26 March 2011

A Civil War Soldier's Life - Part 2 (James A. Rice)

 Part 1.

After being wounded at the Battle of Fort Donelson in February 1862, as a soldier in the 18th Illinois Regiment and discharged from the military because of his injury, James A. Rice later reenlisted, shattered hand and all, and eventually became a captain in the 73rd IL Regiment.

As a captain, James A. Rice suffered a second, even more severe, injury:

In September of 1863 Captain James A. Rice became a POW after being shot in the side at Chickamauga.  An affidavit by D. B. VanWinkle of Perry Co., Illinois, dated 26 June 1867, stated that James A. Rice was wounded in battle at Chickamauga on the 20th day of September 1863 which in battle and in the line of duty. ...That he was left in the field and captured by the enemy -- that his wound was in the side -- that he knows the facts above stated by having been with the C.O. at the time.
 Because James A. Rice was an officer, he was sequestered from soldiers imprisoned at Andersonville (some officers were considered part of the Andersonville prison detention system, but were physically located elsewhere).

Prisoner of War Records show him captd at Chickamauga Ga Sept 20/63, conf'd at Rich Va Sept 30/63*, and sent to Macon Ga May 7/64 ; conf'd at prison camp near Columbia, S.C .; his name is borne on a list of sick and conval. at said Camp, remark wound in hand; paroled at Charleston SC Dec 10/64, reptd at Camp Parole Md Dec 15/64, granted leave of absence Dec 19/64 for 30 days, reptd at Camp Chase O   Feby 1/65, sent to Benton Bk Mo Mar 10/65, where he reptd. Mar 13/14/65, and granted leave of absence Mar 30/65 for 20 days, No Later Record.
*Captain James A. Rice was imprisoned in Richmond's infamous LIBBY PRISON for several months during the years 1863/1864.  He was also a POW in Columbia, South Carolina.  Capt. Rice was also held in Macon, Georgia, in June of 1864.  The capture, the prison pen....a book by POW Willard W. Glazier, included J.A. Rice in the appendix as a fellow POW.

A medical certificate dated at Harrisburg, Ill, Jany 18/65, signed by John W. Mitchell, Examining surgeon, U.S., where professional standing is vouched for shows him (soldier) recovering from a severe attack of Typhoid fever...by long confinement and general bad treatment while in prison and by reason of the disability from induced by said disease. Nothing additional found. Signed: John Truesdale, Actg Chief, Record and Pension Office, Mar 26, 1900.

James A. & Nancy (Patillo) Rice [and unidentified person] photo courtesy of Rice descendant(s)

Pension** papers filed by James A. Rice's widow, Nancy, stated that he died on the 17th day of May 1899 of result of a bullet or gunshot wound for which pensioned, said bullet being lodged near and in close proximity to the spine and there remaining until death. **Labeled Box 45,499/Cert: 499,577 (Said J.A. Rice was pensioner by Cert. No.: 85,718, Chicago, IL, Agency). Widow's No. 699,338

From his pension papers:
Included in James A. Rice's Invalid Pension Papers is a document from the Adjutant General's Office, Washington, D.C., January 2, 1867:

I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt from your Office of application for Pension No. 111076, and to return it herewith, with such information as is furnished by the files of this Office.

It appears from the Rolls on file in this Office, that, James K.(sic) Rice was enrolled on the 1 day of March, 1863, at Murfreesboro, Tenn in Co. K, 73 Regiment of Illinois Volunteers...and mustered into service as a Captain (to date) from the 1 day of March 1863, at Murfreesboro.... On the Muster Roll of Co. K of that Regiment, for the months of Sept. & October 1863, he is reported Capt "Wounded & Missing in the Battle of Chickamauga Sept. 20, 1863." M. out Roll dated June 12, 1865 reports him Mustered out & honorably discharged. Nature of wound not stated.
Civil War service record notations:
JAMES A. RICE, Co. K, 73 Rg't, Ill Inf.

Enrolled June 27, 1862 and Mus. Out June 12, 1865, on (____) roll
From June 27, '62 to June 12, '65 he held the rank of Serg't &
2 Lt commission to date Oct 8, 1862
1st Lt " " Dec 25, 1862
Capt " " Mch 1, 1863
Rolls show him present, except as follows:

Aug 31, '63 sick in Stevenson, Ala
Oct. 31, '63 wounded & missing in the battle of Chickamauga since Sept. 20, 1863
Feby 29, '64...absent - prisoner of war since Sept 20/63, same to Dec 31, '64 with remark exchanged Dec 9, '64
Feby 28/65 absent, Paroled Prisoner at Camp Chase, O


Susan (Nolichucky Roots) said...

Great set of posts. It's impossible to read these and not reflect on today's soldiers and the long term cost of war on those that fought. Thank you for sharing this.

PalmsRV said...

Thanks Susan (Nolichucky Roots); I'm so happy that you enjoyed the posts. I spent quite a bit of time reflecting upon the fate of soldiers the first time I visited Chickamauga and stood where James A. Rice was captured on the battlefield. Cathy

Karen Little said...

Thank for researching and sharing or heritage with us! I know it's a lot of work, but must be exciting when you get a hit. Are we related to him through Katy or Hershel?

Karen Little said...

*Thanks* *our* :-)

PalmsRV said...

Hi Karen, we're related to James A. Rice through Katy.