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Brigadier General Albert Rust

3rd Arkansas Infantry Regiment

Brigadier General Albert Rust was one of the leading men of Arkansas during the days of political strife that preceded the War Between the States.  He served the State of Arkansas ably as one of its Representatives before the Congress of the United States.  During his tenure he devoted himself to defending the Southern interpretation of the Constitution.

At the start of the war he was one of the first Arkansans to take up arms.  He raised a regiment of infantry and was elected Colonel of the Third Arkansas, receiving his commision on 05 July 1861.  He and his regiment were ordered to Virginia and assigned to the Brigade of General Henry R. Jackson consisting partially of freshly raised troops and partly of those who had been in West Virginia under General Robert Garnett.  After the remnant of Garnett's command had been recuperated and rested awhile at Monterey, the brigade under General Jackson advanced to the Greenbrier River and pitched their tents in the valley known as Traveler's Repose.

General Lee, who was at the time commanding in Virginia, determined to attack the Federal positions on Cheat Mountain.  Colonel Rust on a scouting expedition had discovered a mountain pass by which he could lead infantry into the rear of the Federal position.  He was ordered to lead his regiment to this point, and General Samuel Anderson was directed to support him with two regiments from Loring's command.  General Jackson was to advance with his brigade from the camp at Greenbrier River, and Loring was to advance from Huntersville by the main road upon the Federal position.  The troops reached the assigned places promptly.  Colonel Rust's attack was to be the signal for the advance of all troops.  That officer, hearing nothing of Anderson, though he was in supporting distance, failed to attack.  Surprise was lost and the attack did not proceed.  Shortly thereafter the Federal forces sallied forth and attacked the Confederate positions on the Greenbrier River but were repulsed.  Colonel Rust was commanding the left wing of the Confederates performed so well as to be favorably mentioned in the General's official report.

In December, Jackson's Brigade, now under Colonel William Taliaferro, joined General Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson at Winchester.  During Jackson's advance upon Hancock, MD, in the winter campaign to Romney, Colonel Rust in command of his own regiment and that of Colonel Fulkerson with one section of Shumaker's Battery, when near the railroad bridge over the Big Cacapon, encountered the enemy and defeated him.  General Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson in his report stated "Colonel Rust and his command merit special praise for their conduct in this affair."

On 04 Mar 1862 Colonel Rust was appointed Brigadier General.  He and his command had an honourable part in the glorious but disastrous Battle of Corinth. on 04 Oct 1862.  He was sent back across the Mississippi River in April of 1863 where he reported to General Sterling Price in the Trans-Mississippi.  He served the Confederacy faithfully until the end of the war.  -- Confederate Military History, Vol.X, part II.

 
 
Copyright 1998, Arkansas Division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, all rights reserved