CHAPPELL, R. M. (1846 ~ 1934). R. M. Chappell, Confederate veteran, was born in Atlanta, Georgia, in 1846. On February 13, 1864, at Haralson, Georgia, he enlisted in the Confederate Army and was mustered into Company G of the 53rd Georgia Infantry, as a private.
The 53rd Infantry, was organized in the spring of 1862, and had already participated in numerous engagements before Chappell enlisted. After his enlistment, he most likely participated in The Wilderness, May 5 - 7, 1864; Spotsylvania Court House, May 8 - 21, 1864; and Cold Harbor, May 31 - June 12, 1864. On June 11, 1864, while at the Battle of Cold Harbor, Chappell was struck with aphonia (a loss of his voice) and was admitted to the Jackson Hospital in Richmond, Virginia.
Chappell stayed at the Jackson Hospital until June 28, 1864, when he was transferred to the Wayside Hospital at Camp Winder which was also in Richmond. He spent the remainder of the war there.
After being honorably discharged at the end of the War, it is believed that Chappell returned to Georgia, though no records have been found until he moved to Texas in 1881. Once in Texas, he settled in Slocum, Anderson County, where he successfully applied for a Confederate Pension from the State in December, 1913. Chappell and his wife, Martha (also a Georgia native), moved to Normangee, Leon County, where they were farmers.
Suffering from old age, the Chappells moved to Austin to live in the Confederate Men's Home. Martha died there on February 9, 1928, and was buried in the Texas State Cemetery two days later. Chappell continued to live in the Home until September 21, 1930, when he was discharged. It is believed that he may have moved back to Normangee, where his son, N. R., was living. He later returned to the Home on October 14, 1931.
While on furlough in Brazos County, Texas, Chappell died on March 31, 1934. Unable to bury him in Austin, he was buried in the city of Bryan. Originally he was to be buried next to his wife, but since he was unable, a cenotaph, or memorial marker, was placed next to his wife at the Texas State Cemetery.
Information taken from: Compiled Military Service Records; National Park Service Website, http://www.itd.nps.gov; Soldier's Application for a Pension, # 25289; Confederate Home Rosters; and Death Certificate # 8786.