The 10thVirginia Infantry was formed from volunteer companies recruited in Rockingham, Shenandoah, Page and Madison counties.
The 10th Virginia received its baptism of fire at 1ST Manassas. The unit wintered near Manassas Junction before being transferred in April 1862 to Stonewall Jackson’s army. Assigned a position in Jackson’s old division, the 10th Virginia fought in all the major battles in Virginia, including Cedar Mountain where it lost heavily. Posted at Martinsburg, the 10th missed the Battle of Sharpsburg.
At Chancellorsville they took part in Jackson’s attack against the Federal Eleventh Corps, losing nearly a third of their number. Assigned to Stewarts’ brigade, the regiment fought at Gettysburg, joining in on the unsuccessful assault on Culp’s Hill.
In 1864 the unit fought at both the Wilderness and Spotsylvania and at the latter was almost entirely captured at the angle. The survivors joined General Early in his campaign against Washington and were with him in his failed defenses of the Valley in 1864, fighting at Winchester, Fisher’s Hill and Cedar Creek.
The several dozen survivors of the regiment were transferred from the valley to the Petersburg trenches, where they participated in the Army of Northern Virginia’s last offensive against the Federals at Fort Stedman.
When Grant broke the Confederate lines at Petersburg the 10th Virginia retreated west along with the rest of Lee’s army
On April 12th, 1865 at the surrender ceremonies which were conducted with dignity and decorum, about a dozen men of one of Lee’s most stalwart regiments stacked arms for the last time. Under the command of Lt. Miller, they surrendered their arms, but not their Flag. Refusing to hand over their flag lt. Miller stuffed the regiment’s cherished old banner, which bore on it the names of so many bloody battles, inside his faded jacket and carried it home to the Valley of Virginia.
The sprit of the 10th Virginia survivors would continue to live on in the hearts and minds of those who served it. The story of the old regiment would be told and retold to children and grandchildren and even great grandchildren and it yet lives to be retold once more…
Taken from: 10th Virginia Infantry
By: Terrence V. Murphy