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Archibald Jasper Murphy, Private, Company L,
2nd Mississippi Infantry Battalion /
48th Mississippi Infantry Regiment CSA

My maternal 2nd great-granduncle, Archibald Jasper Murphy, served in Company L, 2nd Mississippi Infantry Battalion / 48th Mississippi Infantry Regiment from 12 May 1862 to May 1865.

Twice captured and once wounded, Archibald J. Murphy was fortunate to survive the war. His battalion/regiment, assigned to the Army of Northern Virginia, saw years of savage fighting: Seven Pines, the Seven Days, Second Manassas, Antietam, First and Second Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Fredericksburg _II, the Wilderness, the Bloody Salient at Spotsylvania, North Anna, the seize of Petersburg, and the defense of Fort Gregg [Petersburg_III]. A.J. Murphy
  • missed Gettysburg due to capture in the aftermath of Second Fredericksburg
  • missed Cold Harbor due to hopitalization/furlough after a gunshot wound at the battle of North Anna, Virginia
  • missed Lee's surrender of the Army of Northern Virginia at Appomattox Court House, Virginia, due to capture in the final day of defense of Petersburg/Richmond

    Archibald Jasper Murphy survived 36 month of war. In contrast, his younger brother, David Huston Murphy, who enlisted in the same unit at the same time, died of pneumonia after ~ 2 months of combat, ~ 4 month of illness, and ~ 1 month of hospitalization. D.H. Murphy's death to disease bears witness to the fact that two-third of the soliders' deaths in the American Civil War were due to disease.

    Archibald Jasper Murphy's story is detailed below.

  • Archibald Jasper Murphy was born on 15 Feb 1832 in Florence, Alabama. He was the 9th of 14 children born to Archibald and Anna G. [nee THOMPSON] MURPHY. His father was born in Scotland on 12 Jan 1794 and immigrated to the USA before 1815. His mother was born on 20 Aug 1800 in Rutherford County, Tennessee.

    Archibald J. Murphy enlisted as a Private in Captain Joel P. Rogers’ Company [Oktibbeha Reserve or Oktibbeha Rescue] on 12 May 1862 at West Point, Clay County, Mississippi. He was 30 years of age. His next younger brother, David Huston Murphy, then 27 years of age, enlisted in the same unit at the same date and place. A.J. Murphy and family are reported in the 1860 Census of Oktibbeha County, Mississippi. Clay County is adjacent to and north of Oktibbeha County.

    Another younger brother, Charles Alexander Murphy, served in the 2nd Mississippi Partisan Rangers Cavalry [Ballentine's] Regiment.

    On 17 January 1863, the 2nd Mississippi Infantry Battalion was increased to regiment strength and designated the 48th Mississippi Infantry Regiment. Captain Joel P. Rogers’ Company was henceforth designated Company L of the 48th Mississippi Infantry Regiment. A.J. Murphy is reported in the roster of both
  • Company L, 2nd Mississippi Infantry Battalion
  • Company L, 48th Mississippi Infantry Regiment


    Archibald J. MURPHY served in the 2nd Mississippi Infantry Battalion for 08 months, 12 May 1862 to 17 January 1863. He served in the 48th Mississippi Infantry Regiment for 28 months, from 17 January 1863 to until his release from Prisoner of War status at the end of the war; nominally, May 1865. Thus, Arch J. MURPHY served about 36 months; May 1862 to May 1865.

    While in service, Arch J. MURPHY was
  • taken prisoner of war at Fredericksburg, Virginia, on 05 June 1863 in action on a river in the aftermath of First Fredericksburg, at the end of the Chancellorsville Campaign [April-May 1863].
    See details of the engagement in Note_01, below.
  • hospitalized in June 1863 at Farmville, Virginia, for a gunshot wound of right hand. The wound was received 24 May 1864, fracturing two fingers and the thumb. The date of the wound corresponds with the dates of the Battle North Anna, Virginia, 23-26 May 1864, in which his regiment was engaged. See details of the engagement in Note_04, below.
  • furloughed for 60 days on 17 Jun 1864 following his hospitalization; the furlough is taken to have been from 17 Jun to 16 Aug 1864
  • taken prisoner of war at the battle in defense of Fort Gregg, Virginia, on 02 Apr 1865, the day before Lee abandon Petersburg and Richmond.
    See details of the engagement in Note_05, below.

    While Archibald Jasper Murphy was in service, the 2nd Mississippi Infantry Battalion was engaged in the following battles which had a direct impact on the course of the war and / or a decisive influence on a campaign:
  • Seven Pines [aka, Fair Oaks], Virginia, 31 May - 01 June 1862
  • Gaines' Mill [aka, Beaver Creek], Virginia, 27 Jun 1862
  • Frayser’s Farm [aka, Glendale], Virginia, 30 June 1862
  • Second Manassas, Virginia, 28 - 30 Aug 1862
  • Harper's Ferry, West Virginia, 12 - 15 Sept 1865
  • Antietam, Maryland, 17 Sept 1862
  • First Fredericksburg , Virginia, 13 Dec 1862

    While Archibald Jasper Murphy was in service,
  • not a prisoner,
    and
  • not on furlough,
    the 48th Mississippi Infantry Regiment was engaged in the following battles which had a direct impact on the course of the war and / or a decisive influence on a campaign:
  • Chancellorsville, Virginia, 01 - 04 May 1863
  • Second Fredericksburg, Virginia, 03 May 1863
  • Bristoe Station, 14 Oct 1863
  • Mine Run, Virginia, 27 Nov - 02 Dec 1863
  • The Wilderness, Virginia, 05 - 06 May 1864
  • Spotsylvania Court House, Virginia, 08 - 21 May 1864; specifically, at the Bloody Salient
  • North Anna, Virginia, 23 - 26, May 1864
  • Deep Bottom II, Virginia, 13 - 20 Aug 1864
  • Global Tavern [aka, Second Battle of Weldon Railroad], Virginia, August 18 - 21 1864
  • the defense of Petersburg, Virginia, occupying Rives’ salient on the Petersburg lines for more than two months where they were under fire of artillery and sharpshooters all day, and sharpshooters and mortars at night
  • Petersburg_III [Fort Gregg], Virginia, 02 Apr 1865

    Arch J. Murphy imprisonment is assumed to have been 3 months. [see Note_02 and Note_06, below]. His military service records have been ordered from the Mississippi State Archive; corrections / additions will be made when available.

    Due to his gunshot wound, 24 May 1864, hospitalization, and furlough, taken to have been from 17 Jun to 16 Aug 1864, Arch J. Murphy missed
  • the end days of Grant's Overland Campaign, which included the Battle of Cold Harbor, 31 May - 12 Jun 1864
    and
  • first two months of the defense of the Federals' Richmond-Petersburg Campaign.

    Due to his capture at Fort Gregg, Petersburg, Virginia, on 02 Apr 1865, Arch J. Murphy also missed Lee's army's desperate westward movement from Richmond/Petersburg and capitulation at Appomattox Court House, 09 Apr 1865.

    Archibald Jasper Murphy regiment, assigned to the Army of North Virginia, fought in many savage battles, including at the Bloody Salient in the Battle of Spotsylvania Court House; Grant's Overland Campaign from the Battle of the Wilderness to the Battle of Cold has been described as 60 miles/60,000 casualtie's; albeit, 80,000 seems a better number for the total died, wounded, or missing [in American Civil War parlance, 'missing' means: unidentified dead, taken prisoner, or taken flight, deserted].

    Archibald Jasper Murphy married Harriet Jane Murray, born 22 Aug 1831, on 23 Dec 1848. They had 09 children, 1851 - 1870. Five children were born before the war; four, after.

    Notably, Archibald Jasper Murphy, Junior, born 10 Apr 1865; was apparently conceived during , Archibald Jasper Murphy, Senior's, mid-June to mid-August furlough from the Army of Northern Virginia. Do the math.

    Arch J. Murphy died on 30 May 1919 in Choctaw County, Mississippi, and is buried in Nebo Cemetery. His wife, Harriet Jane [nee Murray] Murphy, died on 28 Jan 1915 in Choctaw County, Mississippi, and is also buried in Nebo Cemetery.

  • Notes
    Note_01, A.J. Murphy's First Capture, 05 June 1863:
    Arch J. Murphy's first capture is taken to have been associated with the following event described in the 48th Mississippi Infantry Regimental history in Dunbar Rowland’s Military History of Mississippi, 1803-1898:
      After this they were at Fredericksburg until Lee's army was in motion for Pennsylvania, A. P. Hill's corps, to which they were now attached, being the last to leave the front of Hooker's army. The brigade was moved below Fredericksburg and occupied the line of the valley road, the Forty-eighth Regiment being thrown to the front and deployed as skirmishers along the river bank. The enemy, desiring information of the movements of General Lee, on the 5th of June [1863] placed pontoons in the river and crossed a large force of infantry and artillery. After a spirited engagement the Forty-eighth Regiment was compelled by superior numbers to fall back to the line occupied by the other regiments of the brigade. The enemy did not pursue. [Harris' Diary.] Next day the brigade began to march to to Pennsylvania, and they reached the battlefield of the 1st July, near Gettysburg, on the evening of that day. Next day they were advanced to the front of the Federal line on Cemetery ridge.
    The aforementioned river is taken to be the Rappahannock River.

    Note_02, Release From First Capture
    Arch J. MURPHY's first incarceration is assume to have been for a period of about three months. This is base on the history of my paternal great-grandfather, Henry Harrison High. H.H. High was taken prisoner of war at the surrender of Fort Hindman, Arkansas Post, Arkansas, imprisoned at Camp Douglas [Chicago], Illinois, paroled, transported to City Point, Virginia, and exchanged. Henry H. High period of incarceration was almost 3 months to the day, 11 January 1863 to 10April 1863.

    Note_03, Battle of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania:
    Due to his capture at Fredericksburg, Virginia, on 05 June 1863, Arch J. Murphy almost certainly missed the Battle of Gettysburg; a propitious consequence. The 48th Mississippi Infantry Regimental participation in the second day's Battle at Gettysburg was described in Dunbar Rowland’s Military History of Mississippi, 1803-1898, as follows:
      The regiment went into battle July 2 on the left of Wright's Georgia brigade, in that part of the field where their division, Anderson's of A. P. Hill's corps, attacked the Federal positions at the peach orchard and in the vicinity of Little Round Top.

    Note_04, A.J. Murphy's Wounding, 24 May 1864:
    The 48th Mississippi Infantry Regimental participation in the Battle at North Anna is referenced in Dunbar Rowland’s Military History of Mississippi, 1803-1898, as follows:
      On this line and the North Anna line and later at Cold Harbor, the regiment was in almost continuous battle for weeks, without time for a bath or change of clothing.

    Note_05, A.J. Murphy's Second Capture, 02 Apr 1865:
    The 48th Mississippi Infantry Regimental participation in the defense of Fort Gregg, 02 April 1864, was described in Dunbar Rowland’s Military History of Mississippi, 1803-1898, as follows:
      In the famous deed of April 2, 1865, distinguished in the annals of military chivalry, the Forty-eighth Regiment, under Colonel Jayne, was posted with the Nineteenth [Mississippi Infantry Regiment] in Battery Whitworth, from which all the artillery was withdrawn. From this position they aided materially in the defense of Fort Gregg, against which the main attack was made, as well as repulsed the demonstration against their own fort, made by Harris' West Virginia brigade and other troops. When Gregg was captured many of the Nineteenth and Forty-eighth were compelled to surrender.

    Note_06, Release From Second Capture; After Lee's and Johnston's Surrender
    Archibald Jasper Murphy is assumed to have been paroled and released in May 1865 based on the story of my patrilineal great-grandfather. Sgt. James Robert Box, 14th Texas [Dismounted] Cavalry, who was captured at Spanish Fort, Alabama, 08 April 1865 and, subsequently, paroled and released at Meridian, Mississippi, 11 May 1865.

    Note_07,1860 Oktibbeha County Census
    The 1860 Oktibbeha County Census reports household 907 consisting of:
  • Archy Murphy, age 27
  • Harriet, age 29
  • Frances, age 09
  • Eliza, age 08
  • John, age 03

  • Sources
    Ref_01: Charles Williams' RootsWeb WorldConnect database entry in part derived from early work by his grandmother Zelle [nee Murphy] Williams, published on the World Wide Web. Charles Willams reports that Zelle [nee Murphy] Williams' data is the result of forty years of devotion to and perseverance in the genealogy research.
    Ref_02: Roster of Confederate Soldiers, 1861-1865, Broadfoot Publishing Company, Wilmington, NC, 1999. Accessed at the University of Colorado, Boulder, Libraries.
    Ref_03: NPS CWSSS Soldiers Records website.
    Ref_04: NPS CWSSS Regimental Histories website.
    Ref_05: NPS CWSSS Battle Summaries website.
    Ref_06: Compendium of the Confederate Armies: Mississippi, Stewart Sifaki, Facts On File Books, New York, New York, 1995. Accessed at the University of Colorado, Boulder, Libraries.
    Ref_07: Regimental History of 2nd Battalion Mississippi Infantry/48th Regiment Mississippi Infantry [derived from Dunbar Rowland’s Military History of Mississippi, 1803-1898], published on the World Wide Web.
    Ref_08: 1860 Oktibbeha County Mississippi 1860 Census, 'Started in July Families Numbered in order of visitation'.

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