(1822 - 1863)
Home State: South Carolina
Education: South Carolina College, Class of 1843
Command Billet: Commanding Regiment
Branch of Service: Infantry
see his Battle Report
He served in Company E, First South Carolina Volunteers - the Palmetto Regiment - in the Mexican War (1846-48) and was afterward a lawyer and cotton planter in Abbeville, and served a term in the South Carolina House of Representatives. By January 1861 he was Captain of the Abbeville Minute Men militia company and they served in Charleston from January to April 1861:
A company of Minute Men from Abbeville District arrived in this city on Wednesday night [9 January 1861]. They number one hundred men, and are as fine a looking body as any that can be raised. For the information of the [New York] Tribune and papers of that ilk, we state that ten members of this company took the first honor in the South Carolina College. The company is made up of the best material. Their uniform is a red [flannel] frock and dark pants. The following is a list of their officers: Captain, J.M. Perrin; First Lieutenant, A.M. [Augustus Marshall] Smith; Second Lieutenant, J.G. Edwards; Third Lieutenant, A. [Augustus] J. Lythgoe.He then raised a new Company for war service and was commissioned Captain, Company B, First South Carolina Rifles on 20 July 1861. He was promoted to Major on 29 August 1862 and Lieutenant Colonel on 1 September.
On the Campaign
He led the regiment at Harpers Ferry, Sharpsburg and Shepherdstown on the Maryland Campaign.
The rest of the War
He was promoted to Colonel on 12 November 1862 and was absent into December to serve in State Legislature. He commanded the regiment to Chancellorsville, VA:
I regret to announce the death of Colonel James M. Perrin, Orr's Rifle Regiment, who was mortally wounded while gallantly fighting his regiment at the breastworks, on Sunday, May 3. Colonel Perrin was one of the captains of my old regiment (First South Carolina Volunteers), and on duty with me in South Carolina previous to my coming to Virginia in 1861. Since then he has at various times been under my command. A more zealous or efficient officer could not have been found in this command. Noble, brave, and pious, he lived to win the admiration and esteem of his friends, and, we will trust, died to receive the reward of a life spent in the strict discharge of every duty.
References & notes
His service from his Compiled Military Service Records, online from fold3. The first quote above is from the Charleston Mercury of 11 January 1861, the second from Colonel Hamilton's Report of 20 May 1863 on the Battle of Chancellorsville, from the Official Records.1 Personal details from family genealogists and the Roll of Students of South Carolina College, 1805-1905 (1905). His gravesite is on Findagrave. His picture from a portrait painted by J. Bogle in 1856, in the Colonial Dames of America's South Carolina Portraits, A Collection of Portraits of South Carolinians (1996).
He married Mary Elizabeth Smith (1829-1855) in 1849 and they had 5 children; Mary died shortly after their 5th, daughter Janie, was born. He married Kittie Calhoun Tillman (1832-1890) in 1858 and they had 6 more children.
More on the Web
06/08/1822; Abbeville, SC
05/03/1863; Chancellorsville, VA; burial in Upper Long Cane Cemetery, Abbeville, SC