THOMAS J. WILSON, Co. B, 24th Texas Cavalry

THOMAS J. WILSON/Co. B, 24th Texas Cavalry


© Karen McCann Hett  All Rights Reserved 2003-2014

In March 1862, Thomas J. Wilson joined the Second Texas Lancers under Capt. S. D. Wooldridge. Captain Wooldridge's company would later become Company B, 24th Regiment Texas Cavalry. He was a private.

Thomas was born in 1839 in Robertson County, Tennessee, the son of Drury Wilson and Matilda Reding. Matilda is thought to be a niece of Iredell Reding. If so, Thomas J. would be a cousin once removed of George W. Reding.

Drury and Matilda probably married in Illinois. From there they moved back to their home state, Tennessee, in about 1835. Drury bought a town lot from G. B. Pursley in Danville, Montgomery County, Texas, in 1849. He was still there in February, 1850, when he was ordered to serve as a hand to work on roads. However, he was enumerated with his family in Robertson County, Tennessee, in 1850.

They all moved to Montgomery County shortly afterwards, as their daughter Julia married Thomas J. Horton there in 1854, and they are enumerated in Danville in 1860. Thomas J. Horton's sister Charlotte married R. B. White.

Thomas J. Wilson was twenty-two when he joined the Second Texas Lancers under Capt. Samuel D. Wooldridge.

He trained at Camp Carter at Hempstead in April, 1862 and then rode to Arkansas with the other men of his regiment.

There he was dismounted along with the others and was forced to serve as infantry. At this time, the Second Lancers were attached to the CSA and became the 24th Regiment, Texas Cavalry (Dismounted). They were assigned to Garland's Brigade and drilled as infantry at Camp Holmes near Pine Bluff, Arkansas.

The men were then sent to Ft. Hindman at Arkansas Post in the fall, and there they were engaged in building cabins for the winter and digging rifle pits. Thomas was present for the muster roll in October, and was apparently well at that time.

Epidemics and illnesses affected all the soldiers stationed at Arkansas Post, and the hospital was full. Many died that fall, including Thomas, on November 19, 1862.

In a letter to his wife, Private Peter B. Irvine stated “One death since I wrote by Graham. Tom Wilson he died on the 19th of this month of pneumonia.”

Note that the muster roll card from Thomas's file shows that he was last paid to June 30, 1862, and died November 20, with an incorrect year, 1863. This was a copyist's error.

No one knows where those who died that fall were buried, since the Ft. Hindman cemetery has never been found. You may read Ranger Eric Leonard's Comments on the deaths and burials.

Shortly after the war, the Wilson family moved to Travis County, where Drury died in February, 1865. Matilda's death date or place of death is not known.

The above was compiled from compiled service records, census records, county records, and from communication with descendants of Drury and Matilda Hulda (Reding) Wilson. They include Mrs. Ernest Nelson (deceased), Bonnie Harris, Don Horton, Michael Smith, David Martin, and Teresa Tucker.

For further information and records of all Confederate soldiers of Montgomery County, Texas, as well as histories of the regiments they served in, see Montgomery County, Texas, CSA by Frank M. Johnson. Contact Frank at Return to History of Co. B 24th Texas Cavalry

© Karen McCann Hett  All Rights Reserved 2003-2014
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Counter June 24, 2007