CHICOT COUNTY CONFEDERATE TROOPS
These articles were copied with the permission of Steve Russell, owner of the Chicot Spectator. They were originally from the special Sesquicentennial supplement to the Chicot County weekly
newspapers. The supplement was published Wednesday, November 14, 1973.
CHICOT COUNTY NEWSPAPERS
The Dermott News was founded in the summer of 1910 by J. A. Watkins.
During the next year it was published successively by C. T. Kennedy and by W.
S. Daniel and W. A. Riley. In September, 1911, the News was purchased by Gilbert
Earle Kinney who edited and published the paper for 27 years until his death in
In December, 1939, the Dermott News was purchased from the Kinney family by
Joe W. Sitlington. Sitlington published the weekly until September, 1946, when it was
purchased by a group of local citizens operating as the Dermott News Publishing
Company. In September, 1947, it was sold to W. W. Mundy.
Mundy published the News for over 10 years, selling in 1958, to F. N. Carnahan
publisher of the Eudora Enterprise. In February, 1961, the paper was purchased by Mr.
and Mrs. LeRoy Tyson who had formerly been with the Augusta Advocate and Atkins
Chronicle. The Tysons continue to publish the News with Mr. Tyson as editor.
The Eudora Radio was a short-lived weekly published and edited in the mid-20s
by P. A. Tims.
It appeared on Thursdays and at one time had a circulation of 550.
The Eudora Enterprise was established on November 29, 1934, by J. R. Massey
with the equipment he had formerly used to publish the Junction City News.
Massey was succeeded the next year by Jeff S. Henderson, who took in as a
partner Charles S. Field. In 1937 Hendersons interest was purchased by Fields son,
Sheldon E. Field. Sheldon Field took over complete management of the Enterprise in
1946 when his father retired.
In 1948 the Eudora weekly was sold to a company with Jack E. Halter, Jr., and
Francis Neal Carnahan as the major stockholders. Carnahan purchased a full interest in
the Enterprise in 1951 and continued to edit and publish the paper until his death in 1967.
Mrs. Alice Carnahan operated the weekly until 1971 when it was sold to Mr. and Mrs.
LeRoy Tyson of the Dermott News and James R. Tyson of the Chicot Spectator in Lake
Village. James Tyson became editor of the Enterprise, which is published on
Wednesdays and has a circulation of over 2,300.
The Chicot Spectator was founded in Lake Village in 1906; D. C. McCan was an
early editor and publisher.
J. D. Miles published the paper for about three years, selling to R. P.
Sponenbarger in 1910. A. B. Avery bought the Spectator in 1915 and continued to edit
and publish it until 1937 when he was succeeded by his son, Marsden Avery.
Early in 1942 the Lake Village weekly was purchased by Dixon T. Gaines and D.
T. Henderson; a few months later Gaines assumed full ownership. In 1945 Gaines sold
an interest in the Spectator to Lester W. Mansur who became editor and later publisher.
In 1952 Charles W. Mansur bought an interest in the paper.
In 1969 Lester Mansur sold the Chicot Spectator to James R. Tyson who is its
present publisher and editor.
COUNTY SCA TROOPS
Reprinted from the Sesquicentennial Edition
To Captain Jacob McConnell belongs much of the credit for Chicot Countys
efficient troops in the Confederate Army. It was he who, having attended a military
school in Lexington, Kentucky, first took the men who knew a rifle for hunting only,
trained them in the art of warfare, and made soldiers of them. At the beginning of the War
Between the States he refused to be an officer, declaring that he could be more useful in
training men. Nevertheless, the brave Confederate gave his life at Chickamauga.
Three companies were recruited and fitted out here, and all served with credit
during the war. These were the Chicot Rangers, Chicot Guards and Chicot Rebels,
all of which organizations lost their distinctive names after merging into commands
regularly designated by the Confederate military command.
The Rangers were recruited early in 1861 by Capt. (afterward General) Daniel H.
Reynolds, who would later be gravely wounded by the loss of a leg in battle. They were
ordered to Little Rock, and thence to Fort Smith, and were there, on June 14, mustered
into Company A, First Arkansas Cavalry. The regiment served in Missouri and Arkansas
until April 1862, when, with a large part of the Trans-Mississippi Army, it was transferred
to Memphis, and thence to Corinth, and with the Army of Tennessee fell back to Tupelo,
Miss. Then, it went into Kentucky, under command of General E. Kirby Smith. On the
retreat from Kentucky it fell in with the Army of Tennessee and was part of McCowns
Division until May 10, 1863, when the division was taken to Mississippi by Gen. Joseph E.
As first organized, the commissioned officers of the Rangers were: Captain D. H.
Reynolds; First Lieutenant Richard I. Shattuck; Second Lieutenant Abner Gaines; Third
Lieutenant Jacob McConnell. When, in 1862, Capt. Reynolds was promoted, Major
James McConnell became Captain in his stead, Lieutenant Shattuck then being a prisoner
of war, and Lieutenant Gaines having resigned. Capt. McConnell was killed at
Chickamauga; G. M. Henry, who had become lieutenant, was captain until he was killed at
Dug Gap in 1864, after which Lieutenant Shattuck, having been exchanged was captain
until the end of the war. Other officers worthy of mention were S. S. Fitzgerald, who was
First Lieutenant at the close of the war; Lieutenant Turner, who was killed at
Chickamauga, and Lieutenant A. J. Maxey, who was mustered out with the company, or
the remnant that had survived.
The Chicot Guards were organized temporarily at Lake Village in February 1862,
with James F. Robinson as Captain and Abner Gaines as Lieutenant, and rendezvoused at
Jacksonport, on the White River in March, where they were mustered into Confederate
service. Shortly after, they were ordered to Memphis, Tenn., where they encamped in the
rear of that city for about two weeks; then with other companies from Arkansas, were
formed into the Twenty Third Arkansas Regiment, with Charles F. Adams of Helena, as
Colonel. The regiment was soon ordered to Corinth, Miss., and took part in the defense
of that place, and on evacuation and retreat, it was halted at Tupelo, Miss., where it
formed a part of Gen. J. C. Moores Brigade, Maurys Division of General Prices Army.
The regiment was engaged in the movement on Iuka, Miss., in the spring of 1863, and was
part of the attacking column at Corinth, in the same campaign. After that attack and
discomfiture, the Twenty-Third was detailed for service at Port Hudson, to garrision that
point, and took part in its defense. Upon the fall of Port Hudson, Miss., the company
surrendered and was paroled, and that ended its service.
The Chicot Rebels were commanded by Captain James D. Imboden, and formed a
part of the first Arkansas Battalion.
These links will give you the rosters for each company. They are found on the Edward G. Gerdes Civil War Home Page. Edward and Bryan Howerton and Jeri Fultz have spent many hours compiling the rosters for the companies who represented Arkansas in the Civil War.
Co. A, 1st Arkansas Confederate Mounted Rifles "Chicot Rangers"
Company G, 23rd Arkansas Infantry, "Chicot Guards"
Company B, 8th Arkansas Infantry, "Chicot Rebels"
Copyright© 1996 - 2004 Sheila Farrell Brannon
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