The Richland Volunteer Rifles and Rhett Guard, 1st South Carolina Volunteers

AUG

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Richland Volunteer Rifle Company 1.jpg

richland-volunteer-rifle-company-2-jpg.jpg

"Review of the volunteer troops in Fort Moultrie, on Sullivan's Island, Charleston Harbor, SC, in the presence of Mrs. [Lucy Holcombe] Pickens and Miss [Jane "Jeannie"] Pickens, the wife and daughter of the governor [Francis W. Pickens] of South Carolina."
(Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper, Feb. 23, 1861)

The two companies shown, the Richland Volunteer Rifles and Rhett Guard, were from Richland District and Newberry District, South Carolina, respectively.

The Richland Volunteer Rifles was one of the oldest militia organizations in the state, dating all the way back to 1813. As an organization, the Rifles had seen service in the Seminole War and the Mexican War; in the latter they served as Company H of the famed Palmetto Regiment.

In January 1861, both companies were mustered into state service for six months in Maxcy Gregg's 1st South Carolina Volunteers as companies A and L, respectively. The regiment was transferred to the Confederate Army and later reorganized in August 1861, after its first term of service expired. The companies would then become C and B of Gregg's 1st South Carolina Infantry (Provisional). They would go on to see a lot of action in the Eastern Theater as part of Gregg's/McGowan's South Carolina Brigade in A. P. Hill's Light Division, Army of Northern Virginia.

The Richland Volunteer Rifles' early war uniform consisted of dark gray pleated hunting shirts, dark gray trousers, and chasseaur-style forage caps. The Rhett Guard wore green hunting frocks, with scarlet sashes and oil-silk caps.

Peterson Borrum Ramage, Co. L, 1st South Carolina Infantry.jpg

Peterson Borrum Ramage of the Rhett Guard. In July of 1861, the Rhett Guard received a new uniform consisting of gray pleated hunting shirts and gray trousers trimmed with green velvet, as well as dark-colored slouch hats pinned up with a star insignia and fitted with black ostrich-feather plumes.
(The Confederate Army, 1861-65, Vol. 1, South Carolina & Mississippi by Ron Field)

tumblr_nruqgb4hac1rm9yhio1_1280-jpg.jpg

Two CDVs of 15-year-old Color Sergeant James "Jimmie" Hunt Taylor of the Richland Volunteer Rifles, who was killed carrying the 1st South Carolina's colors at Gaines' Mill (More on that Here). He may be wearing their militia dress uniform in the photo on the left, or at least the Hardee Hat from that uniform. (Cowan's Auctions)
 

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AUG

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Retired Moderator
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A group photo of some members in 1861.

View attachment 317215
Excellent, thank you for posting! I don't think I've ever seen that image before.

Company A of the 15th South Carolina was actually the Columbia Rifles, also from Richland District. These men must have enlisted in that company after their initial six-month term of service in the 1st South Carolina.
 


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