Camp cripple creek
18 january - 24 june 1863
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What possessed you to undertake such a daunting task as this website?
The long, involved answer in on the Home Page. The brief, in-a-nutshell answer is that I love Civil War history, genealogy, keeping a diary and reading others' diaries, as well as metal detecting, being retired, and being the "Little Red Hen" who takes on a task when nobody else has stepped forward to do it. Okay, so this isn't really a brief answer, but it is brief for me.
Why do you think others will want to explore your webiste?
I'm not sure why anyone would explore this site. Maybe they googled an ancestor's name and the search led them here. Maybe they are a Civil War buff or a re-enactor who wants to know more about one of the topics covered here. Maybe they are researching something contained here that isn't covered very thoroughly in other sources. Maybe they are bored, an insomniac, or simply waiting for a bus.
Why do you have more information for some men and less for others?
For some men, the vast expanse of cyberspace is teeming with information, while for others, there is hardly much more than a name, a rank, and a ballpark guess at the year they were born, thanks to their enlistment form.
Where did you get all the information posted here?
My main sources are the military records available through internet sources, such as Ancestry and Fold3. If I have the man's name and age from the Regimental Records, a pension record, and the 1890 Veterans' Census, I can usually find other sources, such as burial records, obituaries, or family trees. I can sometimes find information in a regimental history or a county history. The best information often comes from letters or diaries written by the men themselves.
You're a librarian and a genealogist. Why don't you list your sources for birth and death dates, family information, burial information, and so on?
It's true, I don't list them on the website, but I could probably find that information again in order to share it with someone who contacts me.
You have posted a picture on your website that I took and you are using it without my permission. This is a copyright violation and I demand that you remove it immediately!
First of all, I apologize. I do not want to infringe on anyone's rights, nor do I want to invade anyone's privacy. I include the photos simply becuase I think it helps to know the men of Cripple Creek better if you have a visual image to associate with a man's name and personal story. I am not maintaining this website for any sort of monetary gain, I simply want to share the information I have found in my research. If you hold the copyright to any of the pictures here, I will, of course, remove it if you contact me.
The information you have on _________ (fill in any soldier's name) is wrong. Will you change it?
If someone can show me a mistake in my information (and share their source for the alternate data with me), I would be happy to change it.
You say things on your website that are unflattering, derogatory, or otherwise upsetting to me with regard to one of the soldiers at Cripple Creek. This man was my ancestor and I don't want the fact that he was a deserter (or court martialed or arrested or some other information that will reflect negatively on my family) to be put on your website. Take it down or I will sue you for libel!
Okay, so maybe this scenario is a little extreme. The truth is, I am only sharing information that is already available in documents (military records, diaries, letters, county histories, etc.) in print or on the internet. Is everything one finds in a book or on the 'net an indisputable fact? Of course not. I try to verify the information I post using a variety of sources. In cases where there are doubts about the validity of something or conflicting information, I try to note this. If something I post is my own conclusion or viewpoint, I identify it as such. If this were a website dedicated to the 4077th M*A*S*H unit, I would find very different descriptions of Hawkeye Pierce, depending on who was doing the describing. When there is conflicting or objectionable information, I simly try to present all sides and also to distinguish between facts and opinions. I would welcome your feedback if you have facts or opinions that differ from what I have written here. In the case of a "Deserter" there are often extenuating circumstances that caused a man to leave his Company--a family member dying at home, a legal matter, etc. In many cases, a man who was listed as a "Deserter" was later found to be wounded in a hospital, or taken prisoner, or dead. However, I will not sugar-coat negative things for the sake of not offending someone somewhere. Some of these men did things that were more than simply questionable--they were wrong, illegal, reprehensible. As a family genealogist, I have come across more than a few rotten apples in my own family tree. Rather than altering the facts or leaving out the uncomplimentary things, I would rather acknowledge them when I find them and accept the bad along with the good. This is true for my Cripple Creek "family" as well as my biological family.
What if someone has more information on one of the men than the "name, rank, and enlistment age" that appear on the website? Will you add additional information?
As I said in a previous answer, if someone can show me information (additional, alternate, or otherwise) and furnish the source for their information, I would be happy to add it to the website. I may not include every bit of information someone sends me, but I would certainly consider adding more. This is especially true if it pertains to the men while they were actually at Camp Cripple Creek. In the case of an article or a book about someone, it might be easier to provide a link to that information, if it is online.
Why do you have pictures of so many headstones?
I try to include a photo of the man--especially if it shows what he would have looked like around 1863. If the only photo available was taken later in a man's life, I will post that. If a photo of the man is not available, I will accept a photo of the man's headstone or some other representation of him. If you have a photo that I don't have of someone listed here, I hope you will share it with me.
What if the information and/or photo I want you to add is of someone who was in one of these companies but who was not at Camp Cripple Creek?
Of course, if the man were dead, disharged, deserted, or otherwise not at Cripple Creek, I would still welcome your information and photos. However, my main interest is in those who were at Camp Cripple Creek.
My great-great (add a few more "greats" if appropriate) uncle (or grandfather) was in one of the regiments at Camp Cripple Creek. Why don't you have him listed?
I expect there may, indeed, be a few names left out by accident. I apologize ahead of time for any omission. Send me an e-mail with the missing person's information and I will correct the problem. However, please be sure your information is correct before you send it to me. (For example, let's say you believe I have left your great-great-great grandfather out of the page for Company C of the 90th OH. Then, it turns out he was actually in Company G and he is right there on the page where he should be. OR maybe you think that your great-great-great uncle was in the 31st IN and on closer inspection you learn he was actually in the 81st and not the 31st. You get the idea.) If you are certain I have left someone out, be certain you have checked all of the lists on this website: there is a page for each company, with separate listings for the field and staff officers, the enlisted men, and for each reason why a man might not be with his regiment while they were at Camp Cripple Creek. Also, double check the spelling. Even using official military records, I sometimes find several different spellings for the same man. I usually try to indicate cases where I have encountered different spellings. If all else fails, send me an e-mail and I will do what I can to track down the facts.
You list someone as one rank on your website, but my records show him as a different rank. Why is this?
I have tried to represent each man as he would have been during his time at Cripple Creek. Many men received promotions while they were at Cripple Creek. Sometimes there are other changes, such as transfers to other companies or to other regiments. I have even come across a couple of demotions. In the case of someone changing his rank, company, or regiment between January to June 1863, I try to indicate this.
What happens if a man was at Camp Cripple Creek for part of the time, but was elsewhere for the other part (captured, in hospital, died, discharged, etc.)?
As with the previous answer, if a man's status changes in any way during the Cripple Creek encampment, I try to indicate this. In some cases, I am unable to determine whether a man was actually at Cripple Creek. The typical scenario is that of a man who was injured during the Battle of Stones River. Did he go to a hospital and remain there until he was medically cleared to go home ? Did the doctor immediately send him back to his regiment? Did he go to a field hospital and return to camp a few days later? What if the records don't indicate when he returned? I always indicate a man whose whereabouts I am not sure of with the symbol ??? before his name.
I have a book (or letter or diary or picture) that pertains to Camp Cripple Creek. Why isn't it listed in your sources on the Calendar page?
It is probably because I don't know about the book (or letter or diary or picture) you mention--or I was unable to locate a copy for my personal library. I am ALWAYS interested in further information on Camp Cripple Creek and the men who were there. Contact me and we can work out some way for you to share what you have with me and the people who visit my website.
Who chose the location for Camp Cripple Creek and why was it located where it is?
I have not discovered the who or why. My guess is that someone on General Rosecrans' staff scouted out the area in the aftermath of the Battle of Stones River and made the decision based on the proximity of the road, the creek, and Pilot Knob. Of course, Cripple Creek proved to be an unreliable source of water (either a flood or a trickle). I imagine the fact that the camp was located on a slight rise might have been a deciding factor, as well--providing a better view of the surrounding countryside, even for those not detailed to "The Knob" that day.
What happened to Camp Cripple Creek after the Union Army left on 24 June 1863?
I have often wondered that. A contingent of soldiers remained in Murfreesboro at Fortress Rosecrans, since it was important as a supply depot and as a transportation hub. I am not sure if any men would have been detailed to remain at any of the other camps besides Fortress Rosecrans. There was a minor skirmish near Cripple Creek in May 1864, but I don't know of any troops being stationed there at the time. If the camp were abandoned when the Army of the Cumberland left the area to begin the Tullahoma Campaign, that would be a shame, since the men had worked so hard to spruce up the camp with wooden buildings, landscaping, and gravel-paved streets. I guess the wood from the few permanent structures was re-used by the locals. I would love to find a diary or a letter written by one of the people who lived near the camp. If you know of one, please let me know!
Why is there a Company J for the 2nd KY, but not for any of the other regiments?
Apparently, the Military Powers-That-Be decided that the capital letters "I" and "J" looked so much alike that it could cause confusion. The tradition, as I understand it, was to skip "J" on the list of company designations. There were usually only 10 companies assigned to each regiment (A - I and K). One source I have makes reference to Companies I, L, and M for the 2 KY, but I can find no actual roster nor any other information on these units. I suspect the source that listed those 3 extra companies is in error. However, I decided to leave a page for each because it is not very easy to add a page using my editing tool. (Sorry, WIX--I love everything else about your product!)
If you started all this research because you wanted to do some metal detecting at a former Civil War encampment, what relics have you found?
None (so far) that I can say are definitely from the Civil War time frame. I understand that Camp Cripple Creek has been hunted pretty thoroughly through the decades and I don't really expect to find any belt buckles, coins, or significant relics. A bullet or a button would be great, although my hope for something really great always springs eternal! (Maybe I could find a bayonet, since more than one man in the records apparently lost his bayonet and was obliged to pay for a new one!) However, even if I never find a single Civil War relic from Cripple Creek, I believe I have found something infinitely more precious than a piece of metal or an historical artifact: I have found the stories, the faces, the lives of the men who were here. They are the reason for my search, as well as for my website.