Richard H. Ault born in New York in 1820. He came to Lowndes County, GA some time before 1860 to make his home in the 1200 Georgia Militia District. In the 1860 census, R. H. Ault was single, living in the household of William Bradford and taking his mail at the Troupville post office. His trade was blacksmith.
With the onset of the Civil War, Richard H. Ault enlisted with Levi J. Knight’s company of Berrien Minute Men on August 1, 1861 at Savannah, GA. The Berrien Minute Men had arrived in Savannah on July 30, 1861 as a company of the 13th Georgia Regiment.
About this time, the 29th Georgia Regiment was stationed at Lawton Battery on Smith’s Island, with the Savannah River Batteries, Col. Edward. C. Anderson, commanding. With the reorganization of the 13th Regiment, the Berrien Minute Men were assigned to the 29th. This company was designated at various times as Capt. Knight’s Company, Capt. Wylly’s Company, (Old) Company C, and (New) Company G, 29th Regiment Georgia Infantry.
Battery Lawton was said to be armed with “one thirty-two pounder rifle gun,one forty-two-pounder smooth-bore, two eight-inch, and two ten-inch columbiads” which, along with the guns at Battery Cheves, and Battery Lee, thoroughly commanded the river.
Military records notate that Richard H. Ault was discharged by civil authority at Savannah on August 19, 1862, but on September 7 he was recalled by order of the Adjutant General.
In October, it appears there was a request that Pvt. Ault be detailed first to the Washington Artillery, SC, and second to Macon Arsenal. The Rebel Archives in the Record Division of the War Department show that Col. E. C. Anderson, commander of at Savannah requested that the detail of R. H. Ault be reconsidered. At Battery Lawton, Company C had only three blacksmiths, Thomas J. Palin, Samuel Palin and Richard H. Ault. The two Palin men had already been pulled from the Berrien Minute Men and detailed as blacksmiths for other units. The relationship between these two men is not known; both men deserted Confederate service in 1864, swore allegiance to the United States and were released north of the Ohio River. Thomas J. Palin was a Canadian who came to Berrien County before the War. In the 1860 census T. J. Palin was a fellow boarder along with Levi J. Knight, Jr. (nephew of Captain Levi J. Knight) in the household of William Y. Hill. In 1861, Hill was Ensign in Captain L. J. Knight’s company of Berrien Minute Men.
On October 17, 1863 Col. E. C. Anderson wrote to the Assistant Adjutant General, Captain William W. Gordon
Savannah River Batteries Oct 17, 1863
Capt W W Gordon
A. A. G.
The enclosed papers were handed me by Capt Carroll having been received by him under cover direct from Charleston.
I would respectfully represent that private R H Ault is the only Blacksmith left me in the Company, private T Palin having already been detailed to Lt Col Cuyler at Macon and more recently private Saml Palin transferred to the Engineer troops here. Capt Carrolls Company is posted on Smith’s Island, Lawton Battery. There is a constant use for a Blacksmith at this post & I respectfully ask that private Ault may not be taken from me.
Department of South Carolina, Ga. & Fla.
Charleston, S.C. Oct. 10th 1863
I. The following named men are detailed to report as follows:
Pvt A. H. Ault Co “G” 29th Ga. Vols until 31st Dec. prox. without pay or allowances to report to Lt. Col. R. M. Cuyler, Macon Arsenal.
By command of General Beauregard
- Organization and Command of the Berrien Minute Men
- 29th Georgia Regiment Soldier Killed by Fellow Soldier
- William W. Knight Writes Home About Old Yellow and Men of the 29th Georgia Infantry
- Reward Offered for Confederate Deserters
- Robert O. Rouse Sought Confederate Pension
- Berrien Readied for Civil War, May, 1861
- John Carroll Lamb
- Civil War Letters of James Parrish
- Georgia Fever Bark