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Men of the fifth Georgia: more than half this regiment was killed and wounded at the battle of Chickamauga. Lounging beneath the Stars and Bars are eight members of an Augusta, Georgia, company—The ‘Clinch Rifles.’ Their new paraphernalia is beautifully marked ‘C. R.’ They have a negro servant. In a word, they are inexperienced Confederate volunteers of May, 1861, on the day before their company became a part of the Fifth Georgia Regiment. Pass to November, 1863; imagine six of the soldiers in the group lying dead or groaning with wounds, and but three unhurt,—and you have figured the state of the regiment after it was torn to shreds at the battle of Chickamauga. It was mustered in for twelve months at Macon, Georgia, May 11, 1861, being the last regiment taken for this short term. The Sixth Georgia and those following were mustered in for three years or the war. The Clinch Rifles were sent to garrison Pensacola, Florida, where General Braxton Bragg would occasionally come from his headquarters, eight miles away, to drill them. The ten companies were all from towns, or cities, and nicely uniformed, though each in a different style. This led Bragg to name them his ‘Pound Cake Regiment.’ In July and August, 1862, the Fifth marched from Chattanooga, Tennessee, to Bardstown, Kentucky, thence to the eastern part of the State, and down through Cumberland Gap to Knoxville, 800 miles in all. It lost heavily in the battle of Murfreesboro. At bloody Chickamauga, September 19 and 20, 1863, its killed and wounded were more than 54 per cent. of the regiment—surpassed by few organizations in history. It suffered again at Missionary Ridge, and in the spring of 1864, when it stood against Sherman through the Atlanta campaign. The regiment fought on through the campaigns from Savannah, Georgia, up to North Carolina, and in the last combat at Bentonville, North Carolina. It surrendered at Greensboro, April, 26, 1865.

 

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