HAZARD PERRY BAKER
Hazard Perry Baker was the son of Blake Baker and Edna J. Gresham born on January 2, 1835 in Trigg Co., KY. He enlisted December 9, 1862 at Williamsport, Tennessee into Co., B, 15th Regiment Calvary as a private. The 15th was formerly called the 2nd Regiment Woodward's Calvary of CSA, Army. He is noted in military records as having fair complexion, light hair, with hazel eyes. He was a tall man, standing a full 6 feet and 2 inches tall. He rose through the ranks being promoted to 4th Sgt - Feb 10, 1863 - Aug 1863, and again promoted to 2nd Sgt- on Aug 14, 1863.
During his military career he was involved in numerous campaigns of the conflict and saw quite a bit of action. He was also with the escort that was with Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederacy, when they were captured in Irvingville, GA, May 10, 1865. At the time of his capture he was a Lieutenant (SP), and Chief of Escort. The following is an accounting of these historical events.
Hazard Perry Baker's company was encamped at Cleveland, Tennessee during November of 1863 and was charged with guarding the railroad there. On November 26th, were attacked by Union forces and compelled to retire to Varnell's Station. On December 28th, 1863 Hazard Perry Baker's company, attacked the Yankee positions at Charlestown and were repulsed. His outfit retreated to an old encampment, January 1, 1864. They later removed to Tunnel Hill, February 13th, 1864. This is an account as described in a roll dated February 29th, 1865, Oxford, Alabama.
This Company was actively engaged with the army of General Hood, until last of July: Hazard Perry Baker's company participated in the fight that resulted in capture of General Stoneman and his command. From there they continued on a raid in rear of the Union forces. They were cut off with the Brigade, and were able to make their way through West Virginia and made their return to the Army of Tennessee. They then followed Sherman's Army to Savannah, having several sharp skirmishes on the route. Since the fall of Savannah have been resting. This description is as reported from Givan Campbell, Captain. This is an account as described in a roll dated December 3rd, 1864, near Robertsville SC.
The following is from an article in the Mayfield Messenger, Tues, July 9, 1991.
"Confederate Leader's Escort Is Said to Deserve Respectable Remembrance" By Berry Craig For The Associated Press
CANTON, KY (AP) - When the Yankees captured Christian County-born Jefferson Davis, Trigg Countian Hazard Perry Baker offered his sword as a token of surrender. Baker, a Rebel Lieutenant, doesn't even rate a line in most history books. Neither do Capt. Givan Campbell and the other Trigg County cavalrymen who rode as the Confederate president's personal escort when he tried to escape Union troops after the Civil War. Baker's story is told on a highway department marker on U.S. 68 in Canton, a tiny Trigg County community on Lake Barkley. The officer is buried nearby in a cemetery 4 miles south, KY 1254.
Campbell carried a diary titled "Memorandum of a Journal, Kept Daily during the last March of Jefferson Davis." Owned by the Library of Congress, the record describes the flight of Davis through the Carolinas to southern Georgia, where Union cavalry caught him on May 10, 1865. Campbell and his men were part of a small cavalry force that rendezvoused with the Davis party at Greensboro, N.C. In the presidential entourage was another famous Kentuckian, Gen. John C. Breckenridge, Confederate secretary of war. Campbell said Davis "appeared well on horseback, "thin but not "frail or weak". In South Carolina, Davis chose Campbell and his men as a personal escort. Traveling on, the little caravan of wagons and horsemen reached Washington, GA., where more than $200,000 in money and gold from the Rebel treasury were left with still-loyal Confederates. To speed his escape, Davis pared down his escort. He asked Campbell to choose "a few faithful hearts who would be willing to go as (Davis') escort." After the captain named Baker and seven other men, the president gave Campbell "a pair of large revolvers, Kerr's Patent." At Abbeville, Ga., Davis spent the night in his tent with his wife, Varina, who had been traveling with their children in a separate caravan. Two of Campbell's scouts, "their horses showing the effects of...hard and rapid ride," reported that 400 blue-clad troopers were close. The presidential train moved slowly up the road toward Irwinville, then stopped on the morning of May 9. Alarmed, Campbell said he "took the liberty of suggesting to President Davis the danger of this delay and the readiness with which the enemy's cavalry could pursue so broad a train." Yankee horsemen were not Davis' only worry, Campbell recorded. Davis "seemed very much impressed for the safety of his wife and children, on account of the large number of deserters from the Confederate Army residing in the adjacent counties." Davis ordered Campbell to take a man and find a place to cross a river near Irwinville. Campbell "remonstrated against leaving the president at that time and suggested that he send another party." Campbell rode ahead. On May 10, he made the last entry in his diary: "...At the house of a deserter...we learned that President Davis had been captured that morning, North of and near Irwinville." In Campbell's absence, Baker was in command of Davis' escort. When he offered his sword to the leader of the Yankee troops who captured Davis, the Union officer gallantly returned it. Campbell, Baker and the Trigg County troopers in gray made it home after the war. Baker's sword ended up with Arthur C. Burnett of Cadiz who donated it to the United Daughters of the Confederacy.
Hazard Perry Baker also had kept a diary during the time that he served, unfortunately, the diary was destroyed due to a flood save but a couple of pages. These pages speak of the event of President Davis capture and of the Confederate gold. The following names are listed in his diary: President Jefferson Davis, Officer VanBerthizen (Capt. Jeff), General Duke, General Johnston, Capt. G. W. Campbell, and W. A. Howard.
The following names are those of the escort Commanded by Capt. G. W. Campbell: Lieutenant Hazard P. Baker, Trigg County, Ky., James T. Walbert, McCracken County, KY, W. N. Ingram, Trigg County, KY, Harrison Smith, Lyon, KY, Capt. Givan A. Campbell, McCracken Co., KY, Parsley, McSwain, and Howard. There is one other and at this time I have not discovered who he was. All members of the escort were members of Campbell Co., better known as Co. B, 2nd Regiment, William's Brigade. They were all Kentuckians, except one, he was from Tennessee.
Hazard Perry Baker was captured in Irvingville, GA, May 10, 1865. Captain Campbell, Parsley, McSwain and Howard, were the four absent at the time of the capture and made their escape. He was released in accordance with General Order No. 109. War Dept 1865. Head Quarters Provost Marshall General, Military Division of the Tennessee, Nashville, Tennessee, Roll No. 595. His name appears as signature to an Oath of Allegiance to the United States, subscribed and sworn to before Charles D. Coleman, Captain and Asst. Provost Marshal General, Military Division of Tennessee at Nashville, Tenn., Sept 2, 1865.
Hazard Perry Baker returned home to Trigg County after the war and his first wife Susan Cannon. He once again returned to the life of a farmer, as did many of the returning veterans. He would later remarry a second woman, Henrietta Noel, who is pictured with him below.
Hazard Perry Baker, gallant soldier of the Confederacy, passed away Jan 19, 1918 and is buried on his property in the Hazard Perry Baker Cemetery, Trigg Co., KY.
Kaye Brown Woomack
Great Great Granddaughter