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Full text of "Major-general Hiram G. Berry; his career as a contractor, bank president, politician, and major-general of volunteers in the civil war, together with his war correspondence, embracing the period from Bull Run to Chancellorsville"

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Copyright, 1899 

JUL 2o 1899 J 

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The biographical articles treating of Major-General Berry, 
which were prepared by the author and published in the 
Rockland Courier-Gazette, have met with such flattering recep- 
tion, crude though they were, that, yielding to my own inclina- 
tions and the importunities of the many admirers of General 
Berry, I now offer, in more enduring form, this life story of 
Maine's greatest soldier; first .subjecting the original sketches 
to a thorough revision, adding much matter that has since 
become available, and eliminating many things that would not 
prove of interest to the general reader. 

A great quantity of material for this biography was col- 
lected through the energetic and intelligent efforts of the 
General's only daughter, the late Lucy Berry Snow, of Brooklyn, 
New York, whose untimely demise, after a brief illness, I in 
common with others deeply deplore. I have had occasion to 
consult and make extracts from the following works, for which 
I now make acknowledgment, viz. : Eaton's History of Rock- 
land, Thomaston and South Thomaston ; Reports of the 
Adjutant-General of Maine for the years 1857, 1861, 1862, 
1863, 1864; Official Records of the Union and Confederate 
armies, War of the Rebellion, published by the War Depart- 
ment; De Peyster's Life of Major-General Philip Kearny; 
Webb's Peninsular Campaign ; Doubleday's Chancellorsville and 
Gettysburg; Palfrey's Antietam and Fredericksburg ; Report of 
the Adjutant-General, State of Michigan, 1866; Michigan in 
the War, by Robertson ; De Trobriand's Four Years with the 
Army of the Potomac ; Reports of the Committee on the Con- 
duct of the War; and Stine's History of the Army of the 
Potomac. The publishers of the Rockland Courier- Gazette 
have freely entrusted to me the early files of that paper from 
1854 to 1863, and they have proved to be an inexhaustible 
source of information, of which I have made frequent use. 

E. K. G. 

Rockland, Maine, July 1, 1899. 



I. His Youth and Early Manhood 

II. His Political Career 

III. The Rockland City Guards 

IV. Fourth Maine Infantry 

V. From Portland to Philadelphia 

VI. Washington . 
VII. The Advance to Bull Run 

VIII. Battle of Bull Run 

IX. After the Battle 

X. Camp Life ..... 

XI. A Monotonous Existence . 
XII. Berry a Brigadier-General 

XIII. Assigned to the Michigan Brigade 

XIV. Battle of Williamsburg . 

XV. Hero of Williamsburg 

XVI. Berry's Account of Williamsburg 

XVII. Battle of Fair Oaks or Seven Pines 
XVIII. Berry Covered with Glory 

XIX. Retreat to the James 

XX. Seven Days' Fight 
XXI. Berry's Sickness 

XXII. Reception in Rockland 

XXIII. Rejoins His Brigade . 

XXIV. Fredericksburg . 

XXV. Berry a Major-General 

XXVI. Berry Commands Hooker's Old Division 

XXVII. Chancellorsville 
XXVIII. Berry at Chancellorsville 

XXIX. Death of Berry 

XXX. The Remains Borne to Rockland 

XXXI. The Obsequies .... 

XXXII. Berry's Character and Services 

Inauguration of Berry's Statue 
Tributes from Generals Hooker, Sickles, How 
Funeral Address by Rev. Nath'l Butler 



2 3 







x 39 





2 55 







Major-General Berry .... Frontispiece 

Mrs. Hiram G. Berry ....... 25 

Camp of Fourth Maine at Rockland, Maine . . . 41 
Mrs. Lucy Berry Snow ....... 57 

Residence of General Berry, Rockland . . -73 

Camp of Fourth Maine near Fort Lyons, Va. . . .89 

Colonel Elijah Walker in 1861 ..... 105 

Brevet Major-General Davis Tillson . . . .121 

Vice President Hannibal Hamlin . . . . .168 

Brevet Major-General Adelbert Ames .... 200 

Major-General Joseph Hooker ..... 249 

Colonel Elijah Walker in 1899 ..... 265 

Lieutenant-Colonel L. D. Carver ..... 281 

Simmons' Statue of General Berry at Rockland . . 291 



His Birthplace. — His Grandfather a Revolutionary Soldier. — 
His Father in the War of 1812. — His Brothers and Sis- 
ter. — Educational Advantages. — Boyhood Character- 
istics. — A Born Leader. — Fond of Horses. — A Close 
Student. — A Private of Artillery in the Militia. — Learns 
the Carpenter's Trade. — Becomes a Contractor and 
Builder. — Erects a Fine Residence. — Builds Many of 
Rockland's Substantial Blocks. — Forms Co-partnership 
with his Brother. — President and Director of Limerock 
National Bank. — Berry and Elijah Walker Engage in 
Business. — His Marriage. — Birth of his Daughter. 

HIRAM GREGORY BERRY was the fourth child of Jere- 
miah and Frances Gregory Berry. He was born on the 
parental farm at the Meadows in what is now the City of 
Rockland, Maine, August 27, 1 824. Rockland at that time was a 
part of the town of Thomaston, so, to be accurate, that town is 
the place of his birth. The farm on which he first saw the light 
of day is now owned, and until recently was occupied as a resi- 
dence by the Honorable G. L. Farrand. His ancestors are a part 
of that hardy New England stock in which the foundations of many 
of the best families are laid. His grandfather, Thomas Berry, was 
an officer in the Revolution, and in his declining years was pen- 
sioned by the government for his services in that war. At the 
breaking out of hostilities between this country and England in 
1812, the father of Hiram buckled on his sword, determined to 
match his valor with the old foes of his native land. He was 


appointed Orderly Sergeant of a company which was stationed 
at the fort at Eastport, at which place he continued until 
mustered out. 

Those were days of suspense and of thrilling adventure- 
British men-of-war skirted the shores of Maine and invested 
her harbors and inlets, bombarding her villages, murdering the 
inhabitants and spreading waste and devastation far and wide. 
The small force of militia and volunteers on which devolved the 
defence of the long coast line and scattered villages could offer 
but little resistance to the ravages of the enemy. By reason of 
its exposed condition on the Canadian frontier, Eastport was 
one of the objective points of the British attack, and during 
these trying times, the valor and patriotism of Sergeant Berry 
must have been severely tested, and many is the tale of thrilling 
adventure and hair-breadth escape it must have been his privi- 
lege to tell. We can imagine with what eager interest young 
Hiram listened to the stories of the Revolution, and of 1812, 
and what influence they must have had in shaping the course 
of his life to its untimely close. 

Four brothers and one sister shared with Hiram the home 
life on the Meadow farm. They were Jeremiah 2nd, John T., 
William G., George W. and Frances E. Berry. Of this num- 
ber, Jeremiah 2nd and William G. died many years ago. The 
sister, Frances E. Berry, married Edward H. Fosdick and took 
up her residence in Brooklyn, N, Y. John T. and George W. 
Berry still remain in the city of their birth, honored, respected 
and prosperous. 

Hiram's advantages of education were limited to such 
public schools as the town of Thomaston afforded way back in 
the 'thirties. But he made the most of these meagre advantages. 
With diligence did he apply himself to his studies, and his 
indomitable will, which in after life carried him over so many 
seemingly insurmountable obstacles, showed itself ' in his youth- 
ful struggles to acquire an education. His was a practical mind, 
and while the beauties of the classics were clear to his vigorous 


intellect, yet instinctively he turned to mathematics, and with 
dogged determination mastered its most difficult problems. 
Joyous by nature, when the labors of the school were over he 
joined in the rude sports of those days as only a young boy full 
of animal life and overflowing spirits can. Courteous and affa- 
ble, he was ever a favorite with his companions and a leader in 
their sports. Even at this early age, his love for military affairs 
manifested itself. The stories of Lexington, Bunker Hill and 
Yorktown fired his youthful heart, and he longed to emulate the 
example of those hardy patriots whose valor had made this 
nation possible. 

He early acquired the correct habits of thought and meth- 
odical ways which made his business career a phenomenal suc- 
cess. No detail was too trivial to be slighted, and whatever he 
had to do was well done. 

Genius has been defined to be an unlimited capacity for 
hard work, and measuring by this truthful standard the subject 
of our sketch can lay claim to that title. Possessed in youth 
and early manhood with a robust physique, he was an inde- 
fatigable worker and never wasted the precious moments of his 
short life. Hours were golden to him, and it was a crime to 
idle them away. It would seem as though a premonition of his 
early end must have made an impression on his nature, impell- 
ing him to make the most of the few short years that were his 
to enjoy and improve. 

A companion of his early years in speaking of him says 
that he was a born leader and a natural diplomat. As a youth 
he never entered into squabbles, and was always dignified and 
self-reliant, but never reticent. He was regarded by his youth- 
ful associates as possessing superior judgment and discretion, 
and when differences arose, as they sometimes will in youth as 
well as in later years, the question always asked was : " What 
does Hi Berry say about it?" His decision was regarded as 
final, and from it there was no appeal, there being no dissenting 


Young Berry was an inordinate lover of that noble animal 
the horse. Like many others of even greater renown, he 
believed a horse was next to man in instinct if not intelligence, 
and when a mere youth he would take the wildest steed from 
among the many in his father's stable, and by force of will and 
natural courage soon bring the animal to such a state of 
docility that a lady might handle it. 

Berry by nature was a gentle, unassuming but courageous 
youth, and while never aggressive, he would never permit a 
deliberate insult to a friend or himsef to pass unrebuked. 

He possessed a great fondness for books, and devoted 
much time to the biographies of the leading generals of the 
world, and the history of campaigns. Night after night he sat 
in his chamber poring over the pages of some favorite volume, 
and laying up knowledge that was to be devoted to his country's 
service in after years. 

He always regarded it as a great mistake that he was 
never permitted to enter West Point, when a cadetship in that 
institution was within his reach, but his mother was very much 
opposed to his going, and he dutifully deferred to her wishes. 
However, his military instincts were strong, and in the autumn 
of 1 841, we hear of him as a private in an artillery company 
commanded by the late Francis Cobb, when with his early friend, 
Elijah Walker, he was assigned to load one of the guns at the 
trainings, a duty he performed with skill and caution. 

After completing his school life, Hiram learned the trade 
of a carpenter, and for several years he industriously pursued this 
occupation. In 1843 ne entered into an agreement with Elijah 
Walker to labor at carpenter work and share profits. In this 
occupation, young Berry developed great physical strength, 
and it is said that these two young men, during the eight 
months in which they worked together, accomplished great 
results. In 1845, having thoroughly mastered the details of his 
chosen occupation, he became a contractor and builder on his 
own account, establishing the lumber yard now owned by the 


W. H. Glover Co., and which they acquired from him. With 
but little capital and relying principally upon his native energy, 
the business rapidly prospered. Among the buildings erected 
by him is the Second Baptist Church, and his magnificent 
residence on the corner of Beech and White streets, now owned 
by Hon. John S. Case, and which today is one of the most 
imposing private residences within the city limits. 

April 21, 1852, the Rockland Steam Manufacturing Com- 
pany was incorporated with power to hold property not 
exceeding $30,000. The incorporators were Hiram G. Berry, 
I. K. and A. H. Kimball and Joseph C. Libby. This corpora- 
tion did a good business in the manufacture of doors, sashes 
and blinds, until its buildings were destroyed by fire in 1855. 

For many years General Berry was a director in the 
Limerock National Bank, the oldest national bank in his native 
city, having been elected Oct. 8, 1853. On the death of its 
president, Knott Crockett, in 1857, he was elected to that place, 
Oct. 19, continuing as such until he resigned to enter the army, 
June 5, 1 861. 

In addition to these various interests, Berry owned largely 
in shipping. As a bank-director and president he is said to 
have been a success, and the rapidity with which he added long 
columns of figures was marvellous, and he very rarely made an 
error. It is also said of him that he would move lumber from 
a pile, keeping an accurate account of the pieces in his mind, 
and at the same time carry on an animated conversation with 
several parties, or transact some other business. 

As a business man he was always benevolent and accom- 
modating, freely granting credit to any person who could lay 
claim to the faintest sense of honor. He made but few bad 
debts, and was never known to importune a debtor for an 
unpaid balance, when such a person called at his place of 

On the twenty-third of March, 1845, Hiram G. Berry and 
Almira M. Brown were united in marriage. The bride was a 


daughter of John Brown, a respected citizen of Thomaston, 
and was regarded as one of the most promising young ladies 
of her native town. One daughter, Lucy F. Berry, came to 
bless this union. She was the idol of her father, and upon her 
he lavished the wealth of his affection. She was the wife of 
Albert D. Snow, a prosperous commission merchant, and 
resided in Brooklyn, N. Y., at the time of her death in 
November, 1895. Of her illustrious father she retained a most 
tender memory, which the passage of many years never 



Elected Representative to the Legislature. — Stirring Politi- 
cal Times. — Berry's Legislative Associates. — Candidate 
for Mayor of Rockland. — Desperate Contest and Tri- 
umphant Election. — His Efficiency as Chief Executive. 
— Renominated Mayor. — Defeated on National Issues. 

POLITICS always fascinated the strong manly nature of 
Berry. He enjoyed the sharp encounter of party against 

party, the marshalling of forces, the sudden surprises, the 
swift defences. Perhaps the semblance of these elections to 
the conflict of arms satisfied in a measure his military instinct. 
The maneuvers of party were to him the operations of a 
brigade. The joining of issues at the polls and the struggle 
for the mastery were to him the impact of contending armies, 
requiring skill, intuitive judgment, and quick, courageous action 
to win the victory. He was never a bitter, narrow partisan. 
It was not his nature to be that. He was generous to his 
political foes, and even in the heat of a desperate political 
struggle would seek out his opponents and talk to them in a 
jocose way of the probable results. He was never embittered 
by defeat, but was always first to present his compliments to 
his victorious opponent, and ever after cordially supported him 
while in office in every honest and patriotic endeavor. 

In the Fall of 1852 Berry was nominated for Representative 
to the Legislature from the town of East Thomaston. His 
opponents were Elkanah S. Smith and Jonathan Spear, both 
prominent and influential men, and active politicians. The 


town meeting for the election of state officers was held in the 
Congregational meeting house on the thirteenth of September, 
1852. In this struggle, Berry's talent as an organizer manifested 
itself. As a popular young man he had a large following, and 
with consummate tact and skill he united various elements to 
his support, and came off triumphant, receiving 590 votes to 
319 for Mr. Smith and 117 for Mr. Spear. Thus at the early 
age of 28 years was he elected by his fellow-townsmen to repre- 
sent them at the seat of government. 

The Legislature that assembled at Augusta in the early part 
of 1853 was the center of much interest. The stirring cam- 
paign of the previous September had resulted in no choice for 
a Governor by the people, and the young Representative from 
East Thomaston found himself in a hot political cauldron which 
in many respects was quite agreeable to him. From the num- 
ber of candidates voted for at the polls, the House chose the 
names of John Hubbard and William G. Crosby, to be sent to 
the Senate, one of whom was to be elected Governor by that 
body. Of these two men the Senate chose Crosby, a Whig, 
and he was duly qualified and entered at once upon the duties 
of his office. It does not appear that Representative Berry 
took a prominent part in these proceedings, but he was present 
at the sessions and was an interested participant in the voting. 

When the committees of the House were announced, Rep- 
resentative Berry found himself honored by appointments on 
the committee on elections, on railroads and bridges, and on the 
state prison. His duties on the elections committee were oner- 
ous and important. The close vote in many Senatorial and 
Representative districts resulted in several contested elections, 
and much testimony was introduced before the committee. 
Representative Berry was always in attendance at these pro- 
longed hearings, an attentive listener and an intelligent judge, 
carefully weighing the testimony as it was adduced, and forming 
his own opinion therefrom without regard to the views of his 
associates upon the committee. 


That he was faithful to his constituents, the journal of the 
House gives abundant evidence. Among the matters of local 
interest presented by him was a petition of Henry C. Lowell 
and others for the incorporation of a bank in East Thomaston ; 
an act to incorporate the Atlantic Ship, Wharf & Lime Com- 
pany ; and a petition of L. Snow and others to prevent the 
throwing of lime core in the docks at East Thomaston. 

An important question before this Legislature was the 
acquirement of the Massachusetts lands within the limits of 
Maine, and commissioners were elected to effect this result, 
reporting at a special session of the Legislature, called by Gov- 
ernor Crosby for that purpose. In many of the yea and nay 
votes taken by the House upon these important matters, we find 
that the young Representative from East Thomaston had early 
acquired the habit of thinking for himself, as his vote is recorded 
on the side of the minority, and in some instances stands almost 
alone in its protest against the pending proceedings. 

The election of a United States Senator to succeed Hon. 
James W. Bradbury was one of the most desperately fought 
legislative battles ever known since Maine became a state. The 
bitterness of feeling engendered, the desperate measures 
employed by the friends of the various candidates to secure 
their election, the skillful parliamentary maneuvers, the power- 
ful influences brought to bear on the members of the Senate 
and House, all had their part in making this contest an ever 
memorable one. William Pitt Fessenden, a member of the 
House from Portland, afterwards Secretary of the Treasury, was 
the leading candidate and came within a few votes of election. 
But his opponents outgeneraled him by combining and voting 
to indefinitely postpone the election. Representative Berry was 
an active participant in these proceedings. 

Among Representative Berry's associates in the Legislature 
were William Pitt Fessenden, afterwards United States Senator, 
Artemas Libby, late Associate Judge of the Maine Supreme 
Court, Alonzo Garcelon, ex-Governor of Maine, and Hon. John 


C. Talbot, who was Speaker of the House. In the Senate were 
such men as Nelson Dingley, and Nathan A. Farwell of Rock- 
land, afterwards United States Senator. 

Returning from his duties as a legislator, General Berry gave 
his undivided attention to the building up of his rapidly 
growing business as a contractor and builder. He did not 
again enter politics until the spring of 1856, when he became 
the candidate of the Democrats and straight Whigs for Mayor 
of the new city of Rockland, which two years earlier had been 
created from the town of East Thomaston. With his usual 
energy he entered actively into the canvass, drawing about him 
many active campaign workers and influential citizens, and 
directing the efforts of the party with judgment and skill. 
While party feeling ran high and personal recriminations 
were freely indulged in by individuals of the opposing parties, 
General Berry remained calm and collected, repressing "personal 
politics " whenever it appeared among his followers, and concil- 
iating his opponents by his frank and manly bearing and 
courteous demeanor. The polls opened on the morning of 
March 3, and all day long the battle waged fierce and hot, and 
at its close when the votes were counted it was found that no 
choice had been made. The number of votes cast was n 26, 
and it required 564 votes to elect. Of this number Hiram G. 
Berry had 484, Joseph Farwell 262, George S. Wiggin 254, 
Harvey H. Spear 125, and John Bird 1. Commenting on the 
result of this ballot, the Rockland Gazette of that day says : 
" The vote given in on Monday was larger than was generally 
anticipated. Whether the Republican vote at the next trial 
will be centered upon Wiggin or Farwell or upon some new 
man, we are not able to state. The election produced quite an 
excitement compared with any other we have had since the 
organization of the city government, and on that account was 
quite a relief from the monotony which has existed amongst 
us since the election in September." 

The board of aldermen warned the voters of Rockland to 


assemble at the polls on the twelfth of March and again cast 
their ballots for Mayor. According to the Gazette, a spirited 
meeting of the straight-out Democrats and Whigs was held at 
Beethoven Hall on Saturday evening before the election, and 
an equally spirited Citizens' caucus was held. At the latter 
meeting, Charles Crockett, Esq., was nominated for Mayor. 
Messrs. Wiggin and Farwell, who at the preceding election 
received most of the votes in opposition to H. G. Berry, Esq., 
acquiesced in the nomination. 

The scenes about the voting places during this election 
were a repetition of the preceding one. If it were possible, the 
uncertainty that shrouded the result intensified the excitement, 
and increased the interest and efforts of the partisans. Again 
the ballots were counted, and again did the news fly from lip to 
lip, " No election ! " There were 12 12 ballots cast in this elec- 
tion, and of this number, the successful candidate must secure 
607. Hiram G. Berry had 541, Charles Crockett 561, and 
Harvey H. Spear 103, scattering 7. It looked as though the 
chances of election of Mr. Berry were dubious, and the friends 
of Mr. Crockett were jubilant because of the strength devel- 
oped by their candidate. But Mr. Berry was not cast down by 
the result. He believed another determined effort would win 
him the victory, and quietly laid his plans. Again we quote 
from the columns of the Gazette : 

"A second trial for the election of Mayor was held yester- 
day afternoon. There is still no choice. The vote was large, 
being an increase over the vote last week of nearly ninety. 
The heavy vote thrown indicates the interest which was felt in 
the election. The vote will probably increase somewhat at the 
next trial, which is to be on Monday afternoon next and which 
will doubtless settle the question, since a plurality then elects." 

The third and last battle of the ballots took place March 17, 
with increased excitement and turmoil. When the approach 
of darkness put an end to the strife, Hiram G. Berry had 
triumphed over his opponents, and was made by his fellow 


citizens Mayor of his native city, — the second man to hold 
that office. 

The ballots cast at the third election numbered 1282, 
Berry receiving 642, while his principal opponent, Crockett, 
polled 612 with a scattering of 24. 

Editorially, the Gazette says of this result: "The third 
and last trial for Mayor of this city came off Monday, and 
resulted in the election of Hiram G. Berry, Esq., by a plurality 
of thirty votes over Charles Crockett, and a majority of one 
vote over all others. The excitement had been increasing from 
the previous election up to the time the result of the voting of 
Monday was known , and it is universally remarked that there 
never was before so much interest manifested in any election in 
Rockland. Indeed, the vote of last September, when it was 
thought that every live man turned out to the polls, and it is 
certain there were considerably more voters in the city than at 
the present time, was sixty-three less than the vote of Monday. 
At a little before six o'clock, the result of the election was 
known, viz.: that ' Berry was elected,' and a large number of 
his friends gathered about the Commercial House, when speeches 
were made and a grand jollification was had by those who had 
voted for the successful candidate. In the evening, guns were 
fired, bonfires lighted, etc. The Mayor-elect also invited his 
supporters to a supper, given at the Commercial and Thorndike 
hotels, at which several hundreds were present. A procession also 
marched to the Mayor's house and called him out for a speech, 
which he made, appropriate to the occasion. In short, the 
' party' generally were in high spirits at their success. We will 
say of Mr. Berry that he is a man of energy and business expe- 
rience, and, like his opponent, has the general confidence of his 
fellow citizens. Indeed, high as the ' steam ' was on the Mayor 
question, we recollect of hearing scarcely a word spoken derog- 
atory to the personal character of the candidates. And we 
believe that they are on the best terms with each other per- 


The happy close of this desperate and hard-fought struggle 
came near being marked by a serious accident. A cannon was 
placed in the field in front of the residence of Mayor-elect 
Berry and was repeatedly discharged to celebrate his victory. 
After a few rounds were fired, this cannon burst and a man 
named Nash was struck by a flying piece of gun metal and 
injured. Another piece of the gun was thrown some distance 
through one of the lower lights of a window of Wm. Young's 
house on Union street while two children were looking out of 
the window. Neither was hurt, and the wounded man was but 
slightly injured. 

Mayor Berry's inauguration took place with the usual cere- 
monies. On March 19, both boards of the city council met in 
joint convention in the common council rooms to listen to the 
Mayor's address, which was brief, concise and business-like, 
written in the easy, flowing style characteristic of the man. 
With no attempt at rhetoric, he plainly sets forth the city's needs 
and impresses on his associates that they are public servants 
invested with a public trust that should be faithfully administered. 
He modestly expresses the deep sense of his inability to fulfill the 
expectations of his fellow-citizens, but pledges his unselfish 
devotion to their interests. 

Mayor Berry's management of the affairs of the munici- 
pality was characterized by shrewdness and wisdom. The work 
of some of the departments Was in a crude state. They were 
by him reduced to order, and systematized. A seal was pro- 
vided for the city. The financial affairs received the closest and 
most intelligent attention. Every department began to give 
evidence of the domination of a master mind ; and at the close 
of his term of office, it was universally admitted that Mayor 
Berry had made a model chief executive. 

In the spring of 1857, Mayor Berry was renominated by 
his party, but as party feeling was running high over national 
politics, it affected the city election to the extent that Mayor 


Berry suffered a defeat at the hands of his former opponent, 
Charles Crockett, and retired again to private life. 

In 1858, Berry was chosen chief engineer of the fire 
department, which is the last civil office held by him. His 
duties in this department did not require much effort and he 
was fully satisfied with one term, at the expiration of which he 
gave place to his successor. 



Berry Inspector 4th Division Maine Militia. — Organizes the 
Rockland City Guards. — Berry Chosen Captain. — Pre- 
sentation of Flag by Mayor Crockett. — Captain Berry 
Receives an Elegant Present from the Guards. — Gu< 
of the Warden of the State Prison. — Guards Entertain 
the Camden Rifles. — Regimental Muster at Rockland. 
— Muster at Portland. — Rockland Brass Band. — Ludi- 
crous Incident. — Muster at Belfast. — The Guards Escort 
Jeff' Davis, then Secretary of War. — Adjutant-General 
Webster's Famous Description of this Event. — Guards 
Disband. — Its Officers. — Furnished Twenty-one Officers 
to the Volunteer Service. 

AS we had occasion to mention, the subject of our sketch 
always had a keen interest in military matters from early 
boyhood. He was in frequent demand as chief marshal 
of processions on Fourth of July and other occasions, and took 
pride in skillfully managing these affairs. March 19, 1853. he 
was appointed Inspector of the Fourth Division of Militia with 
the rank of lieutenant-colonel. 

In 1854, Colonel Berry with others organized a light 
infantry company, which was called the Rockland City Guards, 
and was mustered into the Maine Volunteer Militia as Company 
B of the 1st Regiment, 2d Brigade, 4th Division. The 1st 
Regiment at one time was commanded by Colonel G. J. Burns, 
with Davis Tillson as adjutant, both citizens of Rockland, and 
the 4th Division had for its chief, Major General William H. 
Titcomb, also of that city. 


At the election of officers of the Guards, Hiram G. Berry 
was chosen captain ; G. J Burns, Jonathan Spear and A. S. 
Dyer, lieutenants; William H. Titcomb, orderly sergeant; and 
O. J. Conant, ensign. Arms were furnished by the state, but 
the beautiful uniforms of blue and gold, with the tall bear-skin 
cap and gold tassel, were purchased by the company. Drill 
commenced under the direction of Adjutant Davis Tillson, who 
was a graduate of West Point, and the company soon became 
proficient in the manual of arms and evolutions of a company. 

The occasion of a presentation of a beautiful flag to the 
Guards by the Mayor of Rockland, Hon. Knott Crockett, who 
had purchased the same at a cost of $40, was a memorable one. 
It occurred May S, 1 S 5 5 . and on the afternoon of that day the 
Guards paraded the streets under the command of Captain 
Berry. They were accompanied by the Rockland Brass Band, 
and at about three o'clock proceeded to the house of the Mayor 
where the presentation was made, His Honor making an appro- 
priate address to which Ensign O. J. Conant responded in 
behalf of the company. 

For two hours following the presentation, the company 
paraded the streets, delighting the citizens with the precision 
of their movements and the sight of their beautiful new banner. 
At five o'clock the company repaired to the restaurant of C. A. 
Harrington, where refreshments were served, which terminated 
the exercises of the afternoon. 

The following August, the members of the company, to 
show their appreciation of his services, presented Captain 
Berry a magnificent silver pitcher with gold chain and plate 

The first appearance of the Guards in their new uniforms, 
which have been previously described, was on the occasion of 
the official visit of the Governor and Council to the State 
Prison at Thomaston. Warden Hix had invited the Guards to 
be his guests on that occasion, and early in the day coaches 
were taken for Thomaston. The Guards arrived at their 

Mks. Hika.m G. Herry 


destination at about ten o'clock and were received by the State 
of Maine Fire Company, a crack fire brigade of Thomaston. 
After a short drill on the part of the Guards near the prison, 
the members of the company were permitted to inspect that 
institution. A photograph of the company was also taken 
during this visit. The Governor was absent on account of sick- 
ness, but the Secretary of State and members of the Council 
were present as guests of the warden. Dinner was partaken of 
at one o'clock, and at a later hour, the Guards paraded on the 
green in front of the prison, under command of Captain Berry, 
where Hon. Noah Smith, one of the Councillors made a short 
speech in which he complimented the company on its fine 
appearance. At four o'clock the Guards took conveyance for 
home after an enjoyable day. 

The following September, the Guards entertained the 
Camden Rifles. On the afternoon of September 7, the Guards 
took up their line of march for Blackington's Corner, where 
they received their guests with military honors and escorted 
them to the city, where they found the sidewalks and windows 
filled with admiring spectators, while numerous flags, thrown 
to the breeze by citizens, waved over their heads as they passed. 
After performing their evolutions, which reflected great 
credit both upon officers and soldiers, they repaired to the 
armory of the Guards, where they deposited their arms, and 
thence to Beethoven Hall, where the Rifles and other guests 
were feasted to their hearts' content, the members of the Guards 
doing the honors of the table. After refreshments, speeches, 
toasts and music enlivened the scene until a late hour, when the 
lines were re-formed, and the Guards escorted their guests some 
distance on their way home. The Rifles were delighted with 
their entertainment, and very favorably impressed by the drill 
of the Guards. 

In 1856 the encampment of the First Regiment, Second 
Brigade, Fourth Division, of the militia of the State, was held 
in Waterman Fales' pasture in Rockland, continuing two days. 


This was the regiment to which the Rockland City Guards was 
attached. The encampment is said to have been a fine affair, 
and passed off to the entire satisfaction of all. On Tuesday- 
morning the regiment, consisting of nine companies, was formed 
under the direction of Adjutant Tillson, on Main street, in front 
of the Thorndike Hotel, and was immediately taken in charge 
by G. J. Burns, commander of the regiment, under whom it 
marched through Main street to Camp Knox, as the camp had 
been called. Tuesday was occupied in battalion drill on the 
field, where the evolutions were witnessed by thousands of 

At nine o'clock on Wednesday, the regiment was formed 
under the direction of Adjutant Tillson, and given up to Colonel 
Burns, who detached the Rockland City Guards and the Conrad 
Guards to escort Major General William S. Cochran and staff 
and Adjutant General G. M. Atwood from the Thorndike Hotel 
to the field. At about eleven o'clock the regiment was reviewed 
by Major General Cochran and Adjutant General Atwood. The 
review occupied the remainder of the forenoon and was among 
the most interesting exhibitions of the camp. A line was 
formed again at two o'clock in the afternoon and the regimental 
drill performed. At four o'clock the tents were struck and the 
line of march taken up through the principal streets of the city, 
the parade being dismissed at about five o'clock, the whole 
affair ending in a ball. 

The City Guards continued to maintain its high standard of 
efficiency through all the years of its existence, giving frequent 
exhibition drills, and parading on every public occasion. 

Regimental musters were held at Waldoboro and Portland 
and the City Guards were in attendance on both occasions. At 
the Portland muster, which was held two days, the Rockland 
Brass Band, then the leading band in Maine, accompanied the 
Guards, and the two organizations attracted special attention by 
the military precision of the one and the fine music of the 
other. The position of the Rockland City Guards was on the 


left of the regimental line, and so well did they fill this impor- 
tant and difficult place, that Colonel Harding, the commander 
of the encampment, was heard to exclaim: " What would the 
left have been without the Rockland City Guards ! " 

One of the ludicrous features of this encampment was the 
mock parade conceived by some of the mischievous youngsters 
in the Rockland City Guards. Clad in the wolf skins and 
buffalo robes which were used for bedding, fifteen or twenty of 
these hilarious fellows, under the lead of L. D. Carver, after- 
wards lieutenant colonel of the Fourth Maine, sallied forth 
about midnight and went on dress parade, introducing several 
features which were not in strict accordance with tactics. They 
then took up their line of march through the encampment, 
making night hideous and sleep impossible by their howls, 
cheers and cat calls. 

Colonel Bodfish, a veteran of the Mexican war, was officer 
of the day of the encampment, and toward the small hours of 
the morning it became clear to him that something was not just 
right about the encampment, so rising from his cot he donned 
his sword and sash and ventured forth into the night, just in 
time to see a line of grotesque figures, executing the manual of 
arms to the commands of a figure with a stentorian voice. 

" By what authority are these troops paraded? " thundered 
the irate colonel, striding up the line. 

" By the same authority by which they have raised h — all 
night," thundered back the imperturbable Carver, and in the 
shout of laughter which followed, Colonel Bodfish beat a hasty 

At this encampment the Guards formed a close friendship 
with the Bath Greys, which was continued after the members of 
both organizations had entered the Union army ; the former in 
the Fourth Maine, and the latter in the Third. This friendship 
is kept up by the survivors to this day. 

A most important and significant event, in which Captain 
Berry and the Rockland City Guards took a prominent part, 


was the Brigade muster at Belfast, August 31, 1858, when 
Jefferson Davis, the Secretary of War, afterwards President of 
the Southern Confederacy, reviewed the troops and was escorted 
by the Rockland City Guards. 

On his way to Belfast, Mr. Davis stopped at the Thorndike 
Hotel in Rockland, and some good stories are told of two or three 
prominent citizens, who prompted by the desire to say some- 
thing polite to the distinguished visitor, and becoming somewhat 
confused in his presence, got their sentences very much mixed, 
saying things that evidently were not in the speeches they had 

The troops present at the Belfast muster were of the 
Fourth and Ninth Divisions, Major Generals Cushman and 
Titcomb commanding, and parts of the Third and Seventh 
Divisions, the whole constituting a brigade under the immediate 
command of Colonel G. J. Burns, as acting brigade commander. 

Captain Berry, with the City Guards, left Rockland for the 
encampment on the steamer Daniel Webster, early on the 
morning of the first day of the muster, and arriving at Belfast, 
formed and marched through the streets, halting at the New 
England House and depositing their arms. On this occasion, 
as on many others, the City Guards were accompanied by the 
Rockland Brass Band. 

Subsequently line was formed and the City Guards marched 
to the steamboat landing to receive and escort other companies 
to the camp ground, where the Guards pitched their tents in 
true military style, their proficiency in this respect exciting the 
favorable comment of their superior officers. 

Thursday, Hon. Jefferson Davis of Mississippi was to 
review the troops, he having been brought from Rockland by 
carriage for that purpose. 

Adjutant General Webster in his report of this affair says : 
"The most active preparations were now made to place the 
troops in the best possible condition for the duties of the day. 
The Hon. Jefferson Davis, by direct invitation of the com- 


mander of the encampment, was tendered the honor of review- 
ing the brigade, which he accepted with that grace peculiar to 
the man. At nine o'clock the united corps of division officers 
presented themselves at the quarters of that distinguished gen- 
tleman, (the residence of Hon. H. H. Johnson,) and escorted 
him to the confines of the encampment. This cortege was met 
at a convenient distance from the parade by the Rockland 
Guards, Captain H. G. Berry, a company richly entitled to 
position in the front rank of the M. V. M., with a full band led 
off by Adjutant Tillson. The escort was gracefully performed, 
and the soldier who had bled at Buena Vista was presented to 
the line amid the bugle's cheer and the roar of artillery. 
Colonel Davis was received with the highest marks of respect, 
and the honors due his rank and position cheerfully tendered. 
He now proceeded to review the troops with that air of ease 
and manliness which attaches to his every movement. The 
ceremonies of the review concluded, the brigade was formed in 
close column of companies on the right, when, on invitation of 
General Cushman, the guest of the occasion addressed the sol- 
diery in an eloquent and fervid manner, thanking them for the 
honor and courtesy they had so generously bestowed upon him, 
and concluded by saying that, ' With such troops as are now 
before me, we may defy the combined forces of the world and 
shout the song of freedom forever.' " 

At about half-past twelve o'clock the Governor reviewed 
and addressed the brigade. This review ended, the Rockland 
City Guards, (who occupied the right,) withdrew from the line, 
and in twenty-two minutes were on the line of march for the boat, 
attended by the Rockland Band. They marched from the field 
in excellent style, with open ranks, having the wagons convey- 
ing their baggage between the sections. 

Speaking of this encampment and review, the Rockland 
Gazette of September 9, 1858, says: "The Guards won high 
encomiums by the high degree of military discipline which they 
exhibited and the skill with which they performed their various 


evolutions." The company had 45 officers and men in attend- 
ance at this encampment. 

The City Guards did not continue as an organization much 
longer. Its captain, Hiram G. Berry, having resigned, it dis- 
banded. Besides the officers already given, promotions were 
made May 13, 1856, when O. J. Conant was created second 
lieutenant; O. P, Mitchell, third lieutenant; and Edward A. 
Snow, fourth lieutenant. July 16 of the same year, O. J. 
Conant was promoted to first lieutenant; O. P. Mitchell, second 
lieutenant; Edward A. Snow, third lieutenant; and Thomas 
B. Glover, fourth lieutenant. August 6, 1858, an entire new 
board of officers was chosen, except the captain, Hiram G. 
Berry, and the third lieutenant, Edward A. Snow. They were, 
Iddo K. Kimball, first lieutenant; William A. Banks, second 
lieutenant; Orin P. Tolman, fourth lieutenant. A few years 
later many of these men rendered important service to their 
country in the Civil War, and it is a fact, the significance of 
which the reader can appreciate, that the Rockland City Guards 
furnished 21 commissioned officers to the Union armies, among 
whom were one major-general, one colonel and one lieutenant- 

As captain of the Guards, Berry received his training for 
the important events in which he was to be a prominent figure. 
In his zeal to acquire military knowledge, it is said that with 
beans and coffee spread out before him on a table, and his 
books of tactics beside him, he would devote many evenings to 
mastering the intricate evolutions of a company. In this way 
he became the best drilled officer then in the service of the 



Sumter Fired On. — Berry's Luxurious Circumstances. — 
Excitement in Rockland over the Insult to the Flag. — 
Berry Tenders his Services to the Governor of Maine. — 
Raises the 4th Maine Infantry. — Companies Rendez- 
vous at Rockland. — Enthusiastic Reception. — Election 
of Regimental Officers in Atlantic Hall. — Berry Chosen 
Colonel.— The Camp on Tillson's Hill.— The Daily 
Routine. — Visit by Governor Washburn. — Winterport 
Company Disbanded. — The Brooks Company takes Its 
Place. — Men Re-enlist for Three Years. — Discipline in 
Camp Knox. — Regiment Breaks Camp. — Take the 
"Daniel Webster" for Portland. 

OMINOUS clouds had been gathering on the political hori- 
zon. There was a general feeling of uneasiness and 
suspense ; a foreboding of some impending evil that no 
person attempted to define. Southern aggression was only 
equalled by Northern inertness. Secession was loudly advo- 
cated and threatened even in the Houses of Congress ; and the 
national dissolution which the matchless eloquence and irresist- 
ible logic of Webster had averted, now seemed about to be an 
accomplished fact. How prophetic are these words of this 
immortal statesman, when he says, " When my eyes shall be 
turned to behold for the last time the sun in heaven, may I not 
see him shining on the broken and dishonored fragments of a 
once glorious union ; on states dissevered, discordant, belliger- 
ent ; on a land rent with civil feuds, or drenched, it may be, in 


fraternal blood ! " What a pen picture there is in these 
majestic words ! It would seem that by some Omnipotent 
power the mind of Webster penetrated the veil of the future, 
and his gaze rested in horror on the truthful scene he so vividly 
portrays. But the vision of this prophet was not heeded by the 
North. If thought of at all, it took the form of a matchless 
piece of rhetoric and not as a warning of coming strife. 

But the South was arming. Already it flaunted treason's 
banner in the face of the President, who, through natural tim- 
idity, or an inability to fully grasp the situation, permitted the 
Northern forts to be stripped of their armament, the ships of 
war to be scattered to earth's remotest bounds, and the little 
army of regulars to be given over to the enemies of the Union. 
Treason did not now sing with the siren's voice. The time for 
pleasing had passed, and the dogs of war howled in loud and 
discordant tones. 

Lincoln had been elected and inaugurated as President 
of the United States, and the Southern states, following the 
lead of South Carolina, were seceding one after the other. 
Anderson and his little band were besieged in Fort Sumter, 
surrounded by hostile batteries and threatened by armed hosts. 
The country watched with breathless interest the futile efforts 
of President Lincoln to reinforce and provision this garrison. 
But the spell was soon broken and the thunder of the cannon 
directed at Sumter's walls summoned the North to arms. 

When the news of the bombardment of Sumter reached 
Rockland all was excitement. Public meetings were held, 
patriotic speeches were made, resolutions passed, and volunteers 
flocked to the recruiting offices that were soon opened in the city. 

The outbreak of hostilities found Berry in the midst of a 
prosperous business career. Living in a magnificent house, 
made bright by the presence of wife and daughter, and with 
prospects for the future bright and promising, it would not 
have been a matter of wonder if Berry had failed to hear the 
call to duty, and remained passive in his comfortable surround- 


ings. But he was cast in a heroic mould. The pleasures of 
luxury were as nothing to the security and preservation of his 
country. The delights of domestic life and the profitable 
pursuits of peace must all give way to the stern exigencies 
of war. True to the traditions of his family, he had always 
been a Democrat in politics, but like thousands of others he 
sank party in patriotism and declared for country first and 
party afterwards. 

" I know no politics while this conflict lasts," he responded, 
to the invitation to exchange his sword for the honors of 
political office. This answer reveals the man. 

Berry hastened to Augusta and tendered his services to 
the Governor, returning post haste with the papers to recruit a 
regiment. Four companies were raised in Rockland for the 
Fourth Maine, and were commanded by Elijah Walker, L. D. 
Carver, O. J. Conant, and G. J. Burns. Companies were also 
raised in Belfast, H. W. Cunningham, commanding; Damaris- 
cotta, Stephen C. Whitehouse, commanding; VVinterport, 
Oliver Crowell, commanding; VViscasset, Edwin M. Smith, 
commanding; and another company, commanded by Silas M. 
Fuller, was also raised in Belfast. 

The companies of the 4th Maine were ordered to ren- 
dezvous at Rockland, and on Thursday morning, May 16th, 
the four Rockland companies went into camp on Tillson's Hill, 
a high eminence back of the thickly settled part of the city, 
between Middle and Rankin streets. The Damariscotta 
company was the first to arrive, and their reception as they 
appeared in carriages on Main street was most enthusiastic. 
The company proceeded to the Lindsey House, where they 
left their carriages, then forming line, marched to the Kimball 
Block, where they were bountifully fed, after which they were 
received and escorted to their quarters by the Rockland 

The Wiscasset company arrived in the coaches of Mr. John 
T. Berry at about six o'clock, Sunday. They formed line out- 

34 major-generAl hirAm g. berr*. 

side the city limits, and marched in to the stirring music of the 
Damariscotta Band. They were received with military honors 
by Capt. Carver's company of Rockland, and the Damariscotta 
company, and were enthusiastically greeted by the citizens. 

On Monday forenoon the two Belfast companies arrived 
on the steamer Daniel Webster, and were escorted to the camp 
ground by Captain Conant's Rockland company and the 
Wiscasset company. They received an ovation from the 

Monday afternoon the Winterport and Searsport companies 
arrived on the steamer Sanford. Captain Walker's Rockland 
company and the Damariscotta company, attended by the 
Rockland Band, were in waiting to receive them. The battalion 
marched to the foot of Limerock street, when the escort 
stacked arms, and the newly arrived companies went to supper. 
Subsequently they were escorted to the encampment, and 
Camp Knox, as it was called, was then completed. 

The commissioned officers of the companies composing 
the 4th Maine, held their election of regimental officers at 
Atlantic Hall, Rockland, Wednesday afternoon, May 8th, Major- 
General William H. Titcomb of the State Militia presiding. 
Hiram G. Berry was elected colonel, Adelbert Ames of Rock- 
land, a member of the class just graduated from West Point, 
was chosen lieutenant-colonel, and Thomas H. Marshall of 
Belfast, major. As the War Department would not permit 
Ames to accept a commission in the volunteers, Marshall was 
promoted to lieutenant-colonel, and Frank S. Nickerson of 
Searsport was chosen major. 

The land on which Camp Knox was situated was high and 
dry, and though not level, made a fine parade ground. On the 
right looking from Middle street, and on the southeast side of 
the encampment, was the quarters of the regimental officers ; 
next beyond these were the tents of the company officers, next 
the kitchens, and next the company tents, six to each company, 
in ten parallel rows. In front of these at the northeast side of 


the camp was the parade ground. The tents were made by 
General William S. Cochran, and each tent had a flooring of 
boards raised several inches from the ground. At first the 
troops were fed by Robert Anderson, but the camp utensils 
having been made by J. C. Libby & Son of Rockland, and 
delivered to the companies, rations were issued and cooked in 
true army style. 

The regiment now began the routine of camp life. At five 
o'clock A. M. reveille was sounded, when the morning gun was 
fired, and sentinels ceased challenging. The companies formed 
on company parade, and the roll was called, after which the 
tents and grounds were put in order ; seven o'clock, breakfast ; 
half past eight o'clock, guard mounting; ten o'clock, regimen- 
tal line formed and company drill; twelve o'clock, dinner; two 
o'clock P. M., regimental line was formed by adjutant for bat- 
talion drill; six o'clock, supper; at forty-five minutes past six, 
dress parade and retreat, when the evening gun was fired, and the 
flag hauled down, after which the sentinels commenced chal- 
lenging; at half-past nine o'clock, tattoo, when the companies 
fell in for roll call on the company parade grounds. At half- 
past ten o'clock taps sounded, all loud talking and noise must 
cease, lights were extinguished in all except guard and officers' 
tents, and all non-commissioned officers and soldiers except 
those on guard, must be in bed. 

Governor Washburn visited the regiment while in camp 
and witnessed the dress parade, when he addressed the troops, 
expressing himself as well pleased with their appearance, and 
pronouncing the regiment the best looking body of troops 
Maine had yet sent to the front. 

The health of the troops while in camp was generally good. 
A few cases of measles were reported, and Atlantic Hall was 
used as the hospital for the regiment. The men were not uni- 
formed on going into camp, but the Damariscotta and Wiscasset 
companies were provided with army shirts, which they received 
before leaving home. 


The men of the 4th Maine were originally enlisted for 
three months, but orders came to enlist for three years, and the 
men were asked to re-enlist for that period. Most of them 
did, but a number of the men of Company F of Winterport, 
refused to enlist for the three years term, and the company was 
disbanded. A large number of the men of this company 
remained with the regiment, going into other companies. The 
Brooks company, Captain Andrew D. Bean, arrived on the 
Sanford, Monday, May 27th, and was given the place in the 
regiment left vacant by Company F. 

An incident of camp life is worth relating to illustrate the 
discipline maintained at Camp Knox by Colonel Berry. A man 
who had come to the camp ground for the purpose of selling 
rum was summarily arrested by Adjutant J. B. Greenhalgh and 
sent off to the prisoners' tent. Subsequently he was taken out 
and escorted down the line by a sergeant and three men, with 
his bottle hung around his neck, bayonets at his back, greeted 
with laughter and jeers by the soldiers, and the drums beating 
the Rogue's March. 

Friday, May 31st, the regiment paraded the streets without 
arms, preceded by the Rockland Band. The companies made 
a fine appearance, and large numbers of citizens filled the 
streets to witness the display. On the return of the regiment 
from the South-end a halt and rest was ordered, the line extend- 
ing from Sea street to Kimball Block. This was the first 
appearance of the regiment on parade outside of the encamp- 
ment. Monday, June 17th, the anniversary of the Battle of 
Bunker Hill, the 4th Maine broke camp and started for 
Washington. On the preceding Saturday, the troops were 
inspected and mustered into the service of the United States by 
Captain Thomas Hight, U. S. A. Sunday, knapsacks were 
packed as well as camp equipage and baggage, and each soldier 
received one day's rations. On Monday morning the reveille 
sounded at four o'clock, and at five o'clock the soldiers took 
their last breakfast in Camp Knox. 


The men in each company were subsequently divided into 
squads, and at the proper time, proceeded to lower and pack 
their tents. After the cords had been unfastened, and the pegs 
taken up, at the tap of the drum all the tents were simultan- 
eously lowered to the ground, every man cheering as the tents 
came down. 

The camp grounds were thronged with people. Many 
were light hearted and gay, enjoying the beautiful morning, and 
the varying scene before them ; many were sad and weeping 
and the bright day was to them one of the saddest of their 
lives. Some were there to take a sad leave of husbands, sons 
and brothers, whom they might never see again, and yet there 
were few of those wives, mothers and sisters who were not 
ready to say, with a true devotion to their country's cause, 
" Go, and God bless you." Most of the men appeared cheer- 
ful, many of them merry. Some were serious and thoughtful, 
but ready to go to their work with stout arms and brave 

Adjutant Greenhalgh began to form the regimental line at 
about eight o'clock, and when all was ready, Colonel Berry took 
command, and the regiment began its march about nine o'clock. 
First, the crowds on foot and lines of carriages came pouring 
down Middle street, and then the platoons of the soldiery 
appeared, their bright bayonets flashing in the morning sun. 
The whole route of march was densely thronged with people, 
every window along Main street was occupied, and carriages 
stood in all the avenues looking on the street. At Main street 
the troops were joined by the Rockland Band in full uniform, 
who accompanied the regiment to Washington. The regiment 
carried on the march a large white banner, bearing the inscrip- 
tion, " From the Home of Knox," and when the head of the 
column had arrived opposite the Kimball Block, a halt was 
made, and Major-General Titcomb presented to Colonel Berry, 
for the regiment, a small silk banner bearing the arms and 
motto of the State of Maine. 


The troops were then greeted with enthusiastic cheers by 
the throng of citizens, which were heartily returned by the 
soldiers, when the column moved forward again at a quick 
march, directly to Atlantic Wharf, where the steamer Daniel 
Webster, stripped of her furniture and bedding, waited to 
receive them. 

The wharf, and the ground, sheds, buildings and shipping 
in the vicinity were densely thronged with spectators to witness 
the embarkation. Probably not less than eight or ten thousand 
people were assembled in the vicinity of the wharf. The troops 
were embarked in order, each company going on board and 
taking the position previously assigned it by Colonel Berry's 
special order. During the embarkation a salute was fired from 
two or three small cannon on board the ship Alice Thorndike 
lying at the wharf. When the troops were embarked Major- 
General Titcomb addressed the citizens assembled, after which 
the boat moved away, the crowds cheering, handkerchiefs 
waving, and the band playing a cheerful air. 

The regiment arrived in Portland at four o'clock, where 
the troops were received by the city authorities, and escorted 
by the 5th regiment. They were quartered in the City Hall, 
and on Tuesday morning at quarter past seven o'clock took the 
train for Boston, in good spirits, arriving in Boston at twenty 
minutes past one. Thousands of citizens cheered the soldiers 
as the long train drew out of the Portland depot, and as they 
swept through towns and villages of Maine and New Hamp- 
shire, the troops were greeted with cordial and encouraging 
tokens of friendship and sympathy. 

They arrived in Portsmouth at ten o'clock and ten minutes* 
where the Eastern Railroad corporation took them in charge. 
The train consisted of twenty cars drawn by the locomotive 
" Governor Endicott," and conducted by a Mr. Cram and 
Superintendent Prescott. At Portsmouth the 2d New Hamp- 
shire regiment had engaged to meet them at the depot and 
give them a welcome, but the train being ahead of time, the 


pleasure was denied both regiments. The train stopped a few 
minutes at Newburyport, and again at Ipswich and Salem. At 
the latter place a salute was fired, and at all the stations on the 
route the people were abroad in great numbers, and greeted 
the volunteers with cheers, approving smiles, the waving of 
handkerchiefs and flags, and hearty shouts of " God speed you." 



The First Accident. — Reception in Boston. — Mrs. Walter 
Baker. — Enthusiasm of the Ladies at Fall River. — 
Arrival in New York. — The Men Suffer from the Intense 
Heat. — Presentation of Flags. — Dramatic Scene when 
Colonel Berry Receives the Colors. — Arrival at Phila- 
delphia. — Cordial Reception and a Bountiful Repast. — 
The Pretty Waiting Maids. 

THE first accident in the regiment occurred while the 
Fourth was marching to the cars in Portland. A soldier 
named Roland of Company F of Brooks stepped upon a 
rolling stone, slipped and fell, breaking his leg in two places. 
The poor fellow was cared for by the citizens. 

On arriving in Boston the 4th Maine was met by the 
Cadets and escorted to the Common, where a collation was pro- 
vided for them. The Boston Herald said of them : 

" The Cadets escorted the regiment to the Common, where 
the afternoon was passed away very pleasantly by means of a 
collation, the joint production of the Regimental Quartermaster 
and the City of Boston, music and fun. This was the merriest 
lot of men we have ever seen on the Common since the war 
commenced. They were continually at some rough and tumble 
games which neither fatigued them nor the thousands of laugh- 
ing spectators. Nearly every company has a wag which kept 
them all in good humor. The lower part of the Common was 
enclosed for their accommodation, and those who had friends 
inside or favor at the gateway were admitted. Outside there 


were thousands enjoying the fashionable amusement of the time 
— a military display. This is getting to be an every day affair, 
and fashionable audiences flock to the Common as they do in 
the season thereof to balls and the opera. The Common never 
looked better than in its elegant June dress this year, but the 
carpet of green on the hills and parade ground is now gravel 
bare by the great audiences of late. The Maine boys stacked 
their arms on Charles street mall, and the Cadets kept guard 
for them while they ate and rested. The Brigade Band was out 
with the Cadets, and together with the Rockland Band, which 
accompanied the Maine Regiment, they issued some good notes 
to pay the visitors for their trouble. They were better than the 
Confederate bonds. It was enough to make a man wish to go 
for a soldier — all the pretty faces and the music. There were 
whole troops of Maine girls about cheering the soldiers and 
making them more unhappy when they left. A soldier's life is 
not always gay, but these boys were bound to go in and enjoy 
it as it comes. 

" The moments flew away and at six o'clock the regiment 
was assembled and fell into column by platoons and marched 
through Beacon, Park, Tremont, Winter, Summer streets, Har- 
rison Avenue, and so on to the Old Colony Depot where a train 
of twenty cars was filled. Here the jocularity continued. 
John L. Kalloch of Company B made himself the center of an 
audience wherever he moved. He was a rare wag and his 
grimaces will be remembered for a long time. He kept the 
whole company and a crowd of outsiders in a roar. We should 
be sorry to see his name among the dead or missing, for he is 
better than a medicine chest in a company. The train started 
without accident at 7:22 o'clock amidst a volley of cheers, the 
last of which was for the Boston ladies, from the soldiers." 

An incident happened while the regiment was in Boston 
that illustrates the patriotic ardor of the ladies of that city. I 
give it as it was told me by an officer of the 4th Maine. 
When the -regiment arrived in Boston, a detail had been made 


of a certain number of men to care for the baggage at the 
depot, and while the rest of the regiment were on the Common 
feasting, this detail was toiling with the baggage, hungry and 
disconsolate. Mrs. Walter Baker, wife of the proprietor of the 
far famed Baker's chocolate, was returning in her carriage from 
the Common when she came upon this detail, and stopping 
her carriage, asked them to what regiment they belonged. 

" The 4th Maine," came back the courteous reply. 

" Why, I left the 4th Maine at dinner on the Common. 
How does it happen that you are not with them? You must 
be hungry." 

One of the soldiers briefly explained the situation to the 
lady, who listened attentively, then bidding the soldiers remain 
where they were, drove on. Very soon the message came for 
the detail to repair to the nearest restaurant, where they were 
regaled with the best that Boston afforded, at the expense of 
this generous and high born lady. 

The passage of the troops from Boston to Fall River was 
marked at every point by enthusiasm. At Fall River the ebul- 
lition of feeling was intensified. Ladies were eager to take the 
hands of the soldiers and some noble-hearted women, refined 
and beautiful, said: "Let us kiss a soldier!" and suited the 
action to the word. At Fall River the regiment was embarked 
on the steamer Bay State. The officers and men were incensed 
at the arrangements to which they were subjected on board this 
transport, which conveyed them to New York. The supply of 
provisions on board the steamer was small, but officers and men 
bore the hardship with creditable patience, until New York was 
reached. Here a pleasant surprise was in store for the regiment. 

We are indebted to the New York Herald for the following 
account of the arrival and reception of the 4th Maine in that 
city : " This fine body of volunteer militia, from the Pine 
Tree State, arrived in this city at about eleven o'clock, Wednes- 
day, June 19. The transport in which they arrived came to her 
moorings at pier No. 3, North River, where a large crowd of 


men and women were assembled to greet the stalwart strangers. 
The men, who were all strong and sturdy specimens of Maine's 
true nobility, reminding us of the old northern warriors of 
Gustavus Adolphus, were soon landed, and put in marching 
order. The line of march was up Broadway to the Park 

" Despite the overpowering heat of the sun, there were 
thousands collected in the vicinity of the Park, awaiting the 
arrival of the regiment. The men, heavily hampered with their 
full knapsacks and blankets, marched steadily up Broadway, 
receiving a continuous tribute of applause as they slowly 
approached the barracks. Many of them looked worn and 
fatigued, as well they must have been while tramping under the 
almost perpendicular beams of a scorching midsummer sun. 
Their swarthy cheeks were wet with perspiration and the weight 
of their knapsacks pressed heavily on them, but they marched 
with undeviating regularity, and with a firmness of step betok- 
ening well developed strength and muscle. On arriving at the 
Park barracks, on the Broadway side, the regiment was marched 
to the front of City Hall, where it was received by commit- 
tees of the Sons and Daughters of Maine. The scenes which 
then ensued were very interesting and in some instances even 
affecting. Friends who had not met for years soon recognized 
each other, and then there were impulsive rushes here and 
there to shake hands and to exchange friendly words of greet- 
ing. Some little time was consumed in these conventionalities 
and the formal ceremonies of handshaking might have lasted 
much longer but for the stentorian voice of the commanding 
officer ordering the men to ' fall in ' and ' dress.' The colonel 
then came to the front and announced to the regiment that the 
Rev. Isaac S. Kalloch, formerly of Boston, would invoke the 
Divine blessing on their cause and themselves. The men were 
soon as quiet as could be desired, and the clergyman proceeded 
to deliver a brief but fervent prayer. At its conclusion the 
regimental colors were advanced to the front. One was a silken 


Federal flag, of the regulation size, heavily fringed with gold. 
The other was a blue silk flag, heavily and chastely embroidered. 
The first was ornamented with arms of the State of Maine, with 
the name of the regiment, and the Latin inscription ' Dirigo.' 
The other was inscribed, ' Presented to the Fourth Regiment of 
Maine Volunteers by the Daughters of Maine in Brooklyn, June 
19, 1861.' 

" The Rev. Dr. Hitchcock presented the first flag, and in 
doing so addressed the regiment in very warm and affectionate 
language. In his response to this address Colonel Berry said 
that his men were foot-sore, and fatigued by the heavy weights 
on their backs. He thanked the generous people of New York 
for all their kindness and the reverend gentleman for the elo- 
quent speech he had addressed them. Then taking the flag he 
ascended a small platform and asked : ' Shall this flag ever trail 
in the dust?' Loud cries of ' No, no ! ' 'Will you defend it 
so long as you have a right arm? ' ' We will, we will ! ' shouted 
the men of the regiment, and a simultaneous shout of applause 
broke from the assembled thousands. 

" Mr. H. Brockman then presented the other standard, 
addressing the regiment in eloquent terms. By invitation of 
Colonel Berry the flag was received in behalf of the regiment 
by Rev. Isaac Kalloch in his usual happy manner. After the 
ceremonies of the presentation were concluded, the officers 
retired to the Astor House and the privates to their barracks in 
the Park. 

"While arrangements were being completed for the depart- 
ure of the regiment, the men were ordered to stack arms and 
dispersed around the Park. They left by the late train for 
Philadelphia, en route for the seat of war." 

The regiment arrived in Philadelphia at about eleven 
o'clock at night. Both officers and men were somewhat 
exhausted by the long journey and were most agreeably sur- 
prised when they were met at the depot at that late hour by a 
delegation of citizens and invited to partake of such refresh- 


ments as they had hastily prepared. The line was formed and 
the regiment marched to a building temporarily erected, about 
ioo feet in length, along the outside of which were arranged 
some fifty wash stands with soap and towels, each stand supplied 
with cool running water. These bathing facilities were turned 
to good use, after which the doors were thrown open and 
the soldier boys invited to enter. There upon some half- 
dozen tables, extending the length of the building, lighted by 
gas, were huge platters of cold beef, ham, plates of sandwiches 
and bread, crowned by that good old New England dish of 
baked beans and brown bread. A fragrant cup of coffee was 
placed at each plate. The pretty waiting maids were very 
attentive to the wants of the boys from Maine, who were ready 
to affirm that the girls of Philadelphia could not be excelled 
except by those of the Pine Tree State. 



Start for Baltimore. — Ammunition Distributed to the Men. — 
The March through Baltimore. — Silence and Sullen 
Faces Greet the Troops. — The Run to Washington. — 
First Glimpses of Army Life. — Quartered on the Avenue. 
— Accident to a Member of the Searsport Company. — 
Camp on Meridian Hill. — Severe Rain Storm. — Berry 
Describes Camp Life. — The First Death. — The Presi- 
dent Reviews New York Troops. — President Lincoln. — 
General Scott. — Formation of the Regimental Band. — 
Alexandria. — Change of Camp. — Reconnaissance. — 
"On to Richmond." 

THE regiment remained in Philadelphia until six o'clock 
the next morning, when, with many cheers for Philadel- 
phia, they looked forward to Baltimore as the next point 
of interest. Havre de Grace was soon reached, and here was 
found a regiment of New Jersey Volunteers, whose pickets the 
4th Maine had encountered some miles out. The officers of 
this regiment were very gentlemanly and improved the spare 
moments in pointing out various points of interest. 

Colonel Berry now began to prepare his men for the 
march through Baltimore. Ammunition was distributed to each 
soldier, and the command given to the officers to permit no 
stray brick-bats or paving stones to be thrown at the men with- 
out an emphatic response on the part of the soldiery. Interest 
now began to increase, for although trouble was not really 
anticipated, still a wise precaution might enable the regi- 


ment to give a good account of itself in case of emergency. 
Baltimore is at length sighted, and the train halts in the 
suburbs of the city, and the soldiers are greeted with cheers by 
the sturdy, honest workmen in the foundries. The regiment is 
soon in line, the New York colors are flying, the band is play- 
ing " Hail, Columbia," and the march for the other side of the 
city is begun. An immense crowd of spectators line the streets. 
Here and there a modest little flag timidly waving from some 
upper window may be seen, but no cheers greet the troops, 
no glad faces beam a kindly welcome, no friendly hand minis- 
ters to their necessities. How different from the march through 
Boston, New York and Philadelphia ! 

The regiment passes through Baltimore without molestation 
and is soon speeding on its way to Washington. Relay House 
is reached. The soldier boys gather branches of evergreen and 
decorate the train, giving it the appearance of a moving forest. 
Again the train moves off, and some of the boys, leaving the 
inside of the cars and climbing to the top, are making the sur- 
rounding country echo to the music of their muskets. A halt 
is made at Annapolis Junction where the boys fill their can- 
teens with pure water and observe the evening parade of the 
regiments there encamped. 

The regiment reached Washington about eight o'clock and 
was quartered for the night in a large building on Pennsylvania 
Avenue. Here one of the Searsport boys had a most hazardous 
adventure. Being in the third story he was sitting in an open 
window, and falling asleep he lost his balance and fell. In his 
descent he struck an iron railing and finally landed on the pave- 
ment below. Fortunately no bones were broken, and aside from 
a little bruising, occasioning some lameness, no harm was done. 

The following morning (Friday) the regiment went into 
camp on Meridian Hill, about two miles from the city, where 
they found the 3d Maine encamped. The march from the city 
was severe, the day was intensely hot, and several of the men 
suffered sun stroke, Colonel Berry himself being thoroughly 


exhausted when the camping ground was reached. Seeing the 
exhausted condition of the men of the 4th Maine, the gallant 
fellows in the 3d Maine volunteered to pitch the tents while the 
tired soldiers rested in the shade of a grove in which the camp 
was laid. 

The constant care and responsibility attending the trans- 
portation of a regiment from Maine to Washington cannot be 
well imagined, but it can be said to the credit of Colonel Berry 
that it arrived in Washington in excellent condition. 

The fourth or fifth day after getting into camp, the 4th 
Maine was treated to one of those storms of rain for which that 
part of the country is noted. It seemed as though the flood 
gates of heaven must have been opened, inundating the tents 
and spreading discomfort far and wide. The tents of the com- 
panies on the left of the regimental line suffered the most from 
this deluge, the men standing in water up to their knees, and 
boxes and trunks floating about, This experience taught the 
officers a practical lesson in selecting a camp ground, and ever 
after, the 4th Maine camped in the open fields when possible, 
and the forest was carefully avoided as a camping place. 

In a letter to his family, Colonel Berry describes his camp 
and incidents of his journey to Washington. 

Camp Knox, Meridian Hill, June 1, 1861. 

Thinking that anything concerning myself would be of interest to you, I will 
therefore just give you a description of the camping ground and my tent — my home at 
present. We are encamped fronting exactly to the south; on our east is Fourteenth 
street, leading from Pennsylvania Avenue, which is two and one-half miles distant. 
The 5th Maine Regiment encamped yesterday on the west of us, and immediately 
adjoining is encamped the 3d Maine and on the west of them the 2d Maine, and west 
of them is the 1st Maine. Our camping ground is in a fine grove of oaks, sufficiently 
large to admit of all our tents. The parade ground is immediately in front and is 
really very fine, being about twenty-five acres in extent, and as level as any spot can 
well be. In front of the parade — that is, south of it, stands Columbia College, a fine 
old structure surrounded by large shade trees and fine grounds. 

My own tent is in the rear of the company officers' tents, under the shade of large 
trees. The ground in the grove is level and is carefully swept every morning. On the 
right hand entering my tent is a box on which is my wash bowl and water; next to that 
my writing table,which occupies an entire side; next, and opposite the door is my baggage 



and boxes of material belonging to myself and the regiment; next, and last, stands my 
camp bedstead and bed, also my saddle and riding equipments. On the pole in the cen- 
ter I have arranged to hang my hat, sword and belt, pistols, etc. I have no floor in the 
tent, that luxury we left behind at Rockland. Take it all in all I feel quite comfortable. 
We have a black cook, and a dining tent in which all the staff eat — some six of us. 
We use little meat, live mostly on light articles of food, use no liquor or but very little — 
none allowed in camp. Our men are quiet and seem disposed to do almost anything 
for me. We are now drilling the new tactics of quick movements. Shall be pretty 
well along by the last of this week in the new drill, so we can drill it publicly. We 
have any quantity of compliments on our discipline. In fact, many say we have the 
best regiment of volunteers that has yet come into Washington. Today is Sunday. 
Any amount of drunkenness all around about us. I have had but one case today; the 
rest of my men are all right. 'Tis now evening, about nine o'clock. A prayer meet- 
ing is being held on my right, and another on my left. Almost all tents have men 
singing psalm tunes, and it really seems tonight more like one vast camp meeting than 
like a soldiers' camp, and were it not for the occasional challenging of stragglers by 
the guard, and my own men coming in from visits, I should almost forget the fact that 
we are now in the midst of soldiers' life. 

Twenty-one regiments have arrived here this week. I know not how many sol- 
diers there are now in Washington, but do know the number to be very large. Our 
journey here was very pleasant and at the same time fatiguing. We had a splendid 
collation on Boston Common; had three flags presented to us in New York, and three 
long speeches, notwithstanding my plainly spoken intimations that my men were tired, 
their knapsacks heavy, and that the sun was beating down upon them with thermometer 
at ninety-five degrees. We passed through it, however, got the flags, heard the speeches, 
got my men to dinner all nice and comfortable, and then went over to the Astor House 
to get lunch and see friends. 

We left New York at four o'clock for Philadelphia via Camden and Amboy, and 
arrived at Philadelphia in the night at twelve o'clock. Were till nine next morning 
shifting horses and baggage into train for Baltimore,where we arrived at two o'clock P.M. ; 
got out of cars, formed regiment and marched to Washington depot with band playing, 
colors unfurled, guns loaded and twenty rounds of ammunition to a man with us. We 
had no cheers to speak of, and no kind word spoken; men looked dark and sullen; 
did not know but we might have trouble. None occurred, however, and all passed off 
well. It has not been customary for regiments to march through as we did. They 
have done so quietly, by tap of drum simply. We chose to go through Baltimore as 
we had through other cities and did so. The 4th Maine set an 'example which will 
probably be followed in the future. We arrived here at nine o'clock in the evening. 
The companies went into quarters at Woodworth buildings on Pennsylvania Avenue, 
and I passed the night with the staff officers at National Hotel. The next morning 
marched to the spot where we are now encamped as described. We have been visited 
by the Secretaries of War and Treasury, many prominent military men in the Regular 
Army, and also by members and senators in Congress without number. 

I am pleasantly situated as far as one can be so circumstanced. I ride about six 
miles a day and do very well, in fact I do not see why I do not ride as well as the best 


of them. My duties are hard and I am hard at work most of the time. Should think 
I had worked off some twenty pounds. Shall have to grow thinner yet, then I think I 
can stand the climate. I shall endeavor to take care of my health; "I shall try and 
preserve myself in all cases, but shall do my duty so far as I understand it, knowing 
and feeling that those nearest and dearest and in fact my all on earth would have me 
do no less. 

All news we get in the papers comes from New York. Everything is known there 
before it is here. All is seemingly quiet here, but in the night time troops and munitions 
of war are moving incessantly. A very large force is now collected here, preparatory 
to some huge movement, the character of which is only known by the President and 
Cabinet and General Scott. Enough, however, is known to judge pretty accurately 
that no movement will be made onward until all is properly organized, and then when 
it does go it will travel fast, secure and effectively, and accomplish its purpose. Troops 
are coming in by three, four or five regiments per day; in a short time all the land 
within a circuit of rive miles will be completely covered. In fact, Washington and the 
District of Columbia, Alexandria, and the railroad line to Relay House is one vast 
camping ground. 

It is now eleven o'clock and I have to be up at four. 

Washington, D. C, July 7, 1861. 

Our first death occurred yesterday, the subject a young man by the name of Hatch, 
[ Joseph L. Hatch of Nobleboro,] belonging to a Damariscotta company. He had 
the measles in a very mild form, was duly discharged from hospital, and sent to quarters. 
He lay down in the tent where the air had free access to and over him, caught cold, 
and lived but twelve hours. His remains have been kindly cared for, having been 
placed in a metallic case and will be forwarded to his friends at home. 

The 3d Maine Regiment broke camp yesterday and passed into Virginia. No 
doubt but we shall follow this week. The men are now pretty well posted in their 
duties and are uneasy to be off. 

The fatigues of the long journey to Washington and the 
hot weather had affected the health of many of the men of the 
4th Maine, and some of them were discharged and sent home, 
receiving three months' pay in advance. 

On the morning of the Fourth of July, the regiment was 
awakened by the boom of cannon and sweet strains of music 
from the band of the 3d Maine, who in this manner were cele- 
brating the birthday of American independence. Many of the 
men for the first time saw President Lincoln and General Scott, 
who reviewed twenty regiments of New York troops from a 
stand erected in front of the White House. Mr. Lincoln stood 


with uncovered head, Mr. Seward on his right with his hat on, 
and Gen. Scott on his left, gorgeous in military trappings. 
They seemed deeply interested in the scene before them, 
although the long line of troops was more than two hours in 

General Scott is described as of massive frame, and at this 
time appeared to be very old. His movements of the head and 
hands were rapid, but he walked slowly and carefully. He had 
a pleasant word for the soldiers, who approached the aged hero 
with reverence and admiration. Mr. Lincoln's expression of 
countenance was genial, kind and benignant. His hair and 
whiskers were black, and he inspired the beholder with the 
desire to be better acquainted with him. 

About this time the regimental band was formed from 
musicians in the several companies, with John F. Singhi of 
Rockland as leader. The cornets with which this band was 
supplied were made in Baltimore. The band made its first 
public appearance in a serenade in front of Colonel Berry's 
tent, where it surprised the spectators by the good time and 
general efficiency of its efforts. 

July 8th the long expected orders to move arrived, and prep- 
arations were at once made to change camp. The day was hot, 
and everybody was busy and excited, the men packing their 
knapsacks and the officers their trunks. Rations for one day 
were issued to each man, and the grey uniforms which had 
been worn since leaving Rockland were now discarded for the 
regulation blue of the United States Army. The sick, of which 
there were not many, were placed in Columbia College where 
they were left when the regiment took up its march for Virginia. 
These preparations were soon completed, and at about four 
o'clock in the afternoon, at a given signal, the tents of the regi- 
ment fell to the ground amid the ringing cheers of the men. 
Twenty rounds of ammunition were distributed to each man, 
and at five o'clock the regimental line was formed and the 
march begun for Alexandria. Passing down Fourteenth street, 


the men amused themselves by singing " Dixie " and other 
favorite songs, until Pennsylvania Avenue was reached, when 
the regiment came to " attention," marching with steady tread 
and martial bearing down the avenue and attracting general 
attention as they passed. At nine o'clock P. M. the regiment 
was on board the steamers with their camp equipage, and in 
one hour more landed at Alexandria on the south side of the 
Potomac. By twelve o'clock, midnight, the baggage was dis- 
charged and the men scattered to find places to sleep, and 
although the beds of many were made on logs, boards and bales 
of hay, yet sleep came to the tired fellows and the morning 
found them refreshed and ready for the duties of the day. 
Regimental line was formed at five o'clock A. M. and the march 
for camp began. As the regiment marched out of the city, it 
passed in review before the quarters of General Heintzelman, 
its division commander, who complimented Colonel Berry on 
the fine appearance of his regiment. 

At this time Alexandria was hostile to the Union, and for 
that reason was under martial law. Houses deserted, stores 
untenanted, and grass growing in the streets, gave to the place 
a general appearance of dilapidation, making it indeed a fit 
nursery of secessionists. 

The regiment arrived at the place designated for its camp 
at half-past six o'clock, and the tents were soon pitched, not- 
withstanding the intense heat. This camp is about two miles 
from Alexandria and twelve from Washington. The land rises 
in moderate elevations all around and was well cultivated by the 
natives, who were Southern sympathizers. On the left was the 
camp of the 3d Maine ; on the right was that of the 5th Maine, 
and the Ellsworth Zouaves. The Scott Life Guards and other 
regiments were encamped near by. On the arrival of the regi- 
ment at its camping place, Companies B and D, Captains Walker 
and Carver, were detailed under Major Nickerson to make a 
reconnaissance toward the Pohick in search of the enemy. After 
marching ten miles in the broiling sun, the companies returned 


about dusk in a drenching shower of rain without encountering 
any serious opposition from the rebels. We will let Colonel 
Berry give his experience up to this point: 

Headquarters 4TH Regiment, Maine Vols., 

Road to Richmond, below Alexandria, 

On original Washington Farm. 

We are temporarily encamped at this point, being at present the advance guard of 
the army. We are some two miles ahead of the New York Fire Zouaves. The march 
was fourteen miles, and from the fact that we were continually challenged all along our 
route (it being a night march, starting at 7 P. M. and arriving at 4 A. M.) we were some 
hours on the road. My regiment is in line condition. We yesterday dispatched Captain 
Walker's and Captain Carver's commands under the charge of Major Nickerson on the 
Fairfax Road. They advanced under my orders to within a short distance of Fairfax 
Court House, having marched within the twenty-four hours, reckoning from the break- 
ing of camp, thirty miles, and strange to say are all well and anxious to start again this 
morning. None of them seem to be tired; none sick since their arrival here, and none 
foot-sore. We shall probably stay here one week, then onward. We are in a division 
under one of the best officers of the U. S. Army, Colonel Heintzelman, Brevet Briga- 
dier-General. One brigade is commanded by Colonel Franklin, one by Colonel Wilcox 
and one by Colonel Howard. All are West Point graduates, and what is more strange, 
all are members of the Engineer Corps in the U. S. Army, the highest grade of 1 
I feel great confidence in the officers placed over us. Our brigade is composed of my 
regiment, right regiment; Howard's, the left; Daniel's and 2d Vermont, center. 
We are now dressed in the U. S. regulation uniform. * * * My greatest difficulty 
is now to restrain my men to keep them inside the lines. We are surrounded by seces- 
sionists, and have pickets stationed three miles in every direction. It takes two whole 
companies every night. 

July 1 1 th orders were given to move forward toward Mt. 
Vernon and Richmond. One day's rations were cooked, and 
officers and men were allowed but two blankets and two pairs 
of stockings beside the ones worn. The regiment struck tents 
about eleven o'clock in the forenoon, and marching five miles 
by a circuitous route, encamped about six miles from Alexan- 
dria. It was manifest to all that a great battle was impending, 
but when and where the enemy were to be encountered was still 
a matter of conjecture. 

The prospect of a fight did not prevent Colonel Berry's 
men from being light-hearted and gay, and on the march and 
at bivouac familiar songs and good-natured banter prevailed. 


The regiment was now passing through a country which seemed 
like nature's paradise. Peach, cherry and apple orchards dotted 
the landscape here and there, and comfortable country houses 
stood invitingly on the hillsides, or snuggled cosily away in 
some quiet dell, tempting the tired soldiers to linger and enjoy 
their loveliness and cool shade. But stern duty urged them 
onward and they left this beautiful scene with reluctance, to 
meet the dangers of the battlefield, many of them never again 
to gaze upon nature's loveliness with mortal eye. 



Reconnaissance. — Southern Sympathizer. — First Prisoners. — 
Their Statements. — Berry Writes Home. — Occupation of 
Abandoned Breastworks. — Supplies Captured. — Berry's 
Devotion to the Union Illustrated by an Incident. — 
Manassas. — Troops. — McDowell Prepares for Battle. — 
Success of the Union Troops in the Morning. 

COLONEL BERRY had now advanced with his regiment to 
a point fifteen miles south of Washington, conforming to 
the movement of that part of the Potomac army to which 
his regiment belonged. Captain Walker's company, with that 
of Captain Conant, was detailed by Colonel Berry for a scout- 
ing party. Colonel Berry gave detailed instructions, and plans 
of the forest to be explored, and the command started at five 
o'clock in the morning, taking up their line of march along the 
Orange and Alexandria railroad, directly into the heart of the 
enemy's country. The scouting party advanced along this 
route to a little place called Acotink, when a detachment was 
sent to the right under Lieutenant Litchfield of B, and another 
from C company was to scour the woods thoroughly. A third 
detachment was sent along the railroad in the direction of the 
4th Maine's camp, to prevent the escape of the enemy across 
the road, the three detachments being kept within supporting 
distance of one another. Lieutenant Litchfield's detachment 
soon came upon a negro from whom it was learned that a num- 
ber of rebels had been to the house of a Mrs. Fitzhue in the 


morning, and that the notorious Ab. Miner, a spy, who had 
amused himself by shooting the Union sentinels at night, had 
departed from her house at ten o'clock that forenoon. This 
Mrs. Fitzhue, whose plantation was near by, had been harbor- 
ing Southern troops and furnishing information to the rebels, 
although she was enjoying a written "protection" from General 
Scott. On learning of her treasonable conduct, Lieutenant 
Litchfield did not hesitate to supply his squad with bread and 
milk from her larder, notwithstanding her indignant protest, and 
the order of General Scott which she thrust in his face. A 
negro was pressed into service as a guide and the squad started 
on the trail of the rebels. About a mile out, rebel scouts were 
encountered, three of whom fell into the hands of our men. 

The prisoners were bright looking young fellows. One of 
them, D. D. Fiquet, was a young lawyer and a graduate from 
Harvard Law School. When the captors arrived in camp with 
the prisoners the excitement was intense. Men crowded about 
the Southerners eager for a glimpse of them, as these were the 
first Confederate soldiers they had ever seen. The prisoners 
seemed grateful for the kind treatment they had received at the 
hands of their captors, and were prepared to suffer imprison- 
ment like men. 

The prisoners were delivered to Colonel Berry, who caused 
them to be brought before General Heintzelman, at whose head- 
quarters they were carefully examined. They seemed to be 
apprehensive that immediate death was to be their lot, as the 
Southern leaders had created the impression in the rank and 
file of the Confederate army, that such was the manner in 
which all Southern men were treated who fell into the clutches 
of Yankee soldiers. 

It was evident from the information obtained from these 
prisoners that the enemy was in force at Fairfax Court House, 
and Colonel Berry was anxious to attack them with the 4th 
Maine, but was not permitted to advance at this time. We will 
now permit Colonel Berry to give his experience : 

Mrs. Lucy Berry Snow, 
Daughter of Major-Gen eral Berry. 


Headquarters 4.TH Maine Vols., \ 

Camp Knox, Fairfax County, Va., July 13, 1861.J 

Since writing my last we have moved onward apace. We are now encamped on 
the east side of Alexandria and Manassas Gap railroad, near the town of Fairfax. I 
am well and never experienced so good a climate as this of Virginia. The country 
through which we have passed since we left Alexandria is one of the finest imaginable. 
The plantations are of the medium size, of about 1,000 acres on the average. I louses 
large, airy, comfortable and well arranged. Must of the people are to my mind 
sionists. 'Tis sad indeed to see so fine a country in so bad a tix; nevertheless, no help 
for it now but to fight it out. We move forward again in a day or two from live to ten 
miles. The whole line is some eighteen miles long, and advances at the same time. 
Our route is down the railroad spoken of above, on its eastern side, or its left flank. 
We build bridges as we go along, and also a telegraph. The regiment is in fine health 
and works hard. I am at work from four in the morning till eleven at night, sleep on 
the ground and am as well as ever in my life. I dress in blue flannel, have also uni- 
formed. my entire regiment in same manner. All feel better since they put on flannel. 
'Tis the only fit thing to wear in this climate. 

Headquarters 41 11 Regiment, Maim. Vols.,) 
Fairfax Station, July 15, 1861. / 

We are under marching orders and leave at three o'clock this afternoon with three 
days' food in haversacks Baggage of all kinds, tents, everything left behind. The 
whole line, some 18 miles, advances today. We form its left wing. I hope all will be 
well with us, and trust in God it will lie. 

Tuesday, the 16th of July, Colonel Berry moved his regi- 
ment promptly at three o'clock in the afternoon on the road 
to Fairfax, accompanying nearly 12,000 troops, the left wing 
of the Army of the Potomac. For several miles the roads 
were in good condition, and Colonel Berry's command made 
rapid progress, but towards night the roads became muddy and 
narrow, many steep hills and unbridged streams crossing the 
line of march, impeding the progress of the troops. Many 
streams were crossed in single file over narrow planks or logs, 
and when these facilities were not at hand, officers and soldiers 
forded the streams, holding high their arms and ammunition as 
they waded to their arm-pits in the swift and muddy current. 
For miles on either side of the line of march were forests of 
scrubby pines and oak, with here and there a dwelling, which 
was promptly visited by the soldiers who appropriated the 


bacon, beans and other provisions found therein, and supplied 
the wagons and mounted officers with fresh horses. 

The prospect of an encounter with the enemy served to 
stimulate the efforts of the men, and despite the difficulties 
encountered, cheerfulness prevailed. 

At eleven o'clock at night, Colonel Berry gave orders to 
encamp, and the tired soldiers sought rest on the cold ground 
wherever they happened to be, and calm and peaceful was their 
slumber after the toil of the day's march. 

Reveille sounded early in the morning, and the march was 
resumed towards Fairfax Court House. Colonel Berry's advance 
guard labored hard to clear the obstructions from the path of 
the regiment. Heavy trees had been felled by the enemy to 
impede the progress of the Union army, but the work of 
obstruction had been done in such a clumsy manner, that 
before the strong arms and sturdy blows of the men from 
Maine they soon disappeared. Colonel Berry had advanced 
with his command within a short distance of Fairfax Court 
House, when he encountered breastworks of the enemy which 
gave evidence of having been hastily evacuated on his approach. 

Acting under orders from Colonel Berry, Captain Walker 
took possession of the works. Among the spoils left by the 
enemy were flour, fresh beef, wines and whiskey, which were 
very soon converted to patriotic uses. But Colonel Berry will 
now tell his own story : 

Camp Knox, two and one-half miles from ) 
Fairfax Court House, July 18, 1861. J 

(Written by camp-fire.) 
We are now two and one-half miles from Fairfax Court House, on south side, 
having turned the enemy's position and taken some twenty prisoners. They report the 
main column to have left over two hours before us. We have taken their camp, tents, 
200 barrels of flour, bacon, sugar, tea, etc. — a pretty good show for hungry men. Cap- 
tain Walker's men took possession of these works, called Fairfax Station, in the name 
of the United States, and the 4th Regiment in particular. The works consist of three 
earth batteries or breastworks, with no guns. They were constructed to cover infantry, 
and in good style. My men are in excellent condition. We have fifty axe-men to 


clear the way, as the enemy have felled trees across the road, torn down bridges, etc. 
We clear the way, make the roads, scout the country for half a mile ahead, and 
advance main column. My men work like tigers, and are the admiration of all the 
army officers. We have one thirty-two and two twenty-eight pound rifle cannon, 
mounted on carriages, with ammunition, etc. My men (under command, of course,) 
have dragged these guns the last twelve miles. The army men who had them in 
charge got them stuck in a dreadful ravine — hills one-half mile on each side — and 
gave them up. The Massachusetts 5th tried a hand and gave up also. Colonel 
Heintzelman said he would try the 4th Maine Regiment and they would bring them if 
power could do it. I got the request and dispatched Bean and Carver, with their 
companies, and went also myself. We manned the guns, made our arrangements, and 
in one-half hour had them at the top of the hill, and turned them over to Colonel 
Heintzelman in front of the earthworks of the enemy, having dragged them ten miles. 

Long roll sounds to fall in. We are now only eight miles from Manassas (lap, 
and bound thither, enemy in front all the way, trees across the roads, bridges all burned, 
etc. Hard labor to clear the way. We shall take position in the rear of the enemy 
to cut off retreat. The left wing, in which we are, has to march in a circuitous road in 
consequence. I have not yet had an accident of any kind in the regiment since I left 
Portland. The Fifth lost two men by accident yesterday. Regimental organization 
stronger every day. New York Fire Zouaves are with us. They are a fine body of 
men, and the strongest ties of friendship exist between them and this regiment. 

Morning — No more now; I am ordered to march. 

As the following indicates, Colonel Berry had thrown him- 
self into the contest in earnest, sinking all personal interests in 
the greater cause of humanity. A battle with the enemy was 
now impending, and on the eighteenth of July, the regiment 
bivouacked near Centerville with the expectation of attacking in 
the morning. Captain Elijah Walker, who was a partner in 
business with Colonel Berry, received a letter from the Colonel's 
brother, George, saying that he had notified the Colonel of a 
serious loss that his business had sustained and requesting 
Walker to ascertain if the letter had reached its destination. 
Calling at Berry's tent Captain Walker found him as calm and 
unruffled as though such things as financial losses were unknown. 
The Captain asked him if the letter had been received. 

"Yes," answered Berry; "but I have something of more 
importance to look after now." 

The Army of the Potomac under General McDowell had 
now advanced within striking distance of the enemy, who were 


heavily intrenched at Manassas Gap and Bull Run. The battle 
takes its name from a small sluggish stream that is a branch of 
the Occoquan River, and has its source in Loudoun County, near 
the Blue Ridge, and runs southeasterly. From Centerville its 
windings can be traced through a wide valley, mostly wooded, 
with here and there an opening in the forest. At short inter- 
vals its slow current spends itself in pools of stagnant water, 
enclosed by high banks or wide, marshy meadows, and bordered 
with sand hills, clumps of trees, dark forests, or almost impen- 
etrable thickets. Manassas is a plain or a plateau well adapted 
for defensive purposes. Its approaches were difficult and there- 
fore easy to defend. Bull Run stream could be crossed by 
several fords, two of which are on the line of the roads leading 
from Alexandria and Washington direct, and are east of Manas- 
sas. Beside these fords was the railroad bridge, also strongly 
defended. There is also a direct road from Centerville to 
Manassas, and the next crossing is on the Warrenton Turnpike 
where the battle of Bull Run was mainly fought, about five 
miles from Centerville. 

Beauregard with the main body of the rebel army was 
strongly posted on the other side of Bull Run. His position 
was protected by Bull Run stream and could only be reached 
by the fords, which were from a half mile to a mile apart. His 
lines were eight miles long, extending from Union Mills to the 
Stone Bridge, at which point the Warrenton Turnpike crosses. 

Miles took position on the road leading from Centerville 
direct to Manassas. General Tyler took the Warrenton Turn- 
pike. The remainder of the force, of which Berry's 4th Maine 
formed a part, took a road which led to the rear of the enemy's 
position, fording Bull Run stream at Sudley's Spring, and attack- 
ing the enemy some distance beyond Tyler. McDowell's plan 
of attack was to force the enemy back to Manassas by bringing 
the Union army to bear on him in front and flank, and to men- 
ace his rear. Miles was simply to make a demonstration at 
Blackburn's Ford, and then to maintain his force on the defen- 


sive, holding Centerville and covering the base of supplies at 
Arlington. The other two were the columns of attack, and to 
one of these, as we have previously stated, Colonel Berry's 
regiment was attached. Early on the morning of Sunday, 
July 21, Tyler commenced the attack by opening with artillery, 
and pressed forward along the Warrenton Turnpike a part of 
his infantry under Sherman. Although the several commands 
were slow in taking position, the Union attack was successful, 
and the enemy was pushed back toward Manassas. Tyler 
attacked with vigor on the Warrenton Turnpike, while Hunter 
and Heintzelman were doing their part on the flank of the enemy 
near Sudley's Ford. At half-past ten o'clock the Union troops 
occupied the enemy's ground, and orders were sent to the rear 
for the pioneers to advance with the bridge which had been 
prepared to throw across the stream. 



Held in Reserve during the Morning. — Ordered into Battle. 
— Rapid March to the Battlefield. — Many Fall by the 
Wayside. — Assailed by a Murderous Fire. — Position of 
the 4th Maine. — Sergeant-Major Stephen H. Chapman 
Killed. — Wild Excitement. — Berry's Coolness and Gal- 
lantry. — He Bore the Standard. — The Retreat to Alex- 
andria. — Letter Describing Battle. — Berry's Official 

COLONEL BERRY'S regiment had been held in reserve 
during the fight of the morning. They could hear the 

roar of artillery and the rattle of small arms, and were 
consumed with impatience over the delay which prevented them 
from sharing the dangers of their comrades. 

At two o'clock in the afternoon Colonel Berry received 
orders to advance at double-quick and engage the enemy. A 
run of one or more miles in the broiling sun, accoutered for 
battle, is no child's play, and it told heavily on the inexperi- 
enced soldiers of Berry's regiment. The route of their advance 
was lined with material which the soldiers had cast aside in 
their rapid march. Some fainted and fell by the wayside, 
others kept their places in column with the greatest difficulty, 
the staggering step and the veins standing out like whip-cords 
on the heated brow telling how severe was the strain to which 
their physical being was subjected. The regiment arrived on 
the field about three o'clock when the tide of battle had already 
turned against the Union army. The tired soldiers formed their 


line of battle in an open field on high ground with the enemy 
in the woods in their front. Colonel Berry's men were assailed 
by a murderous fire of artillery and small arms, which laid 
many a gallant fellow low, and gave the regiment its first 
baptism of fire and blood. 

Beyond the Warrenton road, and to the left of the road 
down which our troops had marched from Sudley's Spring, is a 
hill with a farm-house on it. Behind this hill the enemy had 
early in the day planted some of his most annoying batteries. 
Across the road from this hill is another hill, or rather 
elevated ridge or table land. The hottest part of the contest 
was for the possession of this hill with a house on it. Heintzel- 
man's division was engaged here, Howard's brigade, of which 
Colonel Berry's regiment formed a part, being on the right. 

Colonel Berry was ordered to support a battery in his front. 
and forming his regiment in line of battle, with the 2d Vermont 
on his left, he advanced up the hill through the thickets, where 
he found one caisson. Here also he found Lieutenant Kirby 
with his face covered with blood, on a horse that had been shot 
through the nose. This was all that was left of the battery. 
The 4th Maine was delayed a little by the thicket in getting 
into position, but soon came into line with the 2d Vermont, and 
opened fire. Rebel batteries on the right and left poured a 
steady fire on Berry's regiment. Sergeant-Major Chapman was 
the first victim, and he fell, pierced in the heart by a rifle ball. 

" Tell my wife I am shot — God bless her ! " murmured the 
gallant fellow, as a comrade stooped to catch his last words. 
Stephen H. Chapman was the first man to enlist in the 4th Maine 
and the first in that regiment to offer his life for his country. 
He left a wife and five children to mourn his loss. 

Asahel Towne of Captain Conant's company was killed by 
a shell. B. W. Fletcher of Captain Walker's company had an 
arm shot off and his side injured. Lieutenant Clark of Com- 
pany G, Wiscasset, was killed by the bursting of a shell as he 
was cheering on his men. Lieutenant W. E. Burgin and D. 


Blanchard of Company I, and Captain S. C. Whitehouse of 
Company E, were wounded. P. Henry Tillson of Thomaston, 
a member of Company C, and a young man of high character 
and worth, had both legs shot off by a cannon ball, and expired 
almost instantly. 

The 4th Maine withstood this murderous fire most gal- 
lantly. All was excitement and turmoil. The thunder of 
artillery, the rattle of small arms, the hoarse commands of the 
officers, the whistle of bullets, the shriek of shells, the shouts of 
the combatants, the cries of the wounded, made it a scene never 
to be forgotten. Men became wild with excitement, discharg- 
ing their muskets in the air, and in the frantic endeavor to 
reload forgetting to cap their pieces, when, after several charges 
had been put in the gun, it would be discharged, damaging the 
man who held it more than the enemy at whom it was aimed. 

Through all this scene of wild excitement Colonel Berry 
manifested great coolness and bravery, encouraging and cheer- 
ing on his men, and directing their movements with judgment 
and discretion. When the color bearer was shot down, Colonel 
Berry seized the fallen standard and bore it aloft through the 
fray. His stalwart figure was a conspicuous mark for the foe 
and his clothing was riddled with bullets and his horse shot 
under him. The sight of so many of his brave boys killed and 
wounded overcame him and he wept bitterly over this loss, and 
could not be consoled. 

The muskets of the men soon became heated and unfit for 
use. The retreat commenced on the left of the brigade and 
Colonel Berry's regiment was the last to leave the field. In 
falling back it became disorganized in the confusion, losing its 
regimental formation, but many of the captains succeeded in 
keeping their men together, and brought their companies into 
camp at Centerville in good order. At Centerville Colonel Berry 
collected his scattered companies and continued the retreat to 
Alexandria, where they arrived the next day and went into quar- 
ters. Colonel Berry gives his experience in the following letter: 


Alexandria, July 23, 1861. 

I am here again with my regiment, acting under orders, having arrived last even- 
ing amidst a most pitiless rain storm. We broke camp at Fairfax, near a place called 
Claremont on Thursday morning at two o'clock, marched to a spot near Centerville, 
some fourteen miles and located. Stayed there Thursday, Friday and through Saturday. 
On this last march we drove some 5,000 of the enemy before us. Sunday morning at 
half-past one o'clock, we broke camp and marched with the main column of some 
30,000 men to attack the enemy at a place called Bull Run, some fourteen miles distant. 
The brigade my regiment was in was halted till two r. M. some six miles from battlefield 
to act as a reserve, to go when needed. At that time we moved forward to join our 
own division, which was having a dreadful light. We moved at double-quick time in 
one of the most melting of days. Men threw away everything except their guns and 
equipments, and arrived on the field in less than an hour. The ammunition of our artil- 
lery gave out, and also of the regiments which had been in action. The ammunition 
trains for some reason did not get up to us. We were ordered into position at once, 
and stood our ground until ordered off by General McDowell We stood the fire 
about one hour, holding the enemy in check till the retreat of the main body took 
place, and we were ordered to move. Two full batteries of the enemy played upon us 
and if the shot had been well aimed, it would have been worse for us. As it is, it is 
bad enough — sergeant-major shot through the heart, twenty-five privates killed, three 
company officers wounded, (Bird, Bean and Clark,) two prisoners, sixty-odd wounded, 
some very slightly, one hundred and nineteen missing; most of these, however, will 
soon be in. 

My regiment fought bravely and stood their ground manfully. T have no cause of 
complaint in that respect. We marched fifty miles without halting except to tight a 
battle — without sleep also. I have lost everything. No change of clothing — nothing. 
Lost one of my horses, the best one — killed. Say to General Titcomb that one of my 
flags was carried through the fight — the stars and stripes presented in New York. It is 
riddled with bullets. I have done my best and my whole duty, as I hope. I am sorry 
indeed to have lost so many, many men in a losing affair. Not less than 3,000 killed 
and wounded on our side and prisoners — say twice as many more of the enemy. The 
victory was ours up to one-half hour of our arrival on the ground. At that time the 
enemy was reinforced by 17,000 men, and that fact together with the failure of ammu- 
nition lost the battle. Our part was to fight, and cover as far as possible the retreat. 
I am well, but exhausted, and my men are nearly so. I will mention names of men 
belonging to Rockland killed : 

Company B — Asahel Towne, B. W. Fletcher, Chas. O. Fernald.* 

Company C — Dennis Canning, P. H. Tillson, S. P. Vose, Jarvis B. Grant. 

Company D — J. A. Sparlock, Wm. B. Foss, Geo. C. Starbird, James Bailey. 

Company H — G. F. Cunningham, James Finn, West W. Cook, E. W. Anderson. 

Colonel Berry is given especial mention for his conduct at 
the battle of Bull Run in the report of his brigade commander, 

*Taken prisoner and reported killed. Afterwards exchanged and now living. 


Colonel Oliver 0. Howard, and, indeed, it was his gallantry at 
this battle which insured his promotion later on. 

The official report made by Colonel Berry of the part his 
regiment took in the battle of Bull Run was evidently prepared 
before accurate returns of the killed, wounded and missing 
could be obtained, as the statistics given in that report do not 
agree with the return afterwards made by him. The 4th Maine 
lost at the battle of Bull Run in killed, one commissioned officer 
and twenty-five enlisted men ; wounded, three officers and forty- 
three men ; missing, two officers and one hundred and nineteen 
men, making the aggregate of officers and men killed, wounded 
and missing, one hundred and ninety-three. The report is as 
follows : 

Headquarters 4.TH Regiment Maine Vols., \ 
Claremont, Va., July 26, 186 1. J 

Sir : I have the honor to report to you my regiment now in quarters at this post. 
The engagement with the enemy on Sunday, and the long march incident thereto, have 
exhausted my men, and some time must necessarily elapse before the regiment will be 
fitted for active duties. As near as can be ascertained, the loss in killed in the engage- 
ments at Bull Run consists of two commissioned officers, Lieutenant Clark of Company 
G, (Wiscasset,) and Lieutenant Bird of Company F; two commissioned officers 
wounded, Captain Bean and Lieutenant Huxford; Sergeant-Major Chapman killed; 
twenty-eight privates killed and thirty-three wounded. This indeed has been an 
unfortunate affair for this regiment. 

I herewith hand you report of wants for regiment, in accordance with orders so to 
do. In doing so, I must beg leave to say that my men have no confidence whatever 
in the kind of arms with which they are now partially supplied. Had they been prop- 
erly armed, the result of Sunday's loss would have been somewhat different. It will 
take some time to bring the regiment up to that state of confidence in the managers of 
this war that it had prior to Sunday's affair. I mention these things for the reason that 
a commander should know all the facts material to the efficiency of his command. 

Truly, your servant, 

H. G. Berry, Colonel 4th Regiment. 

Col. O. O. Howard, Commanding Brigade. 

As a result of the fatigue and excitement of the battle of 
Bull Run, many of the officers and men of the 4th Maine were 
on the sick list and some were sent home on furlough to recover. 
At home preparations were actively going on to supply the 


soldiers with necessities, as the rapid march to the battlefield 
and the subsequent retreat had left all in a destitute condition. 
Many of the missing were coming in, having got lost in the 
turmoil of retreat, and some who were taken prisoners by the 
enemy had effected their escape and now rejoined their comrades 
in camp. The defeat of the Union forces had a disheartening 
effect on many of the men, and the letters home were full of 
expressions of despair and discouragement. Homesickness 
was prevalent, seriously affecting the health of many and pre- 
venting the speedy recovery of some of the sick and wounded, 
who in their misfortune gave themselves up with intense yearn- 
ing to thoughts of home life and the dear ones left behind. In 
a letter home Colonel Berry says : 

Claremont, Va. 

My health is better than for the past two weeks. I feel quite the thing again. I 
have not been sick, but somewhat exhausted, growing out of the fatigues consequent 
upon the movements of two weeks ago. The regiment is now getting over in a meas- 
ure its recent troubles. I hope they will soon be themselves again. Never was a 
braver set of men than those who went into battle under my command. They were 
perfectly cool, did exactly as I wanted, obeyed all my orders and behaved nobly. They 
should have the thanks of those they battled for and I doubt not will have them. As 
for my poor self, I tried to do my whole duty. Strange as it may seem to you I was 
no more excited than ordinarily when in earnest. I did not believe I should be hit in 
any way, and I did not think of it at all. My mind was occupied by my command 
entirely. Men fell all around me, killed and wounded. The ground was covered with 
men and horses, some mine and some of other regiments, who had passed over the same 
ground. Chapman left me only one minute before he was shot. He came for orders 
to my post by the Regimental colors; asked for orders with a smile. I gave them, he 
extended his hand, we exchanged blessings, he cautioned me against unnecessary 
exposure, and we parted for the last time. He was shot through the heart immediately 
on resuming his post. 

I shall come out all right I have no doubt; shall do my whole duty, and I never 
again, probably, shall be placed in such a position should the war last for years as that 
at Bull Run. 

You ask me if reports are true concerning carrying the flag, etc. I do not care to 
say much about myself; I leave that to others. My color-sergeant was shot in the 
battle. I did carry the flag throughout the entire engagement. It was my post in 
battle beside or near it. I at once raised it after it fell. Poor flag ! 'Tis indeed a 
sorry looking concern for one so pretty when presented. Cannon shot and musketry 
have well-nigh ruined it, but torn as it is, it is the pride of the regiment. My labor 


has been to get the confidence of my men, their entire confidence on all occasions. I 
think I have succeeded, and whilst I am severe on them in the discharge of their duties, 
nevertheless I try to take care of them in all emergencies. I do not believe there will 
be any more engagements for some time, and then when they do come it will be princi- 
pally with artillery. 

Colonel Berry's troops remained quartered at Alexandria 
until July 24th when they went into camp at their former loca- 
tion at Bush Hill. Great difficulty was experienced in securing 
supplies for the regiment, which was partly due to the inex- 
perience of the officers of the commissary and quartermaster 
departments, and partly to their incompetency. In his zeal for 
the welfare of his men, Colonel Berry lodged a complaint 
against the quartermaster of the brigade, but before the com- 
pletion of the investigation which the brigade commander 
ordered to be made, the quartermaster resigned, and thereafter 
the men were better supplied. 

August 13th, Colonel Berry moved his camp about two 
miles to a beautiful and healthful eminence near Fort Ellsworth, 
overlooking the broad Potomac. Here the warm weather that 
had been enjoyed for weeks gave place to an unusual degree 
of northern temperature, and the men suffered severely from 
the cold. 



Liberality of Friends at Home. — Letters. — Revolt in the 
Regiment. — Lieutenant Robert H. Gray. — His Capture 
and Escape. — Thrilling Experience. — The 4th Maine 
Building Earth Fortifications. — First Pay Day in the 
Regiment. — Reviewed by General McClellan. — Mc- 
Clellan Described. 

THE energetic efforts of friends at home to relieve the des- 
titute condition of Colonel Berry's men now began to be 
felt. Thirty-three packages, weighing three tons and a 
half, were shipped from Rockland for the soldiers of the 4th 
Maine. They were made up of private parcels sent by relatives 
and friends, packages for general distribution, the gifts of 
generous citizens, and articles purchased by the committee 
appointed for that purpose, such as pickles, dry fish, stockings, 
towels, and stationery. Seven of these packages were sent by 
the patriotic ladies of Thomaston, several from Damariscotta 
and Wiscasset, and the remainder from Rockland. Belfast also 
sent packages weighing a ton and a half to the regiment. 
Money contributions were freely made by the citizens of these 
various towns to purchase articles for the soldiers, and the men 
of the Fourth were made to feel that their sacrifices were not 
forgotten, nor did they lack appreciation from those who were 
left behind. Under date of August 10th, Colonel Berry in a 
letter home gives matters of interest. 


Clouds Mills, Va., August 10, 1861. 
We are now encamped on the side of a hill fronting the Turn- 
pike Road leading to Fairfax Court House. Three New Jersey 
regiments are on our right and the rest of our brigade, the 2d Maine 
and one Vermont regiment, are on our left. We have a battery 
of ten-pound rifle cannon in our front, and a cavalry camp in 
our rear. I should judge by appearances that no move onward 
would be made for some time to come. Weather is very warm here, 
thermometer 130 degrees in sun every day and 95 to 105 degrees in 
the shade. General McDowell called on me yesterday and reviewed 
the regiment. He complimented me somewhat. 

Again he writes under date of August 18: "We are now 
encamped near Fort Ellsworth, some three miles in toward 
Alexandria from place of last encampment. We are located 
on a hill and have good grounds, good air and a very pleasant 
place generally. We are no longer the advance regiment and 
we have less to do, less cares and less responsibilities. I am in 
hopes to go through this month without sickness in camp. We 
are now quite healthy — very few cases of fever and ague, and 
those only where the subjects have had it heretofore. We 
know but little that is going on, even here — all is a profound 
secret. I could find out if I desired ; but if I know nothing 
then I have no fears of speaking improperly. I have all con- 
fidence in the management of our new commander," [General 
McClellan]. " He works hard and keeps his own counsel." 

The rigors of an active campaign and the terrible experi- 
ences of the battlefield had done their part in removing the 
glamour and romance of a soldier's life. The transition was 
not a pleasant one to many of the men of the 4th Maine, whose 
conception of a soldier's duties was far different from what 
experience had proved them to be. Fun and frolic were not 
the prevailing characteristics of life in the army, as many had 
led themselves to believe, and great was the chagrin and disap- 
pointment of the deluded ones when the stern necessities of the 
situation confronted them. It is not therefore a matter of sur- 


prise that one fine morning Colonel Berry awoke to find a 
portion of his regiment in revolt. In fact, this was quite a 
common experience with regimental commanders in the early 
days of the war; but Colonel Berry, who had such a fatherly 
care over " his boys," and had striven to make their condition 
comfortable and agreeable at all times and under the most 
unfavorable circumstances, was sorely grieved at this mark of 
dissatisfaction. His fertility of resource seemed at this time to 
desert him, and he was at a loss just how to meet the emer- 
gency. His kind heart shrank from administering the nummary 
punishment which such a flagrant breach of discipline made it 
his duty to inflict. Calling in his advisers, it was finally decided 
to transfer the malcontents to the 38th New York, Colonel J. 
H. Hobart Ward commanding, and this was done. This trouble 
arose from a misunderstanding concerning the term of enlist- 
ment, and it is but just to say that these men served honorably 
and faithfully thereafter; many of them died on the field of 
battle, in hospital and in Southern prisons, and when the term 
of enlistment of the 38th New York expired, and it was mustered 
out of the service, what remained of this number, about forty, 
were transferred to the 4th Maine, with which regiment many 
of them served to the end of the war. 

In his series of excellent articles on the 4th Maine, which 
appeared during 1893, in the Rockland (Me.) Tribune, Colonel 
Elijah Walker, who succeeded General Berry in the command 
of this regiment, says : 

" General Berry failed in one respect as a regimental com- 
mander. He was too tender-hearted. He would not punish a 
man nor allow others to do so to any extent, and when men 
became homesick they took advantage of his kindness. I will 
relate an incident to illustrate General Berry's sensitive nature. 
While I was acting as regimental officer of the day, a soldier 
became fighting ugly and refused to go to his quarters and keep 
quiet. I put a line about his wrists and tied him to the limb of 
a tree, so that he was reaching his full length, and told him he 


should remain until he would promise to behave himself, which 
promise he refused to make. I left the spot and as soon as I 
disappeared he screamed ' blue murder.' He was near the 
Colonel's tent, who, hearing the cries, ran out and saw the man 
suspended. He took him in his arms, and holding him up, 
called for a man to loosen the cord. Then he took the culprit 
to his tent and bathed his wrists, expressing for him all the 
affection of a kind father. He gave me a scolding that I remem- 
ber to this day. 

" Had Colonel Berry included in his makeup some of the 
' ugly' of General Benjamin F. Butler, who could without wink- 
ing more than one eye, take a man from the arms of his wife 
and hang him, and then, as a reward to the widow, get her a 
clerkship in a government department at Washington, his men 
would not have been sent to the 38th New York. As a general 
commanding a brigade or division he had no superior. In 
those capacities he was not brought in direct contact with the 
discipline of the men. In actual conflict he was brave as a 
tiger. I have seen his sword wave bravely in the smoke of 
battle. I have seen him weep over his fallen comrades, and 
almost refuse to be comforted." 

August 1 2th, Colonel John Sedgwick became the com- 
mander of the brigade to which Colonel Berry's regiment was 
assigned, and it was about this time that Major-General Geo. B. 
McClellan assumed command of the Army of the Potomac. In 
a letter previously quoted, Colonel Berry expressed his confi- 
dence in the new army commander, on whom the country was 
basing such high hopes. 

Under the date of August 25th, 1 861, Colonel Berry writes : 
" My camp and home is now where it was when I last wrote, on 
a high hill overlooking the country lor miles, and the Potomac 
River down to Mt. Vernon — the home of Washington. Alex- 
andria is to the east of my camp, stretched out on a plain 
bordering on the river's bank for some three miles, extending 
to the rear some mile and a half to the high range of hills, on 

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x Z 


one of which is my camp. This plain is as level as a sea. 
These hills are covered with encampments as far as the eye can 
reach, and are in most cases fortified with field works, having 
mounted artillery. The entire line of works on this side extends 
from the southeast side of the city of Alexandria to a chain 
bridge north of it and of Washington, a line of ten miles. 
On this is located some seventy thousand men, armed with all 
the implements of war. 'Tis a sight never beheld on this 
continent before. 

" The health of my regiment is fair and the regiment is in 
good condition, as good as the best. My camp is in a fine 
locality and in good order. I have been engaged on courts- 
martial for the past eight days, trying officers for misconduct. 
Most cases are foolish ones growing out of petty jealousies and 
ought not to have had a hearing. 'Tis tedious, foolish business 
in some cases and in other ones a fearful responsibility. They 
sentence a man to death for small things. Military law is not 
to be trifled with. 

" I trust you have met Lieutenant Gray, [R. H. Gray of 
Stockton,] for such he now is, and have learned from him all 
the little particulars of camp life and other matters more or less 
interesting to you. He is a gallant fellow, and has won for 
himself his commission. I hope the good people of Rockland 
will not fail to show proper civilities and attention to so worthy 
a man. 

" Many officers who came into the service with me have 
resigned, some from sickness and some from other causes. 
Many more will have to go home for similar reasons, and when 
the 4th Maine again returns to the State it has had the honor 
in part to represent, the most of the officers will be men who 
were in the ranks at the start. I promote the privates as fast as 
they show themselves to be men of the right spirit." 

Lieutenant Robert H. Gray, to whom Colonel Berry refers 
in such a complimentary way, was wounded and taken prisoner 
at Bull Run. He received his wound just before the order 


came to retreat. On his way to the rear Lieutenant Burgin of 
the Searsport company found him and bound up his wounded 
arm, and afterwards sent some men to conduct him to a place 
of safety. They did not find him, however, as his wound com- 
menced bleeding soon after the lieutenant left him, and he 
started for a stream near by for water. Before he reached it he 
fainted from loss of blood, and on reviving, saw the retreating 
column of the Union army nearly a mile away. Replenishing 
his canteen at the brook, he attempted to rejoin his comrades 
by a short cut, but soon came in view of rebel troops who began 
firing on him, but he escaped further injury. His wound was 
so painful that he was indifferent to the danger he run, and con- 
tinued steadily on his course until he had nearly reached his 
friends, when he beheld rebel cavalry rapidly approaching. 
Hastily entering a house which had been converted into a 
hospital by the Union forces, he lay down among the wounded, 
and had just made himself comfortable, when the cavalry 
dashed up, shooting two unwounded men. 

The rebels entered the hospital and proceeded to relieve 
the wounded of such valuables as they possessed, after which 
a guard was placed over them and from that time they were 
prisoners of war. The rebel officers were kind and courteous, 
but the soldiers used abusive language toward the prisoners. 
A rebel officer approached Gray and attempted in a pleasant 
manner to extract information, but it is superfluous to say that 
he got no satisfaction. The good woman of the house pre- 
pared some goose broth for the wounded. The dish was with- 
out much salt, and being strongly flavored with the oil of the 
goose was not a palatable dish for the sick. Gray was seven 
days in the rebel camp, when, his condition becoming intoler- 
able, he determined to escape or die in the attempt. Purloining 
some biscuit, and secreting bandages and salve about his 
person to dress his wound, he watched for a favorable opportu- 
nity and then made a break for liberty. Enveloped in a rebel 
blanket which effectually concealed his uniform, he safely 


passed several rebel officers and soldiers and shaped his course 
toward Georgetown. During the first fourteen hours of his 
journey he was constantly dodging rebel pickets, and on reach- 
ing the Potomac river boldly plunged in and by wading and 
swimming soon reached the opposite side. After being thirty- 
four hours on the road, he reached Georgetown in an exhausted 
condition, and suffering from a high fever. Here he received 
kind care and was sent home on furlough. For gallantry at 
Bull Run, Gray was promoted to lieutenant. Afterwards he 
became captain of Company I, and subsequently was promoted 
to major. 

As will be seen by the letters of Colonel Berry, written 
about this time, there was little to disturb the monotony of 
camp life. McClellan was putting forth every effort to reor- 
ganize the army, and to intrench Washington and its approaches. 
In the building of fortifications the men from Maine were in 
constant demand, and heavy details were daily made from the 
4th Maine for this purpose. September 9th, 1861, Colonel 
Berry writes : 

"This army is now engaged in building earth fortifications 
to cover our entire line of defenses. My detail daily takes one- 
half of the regiment. We are now very strong in position and 
in numbers. No fears need be entertained but we shall sustain 
ourselves here. Such is the opinion of military men of great- 
est experience." 

Camp Knox, September 15, 1861. 
I have no news to write you, as we now have but the daily 
routine of camp life. You speak of the reading of my letters. I 
am glad to have you know all, but I do not care to have the public 
know much of my private correspondence. I care nothing now 
for public sentiment. I am here on a stern duty, and if I perform 
it in a manner acceptable to my commander, myself, and those with 
whom I am immediately associated, I am content. I did not come 
here to make any political capital, nor do I again desire to hold a 
political position. 


Camp Knox, September 29, 1861. 
Today is Sunday, but how different from home Sundays. 
Here all is noise and bustle consequent upon military arrangements 
and discipline. My health is fair again although I have had a slight 
sick spell. The positions of the armies are changing. I may move 
with my regiment, if so I will inform you. We are working hard 
building earth fortifications to defend the city of Washington. 
After they are completed, no doubt but active movements will be 
had with a portion of this army. 

The first pay day came at last and Colonel Berry's men 
were made glad by their hard-earned wages, $18,000 of which 
was sent to relatives at home, through General Wm. H. Titcomb, 
who was then visiting the regiment. This event had a cheering 
effect on the soldiers, and the merry laugh was heard in every 
part of the camp. The soldiers were now confined to the 
army ration, but provided themselves with such luxuries of 
living as money alone could procure. 

September 24th, 1861, orders were issued to prepare for a 
review by General McClellan, which took place the following 
day. At half-past nine the next morning regimental line was 
formed, and accompanied by the band, the 4th Maine marched 
to Fort Franklin to take part in the review. From Fort Frank- 
lin could be seen the rebel fort on Munson's Hill, and the rebels 
were no doubt interested spectators of the military pageant 
then taking place. The review occurred in a large field to the 
left of Fort Franklin, which was well adapted to the maneuvers 
of large bodies of troops. The brigade to which Colonel 
Berry's regiment was attached formed on the western side of 
the field, while two or three other brigades formed on the 
southern and eastern sides. The artillery and cavalry occupied 
the northeastern portion of the field. The troops to be reviewed 
numbered between twelve and fifteen thousand, and they made 
a most impressive spectacle. Gaily dressed officers galloped 
here and there, and generals of brigade resplendent with gold 
epaulettes and black plumes rode up and down the lines arrang- 


ing their men. The center of the field was filled with carriages 
of civilians, who patiently awaited the arrival of the general-in- 
chief. Soon the booming of cannon on the right announced 
his approach, and he appeared at the head of a group of horse- 
men and commenced the review, passing down the line, and 
raising his hat gracefully as he approached each regiment, whose 
band played " Hail to the Chief" as he passed. The men of 
the 4th Maine were struck by his boyish appearance and it was 
hard for many to believe that one apparently so young could 
be the chief of the magnificent army now gathered about 

General McClellan is described as plainly dressed, and at 
the review was mounted on a gray horse. He critically exam- 
ined the 4th Maine, as he passed along its front, and seemed 
well satisfied with the appearance of the men. After riding 
along the entire line of horse, foot and artillery, General 
McClellan took his stand in the center of the field, and each 
brigade breaking into column of companies, marched in review 
before him. This concluded the ceremony. 

After the confusion and uncertainty following the battle of 
Bull Run had given place to system and order, it was found that 
Lieutenants Clark of Company G, and Bird of Company F, 
who had been reported killed by Colonel Berry in a letter home 
and in his official report, which are given without change on 
preceding pages, were alive, and one of them at least is living 
today. These gallant officers were severely wounded, but lived 
to read their own obituary notices. 



A Change of Camp Grounds. — New Rifles and Saber Bayo- 
nets. — Death of Colonel Thomas H. Marshall. — Recon- 
naissance at Pohick Church. — Berry's Official Report. 
— Cold Weather. — High State of Efficiency in the Regi- 
ment. — Captain Pitcher Arrives with the Bangor Com- 
pany. — Lieutenant-Colonel Nickerson Promoted to the 
Colonelcy of 14th Maine. — Other Changes. — Lieutenant 
R. H. Gray Arrives with Recruits. — Visit of Rev. Isaac 
Kalloch. — Preaches to Slaves on the John A. Washing- 
ton Farm. 

MONDAY, September 30th, 1861, the regiment again 
moved camp. They did not relish leaving the delightful 
spot on which they had encamped for six weeks, during 
which time the tents had been made as comfortable as secesh 
lumber could make them. Every tent had a flooring of boards, 
and a berth for each man, and one company boasted a cosy 
little house well lighted by glass windows. Cane-seat chairs 
and well constructed tables were not uncommon articles to see 
in many of the tents — but all this must be left behind on break- 
ing camp. 

Baggage packed and regimental line formed, the command 
" forward " was given in Colonel Berry's ringing tones, and with 
the band playing a popular air, the regiment marched down 
past Fort Ellsworth, then to the right to Happy Valley, where 
a halt was made for a few moments to rest the men whose knap- 
sacks hung heavily upon their shoulders. Resuming the march 


the new camp ground was soon reached, and after sentinels were 
posted, tents were pitched, and a barn near by was cleared of its 
store of straw to fill the bed-sacks of the soldiers. The camp 
was located on high land and was healthy, although the broken 
condition of the ground made it undesirable for parade and 
drill. A little brook run through the field at the foot of the 
high land, and here a good opportunity was afforded the soldiers 
for washing clothing. General Sedgwick's headquarters were 
located twenty rods in front of the 4th Maine's camp, and on 
the left, crowning the summit of a rugged hill, a large earth- 
work appeared, commanding the Potomac and Alexandria. 

October 21st, a large detail was made from the regiment 
to chop trees, for which service the men of the Pine Tree State 
were well adapted, a fact that army commanders were not slow 
to take advantage of. 

Two or three light frosts now whitened the ground, and 
the bracing air of autumn infused new life into the men. About 
this time General Sedgwick's aid, Beaumont, whom many of 
the men of the Fourth will remember as a courageous and 
dashing young officer, brought from New York his bride of a 
few days to share with him the fortunes of war, and a serenade 
was given them on their arrival. 

October 17th, 1 861 , Colonel Berry writes: "I am now 
encamped with my regiment on the extreme left wing of the 
Army of the Potomac, in the same brigade as when I last wrote 
you, [Sedgwick's,] and under my old division commander, 
Heintzelman. The men and boys from Rockland are all well 
and happy." 

Under date of October 22d, he writes: " This is a rainy 
day and in consequence I have sat in my tent all day long, 
the rain pouring down in a perfect deluge. Surely one in the 
North has poor ideas of a rain storm. We are now encamped 
as when last advised. Have just finished another large fort, 
making the second one by this brigade, besides cutting down 
miles of forests, and also heaving up miles of rifle pits or 


breastworks. The enemy are again retiring before our advances. 
What the plan of operations will be I know not. I should not 
be surprised if we stayed here all winter, for if we do not move 
soon the roads will be so injured by the heavy rains as to render 
them impassable. This army is a big machine, extending as it 
now does over at least 1,000 square miles, which would be as 
you know forty by twenty-five miles. One could ride all day 
long and see but very little compared with the whole. This is 
indeed a great sight, 240,000 men at least, encamped as near 
each other as wood and water will admit of. My regiment is in 
good condition and is called the best drilled in this part of the 
army. We yesterday drilled battalion exercises, going through 
the whole second volume in the presence of many officers. All 
pronounced it very fine. I fear I have no news to make my 
letters interesting. Camp life is one of monotony at best. I 
some think of going to Washington tomorrow." 

While encamped at Lawson's Hill, Colonel Berry's men 
were cheered by a visit from Hon. S. C. Fessenden, A. D. 
Nichols, Esq., and Benjamin Litchfield, and their familiar and 
well-remembered countenances brought back memories of home. 
They received a soldier's welcome and were well pleased with 
their reception. 

Through the persistent efforts of Colonel Berry, four com- 
panies of the 4th Maine were now supplied with rifles and saber 
bayonets, the old smooth-bores with which the regiment had 
fought the battle of Bull Run giving way to these modern 
weapons. The change was a pleasing one to the men, the 
shoulders of many of whom gave evidence of the vicious ten- 
dencies of the antiquated arm with which the government 
expected them to preserve the Union. 

About this time came the sad news of the death of Colonel 
Thomas H. Marshall, once the popular lieutenant-colonel of 
the Fourth, who had left that regiment for the colonelcy of the 
7th Maine. His lofty character and pleasant ways had endeared 
him to officers and men alike, and his early demise was univer- 


sally regretted. In a letter home, Colonel Berry speaks of 
Colonel Marshall's death in the following terms : " Poor Mar- 
shall is gone. He died of typhus fever brought on by overwork 
and the care of a volunteer regiment." He also issued the 
following order as a tribute to the dead : 

Headquarters 4TH Maine Regiment, ) 
Camp Knox, October 29, 1861. j 

It is with feelings of sorrow and sadness that I announce to this 
regiment, in an official manner, that an all-wise Providence has 
thought proper to remove from the scenes of his earthly labor, our 
late lieutenant-colonel and beloved companion, the Hon. Thomas H. 
Marshall, colonel of the 7th Regiment Maine Volunteers. 

This is indeed sorrowful news to all of us. Colonel Marshall 
was beloved, respected and honored by all for his many virtues. As 
an officer ever faithful, allowing none to excel him in the perform- 
ance of his duties, in the depth of his patriotism and love of country. 
In his death the Government has lost a valuable officer ; the State 
he has in part represented in the tented field, an honored son ; the 
7th Regiment a valuable and beloved commander ; we with whom 
he has shared the dangers and privations of a soldier's life, a true 
and beloved companion and friend; his family, a model husband, 
son and father. We can only exclaim " Peace to his ashes," all 
honor to his memory. 

Ordered, That the officers of this regiment wear crape on the 
left arm for a period of thirty days, and that the regimental colors 
be hung in black for the same length of time. 

H. G. Berry, Colonel. 

J. B. Greenhalgh, Adjutant. 

In order to locate the position of the enemy, and to ascer- 
tain what they were doing, General Heintzelman determined to 
make a reconnaissance toward the Pohick and issued his orders 
accordingly. From the officers in Sedgwick's brigade, Colonel 
Berry was selected to command the troops, and the following 
instructions were given him : 


Headquarters Sedgwick's Brigade, \ 
Camp Sacket, November n, 1861. j 

Colonel : In pursuance of orders from the general command- 
ing the division, you will take your entire regiment, leaving only a 
sufficient number to take care of the tents, and, omitting to send the 
detail heretofore ordered for work on the fort, make a reconnaissance 
on the Old Fairfax road as far as the Accotink, there to halt, and 
push forward a detachment to reconnoiter as far as the Pohick, if it 
is found safe, taking care to observe well the roads on the right flank, 
it having been reported that 400 rebel cavalry were today at Acco- 
tink and that two regiments were about to encamp at Pohick Church. 
General Heintzelman will send out a force upon the roads on our 
left leading to Pohick Church. You will take a day's rations in the 
haversacks of the men, and will return in the evening, and upon 
vour return make your report to these headquarters. You will be 
accompanied or followed by a company of the Lincoln cavalry. 

By order of Brigadier-General Sedgwick. 

Wm. D. Sedgwick, 
Colonel Berry, Assistant Adjutant-General. 

4th Maine. 

At two o'clock on the morning of November 12th, 1861, 
the men of the Fourth were awakened from their quiet slum- 
bers and ordered to prepare to march with one day's rations. 
Although this order was a surprise, the men had become veter- 
anized to such an extent that they speedily adjusted themselves 
to circumstances, however startling and unexpected, and the 
camp fires were soon lighted and little groups gathered about 
them to cook the rations for the expedition. After a hearty 
breakfast, ammunition was issued, and at four o'clock regimental 
line was formed, and under the command of Colonel Berry, the 
regiment moved off without the tap of a drum or the inspiring 
notes of the cornet to cheer them on their way. Every soldier 
fit for service was in the ranks and the band was left to do guard 
duty around the camp. Colonel Berry was soon joined by a 
troop of cavalry and with this force he was to make a recon- 
naissance to Pohick Church. After a march of ten or twelve 


miles, a reserve of six companies was stationed by Colonel 
Berry, and Companies A, B and K were ordered forward as 
skirmishers, taking position two or three miles in advance of the 
regiment, their line being concealed by a forest. The detach- 
ment of cavalry in its forward movement got beyond support- 
ing distance, and were attacked and roughly handled. Having 
now advanced some distance into the enemy's country and the 
object of the reconnaissance having been accomplished, Colonel 
Berry fell back on his reserve, and then returned to camp, 
where the regiment arrived just at sunset, weary and foot-sore. 
It subsequently appeared that the attack upon the cavalry had 
not been made by armed troops, but by persons whom they 
were plundering, and which resulted in a loss of seven men to 
the cavalry. The captain of the cavalry was put under arrest 
for this occurrence. 

The following is Colonel Berry's official report of this 
affair : 

Hdqrs. 4th Regiment Maine Vols., ) 
November 12, 1861. J 

Sir : In conformity to your orders, I left camp with my regi- 
ment at precisely four o'clock this morning, and proceeded on the 
road to the Accotink Creek. At 4.30 o'clock I was joined by 
Captain Todd and some forty-odd men of the Lincoln cavalry. We 
passed our outer line of pickets, halted, loaded the guns, and hove 
out a full company of skirmishers in advance and on the flanks. In 
this manner we proceeded carefully along the Old Fairfax road, 
examining all cross-roads minutely. We found no signs of the 
rebels having been on this side of the Accotink in force for some 
four or five weeks. Large bush tent accommodations were discov- 
ered on the road leading from Fairfax Station to Accotink, sufficient 
to accommodate at least ten full regiments ; these tents bore the 
appearance of having been deserted some four or five weeks since. 

We arrived at Accotink about 9 o'clock and halted. After 
making a careful reconnaissance of the creek and hills surrounding, 
I ordered my skirmishers across, followed by two more companies 


of riflemen. I ordered my main body to remain on this side of the 
creek, in conformity with your instructions. I crossed with the 
cavalry in this manner. We proceeded carefully along for two miles 
to the road leading from Burke's Station to Pohick. This road bore 
the marks of recent extensive travel. I halted, and whilst making 
a careful survey, my skirmishers sent in three men, evidently 
farmers. On questioning them minutely I learned that a large force 
of infantry was encamped on this road, and about two miles on my 
right, estimated by them to be fully 5,000. 

They also informed me that that was the main traveled road for 
the rebels between Burke's Station and the Pohick. I therefore 
placed a small body of men here at the junction in the woods. 
Retaining the prisoners, I proceeded on some three-fourths of a 
mile, halted my men, and instructed Captain Todd to take his cavalry 
and make a personal reconnaissance towards Pohick Church. He 
did so; reported that the enemy were drilling a cavalry and infantry 
force some three-fourths of a mile in advance. Not hearing any- 
thing from the force sent down by the other road, and as it was 
evident that we were in the vicinity of a large force of the enemy, 
who controlled roads in my rear, I deemed it best under the instruc- 
tions I received to return to the Accotink and halt and give my men 
their dinner. I therefore ordered the cavalry in, and also faced 
about my skirmishers and the column, and came back to Accotink. 

Capt. Todd informed me a few minutes after that some of his 
company were still out, and that he would go out and bring them in. 
I said to him I should take a position near the top of the hill con- 
trolling a cross-road and await his arrival. I moved my regiment 
into a proper position, hove out sentries and awaited the captain's 
arrival. After waiting an hour or more we heard the reports of 
some thi-ee or four guns. In a few minutes three of the absent men 
came in, two wounded and one unhurt, all three having plunder 
strapped on their horses, consisting of a side saddle, bed-clothes, etc. 
On questioning them I found they had been wandering in all direc- 
tions and plundering the inhabitants. I therefore concluded that 
the persons robbed had fired upon them. Knowing the enemy to be 
near in force, and thinking it most likely they had been made aware 
of our presence through the indiscretions of these wandering men, 
I concluded, as the object of my reconnaissance had been accom- 


plished, to return to camp. The lieutenant commanding the cavalry 
informs me that the captain is absent and four men. 
Respectfully, your obedient servant, 

II . G. Berry, 
Colonel 4th Maine Volunteers. 
William D. Sedgwick, 

Assistant Adjutant-General, <Sth Brigade. 

November with its chilling blasts had now come and the 
ingenuity and purses of Colonel Berry and his men were taxed 
to provide some kind of heating arrangements for their airy 
houses. The policy of " masterly inactivity," which character- 
ized the administration of military affairs by General McClellan, 
had committed the men from Maine to the monotony of camp 
life, with the prospect for an active campaign a remote possi- 
bility. However, the boys simply exercised the soldier's 
privilege of " growling," and went about their duties as true 
soldiers should. Under the wise and intelligent instruction of 
Colonel Berry, the regiment had now reached a state of profi- 
ciency in the art of war unexcelled by any other regiment in 
the Army of the Potomac. This fact was generally conceded 
by the officers of the regular army who were in position to 
judge. That Colonel Berry took pride in his command his 
letters home furnish abundant evidence, and that the men of 
the Fourth devotedly loved their leader and had confidence in 
his courage and discretion had been demonstrated on many an 

Captain Pitcher had now arrived with his Bangor company 
to replace old Company H, and the new recruits were at once 
duly initiated into the mysteries of soldiery by the veterans of 
the other companies, who would furnish the new men with 
wholesome advice at one time and clandestinely relieve them 
of their belongings at another time, all of which was borne with 
such philosophy as each individual nature could command. 

Lieutenant-Colonel F. S. Nickerson had been promoted to 
the colonelcy of the 14th Maine and now left for Augusta, 


Maine, to take command of that regiment. He also took with 
him John Crowell, the quartermaster-sergeant of the 4th Maine, 
who was to be quartermaster of the Fourteenth, and Sergeants 
Bickman and Wiswell of Company I, who were to fill positions 
of rank in that regiment. Colonel Nickerson had proved him- 
self a valuable officer to the 4th Maine, and his departure was 
sincerely regretted. He was afterwards promoted to brigadier- 
general and served with distinction to the close of the war. On 
arriving at Augusta, he named the camp of the 14th Maine 
" Camp Berry," in honor of the subject of this biography. 

Twenty-eight recruits arrived in camp under command of 
Lieutenant R. H. Gray, and were distributed to the several 
companies. The ranks of the regiment had now been swelled 
to such an extent by the arrival of recruits that at dress parade 
the line made an imposing appearance 

In December, Rev. Isaac Kalloch of New York, who had 
responded in such a felicitous manner to the speeches, on the 
occasion of the presentation of flags to the regiment in New 
York, visited the Fourth, and by invitation of Colonel Berry 
preached an eloquent and patriotic sermon to the men on the 
Sunday following. The weather now was quite mild, nearly as 
warm as that of an Indian summer, and in marked contrast to 
the rigors of an Arctic winter to which their friends and rela- 
tives in Maine were being treated at this time, as it was now 
midwinter in these higher latitudes. The men were supplied 
with the Sibley tent, which was not so spacious as the style 
previously used, and was therefore not so popular, although 
comfortable and well adapted for campaign purposes. 

Colonel Berry writes under date of November 14th, 1861 : 
" I am still encamped on the old spot near Alexandria with the 
regiment. We are now quite well, the weather is cool. I have 
been very busy* of late. Day before yesterday morning I 
received an order to start my regiment with one day's provisions 
at 4 o'clock A. M., precisely. I did so, and marched beyond 
our outer line of sentinels and twelve miles into the enemy's 


country, beating up all the roads, making arrests of men to 
obtain information, scanning the country for miles each side of 
the road, and returning to camp at five o'clock P. M., having 
marched thirty miles. My men behaved finely, and the recon- 
naissance resulted in obtaining much valuable information. The 
defeat of the enemy in South Carolina and the capture of the 
forts, harbor and war material will have a tendency to shorten 
the war. I think the campaign of this winter will be very deci- 
sive indeed. This army is in fine condition and discipline. I 
am dreadfully homesick these long evenings. I have built a 
fire-place in my tent and have it fixed up in a comfortable 

He again writes under date of November 26th : " I have 
no news to communicate. We go through the same routine 
daily, occasionally spiced by a reconnaissance or something 
of that sort to keep the men cheered up. Drill, drill, drill, day 
in and day out, is the program. We had a grand review the 
other day, 70,000 troops present, all in excellent condition. It 
was one of the grandest sights the world ever saw. European 
officers present acknowledged it to be equal to the reviews in 
Europe, if not superior to them. We know not when or where 
we may go, or whether we may not winter here. 'Tis pretty 
cold in canvas houses. Ice makes into icicles six inches long, 
and water freezes in pails and basins in some cases to the 
bottom. Strange to say we are all well, none have bad colds. 
I send you a piece of music composed in camp by S. K. Whit- 
ing. I know you will prize it for the source from which it 
emanated — Camp Knox. We have many pieces composed 
here, and a fine glee club to sing them." 

Under date of December 1st, he writes: " My regiment 
is in fine condition. We number about 900 men. I am 
well satisfied with them. Capt. Walker has been promoted 
major; Lieutenant Litchfield, first lieutenant; Mitchell, cap- 
tain ; Arthur Libby, second lieutenant, ditto captain. Do not 
mention this yet, however, as they are not commissioned." 


December 8th, 1861, he writes: "We are quite well, the 
weather is fine, and altogether different from that at home. I, 
today, in company with Rev. Isaac Kalloch, visited Mount 
Vernon, the home of Washington. Whilst there I picked up 
two small leaves from near his house, and enclose them to you. 
Mr. Kalloch spoke to the regiment in the forenoon and made a 
capital discourse, which pleased the entire regiment (together 
with many visitors) very much. In the afternoon he spoke to 
the slaves on the John A. Washington estate, adjoining Mount 
Vernon, a thing never done in Virginia before. 

> 3 

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Orq > 

3 * 

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Christmas in Camp. — Roast Turkey — Distinguished Visitors 
from Maine. — Changes in the Commissioned Officers. — 
Berry's Letters. — Berry is 111. — His View of the Policy 
of the Government. — Prisoners Rejoin the Regiment. — 
The Temperance Movement. — The "Berry Quartet 
Choir." — Berry's Plan of Campaign. — Building Earth- 
works. — Visits Washington. — Sunday in Camp. — News 
of Burnside's Victory at Roanoke. 

THE thunder of the cannon on the battlements of Fort 
Lyon, adjacent to the camp of the 4th Maine, heralded a 
" Merry Christmas " to the gallant soldiers of the Pine 
Tree State — their first in camp. The day was indeed a merry 
one to Camp Knox. Thoughtful friends had provided Christ- 
mas viands, and all the companies feasted on roast turkey and 
concomitant luxuries which the generosity of the company 
commanders had supplied. So, also, they had holiday exemp- 
tion from usual duties, and officers and men gave themselves 
over to the pleasures of the day unreservedly. The almost 
summer mildness of the atmosphere gave to the scene a strange- 
ness and an unreality quite unlike the bleak meadows and 
snow-clad trees and housetops which are associated with 
thoughts of Christmas in the mind of every New Englander. 
Then, too, the chatter of childish voices making merry over 
the season's offerings, the presence of father and mother, and 
the palatable viands which only a New England housewife can 
produce — the absence of all these lent a tinge of sadness to 


the merry-making and turned the thoughts of many with intense 
yearning toward home and loved ones. 

Chaplain B. A. Chase of the 4th Maine gives the follow- 
ing incidents in a letter to the Rockland Gazette : " Camp life 
has its pleasant incidents, among which there is none more 
welcome to the soldier than the arrival of visitors from his 
native state. It shows him he is not forgotten, but that his 
sacrificing toils are appreciated. Only a few days since we were 
cheered and honored by a company of distinguished guests 
from Maine. They were Vice President Hamlin and wife 
together with the following members of Congress, namely: 
L. M. Morrill, senator, accompanied by his daughter; Hon. A. 
P. Morrell and Hon. Mr. Rice, representatives ; also Mr. S. P. 
Brown, (of Orland,) naval agent at Washington, accompanied 
by his sister-in-law, Miss Grendell. They arrived in the early 
part of the day, were Colonel Berry's guests at dinner, and wit- 
nessed the appearance and performance of the regiment at 
dress parade, which, much to the praise of Colonel Berry and 
his command, they unanimously pronounced the best exhibition 
of the kind they had ever seen. Not to feel an honest pride in 
so high a compliment would be to withhold that deference 
which is due to the opinions of those eminent men — men who 
had honored Maine, and whom Maine loves to honor. They 
complimented our camp as a model one, for its tidy appearance 
in general. * * * * During the afternoon the whole party, 
under escort of Colonel Berry, visited the 3d Maine and enjoyed 
a brief entertainment by Colonel Staples and wife. They also, 
upon the route, called upon General Sedgwick at his headquar- 
ters. These calls being over, a portion of the party returned 
to Washington. The best of the occasion, however, is that 
Senator Morrill, his daughter, Mr. Brown and Miss Grendell 
decided to pass the night in camp, the two young ladies being 
so enamored by the attractions and novelties of the tented field 
as to desire a fuller experience of its accommodations. This 
addition and truly genuine compliment to camp life was shared 


between two regiments, the ladies stopping with Mrs. Lampson, 
matron of the Third, while the gentlemen remained in the 
Fourth, guests of Colonel Berry." 

Time had wrought a number of changes in the commis- 
sioned officers of the Fourth. Silas M. Fuller of Belfast was 
now lieutenant-colonel, and Elijah Walker of Rockland, major. 
Of the original ten company commanders, but four now- 
remained, resignations and promotions having removed the 
others. Those remaining were Captains Carver, Smith, Bean 
and VVhitcomb. 

December 15th, 1861, Colonel Berry writes: " I am today 
quite busy answering letters. I have much to do in that line, 
as almost everybody who has a son, husband or lover in my 
regiment writes me making anxious inquiries, some to know 
if their friends are well provided for, others on business 
matters, whilst some are anxious to have their dear ones dis- 
charged and state long reasons. Among the most prevalent 
is the excuse that when the naughty one enlisted he was a 
minor and that dear Pa and Ma failed to give their consent. 
To all of these besides hundreds of other inquiries I am obliged 
to answer weekly at least. The weather here is very fine, much 
like our October, particularly the latter part of that month. 
We are now in a very fine camp, the best we have ever had ; 
streets are wide and well made, the main street turnpiked and 
lined with cedar trees which grow in splendid form in this 
section. It is said those who are conversant with the different 
camps pronounce ours to be the best kept of any. How long 
we are to remain here is still in doubt ; uncertainty as to move- 
ments still prevails." 

Again on December 29th he writes : " We were visited 
Christmas Day by Vice President Hamlin and Representatives 
Morrill and Rice, together with other gentlemen and ladies of 
the same party. They all witnessed the drill and discipline of 
my camp and regiment and seemed delighted, so much so that 
they stayed all night. I think the 4th Maine hard to beat." 


January 9th, 1862, he writes : "I am not really sick but 
have been poorly of late. I have been off duty for some five 
days and have spent the time mostly away from camp. This 
rebellion is a most stupendous affair; none can know about it 
that are not conversant with such things, or are not on the scene 
of operations. We are spending millions every week. How 
long Government will be enabled to go on this way is a problem 
I cannot solve. All I can say is this, the Government must be 
sustained or all are engulfed in one common ruin. 

" If Government is not sustained, property loses its value, 
the sun goes down for generations and those who come after us 
will have a sorry prospect in view for home, a country and a 
Government to sustain and protect them, as we have heretofore 
been protected under the old flag. We have not yet made the 
first point in the whole contest. Tremendous operations are 
about being made by sea and land, on the Atlantic border and 
in the West. The result no one knows. I do not think we are 
much stronger than the South. They fight at home, we far from 
home. They take from the country over which they pass what- 
ever they can find that they need. We buy and pay for it. We 
have to pay large sums of money, while they seem to get along 
without much of any. I confess I am at a loss how to judge of 
the contest, as the above are not all the things that tell against 
us. There is no doubt but officers in the U. S. Regular Army 
are now in pay of the Confederate government. They are 
among us and we know them not. We can do nothing that 
Jeff Davis does not know, even more than our most prominent 
generals. We are betrayed daily. Now about England. I 
think we have got to fight her or take all her insults. She is 
bound to ruin this Government if possible, and now is her most 
favorable time. I think she will improve it, if so all are ruined 
together. If it is so to be, then none can help it. This Mason 
and Slidell affair has terminated just as I expected it would, for 
I thought the capture wrong. This Government went to war in 
181 2 for the very thing we have in this instance been guilty of. 


Nevertheless England's doctrine has been such as to sustain us 
in the Trent affair. Our own policy for fifty years has been in 
direct contradiction to it. But a few days will elapse before 
something else will turn up, from which we as a nation cannot 
with honor recede, then the fight must come. These are my 
opinions ; they are not worth much ; I feel that I am nobody 
and am not disposed to say much anyway. Carver [L. D.] has 
arrived and has been telling me about his visit home. He had 
a good time and I am glad of it. He is a good fellow." 

During the latter part of February, Berry's whole regiment 
was frequently detailed for picket duty, and reconnaissances 
were also made by detachments of that regiment. Lieutenant 
Thomas B. Glover of Company B, and Hospital Steward 
Charles S. McCobb, who were taken prisoners at Bull Run, now 
rejoined the regiment. 

About this time a temperance movement was started in 
Camp Knox, and some 500 of Berry's 4th Maine arrayed them- 
selves against King Alcohol. The number included many com- 
missioned officers. The regiment could also boast of a club of 
glee singers styled the "Berry Quartet Choir of the 4th Maine 
Regiment." The music composed by S. K. Whiting was very 
popular and the regiment was justly proud of his productions. 
Among them were : " Memories of Home," with words by 
H. G. Tibbetts of Rockland, "Ole Massa on his Trabbles Gone," 
and " Home Visions." 

A cyclone visited the camp about this time and made sad 
havoc with the tents and equipage. Colonel Berry's tent 
suffered with the others, but being absent in command of the 
picket, he experienced no inconvenience, and the men speedily 
restored it to its place. The sutler's covered wagon performed 
a gyration over the tent of the surgeon, Dr. Libby, damaging 
it somewhat, then speeding away at random, making havoc 
along its course. 

January 19th, 1862, Colonel Berry writes: "The weather 
here is awful, it rains most of the time and 'tis dreadfully 


muddy. Can do nothing but sit in our tents, which is lonely 
enough. No drill, no marches, but a steady confinement to 
quarters. This weather will probably last some weeks, during 
which I cannot see how we can do anything ; still there is talk of 
an advance, as a simultaneous movement down the Mississippi 
by Halleck, through Tennessee to the Cumberland Gap by 
Buell, and an attack on the Wilmington & Weldon railroad 
by Burnside, and on Norfolk by Wool, Winchester in Virginia 
by Rosecrans, and lastly by McClellan to hold Beauregard in 
check at Manassas, to prevent him from sending troops to 
reinforce the other points which I have named. I have no 
doubt but decisive events will soon take place, but I think most 
of the fighting will be done West. You can look at my maps 
and get the whole plan of the campaign. Buell takes posses- 
sion of the railroad through Cumberland Gap, cutting off sup- 
plies from Manassas from that direction. The Atlantic expedi- 
tions, that line running south through Wilmington and Weldon, 
tie here to dispute the passage into Maryland. Rosecrans in 
the mountains of Virginia, General Dix on the eastern shore in 
Accomac and Northumberland counties. When their armies are 
once so placed, the supplies necessary for a large army cannot 
be obtained in so small a district as he [Beauregard] will have 
left, and he cannot hold out but a very short time. Such is the 
plan. God grant it may prove successful." 

Again he writes under date of January 22d : "I am 
still hard at work building earthworks, rifle pits and breast- 
works. For nine nights I have slept scarcely an hour a night. 
Picket and artillery firing going on all the time within a few 
hundred yards." 

February 3d: "I was in Washington yesterday. The 
weather is still very stormy. It has been snowing since day- 
light, and is today more like home than any day thus far this 
winter. The mud has been awful. We suppose in Rockland 
that the mud is deeper than anywhere else, but such is not the 
fact. The mud in Virginia exceeds in depth and stickiness any 


I ever saw; it will fairly draw one's boots before giving way. 
Last night was cold and the ground is now frozen. This will 
not last, as the sun takes off the snow by midday." 

February 9th : " Today has been a good nice day, 
the air very like April with us. We had our usual religious 
services, morning inspection, and dress parade in the afternoon, 
something new for us, as for many days it has rained or has 
been so muddy we have postponed drills and military parades 
in order to keep the health of the regiment good. I have no 
doubt but that the next few weeks will tell on the rebellion 
wonderfully. My greatest anxiety is now that Burnside may do 
something handsome on the coast. If so we shall have the 
rebels in Virginia in a tight place, flanked on both sides and 
their communications either cut off or threatened, so no way 
will be left but to evacuate their stronghold. You must remem- 
ber that when once we get things moving favorably we shall 
make short work, as none can tell the disaster of a retreat, 
especially to soldiers fighting with a halter around their necks 
as they are ; all will be equally anxious to get home and out of 
the scrape. I do not think we shall have much fighting to do 
on this line, as the movements are mainly in the West. The 
Government does not want in any way to jeopardize Washing- 
ton, as it would be followed, if taken, by an immediate recog- 
nition by European powers." 

February 12th: "We have the news today of the 
capture of Roanoke Island by Burnside and of the taking of 
some 10,000 prisoners, etc., etc. It seems that the spring cam- 
paign is to be on our side. A few such victories and the power 
of the rebellion is over, and the end will soon come. We are 
all quite well. Have not been doing much of late as the 
weather has been very bad until the last three days. We 
improve every good day in military drills, and shall one of 
these days be pretty good soldiers. The troops are joyous 
tonight over our recent victories in Kentucky and North Caro- 
lina. The campaign is working as I wrote you some days ago 


it would. There is no doubt but all will go pretty well. We 
have occasional reverses, but the general plan will be carried 

Sunday, February 17th: "This is an age of events and 
notwithstanding many things connected therewith may be 
unpleasant to all of us immediately connected with the great 
struggle now going on, I hope and firmly believe that we will 
yet thank God that we have lived to participate in the events 
now transpiring among us. You will remember that I wrote a 
month since giving the plan of campaign as I understood it. I 
did not derive the information from any one, but will say it was 
simply my own plan or what I would have done had I had the 
command. I have endeavored to study the art in which I am 
now engaged, and so far have hit pretty near. The next thing 
that will be done will be the taking by force or otherwise of 
Columbus (Kentucky), next Knoxville and Nashville. That 
done we have possession of the upper line of railroad to 
Manassas. Burnside will take possession of the shore or lower 
railroad leading into Virginia. After that Halleck and Commo- 
dore Foote will proceed down the Mississippi to New Orleans; 
Hunter through Arkansas to western Texas ; Buell and Burn- 
side will stretch an army across North Carolina to Tennessee. 
Manassas will be cut off from supplies and the force bagged, 
providing they do not retreat South into the cotton states before 
the cordon of soldiers are stretched across the country. We 
have no doubt about the result of the war. We shall wind up 
this rebellion in ninety days. Then, with the exception of say 
one-fourth of our present force to maintain order, all will go 
home again. I have no doubt about the result of any battle 
that may be fought hereafter." 



President Lincoln Commissions him Brigadier-General of 
Volunteers. — Joy in the 4th Maine. — Comments of the 
Press. — Letter from Governor Washburn. — Presentation 
of a Sword by the Sergeants of the 4th Maine. — Elegant 
Silver Service from the Commissioned Officers. — 
Assigned to a Brigade. — 4th Maine Moves to Hamp- 
ton. — Colonel Elijah Walker Succeeds Berry in the 

COLONEL BERRY'S promotion to the rank of Brigadier- 
General of Volunteers was the occasion of much rejoicing. 

He was commissioned as such March 20th, 1862, by Presi- 
dent Lincoln, in recognition of his gallant services at Bull Run. 

Commenting on this important event, the Rockland Gazette 
says: "We are pleased at the promotion, not only because it 
is gratifying to Colonel Berry's friends and fellow citizens, but 
because we believe it an honor justly due to the merits of an 
able and efficient officer." 

That these sentiments were shared by the men he com- 
manded in the field, is evident from the following letter, written 
at the time the promotion was made known to the 4th Maine, 
by a private in that regiment : 

"We learned with mingled pleasure and regret of the pro- 
motion of Colonel Berry to the rank of a brigadier-general. 
Our pleasure was because we love to see those deserving of 
merit rewarded, and those whom we admire and respect pro- 
moted to that position where their talents can have full scope ; 


and our regret was because when our colonel shall leave us we 
shall suffer an irreparable loss. Those who have been our 
companions through adverse circumstances and privations seem 
dear to us ever afterwards, and therefore 'tis natural that he, 
who has been at our head and looked out for our best interests 
in the most careful manner ever since the regiment was first 
organized, should occupy a large place in our hearts. While 
other regiments about us have languished and become disgraced 
by having unqualified and unworthy commanders, we have 
flourished and lived through the trying ordeal occasioned by 
Bull Run, and have come to such perfection in arms that army 
officers who are present at inspections or parade are loud in 
their commendations ; and even General Heintzelman, who 
never says anything unless he means it, speaks of the 4th Maine 
Regiment in the highest terms to General McDowell and the 
War Department. The natural military ability of Colonel 
Berry, together with the amount of knowledge of warfare which 
he has acquired by studious application and practice since 
coming into the service, eminently fits him for his new position, 
and there is no doubt that he will always prove himself an 
honor to his State. It may be some weeks before he leaves us, 
and many of us, I fear, are selfish enough to hope that he may 
remain with the regiment to the close of the war." 

Governor Washburn of Maine, in the following note, extended 
his felicitations : 

State of Maine, Executive Department, \ 
Augusta, March 5, 1862. j 

Dear General : I see by last evening's paper that the Presi- 
dent has nominated you to the Senate for brigadier-general. I 
rejoice that he has done so, and heartily congratulate you on your 
success. It was just to you and to our honored and gallant State. 

Please advise me in reference to the appointments in the 4th 
Regiment made necessary in consequence of your promotion. Will 
the 4th Regiment be in your brigade? 

Very truly yours, I. Washburn, Jr. 

Brig.-Gen'l H. G. Berry. 


The sergeants of the 4th Maine showed in a substantial 
way their appreciation of their commander. Immediately after 
the news of the promotion of Colonel Berry was known to them 
the sergeants ordered a beautiful sword to be made and for- 
warded to the regiment. It arrived a few days before the 4th 
Maine left Yorktown. On the day of its presentation, the 
sergeants marched in a body to Colonel Walker's quarters, and 
formed line in front of his tent. On each side of them were 
grouped the officers and soldiers of the regiment, interested 
spectators of the ceremonies then taking place. Colonel Wildes 
and other gentlemen from Maine were also present. When all 
was ready Sergeant H. H. Burpee advanced to the front, and 
took the sword from its box. General Berry, with arms folded, 
stood in the center of the open area, while Sergeant Burpee 
delivered the presentation speech. At the close of his remarks 
the sergeant delivered the sword to General Berry, who exam- 
ined it for a moment, and then responded in substance as 
follows : 

" Sergeants, Soldiers and Brothers — for such you all are 
to me: This is one of the happiest moments of my life. But 
one year ago — and it has been a short year to me notwithstand- 
ing its privations — I undertook the task of disciplining the 
regiment. I myself was undrilled and I felt my own incompe- 
tency, but with the assistance of the non-commissioned officers 
and the faithfulness of all under my command, I have succeeded 
in making this one of the best regiments in the volunteer serv- 
ice. You speak of my name going down to posterity, but the 
name of every man in the Potomac Army, and of the armies 
of the West, will always live, and their brave deeds will shine 
on the pages of history. Accept my thanks for this beautiful 
sword, and I assure you that I shall always look upon it with 
feelings of fond remembrance of this regiment. I hope you all 
may live to return to your homes in our own Pine Tree State, 
to receive the thanks of a grateful people." 

This scene was a most affecting one to all present. At the 


conclusion of the presentation the sergeants were marched 
away to quarters. 

The sword was manufactured by J. H. Caldwell & Co., 
Philadelphia ; the mountings of the hilt were of solid silver 
and beautifully wrought, the blade was Damascus steel, and 
flowered one-third of its length. The scabbard was of bur- 
nished steel with solid silver mountings, and on a silver plate 
in its center was this inscription: "Presented to Colonel H. G. 
Berry, by the Sergeants of the 4th Maine Regiment." 

The elegant service of silver plate presented to General 
Berry by the officers of the 4th Maine was another token of the 
love and esteem in which he was held by those associated with 
him. It consisted of seven pieces and cost nearly $1000. The 
silver bears a very fine representation of the old encampment 
of the 4th Maine near Alexandria. This silver service, the 
presentation sword and other keepsakes remain in possession 
of General Berry's family, at their home in Brooklyn, N. Y. 
On the coffee urn is the inscription which follows, the first part 
of which is also upon each of the other pieces : 

Presented by the 
Commissioned Officers of the 4th Maine Regiment Volunteers 


Brigadier-General H. G. Berry. 

On his promotion from the Colonelcy of said Regiment. 

A token of respect and regard to a faithful and gallant officer. 

17th March, 1862. 

We will now let General Berry give his experience : " Feb- 
ruary 1 8th, 1862 — You have doubtless heard the good news ere 
this, as you hear by telegraph as soon as we do. The battles 
are now with our side and will be to the end, as we are as well 
prepared as the enemy. Formerly, in Bull Run days, they 
were better off than we were. An appeal from General 


McClellan for New England regiments to furnish men for gun- 
boat service on the western rivers was read to my regiment. I 
asked for sailors to step forward ; over two hundred responded 
from whom I selected thirty, and they are now on their way to 
Cairo. So you see we are alive to the good work that goes 
steadily on. Expect to go out with the regiment on picket 

Under date of February 26th, he writes from Camp Knox : 
" I had [last evening] just come in from the front where I had 
been three days in command of the pickets of the left wing — 
over ten miles front — for my share. By order of General 
Heintzelman I extended our lines, or rather advanced them 
three miles nearer the enemy, but not without a brush with the 
enemy's scouts, in which affair we lost ten killed and three 
wounded. The posts are permanently established, and we shall 
no doubt advance them again in a day or two. The loss fell on 
the 39th New York Regiment, which was under my command. 
The enemy's scouts attacked our lines in the front. I sent out 
two hundred of my men [4th Regiment] under Major Walker 
and scoured the country to the Occoquan River for miles, so 
no more danger is apprehended. I have injured my right 
thumb so that I cannot use my right hand, and I only write by 
holding my pen between my fingers. T am well and in pretty 
good spirits. I think this rebellion is badly damaged and hope 
on its way to ruin. I see you have had a demonstration on the 
22d inst. Am glad indeed to know the people of my city are 
alive to the welfare of our country. Have just received orders 
to be ready to march at a moment's notice ; baggage to be 
reduced to carpet bag for officers and knapsacks for men. No 
tents ; wagons of 4th Regiment for provisions only." 

The following letter from General Berry throws a flood 
of light on his promotion. A Democrat in politics, with- 
out political friends who could be of assistance to him, pro- 
motion could not be hoped for by the usual methods then 
employed. By attention to duty and by valor and skill in battle 


did General Berry win his star. The Government needed just 
such officers to command its brigades. The high ability of 
General Berry attracted the attention of his superiors and secured 
for him well-deserved promotion. 

Camp Knox, March 4, 1862. 

I have just returned from Washington, having been summoned 
there by the Vice-President [Hannibal Hamlin] relative to my pro- 
motion. On my arrival I found I had already been appointed by 
the President, and my name with others had been sent to the Senate 
for ratification. What pleased me most and what will be the most 
joyful news to you is that I was informed that I had earned my 
promotion by faithful duty, and good conduct at Bull Run, and that 
I was not under obligation to any one, having been the builder of 
my own promotion. I came here friendless so far as influence goes, 
having been a Democrat, and of course not especially in favor. I 
have worked hard, and have done all in my power to serve the 
Government properly. I have made them all my friends, and I 
judge they are as anxious for my friendship as I am for theirs. I 
also learned another fact : Mr. Hamlin informs me that my regi- 
ment is considered the very best in the Army of the Potomac. 
General Heintzelman said it is the best he ever saw, so I am indeed 
entitled to the favorable consideration which I have obtained. I do 
not know what my future will be. I know not where I may be sent, 
or to what brigade I may be assigned. I learn tonight that General 
Heintzelman is trying to make an arrangement by which another 
brigade may be formed and placed in his division, and for me to 
command it, being determined to keep me with him. I hope it is 
so, for I like him much. 

Am quite well. My hand is still lame, but I manage to write 
more easily than a few days ago. 

On the 9th of March, 1862, the entire regiment went for 
three days grand guard. While performing this duty informa- 
tion was received of the retreat of the entire Confederate army, 
and General Berry was the first to telegraph this fact to General 


Headquarters 4.TH Maine Vols., j 
March 13, 1862. j 

I have just received orders to have my regiment ready to move 
at a moment's notice. We go to Fortress Monroe. I shall stay with 
the regiment until my nomination is confirmed by the Senate, which 
will be in a few days, after which my movements are uncertain. 
General Heintzelman will probably keep me with him, but I am 
not positive how it will be. I was commander of the outposts when 
the enemy left, and was first to give the intelligence to General 
McClellan of the enemy's movements, and got much credit for it. I 
ascended in a balloon at 12 o'clock at night, 2,000 feet, and took 
sketches of what was going on, and then descended and sent my 
regiment to the front and captured some of the enemy, and took 
inhabitants, and got the whole thing so the Army of the Potomac 
moved the next morning at four o'clock. We have telegraph stations 
along our picket lines communicating with headquarters, so one can 
work pretty quickly. I am sorry to go farther from home, but I 
feel that the campaign will be a short one. I shall have to work all 

Some little time elapsed before General Berry was assigned 
to the command of a brigade, and while awaiting orders he 
remained in charge of the 4th Maine. 

March 17th, the regiment broke camp and marched to 
Alexandria where they embarked on transports for Fortress 
Monroe. Soon after their arrival at this place, the Fourth went 
into camp at Hampton, pitching their tents in a delightful spot. 

Before his assignment to his brigade, General Berry wrote 
as follows : 

Headquarters near Fortress Monroe, \ 
March 23, 1862. j 

We are now encamped on the ground with rubber blankets 
only. I have a small tent for Walker [Elijah Walker] and myself. 
It has rained very hard for a number of days, so we have been 
rather uncomfortable. I am not yet assigned to a brigade. I expect 
to be in a day or two. Whatever success I have had here I have 
worked hard for, more so than almost any man I know of. I have 


tried to do my duty to my country, my friends, my family and 
myself. I do not wish to saci'ifice my standing as a man, nor have 
I, in my opinion. My promotion was obtained not by political 

Now one word about my political sentiments. Glad indeed am 
I that I never did anything toward bringing this trouble on the 
country. I am more glad probably than I should be if at home, for 
here I see the full effects of war, ruin stares you in the face every- 
where. Some may say they brought it on themselves ; so they have, 
in part, but are we not one people? Are we not fighting to continue 
to be one people? And does not this ruin affect all? Certainly it 
is with nations as with families, and civil war is the same to a nation 
as trouble in a family. What affects one part affects the whole. As 
to my sentiments, I do not know as they have changed, except that 
change is continually going on with one as experience may dictate. 
I am a Democrat still. I am not, however, a Southern Democrat. 
If I were I should not be here, for I find Democracy here nothing 
less than aristocracy, to make the rich richer and the poor poorer. 

I shall try hard to continue with General Heintzelman. I do 
not think he will consent for me to go from him, anyhow. He is a 
good general and my friend. I have always been under him and 
feel great confidence in the man. I enclose you his photograph, the 
only one I have, and that was given me by the general himself. 

The order assigning Brigadier-General Berry to the com- 
mand of a brigade having arrived, that officer took leave of the 
regiment in the following order : 

Hdqrs. 4TH Maine Regiment Vols., i 

Camp near Hampton, Va., > 

March 25, 1862. j 

Having been ordered by the War Department to report for 
orders to Major-General McClellan, Commander of the Army of the 
Potomac, it becomes my duty now to take my official leave of this 

I part with the officers and men composing this command with 
very much regret. My intercourse with all has been of the most 
pleasant nature. My friendship for officers and men alike is one of 

Colonel Elijah Walker 
( A war-time photograph. ) 


the strongest ever formed by me. I have every reason to believe 
that it is more than reciprocated by this entire command. I can 
only say, mav it continue. I shall watch with great interest your 
future, and, judging by the past, I feel assured the 4th Maine will 
stand second to none during the period of its service. I shall be 
ever ready to assist whenever and wherever my poor service may 
avail you. When the time arrives and you are brought face to the 
foe, remember you carry with you your own reputation and that of 
your State. Strike, then, with a will, for vour country, your God 
and the right. 

If, in the discharge of my duty, I have in any way wounded 
the feelings of an}', I beg of them to forget. None are perfect and 
very few have more imperfections than myself. 

The duties I have had in organizing, disciplining and drilling 
a new regiment have not been light. I hope I may have done the 
service assigned me by His Excellency, the Governor of Maine, 
passing well ; at any rate, I feel that I have endeavored to do my 
duty by you all, by my State and by my country. God bless you all. 

General Berry was succeeded in the command of the 4th 
Maine by Colonel Elijah Walker, one of the bravest men who 
ever wore a shoulder strap or drew a sword. Under his com- 
mand the 4th Maine sustained its reputation as a fighting 
regiment throughout the war, and rendered conspicuous service 
in the important battles in which the Army of the Potomac was 
engaged up to the time when the regiment was mustered out of 
service July 19th, 1864. 



The Regiments of the Brigade. — Splendid Troops. — General 
Berry's Staff Officers. — Incident Relating to Berry's 
Assignment by General McClellan. — His Modesty as 
Told by Captain Earle. — Plan of Peninsula Campaign. 
— Army of the Potomac Moved to Fortress Monroe. — 
The Advance. — Siege of Yorktown. — Berry Active and 
Efficient during the Siege. — Pleased with his New Com- 
mand. — Inspires the Confidence of his Men. — Sharp 
Skirmishing with the Enemy. — Berry's Letters Home. 

BRIGADIER-GENERAL BERRY, as we must now call 
him, was assigned to the command of the 3d Brigade of 

Hamilton's Division of the 3d Army Corps. His division 
commander was Brigadier-General Charles S. Hamilton, who 
was afterwards succeeded by Brigadier-General Philip Kearny, 
" the bravest of the brave." The other brigade commanders 
of Hamilton's Division were Brigadier-General C. D. Jameson, 
formerly colonel of the 2d Maine, who died in the service 
November 6th, 1862, and Brigadier-General David B. Birney of 
Philadelphia, who afterwards became conspicuous as a division 
commander in the Army of the Potomac. They commanded 
the 1st and 2d Brigades respectively. The 4th Maine was in 
Birney's brigade. 

Berry's brigade consisted of four regiments: the 2d Michi- 
gan, Colonel Orlando M. Poe, commanding ; 3d Michigan, Colonel 
Stephen C. Champlin, commanding; 5th Michigan, Colonel 


H. G. Terry, commanding; and the 37th New York, Colonel 
S. B. Hayman, commanding. 

General Berry was fortunate in his assignment to this 
brigade. His regiments were ably commanded and well disci- 
plined, and as an officer of the 4th Maine remarked to the 
writer, they were always ready to go into a fight and never 
knew when they were beaten. Patriotic, courageous and 
intrepid, these Michigan and New York troops under the lead 
of General Bern- rendered signal service for the cause of the 
Union in the Peninsula campaign, and made their title, 
"Berry's Brigade," a synonym of honor and glory. 

General Berry's staff consisted of Captain Edwin M. Smith, 
4th Maine, assistant adjutant-general; Captain James H. Tall- 
man, 3d Maine, quartermaster; Captain Edward S. Earle, 
commissary; Lieutenants VVm. N. Ladue, 5th Michigan, and 
Henry H. Sturgis, aides-de-camp. The day General Berry 
assumed command of his brigade he received orders to march 
from Hampton the next morning, and notwithstanding the very 
short time allowed for preparation (about eight hours) moved 
his command with his accustomed punctuality at the appointed 
time in the direction of Yorktown. 

The following story in connection with the assignment 
of Brigadier-General Berry to the command of the Michigan 
brigade is worthy of preservation. This brigade had formerly 
been commanded by General I. B. Richardson, an officer of 
the regular army. General Heintzelman was anxious to have 
General Berry command this brigade, and he made personal 
application to General McClellan to have Berry assigned to it. 
McClellan said : " No ; I am reserving that brigade for an 
officer of the regular army. You already have two volunteer 
generals [Jameson and Birney] in command of your other 
brigades, and I want a regular officer for the Third." But 
Heintzelman persisted, and seeing his earnestness, General 
McClellan finally said : " Send General Berry to my quarters 
and let me look him over." Accordingly General Berry repaired 


to the quarters of General McClellan, and ten minutes after- 
wards returned to the camp of the 4th Maine, bearing in his 
pocket the order assigning him to the command of the 
3d Brigade. 

The following incident related by Captain James D. Earle 
of Berry's staff, illustrates the modesty that was ever the chief 
characteristic of the general : " I distinctly remember the first 
time I saw him. Our brigade commander had been promoted 
and it was rumored that Colonel Berry of the 4th Maine Infantry 
had been made a brigadier and was to be our commander. 
I was sitting before my tent just at dusk, when an officer rode 
up with but a single orderly and asked, ' Is this the head- 
quarters of the 3d Brigade?' Answering in the affirmative and 
recognizing the tone and manner of an officer, it flashed over 
me at once that this was our new brigade commander. I then 
asked, ' Is not this General Berry?' His reply impressed me. 
'Yes; I suppose so,' he said modestly. 'Colonel sounds more 
natural to me, but I believe I am General, now.' This was 
my first acquaintance with what proved to be the uniform 
characteristic modesty of the man. That night he shared 
my tent, and for many an hour he plied me with questions 
as to the command, and then, tired out, it was all I could 
do to induce him to take the only cot in the tent. The next 
morning he called for his horse and asked me to ride with him 
and introduce him to the regimental commanders. During the 
ride he spoke of his staff, merely saying, ' I intend having one 
or two of my Maine boys with me.' Naturally upon a change 
of general officers I expected to be relieved, and you may 
imagine my astonishment when the announcement of the staff 
was made by the adjutant-general, to find myself a member 
of his military family, and most pleasantly situated." 

The Army of the Potomac under General McClellan had a 
difficult task before it. Its first duty was to protect Washington, 
which was unfortunately situated near the Confederate army, 
a tempting bait as a point of attack, and could either be 


approached by way of Manassas or the Shenandoah Valley. 
It was also the duty of the Army of the Potomac to take Rich- 
mond. The nature of the country between Richmond and the 
Potomac is such as to make the passage across it of an invad- 
ing army very difficult. Several rivers traverse the country, all 
having a general southeasterly course and serving as natural 
barriers, which can be successfully defended against vastly 
superior numbers by a resolute force well commanded. Indeed 
for four long years did the Potomac Army attempt to 
force these barriers, but the army under Lee kept it at bay 
until Grant overwhelmed the defenders and forced them to 

There were several ways by which Richmond might be 
attacked from Washington. The Army of the Potomac might 
march directly against Johnston who was encamped at Bull Run, 
or it might move down the east bank of the Potomac through 
Maryland, crossing the river at Fredericksburg and marching 
directly on Richmond by the road leading from that city to 
Richmond. General McClellan desired to move the greater 
part of the army to Urbana on the Rappahannock River, leaving 
a sufficient force to defend Washington. He claimed that this 
was the best route to Richmond, and if occupied by the Potomac 
Army, would force Johnston to leave his position at Bull Run 
in order to prevent the United States forces from getting 
between him and Richmond. The President, however, did not 
regard this plan with favor, fearing that the withdrawal of the 
Army of the Potomac from the vicinity of Washington would 
endanger the safety of the capital. 

General McClellan made a written statement to the Presi- 
dent, giving at length his reasons why the proposed movement 
against Johnston was not so good as the one suggested by him. 
This statement of General McClellan seemed to convince the 
President that that officer's plan was the better one, and he at 
once ordered the Secretary of War to gather transports to convey 
the army to the Rappahannock. However, Mr. Lincoln appears 


to have been not altogether satisfied that the plan of General 
McClellan was a safe one, for he asked that officer to submit 
the two plans to a council of the principal officers of the army, 
which was done, and General McClellan's plan was approved by 
eight out of the twelve generals present. 

Before this plan could be carried out, Johnston suddenly 
evacuated Manassas and Bull Run for a position below the 
Rappahannock, where he would be better able to oppose the 
Union army should it attack by way of Fredericksburg or the 
Rappahannock. This led to another change in the plan of 
attack, and it was now determined to transport the army to 
Fortress Monroe, and to advance on Richmond by way of the 
" Peninsula," the long isthmus between the York and James 
Rivers. Hamilton's division, of which Berry's brigade formed 
a part, was the first to move to Fortress Monroe, and was 
followed by the division of General Fitz John Porter. These 
divisions were placed in position on roads leading to Newport 
News and to Yorktown. For lack of transportation the troops 
were slow in arriving at Fortress Monroe. 

However, on the 4th of April the forward movement began 
in two columns commanded by Heintzelman and Keyes, the 
former advancing directly on Yorktown. Reconnaissances made 
under fire determined that the Warwick River, which has its 
source near Yorktown, was controlled by the Confederate gun- 
boats for some distance from its mouth on the James River ; 
that its fords had been destroyed by dams, the approaches to 
which were generally through dense forests and deep swamps, 
and defended by extensive and formidable works ; that timber 
felled for defensive purposes and the flooding of the roads 
caused by the dams, had made these works apparently inacces- 
sible and impossible to turn; that Yorktown was strongly 
fortified, armed and garrisoned and connected with the defenses 
of the Warwick by forts and intrenchments, the ground in front 
of which was swept by the guns of Yorktown. It was also 
ascertained that the garrisons had been and were daily being 


reinforced by troops from Norfolk and the army under General 
J. E. Johnston. (See McClellan's report.) 

The columns of Heintzelman and Keyes advanced from 
ten to twelve miles and bivouacked. Although the enemy was 
in sight, serious resistance was not offered to the advance of 
these columns, and on the following morning the forward 
movement was continued. General Heintzelman was to advance 
with the 3d Corps and halt two and three-fourths miles from 
Yorktown, while Keyes was to continue by way of Warwick 
Court House to an old landmark known as the " Halfway 
House," between Yorktown and Williamsburg, and was to 
occupy and hold the narrow dividing ridge near the " Halfway 
House," so as to prevent the escape of the garrison at York- 
town by land, and prevent reinforcements from being thrown 
in. Keyes was unable to carry out these instructions in detail. 
The rain had been falling in torrents all the morning making 
the roads almost impassable for artillery, and it was not until 
about noon that the advance under Keyes struck the enemy's 

The enemy interposed a determined front to Keyes at Lee's 
Mills, and finding the march thus seriously obstructed, he 
encamped for the night. Heintzelman's advance was also 
stopped, being upon Yorktown itself, and was therefore 
expected. McClellan had therefore failed to occupy the posi- 
tions contemplated in his forward movement of the 5th, and it 
was at this point that the delay of one month at Yorktown 

Yorktown was the base of operations of the Confederates, 
with outposts thrown out several miles in advance. As early 
as March 1st, 1862, three defensive lines across the Peninsula 
from Williamsburg down to Fortress Monroe had been laid out 
and partially completed by the Confederate General J. Bank- 
head Magruder. His real line of defense was at the front, 
seven miles below Yorktown, at a point between Howard's and 
Young's Mills, where the setting back of the Poquoson River 


from the York and the mouths of the Warwick and Deep 
Creek, on the James, contracted the intervening solid ground to 
the short distance of three miles. In describing his position 
here, Magruder says : 

" Both flanks of this line were defended by boggy and 
difficult streams and swamps. In addition, the left flank was 
defended by elaborate fortifications at Ship Point, connected by 
a broken line of redoubts crossing the heads of the various 
ravines emptying into York River and Wormley's Creek, and 
terminating at Fort Grafton, nearly in front of Yorktown. The 
right flank was defended by the fortifications at the mouth of 
the Warwick River and at Mulberry Island Point, and the 
redoubts extending from the Warwick to James River. Inter- 
vening between the two mills was a wooded country, about two 
miles in extent. This wooded line forming the center, needed 
the defense of infantry in a sufficient force to prevent any 
attempt on the part of the enemy to break through it. In 
my opinion this advanced line with its flank defenses might 
have been held by 20,000 troops." 

These works were pronounced by General Barnard, chief 
engineer of the Potomac Army, too strong to be carried by 
assault. General McClellan therefore decided to lay regular 
siege to them. For nearly a month the troops toiled, building 
batteries and redoubts, and digging trenches. Many were dis- 
abled by sickness, and the continual fire which was kept up by 
the enemy rendered the situation of the working details dan- 
gerous. Preparations were made to open fire on Yorktown on 
May 6th, but the rebel General Johnston, who had now assumed 
command of the opposing forces, frustrated this plan. Learn- 
ing that General McClellan was mounting heavy rifled guns to 
bombard his works, and having only old-fashioned smooth-bore 
guns to defend them, he evacuated Yorktown on the night of 
May 3d, the United States troops entering the next morning. 

During the siege of Yorktown, General Berry was very 
often called upon to move his command to the extreme front, 


either to act as working parties, or to support them and the 
batteries on outpost duty ; and it was at this place that he won 
the confidence and respect of his superior officers and of his 
entire command, which continued to increase during his service 
with them. It was here that he also won that high reputation for 
valor which on many occasions afterward was so conspicuously 
displayed. General Berry writes : 

Headquarters Berry's Brigade, 
Hamilton's Division, 
Near Yorktown, Va. 

I was assigned to this brigade on Thursday night and assumed 
duty next morning. I am under General Heintzelman as usual, he 
having been promoted to chief of our Army Corps. Hamilton 
commands his old division, and I the brigade formerly commanded 
by General Richardson. It is composed of three Michigan and one 
New York regiments. It is one of the largest and best brigades in 
the army. I had my choice and chose this one, and was placed in 
command of it immediately. We are now before Yorktown in 
immense strength. The enemy are strong. We have a fleet of 
gunboats co-operating with the land forces. Some fighting has 
taken place between the artillery forces. I am well located. The 
brigade is perfectly satisfied and so am I. I hope all will go 
smoothly and well. I think we shall close this campaign in Vir- 
ginia very soon. McClellan is with us. McDowell is on the 
Potomac line, advancing on the enemy's front, and we are attacking 
their right flank. In a few days you will hear of stirring events. 

Headquarters Berry's Brigade, ) 
April 12, 1862. j 

I am now located with my brigade in front of Yorktown. We 
came in here a week ago, since which time we have had an occa- 
sional shell, and also some picket shooting going on most of the 
time. Nothing of moment has transpired. We are getting ready 
for a siege and an assault. They are doubtless prepared for a vig- 
orous defense. I think this battle will in a great measure decide 
the contest. I have a fine command and am pleased with the 
officers. They are, I think, pleased with me, and I see no reason 


why I may not be as well located as I could wish. The old regi- 
ment [4th Maine] is near by me; all quite well, and in good spirits. 
I hope they will continue to prosper and have no doubt they will, 
as Walker [Colonel Elijah Walker] will strain every nerve to keep 
the command up to its good condition. 

My health is first-rate. I have the full confidence of Generals 
Hamilton and Heintzelman. They have both been to see me today. 
I never appreciated home as I shall hereafter. My way of living 
here is not that which any one would court ; sometimes we eat, and 
some days we eat not at all. We sleep on the ground, but all are 
cheerful. In has rained three days at a time, during which we were 
all drenched to the skin, but all feel willing to go through anything 
to assist in closing this cursed war. 

April 20, 1862. 
I received a letter yesterday from Governor Washburn that 
was just thirty days on the way. I am quite well, have a tent to 
sleep in and my cares are not half what they were in the regiment. 
I now have some one (all the colonels) between me and the men, 
so all I have to do is to give orders ; it is the colonel's duty to 
see them executed, and all the care of men, clothing, provisions, 
drill, etc., etc., I get rid of, except simply to see that the proper 
officers attend to it. I therefore shall be less likely to get sick 
in consequence of severe duties. We are still before Yorktown and 
hard at work, building roads, getting up siege guns, establishing 
pickets and doing all that is to be done preparatory to a siege. This 
place is strongly fortified, still I have no doubt of our ultimate suc- 
cess. It may be weeks before we accomplish the task before us, 
still it will be done. The war in the Southwest is rapidly drawing 
to a close ; another fight and victory will end the battles there. A 
victory here will do the same and will end all the hard fighting here. 
I think by July 1st the rebellion will be about played out. The loss of 
Johnson [Albert Sidney] is great to the rebels. His place cannot be 
filled. I do not think a hard battle will be fought here, but think the 
strategy of our plans when developed will cause an evacuation of this 
place. The outpost duty here is arduous ; we have heavy guards and 
they are commanded by generals, who go out by turns and stay twenty- 
four hours. We have some fighting. I was out on Wednesday last and 


had quite a time; had twelve pieces of artillery and shelled the rebel 
troops twelve hours. My men were covered and the enemy the same. 
Our loss, one killed and one wounded. The enemy lost as near as 
we could judge some forty killed and wounded. Our gunners fire 
with fearful accuracy. 

April 27, 1862. 
Mr. Farwell is now here and has been staying with me for 
the past three days. I am well yet, although we are having a very 
hard time. We are encamped in a swamp and work day ami night. 
I like my brigade very much, and hope to get along pretty well. We 
are all doing our best to carry out the plans of the general-in-chief 
and feel confident that we shall succeed in our efforts against the 
enemy. We are now at work preparing for active operations. If 
we are successful at Yorktown, it seems to me, and also to all, to be 
the last stand the enemy can make in Virginia. Halleck will finish 
Beauregard at Corinth, and the news has just arrived of the fall of 
New Orleans. 



Versatility of Volunteers. — Confederates Evacuate York- 
town. — Slow Pursuit of the Retreating Confederates. — 
Hooker Opens the Battle. — Fort Magruder. — Long- 
street's Vigorous Attack. — Hooker's Perilous Position. — 
Berry Hastens to the Rescue. — Pushes Past Lagging 
Columns. -Heintzelman Weeps for Joy. — Orders Bands 
to Play. — Berry Gallantly Charges the Enemy. — Poe's 
2d Michigan. — The "Fighting" 5th Michigan. — 37th 
New York. — Colonel Terry Wounded. — Berry Saves 
Hooker from Defeat. 

AT the siege of Yorktown, General Berry furnished an illus- 
tration of the versatility of the character of volunteers. 
With the men of his brigade he repaired and put in oper- 
ation two steam saw-mills, nearly destroyed and abandoned by 
the Confederates, took beef cattle from the cars which supplied 
the army, extemporized yokes and bows and wheels, hauled 
timber from the forests, and sawed many thousand feet of lum- 
ber, accomplishing all within twenty-four hours. These mills 
furnished nearly all the lumber used in the fortifications built 
in the siege of Yorktown. 

The evacuation of Yorktown by the Confederates was a 
surprise to General McClellan, who had made preparation for a 
long stay in camp, hence the troops were slow in starting in 
pursuit. Several hours were consumed in supplying the troops 
with rations for the march, and although the retreat of the 


Confederates was discovered at dawn, the infantry and cavalry 
did not start in pursuit until noon. 

That it was the purpose of the enemy to delay as much as 
possible the advance of McClellan up the Peninsula is apparent, 
but it was never their intention to hold Yorktown longer than 
was necessary for this purpose. They had held the Union army 
before the intrenchments of Yorktown for a month, and effected 
their escape before serious injury could be inflicted upon them. 
The Confederate General Johnston says: 

" It seemed to me that there were but two objects in 
remaining on the Peninsula — the possibility of an advance upon 
us by the enemy, and in gaining time in which arms might be 
received and troops organized. I determined, therefore, to 
hold the position as long as it could be done without exposing 
our troops to the fire of the powerful artillery, which, I doubted 
not, would be brought to bear upon them. I believed that 
after silencing our batteries on the York River, the enemy 
would attempt to turn us by moving up to West Point by water. 
* * * * Circumstances indicating that the enemy's batteries 
were nearly ready, I directed the troops to move toward 
Williamsburg on the night of the 3d." 

Having fairly got started in pursuit, the Union troops were 
pushed forward with vigor. The troops detailed for the pursu- 
ing force were Stoneman's cavalry, which was to be supported 
by the divisions of Hooker of the 3d Corps, and Smith of the 
4th Corps, Hooker taking the direct and shorter road on the right 
from Yorktown to Williamsburg and Smith filing from his posi- 
tion opposite Dam No. 1 into the Lee's Mills road on the left. 
Kearny was to follow Hooker, and the divisions of Couch and 
Casey were to follow Smith. The divisions of Sedgwick and 
Richardson of Sumner's Corps were set in motion late on the 
following day, while Franklin and Porter were to go up the river 
in transports. 

General McClellan did not go in person with the pursuing 
columns, but left the command to General Sumner, the next 


officer in rank. He regarded the advance of Franklin by water 
as of more importance, and remained behind to superintend it. 

General Kearny, who had now succeeded to the command 
of the division of which Berry's brigade formed a part, did not 
move in pursuit of the enemy until 9 o'clock on the morning 
of the 5th of May. Between the divisions of Hooker and 
Kearny was Sumner's corps. After daylight of the 5th the rain 
fell in torrents, making the roads almost impassable, and the 
progress of the troops was therefore slow. The different com- 
mands also became intermingled, and the state of affairs between 
the divisions of Kearny and Hooker, who had the advance of 
the infantry, was decidedly mixed. Heintzelman and Sumner 
were both ordered by McClellan to assume command at the 
front, a fact which did not improve the complicated condition of 

Smith's division was moving on a road parallel with Hooker, 
and was making greater progress, when he was stopped at the 
head of Skiff Creek by the burning of the bridge. Acting 
under orders from Sumner, Smith turned from the right and 
entered the road Hooker was following, thus compelling the 
latter to halt for over three hours. 

As Hooker now could not act as the immediate support of 
the cavalry, he asked permission of his corps commander, Gen- 
eral Heintzelman, to cross over to the road Smith had left and 
to pursue or attack from that direction. This request was 
readily granted, and after advancing three miles, Hooker's 
division made the change to the other road. 

Hancock's brigade of Smith's division came up with the 
cavalry about half-past five in the afternoon. Sumner deter- 
mined to attack the enemy at once and Smith formed his 
division in line of battle, but being unable to preserve his 
formations in the increasing darkness and tangled undergrowth, 
the troops bivouacked for the night without making the attack. 

Hooker continued his march until eleven o'clock at night, 
when he halted within attacking distance of the enemy. 


The following morning the battle of Williamsburg opened. 
General Alex. S. Webb, in his work on the Peninsula campaign, 
says it was "a battle without a plan, with inadequate numbers, 
and at a serious sacrifice without compensating results. The 
responsibility has been laid by some upon the shoulders of 
McClellan because of his absence from the field ; and by others 
upon Sumner, who seems to have directed the movements of 
the day without method. Whatever may have prev* 
McClellan's presence with the advance, one might at least 
expect that his senior corps commander should have been com- 
petent to fight a battle of moderate proportion^." 

At 7.30 o'clock the next morning Hooker began the attack 
by throwing forward his skirmishers. In his official report of 
this affair Hooker says : "Being in pursuit of a retreating army 
I deemed it my duty to lose no time in making the disposition 
of my forces to attack, regardless of their number and position, 
except to accomplish the result with the least possible sacrifice 
of life. By so doing, my division, if it did not capture the 
army before me, would at least hold them, in order that others 
might. Besides, I knew of the presence of more than 30,000 
troops not two miles distant from me, and that within twelve 
miles — four hours march — was the bulk of the Army of the 

In Hooker's immediate front at the junction of the York- 
town and Hampton roads was Fort Magruder, and on each side 
was a cordon of redoubts, thirteen in number, extending entirely 
across the Peninsula, the right and left of them resting on the 
waters of the York and James Rivers. Approaching them from 
the south they were concealed by a dense forest until within less 
than a mile of their locality. Where the forest trees had been 
standing nearer than this distance, the trees had been felled in 
order that the defenders of the redoubts might have timely 
notice of the approach of an enemy. In this manner the trees 
had been felled on both sides of the road on which Hooker had 
advanced, for a breadth of almost half a mile. This had also 


been done on the Yorktown road, giving the enemy an unob- 
structed view of the approaches of Fort Magruder and the 
redoubts, and affording them every opportunity to use their 
artillery upon columns attacking by these roads. Between the 
edge of the felled timber and the fort was a belt of clear arable 
land, 600 or 700 yards in width, which was dotted all over with 
rifle pits. The redoubts themselves were advantageously located 
near the eastern and southern verge of a slightly elevated plain, 
the slopes of which were furrowed with winding ravines, with 
an almost boundless and gently undulating plain reaching across 
the Peninsula and extending to the north and west as far as the 
eye could reach. Two miles distant could be seen the spires of 
Williamsburg. Fort Magruder was the largest of the redoubts, 
its crest measuring half a mile, with substantial parapets, ditches 
and magazines. It was located to command the Yorktown and 
Hampton roads, while the redoubts in its vicinity commanded 
the ravines which the guns of Fort Magruder could not sweep. 

The skirmishers thrown out by Hooker advanced into the 
felled timber to the left and right of the road by which he had 
advanced. Grover's brigade was soon engaged, and Webber's 
and Bramhall's batteries were brought into action on the right, 
some 700 yards from Fort Magruder. By nine o'clock the fort 
was silenced and all the enemy's troops in sight on the plain 
dispersed. Two regiments that had been directed by Hooker 
to open communication with Sumner on the Yorktown road 
found no enemy in the roads between the two commands, and 
this being reported to Hooker, he now fek that he was not fight- 
ing in an isolated position, but on the right of a general line 
which could be l<ept connected under the control of his 

The close pursuit by the Union cavalry the previous after- 
noon and Hooker's attack early the next morning had halted 
the rear divisions of the enemy in their retreat. Longstreet 
was the Confederate commander at Williamsburg on the 5th, 
and he speedily put his entire division into action, to resist 

Brevet Major-General Davis Tillson, 
Formerly Drill .Master, Rockland Citv Guards. 

hooker's perilous situation. 121 

Hooker's attack. As brigade after brigade of Confederate 
troops went into action, it increased in intensity, and at eleven 
o'clock Hooker found himself warmly engaged. The right and 
left of the enemy's line of battle was formed by the brigades 
of R. H. Anderson and Pryor. Wilcox reinforced Anderson, 
with A. P. Hill in supporting distance, and at ten o'clock 
Pickett's brigade was also added. Longstreet directed this force 
against Hooker's center and left, and endeavored to turn his 
position. This attack was made with vigor and fell heaviest on 
Patterson's New Jersey brigade, who fought manfully against 
superior numbers. Grover promptly sent part of his brigade to 
Patterson's support, but so fierce was the enemy's attack and so 
overwhelming their numbers that Patterson was driven back 
and the batteries of Webber and Bramhall were captured. 
Bramhall's battery was recovered later in the day. 

Hooker was now in a perilous situation. At twenty 
minutes past eleven he sent the following note to General 
Heintzelman, his corps commander: " I have had a hard con- 
test all the morning, but do not despair of success. My men 
are hard at work, but a good deal exhausted. It is reported to 
me that my communication with you by the Yorktown road is 
clear of the enemy. Batteries, cavalry and infantry can take 
post by the side of mine to whip the enemy." This note was 
delivered to General Sumner, who was in command, who 
returned the note with the endorsement, " opened and read." 
Just before that he had sent word to Kearny to hurry to 
Hooker's support. 

From seven in the morning till twelve, Hooker had been 
left to do all the fighting, being attacked by overwhelming 
numbers commanded by the best generals the Confederate 
army possessed. 

During the fight of the morning the brigade of Brigadier- 
General Berry, as the leading brigade of Kearny's division, was 
pushing on toward the front. When within seven miles of the 
battlefield he heard the cannonading, and became convinced 


from the direction of the sound that Hooker was engaged. He 
hurried on his brigade and when within five miles of the front 
overtook Sumner's troops entirely blocking the road which had 
now become a "sea of mud." Enquiring what troops were 
engaged he was told by an officer of Sumner's staff that they 
were Hooker's. His quick military instinct told him that the 
brave officer was in peril. His orders would seem to require 
him to keep in the line of march, and before him was an entire 
division filling the road. He determined it would be safe to 
depart from instructions, if that would take him toward the 
enemy in battle, to the rescue of a brave division. It was rain- 
ing hard, but keeping along his artillery and ammunition train, 
and taking the side of the road with his troops, he pushed his 
brigade past the troops before him, amidst the imprecations 
and threats of those who were jostled by his unceremonious 
haste. After a mile and a half of this kind of marching he 
reached a by-road leading to the left in the direction of the 
firing. Taking this road, instead of that pursued by the other 
troops, he pushed on until the road seemed to lead him too far 
to the left. Ordering his men to lay aside their knapsacks and 
everything cumbersome, he permitted them to rest for a few 
moments, then leaving the road he shaped his course through 
fields and forests, over morasses and ravines, toward the fight. 
He reached Hooker at a very critical moment. Hooker's 
unflinching ranks had stood from early morning till three o'clock 
in the afternoon. But one brigade had begun to give way, 
having exhausted their ammunition. They had been rallied, 
and now the troops of Hooker's division " were maintaining 
their ground with empty guns and not a cartridge in their 
boxes, relying upon their bayonets." At this moment General 
Berry came upon the field with his brigade. General Heintzel- 
man was there, having hastened to the front. He had seen 
how nearly the day was lost, and when Berry with his fresh 
troops appeared, the old hero fairly cried with joy. He 
ordered the bands to play a patriotic air, and Berry's men, 


answering with a cheer, deployed at double-quick and poured 
volley after volley into the masses of the enemy, recapturing 
lost artillery, taking rifle pits and a large number of prisoners. 

General Berry arrived on the battlefield at 2.30 o'clock 
P. M., and under the direction of General Kearny at once put 
his command in action. The 5th Michigan, Colonel Terry, 
took the left of the road in the timber, supported on the left 
by the 37th New York, Colonel Hayman. General Berry 
formed these regiments in loose order, the left extending far 
into the timber for the purpose of outflanking the enemy on 
that side. One company was placed in the rear of the extreme 
left as a support. The 2d Michigan, Colonel O. M. Poe, was 
placed part on either side of the road. 

As soon as these formations had been made, General Berry 
gave the order to charge, and the troops pressed forward, wildly 
cheering, and sweeping everything before them. The other 
regiment belonging to Berry's brigade, the 3d Michigan, was 
detached to act as a reserve and support on the left, and was 
not engaged. 

On receiving the order to attack from General Berry, Poe's 
2d Michigan promptly made its formation and went into action 
in splendid style. Two companies deployed as skirmishers 
on the right of a battery, which had then ceased firing. At 
the same time two of the companies on the left of the regi- 
mental line also deployed as skirmishers, the road thus dividing 
the line equally. The remaining six companies were held in 
reserve. These skirmishers were soon hotly engaged, and the 
line was strengthened an hour later by two companies, that 
were thrown to the right and left in support. A sharp fire was 
maintained until about 5.30 P. M., when the remaining four 
companies went forward to relieve those who had been engaged, 
and whose ammunition had become nearly exhausted. Placing 
the regiment in position, Colonel Poe was ordered to maintain 
his ground at all hazards, which he did most gallantly, the right 
wing being under command of Lieutenant-Colonel Williams, 


and the left under Major Dillman. During the desperate con- 
flict in which this regiment was engaged many acts of individual 
bravery were performed. The ground over which the regiment 
advanced was so broken, that the fight resolved itself into per- 
sonal encounters in which the courage of the men was severely 
tested. Both officers and men acquitted themselves most 
gallantly and did their part in snatching victory from the jaws 
of defeat. 

The 5th Michigan, Colonel Terry, went into action about 
2.30 o'clock, deploying in line of battle in the woods to the left 
of the road leading to Williamsburg, the right resting on the 
road. In the front the enemy appeared in strong force, pre- 
ceded by a cloud of skirmishers. Having made its formation 
in line of battle, the Fifth moved forward under a severe fire. 
A charge was now ordered and the men sprang forward, 
sweeping everything before them, but the enemy soon rallied 
and poured murderous volleys into the ranks of the Fifth. 
Again the Fifth charged, wildly cheering, and compelling the 
enemy to seek shelter in a rifle pit in the edge of the woods, 
where a determined stand was made. Here the fighting became 
most desperate. The enemy maintained their position with 
dogged determination and their fire was severely felt in the 
thinned ranks of the gallant Fifth. They must be driven out of 
their sheltered position, or the Fifth must yield the ground so 
dearly bought. " Charge ! charge ! " and making the welkin 
ring with their shouts the long line of bristling steel pressed 
forward on the run. In vain did the enemy pour in a deadly 
fire, leaving wrde gaps in the advancing line after each discharge. 
No human power could stop that impetuous charge. Over the 
rifle pits swarmed the men of the Fifth and the day was theirs. 
The enemy fled in confusion, leaving them in possession of the 
rifle pits. During this engagement Colonel Terry was wounded 
but gallantly remained on the field until the battle was over. 

The 37th New York, Colonel Hayman, formed its line of 
battle on the left of the 5th Michigan and shared with that 


regiment the dangers and glory of the contest. On completing 
its formation, Company B deployed as skirmishers to pro- 
tect the regimental left flank. The enemy soon opened a 
murderous fire on the Thirty-Seventh, which was returned with 
spirit for about an hour, when Colonel Hayman ordered it to 
cease, to avoid an unnecessary loss of ammunition. A scout 
was sent to the front to observe the movements of the enemy, 
who were concealed by the thick undergrowth. He soon 
returned and reported the enemy moving to the left This 
report was confirmed by their fire, which was delivered in front 
and on the left flank of the regiment. To meet this movement, 
the whole regiment was now moved some distance to the left 
and six companies deployed in extended order at right angles 
to the previous position of the regiment. The enemy now 
made a determined effort to break through the line of these six 
companies and for more than an hour they maintained a desper- 
ate conflict, which resulted in the enemy being driven out of 
the woods. In the meantime the companies on the right were 
doing their part and were sweeping all before them in their 
irresistible attack. In their retreat the enemy carried off 
most of their wounded, but a large number of the dead and 
some of the wounded were left, and three parties of the enemy 
sent to gather up the dead were captured by the pickets of the 
Thirty-Seventh during the night. 

After the enemy had retired, eight companies of the 
Thirty-Seventh were deployed as skirmishers to the left as far 
as the plain in front of Williamsburg. General Berry detached 
the other two companies to man and defend the artillery that 
had been abandoned earlier in the day. This regiment suffered 
severely and acquitted itself most gallantly. Colonel Hayman 
superintended the fighting of his command in a cool and quiet 
manner that inspired officers and men with confidence and 



What General Heintzelman Says of Berry. — The New York 
Herald's Tribute.— What the New York Tribune Says. 
— General Kearny. — Berry's Congratulatory Order. — 
Kearny's Letter to Governor Washburn. — The Gover- 
nor's Reply. — Congratulates Berry. — His Modest Reply. 
— Berry's Admiration for his Brigade. — Heintzelman's 
Letter to Vice President Hamlin. — Captain Edwin M. 
Smith. — Berry's Official Report. — Commendation for 
Colonel Terry of the 5th Michigan. — Other Officers 
Mentioned. — Casualties in the Brigade. — "Proud of 
Our General." 

AN hour after General Berry arrived, General Birney with 
his brigade came up, followed immediately by General 
Jameson, and with this force the ground lost by General 
Hooker was recovered by nightfall. Berry's timely arrival had 
saved General Hooker from being overwhelmed by superior 
numbers, and from this time General Hooker conceived the 
strongest admiration for General Berry and was ever after his 
constant and steadfast friend. 

General Heintzelman in his official report says: "General 
Berry is entitled to great credit for the energy he displayed in 
passing the obstructions on the road, and for the gallant man- 
ner in which he brought his brigade into action at the turning 
point of the battle." 

The press of the country joined in doing honor to General 
Berry and his gallant brigade for the conspicuous service ren- 


dered on the field of Williamsburg. The New York Herald 
of that day says: "The particular brigade which rendered the 
eminent service was that of General Berry, which that officer 
brought to the front in spite of the obstacles which seemed 
insurmountable, and which he handled, when he got them up, 
with consummate skill. He was under fire four hours, and 
many of his officers were shot close to him." 

The New York Tribune says: " But now Brigadier Berry 
of the stout State of Maine, wading through the mud and rain 
at such speed that he actually overtook and passed three other 
brigades — came in sight. Heintzelman shouted with gratitude. 
He ran to the nearest band and ordered it to meet the coming 
regiments with ' Yankee Doodle,' and to give them marching 
time into the field with the ' Star Spangled Banner.' A wild 
hurrah went up from the army, and with a yell that was electric 
three regiments of Berry's brigade went to the front, formed a 
line nearly half a mile long, and commenced a volley firing that 
no troops on earth could stand before, then at the double-quick 
dashed with the bayonet at the rebel army, and sent them flying 
from the field into their breastworks, pursued them into the 
largest of them, and drove them out behind with the pure steel, 
and then invited them to retake it. The attempt was repeatedly 
made and repeatedly repulsed. The count of the rebel dead 
in that battery at the close of the fight was sixty-three. They 
were principally Michigan men that did this work. 

"The equilibrium of the battle was restored. It was now 
four o'clock and Jameson and Birney came up with their 
brigades, covered with mud and steaming with the rain, but 
eager for a share in the blessed work. They went to the front 
and soon the tide of the fight turned backward. But Berry's 
timely arrival, for which he is entitled to both gratitude and 
honor, saved the day." 

In his report of this battle General Kearny says : " General 
Berry was ever on the alert, and by good arrangements and 
personal example influenced the ardor of all around him. His 


regiments fought most desperately." After the successful 
repulse of the enemy at Williamsburg by his gallant troops, 
General Berry issued the following congratulatory order: 

Hdqrs. 3D Brigade, Kearny's Division, 

On Williamsburg Battlefield, 

May 8, 1862. 

The commander of the brigade takes great pains in making this 
official communication to his command : That they, by heroic forti- 
tude, on Monday last, by making a forced march through mud and 
rain, each vying with the other to see who could most cheerfully 
stand the hardships the time called for, making thereby a march that 
others shrank from, coming into a fight at double-quick, made 
doubtful to our side by the overwhelming mass of the enemy poured 
upon our center ; by a rapid deploy and quick formation, and by 
coolness, precision and energy, beat back the enemy, recapturing 
our lost position and artillery, and also by a heroic charge took a 
stronghold of the enemy, and thereby dislodged him and drove him 
on the plain below his well-chosen position — have done themselves 
great honor, have honored the States of Michigan and New York, 
and have won a name in history that the most ambitious might be 
proud of. Our loss of brave comrades has indeed been large. We 
mourn the departed. " Green be the turf above them." They 
have a place in our heart's memory, and in the history of our com- 
mon country. 

Soldiers ! You have won by your bravery the hearts of all 
your commanders — brigade, division, corps, and even those higher 
in command. Soldiers ! I thank you ; my superiors thank you ; 
your country thanks you, and will remember you in history. 

Our labors are not yet over ; the insolent rebels who have 
endeavored to destroy, and have laid to ruin and waste portions of 
the best Government and the finest land of earth, are still in force, 
and to be conquered in our fights. I have pledged you, men of the 
3d Brigade, in all future trials. I know my men ; they are not 
pledged in vain. Commanders of regiments will have this order 
read at the head of their respective regiments this afternoon. 

H. G. Berry, 

Official : Brigadier-General, Com'ding 3d Brigade. 

Edwin M. Smith, A. A. A. G. 

Kearny's commendation. 129 

That General Kearny was deeply sensible of the important 
service rendered by General Berry is evident from his letter of 
commendation written to Governor Washburn. He says : 

As the commanding general of this division of which two of 
the generals commanding brigades [General Jameson and General 
Berry] as well as two regiments, the 3d Maine, Colonel Staples, and 
4th Maine, Colonel Walker, form a part, I take this opportunity of 
calling to your notice their meritorious conduct in the late fight, and 
to display the fact that although these regiments were not sufferers 
in the late engagement at Williamsburg, having been detached by 
General Heintzelman to guard the left flank, yet by their steady and 
imposing attitude, they contributed to the success of those more 
immediately engaged. And I assure you, sir, that with such mate- 
rial, commanded by such sterling officers, nothing but success can 
crown our efforts when the occasion requires. * * * 

It is peculiarly appropriate, after having rendered justice to the 
regiments and colonels, to bring Generals Jameson and Berry to the 
especial attention of yourself and citizens at home, who look to 
them for noble deeds, to illustrate their annals; and I am proud to 
state that they have amply filled the full measure of anticipated 

General Berry charged with the left wing of our line of battle, 
evinced a courage that might have been expected from him, (when 
as colonel of the 4th Regiment of Maine Volunteers, he nearly 
saved the day at Bull Run,) and also a genius for war, and a per- 
tinacity in the fight that proved him fit for high command, for he 
was most severely assailed on the left, and had most difficult rifle 
pits and abattis to face and carry. 

**** **** 

I have the honor, sir, to be, 

Your obedient servant, 

P. Kearny, 
Brig. -Gen., Com'ding 3d Division, Heintzelman's Corps. 

To the above letter Governor Washburn sent the following 
characteristic reply : 



State of Maine, 
Executive Department 

Augusta, May 22, 1862 

General P. Kearny, Com'ding 3d Division, Heintzelman's Corps : 
Sir : It is with feelings of pride and gratitude that I acknowl- 
edge the receipt of your letter of the 10th instant, in which you 
make honorable mention of General Jameson and General Berry, 
and of the 3d and 4th Regiments of Volunteers from this State. It 
was received while at my home at Orono, and I take the earliest 
opportunity to make its contents known to the good people of this 
State, who will thank you in their hearts, as I do, for so noble and 
emphatic testimony to the gallantry and good conduct of these(now, 
if not before) distinguished generals, whose fame is a part of the 
truest wealth of their State ; of the other brave and meritorious 
officers, and of the courageous and patriotic men of whom you have 
spoken, and of whom we are justly proud. 

General, accept my thanks in behalf of the people I represent, 
for your letter, which is doubly gratifying as fulfilling their most 
cherished hopes in regard to their brethren in the field, and as 
coming from an officer of the army, for whom they entertain so 
sincere respect as they do for yourself. 
Very truly, 

Your obedient servant, 

Israel Washburn, Jr. 

Governor Washburn voiced the sentiments of the people 
of Maine, in the following ringing and patriotic letter to General 
Berry : 

Augusta, May 23, 1862. 

Dear General : You have made the State of Maine proud 
and happy, and I rejoice in being her organ to tell you so. On two 
memorable battlefields you have won distinguished honor. 

In reply to General Kearny's letter, a copy of which I enclose, 
I told him that the good people of Maine would thank him in their 
hearts as I did, for his noble and emphatic testimony to the gallantry 
and brilliant services of the distinguished generals whose fame was 
a part of the truest wealth of the State, and for his gratifying men- 

Letters. 131 

tion of the officers and men of the 3d and 4th Regiments of Maine 

General, accept my warmest congratulations, and believe me, 
Yours truly, 

I. Washburn, Jr. 
Brig.-Gen. H. G. Berry, 

Kearny's Division. 

Brigadier-General Berry received these commendations 
with the modest deprecation that was characteristic of him. 
Conscious only of a sense of duty, whose imperative demands 
precluded every personal consideration, he could not believe 
himself entitled to special consideration for performing that 
duty faithfully and well. Witness his modest reply : 

Headquarters 3D Brigade, ") 
Kearny's Division, June 8, 1862. j 

To His Excellency, the Hon. I.Washburn, Jr., Governor of Maine : 
Sir : Yours of May 22d reached me the first inst. In conse- 
quence of pressing duties I have until this time deferred acknowl- 
edging the receipt of same. I feel deeply the kindness of General 
Kearny in bringing my poor services at the battle of Williamsburg 
before the people of my native State through its patriotic Governor. 
I can for myself only say I endeavored to do my duty, and if I 
succeeded in a measure in rendering valuable service to my country, 
it was no more than the good people of Maine had a right to expect, 
not only of myself, but of all her sons engaged in this contest. I 
need not say to you that I cordially endorse every word of General 
Kearny's letter that has reference to one of Maine's distinguished 
sons now commanding the 1st Brigade (Brigadier-General C. D. 
Jameson) in this division, as well as the steady, manly and soldier- 
like bearing of the officers and men of the two regiments of our 
State referred to therein. 

Accept, Governor, my cordial thanks for the very warm sup- 
port you have ever given me in the discharge of my military duties. 
I am, sir, with very much respect, 

Your obedient servant, 

H. G. Berry, 
Brig.-Gen. Vols., Com'ding 3d Brigade, Kearny's Division. 


Berry's generosity did not stop here. Ever mindful of the 
gallant troops serving under his command, he did not fail to 
grasp every opportunity to pay tribute to their courage and 
skill. Already they had won his esteem and admiration. 
Speaking of the Michigan and New York troops in his brigade, 
General Berry pays them the following generous tribute in a 
letter to a friend in Washington : 

" To all my sick and wounded in hospital you chance to 
visit give my warmest regards for their welfare. May they 
speedily recover. So gallant a set of men should not suffer for 
want of anything. I trust they will be amply provided for as 
you intimate they are. A nobler set of men never lived. Any 
man can win fights with such material. I have received ten 
times more credit than I am entitled to for the part performed 
by my poor self in the late bloody battle. Such troops as I 
lead are bound to conquer, no matter who leads them. 

" Please give my compliments to all those Michigan men 
in Washington who take such interest in this brigade. Say to 
them they are fortunate to hail from a State that has such gal- 
lant sons. God bless the State and people of Michigan for the 
part it and they have taken to crush out this most unholy of 
all rebellions." 

Thus did Rockland's gallant son, with a modesty that 

the brave and valiant alone possess, belittle his own valuable 

services, and freely accord to his associates their fullest meed 

of praise. It was this modesty and generosity, as well as his 

valor and skill, that made General Berry the invincible leader 

of men. His men were ready to follow wherever he might 

lead, and full well they knew he would not require them to go 

where he would not go himself. General Heintzelman tells of 

General Berry's valuable services in the following letter : 

Headquarters 3D Corps, ") 
Barhamsville, Va., May n, 1862. j 

Hon. H. Hamlin, Vice President U. S., Washington: 

My Dear Sir : We fought a severe battle on Monday, the 5th, 
against a very superior force of rebels. The battle lasted from 


7.30 a.m., until after dark, when the enemy commenced their retreat. 
They abandoned twelve earthworks, one being Fort Magruder, a 
bastioned fieldwork. The next morning we occupied their works 
and I sent General Jameson's brigade in pursuit. In Williamsburg 
we found all their severely wounded and took in all near 1,000 pris- 
oners, with many small arms. We also got five siege and two 
field pieces, that they were compelled to abandon. 

At 2.30 p. m., our first reinforcements of General Kearny's 
division arrived, led by General Berry, who pressed forward most 
gallantly at the head of his brigade. He arrived at the critical 
moment, when General Hooker's division began to give way, having 
expended all their ammunition. No troops ever fought better than 
the troops I had the honor to command. Our loss is, in killed, 
wounded and missing, 2,046 in the two divisions or 1,575 in General 
Hooker's alone. They held their ground alone (Soo of them) for 
five long hours. The position of the enemy was such that I could 
not make much use of my artillery. Three batteries never fired a 
gun. We lost three Parrotts and one twelve-pounder Howitzer, 
during the five minutes the enemy had possession of our batteries, 
just before General Berry's opportune arrival. I think that we have 
satisfied the rebels that our Northern troops will fight. 

There was not the least cessation of the musketry fire from the 
time it commenced in the morning, until after dark, and at times it 
was very heavy. The battle was fought in a dense woods, with a 
thick undergrowth. You could not see a man until he came to 
within from forty to sixty yards. This accounts for our heavy loss. 
We are now in communication with the troops landed near West 

I have this moment heard of the taking possession of Norfolk 
by our troops and the blowing up of the Merrimac. 

I wrote this knowing the special interest you feel in many of the 
troops engaged. We got in Fort Magruder one little silk flag 
inscribed " Picken's Guards" and presented them by the ladies. 
I remain truly yours, 

S. P. Heintzelman, Brigadier-General. 

At the battle of Williamsburg none rendered more conspic- 
uous service than General Berry's young and brilliant assistant 


adjutant-general, Captain Edwin M. Smith of Wiscasset, 
Maine. Refusing the commission of major of the 4th Maine, 
he accepted an appointment on General Berry's staff, and with 
great recklessness and courage led the troops in the brilliant 
charge at Williamsburg. General Kearny in his report says of 
him : " I especially notice Captain Smith, assistant adjutant- 
general of General Berry, and predict for him a career of 
usefulness and glory." General Berry also gives him special 
mention in his report. This report succinctly describes the part 
his brigade took in the desperate fighting of that day, and is 
one of the best official documents of General Berry now extant. 
It is as follows : 

Headquarters 3D Brigade, » 

Kearny's Division, > 

Third Corps, May 6, 1862. ) 

1 have the honor to report that I moved my brigade from camp 
in advance of Yorktown yesterday morning in conformity to orders, 
my brigade taking the lead of the column. Nothing of interest 
occurred until near 10 a. m., when I found the road blockaded by 
troops and trains in advance. Hearing heavy firing at the front and 
seeing that the troops that immediately preceded me moved very 
slowly — or at least it seemed slow to me — I resolved to push my 
brigade through to the front at all hazards. I have the gratification 
of knowing that my course in this respect met with the approval of 
the General, who was pleased to instruct me to continue to move 
rapidly, keeping along the artillery and ammunition train. I at 
once dispatched Lieutenant Sturgis, of my staff, to the rear, with 
instructions to push forward all the regular artillery of the division, 
and also to do anything requisite and necessary for the rapid advance 
of the troops and ammunition. I am happy to say that Lieutenant 
Sturgis was successful in his efforts and contributed much to the 

I pushed forward with my brigade to the rebel earthworks to 
the left and in rear of the Brick Church, and there ordered my men 
to lay aside their knapsacks and everything cumbersome. After 
halting a few moments for rest, I ordered my command forward. 
Arriving within two miles of the field, I turned over to Captain 


McKeever, assistant adjutant-general 3d Corps, the 3d Regiment 
Michigan Volunteers, Colonel Champlin, to act as reserve and 
support on our left ; consequently they were not engaged in the 
action. I advanced with the three remaining regiments and arrived 
at the scene of action at about 2.30 o'clock p. m., and at once put 
my command into action under the eye and supervision of the 
General ; the 5th Michigan, Colonel Terry, taking the left side of the 
road in timber, supported on the left by the 37th New York, Colonel 
Hayman. I formed these regiments in loose order, the left extend- 
ing far into the timber, for the purpose of outflanking the enemy on 
that side. I placed one company in rear of the extreme left as a 
support. The 2d Michigan Volunteers was placed part on either 
side of the road, six companies being held as a reserve and located 
on the left side. 

As soon as these hurried arrangements were completed (and no 
time was to be lost, as all our artillery was in jeopardy) I ordered 
the troops on the left to advance and charge. Thev nobly responded 
and charged with much enthusiasm, driving the enemy entirelv out 
of the timber and into and partly through the fallen timber, causing 
him to leave a large number of his killed and wounded on the 
ground. The enemy was strongly posted in an old rifle pit, and 
caused the previous (General Hooker's) troops much annoyance in 
the forenoon. In the rifle pit in front of the 5th Michigan, sixty- 
three of the enemy's dead were found, the majority of whom were 
shot through the head. The 5th Michigan held possession of the 
rifle pits until the close of the action, and remained in them till 
morning. The 37th New York, still farther to the left, was con- 
tinually engaged. The enemy made frequent attempts to turn our 
left at this point, and was as often repulsed, and always gallantly 
and quickly. The 2d Michigan operated mostly under the immedi- 
ate eye of the General, and I saw only those on the left side of the 
road. They behaved gallantlv and prudently, always making sure 
of their aim when firing. Those companies held as reserve were 
ordered into action by the General, and most nobly did they acquit 

I take great pleasure in noticing the gallant conduct of Colonel 
Terry, of the 5th Michigan. He was injured in the early part of 
the engagement by a spent ball, but continued in the battle to the 


end and conducted his men gallantly. Colonel Hayman, 37th New 
York, led his men in fine style, always being where most needed, 
and by his cool, quiet manner, assured his officers and men around 
him. Colonel Poe, 2d Michigan, brought up his men gallantly, not 
unnecessarily exposing any of his command, but when the time 
came all were brought into action in a soldierly manner. We cap- 
tured some twenty prisoners, who informed us they were from 
different regiments, numbering 1,600 men, and were posted in front 
of our left. It was this number that some 800 of our men charged 
and forced to return at the point of the bayonet. 

I am pleased to make favorable mention of the conduct of Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel S. E. Beach, wounded in the thigh; Major J. D. 
Fairbanks, who had his horse shot under him ; and Lieutenant C. 
H. Hutchins, acting adjutant, all of the Michigan 5th ; and am glad 
to learn from Colonel Poe, 2d Michigan, that all his officers bore 
themselves throughout in a soldierly and brave manner. 

Colonel Hayman, 37th New York, reports the conduct of all 
his officers worthy of commendation, particularly those of the six 
left companies, commanded by Captains Maguire, Clark, De Lacy, 
O'Beirne, Diegnan, and First Lieutenant Havs ; also deems worthy 
of special notice First Sergeant Lawrence Murphy, Company K, 
and Sergeant Martin Conboy, Company B ; also to favorable con- 
sideration Corporal Patrick Kiggan, Company C, Corporal James 
Bo) le, Company C, Private Charles O'Brien, Company C, and 
Private Henry Brady, Company F. 

I would also call your attention to the conduct of my aides, 
Lieutenants Sturgis and Ladue, both of whom by their coolness and 
bravery were able to render me important service during the day ; 
and I wish to make particular mention of my acting assistant 
adjutant-general, Captain Smith, 4th Maine Volunteers, who was 
continually under fire during the engagement and rendered me great 
aid in leading and directing the troops. His conduct was, indeed, 
most gallant and noble. The casualties of the day have been many, 
comprising some of the finest officers and best men in my brigade, 
the names of whom will be furnished as soon as can be correctly 
ascertained. The number is as follows : 

Fifth Michigan. — Lieutenant James A. Gunning, killed ; Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel Beach, severely wounded ; Captain E. T. Sherlock, 


Company A ; Captain Heber Le Favour, Company F ; Lieutenant 
Tillotson, Company H ; twenty-nine non-commissioned officers and 
privates killed ; ninety-nine non-commissioned officers and privates, 
wounded ; fifty-four non-commissioned officers and privates missing, 
most of whom will come in. 

Second Michigan. — Lieutenant R. D. Johnson, Company A, 
wounded ; Captain W. R. Morse, Company F, severely wounded ; 
Captain W. B. McCreery, Company G, wounded ; fourteen non- 
commissioned officers and privates killed ; thirty-seven non-com- 
missioned officers and privates wounded ; fourteen non-commissioned 
officers and privates missing. 

Thirty-Seventh New York. — First Lieutenant Patrick H. Hays, 
and First Lieutenant Jeremiah O'Leary, killed ; Captain James T. 
Maguire, Captain William De Lacy, Second Lieutenant John Mas- 
sey. Second Lieutenant Edmund VV. Brown and Second Lieuten- 
ant James Smith, wounded ; twenty non-commissioned officers and 
privates killed ; sixty-four non-commissioned officers and privates 
wounded ; five non-commissioned officers and privates missing. 
Aggregate killed, sixty-five ; aggregate wounded, 208 ; aggregate 
missing, seventy-three. Total aggregate, 346. 

Very respectfully, your obedient servant, 

H. G. Berry, 
Brig. -Gen. Vols., Com'ding 3d Brigade. 

Lieutenant W. E. Sturgis, 
Act. Asst. Adjt.-Gen., Kearny's Division. 

General Berry's revised statement of casualties gives the 
loss of the 2d Michigan as seventeen men killed, three officers 
and thirty-five men wounded, and five missing, making an aggre- 
gate of sixty. The 5th Michigan lost one officer and twenty- 
eight men killed, five officers and 1 10 men wounded, making an 
aggregate of 144 officers and men killed and wounded. The 
loss of the 37th New York was two officers and twenty-one men 
killed, five officers and sixty-five m " wounded, two men miss- 
ing, making a total of ninety-five. The loss in Berry's brigade 
in killed, wounded and missing at the battle of Williamsburg 
was therefore 299 officers and men. 


Major H. L. Thayer of Michigan, who served at General 
Berry's headquarters as clerk to the assistant adjutant-general 
until appointed provost marshal after the battle of Fair Oaks, 
says of General Berry's conduct at the battle of Williamsburg: 
" When darkness stopped the dreadful carnage of that memor- 
able 5th of May, there was not a man who was left alive in our 
brigade who was not proud of our general, and the confidence 
he then and ever after expressed in the 'Michigan Brigade' was 
fully reciprocated." 



An Attempt to Rob him of his Hard Earned Glory. — Spirited 
Protest to Vice President Hamlin. — That Statesman's 
Reply. — Berry Writes Home. — Sent for by McClellan 
and Thanked for his Gallantry. — Heroic Conduct of 
Captain Edwin M. Smith. — Berry's Clothes Riddled 
with Bullets. — Terrible Scenes After the Battle. — Wil- 
liam and Mary College. — Kindness to Confederate Pris- 
oners. — Camp Life at Cumberland. — Residence of 
Tazewell Tyler, Son of Ex-President Tyler. — Church 
Where Washington Was Married. 

ATTEMPTS had been made to rob the gallant troops who 
saved the day at Williamsburg of the credit due their 
heroic conduct, the dispatches that were first sent broad- 
cast over the country giving to another brigade the honors of 
these achievements. But General McClellan on discovering the 
mistake promptly made the truth known, and gave to Berry's 
brigade the public commendation it deserved. 

Before this had been done, however, General Berry wrote 
a spirited letter to Vice President Hamlin protesting against the 
injustice done him and his men by those in authority. The 
relations between these two men were most intimate and cordial, 
and General Berry freely expressed his mind to the Vice 

The Vice President replied in his characteristic vein and 
assured General Berry of his constant faith in his ability and 


Washington, May 23, 1862. 
Dear General : I returned here yesterday and received your 
letter by General Heintzelman and also yours of the nth. I need 
not assure you that your gallant conduct at Williamsburg, and the 
signal service which you performed is gratifying to all of your friends 
and particularly so to me. I feel proud of it for yourself, and for 
our State. It was what I had faith you would do. I want to see 
General Heintzelman a major-general, and if I can do it he shall be. 
I have faith in him as you well know. 

In haste, yours truly, 

H. Hamlin. 
Brig. -Gen. H. G. Berry. 

In a letter home after the Williamsburg fight, General Berry 
says under date of May 9th, 1862 : " I am safe and telegraphed 
you yesterday of the fact. Monday morning we broke camp 
about three miles in advance of Yorktown at 4.30 A. M., march- 
ing on this place over one of the most muddy roads you ever 
saw, and in a bad rain storm. Our division was the second of 
Heintzelman's on the road, the first being some six or eight 
miles in advance in the vicinity of this town and immediately 
in front of the enemy. 

" The corps of Keyes advanced on the right by another 
road, and Sumner on our left by also another road. The divi- 
sion of our corps [Hooker's] in advance engaged the enemy 
about the time we broke camp. The roads were full of wagons 
and artillery, and many of them stuck in the mud. I passed all 
the troops on the road, some thousand who had to march by 
our road to reach their respective positions on the right and 
left, as they changed places relatively from that occupied in the 
old camp, and also all the baggage trains, ammunition trains and 
artillery. I had off all the knapsacks of my men, and rushed 
forward to support Hooker's division, which was fighting the 
whole force of the enemy, General Heintzelman being with it 
and fighting the ground inch by inch, the fight being in felled 
timber and thick woods. All of the horses and nearly all of 

m'clellan's congratulations. 141 

the men of the artillery and the infantry were either killed, 
wounded or exhausted. I arrived at 2.30 P. M., and immedi- 
ately went into the fight, fired three volleys on the enemy, and 
charged bayonets, recaptured all the artillery, drove the enemy 
from the woods into the plain field and held full possession of 
the ground, manned the artillery again with my own men, and 
served it until the close of the day. At six, other troops 
arrived, the fight ceased for the day, we in possession of the 
field. I took one of the enemy's rifle pits from which they had 
dealt destruction to all. * * * Have taken some hundreds of 
prisoners, besides killing and wounding some 800 of the enemy. 

" General McClellan sent for me today. I went to his 
headquarters, and there in the presence of Heintzelman received 
his thanks and congratulations. It is conceded by him and by 
all that my brigade won the fight. My clothes are somewhat 
torn with bullets ; other than that I am all right. Captain 
Smith of Wiscasset, my assistant adjutant-general, led a 
charge most gallantly. He had two caps shot off his head, 
besides bullets through his clothes. Our horses are scratched 
with balls but are not disabled. I was mounted throughout the 
entire fight. My brigade is a splendid one and I am much 
attached to it, and I trust beloved by it. I have lost many 
valuable officers and men, but have rendered the country a 
service by a forced march and hard fight, and I trust will be 
appreciated by it. I have no doubt of it. The 4th Maine was 
held in reserve after it arrived to support me if I wanted help. 
I did not call for it as I could get along without exposing 
them. The enemy has lost in killed and wounded at least 
2,500 men, many thousand prisoners, thousands of muskets, 
six cannon, and the roads for miles are strewed with knapsacks 
and everything that appertains to an army. 

" Now imagine me after dark setting pickets, amidst a terri- 
ble storm, dead and dying all around me ; horses in their last 
agonies, men calling for help, some on God in prayer, others 
groaning, friend and foe side by side. 

142 major-general siram g. berr^. 

" We worked all night, bringing the wounded to the camp 
fires. We could do nothing except give them water, as we had 
no food, no covering. I had eaten nothing since early morning; 
had no overcoat. My men, many of them, were in shirt sleeves. 
Well, we passed away the night, morning came, the enemy were 
just in sight (their rear guard). We took possession of the 
works and town. We found every house, church and building 
full of wounded. The battlefield next morning was an awful 
sight. We have now got the wounded together, and the dead 
mostly buried. I am somewhat worn down, as I was under fire 
in front of Yorktown for some eight days. This town is the 
site of William and Mary College, the oldest and most historic 
in the country. 'Tis a fine old place and looks like a town of 
refinement and prosperity in times of peace." 

Again General Berry writes under date of May iith: 
"We are now encamped in advance of the battlefield of Wil- 
liamsburg. My command is getting recruited again. We move 
tomorrow in the direction of Richmond. I have the credit of 
saving the troops engaged from defeat and shall be handsomely 
reported by my division commander, my corps commander, and 
also the commander of the army. All the officers acknowledge 
it, and when the mist which always obscures the facts in 
every fight blows away, and you get the official reports, then 
you will see my name made honorable mention of. As my 
command has been in, I shall not be likely to have the burdens 
of a hard fight again, unless all are brought into action. I lost 
one-fourth of all the men I took into action, either killed or 
wounded, but I saved the day by a dashing bayonet charge of 
the left wing, on the enemy's right. I think the war is on its 
last legs and that the enemy will soon give up, as they cannot 
keep their army out of our reach. The killed and wounded on 
our side in some 12,000 men engaged was 2,063, tnat °f 
the enemy much larger. I have seen the dead and dying, 
have lain among them and heard their prayers and groans. 
'Tis indeed awful, friend and foe alike, side by side. Enough of 


this, however. I will say we take all the care of the poor mis- 
guided men we take prisoners who are wounded that we do of 
our own, and a more grateful set of men I never saw. I have 
walked through all the hospitals and talked with scores and find 
but few who show disposition to continue the fight. They, 
however, are taught to believe us demons and do not find their 
mistake until we take them prisoners. The leaders, however, 
know better; the rank and file are the dupes." 

Again General Berry writes under date of May 17th: " I 
have been moving my brigade hither and thither. We are 
now at a place called Cumberland. We are in the rear and I 
suppose according to military usage will not have much to do 
in the next fight unless it is a general engagement. Many 
think there will not be a general fight, as McClellan may turn 
the flank of the enemy and thereby avoid it. I am here in a 
canvas tent six feet wide, eight feet long, a small table on one 
side and my camp bed on the other, a single chair and one 
tallow candle. My floor is the earth, and of course when the 
weather is wet, that is wet and damp enough. I have to eat as 
follows: For breakfast, coffee, (sometimes with, sometimes 
without sugar,) hardbread and salt beef, occasionally a piece of 
tough fresh beef. I have not seen a potato or any other vege- 
table for many weeks, or a chicken or hen. Beef, pork and 
hardbread is our fare when we can get it, which is not always. 
Still the soldiers do not complain ; they are willing to bear any 
kind of hardships, providing they can render service to their 
country. The particulars of the battle of Williamsburg will 
gradually be known. I lost one-fourth of all the men I carried 
into the fight. It almost made my heart bleed to see them fall 
right and left by my side, by dozens, at every volley of the 
enemy. Still the object in view had to be accomplished, and 
by God's providence I was selected as the one to lead on the 
men, who saved our forces from defeat on that day. I now think 
that we shall be in Richmond in a few days ; if by a fight or not, 
you will have the intelligence before you get news from me." 


Again under date of May 21 : "I write this from a point 
some twenty miles from Richmond, at a place called Baltimore 
Cross Roads, and some three miles in advance of Kent Court 
House. I visited on Sunday the place where Washington first 
met Martha Custis. The house I visited (now the headquarters 
of General McClellan) is on the site of the one history refers to ; 
it is a plain house, two stories high with a portico, bay windows, 
etc., flanked on either side by outbuildings, all in good repair, 
and very well arranged. The plantation is on both sides of the 
Pamunky River, contains about 2,000 acres, and is worked by 
over 300 slaves. It is now owned by General Lee of the rebel 
army, descendant of ' Light Horse Harry ' of the Revolu- 
tion, who you will remember was a son of Washington's first 
love, the lowland beauty, who afterwards married Richard 
Henry Lee, of Revolutionary fame also. The whole country 
about here wears an ancient look ; the soil is good and to 
all appearances it has been well worked, up to the time of this 
trouble taking place. 

" My camp is just opposite the house of Tazewell Tyler, a 
son of ex-President Tyler. He is a doctor in the rebel army. 
I learn from the slaves that he is not well liked, being rather 
dissipated. I am quartered in a house owned by a Mr. 
Tally, who left, it seems, everything on the approach of our 
forces. The retreating rebels have broken everything to pieces 
here as elsewhere on the line of their retreat. Our men inter- 
fere with nothing, protect everybody, and the inhabitants say 
they are much better treated by us than by the rebels." 

Continuing in the same reminiscent vein, General Berry 
writes home under date of May 22d : "We are encamped at 
same place, ' Baltimore Cross Roads.' The entire army has 
passed on to the front, leaving our corps to get rest. We have 
heretofore done all the work and fighting, others are now in 
front building roads and bridges. We shall move tomorrow or 
next day and shall set ourselves down before Richmond prepar- 
atory to the assault or siege as the case may be. I don't think 


the rebels will meet us. They were so terribly whipped at 
Williamsburg that their soldiers have contracted a dread of our 
troops, so say all contrabands and deserters who have come 
into our lines of late. I have had a few days' illness and am 
not well today. I was out riding today with General Heintzel- 
man to the White House as it is termed, where I wrote you that 
Washington first met his wife, and we passed the little church 
in which Washington was married. It stands in a grove of very 
large oak trees, is quite small, of ancient appearance, and is 
built of imported brick, one story high, sufficiently wide for 
two rows of benches, one on either side of the entrance, which 
is as usual in the end. The building is about fifty feet long, a 
small dingy affair indeed, but of much interest to the stranger 
for its history. The building is evidently very old — I should 
say something over ioo years, perhaps 125." 

Lieutenant J. B. Greenhalgh, the adjutant of the 4th Maine, 
who had been home on recruiting service, now joined General 
Berry's staff as senior aide-de-camp and continued in that 
capacity until the General's death. 

After the battle of Williamsburg a rapid pursuit of the 
retreating Confederates was prevented by the wretched condi- 
tion of the roads. In two weeks the army had not marched 
more than forty miles from Williamsburg, and the prospect of a 
rapid advance was despaired of. But by the 2 1st of May the 
Army of the Potomac had concentrated and was in line once 
more, with Richmond from seven to twelve miles distant. 
Between it and the Union forces lay the formidable army which 
the Confederates, profiting by the slow advance, had collected. 
The Chickahominy River was also to prove a difficult obstacle 
to overcome and served as a strong natural defense to the 
Confederate capital. McClellan was calling for reinforcements, 
believing that he did not have a sufficient force to make decisive 
the result of any victory he might gain over the opposing 
forces. The President turned a favorable ear to all of General 
McClellan's requests for troops, and an endeavor was made to 


strengthen the forces under his immediate command. In the 
meantime Heintzelman's corps, in which was General Berry's 
brigade, was acting as a reserve force to the Army of the 
Potomac and was therefore relieved of much of the hard labor 
and responsibility which fall to the forces at the front. 

May 26th, 1862, General Berry writes home: "We are 
now encamped only ten miles from Richmond. We are under 
marching orders for tomorrow morning. The battle will come 
off tomorrow or next day. I trust our arms will be successful 
and that the fall of Richmond will virtually end the war." 

Again he writes under date of May 30th: "The sword 
you have [presented by the sergeants of the 4th Maine] was in 
the battle of Williamsburg, so it becomes a relic, as well as a 
keepsake and present. I have been very unwell of late, I got 
a dreadful cold the day and night of the battle [Williamsburg]. 
I had no overcoat with me and was drenched with rain for 
thirty-six hours and had nothing to eat, so I got pretty badly 
used up in consequence of that, and the care and anxiety of a 
fight. I am now mending fast. We shall not attack Richmond 
for some days, not until we have the corps of McDowell and 
Wool to co-operate with us, then we shall take Richmond and 
bag, I trust, a large portion of their army." 



The Confederate Position. — Chickahominy Divides the 
Army of the Potomac. — Confederate Attack. — Casey 
and Couch Meet the Enemy. — Forced Back. — Berry Six 
Miles in Rear at Opening of the Battle. — He Hastens to 
the Front. — Ordered to Turn the Confederate Left 
Flank. — Brilliant Attack by the 3d and 5th Michi- 
gan. — Colonel Champlin Severely Wounded. — Enemy 
Driven Back and Lost Ground Recovered. — Threatened 
by a Flank Movement. — Promptly Met by the 37th New 
York. — General Kearny Leads the Charge. — Colonel 
Poe and the 2d Michigan. 

UNDOUBTEDLY Johnston, the rebel commander, believed 
that McDowell would attempt to form a junction with 
McClellan, and to prevent this, he determined to assume 
the offensive and attack McClellan before he could be reinforced. 
Accordingly he made disposition of his forces with this idea in 
view. Huger's division was ordered up from Petersburg. Hill 
was stationed on the north side of the Chickahominy at Meadows 
Bridge. Smith was ordered to take position on the left of 
Magruder on the Mechanicsville Turnpike, while Longstreet was 
placed on the left of D. H. Hill's division, and Huger in the 
rear of the interval between these divisions. Hill supported by 
Longstreet was to advance by the Williamsburg road to attack 
the Union troops in front. Huger with his division was to 
move down the Charles City road in order to attack in flank 
the troops who might be engaged with Hill and Longstreet, 


unless he found in his front force enough to occupy his division. 
Smith was to march to the junction of the New Bridge road 
and Nine Mile road, to be in readiness either to fall on Keyes' 
right flank or to cover Longstreet's left. 

Keyes with his entire corps had crossed the Chickahominy 
and on the 25th of May had taken up a position at the Seven 
Pines, on the main turnpike leading to Richmond, about five 
miles from the city. Heintzelman's corps had also crossed on 
that date, while Hooker moved northward to guard the White 
Oak Swamp bridge, and Kearny's division, including General 
Berry's brigade, took position in advance of Savage's Station. 
On the left bank of the Chickahominy were the corps of Sum- 
ner, Franklin and Porter ; thus did the river divide the Potomac 
Army, which numbered May 31st, according to the official 
returns, 126,089 officers and men and 280 pieces of field 

Under direction of General McClellan, a position a mile 
and a half in advance of Seven Pines had been selected and 
the work of fortifying had commenced. This position was 
considered important as it was at this point that the Williams- 
burg road made a junction with the Nine Mile road. The work 
of fortifying had not been completed when the Confederate 
attack was made upon this position. The advance of the left 
wing of the Army of the Potomac was composed of the 
brigades of General Casey's division, and occupied the unfin- 
ished works at Seven Pines. Couch's division was also 
encamped at Seven Pines about half a mile in the rear of 
Casey. General Keyes, to whose corps these divisions belonged, 
expected a battle and was preparing for it by sending his 
wagons to the north side of the river. On the 29th there was 
heavy skirmishing along Casey's front, and large bodies of the 
enemy threatened both flanks of Keyes' corps. This skirmish- 
ing became so severe on the 30th, that Casey called for rein- 
forcements, and Peck's brigade was sent to him. This was a 
reconnaissance made by the Confederate General Johnston to 


determine the time and manner of his attack. Heavy and 
protracted rains during the afternoon and night of the 30th of 
May had swelled the Chickahominy so that it appeared to the 
Confederate commander that the corps of General Keyes was 
cut off from the Army of the Potomac by the raging torrent, 
and he determined to throw his whole force upon Keyes and 
crush him. But the roads were in bad condition and the Con- 
federate troops did not get into position for attack as soon as 
expected by General Johnston. This attack was looked for by 
General Keyes, and he gave orders for the troops to be under 
arms at 1 1 o'clock, and had the artillery put in readiness 
for action. Heavy columns of the enemy appearing on his 
right, Keyes anticipated the weight of attack from that quarter. 
During the forenoon the firing in front of Casey became 
severe and as a precaution Keyes ordered up the brigade of 
Peck to his support. In his account of this attack, General 
Casey says : 

" On the morning of the 31st my pickets toward the right 
of my line succeeded in capturing Lieutenant Washington, an 
aide of General Johnston, of the rebel service. This circum- 
stance, in connection with the fact that Colonel Hunt, my 
general officer of the day. had reported to me that his outer 
pickets had heard cars running nearly all night on the Rich- 
mond end of the railroad, led me to exercise increased diligence. 
Between 1 1 and 12 o'clock a mounted vidette was sent in from 
the advanced pickets to report that a body of the enemy was 
in sight, approaching on the Richmond road. I immediately 
ordered the 103d Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers to advance 
to the front for the purpose of supporting the pickets. It was 
soon after reported to me by a mounted vidette that the enemy 
was advancing in force, and about the same time two shells 
were thrown over my camp. I was led to believe that a serious 
attack was contemplated, and immediately ordered the division 
under arms, the men at work on the rifle pits and abattis to be 
recalled and to join their regiments, the artillery to be harnessed 


up at once, and made my dispositions to repel the enemy. 
While these were in progress the pickets commenced firing. 

" The enemy now attacked me in large force on the center 
and both wings, and a brisk fire of musketry commenced along 
the two opposing lines, my artillery in the meantime throwing 
canister into their ranks with great effect. Perceiving at length 
that the enemy were threatening me upon both wings, for want 
of reinforcements, which had been repeatedly asked for, and 
that his column still pressed on, I then, in order to save my 
artillery, ordered a charge of bayonets by the four supporting 
regiments at the center, which was executed in a most gallant 
and successful manner under the immediate direction of Briga- 
dier-General Naglee, commanding ist Brigade, the enemy being 
driven back. When the charge had ceased, but not until the 
troops had reached the edge of the wood, the most terrible fire 
of musketry commenced that I have ever witnessed. The 
enemy again advanced in force, and the flank being again 
severely threatened, a retreat to the works became necessary. 
To be brief, the rifle pits were retained until they were almost 
enveloped by the enemy, the troops with some exceptions 
fighting with spirit and gallantry." The troops then retreated 
to the second line in possession of General Couch's division. 
So fierce was the Confederate attack upon Casey that his troops 
were thrown back in confusion upon Couch's division who was 
in line a half mile in the rear. All this time the men had been 
fighting in front of the intrenchments, but as the Union line fell 
back an opportunity was afforded the artillery, which opened 
with good effect with grape and canister upon the rebels as 
they pressed forward in pursuit. This checked for a time the 
advance of the enemy. 

Casey's division having been driven from the field, the 
brunt of the Confederate attack was now upon Couch whose 
division constituted the second line of defense. Here by the 
most desperate fighting did Couch endeavor to stem the rebel 
advance. Casey succeeded in rallying a portion of his troops 

couch's desperate struggle. 1.51 

and brought them into line with Couch. The Confederates now 
occupied Casey's camp, and flushed with success attacked with 
renewed vigor this second line of defense. Couch with a 
portion of his command was cut off from his division and 
endeavored to force his way through the rebel lines, but finding 
the odds against him, he withdrew toward the Grape Vine 
Bridge on the Chickahominy, and took a position facing Fair 

In the meantime Berry's brigade had been encamped six 
miles in the rear, on the night previous to the attack upon 
Casey. The next morning he was ordered up to support the 
front. When halting for dinner, the firing on Casey's troops 
commenced. Hastening forward, General Berry met large 
masses of troops straggling to the rear. Already had Casey 
been driven in and now Couch was struggling desperately 
against an overwhelming force of the enemy. Hastening the 
march of his brigade, General Berry soon met large numbers 
of Couch's troops, who cried that they were defeated ; still the 
little brigade of 2,500 men, with General Berry at their head, 
pushed on toward the front with unbroken ranks, through the 
masses of disordered fugitives. 

At this point General Kearny overtook Berry. 

"Are you not afraid to take your troops through this crowd 
of flying men?" he said. 

" No, sir," replied Berry, "not with such men as I have !" 

And through them he forced his brigade to the front, forming 
them in the open space and in the woods, and held the enemy 
in check until the arrival of reinforcements ; then concentrating 
his brigade on its left flank he advanced and retook that portion 
of Casey's camp which the enemy had taken on the left of the 

On receiving orders to turn the flank of the enemy, 
General Berry sent out the 3d Michigan, Colonel Champlin, 
to take position in the woods on the left of the Williamsburg 
road. Colonel Champlin executed this order in a most gallant 


manner. His regiment advanced into the woods, preceded by- 
fifty sharpshooters detailed from this regiment and under com- 
mand of Captain Judd. The 5th Michigan, Colonel Terry, 
under orders of General Berry, followed the 3d Michigan and 
supported it, while the 37th New York, Colonel Hayman, 
followed the 5th Michigan. Thus General Berry advanced his 
brigade to the attack in three lines of battle. The other regi- 
ment of his brigade, the 2d Michigan, Colonel Poe, was on 
picket duty when the order to attack in force was given. 
General Berry promptly concentrated this regiment on the 
right flank and held it in readiness to move to the front. To 
protect the flank of the 37th New York, General Berry detached 
two companies from the 2d Michigan, under Major Dillman, who 
formed on the flank of the New York regiment and did excel- 
lent service throughout the engagement. In the meantime the 
3d Michigan, which constituted the advance line of battle, 
attacked the foe vigorously. It had advanced but about a 
mile and a half when it encountered the enemy. Colonel 
Champlin promptly deployed his regiment in line of battle upon 
the left of the road, his right resting upon an abattis, while the 
left advanced at double-quick into a thicket of pines. Here 
the troops found it difficult to advance because of the mass of 
fallen timber, but Captain Judd's sharpshooters soon began 
their deadly work and the engagement now became general. 
The sharp crack of the sharpshooters' rifles was mingled with 
the deep-toned volleys of the enemy, and the clouds of smoke 
soon filled the woods, rendering obscure the embattled lines of 
the opposing forces. The dense woods, the din of battle and 
the shower of leaden hail were enough to shake the courage of 
less dauntless men than those of the 3d Michigan, but the men 
remained cool and steady, and each discharge of their rifles 
was delivered with telling effect. Colonel Champlin now 
ordered the regiment to charge. Leveling their bayonets they 
sprang forward with a yell that carried consternation to the 
hearts of their foes. A deadly volley was poured into their 


advancing ranks and the gallant Champlin fell, severely wounded 
in the hip. Captain Judd was also killed by the enemy's fire. 
Lieutenant-Colonel Stevens now took command and pressed 
forward the long line of glittering steel. This formidable array 
was too much for the courage of the enemy, and they fell back 
some eighty rods beyond the fence in the rear of the camp of 
General Palmer's brigade, where they rallied and made another 
stand. General Berry now brought forward in person the 5th 
Michigan to relieve the Third which had borne the brunt of 
the fight up to this time. After getting into the woods, Colonel 
Terry formed the Fifth in line of battle and promptly moved to 
the front, where he found the Third at a halt awaiting orders. 
Colonel Terry ordered his men forward, passing the 3d Michi- 
gan, two companies of which joined the Fifth in the forward 
movement. Soon the advancing line came upon the enemy, 
and a severe fire was opened on him, which soon compelled 
him to fall back. The 5th Michigan moved steadily forward, 
supported by the Third, halting and firing until the standing 
woods in front were clear of the enemy, who retired somewhat 
to the right into a slashing or abattis of fallen timber, adjoining 
to and between General Berry's men and a camp which had 
been occupied by Union troops. From this cover the enemy 
poured deadly volleys on the steady ranks of the Fifth. Twice 
was the enemy reinforced, but Colonel Terry steadily maintained 
his advanced position. But his cartridges were now gone ; the 
enemy kept up his merciless fire and the ranks of the Fifth were 
rapidly thinned under the shower of leaden hail. Lieutenant- 
Colonel Stevens brought the 3d Michigan into line with the 
Fifth, and together the two regiments presented a stubborn 
front to the foe. The cartridge boxes of the dead and wounded 
were now opened and furnished a limited supply of ammuni- 
tion, which enabled the men to continue the fire until about 

About an hour after General Berry became engaged, por- 
tions of regiments of other brigades came up and these General 


Berry formed on the left of the troops of his brigade, where 
they rendered conspicuous service. General Berry had now 
driven the enemy back so far that he had serious fears of being 
flanked by the heavy masses of infantry opposing him. 
Already they were driving the troops of other brigades down 
the road and plain, as well as those on the right of the road. 

General Berry, however, determined to hold his advanced 
position as long as possible. His troops were posted in such a 
manner as to command with their rifles the old camping 
ground of General Casey's division, which was now in possession 
of the enemy. A galling fire could also be maintained on the 
earthworks which Casey had abandoned early in the fight. 

General Berry now passed down through the slashings 
some one hundred and fifty yards and found the 37th New 
York, and two companies of the 2d Michigan, under Major 
Dillman, in position and at work. This regiment had consti- 
tuted the third line of battle of Berry's brigade and had 
followed the Richmond road to a point near a farm house, 
located in a clearing. During this movement it had been sub- 
jected to a heavy fire of artillery, which it withstood most 
gallantly. Colonel Hayman was unable to determine the pre- 
cise locality of the 3d and 5th Michigan regiments, which 
were fighting in the timber, and which he had been ordered to 
support. Having advanced to the farm house, he then pro- 
ceeded to the left until he found that the 3d and 5th Michigan 
regiments were in his front. He endeavored to find a 
position to co-operate with these regiments, which were now 
heavily engaged. While getting into position a heavy musketry 
fire was opened upon his right flank, and it appearing that the 
enemy was attempting to turn the right flank of the brigade 
and get in its rear, Colonel Hayman promptly disposed his 
regiment to meet this new danger. While he was personally 
conducting the leading company, in the movement then being 
made to get into the new position, and before it was completed, 
Colonel Hayman observed that his left wing was moving to the 

major pierce's hazardous service. 155 

front. He soon learned that this change of front had been 
ordered by General Kearny, the division commander, who had 
put himself at the head of the troops and was leading them in 
the charge. Colonel Hayman then faced his right wing to the 
left and followed the movement General Kearny was leading. 
This demonstration of the 37th New York effectually checked 
the enemy, who recrossed the road, where he was strongly 
reinforced, and opened a terrible fire on the Thirty-Seventh, 
which engaged in the unequal strife with spirit. The enemy 
was still moving a strong force to the right and rear. The reg- 
iment retained its position, however, until General Kearny 
ordered it to file to the rear and incline to the right, which it 
did in good order, taking its wounded with it. 

General Berry, finding that the Thirty-Seventh was moving 
to the rear under orders of the general of the division, ordered 
the other regiments to fall back also. 

In the meantime the advanced regiments of the brigade, 
the 3d and 5th Michigan, had steadily and courageously kept 
up the fight. When the ammunition of the Fifth gave out, 
Major Pierce of that regiment volunteered to procure cartridges 
and further orders. This was a hazardous service as the enemy 
now enveloped both flanks, and these regiments were in an 
isolated position, by reason of the falling back of the troops 
upon their right. Colonel Terry of the 5th Michigan was the 
senior officer present on this part of the line. Hearing rapid 
discharges of musketry nearly a mile in the rear, at the point 
where he had entered the woods, and his ammunition having 
been exhausted, with no troops to support him, and daylight 
fast disappearing in the gloom of night, he gave orders for the 
line to retire, which it did in good order, the regiments getting 
into camp about nine o'clock. 

Colonel Poe's 2d Michigan had in the meantime been doing 
good service on the right. He promptly obeyed General 
Berry's order to concentrate his regiment. Three companies 
were deployed across the road by order of General Heintzel- 


man with orders to stop all stragglers from passing to the rear. 
The other five companies as soon as concentrated were con- 
ducted by Colonel Poe to the scene of action, where they were 
assigned a position to support a line which was then being 
formed on the right of the road. This front line when ordered 
forward, did not number more than sixty men, who broke and 
passed to the rear of the 2d Michigan without firing more than 
five or six rounds. 

At this moment Colonel Hays, of the 62d Pennsylvania, 
urged Colonel Poe to advance, but seeing the forces on the left 
of the road in full retreat, he declined to do so, believing such 
a course would needlessly sacrifice his small command. Colonel 
Poe then fell back about five hundred yards, and took position 
in a wooded ravine which he was confident he could hold, as 
the ground over which the enemy would have been compelled 
to attack was clear, while he had the advantage of cover. At 
this time the enemy occupied the woods nearest him, with no 
troops in his front or on his flanks. Upon representations made 
by Colonel Hays, General Jameson gave Colonel Poe an order 
to move forward, which was obeyed with alacrity. The solid 
line of blue had no sooner emerged from cover into the open 
space than the enemy poured in a murderous fire from both 
sides of the road. With men dropping in the ranks like 
autumn leaves before a gale, the 2d Michigan continued to 
advance until within fifty yards of the enemy, when finding it 
impossible to hold such an exposed position, Colonel Poe 
received the assent of General Jameson to retreat, which was 
done in line of battle and in good order. This regiment was 
the last to leave the field on this part of the line. 



His Recklessness at Fair Oaks. — Death of his Assistant 
Adjutant-General Edwin M. Smith. — Care of his Body. 
— His History. — The Prince De Joinville Compliments 
Berry's Brigade. — McClellan, Heintzelman, Kearny and 
Hooker Acknowledge his Services. — Glowing Tribute 
from the New York Tribune. — Losses in Berry's Bri- 
gade. — Berry's Official Report. — Gallantry of Father 
Peter Tissot of the 37th New York. — Zeal of the Sur- 
geons of Berry's Brigade. — Berry's Tribute to his Dead 
Assistant Adjutant-General. — Great Credit Due Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel Stevens of 3d Michigan. 

GENERAL BERRY'S brigade suffered severely in the 
desperate engagement at Fair Oaks and came out of it 
much reduced. The ground fought over was swampy and 
thickly wooded and it was almost impossible to keep the lines 
connected. General Berry remained mounted throughout the 
entire engagement, a conspicuous mark for the foe. Here as at 
Williamsburg his intrepidity and manly bearing inspired every 
man to do his best. It was during this engagement that General 
Berry's assistant adjutant-general, Captain Edwin M. Smith of 
Wiscasset, Maine, was killed while gallantly leading troops to 
the charge. Major H. L. Thayer, one of General Berry's staff 
officers, says : 

" I met the General shortly after Captain Smith was killed. 
He was mounted, bare-headed, having lost his hat in the slash- 
ing, his face blackened with the smoke of powder, his eyes 


filled with tears, and his chin quivering with deep emotion as 
he told me the Captain's death was a great personal loss to 
him. He then directed me to mark the spot, and as soon as 
the firing had ceased so that men could be spared to assist me, 
to take the body to Corps Headquarters and remain with it 
until I either delivered the body at Rockland, Maine, or trans- 
ferred it to some one whom I knew would do so. After dark, 
with the help of three soldiers, we carried the body in an army 
blanket through the wet swamp and out of the timber about 
three miles, where, at midnight, Captain McKeever of the corps 
staff told me the orders just received from Washington were to 
send only the wounded, and that we must bury the body at 
once. We obeyed his order, but found a sandy spot in the 
orchard and made the grave shallow, as I still hoped to carry 
out my original instructions. Early the next morning, Mr. Z. F. 
French, sutler of the 4th Maine, came with his ambulance, in 
which we placed our friend's remains, and French hastened 
away with them to his vessel at some point on the river. As 
the advance pickets from the enemy were already firing on us 
from the farther side of the orchard, this spot was hurriedly 
abandoned, except by some surgeons and their assistants, who 
volunteered to remain with the wounded who had been brought 
to this point during the night." 

Captain Edwin M. Smith was the son of Hon. Samuel E. 
Smith, ex-Governor of Maine. He was born in Wiscasset, and 
completed a full course at Bowdoin College, after which he 
studied law, and then finished his education by travel in Europe. 
Shortly after his return from abroad, the war broke out, and 
with all the ardor of a youthful nature he enlisted in the conflict. 
He was the first volunteer from his native town. His company 
unanimously elected him captain, and with it he joined the 
4th Maine, and fought his first battle at Bull Run. Captain 
Smith is said to have been one of the last officers in his regi- 
ment to leave the battlefield, and then barely escaped with 
his life by the use of his revolver. Soon after he was 


commissioned major of his regiment, but declined the office, 
preferring to follow his colonel, then made a brigadier-general, 
as assistant adjutant-general upon his staff. At Williamsburg 
Smith led the 5th Michigan in the charge upon the enemy's 
works, and carried them with a storm of fire. Four bullet 
holes through his clothes proved the risks he run. After the 
battle he was introduced by General Kearny to other officers as 
" the hero of the day." In his official dispatches, the same 
general spoke most flatteringly of Smith's bravery and predicted 
for him " a career of usefulness and glory." At the battle of 
Fair Oaks, Smith again led the 5th Michigan in a charge, but 
it was his last, for a rifle bullet striking him in the temple 
quenched at once his gallant young life. His body was brought 
safely home for burial and committed to earth with military, 
Masonic and civic honors. 

On the night before the attack on Yorktown, in the noise 
of camp and the bustle of preparations for the morrow, he 
made his will of which this is the closing paragraph : "And 
now, having arranged for the disposition of my worldly estate, 
I will say, possessing a full confidence in the Christian religion, 
and believing in the righteousness of the cause in which I am 
engaged, I am ready to offer my poor life in vindication of that 
cause, and in sustaining a government, the mildest and most 
beneficial the world has ever known." 

As night fell, shrouding in gloom that terrible field of blood 
and carnage, the rebel advance had been stopped and the 
Army of the Potomac was again saved from disaster. None 
contributed more to this result than General Berry and his 
gallant brigade. In the words of their intrepid division com- 
mander, "They accomplished all that I hoped for." The fury 
of the fight may be understood by the fact that on the field of 
battle fought by Berry's brigade, there were counted 537 dead 
rebels, and upon a spot sixteen feet square lay twenty-five of the 
enemy's dead. Of Berry's brigade at Fair Oaks, the Prince de 
Joinville says: " Meanwhile Heintzelman rushes to the rescue. 


As at Williamsburg, Kearny arrives in good time to re-establish 
the fight. Berry's brigade of this division, composed of three 
Michigan regiments and an Irish battalion, [37th New York,] 
advances firm as a wall into the midst of the disordered mass, 
which wanders over the battlefield, and does more by its exam- 
ple than the most powerful reinforcements ; about a mile of 
the ground has been lost, fifteen pieces of cannon, the camp of 
the division of the advance guard, that of General Casey; but 
now we hold our own." 

Other portions of the Federal lines were broken, but Berry's 
brigade was not driven one foot. Of them General Heintzel- 
man says : " These troops, however, most gallantly kept their 
position on the rebels' right flank and kept up such a deadly 
fire that no effort the enemy made could dislodge them. They 
remained until dark, firing away sixty rounds of ammunition to 
each man, and then supplying themselves with cartridges from 
the dead and wounded. Their fire completely commanded the 
open space in their front, and not a mounted man succeeded 
in passing under their fire." 

At the battle of Fair Oaks, Generals McClellan, Heintzel- 
man, Kearny and Hooker personally complimented General 
Berry for his skill and bravery. General McClellan in his 
official report, says : " General Berry was ordered to take pos- 
session of the woods on the left, and pushed forward so as to 
have a flank fire on the enemy's lines. This movement was 
executed brilliantly, General Berry pushing his regiments for- 
ward through the woods until their rifles commanded the left 
of the camp and works occupied by General Casey's division in 
the morning. Their fire on the pursuing columns of the 
enemy was very destructive, and assisted materially in checking 
the pursuit in that part of the field. He held his position in 
these woods against several attacks of superior numbers, and 
after dark, being cut off by the enemy from the main body, he 
fell back toward White Oak Swamp, and by a circuit brought 
his men into our lines in good order." 


General Heintzelman says in his report: "Our reinforce- 
ments now began to arrive. General Berry's brigade was sent 
into the woods on our left and ordered to outflank the enemy, 
who occupied in force General Casey's camp, and had a battery 
of artillery near a large woodpile in rear of the unfinished 
redoubt. This position General Berry held till dark. * * * * 
When the troops on the right of the road near the Seven Pines 
gave way, the enemy pushed several regiments across the main 
road, placing them between General Berry's brigade, part of 
Jameson's and the portion of our troops who gave way from 
the right of the road. * * * * When night came on they fell 
back about a mile, took the Saw Mill road, and by 8 p. M. joined 
their division. When we reoccupied their ground again the 
rebel dead covering their front attested their coolness and accu- 
racy of fire." 

General Phil Kearny, who commanded the division to 
which General Berry's brigade belonged, says in his report: 
" On arriving at the field of battle we found certain zigzag rifle 
pits sheltering crowds of men and the enemy firing from abattis 
and timber in their front. General Casey remarked to me on 
coming up, 'If you will regain our late camp the day will still 
be ours.' I had but the 3d Michigan up, but they moved for- 
ward with alacrity dashing into the felled timber and commenced 
a desperate but determined contest, heedless of the shell and 
ball which rained upon them. This regiment, the only one of 
Berry's brigade not engaged at Williamsburg, at the price of a 
severe loss, has nearly outvied all competitors. Its work this 
day was complete. The next regiment that came up, the 5th 
Michigan, again won laurels as fresh as those due them from 
Williamsburg. Its noble officers did their duty. I directed 
General Berry with this regiment to turn the slashings, and, 
fighting, gain the open ground on the enemy's right flank. 
This was perfectly accomplished. The 37th New York was 
arranged in column to support the attack. Its services in the 
sequel proved invaluable. This was perhaps near six o'clock, 


when our center and right defended by troops of other divisions, 
with all their willingness, could no longer resist the enemy's 
right central flank attacks, pushed on with determined discipline 
and with the impulsion of numerous concentrated masses. 
Once broken, our troops fled incontinently, and a dense body 
of the enemy pursuing rapidly, yet in order, occupied the 
Williamsburg road, the entire open ground, and penetrating 
deep into the woods on either side interposed between my 
division and my line of retreat. It was on this occasion that, 
seeing myself cut off, and relying on the high discipline and 
determined valor of the 37th New York Volunteers, I faced 
them to the rear against the enemy, and held the ground, 
although so critically placed, and despite the masses that gath- 
ered on and had passed us, checked the enemy in his intent of 
cutting us off against the White Oak Swamp. This enabled 
the advance regiments, averted by orders and this contest in 
their rear, to return from their hitherto victorious career, and 
to retire by a remaining wood path known to our scouts (the 
Saw Mill road) until they once more arrived at and remanned 
the impregnable position we had left at noon at our own forti- 
fied division camp. The loss of the 37th New York is severe. 
Colonel Hayman, its colonel, has ever been most distinguished. 
He revived this day his reputation gained in Mexico." 

The New York Tribune, of June 4th, 1862, pays a glowing 
tribute to General Berry's men. It says : " My veneration of 
the fighting done by the warriors of Berry's brigade, and by 
the men whom Kearny led up, and by all the others who stood 
by Peck and Couch and Keyes, and who rallied under the 
fluttering cloak of the fiery Heintzelman, is glowing. Com- 
panionship in arms with such men would to me be the most 
satisfactory distinction. I would covet the honor, if usage 
could confer it, of adoption into either of the Michigan regi- 
ments whom I saw on the leap through shot and shell infested 
wood — on the leap to the ruin advancing upon us from the 
front to take in flank and stay it — an adoption with a visible 

" CHARGE." 163 

sign, so that when asked, ' To what service do you belong?' I 
could proudly reply, ' I belong to Berry's brigade.' 

" Cromwell never had better troops than those, who, under 
command of this good officer, swept with fire and steel the 
whole rebel force from Casey's camping ground and earthworks, 
piling it with monuments of their terrible marksmanship. A 
North Carolina regiment sent against the 3d Michigan had its 
front file wholly knocked down by a volley. The next file 
turned and run. A line of bayonets depressed behind them 
held them fast. ' Charge ! ' ordered the Michigan colonel. 
Over the rail fence leaped our men, with a yell that ever smites 
terror. Their bayonet points were not waited for. The Caro- 
linians broke and ran." 

The losses in Berry's brigade at the battle of Fair Oaks in 
killed, wounded and missing, were 463 officers and men. Of 
this number the 37th New York lost in killed one officer and 
eleven men, wounded six officers and sixty-two men, missing 
two men, making a total loss of eighty-two officers and men. 
The 2d Michigan, ten men killed, two officers and forty-five 
men wounded, making an aggregate loss of fifty-seven officers 
and men. The 3d Michigan had one officer and twenty-nine 
men killed, nine officers and 1 15 men wounded, and fifteen men 
missing, making a total loss of 169. The 5th Michigan, lost 
and killed two officers and twenty-nine men, wounded five 
officers and 100 men, and nineteen men missing, making a total 
loss of 155 in this regiment. These figures will give an idea of 
the desperate fighting done by this brigade. General Berry 
graphically relates the part his brigade took in the fight at Fair 
Oaks in his official report written at thet ime. It is as follows : 

Headquarters Berry's Brigade, 
Kearny's Division, 

June 1, 1862. 

Captain : Yesterday morning^ in obedience to orders, I moved 
my brigade from its camping ground, some three miles below, to 
the vicinity of these works, where we bivouacked at 12 m. I placed 


the 37th New York Volunteers, Lieutenant-Colonel Riordan com- 
manding (Colonel Hayman having been previously detailed by 
yourself as division officer of the day), in the works along the sides 
(west and north). At one o'clock I received an order from your 
headquarters to place my entire command in rear of the intrench- 
ments. I had scarcely got my men into their several positions when 
I received an order from your headquarters to have one regiment 
placed in the woods on the left of the Williamsburg road on our 
front. I ordered out the 3d Michigan, Colonel Champlin, for that 
purpose, preceded by fifty sharpshooters detailed from the regiment, 
and under the command of Captain Judd. This regiment I moved 
across the plain, when I received an order to move the balance of 
my brigade to the front ; also to send for all my men then on other 
duties in the field to report to their commander at the front. The 
5th Michigan, Colonel Terry, followed the 3d Michigan, the 
37th New York following the 5th Michigan. 

The 2d Michigan, Colonel Poe, was on picket duty. I ordered 
the colonel to concentrate his regiment on the right flank and hold 
it in readiness to move to the front. On my order Colonel Poe sent 
forward two companies, under the command of Major Dillman, 
who took position on the flank of the 37th New York and did 
excellent service. The 3d Michigan moved into the woods about 
one mile in advance of this camp on the left of the road, and by 
gallant fighting drove the enemy for more than a mile along the left 
of the woods into and through the slashings. 

At this time the 5th Michigan came into the field and was 
conducted forward by myself, and with it I relieved the 3d Michigan 
and placed the Third in reserve to the Fifth. About one hour later 
a portion of regiments of other brigades came up. I formed these 
on the left of the troops of my brigade into the timber. We steadily 
drove the enemy forward so far that I had serious fears of being 
flanked by the enemy, as they were driving our troops down the 
road and plain as well as on the right of the road. 

We were at this time in the woods, extending from the edge of 
the slashings below, up the woods, and on the left of the camping 
ground of General Casey's division, completely commanding his 
old camp and the earthworks with our rifles. I then passed down 
through the slashings some 150 yards, and found the 37th New York 


Volunteers and Colonel Poe's two companies, under Major Dillman, 
in position and at work. On my return to the front I learned that 
Captain Smith, my assistant adjutant-general, had been killed. We 
held the enemy in check, and could have driven them back farther 
had the center and right of our line been able to hold their 
position. About 5.30 p. m. I discovered the 37th New York moving 
to the rear. On inquiry I found they had been ordered to fall back 
by the general of division to prevent being flanked and captured. 
I then gave orders to the other regiments to fall back also, some 
portions of which did not get the order in consequence of the thick 
woods, but all did make good their movement to the rear and came 
into camp in order. 

The brigade has suffered severely and is much reduced. The 
ground we fought on was swampy and thicklv wooded. It was 
almost impossible to keep our lines connected. The enemy repeat- 
edly attempted to turn our left, but by the exertions of Lieutenant- 
Colonel Stevens, and Majors Fairbanks and Pierce, were as often 
handsomely repulsed. Colonel Poe's three companies, first concen- 
trated, were sent by order of General Heintzelman, to form a guard 
line across the rear of our army to prevent straggling. The balance, 
five companies, were reported to General Heintzelman, and went 
into action on the main road, under command of Colonel Poe in 
person. These last named companies suffered severely, as they 
fought largely superior numbers, for the particulars of which I 
respectfully refer you to Colonel Poe's report. 

I have to say that the regiments of this command fought a hard 
fight in a most difficult and trying position under great disadvantages 
and against fearful odds. They fully sustained their former reputa- 
tion as good soldiers and gallant men, and I am constrained to say 
did their part to secure a victory to our arms. 

I have to make honorable mention of Colonel Champlin, of the 
3d Michigan Volunteers, who was wounded in the fight. Lieutenant- 
Colonel Stevens and Major Pierce, of the same regiment, did their 
duty nobly. I am pleased to add that Colonel Champlin's wound is 
not dangerous, though severe. I have to report the loss of Captain 
Judd, of this regiment. He commanded the body of sharpshooters. 
He fell at their head. This regiment's fire told fearfully on the 
enemy. The sharpshooters raked the road and field with their fire. 


Colonel Terry and Major Fairbanks, of the 5th Michigan, both 
displayed their accustomed bravery. Their regiment fought well and 
gallantly, and fully maintained their previous reputation gained at 
Williamsburg. Colonel Poe makes honorable mention of Lieutenant- 
Colonel Williams and Adjutant R. H. Mahon, and I wish to add 
Major Dillman, who it will be remembered commanded two compa- 
nies on the flank of the 37th New York. Colonel Hayman fought 
his regiment mostly under the eye of the division general. I would 
therefore refer you to Colonel Hayman's official report. Colonel Hay- 
man mentions as worthy of special notice Lieutenant James Henry, 
adjutant ; also Captain J. R. O'Beirne, Lieutenant W. C. Green and 
P. J. Smith. It will be seen that the list of missing in my brigade is 
ver) small. The withdrawal of my men under the circumstances was 
accomplished without much loss. I wish to accord great credit to 
Lieutenant-Colonel Stevens, of 3d Michigan, for valuable services 
rendered in getting a portion of the men of the 3d and 5th Regiments 
well off the ground after our retreat was made difficult. The men 
of these regiments were unwilling to leave the ground they won, and 
it was not until they had fired their last cartridges, and all they could 
obtain from the boxes of the killed and wounded, that they were 
willing to fall back. Being accustomed to the woods, they came into 
the camp in order and without losing any men as prisoners. Father 
Peter Tissot, chaplain of the 37th New York Volunteers, was in 
the engagement and rendered valuable service to his regiment. He 
had his horse killed under him. He was also in the thickest of the 
engagement at Williamsburg. I take great pleasure in commending 
him to the general of the division as in every way a worthy and 
model chaplain. I would call the attention of the general of the divi- 
sion to the uniform good conduct of the surgeons of this brigade. 
They have been very attentive and industrious in rendering to those of 
my command who were wounded the aid so necessary. The brigade 
is indeed fortunate in having the services of so good a board of 
surgeons. 1 feel particularly the loss of my accomplished and brave 
assistant adjutant-general, Captain Smith. A more gallant man did 
not exist. He fell while nobly discharging his duty. 

H. G. Berry, 
Captain W. E. Sturgis, Brig. -Gen., Com'ding 3d Brigade. 

Asst. Adjt. Gen. 



Changes on Berry's Staff.— Letter from the Vice President. 
—His Command Much Reduced.— Tribute to Colonel 
Elijah Walker and the 4th Maine.— Terrible Losses — 
The 1st New York Assigned to Berry's Brigade.— 
Colonel Dyckman.— Pickets Attacked.— Major H. L. 
Thayer Relates an Important Incident.— Kearny Seeks 
Permission to Enter Richmond and Release Union Pris- 
oners.— McClellan Refuses.— Kearny Denounces him 
in Severe Terms.— Excitement and Fatigue.— Berry 
Shares Hardships with his Men. 

AFTER the death of Captain Smith, General Berry's assist- 
ant adjutant-general, Lieutenant E. H. Shook of the 
Michigan Volunteers, acted in that capacity, until Captain 
George W. Wilson of the 5th Michigan was promoted to that 
position. Other changes were made in the staff, Lieutenants 
George W. Freeman of the 2d Michigan and S. S. Huntley of 
the 37th New York being appointed aides-de-camp in the place 
of Ladue and Sturgis. Lieutenant H. L Thayer of the 3d 
Michigan, who had served as clerk at General Berry's headquar- 
ters up to this time, was also appointed provost marshal of the 
brigade, and instructed to select forty picked men to remain at 
headquarters for such special duties as might be required. 

Vice President Hamlin wrote General Berry after the battle 
of Fair Oaks, condoling him on the death of Assistant Adjutant- 
General Smith. His letter follows : 


Washington, June 8, 1862. 
Dear General : It made me feel sad to receive your letter 
of the 3d, for only two days before receiving it I had written you of 
the appointment and confirmation of your assistant adjutant-general. 
Let me know who you may want in his place, and I will attend to 
it for you at once. * * * * You had a most desperate fight on 
Saturday and Sunday, and I have no doubt the rebels expected to 
annihilate you all. And it was the valiant officers and men who alone 
prevented it. You must have been outnumbered two or three to" 
one. And we all leel proud of the gallant officers and noble men 
from our Pine Tree State. 

Yours faithfully, 

H. Hamlin. 
Brig. -Gen. H. G. Berry. 

Under date of June 3d, 1862, General Berry writes home: 
" I am yet in health, and so far unhurt. That is, I have not 
been injured by ball or bullet although somewhat bruised by 
tumbling over logs, etc. On Saturday, the enemy, 30,000 
strong, attacked the most advanced divisions, some two miles 
ahead of ours. They drove our people in on our lines. We 
were ordered to the front, my brigade being under arms on my 
own order. Having taken this precaution, I moved out to 
check the enemy in the advance. I took the left, and the 
enemy were handsomely checked at my command. Jameson 
took the center, (of Kearny's division,) Birney the right. 
They did not succeed so well in keeping the enemy at bay. 
So night closed in. My loss was 463 killed and wounded. 
Poor Smith is no more [Captain Edwin M. Smith]. He was 
shot through the head. He was my best man and I cannot 
replace him ; he died while nobly doing his duty. Jabez 
Greenhalgh is with me now. I have Mr. Tallman of Bath also, 
as quartermaster [James H. Tallman]. On Sunday the enemy 
attacked our lines again and were whipped terribly. The 4th 
Maine had a hand in the fight and behaved nobly. Walker 
[Colonel Elijah Walker] handled his men well and has great 

CL^^^d^L Z&^t^L 

The War Vice-President. 


credit for it. The Commander-in-Chief McCIellan, Heintzel- 
man, Kearny, Prince de Joinville and the Count of Paris have 
all acknowledged my services of Saturday last. My brigade is 
much reduced. I have not one-half a command left, as many 
who escaped are sick by constant excitement and exposure. 
The last fight is named Battle of Seven Pines (or Fair Oaks)." 
Again he writes, June 5th: "Probably ere this you have 
full accounts of the fight, or Battle of Fair Oaks. Casey's 
division was in advance of that portion of the forces that we 
had got over the Chickahominy, some 40,000. Kearny came 
next. On Saturday Casey was attacked by the entire rebel 
army and driven back. My brigade was placed under arms as 
soon as it was evident that Casey was retreating. When the 
fact was evident, General Heintzelman ordered me to go forward 
and take the left of our line, push the enemy back and recover 
the lost ground. I brought my brigade to the front at double 
quick, and succeeded in first checking, and then driving, the 
enemy back over the ground they had advanced upon. The 
right, which was composed of two other brigades, did not suc- 
ceed so well; in consequence the enemy held a portion of our 
ground during the night. We reinforced our right and next 
morning drove the enemy at the point of the bayonet out of 
all the ground of our old position. I am well although suffering 
great privations. The old regiment [4th Maine] did finely, 
and is one of the best in the service. Walker [Colonel Elijah 
Walker] is one of the bravest of men. Poor Smith [Captain 
E. M. Smith] was killed instantly. A more gallant and prom- 
ising officer was not in the army. We shall push on to Rich- 
mond in a day or two, and I shall write all about that hot-bed of 
secession. I have only 1,560 men left out of 3,400 that I took 
to Hampton, near Fortress Monroe. I have had about 900 
killed and wounded, and about 1,000 broken down by sickness 
and fatigue. My brigade has fought more than any other and 
has done its work to the entire satisfaction of all. I under- 
stand I am to have more fresh regiments ; of that, however, I 


do not know. I shall have a chance at new regiments, as all 
are friendly." 

Again General Berry writes home under date of June 8th : 
"The smoke and excitement of the battle of May 31st and 
June 1st have just died away. On summing up we find our 
army has lost 7,000 men; the rebels admit a loss of 10,000 — a 
terrible battle indeed. God only knows how many more of the 
kind we are to fight. We are now close in to Richmond, being 
but four miles from there with our advance. We are now await- 
ing reinforcements which are coming in daily, and we judge the 
fight will not come off for days yet. I have had a new regi- 
ment assigned to me, the 1st New York, Colonel Dyckman, 
which makes my command quite large again. I am quite well, 
having got over in a measure my sickness, and I am quite 
black and hard looking. I do not think you would know me. 
The 4th Maine was engaged and did splendidly. They fought 
mostly from cover, which accounts for their small loss. Walker 
[Colonel Elijah] did splendidly; none could do better. The 
regiment is in fine condition." 

June 14th, General Berry writes: "Since the battle [Fair 
Oaks] I have had the 1st New York assigned to me, Colonel 
Dyckman, the officer to whom the committee awarded the 
' gold snuff box ' of General Jackson, as being the bravest man 
in the Mexican War from New York State. I have the sole 
charge of the front (our front). It makes it pretty hard, and 
it is wearing on me somewhat. I shall do all I can and if my 
health fails me I cannot help it. At the present time I am 
pretty well, but greatly careworn. The army is receiving 
reinforcements daily. How long we shall remain here none can 
tell, nor do we know how or where the battle is to commence 
before Richmond. I have just come in from the front and 
have passed over a portion of my fighting ground in the last 
battle. Many are yet unburied ; we are at work covering up 
rebel bodies daily. I have no news. One thing certain, I 
never in all my eventful life endured so many sufferings and 


privations as I have the past ten months. I hope, however, 
to come out all right. I have done all my duty here. The 
fight of my brigade in the late battle was a success." 

June 15th, he wrote as follows: "I was obliged to stop 
writing, owing to pressing duties. I resume at this moment — 
7 P. M. I have just come in from the front. My pickets were 
attacked by a rebel regiment, one of my men shot; we killed 
two rebels, wounded others and took six prisoners. The 4th 
Maine was on picket and did the work. I now have charge of 
the outposts, and, consequently, all regiments detailed for that 
duty are under my immediate charge. We are reinforcing 
quite rapidly. I suppose the enemy is doing the same, and we 
shall finish the war here, as the strength of the two armies will 
be concentrated here." 

Major H. L. Thayer, of General Berry's staff, relates the 
following incident which is of historical importance: " My pro- 
motion to provost marshal on the staff of General Berry gave 
me still better opportunities for knowing our general and his 
personal opinions on many subjects which, as soldiers, were 
only discussed among ourselves, as members of one family. 
Of one incident, which seemed of great importance to all of 
us then, I will speak. When the plans of the commanding 
general for the retreat from the Peninsula were made known to 
the general officers, our corps [Heintzelman's] still comprised 
the two divisions under Kearny and Hooker. We were on the 
extreme left and facing toward Richmond, whose church spires 
could be seen from our picket lines and only three and one- 
half to four miles away. These plans were earnestly discussed 
and so strongly opposed, that Generals Kearny and Hooker, 
accompanied by Heintzelman, together with General Berry and 
some other brigade commanders, rode to General McClellan's 
headquarters, where General Kearny, as principal speaker, ear- 
nestly insisted that he should be granted permission to march 
our division at once into Richmond to liberate the 14,000 of 
our men known to be held there in Libby as prisoners, and, if 


not deemed best to hold possession of the city, to return; that 
as there was only a small force of the enemy between us and 
the city, the main part of General Lee's army being opposite 
our extreme right where the fighting was then going on at 
Gaines Mills, nearly fourteen miles away, he believed this 
could be done successfully. It would also tend to divert the 
enemy and possibly make our retreat unnecessary. General 
Hooker also heartily approved of the plan, saying that in his 
opinion one division could alone do all that Kearny had pro- 
posed, but, for safety, suggested that one division should 
advance into the city while the other should remain in reserve 
guarding the flank. General Heintzelman's views coincided, 
but all their united arguments having no effect in changing 
General McClellan's plans, General Kearny denounced him in 
language so strong, that all who heard it expected he would be 
placed under arrest until a general court-martial could be held, 
or at least he would be relieved from his command. 

" On their return in the evening, General Berry with a 
heavy heart detailed the exciting incidents of that conference 
to us, and while little of the occurrences of that particular 
event was then allowed to be generally known to the Army of 
the Potomac, our two divisions were never afterward as enthusi- 
astic for * Little Mac ' as we had been while fighting our way 
up the Peninsula." 

After Sumner had thrown his corps across the Chicka- 
hominy to the assistance of Keyes and Heintzelman, and hurled 
back in defeat the exultant enemy, whose advance had been 
so gallantly stopped by Berry's brigade and other troops the 
preceding day at Seven Pines, the Army of the Potomac 
supinely sat itself down to ponder on the victory and permit 
the Confederates to escape. Why the retreating enemy were 
not vigorously pursued after the battle of Fair Oaks has never 
yet been explained to the satisfaction of military men. 

After the battle of Fair Oaks, General Berry was assigned 
a position on the extreme front and left, a most dangerous and 


exacting position, as the Union pickets were daily attacked with 
greater or less force. For more than two weeks this state of 
affairs continued to exist. From this time till the completion 
of the " change of base " to Harrison's Landing, General 
Berry's brigade, and the entire army, was in a state of great 
and continual excitement and anxiety, the effect of which was 
most fatiguing and disheartening to officers and men alike. 
Indeed, from the ist to the 27th of June, there was hardly a 
day or night, and scarcely an hour, when it was not necessary 
to be constantly on the alert. General Berry shared with the 
men the danger and fatigue, but his anxiety for the welfare of 
those under his command much exceeded that of the men 
themselves. He was constantly among them, solicitous for 
their well-being and zealous in promoting their efficiency. The 
knowledge that he shared their perils and fatigue enabled his 
command to endure every danger and trial with the most 
heroic fortitude, and they looked upon their general with a fond 
regard which the survivors of the gallant old brigade cherish 
to this day. 

General Berry writes under date of June 17th, 1862: 
" It is just one year today since I left you — the saddest, or one 
of the saddest of my life — a year that has indeed been eventful 
in more ways than one to me. That it has brought with it 
hardships and perils is even so, but perhaps I should have met 
them at home or elsewhere by sickness or accident. Enough 
it is to know that so far I have passed through all, have fair 
health and a good position. I trust that the worst has passed 
and that the power of the rebellion is broken by the downfall 
of Beauregard and the loss to the enemy of the Mississippi 
River. They have no natural boundary left; their country is 
divided by our occupancy of the great river, and the same can 
never be retaken. Richmond is sure to fall, and I feel that 
its fall will end the war. Now one word of encouragement : I 
shall try to be with you at our birthdays in August. Our 
daughter will be sixteen. I feel I must be at home in that 


month. I go home at peace with all mankind. I have sought 
the front in the two battles, and Providence has seen fit to spare 
my life, though many have fallen by my side, even whilst I have 
been giving them orders. I shall seek no more exposed 
places. All say (Heintzelman, Hooker, Keyes, Kearny, De Join- 
ville and many others) that I have done enough. I trust when 
Richmond falls the war closes. I shall then be with you. I 
have accomplished my object, and shall feel ready, willing, yes, 
anxious to retire at the earliest moment. I want nothing ; no 
place, no position that takes me from home. I hold the left 
of the front towards Richmond. The division is under my 
charge, as Kearny has given me control of the same for all 
purposes needed in the carrying out of orders. This post (the 
left) is a post of honor. Michigan men say I must hereafter 
live in their State. It is flattering, but I shall live in Rockland 
to the end." 



Battle of Oak Grove or the Peach Orchard. — 2d and 3d 
Michigan Move to Support the Pickets. — The 1st and 
37th New York at the Post of Danger. — Saves Beam's 
Battery. — General Berry's Report. — Gaines Mills. — Strat- 
egy of Magruder. — Berry Ordered to Fall Back. — 4th 
Maine Repair Fisher's and Jordon's Fords. — Passage of 
Fisher's Ford. — White Oak Swamp. — Battle of Charles 
City Cross Roads. — Battle of Glendale or Nelson's 
Farm. — Battle of Malvern Hill. — Lieutenant J. B. Green- 
halgh Leads Charge of 24th New York. — Major Fair- 
banks Badly Wounded. — Retreat to Harrison's Landing. 
— Casualties. 

AFTER Fair Oaks the Potomac Army was engaged in that 
most arduous of tasks in inclement weather, intrenching. 
The line laid out beyond Seven Pines was strengthened 
and completed from Golding's to White Oak Swamp. Changes 
were also made in the positions of the troops, the front at Seven 
Pines being heavily reinforced. Heintzelman's corps was on 
the left, his line extending toward the White Oak Swamp, with 
Sumner on his right and Keyes in reserve. Franklin's corps, 
which had crossed the Chickahominy, held the right of the line. 
In the meantime Lee had been heavily reinforced, and had 
opposed to the Potomac Army during the Seven Days' Fight 
80,762 men. McClellan had 92,500. McClellan now decided 
to advance his lines in front of Seven Pines to a large clearing, 
on the other side of a stretch of country heavily timbered, and 


divided by a small stream, which up to this time had served as 
a defense to the picket lines of both armies. The attempt to 
occupy this clearing resulted in an engagement known as the 
battle of Oak Grove or the Peach Orchard. This was the first 
of those desperate and hotly contested conflicts known as the 
" Seven Days' Battles." The force engaged in this battle was 
the corps of Heintzelman, Palmer's brigade of Keyes' corps, 
and a part of Sumner's. The Union troops advanced in good 
order through the timber, and repulsed a strong force of the 
enemy, occupying in force the clearing which was the objective 
of the attack, and throwing out pickets within four miles of 

General Webb in his " Peninsular Campaign," says : " This 
advance makes manifest the fact that while General McClellan 
may, and doubtless did, entertain the plan of moving his base 
of supplies from the White House to the James, he was induced 
to make this latter move by Stewart's cavalry raid on the i ith, 
rather than with any intention of changing his line of attack or 
transferring his army to that point." 

Although General Berry was not so heavily engaged as at 
Williamsburg and Fair Oaks, yet the regiments of his brigade 
did their part in winning the victory at Oak Grove. The brunt 
of the attack, however, fell upon the brigade of General Robin- 
son, who sustained the contest most gallantly, and hurled the 
enemy back defeated. 

At 7 o'clock on the morning of June 25th, when this battle 
was fought, General Berry was ordered to advance his picket 
line and support it with the remaining regiments of his brigade. 
The 37th New York and ten companies of the 1st New York 
were on outpost duty when General Berry was ordered to 
advance. Taking the 2d and 3d Michigan, General Berry 
promptly moved to their support, and the 2d Michigan, Major 
Dillman, was directed to relieve them. 

After it was relieved from picket duty, the 37th New York 
was assigned the post of danger on the direct road to the 


Charles City road, with the ten companies of the 1st New York 
about 1,000 yards in advance. General Berry posted the 3d 
Michigan in an advantageous position near the road, and then 
threw out skirmishers along the front. After these dispositions 
had been made, the order to advance was given, the enemy's 
pickets retiring as General Berry's troops came up. In the 
meantime the brigade of General Robinson had become heavily 
engaged, and General Berry sent the 37th New York to his 
assistance, the 5th Michigan taking its place in line. 

General Berry held his position until about 3 o'clock in the 
afternoon, when the fire of the enemy became quite heavy. 
Believing that an attempt was about to be made to take Beam's 
battery, the right wing of the 1st New York was ordered to 
advance and hold the road at all hazards. This was done, and 
when the 87th New York was driven back, later in the day, the 
First held its advanced position most gallantly, and, together 
with the 5th Michigan, prevented the brigade line from being 
broken by this partial success of the enemy. 

General Berry personally conducted the 5th Michigan to a 
position in reserve in the rear of the 3d Maine, which was then 
on picket duty. Here the regiment remained until 5 o'clock, 
when the enemy succeeded in breaking through the lines in 
front, and troops rushed by in disorder, calling out that the 
enemy were attacking in great force. Colonel Dyckman of the 
1st New York promptly advanced four of his companies and 
formed on the right of the 5th Michigan, and together this 
force advanced upon the enemy. A few well-directed volleys 
were sufficient to check the enemy, and the line was halted in a 
clearing, where it maintained its position to the end. This 
demonstration saved Beam's battery from capture and closed 
the engagement for Berry's brigade. At dark the regi- 
ments of the brigade were put on outpost duty, having 
held during the day all the ground gained, and advanced 
about one-half mile. General Berry's report of this affair is as 
follows : 


Headquarters 3D Brigade, \ 
June 27, 1862. j 

Captain : At 7 o'clock, morning of the 25th instant, in compli- 
ance with orders from your headquarters, I moved forward to support 
and advance mv picket line, the 2d and 3d Michigan Volunteers, the 
37th New York, and ten companies of the 1st New York, being 
then on outpost duty. I immediately relieved the 37th New York 
and the ten companies of the 1st New York with the 2d Michigan, 
Major Dillman commanding. 

I placed the Thirty-Seventh after it was relieved, at the danger- 
ous road (direct road to Charles City road), and the ten companies 
of the 1st New York in advance, some 1,000 yards on said road. I 
placed the 3d Michigan between the dangerous road and the pine 
tree, some 1,000 yards in advance of the road, and had skirmishers 
out here along my front 100 yards. I advanced the line, keeping the 
connection on the right. The enemy's pickets were driven in by 
my right at the same time that they were met by the forces of 
General Robinson, the enemy supporting on the left of General 
Robinson in foixe. 

At this time you called on me for a regiment to support on the 
left of the 1st Brigade. I sent the 37th New York, and immediately 
ordered over the 5th Michigan to take its place. On its arrival I 
changed and placed the Fifth in position on my right, and placed 
the 37th New York down the dangerous road 500 yards, in line 
with the 3d Michigan, but some hundred yards from it. At 3 p. m. 
the firing was heavy for a time. The two pieces of artillery of 
Beam's battery were now at work. The enemy seemed to be arrang- 
ing for something. I judged it to be to make a dash for the road in 
rear of the field pieces. I placed the right wing of the 1st New 
York Regiment on my extreme right, with orders to advance and 
hold the road at all hazards. This regiment, together with the 
5th Michigan, contributed much to sustain our lines when the 
87th New York broke. 

It now became dark, and in accordance with orders from the 
general of division I kept the regiments of my brigade on outpost 
duty; also ten companies of the 1st New York. We held all the 
ground gained during the day, having advanced our right about 
one-half mile. 


I will send you a detailed report, together with a list of casual- 
ties of the day, as soon as my regimental reports are in. 
Very respectfully, 

H. G. Berry, 
Captain Sturgis, Brigadier-General Volunteers. 

Assistant Adjutant-General. 

Note. — I had out during the day the 2d, 3d, and 5th Michigan, 
the 37th and 1st New York. I had to guard a line of two and one- 
half miles long, and as my left is the dangerous point, my attention 
was particularly directed to that point. All my men behaved hand- 
somely. At night I established my picket line on my line of skir- 
mishers, having advanced it on the right more than one-half a mile. 

H. G. Berry, 
Captain Sturgis, • Brigadier-General Volunteers. 

Assistant Adjutant-General. 

Again we quote from Webb's " Peninsular Campaign : " 
" It is to be noticed here that McClellan's base of supplies at 
the White House had become a source of anxiety, since he 
seemed to doubt his ability to keep his connection with it 
secure, and because the rain and mud had rendered the roads 
almost impassable for wagons. Some time in June, the General 
called General Porter to a meeting with himself alone, half" way 
between their respective headquarters, to discuss the advantages 
of the James River as a base. The conclusion reached was 
that necessity and necessity only would warrant such a move- 
ment ; that it was dangerous and difficult in the face of such a 
vigilant foe as General Lee, and a disaster would endanger our 
cause at home and abroad. The necessity of keeping a con- 
stant threat upon Richmond itself for the purpose of showing 
our confidence in our strength, was then felt. However, it was 
considered that the necessity might come, and it was determined 
that we should be prepared for the emergency." 

June 27th, the battle of Gaines Mills was fought by the 
troops of Porter's corps. General Berry's brigade, being in 
Heintzelman's corps, took no part in the engagement. 


While the battle of Gaines Mills was in progress, the 
Confederate General Magruder, with a force of 25,000 men, 
was making a succession of demonstrations at different parts 
of the Union line south of the Chickahominy. This was done 
for the double purpose of preventing the sending of reinforce- 
ments to the hard-pressed troops of Porter's corps, who were 
fighting superior numbers at Gaines Mills, and, also to frustrate 
any attempt to advance on Richmond, which was now exposed 
by the concentration of the main body of the Confederate army 
at Gaines Mills. Kearny, Heintzelman and Hooker were quick 
to observe this advantage, and hastened to McClellan to get his 
permission to advance Kearny's division into Richmond, but 
their arguments were without avail, as has already been detailed. 
In these feints, Magruder was repeating the tactics of the siege 
of Yorktown with the same success. He was in constant fear 
of being swept away by the advance of McClellan's left, and 
that Richmond would fall into the Federal Commander's hands. 
Magruder says: " I received instructions enjoining the utmost 
vigilance. I passed the night without sleep. Had McClellan 
massed his whole force in column and advanced it against any 
point in our line of battle — as was done at Austerlitz under 
similar circumstances, by the greatest captain of any age — 
though the head of his column would have suffered greatly, its 
momentum would have insured him success, and the occupation 
of our works about Richmond, and, consequently, of the city, 
might have been his reward." 

After the battle of Gaines Mills arrangements were made 
to transfer the base of supplies to the James. Casey's troops, 
who were at the White House, were ordered to the new base, and 
all the material that could not be put on board the transports 
was burned. The rolling stock, loaded with supplies, was run 
into the river. Five thousand wagons, laden with everything 
portable, were sent to the James by the way of White Oak 
Swamp. The reserve artillery was also moved by this road. 
Twenty-five hundred head of cattle made a part of the long 


column. What could not be carried was destroyed, and blazing 
bonfires marked the camps and depots of the Union troops. 
Webb says: "Millions of rations, hundreds of tons of fixed 
ammunition and shells for the siege guns were thus lost. Lee's 
uncertainty as to the movements of McClellan gave the latter 
twenty-four hours to perfect and carry out his arrangements, 
and when Lee saw the intention of the Union general, the 
retreat was well advanced, and the roads across the swamps 
guarded to protect the passage of the trains from attack by way 
of the New Market, Charles City and Williamsburg roads." 

About midnight of the 29th of June, General Berry received 
orders to fall back from his advanced position at Seven Fines. 
After the 1st and 2d Brigades had moved, General Berry com- 
menced the retreat at 4 o'clock in the morning, taking with him 
a section of Thompson's battery. The 3d Michigan covered 
the retreat. The brigade soon reached the second line of 
defenses, by the way of the Saw Mill road, and took position. 
By direction of the division commander, General Berry person- 
ally inspected the fords and found one of them (Jordon's) in 
bad condition. Fisher's Ford was found available, and by the 
energy of Colonel Walker and the 4th Maine this latter ford 
was soon made passable for infantry. General Berry then rode 
to division headquarters to report. On his return he met his 
brigade on the march under command of Colonel Hayman, 
who informed him that they were ordered to cross the swamp 
at Jordon's Ford, and that the division as well as the army was 
on the move. General Berry again rode to division headquar- 
ters for instructions, but as General Kearny was absent, he 
returned to his brigade. Being satisfied that it was not possible 
to pass a large body of men over Jordon's Ford with rapidity, 
and knowing that Fisher's Ford had been put in good condition 
by the 4th Maine, General Berry made the passage at this point, 
taking the Charles City road to the left, and joined the com- 
mand of General Sykes. The next morning General Berry 
reported to General Kearny, who stationed his brigade on the 


left of the Charles City road, his left flank being protected by 
a swamp, and his right resting upon that road. Orders soon 
arrived for General Berry to move his brigade to the rear to act 
as support to the other brigades of the division. This order 
was executed on the double-quick, the men laying aside their 
knapsacks. McClellan's retreat soon became known to Lee, 
and Longstreet and A. P. Hill started in pursuit, moving by the 
Darbytown road to the Long Bridge road, and coming upon 
the Union troops strongly posted about a mile from the inter- 
section of the Long Bridge and Charles City roads. General 
Kearny being sick from exhaustion and exposure, the command 
of the division was given to General Berry, who directed its 
movements during the latter part of the battle of Glendale. 

McCall's division halted on the New Market road and 
formed line of battle. Slocum formed to the right of the 
Charles City road, and General Kearny's division was posted so 
as to guard the space between the Charles City road and the 
New Market road. Robinson's brigade formed the left of his 
line, and also supported Thompson's battery. General Birney 
was on the right, and, as previously stated, General Berry was 
in reserve. 

By 5 o'clock in the afternoon, Robinson's brigade and 
Thompson's battery became engaged with the enemy and were 
subjected to a severe fire. So determined was the attack upon 
troops to the left of Berry's brigade, that they gave way. Gen- 
eral Berry ordered the ist New York to the support of Thomp- 
son's battery, and at the request of General Robinson, the 2d 
Michigan was sent to his assistance. The 3d Michigan was also 
ordered forward to support General Birney. The enemy made 
a desperate attempt to capture Thompson's battery, but were 
mowed down by showers of canister. The supporting line of 
infantry also poured in deadly volleys, and this determined 
resistance prevented the enemy from gaining ground. 

It was now apparent that a strong column of the enemy 
was about to make a desperate attempt to pierce the Union 


lines. General Berry promptly formed the 5th Michigan, which 
had in line but 200 men, and the 24th New York, of General 
Burns' brigade, which had been sent to his assistance. Lieuten- 
ant J. B. Greenhalgh, one of Berry's aides, gallantly led the 
charge which was now ordered, the troops bravely advancing 
upon the strong force of the enemy, who could not resist so 
determined an attack and fled instantly, leaving a stand of 
colors in the hands of the victorious troops. For his courageous 
conduct in leading this charge and driving back the enemy at 
one of the most critical periods of the battle, Lieutenant 
Greenhalgh received special mention in official reports. The 
ground gained by this charge was held. General Berry was 
reinforced, and with the troops now at his disposal, he success- 
fully resisted every effort of the enemy to retrieve the disasters 
that had come upon them. 

General Berry maintained his formation until midnight, 
when orders came to continue the retreat to Malvern Hill. So 
near were the opposing lines of the enemy that strict silence 
was enjoined, that the retreat might not be discovered by the 
rebel pickets. With cautious tread and at whispered command 
the brigade withdrew from the front, leaving behind in the 
darkness the dead and dying, the stern exigencies of war 
making it impossible to succor the injured or bury the slain. 
In this engagement General Berry was slightly wounded by a 
musket ball which severed his sword belt. 

General Berry had followed the retreating army to Malvern 
Hill and took position on the right of the advanced general 
line, supporting the 2d Brigade. At 10 o'clock the enemy 
commenced shelling from the plateau opposite the position 
occupied by General Berry's brigade, and although many men 
were struck, the line maintained its position all day without 
wavering. In his report of this battle General Kearny says : 
" The 4th Maine particularly distinguished itself for its coolness 
in holding the ravine in our front and daringly engaging the 
skirmishers of the enemy's attacking columns. Their loss was 


considerable." As the brigade of General Berry was held in 
reserve it did not become engaged, although under a severe fire 
all day. General Berry's ofhcial report of these battles is as 
follows : 

Headquarters 3D Brigade, ) 
July 5, 1862. j 

Captain: At 12.30 at night of 29th June I received orders to 
be prepared to fall back from the position that my brigade occupied 
on the left of the line, to the second line of defenses, and to pass to 
the same by the Saw Mill road, my pickets to be kept to the front 
and my brigade to fall back after the 1st and 2d Brigades. I made 
the necessary preparations, and at 3 a. m. the 1st and 2d Brigades 
moved, together with two sections of Thompson's battery, which 
was in the redoubt on my immediate front. At 4 A. m. I filed my 
command to the rear by regiments, the 3d Michigan covering our 
rear, taking with them the remaining section of Thompson's battery. 
We passed to the second line of defenses by way of the Saw Mill, 
having succeeded in withdrawing our pickets without confusion or 
loss. We took position on the left of the earthwork in the skirt of the 
woods fronting the plain, the 2d Michigan Volunteers, Major Dill- 
man, guarding the approaches via Saw Mill, as well as picketing 
our front to connect with those of the 1st Brigade, which together 
covered our front from the Saw Mill to the Williamsburg road. 

At 2.30 p. M. the general of division sent for me to pass down 
and examine the fords, in conformity to an order from corps 
headquarters. I immediately did so. I found Jordon's Ford in a 
bad condidon, requiring some considerable labor to finish the cross- 
ing, and I ordered it done by the 4th Maine Regiment, there on 
fatigue duty. I also passed down to Fisher's Ford, and found that 
a little labor would put that in good condition for infantry. I also 
ordered that work commenced immediately. Colonel Walker put on 
extra men, and I am happy to state the ford was in an hour made 

At this time, say 3.45 p. m., an orderlv came for me, ordering 
me to report to division headquarters. I returned as rapidly as 
possible, and when within a mile of camp met my brigade, under 
command of Colonel Hayman, moving toward the ford. Colonel 


Hayman informed me that we were to cross the swamp at Jordon's 
Ford, and that the division as well as the army was on the move. 
I passed on to headquarters of division for instructions, and when 
I reached there the general of division was absent. I immediately 
returned to my brigade. I passed down the road and when I reached 
Jordon's Ford I examined it again, and concluded it was not possible 
to pass a large body of men over it with any rapidity, and know- 
ing the next ford was in good condition I pushed on for that. I 
passed over it with my command, except the 2d Michigan, which 
had been on picket and was in the rear of troops of our corps. 
After passing the ford I took the Charles City road to the left and 
joined General Sykes' command, and took position on his front. 

At 3 A. m., June 30th, I reported my command to the general 
of division. We were moved, by order of the general of divi- 
sion, forward to a position on the left of the Charles City road, my 
right resting upon it and my left on a swamp. We arrived in this 
position at 5 a. m. At 11.30 A. m. I received orders to move my 
command to a new line to the left, and while making arrangements 
to get my pickets relieved, an order came to hurry at double-quick. 
My men laid aside their knapsacks, placing a guard over them, and 
moved as ordered. We took up a position to the rear and in reserve 
to the two brigades. At 4 p. M. I received orders to place my 
brigade on the right of the central road, in the skirt of the woods, 
directly in the front of division headquarters. 

At 5 A. M. the action in front of Robinson's brigade and 
Thompson's battery opened severely. It was evident that the troops 
on the left of the road (McCall's division) were giving way. At 
this time I placed the 1st New York, Colonel Dyckman, in support 
of Thompson's battery. General Robinson called on me for a regi- 
ment to sustain his line, and I sent him the 2d Michigan, Major 
Dillman. Captain Sturgis, acting assistant adjutant-general, took 
the 3d Michigan Volunteers, Major Pierce, to support General 
Birney. Thompson's battery was severely assailed, and by the use 
that gallant officer made of canister, and the support rendered by 
General Robinson's brigade, together with that rendered by the 
1st New York, and afterward by the 37th New York and 5th 
Michigan, Major Fairbanks, of my own, prevented them from 
advancing their lines toward us. This regiment operated in front 


of General McCall's line and the road. The enemy were pressing 
in that direction very hard, and I thought it my duty to check them 
to save our left flank. 

At 7.30 A. m. it was evident that the enemy was preparing a 
column to make a strong effort to pierce our lines. I made known 
the fact to General Burns, who was forming a second line to McCall's. 
That officer gave me the 24th Regiment New York Volunteers, 

Colonel . I marched up to the road and placed the 5th 

Michigan, of less than 200 men, and they, the remaining one, on its 
right ; filed by the right across our front, and in rear of Thomp- 
son's battery and ordered to charge the enemy, who had appeared 
in a strong column. Lieutenant Greenhalgh, one of my aides, 
gallantly led the regiment, drove back the enemy, and captured a 

stand of colors belonging to the regiment, of . Other 

reinforcements arrived, and we held our line without falling back an 

At 12 m. I received orders to draw off my men immediately 
and to follow General Robinson's brigade. I did so without loss of 
any pickets, leaving my dead and wounded on the ground. My loss 
in this engagement was considerable, including Major Fairbanks, 
badly wounded. 

We followed the retreating army to Malvern Hill, and after 
having collected stragglers, took position under orders from your 
headquarters on the right of the advanced general line, supporting 
the 2d Brigade. At 10 A. m. the enemy commenced shelling us 
from the plateau opposite with considerable effect. My men, how- 
ever, kept their position all day without flinching, although some 
fifty men were hit; among others Captain Pulford, of the 5th 
Michigan Volunteers. At 1 A. m. of the 2d we were ordered to fall 
back and follow the 2d Brigade. We did so in order, arriving at 
this locality at 10 A. M. of the 2d instant. 

I have to mention that my brigade behaved admirably at the 
battle of Charles City. The position was strongly contested. 
Night closed in upon us in possession of our own ground. The 1st 
New York Volunteers, Colonel Dyckman, behaved handsomely. 
This regiment received a charge of a rebel regiment, and charged 
in turn and broke the enemy in confusion. The 37th New York 
Volunteers, Colonel Hayman, charged a rebel regiment and broke 


it into confusion. The 5th Michigan again fought as usual. Major 
Fairbanks, its only field officer, was here badly wounded. The 
3d Michigan was with the 2d Brigade and the 2d Michigan was 
with the rst Brigade. They behaved as Michigan soldiers always 
do — well. None flinched. At the battle of Malvern Hill my brigade 
was exposed to the shot and shell from morning till night. Notwith- 
standing many were killed and wounded, the regiments maintained 
the most perfect order. 

I have to make honorable mention of Captain Wilson, my 
acting assistant adjutant-general ; also Lieutenants Freeman and 
Greenhalgh. They were active in carrying out my wishes during 
the battles mentioned. Lieutenant Greenhalgh led the 24th Regi- 
ment New York Volunteers, of General Burns' command, gallantly 
into the fight, repulsing the enemy, and capturing a stand of rebel 
colors at one of the most critical periods of the fight. All my com- 
pany officers behaved well. I have no fault to find with any. For 
the particular ones who distinguished themselves more than others I 
respectfully refer you to the regimental reports. 

Respectfully, your obedient servant, 

H. G. Berry, 
Captain W. E. Sturgis. Brig. -Gen., Com'ding Brigade. 

During the night of the battle of Malvern Hill, the Union 
troops were withdrawn and continued their retreat to Harrison's 
Landing, seven miles distant. On the arrival of the army at 
this place, General Berry was assigned a position on the center 
of the front line, and by reason of the great losses his brigade 
had sustained, and the large amount of service it had performed 
during the retrograde movement, it was excused from fatigue 

The casualties of the brigade during the Seven Days' Bat- 
tles were as follows : 2d Michigan, two men killed, nineteen men 
wounded, total twenty-one ; 3d Michigan, one man killed, four 
men wounded, twenty-seven captured or missing, total thirty- 
two ; 5th Michigan, one officer and two men killed, four officers 
and twenty-nine men wounded, and one officer and twenty-two 
men captured or missing, total fifty-nine; 1st New York, 


twenty-two men killed, five officers and 122 men wounded, two 
officers and eighty-five men missing, total 236; 37th New York, 
forty-two men wounded, thirty-nine men missing, total eighty- 
one ; making a total loss in the brigade of 429 officers and 


berry's sickness. 

General R. de Trobriand. — Berry Worn Out by Fatigue and 
Malaria. — General Berry's Wound. — Letters from Vice 
President Hamlin. — Communications Cut Oft*. — Desper- 
ate Fighting of Confederate Soldiers. — Whiskey and 
Gunpowder. — General Adelbert Ames. — Berry's Dilapi- 
dated Condition. — His Horsemanship. — Describes his 
Quarters. — Urging the Use of the Draft. — On Furlough. 

AMONG the new regiments now assigned to Berry's brigade, 
which had become reduced by the severe fighting of the 
Peninsula, was the 55th New York, commanded by that 
gallant French officer and cultivated gentleman Colonel (now 
Brevet Major-General) R. de Trobriand. In his "Four Years 
with the Army of the Potomac," General de Trobriand describes 
General Berry as he appeared after passing through the perils 
and privations of the Seven Days' Fight. He says : " I called 
on General Berry with the order assigning the Fifty-fifth to his 
command. He was a plain, straight-forward man, tall and 
broad-shouldered. His blue flannel blouse and his whole dress 
gave him very little of a military air. But whoever judged him 
from his appearance would have judged badly, for, although he 
had rather the appearance of an honest farmer than that of a 
brigadier-general, he was not the less a good officer, as faithful 
to his duty as he was devoted to his soldiers. The Peninsular 
campaign, and that of the North of Virginia, had already 
sensibly affected the health of General Berry, but in him the 
moral energy strove against physical weakness, and it was only 


when it could not be avoided that he consented to take leave 
of absence, to re-establish his exhausted strength." 

As is stated by General de Trobriand, the health of General 
Berry had become very much impaired. He had put forth 
superhuman efforts during the campaign just closed and his 
physical being now uttered its protest. For nearly a month he 
did not sleep in his tent, but usually on the ground with his 
horse's reins in his hands. It was this incessant labor and 
anxiety that induced an attack of fever which threatened his 
life; but he continued at his post until it was impossible for 
him to longer remain and perform the duties of his station. 
General Berry writes : 

Headquarters Opposite City Point, ) 
Berkley Wharf Landing. j 

I am here — that is, what is left. Since I last wrote you we 
have had five battles ; three of them were in great force. Our right 
wing was turned, and our communications cut off. We had to 
cross the White Oak Swamp, then fought and whipped the enemy 
and retreated at night. Next day we fought the battle of Charles 
City, drove the enemy four miles with great slaughter, and at night 
retreated to this place. We were obliged to do this, as our com- 
munication by way of railroad to the Pamunky river was cut off, 
and we could get nothing to eat. Our men have had but very little 
for the past two days. We are now at a point where supplies can 
reach us, and we are in conjunction with our gunboats. I have 
been in the thickest of three of the fights since I last wrote you. I 
am slightly wounded in the arm by a piece of shell. Greenhalgh 
[Lieutenant J. B.] is wounded in the shoulder slightly, also by 
a piece of shell. I am also somewhat bruised by my horse falling 
on me when he was shot, but am not injured so badly but that I can 
do my daily duty. Out of some 4,400 men that I have had in my 
command since I joined the brigade, I now have less than 1,500. 
They are scattered, some 1,200 are killed and wounded. The dead 
lie on six different battlefields and some half-dozen places where we 
have had skirmishes. This army is now much reduced. We are 
getting reinforcements daily, and will soon be right again. I am 
not well tonight. 1 shall try to recruit my health if possible. 


Harrison Cowing is dead ; was killed instantly. Charley Wood 
[Charles F. Wood of Rockland] is dangerously, probably mortally, 
wounded. My new assistant adjutant-general is also wounded, 
[Captain Geo. W. Wilson of Michigan]. To give you an idea of 
the losses, I will state that in my opinion the army is not half so 
numerous as when we landed at Fortress Monroe, and the rebels 
have suffered nearly twice as much as we. 

Touching the Seven Days' Fight and the policy of the 
Government in the conduct of the war, the Vice President 
writes General Berry as follows : 

Bangor, July 17, 1862. 

My Dear General: I received your letter of the 5th two 
days ago at this place where I have been for two weeks. We all feel 
sad at the disaster before Richmond, but are still of good cheer. 
We think we can see a new policy laid down such as will meet your 
views, I am sure, and upon which the war must be conducted. We 
cannot longer afford to protect rebel property with loyal arms. It 
should be used in all cases where it will give comfort to our men, 
and all means should be used to relieve our men. It must come to 
this and the sooner the better. We are all at work like beavers to 
raise men, and while it is the worst time in the year, still we will 
have our quota, and I think by enlistment and not by draft. 

I have been speaking some, and I do not fail to do full justice to 
our noble officers and men. Our people shall know their valor and 
worth, I assure you. The North will be equal to the crisis, you 
may be sure of that. H. Hamlin. 

Bangor, July 18, 1862. 

Dear General : We had a very large meeting here last night. 
General Howard and others addressed it. I think it will do good. 
It was all for more promptness in action and demanding the use of 
all means within the reach of Government. 

I endorse every word you say in relation to what should be 
done. Oh, how I wish the same spirit would animate all in control 
of affairs, from the President down to the lowest official, then we 
would begin to see the end. Out of this sad reverse I gather fresh 
hope ; it will, it must, compel another policy, a policy of action and 


not delay. It will compel Government to seize on all means to 
relieve our noble soldiers, and no longer compel them to guard rebel 
property, while the rebel is hurling his blows at the heart of the 
Republic. Let the loyal colored man be used in all possible ways 
to relieve our soldiers, and all rebel property be taken to make our 
troops comfortable. Then will we end this unholy and wicked war. 
That course is coming and in that I have faith in our success. 

Yours faithfully, 
Brig.-Gen. H. G. Berry. H. Hamlin. 

Under date of July 4th, 1862, General Berry writes home: 
" For the past week our communication has been cut off, and 
we neither have sent nor received letters. I am not well — have 
been so much exposed and have worked so hard. I hope for and 
must be able to get some rest and recover somewhat. I wrote 
you that Charles Wood was badly wounded, but I have not yet 
been able to find out how badly, or where the poor boy is. All 
is excitement on the battlefield, and but little attention is paid 
to anyone. As we fell back that night, all our wounded were 
left on the battlefield. I have sent to the regiment [4th Maine] 
repeatedly to find out about Charley, and all I learn is that he 
is very badly wounded by a shell. Nothing but woods inside 
our lines — outside, the enemy." 

Again he writes under date of July 5th: "Well, I have 
passed through five more battles, and although wounded by a 
shell on my right arm, I am comparatively uninjured. My 
wound is merely a flesh one and is already healing. I think in 
a week it will be almost well. My poor horse is getting better. 
In a few days he too will be all right. My poor brigade now 
numbers 1 ,500 men left of the 4,400 placed under my command. 
The balance are wounded, sick in hospitals, or their bones lie 
mouldering at Williamsburg, Fair Oaks, White Oak Swamp, 
Charles City and Malvern Hill battlefields. Over 50,000 have 
fallen on the battlefields of this locality within the past week. 
I am spared, for what purpose God only knows. My cap has 
been twice shot from my head, my clothes are riddled with 


bullets, still I am here. I shall never be killed by cannon or 
musket shot, I sincerely think, as I have faced the deadliest fire 
for hours when all have been hit but myself. Greenhalgh 
[Lieutenant J. B.] is slightly wounded but is all right. He 
distinguished himself, having led a regiment in a charge at the 
crisis of the battle and captured a stand of colors. We have 
had a bloody time, but for every one of our men injured the 
enemy have lost two. We have fought on empty stomachs. 
The men fight splendidly, the enemy desperately. All their 
canteens are found with whiskey in them and mixed with 
gunpowder. All the prisoners we take on the battlefield are 
intoxicated ; made so to make them fight desperately. All our 
retreats have been well conducted — not a cannon lost, men 
behaved splendidly, no panic, all were cool and bound to turn 
and fight if attacked, as we have been twice. We are now in a 
safe place waiting for reinforcements. The North will have to 
stir itself. Now is the time for all patriotic men to come here. 
Men are wanted ; men we must have. I am off duty, being 
too unwell for active service. I shall resume again in a day or 
two. Keep the dear old home in good order. I hope to visit 
it soon." 

He writes again under date of July 8th: " I am in much 
better health than for the past month. The air is good here 
and the men improving rapidly. The army is in good condi- 
tion ; we are receiving reinforcements. The battle of the 
Seven Days was most destructive to human life; not less than 
50,000 fell on both sides. We repulsed the enemy in every 
battle on our retirement from the White Oak Swamp. I cannot 
learn about Charley Wood. That he is badly wounded is a fact, 
still I think it is not a mortal wound. He must be a prisoner, 
yet I hope he will have care, as many surgeons of our army 
are left behind with stores for the wounded. I know the boy 
was hurt on the battlefield, as young Spear [Josiah C] asked 
me where there was a surgeon. I could only answer, to take the 
boy to the rear out of range of fire. It seems he was so taken, 


a surgeon found and his wounds dressed. He was taken on 
towards this point and left in a house used as a hospital — 
where, I cannot learn. Poor boy ! My heart bleeds for him. 
If it is possible to find him when we again advance I shall do 
so. On the retreat across the White Oak Swamp I took my 
command across at a point over which none others passed, and 
nearer Richmond than any troops, passed the swamp and got 
into position on the other side four hours ahead of General 
Kearny, who took the other two brigades. It is considered here 
a good thing among military men, as my men were compara- 
tively fresh, whilst others were exhausted." 

Under date of July ioth, he writes: "It is very dull; 
nothing doing. Report says the enemy have retired from our 
front to Richmond and that they are in bad condition, etc. 
Lieutenant Ames, [now Major-General Adelbert Ames] is in 
the tent with me. He is well. He fought his battery splen- 
didly at Malvern Hill." Again, July nth: " I am tanned so 
that I look about as black as a mulatto. I wear a blouse and 
black wide-rimmed felt hat, an old leather belt, cavalry sword 
and large pistols. I have another iron-gray horse that jumps 
fences or ditches, high and wide, so that I go over fields, pas- 
tures, through woods, or anywhere in regular Dick Turpin style. 
I have ridden so much that my legs are getting almost useless. It 
seems strange, too ; I used to walk so much, now I cannot walk 
without tiring myself excessively." Again, July 12th: "Today 
is Sunday. We are now quiet, the enemy not very near us. 
They have been repulsed so severely they grow cautious. We 
shall move in a few days and shall commence active operations 
I have no doubt." 

He writes July 17th, as follows: " Imagine me seated under 
a shade made of small trees in front of a small canvas tent, in 
which is a small table. On one side is my bed of oak leaves 
covered by a rubber blanket, and on that a woolen one. On 
the other side is the bed of Lieutenant Greenhalgh. A passage- 
way between of two feet is covered by a piece of woolen carpet, 


obtained in a clandestine manner. I am dressed in pants with- 
out suspenders, as I have done away with them long since. My 
head is crowned with an ugly felt hat, my feet encased in heavy 
military boots and spurs, large enough for a church vane. I 
am now quite well and engaged in drilling and disciplining my 
brigade. I have got everything about completed to my mind. 
In a few days more I shall have everything fit for active opera- 
tions. My brigade is in good condition. It is small compared 
with what it was, but is now composed of veterans. I have no 
news to communicate. I look for news from home. It now 
depends on the people to save the Government, as we can do 
but little unless strongly reinforced. My own opinion is that a 
draft is necessary. Action is wanted now and a draft would 
give us all the men we want in a day. That's what we want 
done, and any man who is unwilling to stand his draft is not 
the man for whom to spend money or blood to sustain the 

July 23d, he writes : " I have been quite ill, but I am now 
able to sit up. My system was completely poisoned by the 
malaria of the White Oak Swamp region, which has lost so 
many thousands of lives. The army still lies here. We are drill- 
ing, arranging and bringing our men up to the standard they 
were at when before Washington. I understand we are getting 
some reinforcements. How many I do not know. I usually get all 

these things at General 's, but as I have been unable to 

visit him for some days I have no news. If the North is to 
send us men, the sooner the better. Drafting is the only fair 
way. The army can be filled quickly in that way." 

Again, July 24th : " I am now on the right center. At 
Malvern Hill we were on the center of the outer front; we were 
in action all day. My position at Charles City road, as I wrote 
you, was on the right center. We shall have no fighting at 
this point; we are too strong. Our position is one of immense 
strength. We shall leave here in a few days, and then work 
will commence again. I see that the Government is out with a 


proclamation for volunteers. Tis of no use. Men must be 
drafted, and that too immediately, if we are to have aid and 
expect to put down the rebellion. It must be no longer ' my 
neighbor can go and I cannot.' The strong arm of military 
law will have to take hold and compel men to fight for that 
Government that gives them protection and a home. Facts are 
stubborn things, and this war is a stubborn fact, as all will yet 
find out. The North can no longer play with it, it must meet 
force by force. We have fought two to one, long enough." 

July 28th, he writes : " I am on duty again but quite weak. 
My flesh is all gone. I don't think I was ever so thin. I see 
no end to this war at present. The South seems determined 
to fight to the bitter end, and we have made no progress in the 
Campaign of Virginia, and have lost in killed, wounded and 
disabled by sickness more than 60,000 men, besides at least 
20,000 more at home on sick furloughs who may or may not 
return. * * * * I have a most thorough contempt for anything 
that smacks of politics. I shall in my future keep clear of it. 
I should like a chance somewhere, where I could honestly make 
some money. Other than that, and to be once again in my 
own home, I have no earthly ambition. I shall have a commis- 
sion for Charles Sawyer soon. I know all about the boy. No 
better lad lives. He does his duty handsomely. I have had 
him advanced just as fast as I thought it for his interest, no 
faster. He is now sergeant-major of his regiment and has risen 
to that position from the ranks. He will soon be lieutenant. 

" * * * We leave for home tomorrow. Shall not see you 
till first of the week as I have to travel slowly. I shall be well 
again, after a few days at home where I can get good air and 
careful nursing. I am worn out and must get rid of care." 



Starts for Home. — Lieutenant J. B. Greenhalgh Accompanies 
Him. —Cavalcade of Citizens Meet Him at Thomaston. 
— Received by the City Government Near the City Line. 
— Mayor Wiggin's Stirring Address of Welcome. — Gen- 
eral Berry Responds. — Enthusiastic Reception as he 
Passes Through the Streets. — Kind Expressions from his 
Comrades in the Field. — Letter from Assistant Adjutant- 
General George W. Wilson. — Colonel Adelbert Ames. 
— Colonel O. M. Poe. — Congressman F. A. Pike. — 
Senator Lot M. Morrill. 

REGARDLESS of the ravages of a fever which had wasted 
his stalwart frame and stripped his face and head of the 

luxuriant growth of chestnut-brown hair that had been 
the crowning glory of a once vigorous and beautiful manhood, 
General Berry remained at his post of duty until he placed his 
command once more in a high state of efficiency. Not until 
then did he regard with favor the solicitation of friends at home, 
and the importunities of brother officers, to accept a leave of 
absence, that his wasted energies might be revivified by the rest 
of home life and the care of loved ones. 

The following telegram was received by Mrs. Berry : 

New York, August 4, 1862. 
I leave tonight, Fall River boat. At Adams House tomorrow 
morning. H. G. Berry. 


His reception in Rockland was most enthusiastic, and the 
demonstrations in his honor were imposing, as befitted the high 
rank and distinguished services of him whom his neighbors and 
friends thus delighted to honor. For an account of this recep- 
tion we quote from the Rockland Gazette of August 9th, 1862 : 
" Our distinguished fellow-citizen, Brigadier-General H. G. 
Berry, arrived at his home in this city on Wednesday evening, 
on a brief furlough, it being his first visit since he left us as 
Colonel of the 4th Regiment. General Berry, who was accom- 
panied by Lieutenant Greenhalgh of his staff, left Bath at about 
nine o'clock on Wednesday morning, and was received with 
hearty and enthusiastic demonstrations of the public regard and 
approval at every point on the route to this city. At Wiscasset 
he was welcomed by the firing of a military salute of the num- 
ber of guns with which an officer of his rank is honored, and 
other demonstrations of the public feeling, and at Damariscotta, 
Waldoboro and Warren he also met with a warm public recep- 
tion. On his arrival at Thomaston, General Berry was met and 
welcomed by a cavalcade of our citizens, and accompanied to 
the junction of the New County road with Pleasant street, 
near the city line, where the members of the City Government 
and a concourse of citizens, with the fire companies, and the 
Rockland Band, were waiting to receive him. He was greeted 
with enthusiastic cheers and the music of the band, and after 
receiving the usual honors from the fire companies, General 
Berry rode up to the carriage containing the members of the 
City Government, where he received a hearty welcome from 
Mayor George W. Wiggin, who addressed him in eloquent 
terms, to which General Berry briefly responded. 

" The fire companies, led by the band, then formed as an 
escort and moved towards the city, General Berry riding next, 
attended by the cavalcade of citizens and followed by the mem- 
bers of the City Government and large numbers of private 
citizens in carriages. Throughout the city flags were displayed 
at various points, and the streets were crowded by our citizens, 


to give a warm and earnest ' welcome home ' to the man who had 
done himself and his fellow-citizens so much honor, and who 
had rendered his country such brave and efficient service. 
After the procession had passed on towards Middle street, the 
throng immediately proceeded to General Berry's residence, 
whither he was being escorted, and there welcomed him with 
three times three hearty cheers. General Berry appeared much 
fatigued and enfeebled, and at his request it was announced that 
in his present condition, he was unable to address his fellow- 
citizens, as he desired. 

" The reception given General Berry was but the expres- 
sion of the universal appreciation and respect in which he is 
held by his fellow-citizens and their united testimony to the 
bravery and merit of the services which he has rendered to his 
country. He left us as colonel of the 4th Maine regiment, a 
band of men to whom he was earnestly devoted, and who were 
most ardently attached to him. His present brigade is com- 
posed of the 2d, 3d and 5th Michigan, and the 1st and 37th 
New York. Of this brigade the General speaks in most enthu- 
siastic terms, and its record is written deeply in the hearts of 
their countrymen. Rockland is grateful to and proud of Gen- 
eral Berry, and it will be the heartfelt prayer of his fellow- 
citizens that this brief respite from his arduous duties in the 
field may give him new health and strength for the service of 
the noble cause to which he has so efficiently devoted himself." 

During General Berry's furlough he kept in touch with 
affairs at the front through letters written by members of his 
staff and others. Some of these follow. 

Captain G. W. Wilson, of Berry's staff, thus gives the 
events transpiring in the brigade : 

Headquarters Berry's Brigade, ) 
August 1, 1862. J 

My Dear General : By this morning's mail quite a bundle 
of letters was received here for yourself and Lieutenant Greenhalgh, 
which I herewith enclose. 


I am very glad that you were able to leave yesterday morning, 
for I fear the excitement in camp might have had a very bad effect on 
your health. The rebels got several guns in position on the oppo- 
site side of the river, among them two heavy pieces, and at about 
one o'clock opened a rapid fire on our shipping and army camp. 
They fired one shot through the ordnance ship, and report says 
damaged one or two others more seriously. Several men were killed 
and wounded, but the statements of the number are very conflicting. 
The 4th Michigan and 16th Michigan (Stockton's regiment) lost 
some in wounded, not exceeding six. 

Most of this brigade heard the firing about half an hour, but 
nothing was done. It sounded quite natural to hear the cannon once 
more at night. The siege guns and gunboats did not get into posi- 
tion very promptly. But when they did they soon put an end to the 
imprudent movements of the enemy. Today our side of the river 
bristles with heavy guns frowning upon the opposite bank, and if 
the enemy again open on us they will get dearly paid for their 

Everything thus far has moved on smoothly here. But we miss 
you very, very much. General Kearny received notice today 
(official) of his appointment as major-general. His commission is 
dated 4th July, 1862. He says it is an insult to him and his division 
to date it on that day ; that it should have been dated on the day of 
some one of our battles. I admire his taste in that respect. Our 
rulers are not half military in that regard yet, and probably won't be 
during the war. 

Colonel Adelbert Ames of the 20th Maine, expresses his 
appreciation : 

Headquarters 20th Regiment Maine Vols., \ 

Camp near the mouth of the Antietam Creek, Md., > 

October 9, 1862. ) 

My Dear General : I was disappointed while in Maine in not 
seeing you and thanking you for what you did for me. I now thank 
you with all my heart, and I assure you that what I can do in my 
position to repay you for your confidence and kindness I will most 
readily do. You know where we are. It is not necessary to tell you 
how I like. We have discussed this point before. We are in General 

Brevet Major-General Adelbert Ames. 
(A war-time photograph. ) 


Morell's division. Of course you know his value. I should like to 
be in your command. Situated as we are that idea had to be aban- 
doned. I can form no idea of what we are to do. 

Colonel O. M. Poe, of the 2d Michigan, who was com- 
manding Berry's brigade in his absence, writes : 

Edward's Ferry, Oct. 21, 1862. 
My Dear General: Everything here is in very good condi- 
tion. We have eight miles of picket, which requires two regiments, 
but the ground is such that a small force answers just about as well 
as a large one. The escape of Stuart was a most disgraceful arlair. 
I am not prepared to say who is to blame, but certainly some one is, 
and I don't believe it was General Stoneman. I have a theory of 
my own concerning the matter, and when I see you will talk with 
you about it. One thing is certain, if this brigade had come within 
reach of Stuart there would have been some fighting, and somebody 
would have been hurt. The list of killed and wounded would not 
have been a perfect blank. Freeman brought me your kind message, 
and I hasten to tender you my thanks for your interest in my behalf. 
Believe me, sir, I am not one to forget a kindness done, or a favor 
shown. I hope when you rejoin us that you will find everything in 
good condition. The health of the brigade is good, and the men 
appear to be contented and cheerful. 

Congressman F. A. Pike, of Maine, writes to General Berry- 
on current matters as follows: 

Washington, D. C, July 12, 1862. 
My Dear General : Yours was received just before I went 
down into Maine and for that reason I have not yet answered. I 
saw your Rockland people at Ellsworth, the Farwells, Colonel 
Williams, etc , and wherever else it maybe otherwise, if anywhere, I 
can assure you your brilliant military successes are fully appreciated 
at home. I told the convention I reckoned you our hero, and this 
reminds me of a little incident: In the Senate the other day, while 
they were in secret session, a case of confirming an officer came up, 
and Chandler of Michigan got up and objected because he wanted 
to put his man ahead, and gave as a reason that he had served under 
Berry of Maine and was as brave as Berry and that was brave 


enough ! There was considerable more of the same sort, but this 
part of it struck me with force and I thought you would like to 
know it. 

The President has got back and it is generally understood that 
he finds the army in better care than he supposed he should. It is 
quite evident that your great fights lately are to have a decided effect 
about the manner of carrying on the war. The plan of taking such 
excessive care of rebel property will undoubtedly be abandoned 
hereafter. It seems so absurd to detail a force of a captain and nine 
men to watch Fitzhugh Lee's "White House " and keep it from use 
even for hospital purposes, when Lee was leading a force to fire into 
our railroad trains. McDowell, I understand, has been acting in an 
equally foolish manner, saying he would detail a man to protect 
every line of fence rail rather than have them destroyed. I have no 
idea of being ruthless or barbarian in this warfare, but there is a 
just medium about the matter, and hereafter I don't believe we shall 
make fools of ourselves. And the blacks are discussed again in 
full force. Lew Wallace of Indiana was serenaded here the other 
evening (when you come up we will do the same thing) and Wallace 
made a sensible talk about the negro question. He is an old Demo- 
crat and spoke of the employment of the negro as a military measure, 
using him just so much as he would be found valuable. You have 
the Tribune, I presume, and have noticed it. In the Senate, such 
Democrats as Wright of Indiana, and Rice of Minnesota, have been 
speaking in favor of using the negro. So we go. There has been 
a good deal of talk about changing the commander of your army, 
and I don't know what the President's notions are since he got back. 
I have not supposed it would be done. We have not yet been able 
to get at any details regarding our Maine troops except what we get 
in our New York papers. Elliot of Brunswick, who is on the 
Governor's staff, was down there but came back at once and did not 
seem to know much about our regiment. Of course we have all 
been anxious to know. 

We adjourn next Wednesday, and shall have to go home to aid 
in getting up recruits. I have a notion of going into it, and if I do, 
shall go into the ranks. There will be plenty of officers to be had 
but soldiers may be scanty. There is talk of drafting, and that 
would be well enough, only it might be complained that rich people 


could buy substitutes but the poor would have to go anyway. We 
must raise the troops anyhow. There are no two ways about that. 
There was a good deal of despondency for a while after the late 
fights, but it is pretty much got over now and the usual state of 
feeling prevails. With a good smart reinforcement at once we ought 
to have Richmond early in the fall. Write me. 

Below are the views of Senator Lot M. Morrill, of Maine: 

Washington, 1). C, July S. 1S62. 
My Dear General: Your Eavor is received. I am thankful 
to hear from you in person after the terrible ordeal through which 
you have passed. I had heard of your safety and also of the peril 
in which you had been during the engagements of the army. I want 
to sav to vou — to assure you — that although you may not get what 
so rightly belongs to you — what your heroic conduct in many fields 
merits from those who are in a position over you — your countrymen 
will not fail to award it. Be assured your friends and fellow-citizens 
of your own State appreciate your services and sacrifices, and will 
honor vou and render you the thanks of grateful hearts. God only 
knows what is in store for our beloved country. I hope and trust 
that it will triumph over all its foes, and am sure if all had served 
it as faithfully and heroicallv as you. its day of triumph would not 
have been so long postponed. The people. I am confident, will fill 
up your ranks without delay and put vou in position to avenge your 
countrv's wrongs and vindicate her cause. We are sad at the dis- 
comfiture of our army— its retreat when we were hoping for a 
victorious advance upon the rebels. I do not stop to criticise. I do 
not know that I am possessed of (acts to authorize a criticism. I 
only hope that we are to be more successful in the future. I have 
o-reat faith in the army and through it I have faith that we are to 
prevail. I want to go down and see our troops but am told there is 
no way to get down ; can't get permission. I hope to be able to get 
Mr. Abbott appointed, but such has been the rush of business that 
it has been difficult to get a hearing. I wish you would write me as 
often as you have time, and freely, feeling assured that I am in 
deepest sympathy with you in your great peril, and will always be 
glad to serve you. I have a nephew in the Massachusetts nth, 
named Blackwell. Can you tell me if he is safe? 



The Pope Campaign. — Kearny's Death. — Poem by Stedman. 
— Movements of Berry's Brigade. — Berry Narrowly 
Escapes Capture. — Confederate Women. — Berry Pro- 
tects Their Property. — Their Discourteous Conduct. — 
Berry Brings Them to Terms. — More Letters. — The 
Branding of a Deserter. — Berry's Keen Sympathy. — 
The Brigade in Maryland and Virginia. — Guarding 
White's Ford. — Search for Concealed Powder. — Discov- 
ery of Artillery Harnesses and Cavalry Equipments. — 
The "Buckwheat Seed."— " Stop ! It is Powder."— 
Changes in the Brigade. — Letters. 

DURING General Berry's absence on leave, his brigade took 
part in the Pope campaign and was engaged at Groveton 
and Second Bull Run, August 29th, and at Chantilly> 
September 1st, where the gallant Kearny gave up his life. 
General Kearny was one of those rare specimens of manhood 
to whom fear was an unknown quantity. He had served in the 
Mexican War where he suffered the loss of an arm in a desper- 
ate cavalry charge. Again, in the French army, he rendered 
conspicuous service, and at the breaking out of the Civil War 
he promptly tendered his services to the Government. His 
brilliant career during the Peninsular campaign made him a 
prominent figure in the stirring events of those days, and his 
untimely end deprived the Union cause of a brave and skillful 
general. Edmund Clarence Stedman in his poem, " Kearny at 
Seven Pines," makes this allusion : 


So that soldierly legend is still on its journey, 

That story of Kearny who knew not to yield ; 
'Twas the day when with Jameson, fierce Berry and Birney, 

Against twenty thousand he rallied the field. 
Where the red volleys poured when the clamor rose highest; 

Where the dead lay in clumps through the dwarf oak ami pine; 
Where the aim from the thicket was surest and nighest, 

No charge like Phil Kearny's along the whole line! 

Returning from the disastrous Pope campaign, Berry's 
brigade was encamped for a few days at Hunting Creek, Fort 
Lyon, Fort Ward and Upton's Hill. In September General 
Berry resumed his command. He was not in the best condi- 
tion for the field, but the rest and quiet of home had improved 
his health, and he longed to be with his troops and share with 
them the perils to which they were exposed. 

On his journey to join his brigade, General Berry and his 
aide, Lieutenant J. B. Greenhalgh, had a narrow escape from 
capture. They had forded the Potomac and reached the west- 
ern side. Continuing their journey for four or five miles they 
stopped at a tavern in a small town. There was much excite- 
ment, the Union troops having left but a short time before 
General Berry's arrival, and the place was swarming with Con- 
federate sympathizers. Lieutenant Greenhalgh was feeding his 
horses, when General Berry came out of the tavern, and said 
that he did not like the appearance of things— that he had 
overheard that Confederate troops were expected. Directing 
Lieutenant Greenhalgh to take the horses to a point a mile 
away, General Berry quietly returned to the tavern and in an 
unconcerned manner remarked that he must rejoin his brigade 
at once. He succeeded in getting away without arousing sus- 
picion, and joining Lieutenant Greenhalgh the two hastily 
retraced their way to Washington. Three hours after their 
departure the town they had left was raided by Confederate 

September 12th, 1862, General Berry writes home: " I am 
now with my brigade in front of Alexandria, in the vicinity 


of the spot occupied by us about one year since. The officers 
and men of my command were very glad to see me and gave 
me a warm reception. My health is improving, but I am very 
weak and cannot bear much exertion. The old 4th Maine has 
had severe fights and acquitted itself handsomely. Their loss 
was quite heavy, much more so than I supposed. I have little 
to write except it be that many of the troops require rest, 
especially my poor brigade. Will they have it? I hope so. 
We are now located with a view to guarding Alexandria and 
its approaches." 

Soon after rejoining the brigade the following little incident 
occurred, which Major Thayer of General Berry's staff relates : 
" At this time my wife who was stopping with friends in Alex- 
adria wished to visit me in camp, and as our headquarters were 
established in the yard of a house occupied by two middle-aged 
ladies, I engaged a room in the house which Mrs. Thayer could 
use in rainy weather. The two ladies asked protection from 
General Berry for their property, consisting of a span of horses, 
carriage, some poultry and a large flower garden, which was 
about all there was left of value outside of their house. The 
General directed guards to be placed, as was usually done over 
such property near our camp. On Sunday morning, learning 
from the colored boy who drove the carriage that the ladies 
would attend church at Alexandria, and that there would be a 
vacant seat in their carriage, I asked them to call for Mrs. 
Thayer after church to ride back with them, which they flatly 
refused to do. I stated the case to General Berry, who said, 
' Say to them, it is my orders that the carriage shall bring the 
Lieutenant's wife, if she desires to come, and if you object to 
riding with the wife of a Northern soldier you can stay at 
home, and your carriage will go after her.' This brought them 
to terms, and the three returned together after church. The 
next day Mrs. Thayer, while walking in their garden, picked a 
few flowers, of which there was a profusion, and while arrang- 
ing a bouquet was met by a little colored girl with a note from 


the ladies, on a silver tray, in which they objected emphatically 
to her trespassing by picking any flowers on their premises. 
She carried the bouquet and note to General Berry, who said in 
a quaint way he often had, ' Tell your husband that as we will 
probably move from here in a day or two, the soldiers need all 
the rest they can get, and that any guards now doing duty 
around these premises or elsewhere, who are not needed for pro- 
tecting public property, can be relieved and go to their quarters.' 
The following day Mrs. Thayer received from the soldiers more 
bouquets than she could supply with vases, and very possibly 
some of them came from this same garden." 

General Berry writes under date of September nth: 
"Today is my first Sunday in camp since my return, and not- 
withstanding the crowd, how lonely ! I feel more inclined to 
murmur than when I first came into service, when I had many 
things to drive me everywhere and keep my mind employed. 
Things have somewhat changed since then, I hope and trust for 
the better, so I find myself wishing to be at home rather than 
here sleeping on the ground again and living poorly enough for 
a hungry dog. The army under Pope got a tremendous thrash- 
ing at Bull Run. It is a fact, and no efforts will avail to keep 
it from leaking out. McClellan's forces, particularly Heint- 
zelman's corps, opened the way to the rear by the battle 
of Chantilly, which was a victory, in which poor Kearny was 
killed, and made an open road for Pope to fall back. McClellan 
is again in command, and all seem to feel easier, thinking that 
no great blunder will be committed, if no decisive victories are 
obtained. This corps is still in front of Alexandria for the 
defense of that city. How long we will remain no one knows, 
but think for the next two weeks at least, perhaps longer. I go 
to Washington tomorrow to see about some matters concerning 
my brigade. Shall return in the afternoon. The boys of the 
4th Maine have indeed had a hard fight. The regiment has 
lost over one hundred in killed and wounded. Company B took 
into the fight on Monday at Centerville twenty-four men; 


sixteen were killed and wounded and four others had holes shot 
through their clothes. Company C and also A suffered severely. 
They behaved splendidly ; in fact their conduct was unexcep- 
tionable. They have won honors for themselves that will be a 
lasting monument to their bravery. Colonel Elijah Walker 
handled his regiment in a manner that shows him to be a brave 

September 16th he writes : "Well! McClellan has whipped 
the enemy severely [at Antietam] and I trust decisively, so much 
so that his retreat in Virginia will be as much as he can attend 
to at present. Thus ends the invasion of the North. The new 
troops are pouring in rapidly. I. trust that in a few days we 
shall have an army large enough to warrant our moving onward 
towards Richmond in pursuit of the enemy. I hope that this 
campaign may be decisive in its character, sufficiently so to end 
the war. I send you two copies of a photograph of the lamented 
Kearny. I prize them more than money. I wish them kept 
sacredly. He was my friend and I had a great love for him, as 
I well know' he had for me. We are under orders to march at 
a moment's notice, I do not know when, but probably in a few 
hours, within at least two days. My health is improving." 

September 20th he writes : " We are still watching the 
front of Alexandria. How long we are to remain is a matter 
of doubt. The rebels, it seems, have left Maryland, and are 
again on Virginia soil. They found invasion a different affair 
from what they supposed. I had hoped that the battles would 
have been attended with more decisive results than they seem 
to have been, but so it is, and it is no use to complain. It is 
very lonely here, more so than before I went home. Kearny is 
dead, Hooker is in command of an army corps, and many 
others have left or been promoted. I feel discontented, and 
camp life seems tiresome enough. I suppose you know all 
about the 4th Maine boys that are wounded. George Redlan 
has lost an arm, Charles Sawyer wounded in the foot, George 
Wall wounded, and so on. Oliver Blackington is uninjured. I am 

Litchfield's bravery. 209 

glad it is no worse. Julius Litchfield is one of the bravest men 
in the army, and one of the best of officers in an engagement. 
He is entitled to the respect and good-will of all his friends for 
his heroic conduct under fire. No man more distinguished him- 
self in that noble regiment than Julius. He was in the front 
and cheered on his men continually. So, too, with the Abbott 
boy of Thomaston, also Captain Davis, one of the best of officers, 
and so with very many others. Walker's horse was hit, but 
he escaped unhurt." 

September 23d he writes: "I am still in front of Alex- 
andria. The 4th Maine is now up the river near Potsville, the 
precise locality I know not. I do not hear that they have had 
any fight, but infer that they have moved around considerably. 
I may go with General Hooker ; he has applied for me. I 
should like him much better than any man I have seen. 
I consider him the best man in the army." 

October 5th he writes : "I am still with my brigade at 
the outposts in front of Alexandria. How long I shall remain 
here I know not. I shall try to get away to more active service 
as soon as possible, as I dislike this kind of life very much. My 
health is not so good as I wish it were. I find myself weak and 
easily overthrown by the least exposure. I fear it will be some 
time ere I am as well as I was last winter." 

October iithhe writes: "My health is better. I have 
had a relapse of my old fever of Harrison's Landing. I came 
back too soon ; it would have been better had I stayed till now, 
but under the stringent orders of the War Department I did 
not feel at liberty to remain longer. I have now nine regiments 
in my brigade, one of the largest brigades in the army. I have 
it in most thorough drill and discipline and it is the pride of all 
who belong to it." 

In speaking of General Berry, Major Thayer, his provost 
marshal, whom we have quoted before, says : " As a disciplina- 
rian General Berry was firm but with a heart as tender as a 
woman's. While in camp at Alexandria, one of our men was 


iound guilty by a court martial held some distance away, on 
the charge of desertion, the sentence being to have his head 
shaved, to be branded with the letter ' D ' on the left hip, and 
then drummed out of camp, the brigade to be formed in a 
hollow square to witness the execution of the sentence, under 
the direction of the provost marshal of the brigade. General 
Berry handed me the order, saying, ' I see no way of evading 
the order. Have it done as quickly as possible, and caution 
your men neither to shave close, nor burn deep.' He felt it 
was a disgrace to his brigade as well as to the soldier. When 
we returned to our quarters he said to his staff that he would 
rather lead his men into battle than to be compelled to degrade 
another soldier for desertion." 

Continuing, Major Thayer says : " In October the 3d Corps 
was sent as a corps of observation up the Potomac. Our 
brigade marched on October 11th across Chain bridge, up the 
river road, through Tenallytown, Rockville and Darnestown to 
Edward's Ferry, Maryland, doing picket duty until the 28th, 
when we moved via Poolsville to White's Ford, and again cross- 
ing the Potomac into Virginia. While guarding the ford and 
watching for a return of Stuart's cavalry, our headquarters was 
near a house where we suspected powder was stored to be used 
in destroying the Monocacy stone bridge in Maryland. The 
owner of the premises and his wife both protested stoutly that 
there was nothing of the kind, that they were Union people, 
and that the rebels knew better than to seek their assistance in 
any way. Notwithstanding their assertions, I searched the 
house, finding only an overcoat with Confederate buttons, which 
they explained had been left there by a Confederate officer, 
who stopped for dinner, and had left hurriedly when some of 
our men were approaching. Our forage running short we 
began using hay from the barn, giving receipts for which the 
owners could be paid on proof of loyalty. When two or three 
loads had been removed we found, hidden beneath the hay, 
artillery harness and cavalry equipments enough for supplying 


several hundred men, and as it all bore the unmistakable marks 
of the ' C. S. A.' we gave the couple no more hay vouchers. 
General Berry then directed me to make a more minute search 
for powder. The owner followed me, and when I found in a 
dark attic an open keg, and asked what it contained, he said it 
was buckwheat saved for seed, but when I struck a match he 
said ' Stop ! it is powder,' and sure enough there were three 
kegs of blasting powder. This was reported at once to General 
Berry, who directed me to take some men and assist the family 
in removing everything of value from the house to some other 
place, and find out with fire whether we had found all the muni- 
tions of war stored there by the enemy. In less than an hour 
several distinct explosions demonstrated that we had been 
advised correctly. The overcoat belonged to their son, as 
admitted to me by his mother, while the house and barn arsenals 
were being purified by fire." 

The next movement of the brigade was by the way of Lees- 
burg, Millville, Waterloo and Warrenton, camping October 23d at 
Falmouth. About this time the 2d Michigan was transferred to 
the 9th Corps, and the 1st and 101st New York and 17th Maine 
regiments were added to the brigade. 

General Berry writes under date of November 12th: "I 
am now in command of my brigade, under General Stoneman, 
he being in command of the division. My health is better, the 
weather cooler, and I hope to get rid of my long-continued 
sickness. General Stoneman is a good officer and a gentleman. 
I am pleasantly situated. This is a fine, mountainous region, 
the air is bracing, the country furnishing in times of peace 
many of the comforts of life. Now all is swept away by the 
armies advancing and falling back as the case may be. You 
will probably next hear from me by the way of the Lower 

November 17th he writes: "I have not written for some 
days, owing to my having been for the past ten days continually 
on the move. We are now encamped in advance of Warrenton, 


Va., in a country seemingly very long under cultivation, and of 
most picturesque appearance. High hills, sweeping valleys, 
dotted over with old-fashioned Virginia farm houses, at least a 
century behind the times, inhabited only by old men and women 
and a few blacks, make up all that is worthy of note in this 
part of the ' Old Dominion.' My health is somewhat better. 
I am very lame in my legs and right shoulder, so much so in 
my legs that I can scarcely walk. My shoulder is lame also, 
and my arm is almost useless at this time. Still I think I am 
improving, and believe that the cold weather will end my attacks 
of intermittent fever, but I have to take medicine daily to guard 
against a return of it. We shall move again soon." 

November 20th General Berry writes : " We shall go to 
the immediate vicinity of Fredericksburg tomorrow. We are 
now ten miles distant at the Rappahannock River." 

Writing from near Falmouth, November 24th : " We now 
confront Fredericksburg, and shall doubtless storm the place in 
a day or two. The city will most likely be destroyed, as we 
shall burn it if opposition is made therefrom to our crossing. 
Entirely destitute of news." 

Near Falmouth, November 30th : " I am now quite smart, 
having got better of my troubles. Although thin in flesh I am 
comparatively well. My command is in fine condition. I am 
complimented on all sides in relation thereto. The President 
was here in consultation with General Burnside a few days since, 
and doubtless made known to the General the future plan of 
operations. Of that, however, none know the particulars and 
will not till the moves actually commence." 



General Burnside in Command. — Proposes to Attack Rich- 
mond by way of Fredericksburg. — Delay. — Positions of 
the Opposing Forces. — Opening of the Battle. — An 
Unsuccessful Attack. — Slaughter at Marye's Hill. — The 
17th Maine. — Berry's Love for It. — Berry Crosses the 
Rappahannock and Prepares for Battle. — His Brilliant 
Generalship. — "Steady the 17th Maine! The State of 
Maine is Looking at You To-day." — Berry and the 
Backwoods Boy. — "Keep Those Heads Down." — Fierce 
Attack on Berry's Brigade. — "What Shall I Do with the 
Knapsacks?" — Berry Drives Back Ihe Enemy. — Confed- 
erate General A. P. Hill Compliments Him. — Lieutenant- 
Colonel Gilluly. — General De Lacy. — A Bad Scrape. — 
Berry's Official Report. — His Grief. 

M'CLELLAN was now relieved of the command of the 
Army of the Potomac and General Burnside had assumed 
his place. Promptness of action was of the utmost 
importance to insure success to the Union army ; but instead 
of attacking the enemy at once, Burnside spent several days in 
reorganizing his force. His plan of attack was to move on 
Richmond by the way of Fredericksburg, a design that Lee 
speedily fathomed and disposed his troops to disconcert; and 
while the Union army marched toward Fredericksburg on the 
upper side of the Rappahannock, the Confederates moved in 
the same direction on the other side. Burnside reached Fal- 
mouth, nearly opposite Fredericksburg, on the 17th of Novem- 


ber, several days in advance of Lee. The town was then 
occupied by a small garrison of Confederate troops, and Sumner 
sought permission to cross the river with his corps and occupy 
the heights behind the town, which would have resulted in its 
fall. Burnside, however, withheld his consent, and before the 
Union commander was ready to act, Lee had possession of the 
hills and had strongly fortified them, so that desperate fighting 
and heavy losses must ensue before the Stars and Stripes could 
float over them. 

Fredericksburg at this time was a small town of but little 
importance, except as a point of military operations. It is 
located on the bank of the Rappahannock, on a plain which 
stretches away to a line of hills that curve to the river banks, 
a short distance above the village of Falmouth. Below Fred- 
ericksburg these hills, broken by the intersection of a broad 
ravine, make a wide sweep away from the river to a point where 
they terminate abruptly to give passage to Massaponax Creek, 
a stream which crosses the plain at its widest point, to empty 
into the Rappahannock. 

The heights along the north bank of the river completely 
command Fredericksburg and the plain beyond, and it was here 
that the Union army was encamped. The little city was thus 
in a perilous position between the two armies, and could be 
destroyed by the artillery fire of either. Sharpshooters were 
also posted by the enemy in the houses along the river bank, 
to oppose the crossing of the Union forces, by preventing the 
rebuilding of the bridges. 

By the ioth of December Burnside was ready to attempt 
the passage of the river. The weather was very cold and the 
poorly clad troops suffered severely. Snow fell to the depth of 
several inches on the 5th, bending the pines under the weight 
until the curving trunks formed arcades above the tents of the 
sleeping men, while the sentinels under their mantle of snow 
looked like statues half confounded with the trees. 

One hundred and fifty cannon were posted on Stafford's 


Hills to protect the Union troops who were to lay the pontoon 
bridges. Work began on the iith under cover of a heavy fog, 
but the Confederate sharpshooters soon got in their deadly 
work, compelling the engineers to desist from their labors. It 
was evident that these sharpshooters must be driven away 
before the passage of the river could be effected, and the Union 
artillery opened fire upon the city. Columns of smoke arising 
above the mist showed that Fredericksburg had been set on 
fire by the shells, but neither the shelling nor the conflagration 
dislodged the tenacious sharpshooters. Another attempt to 
rebuild the bridges failed, and volunteers were called for to 
cross the river in boats and attack the riflemen. This was a 
most desperate undertaking, but the volunteers were soon forth- 
coming, and the attack upon the sharpshooters resulted in the 
capture of many of them and the driving away of the remainder. 

On the iith and 12th the Union army crossed the river on 
the bridges and prepared to give battle to the enemy. The 
morning was foggy and did not clear until about eleven o'clock. 
The battle opened by General Meade attacking Jackson, who 
occupied the right of the enemy's line, posted on the hills back 
of Fredericksburg. Meade succeeded in driving back the first 
lines of the enemy and reaching the top of the hills, but not 
being reinforced in time, was driven back with great loss. 

Sumner on the right had attacked the enemy vigorously. 
Marye's Hill just back of the town was crowned by strong 
batteries of the enemy. Along its base is a sunken road with 
a stone wall bordering the side nearest the city. The existence 
of this road was unknown to the Union generals, and it served 
as a place of concealment for a strong body of Confederate 
riflemen, whom the stone wall, which was four feet high, com- 
pletely sheltered. The Union troops made several attempts to 
carry this height by storm, but in vain. Finally, the lines were 
formed for a desperate assault and the troops advanced across 
the plain in front of the hill in the face of a terrible fire from 
the Confederate batteries. The stone wall was reached, and in an 


instant a fringe of flame leaped from the rifles from behind it, 
while batteries at the ends poured grape and canister into the 
surging mass in front. This was too much for human nature to 
endure, and the broken Union lines came reeling back, the dead 
and dying lying in piles along their course. 

General Burnside, when he saw the result of the assault, 
went to Hooker, whose division had not yet crossed the river, 
and ordered him to carry the hill. On examination Hooker 
became satisfied that such an attack would only be sending the 
men to certain death without accomplishing the result sought 
for. He therefore returned to General Burnside and tried to 
persuade him to countermand his order, but without avail. 

Hooker opened with artillery, and about sunset ordered 
General Humphrey to assault the hill. Laying aside knapsacks 
and relying on the bayonet, the troops gallantly rushed to the 
attack, but on reaching the stone wall they were met with such 
a fire that they were driven back, leaving 1,700 of their number 
behind. Night ended the conflict, which had resulted in a loss 
of more than 12,000 men to the Union army. Nor was the 
struggle renewed the following day, General Burnside yielding 
to the entreaties of his principal generals, who were unanimous 
in their opinion that the enemy's position was too strong to be 

At this time Berry's brigade consisted of the 17th Maine, 
3d and 5th Michigan, 1st and 37th New York. December 23d, 
1862, the 55th New York was consolidated with the 37th, which 
increased its effective strength. 

The 17th Maine, which had just arrived from home, was 
among the new regiments added to Berry's brigade. It was a 
magnificent body of men and gave evidence even at that early 
date of the brilliant career it was juit entering upon. General 
Berry was in Washington when this regiment reported at the 
front for duty in his brigade. On his arrival at headquarters, 
he immediately ordered the 17th Maine to parade for inspec- 
tion, desiring in this manner to become familiar with the men, 


and to give the regiment a " sizing up." The regiment was drawn 
up in an open field and the ranks opened. Dismounting, Gen- 
eral Berry commenced a thorough examination of the men and 
equipments, nothing escaping his practiced eye. As he came 
slowly down the line he suddenly stopped opposite Captain 
George W. Verrill, who was then an orderly sergeant, and asked 
his name and where he was from. Unconscious of having 
committed any offense, other than partaking of some unpur- 
chased morsels that others had given him, yet the sergeant was 
quaking with apprehension lest he was about to be severely 
disciplined. For what other reason could he be singled out of 
this line of 600 men and thus addressed by this general of 
brigade? Summoning what remained of his vanishing courage 
for one supreme effort, Verrill blurted out his name and resi- 

"Where is your sergeant's sash?" asked General Berry, 
with a merry twinkle in his eye. 

Alas, he had it not, and in a few words he explained that 
when the regiment was ordered from the defenses of Washing- 
ton to take the field for active service, the sash had been packed 
up and left behind. 

General Berry laughed with delight at some humor in the 
situation ; told the sergeant that he " guessed he would do," 
and moved on. Verrill was not court martialed. 

Berry continued his searching inspection, and noticing that 
the men of one company were of small average height, he 
called the captain to him, and said that they would make good 
skirmishers and advised the captain to drill them thoroughly in 
skirmishing. Never before nor since was this regiment sub- 
jected to such a rigid examination, but it came out of the ordeal 
crowned by the confidence and esteem of its brigade com- 
mander, who ever after spoke with pride of the 17th Maine. 

On the morning of the 13th of December Berry's brigade 
left its camp and with the other brigades of Birney's division 
moved to the bank of the Rappahannock below Falmouth. 


Here Berry crossed over the upper bridge and took position on 
the left of the 2d Brigade, remaining in this position until 
12 o'clock. The division to which Berry's brigade was attached 
was deployed in a field in the rear of General Meade's division, 
as a support to the intended movement by that division. The 
road bounding the rear of the field was edged with high 
embankments, with ditches next to the road some six feet deep. 
Through these embankments were two narrow wagon-ways, 
making it possible to retire from the field only by the flank of a 
regiment. The brigades of Ward and Berry were deployed 
in two lines, leaving Robinson's brigade, which had not then 
reached the field, as a reserve. 

The enemy's batteries commanded the open field, and in 
order to get into position under the brow of the hill, General 
Berry was obliged to advance over ground that had been staked 
by the enemy in order to gauge their guns, that is, lines of 
stakes had been driven into the ground at certain intervals so 
that the rebel artillerymen would know at what elevation to fire 
their pieces, in order to make their shots effective upon the 
attacking force. General Berry resorted to strategy to protect 
his men from the shells that rained upon them. Ordering them 
forward at the double-quick, the line would advance at a run 
for eight or ten rods amid the storm of shot and shell, then lie 
down, whereupon the firing would stop. Again the troops 
would rise, rush forward until the fire became too hot, then 
drop to the ground. These tactics were repeated four times 
before the brigade got into position under the brow of the hill. 
The significance of the stakes being now discovered, they were 
removed by General Berry's order. 

The severe shelling that the 17th Maine received was quite 
a test to the nerves of the new troops, who were receiving their 
first baptism of fire and blood. As the regiment was forming 
line of battle in front of the enemy, with the bullets whistling 
merrily about their heads, General Berry rode along the line 
accompanied by his staff. Glancing down the long line of men, 


he cried: "Steady, 17th Maine! The State of Maine is look- 
ing at you today ! " whereupon the men cheered lustily, took 
new courage, and as the records show acquitted themselves 
well, then and ever thereafter. 

It is related of General Berry that at the time the troops 
were lying flat to escape the shells that were hissing over them, 
he noticed that several men had sought shelter in a deep ditch 
a few yards in the rear of the line of battle. Addressing a 
tall backwoods boy he said : 

" Get out of that and join your company ! " 

The soldier straightened up, bowed to the General, and 
replied in a drawling tone of voice: 

" Ya-as, Gineral, I will, jest as soon as them fellers quit 
throwin' railroad iron at us." 

The General rode along. 

In another position of the 17th Maine, when General Berry 
desired to conceal the exact location of his line, and the enemy 
was vainly trying to shell him out, the orders were to " keep 
down out of sight," but the men were curious to know what 
was going on and would raise their heads to take a look. 
Observing this, General Berry galloped up at a furious pace, 
swinging his sword and shouting in stentorian tones, " Keep 
those heads down or I'll cut them off! " 

The owners of the heads obeyed, fearing the General more 
than the shells of the enemy. 

In the meantime General Meade's division was being sorely 
pressed ; Ward's brigade was detached by General Birney and 
sent to his assistance, and Berry's brigade was returned to its 
position on the left. 

Meade's troops were now in full retreat, and no efforts of 
the officers could rally them. The enemy appeared in force in 
front of Birney's division and charged upon the four batteries 
in the front. General Berry promptly sent forward the 5th 
Michigan to support the batteries, and advanced his remaining 
regiments to the front and right, filling the gap in the Union 


lines caused by sending forward a part of Ward's brigade. On 
came the rebel line at a charge, flushed by the victorious 
encounter with the troops of General Meade. The brunt of 
this attack fell upon General Berry, who met it with the 5th 
Michigan, Lieutenant Colonel Gilluly ; 37th New York, Colonel 
Hayman ; 101st New York, Colonel Chester; and the 17th 
Maine, Colonel Roberts. The 1st New York and 3d Michigan 
acted as a reserve. 

Volley after volley did the steady ranks of Berry's infantry 
pour into the masses of the enemy, until the lines were obscured 
by the sulphurous smoke and the rattling volleys blended in 
one continuous roar. Before this terrific fire the enemy melted 
like chaff before the wind. The men lay in ranks just as they 
fell, and wide gaps were left in the advancing line after each 
discharge. It was too much for human endurance. The 
shattered line of the enemy halted, then wavered, then went 
reeling back, broken and defeated. 

A member of the 17th Maine relates an incident that 
occurred during this fight. He says: "The men, being raw 
when we started for that engagement, were encumbered with 
their knapsacks, loaded with clothing, testaments and other 
books, playing cards, etc. When the critical moment arrived 
that General Berry concluded to put in our large regiment to 
meet an advance of General Hill, he rode up to our Colonel 
Roberts and ordered him to move forward. [General Berry 
had the good habit, lacking in many other generals, of giving 
orders in person when possible.] It was a muddy place we 
were in. Colonel Roberts was uncertain whether to unsling 
knapsacks or have the men wear them, so he asked the General 
what he should do with the knapsacks. The General replied, 
' I don't care what you do with the knapsacks, if you will only 
go forward.' Thus he taught us how to behave in action." 

The action had now ended for the day, so far as Berry's 
brigade was concerned, although the men were subjected until 
night to a severe artillery fire. Sunday and Monday the 

Incidents of the battle. 221 

brigade lay on the ground under the enemy's batteries, during 
which time they conducted themselves in a courageous manner 
The next day Lieutenant J. B. Greenhalgh was sent under a 
flag of truce to the rebel lines to make arrangements for the 
removal of the wounded who were lying between the two lines 
of battle. Meeting an aide of General A. P. Hill, he inquired 
of Greenhalgh what brigade came up after their heavy artillery 

" General Berry's brigade," responded Lieutenant Green- 

" General A. P. Hill sends his compliments to General 
Berry," said the Confederate officer, " and say to him that it 
was the best behaved brigade that he ever saw under fire." 

Lieutenant-Colonel Gilluly of the 5 th Michigan was killed 
in the charge of the enemy upon his command. It is said of 
him that having a most sensitive nature he was under the 
impression that his courage had been misrepresented to General 
Berry, and he went into this action with a determination to 
refute any such representation by a display of bravery most 
convincing. He led his regiment mounted, and knowing it was 
a most hazardous undertaking, he arranged with his quarter- 
master, Lieutenant H. B. Blackman, that should he fall, every 
effort should be put forth to recover his body and have it 
buried in Michigan. Gilluly fell during the bloody fight of that 
day and the Union army had fallen back, rendering any attempt 
to recover the body a difficult and perilous undertaking. True 
to his promise, and caring not for the dangers of the quest, 
Blackman secured an ambulance and a (ew men, and in the 
darkness of night returned to the battlefield, secured the body 
and returned with it to the regiment. Subsequently the body 
of the gallant lieutenant-colonel was taken to Michigan and 
given burial. General Berry says of this officer in his report: 
" I have again, as upon every field where this brigade has 
fought under my command, to make honorable mention of the 
5 th Michigan. Its brave chief, the gallant Lieutenant-Colonel 


Gilluly, fell at the head of his regiment in repelling a charge 
of the enemy upon the battery which his regiment was support- 
ing. The conduct of this war-worn regiment was, indeed, most 

General William De Lacy, formerly major of the 37th New 
York, says that he had been appointed brigade officer of the 
day on the morning of the battle. Anxious to participate in 
the conflict with his regiment, he hastened to General Berry 
and asked permission to remain with it during the impending 
battle. At first he denied the request, but in a few moments 
smiling at the impetuosity of the Major, he said, "All right; 
do as you please." 

Major De Lacy galloped back and rejoined his command, 
as it was leaving the road to form line of battle on the brow 
of the hill. The formation had not been completed when back 
came a portion of the Pennsylvania reserves, defeated and panic 
stricken. Colonel Hayman of the 37th New York and Major 
De Lacy attempted to rally them about the latter regiment, but 
without success. At this time General Berry appeared on the 
scene and addressing the regiment said : 

" Men of the 37th, this position has been abandoned. I 
expect you to hold it as long as I deem it necessary, and I feel 
sure you will do it." 

The men greeted these words with cheers and successfully 
resisted every attempt of the enemy to drive them from this 

General De Lacy adds : " I never remember seeing General 
Berry after that day, but I shall never forget him, how fine 
and powerful he looked — always calm, unruffled, with a genial 
smile, never a harsh word, and never theatrical, but he was, as 
he looked, always reliable, ready at all times for any emergency. 
All the soldiers loved him. I remember saying often that the 
men never waited for orders to cheer Kearny, Sickles or Berry. 
Their applause came from their hearts involuntarily." 

The following Monday, at 10 P. M., Berry was ordered to 


form his brigade in the rear of the road and be prepared to 
move at a moment's notice. Soon after orders came to recross 
the Rappahannock and go into camp. Speaking of this retreat, 
William Hobson, captain in the 17th Maine, says: "We 
retreated to the north bank of the Rappahannock on the night 
of the 15th, having been on the front line for more than fifty- 
six hours. Our regiment was the rear of the brigade, and as 
we climbed the bank we passed General Berry sitting on his 
horse, anxiously watching for the safety of his beloved brigade. 
As I passed him he said, ' Ah, boys, I've got you out of a bad 
scrape.' He did not leave until the last man was across the 

As a further illustration of General Berry's solicitude for 
the welfare of his men, the following incident is given : "On a 
bleak night in December, when the guard around his quarters 
were nearly frozen as they paced the beat, each for a long two 
hours, one of the 17th Maine men as he went past the door 
of the General's tent was surprised to see the tent-flap open and 
the General appear. He came out to the beat and held out a 
dipper, saying to the astonished private, ' Drink this, it will do 
you good.' He drank it obediently and it did him good. It 
was whiskey." 

In his report of the battle of Fredericksburg, General 
Stoneman, commander of the 3d Army Corps, and General 
Birney, his division commander, gave General Berry honorable 
mention for his conduct during the fight. 

General Berry's official report of this battle is as follows : 


Headquarters 3D Brigade, 
Camp below Fredericksburg, Va. 
December 14, 1862. 

Sir : In conformity to orders from your headquarters we broke 
up camp yesterday morning at 4 A. M., and moved, with the other 
brigades of this division, to the bank of the Rappahannock, just 
below Falmouth, where we were halted until 10.30 A. m. At this 
time we moved to the river to cross. 


In obedience to orders from corps headquarters I crossed this 
brigade over the upper bridge, and connected with the ist [2d] Brig- 
ade, General Ward, upon this side, arriving on our present ground 
about n.30 o'clock, and took up a position on the left of the ist 
[2d] Brigade. 

At 12 o'clock I was ordered by General Birney to take one reg- 
iment over to the right of our first line, and to sustain the rifle 
batteries ; also to guard our left flank with the other regiments of 
my brigade. I sent the 5th Michigan, Lieutenant-Colonel Gilluly 
in command, to the ridge, and placed the 37th New York, Colonel 
Hayman, 101st New York Volunteers, Colonel Chester, and 17th 
Maine, Colonel Roberts, in support of the batteries, keeping as a 
reserve the ist New York and 3d Michigan. These dispositions 
being made, I awaited the result of the attack then going on in front. 
I received orders about this time (1.30 p. m.) from the general of 
the division to be prepared fully to sustain a charge on our batteries 
should our forces then engaged be driven back. 

At 2 p. m. it was evident that our forces were being driven in. 
I extended my left by moving the 17th Maine to my extreme left. 
At this time the charge took place on the batteries in my front. 
The disordered troops, who had been driven in, by passing my front 
to the rear, did not dampen the ardor of my command, and when 
the enemy came within range, the 5th Michigan, 37th New York, 
101st New York and 17th Maine poured a withering fire into their 
ranks, which sent them to the right-about, they having met with a 
bloody repulse. This ended the infantry fight, as far as my brigade 
was concerned. We were subject, until night, to a heavy artillery 
fire, during which my men behaved handsomely. We lay on the 
ground under the enemy's batteries Sunday and Monday. 

Monday at 10 p. m. I received orders from the division general 
to form my brigade on a third line in rear of the road, and to be 
prepared to move at a moment's notice. A half-hour later I received 
orders from General Stoneman, commanding the corps, to move my 
brigade by its left flank to the rear, and form a line of battle, the 
left resting on the river, and the right resting on General Sickles' 
left flank. Captain Sumner, of the corps staff, was sent with me to 
place the brigade in position. As I was about forming my line, I 
received a second order from corps headquarters, through Captain 


Livingston, of the artillery, to march my brigade directly to the 
lower bridge, to cross and go into camp near corps headquarters. I 
proceeded on with my brigade, crossed the lower bridge, and went 
into camp within 400 yards of corps headquarters at 1 a. m. 

At daylight I reported in person to General Stoneman, and sent 
Lieutenant Freeman, of my staff, to report to division headquarters. 
At 8 A. M. I received orders from division headquarters to join the 
division, and place my brigade in rear of the 1st Brigade. I did so, 
and followed it to its camp and then, under direction of the general 
of the division, I placed my brigade in its present camp. 

This brigade has sustained in this battle its former good reputa- 
tion ; forming as it did on the plains of Fredericksburg, under fire 
of the enemy's batteries from the heights in front, and from their 
batteries on our flank, without any signs of wavering, is proof of 
its reliability. I have to again, as upon every field where this 
brigade has fought under my command, make honorable mention of 
the 5th Michigan Volunteers. Its brave chief, the gallant Lieuten- 
ant-Colonel Gilluly, fell at the head of his regiment in repelling a 
charge of the enemy upon the battery which his regiment was 
supporting. The conduct of this war-worn regiment was, indeed, 
most noble. 

The 37th New York Volunteers was no less conspicuous. 
Colonel Hayman was ever on the alert. His regiment was in sup- 
port of a battery, and always ready. It contributed largely in 
repulsing the enemy. It has won new laurels in the fight, which, 
added to its very many old ones, makes this organization one of the 
most noted in the volunteer service. 

I have also to mention the good conduct of the 101st New 
York Volunteers, Colonel Chester commanding. They nobly per- 
formed their duty during the fight ; also as picket on the night of 
the retreat. This regiment, though small in numbers, did good 
service, and its conduct, together with all its officers, was unexcep- 
tionable. The 3d Michigan Volunteers and the 1st New York 
Volunteers formed my second line. They were not actively engaged, 
but by their steady bearing and devotion to duty have again won my 
admiration. The conduct of these two regiments could not be 

Next, I have to mention the 17th Maine Volunteers. This was 


its first engagement ; but very few of its members were ever before 
under fire. Officers and men alike nobly performed their duty ; no 
one would have known but they were veterans. Colonel Roberts, 
Lieutenant-Colonel Merrill and Major West acted nobly, and per- 
formed their duties in a most satisfactory manner. This regiment 
assisted in the repulse of the enemy's attack on our batteries. 

I cannot close this report without making honorable mention of 
Captain G. W. Wilson, my acting assistant adjutant-general, and 
my aides, Lieutenants J. B. Greenhalgh, George Freeman and S. S. 
Huntly. They were active in the performance of their duties, and 
rendered the most efficient service. 

I also feel it my duty to mention Father Tissot, chaplain of the 
37th New York Volunteers. He was with his regiment during the 
engagement, and by his bearing and teachings rendered valuable 
service. He is, indeed, a model chaplain. 

The several surgeons of this brigade were on the field, and 
were very active in the performance of their duties. 

Herewith please find a complete list of killed and wounded. 
You will observe we have no missing. I am happy to be able to 
state that I have not a straggler in the whole brigade. 
Respectfully, your obedient servant, 

H. G. Berry, 
Captain F. Birney, Brigadier-General of Volunteers. 

Asst. Adjt.-Gen., 1st Div., 3d Corps. 

General Berry writes his daughter December 17th, 1862: 
" Your last two letters, my child, were handed to me by the 
brigade mail-boy on the field of battle on Saturday. I read 
them with much pleasure, under the most murderous artillery 
fire I have ever been subjected to. My brigade thought it very 
queer that I should read letters at such a time, but as I was not 
to move for a few moments I thought I would know what was 
in the letters, as I might not have the privilege an hour after- 
wards. I am pretty well, although very much exhausted, 
having slept on the ground for seven nights, and part of the 
time in wet places. My hair is all out of my head and I have 
had it shaved. I hope it will grow again, as I look queer enough." 


He writes again under date of December 26th : " I have 
been confined to my tent of late. I am now improving slowly 
but am indeed a frightful looking chap. The battle of Fred- 
ericksburg was a bloody affair and without results, except they 
be unfavorable ones so far as we are concerned. My brigade 
lost 180 killed and wounded. I lost one colonel killed. The 
artillery fire was very heavy and plenty of iron flew through 
our ranks. I escaped unhurt, although in the midst of the fray 
from Saturday at ten till the recrossing of the river. I got 
cold sleeping on the ground and getting wet and chilled." 

The casualties of Berry's brigade at the battle of Freder- 
icksburg as given in the official returns are as follows: 17th 
Maine, one man killed, nineteen wounded ; 3d Michigan, six 
men wounded and one officer captured ; 5th Michigan, one 
officer and nine men killed, one officer and seventy-two men 
wounded; 1st New York, seven men wounded; 37th New 
York, seven men killed, twenty-seven wounded, one captured ; 
101st New York, one man killed, twelve wounded. Total loss 
in the brigade of killed, wounded and missing, 165. 

In speaking of General Berry's love for his old regiment, 
Colonel Walker says : " The next morning after the battle of 
Fredericksburg, where the 4th Maine met with such fearful 
disaster, the General walked to my side, laid his head on one of 
my shoulders and his hand on the other and wept bitterly, 
refusing to be comforted, until two of his staff officers led him 
away. Thus we parted without uttering a word. One hour 
later he was in his saddle, directing his brigade, as cool and 
calm as though nothing had happened." 

January 8th, 1863, General Berry was temporarily in com- 
mand of the division during the absence of General Birney, and 
on the 15th, having secured a leave of absence, he hastened to 
New York to join his family, who were then in that city. But 
his vacation was of short duration, as in response to a tele- 
gram from his superiors summoning him to the field he returned 
to his command next day. 



General Charles Hamlin Relates How Berry was Promoted. 
— Meets Berry for the First Time. — Visit to Major-Gen- 
eral Hooker. — The Latter's Glowing Tribute. — Expresses 
Wish that Berry Command his Old Division. — General 
Heintzelman Interviewed. — His Letter. — President Lin- 
coln's Words of Praise for Berry. — Delay in Making the 
Appointment. — General Hamlin's Call on General Hal- 
leck. — The Latter's Boorishness. — Anecdote of Senator 
Zach Chandler. — Berry Appointed Major-General. — 
Letters. — Assigned to Hooker's Old Division. — Farewell 
Address to the Brigade. — The 37th New York's Address. 
— Berry's Affection for his Old Brigade — General Hooker 
Assigned to the Command of the Army of the Potomac. — 
His Great Admiration for Berry. — Assigns him to the 
Command of the 2d Division, 3d Corps. 

GENERAL BERRY'S qualities as a leader of men had 
long since brought him to the favorable notice of his 
superiors. His friends now took it upon themselves to 
see that his patriotic services received the reward that their 
importance merited, and urged his promotion to major-general. 
General Charles Hamlin, son of the War Vice President, gives 
the following account of General Berry's promotion : 

" Soon after Antietam I learned that General Berry, at the 
close of the Peninsular campaign, had been ordered to his home 
in Rockland in consequence of severe sickness. About the 
middle of October the Vice President came to Washington and I 

hooker's endorsement. 220 

found him at the National Hotel in consultation and conference 
with the General. I had never met the General and as I entered 
his room I was met by him in a most cordial manner. Although 
showing the effects of malaria, he possessed a fine, martial 
spirit which seemed to sit natural and easy upon a powerful 
form. I knew very well the confidence that was reposed in 
General Berry for his soldierly qualities by the Vice President 
and the personal interest the latter took in his success; so that 
when the conversation turned upon the General's promotion to 
the command of a division with the rank of major-general, I 
was not surprised and was much pleased with an invitation of 
both to go with them to see General Hooker whose advice and 
recommendation could be relied upon to bring about the desired 

" General Hooker, who had been wounded in his foot at 
Antietam, was then under the care of Dr. Nichols, at the Insane 
Asylum, where we found him lying upon a lounge in a room 
assigned to him which afforded cool and pure air to his wound. 
His greeting of our party was as hearty as his criticism of the 
handling of the army at Antietam was severe. As he was not 
an admirer of General McClellan — not even a believer in him 
as an army commander — he found a good listener in the Vice 
President, who prophesied that McClellan would not retain his 
position at the head of the army much longer. When General 
Hooker was informed of the special object of the visrt, he at 
once expressed his willingness to do all in his power to aid 
General Berry's promotion, adding that he had earned it, and 
that he desired above all things to see him in command of his 
old division which, wearing the White Diamond, was composed 
of Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and New Jersey troops and the 
Excelsior Brigade that had been raised by General Sickles. 
I was prepared for his declaration of confidence and interest in 
General Berry ; and he having promised to give him a strong 
letter recommending his promotion, we sat there prolonging our 
visit while listening to this recital of General Berry's valuable 


services and fine conduct as it had fallen under his eye on the 

" He gave many details of the battle of Williamsburg, 
especially, naming General Berry's opportune arrival with his 
brigade, from the Kearny division, which enabled him to hold 
his position and save the day. General Hooker endorsed him 
without reserve. He says : 

Headquarters Insane Asylum, D. C, ) 
October 19, 1862. j 

Major-General H. W. Halleck, Commanding the Army: 

General: The friends of Brigadier-General H. G. Berry 
desire that he should be promoted to the rank of Major-General of 
Volunteers, and have applied to me fur a testimonial in his behalf. 
He commanded a brigade in Kearny's division, and it was in that 
position I had an opportunity to witness his services through several 
eventful months. He led his brigade with great judgment and gal- 
lantry at Williamsburg and Fair Oaks, and I was informed by his 
late division commander [General Kearny] that his conduct was no 
less conspicuous in the subsequent engagements of his division on 
the Peninsula. But it was not in the presence of the enemy alone 
that my attention was attracted to this officer, but in the preparation 
of his brigade for active service, and in his arrangements for the 
defense of his position while encamped on mv left at Fair Oaks, 
and the soldierly manner in which he held his command, when the 
driving in of a picket by the enemy or a false move in the disposi- 
tion of his brigade would have endangered our whole line. He 
enjoyed the entire confidence of his division and corps commanders. 
I am not informed of his early opportunities for acquiring 
information in his profession, and only know that I regard him as 
an accomplished officer, and well qualified to fill the place he aspires 
to. He is practical, intelligent, enterprising, intrepid and devoted. 
In my own mind I have classed him among the promising officers 
who have grown up during the Rebellion, and from whom I have 
learned to expect great deeds before it is ended. Of this class, I 
know of no superior to General Berry, and but few, if any, equals. 
In consideration of the many recommendations you must have 
presented to you, General, it may not be necessary to add that I 

heintzelman's letter. 231 

shall commend no one to your favorable consideration, whose 
services I should not desire, were it admissible, in my own 
command. In view of the great responsibilities which belong to 
those high stations I have adopted this as an inflexible rule for my 

Very respectfully, your obedient servant, 

Joseph Hooker, 

Major-Genera 1. 

" Upon returning to the hotel I was excused for the day 
and requested to return in the afternoon of the next day. I 
did so, and with a note of introduction to General Heintzelman 
called upon him at Arlington to obtain the second letter of 
recommendation that was filed. Riding over the Georgetown 
bridge with a friend who knew the way, we reached Arlington 
in the evening and were ushered into the house at once, as soon 
as I had sent in my note of introduction. I found General 
Heintzelman with several members of his family sitting in a 
large room before an open wood fire, where he kindly received 
us. I recall with pleasure how soon the gray-bearded veteran, 
looking at us with his keen eye, put us at ease ; and as soon as 
he learned the object of our call spoke in the strongest terms of 
his admiration of General Berry and promised to send a letter 
in his behalf to the President the next day; and he did so. 
Here is the letter : 

Headquarters Defenses of Washington, i 

South of the Potomac, Arlington, Va., > 

October 15, 1862. ) 

His Excellency, A. Lincoln, President of the United States, 

Washington : 

Sir: I have the honor to recommend to your notice Brigadier- 
General H. G. Berry who served under my command first as colonel 
near Fort Lyon, afterwards as brigadier-general during the campaign 
on the Peninsula. 

He has always performed his duties with energy and good 
judgment. On the Peninsula he was highly distinguished for his 


gallantry and activity in the various battles, and more particularly at 
Williamsburg and Fair Oaks. 

At the former place he commanded the leading brigade that 
relieved the troops who were then engaged and almost out of ammu- 
nition, thereby saving the day. At Fair Oaks he held our left wing 
until after dark. 

I have the honor to be, sir, Very respectfully, 

Your obedient servant, 

S. P. Heintzelman, 


" These letters were placed in the President's hands. He 
expressed his satisfaction with the gallantry, efficiency and 
merits of General Berry and remarked that it would be a pleas- 
ure to make this promotion. It was understood that the letters 
were to be sent to General Halleck to be placed in his office 
and the nomination already agreed on to go to the Senate in a 
few days. The Vice President returned to his home and 
General Berry went to the front, shortly afterward. 

"After the lapse of a fortnight, the appointment not having 
been made, I received a letter from the Vice President asking 
me to inquire into the cause of the delay. I called upon the Pres- 
ident, who informed me that it should be made as soon as the 
Senate convened, and, to insure against mistake, gave me a card 
to General Halleck requesting him to see me. I went to 
General Haileck's office and waited in his ante-room during the 
afternoon until he closed his office for the day. Coming out 
with the card in his hand, and on being informed who was the 
bearer of it, he very haughtily said, before I could tell him I 
was there only in the capacity of a messenger from the Presi- 
dent : ' Young man, I am too busy to attend to such matters. 
You better go to your regiment.' I always thought that 
General Kelton, his adjutant-general, was more annoyed than 
was the President's messenger with the boorish action of 
General Halleck toward the President. The appointment 
came, however, as soon as the Senate convened, and Berry 


was confirmed without delay, to date from November 29th, 

It is said of Zach Chandler, the War Senator from Michigan, 
that when asked for his endorsement to papers requesting the 
promotion of General Berry from the rank of brigadier- to that 
of major-general, and it was suggested that Berry's political 
faith was not the same as his, he exclaimed in his bluff way: 
" D — n his politics ; his military record is good enough," and 
seizing a pen he signed the documents. 

Vice President Hamlin notified Berry of his promotion in 
the following terms : 

Washington, January 22, 1863. 
Brigadier-General H. G. Berry : 

Dear Sir : I am directed by Mr. Hamlin to avail myself of 
the honor to inform you that you have been today nominated by the 
President as Major-Genera 1 of Volunteers in the United States Army. 
You may be sure your friends and all who know you will 
rejoice in an event which confers so well-earned and well-merited 
honor upon you, and secures in a wider sphere the skill which will, 
we think, be used most earnestly and successfully for your country. 
Truly yours, N. Butler, 

Private Secretary to Vice President. 

Thus at the early age of 38 years did General Berry attain 
this high rank in military life solely because of superior service 
and ability. The press of business was so great in the Senate, 
however, that General Berry's nomination, with others, was not 
then acted upon; but on March 7th, 1863, he was renominated 
by the President and two days afterwards the nomination was 
confirmed by the Senate, to rank as Major-General of Volun- 
teers in the service of the United States from the 29th day of 
November, 1862. 

January 23d, 1863, General Berry writes home: "We have 
just got back to our old camp again, having been out for seven 
days. I passed from the cars at Washington immediately to 


the boat for Aquia Creek and thence by rail to this point. On 
my arrival I found my brigade had moved up river. I started 
at once and overtook it and have been with it ever since. 

"Tuesday it commenced raining and continued through the 
night and Wednesday and Wednesday night. Our wagons and 
artillery all stuck fast in the roads and we have been obliged to 
build corduroy roads to get back to camp again. I have had a 
dreadful attack of earache again, and I am well-nigh used up. 
This move has been a most miserable failure." 

Under date of Sunday, January 25th, 1863, General Berry 
writes: "I received notice last evening from Mr. Hamlin 
that I had been appointed by the President as Major-General 
of Volunteers." 

We quote from the diary of one of General Berry's staff 
officers: "January 21st, 1863. Called at 5 A. M. and at day- 
light brigade ready to move. Waited for orders till 10 A. M., 
when we made ourselves as comfortable as possible for the day. 
Still raining. Sent orderly on horseback, and we were allowed 
fires and got along very comfortably. About 1 1 A. M. General 
Berry arrived, and such another shout was never heard from one 
brigade, as at this time. The officers flocked around him as 
though he were their saviour. 

General Berry writes, February 2d : "I am now at my old 
camp, but not in command, having turned it over to the senior 
colonel. I shall be assigned another place in a day or two." 

On the 25th day of January General Burnside was 
relieved of the command of the Army of the Potomac, and 
Major-General Joseph Hooker (Fighting Joe) was assigned as 
its commander. We have had occasion many times to refer 
to the warm friendship existing between Hooker and Berry, 
since the latter saved Hooker from disaster at Williamsburg. 
The admiration Hooker cherished for the judgment and 
military skill of the subject of this biography he had expressed 
in unlimited terms in his letter to General Halleck recommend- 
ing his promotion, and in his often expressed wish to have 


General Berry assigned to his command. Now as commander 
of the Army of the Potomac he was in a position to demon- 
strate the sincerity of his regard. Nor was Hooker slow to 
avail himself of the opportunity. Among his first official acts on 
assuming command of the army was that of assigning General 
Berry to the command of his (Hooker's) old division. This 
he did in the following order: 

Headquarters Arm? oi the Potom.u , 

Camp near Falmouth, Va., 

February 5, 1863. 

Special Orders, ) 
No. 36. j 

I. Brigadier-General H. G. Berry is assigned to the command 
of the 2d Division, 3d Corps, and will report accordingly. 

By command of Major-General Hooker. 

Jos. Dickinson, 
Assistant Adjutant-General. 

General Berry writes home of his assignment to the 
2d Division as follows : 

Headquarters 2d Division, 3D Corps, j 
February 8, 1863. j 

I am located again, having been assigned to the command of 
this division. I have the assignment as a matter of compliment. 
This is the Hooker Division, the largest in the army and the best. 
I have three good brigadier-generals and five batteries of artillery 
and some seventeen regiments of infantry, and am well satisfied 
with my command. 

General Berry was not now in good health. During Febru- 
ary he had suffered severely from chills and fever, and ague in 
the face. However, at 11 o'clock A. M. on the 8th day of 
February he arrived at the headquarters of his new command 
and assumed control of the division. His headquarters were in 
the Thomas Fitzhue house, an ancient colonial residence, built 


in 1752. Prior to leaving his old brigade, General Berry issued 
the following farewell order : 

Hdqrs. 3D Brig., ist Div., 3D Corps, 
Army of the Potomac, Camp near Falmouth, Va., 
January 29, 1863. 

Having received an order to report to the War Department for 
orders I hereby turn over the command of this brigade to Colonel 
Roberts, 17th Maine Volunteers. 

I cannot part with my old comrades in arms without specially 
thanking them for the handsome manner in which they have always 
conducted themselves, both in camp and in the field. Their triumphs 
have been many. They have won by their heroism a name that will 
live as long as the history of this rebellion and they have the proud 
satisfaction of knowing that they have never yet been driven a rod 
on any field. This gallantry is acknowledged not only by this army, 
but by the enemy himself. Continue thus to demean yourself, and I 
assure you, that when your several terms of enlistment expire you 
will be welcomed home by your friends as brave and gallant men 
ever are; and besides, you will individually have the proud con- 
sciousness of knowing that you have sincerely endeavored to perform 
your duties and that you deserve well of your country. 

Parting with you is indeed painful to me. How can it be 
otherwise ? I came among you a stranger, and to fill a place before 
occupied by a brave and gallant officer [Major-General I. B. 
Richardson] who has since given his life to his country. You at 
once determined to give the same support to me that you gave to 
him and I have to thank you for it. I shall watch your future with 
great interest and I trust it will be as brilliant as the past. 

I now take my leave of you imploring Heaven's blessing on my 
old brigade. 

H. G. Berry, 
Lieutenant G. W. Freeman, Major-General Volunteers. 

Aide-de-camp and A.A.A.-G. 

The 37th New York, one of the regiments of Berry's 
brigade, in an address to him said : " We feel as though we 
were losing in you a father and a protector who has watched 
over us in moments of danger, but we hope and trust you will 


have a command commensurate with your abilities, and a posi- 
tion worthy of your devotion to the cause which you serve, and 
we sincerely trust that this regiment will be a portion of that 
command. Rest assured, dear General, that wherever you are, 
or in whatever position you are placed, the heartfelt gratitude 
of the officers and men of the 37th New York Volunteers 
[Irish Rifles] will be with you." 

An officer of the brigade, in a letter to the author, says : 
"While there is a warm spot in our hearts for Generals Rich- 
ardson, Pierce, De Trobriand, Poe, Mays, and others who 
subsequently commanded, ours will always be known as ' Berry's 
Brigade.' " 

A member of the 17th Maine says: "I did not see 
General Berry again until the grand review of the Army of the 
Potomac by President Lincoln in April, 1863. In the meantime 
he had been made Major-General and assigned to the command 
of the 2d Division of the 3d Corps. While we were waiting 
for the review he said to his staff, ' Come with me down to my 
old brigade and I will show you some boys who know how to 

" Although we had no warning of his coming, it is needless 
to say that he was received in a manner which showed the 
place he held in the hearts of his old brigade. On Sunday, the 
19th of April, just two weeks before he was killed, he again 
visited the brigade in its camp at Potomac Creek. He called 
at the headquarters of the other regiments, but when he came to 
the 17th Maine he requested Colonel Roberts to call out the reg- 
iment as he wished to talk to the boys. The assembly sounded 
and the regiment was drawn up in double column closed in mass 
without arms, in front of the Colonel's quarters. The General 
made an eloquent and patriotic speech. He said that he wished 
to speak to us in particular because we were from Maine, and 
were the only troops from his own State which had ever been 
under his command, excepting the 4th Maine. He spoke of 
his sorrow at leaving his old brigade, and said that arrange- 


ments'were in progress by which he hoped to have it again with 
him. He said that a great battle was at hand, that he knew 
something of General Hooker's plans, and hoped and predicted 
a glorious victory for the Union Army. 

" Speaking of the magnitude of the issues involved in the 
coming battle, he expected the regiment to maintain the repu- 
tation of the brigade, ' for,' said he, ' it is a fact that this brigade 
has never been driven a foot on any battlefield whatever.' Con- 
tinuing, he said, ' And now, boys, let us give three cheers for old 
Joe and the next fight.' They were given with a will, and then 
three more were given for General Berry. We never saw him 
but once after: on the first day of May, as our division had 
halted for a rest he passed us at the head of his division. As 
soon as the boys recognized him they rose and cheered him 
and he returned their salute. Words cannot express the sorrow 
which not only we of his old brigade, but the whole army felt, 
when on the following Sunday we learned that he had been 
killed. It is safe to say that the loss of no general officer 
could have been more deeply felt. He had improved his rare 
military genius both by study and by the experience of actual 
warfare, and at the time of his death was competent to com- 
mand a corps or even an army. No emergency ever found him 
unprepared, and no general ever received in higher degree the 
love and the confidence of those who served under him. 

" Entirely free from the petty jealousies which disgraced 
the record of so many officers, his only aim was to give his 
best and highest services to his country. If he had lived we 
know not to what higher honors he might have attained, but he 
could not have added to his reputation as a soldier satis peur et 
sans reproche." 



Berry's Staff Officers. — His Brigade and Regimental Com- 
manders. — The Regiments and Batteries in his Division. 
— An Army Wedding. — Ball at General Sickles' Head- 
quarters. — Mrs. Le Grand Benedict Relates an 
Anecdote of General Berry. — His Love of Fun. — His 
Splendid Horsemanship. — St. Patrick's Day in the Army. 
— Review by President Lincoln. — He Compliments Gen- 
eral Berry's Command. — Annie Etheridge. 

THE gallantry of this 2d Division had earned for 
General Hooker the sobriquet of Fighting Joe. He had 
commanded it through the entire Peninsular campaign, 
and at Williamsburg from early morning until the middle of the 
afternoon it had sustained the attack of the rebel army until 
General Berry relieved it from its desperate situation. Its 
brigades and regiments were ably commanded, and many of its 
subordinate officers attained high rank and national prominence 
later in the war. Hooker had infused into it much of his spirit 
and daring, and it had the dash and elan which that officer alone 
could impart to those under his command. In no better way 
could Hooker have manifested his regard and confidence in 
General Berry than in making him the chief of this magnificent 
organization of fighting men. 

On assuming command of the 2d Division, General Berry 
appointed the following staff officers : Captain J. S. Poland, 
chief of staff and assistant inspector-general ; Captain Le Grand 
Benedict, assistant adjutant-general ; Captain James D. Earle, 


commissary of subsistence ; Captain James A. Cross, provost 
marshal; Captain Charles W. Squier, engineer officer; Captain 
William H. Chester, judge advocate; Captain Thomas W. 
Osborn, chief of artillery ; Captain Benj. W. Hoxsey, ordnance 
officer; Major J. Theodore Calhoun, medical director ; Captain 
James F. Rusling, chief quartermaster; Lieutenant Seth 
Cushman, commissary of musters; Lieutenant William J. 
Rusling, chief of ambulance corps ; Captain Jabez B. Green- 
halgh, senior aide ; Lieutenant George W. Freeman, aide-de- 
camp ; Lieutenant I. Henry Washburn, aide-de-camp. 

The division of Major-General Berry consisted of the 
following troops : 

ist Brigade — Brigadier-General Joseph B. Carr; ist Mass- 
achusetts, Colonel Napoleon B. McLaughlen ; iith Massachu- 
setts, Colonel William Blaisdell ; 16th Massachusetts, Lieutenant- 
Colonel Waldo Merriam ; nth New Jersey, Colonel Robert 
McAllister; 26th Pennsylvania, Colonel Benj. C. Tilghman. 

2d Brigade — Brigadier-General Joseph W. Revere ; 70th 
New York, Colonel J. Egbert Farnum ; 71st New York, Colonel 
Henry L. Potter ; 72d New York, Colonel Wm. O. Stevens ; 
73d New York, Major Michael W. Burns; 74th New York, 
Lieutenant-Colonel Wm. H. Lounsbury; 120th New York, 
Lieutenant-Colonel Cornelius D. Westbrook. 

3d Brigade — Brigadier-General Gershom Mott; 5th New 
Jersey, Colonel Wm. J. Sewell ; 6th New Jersey, Colonel 
George C. Burling; 7th New Jersey, Colonel Louis R. Fran- 
cine; 8th New Jersey, Colonel John Ramsey; 2d New York, 
Colonel Sidney W. Park; 115th Pennsylvania, Colonel Francis 
A. Lancaster. 

Artillery — Captain Thomas W. Osborn, chief; ist New 
York Light, Battery D, Lieutenant Geo. B. Winslow ; New 
York Light, 4th Battery, Lieutenant Geo. F. Barstow ; ist 
United States, Battery H, Lieutenant Justin E. Dimick ; 4th 
United States, Battery K, Lieutenant Francis W. Seeley. 

As above organized the division entered upon the cam- 


paign that ended with the battle of Chancellorsville. At one 
time, prior to this battle, the 1st New Jersey, Battery B, Captain 
J. A. Clark, was also attached to Berry's division. 

With his characteristic energy Major-General Berry began 
at once to drill and discipline his large command, and when the 
movement on Chancellorsville began, it never had been in 
better heart and trim. 

Among the pleasant incidents of camp life was a wedding 
in the division. The ceremony took place under a tent and 
was enlivened by every kind of festivity. The groom was a 
captain in the 7th New Jersey, and if he had been of higher 
rank he could not have had a more imposing demonstration. 
The bride had brought with her from Washington ten grooms- 
men and ten bridemaids, a retinue fit for a queen. Generals 
were present in great number, General Hooker being among 
them, full of gayety and life. There was dancing, drinking and 
banqueting, succeeded by a ball at General Sickles' headquar- 
ters — a grand affair indeed. 

The monotony of camp life at the headquarters of Berry's 
division was also enlivened by the advent of the charming and 
vivacious young bride of the assistant adjutant-general, Captain 
Le Grand Benedict, who courageously came to share the discom- 
forts of army life with her husband. Her presence was hailed 
with delight by the chivalrous young officers of Berry's staff, 
who racked their ingenious brains to devise contrivances that 
would add to the comfort of her habitation and the pleasure of 
her novel experience. In " Outing" for December, 1887, she 
relates in an entertaining way her experiences with the army, 
and gives an incident that is illustrative of another side of 
General Berry's nature, namely, his inordinate love of fun : 
" It was dusk when she, accompanied by her husband, was 
quietly proceeding homeward. A deep gulch separated the 
camp from the main road, through which flowed a lazy stream, 
where the horses regularly expected a drink. Laying the 
bridle on the neck of her steed to permit this indulgence, she 


rested indolently in her saddle, reviewing the events of the day. 
They had just descended one precipitous bank, while another 
equally steep rose before them. Bucephalus stood knee-deep 
in the water, enjoying the draught, when suddenly from the rear 
came a frightful roar, a rushing tramp as of the approach of 
the whole Confederate army. Oh ! what a moment of conster- 
nation ! One to test the spirit and bravery of a northern 
woman, a would-be heroine, a soldier's wife ! She had not 
even time to collect her bridle reins, when the sharp sound of 
horses' feet clattered about her, a confused mass of flying cav- 
alry surrounded her, and she was conscious that this was the 
most trying moment of her life. Should she ever again see 
home and friends? Bucephalus made a desperate bound for 
freedom, and dashed up the hill with fury, his bewildered mis- 
tress, grasping his mane, his neck, and feeling that she was 
flying through space on the wings of a whirlwind. At this 
moment a strong hand caught at the curb of the animal, there 
was a firm and powerful grasp about her waist, while a voice in 
trumpet tones shouted closely in her ear the awful, awful com- 
mand, ' Surrender ! ' She had not a moment to think more 
than that she would sell her freedom as dearly as possible ; her 
life was at stake, and having about her no other weapon of 
defense, with her slender riding whip she struck one noble, 
terrible blow at rebellion, and then burst into cowardly tears. 
Next she felt her feet upon the ground, her husband's arm 
supporting her, the enormous body of cavalry vanquished and 
vanished, save for one peaceable orderly soothing her stamping 
charger, while a firm, loving, tender-hearted general, big and 
impulsive, stood before her in abject remorse, overwhelming 
her with apologies. He explained that returning with his 
mounted staff to his quarters, at their usual break-neck speed, 
he had jestingly thought to lift her from her saddle, transfer 
her to his own and bear her captive to camp." 

The officer mentioned in this narrative was General Berry, 
and it was related of him that one of his favorite pastimes was 


to seize a staff officer, when going at full gallop, and transfer 
the hapless victim to the pommel of his own saddle, bearing 
him off in triumph, in spite of his desperate struggle to get 

General Berry writes under date of March 5th: "No 
news other than ' all is quiet along the Rappahannock.' I like 
my command very much. I shall get along with them nicely." 
Under date of March 18th, he writes : "We had a wedding 
in the camp of one of my regiments followed by a dinner and 
ball in the evening. Next night a ball was given by General 
Sickles in honor of the party. All the ladies in camp were 
present. I went, took supper, did not dance, returned to my 
camp at 11.30 in the evening. Yesterday (St. Patrick's day) 
we had a hurdle race, a regular Irish affair. Everything was 
conducted in Kilkenney style. All the ladies in camp were in 
attendance. The horses were jumped over fences and ditches 
to the amusement of all, particularly the foreign part of the 
army. Result: Large lot of whiskey punch drank, mass was 
said by the priests, the races commenced, stakes of money large, 
accidents not a few, one man and two horses killed, two nearly 
so, many with arms broken, and much horse-flesh used up. So 
you see we have our amusements." 

He writes April 8th: "We had a review of the 
infantry of four army corps today. The President is here. I 
have got pretty well acquainted with him, and like him very 
much." Again, April 15th: " I am well and have a fair pros- 
pect of good health. I sincerely hope so, as the duties of an 
active campaign are arduous for even a well person. We shall 
move soon. I have a fine command. The President compli- 
mented my division very much. I was with him three days, 
most of the time." Again, April 20th : " The army is under 
marching orders, and has been for some days. It is uncertain 
what day we shall move." Again, April 24th : " No news to 
write. I am well and have a fair prospect of good health. I 
shall go into the field better prepared to live comfortably than 


last year ; besides I have more help and no more work, if as 

There was a very remarkable personage connected with 
Berry's old brigade. This was Miss Annie Etheridge, a young 
lady who was serving with the Michigan contingent as a nurse. 
She was to be seen on the march accompanying the staff of 
General Berry, riding her horse with ease and grace, and when 
in camp quartered with the medical department of the brigade. 
She was looked upon by officers and men as a noble, high-minded, 
honorable young lady, whose disinterested service for the sick 
and wounded will long be remembered by the soldiers of 
Berry's brigade. Her present address is 115 Sixth street S. E., 
Washington, D. C. 

Under date of July 20th, 1895, Miss Etheridge furnishes 
the following interesting account of her services with General 
Berry : 

" I remember better than anything else, all that is associated 
with General Berry, because I was so deeply attached to him, in 
common with all the soldiers — for we all worshipped him for his 
bravery, and for all that goes in the highest degree to make an 
ideal soldier and perfect gentleman. Although I knew General 
Berry as one of the prominent officers at headquarters, I really 
became acquainted with him at a private house, which had been 
turned into a temporary hospital, on what was called Upton's Hill, 
not very far from Washington. He had been taken there from 
camp very ill with fever. This was before I was seventeen 
years old, and he must have looked upon me as a child, for at 
that time I had not attained my full stature. I recall bathing 
his head very often, and doing everything for him as directed 
by the surgeon, until he recovered sufficiently to get a ' leave ' 
and go home. I remember he lost a great deal of his hair after 
the fever, and his saying ' You did it, Annie, bathing my head 
so much.' 

" I recall that when we were in winter quarters near 
Falmouth he decided to give a dinner party in camp. I 


remember that he inquired : ' Annie, will you cook the 
dinner?' I thought I could do anything for the soldiers in 
those days and I replied, ' Of course, I can cook the dinner ! ' 
So my tent was turned into a kitchen. I had a mud fireplace 
with a barrel for the chimney, and a tin contrivance that I 
could set up before the fire where I could bake the pies and 
other things. I hung up the turkey and basted it. There was 
no cook but myself. There was a ' bill-of-fare,' and the com- 
pany would have me in to be thanked, though I begged hard 
to be let alone. I felt ashamed of my army shoes, but I had 
no others, and all I could do to ' fix up ' was to polish the metal 
on my soldier-belt. General Berry's guests were Vice President 
Hamlin, two Senators, and the members of Congress from 
Maine, and his staff. I cannot recall the names of all the com- 
pany that day. With all my experience I could not begin to 
do now what I did then. I look back upon it all with perfect 
amazement, but the officers, and indeed all of us, felt that we 
must do everything expected of us; that we must not fail. 

" I do not recall any incidents, except those usually con- 
nected with marches and the routine of army life, prior to the 
awful battle of Chancellorsville where General Berry lost his 
life. I recall it was May 3d, my birthday. I was always with 
headquarters, marching with it. The night before, I had filled my 
canteens with hot coffee and started down the Chancellorsville 
road in company with the surgeon of the regiment. I knew 
that General Berry was stationed at the right. When we were 
seen coming we were met by an artillery officer, who told the 
surgeon that we were on the line of battle within the rebel 
lines, and he must take me back. I knew General Berry was 
on the right and I said he must take me to him — I must see 
him ! The officer wheeled his horse, rode back and reported. 
General Berry said : ' It is Annie ; bring her here, I would risk 
my life for her ! ' This the officer told me after Berry was gone. 
When I reached the General, who was on the line of battle, he 
drank the coffee and said : ' We are going to have a midnight 


charge,' at the same time pointing to a white house in the dis- 
tance. ' Go there, where you can attend to the wounded, and 
if I get killed I want you to go home with my body.' He was 
killed, as near as I can learn, the morning of the midnight 
charge, and before I knew it his body was carried off the field 
and sent away. I remember the bitter tears I shed that day, 
for I felt at the time that if he had been my own father, my 
grief could not have been deeper. Two years ago I visited the 
battlefield and stood on the very spot where he fell. I have no 
words to express the sorrow of the regiment [5th Michigan] at 
his early death. He had the power to inspire the highest 
qualities in friend or foe ; and he was a man — a great and noble 
soldier, whose deeds will never die." 



Hooker's Brilliant Plan — Description of Chancellorsville.— 
Slocum, Howard and Meade Make Passage of the Rappa- 
hannock. — Sedgwick and Reynolds Make a Demonstra- 
tion below Fredericksburg. — Sickles Supports Sedgwick 
and Reynolds. — Concentration at Chancellorsville. — Bat- 
tle Commences. — Hooker Withdraws to Chancellorsville. 
— Jackson's Brilliant Flank Movement. — Crushes the 
nth Corps. — Disaster Threatens the Army of the 

THE Army of the Potomac rested on the left bank of the 
Rappahannock when the Chancellorsville campaign com- 
menced. It was still opposite Fredericksburg, in a 
position among the Stafford Hills, a position that was regarded 
as almost impregnable. It numbered 124,500, and of these 
1 1,500 were cavalry. Lee had 62,000 men and 3,000 cavalry. 
It is stated, however, on reliable authority, that Hooker did not 
have over 1 13,000 men for actual combat, as it is a well estab- 
lished fact that 100,000 men on the rolls are equivalent to about 
80,000 muskets in action. 

The difference in the actual strength of the two armies was 
amply compensated by the wide river in front of the enemy 
with its well fortified fords and strongly guarded approaches. 
Stonewall Jackson kept under his watchful eye the line of 
defense below Hamilton's Crossing to Port Royal. One ol 
Longstreet's divisions under McLaws held the line from Ham- 
ilton's Crossing to Banks' Ford. The fords of the Rappahan- 


nock for miles above the position of both armies were narrowly 
watched by the eagle-eyed Confederate cavalry leader, J. E. B. 
Stuart, and his fleet-footed horsemen, supported by Anderson's 
division of Longstreet's corps. Indeed, every precaution that 
a skillful general like Lee could devise to prevent the Union 
forces from crossing the river and surprising his camp was 
taken, until the Confederate generals were led to believe that 
Hooker's slightest move could be quickly discerned and 
promptly thwarted. 

Both armies had secured a much needed rest, and Hooker 
had brought the Army of the Potomac to such a high state of 
discipline, that it would be difficult to find a finer body of fight- 
ing men than made up the various organizations of this vast 
army. Hooker inspired the utmost confidence as a commander, 
and there was dissatisfaction in but one part of the army. 
General Franz Sigel had been removed from the command of 
the iith Corps, composed mostly of German troops, and Gen- 
eral O. O. Howard was given his place. This quenched the 
enthusiasm of this corps, who regarded the removal of Sigel 
as a blow to their nationality. 

In his plan of campaign Hooker displayed the high quali- 
ties of a strategist. Major-General Sedgwick was to cross 
the Rappahannock and make a demonstration below Freder- 
icksburg, while four corps under Major-General Slocum made 
a detour and crossed twenty-seven miles above at Kelley's 
Ford. Slocum was then to proceed down the river and fall 
upon the left flank of the rebel army, and reopen Banks' Ford, 
which would accomplish the double object of reuniting the two 
wings of the Union army and giving a safe line of retreat in 
the event of disaster. This accomplished, it was Hooker's 
purpose to give battle in the open country near the ford, taking 
the whole rebel works on the heights of Fredericksburg in 
reverse. As the Union encampment at Falmouth was in full 
view of the Confederate forces on the opposite bank of the 
river, Gibbon's division was left behind as a blind to the move- 

Majok-General Joseph Hooker. 
From portrait by J. Harvey Young. 


merits of the troops, that the surprise of the enemy might be 
complete. Stoneman with 10,000 cavalry was to start about 
two weeks in advance of the main body, cross the river by the 
upper fords, and cut Lee's communications with Richmond. 
Averill with one column of cavalry was to attack Culpeper 
and Gordonsville ; the other under Buford wai to move to Louisa 
Court House and thence to the Fredericksburg railroad, both 
uniting behind the Pamunky. Should success crown the efforts 
of the main body of the Potomac Army, Stoneman was to take 
an advantageous position behind a river on Lee's line of retreat, 
and hold him in check until Hooker could attack and compel 
the surrender of the Confederate forces. A nicely devised 
plan, truly, worthy of the brain of a Napoleon ! 

But a severe storm of rain that converted the roads into a 
sea of mud, every ravine into an impassable river and rendered 
the Rappahannock unfordable, prevented Stoneman from start- 
ing on his expedition until the 28th. This was too much for 
Hooker's impatient nature, and his troops were over the river 
and the battle ended before Stoneman got fairly at work. 

Chancellorsville is a solitary house in a cultivated clearing 
surrounded on all sides by a forest, which is correctly named 
" the Wilderness." The dense growth and tangled underbrush 
made the deploying and quick maneuvering of an army 
extremely difficult, if not quite impossible. Hooker had never 
dreamed of giving battle here, but thought it a favorable point 
to concentrate his forces that he might the more effectively take 
the enemy in reverse, or force him to come out of his strong 

On the 28th the corps of Slocum, Howard and Meade 
made the passage of the Rappahannock at Kelley's Ford, under 
cover of darkness, and on the 29th, having successfully crossed 
the Rapidan, the columns stretched away in a rapid march 
toward Chancellorsville, which was reached the afternoon of the 
30th of April. This successful movement of the three corps 
opened United States Ford and prepared the way for Couch's 


corps, which promptly crossed at this point and joined the 
troops at Chancellorsville that night. Hooker himself came 
to Chancellorsville to give personal direction to the contem- 
plated movements. 

Meanwhile Sedgwick's and Reynolds' corps had moved 
three or four miles below Fredericksburg and bivouacked, 
Sickles' corps, in which was the division of Major-General 
Berry, taking up a position in the rear of these two corps as a 
reserve. The next day Sedgwick and Reynolds crossed the 
Rappahannock in the face of vigorous opposition from the 
enemy, but as it became evident that the enemy would not 
continue the attack, Sickles' corps was withdrawn and ordered 
to Chancellorsville. 

Notwithstanding the fact that Sedgwick so disposed and 
marched his forces as to give to the enemy the impression that 
the real attack was to come from him, Lee was soon undeceived, 
and on discovering Hooker's movements, he promptly started 
for Chancellorsville with the main body of the Confederate 
army. Early's division and Barksdale's brigade were left to 
defend the heights of Fredericksburg against Sedgwick's attack. 
Hooker planned to give battle to the enemy in the open 
country about half-way from Chancellorsville to Fredericksburg. 
It was of the utmost importance to reach this coveted position 
at the earliest possible moment. This position could be 
reached by two excellent roads which formed a junction near 
the Tabernacle, while a third ran near the river and came out 
at Banks' Ford. After concentrating five corps of the Army of 
the Potomac at Chancellorsville, Hooker had 64,000 men at his 
command. For some unaccountable reason he delayed action 
all that night and until 1 1 o'clock the next day. 

Before Hooker advanced from Chancellorsville Lee had 
started to meet him, and between 10 and 1 1 o'clock his advance 
guard encountered our cavalry skirmishers and drove them in. 

At 1 1 o'clock on the first day of May, Hooker moved 
from Chancellorsville in four columns. The corps of Slocum 


and Howard took the Plank road, the divisions of Sykes and 
Hancock advanced by the turnpike, and Griffin's division, 
followed by that of Humphrey, took the river road. French 
was to turn off and march to Todd's Tavern with his division. 
In the meantime Sickles' corps, consisting of the divisions of 
Birney, Berry, and Whipple, had arrived at Chancellorsville and 
were posted as a reserve in the rear of the Chancellor house. 

Sykes moved forward to the support of the cavalry pickets, 
which were being driven in, and deploying his division charged 
the enemy, driving him back for more than a mile and occupy- 
ing the position assigned him by his instructions. On the right 
Slocum moved forward without opposition, while Meade on the 
left arrived in full view of Banks' Ford without encountering 
the enemy, and had only to form promptly his line of battle. 
Indeed everything was favorable to the Union forces. The 
general line of battle was a good one, as the army was mostly 
in the clear country and the chance to maneuver artillery was 

But now occurs the inexplicable. Instead of continuing 
the advance of his troops and supporting Sykes strongly, 
Hooker ordered the three columns back to the positions they 
had occupied the night before. Couch protested against the 
order, and Warren hastened to expostulate with Hooker on a 
course that certainly was suicidal. Hooker turned a deaf ear 
to all arguments and entreaties, until it was too late to regain 
the advantage he had voluntarily surrendered to the enemy. 
When the order was finally countermanded the enemy was in 
possession of the field and would not be driven. The Confed- 
erates followed our retreating columns closely, but Hooker 
resumed the positions occupied by his army the night before in 
good order. 

Meade held the left of this new line of battle, his flank 
resting on the Rappahannock near Scott's Dam. Couch's corps 
continued the line to a point near to and east of Chancellors- 
ville. Slocum's corps was next, facing south, and west of him 


and some distance away was the nth Corps, formed en echelon 
to the rear along the Plank road. Sickles' corps, in which was 
Berry's division, formed the reserve, and was stationed in the 
rear of the mansion. 

The right flank of the Union lines, held by the iith Corps, 
was, according to military parlance, "in the air;" that is, it 
rested on no obstacle. Here the Union lines were the weakest, a 
fact that the Confederate commander was not slow to discover. 
Lee began his attack with artillery before darkness set in, but 
as the thick undergrowth concealed the position of the Union 
troops, he devoted the rest of the day to a series of attacks 
designed to disclose the strength and location of our troops. 

The next day the enemy made an attack upon Hancock's 
pickets, but did not advance in force. Hooker was in a state 
of uncertainty as to what was transpiring beyond the curtain 
of woods in his front, and the 12th Corps was sent forward to 
uncover the enemy's movements. These troops were met by 
such a deadly fire that they were compelled to fall back, leaving 
Hooker in the same uncertainty as before. However, through 
openings in the forest, heavy columns of the enemy were seen 
rapidly marching from the left to the right, presenting their 
flanks to the whole Union line. 

On discovering the defenseless condition of the right flank 
of the Union army, Stonewall Jackson asked and obtained 
permission to take his corps of 26,000 muskets, traverse the 
front of Hooker's forces, depending on the thick forest to 
conceal his hazardous maneuver and secure him from a flank 
attack, and fall upon the defenseless right flank of the Union 
army, thereby bringing about the defeat and probable annihila- 
tion of the Army of the Potomac. It was a bold plan, boldly 
executed. When this movement was begun by Jackson, Lee 
opened with artillery and musketry against our centre and left, 
to divert attention from the real attack. As has already been 
stated, Jackson's column had been observed and its numbers 
accurately estimated. Hooker believed this movement to be a 


retreat of the Confederate army on Gordonsville, and neglected 
to take precaution against surprise. 

Sickles ordered out a battery to shell the Confederate col- 
umn passing along the front, which resulted in driving him on 
to another road, running in the same direction, but farther back 
in the forest and less exposed to attack. Sickles then started 
with the divisions of Birney and Whipple to attack Jackson and 
cut him off from the main body. Woods and swamps delayed 
the advance, however, but these detentions afforded Berry's 
division, which had been in reserve, an opportunity to support 
the movement. Sickles captured some prisoners and met with 
resistance, but was not permitted to attack McLaws in force as 
he desired. 

Jackson was now separated from Lee by nearly six miles 
of pathless forest. On reaching the turnpike, he halted his 
command and ascended a high hill to reconnoitre. Finding no 
preparations had been made to meet his attack, he formed line 
of battle overlapping the iith Corps in front and rear for long 
distances. The first notice the Union troops had of his attack 
was from the wild animals of the forest driven from their coverts 
by his advance. The surprise of the I ith Corps was complete. 
Doubleday, in his work on " Chancellorsville and Gettysburg," 
says : " An officer of the I ith Corps, who was present, informed 
General Wainwright, formerly colonel of the 76th New York, 
that he was playing cards in a ditch, and the first notice he had 
of the enemy was seeing them looking down on him from 
the parapet above." 

A distinguished officer of the 3d Corps says that when 
this attack occurred, Sickles' troops were at a halt, the officers 
laughing and relating different episodes of their advance. Sud- 
denly in the distance came the crash of musketry. All are 
silent as if by magic, and each listening ear is turned toward 
Chancellorsville. The volleys of musketry increase and soon 
the boom of cannon adds to the din, at first by a volley of 
batteries, then by shots hurried and furious. 


" Jackson has crushed our right ! " is the appalling cry. 

Sickles' men swiftly returned on the road over which they 
had just advanced. The nth Corps, taken by surprise, and 
overwhelmed by superior numbers, was driven back in confusion. 
Wagons, ambulances, horses, mules and fleeing men were min- 
gled in the wildest disorder. In vain did the officers endeavor 
to stop the flight. Here and there a regiment or parts of 
divisions heroically endeavored to hold together and make a 
stand, but all to no purpose. Dire disaster seemed to have 
overtaken the Union army. 



Berry Moves to Franklin Bridge with 3d Corps. — Supports 
Demonstration of Sedgwick and Reynolds. — Ordered to 
Chancellorsville. — Bivouacs at United States Ford. — 
Berry Crosses the Rappahannock. — Heavy Firing in 
Front. — Berry Takes Position near the United States 
Ford. — Advances to Chancellor House with Two Bri- 
gades. — Mott Left Behind to Guard United States Ford. 
— Reconnaissances. — Berry's Presentiment of Impending 
Death. — Anxious About Wife and Daughter. — Panic of 
the nth Corps. — Hooker Orders Berry to the Rescue. — 
"General, Throw Your Men into the Breach." — Berry 
Forms in Woods. — Meeting of Howard and Berry. — 
Hill Attacks Berry. 

WE will now return to General Berry and follow his move- 
ments from the time of breaking camp before Freder- 
icksburg, until he appears upon the scene of action at 

At 5 o'clock on the afternoon of Tuesday, April 28th, 
Berry's division was under arms in its position at Fredericksburg, 
and with the 3d Corps to which it was attached it moved down 
the river to Franklin's bridge to act as a support to the 1st and 
6th Corps that were to make a demonstration at this point. 
Arriving at the bridge on the morning of the 29th, it went into 
position on the heights covering the bridge. The 1st and 6th 
Corps now attempted the passage of the Rappahannock, which 
was successfully accomplished, after which the 3d Corps was 


withdrawn from the heights and took up its march for Chancel- 
lorsville. On Thursday, at 1 1 o'clock in the forenoon, Berry's 
division again broke camp and started with the 3d Corps 
toward the United States Ford, which it reached too late to 
cross that night. Having bivouacked about three miles from 
the ford during the night, Berry succeeded in crossing his large 
division Friday forenoon and at 1 o'clock of that day he took 
up position by brigades, with the object of connecting Whip- 
ple's division of the 3d Corps with the ford. This he succeeded 
in doing, his pickets being thrown out on the right flank of the 
division. Two regiments of Mott's brigade were detached and 
sent to the north side of the Rappahannock to guard the supply 
trains. Berry did not remain in this position long, for about 
4 o'clock in the afternoon he received orders to march to 
Chancellorsville, some two and a half miles distant. Mott's 
brigade was left behind with orders to guard the ford, supported 
by Seeley's battery. By 7 o'clock Carr's and Revere's 
brigades were in position, resting in the woods to the left of 
the Chancellor house and adjoining the cleared space west of 
the Banks' Ford road. The heavy firing in front indicated that 
a portion of the Union troops were hotly engaged. Berry 
formed his troops in mass as a reserve and in this position 
bivouacked for the night. 

On Saturday, the 26th Pennsylvania, Lieutenant-Colonel 
Tilghman, was ordered to make a reconnaissance on the Plank 
road. At the same time the nth Massachusetts, Colonel Wm. 
Blaisdell, was to make a reconnaissance to the left on the Banks' 
Ford road. In execution of this order, Colonel Blaisdell moved 
at 8 o'clock A. M. as far as the batteries stationed in front of 
General Hooker's headquarters. He entered the Plank road 
and had advanced about a mile when the enemy's sharpshooters 
were encountered. The detachment of sharpshooters that 
accompanied Colonel Blaisdell were thrown forward as skir- 
mishers, and the regiment commenced to feel the enemy's 
position. The sharpshooters who were acting as skirmishers 

Reconnaissance. 257 

broke before the enemy's fire, and Lieutenant-Colonel Tripp, 
commanding the advanced skirmishers of the regiment, was 
obliged to advance his own men, armed only with smooth-bore 
Springfield muskets, to take their places. Colonel Blaisdell 
was now attacked by a Confederate brigade, that made stren- 
uous attempts to drive him back. After nearly two hours of 
desperate fighting the enemy gave up the contest. Having 
obtained much valuable information, Colonel Blaisdell returned 
to camp, and for the services rendered received the commenda- 
tions of General Hancock, commanding the lines to the left of 
the Chancellor house. 

Colonel Tilghman and the 26th Pennsylvania had in the 
meantime successfully performed the duty assigned them. The 
enemy's pickets retreated before the advance of the regiment. 
About a mile to the front, Colonel Tilghman came upon the 
enemy in force, drawn up in two lines of battle, with a battery 
of artillery. General Hooker sent orders for the regiment to 
retire, which it did, with a loss of two killed and four wounded. 
Up to this time Berry's division had been held in reserve at the 
Chancellor house. Desperate fighting had occurred along the 
front of the Union lines, but the veterans of this division had 
not yet been permitted to share in the conflict. 

At the time the movement on Chancellorsville had com- 
menced, General Berry received his orders to march, with 
gloomy foreboding. About 9 o'clock at night he sent for his 
chief quartermaster (now Brevet Brigadier-General) James F. 
Rusling, told him of the impending battle and of the present- 
iment that he would not survive it. He committed to Captain 
Rusling's care certain papers and valuables, and got his pledge 
that, should he fall, the captain would use every endeavor to 
recover his body and send it home to Maine. Captain Rusling 
tried to dissipate the foreboding from Berry's mind but without 

Captain James D. Earle, Berry's commissary of subsist- 
ence, on his arrival at headquarters that night, found the 


General greatly depressed. He seemed anxious to hear once 
more from his wife and daughter, and Earle volunteered to 
return to Stoneman's Switch, a ride of eighteen miles, and bring 
him the mail. At first Berry refused to permit the young 
officer to take the journey, but as he persisted, asking only for 
a fresh horse, Berry consented and gave him one of his own 
horses for the trip. As Earle galloped into camp at 2 o'clock 
the next morning the General came out to meet him, eagerly 
seizing the package of letters which was handed to him, and 
hastening to the camp-fire to devour their contents. After car- 
ing for his horse, Earle returned to the camp-fire, where Berry 
was still reading the letters, and on his approach the General 
thanked him warmly for his kindness, showed him photographs 
of his daughter which the mail had brought and read extracts 
from the letters. " Now," said Berry, " I will try to get some 
sleep, as I look for warm work in the morning." 

When the 11th Corps was attacked by Jackson, Berry was 
still near the Chancellor house acting as a reserve. The noise 
of the rapid flight of the panic-stricken fugitives and the close 
pursuit of Jackson's victorious troops was borne to the ears of 
his men, first in faint, indistinct murmurs, constantly increasing 
in volume until it seemed as though pandemonium had broken 
loose. Then came the fugitives, frantic and terror-stricken, 
blindly pushing their way through the steady ranks of Berry's 
division. In the midst of the rout and tumult Hooker hurried 
up. Near by was his old division under command of his true 
and trusted friend, Major-General Berry. 

" General," he shouted, " throw your men into the breach 
— receive the enemy on your bayonets — don't fire a shot — they 
can't see you ! " 

Berry at once advanced with his 1st and 2d Brigades. In 
the meantime, General Pleasonton, with twenty-two pieces of 
artillery, double-shotted with canister, had poured a well-directed 
fire at short range into masses of the enemy. (Hamlin in his 
" Battle of Chancellorsville," questions Pleasonton's part in this 

ehemy^s advance checked. 259 

encounter.) This, together with a desperate charge of a small 
cavalry detachment, checked the advance for a time until Berry 
could get into position. Berry's orders were to form perpen- 
dicular to the Plank road. In the execution of this movement, 
Captain Poland, Berry's chief of staff, led the Excelsior brigade 
into the woods to the right of the road, the 4th Excelsior being 
placed on the edge of the timber to the left. The 1st Massa- 
chusetts, Colonel McLaughlen, was detached from Carr's brigade 
and posted to the left of the Excelsior brigade, prolonging the 
line to the Plank road ; the remainder of Carr's brigade formed 
a second line of battle 150 paces to the rear. Sickles says 
these dispositions were made without the steadiness of these 
veteran troops being in the least disturbed by the torrents of 
fugitives breaking through their intervals. The regiments of 
the first line, covered by their skirmishers, immediately threw 
up a strong breastwork of logs and abattis. Osborn, Berry's 
chief of artillery, during these .dispositions of the infantry, 
placed Dimick's and Winslow's batteries on the crest of the hill, 
perpendicular to the road and 300 or 400 yards in the rear of 
the line of battle. In this position the guns could fire over the 
heads of the infantry of Berry's division, and be effective 
against the enemy. 

At Berry's suggestion, Osborn advanced two guns of 
Dimick's battery to the line of battle and went into position on 
the Plank road in line with the infantry. After the guns were 
in position, General Berry stated to Osborn that as his head- 
quarters were in the woods a little to the right, he was unable 
to see the movements of the enemy in front of the guns. He 
then directed Osborn to use his own judgment as to the neces- 
sity of opening fire on the enemy and to govern the length of 
time the fire should continue. He also ordered the batteries on 
the ridge to govern their fire by Osborn's, on the Plank road, 
and the same instructions were given to the infantry. This 
placed the government of the fire that night solely in Osborn's 
charge on that line, a most fortunate circumstance. 


Berry had now formed his division in two lines of battle, 
Revere's brigade and a portion of Carr's brigade constituting 
the first line, and the remaining regiments of Carr's brigade act- 
ing as the second line. Acting on information that a line of Union 
troops was in his front, and to verify this information, Captain 
Poland, his chief of staff, was sent forward to reconnoitre. It 
was now 9 o'clock at night and the darkness made it difficult to 
locate the enemy. Poland went to the skirmish line, where he 
found a prisoner who had just been captured, and who gave him 
the information that the enemy's line of battle was but two hun- 
dred yards distant. In his anxiety to be promptly informed as 
to what was transpiring in his front, General Berry rode forward 
to the skirmish line and joined his chief of staff. Just at this 
moment the pickets brought in prisoners, who proved to be an 
aide to the Confederate General Stuart, and his orderly. They 
had been ordered to draw off a caisson left by the 1 ith Corps 
between the lines, and being unaware of the proximity of 
Berry's division had stumbled on our pickets. 

As soon as the first line of battle had been formed, scouts 
were sent out and skirmishers deployed, who reported the 
enemy's pickets in front supported by heavy masses of infantry. 
Alarms were now frequent and several times Berry's pickets 
were driven in. Twenty soldiers of the enemy were captured, 
all of whom agreed that General A. P. Hill of Jackson's com- 
mand was in Berry's front, with a large force, and was massing 
on the right and left flanks of Berry's line of battle, with a view 
to gaining possession of the cross roads and thereby cutting 
off his communications with the river. 

General Berry personally attended to the final disposition 
of his troops to resist the attack that was soon to come. He 
was in a critical position and the fate of the Army of the 
Potomac depended upon him at this hour, yet he faced danger 
calmly and with a confident manner, inspiring his men by his 
presence and reassuring his anxious subordinates by a few 
quietly spoken sentences. 


General Howard had come up and the two officers cordially 
greeted each other. Howard was despondent and downcast, 
and is said to have referred bitterly to the disaster that had 
overtaken his command, the iith Corps. General Berry 
responded cheerfully. Asking General Howard where the line 
would be hardest pressed, and learning that the point of danger 
was at the right, he said to Howard: "Well, General, if you 
will take care of the left, here, I will go to the right." 

Berry's division was now in position on the Plank road. 
Twice before midnight, in obedience to General Berry's order, 
did Captain Osborn open fire on the enemy, which was the 
prearranged signal for the whole line of infantry and artillery to 
pour in their volleys. 

At sunset a rebel battery had opened fire on the batteries 
of Berry's division stationed on the brow of the hill. A 
portion of Dimick's battery promptly replied and quickly 
silenced the enemy. The silence that followed the cannonade 
was only broken by the sounds from the enemy's lines as they 
massed their troops and moved their artillery under cover of 
the woods. It was now evident that their force was large, as 
the voices of their officers, swearing and shouting orders, 
sounded like the chattering of a multitude. This continued 
until 9.30 o'clock P. M., during which time several rebel officers 
rode within Berry's line of pickets and were captured. Now by 
the light of the moon the head of a column moving down the road 
could be distinctly discerned. It seemed to cover the entire 
breadth of the road and stealthily approached until within 150 
yards of Berry's batteries, when it began to deploy in line of 
battle. Dimick opened with canister which swept the road clear 
of troops. At the same time the batteries on the crest opened 
fire upon the road beyond, making havoc in the rebel lines, and 
together with the infantry fire effectually checking the advance. 
This attack lasted thirty minutes. 

General Berry's prompt disposition of his troops at a crit- 
ical moment, the severe fire of his artillery, and the imposing 


attitude of his infantry had effectually stopped the advance of 
Hill's troops, flushed as they were with their victorious encounter 
with the nth Corps. The magnitude of this service can better 
be comprehended when the fact is considered that Berry's 
division numbered but 460 commissioned officers and 7,183 
enlisted men present for duty. Then, too, he was compelled to 
advance his line of battle through the panic-stricken mob of 
the 1 ith Corps. 

Doubleday says : " Few people appreciate the steadiness 
and courage required, when all around is flight and confusion, 
for a force to make its way through crowds of fugitives, advance 
steadily to the post of danger in front and meet the exulting 
enemy, while others are seeking safety in the rear. Such men 
are heroes, and far more worthy of honor than those who fight 
in the full blaze of successful warfare." 

General Robert McAllister, then colonel of the nth New 
Jersey, in a letter home after the battle, says of General Berry: 
" As I filed my regiment into the line, General Berry rode up 
to me and said : ' Now, Colonel, do your very best.' ' Yes, 
General, I shall,' was my reply. I knew I had the boys who 
would fight, and felt confident that we would make a good one. 
That noble and brave man rode along the lines of battle that 
night wherever there were points of danger, and words of com- 
fort and encouragement fell from his lips. He knew well the 
responsibility resting upon him, and like Leonidas with his 
brave band, was ready to do or die. The last night he spent on 
earth was a night of toil, trouble, danger and watchfulness for 
our army and our country. These scenes I shall never forget. 
The night was beautiful and clear, the moon shone brightly, but 
the heavy forest shade above cast a gloom around us. All 
would be still and calm one moment, then crack ! would go a 
gun, followed by many others, tejling us we were again attacked 
and our pickets engaged, soon followed by a tremendous roar of 
musketry. The enemy marched in front of us and were deter- 
mined to break our lines." 



Hill's Second Attack. — Skill of Berry's Artillerymen. — 
Revere's Brigade Drives Back the Enemy. — General 
Mott Comes up from United States Ford. — General Berry 
and Captain Rusling and the "Presentiment." — Hill's 
Third Attack. — Withdrawal of the 3d Maryland. — Berry 
Attacked in the Flank. — His First Line of Battle Forced 
to Retire. — Death of Lieutenant Dimick. — Confederate 
General A. P. Hill Wounded by the Fire of Berry's 
Guns. — Mott Reinforces Berry's Second Line of Battle. 
— Berry Attempts to Close the Breach in his Line. — Killed 
by a Sharpshooter near the Plank Road. — Grief of Gen- 
eral Hooker. 

THE enemy made a second attack on Berry's position at 
10.30, moving their troops through the woods to escape 
the fire of the artillery. The first notice given of the 
impending attack was the volley poured into the Union lines by 
the advancing foe. Berry's troops responded with vigor and 
then began a desperate struggle for the mastery. The enemy 
used his artillery but his guns were badly served, and he suc- 
ceeded in wounding but a few artillerymen and killing a few 
horses. Berry's guns, however, were admirably served, and 
although the lines of battle several times became closely 
engaged, the batteries on the crest poured a steady fire over 
the heads of our infantry into the ranks of the foe, with such 
precision that not a Federal soldier was struck, while the 
Confederate line was torn and shattered by the iron hail. 


Revere's brigade sustained the brunt of this attack with great 
gallantry, and the deadly volleys of the infantry, together with 
the artillery fire, was too much for Jackson's veterans, who again 
fell back, shattered and broken. 

About 12 o'clock, midnight, the I ith Massachusetts arrived 
from its position on the left, occupied in the morning, and was 
placed on the left of the second line. At 2 P. M. the 4th Excel- 
sior Regiment was relieved by the 3d Maryland, of General 
Williams' troops, which was placed on the left of the road, 
in reserve to the second line. At 2 o'clock the next morning, 
General Mott also came up from the ford with the other brigade 
of Berry's division, which had been left behind to guard the 
ford when Berry started for Chancellorsville. Seeley's battery 
also came with this brigade. During the night Captain Charles 
W. Squier, Berry's chief engineer, threw up small works in 
front of the guns on the crest, which were of much service in 
protecting the artillerymen from the fire of sharpshooters. 

On the morning of May 3d, as Captain James F. Rusling, 
Berry's chief quartermaster, rode to the front, he found the 
division in line of battle, as it had fought the evening previous. 
General Berry was seated on a stump by the roadside, an 
eighth of a mile in front of the Chancellor house, superintending 
the planting of a battery. As Berry had passed through the 
engagement of the previous day unhurt, Captain Rusling, during 
the conversation, joked him about his " presentiment;" but the 
General was still grave of manner and remarked : 

" Rusling, the battle is not over yet." 

After spending a half hour with the General and lunching 
with him and the staff, Rusling rejoined the trains on the other 
side of the Rappahannock, and when he again saw his chief it 
was when the dead body was brought back to Falmouth in an 
ambulance, and there he wrapped it in the large garrison flag 
that flew at Division Headquarters. 

At daylight, on the morning of the 3d of May, the enemy 
advanced again on the front line of Berry's division, held by 

-^ filUaJL ^W^ 



General Revere's brigade and the ist Massachusetts and 26th 
Pennsylvania regiments, driving in the pickets and opening with 
a terrific fire of artillery and musketry, while his sharpshooters 
were also actively engaged. Our gallant soldiers undauntedly 
returned their fire from behind their low defenses, and defiantly 
answered savage yells by lustily cheering. The single line of 
battle, aided by its rude defense, successfully resisted the 
onslaught of the heavy columns which the enemy sent against 
it, until the withdrawal of the 3d Maryland, which exposed the 
left of the line to an enfilading fire, obliging it to retire, but 

Osborn with his artillery played upon the enemy with tell- 
ing effect. The section in the Plank road under Lieutenant 
Dimick was of special service, notwithstanding its exposed 
position. A galling fire was maintained upon this section by 
the Confederate sharpshooters and line of battle. Lieutenant 
Dimick held this position for an hour, his men fighting bravely 
but falling rapidly around him. His horse was shot under 
him. The infantry crowded back until his flanks were exposed. 
Not until then was the order given him to limber up and 
fall back. In doing this his horses became entangled in their 
harness, and in freeing them Lieutenant Dimick received a shot 
in the foot. This wound he hid from his men, but in a moment 
he received another in the spine, and died two days after from 
its effects. He was an educated and accomplished officer, just 
rising into the full vigor of manhood. He had shown superior 
ability as an officer of artillery, and on the battlefield was 
unsurpassed for gallantry. 

Speaking of the service of his batteries, Captain Osborn, 
chief of artillery of Berry's division, says : " Our artillery fire 
about 10 o'clock upon Jackson's troops, which we could locate 
only by the general topography of the country, was very severe. 
Colonel Augustus C. Hamlin in his investigations learned from 
the several Confederate generals that our fire was exceedingly 
destructive, and had it been continued twenty minutes longer 


Jackson's troops would have been driven from the field. Many 
of Jackson's officers confirm this statement. How destructive 
our fire was, of course we could not know. When we thought 
we had quieted them for the night we ceased our fire. General 
A. P. Hill was wounded just in front of Dimick's battery, say 200 
yards. It was my order to open fire on him and his staff, who 
were then in sight, which brought on the heavy fire I speak of." 

Mott's brigade was placed in position in Berry's second 
line of battle, its right resting on the Plank road and connect- 
ing with Carr's brigade. The retreat of the Maryland regiment 
exposed Revere's brigade to a flank attack, which the enemy 
was not slow to take advantage of, turning Berry's left flank 
and enfilading the breastworks. Slowly Revere's brigade retired 
to the second line of battle, breaking off gradually, regiment 
after regiment, from the left, reluctantly yielding their ground 
to a vastly superior force. This brigade lost all its knapsacks, 
shelter-blankets and rations, which were left at the bivouac near 
the cross-roads during the enemy's terrific assault upon its left 

General Berry, with characteristic energy and coolness, 
attempted to meet and repel this flank attack of the enemy. It 
was now 7 o'clock in the morning and Captain Poland, his chief 
of staff, was vainly attempting to bring a regiment forward to 
replace the one that had fled. The battle had now ceased for 
a few moments, and turning to Captain J. B. Greenhalgh, his 
senior aide, General Berry told him to ride to General Hooker's 
headquarters and inquire if he were to continue to hold his 
position. Greenhalgh galloped away and the General and his 
staff dismounted. 

General Mott's brigade of his division was then in position 
a few rods away across the Plank road. General Berry had the 
habit, rarely found in a division commander, and before referred 
to in this biography, of communicating orders in person when 
it was possible to do so. Following out this custom, he told 
his staff to remain where they were, while he crossed the 


Plank road to communicate with General Mott. His officers 
remonstrated and offered to go in his stead, pointing out to 
Berry that the rebel sharpshooters were posted in the trees 
and sweeping the Plank road with their unerring rifles. The 
General replied that he preferred to communicate the order 
in person and started on his way, crossing the Plank road in 
safety. Reaching General Mott, they conversed for a short 
time ; then the General started to return. He had gained the 
Plank road, crossed it, and had nearly reached the place where 
his staff officers were standing, when from the trees in which 
the North Carolina sharpshooters were posted came a wreath of 
smoke, followed by the sharp crack of a rifle, and Major- 
General Hiram G. Berry had fought his last battle. The minie- 
ball struck him in the arm close to the shoulder, passing down- 
ward through his vitals and lodging in his hip. 

" Poland ! Poland ! " he called to his chief of staff, who 
was but a short distance away. 

Seeing their General prostrate upon the ground, Poland, 
Benedict, Freeman, Earle, and others hastened to his assistance. 

" My wife and child ! " he murmured, as he was raised in 
the arms of Captain Benedict. " Carry me off the field," he 
added, as the staff officers gathered anxiously about him. A 
tremor passed over his body, then calmly, peacefully, at 7:26 
o'clock, the heart ceased its throbbing and the warrior was at 
rest. Thus on that beautiful Sabbath morning, the 3d of May, 
at the early age of 38, with the embattled lines of his division 
all about him, perished one of the most promising young 
generals the Civil War had produced. 

His body was carried back to the road and covered with a 
cloak. Just then General Hooker rode up, and seeing the 
group of staff officers, asked : 

"Whom have you there, gentlemen?" 

At the reply: " Major-General Berry," he sprang from his 
horse and approached the prostrate form, weeping bitterly. 
Kneeling reverently he kissed the cold forehead, murmuring sadly : 


" My God, Berry, why was this to happen? Why was the 
man on whom I relied so much to be taken away in this 
manner? " 

Then turning to the sympathetic group of officers, he said 
that he had lost one of his best officers and warmest friends. 
When General Hooker had paid his tribute to the lifeless form 
of General Berry, he ordered it carried to the rear at once. 

After the fall of their commander, confusion reigned for a 
time in Berry's division. General Mott, the senior brigade 
commander, had been severely wounded, and General Joseph 
B. Carr was notified by Lieutenant Freeman, of Berry's staff, 
that he was in command of the division. The other brigade 
commander, Brigadier-General Revere, believing himself to be 
the senior officer, had already assumed command, and heedless 
of their murmurs, led to the rear the whole of the 2d Brigade 
and portions of two others, thus subjecting these proud soldiers 
for the first time to the humiliation of being marched to the 
rear while their comrades were under fire. For this conduct, 
in an officer who had hitherto proved brave and efficient, 
General Revere was convicted by court martial and sentenced 
to be dismissed. By direction of the President this dismissal 
was revoked and General Revere's resignation accepted. This 
officer's explanation of his conduct was that the ammunition 
of the troops was exhausted and they were without rations, 
hence he considered further resistance useless. 

Notwithstanding the break in the line of battle caused 
by the withdrawal of these troops, the remainder of Berry's 
division, under the lead of the gallant Carr, continued to resist 
the overwhelming forces of the enemy until night closed the 
scene of carnage. Hooker had been checkmated in the execu- 
tion of his brilliant plan, and Lee added another chapter to his 
great record of military achievements. 

In his report of the operations of Berry's division, Briga- 
dier-General Carr says of the lamented commander: "It is 
with pain I close this report with the record of the death of 


Major-General Hiram G. Berry, late commander of this division. 
On Sunday, the 3d instant, at 7 A. M., he fell, mortally wounded, 
and at 7.26 A. M. he died, peacefully, heroically. I cannot 
describe the vacancy his absence creates, not only in the hearts 
of his command but in the army with which he has served in so 
distinguished a manner. He had become endeared to all under 
him, around him, and to many above, through his honest kind- 
ness, amiability and steady friendship. Gentleness and courage 
undaunted marked him as commander and leader. Endowed 
with sound judgment, actuated by a burning patriotism, impelled 
by a fiery ardor, his military career has appeared a success." 

Captain Osborn, Berry's chief of artillery, in a letter written 
immediately after the General's death, says : " The death of 
General Berry, our division commander, was not only a severe 
loss in itself, but the occasion of special sadness to those who 
knew him well. His reputation was that of an exceptionally 
brave and reckless officer. He was exceedingly ambitious and 
was gaining prominence rapidly. He was fully aware of the 
desperate position in which his division was placed, and was 
determined to carry it through its work successfully. When 
the enemy attacked in the morning he ordered his officers and 
men to cover themselves as much as possible by the earthworks 
the men had made during the night. These were about eighteen 
inches high and gave good protection to the troops lying on 
the ground. He however refused to make any effort to screen 
himself, but walked to and fro along the line, encouraging all to 
hold the line and keep themselves well covered. In this way 
he was exposed to the fire of the sharpshooters, and four-fifths 
of his person to the general fire of the enemy. He had escaped 
a considerable time and was confident he would not be struck. 
While standing close to me, and near the section (of a battery) 
on the road he was hit by a bullet and in a few minutes after 
died. His body was at once carried to the rear and a few 
hours later staff officers were detailed to proceed with it at 
once to Washington." 

270 major-generAl hirAm g. berr¥. 

Upon the same subject Colonel Robert McAllister, com- 
manding the nth New Jersey in Berry's division, writes on 
May ioth, 1863: "Saturday afternoon we lay in mass column 
near Chancellorsville. Our corps (the 3d) was lying as a 
reserve. Though we had been almost twenty-four hours in that 
position we were not to remain much longer. The enemy 
made an attack on our right and left and forced our first lines 
hard. The firing became hard and harder and the enemy 
seemed to approach. Our left stood firm but the right fell 
back. In a moment we were to arms and moved rapidly for- 
ward to the Plank road, past General Hooker's headquarters. 
As I looked up the road I beheld the nth Army Corps coming 
down it, wagons, ambulances, horses, soldiers armed and 
unarmed, pell-mell, real Bull Run style. We now had to throw 
ourselves into the breach or all was lost. It was a trying 
moment. Good generals and brave hearts only were equal to 
the task. It was do or die with us. A few moments lost and 
all would be gone. The gallant Hooker, the brave Sickles, the 
noble Berry, to say nothing of General Carr and other brave 
officers, rode at the head of our gallant division. The order 
came down the line, ' double-quick ! ' Three times three cheers 
rent the air. Our boys were ready and willing for the fight. The 
flying soldiers of the 1 ith Army Corps heeded not our orders to 
halt and fall in with us. They were panic-stricken and perfectly 
worthless. But our brave boys heeded them not, treating them 
with perfect contempt. On, on we went, regiment after regiment 
filed into line of battle to the right and left of the road. ' Charge ! 
charge ! ' resounded through the wood. The roar of musketry, 
the booming of cannon was terrific. The tide of battle was turned, 
the rebels stopped, their onward progress stayed — the day was 
ours, and the Army of the Potomac saved from utter destruction. 
I am told that General Sickles was in advance of our lines among 
the enemy for fifteen minutes. The wonder is how he got out. 
Several rebel aides rode out with our officers thinking they were 
their own. Great credit is due Generals Sickles and Berry." 



In State at Falmouth. — Grief of a Squad of the 4th Maine. — 
Governor Coburn Visits the Remains. — President Lin- 
coln's Wish. — Reception of the Dead in Portland. — 
Lying in State at City Hall. — 7th Regiment a Guard of 
Honor. — News of his Death Received in Rockland 
with Profound Sorrow. — Action of the City Council. — 
Thirty-four Prominent Citizens Chosen to Arrange 
Reception. — Minute Guns and a Sorrowing Multitude 
Greet the Steamer. — Lying in State at Rockland. 

THE remains of Major-General Berry were conveyed to 
the old camp at Falmouth, accompanied by his aides-de- 
camp, Captain Jabez B. Greenhalgh, Lieutenant George 
W. Freeman and Lieutenant I. H. Washburn. There it rested, 
draped in the headquarters flag, in the room which the General 
had occupied previous to the late movement of the army. 
While on the way, a squad of the 4th Maine, learning that the 
body of their former commander was being carried by, desired 
to have it laid down, and each one of the brave fellows came 
forward, kissed the cold brow of the man they had loved and 
had first followed into battle, and then silently and tearfully 
took their places in the ranks. At Falmouth the remains were 
visited by Governor Coburn of Maine. On Monday morning 
Captain Greenhalgh and Lieutenants Freeman and Washburn 
started for Aquia Creek with the body. Arriving there Chief 
Quartermaster Ingalls ordered a special boat to convey them 
and their mournful charge to Washington, and by noon they 


were in the city and had deposited the body at the undertaker's 
where it was embalmed. No burial case could be furnished 
in Washington large enough for the body and one had to 
be obtained in Baltimore. President Lincoln, learning that 
the remains were in Washington, sent for the officers having it 
in charge, and he and General Halleck expressed their desire 
that funeral ceremonies should be performed there, but the 
officers did not feel authorized to grant their request. Before 
they left the city President Lincoln sent down a beautiful wreath 
to be placed upon the body, and at the funeral it could be seen 
resting upon the right shoulder of the fallen warrior. 

It is said that on the arrival of the officers with the remains in 
Washington, an officer from General Halleck waited upon them, 
and seeing Lieutenant Freeman, directed him to report to Gen- 
eral Halleck. Freeman did not at once comply with this order, 
but remained to assist Captain Greenhalgh in the preparation 
of the body for embalming, and when at length he did make 
his appearance at the War Department, he found President 
Lincoln and General Halleck in consultation. Upon reporting 
to General Halleck, the latter turned to him in an angry manner 
and broke out in a severe reprimand, asking Freeman if he 
knew the penalty for disobedience of orders. Freeman replied 
that he did, and was quite ready to be dismissed from the serv- 
ice as he had no further disposition to remain, and turning on 
his heel he started to leave the office, when the President, who 
had remained silent during the angry colloquy, interposed. 
Requesting General Halleck to desist, he recalled Lieutenant 
Freeman, saying that no messenger had as yet arrived from the 
battlefield and they were ignorant of the state of affairs at the 
front and were very anxious about the army. He then 
requested Freeman to give them such information as he pos- 
sessed. This Freeman did, and as he was an observant officer, 
was able to give the President a faithful account of the battle so 
far as it had progressed when he left the field. General Halleck 
joined in the conversation, which lasted some little time, and 


after Freeman had imparted all the information he possessed 
upon the state of affairs the President permitted him to go. 
But for Mr. Lincoln's presence, Halleck would have without 
doubt dismissed the lieutenant from the army by special order 
for his tardy response to the order of the general-in-chief. 

Nothing special occurred in the passage home until reach- 
ing Portland, the first stopping place within the limits of Berry's 
native State. In relation to the proceedings there we copy 
from the Argus of that date : 

" The telegraph announced yesterday forenoon that the 
body of Major-General Berry would arrive in this city on the 
noon train from Boston, and preparations were made to 
receive it. A hearse bearing the body and covered with the 
American flag was followed by two carriages containing the 
friends of the deceased, from the depot to the City Hall, the 
bells tolling as the procession, slow and solemn, passed through 
the streets. Arrived at City Hall, the body was taken to the 
City Council room, where it lay in state throughout the day, 
and was visited by hundreds of our citizens, notwithstanding 
that no notice was given of the fact except as word was passed 
from one to another. A guard of honor was volunteered by 
Colonel Mason, of the 7th Regiment, and also an escort from 
City Hall to the boat. Accordingly, at 6 o'clock, the remains 
were taken from the Council room, placed in a hearse, and 
escorted to the steamer Harvest Moon by a detachment of the 
7th Regiment, the Mayor and Board of Aldermen and Council, 
and a large representation of the Masonic fraternity. * * * A 
guard of honor, consisting of Colonel Mason and his officers 
and the officers of the 10th Maine, accompanied the hearse. 
The Portland Band and the band of the 7th Regiment furnished 
music for the solemn occasion. Thus has Portland done what 
she could, in the short time allowed, to do honor to the brave 
defender of his country." 

The news of the untimely end of Major-General Berry 
was received with profound sorrow in Rockland, the city of 



his birth and residence. On Wednesday evening his death 
was announced in the City Council, and the following gentle- 
men were appointed a committee of arrangements, to make 
all necessary preparations for the reception of the body and 
the obsequies of the deceased : 

George S. Wiggin 
John S. Case 
Wm. H. Titcomb 
Joseph Farwell 
George Thorndike 
Timothy Williams 
Freeman Harden 
William Wilson 
O. P. Mitchell 
Joseph Kalloch 
O. J. Conant 
E. A. Snow 
George W. White 
S. C. Fessenden 
A. T. Low 
Francis Cobb 
Thomas Frye 

N. A. Burpee 
Charles Crockett 
James Wight 
Philo Thurston 
H. M. Brown 
O. H. Perry 
Benj. Litchfield, Jr. 
C. L. Allen 
Calvin Hall 
Wm. McLoon 
Robert Crockett 
Alden Sprague 
T. W. Hix 
C. G. Moffitt 
Ira B. Ellems 
Jonathan Spear 
J. T. Young 

At the same meeting the following were appointed a com- 
mittee on resolutions for the City Council: Joseph Kalloch, 
G. W. White, Edwin Sprague. The pall-bearers were selected 
from the survivors of the old Rockland City Guards, and were 
as follows: O. J. Conant, O. P. Mitchell, J. L. Giofray, John 
T. Berry, 2d, Jesse Richardson, M. C. Andrews, H. M. Brown, 
Charles Greenhalgh. At a subsequent meeting of the City 
Council, May nth, resolutions of respect were passed. 

On Friday, at noon, a committee of citizens, chosen to go 
to Portland to receive the body of General Berry, went aboard 
the steamer bound for that place, which they reached in the 
evening. There they met Adjutant-General Hodsdon on the 
wharf awaiting their coming, with whom they made arrange- 

Deception rsr rockland. 275 

merits for the funeral, and in a short time received the remains 
of General Berry on board the steamer. On Saturday morning 
at 7 o'clock the boat left Portland, and at about noon reached 
Owl's Head, at the mouth of Rockland harbor. As soon as 
the boat came in sight a cannon was fired from the city, and 
minute guns were continued until she reached the wharf. All 
the colors on the shipping and throughout the city were at half- 
mast. The stores and offices were closed, and all business and 
labor suspended. The buildings on Main street were dressed 
in funeral colors, presenting an appearance of mourning never 
before witnessed in the city. The day was beautiful, the sun 
bright, the air bland, and not a cloud flecked the sky. At an 
early hour crowds began to pour toward Atlantic wharf. When 
the steamer arrived, the buildings and streets adjacent were 
covered with people. The committee of arrangements and 
some other citizens formed in procession in front of City Hall, 
and preceded by the hearse, marched to the landing place in 
silence. The long wharf had been kept completely clear by 
the police early stationed there, and reserved for carriages for 
the mourners, and for the formation of a procession. When 
the boat touched the wharf the Guard of Honor, a detachment 
of the 7th Maine, Captain Warren, marched ashore and formed 
in rear of the hearse. The pall-bearers immediately stepped 
forward from the procession — men who had once belonged in 
the Rockland City Guards — and removed their former com- 
mander's lifeless remains from the steamer to the wharf. 

The wife, daughter and brother of General Berry, with 
Captain Greenhalgh and other friends who had accompanied 
them from New York, took seats in the carriages for the mourn- 
ers. The multitude that covered the space in front were silent 
as death. Joseph Farwell, Esq., chairman of the committee 
sent to Portland, then came forward to the head of the burial 
case, and in a voice choked with emotion, formally tendered the 
remains to the Mayor of Rockland. Hon. S. C. Fessenden 
responded eloquently in behalf of the Mayor. 


The remarks of Mr. Fessenden concluded, the coffin was 
lifted into the hearse, the escort wheeled into the rear with arms 
reversed, and the procession, led by a large body of Masons, 
took its way through the crowded streets, nothing disturbing 
the quiet of the solemn scene except the tolling of the bells 
and the occasional boom of the minute guns. Along the route 
of the procession the streets were full of spectators, and in every 
alley and window were sober faces peering at the strange, sad 
sight. Arrived at the residence, late the abode of the deceased, 
the mourners alighted. The entrance to the house was tastefully 
draped with two large national flags, which, parting in the middle, 
made a passage similar to the entrance of a soldier's tent. The 
remains were then carried into the parlor, where they lay in 
state. The procession was dismissed, the crowd dispersed, and 
sentinels from the guard of honor were posted in front of the 
house, where alternately they kept their beat until the final 

The scene at the General's residence on the following Mon- 
day is thus graphically described by an eye-witness : " On a 
little grass plat a few rods in front of the house, two soldiers' 
tents were erected, and near by the soldiers were going through 
their morning drill and inspection. On the lawn at the right 
and left of the front door, sentinels were pacing to and fro, 
their polished rifles glistening like silver. Entering the door, 
a brother of the General received us, and we passed into the 
parlor where the body lay in state. Two sentinels in uniform 
were marching backward and forward, guarding their trust with 
soldierly care and devotion. The body lay in one of Weaver's 
patent burial cases. The case was lined with white satin, and 
covered outside with black silk velvet. The lid of the case 
bore a silver plate, with the following inscription : 


Killed at Chancellorsville, Virginia, May 3, 1863. 
Aged 38 Years, 8 Months, 6 Days. 


" Inside of this lid was another lid of glass, through which 
appeared the whole form of the body, clad in the uniform of a 
major-general, as became a man who, ten days ago, commanded 
seven thousand men, and at whose word thirty pieces of 
artillery spoke in thunder. At the feet was a bouquet and on 
the body another. Around the neck and under one arm was 
the wreath which President Lincoln sent with the remains. On 
the breast was the Kearny Badge, presented by Major De Lacy, 
37th New York Volunteers. Photographs on a small table at 
the head showed the features as they were in life. On the same 
table lay the sword Berry used in battle and a sword presented 
to him by the non-commissioned officers of the 4th Maine Regi- 
ment. In one corner of the parlor stood the tattered colors 
of the 4th Maine, presented to the regiment in New York. 
They have outlived the hand of him who received them in 
behalf of his men, but they show that they have been where 
the bullets flew. In another place I noticed the picture of 
General Kearny. All was in keeping with the character of the 
deceased and the occasion. The place of burial will be in the 
cemetery near Blackington's Corner. There lie the remains 
of the father and mother of the General. He will rest at their 
side. A grave has been prepared, bricked over at the bottom, 
sides and ends, so as to make it as close as a tomb, and 
covered with a slab of marble." 



A Cloudy Day. — Order of Arrangements. — Arrival of the 
Artillery. — Distinguished Guests. — Vice President Ham- 
lin a Private in the Ranks of Co. A, State Guards. — 
Large Concourse of Masons. — Services at the Residence 
of the Deceased. — Horses of the General and Grief of 
his Orderly. — Masonic Ceremonies at the Grave. — 
Requiem by Z. Pope Vose. 

THE obsequies of General Berry took place on Thursday, 
and were performed in a manner befitting his rank and 
the place which he held in the hearts of his fellow-citizens. 
The morning was wet and portended a rainy day, but the atmos- 
phere grew drier, and though a cold wind prevailed and the sky 
continued clouded, no rain fell. The order of arrangements for 
the obsequies which had been previously issued by the com- 
mittee, were as follows : 

One gun to be fired at sunrise 

Half-hour guns from sunrise till the procession starts for the grave 

Minute guns from the time the procession starts till it halts 

Half-hour guns until sunset 

Flags to be set at half-mast at sunrise 

Bells to be tolled from 7 to 8 a. m. 

Buildings to be draped in mourning by 10 a. m. 

Order of Procession 

Major-General Win, H. Titcomb, Marshal of the Day 

Aides, Major Charles A. Miller, Major E. W. Stetson, Major G. W. Kimball, Jr., 

and Lieutenant-Colonel John S. Case 

Bangor Cornet Band and Drum Corps 


Masonic Fraternity 

Military Escort 

Rockland Band 

Major-General Butler and Staff 

Adjutant-General Hodsdon, Colonel Harding and Lieutenant-Colonel Osgood 

of the Governor's Staff 

Guard of Honor 


Pall Bearers Funeral Car Pall Bearers 

The General's War Horses 

Family and Relatives in Carriages 

General's Military Staff 

Vice President of the United States and Governor of Maine 

Ex-Governors and Members of Congress 

Justices of Supreme Court 

Members of Legislature 

Officiating Clergymen 

Disabled Soldiers 

Tnvited Guests 

Mayor and City Council of the City of Rockland 

Committee of Arrangements 

Citizens and Strangers 

Half-hour guns were fired during the morning, commencing 
at sunrise, and the bells of the churches were tolled. Flags 
were displayed at half-mast throughout the city and on the 
shipping, and nearly all the stores and blocks on Main street, 
and many of the residences of citizens, were hung in mourning. 
All places of business were closed, and Rockland citizens and 
hundreds from other towns filled the streets in waiting for the 
beginning of the solemn pageant of the day. 

The military escort consisted of a detachment from the 7th 
Maine, Captain L. J. Morse's Company A, State Guards, and a 
detachment of Captain R. H. Tucker, Jr.'s, company of artillery, 
Coast Guards. 

The squad of artillerymen who were detailed from the 
Wiscasset company, for ordnance service, arrived in the city on 
Wednesday. They were men of sturdy appearance, and per- 
formed their duty well. The Bangor Fusileers (Company A, 
State Guards), Captain Morse, arrived at about half-past ten 


o'clock, on the steam tug Terror, accompanied by the Bangor 
Cornet Band. They marched in full numbers, and with their 
bright uniforms and military bearing presented a very fine and 
soldierly appearance. The company marched to the City Hall, 
where the city authorities had prepared a collation for them, 
and where also they made their quarters for the night. Adju- 
tant-General Hodsdon, with Colonel Harding and Lieutenant- 
Colonel Osgood of the Governor's staff, as well as Major-General 
Butler and staff of Bangor, were present at the obsequies, and 
the Portland steamer brought Lieutenant Nickerson, post adju- 
tant at Camp Lincoln, Portland, Captain Freeze and Lieutenant 
Bachelder of the 7th Regiment, and Lieutenant Clarke of the 
5th Maine Battery. Lieutenant I. H. Washburn of General 
Berry's staff was also present. The Vice President of the 
United States was a member of the Bangor company, and per- 
formed duty as a private in its ranks during the day. " We 
have heard," says the Rockland Gazette of the time, " that this 
course of Mr. Hamlin was unfavorably remarked upon by some, 
who thought he should have appeared in his official character 
as Vice President, on this occasion ; but those who know the 
regard in which the Vice President held General Berry, the 
great estimation which he set upon his services, and the depth 
and sincerity of the sorrow with which he mourned him, will be 
furthest from criticising the manner in which he paid the tribute 
of honor to his memory. Mr. Hamlin felt that his mere 
appearance at the obsequies as Vice President of the United 
States would be a representation of official character which 
might be borne by any man upon whom that position might 
have devolved, but would fail to express the deep feeling with 
which he mourned, and desired to honor, the memory of General 
Berry; that he could not speak to the mourning widow any 
words of formal consolation that would mitigate her grief or 
express his own. He desired to render the highest honor in 
his power to the memory of General Berry, and he felt that he 
could best do this by serving in his place in the ranks of this 

.ielt.-Col. L. D. Carver 
4th Maine Infantry. 


company, in performing the last sad duties with which the 
soldier pays his farewell tribute to a fallen commander. To 
perform this duty, the Vice President would have marched 
leagues, with gun and knapsack, if necessary, and those who 
saw him, standing unmarked in the ranks of his company, and 
paying the tribute of his tears at the obsequies of the man he 
loved and honored, must have felt that in no other way could 
he have more deeply honored the fallen brave." 

The Masonic ceremonies were under the direction of 
Aurora Lodge, of which General Berry was a member, although 
in the arrangements for the entertainment of the brethren from 
abroad, and in all expenses connected with the preparations, 
equal share was borne with Aurora Lodge by Rockland Lodge 
and King Solomon Chapter of Royal Arch Masons. A large 
number of the fraternity were brought to the city in the 
steamer which conveyed the Guards, and many others arrived 
by other means of conveyance. Lodges were present from 
Thomaston, Warren, Rockport, Camden, Union, Belfast, Bucks- 
port, Orland and Ellsworth. A collation was prepared in 
Atlantic Hall by the Lodges of the city, of which the members 
of the fraternity partook at noon, and where they also returned 
for supper. Those from abroad who remained over night were 
entertained at the houses of the brethren. The number in the 
Masonic procession was about three hundred. 

The military, Masonic and civic processions were formed 
between I and 2 o'clock, and the united bodies proceeded to 
the late residence of General Berry. A vast concourse of peo- 
ple had collected in the small field opposite the house and in 
the streets in the vicinity, and the windows and balconies of all 
the houses near were crowded. The number of persons in the 
vicinity was estimated at 5,000 to 6,000, while large numbers 
were waiting at points which the procession was expected to 
pass, and many others had already gathered at the cemetery. 

A platform had been erected in front of the house, covered 
by an awning, from which the funeral address was given. The 


platform was occupied by Rev. Nathaniel Butler, of Auburn, the 
officiating clergyman, and the clergymen of the city, and by 
Governor Coburn, Ex-Governor Washburn, Senator Morrill, 
Judge Rice, of the Supreme Judicial Court, Hon. S. C. 
Fessenden and others. The Scriptures were read by Rev. 
H. A. Hart, of Rockland, pastor of the First Baptist Church. 
Prayer was offered by Rev. Mr. Butler, who then delivered an 
able and fitting address, after which the benediction was pro- 
nounced by Rev. Joseph Kalloch. 

At the conclusion of these services the body of General 
Berry was borne reverently and mournfully out, to the solemn 
music of the band, and deposited in the funeral car which was 
to bear it to its last resting place. The procession was formed 
and moved in order, proceeding down Limerock and up Main 
and North Main streets, to the Achorn cemetery at Blackington's 
Corner, there to rest in the family lot beside the dead warrior's 
parents. The funeral car was tastefully draped with national 
flags, two flags rising and crossing each other in the center, and 
with heavy black plumes at the corners of the car. The burial 
case was visible within, wrapped in the flag which had floated 
over the General's headquarters. The car was drawn by four 
white horses, with funeral trappings, and led by grooms. The 
horses of General Berry (three in number) were led immediately 
behind the car. The horse which he rode in battle, equipped 
as when the General dismounted from him a few minutes before 
his death, was led by a young man who had long been in 
General Berry's service. 

When the procession arrived at the burial place the ceme- 
tery was lined with a large throng of people, who pressed as 
near as they were allowed to approach. The Masonic ceremo- 
nies were impressively performed by Past Grand Master Hiram 
Chase of Belfast. The sacred scroll and the lambskin were 
deposited in the grave, with the usual ceremonies, and the 
brethren sadly and silently dropped upon the hero's coffin the 
evergreen emblems of immortality. The flag which had been 


wrapped about the burial case was also deposited upon it. The 
Masonic ceremonies being concluded, the State Guards were 
ordered forward, and in three divisions fired separate volleys 
over the grave, and the last sad duties of love and respect to 
the honored dead were concluded. 

Z. Pope Vose of Minneapolis, at that time editor of the 
Rockland Gazette, offered the following poetical tribute : 

In memory of Major-General Hiram G. Berry. 

Boom ! brazen cannon, boom ! 
Low in the silent tomb 

Our gallant warrior lies ! 
Dust unto dust goes down, 
Spirit, to wear its crown 

Of life, ascends the skies ! 
Bravely, his ranks beside, 
He stemmed the battle's tide; 
Nobly he fought and well, 
But in the strife he fell; 
Stricken, he fell and died. 

Boom ! Boom ! 
Speak from each brazen throat, 
Grief in each measured note, — 

Boom ! brazen cannon, boom ! 

Toll ! bells, in sadness, toll ! 
Your solemn anthem roll ! 

City that gave him, weep ! 
Claiming this mournful trust, 
Take back his lifeless dust, 

Safely to guard and keep. 
When Sumter's cannons spoke, 
And at that summons woke 
Thousands to Freedom's call, 
He came, to win or fall, 
Where treason's fire outbroke. 

Toll! toll! 
Speak from each iron tongue, 
Grief that our hearts has wrung, — 

Toll ! bells, in sadness, toll ! 


Droop ! starry banner, droop ! 
Your blazoned glories stoop 

Low o'er the hero's grave ! 
From the embracing sky, 
Waft downward Freedom's sigh — 

Freedom, he died to save ! 
Freeman, revere his name ! 
Honor the patriot's aim. 
One in the noble band 
Dying for native land, 
His is his country's fame ! 
Droop ! Droop ! 
Flag of the brave and free, 
He gave his life for thee ! 

Droop ! starry banner, droop ! 

Write ! pen of history, write ! 
In words of burning light, 

Deeds of this mighty day ! 
And to the brave and free, 
Saviors of liberty, 

Millions shall praises pay ! 
Tell how the Wrong assailed; 
Tell how the Right prevailed; 
And on thy deathless page, 
Bright'ning from age to age, 
Be its Defenders hailed ! 
Write! write! 
High on the roll of fame, 
Blazon our hero's name ! 

Write ! pen of history, write ! 


berry's character and services. 

A Self-Made Man. — Never Made a Military Blunder. — 
Hooker's Quick Insight into his Character. — Lincoln's 
Tribute. — Mentioned as Commander of the Army of the 
Potomac. — General Charles Hamlin's Interesting Narra- 
tive. — His Interview with Stanton. — Hamlin Appointed 
Adjutant-General to Berry. — News of Berry's Death. — 
His Devotion to Duty. — Politics Give Way to Patriotism. 
— His Courage — His Gentle Nature. — The Devotion of 
his Troops. — Love of the Old Fag. — The End. 

GENERAL BERRY was one of those remarkable products 
that is only possible under a free government. Springing 
from a humble origin and compelled to rely solely upon 
the latent forces of his own nature, he surprised men by what 
he accomplished and never disappointed them by failure. As 
a carpenter toiling with his hands for his daily bread, as a 
contractor and builder, as a Representative to the Legislature, 
as a bank director and president, as the Mayor of his native city, 
as an officer of militia and as a Major-General of Volunteers, 
he displays the same untiring energy, the same great resources, 
strength of will and power of execution, which were never 
measured by what other men could do. 

Elevated to high command when a novice in the science 
of war, and when faulty generalship was the rule, yet no single 
blunder can be charged to him. His dispositions for defense 
were always admirable, and his attacks were made with the 
dash and vigor of a trained veteran, never bordering on rash- 


ness, nor needlessly sacrificing precious lives. Rare military- 
genius lay concealed beneath a modest and unassuming exterior. 
Hooker with his keen perception was quick to note the possi- 
bilities of such a nature. Had Berry survived the Chancellors- 
ville battle, Hooker would have made him a corps commander, 
for we have his own words to that effect before that battle took 
place. Already had he attracted the attention of the powers 
at Washington. President Lincoln speaks of him as one of 
the best officers in the service, and Lincoln was a man who 
weighed his words, Indeed, Berry's ability as a military com- 
mander was so marked that already his name was being discussed 
as commander of the Army of the Potomac. 

Here is what General Charles Hamlin says, and no living 
man is better able to speak with authority upon this point than 
he : "I accepted General Berry's invitation to join his staff as 
adjutant-general. Upon going to the War Department with his 
nomination, I called upon Mr. Stanton, Secretary of War, who 
ordered the appointment to be made and spoke of General 
Berry in the highest terms. I recall his words : ' He is one 
of the most reliable officers in the field. He never gives us 
any trouble, and can always be counted on to do his whole 
duty without being urged. He belongs to that class of volun- 
teer generals destined, if I live, to have the command of an 
army.' Mr. Stanton afterwards told the Vice President that he 
intended to give General Berry the command of the Army of 
the Potomac. This was Friday morning, May I, 1863, and as 
I was desirous to reach the General without delay, for rumors 
were afloat that the Army of the Potomac was crossing the 
Rappahannock, I asked Senator Ramsay, of Minnesota, to 
take me with him past the guard into the Secretary's private 
office. He did so, and kindly permitted me to state my 
business first. While waiting for his son to bring back my 
appointment from the Adjutant-General, the Secretary used the 
words I have quoted. 

" Having bade farewell to my regiment, I took the steam- 


boat for Aquia Creek, Sunday morning, May 3d, to join the 
2d Division, 3d Corps. The steamboat had hardly left the 
pier in Washington before I heard a group of officers, returning 
to the front, speaking of the recent movement that had taken 
place. Drawing near to learn what I could, I was asked to 
what command I belonged. Upon replying that I was adjutant- 
general for Major-General Berry, one of them informed me that 
as he left the War Department, it was reported that General 
Berry was killed at Chancellorsville that morning. There was 
no means of verifying this distressing and painful news except 
by proceeding to the front. Upon reaching Falmouth I found 
that the depot quartermaster was Luther H. Pierce, a Bangor 
friend, and learned from him that my information was correct. 
My grief was profound and my situation perplexing. The first 
thought was to return to my regiment ; the next, that I 
belonged to the division as a department officer, differing in 
this respect from a personal aide-de-camp. There were reports 
that our army was falling back across the river. There was no 
one to guide me to the command, and, night coming on, I 
remained with my friend, Captain Pierce, who hospitably shared 
his tent with me that night. The next day I joined the divi- 
sion, reporting to General J. B. Carr, commanding, and with it 
returned to its former camp ground, having witnessed the 
6th Corps resist a final attack south of Banks' Ford, where it 
rejoined the main army. 

" I have thus given some facts relating to the military 
history of General Berry — the most of them occurring within 
my own knowledge — and mainly such as cannot be found in 
the official records. It is due to his memory and patriotism 
that those who come after us should know not only how he 
served so well the country he loved, but also how he acquired 
the strong friendship and active interest of those under whom 
he served and those who, recognizing his inestimable valor as a 
soldier and officer, were ready at all times to assist in procuring 
just recognition and reward for his brave deeds." 



To those who did not know the man, his conduct in the 
battle in which he lost his life may seem like rashness, but he 
could not commit to another what he felt could be done better 
by himself. His soldiers fought immediately under his eye and 
by his side, and by his personal presence he held them to their 

A Democrat in politics, he buried party prejudices and 
political preferences when he entered the service of his country, 
and permitted his patriotic zeal alone to dominate every act of 
his eventful military career. His was a courageous nature. 
Calmly did he face the battle's fiercest storm. Shot and shell 
whirled about his head, the smoke of battle enveloped him in 
sulphurous embrace, his faithful chargers sank beneath him done 
unto death, men fell at his side like the leaves of autumn before 
the gale, but he faltered not. Death had no terrors for such 
as he. 

With undaunted courage he also possessed a heart of great 
tenderness. We behold him bitterly weeping over his fallen 
comrades with a grief so profound that it can not be assuaged. 
His first care was the comfort and welfare of his men. " Just 
a little further, boys, and I will throw you into some green 
meadows with plenty of rails at hand," rang out his cheery 
voice over that long dusty column of weary troops as they 
toiled up the Peninsula. And he always kept faith with his 
men. Again do we behold him at the midnight hour of a 
bitter cold winter's night, issuing from his quarters to administer 
to the wants of the surprised sentry pacing the lonely beat in 
front of his tent. It is not therefore a matter of surprise that 
his soldiers loved him with a warmth of affection that has stood 
the test of many years, and that despite the many able and 
worthy officers who succeeded him in command, his troops to 
this day call their organization " Berry's Brigade." 

He loved the flag of his country and all that it represents 
with a fervor and zeal that consumed all other impulses. He 
followed wherever it might lead. He saw its lustre dimmed 

love for the flag. 289 

by the smoke of many battles, yet he faltered not in his stead- 
fast faith. He beheld it torn and rent and storm-tossed, its 
bright emblems obscured in the darkness of defeat; yet he 
clung to it still — clung to it until its starry folds wrapped him 
in eternal slumber. Thus we will leave him until that time 
when the touch of the wand in angel hands shall endow death 
with glorious life, and give for the lethargy of sleep the bright- 
ness and exhilaration of the morning. 



THE relatives of the deceased General had caused to be 
made a colossal statue to mark the last resting place 
of the departed. The services attending its unveiling 
occurred October 31st, 1865. 

This magnificent marble statue of Major-General Berry is 
the work of Simmons, the celebrated sculptor, and represents 
the General standing in a martial attitude, gazing into the dis- 
tance, contemplating as it were the sullen ranks of foemen. It 
now stands above the grave of the General in Achorn cemetery, 
Rockland. The services attending its inauguration were 
impressive. They were conducted under the auspices of King 
Solomon's Chapter of Royal Arch Masons, and Aurora and 
Rockland Lodges of Free Masons, General Berry having been 
a member of the Chapter and Aurora Lodge. The committee 
of arrangements were Charles N. Germaine, G. W. Frost and 
Leander Weeks on the part of the Chapter ; E. E. Wortman 
of Aurora and Eli Hall of Rockland Lodges. General Wm. 
H. Titcomb was chief marshal of the procession, which con- 
sisted of the Masonic bodies, city officials, fire companies, and 

For an account of this event we quote from the Rockland 
Gazette of that day : " The statue of Major-General H. G. 
Berry was inaugurated with appropriate ceremonies, by the 
Masonic fraternity, on Tuesday afternoon, in accordance with 
the programme arranged for the occasion. The weather was not 
unfavorable, for though cloudy it was not too cold, and the 

Photo by Davies, Rockland, Me. 

The General Berry Statue. 
Achorn Cemetery, Rockland, Maine. 

ttNVElLlNG THE STATttE. 291 

roads were in good condition for the walk to the cemetery. 
The Masonic and civic procession was formed at about half- 
past one o'clock, led by the Rockland Band and escorted by 
Defiance Engine Company No. 4, in uniform. Following the 
band and escort came Rockland and Aurora Lodges, members 
of neighboring lodges, and King Solomon's Chapter. Then 
came the members and past members of the City Council, on 
foot, and after them the relatives of General Berry in carriages, 
followed by a long line of citizens in carriages, which closed 
the procession. 

" Besides those in the procession, hundreds more gathered 
in the cemetery at Blackington's Corner, to witness the ceremo- 
nies, and it was estimated that perhaps 3,000 persons were 
present. When the procession arrived at the cemetery it was 
formed on three sides of a hollow square around the grave of 
the General, the relatives of General Berry occupying the 
remaining side of the square. The large concourse of spec- 
tators gathered around outside this square. The statue was 
draped in the American flag as the procession came into the 
cemetery, but was uncovered as the ceremonies proceeded, and 
the work of the sculptor was received with as much approval 
by the large assembly as by the few who had before looked 
upon it. 

" The exercises were introduced with a dirge by the band, 
followed by a fervent and appropriate prayer by Rev. J. Riley 
Bowler, chaplain of King Solomon's Chapter. The band then 
performed ' God Save America,' after which Rev. Nathaniel 
Butler, of Camden, delivered the dedicatory and commemora- 
tive address. This address was an able, feeling and eloquent 
production. At the close of Mr. Butler's address, the band 
played ' Star Spangled Banner,' after which an appropriate 
address to the Masonic fraternity was delivered by D. D. G. M. 
Dr. C. N. Germaine. A dirge by the band closed the exercises, 
and the procession then formed again and returned in the order 
in which it came. 


" The statue of General Berry has thus been fittingly and 
publicly inaugurated, in a manner creditable to his native city, 
for which fact much credit is due to the Masonic fraternity, who 
undertook and carried out the arrangements so successfully. 
These ceremonies were fitting and appropriate, not only as a 
tribute to the patriotism and gallant services of General Berry, 
but as an expression of the public gratitude to all who, with 
him, have fallen for their country." 


[Letter from John Neal.] 

Portland, October 17, 1863. 

Madam : Though personally a stranger to your late husband, 
Major-General Berry, I am no stranger to his character and great 
worth as a soldier and as a man. And I take the liberty now of 
expressing my sympathy for you and your daughter, and my 
unqualified admiration of your gallant husband, because I have just 
understood that the family have it in view to perpetuate the memory 
of that brave man by a marble or bronze statue, life-size, to be 
executed here in Maine, by a native of Maine, who was never 
abroad, and who, like General Berry, is a self-educated man in the 
truest sense of the word. 

Allow me to congratulate you on your determination, and to 
say that from my knowledge of sculpture, and of this young man 
Simmons, I feel myself entirely justified in saying that I am sure of 
his work being not only a comfort and consolation to the family, 
but an honor to the State and to the country. 

Allow me to add that if the original plaster model should be 
properly preserved, or reproduced, it may lead to a bronze statue by 
order of the State, with comparatively small expense. 

[Letter from General Joseph Hooker.] 

Major-General Hooker in a letter to the 17th Maine Regi- 
mental Association, written many years after the war, pays a 


worthy tribute to the deceased. Hooker was evidently under 
the impression that Berry had been Colonel of the 17th instead 
of the 4th Maine, as many expressions in this letter indicate: 

Glen House, N. H., \ 
August 14, 1879. j 

Wm. H. Green, Esq., President 17th Maine Regiment Association. 

My Dear Mr. Presidp:nt : * * * I was prepared to be an 
admirer of General Berry long before it was his fortune to belong 
to my command, from frequent conversations in regard to him with 
his former commandant, and all that I now have time to say is that 
he grew in my esteem from the day I made his acquaintance to the 
end of his brief, but very brilliant career. Your state furnished the 
army with manv noble soldiers, but I am sure I never met with one 
more deserving the love and admiration of his associates, and indeed 
I may almost add, of the whole country, than him who is the subject 
of these lines. 

But I cannot tell the members of his old regiment anything new 
of General Berry. They each felt his humanity and often had 
occasion to witness his valor. In my estimation these are the must 
conspicuous qualities in a great commander in a republican army, 
and it was in these qualities of character your old Colonel shone 
brightly. In the field at Chancellorsville where he fell he com- 
manded my reserve, as it were, and when the emergency of the 
battle presented itself at the time Howard's corps gave way, Berry 
was thrown forward to arrest the advance of the rebel army in 
overwhelming fprce, threatening to sever my army, and probably 
insuring defeat if not disaster; but the enemy's rush was arrested, 
the army saved, but Berry fell. 

The history of the battle is yet to be published, when, I trust, 
full justice will be done to the character and services of our beloved 
comrade. It was for these and other reasons that I particularly 
desired to meet the surviving members of his glorious old regiment, 
but prior to coming into the mountains and during my sojourn here 
I have entered into so many engagements that I find it utterly 
impracticable for me to join you in your reunion on its seventeenth 
anniversary. If you should again honor me with an invitation, I 
shall make every effort in my power to be with you. 


[Letter from General D. E. Sickles.] 

House of Representatives, U. S., 
Washington, D. C, 

January 30, 1895. 

Edward K. Gould, Esq_., Rockland, Maine: 

Dear Sir : In reply to your inquiry of the 29th instant, I have 
to state that Major-General Hiram G. Berry succeeded me in the 
command of the 2d Division of the 3d Army Corps, when I was 
promoted to the command of the corps. He was killed at the battle 
of Chancellorsville on his line of battle. A moment before he fell, 
mortally wounded, I was in conversation with him, and having 
made a suggestion to him, touching a contemplated movement, was 
proceeding to another part of the field, when an aide-de-camp con- 
veyed to me the sad news that General Berry had fallen an instant 
after I had left him. He was an intelligent, capable and zealous 
officer, beloved by all of his command, and his associates and his 
comrades of the 3d Army Corps. I felt his loss most sensibly, for 
he was a gallant and efficient commanding officer. 

[Letter from General Oliver O. Howard.] 

Portland, Oregon, j 

February 8, 1895. j 

Edward K. Gould, Esq,., Rockland, Maine: 

My Dear Sir : I am glad to hear that you are preparing a 
biographical sketch of Major-General Hiram G. Berry. I saw him 
a few moments before he deployed his brigade [division] and 
marched into the woods to catch the Confederates under Stonewall 
Jackson. He was very happy and sympathetic at the time. We 
shook hands cordially and he asked me what he could do. I do not 
remember my reply, but his gallant action, ending in his death, 
showed what he undertook. 

He was but a short time under my command and then when 
we both knew little of actual warfare. I remember that I thought 
him a man of quick intelligence and an excellent administrator ; he 
organized well and commanded well, was a true man and patriot 
and gave his life for his country. Who could do more? 


[Letter from L. G. Benedict, Assistant Adjutant-General.] 

Headquarters 2d Division, 3D Corps, 

Camp at Chancellors ville, Va., 

May 4, 1863. 

My Dear Greenhalgh : I sent by one of my orderlies a 
leave of absence for fifteen days for yourself and Lieutenant Wash- 
burn, also the effects which I took from the poor General's uniform 
after his death, viz. : one silver watch, one pocket-book containing 
$21.25 in money and a lot of papers, one knife and the General's 
commission. The General died in my arms at twenty-six minutes 
past seven on yesterday morning. His last words were: " Take me 
from the field, Benedict." This loss is severely felt in our division. 

[Letter from J. S. Poland, Chief of Staff.] 

Headquarters 2d Division, 3D Army Corps, ) 
May 20, 1863. ) 

Mrs. General Berry and Daughter : It is my duty (so I 
regard it), but approached reluctantly, for fear that reference to the 
sad bereavement with which it has pleased God to afflict you will 
open anew the heart springs of sorrow, but it is for your cheer that 
I dare to write. 

When the General fell he called me. I was by his side imme- 
diately, in time to hear: "Poland — my wife and child." He 
remained silent, sinking calmly and placidly for ten or fifteen min- 
utes. The emergencies of the battle then raging fearfully compelled 
me, despite a longing desire to stay with him to the last, to leave 
him in the excellent and tender care of Captain Benedict, assistant 
adjutant-general. The General's last words were addressed to the 
Captain: " Take me off the field, Benedict." 

Peacefully as a saint he yielded his life for his country. His 
last words uttered all that was dear to him on earth — " My wife and 
child." His last thoughts embraced you with tender devotion. 
Though dying a hero's death, for you he would have asked yet a 
little while. Though dying like a hopeful Christian, for you he 
would stay the parting hour, but God called him. 

It is written, " I will never leave thee nor forsake thee." I send 
you the memorial of " Our General's Staff," whose sorrow, though 


nearly obscured by the busy scenes of ruthless war, is deeply felt. 
They beg to be remembered, and are earnest in their prayer that 
God will ever watch over you. 

[Letter from General O. O. Howard.] 

Headquarters iith Corps, 

's, | 
Near Brooks Station, Va., > 

May 14, 1863. 

Dear Sir : My relations with the late General Berry have been 
such as to induce me to give some public testimonial to his merits 
as a patriot and a soldier. 

At the first battle of Bull Run he was in command of the 4th 
Maine Regiment, which was in my brigade. While under my com- 
mand he showed himself to be an energetic and efficient officer. He 
was always gentlemanly in his bearing and ready to co-operate 
heartily in any measure for the good of his regiment or the advan- 
tage of the service. Upon the Peninsula he commanded a brigade 
in Kearny's division. I remember that I met with General Kearny 
soon after the battle of Williamsburg, who spoke in the highest 
terms of Berry's bravery, and said that his own success was owing in 
great measure to General Berry's skillful and vigorous co-operation. 

Attempting no enumeration of his distinguished services, I 
desire to record one more instance of personal contact with General 
Berry. I met him close to his line of battle on Saturday evening, 
May 2d, near the Plank road, south of Chancellorsville. He had 
drawn up his division of veteran troops, perpendicular to and upon 
both sides of the road, to cover the retreat of the nth Corps, and 
check any further advance of the enemy in that direction. He met 
me with great cordiality, consulted as to where the line would be 
hardest pressed, and in answer to my suggestion that the chief diffi- 
culty would be upon his right said : 

" Well, General, if you will take care of the left here, I will 
go to the right." 

And he went in that direction. I afterward saw him during 
the night at General Hooker's headquarters. He fell in the morning 
when his line was attacked with great fury, and died a hero and a 
soldier at the post of duty. As a brother officer I most heartily 
deplore his death. He has met me of late with the most frank 


demeanor and cordiality, and I could not help remarking after we 
had parted Saturday night, " How noble was the bearing of General 

General De Peyster, in his " Biography of Major-General 
Philip Kearny," says of Berry : "Always reliable, always a 
grand specimen of a natural born soldier, his brigade was the 
first which, under Kearny, brought relief to Hooker. He 
distinguished himself in almost every battle in 1862, and fell at 
Chancellorsville crowned with glory. * * * On May 3d, 
1863, when the nth Corps had given way on the right of 
Chancellorsville, broken and driven by the furious practical 
strategy of Stonewall Jackson, Hooker selected Berry's division, 
formerly his own, to stem the seemingly irresistible flood. 

" 'Go in, General ! ' said Fighting Joe, ' throw your men 
into the breach; don't fire a shot; they can't see you, but 
charge home with the bayonet.' 

" Berry's boys did charge home, and held for three hours 
all that their bayonets so boldly won. The next day the 
struggle was renewed, and the brunt fell again on Berry, who 
again and again headed the charge of his division, and, first to 
meet the foe, received a bullet which ended his grand career. 
Thus, in the arms of victory, as far as his division was con- 
cerned, Berry fell and died, another one of the purest and 
noblest of the type of volunteer generals of our war — a finer 
West Point has never produced." 


" There is a grief too profound to find utterance in words, 
a sorrow which is best indulged in by folding the mantle about 
the head, and sitting upon the earth in sackcloth and ashes. 
Such is ours today and were it not that the glorious dead have 
solemn demands upon us, and that to the living there is left a 


life real and earnest, which will be made more noble and more 
real by the memories which the dead have bequeathed to us, 
we would sit silent in the august presence of the hero's lifeless 
form, and with silence, broken only by sighs, lay him to his rest. 
It is only in the lifetime of but one of many generations that 
men witness the combinations of events like those which have 
a consummation in such a scene as transpires before us today. 
The nation is rising up to honor its brave and living sons, and, 
ah ! it is part of its passion, too, to rise up to mourn its dead. 
To this sad duty we now address ourselves, and among the 
duties belonging to the hour, there are none more fitting than 
a review of the eventful life which has now found its close and 
a record of the characteristics which have made it renowned. 

"General Berry was a man of marked ability. The suc- 
cesses of his life have shown it. Under the guidance of a 
benignant Providence he was the architect of his own fortune- 
His own ability and industry raised him from the more humble 
position of his early life to the eminence which he reached. In 
all the greater efforts of his life it may be truly said he never 
failed. He surprised men by what he did accomplish, never by 
what he failed in doing. Although he possessed advantages 
for literary training not at all beyond what is possessed by 
nearly every young man in the State, yet he acquired a degree 
of culture that characterized him as an educated man, and those 
who have a right to judge affirm that his official reports and 
his correspondence were rarely excelled, in perspicuity and 
accuracy, by the most gifted among our public men. He never 
spent a day in a military school, and yet, when he entered the 
army, he was versed in the art of war so far as military reading 
could make him so. He knew his own strength, and was 
confident in it. He quietly formed his own plans, and depend- 
ing on himself, he entered upon their performance, and men 
knew little of them till their completion announced them. 

" He was a man of untiring energy. During the latter 
years of his life he maintained a constant and almost ceaseless 

MR. butler's address. 299 

struggle with disease, and yet his record is what could be 
expected only of a man of iron frame and perfect health. 
While in the army, he often issued his orders from a sick bed 
or rose from that sick bed to lead his soldiers. When friends 
and superior officers urged him to suspend his active labors, he 
remained performing the duties of camp and field when he 
seemed more properly a subject for the surgeon's care. The 
siege of Yorktown, the battles of Williamsburg and Fair Oaks, 
and the thirty days' duty along that fatal White Oak Swamp, 
attest the energy of his character. The world knows already 
how at Williamsburg he outstripped the ablest generals of the 
army, and with his little brigade pressed on through the blind- 
ing storm and a sea of mud, to the front, where weary troops 
were giving way, and how, at the last, the only moment to save 
the wavering army, to the music of the glorious airs of the 
Union, he hurled his brave band upon the foe, and snatched 
victory from the jaws of defeat. And the world knows, for the 
highest military authorities have told it, how, at Fair Oaks, 
he led his small but firm band of twenty-five hundred men, 
through the flying, frightened crowd of defeated Federal troops, 
till he reached the enemy, and then stood with them, firm as a 
rock, till ten thousand sent against him fled in disgraceful 
defeat ; and for his daring energy the great men of the nation 
delighted to do him honor. His whole military career attested 
the strength of will, and power of execution, which were never 
measured by what other men could do. 

" General Berry was always faithful to the trust committed 
to him by the country. He was a leader and a favorite in the 
political party that opposed the present administration. But 
when he had girded on his sword in his country's cause, he 
buried all party prejudices, and sectional ties and political 
preferences, and he knew his country first and only his country. 
He never indulged the cavilling spirit which swayed smaller and 
weaker minds. No man more heartily than he condemned that 
political bitterness which weakened the hands of the friends of 


the Union, and seemed to have more sympathy with foes than 
with friends. He loved the glorious flag of his country. He 
followed, with all who loved it, wherever it led. He fought 
beneath it, and though it were tattered and rent by the storms 
of a hundred battles, he clung to it still — clung to it unto death. 
Well may ye wrap the glorious stars and stripes around his life- 
less form. He loved it in life, let it be his shroud in death, and 
let the precious memory of his fidelity be as immortal as the 
stars which are emblazoned there. 

" With the lion's heart, General Berry joined the utmost 
gentleness and consideration. He would never ask a soldier to 
go where he feared to go himself. He could weep over a fallen 
comrade, but his eagle eye never quailed before a foe. He had 
a tender regard for human life and suffering, and while other 
officers sought the comforts and luxuries of the metropolis, 
from the day he left yonder pier with his regiment till his last 
battle was fought, he shared the camp, the watch, the painful 
march, the deadly struggle, with his men. His brave heart 
never refused to bear all his duty demanded. And so it was to 
the closing scene. A weaker nature might have been living 
today. But his was one that could not accept life at the price 
of falling back one step from his post. Whatever imperfection 
may have marked his life, whatever weakness an enemy might 
boast over, of this no man can deny him : he died without the 
stain of cowardice upon him. His meed of praise, here, is full ; 
and without a breath of reproach upon his valor, his work is 

" While he must have been conscious of his unusual ability 
and extraordinary success, he possessed the unassuming mod- 
esty which is always a part of true greatness. It may not be 
improper that I should here bear the testimony of a somewhat 
intimate friendship with General Berry during the last years 
of his life. Although always characterized by a serious earnest- 
ness through life, this character appeared with peculiar strength 
after the commencement of his military career. Remembering 

MR. botler's address. 301 

now his demeanor, he had the bearing of a man who had a 
great work to do, and a brief time in which to perform it, and 
who addressed himself to it with a solemn earnestness becoming 
the magnitude of his mission. Those months were spent as no 
pastime of war, no holiday of recreation, but conscious of his 
lofty trust he seriously gave himself to it, as the last commission 
to be held on earth. Who shall say that omniscient Providence 
did not prepare him for his work, and then prepare him for its 
glorious consummation? 

" And shall not the memories bequeathed to us soften the 
sorrows and alleviate the grief which this event brings? I see 
around me the pageant of a mighty grief — I witness the 
mourning of a great sorrow. And well may it be so. It is the 
nation's second birth, and its agonies are greater than at the 
first. Ah ! at what a price are our liberties retained ! God 
asks for them life, and that, too, the most precious. It would 
seem that the noblest, bravest, best must die. No mean sacri- 
fice must lie on Freedom's altar. Read the roll of the dead 
heroes of the land : Ellsworth, and Lyon, and Mitchell, and 
Kearny, and Mansfield, and Berry. Truly only priceless treas- 
ures could demand such sacrifice as this, and most unworthy 
must a people be who shall not cherish the purchase of such 
blood. But is it a mourning over unmitigated calamity? A 
widowed heart is smitten to the earth in unutterable desolation, 
and youth, when most needing the protection of a father's 
strong arm, sees that cherished trust torn away. But in addition 
to that greatest of all consolations, the promise of the widow's 
God, and of the Father of the fatherless, what a legacy of 
comfort and of joy has the departed bequeathed to this smitten 
flock ! To the name he bore he has given imperishable honor, 
and in distant generations men will be honored as belonging to 
his race. Then not to a cold and bitter world is this stricken 
household given. The dead hero's country shall be protector 
of this widowhood and guardian of this childhood. To that 
country he has left them, and well will it keep the holy trust. 


" It is manifestly true that a definite value cannot be set on 
human life, but will it not, in part, at least, compensate for the 
loss of one so precious as this, to know that, in the best human 
judgment, by his industry, skill and bravery, he twice saved the 
Federal army from disastrous defeat, and that, too, under 
circumstances that warrant the belief that no other man in the 
army would have done it? He entered the army to lose his 
life, but is it too much to believe that he entered the army and 
lost his life to save the army of his country? 

" In addition to this, it is not hard to say this life was 
finished — its work was done, and well done. This is no untimely 
death. Future generations will not ask his age. They will 
only ask to know how he lived, and what he did, and when they 
know, they will account his life as among heroes, most complete. 
It is glorious to live in such a day as this, if one so fully 
meets the demands of his day. It is sweet to die when such a 
price is given for life. 

" By the benignant dispensations of a merciful Providence, 
General Berry is brought to the home of his fathers, to find 
sepulchre. No traitor's hand shall touch his hallowed dust. 
No rebellious soil shall furnish him a grave. Then carry him 
to his rest, citizens of Maine, and of his native city. Let the 
hoary-headed come to do him honor, for he bled that you might 
bequeath to your children the sacred liberties you have so many 
years enjoyed. Let the strong men come, for he has shown 
you how to fight for the land you live to defend. Let woman 
and childhood bedew his grave with their tears, for he died to 
preserve inviolate your happy homes. Bear him to his rest. 
Tears are bedewing the path as he goes, but blessings shall be 
on his memory, and the nation's songs shall perpetuate his 
fame. Rear high the monument above his dust, till its morning 
shadow shall lie far over the land for whose honor he gave his 
blood, and its shadow at evening is flung far out upon the sea, 
for he died for the honor of that flag which proudly floats o'er 
every ocean; and at morning and at evening bring the little 

MR. butler's address. 303 

children of the land to the foot of that lofty pile to teach them 
how to be patriots and heroes. 

" He is Freedom's now, and Fame's; 

One of the few, the immortal names 

That were not born to die. 

" As it was said of another, we say of him, we had prayed 
God that he might long live, for greater deed and service, and 
to enjoy the well-earned consciousness of heroic deeds hero- 
ically done. That prayer has not been answered as we would 
have had it; but who, save God, knows what is best? He has 
gone in the fullness of his young renown, from the lavish 
admiration and love of those who knew him best. Farewell 
from him to all who loved him, and they are many ! Farewell 
from them to him ! But his thrilling story, his fidelity, his 
patriotism and his precious memory are our imperishable inher- 
itance, and we will guard them well, and emulate them as we 
may. We will enshrine them in the deepest thoughts of our 
affection, even as, with tender veneration, we soon shall lay in 
our soil his hallowed form, just borne through the land on the 
sobbing bier of a people's heart, the wreaths that cover him 
sparkling beneath the smiles of God with the spray of the 
nation's tears." 


Abbott, Captain Isaac C, 203. 

Alexandria, 52, 53. 

Allen, C. L., 274. 

Ames, General Adelbert, 34, 194, 200. 

Anderson, E. W., 65. 

Andrews, M. C, 274. 

Atwood, Adjutant-General G. M., 26. 

Aurora Lodge, F. & A. M., 281, 290, 291. 

Bachelder, Lieutenant John A., 280. 

Baker, Mrs. Walter, 41, 42. 

Baltimore, 46. 

Banks, Surgeon Wm. A., 30. 

Bangor Fusileers, 279. 

Bangor Company, 4th Maine, 85. 

Bangor Cornet Band, 280. 

Bailey, James, 65. 

Barstow, Lieutenant George F., 240. 

Bath Greys, 27. 

Battery D, 1st New York, 240, 259. 

Battery, 4th, New York Light, 240. 

Battery H, 1st U. S., 240, 259, 261, 266. 

Battery K, 4th U. S., 240, 264. 

Battery B, 1st New Jersey, 241. 

Bean, Captain Andrew D., 36, 59, 66, 91. 

Beaumont, Captain Ralph, 79. 

Beach, Lieutenant-Colonel S. E., 136. 

Belfast Muster, 28. 

Belfast Companies, 4th Maine, 34. 

Benedict, Captain Le Grand, 239, 267, 

Benedict, Mrs. Le Grand, 241. 
Berry, Jeremiah, 9, 10. 
Berry, Frances Gregory, 9. 
Berry, Thomas, 9. 
Berry, Jeremiah, 2d, 10. 
Berry, John T., 10, 33. 
Berry, Wm. G., 10. 
Berry, Frances E., 10. 
Berry, George W., 10, 59, 275. 
Berry, Mrs. Hiram G., 13. 
Berry, Lucy F., 14. 

Berry, Major-General Hiram G., birth and 
parentage, 9; his brothers and sister, 
io; love for military affairs, 11; learns 
carpenter's trade, 12; becomes con- 
tractor and builder; director and presi- 
dent of Limerock National Bank; his 
marriage, 13; his daughter, 14; elected 
representative to the legislature, 15; his 
legislative associates, 17; nominated as 
candidate for Mayor of Rockland; des- 
perate and protracted struggle at the 
polls, 18; his triumphant election, 20; 
organizes Rockland City Guards, 23; 
elected captain, 24; his company 
escorts Jefferson Davis, 28; his pros- 
perous condition at opening of Civil 
War, 32; organizes 4th Maine Infantry, 
33; elected colonel, 34; strict disci- 
pline at Camp Knox; mustered into U. 
S. service, 36; starts for Washington, 
37; presentation of flags at New York, 
43; preparing for trouble at Baltimore, 
46; at Washington in camp on Meri- 
dian Hill, 47; letters descriptive of 
camp life, 48; regimental band gives 
serenade, 51 ; camp changed to Alex- 
andria, 52; letter describing reconnais- 
sance, 53; advance to Bull Run, 55; 
first prisoners, 56; letters, 57; enemy's 
breastworks, 58; incident showing 
Berry's devotion to duty, 59; battle of 
Bull Run, 62; ordered to support a 
battery, 63; he carries the flag, 64; 
letter describing the battle of Bull Run, 
65; official report of the battle, 66; 
letter giving incidents of Bull Run, 67; 
he complains of the brigade quarter- 
master, 68; General McDowell calls on 
him; encamped near Fort Ellsworth; 
confidence in McClellan, 70; regimen- 
tal revolt; his tender heart, 71; de- 



General Berry 

scribes his camp, 72; commends Lieu- 
tenant Gray, 73; did not enlist for 
political effect, 75; letter descriptive of 
camp life, 79; visitors from Rockland, 
80; his tribute to Colonel Thomas H. 
Marshall, 81 ; ordered to make recon- 
naissance to the Accotink, 82; his 
report of the affair, 83; high state of 
discipline in his command, 85; letter 
describing reconnaissance, 86; visits 
Mt. Vernon, 88; visited by Vice Presi- 
dent Hamlin and others, 90; he writes 
about the anxiety of parents to obtain 
discharges for their boys, 91 ; his views 
of the condition of the country, 92; 
the Berry Quartet Choir, 93; his plan 
of campaign, 94; his progress in the 
art of war, 96; promoted to brigadier- 
general, 97; letter of congratulation 
from Governor I. Washburn, Jr., 98; 
presented with a sword by the sergeants 
of the 4th Maine, 99; silver plate pre- 
sented by the officers, 100; his letters 
on current events, ioi; letter telling 
of his promotion to brigadier-general, 
1 02; writes of his balloon ascension, 
103; his political sentiments, 104; 
farewell order to the 4th Maine, 105; 
assigned to Michigan brigade, 106; his 
staff appointments; anecdote relative 
to McClellan's assignment of him to 
the Michigan brigade, 107; his mod- 
esty as told by Captain Earle, 108; let- 
ters giving his first impressions of his 
new command, 113; battle of Wil- 
liamsburg, Berry's push for the front, 
121; his valor and skill in battle, 122, 
123; Heintzelman's commendation, 
126; was under fire four hours; Kear- 
ny praises him, 127; his congratulatory 
order, 128; Kearny's letter to Gov- 
ernor Washburn concerning Berry's 
part in the fight, 129; Governor Wash- 
burn's reply and letter to Berry, 130; 

General Berry 

his modest response; his tribute to 
Michigan soldiers, 132; his letter to 
Vice President Hamlin, 133; his official 
report of the battle of Williamsburg, 
134; his brigade was proud of him, 
138; the attempt to rob him of his 
honors, 139; Vice President Hamlin's 
spirited defense, 140; his letters de- 
scribing the battle of Williamsburg, 140, 
141, 142, 143; his visit to house where 
Washington first met Martha Custis, 
144; his sword that he carried at Wil- 
liamsburg, 146; battle of Fair Oaks, 
his march of six miles; incident con- 
cerning him and Kearny, 151 ; his 
brilliant attack, 152; brings forward in 
person the 5th Michigan, 153; his 
grief at Captain Smith's death, 157; 
distinguished generals acknowledge his 
services, 160; the New York Tribune's 
commendation, 162; his official report 
of Fair Oaks, 163; additions to his 
staff, 167; Vice President Hamlin's let- 
ter of condolence, 168; his letters 
descriptive of the battle of Fair Oaks, 
168,169; his commendation of Colonel 
Dyckman, 1st New York, 170; Major 
Thayer's incident concerning release of 
prisoners in Libby Prison, 171 ; his 
zeal for the comfort of his command; 
his letters, 173; the Seven Days' Battles, 
176; his official report, 178; his retreat 
from Fair Oaks; skillful passage of 
Fisher's Ford, 181; his victorious 
attack, 183; his official report of retreat 
to the James, 184; he is described by 
General de Trobriand, 189; his letters 
describing Seven Days' Battles, 190; 
letters from the Vice President on pol- 
icy of the Government, 191; his letters 
concerning the retreat to the James, 
192, 193; he describes his personal 
appearance after the campaign, 194; 
is ill, 195; commends Lieutenant 



General Berry 

Charles F. Sawyer, 196; ravages of a 
fever, 197; home on furlough; enthu- 
siastic reception in Rockland, 198; 
letter of Assistant Adjutant-General 
Geo. W. Wilson, 199; letter from Gen- 
eral Adelbert Ames, 200; Colonel O. 
M. Poe writes concerning escape of 
Stuart; letter from Congressman F. A. 
Pike, 201; Senator L. M. Morrill also 
gives his views, 203; Stedman's poem 
" Kearny at Seven Pines," 205; Berry's 
narrow escape from capture, 205 ; his 
treatment of discourteous southrons, 
206; his letters on battle of Chantilly 
and other events, 207, 208, 209; brand- 
ing a deserter, 210; search for con- 
cealed munitions of war, 210; his 
opinions of General Stoneman, 211; 
describes condition of the people in 
Virginia, 212; searching inspection of 
17th Maine; incident of the sergeant's 
sash, 217; battle of Fredericksburg, 
Berry's strategy to protect his men, 
218; his enthusiastic reception by the 
17th Maine on the battlefield; incident 
of Berry and the backwoods boy; 
orders troops to " keep heads down," 
219; incident of Berry and the knap- 
sacks, 220; he is complimented by 
Confederate General A. P. Hill, 221; 
he touches Colonel Gilluly's sensitive 
nature, 221; his consideration for the 
impetuous Major De Lacy; his appeal 
to the 37th New York; his men always 
cheered him without orders, 222; gets 
his brigade out of a bad scrape, 223; 
his official report of the battle of Fred- 
ericksburg, 223; his letter to his daugh- 
ter, 226; his grief over the terrible 
losses of the 4th Maine, 227; pro- 
moted to major-general; the account 
of General Charles Hamlin, 228; 
Hooker's glowing praise, 229, 230; 
Heintzelman's unqualified endorsement, 

General Berry 

231; Senator Zach Chandler's compli- 
mentary allusion to Berry, 233; con- 
firmed as major-general, 233; his 
letters concerning the promotion, 234; 
friendship of Hooker for Berry; his 
assignment to the 2d Division, 3d 
Corps, 235; farewell order to his old 
brigade, 236; address to him of the 
37th New York, 236; affection for him 
of the old brigade, 237; appoints his 
division staff, 239; regiments and bat- 
teries in his division, 240; wedding in 
the camp, 241 ; incident related by 
Mrs. Le Grand Benedict, 241 ; his let- 
ter describing the wedding; review by 
President Lincoln, and Sickles' ball, 
243; the army nurse, Annie Etheridge, 
gives incidents concerning Berry, 244; 
battle of Chancellorsville, 250; his 
arrival at Chancellorsville, 25 1; recon- 
naissance, 256; his presentiment of 
death, 257; Captain Earle gets his 
mail; photographs of daughter, 258; 
battle commences, rout of the nth 
Corps; Hooker orders Berry to the 
rescue, 258; his line of battle formed, 
259 ; Osborn ordered to govern fire, 259 ; 
he inspects skirmish line, 260 ; meet- 
ing of Generals Howard and Berry, 
261 ; letter of General Robert McAllister 
describing Berry's part in the battle, 
262; practice of Berry's artillery, 263; 
Captain Rusling writes of the presenti- 
ment, 264; coolness in repelling assault; 
directs his aide to get orders, 266; goes 
to Mott to give orders; staff caution 
him against sharpshooters, 267 ; is killed 
by a bullet; grief of General Hooker, 
267; General J. B. Carr's tribute in 
official report; Osborn's account of 
Berry's death written at the time, 269; 
Colonel Robert McAllister's description 
of Berry, 270; aides-de-camp convey 
remains to Falmouth; grief of squad 



General Berry 

of 4th Maine, 271 : President Lincoln's 
request, 272; reception of remains in 
Portland, Me., 273; names of committee 
of reception, Rockland, 274; arrival 
home, 275; lying in state, 276; order 
of arrangements of obsequies, 278; 
military escort, 279; Vice President 
Hamlin a private in the ranks, 280 ; 
Masonic bodies in line, 281 ; distin- 
guished mourners; funeral cortege; his 
chargers, 282; poetical tribute by Z. 
Pope Vose, 283; Berry's character and 
services, 285 ; probable commander of 
the Army of the Potomac ; General Chas. 
Hamlin's reminiscences, 286; coura- 
geous but not rash; Democrat in poli- 
tics; kindness to his soldiers, 288; his 
statue and the ceremonies of inaugura- 
tion, 290; tribute from: John Neal, 
292; General Hooker, 293; General 
D. E. Sickles, General O. O. Howard, 
294, 296; Assistant Adjutant-General 
Le Grand Benedict; Captain J. S. 
Poland, 295 ; tribute in De Peyster's 
Life of General Kearny, 297; funeral 
address by Rev. Nathaniel Butler, 297- 


Berry's Division, 235, 239, 252, 253; at 
Chancellorsville, 255, 257, 258, 260, 
261, 263, 264, 268, 270, 287, 294. 

Berry, John T., 2d, 274. 

Berry's Brigade, 106-115; at Williams- 
burg, 1 16-138; at Fair Oaks, 147, 166; 
at Seven Days' Fight, 175, 188, 189, 
204; at Fredericksburg, 213-227, 236. 

Bickmore, Colonel Chas. S., 86. 

Bird, John, 18. 

Birney, General David B., 106, 107, 182, 
223, 224. 

Blanchard, D., 64. 

Blackington, Sergeant Oliver N., 208. 

Blackman, Lieutenant H. B., 221. 

Blaisdell, Colonel William, 240, 256. 

Bodfish, Colonel C. N., 27. 

Bowler, Rev. J. Riley, 291. 

Boyle, Corporal James, 136. 

Bradbury, Hon. James W., 17. 

Brady, Henry, 136. 

Brockman, H., 44. 

Brooks Company, 4th Maine, 36. 

Brown, John, 14. 

Brown, Almira M., 13. 

Brown, S. P., 90. 

Brown, Lieutenant Edmund W., 137. 

Brown, H. M , 274. 

Bull Run, battle of, 62-68. 

Burling, Colonel George C, 240. 

Burns, Colonel G. J., 23, 24, 26, 28, 33. 

Burns, Major Michael, 240. 

Burgin, Lieutenant W. E., 63, 74. 

Burpee, Sergeant H. H., 99. 

Burpee, N. A., 274. 

Butler, Rev. Nathaniel, 233, 282, 291. 

Butler, Major-General James II., 279, 280. 

Calhoun, Surgeon J. Theodore, 240. 

Camp Knox, 26, 34, 36. 

Camden Rifles, 25. 

Canning, Dennis, 65. 

Carver, Lieutenant-Colonel L. D., 27, 23, 

34. 5 2 > 53. 59. 9*> 93- 
Carr, General Joseph B., 240, 268,270,287. 
Carr's Brigade, at Chancellorsville, 256, 

258, 259, 260, 266. 
Case, Hon. John S., 13, 274, 278. 
Casey, General Silas, 149, 169. 
Chase, Past Grand Master Hiram, 282. 
Chancellorsville, battle of, 245, 247. 
Champlin, Colonel Stephen C, 107, 135, 

151, 152, 165. 
Chandler, Hon. Zach, 201, 233. 
Chase, Chaplain B. A., 90. 
Chapman, Sergeant-Major Stephen H., 

63, 66, 67. 

Chester, Captain William H., 240. 
Clark, Captain Wm. IL, 63, 66, 77. 
Clark, Captain, 37th N. V., 136. 
Clark, Captain J. A., 241. 
Clark, Lieutenant Ezra, 280. 
Cobb, Hon. Francis, 12, 274. 



Coburn, Governor Abner, 271, 282. 
Cochran, General Wm. S., 26, 35. 
Conboy, Sergeant Martin, 136. 
Conant, Captain O. J., 24, 30, 33, 34, 55, 

63. 274- 
Cook, West W., 65. 
Cowing, Harrison, 19 1. 
Crockett, Charles, 18, 20, 22, 274. 
Crockett, Knott, 13, 24. 
Crockett, Robert, 274. 
Crosby, Governor William G, 16. 
Cross, Captain James A., 240. 
Crowell, Captain Oliver, 33. 
Crowell, Quartermaster John, 86. 
Cunningham, Captain H. W., 33. 
Cunningham, G. F., 65. 
Cushman, Major-General G. G, 28, 29. 
Cushman, Lieutenant Seth, 240. 
Damariscotta Company, 4th Maine, 33,34. 

35. 5°- 
Davis, Jefferson, 28, 29, 92. 
Davis, Captain George G, 209. 
De Lacy, General Wm., 136, 137, 222, 

De Peyster, General J. Watts, 297. 
De Trobriand, General P. R., 189. 
Diegnan, Captain, 37th New York, 136. 
Dillman, Major Lewis, 124, 152, 154, 

166, 176, 185. 
Dimick, Lieutenant Justin E., 240, 259, 

261, 265, 266. 
Dingley, Hon. Nelson, 18. 
Doubleday, General Abner, 262. 
Dyckman, Colonel Garrett, 170, 177, 185. 
Dyer, Lieutenant A. S., 24. 
Earle, Captain Edward S., 107. 
Earle, Captain James D., 108, 239, 257, 

258, 267. 
Ellems, Ira B., 274. 
Ellsworth Zouaves, 52. 
Etheridge, Annie, 244. 
Excelsior Brigade, 259. 
Excelsior, 4th, 259, 264. 
Fales, Waterman, 25. 
Fair Oaks, battle of, 147-169. 

Fairfax Court House, 53, 56, 58. 

Fairbanks, Major J. D., 136, 166, 185, 186. 

Farwell, Nathan A., 18. 

Farrand, G. L., 9. 

Farwell, Joseph, 18, 19, 274, 275. 

Farnum, Colonel J. Egbert, 240. 

Fernald, Chas. O., 65. 

Fessenden, Hon. Wm. Pitt, 17. 

Fessenden, Hon. S. C, 274, 275, 282. 

Fiquet, D. D., 56. 

Fitzhue, Mrs., 55, 56. 

Fletcher, B. W., 63, 65. 

Fosdick, Edward H, 10. 

Foss, Wm. B., 65. 

Francine, Colonel Louis R., 240. 

Fredericksburg, battle of, 213. 

French, Z. F., 158. 

Freeman, Lieutenant Geo. W., 167, 187, 
201, 225, 226, 240, 267, 268, 271, 272. 

Freeze, Captain John W., 280. 

Frost, G. W., 290. 

Frye, Thomas, 274. 

Gaines Mills, battle of, 179. 

Garcelon, Governor Alonzo, 17. 

Germaine, Charles N., 290, 291. 

Gilluly, Lieutenant-Colonel John, 221, 

Giofray, J. L., 274. 

Glendale, battle of, 182. 

Glover, Lieutenant Thomas B , 30, 93. 

Grant, Jarvis B., 65. 

Gray, Major R. H., 73, 74, 75, 86. 

Green, Lieutenant W. C, 166. 

Greenhalgh, Adjutant J. B., 36, 37, 81, 
145, 183, 186, 187, 190, 193, 194, 198, 
205, 221, 226, 240, 266, 271, 272, 275, 

Greenhalgh, Captain Charles, 274. 

Grendell, Miss, 90. 

Guards, Rockland City, 23-30, 275. 

Gunning, Lieutenant James A., 136. 

Hall, Eli, 290. 

Hall, Calvin, 274. 

Halleck, General H. W., 94, 232, 234, 



Hamlin, Hannibal, 90, 91, 102, 132, 139, 

140, 167, 191, 228, 232, 233, 234, 245, 

280, 286. 
Hamilton, General Chas. S., 106, 114. 
Hamlin, General Chas., 228, 232, 286. 
Hamlin, Colonel Aug. C, 265. 
Hancock, General W. S., 11S. 
Harding, Colonel Edward K., 27, 279, 280 
Harden, Freeman, 274. 
Hart, Rev. H. A., 282. 
Hatch, Joseph L., 50. 
Hays, Lieutenant Patrick H., 136, 137. 
Hayman, General S. £-., 107, 123, 124, 

I2 5. *35> I 3 6 > I5 2 . 154, 162, 184, 222 
Heintzelman, General S. P., 52, 53, 56, 

59,61,79,81,82,104,107, in, 114, 

118, 121, 122, 126, 132, 140, 160, 161, 

169, 180, 231. 
Henry, Adjutant James, 166. 
Hight, Captain Thomas, 36. 
Hill, General A. P., 221, 260, 266. 
Hitchcock, Rev. Dr., 44. 
Hix, Warden Maine State Prison, 24. 
II ix, T. W. 274. 
Hobson, Capt. Wm., 223. 
Hodsdon, Adjutant-General John L.,274, 

279, 280. 
Hooker, Gen. Joseph, 117, 118, 119, 120, 

121, 122, 133, 140, 160, 171, 180, 209, 

216, 229, 230, 234, 235, 239, 241, 248, 

257, 266, 270, 293, 297. 
Howard, Gen. O. O., 53, 66, 191, 248, 

261, 294, 296. 
Hoxsey, Captain Benj. W., 240. 
Hubbard, Governor John, 16. 
Hunter, General David M., 61. 
Huntley, Lieutenant S. S., 167, 226. 
Hutchins, Adjutant C. H., 136. 
Huxford, Lieutenant James S., 66. 
Ingalls, General Rufus, 271. 
Irish Rifles, 237. 
Jameson, General Chas. D., 106, 107, 129, 

I3°» !3i< !5 6 - 
Joinville, Prince de, 159. 
Johnson, H. H., 29. 

Johnston, General Joseph E., no, 1 1 1» 

112, 117, 148, 149. 
Johnson, General Albert Sidney, 114. 
Johnson, Lieutenant R. D., 137. 
Judd, Captain Samuel A., 152, 153, 165. 
Kalloch, Corporal John L., 41. 
Kalloch, Rev. Isaac S., 43, 44, 86, 88. 
Kalloch, Joseph, 274, 282. 
Kearny, General Philip, 106, 117, 118, 

121, 122, 123, 127, 129, 133, 151, 155, 

159, 161, 171, 174, 180, 182, 183, 200, 

204, 208, 222, 277, 296. 
Kelton, General J. C, 232. 
Keyes, General E. D., Ill, 148, 149. 
Kiggan, Corporal Patrick, 136. 
Kimball, I. K., 13, 30. 
Kimball, A. H., 13. 
Kimball, Major G. W., Jr., 278. 
King Solomon's Chapter, 281, 290, 291. 
Kirby, Lieutenant, 63. 
Ladue, Lieutenant Wm. \., 107, 136. 
La Favour, Captain Heber, 137. 
Lancaster, Colonel Francis A., 240. 
Libby, Judge Artemus, 1 7. 
Libby, Joseph C, 13. 
Libby, Captain Arthur, 87. 
Libby, Surgeon Abial, 93. 
Libby Prison, 171. 
Lincoln, Abraham, 50, 51, 97, 243,272, 

273, 277. 
Litchfield, Captain Julius B., 55, 56, 87, 

Litchfield, Benjamin, 80, 274. 
Livingston, Captain, 224. 
Longstreet, General James, 120, 1 21. 
Lounsbury, Lieutenant-Colonel Wm. H., 

Low, A. T., 274. 
Magruder, General J. B., in. 
Maguire, Captain James T., 136, 137. 
Mahon, Adjutant R. II., 166. 
Maine, 1st, 48. 
Maine, 2d, 48, 70. 

Maine, ^\, 27, 47, 48, 50, 52, 177, 181. 
Maine, 7th, 273, 275, 279, 280. 



Maine, loth, 273. 

Maine, 17th, 211,216, 217,219,220,223, 
224, 225, 227, 237. 

Maine, 5th, 48, 52. 

Maine, 4th, 31; at Rockland, 33; start 
for the front, 37; at Boston, 40 ; Mrs. 
Baker's generosity, 42; flag presenta- 
tion at New York, 44; at Philadelphia, 
45; march through Baltimore, 46; 
Washington, 47; regimental band, 51; 
Alexandria, 51 ; first prisoners, 56, at 
Bull Run, 62-68; at Fort Ellsworth, 
70; building earthworks, 75; recon- 
naissance to the Accotink, 82; Bangor 
Company arrives, 85; sword presented 
to Berry, 100, 105, 169, 170, 171, 183, 
184, 192, 206, 207, 227, 271, 277. 

Malvern Hill, battle of, 183. 

Marshall, Colonel Thomas II., 34, 80, 81. 

Mason, Colonel Edwin C, 273. 

Maryland, 3d, 264, 265, 266. 

Massey, Lieutenant John, 137. 

Massachusetts, 1st, 240, 259, 265. 

Massachusetts, 5th, 59. 

Massachusetts, nth, 240, 256. 

Massachusetts, 16th, 240. 

McAllister, Colonel Robert, 240, 262. 

McClellan, General Geo. B., 70, 72, 75, 76, 
77, 85, 102, 103, 107, 109, 112, 113, 
116, 117, 119, 139, 141, 145, 148, 160, 
171, 175, 180, 213, 229. 

McCobb, Charles S., 93. 

McCreery, Captain W. B., 137. 

McDowell, General Irwin, 59, 60, 65, 70, 

McKeever, General Chauncey, 135, 158. 

McLaughlen, Colonel Napoleon B., 240. 

McLoon, Wm., 274. 

Merrill, Lieutenant-Colonel Chas. B.,|226. 

Merriam, Lieutenant-Colonel Waldo, 240. 

Michigan, 2d, at Williamsburg, 135, 137; 
at Fair Oaks, 152, 154, 155, 162, 164; 
at Oak Grove, 176, 178; Seven Days' 
Battles, 182, 184, 185, 187, 199, 211, 

Michigan, 3d, at Williamsburg, 135; at 
Fair Oaks, 151, 153, 161, 162, 164; at 
Oak Grove, 176, 178; Seven Days' 
Battles, 181, 182, 184, 185, 187, 199; at 
Fredericksburg, 220, 224, 225, 227. 

Michigan, 5th, at Williamsburg, 124, 135, 
137; at Fair Oaks, 152, 153, 159, 161, 
162, 164; at Oak Grove, 177, 178; 
Seven Days' Battles, 183, 185, 186, 

187, 199; at Fredericksburg, 219, 220, 

221, 224, 225, 227, 246. 
Miller, Major Chas. A., 278. 
Miner, Ab., 56. 

Mitchell, Captain O. P., 30, 87, 274. 

Moffitt, C. G., 274. 

Morrill, Hon. Lot M., 90, 91, 203, 282. 

Morrell, Hon. A. P., 90. 

Morse, Captain W. R., 137. 

Morse, Captain L. J., 279. 

Mott, General Gershom, 240, 264, 267,268. 

Mott's Brigade, at Chancellorsville, 256, 
264, 266. 

Murphy, Sergeant Lawrence, 136. 

Naglee, General H. M., 150. 

Neal, John, 292. 

New Jersey, 5th, 240. 

New Jersey, 6th, 240. 

New Jersey, 7th, 240, 241. 

New Jersey, 8th, 240. 

New Jersey, nth, 240. 

New Jersey, 1st, Battery B, 241. 

New York, 1st, 170; at Oak Grove, 176, 
177; Seven Days' Battles, 182, 185, 
186, 187; at Fredericksburg, 220, 224, 
225, 227. 

New York, 1 st Light Artillery,BatteryD,240 

New York Light Artillery,4th Battery, 240. 

New York, 2d, 240. 

New York, 24th, 183, 186, 187. 

New York, 37th, at Williamsburg, 124, 
135, 137; at Fair Oaks, 152, 154, 161, 
165; at Oak Grove, 176, 177, 185, 186, 

188, 199, 216; at Fredericksburg, 220, 

222, 224, 225, 227; farewell address to 
Berry, 236, 277. 



New York, 38th, 71, 72. 

New York, 39th, 101. 

New York, 55th, 189, 216. 

New York, 70th, 240. 

New York, 71st, 240. 

New York, 72c!, 240. 

New York, 73d, 240. 

New York, 74th, 240. 

New York, 87th, 177, 178. 

New York, ioist, 211; at Fredericksburg, 

220, 224, 225, 227. 
New York, 1 20th, 240. 
New York, Sons and Daughters of Maine, 

New York Fire Zouaves, 53, 59. 
Nickerson, General Frank S., 34, 52, 53, 

85, 86. 
Nichols, A. D., 80. 
Nickerson, Lieutenant, 280. 
Oak Grove, battle of, 176. 
O'Beirne, Captain J. R., 136, 166. 
O'Brien, Charles, 136. 
O'Leary, Lieutenant Jeremiah, 137. 
Osborn, Captain Thomas \V., 240, 259, 

261, 265. 
Osgood, Lieutenant-Colonel Henry L., 

279, 280. 
Park, Colonel Sidney \V., 240. 
Peach Orchard, battle of, 176. 
Pennsylvania, 26th, 240, 256, 265. 
Pennsylvania, 115th, 240. 
Perry, O. H., 274. 

Pierce, Major Byron R., 155, 165, 185. 
Pierce, Captain Luther H., 287. 
Pike, Hon. F. A., 201. 
Pitcher, Major Wm. L., 85. 
Pleasonton, General Alfred, 258. 
Poe, General Orlando M., 106, 123, 136, 

152, 201. 
Poland, Captain J. S., 239, 259, 260, 266, 

267, 295. 
Portland Muster, 27. 
Potter, Colonel Henry L., 240. 
Pulford, Captain John, 186. 
Ramsey, Colonel John, 240. 

Ramsey, Senator Alexander, 286. 
Redlan, George, 208. 
Revere, General Joseph W., 240, 268. 
Revere's Brigade, at Chancellorsville, 256, 

258, 260, 264, 265, 266, 268. 
Rice, Hon. Mr., 90, 91. 

Rice, Judge Richard D., 282. 
Richardson, General I. B., 107, 113, 236. 
Richardson, Jesse, 274. 
Roberts, Colonel Thomas A., 220, 236,237. 
Robinson, General John C, 176, 178, 

182, 185, 218. 
Rockland Brass Band, 26, 29, 36, 37. 
Rockland Muster, 26. 
Rockland City < iuards, 23-30, 275. 
Rockland Lodge of Masons, 281, 290,291. 
Rusling, Captain James F., 240, 257, 264. 
Rusling, Lieutenant Wm. J., 240. 
Sawyer, Adjutant Charles F., 196, 208. 
Scott, General Winfield, 50, 51, 56. 
Scott Life Guards, 52. 
Searsport Company, 4th Maine, 34, 47, 74. 
Sedgwick, General John, 72, 79, 81, 82, 90. 
Sedgwick, Wm. L)., 82, 85. 
Seeley, Lieutenant Francis \\\, 240,256,264. 
Seven Pines, battle of, 147, 169. 
Seven Days' Battles, 175, 176. 
Sewell, Colonel Wm. J., 240. 
Sherman, General W. T., 61. 
Sherlock, Captain E. T., 136. 
Shook, Lieutenant E. H., 167. 
Sickles, General Daniel E., 222, 241, 243, 

259, 270, 294. 

Sigel, General Franz, 248. 
Simmons, Franklin, 290. 
Singhi, John F., 51. 

Smith, Captain Edwin M., ^, 91, 107, 
134, 136, 141, 157, 158, 166, 168, 169. 
Smith, Elkanah, 15, 16. 
Smith, Noah, 25. 
Smith, Lieutenant James, 137. 
Snow, Albert D., 14. 
Snow, Lieutenant Edward A., 30, 274. 
Sparlock, J. A., 65. 
Spear, Jonathan, 15, 16, 24, 274. 



Spear, Harvey H., 18, 19. 

Spear, Josiah C, 193. 

Sprague, Edwin, 274. 

Sprague, Alden, 274. 

Squier, Captain Charles W., 240, 264. 

Starbird, Geo. C, 65. 

Staple-, Colonel H. G., 90, 129. 

State of Maine Fire Co., 25. 

Stanton, Edwin M., 286. 

Stedman, Clarence Edmund, 204. 

Stevens, Lieutenant-Colonel A. A., 153, 

165, 166. 
Stevens, Colonel Wm. O., 240. 
Stetson, Major E. W., 278. 
Stoneman, General George, 201, 211, 223, 

224, 225. 
Sturgis,Lieutenant Henry H., 107, 134, 136. 
Sumner, General Edwin V., 117, 172. 
Talbot, John C, 18. 
Tallman, Captain James H., 107, 168. 
Terry, Colonel H. G., 107, 123, 124, 135, 

I 5 2 > 153. *55. l66 - 
Thayer, Major H. L., 138, 157, 167, 171, 

206, 209. 
Thayer, Mrs. H. L., 206. 
Thorndike, George, 274. 
Thompson's Battery, 182, 184, 185, 186. 
Thurston, Philo, 274. 
Tibbetts, H. G, 93. 
Tilghman, Colonel Benj. C, 240, 256. 
Tillotson, Lieutenant Wm. K., 137. 
Tillson, General Davis, 23, 24, 26, 29. 
Tillson, P. Henry, 64, 65. 
Titcomb, General Wm. H., 23, 24, 28, 34, 

37. 38. 65, 76, 274, 278, 290. 
Tissot, Father Peter, 166, 226. 
Todd, Captain, 83, 84. 
Tolman, Lieutenant Orin P., 30. 
Town, Asahel, 63, 65. 
Tripp, Lieutenant-Colonel Porter D., 257. 
Tucker, Captain R. H, Ji., 279. 
Tyler, General, 60, 61. 
United States Art., 1st, Battery H., 240. 
United States Art., 4th, Battery K., 240. 
Verrill, Captain Geo. W., 217. 

Vermont, 2d, 53, 63. 
Vose, S. P., 65. 
Vose, Z. Pope, 283. 
Wall, George E., 208. 
Wallace, General Lew, 202. 
Walker, Colonel Elijah, 12, 23, 34. 52, 53, 
55. 5 8 > 59, 63, 7L 87, 91. 99, KM, 103, 
105, 114, 129, 168, 169, 170, 181, 184, 
208, 209, 227. 
Warren, Captain Henry, 275. 
Ward, General J. H. Hobart, 71, 218, 

219, 224. 
Washington, Lieutenant, 149. 
Washburn, Gov. Israel, Jr., 35, 98, 129, 

130, 131, 282. 
Washburn, Lieutenant I. Henry, 240, 271, 

280, 295. 
Webb, General Alex. S., 1 19. 
Webster, Adjutant-General Sam'l U., 28. 
Weeks, Leander, 290. 
Westbrook, Lieutenant-Colonel Cornelius 

D., 240. 
West, Major Geo. W., 226. 
White, George W., 274. 
Whitcomb, Major E., 91. 
Whitehouse, Captain Stephen C, 23, °4- 
Whiting, S. K., 87, 93. 
Wight, James, 274. 
Wiggin, George S., 18, 19, 198, 274. 
Wilcox, Colonel O. B., 53. 
Wildes, Colonel A. W., 99. 
Wilson, Wm., 274. 
Wilson, Captain Geo. W., 167, 187, 191, 

199, 226, 259. 
Williams, Colonel Timothy, 274. 
Williamsburg, battle of, 116. 
Williams, Lieutenant-Colonel A. W., 123, 

Winterport Company, 4th Maine, 34, 36. 
Winslow, Lieutenant Geo. B., 240. 
Wiscasset Company, 4th Maine, 22, 34, 35. 
Wiswell, Sergeant J. H, 86. 
Wood, Charles F., 191, 192, 193. 
Wortman, E. E., 290. 
Yorktown, 111. li 

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