Grainger County, Tennessee

William Elvin Chase Jr.
Civil War Soldier

Picture contributed by John Chase          

William Elvin Chase Jr. was born in Grainger County TN about 1840 exact date is unknown. He was one of seven children belonging to William Elvin Chase Sr. and Jane Campbell Chase. On January 10th, 1862 he married Rachel Ann Bales Letner in Grainger County, TN. She was the daughter of Isaac Hammer Beals/Bales and Nancy Mulkey. On 27 September 1862 William E. Chase joined the Confederate States Army 12th Tennessee Calvary Battalion in Knoxville,TN. He was killed at the Battle of Stones River on 31 December 1862 and it is believed that he is burried in the Confederate Soldiers Mass Grave Site in Downtown Murfreesboro, TN. His wife was appoximately one month with child when he enlisted. His son Elvin Sylvester Chase was born in May 1863 and all that he ever had of his father was the photo made of him in 1862. The original portrait was destroyed in a house fire in 1963.


The Header for the Company Muster Roll states


12th Battalion, Tennessee Cavalry (Day's) 

William E. Chase 
Pvt, Co.....,12th Batt'n Tennessee Calvary
Appears on 
             Company Muster Roll

of the organization named above,
for         Jan & Feb      ,1863      

When            Sept 27       ,1862
Where      Knoxville                   
By Whom     Capt     L T Hardy 
Period    3 years or War             
Last Paid
By Whom       Col. Ayers         
To what Time         Dec 31, 1862
For use of horse   $100.00          
Present or Absent     Absent        
Remarks  Suppossedly killed at the Battle of Murfreesboro
His fate not certainly known
The 12th Cavalry Battalion was formed in September, 1862, with four companies,
later increased to seven. Its members were raised in Hawkins, Greene, Knox,
Hamblem, and Grainger counties. The unit was assigned to Wharton's, J.J. 
Morrison's, H.B. Davidson's, Grigsby's, and Vaughn's Brigade. 
It fought at Perryville , Murfreesboro,and Monticello. 
Then from June, 1863, to March, 1864, the 12th and 16th Battalions were 
consolidated into a field organization known as Rucker's Legion.
This command was active at Chickamauga and in Tennessee, and on January 31, 
1864, totalled 171 effectives. During April, 1864, the 12th had 234 members 
and moved into the Valley of Virginia where it was engaged at Piedmont. 
The unit went on to skirmish in Virginia and East Tennessee, moved to North 
Carolina, and probably disbanded in Georgia during the spring of 1865. 
The field officers were Lieutenant Colonels Thomas W. Adrian and G.W. Day, 
and Major Frank L. Phipps. 

William E. Chase Private is listed as number 157 out of 1323 men.

On the back side of the muster roll it went on to say that 
William E. Chase was killed at the Battle of Murfreesboro
on Dec 31, 1862 while charging the ENEMY CALVARY.

It also says something to the effect, One Grey Horse Bought and Paid for I 
don't know if this is in reference to his horse or if this was terminolgy used 
for a Confederate Calvary Member killed in the line of Duty?

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This file was contributed for use in the USGenWeb Archives by: John Chase

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