Davis

The following is taken exclusively from the research and records of Steven J. Davis.  Using information obtained from his father, Gerard Giles Davis, Steven was able to obtain specifics which would lead him to the information contained herein. 

George Davis is the our patriarch ancestor for the DAVIS lineage.  George was born in New York (state or city) in about 1810. 

George Davis next shows up in Oakland Territory, Michigan, around 1836, when he married Mary West.  

In the 1850 Census, he is listed as a Physician and apparently a man of modest means in Saginaw City, Michigan.

James West Davis was born in about 1839 in Saginaw, Michigan.  The lure of the Civil War must have been exciting for 22 year old James, who enlisted for 3 years service on August 21, 1861 in the Michigan Cavalry, 2nd Regiment, Company A, on the side of the Union.  He enlisted as a private, and his Regiment served under General Pope's Army.  They were immediately deployed into Mississippi, where they skirmished with the Confederates at Framington, Monterrey, and the Seige of Corinth where they served under newly commissioned Colonel Phil Sheridan.  From Boonville, they pushed into Kentucky and through the Cumberland Gap into Eastern Tennessee.  In February and March of 1863 they fought at Murfreesboro and the Columbia Pike.  In September, 1863, they were in the great battle of Chickamauga, followed by a march through the Cumberlands and meeting the enemy in a fierce battle at New Market, TN.  In January, 1864, they camped at Mossy Creek, skirmishing with the forces of General Longstreet enroute to Knoxville.

James West Davis re-enlisted January 5, 1864, at Mossy Creek, TN and, after a 30 day furlough, returned to action in Tennessee at the rank of Corporal, participating in various battles enroute to Atlanta.  By November, 1864, they were marching on Lexington, Lawrenceburg and Columbia and other skirmishes at Lewisburg Pike and Bethesda Church. 

In March, 1865, the 2nd crossed the Tennessee River into Alabama, destroying Confederate supply lines.   James West Davis was promoted to Sergeant July 31, 1865.  When the war ended, the 2nd was broken up into detachments to garrison Macon, Georgia and other southern cities.  He was mustered out of the service 17 days later, on August 17, 1865 at Macon, Georgia, and the Regiment was returned to Michigan by rail, arriving in Jackson, Michigan on August 26, 1865, where they were paid off and disbanded. 

The Civil War toll on the Michigan Cavalry, 2nd Regiment was as follows: Of 2425 men, 47 were killed in action, another 23 died of wounds while still assigned to the Regiment, and 268 died of disease.  They distinguished themselves in no less than 62 noted battles as they moved through Mississippi, Tennessee, Kentucky, Alabama and participated in the rout of Georgia.

Family legend tells of the story told by James West Davis upon his return from the war.  The story was passed down by his son, James Thomas Davis, to his son and grandchildren.  According to the story, early in the war, James West Davis was captured and taken to a home or barracks, in which he was locked up.  During the night, he was able to climb up and out of a chimney and made good his escape.

James Thomas Davis was born
Gerard Giles Davis was born

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