Organized December, 1861; reorganized May, 1862; latter part of 1863 consolidated with 23rd Tennessee Infantry Battalion into field unit; formed part of 4th Tennessee Consolidated Infantry Regiment paroled at Greensboro, May 1, 1865.
The 45th Regiment was organized at Camp Trousdale, Sumner County, with 10 companies which had been enrolled at that point during November and December, 1861.
At the reorganization in 1862, Captain Anderson Searcy was elected colonel; Alex Hall lieutenant colonel and Tazewell W. Newman major. Major Newman was detached to recruiting service, and C. H. Wadley succeeded him. Wadley was killed at Murfreesboro January 2, 1863, and James B. Moore succeeded him as major.
The 45th was at Murfreesboro February 93, 1862, where it was reported in Major General G. B. Crittenden's Division, Colonel W. S. Statham's Brigade, consisting of the 15th and 22nd Mississippi, 19th, 20th, 28th and 45th Tennessee Infantry Regiments, and Rutledge's Battery, with Lieutenant Colonel Lytle in command of the 45th. As part of Statham's Brigade, the regiment was in Brigadier General John C. Breckinridge's Corps at the Battle of Shiloh, April 6-7, 1862, but no record of its activities was found. On May 26, it was reported at Corinth, Mississippi with the same units in the brigade.
Some time in June or July, Breckinridge's Division was transferred to Major General Earl Van Dorn's District of Mississippi, with headquarters at Vicksburg. The brigade left Vicksburg July 27 for Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where it was engaged on August 5 as part of General Charles Clark's Division, under General Breckinridge's overall command. In this engagement the 19th, 20th, 28th and 45th Regiments were consolidated into one battalion under Colonel Thomas B. Smith of the 20th. it returned from Baton Rouge to Camp Liberty, near Jackson, Mississippi, where it was reported on August 31, 1862.
From here it moved to Murfreesboro, where on September 18, 1862 Colonel F. M. Walker was in command of a brigade composed of the 20th, 28th, 45th Tennessee, 60th North Carolina Infantry Regiments, and two batteries. On December 19, 1862, Brigadier General John C. Brown was given command of the brigade, and it was known as Brown's Brigade until November, 1864, when Brown's and Reynolds' Brigades were consolidated to form Palmer's Brigade.
In the Battle of Murfreesboro, December 31, 1862-January 2, 1863, Brown's Brigade, commanded first by Colonel J. B. Palmer, later by Brigadier General Gideon J. Pillow, formed part of Breckinridge's Division. At this time, the brigade was composed of the 18th, 26th, 28th, 32nd, and 45th Tennessee Regiments, pluS Moses' Battery, with the 32nd on detached service. The regiment suffered only a few casualties on December 31, but in the charge by Breckinridge's Division in the afternoon of January 2, it lost heavily, total casualties amounting to 113. On January 19, 1863, the 45th reported 323 present for duty, out of 449 present.
During January and February, 1863, the regiment was stationed at Tullahoma. On February 16 the 28th was transferred to Cheatham's Division, and on February 28, the 23rd Tennessee Infantry Battalion, which had been recruited by Major Newman, was added to the brigade. During March and April, 1863 the regiment was stationed at Fairfield; and on June 26, just after the affair at Hoover's Gap, Lieutenant General William J. Hardee, in a note to Major General A. P. Stewart, wrote "The 45th is at Shilob Church. If you retrogade, bring it back with you and consider it under your orders. The rest of Brown's Brigade, except the 26th, is at Tullahoma." The brigade remained in Stewart's Division until November 12, 1863. Following the retreat to Chattanooga, the 45th was stationed at Loudon and Charleston. It moved from that area to Chickamauga early in September, and as part of Buckner's Corps, was engaged in the Battle of Chickamauga, September 19-20, 1863, suffering 98 casualties out of 226 effectives engaged. Following the battle the 45th was stationed near Chattanooga, on Lookout Mountain and Missionary Ridge. On November 12, 1863, the brigade was transferred to Major General C. L. Stevenson's Division; the 3rd (Clack's) Tennessee Regiment was added, and the 45th Regiment consolidated into one field unit with the 23rd Tennessee Infantry Battalion, although separate company muster rolls were maintained. The field oflicers of the consolidated unit were Colonel Anderson Searcy; Lieutenant Colonel Alex Hall, of the 45th; and Major T. W. Newman of the 23rd Battalion. Major Newman was soon again given detached service, and Major Moore, of the 45th, served as major of the combined units.
On November 25, the 45th/23rd was stationed on top of Missionary Ridge, near the tunnel, and held their position until the line to their left was broken, when it retreated to Chickamauga, to Ringgold, to Dalton, Georgia, where it arrived on November 27, 1863. The 45th reported 12 casualties at Missionary Ridge. On December 14, at Dalton, the 45th/23rd reported 232 effectives out of 316 present.
The 45th remained at Dalton, Georgia, until February 5, when it moved to Rome, Georgia, where it was engaged in building fortifications until February 25, when it returned to Dalton. On February 20, 1864, Stevenson's Division was transferred from Hardee's Corps to Hood's Corps. It left winter quarters for line of battle outside Dalton on April 22; fought at Rocky Face May 7; at Resaca, May 14-15; retreated, skirmishing, through Adairsville, Cassville, Cartersville, Powder Springs, Marietta, Peach Tree Creek, and arrived at Atlanta July 31, 1864. From. Atlanta, it moved to Dallas, Georgia, where it was reported August 31, having been under fire for 115 days. On July 26, 1864, the division was transferred to Lieutenant General Stephen D. Lee's Corps.
On November 18, 1864 Brown's and Reynolds' Brigades were consolidated, and Colonel (later brigadier general) Joseph B. Palmer was placed in command of the combined brigade, which, from this time on, was known as Palmer's Brigade. The regiments from Reynolds' Brigade thus added were the 58th and 60th North Carolina, and 54th and 63rd Virginia Infantry Regiments. The 26th Tennessee was added to the field consolidation of the 45th/23rd Battalion, with the combined unit under Colonel Searcy of the 45th. The 58th North Carolina was soon transferred elsewhere, but the other units remained together until the reorganization of General Joseph E. Johnston's Army in North Carolina.
Lee's Corps arrived too late to participate in the Battle of Franklin, November 30, 1864 and Palmer's Brigade was on detached service with General Forrest around Murfreesboro when the Battle of Nashville was fought. However, Palmer's Brigade formed part of the force under Major General E. C. Walthall, which was part of the rear guard of General Hood's Army in its retreat from Tennessee into Mississippi. On January 3, 1865, after the withdrawal from Tennessee had been completed, the 45th reported 37 effectives out of 49 present. On January 19, the 3rd/l8th/ 26th/32nd/45th Regiments and 23rd Battalion, now combined into one field unit, reported 306 effectives out of 471 present.
The brigade moved to North Carolina to join General Joseph E. Johnston, and at Smithfield, North Carolina on March 31, 1865, in the order of battle for Johnston's Army, the 3rd/l8th/32nd/46th/26th Tennessee Regiments and the 23rd Battalion were reported as one unit in Palmer's Brigade. The inclusion of the 46th here was an error, intended for the 45th, as the 46th was also reported in Quarles' Brigade, where it had been all along.
In the final consolidation of Johnston's Army, April 9, 1865, Colonel Searcy, of the 45th, was given command of the Fourth Consolidated Tennessee Infantry Regiment of Palmer's Brigade, which was composed of the 2nd/3rd/l0th/15th/l8th/20th/26th/30th 32nd/37th/45th Tennessee Regiments and the 23rd Tennessee Infantry Battalion. As such, it was surrendered and paroled at Greensboro, North Carolina, May 1, 1865.
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This unit history was extracted from Tennesseans in the Civil War, Vol 1. Copyrighted © 1964 by the “Civil War Centennial Commission of Tennessee” and is published here with their permission.
This history may not be republished for any reason without the written permission of the copyright owner.
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