Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The Spanish Guards, Mobile, Alabama Confederate Militia, 1863 to 1865.

The Spanish Guards Confederate unit of Mobile, Alabama was composed mostly of foreign citizens from Spain and her colonies, with a scattering of members, from other nationalities. It was organized, on November 6, 1863 and was composed mostly of merchants and “cradle and grave” members. It served solely as a local home guard unit.

There were other similar home guard units formed by French, British, Slavic and German nationals (The Mobile French Guards, The British Legation Guard, The Pulaski Rifles and The German Fusiliers #2). The Italian population joined the 21st Alabama Infantry, Company G, with their Spanish neighbors, due to the language similarity and a few can also be found in the Spanish Guard unit.

The City of Mobile had a foreign born population of approx. 7061 people,
out of a total City population of approx. 29,258, in 1860, which was composed mainly of newer French, Spanish, Slavic, German, and English immigrants (including Scots, Irish and Welsh). The State Capital and 1st Capital of the Confederacy located at Montgomery, Alabama even had its own unit composed of foreign born resident’s aptly named, “The Montgomery Foreign Guard,” who among its ranks had a lone Hispanic, although a few others did serve, in other Montgomery local defense units.

The Spanish Guards served as part of the Mobile County Reserves and saw service as Provost Guard and Scouts, in Mobile, and to a minimal extent, in Baldwin County. It was officially disbanded on April 12, 1865 although a few men evacuated with the other Confederate forces and surrendered with General Richard Taylor, at Citronelle, Alabama, on May 4, 1865.

You can visit http://adf.ly/8ALVr and learn about the Cuba Libre Camp Project of the Admiral Semmes Camp 11, Sons of Confederate Veterans which is a project to identify all known Cuban Confederate Soldiers, as well as other Hispanics and Minorities who served in the Confederate Military.

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