Confederate Regiments & Batteries * Alabama

The 8th Alabama Infantry Regiment was organized in May of 1861 in Alabama and fought through the Civil War until surrendered at Appomattox Court House. It mustered 1,377 men during the Civil War, losing 300 men killed or mortally wounded and 170 who died of disease.

May Organized at Montgomery
June 10 Sent to Richmond under Colonel John Anthony Winston, and Major Thomas E. Irby, and accepted into service as the first Confederate command enlisted for the duration of the war.
October 3 Assigned to Fifth brigade, Army of the Peninsula, Colonel Winston commanding post at Yorktown
January 1 Assigned to Second Division, General McLaws commanding, General Magruder’s Department
March 20 Lieutenant Colonel John Wesley Frazer was killed. Major Irby was promoted to lieutenant colonel and Captain Young L. Royston of Company A was promoted to major.
March 29 Reported as “1,000 strong”
Spring Assigned to General Roger Pryor’s Brigade of Longstreet’s Division.
May 5 – 6
Battle of Williamsburg

The regiment lost 100 casualties. Lt. Colonel Thomas Evans Irby was killed, and Major Royston was promoted to lieutenant colonel and Captain Hilary A. Herbert of Company F was promoted to major.

May 31- June 1
Battle of Seven Pines

The 8th Alabama lost 35 men killed, 80 wounded, and 32 men missing or captured. Captains Patrick C. Loughry and Leonard F. Summers and Lieutenant Joshua Kennedy were killed and Major Herbert was wounded.

June 16 Colonel Winston resigned due to chronic rheumatism. Lt. Colonel Young Lea Royston was promoted to colonel. Major Herbert was promoted to lieutenant colonel and Captain John P. Emrich of Company G was promoted to major.
June Attached to Wilcox’s Brigade of Longstreet’s Division
June 26
Battle of Mechanicsville
June 27
Battle of Gaines’ Mill

The regiment lost 31 men killed, 132 men wounded (10 mortally) out of the 350 men engaged. Captains Thomas Phelan and G. W. Hannon and Lieutenants C. M. Maynard, W. H. Lane, and Augustus Jansen were killed. Lieutenants M. Hugh, and McGrath were wounded.

June 30
Battle of Frasier’s Farm (Glendale)

The regiment lost 16 men killed and 57 wounded out of 180 men engaged. Colonel Royston, Captains Crawford E. Blackwood and Duke Nall and Adjutant Daniel Jones were wounded. The colors were captured by the 4th Pennsylvania Reserves Regiment, but survived and, according to the Alabama State Archives, are in the collection of the Museum of the Confederacy in Richmond.

July Longstreet’s Division was divided between its two senior brigadier generals, and the 8th Alabama was assigned to Wilcox’s Division.
August 30
Second Battle of Manassas (Bull Run)

Held in reserve, but suffered 60 casualties

Maryland Campaign

Wilcox’s Division was dissolved and his brigade, along with the 8th Alabama, was assigned to Anderson’s Division of Longstreet’s Command.

September 14-15
Siege and surrender of Harpers Ferry
September 17
Battle of Sharpsburg (Antietam)

The regiment brought 120 men to the field and lost 78 casualties. Major Hillary A. Herbert commanded the regiment, then temporarily took over brigade command for about an hour until he was wounded. Captains Duke Nall and A. H. Ravesies were wounded

December 13
Battle of Fredericksburg

The regiment suffered 1 wounded

May 3 – 4
Battle of Salem Church (Bank’s Ford)

Captain Robert A. McCrary and 6 other men were killed and Colonel Royston and 44 other men wounded. Colonel Royston was badly wounded at the first volley and disabled from field command for the rest of the war.

June 1 Wilcox’s Brigade of Anderson’s Division transferred to the new Third Army Corps under Lieutenant General A.P. Hill.
July 1-3
Battle of Gettysburg

Captain C. P. B. Branegan and 39 other men were killed, Captains Anthony Kohler and Lewis A. Livingston and 144 other men were wounded and 80 men missing out of 420 engaged. Captain Livingston was captured and died in captivity.

From the brigade monument at Gettysburg:

July 2. Formed line here in forenoon. The 10th and 11th Regiments taking position on the right after a severe skirmish with the Union outpost. Advanced at 6 P. M. and broke the Union line on Emmitsburg Road capturing two guns and pursuing rapidly took many prisoners and six more guns. At Plum Run was met by a heavy fire of artillery and fresh infantry and being unsupported after severe losses fell back without being able to bring off the captured guns.

July 3. Took position west of Emmitsburg Road in support of artillery. Soon after Longstreet’s column started an order was received to advance and support it but smoke hiding the oblique course of Pickett’s Division the Brigade moving straight forward found itself engaged in a separate and useless conflict and was promptly withdrawn.

July 4. In line here all day and at dark began the march to Hagerstown.

January 10 Captain M. G. McWilliams died in service
May 5 – 7
Battle of the Wilderness

Lieutenant Colonel Herbert, Major Duke Nall and Captains Thomas Heard and John McGrath were wounded. Major Nall would return to Alabama and die of his chest wound in early 1865.

May 8 – 12
Battle of Spotsylvania Court House

Captain John McGrath was again wounded.

May 31 – June 4
Battle of Cold Harbor
July 30
Battles around Petersburg

Captain Henry McHugh was killed and Lieutenant Colonel John P. Emrich, Captains William R. Knox, William W. Mordecai, George T. L. Robison and Adjutant Morgan S. Cleveland were wounded in the course of the siege.

August 26
Battle of Ream’s Station
November 2 Colonel Royston retired due to his Salem Church wound. Lieutenant Colonel H.A. Herbert was promoted to colonel and then also retired due to disability from his wounds. Major Emrich was promoted to lieutenant colonel and Captain Duke Nall of Company K was promoted to major, although he was wounded and would not return to the regiment.
February 5 – 7
Battle of Hatcher’s Run
April 1 – 9 Retreat to Appomattox
April 9
Appomattox Court House

Surrendered 16 officers and 153 men, but only after defiantly tearing their battle flag to pieces, which were shared among the men as mementos.