"Old" 10th Mississippi
The 10th Mississippi Infantry was organized in March 1861 with an original enrollment of 841 officers and men for a term of one year. Among the officers was future Confederate general Joseph R. Davis, a nephew of President Jefferson Davis.
The troops assembled in Mobile, Alabama, and were transported to Pensacola, Florida, for garrison duty there to help man the coastal defenses. They encamped near Fort Barrancas, opposite Fort Pickens and Santa Rosa Island, both held by Union troops. Several companies engaged in building new fortifications or strengthening existing ones, as well as supporting the artillery crews during periodic bombardments over four months. Colonel Phillips and scores of other men died of disease while stationed near Pensacola. The depleted regiment fought in the Battle of Santa Rosa Island in October 1861.
In February 1862, the regiment was sent back to Mississippi, where it was brigaded with other Mississippi troops under the overall command of Col. James R. Chalmers. The term of enlistment expired in March.
"New" 10th Mississippi
The regiment was reorganized at Corinth on March 15, 1862, for a term of two years.
In April, the new 10th, now under the command of Col. Robert A. Smith and numbering only 360 men, fought in the Battle of Shiloh in West Tennessee. It later participated in Braxton Bragg's Kentucky Campaign and suffered significant casualties at the Battle of Munfordville, including Colonel Smith. Chalmers' Brigade, including the 10th Mississippi, was part in the advance toward Louisville in September. Under Col. James Barr, Jr., the 10th fought in the Battle of Perryville before retreating with Bragg's beaten army across the Cumberland Gap on October 20. Marching through Tennessee, the regiment camped near Murfreesboro, Tennessee, in November. It fought in the subsequent Battle of Stones River in late December and early January 1863.
The 10th again was part of a general Confederate retreat, finally encamping near Tullahoma, Tennessee, until July 1863 when it advanced to Chattanooga and then on to Bridgeport, Alabama. It subsequently participated in the Chickamauga Campaign in September and in the attack on Missionary Ridge at Chattanooga in November before retreating to winter quarters near Dalton, Georgia.
In the spring and summer of 1864, the 10th participated in the Atlanta Campaign. Colonel Barr was mortally wounded in the Battle of Marietta and replaced by James M. Walker. The survivors were part of the Franklin-Nashville Campaign in November before wintering near Meridian, Mississippi. In the spring of 1865, the consolidated regiment took part in the Carolinas Campaign before surrendering with the army of Joseph E. Johnston at Bennett Place in North Carolina in April.