Daniel Beltzhoover was a professor at Mount Saint Mary's
Seminary near Emmitsburg, Maryland, where he taught mathematics.
Before entering his profession at Mount Saint Mary's, Daniel was a
graduate of the 1847 class at West Point. He was also a veteran who served in the United
States Military during the wars in Florida and in Mexico. While
teaching at the Mount, Daniel married Elizabeth Miles who was the
sister to Professor George Miles, who also taught at the Mount.
With this being said, one can speculate, that Daniel was a highly
Before the Civil War, he commanded a company of Zouave Mountain
Cadets at Mount Saint Mary's, and drilled them thoroughly on
Eardin's and Casey's tactics. During the winter of 1860, Daniel
Beltzhoover gave a lecture on "Modern Fortifications". This was
his last lecture before he entered the Confederate Army.
In March of 1861, before the first shots of the Civil War rang
out in the Charleston Harbor at South Carolina, Daniel set out for
his home state of Louisiana resigning from Mount Saint Mary's
Seminary. Major Daniel Beltzhoover was then commissioned into
Confederate service. On April 26, 1861, Major Beltzhoover, who was
headquartered at New Orleans sent a dispatch to 1st Lieutenant H.
W. Fossler requesting him to report for duty at Fort Jackson to be
mustered in and to receive his official commission from the
Confederate States. This is the first record stating Daniel's rank
in the Confederate Army.
On July 25, 1861, Major Beltzhoover received a dispatch from
the Assistant Adjutant-General R. Chilton at Richmond, Virginia
stating: "When troops are organized under State laws and received
into service as so organized, as, for instance, by battalions or
regiments, all vacancies occurring are filled according to State
laws; but where independent companies are tendered as such and so
received by the President, all vacancies are filled by his
appointment." This dispatch was sent to several other officers as
At Baton Rouge or New Orleans on July 1, 1861, Daniel helped
organiz Watson's Artillery, named after A. C. Watson. A. C. Watson
was a wealthy planter from the Tensas parish and equipped the
battery with four 6-lb. Smoothbores and two 12-lb. Howitzers. The
men serving in the battery were from Livingston, East Baton Rouge,
and St. Helena parishes. According to the Story of the Mountain at
least thirty Mountaineers (Mount Saint Mary's Students) also
served in the ranks of Watson's Artillery.
Once the battery was equipped and enough manpower recruited,
Watson's artillery set out for camp in August of 1861. On August
14, 1861, Major Beltzhoover was promoted to Lt. Colonel while
serving in Watson's Artillery. At Lake Bruin, near St. Joseph the
men drilled until they were fit for active service. Watson's
Battery reported for duty in early October at Columbus, Kentucky.
On November 7, the men of Watson's Artillery received their
first baptism of fire at Belmont, Missouri. During the battle of
Belmont, Lt. Colonel Beltzhoover supported Colonel John V.
Wright's 13th Tennessee Regiment, who was on Beltzhoover's left
and the 13th Arkansas Regiment under Colonel Tappan, with the
regiments of Colonels Pickett, Freeman, and Russell on the right.
Beltzhoover's guns were directed to take up position in a field
about a hundred yards from the Mississippi River. Watson's
Artillery kept the fire hot and Lt. Colonel Beltzhoover was noted
by several regimental officers for his gallant conduct during the
battle. The Federals made an attempt to turn the left wing of the
Confederates but was defeated by the destructive fire of
Beltzhoover's battery supported by Colonel Wright's Tennessee
Colonel Beltzhoover was ordered to remove his battery to the
rear when it ran out of ammunition. During the execution to fall
back, one of the teams of horses ran off with the limber, leaving
the gun in its position where the battery was first stationed.
Some reports claim that a Federal artillery shell had exploded
near Watson's Battery. While the other pieces of Watson's
Artillery were withdrawn to the bank of the river, the gun fell
into Federal hands. Lt. Colonel Beltzhoover asked for assistance
in recovering the lost gun.
Lt. Colonel Beltzhoover states the day after the Battle at
Belmont: "About 8 a.m., November 7, you informed me at Camp
Johnston, Missouri, that the enemy were advancing in force against
us, and ordered me to put the Watson Battery in position. I
immediately posted a section at the end of each of the three roads
by which our camp could be approached, and when you came out with
your regiment you gave me a company to support each section. We
stood as thus placed until the arrival of Brigadier-General
Pillow, who ordered your companies back to the regiment, and
united my battery at the edge of the woods and the bend of the
right-hand road from the usual landing of the enemy's gunboats.
There we stood doing our best until the whole line retreated to
the river. At the river I formed in battery again, although I had
no ammunition, and so remained until carried down the bank by the
force of retreating troops. My loss is 2 killed and 8 wounded and
missing; 45 horses killed; 2 guns missing."
"I feel bound to mention, for your favorable notice, Lieutenant
C. P. Ball, than whom a braver or more accomplished officer cannot
be found, and Privates White and Frederick. I am afraid Lieutenant
Ball is seriously wounded by being run over by a caisson." Signed:
Lt. Colonel D. M. Beltzhoover
On November 30, Watson's Artillery had 5 officers and 94 men
present for duty. In late December, Watson's Artillery reported at
Bowling Green, Kentucky where they were assigned to Colonel John
S. Bowen's Brigade. From there, they would travel to Corinth
Mississippi in February of 1862.
On March 13, 1862, Lt. Colonel Daniel Beltzhoover received an
appointment for a staff position as Chief of Artillery and it was
requested that Lt. Colonel Beltzhoover enter his duties at once.
On April 13, 1862, Brigadier General Breckinridge announced his
staff in the Army of the Mississippi and Lt. Colonel Daniel
Beltzhoover was appointed to Chief of Artillery. Because of this
order, Lt. Colonel Beltzhoover resigned from Watson's Artillery.
From this point, Lt. Colonel Beltzhoover becomes associated
with the 1st Louisiana Heavy Artillery under the command of
Colonel Charles A. Fuller. Colonel Fuller just as Lt. Colonel
Beltzhoover also holds a staff position as Inspector-General for
the Confederate Army. The 1st Louisiana Heavy Artillery Regiment
was organized with men from the New Orleans area during the spring
of 1861. It served at Forts Jackson and St. Phillip in New
Watson's Artillery was assigned to Moaxey's and Beall's
Brigade, Department of Mississippi and East Louisiana. After
serving in Mississippi, Watson's Artillery became part of the
garrison at Port Hudson and surrendered on July 9, 1863. Watson's
Artillery was exchanged, but many of its members joined the 1st
Louisiana Regular Artillery Regiment under the command of Lt.
Colonel Beltzhoover. Watson's Artillery had ceased to exist.
During the Siege of Vicksburg, Mississippi, Lt. Colonel
Beltzhoover was attached to Colonel Edward Higgins’ Water
Batteries that served as a portion of the Vicksburg defenses.
Commander Lieutenant General John C. Pemberton, wrote on January
31, 1863, describing the layout of the area where Lt. Colonel
Beltzhoover and the rest of Colonel Higgins’ Brigade was
stationed. The batteries were divided into three commands. The
upper batteries, or those immediately on the city front, were
under the command of Major F. N. Ogden, Eighth Louisiana Artillery
Battalion, to whose command was attached Captain S. C. Bain's
company of Vaiden Light Artillery. The Lowe batteries were under
the command Lt. Colonel Daniel Beltzhoover of the First Louisiana
Artillery. A portion of the Twenty-Third Louisiana Volunteers was
joined to Lt. Colonel Beltzhoover's command.
On July 4th, 1863, the 1st Louisiana Artillery surrendered and
was paroled several months later at Enterprise, Mississippi. At
Demopolis, Alabama on August 29, 1863, Lt. Colonel Beltzhoover
reported "I cannot give any idea of the ordnance stores lost,
because I have none of the reports of returns. During the siege
the commanders of garrisons had nothing to do with the ordnance
stores further than to see that they were taken care of.
Ammunition was sent to the batteries and removed from them without
our knowledge. Colonel Higgins and all his staff are absent, and I
get no better information than given above."
Lt. Colonel Beltzhoover also assessed the losses of heavy
artillery from his Brigade during the surrender of Vicksburg. The
losses were: eight 10-inch Columbiads, one 9-inch navies, one
8-inch Columbiads, one 10-inch mortar, three 42-pounders, five
32-pounder rifles, five 32-pounder smooth-bores, two Brooks', one
Blakely's, and two 6-pounder field guns. Twenty-nine guns in all
After the Confederate surrender of Vicksburg, Lt. Colonel
Beltzhoover took over the Brigade and reorganized it.
Beltzhoover's Brigade included the 27th Louisiana, 1st Louisiana
Heavy Artillery, 8th Louisiana Heavy Artillery Battalion, 1st
Tennessee Heavy Artillery, Anderson's Artillery, Bains' Artillery
company, Wade's Missouri Battery, and one company of Sapper’s and
On November 20, 1863, Major General John H. Forney made his
report of paroled and exchanged troops at Enterprise, Mississippi.
The Confederate troops involved during the parole and exchange for
the Department of Mississippi and East Louisiana under General
Joseph E. Johnston listed Beltzhoover in command of the Henry
Artillery Brigade. The Brigade consisted of the following units:
1st Louisiana commanded by Lieutenant Colonel D. Beltzhoover, 8th
Louisiana Battalion commanded by Captain Toby Hart, 22nd Louisiana
commanded by Lieutenant Colonel Samuel Jones, Vaiden Mississippi
Artillery commanded by Captain Samuel C. Bains, Watson Louisiana
Battery which was unassigned, 1st Mississippi commanded by Colonel
John M. Simonton and the 1st Mississippi Light Artillery commanded
by Captain James J. Cowan.
On January 1st, 1864, Beltzhoover's command consisted of the
1st Louisiana Artillery, 8th Louisiana Battalion, 22nd Louisiana,
14th Mississippi Artillery Battalion, J. S. Smyth's cavalry
battalion, Trans-Mississippi Battalion, Vaiden (Mississippi)
Artillery, 1st Mississippi Light Artillery, and a Signal Corps
On April 23, 1864, Major General Dabney H. Maury who was
stationed at Mobile Alabama wrote to Major General Samuel Cooper
for the consideration of the establishment of a military school
for the education of young officers. General Maury suggested that
Mobile was the best place in the southwest for the establishment
of military schools, and at this time there are several officers
on duty here, graduates of military colleges and men of good
ability and attainments, who will gladly aid in organizing a good
system of military education. He had requested that Lt. Colonel
Beltzhoover as well as a few other officers to teach the young
officers and men in the enlisted ranks.
Lt. Colonel Beltzhoover accepted the teaching position and was
transferred to Mobile, Alabama, commanding the School of Practice
for Artillerists. The school was located on Government Street.
William T. Mumford of the 1st Louisiana Heavy Artillery Company
B was ordered to report to class on May 10th, 1864. His teacher
was Lt. Colonel Beltzhoover. By May 30th, class was in session. On
June 28th, Lt. Colonel Beltzhoover left Mobile at 5 A.M. and took
his class to Forts Morgan, Gaines and Powell. At Fort Gaines,
there were 13 Federal blockading vessels in full view. The Class
didn't return to Mobile until 7 P.M. that evening.
On July 5th, the class received orders to be ready to march out
of Mobile. Rations were to be cooked for five days and a hundred
rounds of ammunition were issued to each man. They were to march
to Meridian at 3 A.M. the next morning to assist in repelling a
raiding party of Federal soldiers coming from the north in
Lt. Colonel Beltzhoover marched his battalion of artillerist
into Mississippi. At Tupelo, Mississippi Beltzhoover's Battalion
was used as Infantry. According to William Mumford of the 1st
Louisiana Heavy Artillery during the battle of Tupelo, Mississippi
several officers and men were left behind among them was Colonel
According to the "The Story of the Mountain",
Lt. Colonel Beltzhoover is believed to have died near Natchez,
Mississippi. He left behind three daughters, who are nuns, and
himself lies buried on the Mountain near Mount Saint Mary's
Seminary. John Devereux, who served with Lt. Colonel Beltzhoover
as his Lieutenant in Watson's Artillery, visited Mount Saint
Mary's College forty years later, looking for the grave of his old
teacher Daniel Beltzhoover, and for that three of Beltzhoover's
Louisiana comrades, whose beautiful epitaph was written by another
of their teachers, George Henry Miles. It is said by his pupils,
that Colonel Beltzhoover stood far above General Grant at West