Nathan Abraham Bernstein


Dear Mr. Demastus,

At the suggestion of Lew Regnstein, I am sending you this information on my Confederate ancestor. Would you please post this on your emailing to see if any of your knowledgeable followers can answer my questions?

Thank you in advance for any help you can provide.





Dear Dr Rosengarten,

Thank you for your reply of 1/23/2012.

Thank you for the book recommendation. I ordered The Jewish Confederates. I saw a trailer for Bob Marcus’s film. I am going to try and find it.

As you know, my great-great-grandfather was in the Confederate Army.During the course of my family genealogy research, I found out the brother of a great-great-grandmother was in the Union Army. He was apparently an assistant to the most successful union general in the western campaign. He also opened the first general store in Orange County, California. This will be included in the information I eventually send you.

The following is a history of the confederate regiments my great-great-grandfather was a member.

1) November 9, 1861-December 12, 1861-Enlisted in Company Robinson’s South Carolina Militia Infantry Regiment, Beat Company #3, Charleston District. Also listed as Robinson’s Company 16th Regiment. Rank in and out as private.

2) March 15, 1862-July 24, 1862-Enlisted for 1 year of service.1 (Charleston) Battalion, South Carolina Infantry (Gaillard’s Battalion), Company F,Rank in and out as private. There was some mention of the 27th Regiment, but I could not read the Company.He was discharged after a few months due to chronic dysentery.

3) July 10, 1863-September 26, 1863-1st Regiment, Charleston Guard, First State Troops, South Carolina. South Carolina 1st Infantry Battalion, Company G. Rank in and out as private.

4) April 1, 1865-1st Regiment, Virginia Infantry (William’s Rifles), Company C. Rank in and out as private. Was captured in the Battle of Five Forks and sent to Point Lookout, Maryland till released in June, 1865.

In the time between his service in South Carolina, he sold scrap metal, bottles, and cotton to the Confederate Arsenal and Infirmary. During 1864, after he moved to Richmond with his family,  he was involved with falsified passports. He was exonerated, but that’s another story.

Now after all my verbiage, my questions.

1) On one card from each tour of service, there are numbers. What do these numbers refer to?

2) Were any of the regiments Nathan was in during his South Carolina enlistments in any battles, fights, etc? Where were his companies on the lines?

3) During the battle at Five Forks, Virginia, where on the battle line was Company C, William’s Rifles?

4) What is special order 38/17? Did it have to do with his re-enlistment or draft into service? This was issued after he moved from Charleston to Richmond, Virginia.  A Grandson of Nathan stated he was stationed at Stratford Courthouse as his first assignment in Richmond.

I have attached a couple samples of documents related to the above questions. I also attached a POW roll.

Any help you can give me regarding the above questions or referral to someone who could answer them would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you,


J. Allan Zerulik, D.D.S.