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Brigadier General
Sep 3, 2014
Center Valley, PA
Wow. Lots of info. Thanks. Couple of comments:

Captain William Garnett was a half brother to General Robert S. Garnett’s father Muscoe Garnett.
Got it :smile: Actually Muscoe Garnett was CSA Brigadier General's Bob Garnett's grandfather. His dad was also Robert Shelden Garnett. Interesting note there: Him mom (Charlotte de Gouges) was French, that's where he got his dark features. She was the daughter of a renowned suffragist and abolitionist writer, Olympe, who was at the wrong place at the wrong time.

The whole issue with how Garnett looked is interesting. You have the photo that is typically used to describe him (the one that shows a standing solider with dark hair and a beard. The one that they use in the movie Gettysburg is the one people this is an actual photo of him). Then you have the photo that surfaced a little while ago of a blonde man with the name R. Garnett on the back of it. That has been purported to possibly be Garnett. I am not really sure how he looked. Some of what I have read says he had dark hair and a beard. That was from some eyewitness at Gettysburg.
That eyewitness wrote that in 1905 or so and his testimony is all over the place :wink:

That picture of the guy with the glasses is of Muscoe Russell Hunter Garnett who was a politician both in the US and the CS Congresses (some interesting speeches in the period are still out there, if interested.) . That article was some crappy piece of research. Dick Garnett had blond hair and blue eyes, based on several contemporary reports from his time out West as well as before Gettysburg. Dan Troiani's "Towards the Angle" has a pretty good likeness to what he might looked like (detail below) :


What I don’t have a lot of information on is on Robert. Is your book just about Richard or do you touch on Robert as well?
Just touch, and on Bob's brother Alex (AYP Garnett), who was a physician in Washington, DC, before and during the early war (pretty interesting story, he suffered pretty badly during the war, was exiled, his property confiscated and auctioned and ended up one of Jefferson Davis' personal physicians, only to return to Washington in 1867 or 8 - cannot remember from the top of my head.)

Richard S. Garnett was the rising star in the Confederate Army and had a long career in the US Army and well documented. Someone can write a book, but not me. Fairly central to my book is Dick Garnett's family in WY (and then NE and SD) before and after the Civil War, which really is what interests me. Circumstantial evidence, but I am fairly convinced that he survived Gettysburg and spent the rest of his live out West with his wife and son Billy and they maybe even had a daughter, Sarah, using an assumed name. My research is not complete in that area, I do need to solidify that hypothesis; as I said, right now it is circumstantial, but it is a good story...

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First Sergeant
Jul 15, 2013

So I got the information on the relation to Garnett from my aunt and I slipped up a little bit and your corrections are correct. I appreciate that. I see clearly now where I made my mistake.

I knew a little bit about some of his family members but hadn’t done too much research into them. I think I will start doing that now.

So you talk about Muscoe Russel Hunter Garnett and so I pose to you another purported photo of Garnett (Richard). If you go to google and type in the name Muscoe Russell Hunter Garnett and look over to the right and you will see a photo of a blonde man who is older. I have seen and read (including a couple of professional articles) that people think that this could be a photo of Richard Garnett. But it says it’s a photo of Muscoe Russell Hunter Garnett. Have you seen what people are saying about the photo? I can point you to a few sources I have read about this. Do you think that could actually be him?

I am interested to know where you found the sources to his life out West. I really haven’t looked hard enough, I admit and because I am concentrating more on his Civil War service than his pre-Civil War career. I would be interested in knowing more about his career prior to the Civil War.

It is interesting that you bring up this painting. I have a painting of Garnett as well but it’s not like that one and in the one I have he has dark hair. The painting I have is called We Gained Nothing but Glory by Bradley Schmehl. I have included a picture of it here. Of course Garnett looks different in this painting. I know of a couple other paintings where he has dark hair and a beard as well.


I was aware of the family he had in South Dakota but didn’t know anything about him having family in Nebraska or Wyoming. And then my looking into Garnett, like I said before, came to an end after his time in the Civil War. I didn’t look into any family after the war but I did do some looking into Garnett’s son, Billy. I was out in Montana a few years ago and ran into some information on him and his exploits in the west. I am very interested in learning more about him and his family and what, if any, family he has left today.

Your theory on Richard surviving the charge is a very interesting one. I would certainly like to hear what you have to say about that. You know, not having a body after the battle was always kind of strange to me. He was a general and they should have been able to recognize that on the field when they were collecting bodies. He would have been segregated and sent to his family for burial. Of course then you have the people that believe that he was “obliterated” by canister fire and thus the body would be unidentifiable. I think that is a theory perpetuated by movies and books.

So perhaps your theory is correct.

I am very interested in learning more about that.

I will be the first to buy your book.


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