21st Infantry

Captain John W. Miller

Company D (the “Forsyth Rifles”), 21st Regiment N.C. Troops (11th Regiment N.C. Volunteers)

John W. Miller (born April 19, 1842) resided with his parents and four siblings in the town of Salem, Forsyth County. His father listed no occupation in the 1860 census, but nevertheless owned eight slaves, two slave dwellings and substantial other real estate.
Miller enlisted as corporal in the “Forsyth Rifles,” subsequently Company D, 21st Regiment N.C. Troops. He was promoted to sergeant in December 1861, and was elected second lieutenant when the “Rifles” reorganized for the duration of the war in April 1862.

Miller was wounded in action at the Battle of Second Manassas, April 28, 1862. He was hospitalized at the Confederate General Hospital at Danville, Virginia, and convalesced until he received a thirty day furlough on September 23.

Miller returned to duty on an unknown date, and received promotions to first lieutenant (dated to his wounding on August 28) and to captain on March 12, 1863. He was killed in action at the Battle of Chancellorsville, probably on May 4, 1863. An obituary in the People’s Press of Salem, dated May 15, 1863, remembered that he was “noble, generous, and brave, and knew no fear.”

Miller’s remains were returned home and he is buried in Salem Cemetery, Winston-Salem.

Image: Copy print in author’s possession.

Source Note:
1860 U. S. Census, Salem District, Forsyth County, North Carolina, population schedule, p. 154, dwelling 1270, family 1205, Harmon Miller household; 1860 U.S. Census, Salem District, Forsyth County, North Carolina, slave schedule, page 11, Harmon Miller, slave owner Manarin et. al., North Carolina Troops, 6:564; service record files of John W. Miller, 21st Regiment N.C. Troops, Compiled Service Records of Confederate Soldiers from the State of North Carolina (M270), RG109, NA; http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GSln=Miller&GSfn=John&GSmn=W&GSbyrel=all&GSdy=1863&GSdyrel=in&GSst=29&GScnty=1684&GScntry=4&GSob=n&GRid=27946030&df=all&