of the
By James Logan Morgan
Our sincere thanks go to Wanda Ridge, who knew this information existed and copied it to us and to "LELA KNIGHT ASHBURN" Pres.  of the Woodruff county Historical  Society who gave us permission to use the article from their publication. And a special thanks to James Logan Morgan who researched the original information and who made this page possible.
            A military company was organized at  Cotton Plant (then in St. Francis County), Arkansas, in the summer of 1861 under the auspices of L. Marsh Walker, colonel commandant of the St. Francis County (l9th Regiment) Militia. The company was known as the Richland Rangers and was composed primarily of men from Richland and    Plain townships of St. Francis County. These two townships later  became a part of Woodruff County. 

According to the first available muster roll (which was compiled October 30,1862, but covered the period from May 1 to July l,1862), the company was enlisted August 1, 1861, at Madison (St. Francis County), Arkansas; however. the commissions to its first officers were  not issued until  August 26,  1861. These officers were:  John C.            Johnson,  captain;  John  R.  Shelton,  lst , lieutenant;  George  C. Harrison, 2nd lieutenant; and, William L. Dobkins, 3rd lieutenant. The company's name indicates it was originaly a cavalry company, but it became Company B of the  l3th Arkansas Infantry Regiment, under Col. J.C. Tappan.

About October 15, 1861, Capt. Johnson and Lt. Dobkins resigned, Lts. Shelton and Harrison were promoted, and two new lieutenants were  elected. The new officers were: John R. Shelton, captain; George C:.  Harrison,  lst  lieutenant;  John  F. Locke, 2nd lieutenant; and, Thomas R. Shelton, 3rd lieutenant.

After the battle of Shiloh,  Tennessee, Apri1 6-7, 1862. the l3th Arkansas Infantry Regiment was reoranized. Company B became Company  D of the  reorganized regiment. Capt. John R. Shelton resigned, and Lts. Harrison and Locke were not re-elected. The slate of officers of Company  D elected on May 6,  1862, was:  Thomas R.
Shelton, captain; Alexander W. Yost, lst lieutenant; Israel P. Nolen, 2nd lieutenant; and R. Kindlyn, 3rd lieutenant.

Capt. Thomas R. Shelton resigned June 30, 1862, but no successor  was elected. Lt. Kindlyn was killed November 7, 1862, and Lt. Yost died December 19, 1862. For the balance of the war, Lt. Nolen was the company cormmander. The company  was decimated and eventually, all the companies of the I3th Arkansas Infantry were combined to form Company G of the Ist Consolidated Arkansas Infantry Regiment. Those who survived to the end were paroled April 28,1865, at Greensboro, North Carolina.

Editor's note: The John R. Shelton mentioned in this article was the grandfather of Miss Zirline 'Trice, and the great grandfather of Mrs. Jack Caperton, Sr.,  both of Cotton Plant. Captain Shelton was  wounded at the battle of Shiloh and resigned from the Confederate Army. He returned home to Cotton Plant and died shortly afterward       from pneumonia and the effects of his wounds. Thomas R. Shelton, also a captain in the Confederate Army, was a  brother of John R. Shelton. He was wounded in battle, but lived until 1873. A third brother, James N., was also a Confederate soldier. He was wounded, captured, and died in prison. The Shelton family came to Arkansas from Tennessee in 1844.


1998 The above information may be used for non-commercial historical and genealogical purposes only and with
the consent of the page owner may be copied for the same purposes so long as this notice remains a part of the
copied material. EDWARD G. GERDES

If you have any questions or comments or if you would like to have more informtion about the Civil War and
Pension Records of the men who served in these Companies, contact me  Jeri Helms Fultz