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6th Regiment, Mississippi Cavalry

Submitted by Len.

Co G (Runnel's Company) raised in Neshoba County, MS

The following unit history is from Dunbar Rowland’s "Military History of 
Mississippi, 1803-1898"; list of companies courtesy H. Grady Howell’s "For Dixie Land, I’ll Take My Stand"

Company A -- Harper’s Company (raised in Noxubee County, MS)

Company B -- Brown’s Company (raised in Itawamba County, MS)

Company C -- Pardue’s Company (raised in Itawamba County, MS), aka Morgan’s Company (raised in Monroe County, MS)

Company D -- Carter’s Company (raised in Tishomingo County, MS)

Company E -- Hunt’s Company (raised in Lowndes County, MS)

Company F -- Harrington’s Company (raised in Lowndes County, MS)

Company G -- Runnel’s Company (raised in Neshoba County, MS)

Company H -- Richards’ Company (raised in Lowndes County, MS)

Company I -- Johnston’s Company (raised in Lowndes County, MS)

Company K -- Lipscomb’s Company (raised in Lowndes County, MS)

Company L -- Williams’ Company (raised in Chickasaw County, MS)

Brief History of the 6th MS Cavalry Regiment

In October, 1863, Colonel Isham Harrison was forming his regiment at Columbus, according to report of Col. Richardson, commanding district. Colonel Harrison was ordered to report to General Ruggles at Columbus, February 11, 1864, his regiment to be armed there. 

On February 23, 1864, Colonel Harrison, now commanding the cavalry brigade in the Columbus district, was directed to send his 6th Cavalry Regiment, Lieutenant-Colonel Sykes' detachment, Colonel Morton's Battalion and Haller’s section of Rice's Artillery to Cotton Gin port for defense of the Tombigbee. February 24, General Lee asked that the regiment be sent to Artesia to await his orders.

The 6th Cavalry Regiment, along with the 4th Cavalry, 14th Confederate, and 38th Mounted Infantry (about 1,000 men in all) was then assigned to Mabry's Brigade. Upon the approach of the third Federal expedition, Mabry's Brigade moved from Saltillo to Ellistown on July 9, 1864 and reported to General Bufford, of CSA Gen.Forrest's Cavalry. CSA Colonel Harris was sent with the Sixth Cavalry Regiment to Plentytude, to operate on the flank of U.S. Gen. A. J. Smith's troops, moving to Pontotoc, and they skirmished on July 11th, 1864. 

On July 13th, Mabry's Brigade, accompanied by CSA Generals Lee and Forrest, followed the enemy toward Tupelo, skirmishing sharply. U.S. Gen. Smith went into line of battle at Harrisburg, and Confederate Generals Lee and Forrest attacked him on July 14, 1864. In this action, Mabry’s Brigade advanced under a furious fire of artillery. Mabry reported: "My line advanced steadily, driving a heavy line of skirmishers back to the fortifications. A most terrific fire of small arms was opened on me when we were within about 300 yards of the works. I immediately ordered a charge, but the heat was so intense and the distance so great that some officers and men fell exhausted and fainting along my line, while the fire from the enemy's line of works by both artillery and small arms was so heavy and well directed that many were killed and wounded. These two causes of depletion left my line almost like a line of skirmishers. At about sixty yards from the enemy's works, seeing that my line was too much weakened to drive the enemy, I halted and directed the men to protect themselves by lying down in a hollow and behind a low fence. I held this position until our second line came up to within about 100 yards of my rear and was repulsed, when I gave the order to fall back. My loss in the hollow and in falling back was severe." 

U.S. Colonel Heath, Thirty-third Missouri (Union), reported that after the repulse of the last assault, Captain McKee's company, deployed to fill a gap in the line, "came upon a party of the enemy (confederate) sharpshooters, whom he charged and drove frown cover," capturing a flag "supposed to belong to the Sixth Mississippi," which the party was "endeavoring to recover from the hands of their dead color bearer."

The total casualties of the 6th Mississippi Cavalry Regiment were 13 killed, 46 wounded, and 14 missing. Among the killed were Col. Isham Harrison, Lieut.-Col. Thomas M. Nelson, Capt. T. G. Fields, and Lieuts. W. D. Carrington, Company H; and A. D. Clifton, Company C. Among the wounded, Lieut. J. F. Clifton, Company B; Sergt. W. J. Sweeney, D; Lieut. J. Turner, E; Capt. A. C. Johnson, Lieut. William Bell, I; Lieut. T. W. Cobb, A.

Total Confederate killed and wounded in the battle were: 1,262; total Federal killed and wounded: 636.

After the battle, CSA Gen. Bedford Forrest wrote, "The battle of Harrisburg will furnish the historian a bloody record, but it will also stamp with immortality the gallant dead and the living heroes it has made. Prominent among the dead the names of Col.. Isham Harrison and Lieut.-Col. Thomas M. Nelson, of the Sixth Mississippi; Lieut.-Col. John B. Cage, commanding Fourteenth Confederate, Lieut.-Col. Sherrill, of the Seventh Kentucky, and Major Robert C. McCay, of the Thirty-eighth Mississippi, will shine in fadeless splendor. They were lion-hearted officers and courteous men. It was a sad blow that struck down these gallant spirits. In unselfish devotion to the cause and high courage they leave no superiors behind among men. Their noble natures and ardent patriotism, it is hoped, will find in the soldier's grave that peace for which their country has thus far struggled in vain, and for the achievement of which they have sacrificed their lives. Future generations will never weary in hanging garlands upon their graves." (Report of General Forrest.)

On August 1, 1864, the brigade reported 400 present for duty. Captain Lipscomb was promoted as Lieutenant-Colonel, commanding the 6th Cavalry Regiment, which was returned to CSA Gen. Wirt Adams' district.

Colonel Lipscomb was at Macon with about 250 of Mabry's Brigade, when Grierson's raiders, from Memphis, struck the Mobile and Ohio Railroad in December, 1864. Grierson eluded most of the Confederate commands, and Lipscomb, in his pursuit, did not come up with him.

In February, 1865, with Mabry's Brigade, Wirt Adams' Cavalry, between Vicksburg and Jackson. On March 3, General Forrest ordered Mabry's Brigade broken up and assigned the 6th Cavalry Regiment to CSA Brig. Gen. Starke's Brigade Starke's brigade arrived at Selma, Ala., during the battle of April 2, but was unable to render assistance. Thence they fell back to Livingston, Ala., their post, April 30, 1865 . The Sixth was consolidated with the Eighth Regiment, Colonel Duff, but under Col. R. G. Brown, retained its identity to the last.

The dates of capitulation were: By General Taylor, commanding department, May 4, 1865; by General Forrest, at Gainesville, Ala., May 22, 1865.

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