I know I'm resurrecting an old thread, but I've gotten back to researching and have a few questions for you. Where did you find the trial records you referenced for Captain Berry's and Groff's Companies for their refusal to engage at Prairie Grove and during the MO raid? I'm missing something. I transcribed everything recorded during the court martial proceedings for Capt Berry of Co H and Capt Groff of Co E contained in their CSR files and I find that the testimony is quite clear in the case of Co E that Captain Groff left his company, but the company did, in fact, engage in the battles of Prairie Grove and Springfield under the command of Lt Blanton. Also, at Hartville the only soldiers available from Co E who weren't on picket duty were 6 to 8 soldiers listed as disabled or sick, and this was the reason Groff gave for having them form in the rear of the Regiment. I didn't find much for Capt Berry's trial, because he pleaded guilty to 2 of 3 charges against him which only states that he "left his command" at Prairie Grove and Springfield, not that his command didn't engage. On the 3rd charge (cowardice at Hartsville), Col Thompson actually states that he "saw part of his company and he was not there nor with the Regiment" leading me to believe that Berry abandoned his Co, but the Co didn't abandon the regiment. I also noticed that one witness during the trial of Capt Groff states that he saw Lt Dickey as one of the first into the enemy fortifications at Springfield (Lt Dickey was a member of Co H).
Also you stated that 2 companies deserted the night before Hartville. I see that Cpt McMahan of Co D deserted on the 11th with a portion (not all) of his Co, but I find no evidence of any other such incident. Which other Co was it?
I've also noticed that Jim McGhee states in his outstanding new book that the two companies refused to fight in the engagements. I'm an amateur at best so it's very likely I've missed something. If you have the time, please show me where I'm confused.