Without a doubt, the Washington Artillery was the most famous and unique artillery organization, not only in the service of the Confederacy, but also the United States.

Formed in 1838, they served in the war with Mexico and entered the Civil War as a complete artillery Battalion, fully equipped with private funds, owing nothing to the state of Louisiana. They were so popular the Governor Moore donated a Napoleon cannon and limber from his own funds.

Five companies were raised, the first four served in the Army of Northern Virginia under General Lee and the fifth company served in the Army of Tennessee, initially under General Beauregard. The unit especially distinguished itself in the defense of Marye's Heights during the Fredricksburg and Chancellorsville campaigns.

A Brief Summary of the History of the Washington Artillery of New Orleans:

1838

Formed as the Native American Artillery, Later changed to current name.

1839

Assigned to right flank company of the Washington Regiment, the only military organization in the American quarter of New Orleans

1845

August 22

As part of the Regiment, they volunteer to serve with Zachary Taylor in the Mexican War and return to Louisiana after three months of service.

1846

Feb. 22
May 9

Received regimental flag.
Volunteered as infantry (Company A of the Washington Regiment) and served three month in the Mexican War

1857

Col. Walton Commanding, they adopt the emblem

1861

Jan 9

Board steamer National for secret mission to seize the arsenal at Baton Rouge. Return victorious on Jan 11.
May Joined the Army of the Confederacy without permission of the Governor of Louisiana and needed a special law passed by the government of the Confederacy to avoid the attendant problems. First command to operate as an artillery battalion.

 

May 26

 

Mustered in Lafayette Square in New Orleans. Companies 1, 2, 3,and 4 left for service in the Army of North Virginia with a 12 piece brass band, their French cook Edouard, cooks and servants. 20 members left behind to form the 5th Company.

 

August

 

The blue cloth dress uniforms are shipped home. The gaiters followed and the only piece of the original uniform was the gold trimmed, red kepi.

 

September

Each man received the Blue Gray private purchase uniform jackets. Together with the red kepi, the vest from the old uniform and sky blue trousers, the final break with the 1858 Federal style uniform was made.

 

 

For any questions about the Washington Artillery of New Orleans
Re-enactors, please email us at: info@washingtonartillery.info