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#1
Major Thomas J. Goree of Longstreet's staff, in a letter to his mother, describes the attack of Colonel Micah Jenkins' brigade at the battle of Glendale/Frayser's Farm on June 30, 1862:

The So. Ca. Brigade under the gallant Col. Jenkins commenced the attack. Kemper was on the right of Jenkins, Wilcox on the left, & Pickett's, Pryor, & Featherston still to the left. One of A.P. Hill's (Branch's Brigade) was ordered as a support to Kemper & Jenkins.

Kemper's (which used to be Genl. Longstreet's old brigade) charged & took a battery. The enemy then brought up reinforcements and Branch failing to support Kemper, the battery was retaken and many of the old brigade captured with it. Jenkins in the meantime had taken a battery and still kept forward. His advance at this time was the most desperate I ever knew. A few hundred yards to the left of the battery he took was one that Wilcox was trying to take. Just in Jenkins' front was a very large force of the enemy's infantry which he immediately engaged, when this battery on his left commenced on him with grape and canister. Thus he advanced in the face of a terrible musketry fire at the same time enfiladed by artillery. Notwithstanding, he pushed on, charged the enemy and drove them from their position with terrible slaughter. He then brought up Branch's Brigade to hold the position. But as soon as they reached the place and saw how far in advance it was & the number of the enemy a half mile farther on, they turned & fled. Being left so far in advance unsupported, Jenkins fell back from position & went to the assistance of Wilcox. The enemy did not return to the position he left. Wilcox during this time had been fighting desperately. He had taken a battery, but it had been retaken, but when Jenkins came in, they made another charge and held it....

....The So. Carolina Brigade (Jenkins') lost more than half & the Ala. Brigade (Wilcox) lost at least one half. The 11th Ala. (Col. Syd Moore's Reg.) out of 10 officers commanding companies lost 8 killed & two wounded. The Palmetto Sharpshooters (Col. Jenkins' Regt.) out of 375 men, lost 44 killed & 210 wounded.

His own escape was almost miraculous. His horse was shot twice. A hole was shot through his saddle blanket, his bridle reins cut in two near his hand. An India rubber overcoat tied on behind his saddle had 15 holes through it made by a musket ball & piece of shell. His sword was shot off at the point, & shot half in two near the hilt, & his sword knob was also shot off. Besides all this he was struck on the shoulder with grape shot (which bruised it severely) and was also struck on the breast & leg with fragments of spent shell.

I met him just as he was coming out of the fight and he was weeping like a child at the destruction of his brave, noble men. He told me at one time when he saw how fast they were falling around him, he stopped and prayed to God to send a bullet through his heart. He says, too, that at times as he would ride up and down the line, his men would turn and give him a look as much as to say, "We can go no further," when he would wave his hand to them and they would again dash forward.

- The Civil War Letters of Major Thomas J. Goree edited by Thomas W. Cutter (Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 1995)

Jenkins' Brigade:
2nd South Carolina Rifles
4th South Carolina (Battalion)
5th South Carolina
6th South Carolina
Palmetto Sharpshooters

dec15micahjenkins.jpg

Colonel (later Brigadier General) Micah Jenkins. Two years later he was infamously killed by the same friendly fire that wounded Longstreet at the Wilderness on May 6, 1864.
 
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AUG

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Major Goree also wrote to his sister about Col. Jenkins' exploits earlier at the Battle of Seven Pines:

Genl. Anderson's S.C. Brigade under Col. Jenkins (Genl. Anderson being temporarily in command of a division) immortalized itself. Col. Jenkins carried the brigade into action about 3 o'clock P.M., a little further to the left of where Genl. D.H. Hill was engaged. From this time until night he fought unsupported and alone, and advancing all the time. He fought 5 separate & distinct lines of the enemy, whipping each one. He whipped the whole of Genl. Couch's Division, consisting of 12 or 15 regiments, with a little brigade of 1900 men. He passed over several abattis of felled timber, two lines of breastworks, captured three pieces of artillery, 250 prisoners, & several stands of colors.

He whipped the fifth lines of the enemy about 3 O'clock P.M. At that time he was near two miles in advance of anyone else. His brigade rested that night in a Massachusetts camp, and had every luxury nearly that you can imagine: a plenty of brandy, lemons, & preserved fruits of all sorts, oil clothes, boots and shoes, opera glasses, etc. etc. etc.

The Yankee prisoners were perfectly surprised when they found he had accomplished so much with only one little brigade. They told him that every line he met was composed of fresh troops, and that they thought he was receiving reinforcements all the time.

Genl. Longstreet was very much surprised, too, when Col. Jenkins came in at night, and reported where his brigade was. This brigade went into action with 1900 men. It lost 700 killed & wounded, & among this number were more than half of its field officers, and near one third of the line officers. But, it never faltered, nor even stopped. It advanced slowly but steadily for more than two miles, all the time in the face of a galling fire, and nearly all the way over felled timber & the enemy's breastworks.

- The Civil War Letters of Major Thomas J. Goree edited by Thomas W. Cutter
 
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AUG

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#7
IIRC Jenkins, as a result of having survive a number of wounds and near misses early in the War, developed a belief that a Yankees couldn't kill him. He was right, but .....
I recall reading that he once said something along the lines of "A Yankee bullet will never kill me." sorry, can't find the original source to that though.

I do have a good account of Jenkins' death at the Wilderness by his friend, Asbury Coward, that I might post here later.
 

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Colonel Asbury Coward of the 5th South Carolina Infantry recalls the incident at the Wilderness, in which Jenkins was killed by friendly fire and Longstreet wounded:

After we had marched in line about 100 yards through brush and woods, we came upon a line of men, about two small regiments, lying down or kneeling directly in the path of our march. I had to halt my men and on inquiry found it was General Mahone's Brigade, who had just halted there. Seeing at the time a flag passing along the tunpike, I ran toward it through the intermediate thicket to inquire what troops they were. It was the Second South Carolina, one of the regiments of Jenkins' Brigade. I could not understand why they were marching in columns of fours, while I was marching in line of battle.

As I turned, I saw that Mahone's men had commenced, on the right, to fire by file. Thinking only of the danger to the Second Regiment, I rushed back to stop the firing by voice and gesture. But not until I reached the line was the firing stopped. At that moment Mahone walked up and enquired why the firing had stopped. I explained why I had stopped it. He then asked me who had started it. I told him the firing had begun in his right company. I went on to say that they might be able to explain how it started there. He went off in the direction of his right company in a very agitated state.

The incident had just taken place when Major R. M. Sims came to me and said: "That firing has wounded both General Longstreet and General Jenkins, one in the throat and the other in the temple... and I fear both are fatally wounded." I ran toward the group of trees that he indicated and found men lifting General Longstreet, litter and all, into an ambulance. Jenkins had just been placed on a litter. General Kershaw, who had remounted his horse, was urging haste; for the enemy's cannon was throwing shells at the cluster of trees. Fortunately, the shots were passing high but were nevertheless dangerous.

I knelt by the friend of my life since I entered The Citadel, my alter ego. Taking his hand in mine, I said "Jenkins... Mike, do you know me?" I felt a convulsive pressure of my hand. Then I noticed that his features, in fact his whole body, was convulsed. The haste urged by General Kershaw prevented any further stay at his side. He was lifted into an ambulance and carried to the rear. Dazed, I returned to my regiment.

- The South Carolinians: Colonel Asbury Coward's Memoirs.
Ed. and comp. by Natalie Jenkins Bond and Osmun Latrobe Coward. New York: Vantage Press, 1968
 

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#9
Bump for anniversary of the Battle of Glendale/Frayser's Farm/Willis Church Road, etc.

Here's an earlier photo of Jenkins when he was Colonel of the 5th South Carolina Volunteers.

Micah%2BJenkins.jpg


And a later photo of him as Brigadier General, with his frock coat on the right which is currently at the South Carolina Confederate Relic Room & Military Museum in Columbia, SC.
Expired Image Removed
 

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#10
Bump for anniversary.

Here is an article in the Yorkville Enquirer, Augusts 7, 1862, detailing the actions of the Palmetto Sharpshooters at Glendale/Frayser's Farm. It was authored by war correspondent F. G. DeFontaine, going by the pseudonym "Personne".

Frayzer's Farm 1.jpg

Frayzer's Farm 2.jpg

Frayzer's Farm 3.jpg

Frayzer's Farm 4.jpg

Frayzer's Farm 5.jpg

Frayzer's Farm 6.jpg

Frayzer's Farm 7.jpg

Frayzer's Farm 8.jpg

Frayzer's Farm 9.jpg


The entire article, which also details their actions at Seven Pines and Gaines' Mill, can be read here: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn84026925/1862-08-07/ed-1/seq-1/
 

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Was reading through Lt. A. A. Dean's memoirs which can be read online here: http://batsonsm.tripod.com/deanaa.html

He served in Co. G, 2nd South Carolina Rifles in Jenkins' Brigade and left a pretty good account of Glendale/Frayser's Farm.


On Sunday morning, June 29, 1862, we marched back up the river for some distance, crossed and went back to our camp near Richmond. We did not stop but turned down in the direction of Malvern Hill. On Monday evening we were in the battle of Frasier’s Farm. We formed in line of battle along a fence with a house in front of us and a patch around the house. There was a large cherry tree full of ripe cherries. Several men climbed up in it and were eating cherries when our artillery commenced firing at the Yankees and they replied with fourteen cannons. Those fellows did not climb down; they just fell out of that tree. They got enough cherries all at once and did not want anymore.

Our battery that commenced firing had three cannons. They went down about a hundred and fifty yards in front of us and opened on the enemy. When the Yankees replied with their fourteen cannon in a few minutes our fellows came back to the house that was in the patch in front of us, where we were lying. They put one cannon at one corner of the house, another at the other, and commenced firing. There were people in the house at the time. The left one of the guns where they first opened fire, said the enemy got the range so well they had to move. They were right in front of us and their firing drew the enemy’s firing on us. The shells were bursting in front of us and all about us. Many of them passed over us and went through the pines behind us, striking trees and limbs. It was awful, there is where I was SCARED so. I had never heard such firing in my life and had rather had a hole three feet deep in the ground than to have had all the gold that has ever been found in California. Just then I was so scared I was weak and felt that I was hardly able to get up. It was not long until (we) were ordered forward and I went all right.

We marched out into the road and turned in the direction of the enemy. We had gone only a short distance when a shell struck C.B. Cox, a man of our company in the back of the head and killed him so quick I don’t think he ever felt it. We went on a short distance further to the right and passed the cannon our men had left where they first opened fire on the enemy. As we were passing it a shell from the Yankee’s guns passed over our heads close to us. Major Keys dodged down nearly to the ground. I said, “Major, does it scare you?” He said, “Yes, it does.” I said, “It don’t scare me no more than nothing.” As soon as I got up and started forward in line of battle from where we had been lying that scared feeling passed off. After passing that gun we faced the left and moved forward in line of battle. going down through an old field, crossing a swamp where there were bushes, mud, and bamboo briars. It was such a bad place that I could hardly have gone at all had I not been going into a battle or something of the kind. We went up through an old field for a short distance and crossed a fence into a field. As soon as we got into it the Yankees commenced firing at us with the fourteen cannon, which were loaded with grape and canister, and small arms too. We were not more than a hundred yards from them and our men were mowed down but we kept advancing just as fast as we could shooting all the time. Onetime I bit off the end of the cartridge and did not take time to take all the paper off it but put it in my gun and tried to ram it down, but it did not go. I was walking up and down the line trying to get it down. I spoke to C.E. Horton and said, “Lige, I have got my gun choked and can’t get the ball down.” He said, “Throw it down and get another.” I did, my gun that was choked was number 2143, the gun that I ==ke== was number 2222 and I carried that gun until I was made lieutenant, over two years. About that time I heard the command, “Fix bayonets” and then “Charge.” As soon as I heard that I began yelling as loud as I could. We started at double quick and drove the Yankees back, captured those cannons, followed the Yankees down to another branch and swamp. I noticed Lieut. Cox, who was in command of our company, walking along by the side of the swamp, looking for a place to cross. He fell forward on his face, drew up his legs and straightened them out, that was his last. A ball had gone through his left arm into the side about his heart. He was a good soldier and a good man.

As I reached the side of the swamp, Frank Davis, a fellow that belonged to company F of our regiment, shot into the bushes down in the swamp, and just as he fired a ball struck his head. He fell so near me I could have caught him. He was badly wounded but so far as I know he is still living. I went on up through a old field to another old field and saw a GREAT MANY Yankees away over at the far side of it. I thought we ought to go right on for I was very much enthused at what we had done. I thought we could whip all the Yankees that we could find but we stopped there and fired for sometime. An officer said, “Don’t run.” I thought he was speaking to me and I said, “I am not running but am shooting as often as anybody.” I had no idea of running but directly noticed that nearly all of our men had left. I could see a great many of them going down through the old field toward the branch. I started too, but thought we would go only a short distance, reform our line and advance again. They kept on and I went on down to the branch and into the swamp. Before I got to it I could see some of our men going across the field where we had captured the Battery, though I did not know why they were retreating. After getting into the swamp I found a spring of water. As it was a hot day I lay down and took a hearty drink, about that time the Yankees poured a heavy volley into the swamp and I knew then why our men had fallen back. The brigade on our right gave way and the Yankees were about to get in our rear. The Yankees were very close to me when they fired into the swamp but I could not see them. The Yankees came back to the battery we had taken from them but another line of our men came up and drove them back again. The fight was kept up until after dark and the enemy was driven off the field though again we lost a great many men. Our company had thirty-two in the fight if I recollect right, about half of them were killed or wounded. Five of them were killed while we were advancing on that battery. I noticed that when the grape and canister fired from those guns struck the ground near us they would knock the dirt eight or ten feet high. How they did mow our men down!​
 

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#12
I recall reading that he once said something along the lines of "A Yankee bullet will never kill me." sorry, can't find the original source to that though.
I've since read the bio of Jenkins, The Struck Eagle by James J. Baldwin since I first posted this thread. Great read on him, the Palmetto Sharpshooters and his brigade.

I should add that Jenkins' actual quote was, "I feel the bullet has not been molded that is to kill me." He said this at the battle of Williamsburg - before his miraculous escape at Frayser's Farm - when someone told him he was unnecessarily exposing himself to danger. I swear I've heard someone say "yankee bullet" or something to that effect, but the quote has probably been distorted over time to fit his later death to friendly fire.
 

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#13
Thanks. The latest writer on the Battle of Glendale, Crenshaw, makes an unsupported (and much contradicted) case that Jenkins' attack was ordered and was later in the battle. In fact the engagement at the crossroads was initiated by Jenkins exceeding his orders to advance the Palmento Sharpshooters to suppress a battery and instead charging his brigade at at. These first hand accounts confirm the accepted version of events.
 

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Bump for the anniversary of the battle.

Here are a couple letters by Jenkins written to his wife, Caroline, shortly after:


July 3, 1862.

My Own Dearest:

I write with the most saddened feelings. God has been most merciful, but, oh my God, what terrible trials have we been through. Nearly all my best friends, men and officers, killed and wounded. In my regiment in the fight on Monday I carried 375 men and had 250 killed and wounded. Never was such gallantry shown. I had the brigade and was ordered forward by Generals Anderson and Longstreet. The enemy behind breastworks poured their fire into us until within 30 feet before they gave back, and 12 pieces of artillery, for a quarter of a mile, enfiladed my line at 300 yards with grape and shell. We drove everything before us, but when we got there scarce anybody left. Even the Yankee officers, the colonel commanding the brigade, said never was such a charge made before. I have not time to write you more now. Poor John
*, shot through the lungs. I pray God he may recover. I am the most singular instance of the providence of God. My sword shot off with a grape, broken again by a ball, the sword knot cut by a ball, my bridle rein cut with a ball, my saddle cloth cut with a ball, my horse shot under me twice, my overcoat, tied behind my saddle, cut in a dozen places with shell, I hit upon the shoulder with a grape and upon the breast with a shell, am here to praise and bless Him. And if I live, my wife, my life is His hereafter. I dedicate it to His service. May God bless and keep you. I have not time to write more.

Yours till death,

Micah Jenkins.



Headquarters 2nd Brigade, July 6, 1862.

My Precious Wife:

A beautiful Sabbath morning, and I trust it will be a peaceful day. I have tried to give you a full account of all the sad scenes I have lately passed through, sad, though glorious. I feel broken up, having lost so many of my best officers and men. My regiment has acted a glorious part in the great battles before Richmond. I have done more and suffered more than any regiment in the service. My movements have been acknowledged to have been brilliant, but thus far the authorities seem determined to ignore me. General R. H. Anderson acting as major general, I have been called on to act as brigadier, and I think it likely that before long we both will receive what all seem to think a well-merited promotion. I am much grieved at the death of my noble Major William Anderson, who died from his wounds day before yesterday. I have not heard from John
* in the last day or two. I do hope and pray the noble boy will not die, but is sadly hurt, I fear. I telegraphed your father to come on at once, and I hope he got my telegram. I sent him to Dr. Seabrook Jenkins' room with the request that he would nurse him just as he would me, and not to let him want anything that money could buy. He will get every attention. I regret very much that I cannot get to see him, but we are now twenty-five miles from Richmond and before the enemy, who have taken refuge under the guns of their gunboats between the Chickahominy and James rivers and protected by them on either side. We will scarcely attack them in that position, and I cannot imagine what will be our next move. Indeed, we of the fighting rank do not know what the intention of the enemy is, our generals keeping us in the dark or not certain themselves.

We have had desperate fighting, and I have had the hottest place in nearly every fight. General Longstreet says he is more than satisfied and that he found my dead further than those of any other. My noble fellows acted nobly, but the other brigades did not support me. I do not believe such troops were ever led before upon the field of battle.
I have not fully recovered the use of my right arm, the muscles seem deadened by the blow of the grape, but I suppose that in a week or ten days it will be all right.

I am very sorry that I did not see Mr. Johnson before his return. His son is my assistant surgeon, and we are all pleased with him. I find him willing as well as efficient.

In our battles we must have damaged the enemy fifty thousand men. We have taken 110 pieces of artillery from the enemy, and under any circumstances I do not think another battle is for some time likely.

Give my love to all, kiss my dear little boys, and believe me yours fondly till death.

M. Jenkins.

To Mrs. M. Jenkins.

- Career and Character of General Micah Jenkins, C. S. A.
by John P. Thomas, p. 17. Stories of the Confederacy ed. by U. R. Brooks, pp. 64-65.


* Lt. John Wilson Jamison, Jenkins' brother-in-law and aide-de-camp. Severely wounded through the lungs but eventually recovered.
 

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