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Glimpses of Soldiers' Lives: John C. Moore and William Savage Moore

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Brothers Private William Savage Moore and Private John C. Moore of Richmond "Parker" Virginia Light Artillery Battery, 1st Company Howitzers Virginia Light Artillery Battery, and I Company, 15th Virginia Infantry Regiment
Brothers Private William Savage Moore and Private John C. Moore of Richmond "Parker" Virginia Light Artillery Battery, 1st Company Howitzers Virginia Light Artillery Battery, and I Company, 15th Virginia Infantry Regiment
http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.pnp/ppmsca.32465

Twin brothers John C. and William Savage Moore joined the Parker Light Artillery of the Confederate army on March 14th, 1862, at Richmond, Virginia, during the American Civil War. They were just sixteen years old, and did not have their mother’s consent to enlist.

The young soldiers left with the regiment to join the Army of Virginia and prepare for the Second Battle of Manassas. But their mother, Maria Moore, had other plans. She soon wrote to the regiment’s surgeon, claiming that the boys were, as he paraphrased, "in every aspect unfit to do military duty." Perhaps fearing that her statement alone would not hold much weight with the commanding officers, she had her doctor put in a word as well. "I have been the family physician of Mrs. Moore Sr. for 8 years and I am convinced that they are unable to perform active service," he wrote. He claimed they were "very sickly and delicately constituted" and recommended they be discharged.

In the end, it was the boys’ young age, rather than their constitutions, that brought them home. The two were discharged as minors on October 8th, 1862.

Perhaps still smarting from being charged as sickly and delicate, William confirmed the robustness of his constitution once and for all two years later, when, now legally of age, he reenlisted. William joined the First Richmond Howitzers, a Virginia Light Artillery Battery, on July 1st, 1864.

Capture of Petersburg
Capture of Petersburg. Drawing by Alfred R. Waud, 1865 April 2.
http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.pnp/ppmsca.20089

Over the next year, William Moore proved his mettle, and was promoted to Second Lieutenant of the 15th Virginia Infantry’s I Company on March 27th, 1865. Just a few days later, while the regiment fought to stave off the Siege of Petersburg, he was promoted again, to Captain.

Petersburg fell on April 2nd. William was wounded in the left arm, and taken prisoner the next day. By April 6th, he was confined in the hospital at Washington, D.C. There he signed an Oath of Allegiance to the United States of America and was released.  His mother was surely overjoyed to have him home again.

Sources:

"15th Virginia Infantry.” The American Civil War Research Database. http://asp6new.alexanderstreet.com/cwdb/cwdb.object.details.aspx?handle=regiment&id=200764 External link [subscription resource - access inside Library of Congress buildings]

"John C. Moore.” The American Civil War Research Database from The Virginia Regimental Histories Series, (1987). http://asp6new.alexanderstreet.com/cwdb/cwdb.object.details.aspx?handle=person&id=200374835 External link[subscription resource - access inside Library of Congress buildings]

"Richmond Howitzers 1st Virginia Light Artillery Battery (Confederate).” The American Civil War Research Database. http://asp6new.alexanderstreet.com/cwdb/cwdb.object.details.aspx?handle=regiment&id=202584 External link[subscription resource - access inside Library of Congress buildings]

"Richmond Parker Light Artillery.” The American Civil War Research Database. http://asp6new.alexanderstreet.com/cwdb/cwdb.object.details.aspx?handle=regiment&id=200611 External link [subscription resource - access inside Library of Congress buildings]

"William S Moore.” The American Civil War Research Database. http://asp6new.alexanderstreet.com/cwdb/cwdb.object.details.aspx?handle=person&id=200374836 External link [subscription resource - access inside Library of Congress buildings]

"William Savage Moore," Historical Data Systems, comp.. U.S. Civil War Soldier Records and Profiles [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2009. [subscription resource - access inside Library of Congress buildings]


Compiled by: Ann Tyler Moses, Liljenquist Family Fellow, 2012. Last updated 2012 July.
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  November 7, 2012
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