Walker Todd was born on May 5, 1822 in Cannon County, Tennessee. Walker was raised by his grandmother. He didn’t know who his father was. To determine parentage, some family members are actively recruiting selected family members for DNA testing. My sister’s DNA result was a match to Walker Everett Todd’s descendents.
Walker married Julia Ann Painter in 1849. There is no evidence they had any children. On May 3, 1855, he married Elmira Frances Haynes in Coffee County, Tennessee. They had ten children, including Albert Newton Todd, Edith McIntire Holder’s grandfather. They also raised their granddaughter, Nellie Lee Todd.
Walker, at the age of 41, enrolled in Company A, 18th Regiment, Tennessee Volunteers under Capt. M. B. Rushing at McMinnville on January 10, 1863. With his enrollment this late in the war and at his age, Walker may have been under a lot of pressure to “volunteer.” Walker was on the muster roll for the CSA 18th Regiment Tennessee Infantry for January and February 1863; March and April 1863 in hospital; July and August 1863 in hospital at Ringgold, Georgia; September and October in hospital. On Aug 8, 1863 he was sent to Ford Hospital (Newman, GA) and was still on the Hospital Muster Roll for November and December.
January and February 1864, he was present on his Company’s Muster Roll, but from May thru August 1864 he is absent from the Company and back in the hospital. A Dalton, GA Muster Roll dated January 20, 1864 shows he was detailed as a hospital nurse. On January 15, 1865, Walker was admitted to the hospital for disabilities and, on April 14, 1865, was sent to C.S.A. General Hospital No. 11, Charlotte, NC.
From the description of 18th Regiment, Tennessee Infantry activities below, it appears Walker may have been captured at Fort Donelson, with another family ancestor, Charles Wilson Buckmaster, fighting on the Union side. We don’t know what caused Walker’s extended hospital stays. He was present on his Company’s Muster Rolls in January and February 1864, just after the fall of Atlanta, with no significant battles during this time, though he was back in the hospital by May 1864. To learn more, state records from the Civil War will need to be searched.
The 18th Regiment, Tennessee Infantry completed its organization at Camp Trousdale, Tennessee, in June, 1861, and in July had 883 men present for duty. The unit moved to Bowling Green, Kentucky, then Fort Donelson where it was captured in February, 1862. Exchanged and reorganized, the 18th was assigned to Pillow’s, J.C. Brown’s, Brown’s and Reynolds’ Consolidated, and Palmer’s Brigade, Army of Tennessee. During October, 1863, the unit was consolidated with the 26th Regiment. It participated in the campaigns of the army from Murfreesboro to Atlanta and returned to Tennessee with Hood, but it was not engaged at Franklin and Nashville. Later it was involved in the North Carolina Campaign. The regiment reported 52 casualties of the 685 at Fort Donelson, then lost thirty-one percent of the 430 at Murfreesboro and forty-one percent of the 330 at Chickamauga. In December, 1863, the 18th/26th totaled 423 men and 290 arms and sustained many losses at Atlanta. Later the 18th was consolidated with the 3rd Volunteers and on December 21, 1864, there were 12 men fit for duty. It was included in the surrender on April 26, 1865. The field officers were Colonel Joseph B. Palmer, Lieutenant Colonels William R. Butler and Albert G. Carden, and Majors Samuel W. David and William H. Joyner.
While Walker was in the service, Elmira hid the horses in the cedars and hid their money under the beehives. When the Raiders went through the house taking everything they could, she was “too ill” to rise from the chair, where she was sitting on their money. The Raiders were stealing food, animals, and everything they could use. When Elmira’s brother, Newton Haynes, got out of the service, he planted the crops. When Walker (who had to walk most of the way home from Virginia) was able to get home, he told the Elmira’s brother he could have half the crops since he had done all the work.
His Oath of Allegiance is dated May 24, 1865 and lists his description: dark complexion, gray hair, gray eyes, 5’11” tall. At the age of 84, he died on July 28, 1906 in Cannon County, Tennessee. He and his wife are buried in the Todd Cemetery, on the hillside of the family farm just a few yards from where their frame house stood.
- Index to Compiled Military Service Records, film M231, roll 43.
Copyrighted, 2012 by Andrea Musgrove Perisho.