Born Tennessee. Legislator. Went to Missouri 1853. Indian agent Kansas. Territory Kansas representative U. S. Congress 1854-57. Moved Texas before Civil War. Organized Lavaca County company for C. S. A. 1861, led 4th Battalion Texas Cavalry Pea Ridge, Ark. wounded battle Iuka, Miss. Leading legion. Made brigadier general 1863. Left command due to ill health, fall 1863. Lavaca County delegate to Texas constitutional conventions, 1866, 1875.
A memorial to Texans who served the Confederacy
Whitfield's Legion, C. S. A. - Originated with Cavalry company organized by Capt. J. W. Whitfield in Lavaca County 1861. Joined C. S. A. troops in Missouri to put Missouri, Kansas in Confederacy. Became part 4th Battalion Texas Cavalry participating Battle Pea Ridge, Ark. Mar. 1862. Organized as 27th Texas Cavalry Regt. , commonly called "Whitfield's Legion", Apr. 1862. Soon dismounted, sent to reinforce Gen. Beauregard at Corinth, Miss. Rendered valorous service at Battle Iuka, Sept. 1862 with 106 killed and wounded in successful charge against artillery battery. Protected retreating C. S. A. battery. Protected retreating C. S. A. Army at Hatchie River. Fought Battle Spring Hill, Miss. March 1863. Remounted and made part 2nd cavalry brigade commanded by Gen. Whitfield. Defeated Federals in attack at Messinger's Ferry, Miss. July 1863. Upon Gen. Whitfield's retirement Gen. "Sul" Ross assumed command and brigade gained renown as Ross Texas Brigade.