On July 6, 1861, the 9th Regiment of Louisiana Volunteers was organized and sworn in to
Confederate service at Camp Moore, La. The unit was comprised of six companies that were sworn in for
the duration of the war and four companies for enlistments for twelve months. The regiment was placed
under the command of Colonel Richard Taylor and immediately began their journey to the Eastern Theater.
The Regiment arrived on the battlefield of 1st Manassas on July 21, 1861, too late to be involved in
the fight as problems with transportation kept them from the field until the engagement had been
terminated. The men of the 9th Louisiana were very disheartened by missing this engagement and thought
that the war would be over and they would not be involved in any combat. Nothing could have been further
from the fact and in the next four years, the Sons of Louisiana would be involved in some of the bloodiest
battles of the War Between the States and but a few would ever return to their homes, death from combat
and disease would forever keep them in the hallowed grounds so far from home.
The 9th Louisiana Infantry went into camp at Camp Florida, near Centreville, Virginia and would
remain their until the spring. No other regiment suffered from the ravages of disease as the farm boys of
the 9th. This was many of them's first exposure to such diseases as measles, mumps and Typhoid Fever.
By August, over 100 men had died or been discharged medically. Hoping that winter, with the cooler
weather would slow or stop the diseases, and would stop the deaths, only to find that other illnesses such a
pneumonia, were waiting to claim even more of the Louisianans.
Of the 1,474 men that enrolled in the regiment, 233 were killed or mortally wounded in combat, 349
died of disease, and 4 were killed accidentally. Not represented in these figures are the men that were
disabled by wounds or disease, some for short periods of time and many others for the rest of their lives.
In the early spring of 1862, the entire Confederate Army was re-organized and the 9th Louisiana
Infantry Regiment was brigaded with the 6th, 7th, 8th Regiments and Wheat's Battalion. Colonel Richard
Taylor was promoted to Brigadier General and placed in command of this new brigade. The 9th Louisiana,
as had many other regiments, reorganized and had thrown out many of their previous commanders and
elected new ones. Captain Leroy Augustus Stafford, commander of Company B, Stafford Guards from
Rapides Parish, was promoted to the rank of Colonel and given command of the 9th Louisiana Infantry.
This soon to be famous Louisiana Brigade, commanded by B.Gen. Richard Taylor, was placed in
General Richard Ewell's Division. In April, 1862, the brigade was ordered to the Shenandoah Valley and
joined the command of General Stonewall Jackson.
General Jackson, after viewing the arrival of the Louisiana Brigade at New Market, after a 26 mile
march with no stragglers, asked of B. Gen. Taylor that he teach his men to march like the Louisiana
Brigade, because his men straggled badly.
The entry into the Shenandoah Valley was the 9th Louisiana Infantry Regiment's first baptism of
fire at Front Royal and continued in quick succession in one bloody battle after another until Jackson's
famous "Foot Cavalry" had cleared the valley of Union forces. The Louisiana Brigade played a key role in
almost every engagement of Jackson's Valley Campaign. The Louisiana boys saved the bridge at Front
Royal, cut the Union column at Middletown, pushed the enemy out of Winchester, and broke the Yankee
flank at Port Republic.
The Louisiana Tigers worshiped their commander, General Stonewall Jackson, and he they, as he
referred to them as his "Iron Brigade". Jackson proved his feelings for the fighting demons from
Louisiana when he recommended the promotion of B. Gen. Taylor to the rank of Major-General the day
following the battle of Port Republic.
On the morning of June 27, 1862, Major Chatham Roberdeau Wheat, commander of Wheat's
Battalion, told Colonel Leroy Stafford, Lt. Colonel Peck and Major Boyd that before the sun set, he would
be die on the field of battle. Later that day, as the Battle of Gaines Mill unfolded, did the men of the 9th
Louisiana realize how accurate the premonition of Major Wheat's was.
Colonel Isaac Seymour took command of the Brigade after Taylor took sick and led the Brigade on
the attack of the Federal right flank. Crossing from a swamp bottom across a open field, the Louisianans
were met by a hail of gunfire that instantly killed Colonel Seymour. Major Wheat seeing the men of the
Brigade begin to fall back, rode forward to urge the men on, only to be caught in a murderous volley of fire
40 yards from the enemy breastworks. The major and his horse went down, killing Major Wheat instantly.
When the men saw this, they became very demoralized and began the retreat back to the swamp.
Less than an hour after the death of Colonel Seymour, Colonel Leroy Stafford took command of the
Brigade and finally restored order to most of the disorganized command. The 9th Regiment, along with part
of the 7th and 8th Regiments were preparing to move back on line when ordered to withdraw further back
by Trimble. Nightfall found them back in the swamp trying to tend to their wounded and dying.
The Battle of Malvern Hill, on July 1, 1862 inflicted heavy losses on the Louisiana Tigers but
enhanced their reputation as fighters and added to the legend growing around their name, both with the
Union and Confederate soldiers. This battle was the final in the Seven Days' Battle and because of the
heavy losses, Lee's Army of Northern Virginia had to be reorganized.
B. General Richard Taylor was promoted to Major General and transferred to the Trans-
Mississippi Department. The Louisiana Brigade wanted to go with Taylor and petitioned President Davis
for permission but were denied.
On July 26, 1862, the 2nd Louisiana Brigade was formed, included in this was the removal of the 9th
Regiment from the Louisiana Brigade, later to be known as the 1st Louisiana Brigade, and placed in the
2nd. Along with the 9th Regiment were the 1st Louisiana, 2nd Louisiana, 10th and 15th Louisiana Regiments
and Coppen's Zouave Battalion. The Brigade was placed under the command of General William E.
After the reorganization of the Army of Northern Virginia was complete, it moved back on the
offensive as the Northern Virginia Campaign of August, 1862 commenced. The Battle of Cedar Mountain
on August 9th, Bristoe Station August 26, and Manassas II or 2nd Bull Run, August 28-30 where on the
30th, the 9th La. Regiment ran out of ammunition and threw rocks at the charging Union soldiers and held
them at bay until ammunition and reinforcements were brought forward. The final battle was the Battle of
Chantilly, September 1st, where a soldier from Company D was said to have killed Union General Philip
In September, 1862 moved into the Maryland Campaign and fought pitched battles at Harpers
Ferry, Sept. 15, South Mountain, and on September 17, Sharpsburg or Antietam.
At the Battle of Sharpsburg, both Louisiana Brigades were suffered heavy losses. In the 30 minutes
in the cornfield, 60% of the brigade had fallen. Every staff officer and regimental commander had been
shot down, including Colonel Gaston Coppens. Some companies almost ceased to exist. The 9th Louisiana
Regiment's Bienville Blues lost 20 of 32 men and the company from Claiborne Parish had 10 killed and 8
wounded among its 18 members.
Although the Battle of Sharpsburg was considered a draw, General Lee withdrew his decimated
army back to Virginia on September 19 and ended the invasion. Again, due to the heavy casualties, the
Army of Northern Virginia had to reorganize several of its brigades. In this, the 9th Louisiana and the 14th
Louisiana exchanged places within the two brigades on October 5th.
The army settled in near Martinsburg for a much needed rest.
The 1st Battle of Fredericksburg, December 13, 1862 did not have the 9th Louisiana on the battle
line but rather, held in reserve. Even with this, 12 men were lost to heavy artillery fire.
In May, 1863 the Chancellorsville Campaign transpired and the 9th Louisiana was heavily involved.
The regiment was in the Battle of Marye's Heights, May 3rd and attacked the Federals at Salem Church on
May 4th. The losses to the 9th Louisiana were quite heavy but the greatest loss of all was the wounding
and following death of General Stonewall Jackson. Losses that the 9th Louisiana and all the Louisiana
Tigers would never recover from.
On June 15, 1863 the Second Battle of Winchester took place with Hay's Louisiana Brigade
storming the breastworks and taking the fort. The color bearer of the 9th Louisiana, James Stewart, was
shot dead at the abatis of fort. Gen. Hays yelled for the colors of the 9th to be hoisted, they were and the
walls of the fort were breached and after some very violent hand to hand fighting, the fort was taken.
General Ewell was so taken with the fighting ability and furor of the Louisiana Tigers in their storming and
capturing of the breastworks that he ordered that the ridge of hills west of Winchester be redesignated as
the "Louisiana Heights" on all military maps.
With the Second Battle of Winchester began the Gettysburg Campaign of June and July, 1863.
The 9th Louisiana was in the attack on Gettysburg on July 1st that routed the Federal XI Corp. Following
this, the commanders of the Louisiana Brigade approached General Ewell to allow them to attack the Union
forces that were digging in on Cemetery Hill. The commanders were denied with a comment by Ewell about
the Tigers never getting a bellyful of fighting. To this comment Hays replied rather angrily that he only
wanted to prevent the unnecessary slaughter of his men in a later assault. At sunset on July 2nd, the
Louisianans were ordered forward in the attack of Cemetery Hill. The Union soldiers on the hill were
pushed back by the charge and Colonel Leroy Stafford of the 9th Louisiana sprinted to the top to be the
first Confederate to occupy the position but the honor went to the fleet-footed Major John Hodges of the
9th Louisiana. The Tigers occupied the position but without any support, the counterattack of the Federal
troops finally pushed the Tigers off the ridge and around 10:00 P.M., they were back at their starting point
at the base of the hill, where Gordon was waiting.
The 1st Louisiana Brigade was held in reserve in Gettysburg on the 3rd of July and on the 4th, began
the long retreat back to Virginia. The losses were unbelievable. Hay's Louisiana Tigers began the
campaign in June with 1,626 men, on July 8th, he had only 945 men answered roll-call.
Lee began the process of regrouping his army on the Rapidan River. Colonel Leroy Stafford of the
9th Louisiana Regiment was appointed to command the decimated 2nd Louisiana brigade. Colonel Stafford,
the organizer and commander of the Stafford Guards from Rapides Parish, had earned the reputation of
being among the best of the Louisiana Officers and was heralded by many as the "bravest Man they had
On November 7th, the Louisiana Tigers were placed in poorly planned and laid out trenches, in a
semi-circle, protecting a pontoon bridge across the Rappahannock River. The attack of two brigades of the
Union VI Corps on the trenches of the Tigers was dismissed by General Lee as a skirmish and did not send
any support. The bayonet charge by the Federal troops was one of the few of the war. Fighting was heavy
and losses on both sides were great. The Tigers were surrounded and without support, surrendered.
Of the over 1200 men of Hay's Tigers, 699 were listed as captured at Rappahannock Station.
On November 27, the Battle of Locust Grove took place. Heavy losses on both sides and General
Lee, after seeing that the enemy were too strongly entrenched to attack, he retired his army behind Mine
Run and dug in, daring the enemy to attack, but Meade refused to take the bait and a standoff settled in.
Meade finally tired of the stalemate and retired his army and the Army of Northern Virginia went into
winter quarters along the Rapidan River. By early March, nearly 500 men that had been captured at
Rappahannock were exchanged and returned to the Tigers, lifting the morale of the Louisiana boys.
On May 5, 1864, the Battle of the Wilderness began. The losses were heavy on both sides and this
was the Tigers first combat against the new Union leader, U. S. Grant. The shock to the 9th Louisiana was
unbelievable when they were moving past the 2nd Louisiana Brigade and saw their former commander, now
General Leroy Stafford, lying mortally wounded under a tree. As the men passed, Stafford urged them to
fight to the last man if necessary. The men of the regiment moved on and took up positions, all hoping and
believing that Stafford would recover but on May 8th, he died in Richmond, Va.
On May 8, 1864, General Lee ordered the consolidation of the 1st and 2nd Louisiana brigades into
one with the command going to General Hay. This consolidation was not received well by the troops of the
two brigades and thought that they were losing their identity. The order was not changed and the soldiers
spent the last year of the war as one unit. The new Hay's Brigade had a strength of a little over one
thousand men, a mere remnant of the twelve thousand Louisiana Tigers who came to Virginia three year
On May 12, 1864, the Battle of Spotsylvania Court House took place with the Louisiana Tigers
fighting at the Mule Shoe. The Tigers defended the position for sixteen hours before they were able to
disengage and fall back. The desperate fighting at the bloody angle nearly decimated the Tiger Brigade
and their heroic stand is usually credited to Gordon and not to the critical role played by the Louisianans.
After Hay's wounding, Colonel Zebulon York, former Lt. Colonel with the 14th Louisiana. After a
few days rest, the Tigers were brought back on line on May 14 and continually were in contact with the
enemy. On May 25, Hanover Junction and June 1 thru 3, Cold Harbor, followed by the Battle of
Monocacy, one of the most bloody and fiercest that the Tigers were ever engaged in, losses were high,
costing the Brigade between 25 and 50 percent of its forces. The 9th Louisiana Regiment lost four color
bearers in the face of Wallace's men before the Yankees finally retreated.
On July 24, the Battle of Kernstown took place with the main thrust by the Louisiana Tigers and
drove the Federals out and through the town of Winchester, taking the town and putting the Union soldiers
on a full scale rout. Following this was a battle at Shepherdstown on August 25 and Smithfield on August
29. On September 19, the Third Battle of Winchester took place. The Louisiana Tigers were in the
forefront of the battle and pushed the Union army from the field of battle. Upon learning that a federal
regiment from Louisiana was in front of them caused the Tigers to increase their attack and with a
Louisiana Rebel yell, caused the Yankees to turn and run. This stand was lost after the Union cavalry
turned the flank of Early's infantry. For a period, only the Tigers were alone on the field, while the
remainder of the Confederate army was in full retreat. The Tigers covered the retreat of the rest of the
army that didn't stop running until they reached Fisher's Hill. The price paid by the Tigers was high for
their feat of heroism as they had 154 casualties.
At the Battle of Fisher's Hill on September 22nd , a repeat of the previous action took place.
Sheridan attacked the entrenched positions and regiment after regiment retreated, leaving the Louisiana
boys standing their ground alone. Again the Tigers covered the retreat of the fleeing Confederates.
The Battle of Cedar Creek on October 19, 1864 was going well for the Confederates as they routed
the Union forces but the pursuit of the fleeing Federals fizzled out when the majority of the starving
Confederate army fell out of ranks to plunder the captured Union camps, giving the Yankees time to
regroup and mount a counterattack and broke the back of the Confederates.
The Louisiana Brigade was in very poor shape following the Cedar Creek defeat and again it was
reorganized. This time into a battalion for easier handling and due to only having 500 men on the rolls,
though officially, it would remain a consolidated brigade. The ten regiments were combined to make six
companies. An additional change was made as York had his arm amputated due to wounds and did not
return, Colonel William Raine Peck of the 9th Louisiana Regiment was chosen to lead the Tigers. Known
as "Big Peck" because of his six foot, six inch, three hundred pound frame, the native of Madison Parish
had moved up quickly through the ranks, starting as a private in the Milliken Bend Guards to Colonel of
the 9th Louisiana Regiment.
The Tigers participated in the Battle of Hatcher's Run on February 6, 1865 and remained in the
Petersburg to reinforce Lee's Army. The winter was hard on the Tigers, not only to sickness and cold but
to desertion. Peck was promoted to Brig. General and transferred to the western theater. Colonel Eugene
Waggaman of the 10th Louisiana was now the brigade commander, a brigade of only 401 men.
On March 25, 1865, a breakout of the Petersburg Siege was planned and the Louisiana Tigers were
picked to lead the attack against Ft. Stedman-unloaded weapons were to be carried and they were to
capture the pickets and overpower the defenders of the fort, which they did. At daylight the Union
counterattacked and drove the Tigers from the fort, foiling the breakout with a high cost to the Tigers.
On April 2, 1865 the final assault on Petersburg began. The Louisiana boys again were asked to
protect the rear of the retreating army and they did. Finally on April 4th the Tigers were told to pull out and
catch up with the rest of the army. For a week the Louisiana Tigers fought as part of the rear guard of the
remnants of the Army of Northern Virginia.
On April 6, the Tigers fought at Sayler's Creek and on April 7, Lee halted his ragged army at
Appomattox Court House and fought a fierce battle with the Union army that had it surrounded. On April
9th the Louisiana Tigers were asked to assault the Union line and make a breakout of the encirclement.
With only 178 men, Waggaman put them on line and the last charge of the Louisianans and the Army of
Northern Virginia commenced. As the screaming Tigers captured one regimental flag and closed in on the
artillery positions, the command to disengage and return to their lines were given. Confused, the Tigers
followed the orders only to find out upon their return that Lee had surrendered.
As the surrender of the Army of Northern Virginia took place, the Louisiana Tigers began to stack
arms, of the two brigades, only 373 men were left on duty. The 9th Louisiana Regiment was the largest
remaining regiment with a compliment of 68 men. The proud soldiers of the Louisiana Tigers and of the 9th
Louisiana may have been surrendered, but were never defeated.