The Company Record
Major Gustav Hoffman enrolled his company of Germans in New Braunfels, Comal County, on September 28, 1861. The unit was mustered into Confederate service for "the war" at Camp Sibley, near San Antonio as Company B, 7th Regiment Texas Mounted Volunteers on October 8, 1861. Company B took part in the battles of Valverde and Glorieta and the skirmish of Peralta. Of the 86 men on this roll, one remained behind in San Antonio to be medically discharged, leaving Company B with 85 effectives on the eve of the invasion of New Mexico During the campaign four men were killed on the battlefield, one at Valverde and three at Glorieta, eight were wounded, five at Valverde and three at Glorieta, and 13 were taken prisoner, including two of those who had been wounded. Two prisoners were sent to Camp Douglas, Illinois. In addition, four men deserted, one was accidentally shot and killed, and one died of disease. With the transferring in of one new man during the campaign, Company B arrived in San Antonio with no more than 62 men fit for duty.
The Williamson Grays were joined for duty and enrolled in Georgetown, Williamson County, Texas, on October 7, 1861, by Capt. Hiram Mack Burrows. During the course of the war, the company was referred to as Captain Burrows' Company; 7th Regiment Texas Mounted Volunteers, Captain Burrows' Company; 3rd Regiment, Sibley's Brigade Mounted Volunteers; and Company C, 7th Regiment Texas Cavalry.1 The company set out for San Antonio, Texas, and were mustered into the Confederate service at Camp Pickett for "3 years or the war" on October 24, 1861.2 They were the smallest company in the Brigade with 56 men at the outset. They served as part of Steele's Regiment under Colonel William Steele and General H. H. Sibley and formed a portion of Steele's forces which occupied the El Paso-Mesilla area.3
The Williamson Grays set out from San Antonio for the West on December 18, 1861.4 They formed a portion of Colonel William Steele's force in the Mesilla-El Paso area, and thus did not take part in the New Mexico campaign proper. They arrived in Arizona around January 21, 1862, and remained there as the rear guard evacuating Confederate Arizona and far West Texas, leaving in July, 1862.5
After Steele was promoted to Brigadier-General in September, 1862, Company C served under Col. Arthur P. Bagby.6 In January, 1863, the Williamson Grays, along with the other units under the command of Col. Bagby, participated in the engagement at Galveston. On February 9, 1863, they marched from Houston for Western Louisiana, where they served through the end of the war.7 According to Noel, they participated in the following battles and skirmishes in Western Louisiana: Bisland (April 13-14, 1863), Centerville (April 14, 1863), New Iberia (April 16, 1863), Vermilion Bayou (April 17, 1863), Grand Coteau (April 19, 1863), Franklin (May 24, 1863), Fort Butler (July 11, 1863), Morgan's Ferry (September 7 1863), Carrion Crow (October 13, 1863), Mrs. Rodgers' Plantation (October 16, 1863), Hudson's Plantation (October 18, 1863), Opelousas (October 21, 1863), Vermilionville (November 11, 1863), Camp Pratt (November 20, 1863) (note states "7th Texas Cav., surprised"), Double Bridges (April 2, 1864), Young's Mill (April 7, 1864), Mansfield (April 8, 1864), Alexandria (April 28, 1864), Capture transport City Belle (May 3, 1864), Capture transport J. Warner (May 5, 1864), Lecompte (May 7, 1864), Marksville (May 15, 1864), Yellow Bayou (May 18, 1864), Raid to Vidalia (July 23, 1864).8
The company disbanded June 19, 1865, in East Texas.9
Several of the young men listed on the roster as being "18" were in fact younger. On the 1860 census, for example, Leonard Edwards , George W. Anderson and William F. Sellers are listed as age 15; Luther Faubion, Hezekiah Nimrod Kirk, and Martin R. Allen, are 16. Many of the members of the Williamson Grays were living in Western Williamson County at the time of the 1860 census, in communities including Bagdad, Rock House, Liberty Hill, Gabriel Mills, Florence and Georgetown.10 Of the seventy-one men on the roll, three men were killed by Indians, one died of disease, one was medically discharged and two transferred to other companies.11 The remaining men returned from the war and many returned to Williamson County.
These were the officers of the 7th Texas Cavalry from Trinity County, Texas who led Company E as it started for the Rio Grande with Sibley's Brigade in the Confederate Army's push to wrest control of the Western United States from the Union Army in the Autumn of 1861. In time the 7th Texas would turn to the eastern arena and participate in many battles. In the East, in the heat and smoke of fierce combat, it would emerge as one of the best mounted regiments in the CSA, its Regimental Colonel promoted to the rank of Brig. General. During the Civil War, many mounted regiments which began as cavalry were often by command, unhorsed and made into infantry. Not so the 7th. This regiment entered the war horsed and ended the war horsed because of it's exemplary performance in the field. The 7th Texas Cavalry, Company E represented Trinity County with distinction and courage. We the descendants of these 7th Texas, Trinity County horsemen are proud to remember them with honor, always.