Thomas Neville Waul, Confederate States Army officer, was born to Thomas and
Annie Waul near Statesburg, Sumter District, South Carolina, on January 5, 1813.
After three years at South Carolina College, he taught for a time at Florence,
Alabama, and then studied law in Vicksburg, Mississippi. He was admitted to the bar
in 1835, and on November 15, 1837, he married America Simmons. By 1850 they
had moved to Gonzales County, Texas, where he established his practice as well as a
cotton plantation on the Guadalupe River.
Waul ran unsuccessfully against Andrew J. Hamilton for the United States Congress in
1859 but was appointed by the Secession Convention to the Provisional Congress of
the Confederate States, where he took his seat on February 19, 1861. Waul favored a
broad range of emergency legislation and introduced legislation designed to strengthen
the frontier defences of Texas. He also favored a constitutional guarantee of the right
to import slaves from any location except Africa. He ran for a seat in the Confederate
Senate in November 1861 but was defeated.
Waul returned to Brenham and in the spring of 1862 recruited Waul's Legion, for
which he was commissioned colonel on May 17. He and his command were captured
at the surrender of Vicksburg on July 4,1863, but he was soon exchanged. Waul was
promoted to brigadier general on September 18, 1863, and given command of the first
brigade, formerly that of Brig. Gen. James M. Hawes, of Maj. Gen. John G. Walker's
Texas Division,which he led during the Red River campaign of 1864. After the battles
of Mansfield (April 8, 1864) and Pleasant Hill (April 9, 1864), Waul and his brigade
were transferred to Arkansas, where, at the battle of Jenkins' Ferry on April 30, 1864,
they helped to repulse federal major general Frederick Steele's attempted invasion of
Texas and where Waul was wounded in action.
After returning to his Gonzales County plantation at the war's end, Waul was elected
to the state Constitutional Convention of 1866. Thereafter he practiced law in
Galveston before retiring to his farm near Greenville, Hunt County, in 1893. There he
died on July 28, 1903. He is buried in Fort Worth.
|Col. Thomas Neville Waul
|Click all images to enlarge
|Historical marker noting the location where
Waul's Texas Legion was formed.
|Waul's Texas Legion
S.C.V. Camp 2103