Lot 17    

Confederate Dead Outside Battery Robinette, Corinth, Mississippi, CDV
6/23/2011 - American History, Including the Civil War
This carte was produced by Nicholas Brown of St. Louis and is on the original maker's mount marked Brown, Williams & Co., St. Louis, Mo. It was taken on Oct. 5th, 1862, following the attack by Col. William P. Rogers and the 2nd Texas and shows where they died at Fort Robinett, Corinth, Mississippi. This is the only known photograph of Confederate dead in the Western Theater as well as the only image of the dead taken during the war in which some of the dead soldiers are identified. This image is illustrated in Vol. 1 of The Image of War: Shadows of the Storm by Davis & Wiley, editors, p. 326.

Confederate dead lay gathered at the bottom of the parapet of Battery Robinett on the day after the Battle of Corinth. Col. William P. Rogers of the 2nd Texas Infantry (on the very left) seized his colors to keep them from falling again and jumped a five foot ditch, leaving his dying horse and assaulted the ramparts of the battery. When canister shot killed him, he was the fifth color bearer to fall that day. To his right, leaning on his shoulder, is the body of Colonel W.H. Moore, who led a brigade of Missouri and Mississippi troops in futile assaults against Robinette.

On the morning of October 4 an impatient Van Dorn called for a series of headlong frontal attacks against the enemy's heavily fortified position. Colonel Rogers's divisional commander, Gen. Dabney H. Maury, who later described the Second Texas Infantry as "one of the finest regiments I have ever seen," ordered Rogers to lead the vanguard of the assault on Battery Robinett, a small fort anchoring the center of the Union line. After one bloody repulse, Rogers led a second desperate charge. Remaining on horseback in the face of a barrage of cannon and musket fire, and finally carrying the regimental colors himself, Rogers reached the deep trench fronting Battery Robinett, dismounted, and led several hundred Texans and Alabamians down into the trench, up the steep embankment, and into the fort. Suddenly federal reinforcements closed in from both flanks. Rogers shouted, "Men, save yourselves or sell your lives as dearly as possible." A few seconds later he was struck by multiple rifle shots, killing him instantly. Scores of others fell with him, and the battle soon ended. The Second Texas Infantry had lost more than half its numbers in casualties. The failure of Rogers's attack sealed Van Dorn's defeat at Corinth and insured a powerful federal thrust toward Vicksburg the following year.

In a remarkable tribute to Rogers's personal bravery, General Rosecrans ordered his burial attended with full military honors, a ceremony normally reserved only for Confederate general officers.


Condition:  
Even toning to carte.
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