Camp Walker - It's Name


 

Historic Resources Management Report

FRENCHBURG ARCH BRIDGE REPLACEMENT


COUNTY ROUTE 50/9, FRENCHBURG, HAMPSHIRE COUNTY
State Project #S314-50/9-0.25
Augusta USGS 7.5-Minute Topographic Quadrangle
Prepared by: Tracy D. Bakic, Structural Historian
December 2014
p. 7

Perhaps the Camp was named for James Alexander Walker. Walker was born in Augusta County, VA in 1832. He was a graduate of Virginia Military Institute. Walker entered the Confederate Army in April 1861. He served in General Robert E. Leee's Army of Northern Virginia assigned to the 13 th Regiment Virginia Infantry, starting as Lieutenant Colonel in July 1861 and then promoted to Colonel from March 1862 to May 1863. Of the companies under his command, two were from West Virginia Co. I (Frontier Rifles) and Co. K (Hampshire Guard), both from Hampshire County. He was next promoted to Brigadier General and assigned as commander of the Stonewall Brigade from May 1863 until May 1864. Walker had a post-war political career, serving two terms in the Virginia House of Delegates, as Lieutenant Governor of Virginia (1877-1881), and in US Congress (1895-1899). He died in 1901 in Wythe County, VA (Bioguide.congress.gov; Hall 2004:101; Hinkle 2003:132; VMI.edu).




Original deed from Henry Haines and James H. Powell & Sarah A. Powell, his wife, to The Society 
of the Ex-Confederate Soldiers in Hampshire County, deed book 69, page 294.
Camp Walker Deed, Deed Bk.85, P. 138 to Sons and Daughters of the Ex-Confederates (?). The current 
deed reference may be Deed Book 245 page 632. Map: 05-18 Parcel: 36 

next property north: Deed:WB56-265

The organizational meeting of the Ex-Confederate Soldiers was held July 31, 1883, following a call 
published in the South Branch Intelligencer.

Maxwell & Swisher lists a Jacob Walker (Hardy Co.) as a member of Capt. George W. Stump's Company B, 
18th Regiment Virginia Cavalry (History of Hampshire County, p. 652)

James Alexander Walker. He was a Colonel assigned to the 13th Regiment Virginia Infantry, which 
included two Hampshire County companies, from March 1862 to May 1863, after which he was Brigadier 
General assigned to command the Stonewall Brigade. (ref Tracy Bakic)


James Alexander Walker, Confederate General

*the source for this articl has disappeared from the Internet*
FIELD COMMANDS
13th Virginia Infantry Regiment Lieutenant Colonel, Colonel

BIOGRAPHY
Born 	August 27, 1832  Mount Meridian, Virginia
Died 	October 20, 1901  Wytheville, Virginia
Buried 	East End Cemetery, Wytheville, Virginia

Brigadier-General James A. Walker, now living in Wytheville, Va., is the son of Alexander Walker 
and Hannah Hinton, whose ancestors were among the early Scotch-Irish settlers of the valley of 
Virginia. He was born in Augusta county on the 27th of August, 1832. After receiving the best 
elementary education that the schools of the neighborhood afforded, he entered the fourth class at 
the Virginia military institute in 1848. Here he remained until the spring of 1852, and was in the 
graduating class of that year, when he took offense at some remark made to him by Stonewall Jackson 
(then Professor Jackson), in the lecture room, and a passage of sharp words took place between the 
two. Cadet Walker, feeling that he had been publicly insulted and wronged by Professor Jackson, sent 
him a challenge to fight a duel. It is related of Jackson by one with whom he consulted on the occasion, 
that, notwithstanding he was a grave professor and the challenger a mere boy, he for a considerable time, 
debated in his mind the propriety of accepting the challenge, expressing a serious wish that it was 
possible to do so. 
  Walker's rebellion in the class-room was a grave offense, at an institution where 
strict military discipline is maintained; but the sending of a challenge to one of the principal 
officers and professors was a crime not to be overlooked or forgiven, and though Walker stood high in 
his class, and was popular with all who knew his honest heart and chivalric qualities, he was court-martialed 
and dismissed from the institution. In after years, when Jackson and Walker met, as officers in the field, 
and the former saw his wayward pupil in the front of every fight, always prompt, never shirking the most 
arduous duties, nor flinching in the most trying and dangerous situations, he freely blotted from his 
remembrance all thought of the occurrence between them at the institute, and pushed him for promotion 
whenever there was an opportunity to do so. They became friends and no officer in the army stood higher 
in the esteem of Jackson than Walker. 
  After the war General Walker's diploma was sent to him by order of the board of visitors, and he is 
enrolled as a graduate of the Virginia military institute. After leaving the institute, Walker 
accepted a position in the engineer corps, then engaged in locating the line of the Covington 
& Ohio (now Chesapeake & Ohio) railroad, from the Big Sandy river to Charlestown, and in this 
rough and unexciting life he spent eighteen months. He then resigned and returned to his home in Augusta 
county. Shortly afterward he began to read law in the office of Col. John B. Baldwin, at Staunton. During 
the session of 1854-55 he took a law course at the university of Virginia, and immediately afterward began 
to practice his profession at Newbern, Pulaski county, Va. 
  In 1860 he was elected commonwealth's attorney of that county and filled that position until 
the spring of 1863. Immediately after the John Brown raid, Walker organized a local militia 
company, the Pulaski Guards, and being elected their captain, drilled them so faithfully that 
when Governor Letcher called for troops from Virginia, his was one of the best companies 
mustered into the service. 
  In April, 1861, Captain Walker and his company were ordered to report for duty at 
Harper's Ferry, and there joined Stonewall Jackson's command. Captain Walker remained with the Fourth 
regiment until after the skirmish at Falling Waters, and for conspicuous gallantry and exhibition of high 
soldierly qualities, was promoted to the rank of lieutenant-colonel and assigned to duty in the Thirteenth 
Virginia infantry, of which A. P. Hill was colonel. Hill was made brigadier in March, 1862, and soon afterward 
Walker was made full colonel. When General Jackson left Manassas for Yorktown, Colonel Walker's regiment formed 
part of General Ewell's division. Later he joined Jackson's command, and participated in the battles of the 
famous Valley campaign. Colonel Walker commanded a brigade nearly all the year of 1862. At Sharpsburg he 
commanded Trimble's brigade, and at Fredericksburg, Early's. 
  In the spring of 1863 he was promoted to the rank 
of brigadier-general, and by the request of Stonewall Jackson was ordered to take command of the old Stonewall 
brigade. At the head of this famous body of soldiers he fought at Winchester, Gettysburg, Mine Run, 
Fredericksburg, Wilderness and Spottsylvania Court House, and at the latter place, the 12th of May, 1864, 
received a musket ball in the elbow of the left arm, which caused an excessively painful wound, which 
compelled resection of the bones and his temporary retirement from service. In July, 1864, with his arm still 
in a sling and his health feeble, he was again called into service and assigned to the defenses of the Richmond 
& Danville and "Southside" railroads, these roads covering Lee's main line of communication and supplies. He 
was successful in holding back the raiding cavalry, and in keeping the railroad communications open with the 
south and west, and for this service received the warm commendations of his superior officers. 
  In February, 1865, General Walker asked leave to return to the front once more, and solicited the favor of 
taking charge of the brigade, which, by the death of the gallant Pegram, was left without a brigadier, and in 
which was his old regiment, the Thirteenth Virginia, a body of troops than whom, he has often been heard to say, 
no braver ever fought in all the famous armies of the world. His request was granted. Being the senior brigadier, 
during Early's absence in the valley of Virginia, with an independent command, he led two brigades of the 
division in a successful attack on Hare's hill. Still at the head of this division General Walker retreated, 
with General Lee, fighting by the way at Sailor's creek, High Bridge and Farmville, to Appomattox, where he 
surrendered himself and about 1,500 officers and men to Grant. 
  The war over, General Walker returned to his 
home in Pulaski county, and immediately went to work putting out a crop of corn, with the two mules he had 
brought home from the army with him. As soon as possible he began to practice law, and gave his entire time 
to his profession until the summer of 1868. In that year, without any solicitations on his part, he was 
nominated as the conservative candidate for lieutenant- governor, and had canvassed several counties before 
the election was postponed by order of the military authorities, and Congress commenced reconstructing the State. 
When later it was found expedient to nominate a Northern Democrat and Gilbert C. Walker's name was mentioned, 
General Walker withdrew his name and canvassed the State for Walker against Wells. In 1871 he was elected to 
the house of delegates. 
  In 1876 he was made lieutenant-governor on the ticket with Governor Holliday. During 
the debt controversy in Virginia, General Walker sided actively with the debt-paying element. After his term 
as lieutenant-governor expired, he took, for several years, little part in State politics, being kept busy by 
the demands of a large law practice. He was also much interested and very active in the development of the 
mineral resources of Virginia. While studying the interests of his section of the State, he became an 
enthusiastic "Protectionist" in politics, and, at that time, indeed, the Democratic party in southwestern 
Virginia was pronounced in its advocacy of protection principles. When, a year or two later, Mr. Cleveland 
avowed his free trade policy and became the Democratic leader and their candidate for President, General 
Walker severed his connection with that party, and has since been a Republican in principle and affiliation. 
  He was elected to Congress from the Ninth district of Virginia by the Republicans in 1894, and was re-elected 
in 1896. In July, 1898, he was a third time nominated. In the official records of the civil war, published 
by the government, General Walker's name, coupled with honorable mention for gallant conduct or faithful 
services, occurs a number of times in the reports of Confederate officers. 
  One interesting fact connected with him is this, that he is the only officer who ever commanded the Stonewall 
brigade who survived the war. All of the others, Generals Jackson, Winder, Garnett and Paxton, were killed in 
battle. Colonels Allen, Botts and Baylor, while temporarily in command of the Stonewall brigade, also fell at 
the head of their troops. 
  As the sole surviving commander of this famous brigade, General Walker has been an object of much interest in 
the North and West, and in the last ten years has been a number of times invited to make addresses on commanders 
of the civil war and kindred subjects, in the cities of those sections. He has in this way been one of those 
ex-Confederate officers who have had much to do with the present era of good feeling between the sections. 
Like Wheeler and Lee and others, he has long been broad-minded enough to see that loyalty to the "lost cause" 
is entirely consistent with loyalty to the government under which he lives and from which he claims protection.
   Confederate Military History
   * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * 

see Robert K. Krick, "James Alexander Walker," N .Davis, ed., The Confederate General, 6:86-87



see also: Caldwell, Willie Walker. Stonewall Jim: A Biography of General James A. Walker, C.S.A. Elliston, VA: Northcross House, 1990. ISBN 978-0-9617256-4-8