William B. Wilson joined the Civil War on 12 Feb 1862 in Weston, Collin County, Texas. He was in Company "K" 6th Texas Calvary, CSA and served for over three years or until the end of the war. Since he was living in Oklahoma when he applied for the pension, William received a small confederate pension from the state of Oklahoma, just before he died. Several documents from the pension file are shown below.
The following information about 6th Cavalry Regiment is from the Civil War Soldiers & Sailors System website maintained by the National Park Service:
6th Cavalry Regiment [also called 2nd Regiment] was organized with 1,150 men at Dallas, Texas, in September, 1861. Many of the men were from Dallas, McKinney, Waco, Austin, and Lancaster, and Bell County. The unit skirmished in the Indian Territory, fought at Elkhorn Tavern, then moved west of the Mississippi River. It contained 803 effectives in the spring of 1862 and was dismounted during the battles at Corinth and Hatchie Bridge. Here the regiment reported 148 killed, wounded, or missing. Assigned to Ross' Brigade, it served with the Army of Tennessee during the Atlanta Campaign, was active in Tennessee, and ended the war in Mississippi attached to the Department of Alabama, Mississippi, and East Louisiana. The field officers were Colonels Lawrence S. Ross, B. Warren Stone, and Jack Wharton; Lieutenant Colonels John S. Griffith and Peter F. Ross; and Robert M. White and Stephen B. Wilson.
The following quotes are from interviews with grandchildren of William Wilson.
1. Champ Means, 29 Nov 1979:
"Grandpa did fight in the Civil War in the Cavalry. He furnished his own horse which ran away in the first battle through enemy lines and back through without injury to him or the horse. After the war he was discharged and received small pension."
2. 25 Jul 1986, grandaughter, Margaret Means Williams:
"Grandpa Wilson was in the Civil War for 4 years. When I asked him if he killed any Yankees he said, 'I killed as many Yankees as they killed me.' Grandpa Wilson is buried at Reck Cemetery, there is no headstone."
3. 14 Aug 1986 with gr-son, Joe Baily Means:
"Grandpa Wilson received a Civil War pension. He fought in 4 or 5 major battles. He never got shot at all. He lived in Georgia and Tennessee before Texas. Grandpa was called Willie."
Pension Records from the State of Oklahoma
for William B. Wilson
Note: these copies are from microfilmed copies of the pension records and are difficult to read. There are notes or abstract below several of the documents.
Name given as William Benton Wilson
W. B. Wilson of Carter County, P.O. Reck
(First Application) 16 Aug 1915
Age: 77; Born: Tennessee;
How long in Oklahoma: 35 years;
Residence: Reck, Carter County;
Occupation: Farmer - not able to work; Physical condition: Feeble;
State served from: Texas;
How long did you serve: Feb 1862 to end of war;
Company name: Company "K" 6th Texas Cavalry
Signed W.B. Wilson, Carter Co., Texas, 16 Aug 1915
Affidavit by C. Hoff of Beckham County, Oklahoma, 17 Apr 1917
"C. Hoff ... was well acquainted with the said W. B. Wilson during the time from and since the year 1857, that he knows the said W.B. Wilson enlisted in the Confederate army, at Weston, Collin County, Texas, on or about the year of 1862, that he was in battle in the west and that he was later transferred to east of the Mississippi River, and that he returned home from the army in the spring of 1865. Signed C. (his X mark) Hoff, Witness: Vina Cox”
(Note: C. Hoff is the brother of Mary Pollly Wilson and so brother-in-law of William B. Wilson. Vina Cox is the daughter of C. Hoff (Cosley Hoff).)
State of Arkansas, County of Washington, 1 Jul 1918, Affidavit by R. F. House: He states that "he was well acquainted with applicant W.B. Wilson and have known him for about 70 years...and that he (Wilson) was a Confederate soldier in Co "K" Regiment of 6th Texas Calvary" and served from 1862 to 1865, then honorably discharged. Signed R. F. House
(Note: Robert F. House is a cousin to William B. Wilson.)