Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 9, Number 2, May, 1999 Page: 82
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Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal
L. Davidson, and then Vea Young.
Company A-Captain J S Shropshire, Ist
Lieut Thos G Wright, 2nd Lieut D A Hubbard,
Jun 2nd Lieut P J Oaks. When Shropshire was
promoted Wells was elected captain; upon his
death Wright became captain; upon his death P
J Oaks became captain; W S Land, W L Bond,
Sam Henderson, J S Obenchain and Jim Carson
became lieutenants of this company...
February 2, 1888
Val Verde Finished-by W. L. Davidson
February 9, 1888
Three Privates' Account
of the Battle of Val Verde
... It now became apparent that the en-
emy had determined to quit fighting by detach-
ments but intended to throw their whole force
upon us. They sent Hall's battery down the
river, in rear of the Mesa, crossed the river
and sent a portion of it on the Mesa and a por-
tion to the front of it to play on our left and
then crossed their whole force with McRae's
battery in front up in the bend, formed in our
front. McNeil was dispatched with three hun-
dred men to drive them a second time from the
Mesa. As soon as Canby saw McNeil's move-
ments he dispatched the 3rd infantry, Lord's
dragoons and Carson's regiment from his cen-
ter to reinforce Hall on the left. As soon as
Col. Green saw Canby weaken his center, he
ordered our whole line to charge it. We had to
charge 700 yards through a level plain to reach
their artillery, behind which was stationed their
infantry. This plain was covered with tall dry
grass; the grass had been set on fire by the flash
of cannon, and through that grass on fire we
had to go. We were all doing our level best to
get to the cannon. We have heard several men
given the credit of having reached the cannon
first. We don't know who got there first ...
When the charge started Lockridge was directly
in front of company A of the 5th; and this com-
pany did reach the battery first, because when
the charge started we were ordered to fall at
the flash of the enemy's cannon, and that com-
pany did not get that order and kept going all
the time; hence, were a little a head of the other
companies. We know this, for when the enemy
blew up that caison, Henderson, Campbell,
Newsom and Little were on it and were blown
up with it, while our line was about ten feet in
front of their cannon; but there were individu-
als all along our line who went faster than the
line and struck the cannon ahead of company
A. Company A. however, kept their line and
men altogether, and they all closed with the
enemy together, and it was not until they came
to a hand-to-hand struggle that they ever began
to scatter. Lockridge and Shropshire had held
them together until then.
Here the firing was so rapid that it sounded
like one solid crash of musketry, the smoke
was so thick that you could scarcely tell one
man from another, and our faces were so black
with powder and dirt that we looked more like
negroes than white men.
After we had taken the battery and while
we were driving their infantry, Carson and Lord
charged down on us from our left front. We
turned our attention to them and began pelting
them, when the cry went down our line that
they were our men; this caused us to stop the
firing for a short time, until the mistake was
discovered, and then we soon sent them into
the river on top of their infantry.
The way the impression got up that they
were our men was that McNeil had been sent
to drive Hall, Carson and Lord from the Messa,
and at first it was believed to be McNeil re-
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Nesbitt Memorial Library. Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 9, Number 2, May, 1999, periodical, May 1999; Columbus, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth151406/m1/34/?q=nesbitt%20memorial%20library%20journal: accessed November 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Nesbitt Memorial Library.