Being admitted to the bar in 1850 he opened his office in Montgomery
In 1855 he was a representative of that county in the Alabama legislature, and in 1860 he was an elector on the Bell
He opposed secession, but when his adopted State decided upon that policy, he obeyed her voice and did all in his power to make her cause succeed.
Having had experience in Mexico
he was elected captain of a mounted company, and served on the Florida coast
until the fall of 1861, when he increased his command to a regiment, of which he was chosen colonel.
This command, known as the First Alabama cavalry, he led to Tennessee
He opened the battle of Shiloh
, April 6, 1862, and was also engaged in the second day's fight.
he acted as aid to General Bragg
he led a brigade, consisting of his own and a Mississippi regiment and Maj. S. J. Murphy
's battalion, and drove the enemy from the field.
In the spring of 1863 Colonel Clanton
raised three more regiments, the Sixth, Seventh and Ninth Alabama cavalry, and on November 13th of that year was commissioned as brigadier-general in the provisional army of the Confederate States
In 1864 he had a fierce fight with General Rousseau
at ‘Ten Islands
,’ on the Coosa river
In this affair he lost his entire staff, Capt. Robert Abercrombie
, of Florida
, and Lieutenant Judkins
, of Montgomery
, being killed, and Captain Smith
, of Dallas
, and Lieutenant Hyer
, of Florida
, being wounded.
Being ordered to Dalton
, he reached there ahead of his command, and acted as aid to General Polk
, at Resaca
For his services in getting the artillery and stores safely across the Etowah
, on the retreat from Cassville
, he received the thanks of the generals of the army of Tennessee.
He was subsequently placed on duty with his brigade in the department of Alabama
and East Louisiana
Early in 1865 he relieved General Baker
, and soon afterward defeated a raiding party of the enemy.
In March he was dangerously