UG1 Regiments At Gettysburg

Regiments At Gettysburg

This is a collection of questions and comments about regiments at Gettysburg that may not be covered in other files. Use the "Find" or "Search" function on your browser to search for a regiment. Check other appropriate files for the regiment.

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Last Updated 2/18/96


From: FIORAVANTI@mayb.dnet.teradyne.com
Subject: 1st Minnesota

Good Day All,

As much as I like Chamberlain, I do think the 1st Minnesota, as proposed by Norm in an earlier post deserve some prime time. Norm had asked why is Chamberlain so heralded and deified, and the 1st seemingly ignored? IMHO, it's because for all intents and purposes, the 1st Minnesota ceased to exist after July 2nd. They literally gave their all to do their duty. Unlike Chamberlain who lived long after the war and could wax poetic about his own accomplishments, be interviewed, etc., no one, or at least no one with even half the literary prowess of a Chamberlain remained to tout the virtues of the 1st Minnesota.

Perhaps instead of comparing the accolades heaped upon an individual like Chamberlain, and the lack of those same accolades to the 1st Minn, maybe it is better, or more wise to compare the 1st to say the 54th Mass? Not to take anything away from their accomplishments, but if the 54th is worthy of such attention, and I loved Glory, the 1st Minnesota is equally deserving, if not more so. Without the heroics of the ist Minnesota on July 2nd, there may not have been a 54th Massachusetts?

Regards,
Jeff FioravantiM

(who lives in Mass. and really does like the 54th, but feels the 1st could use a little spotlight that is long overdue)


From: lawrence@appsmiths.com (Robert lawrence)
Subject: Re: Turning Points

> >By the way: Why has there been so much chatter about Chamberlain in this >group and so little about the 1st Minn.? It takes nothing away from >Chamberlain to recognize that the 1st Minn.'s suicide attack was the >equal in gallantry to anything in the war--and for once, it wasn't wasted >gallantry.

> >Any comments?

> I think the easy answer to your question is "The Killer Angels".! I have a late 1950s American Heritage and a copy of July 1963 issue of "The Cival War Times Illustrated". Both cover the second day, both were issued before the book and neither comments on 20th Maine.

Robert W Lawrence


From: alexander.cameron@smokeys.com (Alexander Cameron)
Subject: 1st Minnesota

For the 1st Minnesota fans:
I took a look at the Bachelder letters and there are several detailed letters from Col. William Colvill, Jr. regarding the charge of the 1st Minnesota. I know that some of you have a copy of the Bachelder Papers but if those who do not are interested in these letters, I'll poke them up for you.
Bill


From: "LMM136@psuvm.psu.edu 'Lisa Mucha'"
Subject: 1st Minn.

I wholeheartedly agree with Norm's recent post regarding the heroism of the 1st Minn. Everytime I walk past the place on Cemetary Ridge where they made their stand, I am in awe of thier courage. I recommend without hesitation Richard Moe's book "The Last Full Measure" which is about the 1st Minn. The voices of the men (particularly the Taylor brothers), spoken in many of the letters reproduced in the book, are full of intelligence and life and it breaks your heart to read them because you know that most of them will perish at Gettysburg.

Lisa Mucha


From: "Douglas M Macomber"
Subject: Rufus Dawes and the 6th Wisconsin

We all know of Joshua Chamberlain, Greene, Morrow, etc. but what about Dawes. The commander of the 6th Wisconsin deserves more credit than Morrow or Greene, while he does not exceed Chamberlain, he did do something like Chamberlain. Rufus Dawes was a major at the outbreak of the Antietam Campaign, when the colonel(I forget who)was mortally wounded at the Battle of South Mountain, he assumed command of the 6th. He led it at Antietam, Fredricksburg, Chanclersville and Gettysburg, and then for the rest of the war. He wrote a book on his experinces SERVICE WITH THE SIXTH WISCONSIN. On the first day, detached from the Iron Brigade, they held the center, connecting Cutler's and Stone's brigades. With James Stewart's Battery B, 4th U.S Artillery. Earlier, they attacked Davis's brigade posted in the railroad cut, in a do-or-die charge. They captured many prisoner's and destroyed Davis's brigade while suffering heavy casualties. Dawes's herioc action deserved the Medal of Honor, yet he did not earn it. For the rest of the first day they were in reseve behind Batt. B. These men surely proved that they were Men of Iron.


FROM: Bob Lawrence
The only problem i have with Rufus Dawes is that he was one of the main subjects of one of the worst books I ever read concerning Gettysburg _Into the Bloody Railroad Cut_ or something like that.

Although Dawes and the 6th Wisconsin did perform admirably on July 1 it was basically all for naught given that Ewell would soon be bringing a fresh Corp over Oak ridge.

Robert W Lawrence


From: alexander.cameron@smokeys.com (Alexander Cameron)
Subject: First Lieut. Eugene L. Dunham, 44th NY Vols

For Timothy Tomsic:

Tim,
There is a LOT of material on LRT. I have an extensive LRT bib (20-25 entries) and would be glad to share it with you if you want it. Just too much trouble to poke it up until I'm sure what you have and what you might need. However, there is a regimental history of the 44th NY. It is a period book by Captain Eugene Arus Nash. If you can't find a copy in your library (you might check the library at Fort Huachuca), you can get it from Morningside Books (800-648-9710). Your Lieut. Dunham is mentioned on page 147. The other book I would recommend is O.O. Norton's THE ATTACK AND DEFENSE OF LITTLE ROUND TOP. You can get it at Morningside also. You will find that there is more written about the other regiments in Vincent's Brigade but there is still a LOT of material on the 44th. As to pictures, see if you can find a copy of THE U.S. ARMY WAR COLLEGE GUIDE TO THE BATTLE OF GETTYSBURG. It has a lot of the Brady photos which show LRT right after the battle. Hope this helps.

Bill


From: Pat GaTechFan@aol.com
Subject: 18th Georgia

Is anyone aware of a regimental history of the 18th Ga? They fought at Gettysburg (Wofford, McLaws) and served the ANV well in its other campaigns.

Thanks.

Pat


From: "Douglas M Macomber"
Subject: Staanards brigade, 16th Vermont (Col. Veazy)

I am an avid prusuer of Staanards brigade, paticulary the 16th Vermont under Colonel Veazy. I recently found a brief history about the 16th, I did not know Staanard and his brigade played such a major role on the third day.Until Gettysburg, Staanard and his brigade assigned garrison duty at Washington D.C. When Lee invaded Pennsylvainia, the brigade was attached to the first corps under Reynolds. Staanards brigade arrived late in the first day, after Reynolds was killed and all major actions on the first day were over. The 16th and the rest of the brigade was posted on Culps hill. They saw no fighting on the second dday, and on the third were detached to strengthen Hancocks second corps.The 16th along with the 14th Vermont acted as the adavnce regiments during Picketts charge. They withdrew and took part in Hancocks famous flanking movement, soon afterward Hancock was wounded. Staanard bent over him saying "It is not bleeding from the artery you will live."Thinking Staanard to be a surgeon, Hancock replied "Thank you for that surgeon." After Gettysburg the 16th's enlistment was up and was discharged.

For further information on Vermonters duringthe civil war see FULL DUTY by Edwin C. Bearss


From: "Douglas M Macomber"
Subject: Regiments at Gettysburg

I thought we might start another digest or disscusion, so my question is. What regiment (CSA or USA)did more to decide the conflict at Gettysburg? (If anybody even suggests the 20th Maine, I'm going to be sick.)

But for the Union I would have to say the 16th Vermont. They destroyed Kemper's flank, besides Wilcox's brigade. They were forced marched all the way from Virginia. 200 of them had picket duty outside of Hancock's line. They also battled it out with McLaws on the second day.

I would say Archer's brigade(not really regiment)deciding to attack on the first day.

From: "Tomsic, Timothy J."

In response to discussion on which unit most significantly affected Gettysburg (Started by D. Macomber). There are several that come to mind. The First Division Cavalry under General John Buford, with supporting Commanders Gamble and Devin were in my opinion the most important. In delaying the Rebs from entering Gettysburg and surrounding hills until Gen. Reynolds arrived, Buford's division allowed the Feds the chance to armada forces against their foe. I think the battle would have been in the reb's favor if they were the ones that were parked out on the round tops, Culps hills, and cemetery ridge when the Feds arrived.


From: lawrence@appsmiths.com (Robert lawrence
Subject: Significant Untis

The 1st Minnesota would have to be on everyones short list of significant units. if not for there charge late on the second day there may not have been a third day.

Robert W Lawrence


From: Bill Mankins
Subject: RE:Regiments at Gettysburg

My vote goes to the First Minnesota. They stopped Cadmus Wilcox's Alabama Brigade from reaching Cemetery Ridge on the evening of 2 July. Wilcox's Confederates could have changed the course of the battle, if they had not been stopped.

Bill Mankins


From: Scott Allen allens@planet.net>
Subject: NJ Units

Can anyone help me out with info on operations of NJ Units? Not sure if they were even at Gettysburg...


From: CSVZ07A@prodigy.com ( TERRY MOYER) Subject: Re: NJ Units

Scott Allen,

There is an old book called New Jersey Troops in the Gettysburg Campaign, by Toombs (don't know the first name). I have seen copies for sale pretty frequently, but cost is usually $85 - $150. You would be better to attempt to obtain it from the library if you can find it.

N.J. had several regts at Gettysburg; the 12th N.J. fought right at the Bryan barn near the angle and came under attack during Pickett's charge. The 7th NJ was part of Sickles 3d Corps and has the large Granite Bullet monument that is so neat looking near the Wheatfield. N.J. units also have monuments along rock creek and in the valley of death.

Terry Moyer


From: "R. Scott Lee"
Subject: 13th Alabama Infantry - Archer's Brigade

Does anyone have references or resource information on the 13th Alabama Infantry Regiment, Archer's Brigade, Heth's Division? I am only interested in actions at Gettysburg. A relative of mine was Pvt W.T. Castleberry who is believed to have been the colorbearer. Thanks for any help.

Scott Lee


From: Pat Ellington

Scott Lee wrote:
"Does anyone have references or resource information on the 13th Alabama Infantry Regiment, Archer's Brigade, Heth's Division? I am only interested in actions at Gettysburg. A relative of mine was Pvt W.T. Castleberry who is believed to have been the colorbearer. Thanks for any help."

General Archer's Great-grandson owns a Civil War bookstore in Knoxville, Tn. Perhaps you could try him:

    Bohemian Brigade Bookshop and Publishers
    7347 Middlebrook Pike
    Knoxville, Tn 37909
    423-694-8227
    Fax: 423-531-1846

From: Robert Nale (rsnale@digital-cafe.com)

Hi - found your address on the web and send this to inquire about what is going on with you and how to get involved. I am a graduate of Gettysburg College (46) and the Seminary (49). I have learned that my grandfather - Albert W. Nale - enlisted in the 36th Pa. Vol Militia in June, 1863 - answering the call of Gov. Curtin for volunteers to defend the state. In his obituary, it is noted that the 36th PVM was sent to G-burg after the battle to help clean up the field. I would like to know if there is any literature available on these PVM units. Albert W. Nale was discharged in August of '63, but enlisted about a year later in the 205th PV and served in the IX Corp and the recapture of Fort Stedman. I have purchased a brick to be placed in the G-burg square in his memory. My father, Harry E. Nale, was a Marine and recalls hiking to G-burg from Quantico, Va. with Gen Schmedley? Butler sometime in the 20's. I have a photo of the two of them taken when Butler visited Altoona sometime in the '30s. My father was an Altoona policemen at the time, but still managed to squeeze into his old Marine uniform. I would appreciate any info you may have on the PVM units and on the whats, whys and hows of your group.

Thank you - Robert E. Nale


From: CSVZ07A@prodigy.com ( TERRY MOYER)

Robert Nale,

The roster of the 36th Pa Militia is found in Bates' History of Penna Volunteers, vol 5. p 1256-1259. The regiment was mustered in July 4, 1863, discharged Aug. 11, 1863. Your grandfather belonged to Company H. Interestingly, as I pored through the roster for this militia regt I found a notation for 1 soldier in Co B. stating: died at Gettysburg Aug 2, 1863, a 2d soldier in Co. B 'died at Gettysburg Aug 7, 1863, and a 3d soldier in Co. D 'died at Gettysburg Aug 3, 1863'. Did these 3 men fall ill, or perhaps they were together when they discovered an unexploded shell... The same source contains the roster and historical sketch of the 205th PV the sketch beginning on pg 636, the roster ending on page 654, which also contains the entry for your Gfather as a Pvt in Co. K. Muster in: Aug 29, 64 and discharged with Co. June 2, 1865. Bates records Co. K as being recruited in Mifflin County, Pa. Bates would be easy to find in any library here in Penna. You may have to look a little harder in Idaho. Hope this helps.

Terry


From: John Kelly (jkelly@argo.net)

You wrote:

Robert Nale,

The roster of the 36th Pa Militia is found in Bates' History of Penna Volunteers, vol 5. p 1256-1259. The regiment was mustered in July 4, 1863, discharged Aug. 11, 1863. Your grandfather belonged to Company H. Interestingly, as I pored through the roster for this militia regt I found a notation for 1 soldier in Co B. stating: died at Gettysburg Aug 2, 1863, a 2d soldier in Co. B 'died at Gettysburg Aug 7, 1863, and a 3d soldier in Co. D 'died at Gettysburg Aug 3, 1863'. Did these 3 men fall ill, or perhaps they were together when they discovered an unexploded shell... The same source contains the roster and historical sketch of the 205th PV the sketch beginning on pg 636, the roster ending on page 654, which also contains the entry for your Gfather as a Pvt in Co. K. Muster in: Aug 29, 64 and discharged with Co. June 2, 1865. Bates records Co. K as being recruited in Mifflin County, Pa. Bates would be easy to find in any library here in Penna. You may have to look a little harder in Idaho. Hope this helps.

Terry

Don't mean to butt in, but I will anyway; In researching a cousin's GGF who served in one of the high-numbered NY regiments, four members of one company, including the subject of my search, were wounded at the Wilderness in 1864. The notation next to their names said that they all died at Fredericksburg about a month later within a few days of each other. The text of the source said something about the onset of erysipelas about three weeks after the wounds, with death resulting. The circumstance mentioned in your posting may be similar, since most of these poor souls died from infection, and not the wound, most often induced by the lack of sanitation found in ACW hospitals. Erysipelas was something I heard my grandmother talk about, but I'm unsure of what it is, except that it involves a high fever. I'd guess that it had to do with infection though. I would imagine gangrene would operate on a similar timetable.

Regards,

Jack Kelly


From: SELieberum@mail.biosis.

I am interested in the 118th PA and their activities in Gettysburg. Any information would be helpful. Also about a Samuel Caldwell in that unit. (In the Movie (sorry) --- the 118th was the unit guarding the Maine boys, and gave them over to the 20th Maine.)

Steve


From: Adam Duritza (adam@duritza.agn.net)

You wrote:

I am interested in the 118th PA and their activities in Gettysburg. Any information would be helpful. (In the Movie (sorry) --- the 118th was the unit guarding the Maine boys, and gave them over to the 20th Maine.)

Depending on how far you are in your search, this information may or may not be helpful. It is the best I can get without leaving my computer for right now. If anything, it may help show you where to get started.

118th Pennsylvania Commander (at GBurg):

Lt. Col. James GwynArmy of the Potomac

Maj. Gen. George G. Meade V Corps

Maj. Gen. George Sykes Brig. Gen.

James Barnes' Division Col. William S. Tilton's Brigade

Casualty Estimates for 118th PA at Gettysburg:

Total Regimental Strength: 233Total Casualties: 25
Killed: 3
Wounded: 19
Captured / Missing: 3

As far as I can tell, the 118th took place in the fighting in the Peach Orchard and Wheat Field on July 2nd. From the looks of it, they defended against elements of Kershaw's Brigade, that is the part of the battle I would get more info on to find out about the 118th PA.

Hope this helps in some way!


From: acameron@tcac.com (Alexander Cameron)

I am interested in the 118th PA and their activities in Gettysburg. Any information would be helpful. Also about a Samuel Caldwell in that unit. (In the Movie (sorry) --- the 118th was the unit guarding the Maine boys, and gave them over to the 20th Maine.)

Steve

Steve,

Samuel M. Caldwell was a Corpl. in Company D, 118th Penn. He was killed at Gettysburg on July 2. He was shot through the right side of the head by Barkesdale's Mississippians during the withdrawal of the 118th from their second position near the Trostle House. He is buried in the National Cemetery at Gettysburg in Section D, grave 26. As to the 118th turning over the prisoners in the movie, that portion is from the book. Page 23 of KILLER ANGELS has a Capt. Brewer of the 118th turning over the prisoners. I took a quick look at my roster and did not see a Capt. Brewer in the 118th. I haven't really researched this but did a quick check and couldn't find a primary source reference to it. That is not to say that it is not true, I just can't come up with anything that backs it up. Shaara may have simply invented the character. If it is important to you, I can look deeper. I have a lot of information on the 118th. I'm glad to share it with you but we're talking about a bunch of stuff. Could you help me as to what you are specifically interested in?

Bill Cameron


From: John Griffin (jgriffin@destiny.esd105.wednet.edu)

You wrote:

As far as I can tell, the 118th took place in the fighting in the Peach Orchard and Wheat Field on July 2nd. From the looks of it, they defended against elements of Kershaw's Brigade,

I would think that Semmes Brigade which followed Kershaws Brigade and move to the left flank of Kershaw (CSA POV) could have engaged the 118th also.

John


From: acameron@tcac.com (Alexander Cameron)

Adam Duritza wrote:

At 09:02 AM 1/24/96 EST, you wrote: As far as I can tell, the 118th took place in the fighting in the Peach Orchard and Wheat Field on July 2nd. From the looks of it, they defended against elements of Kershaw's Brigade

I would think that Semmes Brigade which followed Kershaws Brigade and move to the left flank of Kershaw (CSA POV) could have engaged the 118th also.

John Adam and John,

The 118th was not at the Peach Orchard. They were on what is know as the "rocky hill" which is now by the "loop", just north of the Wheatfield. They were attacked by Kershaw. They retired to a position by the Trostle House where they were attacked by Barksdale and again withdrew. Early on the morning of the 3rd, they were moved to a positon on Big Round Top.

Bill


From: ENordfors@aol.com

Greetings:

Bill was it not the PA 118th that relieved the 20th ME on BRT so the they may rest and relax behind Hancock..whom had the safest place on the ridge (hehe)... Or am I dreaming...

BTW I just about have all the books you suggested in your post to me a while back... I am impressed and I must say most answers can be found somewhere in those excellant books...many thanks again...your input has..as always...been invaluable...

One last pesky question...I seem to have lost the issue number of the GB magazine that you published your article on LRT...can you e-mail me with the number...

Many, many thanks...

Best... Ed...


From: acameron@tcac.com (Alexander Cameron)

You Wrote:

Greetings:

Bill was it not the PA 118th that relieved the 20th ME on BRT so the they may rest and relax behind Hancock..whom had the safest place on the ridge (hehe)...Or am I dreaming...

Ed,

Yes, the 118th went up there first thing on the morning of the 3rd and the 20th came off at 0900 according to most sources. There were other units also involved but in general, you are correct. I haven't bothered to look it up. There is a slug of monuments up there on BRT. The article is in vol. 8. Glad to hear you are enjoying the books. Did you go to the college yet?

Bill


From: benedict@ns.moran.com (Benedict R Maryniak)

For your Excrutiatingly-Small Details about Gburg notebook - Regarding remarks on the poorly-aimed fire of Wiedrich's Battery at Gburg. It is correct, but for a reason realized only recently. Captain Michael Wiedrich's Battery I of the 1st NY Light Arty was raised in the Buffalo area, its core originating with the pre-war members of the 65th NYS Militia. Most of the men were German and many had done military service in Europe. I have a picture of them taken just before they left for the war, and many look like they just arrived from the Fatherland, wearing helmets featuring spikes out the top. Wiedrich went on to be Lt Col of the 15th NY Hvy Arty and then worked in Buffalo's city tax office. Anyway, two members of the Buffalo CWRT - Ray Fuerschbach & Gary Weller - have re-researched Cyrus K Remington's 1891 history of the battery, correcting & adding to Remington's work (he was a newspaper reporter, had not served in the war, and relied a little too much on the failing memories of 1890). Colonel Chas S Wainwright's "A Diary of Battle" (one terrific book) contains his comments about Wiedrich's men not being able to aim their pieces at Gburg. Ray F realized this was because they had just rec'd six three-inch ordnance rifle, replacing parrotts (awk! pieces of eight!) lost at Chancellorsville. At Gburg, they were indeed the sourece of wild fire because unfamiliar with their weapons. During 1864, with Uncle Billy Sherman, there is OR recognition of Battery I's competence.

Ben Maryniak


From: Marc73@aol.com

Hello Group,

Thanks to everyone who answered my question on Weir's Battery C 5th US. Terry Moyer's response was excellant and was the exact information I was looking for. I usually study Gettysburg and the Artillery as my 2 favorite CW subjects. An artilleryman did not want to lose his guns at any cost and I can understand where Gulian Weir was upset with himself to the point of committing suicide in 1886. The cannoners themselves were originally only issued artillery sabers as the army wanted the men to protect the guns at all costs. Only officers and NCOs had pistols at the beginning, but many men acquired pistols on their own. The gun was like an arm to the artilleryman and to lose one to the enemy was not on their list of things to happen.

Marc Riddell

Cooper's Battery B 1st PA Light Artillery


From: benedict@ns.moran.com (Benedict R Maryniak)

Dave Martin devotes several pages in "Gettysburg, July 1" to the 147th's movements. Basically, the 147th shot it out with the 42nd & 2nd Mississippi, finally being overrun because the railroad cut (quite deep at that spot) was at their backs. Martin quotes the version that the Lt Colonel was wounded and carried away on his horse without relaying Wadsworth's order to fall back. The Major picked up command without knowing Wadsworeth's orders. Another version says the 147th NYV fell prey to awful communications during battle. Facing west on the north side of the railroad cut with Cutler's 56th PA & 76th NYV to their right, they were fighting the CSA brigade led by a nephew of Jeff Davis. Overlapped by the Johnnies on their right, Cutler's line was ordered back but the 147th's commander had gone down and his replacement's voice wasn't recognized by company commanders. The 147th didn't hear "their voice" calling for a withdrawal and was therefore "left behind" by the 56th & 76th, to be squashed against the railroad cut. The monument says "killed and wounded here, 212" - at lot of boys who never went back to Oswego County.

Ben Maryniak

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