Welcome to the Shiloh Chapter 2538 website. This site is dedicated to the memory of all the Confederate soldiers who fought at the Battle of Shiloh on April 6, 1862. Their courage and valor shall not be forgotten. We encourage you to visit the various pages and links to learn more about Shiloh and the United Daughters of the Confederacy®. Shiloh Chapter 2538 was organized on July 5, 1988 in Plano, Texas with 18 members. We are members of the Texas Division, United Daughters of the Confederacy®.
Chapter Motto: “Lest We Forget”
Chapter Colors: Red and White
Chapter Flower: Carnation
Shiloh Chapter 2538 meets September through May on the first Tuesday of the month at Chestnut Square in McKinney, Texas.
For more information about our meeting location or membership, please contact the Registrar.
For general information, please contact the President.
Our Shiloh insignia was designed to portray our namesake, the Battle of Shiloh. On the outside ring, our chapter name and number is at the top, with Shiloh’s motto, “Lest We Forget” at the bottom. The three stars on the left and three stars on the right represent the original six Southern states to secede. In the center is Shiloh Church, a Methodist Meeting House where a vicious battle was fought on the first day of battle, April 6, 1862. Canons were firing and shells were exploding everywhere. (A canon is also emblazoned on our Chapter Flag.) There are peach branches with pink blossoms on either side of the church. Soldiers remarked and even wrote home about how beautiful the area was with the peach trees in full bloom and flowers blooming everywhere. These branches reach up toward the seventh star that represents the Lone Star of Texas, the seventh state to secede from the Union and to honor the Texas men that fought at Shiloh: the 9th Texas Infantry, the 2nd Texas Infantry, and the 8th Texas Calvary, better known as Terry’s Texas Rangers.
Battle of Shiloh
The fighting began at approximately 4:55 a.m. on April 6, 1862. Confederate skirmishers clashed with a Union reconnaissance party attached to Prentiss’s division and began firing. The Union troops fell back into their own lines and gradually picked up reinforcements, but it wasn’t enough.
By about 9:30 a.m., the Confederates were overrunning Sherman’s position at Shiloh Church. Gen Pierre R.T. Beauregard, Johnston’s second-in-command, set up his new headquarters in Sherman’s own abandoned tent. Johnston rode forward with the attack, leaving no instruction for Beauregard on how to handle advancement and division of the troops.
The advancing Confederates had not eaten in more than a day, so they were stopping to ransack the Union supplies. This, along with a general lack of command, left them almost as disorganized as their Union counterparts. The Union army fell back, centered on Prentiss, toward the landing. Johnston wanted a hard attack on the flank to cut the Union army off from the river and its supplies, but Beauregard was sending the troops piecemeal into the fight and attacking the whole line evenly. Prentiss was eventually reinforced from W.H.L. Wallace, and the Union army dug in.
By noon, a stalemate ensued across the entire battle line. The center of the line, made up of Prentiss’s men and reinforcements, concentrated so much fire on their locations that the Confederates called that area of the battle the “Hornet’s Nest.” Johnston, Beauregard and their generals led at least 11 unsuccessful charges into the Hornet’s Nest during the afternoon.
In the midst of this, at around 2:30 p.m., Johnston ordered and led a charge on the Union flank to cut them off from their supplies. The attack was initially successful, but Johnston was fatally wounded. By the end of the day, however, the Confederate Army had won the Hornet’s Nest, with the Union’s W.H.L. Wallace fatally wounded. Approximately 2,300 of Prentiss’s and Wallace’s men were captured and moved to the Confederate rear.
Beauregard made a final attempt to cut off the Union army, but the disorganization in his own lines and the addition of the Tyler and Lexington gunboats forced him to cease all attack at around 6:30 p.m. His intelligence informed him that Buell’s Army of the Ohio was still days away, so he sent a dispatch to the Confederate government announcing a complete victory.
During the night, the Union gunboats continued to shell the Confederate lines while Union reinforcement began to arrive. First, Lew Wallace arrived with about 6,000 fresh troops. Around midnight, Buell’s forces began to arrive, bringing in 25,000 fresh troops by morning.
When dawn broke on April 7, 1862, Beauregard’s exhausted and disheartened army of 30,000 was facing an army of 50,000–almost three times the size it had been at dusk. The two miles the Confederates had gained the day before disappeared back into Union hands, and by midafternoon, Beauregard was in full retreat to Corinth. Nathan Bedford Forrest’s cavalry rode rear guard to hold off Sherman’s skirmishers.
On the Union side, about 13,000 soldiers were reported killed, wounded or missing. The number for the Confederates was over 10,500. Now everyone knew this war would not be quickly won by either side and the cost of life great.
Written by Nancy Brantley, Shiloh Chapter President 2010-2014.
For information about the Shiloh Battlefield
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