Texans Go to War

Many Texans Become Soldiers

As soon as the Civil War started, thousands of Texans joined the Confederate army. By the end of the first year of the war, more soldiers were needed, so the Confederate Congress passed the Conscription Act. Conscription is the forced enrollment of people into the military service. This act required all men between 18 and 35 to serve in the Confederate army. It also excused some and allowed the hiring of substitutes.

About 60,000 Texans served in the Confederate forces. Almost one-third of the Texas soldiers were in armies east of the Mississippi River. Others were along the Texas borders and in nearby states such as Louisiana.

Hood's Texas Brigade and Terry's Texas Rangers were among the better known Texas units serving east of the Mississippi. Both units were cites for their bravery and courage. Hood's Brigade fought in many of the great battles in Virginia. General Robert E. Lee, who commanded Confederate troops in Virginia, called Hood's men his "finest soldiers". Terry's Texas Rangers, officially the Eight Texas Calvary Regiment, fought in more battles than did any other cavalry regiment in the Civil War.

john Bell Hood

  • Leader of the Confederacy's Hood's Texas Brigade
  • Wounded in the arm at Gettysburg and had a leg amputated after Chickamauga
  • Turned himself over to Union authorities after the Civil war and died of yellow fever in New Orleans years later.
  • Ft. Hood in Killeen is named for him

john Magruder

  • Commanded Confederate forces in Texas
  • Recaptured Galveston by converting steamboats into gunboats by lining the sides with cotton bales earning the nickname "Cotton Clads"
  • Fled to Mexico after the Civil War where he served in the Mexican Army
  • returned to Texas and died in 1871

Thomas Green

  • Led the troops that were on the steamboats converted to gunboats during the Battle of Galveston
  • Killed by cannon fire at the Battle of Blair's Landing on the Red River on April 12, 1864


Francis Lubbock

  • Governor of Texas 1861
  • served as aid-de-camp for Jefferson Davis and was captured with him at the end of the war
  • imprisoned at Fort Delaware and kept in solitary confinement for eight months before being paroled.
  • city of Lubbock is named in his honor


Lawrence Sullivan 'Sul" Ross

  • joined the Confederate army and became a Brigadier General in 1864
  • became the 19th Governor of Texas in 1887
  • become the Chancellor of the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas which is today Texas A&M
  • After he died in 1898, the Texas legislature created Sul Ross University in his honor.


John Reagan

  • Served as Postmaster General in the cabinet of Confederate President Jefferson Davis