(1829 - 1864)
Home State: South Carolina
Education: South Carolina College, Class of 1849
Command Billet: Regimental Officer
Branch of Service: Infantry
After graduating as valedictorian from South Carolina College in 1849, he spent three years in California seeking gold, but was not extremely successful. After his return to South Carolina he was editor of the Winnsboro Register and later Daily South Carolinian newspapers, and was a vocal advocate of states rights and supported secession.
In 1860 he was the 32 year old editor of the Daily South Carolinian in Columbia, SC. In April 1861 he enrolled and was appointed 2nd Lieutenant of Company A, 2nd South Carolina Infantry, Colonel Kershaw, commanding. He was promoted to 1st Lieutenant on 15 March 1862 and elected Captain of the Company the same day. He was elected Major in the Army reorganization on 13 May 1862.
On the Campaign
He was on the campaign with his regiment and became their commander as senior officer after Colonel Kennedy was wounded at Sharpsburg on 17 September 1862.
The rest of the War
He was wounded in action at Fredericksburg in December 1862 but returned to the Regiment in the Spring for action at Chancellorsville in May 1863. He was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in June. At Gettysburg he again commanded the 2nd South Carolina in relief of the wounded Colonel Kennedy, and was in combat near Little Round Top on 2 July 1863. The regiment lost more than 50% of its strength in casualties there.
In Autumn 1863 the Regiment went west with General Longstreet, being in action at Chickamauga, Knoxville, and on the East Tennessee campaign through the winter, with Lieutenant Colonel Guillard in command. In the spring of 1864 they returned east to the Army of Northern Virginia.
Early on the morning of May 6, 1864, General Winfield Scott Hancock's Corps routed Confederate General A.P. Hill's Corps along the Orange Plank Road. Longstreet's men with the 2nd South Carolina in the lead hurried to the rescue. Gaillard rode next to his cousin, William DuBose [also chaplain, 2nd SC]. Gaillard spoke of hope that his life would be spared in the upcoming combat. Approaching the battlefield, the men emotionally shook hands and parted. Rushing into the Tapp Field on the left side of the Plank Road about 6:00 a.m., the 2nd South Carolina and some Virginia artillerists offered resistance until the rest of Longstreet's men arrived to stabilize the situation. In assisting the halt of Hancock's massive assault at the Wilderness, Gaillard's South Carolinians had performed perhaps their greatest service of the war. The regiment then crossed the road and advanced to a line of shallow earthworks. About 9:00 a.m., Gaillard mounted the earth mounds to obtain a clearer view of the enemy. Then he stepped back with his men when a bullet 'sped on its fatal mission.' Hit in the head, he lingered while the litter bearers carried him to the rear. DuBose came upon the scene near where they spoken several hours before, but Gaillard 'was no longer capable of talking.' 2
References & notes
More on the Web
His wartime correspondence is in the Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill [finding aid].
Descendant Frye Gaillard published Franklin's and his siblings' letters in Journey to the Wilderness: War, Memory, and a Southern Family's Civil War Letters (NewSouth Books, 2015) [more, with pre-1856 photo of Franklin].
04/26/1829; Pineville, SC
05/06/1864; near Fredericksburg, VA; burial in Fredericksburg Confederate Cemetery, Va
1 Salley, Alexander S., Jr., compiler, South Carolina Troops in Confederate Service, 3 vols., Columbia: Historical Commission of South Carolina, 1913-1930, Vol. II [AotW citation 54]
2 Biographical sketch, posted online by Shelby Pittman, Webmaster for Catawba Wateree Genealogical Society, and elsewhere.
Wyckoff, Mac, Franklin Gaillard, Published c. 1998, first accessed 07 June 2005, <http://members.tripod.com/~PittmanS/Gaillard.html> [AotW citation 55]