(1842 - 1915)
Home State: Texas
Branch of Service: Infantry
Unit: 4th Texas Infantry
A 19 year old farmer in Travis County, he enlisted at Camp Clark in Guadalupe County as a Private in Company B, 4th Texas Infantry on 11 July 1861. He was promoted to 4th Corporal on 10 March 1862 and was slightly wounded in the spine at Cold Harbor, VA on 27 June.
On the Campaign
He was with his Company in action at Sharpsburg on 17 September 1862.
The rest of the War
He was promoted to 4th Sergeant on 1 May 1863. He was captured at Lookout Mountain near Chattanooga, TN on 28 October 1863 and was held in Nashville to 3 November, then sent to Louisville, KY for exchange. Instead of being exchanged, he was sent on to the Federal prison at Fort Morton near Indianapolis, IN. He was admitted to the post hospital there on 10 November 1864, probably with small pox, and escaped from the hospital in February 1865. There is no later military record.
After the War
By 1870 he was a laborer on a large farm in Travis County. In 1880 he was a clerk in the land office in Austin, and by 1900 and to at least 1910 he was a merchant - in the wallpaper business with his son there.
References & notes
Service information from Davis,1 as Val C. Giles, and his Compiled Service Records.2 His memoir in the Confederate Veteran (15, 417) puts him at Sharpsburg. Personal details from family genalogists and the US Census for 1860. His gravesite is on Findagrave. His picture here from a photograph taken in 1861 and published in Voices3.
Giles' memoirs were published in 1961 by editor Mary Lasswell as Rags and Hope: Four Years with Hood's Brigade, Fourth Texas Infantry, 1861-1865.
More on the Web
See a very fine post from Andy Hall about Val at Christmas 1861 in Fredericksburg. Thanks also to Andy for Val's full name and pointer to his picture.
01/26/1842; Shelby County, TN
01/31/1915; Austin, TX; burial in Oakwood Cemetery, Austin, TX
1 Davis, Rev. Nicholas A., The Campaign from Texas to Maryland, Houston: Telegraph Book and Job Establishment, 1863, pp. 150 - 152 [AotW citation 1669]
2 US War Department, Compiled Service Records of Confederate Soldiers, Record Group No. 109 (War Department Collection of Confederate Records), Washington DC: US National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), 1903-1927 [AotW citation 26604]
3 Woodhead, Henry, editor, Voices of the Civil War: Soldier Life, Alexandria (Va): Time-Life Books, 1996 [AotW citation 9454]