Civil War & Stephens County, OK (28)


Miles Wilburn Fowler (1844-1912)

Miles Wilburn Fowler, the firstborn son of Georgia to Miles & Mary (Long) Fowler, was born in Georgia on Sun., April 7, 1844. He entered the Confederate Army having just turn eighteen years of age. Miles served three years (1862-1865) as a Private in Co. G of the CSA, 30th Alabama Infantry Regiment, a regiment that saw more than its fair share of heavy combat and losses. One can only imagine the stories this man could have told. A brief summary of this regiment’s experience in the war reads like this:

“The 30th Alabama Infantry Regiment was organized at Talladega, 16 April 1862, with men recruited from Calhoun, Clay, Coosa, Franklin, Jefferson, Randolph, St. Clair, Shelby, and Talladega counties. It reported for duty at once to Chattanooga. Sent further into East Tennessee, it was brigaded under Gen’l Alexander W. Reynolds of Tennessee, then under Gen’l Carter L. Stevenson. The regiment skirmished at Tazewell and Cumberland Gap, and moved into Kentucky, but it was not engaged there. On the return to Tennessee, the 30th was brigaded with the 20th, 23rd, 31st, and 46th Alabama regiments, under Gen’l Edward D. Tracy of Madison, and in December, it was sent to Vicksburg with the other portions of Stevenson’s Division. In the spring, the regiment fought with few casualties at Port Gibson [aka: Thompson’s Hill]; but, it saw heavy losses at Champion’s Hill [aka: Bakers Creek] where 229 men [nearly half of the men on active duty roster at the time] were put out of action – half the regimental strength. In addition, four ensigns were killed, and the colors were penetrated by 63 balls and 16 shell fragments. At Vicksburg, the 30th suffered severely in casualties during the siege and was captured with the fortress. Paroled, the regiment recruited at Demopolis and proceeded with other portions of the brigade, now under Gen’l Edmund W. Pettus of Dallas, to the main army near Chattanooga. The regiment was engaged without loss at Missionary Ridge, then wintered at Dalton. At Rocky Face Ridge [aka: Mill Creek], the 30th suffered severely, but lightly at Resaca [aka: Lay’s Ferry]. In the Atlanta Campaign, the regiment was engaged in several battles. It lost heavily at New Hope, Atlanta, and Jonesboro. It proceeded into Tennessee and was engaged at Nashville, losing heavily again, and was part of the rear guard on the movement to Duck River. Transferred to North Carolina, the regiment fought at Kinston and Bentonville, with high casualties. The 30th surrendered with the army at Greensboro, North Carolina, about 100 men present for duty. Toward the close of the war, the 30th was consolidated with the 20th Infantry and redesignated the 20th Consolidated Infantry Regiment, at Smithfield, 9 April 1865.”

Incidentally, the flag for the 30th Alabama Infantry that was captured at Vicksburg still exists.

Not quite a decade following the end of the war, likely about 1874, Miles married “Emily Jane” (b. 3/28/1849 in TN; d. 6/2/1947). Unfortunately, I know nothing of their family, as to whether or not they had children, when they made the move westward, etc. What I do know is that Miles & Emily appear in the 1900 Chickasaw Nation, Indian Territory census. Miles listed his occupation at that time as a farmer. The 1910 Stephens County, Oklahoma census reveals that they were in the McPherson Township at that time.

It should be noted that Miles had a younger brother named “John Adams Fowler” (b. May 27, 1853; d. ?) who also lived in Duncan, Oklahoma. John moved to Indian Territory from Texas and then to Duncan in 1892. John Adams Fowler had a daughter (Sarah Alice) who married J. Warren Whisenant, the president of City National Bank in Duncan.

Eight years following Miles’ death, his widow, Emily, filed as a veteran’s widow for an Oklahoma Confederate Pension Application (#4308). The application was filed on July 12, 1920 and approved ten days later on July 22, 1920.

Miles died on Thur., May 2, 1912 and is buried in section 6, lot 13 in the Duncan Municipal cemetery (Stephens County, Oklahoma).