June 12, 2011 - Southport, NC - A former resident of
Wilmington transplanted to Fayetteville, Dr. Philip
Hatfield, recently released his second book, "The
Rowan Rifle Guards, a History of Company K, 4th
Regiment, North Carolina State Troops 1857-1865" in
time for the 2011 sesquicentennial (150th
anniversary) of the start of the Civil War.
Tom Belton, curator of military history of the N.C.
Museum of History in Raleigh, says, "It is a
detailed account of the experiences of a North
Carolina infantry company in the American Civil
War." The Rowan Rifle Guards initially formed in
1857 as a Volunteer infantry company.
Those zealous young men saw membership as more of a
social stepping stone than military service. When
the Civil War erupted in April of 1861, sixty-five
excited volunteers hastily stepped forward to help
garrison the North Carolina coast at Fort Caswell
and Fort Johnston near modern Southport.
Re-designated as Company K, 4th North Carolina State
Troops in July, 1861, the Rowan Rifles ranks swelled
with over one hundred men. Company K served in every
bloody engagement waged by the Army of Northern
Virginia. As in all wars, the harsh realities of
active campaign quickly destroyed any naïve
misconceptions of finding glory in the war. This
epic struggle tested their devotion to principal and
to each other.
The shattered company surrendered sixteen survivors
at Appomattox on April 9, 1865 as a testament to
their faithfulness. The transition of this
antebellum era Volunteer militia unit into battle
hardened veterans is documented using several
previously unpublished soldier accounts and military
The author holds degrees in psychology and history,
and has been a member of the Company of Military
Historians since 2006. He is a native of West
Virginia and moved to North Carolina in 1992. He is
a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom and
participated in rescue operations after Hurricane
Katrina in 2005. Dr. Hatfield has published several
articles related to North Carolina and West Virginia
in the Civil War and has three other books related
to the Civil War available on amazon.com and in many
fine independent book stores throughout the
southeastern United States.
Copies of the Rowan Rifle Guards, A History of Co.
K, 4th NCST retail for $25.00 and are available at
several local stores, including
Bull Frog Corner in
Southport, the Fort Fisher gift shop and the
Fort Caswell gift shop.