April is celebrated as Confederate History and Heritage month in Texas. Shelby County enlisted men at Shelbyville and Buena Vista when the war broke out, many thinking their term of enlistment would be for no more than one year. Soldiers from Shelby County served in companies in the following regiments; 3rd Texas Cavalry Co. E (made up also with men from San Augustine County), 28th Texas Cavalry companies A and K, and the 11th Texas Infantry.
The 3rd Texas Cavalry was the first Texas Cavalry unit to serve outside of Texas during the war and fought in the battles of Wilson’s Creek, Vicksburg, Atlanta, Nashville and served as part of the rear guard that enabled General John Bell Hood’s Army of Tennessee to escape total capture.
The 28th Texas Cavalry was dismounted in 1862 and served as an infantry unit for the remainder of the war under the leadership of General Horace Randal. They were later placed in General Walker’s Texas Division under the 2nd Brigade. The unit fought in the battles of Mansfield and Pleasant Hill, Louisiana. They then moved into Arkansas and fought in the swamp of the battle of Jenkin’s Ferry. During the battle General Randal was killed.
The 11th Texas Infantry was under the leadership of Col. Oran Roberts and served in the same brigade as the 28th Texas (dismounted) cavalry. They also fought in the same battles as the 28th. Their participation in the Mansfield and Pleasant Hill Battleskept the Union Army from invading East Texas and capturing Shreveport.
151 years ago, on April 12, 1861 the war began by the firing on Fort Sumter, South Carolina. Other famous battles fought in the month of April were: the battle of Shiloh, aka Pittsburgh Landing on April 6, 1862, the battle of Mansfield on April 9, 1864, and the battle of Pleasant Hill on April 10, 1864. On April 10, 1865 Major General Robert E. Lee surrendered his Army of Northern Virginia at Appomattox Courthouse.
Over 250 confederate soldiers were buried in cemeteries in Shelby County. we ask you to remember the sacrifice these men gave regarding leaving their families and homes.