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Confederate (CSV)


Robert Theodore Bowie

(1836 - 1921)

Home State: Georgia

Branch of Service: Infantry

Unit: 13th Georgia Infantry

Before Sharpsburg

In 1860 he was a lawyer at Blakely in Early County, GA and a Lieutenant in the local militia company - the Early County Guards. He enrolled with them as Company G, 13th Georgia Infantry on 8 July 1861 in Griffin, GA and was elected Brevet 2nd Lieutenant. He was wounded on Whitemarsh Island near Savannah, GA on 16 April and was absent, wounded through May. He was elected 2nd Lieutenant on 11 July 1862.

On the Campaign

He was wounded at the hip joint in action at Sharpsburg on 17 September 1862 and

... he was left on the field among the dead and dying, the ambulance surgeon thinking there was no chance of his living to get to the hospital. Several hours later his own Col. J. M. [James Milton] Smith1 (later governor of Georgia), was riding over the field looking for his men and came to where he was lying. Colonel Smith told him if he was willing to take the chance he would lift him to his horse and swim the river to the nearest hospital. This exertion came near being too much for him, but they made the trip successfully and his life was saved.

The rest of the War

He was elected First Lieutenant on 8 December 1862, but resigned on a Surgeon's Certificate of Disability (from his Sharpsburg wound) on 25 May 1863. He was elected Captain of Company L, 7th Regiment Georgia State Guards on 1 August 1863 and mustered out 31 January. He organized a new company and was elected their Captain - Company D, 4th Regiment Georgia Reserve - on 10 May 1864, and did guard duty at Andersonville Prison for the rest of the war.

After the War

In 1880 he was a farmer in Newton, County GA, but by 1900 was a policeman in Atlanta, GA. In 1920 he was retired and lived with his daughters Annie and Thea in Atlanta.

References & notes

His service from Henderson2 and his Compiled Service Records,3 online from fold3. Personal details from family genealogists, the US Census of 1880, 1900, and 1920, and his obituary in the Confederate Veteran,4 source also of the quote above. His gravesite is on Findagrave; at least one other record and his stone have his birth in 1837.

He married Julia Hamilton (1852-1913) in about 1873 and they had at least 6 children.


07/25/1836; Abbeville District, SC


10/24/1921; Atlanta, GA; burial in West Hill Cemetery, Dalton, GA


1   Lieutenant Colonel Smith does not appear to have been at Sharpsburg on 17 September, or at least he was not listed in command there, as would be expected of him as next senior officer in the regiment after Colonel Douglass. He was later appointed Colonel to date from Douglass' death at Sharpsburg. It's not clear who saved Lt. Bowie.  [AotW citation 28282]

2   Henderson, Lilian, compiler, Roster of the Confederate Soldiers of Georgia, 1861-1865, 6 vols., Hapeville (GA): Longino & Porter, 1959-1964  [AotW citation 7274]

3   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 28280]

4   United Confederate Veterans, and United Daughters of the Confederacy and Sons of Confederate Veterans, Confederate Veteran Magazine (1893-1932), 1893-01-00, Vol. 30, No. 2 (February 1922), pg. 71  [AotW citation 28281]