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The^ Board of Commissioners r.i/^".'<^</-'^'->. ^ 



OF APRIL 16, 1889. 









which is largely eDgendered and promoted in the sons by the record of the sacri- 
fices and achievements of their fathers in their efforts for their establishment and 
preservation, while at the same time common jnstioe calls npon the state to pre- 
serve a record and memorial of the patriotic and heroic deeds of her soldiers, 
many of whom fell in the great struggle for the preservation of free government 
and the enlargement of the area of freedom so as to include all i>eople of every 
race and color within the borders of the United States, in such form as to make 
it accessible and convenient to all their descendants and all the people of the 
State of Minnesota; 

Therefore^ he it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Minnesota: 

Section 1. That said William Lochren, Judson W. Bishop, Christopher G. 
Andrews, John B. Sanborn, Lucius F. Hubbard and Charles E. Flandrau be, 
and they -are hereby, appointed a board of commissioners, whose duty it shall be 
to meet at the capitol of Minnesota and organize as such board on or before the 
first Monday of April, A. D. 1889, and take charge of and cause to be prepared 
and published an official historical narrative of the services of each regiment, 
battalion, battery and independent company of Minnesota troops while in the 
service of the United States in the Civil War of 1861-1865, and in the Indian 
War of 1862, and to cause the same to be edited and made ready for publication, 
and to be published as hereinafter provided, in a single volume, which shall be 
entitled ^'Minnesota in the Civil War, 1861-1865." Said work shall contain a 
complete roster of all Minnesota soldiers and sailors engaged in said war. 

No compensation shall be allowed or paid said commissioners for services as 
such under this act, but they shall have authority to employ, at a reasonable 
compensation, to be determined by them, one of their number, or some other 
person or persons, to discharge the duty and do the work of editors in preparing 
the said volume for publication and superintending the publication of the same, 
and may incur such other incidental expenses as may be necessary in the dis- 
charge of their duties under this act When said commission has completed its 
work, and said volume is fully prepared for publication, said commission shall 
attach a certificate thereto to the effect that the narrative of the organization and 
services of the respective organizations of Minnesota troops therein contained 
has been examined by them and found conformable to the truth, and thereupon 
said commission will deliver said manuscript to the commissioners of public 
printing, with a sample volume of a book selected by them, in conformity with 
which the said volume shall be printed and bound; or said commission may, in 
their discretion, advertise and let such printing to the lowest responsible bidder, 
in which case the same shall be done substantially as herein provided to be done 
by the commissioners of public printing. 

SEa 2. The commissioners of public printing shall, without any unnecessary 
delay, proceed to have the manuscript of said military history printed as direct^ 
ed by the commissioners aforesaid, and in the printing and publication of the 
same shall be governed by the general statutes pertaining to the printing of pub- 
lic documents, excepting so £Bur as said statutes are modified by the provisions 
of this act, or by the directions of the commissioners hereby created. 

Said commissioners of public printing shall cause to be printed and bound 
10,000 copies of said military history, and deliver the same to the adjutant gen- 
eral of the State of Minnesota, who shall, without unnecessary delay, either by 


IMTSonal delivery or by mail or express, deliver one oopy thereof, free from ex- 
I>eii8ey to each surviving soldier of any organization of Minnesota troops in the 
said war who shall apply therefor, but no copy shall be delivered until the adju- 
tant general has satisfied himself of the identity of the soldier who is to receive 
the same. One oopy of the same, ux>on like request, shall be delivered to the 
surviving widow, fother or mother of any such deceased soldier, and if no widow, 
fiither or mother is living, then to the oldest son or daughter, or brother or sis- 
ter, upon identification to the satisfiekction of the adjutant general; and to fEkcili- 
tate such delivery the adjutant general shall mail to the representative of every 
such deceased soldier, and to every such surviving soldier whose address may be 
known or furnished to him, a notice informing him that he is entitled, upon re- 
quest, to a copy of the said history free of expense, and shall keep a record of 
the delivery of such history to such surviving soldier or representative of such 
deceased soldier; one copy to each public and college library in the state, and 
one copy to each state institution; one copy to each school district in the state 
having a library, and one copy to such libraries of state and foreign governments 
as are accustomed to exchange public documents with the public library of this 
state. One hundred copies of the same shall be delivered to the Minnesota His- 
torical Society, and fifty copies to the library of the State University of Minne- 
sota, for exchange. After the distribution of the copies of the histories as afore- 
said the adjutant general may sell any remaining copies, at a price not exceeding 
ten per cent above the actual cost of the same to the state, to any parties desiring 
to purchase the same, but not more than one copy to any one person; and he 
shall at the end of every quarter render an account to the state auditor of the 
number of copies he has sold, and pay over the proceeds of sach sales to the state 
treasurer, and the state treasurer shall sign and deliver to him duplicate receipts 
for the money so paid over, one of which the adjutant general shall retain in his 
ofBce and file the other with the state auditor. 

SEa 3. The cost of printing and binding said volume shall be paid in the 
same manner and upon like vouchers as other public printing, out of the funds 
appropriated for that purpose, and the exx>enses incurred by the commission 
in editing and preparing said manuscript shall be paid upon vouchers made 
out and approved by said commission, which vouchers shall be filed with the 
auditor of state, and be paid by his warrant drawn in the usual form upon the 
state treasurer. The roster herein provided for shall be procured and furnished 
to said commission by the adjutant general of this state. 

Seo. 4. The commissioners of public printing shall cause said volume to be 
stereotyped or electrotyx>ed, so that additional volumes may be printed at any 
time hereafter by direction of the legislature, and said stereotype or electrotype 
plates shall be delivered to and retained by the adjutant general. 

SEa 5. To enable the commissioners hereby appointed to carry into effect 
the provisions of this act there shall be, and hereby is, appropriated out of any 
money in the state treasury not otherwise appropriated the sum of $12,000, or so 
much thereof as may be necessary. Provided^ that no exx>ense shall be incurred 
by said commission for the purposes hereof in excess of the appropriation herein 

Sec. 6. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after its passage. 

Approved April 16, 1889. 


The undersigned Commissioners named in the foregoing act met at the 
state capitol on the 24th day of April, 1889, and organized by the election of 
William Lochren as chairman and C. C. Andrews as secretary. The latter 
was also chosen at the same meeting as editor of the history, and has served in 
that capacity. 

At a meeting held May 1st, the Commission agreed upon the space to be 
allotted for each narrative, and the secretary was instructed to address a note 
to a proper representative of each organization, requesting him to furnish a 
narrative of its services for the use of the Commission. These narratives have 
all been furnished without expense to the state, except for copying. The un- 
dersigned, while not committing themselves to expressions of opinion by the 
various writers, have carefully examined and revised all the narratives, and 
have found them conformable to the truth. 

Sec. 3 of the foregoing act provides that **The roster herein provided 
for shall be procured and furnished to sidd Commission by the adjutant general 
of this state." The roster printed in this volume has iaccordingly been fur- 
nished by the adjutant general from the best sources at his command. Proof 
sheets of many companies were sent to such persons as it was thought would 
from personal knowledge be able to correct errors; and not a few corrections 
in names, dates, etc., have in this way been supplied. Corrections and addi- 
tional names which were received after the press work was done will be found 
printed as an addendum. 

The whole number of names printed in the roster in this volume, including 
those in the supplement or addendum, and in the companies of citizen soldiers 
engaged in the Indian War, is 26,717. In not so very few instances, men who 
were discharged before the close of the war re-enlisted and served in other 
organizations, and the names of such are consequently repeated. But in view 
of the &ct that the total population of Minnesota in 1860 was only 172,023, 
and not exceeding 250,099 in 1865, her contribution to the Union armies 
will be found to compare fitvorably with the number furnished by other states. 

Some few £Eicts in her war record will remain of general interest. Minne- 
sota furnished the first ** three-years' " regiment that reached the seat of war. 
It was a Minnesota re^ment that sustained the greatest loss in the greatest 
battle of the war; a fact which is shown by the recent valuable statistical work 
of Lieut. Col. William F. Fox of Albany, IT. Y., entitled " Regimental Losses 
in the American Civil War." He states, on page 26 : ** In proportion to the 
number engaged, the greatest loss sustained by any regiment during the war 
was that of the First Minnesota, at Gettysburg." This writer shows that in 
respect to the numbers engaged and losses sustained on the respective sides, the 


battle of Oettysburg was almost identical with the battle of Waterloo. By 
uncommon research he has ascertained that the number killed and who died 
from wounds on the Union side, in the battle of Gettysburg, was 5,291. He 
cites eleven other battles ranking next after Gettysburg in the order as named, in 
respect to loss sustained by the Union armies, as follows: Spottsylvania, Wil- 
derness, Antietam, Chancellorsville, Chickamauga, Cold Harbor, Fredericks- 
burg, Manassas, Shiloh, Stone River and Petersburg. The narratives in this 
volume show that Minnesota soldiers were engaged in all of these memorable 
battles, and in a very large number of others, and some of which, like Vicks- 
burg, Chattanooga, Nashville and Atlanta, were of very decisive character. 

The Commission would hereby tender its thanks to the War Department 
for the courtesy and promptitude with which it has, on repeated occasions, 
furnished information for the preparation of this volume. 

William Lochren, 
J. W. Bishop, 
C. C. Andrews, 
John B. Sanborn, 
L. F. Hubbard, 
Chas. E. Flandrau, 
Commissioners under the Act of April 16, 1889. 



{8eej ahOj Index at the end of the volume.) 


Narxatiye of, also the Fint Buttalion, by Jadge William Lochien of Minneapolis, who 
aerred wifh the regimeoit, both as an enlisted man and oommisaioned officer, in the 

Army of the Potomac 1-48 

Boater of the legimenl 4^-86 

Boater of the First Battalion 68-78 


Narrative of, by General J. W. Bishop of St. Paul, who served in the regiment as captain, 
nujor, lientenant colonel and colonel, Army of the Ohio and Army of the Cumber- 
land 71^122 

Boater of the regiment. 123-146 


NanatiTe of, by General 0. C. Andrews of St. Panl, who served with the regiment as cap- 
tain, lientenant colonel and colonel, Army of the Ohio, Army of the Tennessee and 
Army of Arkansaa. 147-177 

Boater of the regiment 178-197 


Narrative of^ hy Oaptain Alonso L. Brown of Brownton, McLeod county, who served in 
the regiment as a non-commissioned officer, Army of the Misrissippi and Army of the 
Tennessee 198-220 

Boster of the regiment 221-242 


Narrative of, by Geneial L. F. Hubbard of Bed Wing, who served with the regiment aa 
captain, lieutenant colonel and colonel, Army of the Mississippi and Army of the Ten- 
nessee.. 243-281 

Boster of the regiment 282-299 


Nanative of^ by Hon. Charlee W. Johnson of MinneapoUs, who served with the regiment 
as an enlisted man in the Indian War in Minnesota and Dakota, and in Arkansas and 
Alabama, Army of West Mississippi 300-328 

Boster of the regiment.. 329-346 


iScBj (UsOj Index at the end of the volume.) 


Narrative of, also the First Battalion, by Jadge William Lochren of Minneapolia, who 
served with the regiment, both as an enlisted man and commissioned officer, in the 

Army of the Potomac 1-48 

Boeier of the regiment ^ 49-66 

Boster of the First BattaUon 66-78 


Narrative of, by €^eral J. W. Bishop of SI Paul, who served in the regiment as captain, 
migor, lieutenant colonel and colonel. Army of the Ohio and Army of the Comber- 
land 79-122 

Boeter of the regiment ^ 123-146 


Narrative of, by General C. C. Andrews of SI Panl, who served with the regiment as cap- 
tain, lieutenant colonel and colonel, Army of the Ohio, Army of the Tennessee and 
Army of Arkansas. 147-177 

Boster of the regiment ^ 178-197 


Narrative of, by Captain Alonjso L. Brown of Brownton, McLeod coonly, who served in 
the regiment as a non-commissioned officer. Army of the Mississippi and Army of the 
Tennessee 198-220 

Boster of the regiment 221-242 


Narrative of, by (General L. F. Hubbard of Bed Wing, who served with the regiment as 
captain, lieutenant colonel and colonel. Army of the Mississippi and Army of the Ten- 
nessee.. 243-281 

Boeter of the regiment 282-299 


Narrative of^ by Hon. Charles W. Johnson of Minneapolis, who served with the regiment 
as an enlisted man in the Indian War in Minnesota and Dakota, and in Arkansas and 
Alabama, Army of West Mississippi 300-328 

Boster of the regiment. 329-346 


iSeej also, Index at the end of the volume.) 


NairatiTe of^ also the Fint Battalion, by Jadge William Lochien of Minneapolis, who 
aerred with the regiment, both as an enlisted man and commissioned officer, in the 

Army of the Potomac 1-48 

Roster of the regiment 4&-66 

Roster of the First Battalion 66>78 


NarratiTe of, by General J. W. Bishop of St. Paul, who served in the regiment as captain, 
mi^or, lientenant colonel and colonel. Army of the Ohio and Army of the Combei^ 
land 79-122 

Roster of the regiment 123-146 


NarratiTe of, by General C. C. Andrews of St. Panl, who served with the regiment as cap- 
tain, lieutenant colonel and colonel, Army of the Ohio, Army of the Tennessee and 
Army of Arkansas. 147-177 

Roster of the regiment 178-197 


NarratiTe of, by CSaptain Alonxo L. Brown of Brownton, McLeod county, who served in 
the regiment as a non-commissioned officer. Army of the Mississippi and Army of the 
Tennessee 198-220 

Roster of the regiment 221-242 


Narrative of, by Geneial L. F. Hubbard of Red Wing, who served with the regiment as 
captain, lieutenant colonel and colonel. Army of the Mississippi and Army of the Ten- 
nevee.... 243-281 

Roster of the regiment 282-299 


Narrative ot, by Hon. Charles W. Johnson of Minneapolis, who served with the regiment 
as an enlisted man in the Indian War in Minnesota and Dakota, and in Arkansas and 

Alabama, Army of West Mississippi 300-328 

of the regiment. 329-346 



NanatiTe of, compiled, under diiection of the Oommiasion, finom official xeoords, and infor- 
mation ftimiahed by James T. Bamer, Esq., of Winona (and otbera), who senred with 
the legiment as a non-commissioned officer in the Indian War and Armj of the Ten- 
nessee 347-^69 

BoBter of the regiment 370-385 


Narrative of, by Hon. William H. Honlton of Elk River, who served with the regiment as 

a non-commissioned officer in the Indian War and in the Twenty-third Army Corps... 386-400 
Roster of the regiment 401-415 


Narrative of, by Hon. C. F. Macdonald of St. Clond, who served with the regiment as a 

non-commiasioned officer in the Indian War and in the Army of the Tennessee. 416-438 

Roster of the regiment 439-454 


Narrative of, by General James H. Baker of Garden City, Bine Earth connty, who served 
as colonel of the regiment in the Indian War and in Miaaonri (regiment afterward 
served in Army of the Tennessee) 455-471 

Roster of the regiment 472-487 


Narrative of, by RafUs Davenport, Esq., of St Panl, who served with the regiment as a 

non-commisBioned officer in the Department of Tennessee. 488-491 

Roster of the regiment. 492-^506 


Narrative of^ by Lienl CoL Francis Peteler of Minneapolis, who served as its first cap- 
tain in the Army of the Potomac 507-510 

Roster of the company 511^12 


Narrative of, by J. B. Chaney, Esq., of St. Panl, who served with the company as a non- 
commissioned officer in the Army of the Potomac..... 513-516 

Roster of the company.. 517,518 


Narrative of, by the late Hon. Engene M. Wilson of Minneapolis, who served with the 

regiment as captain in the Indian War.. 519-524 

Roster of the regiment.. 525-542 



ci, hj Ideat Martin WillianiB of Minneapolis, who served with the regiment 

as qnartennaster in the Indian War, Minnesota and Dakota.. 54S-551 

Roster of the regiment.. 552-671 


NanatiTe of, by Isaac Botsford, Esq., of Albert Lea, Freeborn connty, who served as a 
non-commissioned officer in the battalion in Kentucky and Tennessee and in the 
Indian War 572-584 

Roster of the battalion.. 585-593 


NarratiTe of^ by Miyor C. W. Nash of Minneapolis, who served as qnartennaster of the 

bttttalion in the Indian War 584-601 

Roster of the battalion.. 603-611 


Narrative of; by lientenant James J. Egan of St. Panl, who served as a4jatant of the 

regiment at Chattanooga.. 612, 613 

Roster of the regiment. 614-638 


Narrative of, by Lieutenant Henry S. Horter of Washington, D. C. (Pension Office), who 
served with the battery as an enlisted man and commissioned officer in the battle of 
Pittsbnigh Landing, siege of Vicksbnig, Atlanta campaign, etc 640-649 

Roster of the battery 650-653 


Narrative of, prepared, under direction of the Commission, from official records and infor- 
mation ftimished by its commander, Captain W. A. Hotchkiss of Preston, Minn 654-665 

Roster of the batteiy.. 666-669 


Narrative of, l^ Lieutenant G. M. Dwelle of Lake City, who served as a commissioned 

officer with the battery in the Indian War.. 670-677 

Roster of the battery 678-680 

Addendum to roster. 681-695 

observations that have occurred to the Commissioners in the progress of the 
work, by Gen. J. W. Bishop of St. Paul.. 696-700 


List and short record of general officers, appointed from Minnesota, and of other Minnesota 

offioen, who were brsvetted as general officers.. 701-714 

• • 


List and short xeoord of offioen, appointed finom Minnesota, in the Volunteer Staff Oorps.^ 715-723 


List, ftimished by the War Department, of appointments in the United States Armj finom 

Minnesota, 1861 to 1870 indnsiye 724 

Promotions from Minnesota Volunteers in United States colored oiganications. ^ 725-726 


Nanatiye of, by Hon. Charles E. Flandrau of St Paul, who, as colonel, commanded at the 

battle of New Ulm, and on the southern frontier 727-753 

Roster of citizen soldiers who serred in the Sioux Indian War of 1862, compiled by Hon. 

Charles E. Flandrau of St Paul ^ 754-817 

Index 819-844 







At the request of my comrades I have assumed to write the narrative of the 
Pirst Regiment Minnesota Volunteers for this history. Gen. William Colvill 
was designated to act with me ; but the distance between us is so great, the time 
I can devote to it so precarious, and usually at evening, after days spent in ex- 
hausting official labor, and the time now so short within which it must be pre- 
pared, that no arrangement can be made to avail myself of the general's aid 
beyond his graphic account of our first battle. The necessity of compressing 
the narratives of all Minnesota troops engaged in the Civil War, and in the In- 
dian War of 1862, with full rosters, into a single volume of moderate size, limits 
to briefest outlines the story of this regiment, which took part in every battle of 
the Army of the Potomac during the first three years of the war, achieving a 
reputation certainly second to no regiment in the service, and which, on the 
memorable field of Gettysburg, performed such an act of successful heroism as 
has no parallel in history. Its tale, if fully written, and interspersed with inter- 
esting incidents as they actually occurred, would not find sufficient space in the 
entire volume, covering, with the service of Companies A and B of the battal- 
ion, made up mostly of its recruits and re-enlisted men, all the battles and 
marches from Bull Bun to Appomattox. But anecdotes must in general be 
omitted, and brevity and accuracy alone aimed at in writing this narrative. I 
have received great aid in preparing this work from memoranda and data 
gathered by Maj. Henry D. O'Brien of East St. Louis, 111., and kindly placed 
by him at my disposal; also from the full and well-written diary kept by Isaac 
L. Taylor of Company E, up to the morning of the day on which he was killed 
in the charge of the regiment at Gettysburg, supplemented from that time by 
his brother, Capt. P. H. Taylor, now of Harrisonville, Mo.; also from diaries 
kept by Capt. Myron Shepard and Sergt. Sam. Bloomer of Stillwater, and Sergt. 
3Iathew Marvin of Winona, and letters written by Capt. John Ball, Charles E. 
Oo<ldard, and others. I have also consulted **The Rebellion Record," so far as 
published; ''Regimental Losses in the American Civil War,'' by Lieut. Col. 
WilliamF. Fox;. and ** The Second Corps," by Gen. Francis A. Walker, and such 
other data as was within reach, trusting to my own recollection of events to cor- 
rect what appeared to be error or misconception on the part of others. Although 
I cannot hope to have attained entire accuracy, I trust that mistakes will be 
found to be few and of minor importance. While I recognize that it would be 
of interest to note promotions as they occurred, and to give lists of casualties in 
the accounts of battles, it would be extremely difficult to do this now, with en- 
tire accuracy, from any data at present within my reach, and would make the 
work overpass its limit. And I conceive it to be the less necessary, as the nar- 
rative is to be accompanied by a complete roster as accurate as can now be made. 



April, 1861, brought civil war. Its causes — the existence of slavery in the 
Sonth ; the doctrine, coming from the statesmen of the Revolution, that every 
organized community has the right to change its government, and its relations 
with other governments, at its pleasure ; the doctrine, also traceable to the same 
source, regarding the states as the ultimate sovereigns, and the union formed 
by them, as subsisting, as to each state, only at its will ; the diversity of pur- 
suits, and in character of the people of the two sections, and the constant recrimi- 
nation and abuse passing between the haughty, arrogant representatives of the 
Southern slaveholders and the meddlesome abolitionists of the North, each hating 
the other, and equally willing to disrupt the union which bound them together — 
are matters beyond the scope of this narrative, as is also any account of the 
political clashings and compromises which preceded and postponed the war. 

To the mass of the people of the North the war came suddenly and unlooked for. 
Threats of secession had come so often in then recent times, and been soothed by 
compromise, that the people had grown accustomed to them, and were inclined 
to look on the ordinances of secession and the withdrawal of senators and repre- 
sentatives as bravado, which would end, as other threats had ended, in some form 
of accommodation or compromise. Even when Sumter was invested and sum- 
moned to surrender, the apparent apathy of the new administration, contrasted 
with the bombastic style of Beauregard's orders and dispatches, which were 
borne everywhere by telegraph, caused the masses to look on the proceeding as 
a militia demonstration, which would waste itself in noise and display. But the 
news that Fort Sumter and the Star of the West, each bearing the flag of our 
country, had been actually fired upon, the steamer driven back and the fort 
likely to be captured, brought a shock to the people of the North, and with it the 
realization that the time had at last come when the union of the states would dis- 
integrate and change into at least two governments, foreign to each other, and, 
from differences in institutions, almost necessarily hostile, unless by absolute 
force, and regardless of fanciful theories, the seceding states should be compelled 
to remain in the Union, and that Union so solidified into a nation that no claim 
of right to secede should thereafter be asserted or pretended. 


From the call made by President Lincoln for 75,000 men, to serve for three 
months unless sooner discharged, it would seem that the administration hoped, 
even then, that a show of force would suffice to bring the rebels to terms. Gov. 
Alex. Bamsey was in Washington when, on Saturday night, April 13th, the 
news of the surrender of Fort Sumter was received. Early the next morning he 
went to the War Department, finding Secretary Cameron, with his hat on and 
papers in his hand, about to leave the office. Biamsey told him his business was 
simply, as governor of Minnesota, to tender 1,000 men to defend the Gov- 
ernment. *'Sit down,'' said the secretary, ^*and write the tender you have 
made, as I am now on my way to the president's mansion." This was quickly 
done, and thus the earliest tender of troops came from Minnesota. It was ac- 
cepted ; and on the next day the president's call for troops was published ; and 
on that day Gov. Bamsey telegraphed Lieut. Gov. Ignatius Donnelly, advising 
him of the offer and its acceptance, and requesting an immediate call for vol- 
unteers. This became known at St. Paul during the day, and at a meeting of 
the Pioneer Guards of that city, held on that evening at its armory, the matter 
was discussed, and several members signed a paper agreeing to enlist under the 
call. Josias B. King, afterward orderly sergeant of Company A, and, after re- 
peated promotions, becoming captain of Company G of the First Minnesota 
Begiment^ was the first to sign the paper, and therefore claims the honor of being 
the senior volunteer in the United States service in the Civil War. 


On April 16th, Mr. Donnelly, as governor ad interim^ issued his call for vol- 
unteers for one regiment of infantry of ten companies, to report to the adjutant 


general at St. PanL The call met with enthusiastic response from every part of 
the state. The public meetings held in all the larger towns, addressed by promi- 
nent men of both political parties, manifested the unanimous and determined 
feeling existing in support of the Government, and in favor of the maintenance 
of the Union. The enrollment of volunteers went on rapidly ; and on Monday, 
the 29th day of April, ten companies were assembled at Fort Snelling, as directed 
by the adjutant general, viz.: The Pioneer Guards, Capt. Alexander Wilkin; 
the Stillwater Guards, Capt. Carlyle A. Bromley ; the St. Paul Volunteers, Capt. 
William H. Acker; the Lincoln Guards, Capt. Henry B. Putnam; the St. An- 
thony Zouaves, Capt. George N. Morgan; the Goodhue Volunteers, Capt. Will- 
iam Colvill ; the Faribault Volunteers^ Capt. William H. Dike ; the Dakota 
Volunteers, Capt. Charles P. Adams ; the Wabasha Volunteers, C^pt. John H. 
Pell ; and the Winona Volunteers, Capt. Henry C. Lester. The companies of 
Captains Lester, Pell, Colvill and Adams had reached Fort Snelling a few days 
in advance of the others. The old fort had been for several years in a state of 
neglected disuse ; but cordage for halyards was found, and a nimble volunteer 
climbed the flagstaff and arranged it in its place, and at noon, on April 29th, up 
rose the stars and stripes, while the cannon thundered forth a national salute of 
thirty-four guns. The first dinner was then served on tables of rough boards, 
with service of tin cups and plates, and was disposed of with relish and jollity, 
most of the crowd of visitors sharing. During that afternoon the men were in- 
spected and regularly mustered into the service of the United States by Capt. 
Anderson D. Nelson of the regular army, except that the Hastings and Winona 
companies, each lacking a few men, were filled up and mustered on the following 
day. Little personal examination of the men was necessary, as care had been 
taken to enlist none having any personal defect. The men were brawny and 
stalwart, of all professions, trades and callings, having many in the ranks who 
sought for no office^ yet were well fitted by natural ability, education and train- 
ing to discharge well the duties of any position, civil or military. "No uniforms 
were provided, but the state furnished each man with a blanket, a flannel shirt 
and a pair of stockings. The old quarters in the fort were cleansed and occupied, 
with loose straw for bedding. Some of the companies, formed in part from pre- 
existing companies of state militia, had appropriated the arms of such com- 
panies, consisting, in some cases, of Springfield rifles (then the best arm in the 
service) ; in others, of Mississippi rifles with sword bayonets ; and others were 
temporarily supplied with arms of various patterns from the state arsenal. Those 
having the Springfield rifled were allowed to keep them, but all others were soon 
supplied with the 69-caliber musket, a larger, but very effective, arm. 

Gov. Ramsey was present at the muster on the 29th of April, and then ap- 
pointed, commissioned and announced the field of&cers: Colonel, Willis A. 
Gorman ; lieutenant colonel, Stephen Miller ; and major, William H. Dike. Col. 
Gorman, on the same day, appointed Lieut. Thomas Foster quartermaster, and 
Dr. Jacob H. Stewart surgeon of the regiment. On the next day, Dr. Charles W. 
Le Boutillier was appointed assistant surgeon, and Lieut. William B. Leach 
adjutant. Drilling began at once, and was carried on vigorously and unceasingly ; 
and the adjutant general of the army was informed by telegraph that the regi- 
ment was ready for duty, and awaiting orders. On May 1st Col. Gk)rman was pre- 
sented with a handsome sword by Maj. W. J. Cullen of St. Paul, and Hon. Henry 
EL Sibley sent his check for one hundred dollars, to be expended for the comfort of 
the men. On May 2d the first dress parade took place in the presence of the crowd 
which daily thronged the grounds. Two days later an order was received from 
the War Department, directing that two companies, as soon as fully armed and 
equipped, be sent to each of Forts Ridgley, Ripley and Abercrombie to re- 
lieve the companies of the Second Regular Infantry, stationed at these posts, and 
who were ordered to Washington. This was dampening to the ardor of most of 
the boys, who had hoped to go to the front at once, and would not have enlisted 
to garrison frontier x)osts. But as several days must elapse before they could be 
armed and equipped, they trusted that their destination might be changed. 
Preparatory to carrying out this order Anson Northup was appointed wagon 


master, and on May 9th the state furnished black felt hats and black pantaloons 
for the men, whose uniform now consisted of this clothing, with red flannel 
shirts, save that Gapt. Lester's Company K had neat gray uniforms, presented 
them by citizens of Winona. 


On May 7th Ck>v. Ramsey received a tel^ram from the secretary of war, 
suggesting the mustering in for three years, or during the war, of all of the regi- 
ment willing to enlist for that term, and the mustering out and filling the pla^ 
of all unwilling to so enlist, and on May 10th Col. Gk)rman was directed to reor- 
ganize the regiment accordingly. All who consented to remain were again mus- 
tered by Capt. Anderson D. Kelson for three years, to date from their original 
enlistment ; all others were mustered out, and their places filled by new enlist- 
ments. As the muster of the regiment dated April 29, 1861, it stood the senior 
three-years regiment in the service. On May 14th friends of Col. Gorman pre- 
sented him with a large, serviceable, and very handsome war horse, with saddle, 
bridle, etc On May 21st, in response to an invitation from the ladies of St. 
Anthony and Minneapolis, the regiment marched to the fiills, and the men were 
banqueted in the grove on Nicollet island. On May 24th the regiment was filled 
to its maximum strength, and two days later marched to St. Paul to receive from 
the ladies of that city the state flag, which it carried through its term of service. 
The presentation took place at the east front of the capitol, and Mrs. Anna E. 
Bamsey, holding the flag, addressed the colonel as follows : 

Col. Gorman : On hebalf of the ladies of St Panl, x>ennit me to present to yon, and through 
yon to the First R^ment of Minnesota Volnnteers, this flag, bearing npon one side the coat of 
arms of onr beloved state, and on the other the device which, by its clustering stars and radiant 
lines, testifies that we are still citizens of a great, an undivided and an enduring nation. While 
it will be your proud prerogative, wherever duty may call you, to defend this flag, that nation, and 
the principles forever intertwined with both, it will be ours, standing at the jiortals of your homes, 
to cheer you on your way with smiles and blessings ; to pray for you in the dark hour of conflict ; 
and, if need be, to keep bright and undying among men the memory of those among you who may 
give up life itself for God and fatherland. To you is reserved a proud destiny. When the time 
comes that from the sources of the Father of Waters you shall descend to where the fate of the na- 
tion is being decided, the solicitude and love of the entire state will follow yon. From this capitol 
to the most remote frontier cottage no heart but shall send up a prayer for your safety and success ; 
no eye but shall follow with afiection the flutterings of your banner as you cover it with glory. In 
your hands we feel that the honor of our young state is safe. To you with firm faith we commit 
its virgin and unsullied fame. When the troubles that now agitate the nation are past, when the 
Rebellion is suppressed, and when once more peace folds its white wings among us, you will return 
to receive that praise and that gratitude which you will have nobly earned ; and in after years, 

bering your dependence on him, who alone can cover your head in the day of battle, and who 
never forsakes those who put their trust in him. 

Cheers rent the air as this beautiful and accomplished lady closed her address 
by handing the banner to Col. Gorman, who responded eloqaently, closing as 
follows : 

We accept this flag as the emblem of the cause in which we have unsheathed our swords, and, 
with the help of the God of Battles, we will never allow them to return to their scabbards until 
treason shall be punished, and this flag, the Union, and the constitution be vindicated and made 
perpetual. I now accept it in the name of the gallant officers and men of the First Minnesota 
Regiment, and most solemnly make the pledge to our noble young state, and to her people, and to 
our fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers, wives and children, in this presence, never to surrender it to 
a foe until its folds have been baptized in our blood. We shall carry it wherever duty calls, until 
it shall please a kind Providence to restore peace to our country and us to the bosom of our homes. 

Col. Gtorman then turned and handed the flag to Sergt. Howard Stansbury, 
the color-bearer of the regiment, saying : 

Sib : To your hands I intrust this flag. It will remain in your keeping. Bear it aloft ; and. 
sbould you fall in defense of it, let your last words be, ** Save the colors of the First Regiment.'' 

Rousing cheers, mingled with the thunders of artillery, followed, and the regi- 
ment marched to the Winslow House, stacked arms, and partook of a bountiful 


banqnet, and at the close of the day, most enjoyably spent, were conveyed on the 
steamers Korthern Belle and Hawkeye State back to Fort Snelling. During 
this period, and, indeed, so long as the regiment remained there, Fort Snelling 
was daily thronged by visitors from all parts of the state — relatives, friends and 
neighbors of the soldiers, and often charged with distribating articles of comfort 
and convenience prepared by the ladies of the different localities. 

On May 2Sth Maj. Dike, with Ck>mpany B, Capt. Bromley, and Company G, 
Capt. Lewis McKane, went by steamer Frank Steele up the Minnesota river to 
Fort Bidgley to relieve Maj. Patton and two companies of the Second Infontry. 
At the close of dress parade the same evening, the ladies of Winona, through 
Capt. Lester, presented the regimental flag, — the stars and stripes, — the same 
one afterward carried by the regiment in the battle of Bull Bun, and returned 
to the state capitol, torn with shells and bullets, after that battle. On Wednes- 
day, May 29th, Company A, Capt. Wilkin, marched for Fort Bipley to relieve 
the companies of the Second Infantiy, under Col. Abercrombie, which were sta- 
tioned at that post. On June 6th Company E, Capt. Morgan, marched for Fort 
Bipley, meeting Col. Abercrombie's command on the way ; and on June 10th 
Company C, Capt. Acker, and Company D, Capt. Putnam, with Lieut. Col. Miller 
in command, started for Fort Abercrombie. 


On the evening of June 14th Gov. Bamsey received a dispatch from Secretary 
Cameron ordering the First Begiment to Washington by way of Ebrrisburg, 
and immediately conferred with Col. Oorman, who at once dispatched messen- 
gers to Forts Bidgley and Bipley, and to Lieut. Col. Miller, en route to Fort 
Abercrombie, ordering the detached companies to return at once to Fort Snell- 
ing. The order delivered to Col. Gorman was as follows : 

General Headquabtebs, State of Minnesota, 

Adjutant General's Office, 

St. Paul, Jane 14, 1861. 
[General Order No. 9.] 

In pnisnance of orders from the secretary of war. Col. Willis A. Gk>rman, First Regiment Min- 
nesota Volunteers, will report his oommand forthwith at Harrisbnrg, Pa. 
By order of the commander-in-chief. 

John B. Sanborn, 

AdjutaiU OenerdL 

The news that the First Regiment was ordered to Harrisbnrg (says the Pioneer of Jane 16th) 
was transmitted to Fort Snelling aboat ten o'clock Friday night. Almost everybody save the sen- 
tinels was asleep. The colonel and staff had the information first, and it was received with every 
demonstration of delight. Oar informant says the colonel fairly howled with joy. The news soon 
spread to the quarters of the company officers, and then to the men, and such rejoicing took place 
as had never before occurred since the regiment was mustered in. The men did not stop to put on 
their clothing, but rushed around, hurrahing and hugging each other, as wild as a crowd of school 
boys at the announcement of a vacation. There is no sham gratification at being ordered forward. 
The men enlisted for actual service in the field, and not to garrison forts. Many of them are 
farmers, and would much prefer being at home this busy season than to spend the summer any- 
where in the state. 

This quotation furly describes the fact and the feeling of the men. Although 
they realized that their time thus far had been well employed in the drill and 
discipline necessary to fit them for their duties as soldiers^ and that in going to 
the seat of war they would lose the many comforts constantly supplied by 
thoughtful ones at their near-by homes, and fare much harder than at Fort 
Snelling, yet they had enlisted to participate in such fighting as should be nec- 
essary to put down the Bebellion, and did not wish to be disappointed and con- 
demned to garrison duty until the war should, in brief time, be ended, and the 
regulars sent back. The companies already sent to the frontier forts felt most 
keenly on this subject, and received with corresponding joy the order to return. 
With such alacrity was this order obeyed that by the morning of June 21st all 
these companies had reached Fort Snelling except Company A, Capt. Wilkin, 
and twenty-five men of Company G, with Capt. McKune, who had to wait at 
Forts Eipley and Bidgley, respectively, a short time, in charge of the valuable 


master, and on May 9th the state famished black felt hats and black pantaloons 
for the men, whose uniform now consisted of this clothing, with red flannel 
shirts, save that Capt. Lester's Company K had neat gray uniforms, presented 
them by citizens of Winona. 


On May 7th Gov. Ramsey received a telegram from the secretary of war, 
suggesting the mustering in for three years, or during the war, of all of the regi- 
ment willing to enlist for that term, and the mustering out and filling the places 
of all unwilling to so enlist, and on May 10th Col. Grorman was directed to reor- 
ganize the regiment accordingly. All who consented to remain were again mus- 
tered by Capt. Anderson D. Kelson for three years, to date from their original 
enlistment ; all others were mustered out, and their places filled by new enlist- 
ments. As the muster of the regiment dated April 29, 1861, it stood the senior 
three-years regiment in the service. On May 14th friends of Col. Gorman pre- 
sented him with a large, serviceable, and very handsome war horse, with saddle, 
bridle, etc. On May 21st, in response to an invitation from the ladies of St. 
Anthony and Minneapolis, the regiment marched to the falls, and the men were 
banqueted in the grove on Nicollet island. On May 24th the regiment was filled 
to its maximum strength, and two days later marched to St. Paul to receive from 
the ladies of that city the state flag, which it carried through its term of service. 
The presentation took place at the east front of the capitol, and Mrs. Anna E. 
Bamsey, holding the flag, addressed the colonel as follows : 

CoL. Gorman : On behalf of the ladies of St. Paul, permit me to present to yon, and throngh 
yon to the First Regiment of Minnesota Volunteers, this flag, bearing upon one side the coat of 
arms of our beloved state, and on the other the device which, by its clustering stars and radiant 
lines, testifies that we are still citizens of a great, an nndivided and an enduring nation. While 
it will be your proud prerogative, wherever duty may call you, to defend ttiis flag, that nation, and 
the principles forever intertwined with both, it will be ours, standing at the portals of your homes, 
to cheer you on your way with smiles and blessings ; to pray for you in the dark hour of conflict ; 
and, if need be, to keep bright and undying among men the memory of those among you who may 
give up life itself for God and fatherland. To you is reserved a proud destiny. When the time 
comes that from the sources of the Father of Waters you shall descend to where the fate of the na- 
tion is being decided, the solicitude and love of the entire state will follow you. From this capitol 
to the most remote frontier cottage no heart but shall send up a prayer for your safety and success ; 
no eye but shall follow with afiection the flntterings of your banner as you cover it with glory. In 
your hands we feel that the honor of our young state is safe. To you with firm faith we commit 
its virgin and unsullied fame. When the troubles that now agitate the nation are past, when the 
Rebellion is suppressed, and when once more peace folds its white wings among us, you will return 
to receive that praise and that gratitude which you will have nobly earned ; and in after years, 
amid the avocations of your peaceful lives, men will point to you and say: "There is one who, 
when his country's liberty was in danger, abandoned everything and rushed to the rescue. There 
is a soldier of the great army of freedom." Go, then, sir, where your country calls, ever remem- 
bering your dependence on him, who alone can cover your head in the day of battle, and who 
never forsakes those who put their trust in him. 

Cheers rent the air as this beautiful and accomplished lady closed her address 
by handing the banner to Col. Gorman, who responded eloquently, closing as 
follows : 

We accept this flag as the emblem of the cause in which we have unsheathed our swords, and, 
with the help of the God of Battles, we will never allow them to return to their scabbards until 
treason shall be punished, and this flag, the Union, and the constitution be vindicated and made 
perpetual. I now accept it in the name of the gallant officers and men of the First Minnesota 
Regiment, and most solemnly make the pledge to our noble young state, and to her people, and to 
our fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers, wives and children, in this presence, never to surrenderit to 
a foe until its folds have been baptized in our blood. We shall carry it wherever duty calls, until 
it shall please a kind Providence to restore peace to our country and us to the bosom of our homes. 

Col. Gorman then turned and handed the flag to Sergt. Howard Stansbury, 
the color-bearer of the regiment, saying : 

Sir : To your hands I intrust this flag. It will remain in your keeping. Bear it aloft ; and, 
should you fall in defense of it, let your l^t words be, *' Save the colors of the First Regiment. ** 

Bousing cheers, mingled with the thunders of artillery, followed, and the regi- 
ment marched to the Winslow House, stacked arms, and partook of a bountiful 


banquet, and at the close of the day, most enjoyably spent, were conveyed on the 
steamers Northern Belle and Hawkeye State back to Fort Snelling. During 
this period, and, indeed, so long as the regiment remained there, Fort Snelling 
was daily thronged by visitors from all parts of the state — relatives, friends and 
neighbors of the soldiers, and often charged with distributing articles of comfort 
and convenience prepared by the ladies of the different localities. 

On May 28th Maj. Dike, with Company B, Capt. Bromley, and Company G, 
Capt. Lewis McKune, went by steamer Frank Steele up the Minnesota river to 
Fort Eidgley to relieve Maj. Patton and two companies of the Second Infantry. 
At the close of dress parade the same evening, the ladies of Winona, through 
Capt. Lester, presented the regimental flag, — the stars and stripes, — the same 
one afterward carried by the regiment in the battle of Bull Eun, and returned 
to the state capitol, torn with shells and bullets, after that battle. On Wednes- 
day, May 29th, Company A, Capt. Wilkin, marched for Fort Eipley to relieve 
the companies of the Second Infantiy, under Col. Abercrombie, which were sta- 
tioned at that post. On June 6th Company £, Capt. Morgan, marched for Fort 
Eipley, meeting Col. Abercrombie's command on the way; and on June 10th 
Company C, Capt. Acker, and Company D, Capt. Putnam, with Lieut. Col. Miller 
in command, started for Fort Abercrombie. 


On the evening of June 14th Gov. Eamsey received a dispatch from Secretary 
Cameron ordering the First Eegiment to Washington by way of Harrisburg, 
and immediately conferred with Col. Gorman, who at once dispatched messen- 
gers to Forts Eidgley and Eipley, and to Lieut. Col. Miller, en route to Fort 
Abercrombie, ordering the detached companies to return at once to Fort Snell- 
ing. The order delivered to Col. Gorman was as follows : 

General Headquabtebs, State op Minnesota, 

Adjutant General's Office, 

St. Paul, June 14, 1861. 
iGeneral Order No. 9.] 

In pursuance of orders from the secretary of war. Col. Willis A. Grorman, First Regiment Min- 
nesota Volunteers, will report bis command forthwith at Harrisburg, Pa. 
By order of the commander-in-chief. 

John B. Sanborn, 

Adjutant Oeneral, 

The news that the First Regiment was ordered to Harrisburg (says the Pioneer of June 16th) 
was transmitted to Fort Snelling about ten o'clock Friday night. Almost everybody save the sen- 
tinels was asleep. The colonel and stafif had the information first, and it was received with every 
demonstration of delight. Our informant says the colonel fairly howled with joy. The news soon 
spread to the quarters of the company officers, and then to the men, and such rejoicing took place 
as had never before occurred since the regiment was mustered in. The men did not stop to put on 
their clothing, but rushed around, hurrahing and hugging each other, as wild as a crowd of school 
boys at the announcement of a vacation. There is no sham gratification at being ordered forward. 
The men enlisted for actual service in the field, and not to garrison forts. Many of them are 
farmers, and would much prefer being at home this busy season than to spend the summer any- 
where in the state. 

This quotation fairly describes the fact and the feeling of the men. Although 
they realized that their time thus far had been well employed in the drill and 
discipline necessary to fit them for their duties as soldiers, and that in going to 
the seat of war they would lose the many comforts constantly supplied by 
thoughtful ones at their near-by homes, and fare much harder than at Fort 
Snelling, yet they had enlisted to participate in such fighting as should be nec- 
essary to put down the Rebellion, and did not wish to be disappointed and con- 
demned to garrison duty until the war should, in brief time, be ended, and the 
regulars sent back. The companies already sent to the frontier forts felt most 
keenly on this subject, and received with corresponding joy the order to return. 
With such alacrity was this order obeyed that by the morning of June 21st all 
these companies had reached Fort Snelling except Company A, Capt. Wilkin, 
and twenty-five men of Company G, with Capt. McKune, who had to wait at 
Forts Bipley and Eidgley, respectively, a short time, in charge of the valuable 


master, and on May 9th the state furnished black felt hats and black pantaloons 
for the men, whose uniform now consisted of this clothing, with red flannel 
shirts, save that Capt. Lester's Company K had neat gray uniforms, presented 
them by citizens of Winona. 


On May 7th Gov. Ramsey received a tel^ram from the secretary of war, 
suggesting the mustering in for three years, or during the war, of all of the regi- 
ment willing to enlist for that term, and the mustering out and filling the places 
of all unwilling to so enlist, and on May 10th Col. Gorman was directed to reor- 
ganize the regiment accordingly. All who consented to remain were again mus- 
tered by Capt. Anderson D. Nelson for three years, to date from their original 
enlistment ; all others were mustered out, and their places filled by new enlist- 
ments. As the muster of the regiment dated April 29, 1861, it stood the senior 
three-years regiment in the service. On May 14th friends of Col. €k>rman pre- 
sented him with a large, serviceable, and very handsome war horse, with saddle, 
bridle, etc On May 21st, in response to an invitation from the ladies of St. 
Anthony and Minneapolis, the regiment marched to the falls, and the men were 
banqueted in the grove on Nicollet island. On May 24th the regiment was filled 
to its maximum strength, and two days later marched to St. Paul to receive from 
the ladies of that city the state flag, which it carried through its term of service. 
The presentation took place at the east front of the capitol, and Mrs. Anna K 
Bamsey, holding the flag, addressed the colonel as follows : 

Col. Gorman : On behalf of the ladies of St Paul, pennit me to present to yon, and throngh 
yon to the First Regiment of Minnesota Volnnteers, this flag, bearing npon one side the coat of 
arms of onr beloved state, and on the other the device which, by its clnstering stars and radiant 
lines, testifies that we are still citizens of a great, an undivided and an endnring nation. While 
it will be your prond prerogative, wherever duty may call you, to defend this flag, that nation, and 
the principles forever intertwined with both, it will be ours, standing at the portals of yonr homes, 
to cheer you on your way with smiles and blessings ; to pray for you in the dark hour of conflict ; 
and, if need be, to keep bright and undying among men the memoiy of those among you who may 
give up life itself for God and fatherland. To you is reserved a proud destiny. When the time 
comes that from the sources of the Father of Waters you shall descend to where the fate of the na- 
tion is being decided, the solicitude and love of the entire state will follow you. From this capitol 
to the most remote frontier cottage no heart but shall send up a prayer for your safety and success ; 
no eye but shall follow with afiection the flutterings of your banner as yon cover it with glory. In 
your hands we feel that the honor of our young state is safe. To you with firm faith we commit 
its virgin and unsullied fame. When the troubles that now agitate the nation are past, when the 
Rebellion is suppressed, and when once more peace folds its white wings among us, you will return 
to receive that praise and that gratitude which you will have nobly earned ; and in after years, 
amid the avocations of your peaceful lives, men will point to you and say: ** There is one who, 
when his country's liberty was in danger, abandoned everything and rushed to the rescue. There 
is a soldier of the great army of freedom." Go, then, sir, where your country calls, ever remem- 
bering your dependence on him, who alone can cover your head in the day of battle, and who 
never forsakes those who put their trust in him. 

Cheers rent the air as this beantifhl and accomplished lady closed her address 
by handing the banner to Ck)l. Oorman, who responded eloquently, closing as 
follows : 

We accept this flag as the emblem of the cause in which we have unsheathed our swords, and, 
with the help of the God of Battles, we will never allow them to return to their scabbards until 
treason shall be punished, and this flag, the Union, and the constitution be vindicated and made 
perpetual. I now accept it in the name of the gallant officers and men of the First Minnesota 
Regiment, and most solemnly make the pledge to our noble young state, and to her people, and to 
onr fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers, wives and children, in this presence, never to surrender it to 
a foe until its folds have been baptized in our blood. We shall carry it wherever duty calls, until 
it shall please a kind Providence to restore peace to our country and us to the bosom of our homes. 

Gol. Gorman then turned and handed the flag to Sergt. Howard Stansbury, 
the color-bearer of the regiment, saying : 

Sir : To your hands I intrust this flag. It will remain in your keeping. Bear it aloft ; and, 
should you fall in defense of it, let your l^t words be, **Save the colors of the First Regiment.'' 

Bousing cheers, mingled with the thunders of artillery, followed, and the regi- 
ment mardied to the Winslow House, stacked arms, and partook of a bountifiil 


banquet, and at the close of the day, most enjoyably spent, were conveyed on the 
steamers Northern Belle and Hawkeye State back to Fort Snelling. During 
this period, and, indeed, so long as the regiment remained there, Fort Snelling 
was daily thronged by visitors from all parts of the state — relatives, friends and 
neighbors of the soldiers, and often charged with distribating articles of comfort 
and convenience prepared by the ladies of the different localities. 

On May 28th Maj. Dike, with Company B, Capt. Bromley, and Company O, 
Capt. Lewis McKane, went by steamer Frank Steele up the Minnesota river to 
Fort Ridgley to relieve Maj. Patton and two companies of the Second Infantry. 
At the close of dress parade the same evening, the ladies of Winona, through 
Capt. Lester, presented the regimental flag, — the stars and stripes, — the same 
one afterward carried by the regiment in the battle of Bull Bun, and returned 
to the state capitoL torn with shells and ballets, after that battle. On Wednes- 
day, May 29th, Company A, Capt. Wilkin, marched for Fort Ripley to relieve 
the companies of the Second Infantiy, under Col. Abercrombie, which were sta- 
tioned at that post. On June 6th Company E, Capt. Morgan, marched for Fort 
Bipley, meeting Col. Abercrombie's command on the way ; and on June 10th 
Company C, Capt. Acker, and Company D, Capt. Putnam, with Lieut. Col. Miller 
in command, started for Fort Abercrombie. 


On the evening of June 14th Gov. Bamsey received a dispatch from Secretary 
Cameron ordering the First Regiment to Washington by way of Harrisburg, 
and immediately conferred with Col. Gorman, who at once dispatched messen- 
gers to Forte Bidgley and Bipley, and to Lieut. Col. Miller, en route to Fort 
Abercrombie, ordering the detached companies to return at once to Fort Snell- 
ing. The order delivered to Col. Gorman was as follows : 

General Headquabtebs, State of Minnesota, 

Adjutant General's Office, 

St. Paul, June 14, 1861. 
iGeneral Order No. 9.] 

In paranance of ondeis from the secretary of war. Col. Willis A. Gorman, First Regiment Min- 
nesota VolnnteeiB, will report bis command forthwith at Harrisbarg, Pa. 
By order of the commander-in-chief. 

John 6. Sanborn, 

Adjutant General, 

The news that the First Regiment was ordered to Harrisbarg (says the Pioneer of June 16th) 
was transmitted to Fort Snelling about ten o'clock Friday night. Almost everybody save the sen- 
tinels was asleep. The colonel and staff had the information first, and it was received with every 
demonstration of delight. Oar informant says the colonel fairly howled with joy. The news soon 
spread to the quarters of the company officers, and then to the men« and sach rejoicing took place 
as bad never before occurred since the regiment was mustered in. The men did not stop to put on 
their clothing, but rushed around, harrahiug and bagging each other, as wild as a crowd of school 
boys at the announcement of a vacation. There is no sham gratification at being ordered forward. 
The men enlisted for actual service iu the field, and not to garrison forts. Many of them are 
farmers, and would much prefer being at home this busy season than to spend the summer any- 
where in the state. 

This qaotatioD fairly describes the fact and the feeling of the men. Although 
they realized that their time thus far had been well employed in the drill and 
discipline necessary to fit them for their duties as soldiers, and that in going to 
the seat of war they would lose the many comforts constantly supplied by 
thoughtful ones at their near-by homes, and fare much harder than at Fort 
Snelling, yet they had enlisted to participate in such fighting as should be nec- 
essary to put down the Rebellion, and did not wish to be disappointed and con- 
demned to garrison duty until the war should, in brief time, be ended, and the 
regulars sent back. The companies already sent to the frontier forts felt most 
keenly on this subject, and received with corresponding joy the order to return. 
With such alacrity was this order obeyed that by the morning of June 21st all 
these companies had reached Fort Snelling except Company A, Capt. Wilkin, 
and twenty-five men of Company G, with Capt^ McKune, who had to wait at 
Forts Bipley and Bidgley, respectively, a short time, in charge of the valuable 


stores and public property at these posts, for the arrival of authorized custodians 
to relieve them of the charge, and consequently left the state a short time after 
the regiment, and joined it at Washington. So eager were the boys to go that 
Capt. Morgan's Company B marched the whole of Thursday night, after a long 
march on the preceding day, on the strength of a rumor that Col. Gorman pur- 
posed to leave on Friday, and the company entered Fort Snelling soon after sun- 
rise on Friday morning. 

On Saturday, June 22d, at 5 o'clock A. M., the regiment was formed, and, 
after religious services and a brief address, replete with patriotism and kind- 
ness, by Eev. Edward D. Neill, who had been commissioned chaplain, the regi- 
ment embarked on the steamers War Eagle and Northern Belle. On reaching 
the upper levee at St. Paul it disembarked and marched through the city, giv- 
ing opportunity for hurried final greetings of friends, as, notwithstanding the 
early hour, the streets were throng^ by a sympathetic and enthusiastic multi- 
tude. Little pause was made, and on reaching the lower levee the regiment 
again went on board the steamers and proceeded down the river, the Northern 
^Ue to La Crosse, and the War Eagle to Prairie du Chien. There were crowds 
at the levees of all Minnesota towns, as the boats approached, to greet and cheer 
f the boys. But brief stops were made, and the Northern Belle reached La Crosse 

\ about midnight, while the War Eagle landed three hours later at Prairie du 

I Chien, where, apparently, the whole population received them with an artillery 

salute and most profuse hospitality. From both places railroad transportation 
in first-class passenger cars was furnished. Both detachments were given boun- 
tiful dinners the next day by the railroad company, and came together at Janes- 
ville, arriving in Chicago at 6 P. M. on June 23d. The whole trip was an ova- 
tion, as crowds appeared at every station, greeting the boys with enthusiastic 
cheers. At the Northwestern depot in Chicago the number of people was very 
large, and Mayor John Wentworth made a short complimentary speech, and ac- 
companied Col. Gorman, at the head of the regiment, to the Pittsburgh & Fort 
Wayne depot, through crowded streets, where expressions of kindness and com- 
pliment met our ears at every step. The Chicago Tribune of the next day stated : 

Oar city has been for some days on the qui tnve to see the first installment of troops from loyal 
Minnesota, expected to pass through the city, en route for the seat of war. Their arriTal last even- 
i ing was heralded by a dispatch from onr special reporter from Janesyille, and a bulletin from the 

i! Tribune office, and an immense concourse of spectators greeted their arrival at the Chicago & North- 

western railroad, where they debarked from the cars at six o'clock last evening. Gallant Minnesota 
deserves high credit for her noble sons and their appearance yesterday. They have enjoyed in 
their make-up that rare and excellent process of selection and culling from the older states, which 
has thrown into the van of civilization the hardy lumbermen and first settlers in the wild. There 
are few regiments we have ever seen that can compare in brawn and muscle with these Minne- 
sotians, used to the axe, the rifle, the oar and the setting pole. They are unquestionably the finest 
body of troops that has yet appeared in our streets. 

We left Chicago at 10 p. M., via Fort Wayne and Pittsburgh, and reached 
Harrisburg about 10 A. M., June 25th. The cars were first class, and good meals 
were provided by the railroad company as far as Pittsburgh, which we left at mid- 
night. The journey still continued an ovation, crowds, cheers and waving 
handkerchief^ greeting us everywhere. About sunrise, after leaving Pittsburgh, 
we reached the little village of Huntington, in the mountains, where the train 
stopped about fifteen minutes, being at once boarded by the ladies of the place, 
loaded with delicious coffee, sandwiches, doughnuts, etc., giving an abundant 
and most acceptable breakfast to all. We went into camp at Harrisburg, near 
which a camp of instruction had been established, and several new regiments 
were in tents. At 3 o'clock A. M., June 26th, the regiment was called up, and 
put on a train of cattle cars bound for Baltimore. The change from the elegant 
cars in which we had come to Harrisburg to these dirty, seatless vehicles, in 
which we must either stand or sit on our knapsacks, was far from agreeable. 
We found we were approaching a region where soldiering was less of a holiday 
matter than it had been with us. Still, after daylight, greeting^ were kindly, 
and handkerchiefs, held in fair hands, waved from doors and windows. The 
first hostile demonstration occurred as we neared Baltimore. At a handsome 


mansion near the railroad a comely maiden, a domestic, was sweeping the ver- 
anda, and, as she noticed soldiers on the train, waved her handkerchief. A 
lady, apparently her mistress, stepped quickly from the door, took the broom 
from the girl, and shook the handle menacingly at ns. The act was so sudden, 
unexpected, and unlike any manifestation of feeling we had met with, that its 
impotent spitefulness was answered with cheers and shouts of laughter. At 
Baltimore the railroads did not connect, and we had to march through the city 
to the Washington depot. As a Massachusetts regiment had been attacked, and 
some of its members killed here, not long before, muskets were loaded and bayo- 
nets fixed. The streets were lined with an evidently unfriendly crowd, who 
scowled, but in general kept silent and quiet; and this was well for them, as we 
should certainly have submitted to no assault, and probably to very little provo- 
cation, of any kind. It was late in the afternoon when we left Baltimore, and 
we reached Washington about ten o'clock, and, after some delay, were marched 
to the assembly rooms for shelter for the night. In a very short time we were 
rejoiced by the genial fsee and cordial hand-grasp of Col. Cyrus Aldrich, one of 
our members of Congress, who was followed by a large squad of colored servants, 
bearing pails of hot coffee, baskets of sandwiches, and other refreshments suffi- 
cient for all. The next morning we went into camp about a half mile east of the 
capitol, where we remained for some time, drilling daily, and without special 
incident. Most of the boys improved the opportunity to examine the public 
buildings, which were the only objects of interest in the place. Washington 
was then a very different city from Washington to day. It was entirely un- 
paved, and its streets, from the constant passage of army wagons, were founderous 
in wet weather, so that heavily loaded teams were often mired on Pennsylvania 
avenue. The old canal reeked with malaiious and foul smells. The dome of the 
capitol and the senate wing were unfinished, and most of the shops and resi- 
dences were wooden structures, old, dilapidated and neglected in appearance. 
The iron rule of ''Boss Shepherd" changed this in a few years from the shab- 
biest to the handsomest city in the country ; with pavements unrivaled, elegant 
baildings, and a beautiful park covering the location of the old canal, which was 
arched over and hidden from sight. Though abused and denounced without 
stint at the time by those whose property had to bear the heavy burthen of these 
improvements, Shepherd well deserves of the x>eople of Washington a statue in 
his honor. 

On July 3d the regiment embarked on steamers at the navy yard, and, land- 
ing on the ''sacred soil" at Alexandria, went into camp something less than a 
mile west of that ancient and decaying town. Here, besides constant drilling, 
there were daily details of companies for picket duty, and frequent reconnaissances 
to the west and south. We were here brigaded with some other regiments, under 
the command of Col. W. B. Franklin, forming part of the division of Col. 8. P. 
Heintzelman. Strict orders against meddling with private property of the in- 
habitants were promulgated ; but as the rations were poor, and the people about 
us all secessionists, a few of the boys foraged a little, but with such address that 
other regiments, usually the New York Fire Zouaves, bore the suspicion and the 
blame. In a few days Oscar King, our enterprising sutler, appeared with a full 
stock of sutler's goods, which he opened in a large hospital tent, and at once had 
a thriving trade with our men and those of other regiments. It was soon known 
that he had liquors, though none were sold to enlisted men ; and some of the 
men, by furtively feeling the packages through the tent cloth, located a barrel 
of whisky against the side of the tent ; and soon after dark one cloudy night they 
quietly drew a couple of the tent pins and rolled the barrel out and to an adjoin- 
ing field that had been dug in places for various purposes, where it was tapped, 
and a dozen canteens and a couple of camp kettles filled, after which the barrel, 
still more than half full, was buried. The raiders were all from one Sibley tent, 
which contained fourteen men, in charge of a sergeant, and they had filled their 
own and most of their comrades' canteens. Though the night was very dark, 
some one about the sutler's tent soon observed the loosened pins, and the loss was 
discovered, complaint made to the colonel, and the lieutenant of the guard sent 


with a squad to detect the culprits. The delinquents had been on the watch, 
and, seeing this movement, at once confessed to their sergeant, and besought his 
aid in enabling them to escape detection. While disapproving their act, he was 
inclined to stand by his men, and even risk his chevrons to shield them from ex- 
posure and punishment. He therefore watched the proceeding of the lieutenant, 
observing that he stopped at the entrance of each tent, ascertained the number 
of its inmates, and called for and examined their canteens. Beturning to his 
own tent, he found that but two canteens besides his own were empty, and getting 
these where they could be reached, and instructing a couple of men how to aid 
him, he awaited the officer, who soon approached and called for him. '^Ser- 
geant, how many men have you!" '^Fourteen." *'Pass out their canteens.'^ 
With a peremptory order from the sergeant to the men to pass up their canteens 
rapidly, an empty canteen was handed to the officer, smelled of, and dropped at 
his feet as a second one was handed him, while a man, lying down where he 
could reach safely in the darkness, passed the dropped canteen back to the ser- 
geant, to be presented to the officer again, and thus the three canteens were each 
examined five times and nothing found in the fifteen canteens supposed to have 
been searched. The camp kettles stood quietly at the rear of the tent and es- 
caped suspicion ; and as the search frightened the boys, and made them careful 
in the use of the liquor, they were never discovered. 



For some time a general movement against the enemy had been expected, and 
on July 16th, leaving ten men of each company, mostly sick or ailing, in charge 
of the camp, the regiment joined in the advance of the army toward Manassas 
Junction, where the enemy was known to be in large force. The movement was 
slow, and we bivouacked that night near Fairfax Court House, on a ridge densely 
covered with young pine. The next day we reached Sangster's Station, on the 
Orange & Alexandria railroad, where we halted early in the afbernoon. Black- 
berries were plentiful, and eagerly gathered. The men had not yet come to rel- 
ish hardtack and salt pork ; and, although strictest orders against foraging had 
been issued, a squad of our men, bringing the dressed quarters of a young beef 
into camp, were accidentally met by Oy\. Franklin, the brigade commander, and 
his staff. Ck>l. Gorman, who chanced to be mounted, rode up while Franklin 
was questioning the delinquents, and, in his magnificent, stentorian voice, over- 
whelmed the men with such denunciation and invective as no one but he was 
capable of, ending with an entreaty to Franklin to leave the men to him for such 
punishment as would be an effective example to the regiment. Franklin acceded 
to the request, and rode away, and (xorman, turning to the trembling culprits, 

said : *'Now, you, take up that beef and go to your regiment, and don't 

disgrace it by ever getting caught in any such scrape again." The men were glee- 
ful at escaping the punishment which seemed certain, and determined to profit 
by the colonel's rather equivocal advice, at least to the extent of being more 
wary in the future. 

On July 18th Capt. Bromley of Company B resigned, and Lieut. Mark W. 
Downie assumed command of that company, receiving soon after his commission 
as captain. Lieut. Geo. H. Woods of Company D succeeded Downie as regi- 
mental quartermaster. Companies A and B, with Lieut. Col. Miller in command, 
made a reconnaissance some five miles in advance, and till the rebel line was 
reached. During the same time the advance division of the army, under Col. 
Tyler, had a brisk engagement with the enemy near Bull Eun. On July 19th 
our division (Heintzel man's) marched to Centreville, where the entire army Wiis 
concentrated, and remained the next day, while the enemy's position along Bull 
Bun was examined, and considerable skirmishing took place. On Sunday morn- 
ing, July 21st, we were called up at one o'clock, and, an hour later, marched to 
the top of the hill at Centreville, where we were kept under arms until about six 
o'clock, while other troops, batteries and wagons were passing us. Congress- 
men and other sight-seers, from Washington, began to throng the high ground 
near us, armed with field glasses. About six o'clock we moved through Centre- 


ville, and, on reaching Ball Run, turned to the right, and marched by a cir- 
cuitous route, that seemed many miles in the sweltering heat, to the vicinity of 
Sudley Church, where we got the first extensive view of the battlefield, from 
which the continued roar of musketry and artillery had hastened our march. 
This view was obtained from Buck Hill, from which the Confederates had retired 
before our arrival. I have received from Qen. William Colvill, who was captain 
of Company F, a narrative of the battle, going into details more than I had pur- 
posed, but so interesting that I give it substantially entire : 

Back Hill was held by two Confederate brigades, Bee's and Evans^ and the attack there was 
made by Banter's Division in front along the Ball Ran slope. There was a series of attacks and 
xepalses, and the end was long delayed, nntil a regiment of oar (Heintzelman's) division strnck 
the enemy's flank by way of the Sndley road, and, getting in a cross-fire^ demoralized and broke 
the Confederates, who fell back to Stonewall Jackson's position, aboat a half mile to the rear. 
This position was almost the counterpart of the first, the right resting on the blnffs of Ball Ran, 
and the left on the Sadley road, occapying the top of a long slope, screened all the way across by 
thickets of pine and oak. The distance across was aboat half a mile. In the thickets, and ex- 
tending across from valley to road, Beanregard says he had 6,500 men and foarteen gans aboat the 
time we reached Back HilL A study of his force in detail shows at least 8,000 men, and more gans, 
at the time we went in with Rickett's Battery. Imboden says he counted twenty-six guns, saw them 
properly sighted and the fuses cut. These were in addition to his own battery, which had been 
retired from action. By order of Gen. Bee this battery had been placed at the Henry House, cov- 
ering the Sadley road flank of the Buck Hill position, where it had done good service and ex- 
hausted its ammunition. Sherman's Brigade came by the right flank of Buck Hill, from his cross- 
ing of Bull Run, about forty rods above Stone Bridge, just after the brush was over, and he assisted 
in the pursuit across Young's creek. We arrived at Buck Hill soon after Sherman, and then saw 
his brigade, the Second Wisconsin, the Sixty-ninth New York (Irish) and the Seventy-ninth New 
York (Highlanders) drawn up across Young's creek, close under the hill and out of fire, his line ex- 
tending from the Warrenton pike nearly to the Henry House. At that time Griffin's Battery of 
Porter's Bri^ide, and Rickett's Battery of our (Franklin's) brigade, were pounding vigorously at a 
battery near the right of Stonewall's position, the former from the northwest, and the latter from 
the northeast, angle of the cross-roads, and the enemy made but feeble reply. Stonewall had his 
trap set, and did not choose to disclose it. He was the strong man of that day. We drew up at 
Back Hill, with eight other regiments, all screened from the enemy. There was our commanding 
general, and every division and brigade commander who had crossed Bull Run except Hunter, 
who was wounded, and Howard, who was held back at Sudley Ford. The commanders were aU in 
consultation. The result was that Rickett's Batteiy, supported by the First Minnesota, and 
Griffin's Battery, supported by the Fourteenth New York of Porter's Brigade, were sent to take 
position at the Henry House hill, within eighty rods of the enemy's position. Near the Henry 
House a wood came down from the thicket, extending sixty rods along the left (east) of the Sudley 
road. This wood was surrounded by a rail fence, grown up on our side with scrub pine, so thick 
«8 to be impenetrable to the sight. We led ofi; marching by the flank, and follow^ by the bat- 
teries, coming under fire the first time, to the Warrenton pike, and then, on low ground, out of 
range, to the Sadley road again, which we followed across the creek (Young's), and to the foot 
of the hill on the other side, when we filed left into the field, and then up the hill, coming 
by company into line, and then forward into line, with intent to form on the brink of the hill, 
the batteries to pass through the line at the centre, taking position a short distance in front. 
When the first two companies on the right of the regiment came into line on the brink, we found 
ourselves about two rods from the Henry wood, the left of my company, the Second, about on a 
line with its northeast angle ; and, at the same time. Gen. Heintzelman, who had led our regi- 
ment to the foot of the hill, where it filed left, and then rode on by the road to the top, and across 
along the brink, gave our two companies the order, ^* Feel in the woods for the enemy," to which 
we responded by volleys, and then by a continued fire. It would have been more sensible to have 
pushed a few skirmishers into the wood, who, in two minutes, would have notified us of the near 
approach of the enemy, although I suppose that within two, or at most three, minutes the regi- 
ment was in line at the brink, and the batteries in position, and the fate of the batteries deter- 
mined. For they had barely unlimbered, and got in altogether but two or three shots, when the 
concentrated fire of all the enemy's guns had killed all their horses and many of their men, prac- 
tically disabling both the batteries. Griffin ascribes all his loss to the enemy in the woods, but the 
position of the dead horses close around the guns, and some barely detached from them, proves ray 
acooant. There was, in (act, coming down the wood to meet us, at the time we opened our mus- 
ketry fire, a brigade of the enemy, — that part of Stonewall's masked line that had been stationed 
in the rear of this wood, — and which, on discovering the batteries, had pushed the Fourth Alabama 
Regiment to our front to cover that flank, and formed the other three regiments in close column, 
and advanced on the guns. Their advance from the woods was deliberate and quiet, and though 
perceived from the lotteries, they were senselessly held by Griffin and Mtg. Barry, the chief of 
artillery, as friends; and so, coming close up, our regiment withholding its fire on account of the 
Griffin-Barry statement, delivered the first volley, which took eflect in the centre of our regiment 
as well as the batteries, killing our color sergeant, and wounding three corporals of the color 
goard, and killing and wounding thirty men in the color company. Capt. Lewis McKune of Com- 




pany G was killed, other companies suffered severely, and the colors were riddled with ballets. 
The men of our regiment, at the centre and on the lell, dropped on the slope and returned the fire, 
and we on the right, engaged in front, now for the first time discovering this enemy, tum^ our 
fire on his left rear at close range. But they pushed over the batteries, pretty well jammed up, 
and finally £aced about toward us, and we expected their volley. Instead came a frantic waving of 
arms and fearful yells, of which we could not distinguish the words because of our fire, which v^as 
kept up till the enemy faced to the rear, and after awhile gained distance enough to step out, and 
then to run, when we broke through the fence to follow alongside. We found the wo(m1s full of 
fieeing Alabamians, and picked up half a dozen too badly demoralized to run. I should have stated 
that before we crossed the fence, and at the height of our fire, we captured a mounted officer of the 
Second Mississippi, who had come around to us by the woods and Sudley road to '* remonstrate 
against firing on our friends.'' He was astonished on learning who we were. The Alabamians 
wore home-made clothing, — mostly red shirts ; and our red shirts, dim through the smoke, and in 
the supposed direction of the Alabamians, had misled the enemy's charging column, and they got 
a taste of their own medicine. Beauregard says this charge was made by part of the Thirty-third 
Virginia. We saw distinctly three sets of colors — stars and bars — at the guns. We sent our 
prisoners to the Fourteenth New York, then drawn up very comfortably at ordered arms at the 
foot of the hill, with its right on the road. I never saw that regiment again, nor heard of the 
prisoners. Is it not strange that during all the while that our regiment was hotly engaged but a 
few rods in front, this regiment was held out of fire, to be stampeded (Griffin says), a few minutes 
later, by a few rebel horsemen? Generals of the regular army were there. The way was open, 
by the Sudley road and the thicket, to the enemy's rear by a ten minutes' march ; and Beaure- 
gard's charge or advance with his whole force, ten minutes after the repulse from onr guns, above 
shown, lefl all his guns uncovered and unprotected for at least half an hour. After Griffin's and 
Barry's blander in going into the concentrated fire of twenty-six guns at close range, and not un- 
seen, and by the side of a wood filled with the enemy, their batteries were disabled in a minute. 
Yet they claim the guns were lost for lack of support. Were they not well supported when such 
an overwhelming and sudden attack was repulsed effectually by our regiment? Kirby of Rickett's 
Battery was able to, and did, get off some of his guns. Could not Griffin have done the same? 
Beauregard says that just prior to the charge the Second Mississippi and Sixth North Carolina had 
been put in these woods, and engaged a large force, upon which they had inflicted severe loss on 
account of their superior marksmanship. Onr two companies were the only men in the woods on 
our side who fired a shot above the brink of the hill prior to that charge. As for loss, one man in 
Company A was slightly wounded. The Eleventh Mississippi was brigaded with the Second 
Mississippi and Sixth North Carolina, and was probably with them in this charge : and the Thirty- 
third Viiginia was in Stonewall's Brigade. Gen. Bee and Col. Jones, Font th Alabama, and CoL 
Fisher, Sixth North Carolina, were all killed about this time. Bee's Brigade had rallied on Stone- 
wall, which accounts for these regiments being together. To return: We followed the enemy to 
the thicket, where they disappeared. Our two companies then extended to a skirmish line, pene- 
trating the thicket by cattle paths, and keeping up a lively skirmish fire as any of the enemy were 
seen dodging about. Then came the real rebel yell, as from their cover, down through the fields 
outside the woods, charged Beauregard's whole command (except one brigade, still going the other 
way) to the guns. Now came the struggle between this force and Heintzelman, Sherman, Wilcox 
and Franklin for their possession. Beauregard says that from that time on he held our two bat- 
teries, as well as the plateau. The fact is not a man could stay on that plateau after the fight was 
over. It was covered effectually by the guns of both armies. I had forgotten to mention the 
Black Horse Cavalry, which passed and returned along the Sudley road, and were noticed as we 
penetrated the thicket. After the struggle for the guns, came Lieut. Col. Miller with reinforce- 
ments from the right companies of our regiment, which extended our skirmish line for some dis- 
tance to the right across the road. Two or three regiments of the enemy appeared, bat were held 
off by the skirmish fire, and disappeared. After this came a chai^ge of Howard's Brigade into this 
wood, making a great racket, and firing, fortunately for us, overhead. Before they reached the 
front their fire subsided, and they were gone. The firing was heavier and more prolonged to the 
right. Beauregard says he sent then a brigade that cleared out Howard and Sykes' regulars. I 
have no evidence of this. Long after this firing, and all sounds of battle, had ceased, being restive 
and anxious for news, I left my command and came back to the guns, which stood, powder-stained 
and grim, in the midst of slain men and horses. They looked forsaken ; not a living creature was 
in sight in any direction. Soon, up the hill from behind the guns, came Gen. Wilcox, taking in 
the scene with sorrowful gaze. On inquiry I found he knew nothing of our troops or of the 
enemy. He then rode along the fence for the front. Hearing firing from my men, I left him at 
the' southeast angle of the wood, at the edge of the thicket, and hastened toward them. They 
were watching the cattle paths, and now and then getting a shot. I explored for some distance, 
finally striking a field hospital, nurses and surgeons busy, and withdrew. Directly there was 
sharp firing in the wood across our rear, and, avoiding it, we drifted out to the road. Col. Miller, 
with the same feeling which had induced my visit to the guns, had moved toward them with his 
men, and met Preston's Virginia regiment, and exchanged fire. Capt. Wilkin had joined him, and 
with my company I joined him as be came to the road, in a cut, where we made a good fight, and 
the enemy fell back toward our guns. We were now in some disorder, and got Company I's flag 
(it is still preserved in Wabaslm), borne by a gallant fellow, who, the next day, succeeded to the 
regimental colors, and formed upon it, counting off into two fair companies. We advanced along 
the fence toward the guns, driving the enemy into the thicket. Soon we got no reply, and, peer- 


ing throagh the brash, foand that the enemy had again relinqnished the fight for the gnns. Soon 
a lonesome feeling came over ns — no other men in sight, aud most of as safiering greatly from 
thirst The men began to fall off, and Miller, with a reluctant glance toward the guus, gave the 
order to retire. Even then some lingered for a parting shot. The last, perched on a fence, and 
there himself a good mark, stayed till I insisted on his leaving. This poor fellow, Fred Miller of 
my company, had advanced farthest to the front of any man that day, and was at one time cut off 
from as by the enemy. On leaving the Held he came across three of his comrades carrying a fourth 
to hospital, and, helping, was captured before the hospital was reached. He spent a long time in 
Sonihern prisons, and never rejoined the regiment. I had intended to omit some passages of my 
own adventare, bat thinking one of them may shed some light on the general subject, I will give 
it. Gen. Beauregard mentions the last tight of the day, save some artillery firing from the Cbinn 
house, as haviug occurred in the southwest angle of the cross-roads, where, as he says, Kershaw's 
command attacked and drove off Sykes' and Howard's commands, who still lingered there. I sup- 
pose I was the force driven off. As I was about to start from the scene of the last action near the 
guns, I heard a man crying, and saw, about thirty rods to the right of the wood toward Chiun's 
house, a soldier sitting on the ground, and went to him. He had dragged himself from the wood 
and was crying at seeing us leave, thinking himself abandoned. His leg was broken, the bone 
protruding. I quieted him, and, seeing a troop of our cavalry, hurried back. As I reached them 
I saw also what appeared to be a great Ibrce of our men advancing by the front of Buck Hill right 
about Dogan's house. Just thea one of the cavalry exclaimed, *'Tbe devils are coming," and 
every horse whisked about, and the cavalry was off like a streak. I turned to see what was the 
matter, as a platoon of the enemy was making a left wheel out of the woods to the right into the 
road. Their sweep would have taken me in. Instinctively I broke for the ravine, putting into 
China's brook, the ravine being four or five rods from the angle of the woods. As I reached it I 
heard the chuck of the muskets, as they fell forward into the left hands, and dropped on my back 
on the slope, as the ballets buzzed like a nest of hornets past my head. I sprang up and, glancing 
back, saw a row of blank faces, astonished at seeing me break down the ravine, soon out of their 
ftre. When I reached the brook three or four of our men were drinking. A Wisconsin man 
dropped dead in the brook as we started. A Fire Zouave jumped the brook at my side, and ran up 
the hill. He also dropped, but with my help reached the top and the shelter of a tree. The bat- 
tery from Chinn's house at this time threw shells dowa the brook, which is ia line with the coarse 
of Young's creek below their junction. My eye took in the course of the valley for half a mile, and 
^ere was not half a dozen men in the entire distance — lx)ys lingering along the stream for water, 
whoee retreat the shells expedited, and made ludicrous by their ducking to avoid them. This is 
the shelling which Beauregard describes as playing through, mangling and dispersing vast crowds 
o£ men. The platoon that routed myself was of Kershaw's command, and was the only force of 
the enemy that, up to that time, had reached that angle. I soon reached the head of the column, 
near Dogan's house, at the Warrenton pike. Gen. McDowell was there, his face turning alternately 
red and white with every pulsation, with Arnold's Battery directed to the wood on the right of 
Ohinn's house, and its gunners ready to fire. Now, advancing in fine order down the pkteaa 
toward our abandoaed guns, were two of the enemy's brigades in line of battle, with cadenced step 
and bright uniforms, and arms glittering in the evening sun. Our own column, made up of men 
of all commands, was fiist melting away, four men disappearing where one was put in line ; and 
Gen. McDowell, on a suggestion that it was of no use to try to hold the place, with great staff offi- 
cer dignity directed his aid "to please request Capt. Arnold to recede in this direction," pointing 
to the Sudley road. Capt. Arnold was within six feet, heard the direction, and was ready, and 
had his horses on the (^lop almost as soon as the message was transmitted, the general and staff 
following close after. Looking back, our column had disappeared, breaking across lots for Sudley 
Ford. As I passed along a fence a glance showed the enemy making a final charge on, and leaping 
with huzzas upon, ourabaudoned guns, from which they had been thrice driven, twice by our regi- 
ment alone. I will close by the observation, impressed on me at the time, that, except at the guns, 
on their first two advances, the enemy behaved timidly, and advanced with hesitation and seeming 
dread. This was apparent when they were held so long in the woods by a thin line of skirmishers, 
and when a whole regiment, making the third attack on the guns, was repulsed by not more than 
two companies. Company A brought in one captured officer, a Col. Coon of a Geoi;gia regiment. 

There is little to add to Cten. Colvill's narrative, save some further accoant 
of the left companies of the regiment, which were separated from the right com- 
panies when Bickett's gnns were taken back through the centre of the regiment, 
and by the movements of the right companies, described by Colvill, which took 
them away from the left. In moving by company into line, in the brush, as we 
Beared the top of the bill, the left companies were the last to get into line at the 
edge of a narrow clearing, into which the batteries had just passed. There was 
already firing at the right of the regiment, but the occasion was not understood. 
In a few minutes a strong body of infantry appeared in the edge of the wood just 
opposite us, and fifteen or twenty rods away, dressed in gray, but without show- 
ing colors. Many called out that this wiis the enemy, and prepared to fire. 
But from the batteries came the word that these were friends, aud Col. Gorman 
forbade firing. Our Massachusetts volunteers and some others wore gray uni- 


forms, which probably was the cause of the mistake. Almost at the moment of 
(Gorman's order we received the fire of this line, which extended far beyond, 
opposite US, on the left; and, at the same time, the enemy's batteries, less than 
eighty rods away to oar left, and in plain view, opened a heavy enfilading fire, 
and, between the two, the regiment and batteries with us suffered as detailed by 
Qen. CJolvill. Kirby's men got off a part of Eickett's Battery, but all other 
guns were deserted by the surviving gunners, all the horses, and many of the 
men, being killed or disabled. The lefi} companies dropped on their knees, and, 
as the enemy made a rush for the guns, poured in an effective fire, which, aided 
by the fire from the right, described by Gen. Colvill, caused them to retire after 
the guns were reached. Getting again in the shelter of the wood, they returned 
our fire, which was steadily kept up, and their batteries again opened on our 
line. As this enfilading fire from the artillery was effective and well directed, 
and the enemy had mostly disappeared from our immediate front, we were or- 
dered back, and retired in good order to the foot of the hill, where we remained 
for a considerable time, and were then ordered back to Buck Hill, where our 
knapsacks had been left. We were thence conducted across the Sudley Ford, 
and found the remains of several regiments which had been engaged. Here we 
were joined by a considerable part of the right companies of our regiment ; and, 
as it grew late in the afternoon, Gov. Sprague, then commanding a Rhode Island 
regiment, rode up with information, confirming our fears, that the general result 
of the battle was disaster, and proposed retreat to Centreville. G^n. Gorman 
offered the Fii*st Minnesota as rear guard, but as Sprague insisted on taking that 
position, our regiment moved off next to the rear, in perfect order, in column 
by platoons. After awhile a large body of our cavalry came, in a disordered 
rush from the rear, along the road, and our men had to break to the right and 
left to let them pass, and did not afterward try to keep in regular order. All 
the way was found, in broken wagons and abandoned material, confirmation of 
the disaster ; and at one place, not far from Centreville, the enemy was shelling 
the road over which we passed. Going through Centreville, we halted near our 
bivouac of the night before about dark, so much fatigued that most of the men 
dropped upon the ground, and were asleep at once, expecting a renewal of the 
battle the next day. In about half an hour the cooks called us up for coffee, and 
to receive the order to march at once for Alexandria. This was the hardest of 
all. We knew we had met with a repulse, but had not realized that it was to 
be accepted as defeat, and the prospect of a march of twenty-five miles, after 
such a day of phenomenal heat, long marches and hard fighting, seemed an im- 
possible undertaking. How it was accomplished cannot be told. The writer, 
carrying knapsack, haversack, musket, and complete soldier's outfit, was, on 
this march, several times awakened from deep sleep by stumbling against some 
obstruction. In the forenoon of the next day we were back in our tents at 
Alexandria, thoroughly exhausted and soon asleep, but in the afternoon were 
called up and marched to Washington, six miles or more, by way of Long Bridge. 
This was done in a heavy rain, and we were compelled to stand on the street 
more than an hour, in torrents of rain, when churches and halls were assigned 
for temporary shelter. Some, assigned to Bishop Mcllvaine's church, were im- 
mediately supplied by the good bishop with coffee and plenty to eat, and, in 
other places, our constant friend. Col. Aldrich, appeared promptly with a troop 
of colored servants, bearing pails of hot coffee, baskets of eatables, and other 
comforts, most acceptable in our drenched and exhausted condition. The regi- 
ment never had a warmer or more efficient friend than Col. Aldrich. Generous 
and open-handed, he was always ready and alert to do everything in his power 
for the regiment, or for any man belonging to it, while his cheery voice and 
genial humor brought jollity and good-feeling whenever he appeared. 

An obvious fault on the federal side in the battle of Bull Eun consisted in 
putting the troops into action in small detached bodies, without properly ascer- 
taining the position or strength of the opposing force, or even properly regard- 
ing what was in plain view. The result was that in almost every attack our 
force there was too small, and was beaten in detail. When we came upon Back 


Hill we saw the New York Fire Zoaaves, which had been sent from that posi- 
tion, alone go up to the attack of the enemy's line, and it was of course defeated 
in brief time. There was no reason why several regiments there idle were not 
sent with it, or with us, when we were sent just after. Even the Fourteenth 
New York, which followed us, was not put into action with us, but left idle at 
the foot of the hill. And it is hard to understand why we and the two batteries 
were put on that plateau at all, swept as it was by so many Confederate batteries, 
so near and plainly in sight. Untenable as the position was, the men of the First 
Begiment fought like veterans, and it received special commendation in the re- 
ports of both Franklin and Heintzelman. The character of its fighting appears 
from its losses, which were forty-two killed, one hundred and eight wound^, and 
thirty missing, one hundred and eighty in all, beiug more than twenty per cent 
of the men engaged, and the heaviest loss, in proportion to men engaged, of any 
r^ment in that battle. The missing were nearly all wounded prisoners in the 
hands of the enemy. The surgeon and assistant surgeon remained in attendance 
upon the wounded on the field, when they might have escaped with the retreat- 
ing troops, and were detained as prisoners. Their skillful care of our wounded 
doubtless saved many lives, and as they were treated with marked consideration 
by the Confederates during their captivity, and allowed to look after the welfare 
of their men to some extent, they attended to the cures, and alleviated, in many 
ways, the condition of their wounded comrades. They never returned to the 
regiment, as their places had to be filled before they were released, and for the 
time being they were nomiaally transferred to other organizations. Both were 
gentlemen of highest professional standing and skill, and of most genial, com- 
panionable traits. Surg. Stewart had been mayor of St. Paul, and, being a 
man of untiring energy, had, aside from his professional duties, always taken an 
active, intelligent part in all public afifairs, in which his sagacity, disinterested- 
ness and personal magnetism gave him great influence. After being exchanged 
he remained at St. Paul on duty connected with the mustering in of troops. 
After the war he was elected member of Congress, and afterward appointed 
United States surveyor general of Minnesota. He died at St. Paul, Aug. 25, 
1884. Asst. Surg. C. W. Le Boutillier became surgeon of the Ninth Eegiment 
Minnesota Volunteers, and died in the service, April 3, 1863. 


On July 23d the regiment again encamped a short distance east of the capitol, 
and resumed daily drills; and during our short stay some of the boys found op- 
X>ortunity to listen to debates in Congress, then in session. Here, also, for the 
only time in the service of the regiment, was manifested some slight feeling of 
discontent and lack of morale. Aside from the depression naturally following 
the reverse at Bull Bun, there were many other causes for dissatisfaction. The 
rations were poor, — salt beef that defied mastication, and ancient hardtack, on 
which the brand "B. C' was claimed by the boys to mark the date of baking. 
Neither pay nor clothing had yet been received from the Gk)vernment, and most 
of the men still wore the flannel shirts and black pantaloons picked up hastily 
by the state at the time of enlistment from clothing stores in St. Paul and else- 
where, the original poor material of which had come to rags and tatters, remind- 
ing one of the uniform of Falstaff's vagabonds. Gen. John B. Sanborn, adjutant 
general of the state, learning of the condition of the regiment, came on to Wash- 
ington, and, by persistent eftorts, procured an issue of clothing to be made about 
the first day of August. On August 2d the regiment broke camp and marched 
for the upper Potomac, halting at Brightwood, after a march of four or five 
milcB, where, on the next day, the men received their first pay, at the rate of 
eleven dollars a month for privates. Discontent vanished at once. On August 
5th we reached Rockville, a pleasant village, with a rather disloyal population. 
Two days later we reached Seneca Mills, and began picket duty along the Poto- 
mac We left the latter place August 16th, and made permanent camp in a 
slightly sloping field, about midway between Poolosville and Edwards' Ferry, 
and rather more than one and one-half miles from each. In honor of Gen. Charles 



P. Stone, commanding the division to which we were attached, our camp was 
named Camp Stone. Here we performed picket duty along the Potomac, for 
some distance on each side of Edwards' Perry, and resumed drilling actively. 
Clothing was issued ; pay-day came again ; the sutler appeared with a heavy 
stock of supplies ; the men built cook houses and ovens ; and, by drawing flour 
at times, instead of hardtack, and purchasing meal at a neighboring mill, soon 
very much improved their fare; and, being well fed, well cared for and well ex- 
ercised, became more efficient and content^ than ever before. About eight men 
from the regiment were, with their own consent, transferred to the gunboat 
service on the Mississippi, and a few were selected, by reason of special fitness, 
and transferred to the signal corps. Of these Asa T. Abbott of Company E be- 
came an officer in that corps. On October 1st Col. G^orman was promoted briga- 
dier general, and assigned to the command of a brigade, consisting of the Thirty- 
fourth and Eighty-second New York regiments and First Minnesota, to which 
the Fifteenth Massachusetts was soon afterward added, and Napoleon J. T. Dana 
was commissioned colonel of the First Minnesota, and joined the regiment Oc- 
tober 12th. Col. Dana graduated from West Point in 1842, and had served in 
the regular army with credit through the Mexican War, and until the year 1855, 
when he resigned, having then the rank of captain. After that time he had re- 
sided at St. Paul, and was engaged in the business of banking. He was a model 
officer. Always calm, temperate and gentlemanly in demeanor, and having a 
fine, soldierly presence, he enforced the strictest discipline, without causing any 
friction or complaint, or giving rise to any dissatisfaction. His long, daily drills, 
with packed knapsacks, made the regiment perfect in the execution of all battal- 
ion movement's, and developed the muscle, so needful in its subsequent service. 
The men became devotedly attached to him. Many other changes took place in 
the regiment. Maj. William H. Dike resigned, and Capt. George N. Morgan 
was promoted major. Capt. Alexander Wilkin was commissioned major of the 
Second Minnesota Eegiment, and First Lieut. Henry C. Coates became captain 
of Company A. Maj. Wilkin afterward became colonel of the Ninth Minnesota 
Regiment, and was killed at the battle of Tupelo. Lieut. Minor T. Thomas was 
commissioned lieutenant colonel of the Fourth Minnesota Regiment. Capt. 
William H. Acker was commissioned captain in the regular army, and First 
Lieut. Wilson B. Farrell became captain. Capt. Acker was killed at the battle 
of Shiloh. Capt. Henry R. Putnam was also commissioned captain in the regu- 
lar army, and First Lieut. De Witt C. Smith was promoted captain of Company 
D. On the promotion of Capt. Morgan, and resignation of First Lieut. James 
Hollist^r, Second Lieut. George Pomeroy became captain of Company E. Capt. 
Henry C. Lester of Company K was commissioned colonel of the Third Minnesota 
Regiment, and First Lieut. Gustavus A. Holzborn became captain of Company 
K. Although Col. Lester was unfortunate, and was dismissed for the surrender 
of the Third Minnesota at Murfreesboro, he was efficient, and very highly re- 
garded while captain of the First Regiment. First Lieut. George H. Woods was 
promoted captain and commissary of subsistence, and attained high rank in that 
department. Among the enlisted men Howard Stansbury, Wesley F. Miller 
and Javan B. Irvine were commissioned lieutenants in the regular army. Young 
Miller was the son of our lieutenant colonel, and was afterward killed at the 
battle of Gettysburg. Up to this time and later, vacancies in company officers 
were filled by promotions in the same company, and, at first, pursuant to elec- 
tions by the enlisted men. These elections were soon discontinued as unfavor- 
able to discipline, and promotions from the enlisted men were made on the rec- 
ommendation of the colonel, and later, after examination of one from each 
company, by a board of officers, and subsequent promotions, after the first year, 
were made strictly according to seniority. Just aft)er the battle of Bull Run, 
upon the report that Dr. Le Boutillier had been killed in that battle. Dr. Daniel 
W. Hand of St. Paul was commissioned assistant surgeon of the First Regiment, 
and joined us at once. His great skill, genial character and gentle manners 
won at once the regard of all, and he soon became brigade surgeon, and re- 
ceived rapid promotion to resx)onsible posts ; and Di;. John H. Murphy per- 


formed most satisfactx)rily the duties of snrgeon for several months. His never- 
failing humor and love of fun would work cures in ordinary cases, and he was 
especially successful in his treatment of the few men who were disposed to shirk 
details for laborious or unpleasant duties on pretense of sickness. He was usu- 
ally accurate in his diagnosis of such cases, and would feign to discover very 
serious illness, and would describe to the man such symptoms as for the time ' 
would convince him that his case was alarming, when he would be treated by 
blistering, or such nauseating medicines that he would pause before applying 
for sick-leave again. Later, In the fall of 1861, he was commissioned surgeon 
of the Fourth Minnesota Begiment, and served through the war, with high 

ball's bluff. 

On October 20th Gen. McCall, having advanced near Drainsville, a demon- 
stration in the direction of Leesburg was begun. Ihe First Minnesota and 
Eighty-second New York were marched to Edwards' Ferry in the afternoon, 
and, after being displayed on the north bank. Companies E and K of the First 
Minnesota crossed the Potomac in flatboats, frightening away the enemy's 
pickets and reserves, and some cavalry; and, after remaining on the Virginia 
side some time, recrossed near sunset, when the regimefits returned to their 
camps. On October 21st, at half-past one in the morning, the regiment was 
called up and breakfasted, and, with knapsacks and full equipments, reached 
Edwards' Ferry at daybreak, and immediately crossed in the flatboats, two 
companies at a time. In a short time the regiment was in line, with two com- 
panies advanced as skirmishers, and the other regiments of the brigade, and 
some other troops, then crossed, to the number in all of about 3,000 men, send- 
ing out a strong picket, and intrenching, to some extent, near the bank, to be 
ready in case of attack. Oen. E. D. Baker crossed, at about the same time, at 
Harrison's island, about four miles higher up the river; but instead of intrench- 
ing, and waiting till his crossing was complete, and then acting in concert with 
Gren. Stone, who was in command at the Ferry, on some report that the Confed- 
erates were evacuating Leesburg, he pushed forward a part of his troops toward 
that place, while the rest were still crossing, and, meeting a greatly superior 
force of the enemy, was quickly defeated and killed, and his troops, being driven 
back to where the others were crossing, were slaughtered and captured in large 
numbers, and many drowned while attempting to recross the river. This ad- 
vance of Baker was without communication with Stone, and, of course, unex- 
pected ; and the catastrophe was so sudden that a large part of Baker's own 
force, then crossing, could not aid him, and he could get no help from Stone, 
four miles away, and separated from him by the enemy's earthworks, especially 
as the first notice of Baker's movement, save the firing, which was soon over, 
was the news of the completed disaster. On Tuesday, October 22d, reinforce- 
ments were crossed, and there was some skirmishing on the picket line, in which 
one man of the First Minnesota was killed and some wounded. On Wednesday, 
October 23d, Oens. McClellan and Banks arrived, and it was determined that 
our force should be withdrawn. Gen. Stone placed Gen. Gorman in charge of 
the crossing, who, as soon as it was dark, launched several canal-boats into the 
river, and manned them with lumbermen, mainly from Companies B, D and E 
of the First Minnesota, who, with poles, handled the boats expertly. Gen. 
Stone attended personally to the withdrawal of the troops, and the writer, \fho 
was detailed to act as his messenger or orderly, and carried verbal messages 
from him, and made reports to him personally during the entire night, can 
vouch for his constant, watchful, personal supervision of every movement, and 
his solicitude and care that no munitions, provisions, or material of any kind, 
should be destroyed or abandoned, and the great skill exhibited in conducting 
the withdrawal as rapidly as the boats could carry the men, but without chance 
for disorder or panic. The First Minnesota Regiment, reduced by the detail 
handling the boats, was selected and placed in position to become the rear 
gnanL All the other troops were new, and such withdrawal in the night, after 


knowledge of Baker's disaster, might easily have been mismanaged so as to 
caose trepidation and disorder. But the movement was effected in perfect quiet 
and order. Troops nearest the river were first crossed ; then others were ap- 
prised of the retreat only as they received orders to move to the boats at once 
and in silence. There was no crowding, and no delays. When nearly all had 
crossed, the picket was withdrawn, the writer traversing its length in the dark- 
ness and timber, and communicating the order to each reserve. As the pick^ 
fell back the First Minnesota alone was left, and it was also called in and crossed, 
as light began to dawn in the east. Gen. Stone being the last man to embark. 
Not a man nor a pound of material was left behind. But the people of the whole 
country were shocked by the disaster at Ball's Bluff, and were not inclined to 
blame Gen. Baker, who had died gallantly fighting, and who was popular as he 
was brave. Secretary Stanton and the committee on the conduct of the war 
sought long for a scapegoat for sacrifice to appease the popular wrath, and, after 
three months, the secretary ordered the arrest of Gen. Stone, and his incarcera- 
tion in Fort Lafayette, where, deaf to all appeals from Stone to be informed of 
the cause of the arrest, the secretary held him in rigorous confinement more 
than six months, and until the passage of an act of Congress limiting the time 
of such imprisonment unless charges were made, and continued the imprison- 
ment until the very last day of such limitation, and ever after his release de- 
clined to give any reason or excuse for the outrage. Stanton's conduct in this 
matter can only be characterized as tyranny, pure and simple. Some have 
claimed that McGlellan should share with Stanton the responsibility for this out- 
rage ; but he could not refuse to cause Stanton's peremptory order to be exe- 
cuted. He took no steps to relieve Gen. Stone from what he must have known 
was cruel oppression ; and his passiveness is hardly to be excused, except on the 
ground that his own relations with the secretary soon became such that he could 
hardly risk a new issue with him on behalf of another. From what evidence re- 
mains of this discreditable transaction, it seems that Senator Wade, chairman of 
the committee on the conduct of the war, was an accessory in advising the arrest, 
that there might be a victim to appease the inconsiderate popular clamor, but 
the subsequent course of cruelty seems to rest on Stanton alone. 

After the battle of Ball's Bluff the regiment returned to its camp, and re- 
sumed its picket service and constant drill. A strong effort was made soon aftier 
to break up the practice of several parties of selling liquor to the men. GoL 
Dana, finding our sutler had some supply, destroyed and spilled the whole of it. 
The sutler of the Thirty-fcturth New York, having been caught offending, was 
drummed out of the brigade by order of Gen. Gorman. Serious consequences 
to Gorman came near attending one of his well-meant efforts to break up this 
evil. A couple of negro slaves belonging to a farmer near by had for some time 
been carrying on the traffic on their own account, and were detected and arrested. 
The evidence was clear, and their master was sent for. He advised as punishment 
that they should be whipped by the soldiers to whom they had last sold liquor, 
and this was done. The soldiers felt themselves punished by being compelled 
to administer the whipping, which was therefore not very severe, and it stopped 
this enterprise among the negroes. But a soldier of the regiment, partly from a 
spirit of mischief, and partly because of some dislike toward Gorman, wrote a 
highly colored account of the whipping to the New York Tribune^ which at once 
denounced Gorman for flogging the slaves. The soldier followed this up by 
another communication purporting to come from a friend of Gorman, pretend- 
ing flimsy excuses, but admitting the facts mainly, as at first charged, and kept 
this up, by managing both sides of a bogus controversy, to the detriment of 
Gorman's reputation, bringing out repeat^ editorials, and inflaming the abo- 
litionists against him to such an extent that when G<)rman's confirmation as 
brigadier general came up for action in the senate he was only saved by the most 
persistent labor of friends, including G^n. Scott, under whom he had served in 

On Jan. 16, 1862, Brig. G^n. John Sedgwick assumed command of our 
division, and on February 3d Col. Dana was appointed brigadier general, and 


assigned to the command of a brigade in the same division. The officers and 
men of the First Minnesota Regiment were very loth to part with him, but rec- 
ognized the propriety and jostice of his promotion, and manifested their regard 
by presenting him with sword, saddle, bridle, etc., as fine as coald be purchased. 
Adjt. William B. Leach was promoted captain and assistant adjutant general, 
and assigned to Gen. Dana's Brigade. Dr. William H. Morton of St. Paul was, 
aboat the same time, commissioned surgeon of the First Eegiment. 


On the morning of Feb. 25, 1862, we left Camp Stone, the whole division 
moving up the Potomac, and bivouacked at evening near the Monocacy river. 
The next day we crossed that river at Winfield Mills, and marched to Adams- 
town, whence we were conveyed by rail to Sandy Hook, crossing the Potomac on a 
pontoon bridge, and quartering forthe night in the partially destroyed buildings 
in which John Brown and his partisans had attempted defense, and examined 
with cariosity the marks of his struggle still remaining. Harper's Ferry was a 
strikingly picturesque place. Maryland and Loudon Heights on either side, 
looking down on the chasm which the waters of the Potomac and Shenandoah, 
here uniting, had rent through the Blue Eidge. Solid piers of blackened 
masonry showed where had stood the costly bridges, destroyed by the Confeder- 
ates ; and the ruins of the armory buildings and other structures consumed with 
them gave an air of utter desolation to the deserted town, in which but few, and 
those the poorest of the x>opulation, remained. During the 28th of February, a 
large body of troops of £dl arms was concentrated here, and we changed to more 
comfortable buildings in the higher part of the town. On March 7th we moved 
to Charlestown, where, on Sunday, March 9th, the regiment attended worship, 
conducted by Chaplain Neill, in the Presbyterian church. On March lObh we 
had the advance, in the march upon Berry ville, on a macadamized turnpike, 
which, wet with falling rain, played havoc with the soles of our army shoes. On 
approaching Berryville, Companies B and K were advanced as skirmishers, and, 
heralded by a few shots from a section of artillery, rushed into the town at 
double-quick, with a company of Van Alen's Cavalry, and put to flight a consid- 
erable mounted force of the enemy, and hoisted the stars and stripes on the court 
house. The First Regiment camped in a grove at the edge of the town, and dur- 
ing the night the printers of the regiment took possession of the office of the Ber- 
ryville ConservaJtoTj and in the morning following issued a large edition of The 
First Minnesota, a small paper of four pages, which sold readily, not only in the 
regiment but in all the surrounding camps. It was filled with a rollicking mix- 
ture of humor and patriotism, jibes upon the runaway editor of the Comervator, 
and the fleeing ^^secesh," and good advice to the inhabitants, which they were 
unlikely to profit by. On the morning of March 13th the division marched 
toward Winchester, where a battle with Jackson's force was expected. As we 
were moving from the camp. Col. Alfred Sully, who had been commissioned 
upon the promotion of Gen. Dana, rode up and took command of the regiment. 
Col. Sully was then the senior captain in the regular army, having graduated 
from West Point in 1841, and served with distinction in the Seminole and Mexi- 
can wars, and in various Indian troubles on the frontier, and was in every way a 
splendid soldier. He manifested from the first perfect reliance on the honor and 
good conduct of the regiment, and never placed a regimental guard about camp 
or bivouac. The men appreciated his confidence, and no instance occurred of 
any abusing the privileges accorded, or of leaving camp without permission. 
When we came within two miles of Winchester, we were halted with the news 
that Jackson had fled up the valley, and were marched back to our camp at Ber- 
ryville. On the day following we returned to Charlestown, and on March 15th 
we camped on Bolivar Heights, just back of Harper's Ferry. Here we learned 
of the organization of army corps, and that Sedgwick's Division was the Second 
Division of the Second Army Corps, commanded by Brig. Gen. Edwin V. 
Sumner. We remained here, in a nearly continuous storm of alternate rain 
and snow, until March 22d, when we crossed the Potouiac to Sandy Hook and 



took cars for Washington, reaching that place abont midnight, and, after some 
delay, getting coffee and shelter from the storm at theSoldier's Betreat. Camp- 
ing again near the capitol, we remained antil the night of March 26th, when we 
marched by way of Long Bridge into Virginia, and were then conveyed by cars 
to Alexandria, where, throngh some blander, we were left standing on the 
street, in a drenching rain, until morning, and then were taken to the ground 
on which we had camped before Bnll Bnn. The men, wet and shivering, qaickly 
resurrected the barrel of sutler's whisky, which they had buried the year 
before, and its contents, fairly distributed, were probably beneficial in counter- 
acting the effects of the exposure. 


On the evening of March 29th the regiment embarked on the small steamers 
Golden Gate and Jenny Lind, with transports in tow, and the next morning 
moved down the Potomac, past Fort Washington, Mount Vernon, and deserted 
rebel works, anchoring at evening near the entrance into Chesapeake bay. The 
next day we passed through that bay, filled with vessels of all kinds, including 
several war steamers, and on the morning of April 1st paused for some hours at- 
Fortress Monroe, where the object of greatest interest, lying close by us, was the 
little Monitor, which had so recently met and overcome the formidable Merii* 
mac. It lay quietly among a crowd of vessels, — so small and unlike anything 
ever before imagined as a water-craft, and yet so x>owerful and impregnable. 
We could not study it enough. Moving forward, we debarked at the ruins of 
Hampton, camping in a low, wet field, without wood or good water. Some of 
the men found oysters here, by stripping and wading in the rather cold water, 
discovering them with their bare feet. On April 5th, at 1 o'clock a. m., we 
broke camp, and marched that day to Big Bethel. The weather had suddenly 
changed to sweltering heat, and overcoats, dress coats and extra blankets were 
thrown away on the march, to lighten the knapsacks. On the route, Gen. 
McClellan rode past us with his staff and cavalry escort. When passing Col. 
Sully, with the formal salute came the familiar greeting of old comrades: ^^ How 
are you, Alf t " " How do you do, George f McClellan appeared strong, well- 
knit, a splendid horseman, and the picture of ruddy health. His well-fitting 
uniform was perfectly neat and entirely plain — much plainer than the uniforms 
of his staff. He was already popular with the army, and heartily cheered as he 
passed along. The march was resumed April 6th, at 5 o'clock a. m., with 
cannonading and skirmishing in front, and was varied by long halts and occa- 
sional movements at double-quick, giving the impression that an engagement waa 
likely to occur at any moment; but the enemy retired sullenly, and we came 
within a couple of miles of the Confederate works in front of Yorktown. Our 
bivouac, which we occupied for several days, was in mud; it rained all the time, 
and we were employed building corduroy roads. From the constant discomfort^ 
the boys named the place Camp Misery. Early in the morning of April 11th 
a balloon that ascended to the right of us, near the York river, parted its lines, 
and for a little while was an object of exciting interest, as it sailed over the Con- 
federate works; but a fortunate current brought it backward, and the aeronaut 
landed it in our division camp — Gen. Fitz John Porter being one of its passen- 
gers. The same morning we were moved from Camp Misery to within about a 
mile of the enemy's line, the entire camp of the army taking the name of Camp 
Winfield Scott. Shelter tents, which the men called '*dog tents," were issued, 
and being placed in a wood, and on higher ground, we were much more comforta- 
ble than before. We spent the month in constant and hard duty, either ou 
picket or building fortifications or corduroy roads, and aroused nearly every 
night by musketry on the picket lines, and marched to threatened points ; and 
were most of the time wet to the skin with the continued rains. 


On the morning of May 4th, before daylight, the regiment went on picket as 
usual, but was soon ordered back to camp for tents and knapsacks, on a report 


that the enemy was leaving. Dana's Brigade, on onr right, was first in the 
enemy's works, and we entered next. The Confederate evacnation must have 
been sadden, as considerable provisions and camp equipage were left, and the 
men's breakfasts were still cooking over the fires; not very tempting messes 
generally, but our men secured a supply of frying pans and bake kettles. A 
plantation smoke house near by, and well filled, gave many of us some store of very 
nice ham and bacon. We remained in the enemy's. works until the next morn- 
ing, when a march of three miles to the right, in deep mud and pouring rain, 
brought us to Yorktown. The fortifications here were very strong, and could 
not have been forced without great sacrifice of life. Several casualties in other 
raiments happened through the day from torpedoes, made from percussion shells, 
buried in the ground. The rain continued to pour, and the mud was apparently 
bottomless. Heavy firing was heard at different times during the day, in the 
direction of Williamsburg, and troops were moving, as fast as the terrible con- 
dition of the roads would permit, in the same direction. About dark our 
brigade started, and after floundering in the darkness, rain and mud for about 
three hours, constantly impeded by troops, wagons and artillery ahead, so that 
little progress was made, we were faced about and marched back to Yorktown. 
On the afternoon of May 7th we embarked on the steamer Long Branch, and 
the next morning, with Franklin's command, steamed up the York river, land- 
ing in boats at West Point, under fire from some batteries, which were soon 
silenced by our gunboats. There was skirmishing between the infantry until 
about 5 P. M., when the enemy retired. We remained here during the next day, 
troops and artillery being landed, and on May 9th we moved up the Pamunky 
four miles to Eltham. Here we stayed till May 15th, when we moved in the 
mud and continuing rain eight miles, camping in a pine grove near New Kent 
Ck>uri) House. On May 18th we advanced four miles, to the residence of Dr. 
May, a surgeon on Gen. Lee's staff. On May 2Ist we marched eight miles, 
passing White House and the church where Washington was married. On May 
2dd we marched four or five miles, and encamped near the Chickahominy; and 
on May 27th the regiment was ordered to that river to build a bridge. It was 
baUt of logs, cut near the banks by the men, and was completed before sunset, 
excepting a part of the corduroy approach on the north side, which was con- 
structed by another regiment on the following day. As grapevines, which 
grew plentifully on the banks, were used instead of withes about its construc- 
tion, it was called by some the "Grapevine Bridge." During that day there 
was considerable heavy firing on our right, where Porter was advancing, and 
the next morning our regiment marched, with three days' rations, to reinforce 
Porter, near Hanover Court House. We returned on May 29th, Porter having 
accomplished his design of destroying some railroad bridges. While here, we 
witnessed the execution of the sentence of a court martial upon a captain of the 
Thirty-fourth New York, for insubordination and mutinous conduct. The 
brigade was formed, and after the reading of the sentence, his buttons were cut 
off and his sword broken; the remainder of the sentence being that he be dis- 
missed the service. 

About this time we were informed of the fact that Gen. H. S. Sanford, United 
States minister resident at Brussels, had, through the governor of our state, pre- 
sented to the First Minnesota Regiment a small battery, consisting of three steel 
rifled cannon, of six-pound caliber, with suitable ammunition. On the breech of 
each of the guns was inscribed : '^To the First Minnesota Eegiment Volunteers. ' 
Tribute to Patriotism and Valor. Brussels, 1861." 

In bis letter to Gov. Ramsey, Gen. Sanford expressed, in warm terms, his ad- 
miration for the efficiency, discipline and conspicuous valor of the regiment, 
which had prompted him to place in its hands these guns, which he had caused 
to be made for the defense of the Union. 

The very flattering terms in which this munificent gift was conveyed caused 
much gratification, and the survivors of the regiment still take pride in assert- 
ing their ownership and control over the &knford Battery. 



On Saturday, May 31st, aboat 1 p. m., we were suddenly aroused by very 
heavy firing of artillery and musketry, indicating a hard fought battle on the 
south side of the Chickahominy, which was held by the corps of Heintzelman and 
Keyes. The river had become greatly swollen from heavy rains, and the only 
passable bridge in our vicinity was the grapevine bridge, which we had 
built four days before; and even that seemed precarious, as the water had 
reached the log covering, and much of the corduroy approach was in a floating 
condition. Sedgwick's Division was under arms at once, and Gorman marched 
his brigade to the river ; but orders to cross did not come until about half-past 
two, when Grorman crossed promptly, with the First Minnesota in the lead, and 
hurried to the nearest sound of the conflict, — through mud knee-deep part of 
the way. The condition of the air or direction of the wind made the sound of 
musketry seem nearer than it was in fact; but with the rapid stride taken by the 
regiment we soon encountered the fleeing stragglers and cowards, who reported 
utter and irretrievable defeat. Paying no attention to these, about three miles 
from our crossing we reached Couch's Brigade, as it was taking up a new 
position in rear of Fair Oaks. Here I quote from Gren. Walker's ''Second 

The moment Coach saw the advance of Samner'scolamn, he begins the deployment of his own 
troope, while one of his staff officers, galloping to the head of Sedgwick^s Division, detaches the 
First Minnesota, and leads it right to the (jonrtney Honse, where Sally has been ordered to take posi- 
tion ; and not a moment too soon, for as the yoang officer is giving that grim veteran of the rega* 
lar army some advice as to the disposition of his force, which is received with oatward coartesy, 
and probably with inward amosement, a crowded column in gray balges oat of the woods close in 
front. Have yon ever noticed the instinctive recoil which always attends the first emerging from 
the shade of the forest into the broad glare of day? So this column, the advance of G. W. Smith, 
for the instant recoiled, and, as its leiuling officers perceived Sally's men in front, it fell back into 
the woods to form onder cover for the coming assault. 

The rest of our brigade was formed on the left of Couch, and our deployment 
on his right was just in time, for the disposition was hardly complete when a 
heavy attack came. We were in a field of wheat, and behind a rail fence. The 
attacking force did not cover our front, reaching about to our left ; so that we got 
little of its fire, but poured an effective crossfire diagonally into its left flank. 
Our loss was but two men killed and two wounded, and we took a large number 
of prisoners, including a colonel, a lieutenant colonel and two company officers. 
The colonel, named Ix)ng, of a North Carolina regiment, had been a lieutenant 
in Sully's Ck)mpany in the regular army. Our presence in the field was clearly 
unexpected by the enemy, who had hoped for easy victory, and fought with 
great vigor and tenacity. The Eighty-second and Thirty-fourth New York 
regiments of our brigade, now in battle for the first time, fought like veterans, 
and by a resolute and successful bayonet charge, saved Rickett's Battery, when 
in great danger from a sudden advance of the enemy, and repelled that advance, 
after which the enemy drew back. The victory on our part of the field was 
complete and decisive that night. The Confederates were driven at all points, 
and with very heavy loss, and did not attack us on the next day, although in 
the forenoon of that day there was heavy fighting to the left, and especially 
just to our left, about ten o'clock, when the Irish Brigade of Richardson's 
Division of our corps was put in the front line, and drove the enemy from its 
position in their front. On that day the other regiments of our brigade, sepa- 
rated from us in the hurried dispositions made on first reaching the field, were 
brought to our side, and the spontaneous cheers with which they were greeted 
by our men, for their good conduct, did much to perfect that good feeling and 
esprit du carps which ever after existed in that brigade. Sully, Dana and Gor- 
man won high commendations for their conduct in this battle, and McClellan 
paused, on Sunday, a few moments in front of the regiment, greeting the men 
with words of praise and confidence. The continual rains had broken down the 
bridges, and made the roads so impassable that neither artillery nor trains, nor 
even rations, could be brought up, except as the latter was carried by details. 


McClellan coald not, therefore, follow up further any advantage gained over the 
enemy, as any further advance would bring us, without our artillery, against 
the enemy's fortifications, our position being within five miles of Eichmond. 
It was some days before troojw were got over in sufficient number to extend our 
right backward to the Ghickahominy. During the rest of June, until the move- 
ments and battles resulting in the change of base, the regiment was kept on 
constant and severe duty, on picket and building corduroy roads, and felling 
the forest in front of our lines. Our pickets were attacked and shelled nearly 
every day, and scarcely a night passed that we were not in line once or oftener 
from some alarm, and we were required to keep our arms on, sleeping or wak- 
ing, in r€»adiness to fall into line at a moment's notice. On June 3d we were 
joined by the Second Company of Minnesota Sharpshooters, Gapt. Wm. F. 
Bossell, which had arrived June 1st, taking part in the battle near its close, 
and having one wounded. It was attached to the First Eegiment, and borne on 
its rolls and reports as Company L, though never in fact consolidated with the 
r^ment. The weather through June was hot, and heavy rains frequent. The 
only water for drinking was surface water, as the ground was low, and malarial 
diseases and diarrhea were very prevalent. On June 8th the Spanish general, 
Prim, with a gorgeous staff, accompanied by the French princes on McClellan's 
staff, passed along the line of our regiment, and were received with ^^ presented 
arms." Gen. Prim was on his way home from Mexico, and came to see our 
army in the field. On this day he had come with the French princes from 
McClellan's headquarters to visit Gen. Sumner, who, with Sedgwick and other 
generals, and our colonel. Sully, occupied the Courtney or Adams House, just 
in rear of our line. The fact that Sully spoke both French and Spanish fluently 
did much to make the visit easy and pleasant to the guests, and the French 
princes said so many complimentary things about Sully's regiment that Gen. 
Prim expressed an anxious desire to see it. He was a man of medium size, large 
head, and eyes that observed everything, in the prime of manhood, and dressed 
plainly compared with his staff. June ISth'was the only quiet day aud night, 
and Sergt. Matt Marvin of Company K, one of the best and most efficient of sol- 
diers, notes in his diary that he slept twenty four hours, which indicates the 
worn and fatigued condition of the regiment. Still, the false and dangerous 
position astride the Chickahominy was held, on the promises from Washington 
that we were to be joined at once by McDowell's army of 35,000 men, then at 

SEVEN days' battles. 

It is needless to tell here how Lee and his great lieutenant, Jackson, aroused 
the fears of the authorities at Washington by the rapid raid of the latter into 
the Shenandoah Valley, scattering the poorly commanded federal armies in that 
region, and diverting McDowell's army into that section ; or with what skill 
and address he suddenly lefb 60,000 Union troops there, pretending to look for, 
and evidently fearing to meet him, and with no knowledge of his whereabouts, 
while he rapidly returned to the north of Richmond, and, in connection with 
the corps of D. H. Hill, hurled an overwhelming force upon the corps of Fitz 
John Porter, on the left bank of the Chickahominy, near Mechanicsville, on 
June 26, 1862. Nor shall I attempt to describe the stubborn resistance and ter- 
rible fighting of Porter's corps, with reinforcements sent from the right bank, 
during that and the two following days. Our extended lines south of the river 
were every day threatened and subjected to heavy artillery fire, especially at 
the angle occupied by the First Minnesota, where previous attacks had caused 
us to build a strong breastwork, with traverses to protect us from enfilading 
artillery. Night and day we were in readiness for conflict. On the afternoon 
of June 28th we were ordered to pack up everything but shelter tents, and at 
nightfall these were struck, and we lay on the ground without covering. The 
trains had been going to the south all day, and at dark the sick and disabled 
were also sent off, and at early daylight, in the morning of June 29th, leaving 
our pickets out on the picket line, we marched away in the rear of the army. 


The roads were blocked with masses of moving troops, impeded further along 
by trains and artillery, and in the dense mist of the morning very slow progress 
was made. We had advanced bat about three miles when, at nine o'clock in the 
morning, our picket was forced back, and followed by the enemy, under the 
active and alert Magruder. This force attacked us at once, as we formed near 
the peach orchard on Allen's farm. The fighting was sharp for a brief time, 
though the attack mainly fell on troops just to the right of our regiment, and 
but little of the enemy's fire, save from artillery, reached us. After several re- 
pulses of persistently renewed attacks the enemy fell back, and our army pro- 
ceeded on its way. 

Moving on, we reached Savage Station about 1 o'clock p. m., and were massed 
with a considerable body of the Second Corps near the road leading across White 
Oak swamp. The rest of the army had pa^ed on, and a large amount of mate- 
rial at the railroad bridge was being destroyed. When the bridge, with engines 
and trains upon it, was blown up, an immense body of dense smoke arose, 
assuming perfectly symmetrical, and continually changing forms and colors, 
beautiful and grand to the view, in whatever form it took, like the changes in 
a kaleidoscope, and observed by all for several minutes before it was dissipated. 
About four o'clock the Confederates ran down the railroad a heavy gun mounted 
on a flat-car, and protected by railroad iron, and opened fire on our troops. 
This was followed closely by infantry and other artillery. The First Minnesota 
and G^n. Barns' Brigade of our division were ordered to the point of attack, and 
soon drove off. the enemy. But Confederate infantry at once appeared on 
another road further to the left, and we were sent to that; i>oint, being joined by 
the other regiments of our brigade, the First Minnesota here forming the ex- 
treme left of the line, and resisting the heaviest brunt of the attack, which was 
made with artillery at canister range, and with infantry extending beyond our 
left flank, which was in great danger of being turned. The fighting here was 
most persistent and severe, and as we got the enemy's fire diagonaUy from its 
extended right, as well as from the- front, our loss was considerable. We held 
the position, however, without yielding an inch, and about sunset the Vermont 
Brigade, which had been recalled from its route to White Oak swamp, came in 
on our left, and, joining in a last counter attack, the enemy was driven back. 
The First Minnesota lost forty -eight killed and wounded in this battle. Gather- 
ing our wounded into the field hospital, as there were no facilities for removing 
them, they were left, with a sufficient number of attendants, after their wounds 
had been dressed, to the care of the enemy, and we pushed on after night, still 
in rear of the army, across White Oak swamp, bivouacking near morning for a 
brief time soon after crossing the bridge. 

Early in the morning of June 30th the regiment, under command of Lieut. Col. 
Miller (Sully, by reason of Gorman's illness, being in command of the brigade), 
marched about two miles, when it was countermarched back to the bridge to aid 
the corps of Gen. Franklin in holding that point against the assaults of Jackson, 
which began furiously with artillery about ten o'clock. The natural obstacles 
of swamp and stream gave Jackson little chance to use his infantry, but the 
artillery contest, with occasional infantry fighting, lasted the entire day, which 
was one of stifling heat. Heavy infantry firing ahead of us apprised us of the 
sanguinary battle at Glendale, where the corps of Longstreet and A. P. Hill, 
having passed around the swamp, were endeavoring to force the flank of our line 
of march, and cut off that part of the army still in the rear holding Jackson at 
bay, as well as the immense wagon trains, which, crossing White Oak swamp 
the night before, now filled the roads behind our forces at Glendale. Soon after 
noon we were sent to another crossing of the stream, which Jackson endeavored 
to force. 

Late in the afternoon we were hurriedly sent to Glendale, moving for most 
of the distance at double-quick. We were at first placed in support of troops 
then hotly engaged, throwing ourselves on the ground to recover breath and 
avoid needless exposure to the storm of bullets passing over us. It was the 
heaviest attack made by the Confederates, and Gen. Sumner personally ordered 


US into the front line to relieve a regiment which was hard pressed, saying : 
** Boys, I shall not see many of you again, but I know you will hold that Une." 
The men rose with a cheer, and Dana, whose brigade was engaged near by, said : 
*'I will place my old regiment," and led us to our position in the line. But the 
brunt of the battle had then- passed, and although firing was kept up between 
our line at the edge of a wood and the rebel Hue within the wood, no further 
serious attack was made by the rebels, and darkness soon substantially closed 
the conflict. Several of our men were wounded here, among them Capt. William 
Colvill, who, after dark, was desperately wounded by a shot in the left breast. 
But, with that imperturbability fer which he was distinguished, he gave no sign 
of being hurt, and turned over his command to his lieutenant, as if for a few 
minutes' absence, and no one knew that he was hurt until the next morning, 
when he was heard from as having walked to the field hospital at Malvern Hill. 
We held the line of battle until near morning, when all the trains, as well as 
Franklin's Corps, having passed our position, we followed unmolested, and after 
daylight on July 1st reached Malvern Hill. 

When we arrived there we found the whole army being posted in position for 
battle, some thirty or forty rods in front of the crest of the hill, on which the 
heavy siege artillery was placed. It was a good battlefield, having about half 
or three-fourths of a mile of gently sloping cleared ground in our front. Our 
position at first was near the centre of our line, where, about eight o'clock, the 
enemy opened on us a heavy artillery fire, slightly wounding several of our men 
with pieces of shell, but none severely. Our position was changed slightly sev- 
eral times, and toward noon we were moved to the rear and marched considerably 
to the right, off the elevated plateau, and stationed in an oat-field, on lower 
ground, and well to the right of the line of battle. There we remained without 
attack during' the entire day, listening to the sound of the terrific conflict on the 
left, and expecting an attack at any moment. At times the volume of musketry 
and roar of artillery exceeded anything we had before listened to, and with the 
novel, unearthly shrieking of the immense shells thrown from gunboats passed the 
wildest conceptions of the terrible in battle. Gen. McClellan came along our line 
in the afternoon, infusing that enthusiasm which his presence always brought on 
a battlefield. The conflict on the left continued through the entire day, and for 
some time after dark. Toward morning we were withdrawn, and again as- 
cending Malvern Hill, found it substantially deserted by our troops, and we 
passed after them by a road down the steep bluff to the low ground along the 
James river, and in a drenching rain, through mud which the trains and artil- 
lery had made bottomless, and along which we wallowed, rather than marched, 
about seven miles to Harrison's Landing. 


Morning on July 2d was dawning as we descended the bluff at Malvern Hill, 
and it was about noon when we reached Harrison's, and were massed for camp 
in a field of finely ripened wheat, of large extent, on the rich bottom near the 
river. A finer crop never gladdened the eye of a husbandman than this before 
we entered it. But with the mass of men who covered it, and the rain still pour- 
ing, within an hour there was not a sign of wheat — merely a field of black mud, 
upon which the soldiers set up their dog tents, and supplied them with bedding 
from large stack yards, where from some cause, the crops of previous years still 
stood unthreshed. In a few days we were moved further from the river, camp- 
ing on drier ground, near a small rivulet, and were kept busy during the month 
with fatigue and picket duties. On July 9th President Lincoln, with Gens. 
McClellan, Sumner, Sedgwick and others, passed along our lines, and, on the 
next day, our chaplain, Bev. K D. Neill, took final leave of the regiment to 
enter on duty as hospital chaplain in Philadelphia. He was, and is, a most pol- 
ished and agreeable gentleman, of unusual scholarly attainments, and inde- 
£Atigable in his interest for the men, and in his efforts to secure for them every 
comfort that could be obtained. It is needless to say that he was then, and still 
is, held in highest regard and esteem by all. He became one of President Lin- 


coin's private secretaries, and continued in the same place under President 
Johnson, and was api>ointed by President Grant United States consnl to Dablin. 
Since his return to Minnesota he has resumed clerical and literary work, and 
uniting the characteristics of an educator, a man of letters and devoted christian 
clergyman with that of a most genial, x>olished gentleman, wit and humorist, he 
is a most delightful companion, and his name is a household word throughout 
the state, where he has resided and labored since its earliest settlement, now 
nearly half a century. On July 22d the corps was reviewed by (Jen. McClellan, 
and in Gen. Sumner's orders the next day the First Minnesota and Nineteenth 
Massachusetts were complimented as the two model regiments. On August 4th 
our division and some other infantry, with cavalry and artillery, moved by a 
circuitous route to the rear of Malvern Hill, and advanced to that field the next 
day over the same road as when coming from Glendale. The rebels, after brief 
resistance, were driven from the field, and we bivouacked on that part of the 
battlefield where the severest fighting between Porter's and Magruder's forces 
had taken place. The pits where the dead had been buried in cords had sunk, 
and bones were protruding. We now hoped that this movement was the begin- 
ning of a new advance along the James upon Eichmond. 


But Stanton and Halleck had conceived and started the movement under 
Pope, and the Army of the Potomac was peremptorily recalled from the penin- 
sula. We were therefore ordered back to Harrison's Landing, whence the sick 
were at once sent to the general hospital at Newport News, which was in charge 
of our former surgeon. Dr. D. W. Hand, who had been succeeded by Dr. John 
B. Le Blond as assistant surgeon of the regiment. The surplus material was 
being shipped to Alexandria. On August 16th the regiment moved, passing 
Charles City Court House, Williamsburg, Yorktown and Big Bethel, and reach- 
ing Newx)ort News on the 22d, and on the 25th embarked on the steamer Missis- 
sippi, and reached Alexandria on the morning of the 28th, and marched out 
about three miles toward Fairfax Court House, where they heard the first news 
of disaster to Pope's army. Here the indecision and incapacity of Halleck was 
strikingly displayed. Instead of sending Sumner's and Franklin's corps at once 
to the front, they were kept near Washington, and on the 29th we were marched 
back through Alexandria to the aqueduct, and then to Chain Bridge. On the 
30th we were marched forward again, passing a suburb of Alexandria, to ^a 
place about six miles east of Fairfax Court House. On the next day we marched 
to Centreville. On September 1st Pope's army was retreating toward the Poto- 
mac, and the Second Corps was placed in the rear, our regiment becoming the 
rear guard on the road leading to Vienna, following the army after dark, through 
deep mud, and reaching a position near Chantilly at dawn, where we learned that 
Jackson had struck the flank of the retreating army the evening before, and 
that the gallant Phil. Kearney and Gen. Isaac I. Stevens were killed in resisting 
the attack. Here we halted for the day, seeing the army move off, exhausted 
and dispirited, and with them were sent such of our men as seemed unfit for 
duty, reducing the regiment to less than three hundred men. Still, with two 
pieces of Battery A, First Rhode Island Artillery, we formed the rear guard on 
that road, and were carefully scanned during the afternoon by the enemy's 
videttes, who increased to large numbers before night, and for some time kept 
up a continuous fire upon us at long range. Near sunset our pickets were driven 
in, and as all the rest of the army had been gone a considerable time, our regi- 
ment retired some distance to the cover of a wood, followed by a strong line of 
skirmishers. Suddenly a heavy body of cavalry formed line near us, and a full 
battery came into position near enough to sweep our line with grape and can- 
ister. Col. Sully ordered our two pieces to retreat to Flint Hill, more than 
half a mile to the rear, and take position there in the road; and, after holding 
back the enemy long enough for this to be accomplished, he ordered the regi- 
ment to break ranks and run for the guns, and form on them as the centre. In 
the darkness which had come on, this was done with celerity and in silence. 


The two gans stood in the middle of the road near the top of th(^ hill, and the 
wings of the regiment were, on either side, thrown forward, forming the letter V, 
so as to partly envelop the approaching foe. Silently we waited, but not long, 
for the rebel cavalry and artillery, finding the road clear, hurried on in pursuit, 
not discovering us until the advance was nearly at the muzzles of our two guns. 
Sully's challenge, ** Who comes there!" and the surprised response, ** Who the 
devil are youf and a pistol-shot from the rebel leader directed at Sully, brought 
a volley of canister from the two pieces and musketry from the First Minnesota, 
which must have done fearful execution, judging from the cries, groans, curses 
and commands, as those who were able dashed madly to the rear, hastened by a 
second volley from the guns and the regiment, and during that night they 
troubled us no more. We had five men seriously wounded, among them Lieut. 
Charles Zierenberg, a brave and competent oflBcer, who died in a day or two. 
Without looking after the condition of the enemy's wounded the regiment re- 
sumed its march, being a long distance in rear of any other troops. Approach- 
ing Vienna we met the Nineteenth Massachusetts, which had heard the firing 
and was hastening back to our assistance. Having passed that village we heard 
from the front a rush of cavalry and rapid firing, as a squadron of horse dashed 
through the Nineteenth Massachusetts, which sprang to the sides of the road, 
giving and receiving shots. Our regiment did the same thing, suffering also 
from shots sent by the Massachusetts men after the cavalry. Here we had 
two men killed and seven more wounded. The affair was caused by a body of 
New York cavalry mistaking us in the night for Confederates and charging past 
us. Col. Sully with difficulty got transportation for all our wounded, and we 
pursued our way to the bivouac of the army near Chain Bridge. The campaign 
planned and managed by Stanton and Halleck had ended in disgraceful and utter 
defeat. The man whom they had put in command, or, as Glen. Walker, in his 
"Second Corps," says: 

The braggart who had begun his campaign with insolent reflections, in general orders, npon 
the Army of the Potomac and its commander, and with silly binster about his policy being attack 
and not defense; about discarding **snch ideas '* as lines of retreat and bases of snpply; about 
looking before and not behind ; about studying the possible lines of retreat of his enemy, and leav- 
ing his own to take care of themselves, had been kicked, cuflfed, hustled and knocked down and 
tiodden npon as rarely happens in the history of war. His communications had been cut ; his 
headquarters pillaged ; a corps had marched into his rear, and had encamped at its ease npon the 
railroad by which he received his supplies ; he had been beaten or foiled in every attempt to bag 
those defiant intruders ; and in the end he was glad to find a refuge in the intrenchments of Wash- 
ington, whence he had sallied forth six weeks before breathing out threateniugs and slaughter. 


On September 2d the panic in Washington was so great that, notwithstanding 
the enmity of Stanton and Halleck toward McClellan, the latter was placed in 
command of the fortifications of Washington, and of all the troops for the de- 
fense of the capital. He at once rode to the front, where his presence brought 
enthusiasm and restored confidence. On September 3d McClellan moved the 
Second Corps and other troops to Tenallytown, on the Maryland side, in antici- 
pation of Lee's crossing above. On conferring with Halleck respecting active 
operations, he was told by the latter that his command only covered the imme- 
diate defenses of Washington, and that the commander for an active army had 
not yet been decided on. After Lee's movement became apparent McClellan 
urged upon Halleck the evacuation of Harper's Ferry, and the union of its gar- 
rison of 12,000 men with his army. The advice was treated with contempt, and 
this force, which was not subject to McClellan's orders, was left to be hemmed in 
and forced to capitulate in a few days. Without orders, with his authority to 
command away from Washington denied, and, therefore, **with a halter about 
his neck" in case of disaster, McClellan moved his army to Frederick City to op- 
pose Lee. Beaching this place September 13th, he received the following tele- 
gram from Halleck: ** Until you know more of the enemy's force south of the 
Potomac you are wrong in thus uncovering the capital. I am of the opinion 
that the enemy will send a small column toward Pennsylvania to draw your 


forces in that direction, then suddenly move on Washin^n with the forces 
soath of the Potomac and those he may cross over." And on the 14th| the 
day of the battle at South Mountain, Halleck again telegraphed : ''Scouta report 
a large force still on the Virginia side of the Potomac. If so, I fear you are ex- 
posing your left and rear." Even on the 16th, when we had the rebel force in 
our front on the Antietam, the same chronic fear for the safety of Washington 
was telegraphed by Halleck. Tet, after Antietam, no one was more ready than 
Halleck to blame McClellan for the tardiness of his movements, the rapidity of 
which, before that battle, had so much alarmed him. Better informed than Hal- 
leck, and disregarding the fright of the latter, McClellan moved from Frederick 
to South Mountain on the night of the 13th and morning of the 14th of Septem- 
ber. The battle at the latter place occurred in the ai^rnoon of that day, and 
the First Minnesota, being well to the rear, afber a march of seventeen miles, 
reached the battlefield afber sunset, and was at once pushed to the front up the 
mountain side. But, except desultory firing in the increasing darkness, the bat- 
tle had ceased ; and, after holding the line through the night, we found, in the 
morning, that the enemy had gone, and we crossed the mountain, passing through 
Boonsborough, and bivouacking near Shepardstown. In the early morning of 
the 16th we marched through Keedysville, and halted on high ground overlook- 
ing the Antietam. There was considerable skirmishing and artillery firing dur- 
ing the day, ascertaining the enemy's position, while our army was coming up 
and being placed in res^iness. Here our brave Lieut. Col. Stephen Miller leA 
us, on receipt of his commission as colonel of the Seventh Minnesota Regiment. 
Without military training previous to the organization of our regiment, his 
bravery was conspicuous on every battlefield, and endeared him to the men, who 
parted with him with sincere regret. As modest as brave, he had, on the pro- 
motions of Gorman and Dana, recommended the appointment of trained officers 
to the colonelcy, to which he would otherwise have been promoted. His subse- 
quent honorable career as colonel of the Seventh Minnesota and as governor of 
Minnesota need not be referred to at length. He always showed the warmest re- 
gard for every man of the Old First. He became brigadier general Oct. 26, 
1863, was elected governor in November, 1863, and died Aug. 19, 1881, aged 
sixty-five years. 


On the morning of Sept. 17, 1862, we were aroused at 2 A. M., and got coffee 
and a full supply of ammunition. At 7 A. m. our corps moved about two miles 
in a northeasterly direction, crossing the creek, where Sedgwick's Division 
formed in three lines by brigade, Gorman's Brigade being the front line, and the 
First Minnesota the right of that line, and of the army. In this order we-advanced 
about three-fourths of a mile, crossing, under a heavy artillery fire, a battlefield 
where dead and wounded of both sides lay in great numbers. Reaching a wood 
occupied by the CJonfederates, we drove them rapidly through it, and into a corn- 
field beyond, where, apparently strongly reinforced, they advanced in turn, and 
the musketry fire here was very heavy and long sustained, our men firing about 
fifty rounds, and the enemy's artillery using grape and canister. Although our 
loss here was heavy, it is a curious fact that the brigade which formed the 
second line, seventy-five paces in our rear, and did not fire a shot, sustained 
a heavier loss than our brigade in the front line. By some error, the left of 
our brigade failed to connect with the right of Richardson's Division, leaving 
a considerable space unoccupied, through which, after awhile, a strong force of 
Confederates poured, turning the left flank of the Thirty-fourth New York, 
and forcing it to retire. This uncovered in turn the Eighty second New York 
and Fifteenth Massachusetts, and as they retired the First Minnesota was left 
without support'on either flank. Still, it held its place until peremptory orders 
to retire came. The movement was executed in good order, the regiment paus- 
ing frequently, and turning to deliver its volleys upon the enemy, who followed 
cautiously. It halted behind a stone wall, after going back thirty or forty rods, 
and held the ground until the corps was relieved by that of Franklin. It was 


much the most sanguinary contest in the battle, as is shown by the great losses of 
the Second Corps. Gen. Richardson, commanding the First Division, was killed, 
and (Jen. Sedgwick, commanding our division, was severely wounded. The loss of 
the regiment wasone hundred and forty-seven. Among the killed was Oapt. Gus- 
tavus A. Holzborn of Company K, a gallant and meritorious officer. The regi- 
ment received high praise for its steadiness and good conduct in this hard-fought 
battle. We remain^ on the battlefield, engaged in burying the dead, and in picket 
duty and reconnaissances, for four days aH^r the battle, being visited and favored 
with an address by Bishop H. B. Whipple of our state, on September 21st. At 
daylight, September 22d, we marched for Harper's Ferry, fording the Potomac 
at that place, and encamping on Bolivar Heights. Without opportunity for 
washing since leaving Harrison's Landing, a general bath in the Shenandoah 
and the boiling and washing of our ragged clothing was a gratei&il task. The 
men were in need of clothing, and in great need of shoes, afid it seemed to be 
quite impossible to get anything of the kind from Washington. Here quite a 
number of men of our regiment, as well as of other infantry regiments, enlisted, 
for the balance of their term of service, in the regular cavalry, under an order 
permitting such change of service, and many of the sick, wounded and prisoners 
from the Peninsular campaign returned to us. On the 26th of September, 
1862, Col. Alfred Sully was promoted brigadier general, and assigned to the 
command of our brigade soon after, in the place of Gren. Gorman, who was trans- 
ferred to an important command in the West. Lieut. Col. George "N. Morgan 
was promoted colonel, Maj. William Colvill, lieutenant colonel, and Captain 
Charles P. Adams, major. Greatly attached as the men were to Gen. Sully, and 
glad that, with his well-deserved promotion they were still to remain under his 
care and command, they parted with Gen. Gorman with most sincere regret 
€k>rman was a man of marked characteristics, and of an eventful and distin- 
guished career. Born in Kentucky, of Irish ancestry, he had just begun the 
practice of law at Bloomington, Ind., when, at the outbreak of the Mexican War, 
he enlisted in the Third Indiana Begiment, and was commissioned its major. 
Serving with credit in Gen. Taylor's campaign, he was the next year unani- 
mously chosen colonel of the Fourth Indiana H^giment, and served with distinc- 
tion under Scott, in his campaign ending with the capture of the City of Mex- 
ico. Returning to Indiana, h% was twice elected to Congress, and in 1853 was 
appointed governor of the Territory of Minnesota by President Pierce, holding 
that office four years, and ever after residing at St. Paul. He was a member of 
the Constitutional Convention in 1857, and in public office, as well as in the prac- 
tice of his profession, he acquired a reputation for sterling, unbending integrity, 
and ofbeing one of the most effective orators in the country. His voice was a 
marvel of flexibility and power. A pronounced Union man, at the outbreak of 
the Civil War he tendered his services, and was commissioned colonel of the 
First Minnesota Begiment, and was indefatigable in drilling and preparing it for 
service. Brave in action, and, at times, rough in manner and eloquent in vitu- 
peration, his nature was kind as a woman's, and he could not use severity. He 
always manifested the utmost pride in, and love for, his regiment, and solicitude 
for its honor and reputation, and by his bearing, his precepts, and his generous 
commendsUiions of the conduct of the regiment, built up and fostered that rogi- 
mental pride — thQ,t esprit du corps — which made cowardice or misconduct im- 
possible. Perhaps the regiment never would have become all that it was but for 
the influence of GU)rman, which remained after he left it, and to the end, and 
was seen in its charge at Gettysburg, as in its unyielding attitude in earlier bat- 
tles. The mutual regard existing l^tween him and the regiment continued after 
the war, and he was always present, and honored, at its annual reunions until 
his death. 

On October 16th we formed part of a body of troops, under command of Gen. 
Hancock, in a reconnaissance to Charlestown, where we found a heavy force of 
cavalry and artillery, which made a resolute resistance, and shelled us furiously 
as we advanced toward the town, but retired, before our infantry, about four 
miles beyond that place. Night and heavy rain coming on, we started to 


retnm in intense darkness, in which our guides lost their way, and the most of 
the night was spent in comfortless wandering, not reaching Charlestown until 
near day. That day we returned to Bolivar. About this time we were joined 
by the Nineteenth Maine, a splendid, new regiment, which continued in our 
brigade during the remainder of our service, and behaved like steady veterans 
from the beginning. 


On October 30th the army crossed the Shenandoah, and moved up Loudon 
Valley at the base of the Blue Ridge. The first day was extremely hot, and the 
Nineteenth Maine, unused to marching with the heavy loads carried by soldiers, 
and having knapsacks stuffed with everything, provided by the thoughtful care 
of friends and relatives on leaving home, found their burdens too heavy, and, 
in general, lightened by throwing away their new overcoats, strapped on top, 
and most readily removed. As our regiment marched next behind, with light 
knapsacks, and were well seasoned to fatigue, the men picked up the overcoats, 
and before night were fully supplied, ready for the cold weather, which set in 
within a week afterward. In passing through this valley our advance skir- 
mished nearly every day with the Confederate cavalry, which retired, sometimes 
passing through the gaps in the Blue Eidge, into the Shenandoah Valley. Our 
regiment engaged in these skirmishes near Snicker's and Ashby's gaps, and 
eli^where. This was a beautiful and fertile country, divided into thrifty farms, 
and producing much fruit. It was dotted with pleasant villages, and had never 
been overrun by a hostile force, and fence rails were plenty for bivouac fires. 
The people were all disloyal ; not averse to selling their produce at good prices, 
but preferred Confederate money, and therefore got a good supply of counter- 
feit Confederate notes, with which an enterprising Philadelphia concern had just 
supplied our army. The stringent orders against foraging were not always 
effectual in the presence of the great numbers of fat sheep, pigs and young cat- 
tle, where there was opportunity to run them down in hidden nooks, the neces- 
sary secrecy preventing any shooting of them. One of our men, an incorrigible 
forager, at the close of a day's march, with the assistance of two or three com 
rades, captured a fat sheep in the edge of a wood, and, while dressing it, a few 
men from a Maine regiment came up, and stood looking on and conversing. 
Glancing through the brush from his kneeling position h^ discovered a squad of 
the provost guard almost upon them, and speaking to his comrades, he said, 
quietly: "Boys, that other sheep we got is enough for us ; let us give this one 
to these Maine boys." His comrades knew nothing of any other sheep, but, 
satisfied that he had some sufficient reason for his sudden generosity, assented, 
and followed him quickly into the wood, as the Maine men, just beginning to cut 
up the carcass, were pounced upon by the guard and marched off. Later in the 
day, passing division headquarters, he saw these men tied up to cross-bars, and 
quietly asked how they relished the mutton. On IsTovember 7th the order re- 
moving Gen. McClellan was received at Eectortown, and some rumors of that 
event reached the men on the following day. On November 9th we halted near 
Warrenton, and the rumor was confirmed. Officers and men were stunned and 
exasperated almost to the point of mutiny, but this feeling was repressed by the 
bearing and counsels of McClellan himself. Burnside was personally liked and 
respected, and the more that it was known that he was a warm friend of 
McClellan. But his ability for leadership was doubted, and the army felt hope- 
less, under the conviction that, whoever was nominally put in command, Stanton 
and Halleck would direct all movements, and they were as cordially detested 
and distrusted as McClellan was beloved and confided in. Deepest sorrow and 
despondency prevailed on November 10th, when the army was drawn up to take 
leave of McClellan. Strong men shed tears. A majority of the line officers of 
the First Minnesota sent in their resignations, but, on the representation of Gen. 
Sully that such an act, in the face of the enemy, might subject them to disgrace- 
ful imputation, the resignations were recalled. The estimate of an army of the 
character and capacity of its commander, who has led it in many battles, is always 


accurate ; and the confidence of this army, from its oldest corps commander to 
the men in the ranks, in McClellan was unbounded. Besides, the army then felt 
that he was sacrificed, and itself imperiled, to gratify malice and spite. The 
pretext for his removal was his alleged tardiness of movement and hesitation 
about attacking the enemy. During the ten days following his removal the sum 
of our advance was about thirty miles to Falmouth, opposite Fredericksburg, 
on the Rappahannock. By the time we had slowly concentrated at that point, 
Lee had so fortified Mary^'s Heights, and the rest of the range of hills behind 
Fredericksburg, as to defy attack. But a battle must be risked to justify 
McClellan's removal, and Burnside was directed accordingly. 


I shall not attempt the sickening detail of the fearful and criminal slaughter 
of the best and bravest troops who ever carried arms, as they gallantly, though 
hopelessly, charged again and again upon the impregnable works of Lee along 
Mary^'s Heights. Fortunately, and mainly through the care of Gen. SuDy, the 
First Minnesota was not sacrificed. Gen. Sumner, then commanding the right 
grand division, consisting of the Second Corps, Gen. Darius N. Couch, and the 
Ninth Corps, Gen. Wilcox, had given notice to remove non-combatants from 
Fredericksburg, and early in the morning of December 11th we left camp and 
marched to the lefb and toward the river, and the division was massed in shelter 
of a hill. As the enemy used houses in the city as cover for sharpshooters, who 
fired on the men laying our pontoons, Sumner riddled the houses with his artil- 
lery, and, under cover of its fire, crossed a small force in boats, who drove the 
enemy from the houses near the point of crossing, and the bridge was at once 
laid. The First Minnesota and other troops crossed rapidly near dark, and 
formed along the river bank. The Confederates still held most of the town, and 
there was desultory firing till midnight ; but some of our boys made their way 
to the houses and stores, and returned laden with provisions, wines, liquors, to- 
bacco, and a violin, and soon quadrilles and contra dances were under way, the 
melody of the fiddle being often varied by the hissing of passing bullets. The 
next morning, early, we moved into one of the principal streets ; and because the 
houses had been used as cover by the enemy, the men ransacked, without much 
hindrance, the houses and stores, from which the owners had fied. Provisions 
were found in abundance, and boxes of tobacco were thrown out on the side- 
walks that all might help themselves. Gen. Sully took possession of a hand- 
some residence that chanced to be near the place occupied by the regiment, and, 
when it was invaded by a squad of the boys, told them to help themselves freely 
to everything they could find, as the place belonged to his brother-in-law, ^^a 
blamed rebel." The house had many portraits, by the generaPs father, Thomas 
Sully, the eminent painter, among them one of the general himself when a child 
of three or four years. Well did Sully know that his bluff invitation to plunder, 
coupled with the statement that the premises belonged to a relative of his, 
would secure the place from intrusion. The boys took nothing, and kept off all 
other marauders. The men were not allowed to quarter in the houses, but fences 
and outhouses were broken up for little fires in the street to boil coffee, and the 
men sat around the fires on sofas and stuffed chairs. Soon after dark we were 
moved to the front, and spent a cold, comfortless night on picket. In the morn- 
ing, December 13th, our division (Howard's) was moved to the right of the 
town, Sully's Brigade being the right of the army. During nearly the whole 
forenoon a heavy artillery fire was directed upon us, but with few casualties. 
At noon the slaughter began, and we witnessed the sacrifice of French's and 
Hancock's divisions of our corps, as one, following the other, was led across the 
canal, swept by hundreds of cannon, and gallantly rushed against the stoue wall 
at the foot of Mary^'s Heights, which sheltered as heavy a force of Confederate 
infantry as could operate behind it, while the face of the hill in the rear wiis ter- 
raced with lines of breastworks, manned by Longstreet's Veteran Corps, being 
able to fire from each line of works over the heads of the lines in front. It was 
murder to attempt such an assault, and wholly against the judgment ui Qen. 


Couch, the able commander of the Second Corps. But the orders were impera- 
tive, and were obeyed ; and, as Hancock followed French into the vortex of 
death. Couch moved Howard to the left to support the attack. The Second and 
Third brigades of our division came into this action, and suffered severely, but 
Sully, as judicious as brave, realizing the utter folly of also sacrificing his bri- 
gade, the very last in the corps, when there was no chance or possibility of 
achieving anything but its destruction, detained it in a place of comparative 
safety, and his action, which saved the First Minnesota, was approved, or at 
least passed without question. After dark we were withdrawn to the edge of 
the town, and at daylight were moved back to Princess Ann street, where we 
remained quietly through the day. There was skirmishing at the front, and 
constant firing of sharpshooters there from rifle-pits. While the Confederates 
evidently spared the buildings in the town, they sent shells down the streets 
leading toward Mary 6' s Heights whenever any considerable number of soldiers 
appeared in them. This brought to my notice an instance of female pluck and 
nerve worthy of mention. A rather young, and evidently modest, respectable 
and well-dressed lady (the only woman that I remember seeing in the place) was 
walking along the sidewalk of one of these streets toward the river, when a body 
of our soldiers crossed it at a street crossing a few rods in front of her. In- 
stantly a half dozen shells came ricochetting and bursting down the street past 
her, and the soldiers sought cover, but the woman kept her pace with perfect 
calmness, apparently giving the matter no heed whatever. Soon after dark our 
regiment, with four others, all under command of our colonel, George ST. Mor- 
gjan, were sent to the front to relieve a part of Gen. Sykes' Division. The posi- 
tion taken was in advance of the troops relieved, and in the midst of the most 
exposed and hardest-fought part of the battlefield, and within a few rods of the 
enemy's rifle-pits. In the intense darkness we could hear the sounds of shovels 
and picks just in front of us; and, as our guide had left without giving accurate 
information of the surroundings, Lieut. C. B. Heffelfinger, taking with him 
Corp. Irvine of his company, volunteered to crawl forward and reconnoiter. 
After a brief time the lieutenant came back with information that the labor was 
on the enemy's rifle pits at a little distance. The corporal had been discovered 
by a sentinel and captured. Col. Morgan at once sent back for picks and shovels, 
and by working most of the night we made a serviceable trench and breastwork 
along the line, which else would have been untenable after daylight ; for, besides 
the rifle-pits, a stone's throw away, and the intrenched lines behind them, there 
were several buildings near by occupied by the enemy's shari)shooters. Tdie 
First Minnesota was on the right of our brigade, and joined by another brigade, 
extending further to the right, also intrenched to some extent. In the afternoon 
the enemy placed a battery on a height near the river above the town, where it 
got an enfilading fire along our line, and endeavored to sweep our trenches, 
sending solid shot and shell with great rapidity bounding along the line. The 
One Hundred and Twenty-seventh Pennsylvania, a new regiment, on the right 
of the First Minnesota, at once broke, and ran from this frightful danger, except 
its left company, which joined our regiment. And the contagion carried after 
it two veteran regiments on its right. This uncovered the right of the First 
Minnesota, exposing it to other obvious danger besides the enfilading fire, which 
continued with apparently increasing fury. The regiment, however, stood firm, 
and by its conduct held the balance of the line in its place. Gen. Howard, with 
his brigade commanders, occupied a house in the rear, overlooking the line, and 
saw with alarm the retreat of the three regiments, one after another. Seeing 
our regiment stand fast, Howard exclaimed: ** Sully, your First Minnesota 
doesn't run!" Sully, who had felt no less alarm for the credit of his favorite 
regiment than about the danger of the situation, now reassured, answered calmly, 
**General, the First Minnesota never runs." Gen. Howard was extremely grati- 
fied at the conduct of the regiment on this occasion, and complimented it in gen- 
eral orders, and in a brief address to the regiment a few days later. The line 
was held until night, when we were withdrawn, crossed the river, and returned 
to our camp back of Falmouth, taking up again the routine of drill and picket 


dnty. Oar loss at Fredericksburg was only two officers and thirteen men 
wonnded. On December 2d, npon an examination of sergeants for promotion to 
three vacancies in the office of second lieutenant, which had existed since Sep- 
tember, William Lochren of Company B, Myron Shepard of Company B, and 
Charles H. Mason of Company D were recommended by the board of officers, 
and requests for their commissions were sent by Col. Morgan to Qov. Bamsey, 
and those sergeants were at once put on duty as second lieutenants. On Decem- 
ber 24th commissions came for Lochren and Mason, but instead of one for Shep- 
ard came a long letter from the state adjutant general, urging that a former first 
lieutenant of the regiment — who, after obtaining a leave of absence to visit the 
state in the £^11 of 1861, had procured details for various duties about Fort Snell- 
ing, and remained there in spite of orders to return to the regiment, until 
forced to resign because of his continued absence — should be given this commis- 
sion instead of Shepard, a most competent and deserving soldier, who had served 
in the field with credit the entire time. The regiment felt indignant at this 
action, and it drew forth a letter of warm remonstrance from Col. Morgan, which 
brought Shepard's commission without further delay. The position of our camp, 
in plain sight of the enemy, prevented our division from being moved during 
the distressing '^mud march" of Burnside in the latter part of January. At 
this time our old corps commander. Gen. Sumner, whose personal bravery, con- 
spicuously shown on every field, had endeared him to the men, retired because 
of ill health, exhorting his old command, in his farewell order, to preserve its 
reputation, reminding it of the large amount of artillery and numerous stand- 
ards it had captured, whilst tJie corps had never lost a color nor a gun. About the 
name time, G^n. Hooker succeeded Gen. Burnside in the command of the Army 
of the Potomac. One of his earliest acts was to order the adoption of corps 
badges, worn on the hat or cap of the soldiers and officers, and so borne upon 
flags, as easily to identify corps, divisions and brigades on the march or battle- 
field. They were useful in many ways, and tended to strengthen the esprit du 
corps of the organizations. The device designated the army corps, and the color 
the division ; red for the First Division, white for the Second, and blue for the 
Third. The trefoil, or clover leaf, was the badge of the Second Corps, and the 
First Minnesota, as part of the Second Division of that corps, wore the .white 
trefoil. On April 2d Gov. Bamsey arrived in camp, where he was always a 
most welcome visitor. He brought a new flag for the regiment, presented by 
the ladies of the state, and having inscribed upon it the battles in which the 
regiment had then participated. On April 8th President Lincoln went through 
the camps. 


On April 27th began the movement which culminated in the battle of Chan- 
oellorsville, and most of the army was moved to the right, to cross the river at 
X>oints above. The camp of our division remaining in full view of the enemy, 
the division was held in place, and afterward joined Gen. Sedgwick's Sixth 
Corps in crossing at Fredericksburg. The troops sent to the right crossed the 
Rappahannock at Kelly's Ford, on the night of April 28th, and then, crossing 
the Rapidan, moved to Chancellorsville, uncovering other fords. It is not 
within the scope of this work to trace the marvelous blunders by which this 
well-planned movement of Hooker's, after reaching a point which should have 
made success certain, was turned into a disgraceful defeat. After Hooker had 
crossed above, Sedgwick's Corps crossed below the city, and on May 3d, our 
division, now commanded by Brig. Gen. John Gibbon, crossed the river at Fred- 
ericksburg, and the united forces carried Mary 6' s Heights after several assaults. 
Gibbon, after advancing some distance with Sedgwick, was sent back to the city, 
to prevent any raid in the rear, and Sedgwick advanced to the support of 
Hooker. But the surprise and defeat of Howard's Eleventh Corps by Jackson, 
and the demoralisation of Hooker, enabled Lee, on the following day, to send a 
large force around Sedgwick, and reoccupy the fortifications, and force Sedgwick, 
at length, to cross the river at Banks' Ford, above the city, and on the night of 


May 4th Gibbon's Division also crossed to the north side of the river. On May 
6th the army had all recrossed, the pontoons were taken up, and the movement 
was at an end. The First Minnesota had again escaped severe fighting, as in the 
capture of Mary6's Heights our division was sent well to the right, drawing the 
Confederate troops away from Sedgwick's front, where the principal assault was 
made, except that Lieut. Hezekiah Bruce of Company F, with a picket detail of 
twenty five men of the First Minnesota, who were in front of Sedgwick, took 
place in the front line of his assaulting column, and were among the first to enter 
the enemy's works. The whole loss in the regiment was but nine men wounded. 
On May 5th increasing ill health compelled Col. Greorge N. Morgan to resign. 
Quiet and unassuming in his manner, he was an officer of unusual intelligence 
and capacity, always avoiding everything savoring of pretense and display, but 
most heedful for the care and comfort of his men. Personally brave and consci- 
entious in the discharge of every duty, he had little patience with any who 
attempted to evade duties or dangers, but would never suffer injustice toward 
any deserving soldier. He afterward became colonel of the Second Regiment 
Veteran Reserve Corps, brevet brigadier general, commandant at Fort Snelling, 
and was finally mustered out of the service June 30, 1866, and died of con- 
sumption (contracted in the service) July 24, 1866. Knowing him intimately, 
through close personal relations that grew up between us in the service, the 
writer would gladly devote more space to the delineation of the amiable chivalric 
traits in the character of Col. Morgan than the limits of this narrative will allow. 
On his resignation, Lieut. Col. Cblvill was promoted colonel, Maj. Charles P. 
Adams, lieutenant colonel, and Capt. Mark W. Downie, major. On May 10th G«n. 
Sully left us for a command in Minnesota and Dakota, against the Indians. 
Brave and most capable in action, yet always careful to guard against any fool- 
ish or needless sacrifice of his men ; blunt, yet kind, in manner ; humorous and 
playful as a boy ; always manifesting implicit confidence in the honor and good 
conduct of his men, and relying on that as the only restraint, while never relax- 
ing any necessary discipline, he was perhaps more generally beloved by all than 
any other of our regimental commanders. The regiment parted with him with 
most sincere regret, having but a short time before manifested their regard by 
presepting him with a magnificent dress sword costing $1,000. His suteequent 
career will be in part noted in the narrative of the Indian War in this volume. 
He became brevet major general of volunteers and brevet brigadier general 
in the regular army, colonel of the Tenth Regular Infantry, and died at Fort 
Vancouver April 27, 1879. For the month following the battle of Chancellors- 
ville perfect quiet existed between the two armies. Drills, reviews and picket 
duty occupied the time. Our division had encamped just below the Lacy House, 
near the river, and right under the hundreds of guns which bristled along 
Mary6's Heights, less than a mile away, and Confederate infantry were in camp 
across the river, in plain sight, and within musket shot of us, and under the guns 
on the heights behind us. The pickets on each side of the narrow, for&ble 
river, stood and were relieved in plain view and within a stone's throw of each 
other, and by tiny boats, whittled from the red cedar or juniper, fitted with 
paper sails and rudders tied to suit the current, carried on a daily interchange of 
newspapers, coffee, tobacco and other articles. Talking between them would 
have been easy, but was expressly forbidden for fear of too great familiarity, but 
would nevertheless occasionally break out in good-natured badinage. The men 
on both sides were now seasoned soldiers ; hardy, steady veterans, who would 
fight each other to the death in the line of duty in battle, but would not be guilty 
of assassination, and regarded each other with feelings of respect, unmixed with 
any rancor or ill will. 


On June 6th the quiet was broken by Hooker, who threw a part of Sedg- 
wick's Sixth Corps across the Rappahannock, at Franklin's old crossing, about 
two miles below our position, laying pontoons and moving a considerable body of 
troops to that place, in readiness to cross in force. Although this brought on a 


lieavy artillery fire, and some collision of infantry at the point of crossing, it 
caused no breach of the peace at our position. Hooker remained inactive for 
several days, and on June 10th, Gen. Coach, oar corps commander, was trans- 
ferred to the new department of the Susquehanna, and Maj. Gen. Hancock was 
promoted from command of our First Division to that of the corps. Although 
€k)ueh was highly esteemed, Hancock was extremely x>opular. In personal 
appearance he was matchless, and in splendid horsemanship, dash and bravery, 
quick apprehension of advantages and emergencies in battle, and in every trait 
that marks a capable and great commander, the judgment of the army indorsed 
the epithet of McOlellan, and the Second Corps gladly greeted its *^ superb" com- 
mander, and felt secure that, under his leaderehip, its glories would increase. 
Brig. Gren. William Harrow also succeeded to the command of Sully's Brigade. 
The gallant Thirty-fourth New York Eegiment, which had served with us from 
Camp Stone, and, by its steady bravery on every battlefield at our side, had won 
our highest regard, left us on June 9 th, its term of enlistment (two years) having 
expir^. The First Minnesota accompanied it to the station, and parted with it 
with rousing cheers but sincere regret. On June 13th it became evident that 
Lee, disregarding Hooker'i^ menace, was pushing large bodies of troops beyond 
our right, in the direction of the upper Potomac, or Shenandoah Valley. 
Hooker's natural wish to take advantage of Lee's extended line, and strike his 
flank and rear, was overruled by the ever-baleful interference of Stanton and Hal- 
leck, in their morbid dread for the safety of Washington, and he was required to 
move his army to the vicinity of that place. On that night Sedgwick was with- 
drawn to the north side of the Bappahannock, and the next day a large part of 
the army moved northward. The First Minnesota packed everything, in readi- 
ness to march, and remained behind as rear guard. On the evening of June 
14th we marched about five miles northward, when we were faced about, marched 
back to the river, and placed* on picket. Just about daylight on June 15th we 
were called in, and set out again on the same road, halting, at 9 A. M., at Staf- 
ford Court House. At 2 P. M., under a broiling sun, we started again, and 
halted after passing Acquia creek a couple of miles. A large number of men 
succumbed on the march to the extreme heat. At 3 a. m. of the 16th the march 
was resumed, and Dumfries reached at 7 A. M., where a halt was made for break- 
fast. Going on, we crossed the Occoquan at 6 P. m., and bivouacked on its bank. 
Leaving there the next morning, we reached Sangster's Station, on the Orange & 
Alexandria railroad, soon after seven, several men being disabled by sunstroke. 
Here we were near Alexandria. On June 19th we marched southward to Cen- 
treville. On th^ next morning, some men of the Second Corps, including, per- 
haps, a few from our regiment, got into an altercation with the sutler of the 
^inth Massachusetts Battery, resulting in a rush upon his tent and general con- 
fiscation of his effects, A couple of pieces of artillery, run out to quell the 
riot, were instantly captured, run down a hill and overturned. The men 
then rapidly dispersed to their regiments, and there was no time for inquiry into 
the affair, as the army was in readiness to move. On that day (June 20th) the 
regiment crossed the Bull Bun battlefield to Gainesville, and on the next day 
reached Thoroughfare Gap, where we remained until June 25th, guarding the 
pass and furnishing details to guard trains. In the forenoon of that day we left 
Thoroughfare Gap, our division being the rear guard, and impeded by large 
trains in front. On reaching Hay market, a couple of miles on our way, we were 
severely shelled by a horse battery, which, with a lot of the enemy's cavalry, 
came through the gap after we left. There were several killed and wounded in 
the division, and Ool. Colvill's horse was killed under him. A large number of 
non combatants were with us, regarding the rear as the place of safety. The 
panic among them was ludicrous, and the men shouted with ^ee as the crowd of 
sutlers, surgeons, chaplains and negro servants broke and rushed, in terror and 
disorder, from the vicinity of the rapidly bursting shells. *'De'il tak the hind- 
most ! " was evidently the guiding sentiment, as, with all speed, they went ahead, 
ridding themselves of all incumbrances. A strong skirmish line soon drove 
away the battery, and we passed on to Gum Springs, where we bivouacked. 


On June 26th we crossed the Potomac at Edwards' Perry, and halted near our 
old camp. Leaving this place late in the afternoon of the next day, we passed 
throngh Poolesville and Barnesville, halting, near midnight, at the foot of Sugar 
Loaf Mountain, and sending one hundred and sixty men on picket. On Satur- 
day, June 28th, we passed Urbana, and halted on the Monocacy, in view of 
Frederick City. This beautiful valley seemed filled with troops, artillery and 
wagon trains. Here the news that Hooker had resigned and that Meade was in 
command, caused a momentary depression, soon changed to elation by a rumor 
that McClellan was to be restored to command, — a rumor that he was on his 
way to join us cheering us at Gettysburg a few days later. Early on June 29th 
we crossed the Monocacy, our division taking the advance of the corps. About 
three hours on the road, we came to a considerable creek, crossed by fording 
something more than knee-deep, and having a timber, hewn on top, crossing it, 
on rough stone supports on each side of the road, for pedestrians. To allow the 
men to cross on these timbers would impede the march, and Col. Charles H. 
Morgan, the eflBcient inspector general of the corps, remained here, directing 
each regimental commander to march his command right through the water. 
The direction waa given to Colvill as we approached, and followed by his com- 
mand, " Close order. March!" But a few of the men and line officers skurried 
across on the timbers, losing no time, and saving themselves from scalded feet in 
the long day's march before them. Morgan became angry, and having some 
further trouble with the Fifteenth Massachusetts Eegiment which followed next 
behind, and being groaned by that regiment when he passed our brigade at a 
halt shortly after, and believing that act of insubordination to come from our 
regiment, he caused Col. Colvill to be placed in arrest. This act produced a 
strong feeling of resentment in the men, who felt that their colonel was most 
unjustly dealt with. The day's march continued until 9 P. M., covering thirty- 
three miles, when we halted near the Pennsylvania line, soon after passing 
through XJniontown, Md. The day was extremely hot, the roads dusty, and at 
the halt the men were so exhausted that most of them dropped at once on 
their blankets, without attempt to make coffee or do more than nibble a little 
hardtack and raw x>ork. The writer had scarcely lain down by the side of 
Lieut. Heffelfinger, who, with Col. Colvill, messed with him, when he was called 
by the adjutant to go out with a picket detail, and vividly remembers his feeling 
that exhaustion had reached its limit. But there was no help, and gathering 
the grumbling detail, of which Capt. Thomas Sinclair took command, we went 
about three miles further and established the picket line, and spent the seem- 
ingly very long night there. Early in the morning we were called in, but not 
so early but that I had enjoyed a substantial breakfast at a farmhouse near by, 
and procured such supply of fresh bread, butter, milk and other substantiate as 
made a relishing breakfast for Colvill and Heffelfinger, when on our return we 
found them still asleep. While eating it they seemed to realize that worse 
things might happen than to have a messmate sent out on picket afler such a 
fatiguing march. During that day (June 30th) the regiment remained quiet, 
and the companies made out their bimonthly muster rolls, on which* so many 
were never to draw pay. In the forenoon of July 1st the heavy sound of distant 
artillery soon put us on the march toward it. We turned back to Uniontown, 
where we took a road to the right, and by four o'clock, the roar of conflict 
increasing as we drew nearer, we began to meet the crowd of cowards and camp 
followers, fleeing in terror, with their frightened tales of utter defeat and rout. 
As most of the soldiers wore the crescent badge of the Eleventh Corps, which 
was held in little respect since Chancellorsville, they received but taunts and 
jeers from the sturdy veterans of the Second Corps. Hancock had left us about 
noon, hurrying on to the battlefield, where he had been directed to assume com- 
mand, and where he selected the ground and made dispositions for the continu- 
ance of the battle. We halted three or four miles south of Gettysburg, between 
eight and nine o'clock, placing a strong picket and erecting slight barricade de- 
fenses, as it was known that the Confederates, as well as federals, were as- 
sembling from different directions. At a quarter before six on the morning of 


Jaly 2d we arrived on the battlefield, and the Second Corps was placed in posi- 
tion on the line to the left of the cemetery, being joined on its left by Sickles' 
Third CJorps, which extended that line to the vicinity of the Little Eonnd Top. 
For some reason the First Minnesota Begiment was not placed in this line, bnt 
apparently in reserve, a short distance to the rear. Early in the morning, jnst 
after we reached the battlefield, Ck)l. Colvill was relieved from arrest, and 
assumed command of the regiment, and Company L (sharpshooters) was detailed 
to support Kirby's Battery near the cemetery, and did not rejoin us during the 
battle. While lying here one man was killed, and Sergt. O. M. Knight of Com- 
pany I was severely wounded by shells from the enemy. Some time after noon 
Sickles advanced the Third Corps half a mile or more, to a slight ridge near the 
Emmitsburg road, his left extending to Devil's Den, in front of and near the 
base of Little Bound Top, and Company F (Capt. John Ball) was detached as skir- 
mishers, and sent in that direction. Soon after, the remaining eight companies 
of the regiment, numbering two hundred and sixty-two men (Company C was also 
absent, being the provost guard of the division), were sent to the centre of the line 
just vacated by Sickles' advance, to support Battery C of the Fourth United States 
Artillery. No other troops were then near us, and we stood by this battery, in full 
view of Sickles' battle in the peach orchard half a mile to the front, and witnessed 
with eager anxiety the varying fortunes of that sanguinary conflict, until at length, 
with gravest apprehension, we saw Sickles' men give way before the heavier 
forces of Longstreet and Hill, and come back, slowly, at first, and rallying at 
short intervals, but at length broken and in utter disorder, rushing down the 
slope, by the Trostle House, across the low ground, up the slope on our side, and 
I)ast our position to the rear, followed by a strong force — the large brigades of 
Wilcox and Barksdale — in regular lines, moving steadily in the flush of victory, 
and firing on the fugitives. They had reached the low ground, and in a few 
minutes would be at our position, on the rear of the left flank of our line, which 
they could roll up, as Jackson did the Eleventh Corps at Chancellorsville. There 
was no organized force near to oppose them, except ourhandful of two hundred and 
sixty-two men. Most soldiers, in the face of the near advance of such an overpow- 
ering force, which had just defeated a considerable portion of an army corps, would 
have caught the panic and joined the retreating masses. But the First Minnesota 
had never yet deserted any post, had never retired without orders, and desperate 
as the situation seemed, and as it was, the regiment stood firm against whatever 
might come. Just then Hancock, with a single aid, rode up at full speed, and 
for a moment vainly endeavored to rally Sickles' retreating forces. Beserves 
had been sent for, but were too far away to hope to reach the critical position 
until it would be occupied by the enemy, unless that enemy were stopped. 
Quickly leaving the fugitives, Hancock spurred to where we stood, calling out, 
ashe reached us, "What regiment is this?" ''First Minnesota," jrepliedCSlvill. 
** Charge those lines !" commanded Hancock. Every man realized in an instant 
what that order meant, — death or wounds to us all; the sacrifice of the regiment 
to gain a few minutes' time and save the position, and probably the battlefield, — 
and every man saw and accepted the necessity for the sacrifice, and, responding 
to Colvill's rapid orders, the regiment, in perfect line, with arms at "right 
shoulder shift," was in a moment sweeping down the slope directly upon the 
enemy's centre. No hesitation, no stopping to fire, though the men fell fast at 
every stride before the concentrated fire of the whole Confederate force, directed 
upon us as soon as the movement was observed. Silently, without orders, and, 
almost from the start, double-quick had changed to utmost speed; for in utmost 
speed lay the only hope that any of ua would pass through that storm of lead 
and strike the enemy. " Charge !" shouted Colvill, as we neared their first line; 
and with leveled bayonets, at full speed, we rushed upon it; fortunately, as it was 
slightly disordered in crossing a dry brook at the foot of a slope. The men 
were never made who will stand against leveled bayonets coming with such 
momentum and evident desperation. The first line broke in our front as we 
reached it, and rushed back through the second line, stopping the whole advance. 
We then poured in our first fire, and availing ourselves of such shelter as the low 


banks of the dry brook afforded, held the entire force at bay for a considerable 
time, and until oar reserves appeared on the ridge we had left. Had the enemy 
rallied qoickly to a counter charge, its great numbers would have crushed us in 
a moment, and we would have made but a slight pause in its advance. But the 
ferocity of our onset seemed to paralyze them for the time, and although they 
poured upon us a terrible and continuous fire from the front and enveloping 
flanks, they kept at respectful distance from our bayonets, until, before the 
added fire of our fresh reserves, they began to retire, and we were ordered back. 
What Hancock had given us to do was done thoroughly. The regiment had 
stopped the enemy, and held back its mighty force and saved the position. But 
at what sacrifice ! Nearly every officer was dead or lay weltering with bloody 
wounds, our gallant colonel and every field officer among them. Of the two 
hundred and sixty-two men who made the charge, two hundred and fifteen lay 
upon the field, stricken down by rebel bullets, forty-seven were still in line, and 
not a man was missing. The annals of war contain no parallel to this charge. 
In its desperate valor, complete execution, successful result, and in its sacrifice 
of men in proportion to the number engaged, authentic history has no record 
with which it can be compared. Col. Pox, in his very carefully prepared work 
on "Eegimental Losses in the American Civil War," says, at page 68, speaking 
of the Second Corps in this battle: 

The fighting was deadly in the extreme, the percentage of loss in the First Minnesota, Gib- 
Iwn's Division, being without an eqoal in the records of modem warfare. 

In another place (page 26) he notes that Oen. Hancock, in speaking of this 
charge, is reported to have said: 

There is no more gallant deed recorded in history. I ordered these men in there because I 
saw I must gain five minutes' time. Reinforcements were coming on the run, but I knew that 
before thej could reach the threatened point the Confederates, unless checked, would seize the 
position. I would have ordered that regiment in if I had known that every man would be 
killed. It had to be done, and I was glad to find such a gallant body of men at hand willing to 
make the terrible sacrifice that the occasion demanded. 

The wounded were gathered in the darkness by their surviving comrades and 
sent to field hospitals, and the fragment of the regiment lay down for the night 
near the place from which it had been moved to support the battery. One in- 
cident connected with Company F, which had been detached before the charge, 
may be mentioned. Its position brought it on the fiank of Sickles' retreating 
forces and of the pursuing enemy, and, rallying upon a fence, it poured its fire 
into the enemy just before the charge of the regiment. From Confederate ac- 
counts it would appear that the Confederate general, Barksdale, was killed by 
this fire ; though by some it has been claimed that he was killed by Private 
William W. Brown of Company G while we were holding the Confederate force 
in check at th^ close of the charge. In the morning of July 3d we were joined 
by Company F, and by all men of the regiment who were detailed about brigade, 
division or corps headquarters, and Capt. Nathan S. Messick was in command. 
The morning opened bright and beautiful, with firing near the Little Bound 
Top, and with a sharp fight on the right near Culp's Hill, where the enemy was 
forced back from positions gained the evening before. Soon after sunrise we 
were moved to our place in our brigade in the front line, passing Stannard's new 
brigade of Vermont troops as it was taking position to the left of our division 
under a sharp artillery fire from the enemy, which was turned on us also. The 
Vermont Brigade consisted of full regiments in new uniforms, and was therefore 
noticeable in contrast with the thinned regiments, in dusty garments, of the Sec- 
ond Corps. Beaching our place in the line, we made a slight barricade of stones, 
fence rails and knapsacks filled with dirt a little over knee-high, and, lying 
down behind it, many were soon asleep. During the forenoon there was a slight 
skirmish in our front, in which some buildings used for cover by Confederate 
sharpshooters were burned. But suddenly, about one o'clock, a tremendous 
artillery fire opened along Seminary Bidge, all converging upon the position of 
the Second Division of the Second Corps. It was at once responded to by our 
artillery, whose position was on ground a little higher to the rear of our posi- 


tioD. Aboat one hundred and fifty pieces on each side were in action, firing 
with great rapidity, the missiles from both sides passing over as, except those of 
the enemy, which struck or burst at or in front of our line. We had been in 
many battles, and thought ourselves familiar with the roar of artillery, and with 
the striking and bursting of its missiles, but nothing approaching this cannon- 
ade had ever greeted our ears. In the storm of shells passing over us to the 
I>osition of our artillery, where caissons were struck and burst every few mo- 
ments, it did not seem that anything could live at that place. But our own 
artillery was served as rapidly, and we had the satisfaction of detecting the 
sound of bursting caissons on the enemy's side very frequently. Men will grow 
accustomed to anything; and before the two hours of this furious cannonade 
were ended some of the most weary of our men were sleeping. At length our 
artillery ceased to reply. We were surprised at this, thinking that we excelled 
the enemy in this arm. The Confederate fire appeared to increase in volume 
and rapidity for a few minutes, and then stopped at once. We well knew what 
was to follow, and were all alert in a moment, every man straining his eyes to- 
ward the wood, three-fourths of a mile distant, from which the Confederate in- 
fantry began to emerge in heavy force, forming two strong lines, with a support- 
ing force in rear of each flank. We then estimated the force as over 20,000 
men, though Confederate accounts reduce the number to 15,000. Moving 
directly for our position, with firm step and in perfect order, our artillery 
soon opened upon them with terrible effect, but without causing any pause, 
and we could not repress feelings and expressions of admiration at the steady, 
resolute style in which they came on, breasting that storm of shell and grape, 
which was plainly thinning their ranks. When about sixty rods distant 
from our line our division opened with musketry, and the slaughter was very 
great; but instead of hesitating, the step was changed to double-quick, and they 
rush^ to the charge. But whether because Hancock here wheeled Stannard's 
Vermont Brigade to enfilade their right fiank in passing, or from some other 
cause, their front opened at this time, and perhaps one-fourth of the force on 
Pickett's right here deflected further to their right, and were met and disposed 
of by the gallant Yermonters. The remainder of the charging force at the same 
time diverged or changed its direction to its left, and, passing from our front 
diagonally, under our fire and that of Hall's Brigade to our right, charged the 
position held by Webb's Second Brigade of our division, forcing back the Sixty- 
ninth and Seventy-first Pennsylvania regiments, and capturing Cushing's Bat- 
tery, which had swept them with canister. But as soon as Pickett's force had 
passed our front, our brigade (Harrow's) ran to the right for the threatened point, 
passing in rear of Hall's Brigade, which, as soon as uncovered, wheeled to the 
right to strike the enemy's fiank. So that, by the time the Confederates had 
captured Cushing's Battery, our brigade, mingled with Webb's, was in front of 
it in a strong, though confused, line at a few rods distance. Just here we were 
joined by Capt. Farrell with Company C of our regiment, the division provost 
guard, who had promptly obeyed Gibbon's order to join the regiment in resist- 
ing this attack. The fire from both sides, so near to each other, was most deadly 
while it lasted. Corp. Dehn, the last of our color guard, then carrying our tat- 
tered fiag, was here shot through the hand, and the fiagstaff cut in two. Corp. 
Henry D. O'Brien of Company E instantly seized the flag by the remnant of the 
staff. Whether the command to charge was given by any general officer I do 
not know. My impression then was that it came as a spontaneous outburst 
from the men, and instantly the line precipitated itself upon the enemy. O'Brien, 
who then had the broken staff and tatters of our battle flag, with his characteristic 
bravery and impetuosity sprang with it to the front at the first sound of the 
word charge, and rushed right up to the enemy's line, keeping it noticeably in 
advance of every other color. My feeling at the instant blamed his rashness in 
so risking its capture. But the effect was electrical. Every man of the First 
Minnesota sprang to protect its fiag, and the rest rushed with them upon the 
enemy. The bayonet was used for a few minutes, and cobble stones, with which 
the ground was well covered, filled the air, being thrown by those in the rear 


over the heads of their comrades. The struggle, desperate and deadly while it 
lasted, was soon over. Most of the Confederates remaining threw down their 
arms and surrendered, a very few escaping. Marshall Sherman of Company C 
here captured the colors of the Twenty-eighth Virginia Regiment. Our men 
were at once most kind and attentive to the three or four thousand captured 
Confederates, giving them refre^ments from canteens and haversacks. Our 
loss in killed and wounded in this day's fight was seventeen. Among the killed 
was Capt. Nathan S. Messick, our commander; also Capt. Wilson B. Farrell, 
who succeeded to the command on the fall of Capt. Messick, both most gallant 
and capable officers. Our color guard had suffer^ severely in the battle. When 
the charge on July 2d was ordered, Sergt. Ellett P. Perkins, who bad seized 
the colors at Antietam when Sam. Bloomer was wounded, and had borne them 
bravely through every intermediate battle, still carried them. He and two cor- 
porals of the color guard succeeding him in carrying the colors were struck 
down in that charge. Corp. Dehn, the last of the color guard, carried the flag 
that night, and in the repelling of Pickett's charge, until wounded in the hand 
when the flagstaff was cut in two as stated. Corp. O'Brien, who then seized the 
flag, received two wounds in .the final miUe at the moment of victory; but the 
flag was grasped by Corp. W. N. Irvine of Company D. The staff was spliced 
by the staff of a Confederate flag on the battlefield, and so carried till the regi- 
ment was mustered out, and still remains with the same splice in the capitol at 
St. Paul. With the repulse of Pickett's charge the serious fighting of the battle 
of Gettysburg ended. The command of the First Begiment devolved upon Capt. 
Henry C. Coates, who appointed Lieut. William Lochren acting adjutant. Gen. 
Hancock was severely wounded in this last day's battle, as was also Oen. John 
Gibbon, our division commander, one of the most able and gallant leaders on 
that field. On July 4th we remained on the battlefield, in a drenching rain, 
burying our dead, and expecting a renewal of the fight; but, aside from slight 
skirmishing and artillery firing, the day passed quietly. On July 5th it was 
known that the enemy was retreating, and in the afternoon we moved to Two 
Taverns, and the next day to Taneytown, Md. On July 7th we made a long 
march to Frederick City, passing the aristocratic Seventh N'ew York Militia 
Begiment, which the scare had brought that fiekr, but which had been kept well 
out of danger. It had to bear, with meekness, all manner of jibes and jeers 
from the lines of dusty veterans. From this time on till July 13th we had 
crossed the South Mountain; and, passing near the old battlefield of Antietam, 
on that day confronted the enemy at Jones' Cross-roads, near Williamsport. 
The day was rainy, and was spent in bringing up the army, as the enemy was 
behind strong field-works. In the night following Lee succeeded in crossing the 
Potomac, and the pursuit was at an end. On July 15th the Second Corps marched 
to near Sandy Hook, and on the 18th it crossed the Potomac into Harper's Ferry, 
and, without pausing, crossed the Shenandoah, passing up around the foot of 
Loudon Heights into the beautiful Loudon Valley, following mainly the route 
traveled by us the year before, except that our division marched into and nearly 
through Manassas Gap when it was reached, driving out the Confederates who 
occupied it. The movement of the army was regulated considerably by the 
parallel movements of the Confederates, and continued somewhat deviously dur- 
ing the balance of July, on the last day of which we were near the Rappahan- 
nock, and not far from Kelly's Ford. 


We remained there, engaged in picket and fatigue duties, until August 15th, 
when we were surprised by an order that the First Minnesota, Seventh Michigan 
and Eighth Ohio regiments march to Bealton and take cars for Alexandria, with 
the rumor that we were to go to New York and enforce the draft. We marched 
in the afternoon, the entire division turning out under arms to salute us on part- 
ing. Bealton was reached about dark, and Alexandria after midnight. We 
stayed there till August 20th, when we all went on board the ocean steamer 
Atlantic, which lay at anchor until the next morning. In the night, in some un- 


explained way, Lieat. August Kreager of our regiment fell from the steamer and 
was drowned. The ship was so crowded that he was not missed till we were 
under way the next day, and his fate was learned and his body found by Chap- 
lain Gonwell, who returned from New York to look after him. Gen. S. S. Car- 
roll commanded the troops sent, and Lieut. Myron Shepard of our regiment was 
detailed as one of his aids, and remained on his staff after we returned to the 
army. On August 22d we were on the ocean, a rolling sea bringing sea-sickness 
to many. On the 23d, in the morning, we entered New York harbor, and landed 
and camped on Governor's Island, where we remained till August 28th, when 
we were crossed over to Brooklyn and camped on Washington Park. No draft 
riots occurred, and the veterans received much flattering attention and many 
kindnesses from the good people of Brooklyn, and on September 4th were feasted 
by the ladies of Carlton Avenue M. E. Church in fine style. On September 6th 
we crossed the ferry and marched through a part of New York City, taking the 
steamer Empire City for Alexandria, which, after a pleasant trip, was reached 
on the afbernoon of September 8th. We remained there until the 12th, when 
we took up our march for the front, rejoining our brigade beyond Culpepper on 
the 16th, and finding Maj. Gen. G. K. Warren in command of the corps during 
Gen. Hancock's convalescence. On October 3d Commissioners Jefferson P. Kid- 
der and Solomon Snow received the votes of the regiment for the state election 
a month later. On October 4th Maj. Mark W. Downie, wounded at Gettysburg, 
returned and assumed command of the regiment. 


On October 8th a movement of Lee toward our right and rear was discovered, 
causing Meade's army to fall back to the Eappahannock, which was crossed on 
October 11th. From mistaken information the river was recrossed the next day, 
but linding that the enemy had crossed above, and was advancing on Warrenton, 
the army was on the following night again moved north of the river, and our 
regiment marched to Bealton on the morning of the 13th. After less than an 
hour's rest we were on the march again, and continued till night, without mak- 
ing great distance, as the roads were blocked with trains and with other troops. 
We bivouacked on the south side of Cedar Run, near the village of Auburn. 
Meade's position was now fraught with great danger, as Lee was in position to 
strike him in the flank, coming from Warrenton, Meade's line being incum- 
bered everywhere with heavy trains. We were up at 3 A. M. on October 14th, 
and started, at earliest daylight, in a dense fog. Before we were well under way, 
our cavalry in the direction of Warrenton were driven in, and jnfantry were 
sent to their support. Our course was to Catlett Station, and soon, directly in 
our front, and near at hand, came the roar of artillery. The situation seemed 
to be i)erplexing. It transpired afterward that the Confederate general, J. E. B. 
Stuart, with two brigades of .cavalry and a battery, was caught^ the evening be- 
fore between two of our lines; and, not being discovered, lay hidden in a wood 
till morning, when, before retiring, after the troops surrounding him had moved 
on, he opened his artillery on Caldwell's Division of our corps. Hayes' Division, 
which was nearer still to Stuart, but unseen in the fog, soon drove him away. 
Beaching Catlett's Station we turned to the left, taking the road running on the 
right side of, and parallel with, the railroad toward Bristow; and, on approach- 
ing the latter place, heard the firing of Confederate artillery ahead, and to the 
left of the railroad, and saw the shells bureting in our line of march. Our divis- 
ion, now commanded by Gen. Webb, was in the advance, followed by Hayes 
and Caldwell. As there was on the left side of the railroad a dense thicket of 
stunted pine, the First Minnesota Regiment wa^ sent out as flankers to deploy 
and cover the division in that direction, the men having to push their way 
through a tangle of brush so close that sight would penetrate but a little dis- 
tance. Just as we came opposite to Bristow Station, which was marked by a 
single deserted house, we were assailed by the fire of a body of infantry push- 
ing through the brush on our left. We returned the fire, but soon received an 
order to fall back. On reaching the clearing, about twenty rods from the rail- 


road, none of oar troojw were visible, and we lay down in a dead fnrrow, half 
way down the slope, and opened on the Confederates, who were then appearing 
in strong force at the edge of the wood. At once came a peremptory order to 
foil back over the railroad embankment, and as we ran for it a heavy fire fol- 
lowed OS, which our descent caused to go over us. On rising over and crossing 
the embankment we found our division concealed behind it. The rebels followed 
us with yells, and were half way or more down the slope when our division 
arose, and over the embankment as a breastwork poured in a murderous volley. 
The slaughter was great, and most of the enemy who were not hurt lay down. 
The fire was so hot that a Confederate battery of five guns, which had reached 
the edge of the brush through some by-road, was abandoned before firing a shot. 
^ In a few moments the First Minnesota Regiment again sprang over the embank- 

ment, and, hurrying forward, captured three hundred and twenty -two prisoners, 
considerably more than our own number, and the five cannon and two colors. 
The prisoners were told off into three companies, and each put in command of » 
lieutenant of the First Minnesota (the writer being one), and carrying their 
arms, were marched, without other escort, to the provost guard of the division, 
three- fourths of a mile away. It is related that the Confederates engaged in 
this affair recognized in the white trefoil badge of our division their old antago- 
nists at Gettysburg, exclaiming: '^Here's those damned white clubs again.'' 
The regiment lost in this affair one killed and sixteen wounded. Among the 
latter was Capt. John Ball, who stood on the embankment and emptied his re- 
volver at the foe, receiving a severe wound in the groin. The Confederates were 
reinforced, and advanced again, but did not attack, and, our trains having all 
passed, about midnight we were silently withdrawn and forded Broad Run, 
bivouacking between that and Centreville. This ended Lee's flanking move- 
ment, and he returned again to the south side of the Rappahannock, and was 
followed leisurely by Meade's army. The Second Corps came to Kelly's Ford 
on November 7th. On that day the Sixth Corps carried by assault the enemy's 
works defending the railroad bridge at Rappahannock Station, after which we 
had no serious opposition to our crossing at Kelly's Ford. Here, on the south 
side, the First Minnesota took possession of very nice winter quarters just erected 
by some Confederate regiment. The log huts were well covered.with shakes, 
or long split shingles, and had good fireplaces of clay burned in place. We 
remained here, doing picket duty along the Rapidan, across which Lee had re- 
tired, until November 26th. 


On that day the Second Corps marched early to Germanna Ford, on the Rapi- 
dan. Some delay occurred, because the pontoon bridge was found to be too 
short, and because of delays in crossing other portions of the army above and 
below us. The ^nemy made little resistance, and we crossed in the afternoon, 
and moved about four miles to Flat Ran Church. The next morning we moved 
early, by a wood road, reaching Robertson's Tavern at ten o'clock, finding the 
enemy's cavalry near by in force, which, being driven back, uncovered a large 
body of infantry, apparently outnumbering our corps, and extending beyond it 
on both flanks. French's Third Corps was expected, and then due, on our right, 
and Warren threw forward a strong skirmish line, which kept the enemy engaged 
until sunset, except in front of our brigade on the extreme right, where the Ck)n- 
federates advanced and drove back the skirmishers, but were in turn driven back 
by our main line. The Fifteenth Massachusetts, joining us on the right, lost 
quite heavily in this encounter. French's delay until the next day foiled Meade 
in his hope of surprising the enemy, and gave Lee time to concentrate his army 
and complete the fortification of his naturally strong position on Mine Run, to 
which he fell back in the night. Meade's army confronted these works early on 
the 28th, but the strong intrenchments behind the swollen stream seemed 
impregnable. A movement by the left, to turn the position, was determined on, 
and the Second Corps fell back to Robertson's. Early on the 29th the march to 
the left was taken up, the corps reaching Hope Church in the afternoon. In the 


dear, cold night following we marched to the i>osition assigned ns, passing for 
some distance near to and parallel with the enemy's works, the First Minnesota 
marching as flankers of the division. When halted, onr division lay in the val- 
ley of a small stream, about sixty rods from the enemy's line. The First Minne- 
sota, now faced to the front as skirmishers, was twenty rods nearer that line, and 
conld plainly see the line of earthworks on the crest of the gentle slope rising 
before ns. Onr position required ns to do picket duty during the night, and we 
cocdd hear the incessant sound of intrenching tools in the enemy's works. We 
knew that it was exi>ected that we should charge these works, and earnestly 
wished that the order would come to do so in the darkness, before they were 
made stronger and reinforced. Near morning the order came that the charge 
would be made at eight o'clock precisely, on the firing of signal guns from the 
different corps, and that, in the advance, the First Minnesota should march on 
the enemy's works, keeping its distance as skirmishers in front of the first line 
until it should draw the enemy's full fire, upon which the lines behind were to 
move at double-quick, and the survivors of our regiment were to fall into the 
first line as it reached them, and participate in the assault. As our position on. 
the elope would be in full view of the enemy's works at daylight, and quite near 
its rifle-pits, we gathered fence rails and laid them into slight barricades. As 
the day began to dawn it was intensely cold, and as the Confederates in their 
rifle-pits discovered us, two or three inefifectual shots were fired by them. The 
severe cold drove them out of their pits for exercise, and, as we did not fire on 
them, they also abstained from firing, and soon they and we were running and 
jumping about, within pistol range, to keep from chilling. The earthworks in 
our front seemed very strong, and well covered with artillery, which could 
sweep every inch of the perfectly open, gentle slope over which we must ad- 
vance. It was plain that reinforcements were pouring in, as there was one point 
in the road behind the enemy's line so high that the arms of soldiers passing 
there could be seen by us over the works, and from early light a steady stream 
of men had been passing that point from the enemy's lefb. We had no sufficient 
amount of artillery to silence or disable that of the enemy, but must pass to the 
earthwork through the canister from these guns, as well as the fire of the enemy's 
infantry. The prospect was far from assuring, and, with our orders here, we 
felt that, after our heavy loss at Gettysburg, there would not be enough left of 
the raiment for a formal muster-out after this charge should be made. Yet 
every man was ready, and the order to advance would have been obeyed as 
promptly as if certain victory had been in prospect. Gen. Francis A. Walker, 
the very able assistant adjutant general of the corps, writes: 

While on the picket line, reoonnoitering, my nnifonu concealed by a soldier's overcoat, I asked 
an old veteran of the noble First Minnesota, on picket, what he thought of the prospect Not rec- 
ognizing me as an officer, he expressed himself very freely, declaring it '*a damned sight worse 
t£an Fredericksburg ; *' and adding, **I am going as &r as I can travel, but we can't get more than 
two- thirds of the way up the hill.'' 

At last the hour of eight arrived, and as a gun was heard on our right, many 
scanned the sun, the sky and the landscape for a last survey. One or two more 
guns were heard following the first, but no gun from our own corps, which was 
to set us in motion. We were nerved up for the rush and the sacrifice, and the 
suspense was almost painful. Soon curiosity was aroused as to the cause of the 
delay, andailer a half hour of intense expectation of instant signal to move, came 
the rumor, soon confirmed, that Warren had decided that the assault could not 
succeed, and that he would not order the slaughter. This was relief indeed, 
and every man commended the decision. We at once cast about to make our- 
selves as comfortable as might be, and in the garden of a large house on our line 
found abundance of nice potatoes, covered lightly in piles to protect them from 
the frost. We found kettles in the house, and dry oak bark at a tannery close 
by, and were soon feasting on the potatoes and basking in the heat of the fires, 
and so spent the cold day very comfortably, while our friends, the Confederates 
in the rifle-pits, so near that we could have thrown potatoes to them, looked on 
curiously, but showed no disposition to disturb our comfort. At night we were 


relieved, and marched back a coaple of miles. The next day we marched nearly 
to the Eapidan, which we crossed at another ford in the forenoon of December 
2d, and on the evening of that day, after a hard march through deep mud, and 
wet with the cold rain, we reached our camp, to find that it had been burned 
and destroyed by the mischievous, worthless stragglers, who always sneak in the 
rear of an army. *'Our army swore terribly in Flanders," says Uncle Toby, 
and armies sometimes have provocations tending to profanity, as we realized 
that night. This virtually closed the campaign of 1863, and the field service of 
the First Minnesota Regiment. About December 7th the regiment went into 
camp at Stevensburg, having been joined by Lieut. Col. Charles P. Adams, who, 
though not entirely recover^ from the several wounds received by him at Gret- 
tysburg, took command of the regiment. The men built huts for winter quar- 
ters, and were kept at hard work, building corduroy roads and on picket duty. 
Here, also, on December 29th, they had the pleasure of welcoming back for a 
short time Gen. Hancock, for whom not only his own corps, but the entire army, 
felt the most enthusiastic regard. His wound was not yet healed, and he was 
^on obliged to leave for further treatment, and Warren resumed command. 


On Feb. 5, 1864, the First Minnesota, having received orders to return to 
its state, left camp, the brigade turning out under arms to pay it honor. It 
marched to Brandy Station, where it took cars and reached Washington, and was 
before dark quartered at the Soldier's Best. On the evening of February 6th a 
grand banquet was given to the regiment at the National Hotel in WashingJ^on, at 
which three hundred and nine of ita members, many of them still sujSering from 
wounds, were present. Col. Colvill, unable to stand, was carried in by Capt. Thomas 
Sinclair and Sergt. John G. Merritt. Hon. William Windom presided, and among 
the guests were Hannibal Hamlin, the vice president; Edwin M.Stanton, secretary 
of war; J. P. Usher, secretary of the interior; Senators Chandler, Harlan and 
Lane; Bepresentatives Aldrich and Donnelly; Mr. Morton, commissioner of agri- 
culture; Judge Edmunds, commissioner of the general land office; J. W. Forney, 
secretary of the senate; and James W. Taylor of St. Paul. Also, William 8. 
King, postmaster of the house of representatives, and George A. Brackett of 
Minneapolis, both of whom never omitted an occasion to aid or honor the regi- 
ment, or to befriend any of its members, and who, at this time, did probably 
more than any other two men to make the occasion one of complete enjoyment. 
The tattered battle flags of the regiment were at the heads of the tables, and 
speeches, patriotic and laudatory, were made by nearly all the distinguished 
guests. letters were read from Secretaries Seward and Chase and Postmaster 
General Blair, and the boys were feasted, toasted and praised without stint. 

Col. William Colvill's wounds, especially a wound received in his foot, one 
of the several he sustained in the charge at Gettysburg, still completely disabled 
him; nevertheless, he assumed command of the regiment, and returned with it 
to Minnesota, where he was mustered out with the regiment, having received 
the brevet rank of brigadier general, for gallant and meritorious services. 
Never was brevet more fully earned, nor bestowed on a more gallant and de- 
serving soldier. Liberally educated, a lawyer in good practice before the war, 
and naturally studious, he mastered without eflfort knowledge of tactics, regula- 
tions, and everything pertaining to the duties devolving upon him. But he was 
the most modest of men, without a trace of arrogance, always kind and consider- 
ate toward everyone, and ever watchful for the welfare and comfort of his men. 
Careless of everything in the nature of mere display, he would not, perhaps, 
attract notice at a review, but on the battlefield he always rose to his full height 
of six feet and five inches, the bravest, coolest, most imperturbable of command- 
ers, whom nothing ever daunted or surprised. He was just the man to lead the 
charge made by the regiment at Gettysburg, and had, as such a man always has, 
the fullest love and confidence of those whom he commanded. The regiment 
Ciune by rail to La Crosse, receiving most flattering demonstrations in its honor 
at every place where any stop was made. La Crosse was then the limit of 


railroad transportation in the direction of home, bat Gapt. Bassell Blakeley had 
made ample provision for stage sleighs to meet the regiment at that place, and 
under the immediate charge of Col. Alvaren Allen, genial, obliging and every 
way efficient, it proceeded merrily northward on the frozen surface of the river. 
It was feasted at Winona, Bed Wing and all towns at which it stopped on the 
way, and received an ovation when it reached St. Paul and was quartered again 
at Fort Snelling. Between its arrival there and the 28th of April several of the 
men re-enlisted, and, pursuant to orders from the War Department, all others 
whose terms then expired were to be mustered out. A review was had on April 
28th9 near the fort, before Gk)v. Stephen Miller, the first lieutenant colonel of 
the regiment, followed by an address from him, from which I extract as follows: 

Fellow Soldiebs: A few of ns who witnessed the first grand review of oar gallant old regi- 
ment have been permitted to participate in its last, and I know yon will receive kindly a word of 
parting from one who has shared a portion of yoar dangers, and has followed yoa with his sympa- 
thies Id all yonr marches and conflicts. I said a few of us; for, alas! McKnne and Messick, and 
Acker and Farrell, and Uolzborn and Periam and Mailer, and a host of oar old comrades, both offl- 
eers and men, are not here to-day. They sleep their last sleep, and never will waken to glory again 
nntil God's last reveille shall snmmon them to the soldier's eternal rest. We deeply lament their 
fall, bat the patriot hearts that miss them, still clinging to the flag of oar Union, are exclaiming: 

" I'd not exchange mj slauffbtered sod 
For auy other living one. 

Hondreds of oar associates have fallen, and the hydra rebellion is not yet crashed, and others 
whom I now address may die without the sight To those who are about repairing to your homes 
I may say that you have before you aa illustration that Minnesota is not ungrateful to her soldiers. 
Be pradent and exemplary in civil life, as you have been brave and faithful upon the field. To 
sach as return to the field^ it is hardly necessary to say. Maintain the reputation of the now 
immortal First, and strike boldly for the integrity of the Union. And now, officers and men of 
the First Minnesota Regiment, farewell! Your banners are torn and tattered, but have never 
been dishonored. If, in my service with you, I have, by word or act, wronged officer or soldier, it 
has been by inadvertence, and I now ask his pardon. In camp and in battle, in victory and in 
defeat, in sickness and in health, I have received from you the utmost kindness, and am not in- 
•eosible to the fact that to my association with you I mainly owe whatever of honor or position 
I poesess. Wishing, with all my heart, for the present and eternal happiness of each of you, I bid 
yoa as a regiment a final farewell. * 

Whea the cheers following the governor's address had subsided, Lieut. Col. 
Charles P. Adams, whose gallantry on every battlefield, attested by his many 
wounds, also won for him the brevet rank of brigadier general, read an address 
from which the following is extracted: 

Officebs and Men op the First Regiment: The time has arrived when the organiza- 
tion of this regiment must be broken up. Three years ago you rushed from the peace and tran- 
qoility of your firesides, at the call of the president, to meet the traitors whose hands had trailed 
oar iclorious flag in the dust at Sumter. You came from the hillside and the valley, the city and 
the plain, with brave hearts and strong arms, to shed your blood in defense of your country's 
honor. You were the fir^t three-years' regiment in the volunteer service. Then you were a thous- 
and strong, but stronger in your love of country and devotion to its flag. The promise of your 
organization has been more than fulfilled in the glory of your achievements. Your deeds have a 
world-wide renown. The battle-scented breezes from Bull Run, Edwards* Ferry, Yorktown, West 
Point, Fair Oaks, Peach Orchard, Savage Station, White Oak Swamp, Glendale, Al^lvern Hill, 
Cbantilly, South Mountain, Autietam, Charlestown, Fredericksburg, Mary^'s Heights, Bristow 
Station and the immortiil field of Gettysburg, have wafted them to the most distant climes. The 
seal of your blood was stamped upon all of the twenty odd battlefields emblazoned on your flag. 
The blood of more than seven hundred of your companions has crimsoned those heroic fields, and 
more than two hundred and fifty of them have passed from the smoke and clangor of battle strife 
to their eternal bivoaac beyond the skies. Let the memories of these three years' associations, the 
common dangers and trials we have shared, be cemented in the mutual blood we have shed, and 
cberi-^hed with a true soldier's pride. Forget and cast into oblivion all little piques incident to 
the service. Let these lie buried forever. Officers and soldiers of the First Minnesota Regiment — 
heroes of more than twenty battles! I now bid y<»u an affectionate farewell. Never again will you 
all assemble until the reveille at the dawning of eternity's morning shall summon us from: the 
sinmher of the ^rave, to pass the review of our lives before the CJommander-in-Chief of the armies 
of the skies. May a merciful Providence direct you, and crown you here with earth's brightest 
hoiHtrB. But however brilliant may be your future, your proudest boast will ever be, ** I belonged 
to the First Minnesota." Farewell. 

This was also responded to with cheers, and as the regiment broke ranks the 
officers and men crowded around the carriage in which Col. Colvill reclined, still* 


disabled by his wounds from taking any part in the review. The leave-taking 
between the men and their colonel, and their solicitude for him in his wounded 
and nearly helpless condition, was tender and affecting. On the next day, April 
29, 1864, those whose terms then expired, and who had not re-enlisted, were mus- 
tered out of the service, and, a few days later, followed those who had filled up 
its ranks when changed to a three-years' regiment. And here ends the history 
of the First Begiment Minnesota Volunteers. 


The veterans of the First Minnesota Begiment who re-enlisted, and recruits 
whose terms had not expired, with recruits then enlisted, were formed into two 
companies, and organized as the First Battalion Minnesota Infantry Volunteers 
at Fort Snelling. It was officered by veterans, who had been enlisted men in the 
First Minnesota. James C. Farwell became captain, Chesley B. Tirrell, first 
lieutenant-, and Charles G. Parker, second lieutenant, of Ck)mpany A; and Ellett 
P. Perkins, 'captain, Charles F. Hausdorf, first lieutenant, and Henry D. 
O'Brien, second lieutenant, of Company B; and I pass, with some misgiving, to 
an attempt to narrate, in briefest form, the services of that organization, of which 
I was not a member, and respecting which the data I have been able te collect 
is not as full nor satisfactory as I could wish. Still, its first two companies, who 
alone saw much service in the field, were so largely composed of, and entirely 
commanded by, members of the First Begiment, and always regarded them- 
selves as a continuation of that regiment, and so well maintained its reputation 
in the same brigade on many battlefields, that it seems fitting that its narrative 
should be a sequel to that of the old regiment, and such I understand to be the 
desire of its members, else I would not undertake it. 


The battalion, under the command of Capt. Farwell, was drilled at Fort 
Snelling until May 16, 1864, when, on being ordered to the Potomac, it embarked 
at Fort Snelling, reaching Washington May 23d. On May dOth it again em- 
barked at Alexandria, and arrived, on June 1st, at White House, on the Pamun- 
ky river. On June 5th it escorted a wagon train to Cold Harbor, returning to 
White House the next day. On June 9th it marched to army headquarters, and 
was assigned to the First Brigade, Second Division, of the Sfecond Army Corps, 
the very place occupied by the First Begiment, and joined that brigade at the 
front on June 11th, where it was cordially welcomed by the regiments which 
had served so long with the Old Fii-st. This was just at the close of the san- 
guinary battle of cSld Harbor, in which the loss of the Second Division and of 
the corps had been very heavy. On June 12th orders to pack up were received, 
and on that night the march to the James river was begun, and continued across 
the peninsula, until the James river was crossed on June 14th from Wilcox's 
Landing to Windmill Point, where the boys of the battalion got their first 
glimpse of Gen. Grant, as he stood on the bank quietly smoking a cigar, and 
observing the landing and disposition of the troops. On June 15th the battalion 
marched, with its corps, by a circuitous route, about twenty miles to Peters- 
burg, reaching the vicinity of that place about midnight, and then working till 
morning in throwing up a line of breastworks. The very effective use of the 
spade made by Lee in his campaign from the Biipidan to Cold Harbor had dem- 
onstrated the value of that implement. On June 18th the battalion parti cipat>ed 
in the sanguinary, but unsuccessful, assault on the enemy's works in their front. 
The battalion moved out of its works before daylight, advancing on the Con- 
federate line, which was in a thick wood, and driving the enemy's skirmishers 
from three partially fortified lines. Beaching the City Point & Petersburg rail- 
road, the battalion was subjected to a partly enfilading, as well as a front, fire; 
but, using the railroad embankment as a breastwork, it kept up the contest. 
Here Sergt. W. N. Irvine, who had safely passed through most of the battles of 
the First Begiment, was mortally wounded, and Lieut. Chesley B. Tirrell re- 
ceived a severe wound in the lefb forearm, breaking both bones above the wrist. 


Soon the Sixth Corps advanced on the right, and the position reached by the 
battalion was held as part of onr line, and the nearest to the enemy's works of 
any gained, nntil the retreat of Lee. The approach to it was so completely cov- 
ered by the enemy's fire that all commnnication with it was after nightfall. 
On the evening of June 20th the battalion was relieved from this position, and 
on the next day marched to the left to the Jerusalem plank road, where the 
enemy was found in force. In the skirmish that ensued there were three wounded 
in the battalion, and, after dark, it threw up breastworks to the west of the 
plank road. On the 22d day of June the Second Ck)rps advanced, and was to be 
Joined by the Sixth Corps on its left. The failure of the Sixth Corps to keep up 
with the advance, and the fact that the rebels were in strong force beyond the 
left flank of our corps, caused some delay until a peremptory order from Meade 
to advance, r^ardless of the position of the Sixth Corps, sent the Second Corps 
ahead, when it was subjected to a strong attack in front, and by an enveloping 
force on that flank and on its rear, resulting in a loss of four guns, a large num- 
ber of killed and wounded, and of about 1,700 prisoners. Among the latter 
were nearly all that was left of the gallant Fifteenth Massachusetts Eegiment, 
which had fought by our side since 1861. The loss of the battalion was two 
killed, thirteen wounded and twenty prisoners. This was the first time the gal- 
lant Second Corps had ever lost a color or a gun. Oen. Hancock was not then 
in command, having been disabled a few days before by the breaking out of his 
Grettysburg wound, which kept him from the front till June 27th. 


Until the 26th of July the battalion was mainly engaged in constructing earths 
works and defenses. On that day the Second Corps were given six days' rations, 
and marched at night across the Appomattox at Point of Kocks, and at sunrise 
crossed the James river at Deep Bottom. The corps was accompanied by a large 
body of cavalry under Sheridan, the object being to force the Confederate in- 
fiuitry toward Chapin's Bluff, while Sheridan, with his cavalry, should make a 
dash for Richmond, supported, if he had any success, by the infantry; or, if the 
enemy should be found strong on the north side of the James, it was hoped the 
movement would draw there a much larger force from Petersburg, and give 
greater chance for the meditated assault on the latter place, in connection with 
the explosion of Burnside's mine, which was in readiness under Elliott's salient. 
The enemy north of the James was found in strong force, and well intrenched, 
along Bailey's creek; but the movement was successful in taking more than half 
of L^s army to the north side of the James. The battalion had its share in 
the marching and skirmishing, which held the enemy there till the night of the 
29th, when the federal forces quietly retired and recrossed the James, and, after 
a hard march, reached Petersburg just after daylight, and in time to witness 
the explosion of the mine. The march was exhausting, and one man, John 
Weeks of Company B, died by the wayside. The battalion took no part in the 
action following the mine explosion, and on the evening of that day returned to 
its camp! 

Hancock moved the Second Corps on August 12th to City Point, and in the 
afternoon of the 13th embarked it on vessels for Deep Bottom, leaving at 10 p. M., 
and debarking at Deep Bottom in the morning. The vessels were of such deep 
draught that they could not approach the shore, and the landing was too slow 
for the hoped for surprise. The enemy was there in much stronger force than 
was expecied. There was severe fighting, and in places the Confederates were 
driven from their intrenchments, but were able to reinforce and retake them. 
At 4 P. M. preparation was made for a general assault. Gen. Barlow, inquiring 
of Capt. Farwell what his regiment was, on his response sent it to the extreme 
right, saying: **If you fight like the Old First all hell won't stop you.'' At the 
right the battalion advanced, crossing a cornfield under heavy fire, and reaching 
a ravine of generally impassable bog, covered with a dense tangle of brush and 
vines, beyond which the ground rose gradually to the enemy's intrenchments. 
Several were wounded while crossing the cornfield, and the morass seemed to 


stop further advance. But a slight path was found on the margin of a small, 
open pond, and though swept by the enemy's fire, the battalion hurried through 
' it, and, forming a few yards in front of the rebel works, at once carried them. 
But as the troops on the left had failed to pass the ravine, the battalion was en- 
tirely without support, and on the enemy being strongly reinforced here, Capt. 
Farwell ordered the battalion back to the ravine. The enemy advanced in turn 
and attacked it here, but was repulsed, and retreated to the works, and the 
ravine was held by the battalion until it was ordered back after nightfall. The 
battalion lost seven killed and a large number wounded. Among those severely 
wounded were Lieut. Henry D. O'Brien, who had, as color- bearer of the Old 
First, distinguished himself in repelling Pickett's charge; and Marshall Sher- 
man, who, on the same occasion, had captured the flag of the Twenty-eighth 
Virginia Regiment. The operations north of the James at this time were mainly 
important in withdrawing and keeping employed so large a part of Lee's army 
that it enabled Grant, with Warren's Fifth Corps, to obtain decided advantages 
in the direction of theWeldon railroad. To secure this object the Second Corps 
was kept north of the James till August 20th, on the night of which it was with- 
drawn across i>ontoons and marched to its old camp near Petersburg. This was 
reached after an exhausting night march in deep mud. With only a halt to 
make coffee, the First and Second divisions were sent to the Strong House to 
slash timber and construct defenses. 


On August 24th Gibbon's Second Division was ordered to Reams' Station, on 
the Weldon railroad, twelve miles south of Petersburg, and on the next day took 
part in the unfortunate battle there, where the remnant of the Second Corps, re- 
duced by hard fighting and constant marching to less than 6,000 men, were bieset 
by three times their number; and, after repelling three charges, were at length 
forced to retire, losing some guns and many prisoners. Even then a part of the 
troops, including the battalion, rallied, and, by a sudden charge, recaptured 
some of the lost guns, and held the field until night, when the corps returned to 
the Strong House near Petersburg. The battalion lost one killed, three wounded 
and fiftieen captured. 

hatcher's run — APPOMATTOX. 

Up to October 24th the battalion alternated between several forts. On that 
day Capt. EUett P. Perkins resigned. On October 27th the Second Corps, hav- 
ing moved west of the Weldon railroad, found the enemy strongly intrenched at 
Hatcher's Run, and at once charged and routed them, following to the Boydtown 
plank road, where some hard fighting occurred while Hancock was waiting for 
Crawford to come up on his right. The Confederates were worsted, but as Craw- 
ford did not come up, Hancock retired at night to Hatcher's Run, and next day 
returned to camp near Fort Bross. Capt. Farwell, in command of detachments 
from the battalion, the Seventh Michigan and Thirty -sixth Wisconsin, number- 
ing about seventy men, was, on the night of the 27th, by some oversight, left on 
the skirmish line, and the men found themselves the next morning alone con- 
fronting the Confederate forces. Concealing the weakness of his force in a piece 
of timber, Capt. Farwell repulsed a considerable force of Confederate cav- 
alry which attacked him, and, falling back cautiously, reached the Union Unas 
at nightfall without loss. For his gallant conduct here Capt. Farwell was bre- 
vett^ major. After this the battalion was for some time engaged in picket 
duty. About December 1st, after having built winter quarters, the division 
was moved to the front, and, with the Third Division of the same corps, made a 
raid along the Weldon railroad nearly to the state line. After this it again 
built winter quarters. Maj. Farwell resigned, and was succeeded in command 
of the battalion by Capt. Charles F. Sausdorf. The battalion being reduced by 
casualties and sickness to but little more than thirty men present for duty, 
First Lieut. Charles C. Parker, Sergt. Thomas N. Whetstone, and five other 
enlisted men were sent to Minnesota on recruiting service. Lieut. O'Brien re- 


tamed, and became acting qnartermaster. The recrniting detail was snccess- 
ful, and during the spring following, Company C, Capt. Charles C. Parker, 
joined the battalion, and on the morning after its arrival joined their companions 
in a snccessfnl charge on the enemy's rifle-pits, capturing the occapants. The 
battalion took part in the final assault on Lee's works at Petersburg on the 1st 
and 2d of April, 1865, and in the several actions in which the Second Corps 
was engaged up to the surrender of the Army of Northern Virginia at Appo- 
mattox, and with only the loss of a few wounded. At the surrender the battal- 
ion was on picket, and Confederate soldiers came in in large numbers. Our men 
were of course jubilant at the prospect of a speedy and successful ending of the 
war, and the Confederates seemed reconciled, and glad that the end was reached. 
Company D, Capt. Thos. N. Whetstone, arrived just after the surrender. As 
other companies had been recruited for the battalion, Maj. Mark W. Downie of 
the old regiment was commissioned lieutenant colonel, and joined the battalion, 
and Capt. Charles F. Hausdorf major. Later each of these officers was commis- 
sion^ one grade higher, and Capt. Henry D. O'Brien major. But they were 
not mustered upon those commissions. In June, 1865, soon after the battalion 
arrived in Washington, it was ordered to Louisville, Ky., and became part of 
Brig. Gen. Henry A. Morrow's Division of the Army of the Tennessee. Maj. 
O'Brien became his assistant adjutant general, and Capt. Thomas H. Pressnell 
provost marshal of the division. In July, 1865, the battalion, which had been 
increased by Companies E, F, G, H and I, was ordered to Minnesota, and, after 
a most hospitable and enjoyable reception at St. Paul, was mustered out at Fort 
SneUing, July 15, 1865. 


Glancing over what I haye written, I feel satisfied of its accuracy, for I have 
spared no care or pains. But I have felt cramped by the limit of space, though 
all that could be allowed, in view of the necessity of crowding the narratives and 
rosters of all Minnesota troops into one volume of reasonable size. I feel that 
this narrative will very inadequately convey to its reader any just conception 
of this regiment, whose perfection in discipline and in the execution of every 
movement of company and battalion tactics and care for personal appearance 
made it a favorite and model regiment in camp or on review, and whose esprit du 
corpSy pride in its reputation as a regiment, and the chivalric, soldierly feeling 
I)ervading all ranks would never brook thought of defeat or disgrace, and never 
permitted it to hesitate or falter on any occasion. The regiment can scarcely be 
pictured to the understanding without portrayal of the men who impressed their 
personal characteristics upon it. Such officers as Messick, Farrell, Periam, 
Coates, Sinclair, Muller, Heffelfin^er, Maginnis, Searles and May, and such en- 
listed men as Marvin, Burgess, Tirrell, Perkins, Taylor, Trevor, Irvine and 
hosts of others who, for want of space, cannot even be named. I find I have 
hardly made mention of Dr. W. H. Morton, one of the most skillful surgeons 
of the army, who became medical director of our division, and died from 
disease contracted in the service; or of his able successor, Dr. J. B. Le Blond, 
who joined us in the spring of 1862, and continued till the muster-out of the 
battalion; or of our second chaplain, Rev. F. A. Con well, who joined us after 
Antietam, and was especially devoted in caring for the sick and for the wounded 
on every battlefield ; or of Anson Northup, our wagonmaster, whom no obsta- 
cles could stop, nor any regard for red tape prevent from furnishing needed 
articles to the men, if such articles were in the wagons. The Indian outbreak 
of 1862 took him from us to render efficient service against the savage foe. I am 
aware that some of my statements — of losses, for instance — occasionally disagree 
with official tables. But I have examined all these, so far as yet published in 
the '* Rel)ellion Records," and my statements here vary from them only in the cases 
where, from recollection, confirmed by reliable memoranda made at the time, I 
am satisfied that the official tables are wrong. To cite an instance: ** Rebellion 
Records,'' vol. 27, part 1, page 176, received since this narrative, except this 
closing paragraph, was written, gives the number of officers killed at Gettysburg 


at three. Tet every survivor of the regiment knows that Capts. Nathan S. 
Messick, Wilson B. Parrell and Louis Muller and Lieut. Waldo Farrar died on 
the field. The aggregate of killed, wounded and missing at (Gettysburg is there 
given as two hundr^ and twenty-four. Gapt. CJoates' report of the battle to 
the governor of the state, which (with some typographical errors) will be found 
in "NeilPs History of Minnesota'' (4th ed.), pp. 740-745, was written on the bat- 
tlefield, on July 5, 18B3, by myself, then the acting adjutant of the regiment, and 
states the loss correctly (page 744), four commissioned officers killed, and the 
aggregate loss as two hundred and thirty-two. The six then reported as missing 
were afterward ascertained to have b^n killed or wounded. I may add that 
the aggregate of men there reported as engaged in the battle, three hundred and 
thirty, includes Companies C and F, both of which were engaged with the regi- 
ment on July 3d, but neither of which were in the charge made by the regiment 
on July 2d. The report of Capt. Coates, of Aug. 3, 1863, which appears in voL 
27, part 1, ''Bebellion Becords," pages 424, 425, is manifestly condensed from the 
report written by me on July 5th, as a comparison of its language with that of 
thelatterin * 'NeilPs History " conclusively shows. The reportof Gen. Hancock, 
in the same volume, written while he was wounded and absent from the corps, 
in its reference to our charge, shows that his memory was at that time indistinct 
and at fault. (See page 371.) He speaks of meeting a regiment of the enemy, 
the head of whose column was about passing an unprotected interval of our line, 
and adds: 

The First Minnesota Regiment ctmiing up at this moment^ charged the rebel regiment in hand- 
some style, capturing its colors and driving it back in disorder. I cannot speak too highly of this 
regiment and its commander in its attack, as well as in its sabsequent advance against the enemy, 
in which it lost three-fonrths of the officers and men engaged. 

Hancock was with us but a moment when he ordered our charge. It is pos- 
sible that at that moment a skirt of brush and trees to our right may have hid- 
den from his view a considerable part of the Confederate force which we had 
seen come down the opposite slope and met in our charge. Instead of "coming 
up at this moment," we had stood at the same spot for hours watching Sickles' 
battle and his defeat. It is not strange that, with all the responsibility and un- 
intermitting work and vigilance that devolved on Oen. Hancock during the 
three days of this battle, and his severe wounding on the last day, he should have 
a confused recollection of this incident when he wrote that report. Later, 
the fikcts were recalled to his memory, and the entire situation was well under- 
stood by him, as is indicated by his remarks mentioned by Col. Fox, and already 
quoted. But I have reached my limit, and must close abruptly. The fame and 
glory of the regiment need not be dwelt on. It is known throughout the coun- 
try, and especially to all the people of this state, whose appreciation of its 
valor and services has been shown in the ovations given to the survivors by 
the various cities and towns on the occasions of their annual reunions. Every 
member justly regards his own connection with the regiment as the highest honor 
of his life, — the one thing respecting himself to which his own posterity will 
always refer with greatest pride. May our state always send forth such regi- 
ments whenever its safety, or the safety or honor of our beloved country, shall 
call its sons to arms. 

Minneapolis, Feb. 1, 1890. 




.'.Lt Bouillller 

DbdM W. Htnd. 

EdBandJ. Pogiler 


Eivknl a N«lll. 

^F.A. COD««U 

C^Sttinl Dadi _. 




id DlT., Id Corp*. Bniet Uti. G«iu, Br««i 

wt. CoL; reidgmd; BnTai Brli. Ocn. 
Co).; wad.aiandsle snd GetlTtburg; Brt. 

Brig. 0«a,, Q<iT. of U1dii«mI*. 

id. BuU RuQ, UilTarn, Aatleum, OtUJf 

Q. &^, litLt. mod Cipt. Co. Bi wnd. Osttfib'g : Lt. Col. lai B*tt. 

IK Lt. Co. H,Cipt.*DdA. A.d. I>*D*'«Bri(*da. 
litSerB.iiidliILlsuLCo.El, Cut. Co. H. 

Ut Beri., 2d uid lit Lieut. Co. A, Ou>t.Co.G.; wnd^SiTigii BUIlDD. 
S*i^ll(ior,ldLi«it,Co.A;lBC LIsut.; wod. 0«ttT<burg. 

Pro. Cspt. and C a0.&A.,Lt.Cal.sad ChtCS.8berid«D'(Co>i«. 

Captnndiit BullRuni E»m.8un.M3t. Paul. 

Med. Direcbirld Dli.,M Corp^ —' ' » 

AuL Surg., Surg, lit BMUUon. 

»Id DlT..2d Corp^ lalgnsd troDi dlubllltr- 

Beaigiwd; prlnlc Horelur W PrM. Lincoln i 

■1 Lieut Co. A Oct. T, 


Reiigned nod tr*a>rarnd to Co. O, killed it GettTibarg. 

Compuij F. 


Realgned ind tnnifamd (o Co. D Mit S, 't3. 

Pmuioted 1>l LIsut. Oct. S, '£3. 

Appointed Iloepllil Stevird U. S. A 
Co. L, or 2il Co-Shlrpahooten. 



M*f S, 'I 
Mar B,'l 















Fob, 4,'M 


Killed June 29, m 

S manllii after Geltjiburg, 


Duuded at OetCfihiirg. 


diacharee nt n^atat. 

UDdi at Bull Bud, 

Ut Bait.; wDd. at Oattriburf. 

<iD dlachuge of nglment. 
■t G«UT>buig. 

Iilaeliars«d for dlnblUtr. 





ROSTEK OF CoUPAKT B — ConttitKtd. 



KnMfcr, Andrtw F..... 

I«dd; Audln N... 

LecDud, Hsu rice F... 




LooquM, John. „ 

LarklD, VadK. 


H*r«ie*, John B. 


McDonald, Jnwpfa 

McMdlT, JiDU* K 

HeVallo, Kulun.... 



BOSTES OF COUPAKY C — Oontintied. 




In. 1 Out. 




at 51::::: ::::::: 

July *,-63, Umj 4.W 
NOT.2S/61 Sept ''aa 

Wounded »1 Bull Runi Ciipl. I2lh U, S. Inf. 
mut«| killed bj guerrillu.   J- 

CbHa.B. HeffelHngcT.... 


Seth L. HuuDiDDd 

Ellet P. Pertim 

Siemut Lit«u<umu — 


M«r B>'w 

Sept. 13, "es >.._ 


Feb. ao,'si' 

M.T 16,'ai 

Corp., Color Ssrg.iwouDdoditGetty.buw C«pi. letBtlUlion. 
Serg.,l!ilSer([.; pro. Itt Lieui. To. C: wounded «t Getljsbur? 

Tr"n>f"rml tTlta.'!ii'i?n; died Andereontllle Nor. il, 'U. 
Killvd at GellfsburE. 



Roster op Coufaitt D—Omiinued. 


SosnCB OF COMPAMT D — Oontinmed. 






"WUlliun .. 
JotaD J. MoCaUum 

John BUI 

firit LieuUnanti— 
A. Edwud Welch 
Uuk A. Uo;l^,.. 
Mjron BhepKd... 
Huaki^ Bmoe... 

Mulln MulnDii 
JoHph U. SpcDce 

Abbott, UuioD 

Abbott, Dmld P. 


Alley, Jobn 

Uuiow, JobD^ 

Baker, Abnhim P., 

Barber, Horatio N.' 
Barnes, Rudolph C. 

Boigb, Pster^ 

Beniu, HearrT.... 

BeDiiett,WiD. D 

Biinna, HUton L .. 
BeidaD,Chiiiia A... 
Blackwell, Hearj .. 
Borsrdlng. P«ier U 
Benoer, JetTemD.... 

Bondunnl, Crroa S 

Bond, Ueieklah 

Bnffsa, Juuei 

Brooks. Crma A 

Burrilr, Heniy 

Burgeloif, Heorj... 

BfOwp,John H 

Cannon, LesU. 

Chlldi, Uepry R.... 

Clark, Cal Tin F. 

CliuHo, Jobn.^ 



Coi, Edwin 

Dattt, Ed ■an) E.... 
DaTla, Edirard L..... 


DaTli, AlmeroD 

Decker, Arlemos L. 

Dullng, Willi am 

EHlman, Cbriatopli 

FIT on', JoDBthan!!!!! 
OairlKia, Joseph P.. 

Qltbenon, 01e._ 

GlHler, Aaron^ 


Orlonell. Geo. W..,. 



HanillD. PhlUp 


Hani nier, Nicholas. 
Herbert, Wm.H.... 


HotOletter, John W 
Bubbe.rbarlee L... 
Hoft, Wlllisni H... 
Hudson, Cbarla K. 

Jsckaon. Eliahi oi 
Jacobs, RomuluB E.. 

Johnson, Ole. '.'.'.'. 

JoliBson, Ferris 

King, Lert 

Leeson, Robert V/.^ 
Lelgbton. Gardner . 


Lewis, G«o.L 

T *■■"■"■. David 11„ 

Col., CoUBn. Brig. Gen.; wd.Glendile A Getijsburg. 
It LLCo.G; wd.FrederJcktburg:irans. lolDT. Corpe. 
,1M Serg. and Id Lieut. Co. K; wounded at Brlitsw. 

1 and e^4ured at Bull Rod; Uijor 41b Ulnn. Vols. 
; RslgDed; Inr. Ooipe. 
red from and lo Co. B. 
lat Sergeant, 2d Lieutenant. 

:<). F, 1st Lteot. Co. H, Capt Co. E. 

■nd id Lieut. Co. G-, tranifarred to Slg. Corps; Major. 

I at GellTsburg; discharged for disability. 

r 37, '«3, at WisUnEtoo, D. C. 
red lo iDT, Corns Not. t '63. 
>unded *t Bull Run; discharged for dlsabiliir. 

■unded atGttl;gbarg. 

>unded at Flint HIIL 
ed 1st Bans lion, 
ichargrd for promoHon. 

I Serg. 

-Hi to Itt Baitalton; wounded at Fredericksburg. 
vl from Co. G. 
'ed lo Battalion. 

red Id Kirbr's Batlerr JuIt 16, ■62. 
Steward Mar U, '63. 

^ to U. S.CaT. Oct. 24, •«2; killed In Wilderness. 
" "^ '* ■" snd Gettysburg, 


Bull Bun 

11 Ron. 

ided al Bo 


ed iorillBsbltltr. 

1 BiKl caniured at SaTs^re i 


iniferrTd to Inr. Corps t 

'«] to KlrbT'i batlerr. 
■ed to U B. Par, Oct. 24, t 

St 8erg.; killed al 
3ull Run: discb" 


I at Fiederleksburi 

urged for dlsabllliT. 

II Bull Run: discharged (ordlsabllliT. 
Fair Oaks. 
 " Inv. Corps Pec. 1», 'GJ. 

. al Ge<I7sbrirg. 
'ed lo 1st Belullon. 

I at GellTsburg; translerred to In'. Corpa. 
at Bull Run: discharged for dliiblliij. 


Roster or Compahy F—a>nlinued. 



Nilhmo a. Meulck.... 
Pcwflt USnliti 



JiDua B. Bbepl«r 

Willum >:. SuUh 

Joaeph II. Spenwr ... 

AKm iDiAdMH. 

AiKlniH.MirTtn ]>.... 

BurninlN.irminB V..' 

Btlote, Anien ... 


J Killed JulT 1\. '61, It Bull Run. 
I lit Lieut.; killed Ju1t3, 'S3, >t UellTaburg, 
., Tnnt. from Co. D; leilgned Oct. T.'H; Psrmister; killed \>j 

.. Sen., Cipl. Co. F; wou 

a M Liwil. Cn. E.; rwilgnfd 
Corp., ai Ll ; ma. it tiitt; 

July 31, ■81 

M*r 16, vi] 

Apt. 19. 'R\ 

MiT m| '01 

Mai W, 'SI 

Uar -ti, 'fil. Ml 

M*r ■' 



DlKbsr^ for dluUlitj. 

U. S. Cm. Oet. M, '«L 

L»iSi, SuDOtl 

UTlnntoD, FtMcl* F. 

Ullf , BuniMt. 

L(idui,Jotan D. 


HaKlwtn, John 

U(CulloiiB,JoBM a._.. 



Hoilicr, Lad well J 

Molllson, Alien 

Horfoid, Samuel D 

Kt^hua. Edward Z..,. 

Nicbol^ Junes L. 

Harthmp, Inlne W... 

OlmHstf, Oao. W. 

PvkH.CbM. C 


PM>ri,8.?. _. 

Ptaler, Jmph W 


Phll^Ednrd P.„. 


PollBT, WllUan „ . 

Ituuar. WllUuB. 



K«d, Hcrt „ 


Khdrer. John H _.. 


BnooldL Umit O 

Xoiwrts, BeidB.-ain 

Book^B. A 


B*WT«T, Ovagt P.- 

Btwrar, J*met T. 

BcbolU, Julldi.... 

tlinltr, Jc*epb 


Corpora] , SenoaDt. Bull Bud; dli. for prom. M^. of colored nil ment. 

IMed June 3, 'M, uVilr Oiki. 

at 0«llT>burg. 
f colored n 

Wounded at ADtlsUm and Gcltjabura. 

W<N0d«l at Bull Eun; dlMhargtd for diiibillw. 

DLicharnd for dlaabilitT. 

Wounded ai BnU Bun; died Soi, 6, ■62. at Sew York. 

Corp.; Com. Serg. 

Killed at Gettiibcirg. 

Wnd. at Bull &un; diKharKcd for dliabllllj Julj fi, tS. 

Wed Aug.B.'M.of woundialGtlljiburg. 

Died JulT B, 'S3, of wound! at UeUTiburi. 

WouDd^ at Bull Run 


ded at Antlelam and Gellriburg. 

ler; dlMhar^ foi dlubilltj. 
ferred 1o 111 Battalion. 

Dbcharged; woonded at Bull Run 

I>iacbarged ht dlaablilij. 

Corp.; eerg.; wounded ■! OMtribu 

Tnniforred Is let BauiUon. 

M ualdan; d iKharged. 

Bugler and Prlodpal Muilclan. 

Dlachai^ed tar diubilllr. 
Corp.; vounded at Bull fi 

Corp.; woucdrdat Bull f 

dlKharged for diaabltltr. 

I nuu, dJBcha^ed for dlaabuitf . 

Traniforre'dlo uTs AnllierT. 
Wounded at Cjettjaburg. 

Tranafened to ath U. B, C»i. Oet n, ■«. 


Wounded at Bull Run and Gettjaburg; dlacbaind for diaabL 

Wachargf^.'?! dlfablMIj-. 


Wounded at GeUriburg; dlscbarged for dliabilllT. 

Died Aug, IS, '82. 

Di Tie lon^acon mailer. 


" .ndedonnlcEet. 

at Gettji 

Died J 

g.II. 'M, of wound! at Geltjiburg. 
rredtolst fiUlallou. 

m and Oettriburg. 

at.Gelljiburg; abieni.iick'at dlacta. of regiment 

rcled prisoner, aI dlscbar^ of regiment. 
oern.; oiea Juljr H '62, of disease. 
Tranaferred (o U 6. Eugloeen Oct. 2S, '62. 
Serg.: Capt. tn Isl Batlellon. 
Killed at BullRun. 
DlKharged for dlaabllitj. 
Died Aug. 21, '62. 
Tranaferred (a l!< Ballalion. 

Wounded at Bull Run; discharged for dUablllti. 
DlBchireed for wcundi at Bull Bun. 

DlKharged for dlnhllllj. 

Wounded at Bull Run and Oeltraburg; re-enlMed Itt fiatt. 

Wounded at Bull Run; dlKharged for dliablllti, 

R&4nll!ted lit Battalion. 

DIscbartred for dlMbllilr. 

Wounded at Frederlckiburg; dlKharged for dlsabil 

Killed at Geiijaburg. 

Killed at Oettjiburg. 

i; dltcbarged for dlaablilij. 


RoeTKR or Coup^sr Q—Contimitd. 



BOeXKB OF COUPANT H — Oorttinutd. 




Wounded It Boll Bnoj Tad«i»d Julf 31, 'ei. 
Tnnarirred from Co. C kad to Co. E. 



Promoted C«pt. Co. E JniT 3, -M. 



Tnuurerrsd to Co. O. 

Tniurerred to 4tb U. S. (kT. Oct. 73. tZ 

DwoneU Jpm. -ai. M Fori BDollla^. 


SlS^^i?^- ^- "*""' "* "•"*■ '" ^'^ *■ 

DiMbkrged per order. 

Trmnifernd to Co. B Feb. 11, 'SZ. 

TraaiCerred to IM BatUllon. 


T^neftrred'to ^IhO. a Ct. Oct. 13, -ffZ. 

TTMnferred to till V. S. C... Oct. 23. 'fii 


Rilled u BuU Rod. 

Wnd. at Boll Kuo; Inn., to Co. B; Corp. ud _Serg. M^Jor; Ut 


Wounded mt Bull Bun; killed JuDe 13. '62, Deur Ftlr 0*ki. 

WooDded U Bull Run; killed it Gollyiburg. 

tHKberged fordlublliij. 




Corp.; •ouDdedKt Boll Ruu. 

Died Aug. 2, 'ES, of wounds mt Gettyiburg. 

WouudeS .t Bull Kuo; killed .t GMtjthTrg. 

DlMbu^ed tor DrgmoWon Ut Ueul. In S4lb N. Y. Vol«. 

Died Anri* 'm" 

Corp.. Sers.; veunded at Bull Run. 


Deaerted June 9, '«!, M Fort Snelllng. 




Wounded « Oettriburg. 

Wounded >l (JettfJbu^i trmn.ferred W l.t BatUllon. 

T«iii(enedtoCo.HFBl>. 1/SJ. 



Wounded It Boll Run; dlKbirgod for dlubllltf. 
WouSdrt it Anllotun; Irin.feTTed to l.t BalUHon, 



Woondpd u Bull Run; dlKh«r™d tor dtwbtlliT. 

Ciellieliurg; dltio 

ind Oellr)bnr(. 
q ai»chirj!« of ree 

nirerred lo Ut BitUlU 

ntoirerred to lit BUtilloo 
rinirerredlo4lbr. E " 
lachiirged per order. 

T. Oct. 23. 'iZ 
I WoundsTit'OeiiViburc dliebirged tor dIubllllT, 





RosTEB OF Company E — Continitil. 

RosTEB OF CoMPAMT K — CaHtinned. 







Apl. 6,'SS 

JuJj I.Vi 
Juir l.'6» 
M«r 17. '65 
JulJ L-flB 
Mch.U, ■« 
Apl. 1,'M 

Dec. 21. '63 


July 14, ■«* 


Ma). l.t Mlnp.; com. Col. ofBMUlioo. 

Vet, in Lieut, aod Cpi. Co. B; com. LleuUCol, of BatUUoD, 


Vet.. Serg. M.J. 

Tet, Co. B, MlDD. Shurpghoolen; Hogpllal Elewud. 



Surgtcn — 
John B.Le Blond ..- 








^rir Lieutenania — 

Abbou, EInS. 

Biker, Chi 

Max .l.'e 
Apt 10, '6 

ApL 21, 'SI 
Jan. !,■« 

Vat ; dlKharnl Mr order Breret Ma). 

Vat; wnd. DeepBoltom Aug. U, •«; M LtCo. B; cot 

Vet.; discharged rorwauudarecelTtilPeienburg Jun 


....I Vet., Corp., Sere.; priLorwar; atieeDl on dia. of baUallon. 


'69 Vet.; captared near Peteraborg; paroled; dli. per ocdar. 

... Vel.; died la rebel prlion. 

hI Vel., Corp.; wauDdailJuiigei,>H,Fe(aiaburg. 

SoOTEE OF CouPAKT A. — Continiud. 

RosTBR OF Company A. — Coidi*Mtd. 











"arc p.™... 


flrU LietUfi-nU— 
J. Thomu Wi1k«^ 


Jul 1,'CS 

J? ■.■;:§ 

Hch. R.'U 

Ocl. IS. -64 


Jolj U, •« 

Vet.. Ut Lieui. M.r 12. ■M; M.j. M.y 2, ■«; com. Lkut. CoL 
M iDd 1» Ueul. &. A. 

Vet., Cpl, Co. A, Apl. 10, '65; com. Major. 
Vcl., 1>1 LMut. Co. if. June 8, ■«*. 



July 14, -85 

Vet., W»gQper. 

WouDdMl il UetljibLirg Ju Ij 1, '61; KtiHIil. alck. 
P™?eTlifA'Sfr»D.lll« 8 mo,.; di,. Julf SI, -BS; «t«l.t, lick. 




SoOTiS or CoMPAiTT B— Continued. 

Wounded D«>r Petenburg; died Oct K, V*, *t AndenoDTillaL 

Tet: diKturged tt; lbKD^ ilck. 

Pramoted Corp-: priHiDCr t monllu. 

VeteinD, Corpcnl. 

Vet- Opt Co. E, Meh. II, ■SS, 

Dlichmrged VS: ibHDt. 

Vet., Corp.; promoted Serg, l«t Barg,; priioner B monUu. 

Plomolsd Doip. 

Tat.; killed Jul; 11, '65, It Deep Bottom, Vl 

Vetermn, Corponl. 

Diacbtrged for woanda. 

Died Not. K, >H, lit Cltf Folnl, Vl 

Wounded Julr 2, '69, U OetlTiburg; (bient ilnoe. 

Vet.; dlKturged for dlHbULlr. 

Vet.,Serg-; prla. it ADdenoDTllleSinH;iappoi»ddemd 

Vet.; wounded June 22, 'U. ii Psl«nburg. 

Vet-; dlMbugedoaeiplntlonortenii. 

Ned Mar^lft, 'U, it KUtlmon, Hd. 

lodi ReuDB' SUIloo Aug. 29,'S(. 

.idfedSer " -" 

Vet.:di«bi .. . ._. ... 

VeL: dlichuged on eiplrmtlon of teim. 

Disebirged Id boipltil. 

Prlnner et AndenonTllle 8 months: diKblrged. 

Dlicheived per order. 
Silled B>re,'M,iibi 

Vet.; dlichiried on ei 

unile «t Pelenbnrg. 

DiKherged par order. 

Vet.; died Not. 1$, 'M, it WMUnftan, D. C 


Vol., Corp. and Serg. June 1, ■W. 

WouDdtd at Deep Bollom Aua. II, '«4. 
PnimoMd Q. U. Serg. AprU 1, 'SS. 

DiKbarged ob eiplrmtlon of term. 
Vet.: dlicharged on eiplnllon of term. 
Died Oct. W. 'U, In prlaon at SalliburT, N. C. 
Vet., Serg.; dlidurged on eiplrstloo of term 

Vet; aiaehaxged on expiration of leno. 
Died Dec IS.^M, at SaTltbur; Prlion, N. C. 

Veteran, Corponl; dlacbarged per order. 
Wounded Jane St, t*. near Petenbuig. 

Vetenn, Corporal, Birgeant. 

Vet; wounded iiaetlTiburg; diecbirged 1W 


BosTEB OP Company B—Gmliimeil. 









B OF C0HPAM7 D— OonhmMiJ. 





VeUnn, PriTate Co. fi; raliBol. 





ju ji4,-e3 


DOchtrged in h«plu] <W. 

DlKbirged per order. 
Corponl, Sergeut. 


July 14, 'W 
July H, -ft! 

Dlichiried Id h«pU»l Aag. 8, 'SS 

Dtachirgal in hoiplUL 

July 4,'* 
Ju jl ,'65 

U :i 

JulT 4,'M 





Dliehi^edpEt order. 
Promoted Corponil. 

Died Uirch ^^ 'H, >t Fort Snelliilg. Ulnn. 
Dlicharged In hoaplul. 

DlMharfed Id bwpKnl. 

. DlKbuindlahDiplul. 

S DlicluTfad per order. 

( DtocbugHl pec order. 

i Corpor«l. 

RosTKB OP CoupANT E—OatUinutd. 


RoeiXB OF Company F^Oontiaued. 


ROSTKR or OOKPAKT a—OanUmied. 


Rooter or Cokpasy H — CmUinued. 



SoOTER OF CoUPAKY I — Omliintrd. 



The surrender and evacaation of Fort Samter on the morning of Sunday, 
April 14, 1861, was followed on Monday, the 15th, by the president's proclama- 
tion and call for 75,000 men to serve three months. 

In orders from the War Department these were apportioned among the sev- 
eral states not then in open rebellion in ninety-four regiments of seven hundred 
and eighty men each, the remainder (1,680 men) to he contributed by the Dis- 
trict of Columbia. Hon. Alex. Eamsey, governor of Minnesota, being then in 
Washington, immediately tendered the regiment required from his state, and an 
executive proclamation, signed by Lieut. Gov. Ignatius Donnelly, was published 
in St. Paul April 16th. It was accompanied by '^Special Order, No. 1, Adju- 
tant Generars Office, State of Minnesota, April 16, 1861," by Wm. H. Acker, 
adjutant general. This order called for one regiment of ten companies, each 
of seventy six officers and men, and it provided ''that the first ten companies so 
organized and reported ready for service at this office by their respective cap- 
tains will be received, provided that the several militia companies already or- 
ganized will be entitled to the preference for the space of ten days from this date, 
upon complying with the foregoing requirements." Under this call the First 
Begiment was organized, and, s^r being remustered for three years, was sent to 
Washington. Several more companies were tendered for that regiment than 
could be accepted, and those in excess of the number required were advised to 
maintain their organization in expectation that a second regiment might be 
called for. 

The second call was received by the governor of Minnesota June 14th, and 
immediately announced to the people of the state, and everywhere the enlist- 
ment for the Second Eegiment began. On the 23d, Ck)mpany A (Capt. J. W. 
Bishop) from Chatfield reported at Fort Snelling, and next day Company B 
(Capt. Wm. Markham) from Rochester also reported. On the 26th both these 
companies were mustered into the service, and were followed by Company O 
(Capt. Peter Mantor) June 29th, Companies D (Capt. H. H. Western) and E 
(Capt. A. K. Skaro) July 5th, Companies F (Capt. J. B. Davis) and G (Capt. 
A. R. Kiefer) July 8th, Company H (Capt. N. W. Dickerson) July 15th, and 
Companies I (Capt. John Foot) and K (Capt. J. J. Koah) were mustered in as 
the men were recruited, completing their organization July 20th and August 
23d respectively. After being partially arm^, uniformed and supplied. Com- 
pany A marched out from Fort Snelling on the 3d of July, with orders to gar- 
rison the post at Fort Ripley, one hundred and thirty miles distant on the 
upper Mississippi River. This march was made wholly on foot in seven days, 
one wagon being allowed for baggage and rations. This was our first experience 
on our soldier legs, and to many of the men it was a pretty tough one, but they all 
came through it in good condition and spirit. Company F (Capt. John B. Davis) 
followed a few days later to Fort Ripley, and Companies B and C went to Fort 
Abercrombie, on the upper Red River, and Companies D and £ to Fort Ridgley, 
on the upper Minnesota River; the other companies remained at Fort Snelling. 
Thus located, the next few weeks were devoted to drill and instruction of the men. 

On the 22d of July the governor appointed H. P. Van Cleve as colonel, 
James George as lieutenant colonel, and Simeon Smith as major. Lieut. Daniel 
Heaney of Company B was appointed adjutant, and Lieut. Wm. Grow of Com- 
pany I as quartermaster. Two days later Reginald Bingham was appointed sur- 


geoD, Moody G. Tolman, assistant sargeon, and Eev. Timothy Gressey, chaplain. 
Maj. Smith was, within a few days, appointed paymaster in the regular army, 
and on the 10th of September Gapt. Alex. Wilkin of the First Minnesota Begi- 
ment was appointed major in the Second, vice Smith. Gol. Van Gleve had b^n 
an officer in the regular army and Lieut. GoL Greorge and Maj. Wilkin had served 
as volunteer officers in the Mexican War. None of the other officers had ever 
had any actual military service in the field so far as is known to the writer. A 
band of twenty members was here organized and enlisted, with Michael Esch 
as leader, and at the expense of the state was equipped with instruments and 

About the 20th of September orders were sent out from regimental head- 
quarters recalling the detached companies from the several garrisoned posts, and 
within the first week of October the regiment was assembled, for the first time, 
at Fort Snelling. Here a few days were devoted to active preparation for going 
to the front. Instruction and drill, guard-mounts and dress parades, and issues 
of clothing, equipments, arms and ammunition, made a very busy week of it. As 
the time for departure approached, the camp was thronged with visitors, some 
curious to see the evolutions and parades, and some to take leave of their soldier 
boys who might never return. Most of the companies were now full, or nearly 
full, to the maximum number (one hundred and one), and the regiment paraded 
nearly 1,000 officers and men, well equipped, and, considering their brief service, 
well disciplined and instructed, though poorly armed with old muskets of several 
different kinds and calibers. 


On the morning of the 14th of October, 1861, the regiment embarked on a 
large river steamboat under orders for Washington, D. G. An hour later we 
had disembarked at the upper levee in St. Paul, for a parade march through the 
city. The people had come out in masses to see us off, and Third street from the 
Seven Gorners to the lower levee was lined with crowds of enthusiastic men, 
women and children, who waved hats, handkerchief and flags, and greeted our 
passing column with cheers and smiles and tears and blessings that, at times, 
drowned the gay music of the band and broke up the rythmic tramp of the pla- 
toons in spite of our efforts to be, or at least to appear, soldierly. The march 
ended at the lower levee, where we re-embarked and proceeded down the river. 
Throngs of loyal people greeted us at every landing, the friends of the several com- 
panies having come from their homes, some of them from interior towns, to bid 
the boya a last good-by. At La Grosse we were transferred to the railroad and 
arrived, without noteworthy adventure, at Ghicago on the morning of the 16th, 
and were marched to and quartered in the "Wigwam," the large, temporary 
building where Abraham Lincoln had been nominated for the presidency at the 
National Bepublican Gonvention the year before. We spent the night there and 
marched the next day to the Pittsbu rgh & Fort Wayne Eailroad depot and boarded 
a train for Pittsburgh, where we arrived in the afternoon of the 18th. 

Here we were most hospitably received and conducted to a public hall, where 
a bountiful hot supper was served by an association of loyal and generous ladies, 
who personally attended the tables, to which the soldiers did ample justice. 
This kind reception and others like it were not lost upon the soldiers. They 
remembered and talked of them wherever they went, and many a camp-fire was 
brightened by the memory of the kind words and gracious and sympathetic 
attention of women, to whom all Union soldiers were as sons and brothers. 
Here our orders were changed from Washington, D. G., to Kentucky, and on 
the 19th we embarked on three small steamers, and, after a delightfal voyage 
down the Ohio River, arrived at Louisville on the 22d, where Col. Van Gleve 
reported the arrival of the regiment to Gen. W. T. Sherman, then commanding 
the Department of the Gumberland, and received orders to proceed by rail that 
evening to Lebanon Junction, thirty miles distant south on the Louisville & 
Nashville railroad. We were loaded on a train of open flat cars and spent the 
night in a cold rainstorm, making the trip at about six miles per hour, stopping 


awhile at every side track, uatil, about 4 o'clock A. M., we disembarked and 
stacked arms ia a field near the junction. 

Here we relieved the Ninteenth Illinois Regiment, then commanded by Col. 
J. B. Turchin. Some time in the day, October 23d, our baggage and tents arrived 
on another train, which had started with us but in some inexplainable manner 
had actually run slower than we had. Our camp was set in regulation style, in 
a field just within the angle formed by the main and Lebanon branch tracks, and 
at retreat camp guard was mounted and we considered the war begun so far 
as we were concerned. We remained here several weeks, sending out detach- 
ments to guai'd the railroad bridges in the vicinity, and keeping up the round 
of guard and picket duty, drill and instruction. Beveill6 was sounded an hour 
before daylight, and we then had to stand to arms until sunrise to guard against 
a surprise by the enemy. The camp ground was damp and unhealthy, and in 
this tedious morning hour the fog settled over us like a cold, wet blanket. Our 
sick list increased considerably until the ground was drained by deep ditches 
between the rows of tents, and the practice was adopted of serving every man, 
at early roll call, a cup of hot cofifee and a hardtack, which kept him warm and 
cheerful until breakfigust time. Here the paymaster called upon us and squared 
our account to the 31st of October, and here we enjoyed our first Thank^iving 
dinner as soldiers. 

On the 15th of November Gen. D. C. Buell assumed the command at Louis- 
ville, and on the 2d of December organized the troops in Kentucky into the 
Army of the Ohio. Gen. George H. Thomas assumed command on the 6th of 
the First Division, comprised of the First, Second and Third brigades, our regi- 
ment being assigned to the Third, which was composed as follows: Third Bri- 
gade, Col. B. L. McGook commanding: Eighteenth Begiment United States 
Infantry, Col. H. B. Carrington; Second Begiment Minnesota Volunteers, Col. 
H. P. Van Cleve; Thirty-fifth Begiment Ohio Volunteers, Col. F. Van Derveer; 
!Ninth Begiment Ohio Volunteers, Lieut. Col. G. Kammerling. 

On the 8th of December the Third Minnesota Begiment arrived to relieve 
ns at Lebanon Junction, and the next day we went by rail, thirty-seven miles, to 
Lebanon, where Gen. Thomas had established his headquarters. Kow, for the 
first time, we were brigaded with other troops and had an opportunity to com- 
pare our own with other regiments. The Ninth Ohio, whose colonel (Bobert L. 
McCook) was our brigade commander, was composed entirely of Germans, few 
of whom could speak English. The Thirty-fifth Ohio was our senior by several 
months of service, mostly in Kentucky. 

Both these regiments were brigaded with ours from this time until their mus- 
ter-out, at the expiration of their three years of service, and we had time and 
opportunity for close acquaintance and comradeship, which we remember pleas- 
antly after these many years. The Eighteenth United States Begular Infantry 
was then one of the newly organized regiments of three battalions of eight com- 
panies each. They held themselves somewhat apart from the volunteers, and 
before we had got fairly on the same plane with them as soldiers they were 
placed, with other regular regiments, in a brigade by themselves, the Eighty-sev- 
enth Indiana taki ng their plao« in our brigade. 

Here we came into the immediate presence of George H. Thomas, then a new 
brigadier general of volunteers, under whom, as our division, corps or army 
oommander, we served continuously for the next three years, until the beginning 
of the Grand March to the Sea, in November, 1864. Of him, as a man, a soldier 
or a commander, no man who has ever served with him has any words but of 
respectful admiration. We remained in camp at Lebanon about three weeks, 
devoting the time mainly to battalion drill and to general instruction in mili- 
tary duties. Our camp ground was reasonably fit for the purpose, the weather 
not unpleasant for the season, rations were fully and regularly issued, and alto- 
gether we fared better, as soldiers, than we knew or appreciated at the time. 
With all the comforts of the situation, however, we grew weary of mere prepara- 
tion, and the announcement that we were about to commence an active cam- 
paign received a general and genuine welcome in the camps. 




On the morning of the Ist of January, 1862, our brigade folded the tents^ 
loaded the baggage train, and, with bands playing and colors displayed, marched 
out on the Colombia pike. Thirteen wagons were allotted for the tents and bag- 
gage of each regimen^ and they were loaded to their roofe. Each man was ex- 
pected to carry his musket and accoaterments, with forty rounds of ball cartridges, 
knai>sack with all his personal property, overcoat, blanket, canteen, and haver- 
sad^ with three days' rations in it; in all, forty to forty-five pounds. We marched 
that day fourteen miles, and the next twelve miles, encamping near Campbells- 
ville. Here we found that most of the men were tired, sore-footed and hungry, 
and many of them had lost their overcoats, blankets or some other part of their 
loads on the way. The^ roads were, however, hard and smooth, and the wagons 
had come up in good season, so we made comfortable camps. We remained 
here four days while the wagon trains went back to Lebanon and returned witli 
more rations and supplies, and, on the 7th, marched again with somewhat bet- 
ter preparation than before; the men carrying more rations and less unneces- 
sary stuff in their knapsacks. On the 8th we passed through Columbia, and here, 
leaving the pike, we turned eastward on the dirt road. It immediately began to* 
rain, and before night the road was almost impassable. The next ten dajrs were 
spent alternately in short, but tedious marches in the mud, slush and rain, and in 
waiting for the wagon trains to come up; so about half the nights and days the 
troops, without shelter, were lying in the woods or fields along the roadside. 
This, in midwinter, was a very discouraging experience to the volunteers then 
on their first <»mpaign. Yet th*ey learned speedily to make themselves as com- 
fortable as circumstances x>ermitted, and things were never so bad that some fun 
could not be had. 

Oen. Buell had issued an order that no private property should be appropri- 
ated without proper authority, and thus far the fuel had been furnished by the 
quartermaster; but one evening we encamped in some open fields, where there was 
no cut wood or forest accessible. The fields were, however, well fenced with dry 
rails, and, after some exasperating delay, authority was obtained to use, in this 
emergency, "only the top rail" of the fence along the color line. The cheery 
camp-fires were soon blazing and we had plenty of fuel all the night; next 
morning the fence was gone. The company commanders were called to account 
for its disappearance, but were unable to find any man who took any but the "top 
rail." As we passed through the country we found, usually, only old men, women 
and children at home, most of the able-bodied citizens having joined some regi- 
ment on one side or the other. In some cases brothers had enlisted in 
opposing regiments. Oenerally, the people at home were not seriously foraged 
upon or molested; but occasionally pigs and geese did come into the camp, 
and were duly "mustered into the army." On the 17th of January the head 
of the column arrived at Logan's Cross-roads, nine miles north of ^llicoffer's 
intrenched camp at Beech Grove, and seven miles west of Somerset, where the 
First Brigade, commanded by Gen. Schoepf, was posted. Beech Grove was ar 
naturally good position, on the north bank of the Cumberland, on the east side 
of Oak Creek, at its junction with the river. Mill Springs, by which name the 
campaign and battle are known in our history, was on the south bank of the 
Cumberland, opposite Beech Grove, and had no relation to the battle as far as is 
known; neither had Fishing Creek, from which the Confederates named the affair 
which took place on the 19th, at Logan's Cross-roads. Here we halted for the 
closing up of the column and to await Schoepf 's Brigade, which was ordered 
to join us. 

The First and Second East Tennessee (Union) Infantry regiments, under Brig. 
Gen. Carter, were temporarily attached to our division at this time, also a bat- 
talion of Michigan Engineer troops. On the 18th, of the forces present, the Second 
Minnesota, Ninth Ohio and Twelfth Kentucky, with the engineer battalion, were 
encamped around Thomas' headquarters, on the Columbia, — Somerset road, — 
three- quarters of a mile west of Logan's house. At and near Logan's house 


were the Fonrth Kentucky, Tenth Indiana and First and Second East Tennes- 
see, the battalion of Wolford's Cavalry, and two Ohio batteries, Kenny's and 
Standart's. Schoepf, with Wetmore's Kentucky Battery, the Thirty-third Indi- 
ana and Seventeenth and Thirty- eighth Ohio, were at Somerset, and the Tenth 
Kentucky and Fourteenth Ohio were on the road, some miles back toward 
Columbia. All these forces joined us the afternoon and evening after the battle, 
as did the Thirty-fifth Ohio. The Eighteenth Regulars were still further away, 
and did not arrive until several days afterward. So we had, present and available 
for the battle, seven regiments, two battalions and two batteries. Only four regi- 
ments and one battalion were, however, engaged seriously enough to have any 

G^n. Crittenden, the Confederate commander, in his report giving the order 
of march, names in his column of attack eight regiments, three battalions and 
two batteries. All his regiments were engaged in the battle and lost heavily on 
the field, according to his official report and casualty list. Between Thomas' 
headquarters and Logan's farm the Columbia-Somerset road runs nearly east 
and west. Another road led from Logan's farm southward to Beech Grove and 
Mill Springs, and is called the Mill Springs road in the reports. The battle- 
field of the 19th wafi on both sides of this road, and from half a mile to a mile 
south from the cross-roads or junction at Logan's house. The ground was 
undulating and mostly covered with thick woods and brush, with some small 
open fields inclosed by the usual rail fence of the country. 

The night of the 18th Company A was on the picket line. It was the darkest 
night with the coldest and most pitiless and persistent rain we ever knew. It 
was with great difficulty that the sentinels could be visited or relieved at all 
during the night, and the cooking of supper, or even of coffee, was, in the absence 
of shelter, out of the question. Nothing happened to break the tedious monot- 
ony of the night; but it has since occurred to us that if we had known that Crit- 
tenden's forces had at midnight turned out of their comfortable tents and dry 
blankets and all those six weary hours were sloshing along in the mud and storm 
and darkness, we could have much enjoyed the contemplation of their physical 
and spiritual condition. It was always some comfort to the soldier on such a 
night as this to think that his enemy over there was at least as wet and cold and 
wretched as he was himself. Just at daybreak the enemy's advance struck the 
picket of the Tenth Indiana, and a musket-shot, another, and then five or six more 
in quick succession rang out with startling distinctness over on the Mill Springs 
road, a mile or more to our left and front. This was the first rebel shot we had ever 
heard. Every man was keenly awake and alive with expectation, when again 
on the Mill Springs road firing broke out, nearer than before, scattering at first, 
then thicker and faster as the enemy's advance encountered the picket reserve. 
After a few minutes all was still again at the front, but in the camps behind us 
the long roll was beating and the companies were forming in hot haste, and pres- 
ently we heard our regiment and the Ninth Ohio moving off toward Logan's 
farm. Then the firing broke out again as the enemy came up to the Tenth 
Indiana and later to the Fourth Kentucky, those regiments having hastily got into 
position in the woods about half a mile in front of their camps. Here the enemy 
were held for some time and were compelled to bring up and deploy their two 
brigades for an attack in full force. In the meantime the Second Minnesota and 
Ninth Ohio arrived (nine companies of each), and, in good order, were put 
into the field under Gen. Thomas' personal direction, the Second taking the line 
first occupied successively by the Tenth and Fourth (which regiments had 
retired to replenish their ammunition), and the Ninth Ohio forming on the 
right; the Mill Springs road dividing the two newly arrived regiments. The 
new line was immediately advanced some distance through the woods, guiding 
on the road. The rain had now ceased, but the air was loaded with mist and 
smoke, and the underbrush in our part of the field was so thick that a man was 
hardly visible a musket's length away. Suddenly the Second's lines came 
against a rail fence with an open field in front, and a line of the enemy's troops 
was dimly seen through the mist some twenty or thirty rods distant in the field. 


The firing commenced immediately, and in a few minutes the enemy's line just 
mentioned had disappeared. It was, in fact, his second line, the first being lit- 
erally under the guns and noses of the Second Begiment, only the fence inter- 
vening. The sudden arrival of the Second at this fence was a surprise to the 
rebel Twentieth Tennessee, which was already just arrived there, and it was a 
surprise to our boys to discover, in the heat of the engagement, that the oppo- 
site side of the fence was lined with recumbent reikis. Here, as Col. E. L. 
McGook says in his official report, '^ the contest was at first almost hand to hand; 
the enemy and the Second Minnesota were poking their guns through the same 
fence." This condition of affairs could not and did not, last long after our boys 
really discovered and got after them; many of the enemy were killed and 
wounded there, but more of them after they got up and were trying to get away. 
Some remained and surrendered. One lieutenant, as the firing ceased, stood a 
few paces in front of Company I of the Second and calmly faced his fate.^ His 
men had disappeared and he was called upon to surrender. He made no I'eply, 
but raising his revolver fired into our ranks with deliberate aim, shooting Lieu- 
tenant Stout through the body. Further parley was useless and he was shot dead 
where he stood. He was young Bailie Peyton, the son of a noble sire, whose 
sword, presented by the citizens of New Orleans, for his gallant service in the 
Mexican War, was here found on the dead body of his son. We met his father 
later, at his home near Gkillatin, Tennessee. He was one of the foremost Union 
men of the state, and it was an inexpressible grief to him that his only son should 
have enlisted in the rebel cause. He said that his only comfort was in the reflec- 
tion that he did not die a coward. The enemy in front of the Ninth Ohio, shel- 
tered by some buildings and fences, obstinately maintained their position, and a 
bayonet charge, in which part of the Second joined, was finally ordered and 
made, and this finished the fight. 

Company A was, by the field officer of the day, detained on the picket line 
until the battle was fairly opened, when permission was obtained to join the 
regiment, and we started on a run across the plowed fields in a direct line for the 
battle. As we approached the woods we were obliged to deflect somewhat to 
the left to find an open way, and finally got into the Mill Springs road, about a 
quarter of a mile north of the battle ground, just as the final charge was made. 
The yelling of the charging regiment was, if possible, more stimulating to us 
than the musketry had been, but in fact we were nearly exhausted physically 
when we turned southward in the narrow winding road toward the field of battle. 
Now we met the stragglers and skulkers and the wounded. Of the first 
streteher, one of the bearers was that courtly gentleman and honored citizen, 
Mr. Charles Scheffer of St. Paul. He was then state treasurer, and had on the 
previous day taken from our regiment the allotments of pay then authorized to 
be paid to the families or dependents at home. He had gone out to the battle 
with the regiment and had found this opportunity to render a kind service to the 
wounded men. As we approached the fighting ground the trees were fiecked 
with bullets and the underbrush was cut away as with a scythe, the dead and 
wounded lay along the fence, on one side the blue, on the other the gray; further 
on the enemy's dead were everywhere scattered across the open field, and lay in 
a windrow along the ridge where the second line had stood. We halted a moment 
where the body of General Zollicoffer lay beside the wagon track. He had been 
shot through the heart by Colonel Fry of the Fourth Kentucky, early in the 
battle. The two officers, each with an aid, had met in the narrow winding 
roadway as they were respectively getting their troops into position on each 
side of it. All wore waterproof coate or ponchos, and at first did not recognize 
each other as enemies; as soon as they did, revolvers were drawn; ZoUicofifer's 
aid fired at Colonel Fry and got out of the way, leaving his chief to fall by the 
return he had invited. The body had been dragged out of the way of passing 
artillery and wagons, and lay by the fence, the face upturned to the sky and 
bespattered with mud from the feet of passing men and horses. It was decently 
cared for later, and, with that of Bailie Pe^n, was sent through the lines to 
Nashville for interment. We soon found our regiment and joined it. The battle 


was over, and the mob of demoralized fugitives in the distance were rapidly get- 
ting oat of sight. 

The pursuit was tedious and uneventfuL Occasionally a few shots were ex- 
changed with the enemy's rear guard, and some exhausted or wounded stragglers 
captured were all we had to enliven the chase until we approached Moulden's 
Hill, a high ridge within a mile of, and comn^anding, the intrenched camp at 
Beech Grove. Here a show of resistance was made, and General Thomas halted 
and developed his forces in order of attack and advanced up the easy slope of 
the hilL When our skirmish line reached the crest of the ridge the enemy's 
rear guard was seen in full retreat again, and soon disappeared within their 
camp. Our batteries were brought up, and one of them, posted on the left near 
the river, practiced awhile with shell on a little steamer crossing and recrossing 
the stream at a point below the camp, provoking a reply from the enemy's guns, 
which, however, did no harm. The enemy's camp appeared to be well protected 
by earthworks, abatis and intrenchments. After a brief survey of the situa- 
tion, as far as it was then to be seen. General Thomas bivouacked his troops in 
line of battle where they were, and during the evening the other regiments of 
his command which had not been in the battle came up. The night was clear 
and cold, and the men of Company A had had no food or rest daring the thirty 
hoars past, and none of the regiments had eaten during the day. The exposure 
to the storm during the night, the excitement and physical exhaustion of the 
morning's wild race across the soft-plowed field, of the battle and the day's 
tramp, began to tell. Bations had b^n spoiled in the haversacks by the rain, 
or left behind in the morning, and not until nine or ten o'clock in the evening, 
when the trains came up, was anything procurable to eat. . That night's exposure 
broke down many strong men in our regiment, who never recovered for duty. 
Next morning our regiment marched into the camp of the Twentieth Tennessee, 
within the intrenchments, and filed off in the company streets just as we would 
have done in our own. Apparently the Twentieth men had not visited their 
camp at all since they left it to attack; provisions, clothing, blankets, and all 
the comforts that accumulate about a soldier during a month in camp were here 
in profusion. All the camps were left by the enemy's regiments in like manner, 
the tents standing, and officers' baggage and personal effects, and supplies of all 
sorts in hospitable abandonment. All the artillery except one gun left behind 
mired in the road was found, fully horsed and standing in the narrow roadway 
leading down into the valley from the camp; the leading gun had locked a wheel 
on a small tree, and the whole train had been then and there abandoned. More 
than 1,000 horses and mules, and abundant stores of forage were found in the 
camp. A few sick, wounded and skulkers were added to our list of prisoners, 
bat the army that had a few hours before marched out in that midnight storm to 
surprise General Thomas was now scattered all over the country south of the 
Cuml)erland, every man getting away as fast and as far as he could. Probably 
not many of those men were ever brought together again as organized regiments; 
they certainly spread dismay and consternation all over the country wherever 
they went, and doubtless this contributed much to succeeding Union victories in 
Tennessee. The little steamer, which had been for twelve hours crossing the 
stampeded rebels, was set on fire by the last to cross and drifted down the river 
and out of sight. Schoepf's Brigade was sent on the 21st across the river to 
pursue the enemy, but there was no enemy to be found and he returned. The 
d^td of both armies were buried on the 20th and 21st, and the wounded cared 
for as well as circumstances permitted. 

On the 23d we marched to Somerset and thence southward about two miles. 
Oar trains were mired in the road near Fishing Creek, about three miles from 
Logan's, and we spent a cold, miserable night without shelter. On the 24th we 
encamped in a pleasant field on the north bank of the Cumberland Biver, where 
we made ourselves comfortable for a few days. Meantime our sick and wounded 
men were distributed in all the available buildings in and near Somerset, and in 
these temporary hospitals were cared for as well as could be under the circum- 
stances. Many a brave fellow who, in anticipation of a battle, had cheerftilly 


endared the hardships of the march, now saccambed. The sick largely ontnum- 
bered the woanded, and our permanent loss from diseases, originated or devel- 
oped in this campaign, was more than fifteen per cent of the total force, while 
the killed and wounded was less than seven and one-half per cent of the troops 
engaged, many of the wounded being only temporarily disabled. Of the cam- 
paign it might be said that it would have been a severe one, even for veterans. 
The battle was on both sides desperately contested while it lasted, but was soon 
over, and the victory on the field was decisive and complete. Among the 
trophies was a flag of the Fifteenth Mississippi, captured by the Second ]^nne- 
sota, and by Genenil Thomas forwarded to the War Department. Another trophy 
that now reposes in the goodly company of war-worn flags in the adjutant gen- 
eral's office at the capitol is a handsome banner with the inscription, ''Mill 
Springs, January 19, 1862, Second Begiment Minnesota Volunteer Infantry; 
Presented in Behalf of the Loyal Ladies of Louisville, Ky." In the nine com- 
panies engaged of our regiment, twelve were killed and thirty three wounded. 
In the four regiments and Wolford^s Battalion engaged, the Union loss was forty 
killed and two hundred and seven wounded. Totol casualties, two hundred and 
forty -seven. The Confederate loss was stated by General Crittenden at one hun- 
dred and twenty-six killed, three hundred and nine wounded and ninety "nine 
missing; total, five hundred and thirty-four; but ChBueral Thomas reports the 
Confederate dead, buried by our troops, at one hundred and ninety- two, and the 
unwounded prisoners at eighty-nine, which, with the three hundred and nine 
wounded and ten missing not captured, make the Confederate loss six hundred. 
Under the circumstances, Thomas must be conceded to be the better authority 
as to the dead and prisoners. 



On the 10th of February we folded our tents again and began the return 
march to Louisville. In the afternoon we encamped a mile north of Somerset, 
where we remained the next day, and said good-by to many of our comrades in 
the hospitals, who were too sick or too badly wounded to be moved. Here it 
rained and snowed alternately, as it did in fact nearly every day of the march to 
the Ohio Biver. The roads were almost impassable and the companies were 
ordered each to march with its wagon to help it sJong, as it often became neces- 
sary to do. On the 14th we arrived at Crab Orchard, where we struck the *'pike," 
as macadamized roads are called in that country, and thenceforward the march- 
ing was less tedious, though the weather did not much improve. On the 15th 
we passed through Stanford, and on the 16th arrived at Danville, where we rested 
one day while it rained. On the 18th we made a long march, passing through Perry- 
ville, and encamped within two or three miles of Lebanon. On the 19th we 
marched all day in a drenching rainstorm and encamped on the farm of Dr. 
Jackson, a brother of the man who killed Colonel Ellsworth at Alexandria, Ya., 
in the summer of 1861. The doctor was absent under military arrest, but his 
hospitality was freely drawn upon by the tired and hungry men, who left nothing 
there next morning that could be drunk, eaten or carried away. On the 24th we 
passed through Bardstown, and on the 25th arrived at Louisville about 3 p. M., 
and were received with a most enthusiastic welcome. The sidewalks were full 
of loyal men, and flags were waved to us from windows and porches as we gaily 
marched the principsd streets toward the river. At the National Hotel the regi- 
ment was halted and faced to the front, while a deputation of the '^ Loyal Ladies 
of Louisville" came out and presented the beautiful silk banner referred to io 
the preceding paragraph. After a brief response by Col. Van Cleve, our march 
was resumed and we went on board the large steamer Jacob Strader at the levee. 

Meantime, on the 6th, Fort Henry, and on the 16th, Fort Donelson, had been 
captured, and the way was now open to Nashville by the Ohio and Cumberland 
rivers. On the 26th our baggage, mules and wagons were taken aboard at Port- 
land, just below the falls, and three miles from Louisville levee, and we proceeded 
down the river, very glad of the change from marching to sailing. On the 28th 
we arrived at Smithland and entered the Cumberland, and passing Fort Donelson 


on the l8t of March and Glarksville on the 2d, arrived at Nashville next day. 
On the 4th we disembarked, and encami>ed abont three miles ont of the city on 
the '^ Granny White Pike." Here we had a pleasant and healthy camp and fine 
spring weather. Ample supplies of clothing, rations and ammunition were 
issued and accumulated, and a good many of our sick and slightly wounded, who 
had been left behind, now joined us for duty. Meantime, arrangements had been 
made for a junction of Buell's and Halleck's forces to be effected near the great 
bend of the Tennessee Biver; Savannah, on the east bank, being finally desig- 
nated by General Halleck as the point. On the 16th of March McOook's division 
of Buell's army commenced the march toward the appointed rendezvous, followed 
in order, one day apart, by those of Nelson, Orittenden, Wood and Thomas. 
Our division, having had a battle already, was, in this new campaign, assigned 
to the rear of the column, and marched on the 20th, passing through the city 
and out on the Franklin pike some eight or ten miles. On tiie 21st we passed 
through Franklin and camped a few miles south of the village, remaining there 
the 2^. On the 23d we moved up two or three miles to Spring Hill, and here 
we found the road in front of us occupied by the camps and trains of the pre- 
ceding divisions. The bridge over Duck Biver at Columbia had been destroyed. 
The river was at flood height; no pontoons or other bridge material was availa- 
ble, and we all waited six days for the water to subside. On the 29th a bridge 
was improvised, and a ford, deep and rapid, but practicable with care, was found 
and the crossing commenced. It was slow and tedious work, and it was not until 
the 2d of April that our (the rear) division had a clear way to proceed. On the 
4th the road in front of us was so obstructed with the trains of the other divis- 
ions that we remained in camp; it was raining heavily all day and night. On 
this day General Orant telegraphed, in reply to Nelson's messageof the 3d, that 
he could be in Savannah with his division on the 5th; that he. Nelson, need not 
hasten his march, as transports to convey him to Pittsburgh landing would not 
be ready before the 8th. The rain ceased on the 5th, and we marched about 
twelve miles, keeping close up to the column leading us. Next day, the 5th, the 
troops ahead of us seemed to be showing more speed, and we began to pass the 
wagon trains as we overtook them, inst^kd of keeping behind &em, as we had 
been doing; so, notwithstanding the bad condition of the roads, and the frequent 
detours to pass around the stalled trains, we marched twenty-two miles before 
dark. During the afternoon, whenever we halted for rest, we could hear the 
rumbling of the cannonade in the distant we^t, and we knew that a great battle 
was in progress. About sunset it began to rain again, and grew so dark that a 
man in the column could scarcely see his file leader within arm's reach. Still 
we trami>ed on, tired, cold, wet and hungry, until about eleven o'clock, when 
our brigade was turned into a soft-plowed cotton field to spend the rest of the 
night. The situation here would have been utterly forlorn had it not been enliv- 
ened by the order, at midnight, '^to cook three days' rations and be ready to 
march at 4 o'clock A. M." The cooking was omitted, but we were ready to 
march at daybreak. 

The halts on the 7th were few and short, but our progress, in the wretched 
condition of the road, was slow and tedious, though we marched toward the 
sound of the guns all day. We arrived at Savannah in the afternoon of the 8th, 
to spend another night in the rain without shelter, but had the time before dark 
to select a grass field and get fuel for our bivouac. Here we heard that the field 
of Shiloh had been won and was held by our Union forces, and so we rested con- 
tentedly. Next morning, April 9th, steamers came to Savannah, and, embarking, 
we were taken up to Pittsburgh Landing, where, at noon, we stacked arms ^nd 
rested on the battlefield. The weather had cleared up, and though our wagons 
and tents did not arrive for several days, we were comfortable enough without 
them. The burial of the dead and collection of the wounded now fully occupied 
a large portion of our men for two or three days. After this we moved oat from 
the battlefield toward Corinth, five or six miles, and, when our trains arrived, 
established ourselves in camp again, in a pleasant, gravelly field, with shade 
and spring water. Here Colonel Van Cleve was promoted w brigadier general 


aDd mastered out of the regiment. Lieatenant Colonel Oeorge was promoted to 
colonel, Major Wilkin to lieutenant colonel, and Captain Bishop to major; all 
their commissions dated March 21, 1862. General Thomas, having been 
assigned to command a corps. Brigadier General W. T. Sherman assumed 
command, vice Thomas, of oar division, and Lieatenant Colonel Wilkin was 
detailed inspector general at his headquarters. He was on detached service 
thereafter most of the time, until he was mastered out of the regiment, Aug. 
26, 1862, to become colonel of the Ninth Minnesota Volunteers. At this 
camp our band was mustered out on the 24th of April, by order of General 
Buell, and the men went home, leaving most of their instruments there in 
the woods. They were good musicians, but did not take kindly to actual 
soldiering, and were, no doubt, quite willing to quit there. General Hal- 
leek arrived at Shiloh on the 11th of April, and, after reorganizing the two 
armies of Buell and Grant, and reinforcing them by the Army of the Missis- 
sippi under Pope, and by a division from Missouri and one from Arkansas, com- 
menced the ** Siege of Corinth (!)'' A general advance and intrenchment of the 
Union lines, about once a week, with almost daily skirmishing during the 
intervals, brought us, by the end of May, in such position that Corinth had to 
be defended or evacuated. A volley of explosions and a dense cloud of smoke 
in our front at daybreak on the 30th announced the final departure of the Con- 
federate army, which, with persistence and impudence to be admired, had held 
our greatly superior force at bay for nearly two months. 

This narrative is not the place to criticise general operations of armies, but it 
may truthfully and properly be said that we marched into the vacated and deso- 
late streets of Corinth that day with a feeling of disgust and humiliation at the 
escape of the enemy that we ought to have captured, or, at least, to have broken 
up and defeated. A show of pursuit had to be made, and we marched on after 
the retreating enemy for several days, passing through Danville and Bienzi. On 
the 6th our regiment ^^ corduroyed" about four miles of swampy road by trans- 
ferring the rail fences from both sides to the centre of the track, where they were 
speedily sunk out of sight by the artillery and heavily loaded supply wagons. 

On the 8th we halt^ at Booneville, Miss., where we remained three days. 
Returning, we reached our old camp near Corinth on the 13th, having been out 
fourteen days without tents or baggage, and, as far as we could see, had accom- 
plished nothing. 

Next day we moved three miles, east from Corinth, where we got several days' 
rest on fresh, clean ground. Some reorganization had been going on, however, 
in our absence, and we found General Thomas again in command of our division, 
and preparations were soon completed for a new campaign. 


BuelPs army had been projected eastward, with Chattanooga and East Ten- 
nessee as the apparent objectives, and the divisions of McCook, Crittenden and 
Nelson were already well advanced in that direction when, on the 22d of June, 
our brigade broke camp and commenced the march along the Memphis & 
Charleston railroad, repairing it as we went along, and reaching luka Springs 
on the 25th. The other two brigades of our division were several days' march in 
advance of us, and, as we mov^ eastward, troops from Grant's army followed 
and were stationed in detachments to guard the railroad bridges left behind us. 
At luka we were paid off for two months, chiefly in the then new postal currency 
which we had not before seen. On the 27th our march eastward was again 
resumed, and our regiment arrived on the 29th at Tuscumbia, Ala. We en- 
camped in an open field just at the edge of the village and near a remarkably 
copious spring of pure water. Here General Thomas' division was assembled 
again, and on the 4th of July we had a national salute from the three batteries 
and a grand parade of the twelve regiments, after which some appropriate and 
patriotic addresses were made by Generals Steedman and McCook, and perhaps 
others. Gov. Ramsey's visit shortly afterward, though brief, gave him oppor- 
tunity to compare the Second Minnesota Begiment with those from other states. 


and he was, as he said, quite satisfied with our representation of the state. 
Finding ourselves located here for some considerable time, our camp was put iu 
good order and made comfortable, and the usual course of company and battalion 
drill and instruction waa instituted. The "company musicians," who, in the 
presence of the band, had been quite overlooked, if not forgotten, were hunted 
up and investigated. Those who were not in fact musiciana were exchanged in 
their companies for other men who were, or could become, such. A '* principal 
musician" was appointed, bugles and fifes and drums were supplied to them, 
and the same discipline applied to them that prevailed with the other men of the 
raiment. A few weeks of &ithful instruction and practice made them quite 
proficient in martial music, and the "bugle band" of the Second Minnesota 
received a good deal of attention and commendation from the other regiments, 
and were much appreciated by our own men. On the 26th of July our pleasant 
camp here was broken up, and we crossed the Tennessee Biver to Florence. 
On Tuesday, the 29th of July, we marched again eastward; the weather was 
hot and the road dusty, but there seemed to be no urgent haste, and our 
progress was leisurely and comfortable. The great fields, ere-while in cot- 
ton, were now all in corn, and afforded plenty of roasting ears for the 
soldiers and forage for the mules. The darkies came in troops from every 
plantation as we passed, and joined the "Lincum Sogers," bringing horses, 
mules, cattle, pigs, poultry, bedding and everything else they could lead or carry. 
They had apparently just begun to realize what the war meant to them and they 
were quite ready to go out from bondage, despoiling their old masters as they 
went. On the 3d of August we marched through Athens, Tenn. This was a 
lovely village and had been noted as the last place in the state to haul down the 
Union flag. 

On Monday, the 5th, our brigade commander was murdered by a gang of 
guerrillas. He was sick when we left Tuscumbia and during the whole march 
was unable to sit up or be dressed. He had a bed made in an ambulance, in 
which it was his custom to ride far enough in advance of the troops to avoid the 
dust which always enveloped the marching column. On this day the road was 
narrow and sinuous, with a thick growth of small trees on each side. His ambu- 
lance, attended by two or three staff of&cers, was perhaps half a mile ahead of the 
column, in which the Thirty- fifth Ohio was the leading regiment. Suddenly a 
party of horsemen appeared in the road before him, and the ambulance was 
immediately turned and started back on the run. The party pursued with 
yells and firing of revolvers, and riding up on each side shot him through 
the body. The horses were frightened and beyond the control of the driver, who 
said the general had ordered him to stop before the fatal shot was fired. The 
team was forced into the thicket and the staff of&cers. Captains Brooke and Mil- 
ler, were captured and hurried away. The head of the column soon arrived and 
the general was taken to the nearest house, while the brigade encamped around 
him. We had no cavalry and the guerrillas could not be overtaken. The gen- 
eral died next day and the march was immediately resumed, Col. Ferdinand Van 
Derveer assuming command of the brigade. 

On the 7th of August we arrived at Winchester, Tenn., where we remained 
twelve days. About this time Company C of the Third Minnesota Regi- 
ment was attached to the Second Regiment. This company was on detached duty 
when the regiment was surrendered at Murfreesboro, July 13, 1862, and pending 
the exchange and return of their comrades it was sent to us for duty. It was a 
fine company of soldiers and remained with us several weeks, leaving on the 30th 
of September for Minnesota. On the 19th of August we moved from Winchester 
to Decherd, and thence, by short marches and intermediate halts of one to three 
days, to Pelham Gap, thus consuming the time to August 31st, while Bragg's 
forces were making their way across the mountains and around our left flank 
toward Nashville. During these days we got news of the Indian outbreak and 
massacre in Minnesota, which created much apprehension and excitement, as 
many of our men had families or friends in the threatened frontier counties. 
Lieut. CoL Alex. Wilkin was on the 26th of August appointed colonel of the 


Nioth Minnesota Begiment, and Major J. W. Bishop was commissioned lieutenant 
colonel, and Gapt. J. B. Davis of Company F, major of the Second Minnesota, 
from the same date; Adjutant S. P. Jennison about the same time was appointed 
lieutenant colonel of the Tenth Minnesota Begiment, and Lieut. Charles F. Meyer 
took the vacated place as adjutant of the Second. On the 1st of September 
we marched to Manchester, and, our wagon trains with tents and baggage hav- 
ing been sent via Murfreesboro to Nashville, we encamped for the night in the 
fair ground buildings. Next day we resumed the march toward Murfreesboro, 
arriving there on the 4th. 

Pursuing our northward march we arrived at Nashville on the 7th and en- 
cami)ed in the edge of the city. Most of our army had already creased the Cum- 
berland, but it was given out that our brigade would remain at Nashville, and 
we did for a week, while our divisions nort^ of the river were watching Bragg^s 
movements. By the 14th his army was all across the river, at i>oints higher up 
the river and further north than Nashville, and the race for Louisville began. 
Our brigade left Nashville on the 14th, and. crossing the river, encamped just 
north of Edgefield. We receive five days' rations of flour, coffee and sugar only, 
no clothing or shoes, which were especially needed. In the next three days we 
marched, on the hard, dusty pike, seventy miles to Bowling Green. Here, on 
the 18th, more rations of flour were issued, and we crossed the Barren Biver, in 
which we found the first supply of drinkable water since leaving the Cumber- 
land. On the 19th we marcSied twenty-five miles, and on the 20th overtook our 
other divisions, and, passing through their camps, came up to the enemy's rear 
picket line, near Cave City. Here we extended our line of battle to right and left, 
and posted our picket line confronting theirs. This was the seventh day of the 
march, which was without a parallel in our experience thus fiir. It was the dry 
season of the year, and in this part of Kentucky there was no living water, except 
the Barren Biver, between the Oreen and Cumberland rivers. The farmers 
had depended for a scanty supply on the sink holes, which were saucer-like 
depressions in the fields, with day subsoil bottoms, which filled with water in 
winter and spring, but at this season were nearly exhausted by evaporation. 
Then Bragg' s men were ahead of us, and they madoit their business to enrich 
the already viscid water with dead mules and camp offal of all sorts, so it could 
not be drunk, and could hardly be used to mix our ''dough gods." These were 
made by moistening our flour on a rock with water, and aiter pounding it into a 
tough dough, it was spun into a long roll, about an inch in diameter, and wound 
around a ramrod, and so baked. These, with scanty rations of bacon, consti- 
tuted a decidedly thin diet for the hard service required of us. We had no tents 
or cooking utensils or baggage of any sort, except such as was carried on pack 
mules or on the men's backs, and even these had become sadly deficient, as we . 
had not been able to get any supplies at Nashville. Occasionally we got apples 
or peaches off the trees along the road, butgenerally they were cleaned off by the 
troops ahead of us. This evening we got orders to cook three days' rations and 
prepare for a battle which would probably take place on the next day. The 
enemy, however, moved on early next morning and the footrace began again. 
Our division remained in camp while the others passed on and took the road 
ahead of us. On the 22d we moved camp about two miles to a place near Cave 
City, where, at the bottom of a natural pit about a hundred feet deep, an under- 
ground stream of pure water came to the light. A steep path and steps led down 
to it, and all day long it was alive with soldiers, each laden with as many canteens 
as he could carry. The boys spent the day mainly in filling up, like camels, with 
cold, fresh water, in preparation for resuming the march. 

On the 23d we started again, crossing Oreen Biver about noon, and camped 
at Bacon's Creek, afber a march of about twenty miles. On the 24th we started 
at daybreak and marched fast all day, making thirty miles, and halted for the 
night four or five miles north of Elizabethtown. The race was now telling on 
the foot-sore rebels also, and during that and the previous day we passed their 
exhausted stragglers to the number of several hundred, leaving them to be gath- 
ered up as prisoners by our rear guard. Bragg's army was, however, sih^kd of 


OS, and within one or two days' march of Louisville. Next day we left the rail- 
road and parallel pike, and went straight to the Ohio Eiver, at the month of the 
Salt Birer, making the twenty miles in less than seven hours, and reaching the 
river bank about noon, a tired, hungry, foot-sore crowd. "Thank Qod for the 
Ohio Biver and hardtack!" exclaim^ the champion grumbler of the regiment, 
" I'll never complain again." Here were steamers loaded with rations, clothing 
and shoes, waiting to carry us to Louisville, about thirty miles up the river. 
With little ceremony the boxes of hard bread and bacon were rolled ashore and 
broken open, and while the steamers were being loaded and departing with 
other troops, our brigade rested and refreshed, and waited our time. Next day 
we embarked also, and soon alter noon were at Louisville, where we found most 
of Buell's army encamped around, and in defense, of the city. The next four 
days were occupied in resupplying the troops with clothing, rations, ammuni- 
tion and equipment, in preparation for a new and offensive campaign for the 
recovery and reoccupation of Kentucky and Tennessee. During this time orders 
came from the War Department relieving General Buell, and assigning the com- 
mand to General Thomas. These orders were suspended, by request of (General 
Thomas, and were never put into effect. 


On the 1st of October our army, rested, reclothed and resupplied, moved 
out to find and fight the enemy now confronting our lines abojit Louisville. He 
retired as we advanced, and, passing consecutively through Shepherdsville 
and Bardstown, we overtook his rear guard near Springfield on the morning of 
the 6th, and our regiment, being at the head of the column, had a continuous 
skirmish all day, both armies moving about seventeen miles toward Perryville, 
where was a small stream known as Chaplin Biver. The country we had cov- 
ered during the past week was almost destitute of water, and probably its sup- 
X>osed presence in the vicinity had something to do with locating the collision of 
the armies at that place. On the 7th we halted in the valley of Doctor's Greek, 
a branch of Chaplin Biver, in sight of and about three miles east of the village. 
The creek was nearly dry, only small pools here and there to be found in its 
bed, and guards were placed over these to prevent the watering of horses and 
mules in any except those reserved for that purpose. On the 8th we moved, 
early in the morning, down the river toward Perryville about a mile, in search 
of water, and bivouacked as before, having no tents with us. McCook's corps 
was on the left of our general line, and about noon we heard musketry, and, later, 
artillery firing, in his front. No order or information came to us, however, and 
about four o'clock, our scanty supply of water having again given out, a com- 
pany was detailed from each regiment of our division, and, carrying all the 
canteens of their regiments, they were sent, in command of Lieut. Colonel 
Bishop, to look for a fresh supply further down the valley to the left. As we 
pursued our quest we approached the firing, and finally found a x>ool and filled 
our canteens in full sight of the battlefield. One of the enemy's batteries was 
within easy range of us, but was too busy entertaining its opponents to pay 
any attention to us. We watched the battle a few minutes and hurried back to 
our division, wondering why the whole army, and especially our division, 
was not taking an interest or part in it. Soon after our return, and while the 
canteens were being distributed, our brigade was ordered to McCook's relief, 
and, moving about a mile to the left, we were posted in a strip of woods, on the 
right of his line, our regiment so far back in the trees that we could see nothing 
of what was going on at the front, but not so far back as to be out of range of 
the enemy's artillery which now and then landed a shell among us. We were, 
however, in this position, for a few minutes, in imminent danger from a line of 
our own men, a new regiment, which, just after dark was moved up into position 
just behind us. They were nervously expecting to find an enemy in that vicin- 
ity, and were just ready to open fire at the first indication of his presence. They 
could not see us in the gloom, nor we them, but a prompt and vigorous intro- 
duction of the two regiments by name probably saved us from what would have 


been a sad misfortune. We had no experience in the whole war so startling as 
that cocking of muskets behind us, knowing as we did that they were in the 
hands of friends who were not informed of our presence in front of them. 

The battle ended with the daylight, but we lay on our arms in position all 
night and most of the next day, going forward again in the afternoon to the 
creek valley for water, and there spent the night. On the 10th we moved east- 
ward about five miles, passing through Perry ville, where we found every house 
filled with the enemy's wounded. On the 12th we passed Danville and Lancas- 
ter, and on the 13th camped on Dick's Biver on Crab Orchard. Here we remained 
a week, while Crittenden's corps pursued the enemy southward in a fruitless 
chase. On the 20th we began retracing our march and passing successively 
through Danville, Perryville, Lebanon, Campbellsville, Green Elver and Cave 
City, arrived at Bowling Green on the 2d of November. General Bosecrans 
assumed command, vice Buell, on the 30th of October. We moved again on the 
6th of November and next day camped at Mitchellville. The railroad tunnel 
near and south of this place having been obstructed by the retreating enemy, all 
army supplies were unloaded from the trains here and forwarded by wagons to 
Gallatin and Nashville. Our brigade performed this work here until the 12th, 
when we removed to the tunnel, and for a change of employment spent ten days 
in guarding and clearing it out. On the 23d our regiment, with the Thirty- 
fifth Ohio and the Eighteenth U. 8. Infantry, marched for Cunningham's Ford 
on the CumberlaAd Biver, southeast of and a few miles fi*om Gkdlatin, Tenn., 
where we arrived and encamped on the 25th. We remained here four weeks, 
guarding the ford and making occasional reconnaissances about the vicinity. 
We did not, however, come into any serious collision with the enemy. On the 
7th of December a Union brigade of new regiments, commanded by Colonel A. 
B. Moore, was attacked and captured by the enemy's forces under Gen. John H. 
Morgan at Hartsville, a few miles further up the river. On the 22d we were 
ordered back to Gallatin, and thence about five miles southward toward Nash- 
ville. Here we spent Christmas, and were ordered back to Gkillatin in great 
haste on the 26th. 

Our brigade spent the next three weeks pleasantly encamped near the village, 
occupying a good part of the time in battalion drill and making an excursion 
into the country now and then for forage and provisions. All day on the 31st of 
December and 1st of January we heard the rumbling of the cannonade at Stone 
Biver, some thirty miles away, and were glad to hear next day of the Union 
victory there. On the 13th our brigade, under orders to join the division at 
Murfreesboro, marched by the pike some thirteen miles and encamped midway 
between Gallatin and Nashville. Next day our regiment and the Eighty -seventh 
Indiana were again ordered back to Gallatin, and returned in a cold winter rain 
to our camp ground vacated the previous day, and here we remained two weeks 
more. This second recall to Gallatin was due, as was the first, to a tiireatened 
attack upon the place by the Confederate general, John H. Morgan. Indeed, for 
more than two months we had been shuffled from place to place to meet him, but 
he never granted us an interview. During our stay at Gallatin the president's 
proclamation of emancipation was promulgated, to take effect Jan. 1, 1863, and 
hastened the complete desertion of the negroes in that vicinity from their old 
homes and masters. On the 29th we were again ordered to join our division, and, 
boarding a railroad train, succeeded in getting to Nashville without recall or 
interruption. Our wagons with our baggage, tents, etc., did not reach us until 
noon on the 30th. On the Slst we camped eleven miles south of Nashville, on the 
Nolensville pike, and under the orders of Brig. General James B. Steedman, now 
commanding our division, were ready for a new, and, we hoped, a more active, 


On the Ist of February our brigade marched in hot haste ten or twelve miles 
over the rough, narrow dirt roads toward Franklin to encounter Wheeler's Bri- 
gade of Confederate cavalry which was reported to be in the vicinity, but we 


failed to find any enemy, and after a day of hard marching we spent a cold night 
without tents or shelter. Next day we retraced onr path to Nolensville pike 
and encamped on the farm of Colonel Battle of the Twentieth Confederate Ten- 
nessee Begiment, near Concord Chnrch, and aboat twelve miles from Nashville. 
This Twentieth Tennessee was the regiment opposed to oars in the fight across 
the fence at Mill Springs, and we occapied their camp and tents at Beech Orove 
the two days succeeding that battle. Colonel Battle was now with his regiment 
in Bragg's army. Two or three days after our arrival here Captain Curtis of 
General Bosecrads' staff made a thorough and critical examination of the regi- 
ment) and soon afterward a complimentary letter was received from department 
headquai'ters which referred to the inspection and greatly pleased the men, who 
deserved it. Colonel G^eorge, who had been for several weeks physically unfit 
for active duty and exposure to the severe winter weather, was obliged to leave 
us on the 2d of February, going to Minnesota for rest and treatment on sixty 
days' sick-leave. 

On the 15th a foraging party of two corporals and twelve men, under First 
Sergeant L. N. Holmes, all of Company H, went out to the front three or four 
miles for corn. They were loading their wagons from a large and well-filled crib 
when they were suddenly surrounded by two companies of Confederate cavalry 
numbering about one hundred and twenty-five men. The cavalry diarged 
down upon them, yelling '^Surrender you d d Yanks;" our boysdidnot sur- 
render, but commenced firing in return with deliberate aim, emptying a saddle 
almost every shot, and the astonished cavalry soon quit yelling and withdrew out 

of range for consultation; they decided that they had had enough of the '*d d 

Tanks,' and disappeared altogether. Our boys filled the wagons, picked up three 
of the wounded rebels and seven riderless horses which the enemy had left in 
the field, and returned safely to camp. Two of the wounded died next day. 
Several others, slightly wounded, got away by the help of their companions. 
Colonel Van Derveer, commanding the brigade, was much elated by the brave 
conduct of the Second Minnesota l^ys, and issued a special order complimenting 
them by name. General Steedman, commanding the division, thought the affair 
sufiiciently creditable to ^' my command" to justify a special rex>ort by telegraph 
to department headquarters, describing the fight, refraining, however, from any 
mention of the names or regiment of the men engaged. 

On the 2d of March we marched southward about fifteen miles to Triune, 
where the brigade bivouacked for the night and remained most of the next 
day. At 4 p. m. on the dd Lieut. Colonel Bishop was ordered, with the Second 
Minnesota Begiment, a section of artillery, and two battalions of the First 
East Tennessee Cavalry, to move southward to the Harpeth Biver and take 
and hold the ford where the Nolensville-Eagleville pike crossed it, and to there 
await the coming of the brigade which would follow next morning. The place 
was reached about sunset; the rebel pickets were driven away, the infantry and 
artillery were placed to command the ford, and one battalion of the cavalry was 
sent across the river to reconnoiter the neighboring territory. They soon found 
some rebel cavalry in small parties, and after a running fight returned toward 
morning with some prisoners. General Steedman came up in the morning with 
the other regiments of the brigade, and crossing the river we found and attacked 
a party of the enemy, capturing some sixty prisoners and three hundred horses 
and mules. Next we day made a quick march to Chapel Hill, where we had another 
brush with the enemy, routing him at the first attack, then returned by another 
road six or seven miles and bivouacked, marching next day back t<> Triune 
with our booty. On the 7th we made a permanent camp about two miles north 
of Triune, in a good defensible position, with plenty of wood and water. Triune 
was a small hamlet about midway between Murfreesboro and Franklin. Here 
our division was assembled, the First Begiment of East Tennessee Cavalry was 
attached to it, and here we remained more than three months. Considerable 
work was done in fortifying the position, large details being made from the 
regiments in turn for the purpose. On the 25th and 26th of March our brigade 
made another excursion into the enemy's territory, south of the Harpeth Biver, 


and after a sncoessful skirmish loaded our trains with forage and returned. On 
the 29th of March we received Eofield rifles to replace our old guns of various 
kinds and calibers. 

General J. M. Schofield here sux>erseded Steedman, April 17th, as division 
commander, and gave as several weeks of pretty active exercise in brigade 
maneuvers and drill, the first we had ever had. (General J. M. Brannan relieved 
Schofield May 16th, and continued as our division commander until the reorgani- 
zation of the army after Ghickamauga. Our bugle band, as opportunity was af- 
forded for practice, hsUl so improved that we had become quite proud of them, and 
having some money in the regimental fund, a complete set of brass instruments 
was ordered from Cincinnati, and arrived on the 8th of April. Principal Mu- 
sician B. O. Bhodes was announced as band master, and for the next few weeks 
the woods about the camp were filled with practicing musicians. They made 
rapid progress, and before we left Triune, tfune 23d, our band compared well 
with any in the division. Colonel Oeorge returned on the 31st of March, not 
physically in good condition, but able to do duty not requiring active exertion. 
Brigade exercise was continued under General Brannan, and a grand review 
was held on the 5th of April. On the 1st of May we were supplied witJi new 
" shelter tents, " or ** pup tents" as they were called by the men, and all the 
wall and bell tents were sent back to Kashville except those required by brigade 
and r^mental headquarters, and for the field hospitals. These ^'pup tents" 
were simple pieces of light canvas, and so fitted that two comrades, by buttoning 
their two pieces together and improvising some simple support, could have a 
comfortable shelter from rain or sun. These tents were to be carried by the 
men, and so the wagon trains were reduced from thirteen wagons to three for 
each regiment, the officers of each company being allowed one pack-mule to 
carry their baggage. 

On the 4th of June General Gordon Granger came to Triune to inspect the 
position and the troops, whi(^ had come under his command as part of the 
right wing. The day was spent in brigade and division maneuvers in the 
hot sun, with little rest and no food or water. It closed with a grand review, 
after which the troops were marched back to camp. Artillery firing had been 
heard in the afternoon in the direction of Franklin, and when our brigade was 
dismissed from the review at five o' clock, it was ordered to march immediately to 
Franklin. Colonel Van Derveer, commanding it, however, gave us thirty min- 
utes in camp, after arriving there, for supper. We marched at six o'clock for 
Franklin, fifteen miles distant. The day had been excessively hot and sultry, 
but now the sky grew black, and after a severe thunder storm it settled down 
for a steady, heavy, all-night rain. That night's march will never be forgotten 
by the men of Van Derveer's Brigade. The darkness was intense, the road oofL 
slippery, and so uneven that some of the men were down or fEtlling all the time. 
We were ten hours in making the march, arriving before daybreak, utterly ex- 
hausted, and physically and mentally exasperated. The garrison seemed to be 
all asleep, no enemy was in the neighborhood, and we lay down in a lawn in the 
village to wait for dawn, our field officers stretching themselves on the front- 
porch of the spacious mansion. All was quiet and we rested until noon. In 
the afternoon we made a reconnaissance in search of the enemy, but found none, 
and on the 6th returned to our camp at Triune. The usual round of guard and 
picket duty, battalion and brigade exercises was resumed, varied by an occa- 
sional march to Nashville or to the front for supplies. 

On the 23d we broke camp on an hour's notice and commenced the ^'Tullahoma 
campaign," marching southward and then eastward, in all about fifteen miles, over 
a rough and rocky roa^l to a camp near Salem. Here it commenced raining, and of 
the next seventeen days fourteen were rainy. Of course the roads soon became al- 
most impassable, and the soldiers seldom had dry clothes or rations. On the 24th,. 
our trains moving eastward were threatened from the south by the enemy's cav- 
alry, and Lieut. Colonel Bishop, with four companies of the regiment, was de- 
tailed to keep them back. We had a skirmish fight lasting nearly all day, 
bivouacked on the disputed ground at night, and rejoined the regiment next> 


day, the lieatenant colonel and several of his men with ballet holes in their 
clothes, but no casualties; the enemy firing mostly from horseback, did not aim 
with much precision. On the 29th our regiment had another all-day skir- 
mish fight, killing several and wounding others of the enemy. Among the 
killed was Colonel Starnes, and an aid to (General Wheeler, who was shot while 
carrying a dispatch from his chief. Afber he fell from his horse he was seen to 
tear in pieces the message, but it was recovered, put together and read. Only 
one man of our regiment wsus wounded. At times when we had forced back the 
enemy's line more rapidly than they approved, they opened on us with artillery 
to check our advance. The surgeon of the regiment on our right, who was rid- 
ing behind the advancing line, was very suddenly let drop by a shell from the 
enemy's battery which entered the breast and exploded in the body of his hoi*se 
without hurting the doctor. On the 26th we had a rattling skirmish for the 
possession of Hoover's Gap; the enemy gave way for us as we advanced rapidly 
through the gap, and though they did a good deal of wild firing, no men were 
hurt in our regiment. On the 1st of July we drove the enemy's picket line into 
and through Tullahoma, to find that his army had evacuated the place during 
the previous night, leaving a good many of their tents standing, with several big 
guns and a considerable quantity of stores. On the 2d we reached Elk Eiver, 
finding it at flood height and the bridge gone. Our regiment captured one 
party of eleven prisoners and another of four. 

On the 3d of July the flood had subsided a little and it was found practicable 
to ford the stream by the aid of a rope stretched across to keep the men from 
being swept down by the current. Our brigade stripped to the skin; the knap- 
sacks, clothing, rations, cartridge boxes, etc, making a bundle of twenty-five or 
thirty pounds, were carried on the bayonet, the gun supported by one hand while 
the other kept a grip on the rope, as the men in single file waded the stream in the 
rushing water up to their necks. None of the men in our brigade were drowned, 
but some of them lost their bundles and landed destitute and naked. As the 
flood subsided the artillery and trains began to cross and a bridge was impro- 
vised. On the 4th we heard of the battle of Gettysburg and next day of the 
surrender of Yicksburg, both events being announced in general orders and 
honored by national salutes by the artillery. The enemy had now disappeared 
from our vicinity, and as it was almost impossible to move artillery or trains we 
rested here nine days, and on the 18th moved to Winchester, where we remained 
four weeks, the time being occupied in rebuilding the railroad behind us, and 
refitting and equipping for the next advance. Just a year ago we were encamped 
here for several days, and we now felt quite at home and acquainted. 


On the 16th of August our pleasant camp at Winchester was broken up and 
we marched eastward about a mile under a blazing sun, then two miles in a 
terrible thunder storm; then finding Uie road full of troops and trains entitled 
to precedence, we encamped. Next day we marched three miles further, reach- 
ing the foot of the Cumberland Mountain range, over which our route lay to 
reach the Tennessee River. Here we found the heavy wagon trains toiling up 
the steep, narrow, tortuous road, ascending the western slope of the mountain, 
and the slow progress of the last two days was explained. On the 18th we found 
the road clear and marched up the mountain to University Place, on the sum- 
rait, where we spent the night. Here the corner stone of a magnificent **to be" 
university had been laid by the Bt. Bev. Bishop Polk, now a general in the 
Confederate army; an endowment of $3,000,000 had been pledged and the 
foundations of the several buildings had been constructed, when the war in- 
terrupted the enterprise with an adjournment sine die. On the 19th we 
marched down the eastern slope of the mountain range and encamped at the 
foot of Sweden's Cove, remaining there the 20th. Since leaving our Winchester 
camp we had found plenty of green corn and the '^roasting ears" had made a 
considerable item in our subsistence. On the 21st we moved to the north side 
of the Tennessee Biver, at the mouth of Battle Creek, about six miles above 


Bridgeport, where the railroad bridge had been destroyed, and was being rebuilt 
by our engineer forces. The river here was broad and deep, and the enemy's 
pickets lined the south bank. They, for the first few days, kept popping their 
guns at our men whenever they approached the river, and occasionally the bullets 
would reach the camps, but we picketed the north bank with better marksmen, and, 
after a competitive trial of skill, the men on this duty came to an agreement to 
save their ammunition, and thereafter amused themselves by guying each other 
viva voce. The men of both armies not on duty came down freely to bathe on 
their respective sides of the river, and soon it got to be the practice for a couple 
of good swimmers to meet in mid-river to swap lies, newspapers, etc., while the 
pickets kept watch to see that there should be no foul play or breach of confi- 

Col. George rejoined us here, on the 24th, from a long absence on sick-leave, 
and left us again on the 27th, promising to be back, if alive, in time for the ex- 
pected battle. He kept his promise, returning to the regiment on the 18th of 
September, the day before the battle of Chickamauga. Meanwhile Company F of 
our regiment, composed mostly of river men and rafbsmen from the St. Croix lum- 
ber region, had been quietly at work in Battle Creek, out of the enemy- s sight, 
constructing rafts and rude scows, in which four of our companies effected a cross- 
ing in the evening of the 29th, and got possession of the south shore; the ene- 
my, not expecting an effort to cross here, had left only a few men to watch the 
river, not enough to make any serious opposition. By noon of the next day our 
entire brigade was over and the two other brigades of our division (Brannan's) 
completed the crossing on the 31st. Meantime the other divisions of the army 
wei'e crossing simultaneously at several points above and below us and our trains 
and artillery were sent down to Bridgeport to cross on the new bridge when it 
should be ready. On the 1st day of September we moved out about three miles 
to Graham's Spring, near the foot of Eaccoon Mountain and near the monument 
marking the corner of the three states, Alabama, Georgia and Tennessee. On 
the 5th, our trains and artillery having arrived, we marched on the '^ Nick a Jack 
Trace," as the ravine is called by which the road ascends the western slope of Rac- 
coon Mountain. After making four or five miles it was found that the road needed 
so much repair and the wagons so much help, that it would be impossible to get 
them to the summit that night, and we were obliged to go back two miles to find 
water for a camp. On the 6th we completed the ascent and encamped on the 
summit, and on the 7th descended the eastern slope into Lookout or Will's Val- 
ley and encamped at Boiling Springs, about three miles below Trenton. Here we 
remained two days, learning on the 9th that Bragg had evacuated Chattanooga 
on the 8th, and was retiring southward. On the 10th we marched through Tren- 
ton and up the Lookout Valley about thirteen miles. On the 11th we started in 
the morning, but as the road in front of us was full of trains and artillery toiling 
up the mountain, we only made three miles, and halted at the foot of a steep grade. 
Orders reached us at 7 p. m. to start at once and pass the trains, as the enemy had 
been encountered on the other side of the (Lookout) mountain, but these orders 
were soon countermanded and we bivouacked again. 

Next morning we started at five o'clock, crossed the mountain and halted in 
Chattanooga Valley at 10 a. m. At 2 p. m. we made a reconnaissance, returning to 
our position at seven o'clock. Here we remained the Idth and 14th, while troops 
were moving around and behind us in a way that then seemed mysterious and 
without any definite or intelligible purpose. On the 15th our brigade moved to 
Lee's Mill, on or near the Chickamauga Creek, and bivouacked in line of battle in 
apparent preparation for a fight. We remained there, standing to arms at four 
o'clock on the mornings of the 16th and 17th, expecting an early att-ack. On the 
17th the heavy clouds of dust extending along the eastern slope of the Chicka- 
mauga Valley showed that the enemy's columns were in motion northward, and 
about eight o'clock we took arms and commenced our march, by the left flank, 
abreast of and less than a mile distant from the enemy's parallel march by his 
right flank. Our progress was slow, the day hot and the road ankle-deep with 
fine dust, with which the tramping feet filled the air as the column moved along. 


At ten o'clock we had got about three miles from our starting point, when some 
scattering musket shote were heard in our rear, and presently an order was 
received trom Col. Van Derveer, commanding the brigade, for the Second Min- 
nesota to return as far as the Pond Springs, see what was the matter and rejoin 
the brigade. We unslung and piled our knapsacks, leaving a few men with 
them, and in less than an hour retraced nearly the whole forenoon's march. As 
we came in sight of the springs the two leading companies were deployed for- 
ward and men were detailed from each company to take all the canteens and fill 
them at the springs as promptly as possible upon our arrival there. Approach- 
ing the place we found the springs in the possession of a detachment of the 
enemy's cavalry who were resting in unsuspicious comfort, many of thein dis- 
mounted. They had been worrying our train, and having been repulsed by the 
guard had halted there for reinforcements. They were promptly attacked and 
routed by our advance skirmishers, and while we halted, maintaining ranks, the 
canteens were filled and distributed. Then we reversed our march, returning by 
the left flank to our brigade, which had not moved during our absence, and soon 
bivouacked for the night. The light from the enemy's camp-fires was visible all 
night to the eastward, and we slept on our arms, ready to be attacked if he so 

We remained here all day on the 18th, while troops and artillery and trains 
were moving behind us, to the left and northward, and about 5 p. M. we joined in 
the procession. We moved about a quarter of a mile i)er hour during the whole 
night, halting every few rods just long enough to get stiff and cold, but never 
long enough to build fires and get warm. Many of the men would fall asleep, 
sinking down in the road and some standing on their feet, but strict orders were 
given not to leave the column and to follow closely those leading us. As the 
day began to dawn we could see the brigades and batteries leaving the road from 
time to time and moving off in line of battle into the woods to the eastward, and 
toward the Chickamauga Creek, and we knew that the army was taking position 
for the great contest so long anticipated. We could now undei'stand how this had 
been going on during the night and how slow and difficult had been the construc- 
tion of the grand line of battle in the darkness, and our tedious and halting 
progress was accounted for. We had been all night in moving less than five 
miles and were now on the Lafayette-Chattanooga road, had passed in the darkness 
near General Bosecrans' headquarters at the Widow Glenn's house, and at eight 
o'clock our brigade halted, filed out of the road near Kelly's house and stacked 
arms, while the word was passed down the line, '^Twenty minutes for breakfast." 
In five minutes hundreds of little fires were kindled and hundreds of little coflfee 
cans were filled with water from the canteens and set to boil; in ten minutes the 
boiling cofiee was lifted off, the luscious bacon was nicely browned and the ever 
toothsome hardtack had been toasted; when comes an aid at a furious gallop 
down the dusty road; a brief order delivered by him to our brigade commander, 
and each regiment gets orders to take arms and march immediately. Of 
course some urgent and peremptory necessity was supposed, arms were taken 
and we filed out into the road, now clear, and briskly moved off northward in a 
cloud of choking dust. After making about a mile we halted near McDaniel's 
house, whence a road, or rather a narrow wagon track, leads through the open 
oak woods eastward to Reed's bridge and ford on the Chickamauga Creek. 

It may be here explained that the extreme left of our general line of battle 
rested in the woods about opposite the midway point between Kelly's and McDan- 
iel's houses; the position of the line, extending southward and facing eastward, 
was about midway between and parallel to the woods and the creek. So as we 
faced the eastward and marched in brigade order of battle along the Reed's bridge 
road, we were detached from and nearly half a mile to the left of the left division 
(Baird's) of the established line. Our orders were said to have been given on 
information by Col. McCook, commanding a cavalry brigade on the left, that 
only one Confederate brigade had crossed to the west side of the Chickamauga, that 
he (McCook) had destroyed the bridge (Reed's) behind it, and we were to take 
and hold the ford, and prevent further crossing by the enemy, while our First and 


Second brigades were to find, attack and capture the enemy's supposed isolated 
brigade. This information, if given, proved entirely erroneoos, nearly the entire 
Gonfederate army being in x>osition between our lines and the creek, and their 
brigades were not hard to find when we came to look for them. 

Our brigade was formed with the Second Minnesota on the left and the 
Thirty -fifth Ohio on the right of the front line, with Smith's Battery in the road 
between them. The Eighty-seventh Indiana in the second line behind the 
Thirty-fifth Ohio; the Ninth Ohio was detached with the division ammunition 
train. So we commenced our march, a few skirmishers preceding our front line. 
Proceeding along the road, which seemed to follow a low ridge through the 
woods, and while yet to the left and rear of Baird's division, whose exact posi- 
tion we did not know, we heard musketry to our right and front. Changing our 
direction to face it, to the southward, we moved ofif the ridge and down an easy 
slope, and soon met the enemy in force and the firing began at once. In a few 
minutes the enemy retired, then rallied and attacked again, and were again 
repulsed, this time retiring out of our sight. We gathered up our wounded and 
carried them back over the ridge to the northern slope in our rear, replenished 
our cartridge boxes and readjusted our line, the Eighty-seventh Indiana, mean- 
time, changing places with the Thirty-fifth Ohio on our right. In a few minutes 
the firing again broke out in our front, but while the bullets dropped in among 
us, we were, on account of the trees and underbrush, unable to see any men for 
a time. Then the firing approached and the big guns joined in for a few rounds, 
then a burst of cheers, ^^the rebel yell," the artillery ceased, and the rattling 
musketry came nearer and the bullets thicker. Our men were ordered to lie 
down and hold their fire until Uiey could see the enemy. Presently, to our 
astonishment, a straggling line of men, in our own uniform, appeared, then more 
of them, running directly toward us, their speed accelerated every moment by 
the yelling and nring of the exultant enemy behind theuL Our men got ready 
and waited while the stampeded brigade, officers and men, passed over our lines 
to the rear, then, as the enemy came in view, gave them a volley that 
extinguished the yelling and stopped their advance. They rallied, however, 
and stood for a few moments receiving and returning our fire, then waverings 
broke and ran out of sight. Just now the Ninth Ohio arrived, having aban- 
doned the ammunition train when the firing broke out, and followed our trail to 
the front. The firing had ceased when Col. Kammerling rode up and vocifer- 
ously demanded, '^ Where dem got dam rebels gonet" Some one pointed in the 
direction they were last seen, and away went the Ninth Ohio over our front lines, 
disr^arding Van Der veer's order to come Imck, and we could hear them yelling 
and cheering in both languages long after they disappeared from sight. About 
a quarter of a mile distant they found and recaptured the battery (Guenther's), 
which the enemy had taken half an hour before. The enemy's troops about the 
battery made a fight for it, and Kammerling lost a good many men in getting it, 
and was even then obliged to leave it when recalled by a peremptory order to 
r^'oin the brigade, which he did not receive or obey too soon. 

During the first fighting, our band men, as they had been previously 
instructed, were busy with stretchers, picking up the wounded and carrying 
them back up the slope and over to the north side, where our surgeon, Dr. Otis 
Ayer, had established a temporary hospital, and was giving them such attention 
as circumstances permitted. It soon happened that some of these men were shot 
the second time while being carried back, and the carrying was suspended until 
the firing should cease. Our skirmishers soon reported the enemy moving 
around our left flank, and our regiment, by facing left and filing lefb, changed 
front to face the east. The enemy made an attack upon us in this position, 
which was repulsed by our regiment alone, and then by the same maneuver we 
changed front again to face the north, the enemy having passed a large force 
around our left flank during the last attack, which was probably made to cover 
the movement. 

We were now on the road again, and on the right of our brigade, on a line 
nearly parallel to our first position, but facing the opposite direction, and the 


movement had brought our left company next to the battery, which, without 
changing position, had exchanged the places of its guns and caissons, and now 
also faced the north; the other regiments of our bri^ule had formed on the left 
of the battery, and for a moment of silence we awaited the onset. Here on the 
ground now before us lay our wounded men who had been carried back from 
the first line of fight and were now between the opposing lines. But here they 
come, ranks after ranks emerging from the sheltering trees and underbrush, and 
approaching us with steady tramp and desperate silence. Our men were cau- 
tioned now to '^ shoot to kill," and we opened with file firing that soon broke u-p 
the orderly march of the first line, whose men hesitated and then commenced 
firing wildly; their second and third lines were promptly moved up and all 
pressed on in the charge. Our big guns were loaded with canister, which opened 
great gaps in the enemy's columns at each discharge, while the withering fire 
of our infantry was thinning their ranks at every step of their advance. They 
greatly outnumbered us, and it seemed a question for a time whether we could 
so reduce their numbers and their nerve as to prevent an actual collision, in 
which they would have the majority, but they b^an to waver at sixty yards, at 
forty they broke, and then ran, every man for himself, leaving, alas I hundreds 
of brave fellows prostrate in helpless suffering before us, some of them in- 
termingling with our own wounded, who had been carried there from the first 
fight in the morning. This assault and repulse ended our part of the battle 
for the day; we now refilled our cartridge boxes, gathered our wounded men 
and sent them to the field hospital at Cloud's house, and collected our dead for 
burial. Our regiment had commenced the battle with three hundred and 
eighty -four men and officers, of whom eight had been killed and' forty-one 
wounded, none missing. While waiting here for orders we heard, from time to 
time, the roar of battle along the line to the southward, but saw nothing more 
of the enemy in our vicinity. 

In the afternoon we were moved southward to a field southwest of Kelly's 
house, where we bivouacked for the night. We had had no rest and but little 
food since noon of the 18th. The night was clear and cold, and many of the men 
in the excitement and in changing position had lost their knapsacks and blankets; 
no fire was permitted until aft^er sunrise next morning, and we passed a cheerless 
and uncomfortable night. Yet, when we remembered the tiiiousands of poor 
fellows who, maimed and suffering, lay scattered all over the fields and woods, 
without food, water or care, we forgot our own discomfort in pity for the 
wounded and dying. Sunday morning, the 20th, the sun rose peacefully over 
the misty landscape; all was quiet as the grave; the stillness was in fact oppres- 
sive for a time. Our brigade not being in line was formed as a reserve, in an 
open field near Kelly's house and west of the Lafayette road, x>erhax>s a quarter 
of a mile in rear of the line of battle, which, located in the woods, was invisible 
to us. About nine o'clock a scattering fire of musketry ran along the line in 
our front, increasing rapidly, until in a few minutes Uie terrific roar of battle 
was on in full volume, and the enemy's bullets were passing over our line of 
battle, chipping through the leaves and branches of the trees and dropping into, 
among and around us in a very disquieting manner. Directly the artillery 
open^ also, and while the big shells were not so numerous as the little bullets^ 
they commanded more deference and respect individually when they did come. 
This did not appear to be a nice quiet place for a reserve brigade, but we had to 
stay there and take it; the men meanwhile bracing up each other with jokes 
and facetious comments on everything in sight or that might happen. Presently 
the stragglers appeared, coming out of the wood and crossing the road and field, 
passing us to the rear. Some few of them were wounded, but most of them were 
cowardly skulkers who had sneaked out of the line of battle and were getting 
out of personal danger as fast as they could. Their number increased rapidly 
until it seemed to us that our experience of yesterday was about to be repeated. 
Some effort was made to stop and reform the demoralized fugitives, but most of 
them had thrown away their guns, and all of them their courage and self-respect, 
and in their then condition they were not wortti stopping. 


The situation was a trying one, and we were relieved when orders came to go 
to the left of the line and repel an attack there. We moved northward along 
the west side of, and parallel to, the IjEifayetteroad, some distance, and then chang- 
ing direction to the right, approached the road with our front facing eastward, 
parallel to it. At this point we passed through a thicket of small pines and 
other trees which had otetructed our view toward the east and north. Emerg- 
ing from this we crossed the road in line of battle to take position on the left 
of ^ battery already there. Our brigade was in two lines, the Second Minnesota 
being on the right of the front line, nearest the battery, the Eighty -seventh Indi- 
ana on the left, and the Thirty-fifth and Ninth Ohio in the second line. Before 
us was a large, open field, bounded on the north by a strip of woods, x>erhaps 
twenty rods distant from the left of our brigade. As we halted on the east side 
of the road and began looking around for the enemy, whose appearance we ex- 
pected in our front (eastward), the air was suddenly filled with bullets, and a line 
of gray smoke appeared along the edge of the woods to our left and at right 
angles with our lines. A change of front was instantly ordered and executed by 
the brigade. Pending this movement, which was made on the run, we could not 
return the enemy's fire, and we lost a good many men. The mounted officers 
seemed to be esx)ecially selected; several of them and all of the horses in the 
brigade but two were shot before the affair was over. The wheel completed, 
our first line charged at once up to the edge of the woods, driving the enemy- 
back, and then opened fire on them at short range. They were slow and stub- 
bom to give way, and after a few minutes' firing by the first line, Col. Van Der- 
veer ordered the second line to pass the first and dfiarge them again. This was 
done, the first line joining in the charge, and thus the enemy's front was broken 
up, and soon they retired, leaving the field and their wounded in our possession. 
It appeared that this (Breckenridge's) division had passed entirely around the 
left of our lines and was about to attack our left division in the rear when we 
arrived and encountered it as above described. The fighting over for a time, 
our wounded men were being gathered up and made as comfortable as possible 
until they should be removed to the hospital. Presently the crash of musketry 
was heard again on our right, and as we listened it seemed to be veering around 
to our rear. As the enemy then had disapi>eared from our own front, a few men 
were detailed to care for our wounded until the ambulances should arrive, and 
we marched away toward the sound of the guns. The enemy soon reoccupied 
the field we had won and left, and the twelve men detailed with our assistant 
surgeon. Dr. Otis Ayer, and many of our wounded, were taken prisoners. As 
we got into the open field where We had been in reserve in the morning, we were 
met by an aid from General Thomas, who conducted us to Horseshoe Bidge, so 
called, near the Snodgrass house. The battle seemed to be tending to that posi- 
tion from all directions. Oeneral Thomas rode down to meet us and sat upon 
his horse and looked the men over as we marched past him and up the slope 
of the ridge. Undoubtedly he was glad to see, in this emergency, the regiments 
that, under his eye, had fought and won Mill Springs, and he said to the writer 
that he was *'glad to see us in such good order." We did not then know how 
many troops he had seen in disorder during the day, nor did he know that within 
an hour's fighting we had just lost more than one-third our number in killed and 
wounded; yet we greatly appreciated the compliment at the time. 

Arriving on the ridge, our regiment took the place of one already there (the 
Twenty-first Ohio), which had exhausted its cartridge boxes, and immediately 
had a view of the assaulting columns of the enemy, just commencing the ascent 
of the southern slope in our front. Banks followed ranks in close order, moving 
briskly and bravely toward us. It was theirs to advance; ours, now, to stand 
and repel. Again the order was passed to aim carefully and make every shot 
count, and the deadly work began. The front ranks melted away under the 
rapid fire of our men, those following bowed their heads to the storm of bullets 
and pressed on, some of them fieilling at every step, until, the supporting touch 
of elbows being lost, the survivors hesitate, halt, and then turning, st^^rt back 
with a rush that carries away to the rear all that escape the bullets, as deadly 


in the wild retreat as in the desperate and orderly advance. This was all 
repeated again and again, until the slope was so covered with dead and 
wounded men that, looking from our position, we could hardly see the ground. 
Never was any position more gallantly as^ulted or more desperately defended. 
Meanwhile, General Steedman had arrived with two brigades of fresh troops, 
who came up on our right with enthusiastic cheers, and forty rounds in their 
boxes, just in time to meet the enemy's advance on the crest. Our brigade had 
so far been the right of our line at this place, except three detached regiments, 
and, being furiously assaulted in front, could not have prevented the enemy from 
enveloping our right flank, as they seemed to have plenty of troops and had dis- 
covered that the ridge to our right was vacant. Steedman's arrival and prompt 
attack regained and secured that ground, and he brought a spare wagon-load of 
cartridges, — more precious than diamonds,— as many of the men had placed the 
last one in the gun. The cartridges were quickly brought to the line and dis- 
tributed just in time to meet the next attack. This was made by fresh troops, 
and their advance was only broken up when their foremost men were within ten 
paces of our line. Some of (ihem came on and surrendered; most of them who 
ran back were killed or wounded before they got out of range. Prom five to six 
o'clock an ominous quietude prevailed. Our cartridges were again exhausted, 
and the boxes of our own and the enemy's dead and wounded were searched and 
emptied, and bayonets were fixed when it was found that we had less than two 
rounds to the man. Another attack was made just before dark, and was repulsed 
in our front as the others had been; but there seemed .to be no contest on the 
right, where Steedman's line had been, and presently we found that his troops 
had been withdrawn and that the enemy were groping their way around to our 
right and rear, and had already captured the detached regiments which had been 
between us and Steedman. The Thirty-fifth Ohio was promptly placed to pro- 
tect that flank, and, after receiving a few shots, the enemy retired, no doubt in 
the darkening woods uncertain of the situation, and disconcerted by the loss of 
their commanding officer who fell there. 

After another hour of waiting we were ordered to move to Bossville, which 
we did, with empty guns, but without opposition or adventure; our brigade 
being, as we then supposed, the last Union troops to leave the bloody field. Our 
division commander says, however, as to this, in his official reports (just pub< 
lished) that the Sixty first and One Hundred and First Indiana covered the 
retirement, *Hhey being the only troops that had any ammunition whatever." 
About midnight we arrived at Bossville Gap, and, forming line, stacked arms 
and lay down to rest. Next morning, at Eossville, a muster and roll-call was 
had and every man of the Second Minnesota Regiment, of the three hundred and 
eighty-four who commenced the battle on the IQth, was accounted for; thirty- 
five had been killed, one hundred and thirteen wounded, fourteen captured, and 
two hundred and twenty-two were present for duty, unhurt. This report 
attracted the attention of the brigade commander, who, after verifying its 
correctness, said, in his official report of the battle, ''It is a noticeable fact that 
the Second Minnesota Eegiment had not a single man among the missing, or a 
straggler, during the two days' engagement." It appears from the "Official 
Records "just published by the War Department that but one (Whitaker's) of the 
thirty-six brigades of the Army of the Cumberland engaged in these battles 
lost so many men in proportion to the number engaged as did ours; and the fact 
also appears that at no time during the two days did we vacate or retire from 
any position in the presence of the enemy. The bravery and persistence with 
which the enemy assaulted our lines on Horseshoe Eidgemay be estimated, when 
we know that his two divisions (Hindman's and Preston's) lost more than 3,000 
men, killed and wounded, in the vain efforts to capture it. No serious demon- 
stration was made by the enemy on the 21st, though our division remained in 
position at Bossville Gap. That day was occupied by Qeneral Rosecrans in placing 
the troops about Chattanooga as they were collected, and in restoring order and 
supplying ammunition, and otherwise preparing for defense. Our division was 
ordered in at midnight, and at daybreak on the 22d was in line at and in front of 



.As the troops arrived at Chattanooga from the Ghickamauga battlefield, they 
were formed in a defensive line extending from the Tennessee Biver, above, (north 
of) the town, around by the east in a grand semicircle inclosing it to the river 
bank below (south of) it, the line being about two miles long. The river, sweeping 
around the town by the west in a corresponding curve, inclosed it on that side. 
Our division, being the last to arrive at daybreak on the 22d, was placed in 
X>osition near the centre of the line, and on and across the Eossville road by 
which we had come. A chain of pickets being established about half a mile in 
front of the general line, the troops began at once to protect themselves in 
position by excavating a simple ditch, throwing the dirt up in a ridge on the 
outer side of it, and by the middle of the forenoon a continuous intrenched line 
had been completed. This was from day to day improved and strengthened, 
and at intervals quite pretentious works were constructed of earth and supplied 
with artillery. The enemy appeared about noon on the 22d, and, as they 
located our picket line, established theirs conforming to it, and from forty to 
eighty rods distant, and then formed their lines and established their camx>s nearly 
parallel and about a mile and a half from ours; occupying also the point of 
Lookout Mountain and the crest of Mission Bidge, and fortifying them. 

Here for two months the two armies faced each other; the enemy, having his 
line of communication by rail from Atlanta open and unobstructed, was well 
supplied with food, while our army, dependent upon a difficult and tortuous 
route from Bridgeport over the mountains, was for several weeks reduced to 
half rations of food and forage, while clothing and other supplies could not be got 
through at all. Many of the men had lost or thrown away, in the two days' 
battle, their tents and blankets, and now these were much needed as the cold 
weather came on. The exposure to the weather and the poor and scanty food, 
with the confinement in the line of battle camps, rapidly increased the sick rolls 
and filled the hospitals, while for want of forage the horses and mules generally 
became unfit for any service, and many of them perished. The operations by 
which the river line was opened and the situation improved cannot be 
detailed in this narrative, which does not pretend to be a history of armies or of 
campaigns. Our men bore the want of proper shelter, food and clothing with 
brave and uncomplaining patience and with no thought of giving up the position 
so dearly won and so important to hold. The enemy had planted some heavy 
guns on the nose of Lookout Mountain, and would occasionally admonish us of 
their presence by heaving a big shell into our camx)S. One of these shells 
descended through the roof and two floors of a hospital building filled with sick 
and wounded men, but without harming anyone, as it did not explode. Another 
burst over our regiment, mortally wounding Sergeant Caviezel of Company F, and 
injuring several others. Here the army was reorganized, and when this was 
completed we found that the One Hundred and First Indiana, Seventy-fifth 
Indiana and the One Hundred and Fifth Ohio had been added to our brigade. 
Colonel Van Derveer of the Thirty-fifth Ohio still commanding it. In the seven 
regiments now comprising it he had, in the aggregate, less men than in the four 
with which he commenced the battle of Chickamauga four weeks before. We are 
now known as the Second Brigade, Third Division, Fourteenth Array Corps; 
Brig. Gen. A. Baird commanding the division, and Maj. Gen. George H. 
Thomas, the corps. 

On the 19th of October General Bosecrans vacated and General Thomas as 
sumed the command of the Army of the Cumberland, and General John M. Palmer 
of the Fourteenth Corps. On the 20th our reorganized brigade was assembled 
and encamped in a new position; our regiment occupying what was known as 
Hospital Hill, about half a mile in rear of our former position, and a much more 
desirable location. Here we constructed huts, and, with the scanty material 
available, made them as comfortable as we could. On the 4th day of October Maj. 
Davis, who had been wounded at Chickamauga, left us on sick-leave, and on the 
16th of November Col. George also started for Minnesota with a surgeon's 
certificate of disability and sixty days' leave of absence. About the 1st of 


^N^ovember the new line of sapplies by the Tennessee Eiver, from Bridgeport, was 
secured and opened, and soon afterward full rations and issues of clothing and 
camp equipage were realized, to our great comfort and relief. And now the 
preparations for another battle were energetically pushed, until on the 22d of 
November all was ready, and on the 23d the Army of the Cumberland moved 
out by divisions, in battle array, in the open space between the intrenched lines 
east of the city, the men carrying three days' rations and one hundred cartridges 
each. This movement wsus in plain sight of the enemy, of course, but no prepa- 
ration seems to have been made to oppose it Some of the prisoners said 
afterward that some supposed that a grand review was to take place, and others 
that the ^^ Yanks" were out of wood again and were going to take in a fresh 
supply. By a quick rush in the afternoon our lines were advanced, capturing 
the enemy's intrenched lines on Orchard Knob and along the range of hills 
connected with it. During the night Sherman's troops crossed the river above 
Chattanooga, and next morning got into position for attacking the north end of 
Mission Bidge, while Hooker's army got ready for an assault on the north end of 
Lookout Mountain. Hooker's attack was made on the morning of the 24th, 
and was so successful that about noon his troox>s appeared coming around the 
nose of the mountain into plain view from Chattanooga, driving the enemy 
before them. Bain and mist soon hid the contesting forces from our sight, but 
we could distinctly hear the musketry, and so trace the advance of our troops 
as the ^^ battle above the clouds" went on. By nightfall the mist had cleared 
and the two opposing lines could be located and ob^rved by the flashes of the 
muskets which lighted the slope of the mountain like swarms of fire-flies. The 
contest ended about 9 o'clock p. m., and in the night the enemy abandoned the 
mountain altogether, crossing the valley and reinforcing their lines on Mission 

Sherman's attack was made about noon, and was obstinately resisted. He 
did not make much progress, though he kept at the enemy all day, compelling 
him to reinforce that part of his line heavily. On the 25th Sherman renewed his 
attack on the enemy's extreme right at the north end of the ridge, while Hooker 
descended into the valley and directed his march toward the enemy's left at 
Bossville Qsip, The enemy in his hasty retreat had destroyed the bridge over 
Chattanooga Creek and Hooker had to replace it, which delayed his arrival at 
Bossville until about 3 o'clock p. M. About noon our division was ordered to 
form as the left division of the Army of the Cumberland, then in position facing 
Mission Bidge. Here our brigade occupied the centre of the division, the First 
(Turchin's) on our right, and the Third (Phelp's) on our left. Our own bri- 
gade was formed for battle in two lines of three regiments each, with the Second 
Slinnesota Begiment in advance, and covering the entire brigade front, with two 
companies deployed as skirmishers and six companies as reserve, Companies 
E and G being on detached service. 

The official report of the regimental commander, written on the SOth of No- 
vember, 1863, describes the further movements of the regiment as follows, the 
entire report being quoted here: 

Headquarters Second Begiment Minnesota Volunteers, 

Chattanoogaj Tenn.j Nov, 30, 1863. 
Capt. J. B. Beatty, 

A. A, A. G. Second Brigade j 

Third Division j Fourteenth Army Corps^ 
Captain : In response to circular instructions of this date from brigade 
headquarters, I have the honor to submit the following report of the part taken 
by the Second Minnesota Infantry Volunteers in the operations against the 
enemy during the week commencing Nov. 23, 1863. 

On Monday, the 23d inst., the regiment marched, at 3 o'clock p. m., from its 
encampment in Chattanooga with the other regiments, comprising the Second 
Brigade, with three days' rations and one hundred rounds of ammunition per 
man, and wiis placed in line of battle about half a mile distant from and in front 


and south of Fort Negley. The regiment remained in position here antil noon 
of Wednesday, the 25th, when with the brigade it marched to the left, taking a 
position east of and about a mile distant from Fort Wood, and facing the enemy's 
positions at the foot of and on the crest of Mission Bidge. Here the regiment 
was advanced with two companies deployed, for the purpose of covering the 
brigade in its formation and movement toward the enemy's works. The brigade 
being formed, a general advance was commenced at 3 o'clock P. M. and continued 
for a distance of about three-fourths of a mile without opposition, when the de- 
ployed companies reached the eastern or further edge of a strip of woods and 
came in full view of the enemy's works, the remaining companies being about 
one hundred and fifty yards in rear of the deployed line, and the remaining six 
regiments of the brigade being about three hundred yards still further back, and 
partially concealed from the enemy's view by the woods in front of them. Im- 
m^ately in front of the deployed line lay an open field, the ground descending 
for a short distance to a small creek, and beyond it rising gradually for a distance 
of about a quarter of a mile to the crest of a secondary ridge running parallel 
with and about a quarter of a mile distant from the foot of Mission Bidge. 
Along the crest of this secondary ridge was a breastwork of logs, occupied as 
the front line of the enemy's defenses by two regiments or battalions of infantry. 
Beyond it the ground descended by an easy slope for a distance of three or four 
hundred yard^ to the foot of the main, or Mission, ridge, which rises thence 
with a slope, gradual at first, but increasing in abruptness toward the top, to a 
height of five or six hundred feet Along the crest of Mission Bidge were the 
main defenses of the enemy, consisting of a breastwork of logs, fidly manned 
with infantry, and with artillery posted on the more commanding points in sec- 
tions of two guns each at intervals of from one to two hundr^ yards. The 
artillery thus placed swept with direct and crossfire the whole space between 
the ridges mentioned, and also the open field across which we hstd to advance 
upon the first breastwork. In the valley between the main and secondary ridges 
were the enemy's encampments, the huts mostly hidden from our view by the 
smaller ridge and the breastwork in front of them. The space between the 
ridges and been covered with woods, but, except the steepest and highest parts 
of the main ridge where the smaller trees had been felled and entangled as an 
obstacle, the timber had been recently cut away and used in the construction of 
huts had breastworks. 

After remaining in front of this part of the enemy's works for some twenty 
minutes, I received an order from Col. Van Derveer, commanding the brigade, 
to deploy my entire command and advance upon the first breastwork, to seize 
and occupy it if possible — if repulsed to fall back upon the brigade. The men 
were briefiy informed of the desperate service required of them, and instructed 
to withhold their fire and move steadily forward until the work was gained, 
and then defend it to the utmost. The reserve companies were then deployed, 
and, with bayonets fixed, the whole line commenced the advance. The enemy 
opened fire with muskets from the breastwork and with artillery from the main 
ridge as soon as our line emerged from the woods, but, in the face of both, the 
men moved silently and steadily forward, across the creek, and up the slope, 
until within about one hundred paces of the breastwork, when, as the pace was 
quickened, the enemy broke from behind the works and ran in some confusion 
down the slope into and beyond their camps, where, taking cover behind the 
stumps and among the huts, they opened a brisk fire on us again as soon as we 
gained and occupied the breastwork. Our line, now partially sheltered by the 
work, returned the fire with such effect as soon to drive the enemy out of the 
valley and up the slope of the main ridge beyond the range of our rifles. Our 
loss in this attack was severe, though probably much less than would have been 
suffered by troops advancing upon the work in regular line of battle. Fourteen 
prisoners were taken in this breastwork. About twenty minutes after the cap- 
ture of the first work, the brigade advanced from the woods, and on arriving at 
the work halted for a few minutes, when the order was given for a general 
assault on the enemy's defenses on Mission Bidge. 


My regiment moved forward with the others of the brigade, assembling ou 
the colors sus far as was possible on the way, until, ascending the steepest part of 
the slope, when every man had to find or clear his own way through the entangle- 
ment in the face of a terrible fire of musketry and artillery, the men of the 
different regiments of the brigade became generally intermingled, and when the 
brigade finally crowned the enemy's works at the crest of the ridge, the regi- 
mental, and even the company, organizations had become completely merged in 
a crowd of gallant and enthusiastic men, who swarmed over the breastworks and 
charged the defenders with such promptness and vigor that the enemy broke and 
fied, leaving the artillery ''in battery," and barely getting away a portion of 
the caissons and limbers. Six twelve-pound Napoleon guns were thus captured 
by our brigade, two of them by the men of my regiment. Hardly had a lodge- 
ment been made in the works when the enemy's reserves made a furious counter- 
attack upon our men yet in confusion. This attack was promptly met by a 
charge en masse by the crowd, which, after a few minutes of desperate hand-to- 
hand fighting, cleared the ridge, leaving the place in our undisputed possession, 
with between two and three hundred prisoners captured in the mMSe. The cap- 
tured artillery was turned upon the retreating enemy and manned by volunteers 
from the different regiments, but darkness soon closed over the field and the 
firing ceased. The regiments were assembled, and, after collecting and caring for 
the dead and wounded, we bivouacked for the night. During the operations 
here recounted, about one hundred and fifty men of my regiment, including two 
entire companies, F and O, were on detached service, leaving but fifteen officers 
and one hundred and seventy men present for duty. Of these one commissioned 
officer was killed and three wounded, and four enlisted men were killed and 
thirty-one wounded; total casualties, thirty-nine, or a fraction more than twenty- 
one x)er cent of the number engaged. Three of the wounded have since died. 
The ammunition expended averaged fifty-two rounds x>ei* man. Of seven non- 
commissioned officers in the color guard aU but one were killed or wounded^ the 
color lance was cut off by a fragment of shell and the field torn out of the color 
by another. 

On the morning of the 26th we drew rations for four days, and at noon marched 
in pursuit of the retiring enemy, a distance of about eight miles, to the crossing 
of Chickamauga Creek by the Eossville and Oraysville road, where we bivouacked 
for the night. On the 27th, at 4 o'clock A. M., we marched again, passing through 
Oraysville and arriving at Binggold, Gki., about 10 o'clock a. m., a distance of 
about eleven miles. Here an engagement with the rear guard of the enemy was 
in progress, and we formed in line of battle, in readiness to act as occasion might 
require. At noon the enemy retired, and at night we bivouacked, remaining in 
the same position until noon on the 29th, when we marched for Chattanooga, 
arriving at 6 p. m., a distance of eighteen miles. 

Of the conduct of the officers and men of the regiment, under the hardshii>s 
and privations of the week's campaign in severe and inclement weather, with 
insufficient clothing and scanty rations, and especially of their gallant bearing 
under fire in the operations of Wednesday, I am incompetent to speak in terms 
that would do them justice. The regiment being brought into action deployed 
as skirmishers, there was better scope for individual aqts of heroism or of cow- 
ardice than would otherwise have been afforded; while I witnessed many of the 
former, I am proud to say that none of the latter have come to my knowledge. 

A list of casualties is hereby transmitted. 

I am, captain, very respectfully, your most obedient servant, 

J. W. Bishop, 
Lieutenant Colonel^ Commanding Second Minnesota Volunteers, 

The brigade commander. Colonel Ferdinand Van Derveer, in his official re- 
port states his total force engaged at 1,679 officers and men, and his total casual- 
ties at one hundred and sixty one killed and wounded. Separating the Second 
Minnesota force and casualty reports from those of the brigade we find that the 
average loss of the other six regiments was a little more than eight per cent, 


while that of the Second was as before stated over twenty -one per cent. This 
disparity followed naturally from the brigade commander's jn^cious plan for 
the attack which assigned to our regiment the duty of carrying the first line of 
breastworks ^Hf toe eould^^ before exposing the other six regiments to the 
enemy's fire. Doubtless the aggregate loss of the brigade woald have been 
greater, and our attack would have failed, had not our men made so cool and 
steady an advance across the open field, reserving all for the final rush. The 
brigade commander acknowledged the gallant service of the regiment in the fol- 
lowing language, which is quoted from his official report: ''E3x>ecial credit is 
due Lieut. Col. Bishop for the management of his raiment when skirmishing 
in front of the brigade, and for the gallant manner in which his command car- 
ried the rifle-pits at the foot of the ridge." 


Having returned to our camp on Hospital Hill in Chattanooga on the even- 
ing of the 29th of November, we enjoyed a comfortable night's rest under 
shelter, after the week of bivouacking, marching and fighting. On the 30th, 
Companies F and G, having been on detached service, cutting timber for 
and aiding in the construction of bridges and pontoons, rejoined the regiment. 
The weather was getting cold and wintry, but with Mr supplies of clothiDg, 
blankets and food, and with comfortable huts and plenty of Aiel, the situation 
was quite tolerable. The enemy, some twenty miles away, seemed to be per- 
fectly willing to let and be let alone. About the 10th of December large details 
were sent out to the field of Chickamauga to gather and bury the dead, who had 
thus far been neglected. About this date the announcement was received from 
the War Department that regiments having been in service two years or more 
were invited to re-enlist for three years, and upon so re-enlisting would be sent 
home on thirty days' furlough. This announcement was eminently wise and 
timely under the circumstances. The three years' term of many of the regiments 
would expire in the summer of 1864, and it had become evident that the war 
would not be ended within that term. New recruits and new regiments were 
coming out slowly, and it had moreover come to be understood that a veteran 
regiment was in efficiency much more than equal to a new and inexperienced 
one. The proposition was read to the regiment at dress parade, and the men 
were briefly informed by the lieutenant colonel commanding that, for himself, he 
intended to continue in the service to the end of the war if he should live so 
long; that the question of re-enlistment was a personal one; that every man 
should with due consideration decide for himself, and that having so decided 
his position would be respected, whatever his decision might be, and that there 
should be no distinction or discrimination made or permitted between the men 
who did and those who did not re-enlist. The question was taken up by the men 
and a good deal of earnest discussion was had among them during the next ten 
days. They were, after two and a half yeara of service, perfectly familiar with 
the restraints and hardships and dangers of war, and were not to be enticed into 
re-enlistment ignorantly. They longed to return to their homes in peace, but 
they were as loyal and patriotic as when they first responded to the call to arms, 
and they well knew that their services were now as much needed, and more 
efficient and valuable than they were in '61. 

On the 25th of December the regiment was reported to headquarters as re-en- 
listed; eighty per cent (about three hundred men) having so decided. This was 
one of the first regiments in the Army of the Cumberland to so re-enlist, but sev- 
eral days elapsed before the proper rolls could be obtained and made for the mus- 
ter out and in, which took place on the 29th of December. The payment of the 
troops and procuring transportation and other preparation for going home con- 
sumed several days. The non- veterans, numbering about seventy-five men, were 
formed into a temporary company and Captain John Moulton and Lieuts. M. 
Thoeny and Charles Eampe were detailed to remain with them. This detach- 
ment was assigned to duty during the absence of the regiment as provost guard 
at division headquarters. On the 8th of January, 1864, the regiment embarked 


at three o'clock in the morniDg on the small steamers Danbar and Kingston and 
arrived at Bridgeport in the afternoon, distance about forty miles by river. Here 
the men were loaded into a train of box cars and arrived at Nashville after noon 
next day. This trip, withont exercise or fire or warm food, in midwinter, was a 
severe one, but we were yet in the war country and going home, and there was little 
grumbling or complaint. At Nashville, at 7 P. M. on the 14th, a train of empty 
box cars was again assigned to us, in which we had another cold and uncomforta- 
ble journey of eighteen hours, arriving at Louisville about noon on the 16th, 
and were quartered in the military barracks. Here all needed clothing was sup- 
plied for our midwinter trip to Minnesota, and we took advantage of this oppor- 
tunity to turn in our old Enfield muskets, which we had been obliged to carry 
since our second equipment. Arrangements having been made for this, we had 
a parade march on the 17th from the barracks to the ordnance building, carry- 
ing for the last time the arms and equipments with which we had fought TuUa- 
homa, Chickamauga and Mission Eidge. The arms were stacked, the equipments 
unslung and hung on the bayonets and we returned to the barracks forty rounds 
lighter and feeling perhaps more like furloughed men than before. 

Our orders for transportation to Chicago were here obtained over the Louis- 
ville, New Albany & Chicago railroad, upon the assurance of the superintend- 
ent that we should have comfortable coaches and a quick passage. He at first 
thought that box cars were good enough for soldiers, but we now insisted upon 
proper transportation, as it was paid for and we had a right to it. Finally we 
were notified that on Monday morning, the 18th of January, our train would be 
ready, and we crossed the Ohio Eiver to the New Albany dex>ot, to find a train of 
box and cattle car^ some of them bedded six inches deep with frozen dung, backed 
down to the platform for our accommodation. The superintendent was conven- 
iently absent, but he was informed by telegraph that the cattle train would not 
answer our purpose, and that we would return to Louisville and ask for trans- 
portation by some other line if passenger coaches were not promptly provided 
as promised. The weather was intensely cold, with wind and driving snow, and 
it was a shameful thing to propose to transport human beings in such weather 
and in such cars as were offered us. After some delay a message came that the 
cattle cars were all a mistake and that coaches would be ready in the afternoon, 
and so we waited. About five o' clock the train was made ready and we started in 
warm, comfortable cars for Chicago, expecting to arrive there next morning; such 
transportation as that would, however, have been too good for soldiers, and we did 
not arrive there until the morning of the 21st. After breakfast at the Soldiers' 
Home we started again by rail for La Crosse, arriving there at 3 P. M. on the 
22d, where we were hospitably entertained. Henceforward our transportation 
was to be by sleighs by the stage company, but only conveyances for half the 
regiment were ready; Major Davis with the band and four companies were -for- 
warded the same evening aud arrived at St. Paul early Sunday morning, the24th 
of January, one hundred and forty miles in twenty-two hours, which was con- 
siderably better time than we had made on the New Albany railroad. The 
lieutenant colonel commanding, with the remaining six companies, left La Crosse 
twelve hours later and except three companies. A, B and C, furloughed at 
Winona, arrived at St. Paul Sunday evening. 

The ladies of Winona gave a hot breakfast to the first detachment, and a 
hot supper to the second; and the people of all the river towns along the route 
improved every opportunity to show the boys they were welcome. On Monday, 
the 25th, the men dispersed for their homes, each with thirty days' leave of 
al>seuce, which time they doubtless enjoyed aa they deserved to. The officers, 
instead of receiving furloughs, had been ordered on recruiting service, and were 
aided everywhere by the enlisted men, who all felt interested in filling up the 
regiment, now reduced to less than half the standard strength. 

Headquarters were reopened at Fort Snellingon the 25th of February, and, as 
the men came in rapidly, the regiment was mustered for inspection and pay on the 
29th, showing, besides the three hundred veterans, about one hundred and fifty 
recruits. In the afternoon of this day, on the invitation of the ladies of St. An- 


thony, prominent among whom were Mrs. and Miss Van Cleve, the wife and daugh- 
ter of oar iirst colonel, the regiment marched from the fort to Uiat place, where a 
grand reception, sapper and ball were given in its honor at the then vacant 
Winslow Hotel bailding. The ball lasted all night, and ended with a hot break- 
fast at seven o'clock, after which the boys marched back to the fort, eight miles, 
arriving qaite rested and refreshed. That St. Anthony entertainment was 
another event that still warms the hearts of the old boys whenever they meet and 
talk of old war times. 

Two or three days now came of busy preparation for returning to the front. 
Aided by the active influence of Gov. Stephen Miller, a complete outfit of new 
Springfield rifles, of uniform pattern and caliber, with equipments complete, was 
obtained, clothing was issued and transportation ordered. On the 3d of March 
the first detachment of one hundred and fifty men was started in Ck>ncord 
coaches for La Crosse, aaother detachment followed on the 4th, another on the 
5th, and the field, staff and band on the 6th. Arriving at La Crosse the ice was 
breaking up and the crossing was a work of considerable danger and difficulty. 
It was accomplished, however, without accident, on the 9th and 10th; and at 3 
A. M. on the 11th we started by rail for Chicago. Colonel George, who had lefb 
us at Chattanooga four months before, rejoin^ the regiment at La Crosse and 
assumed command. After breakfast at the Chicago Soldiers' Home on the 12th, 
the regiment was forwarded in detachments to Louisville, the last arriving 
there early on the 16th, and, after a day's delay, proceeded to Nashville, 
arriving Saturday morning, the 19th. The trains were crowded with returning 
veteran regimente and supplies for the army at the front, and after waiting 
three days we got orders to march through to Chattanooga, and, moving out of 
the city four miles, encamped in the afternoon of the 23d. The march was un- 
eventful; an easy one for the veterans, but a new and tough experience for the 
recruits. We arrived at Stevenson on the 5th of April, and, climbing on the top 
of a train of loaded box cars, proceeded thence by rail to Chattanooga, where 
we encamped, on the 6th, on Chattanooga Creek, and reported our arrival to 
division headquarters, then at Binggold. On the 9th we resumed our march, and 
on the 10th rejoined our old bri^^e and division at Binggold, Ga. Here we 
received a most hearty welcome from our non-veterans, who now rejoined us, 
and from our old comrades of the other regiments. 


At Einggold we found the army comfortably in camp. Trains were running 
pretty regularly, bringing rations, forage, clothing, camp equipage and ammu- 
nition from Louisville and Nashville, but the daily consumption of so large an 
army was enormous and the supplies accumulated slowly. Nearly every train 
brought also on the roofs of the loaded cars a veteran regiment returning from 
furlough. For us the next four weeks were full of business; we had about four 
hundred and fifty men present for duty, one-third of them being new recruits 
without any real experience as soldiers except that gained in the march through 
from Nashville, which was of considerable value in putting them on their soldier 
legs. These men had to be taught to handle their arms and equipments and 
instructed in guard and picket duty, and in the school of the soldier, the company 
and battalion. They were distributed to the several companies and paired off 
with the veterans, so far as could be. Daily drill and exercise, forenoon and 
afternoon, with dress parade at retreat, was the regular order, varied once a 
week by a regimental tour of picket duty in front of the enemy. On the 29th 
of April our brigade made a reconnaissance to the front, on which we found and 
developed the enemy's line, returning, however, without casualties, after giving 
our recruits their first view of the men in gray. This was repeated on the 2d 
of May, the brigade going out seven miles to Tunnel Hill. On the 6th of May 
the regiment got ready for active work by a careful inspection of men and arms 
and equipage; the sick and lame were sorted out and with all surplus baggage 
sent back to Chattanooga, the cartridge boxes were carefully examined and the 
haversacks supplied with three days' rations, and the ammunition and supply 
wagons loaded and parked ready to follow the troops. 


On the 7th the Atlanta campaign began— the famous hunared days pf ma- 
neuvering and fighting, without a single hour of quietude by day or night. We 
broke camp at 4 o'clock p. m. and the troops were soon in motion, arriving at 
Tunnel Hill, driving the enemy's skirmishers before us, at noon. Here the 
enemy was strongly intrenched and some hard fighting was done without dis- 
lodging him, our regiment not being seriously engaged. Next day commenced 
the movement of McPherson's corps to the right and through Snake Creek Gap, 
to the enemy's left and rear, resulting in his evacuation of Dalton on the night 
of the 12th. Another three days' skirmishing and a flank movement to the right 
forced the evacuation of Besaca by the enemy on the night of the 15th. On the 
16th we bivouacked at Besaca, on the 17th at Calhoun, on the 18th passed through 
Adairsville, and on the 19th we marched through Kingston and bivouacked by 
the railroad near Cassville, where we remained three days. Here on the 21st 
our longtime comrades of the Ninth Ohio were ordered to Cincinnati for muster- 
out, their three years' term having expired. Our men had spent most of the day 
in visiting and saying good-by to them, and when they were ready to leave 
our regiment was formed to give them a parting ^'present arms" as they marched 
past our front, followed by three rousing cheers for the heroes and comrades of 
Mill Springs, Chickamauga and Mission Bidge. On the 23d we marched four 
miles, forded the Etowa Biver, and six miles further on bivouacked at Euharlie 
Creek. For the next eight days we were in charge of trains in the rear of our 
general line of battle. On the 2d of June we were ordered to the front, and, com- 
ing up to the enemy's fortified lines, our brigade intrenched a parallel line in his 
presence and held it until the 5th, when he evacuated his position. It would be 
tedious to detail here the alternate moves, waits and fights of the next four 
weeks. Some part of our army was under fire all the time. So continuous was 
the uproar of musketry and cannon near or remote, and so accustomed to it did 
we become that we came to ignore it altogether, unless actually engaged in it. 
Our men ate, slept, wrote letters, played cards and chuckaluck, washed and 
mended their clothes and polished their rifies in careless indifiference until we 
ourselves were called out to make or to repel an attack; if at any hour of the 
night the din would absolutely cease, the unwonted silence would awaken the 
sleeping soldiers to wonder what had happened. 

On the 18th of June it was our turn to the front. We moved at 9 a. m., in 
the rain, and our skirmishers soon came to the crest of a low ridge, in full view 
of the enemy's intrenchments, about three hundred or four hundred yards away. 
It was well filled 'with infantry and artillery and they were evidently quite ready 
to receive us, their skirmish line having been withdrawn to their breastworks. 
Our ridge commanded the enemy's line and it seemed important to occupy it. 
Presently, indeed, instructions came from corps headquarters to our division to 
establish our line of battle on that ridge, if possible, and in due time the order 
came to the Second Minnesota to mark and intrench a line there for our brigade 
front. A skirmish line was detailed, and the men being carefully instructed by 
the lieutenant colonel, each one carrying a spade, besides his gun, knapsack, etc, 
moved briskly up to and were hastily aligned along the crest. Then each man, 
lying down flat with his gun by his side and his knapsack at his head, commenced 
excavating a shallow ditch, throwing the dirt up in front and working toward 
his neighbor. After ten or fifteen minutes of lively work, a second detail went 
out, and taking the spades continued the work, while the first resumed their guns 
and rested. The enemy kept up a scattering infantry fire on us, but we were 
making good progress, with no casualties, and would soon have had a continuous 
line intrenched. Suddenly a six-gun battery came rushing up behind us and went 
into action on the ground we had been intrenching, nearly running over some of 
our men who were working there. It was a showy but an unfortunate and 
unnecessary exploit, did no good, and cost some valuable lives. The enemy's 
artillery immediately opened upon them and on us, every gun within range, and 
they being well protected, while this battery stood exposed, it got much the worst 
of the light and soon withdrew, having lost a good many men and horses and 
being generally knocked to pieces. Meantime Lieut. Jones was killed and eleven 


others of our regiment were wounded during the few minutes of artillery fight- 
ing, and the work of intrenching was necessarily suspended, the line being close 
under the muzzles of our battery while in action. It was resumed immediately 
after the battery withdrew and the line was completed, but as the enemy contin- 
ued and increased his infantry firing, we were obliged to deploy a strong line to 
reply to it, which was done with such effect as to keep the enemy's heads down 
and prevent good aiming, so we had but few men hurt by their wild firing. 

General O. O. Howard, in the **Century" for June, 1887, page 454, speaks of 
this affair as follows, being a witness of the concluding part of it: ^^Here I saw 
a feat, the like of which never elsewhere fell under my observation. Baird's 
division, in a comparatively open field, put forth a heavy skirmish line which 
continued, under a heavy fire, such a rapid fire of rifles as to keep down a corre- 
sponding hostile line behind its well- constructed trenches, while the picks and 
shovels behind the skirmishers fairly flew until a good set of works was made 
four hundred yards off and parallel to the enemy's." Our line established, we 
made it so uncomfortable for the enemy that at night they abandoned their posi- 
tion, drawing back to a new fortified line with Kenesaw Mountain as the centre 
and key point, and extending from it east and southeast, and west and south- 
west, covering Marietta and the railroad from there to Atlanta. Our army was 
immediately put in motion and closed up again within easy musket range of the 
enemy's new position, our division being located in front of the mountain, on 
which several batteries had been posted. Our line was intrenched, the usual 
ditch and embankment being supplemented by a breastwork of heavy logs, which, 
covered and protected by the earth in front, proved a good protection from the 
artillery fire. All the ground in our vicinity was commanded by the guns on 
the mountain, and for a day or two they kept it so warm with shot and shell as 
to confine us to our breastworks, but when they got tired of wasting ai^munition 
and ceased firing, our little tents were set and the space in the rear and near the 
breastwork was occupied by our men in comparative comfort, a watch being sta- 
tioned to give warning whenever a puff of smoke appeared on the mountain. 

The enemy amused themselves two or three times a day by shelling our camps 
vigorously for a few minutes to see the *' Yanks" run for their breastworks. 
Here the muster-out rolls were prepared and orders obtained for the discharge 
of our non-veterans, whose three years' term was nearly expired. Colonel George 
announced his intention to retire also at the end of his term, and received orders 
on the 22d to go to Chattanooga on the 23d with our non-veterans and there be 
mustered out. The colonel's age and physical infirmity disqualified him for a 
hard campaign like this, but he x>ersisted to the completion of his term and left 
us at last, much to our regret and his own. About midnight on the 22d our 
regiment was ordered to move about half a mile to the right to relieve another 
regiment there, which was ordered elsewhere. It was a bright, still, moonlight 
night, and the enemy on the mountain was vigilant, and in the habit of investi- 
gating with his artillery every suspicions movement, so the men were instructed 
to move quietly, keeping their gunbarrelscovered, and verbal orders and conver- 
sation to be omitted. Our movement was thus safely made, but on our arrival the 
commander of the regiment to be relieved woke up his men at long range by 
shouting the regulation commands in a voice that could be easily heard t^ the 
enemy, who could also see the glimmer of their muskets in the moonlight, and 
before his men were ready to move a big, round flash was seen on the mountain 
— a few seconds later, another right in our faces, with a deafening explosion, 
and six men at the head of our regiment lay mangled on the earth. The going 
regiment took to the woods without any more formal orders and our men took 
their places in the breastworks with no further casualties, though a furious 
cannonade was kept up for half an hour or more. One of the men killed was our 
sergeant major, P. G. Wheeler, who, a few hours later, would have gone to the 
rear to be discharged. It seemed very sad that, after three years' faithful service 
without injury, he should fall in the last hour of his term. Next morning at day- 
break Colonel George and the non-veterans present with the regiment took 
leave of us, exchanging hearty good wishes and good-byes. 


On the 27th our division was placed in reserve to Davis' division, which 
was ordered to assault the enemy's intrenched line. The attack was most gal- 
lantly made, but failed becanse the line was too strong and too well defended, 
and could not be carried. The loss in the attacking division was heavy, but in 
our division, not seriously under fire, there were few casualties. On the 2d of 
July a detachment of seventy-eight drafted men' joined us from Minnesota, and 
were distributed among the companies. The- enemy evacuated Kenesaw during 
the night, retiring south of Marietta. On the 4th our brigade was ordered to 
garrison duty at Marietta, where we remained eight days. This was now the 
grand supply depot for the army, and we had not only to protect the place from 
probable cavalry raids but to unload several trains a day of army supplies and 
reload them into wagons for the front. Our regiment was encamped on the 
beautiful lawn of ex-Gov. MacDonald's homestead, and with a comfortable 
camp, sufficient rations, no marching or fighting to do, we enjoyed the week 
here, notwithstanding the hard work and picket duty. The new men were 
meantime kept busy learning the duty of soldiers. On the 13th our brigade 
marched nine miles to the front, rejoining the division, and next day another 
detachment of ninety-eight drafted men joined us. On the 15th our regiment 
was ordered back to Marietta to relieve the Twentieth Connecticut as provost 
and depot guard. We continued on duty here for five weeks, our time busily 
occupied in guard and picket duty, in handling HK>mmissary and quartermaster 
stores, and in instructing our one hundred and seventy-six new men, who, being 
mingled in squads with the veterans, made rapid progress. On the 19th of 
August we marched again to the front and rejoined our brigade before Atlanta 
on the 20th. 

Now we were again in the enemy's presence and our old exx)erience of march- 
ing, fighting, intrenching and maneuvering was kept up until, on the 30th, the 
final movement around the enemy's left flank began, culminatiug on the 1st of 
September in the battle of Jonesboro, fought and won by our Fourteenth Corps. 
Our brigade happened to be in the second line during the fighting, and had but 
three men wounded, none killed. The enemy was badly beaten and broken up in 
the battle, and about three o'clock next morning the Confederate army evacuated 
Atlanta, setting fire to the storehouses containing their surplus ammunition 
and stores, which, as we had broken the railroad, they could not move. The 
racket of exploding shells, distinctly heard at our bivouac, reminded us of the 
evacuation of Corinth, of which we had like audible notice, and we knew that at 
last Atlanta was ours. Alter remaining near Jonesboro two days^we leisurely 
marched back to Atlanta, and encamped near the city on the 8th of September. 
We had led Ringgold on the 7th of May with four hundred and fifty-one officers 
and men present. This number had been increased by recruits one hundred 
and seventy-six; returned from hospital or detached service, sixty -seven; and 
had been diminished by killed in battle, four; wounded and sent to the hospital, 
sixteen; sick and sent to the hospital, one hundred and thirteen; discharged at 
expiration of service, one hundred and ten; deserted, three; transferred, two; 
leaving present for duty, September 7th, four hundred and forty -six officers and 
men. (Not all the wounded had been sent to the hospital.) The remainder of the 
month of September was occupied with the usual routine of camp life and duty, 
a great deal of attention being given to our recruits, who were rapidly becoming 
soldiers. Meantime many of the other regiments, like ours, were becoming 
reiluced by discharge of non-veterans at the expiration of their original terms of 
three years, and while all the loyal states were raising and equipping additional 
troops to fill the (quotas called for by the president, some of the governors were 
organizing them into new regiments, which were sent to the front, in some cases, 
under field and company officers of no actual military experience. 

(Jeneral Geo. H. Thomas, who had known our regiment, having had it under 
his command for three years, especially desired to have it filled up to the stan- 
dard strength, aiul al>out the 1st of October the lieutenant colonel commanding 
the regiment received a special written request from him to Gov. Stephen 
Miller for the assignment of two hundred recruits with an order to present the 


requisition in x>er8on. Leaving the regiment in charge of Major C. S. XJline, he 
sta^iied immediately for Minnesota. Next day commenced the northward move- 
ment of Hood's army, and on the 4tH the regiment with its division began the 
tiresome tramp over the familiar ground of the last summer's campaign. The 
march was uneventful so far as our regiment was concerned; it arrived at 
Oaylesville on the 21st, and moved thence to Bome on the 30th, and thence to 
Kingston on the 2d, of November. On the 4th our bandmaster, B. G. Ehodes, 
arrived with a complete outfit of silver horns from Cincinnati. He had been 
sent from Atlanta for them with our regimental fund liberally supplemented by 
private subscriptions by the officers of the regiment. We were all very proud 
of our band, who, by faithful use of their old instruments, had well earned the bet- 
ter ones. Meantime the lieutenant colonel, after a tedious trip with many breaks 
and delays, had been to Minnesota, procured the assignment of eighty- eight 
men — all that were then at Fort Snelling unassigned — and a promise that more 
should follow soon, and had got back to Chattanooga with them just in time to take 
the last train thence to the front, arriving at Kingston at eleven o'clock in the 
evening of November 11th. The train was immediately unloaded and returned 
northward, and at daybreak next morning the railroad and telegraph lines were 
broken behind us, and the troops started for Atlanta. Our regiment delayed a 
little to distribute the recruits and provide them with rations and ammunition, 
but marched at nine o'clock, and rejoined our brigade at Altoona in the evening. 


Our communications northward by railroad and telegraph had been severed 
behind us, and leaving our old commander. General Geo. H. Thomas, to take care 
of Tennessee and Hock's army, we turned our faces southward, retracing the now 
familiar way to Atlanta. On the 14th of November we halted an hour or two 
at Marietta, where we had been on garrison duty five weeks in the preceding 
summer. The once beautiful village had been saidly devastated by the passing 
hostile armies, and our old camps in the shaded lawns were hardly to be recog- 
nized. On the 15th we passed into and through Atlanta, encamping about two 
miles east of the city. Here we filled our cartridge boxes and haversacks, put 
on new shoes and clothing, loaded our wagon trains with rations of coffee, sugar 
and hardtack and disincumbered ourselves of all unnecessary baggage and 
equipage in preparation for the new campaign. The great buildings in Atlanta 
that had been used by the enemy for manufacturing and storing military sup- 
plies had been set on fire and the conflagration had spread over a great part of 
the town, there being neither men nor means to confine it. All that night the 
burning city lighted up the sky and the exploding shells kept up a noisy but 
harmless cannonade. Next morning the Fourteenth Corps, with colors unfolded 
to the mild autumn breeze and bands playing the inspiring martial music, filed 
out into the road and commenced the now historic march to the sea. Our course 
was eastward, parallel and near to the track of the Georgia Railroad; passing 
through Decatur, and near Stone Mountain, we encamped early after an easy 
march of fifteen miles. In the next day's march we passed through Lithonia 
and Conyers. We halted at noon for lunch and then our brigade wrecked two 
miles of railroad track before resuming the march. 

This railroad unbuilding was thoroughly and rapidly done about as follows: 
Our regiment having stacked arms and unslung knapsacks near the road is 
formed in a single rank outside the track and facing inward. The rail joints at 
each end of the line being opened, the men all seize the rail with their hands 
and at the *"yo heave" command they all lift together, raising the rail grad- 
ually up and higher and finally overturning the entire track. The rails are 
joined only with the old-fashioned chairs, and in falling on its back the track is 
shaken up and loosened. The ties are now knocked off and piled upon the road- 
bed cob-house-wise, a few dry fence rails mixed in for kindling, the fire is started 
and the iron rails being laid across the pile are in a short time red hot at the 
centre. A lever and hook is now put on each end of each rail and the ends are 
so turned in opposite directions and brought down to the ground as to give 


the rail at once a spiral twist and a '^ Grecian bend" along its middle third. 
Sometimes the boys wonld give them an extra heating and wind them around 
the trees by the roadside, and at every mile-post the letters U. 8. in sixty -pound 
rails were set up to encourage the loyalty of those who might see and read. Our 
<^valry having broken a bridge some miles ahead of us, we found a locomotive 
and train of cars at Conyers; they were unable to get away before our arrival — 
or afterward. 

On the 28th we passed through Covington, a pretty village, and crossed Yellow 
Eiver; halted at noon for lunch, then dlsint'Cgrated our usual two miles of rail- 
road track. On the 19th we turned southward and left the railroad, directing 
our march toward Milledgeville. The enemy had destroyed the bridge over 
Little Eiver and we had to lay a pontoon bridge, which delayed our march an 
hour or two. The day was rainy, the road slippery and the marching tire- 
Bome and uncomfortable. Next day we passed through Shady Dale, and on the 
2Ist and 22d the weather was fine and we made good progress. On the 24th we 
entered Milledgeville, the then capital of (Georgia, and remained there encamped 
over the next day, which was Thanksgiving day, and was duly celebrated as 
such. We had been eight days on the road from Atlanta and thus far had drawn 
no rations from our wagons except coffee. There had been, however, no lack 
of provisions; it was in that country the season of plenty; there had been cul- 
tivated by the negro labor a most bountiful crop of corn, sweet potatoes and 
various vegetables, and on every plantation were fat cattle, pigs and poultry in 
abundance, while the smoke houses were filled with hams and bacon just cured. 
Butter, honey, sorghum syrup, apples, home-made jelly and preserves and pickles 
had been also provided and stored for us, and it wasn't necessary even to ask for 
them. Every morning an officer with a sergeant and ten men (one from each 
company) were sent out to provide a day's subsistence for the regiment. These 
details were called foragers or ** bummers." They were of course armed and kept 
together and were thus able to whip, or at least stand off, any party of the enemy's 
cavalry they might meet. Details from other regiments that scattered and strag- 
gled lost a good many men by capture, but not a single man of ours was so lost, 
either from the foragers or the column, during the entire march to Savannah. 
These foragers would get as far ahead as they could in the first hour or two, then 
leave the road and visit the plantations, find a wagon or cart, or perhaps a car- 
riage and a single or pair of horses, or mules, or oxen, or cows to haul it, load it 
with corn meal, potatoes, hams, poultry and everything else they could find that 
was edible, and, leading a fat steer or two, would return to the roadside and join 
in the column as the regiment came along. The quantity and quality of sup- 
plies thus collected by these foragers was more than sufficient, and the grotesque 
appearance of the bummers as they lined the roadside in the afternoon waiting 
to join their regiments was a never-failing source of amusement. They usually 
went out on foot, but returned mounted or in carriages in all styles, from screak- 
ing, rickety cart with a single steer or mule in rope traces to a grand coupe with 
a blooded pair in silver-mounted harness. The officer in charge was always in- 
structed to permit no wanton destruction of property or firing of buildings or 
abuse of people at their homes, and so far as is known to the writer these instruc- 
tions were observed by our details, but in many cases, no doubt, soldiers who 
were unrestrained by instructions or discipline were guilty of plundering and 
cruelty, not to be justified even in war, though such acts could not always be 
prevented by those in authority. During this march it was the rule, as it was 
in all other marches, that every man should keep his place in the column, strag- 
gling being in our regiment absolutely forbidden; first, for his own safety, for 
the straggler was liable to be captured or killed, as many of them were, by the 
enemy's cavalry which followed and hung around our rear and flanks; second, 
for his own good, that he might arrive in camp and get his supper and rest with 
his comrades, rather than to fall out, get behind and then have to travel alone 
far into the night perhaps to find his regiment; and third, and chiefly for the 
sake of good order and discipline, that in any emergency, always to be expected 
and prepared lor in war, the regiment should be ready in full strength, every 
man in his place. 


Milledgeville, then the capital of Oeorgia, was an ancient, aristocratic place, 
with handsomely shaded streets and dwelUngs, bat it wore an air of quiet deca- 
dence and lack of enterprise. The legislature had hastily adjourned the day 
before our arrival, and the governor hsul departed with the members. General 
Sherman occupied the executive mansion with army headquarters, while some 
of our officers assembled at the capitol and reorganized the legislature, repealing 
the ordinance of secession and adopting a preamble and resolution declaring the 
loyalty of the State of Georgia to the Union. On the 25th of November we 
crossed the Oconee Elver, and next day reached Sandersville, where we remained 
two days awaiting some movements by the other corps. The enemy's cavalry, 
under General Wheeler, had been very active of late, burning all the bridges 
ahead of our column, and annoying and capturing our foragers whenever they 
could be taken by surprise. We could pontoon the streams without much delay, 
but did not want our foragers interfered with; so Kilpatrick was ordered to 
punish and drive away the offenders, and our (Baird's) division was sent along 
to support him. Some lively skirmishing occurred during the next three or four 
days between the opposing cavalry forces, but they kept out of the way of our 
infantry generally, and we did not get much fun out of the campaign. On the 
4th of December we drove the enemy through and beyond Waynesboro, and then 
turned southeasterly, and on the 5th encamped at Alexandria. Kow followed 
several days of unpleasant weather, obstructed roads and slow progress, with 
continued annoyance and skirmishing with the enemy's cavalry. On the 8th 
we had quite a brush with them, in which Private George Boyson of Company 
K was mortally wounded. This day we crossed the Ebenezer Creek as rear 
guard, and were closely pressed by the enemy while our bridge was being taken 
up. On the 10th we destroyed a section of the Charleston & Savannah railroad, 
includiug a portion of the trestle bridge at the west bank of the Savannah Eiver. 
Now we had left behind us the fine agricultural country of central Georgia, 
abounding in corn, hogs, cattle and sweet potatoes, had also passed through a 
level section of sandy pine lands, almost destitute of population, improvements 
or provisions, and found ourselves among the rice plantations of the Savannsdi 
Eiver and coast region. The rice crop had been harvested, and the threshing 
and hulling mills were in operation. These were fired by the enemy at our ap- 
proach, but our cavalry saved one of the threshing mills in the vicinitv of our 
division, the hulling machinery being destroyed. So, for six or seven days, we 
had rice in abundance, issued to the troops ''with the bark on." We had rice 
for breakfast, rice for dinner, rice for supper, and rice the next day and the next. 
Eice for the soldiers, for the horses, for the negroes and mules, and for every- 
body. The boys exhausted their ingenuity in contriving various ways of hull- 
ing and cooking it, but it was always rice, and we got so sick of it that some of 
us have never eaten any of the stuff since. We were very glad when our regi- 
ment was ordered out on the 16th on a foraging expedition which promised, at 
least, a temporary change of diet. We went out in a southwesterly direction, 
and loaded our trains with forage; got a few cattle and some miscellaneous pro- 
visions, all there were in the country, and returned on the 19th. We were shelled 
by one of the enemy's batteries, at a distance, on our return, and Private Ste- 
phens of Company H was wounded. A wide flooded rice field between us and 
the battery made it inaccessible to us, so we had to leave it behind, much to 
our regret. 

Meanwhile Fort McAllister had been captured by Hazen's division on the 
12th, opening communication with our fleet, and on our return we found forty 
days' accumulated mail in our camp, and two or three days later provisions and 
supplies came in from the fleet by transports; among these supplies nothing was 
more welcome to us than Irish potatoes, of which we had seen none in the past 
six weeks. On the night of the 20th the enemy evacuated Savannah, and some 
of our forces entered it at daybreak on the 2l8t. Our brigade, however, encamped 
in a pleasant field about a mile from the line of defenses constructed by the 
enemy about the city, and officers and men were permitted to visit the city and 
explore the country about it. Some of them discovered that the oyster beds 


below the city had been between the gnns of oar blockading fleet and the enemy's 
shore batteries for two years, and therefore had not been fished. A detail of 
men with big army wagons were sent down there, and returned on Christmas eve 
with several hundred boshels of the big and luscious oysters to enrich our 
Christmas dinner. 

On the 27th of December the Fourteenth Corps passed in review before General 
Sherman in the city of Savannah. Our regiment was especially complimented 
by him, as it well deserved, and a few days later was ordered into the city and 
put in charge of the yard and shops and other property of the Central Eailroad. 
The officers occupied the general office building and the regiment was housed ia 
the great warehouse adjoining the yards. Here, with daily drills and dress pa- 
rades in the park-like streets, and with guard and patrol duty, we had a pleasant 
though busy tour of service. Information was here received of the assignment 
of two detachments of recruits from Fort Snelling to our regiment, one of which 
had been forwarded as far as Nashville and was there detained by General 
Thomas until after the battles of the 15th and 16th, in which our recruits par- 
ticipated; and Major C. S. Uline was sent to Minnesota to bring the other de* 
tachmeut to the regiment. This he did with all possible exx>edition; but we left 
Savannah before either detachment arrived, and they both joined us later at 
Goldsboro, N. C. 


On the 20th of January, 1865, we commenced "The Campaign of the Caro- 
linas," no less famous in history than the "March to the Sea." Our regiment 
marched out of their comfortable quarters at the Central Railroad depot at 7 A. 
M. and at ten o'clock encamped at Cherokee Hill, eight miles out on the Augusta 
road, by which we had approached the city a month earlier. We lefb this camp 
on the 25th, and bridging and crossing one branch of the Ebenezer Creek on the 
26th and another on the 27th, passing that day through the pretty village of 
Springfield, we encamped on the 28th near Sisters' Ferry on the Savannah River, 
about forty miles above the city. Here we remained a week, while a pontoon 
bridge was being thrown across the river and a corduroy road built across the 
wide overflowed bottom lands on the South Carolina side, and while trains and 
artillery were being crossed. On the 5th of February we marched over and 
camped three miles from the bridge, waiting there while it was being taken up 
on the 6th. Next day we passed through the smouldering ruins of Bobertsville 
and Brighton which had been burned the day before by our own troops ahead of 
us. Our course now lay west of north, parallel to and a few miles distant from 
the Savannah Eiver, until the 10th, when we turned to the right, and, crossing 
the Salkehatchie River, arrived at Barnwell Court House. Our brigade had 
the advance to-day, and as we came in sight of the village an order was received 
from corps headquarters for our regiment to encamp therein and to prevent any 
firing of buildings or any molestation of the inhabitants. As every house in 
sight of our march from Sisters' Ferry had been burned, with no attempt to 
restrain or prevent the lawless destruction, it seemed that a difficult duty had 
been assigned to us. Our pace was quickened and we entered the village in 
advance of all other troops; guards were stationed at all the houses and the bum- 
mers and stragglers were admonished as they came up to keep in the streets 
and move on. They were greatly surprised at this restraint and some of them 
were not disposed to submit to it; but no serious resistance was made, and by 
sunset the village was as quiet and peaceful as could be desired. We remained 
here until noon next day, when our corps having passed on we were ordered to 
follow. Before we were half a mile away the village was on fire in a dozen dif- 
ferent places and was no doubt totally destroyed. 

On the 12th we reached the Augusta Sn Charleston railroad, twenty-four 
miles east of Augusta. Here we turned eastward and spent most of the aiter- 
noon in destroying the track and bridges; this work was resumed next morning 
In the afternoon we marched about ten miles northerly and encamped near 
Davis' Mills, on the South Edisto River, our brigade being rear guard of the 


Fourteenth Oorps. Next morning, the 14thy we crossed the river and burned 
the bridges behind us* then marched seventeen miles, to the North Edisto. On 
the 15th we crossed Gongaree Creek at Clark's Mills. The roads were bad and 
we had considerable work in corduroying the soft places and helping the heavy 
wagons out of the mud. Next day we crossed Twelve Mile Creek and passed 
through the smoking ruins of Lexington Court House. On the 17th we waited 
in camp all the forenoon while the troops ahead of us crossed the Saluda Biver, 
which was a wide^ swift and muddy stream, and had been bridged by our pon- 
toniers. We marched, about 5 p. m., over the swaying bridge and on into the 
night. The wind was blowing hard and the whole country seemed on fire. 
Columbia, six miles away, lighted up the eastern sky, and the woods and the 
fences and the buildings and the stacks of straw and forage were everywhere 
ablaze. Along the TO»d were some '^ deadening " fields, in which the pine trees 
had been killed by girdling and left to decay standing, while the ground was 
tilled among them. The fire would climb these dead trees, following a streak 
of turpentine or pitch, and, running out the great, bare limbs, would find the 
fat, pitchy knots and there flare up in flaming torches that seemed to be sus- 
pended in the sky with no visible support. In one of the regiments that had 
encamped in one of these deadenings, some of the men were seriously hurt by 
the falling of limbs that had been burned off the trees over them. Columbia 
was occupied to-day by the Fifteenth Corjw, and we heard that they had a 
lively night of it there. On the 18th our march was resumed, but was slow and 
tedious, most of the time being spent in corduroying the bottomless roads and 
extricating the wagons from the mud-holes. At night we encamped near the 
Broad Biver, opposite Alston, which was an important railroad junction about 
twenty-five miles northwest of Columbia. Next morning, Sunday, we crossed 
the river and destroyed several miles of railroad track, and burned a train of 
cars and the depot; then attended divine service in the afternoon in camp. 
On Monday we marched northward to Monticello, and on Tuesday eastward to 
Winsboro, on the Columbia & Chester railroad. Wednesday, the 22d, we 
tackled the railroad track again and dissected four or five miles of it. 

Our course for a few days had been through a fine, productive country, and 
forage and provisions had been plentiful. On the 23d we moved eastward about 
fifteen miles to the Catawba Biver, at Bocky Mount, where our pontoniers were 
laying a bridge. The stream was wide and full from the recent rains, and the 
current rapid and swirly. It required all the available bridge equipment, and, 
moreover, was a work of great difficulty to span the river with an adequate 
structure. The Twentieth Corps had hardly crossed it ahead of us when it was 
broken by driftwood floating down the river. The next three days were spent 
in replacing the bridge and making and keeping it as secure as possible, 
while a crew of men in boats were put in the river above it to intercept the 
driftwood and tow it to the shores. Meantime it rained nearly all the time, 
and the roads as well as the streams were getting worse. Our troops and 
trains, however, had been crossing at such times as the bridge seemed safe, and 
at seven o'clock on the evening of the 27th our turn, as the rear brigade, came 
to cross. We lighted our precarious way with pitch pine torches, as we moved 
down the narrow, winding, bottomless road to the west bank and gingerly 
walked over the slender swaying chain of canvas boats and then up the slippery 
hill on the eastern shore, where we halted and waited for daylight. We had 
been delayed here several days, and Sherman, who was ahead with the Twentieth 
Corps, was getting impatient. The rains still continued, but nothing could now 
make the roads any worse than the Twentieth Corps had left them after the 
passage of their trains and artillery. We commenced at daybreak, now cutting 
a new parallel road through the woods, and now corduroying the old one, as one 
or the other seemed best; and by working hard all day, forwarded our train 
three or four miles while the pontoniers were taking up the bridge. Next day, 
March 1st, we made fifteen miles, encamping near Hanging Bock battle ground, 
where Sumter and Tarleton met in the Bevolutionary War. On the 4th we 
crossed the line into North Carolina, and on the 5th encamped near the Great 


Pedee Eiver at Sneadsboro. The six days' march between the two rivers, with 
coatinnal rain and mad, had been the most uncomfortable and fatiguing of the 
whole campaign, and we were not sorry to have one pleasant day in camp while 
the bridge was being thrown across the stream. At Intervals we heard explo- 
sions down the river and wondered whether the Fifteenth and Seventeenth Corps 
were having a battle at Cheraw, or, as we afterward learned, were burning some 
captured ordnance stores. 

On the 7th, the bridge having been completed, we crossed the river at noon, 
and then the rain commenced again and continued for three days more. Our 
route now lay through the piny country of North Carolina, whose products, as 
our child's geographies had told us, were ^^ pitch, tar, rosin, turpentine and lum- 
ber." On the 10th our brigade had the lead of the army, and, as we came in 
sight of Fayetteville, found the enemy in our front. Our progress was disputed 
for several miles, without, however, much delaying us, and we entered the city 
about 11 A. M., driving the enemy's rear guard into and through and beyond i^ 
saving the bridge over Cape Fear Eiver by a lively skirmish and a race for it. 
Next day a boat arrived from Wilmington with dispatches for Sherman. Our 
regiment was detailed for provost guard, and made responsible for the protection 
of persons and property of the residents during our occupation of the place. 
We had a pleasant tour of duty here, with good weather and some rest. The 
old United States Arsenal, which had been in operation for the past four years, 
making ordnance stores for the Confederate army, was, by General Sherman's 
order, destroyed, the buildings razed and the expensive machinery broken up. 
On the 15th our regimental commander received orders to burn a large cotton 
&ctory and warehouse in the city, which had been manufacturing goods for. the 
Confederate States Army, and this was done, to the infinite sorrow of the throng 
of girls and other operatives who witnessed it. On the 16th the movement of 
the army toward Goldsboro commenced, and the laborious mending of roads 
and boosting of wagons was resumed, and continued until we encountered the 
enemy in force at Bentonville on the 20th. Our brigade was but lightly 
engaged here, but behaved gallantly, our regiment losing two men wounded. 
Bemaining on the battlefield one day our march was resumed on the 22d, and 
next day we crossed the Neuse Biver and encamx>ed at Goldsboro. Here we 
found Generals Terry and Schofield, with the Tenth and Twenty-third Corps, all 
resplendent in new uniforms, and well supplied with camp equipage and regula- 
tion army rations. Our army, with sixty-three days of hard campaigning, with 
no opportunity of drawing new clothing or mending what we wore, had come to 
that condition when a general change of dress and a chance to wash off the tar 
smoke was eminently desirable. Moreover, understanding that we were to rest 
a few days at Goldsboro, our foraging details had been instructed that day to 
provide as large a supply of miscellaneous provisions as x>06sible, and they had 
been successful, every regiment having at its rear the motley cavalcade of 
**bummers" and their equipage. Well It^en with assorted plunder. As we ap- 
proached the city orders came to close up the columns and prepare to pass in 
review before Generals Schofield and Terry, to whom Sherman, Slocum and How- 
ard proposed to exhibit the army of which they were so justly proud. It may 
be supposed that our own commanders, in thinking of the splendid achievements 
of the army, had quite forgotten the condition it was in, and its appearance as 
it passed the reviewiug stand was a surprise to them, as well as to the dis- 
tiuguished officer iuvited to review us. At all events the review was abruptly 
discontinued alter the fii^t two or three brigades had passed, and we went to our 
camps without further ceremony. After a day's rest in camp our regiment was 
ordered out six miles from Goldsboro, to guard and operate a grist mill, and 
next day we received a mail, the first since the 5th of February. 

Supplies of clothing, ammunition and army rations of food were issued here, 
and distributed to the men. Without any previous notice our regiment was 
carefully and thoroughly inspected on the 1st of April by an officer from corps 
headquarters. He commended everything except the band; he commended this 
also — with their silver horns and magnificent music he could not do otherwise — 


but he reminded the commanding officer that regimental bands had long since 
been abolished, and he would have to report this one to the corps commander as 
unauthorized. It had to be explained to him that these men were only the 
authorized company musicians and not a ''band" at all, within the meaning of 
the regulations. On the 3d of April Major XTline rejoined the regiment, with 
eighty recruits from Minnesota, whose names filled up our roUs to the number 
required to entitle our regiment to a colonel, so on the same day Lieut. Colonel 
J. W. Bishop, who nine months before had been commissioned colonel, was 
mustered as such; Msyor TJline was mustered as lieutenant colonel and Captain 
Moulton as major. Next day our division was reviewed by Gteneral Schofield, who 
had for a time commanded it at Triune, Tenn., in the spring of 1863. He person- 
ally congratulated the colonel on the splendid appearance of the regiment. On 
the 9th Sergeant Kelsey reported with fifty-nine more recruits, which had been 
forwarded from Minnesota in November, '64, and had spent the winter in General 
Thomas' command at Nashville, Tenn. On the 10th of April our army was again 
in motion toward Baleigh, our brigade leading the Army of Greorgia twelve miles 
to Springfield, driving the enemy before us all day. They fired the bridge over 
Neuse Eiver as they crossed it, and a sit had been well prepared for burning with 
tar and pitch, we were unable to save it. Next morning we received the news 
of the surrender of Lee's army, and the cami)s resounded with cheers; Johnston's 
army was yet before us, however, and we went for him again. Next day we had 
a skirmish fight on the way to Baleigh, fifteen miles, arriving there at noon. 
Our regiment was placed in charge of the state insane asylum there, and encamped 
in the ample grounds, placing a chain of guards around it to keep away the bum- 
mers, who were ready to turn out the inmates, sane or insane, without discrimi- 
nation or formality. ' 

After a day's rest here we marched again on the 15th, six miles, to Holly 
Springs, and the next day six miles further toward Durham Station. We 
remained in this vicinity during the ten days occupied in the first and the final 
negotiations for the surrender of Johnston's army, which took place at Durham 
on the 26th, and of which we were formally informed on the 27th. The paroling 
of the surrendered men was assigned to General Schofield, and we returned by 
easy marches to the vicinity of Saleigh, encamping Saturday, the 29th, at Page's 
Station, a short distance west of the city. Our march of four hundred and 
eighty miles, from Savannah to Qoldsboro, occupied sixty-three days in mid- 
winter, with bad roads and much inclement weather and in the presence of an 
active enemy, strong enough to annoy, but not to seriously delay us. We com- 
menced the campaign with five hundred and twenty-six officers and men present, 
of whom eleven, including two men wounded at Bentonville, were sent temjwra- 
rily to the field hospital, and five were captured while foraging; a total loss of 
only three per cent from our effective force. 


With the surrender of Johnston's army the war, so far as we were concerned, 
was substantially over, and we all knew that a few weeks more or less would 
emancipate us from the restraints of military service and restore us to the 
-pesLceful avocations of civil life. Orders were received on the 30th of April 
to "prepare for a comfortable and leisurely march to Eichmond." The troops 
were to carry only ten rounds of cartridges, all surplus stores, ammunition and 
supplies being turned in for storage, and we were notified that we would be 
expected at Eichmond about the 10th of May, which would make our march 
about sixteen miles a day. This for a veteran army, homeward bound, with 
good roads, good weather, and no enemy in the way was easy enough. The 
march was to commence on Monday, the Ist of May, but on Sunday morning, 
under the pretense of changing the troops to a more eligible camp, the Four- 
teenth Corps was led out about sixteen miles and encamped at 3 p. m. The 
remainder of the afternoon was spent in mustering the men and preparing the 
pay rolls. 


On the Ist of May the reveill6 sonnded long before daylight, and we marched 
at five o'clock, crossing Neuse and Tar rivers, and encamping at 6 p. M., after a 
march of twenty-fonr miles. On the 2d we made twenty -two miles, and on the 
3d, with a delay of five hours in bridging and crossing Eoanoke Biver at 
Taylor's Ferry, we marched sixteen miles and encamped near Boydton, Va. 
On the 4th we marched again at 5 o'clock A. m., making twenty- two miles. On 
the 5th the march was urged all day long, and twenty-eight miles were covered, 
and on Saturday, the 6th, twenty-four miles. On Sunday, the 7th, twenty miles, 
brought our division within a mile of the James Biver at Bichmond, and here 
orders were received from Major General H. W. Halleck, commanding the De- 
partment of the James, directing the approaching troops to encamp at least six 
miles south of the city, and forbidding any officer or soldier of Sherman's army 
to enter it unless he had a written pass from his corps commander. General 
Sherman, not expecting our arrival so soon, was absent, and in partial and reluc- 
tant compliance with these orders the weary troops retraced their steps some 
two or three miles and went into camp. In the next two days a good many of 
Sherman's officers and soldiers did visit the city without the required pass, 
greatly to the vexation of the provost guard, who were expected to prevent 
their crossing the river and to arrest and imprison all who might be found in 
the city without proper authority. On the 9th, Sherman still being absent, 
orders from *' Headquarters, Department of the James," were received and 
published to our army, announcing a grand review of the Fourteenth Corps in 
Bichmond on the 10th by the major general commanding the department. This 
order prascribed with infinite detail the line of march by which the corps was to 
be brought into the august presence of the department commander, the for- 
mation of the troops in the column, and the position the arms were to be carried 
in passing the several streets, and especially the honors to be paid the reviewing 
officer. All baggage wagons and camp followers and irregulars of every sort 
were to be rigorously excluded from the column, and the soldiers and their arms 
and equipments were to be, in the highest degree, in military order and condi- 
tion. General Sherman arrived late that night, but in time to announce to the 
troops before daybreak that the proposed review would not take place as 
arranged. Our arrival had been several days earlier than had been expected 
and he now ordered the quartermasters and paymasters, who were on their way 
to meet us, back to Washingtom, and decided to march his army through to the 
Potomac at once. On the 10th our marching orders were received and next day 
the Fourteenth and Twentieth Army corps marched through the city in their 
free and easy route step, paying no honors to anybody. 

Since Johnston's surrender no foraging on the country had been done, and the 
bummers had been gradually reduced to the ranks and to discipline and order, 
but on this day's march they were revived and displayed in unusual exuberance 
of style, spirit and equipment. We marched twenty-three miles that day, cross- 
ing Chickahomiuy River, and in thirteen miles next day passed through Hanover 
Court House and crossed Pamunky Biver. On the 13th we crossed the Bichmond 
^ Gordonsville railroad at Chesterfield, and after a morning's march of twelve 
miles halted at noon at Childsburg; then we marched four miles northwesterly 
and encamped. On the 14th we marched twenty miles, encamping near Daniels- 
ville, and on the 15th, after passing through Verdiersville, we crossed the Bapidan 
at Baccoon Ford, nineteen miles. On the 16th we made eighteen miles, crossing 
the Rappahannock at Kelly's Ford, and next day marched eighteen miles to Bris- 
tow Station on the Orange & Alexandria railroad. We were now traveling his- 
toric ground and were much interested in noting places whose names were so 
familiar in association with the movements of the Army of the Potomac. On 
the 18th we passed Manassas Junction, the Bull Bun battlefield, and Centre- 
ville in a march of tweqty miles, and on the 19th moved our camp about six 
miles to Alexandria. Here on the 20th seventy-two more recruits joined the regi- 
ment and were distributed to the companies. 

Orders were received announcing the grand final review in Washington of the 
two great representative armies, that of the Army of the Potomac on the 23d, and 


of Sherman's army on the 24th, of May, and a day or two was given to rest and 
preparation. Oar regiment was in splendid condition and well armed and eqnip- 
I)ed in every particular. We numbered about three hundred veterans of nearly 
four years' service and four hundred recruits of one year or less, but these had 
been so well mingled with and instructed by the veterans that there was little 
apparent difference in appearance or efficiency. There were few, if any, other 
regiments in our corps so strong as ours; many of them numbered less than three 
hundred men. Our ten companies, under arms, averaged about thirty-two files 
front, and to condense the marching column for the review the smaller regiments 
were formed into eight or six, and some of them into four, companies of about that 
size. The Fifteenth, Seventeenth and Twentieth corps crossed Long Bridge 
during the night of the 2M and bivouacked in the streets about the capitol to 
be in readiness to commence the march at the appointed hour. The morning 
of Wednesday, the 24th, was clear and sunny. Taking an early break&ust in 
our camp, our Fourteenth Corps was in motion at seven o'clock, and after a 
mardi of eight miles stacked arms in the vicinity of the capitol at ten o'clock. 
The review march had already commenced, but there were 65,000 men in the 
column, which, marching briskly, consumed six and a half hours in passing the 
reviewing stand; so our time to march out into Pennsylvania avenue did not 
come until aft;er noon. 

Probably no more magnificent military display was ever seen than the one 
that greeted our eyes as we wheeled around the capitol and looked down the 
long, straight, broad avenue, filled from curb to curb with marching troops, the 
gay uniforms, the glistening muskets and the unfolded colors all swaying 
with the rhythm of the music as the regiments, with regular and steady step, 
moved on. At the great treasury building the column wheeled by companies to 
the right, and then presently to the left, then the arms were smartly brought to 
the ^ ^ carry " for the march past the president and the high officers of the army 
and of the Oovernment standing with him. Officers saluted respectfully as they 
passed the stand, and, when the rear company of a regiment had cleared the 
White House grounds the arms were right shouldered and the ^^ route step" re- 
sumed. No halt for rest was i>ermitted, as the march of the column in the 
avenue must not be obstructed by the troops ahead of it; so we tramped on 
through Georgetown and across the aqueduct bridge into Virginia before we 
had an opportunity to file out of the road and stack arms and take breath. When 
we got back to our camps, at seven o'clock, we were pretty thoroughly tired, 
having marched more than twenty miles. On the day after the review our corps 
left the bivouac at Alexandria, and moved about ten miles to find a fresher and 
cleaner camping ground, about three miles north of Washington. Here the offi- 
cers and men were freely given opportunity to visit the city, and with pleasant 
weather and plentiful rations the time passed rapidly and without many events 
worthy of notation here. Our old commander, George H. Thomas, visited our 
camp on the 2d of June, and was enthusiastically received by our regiment and 
others that had served with him and under him in the West. On the 3d he 
reviewed our division, which had been his original command in 1861, and under 
his direction had fought and won the battle of Mill Springs. 

On the 6th of June our (Third) division (Fourteenth Army Corps) was 
reorganized, and Colonel J. W. Bishop was formally assigned to command the 
First Brigade, now consisting of the Second Minnesota, Eighteenth Kentucky, 
Thirty-first Ohio, One Hundred and First Indiana and Twenty-third Missouri 
regiments, and on the 9th he assumed command of the division, General Baird 
having taken leave of absence. On the 13th of June his commission as briga- 
dier general by brevet, dated April 9, 1865, was received and was duly announced 
to the regiment. In the evening the officers and men of the regiment came to 
division headquarters en masse to present their congratulations. Some twenty- 
five years later he learned that this appointment had been recommended by his 
corps and army commanders from Savannah in January, 1865, and, the commis- 
sion not having arrived, the recommendation was renewed in May. 


On the 14th orders were received to move the division by rail to Parkersburg, 
on the Ohio Biver, and thence by steamers to Louisville, Ky., and the First 
Brigade was forwarded in the afternoon of the same day, the remainder of the 
division following next morning. The troops traveled in open coal cars, which 
at the time were the only cars to be had for them, and they would have been 
comfortable enough in fine weather, but it rained all the first night on the road, 
drenching the men, and, with the coal dust, making their beds decidedly dirty and 
uncomfortable. Division headquarters left Washington by passenger train in 
the evening of the 15th, and, passing the troops on the road, arrived at Cumber- 
land in time next morning to have hot coffee supplied to all the troop trains as 
they came along, which was gratefully appreciated by the tired and hungry men. 
The division arrived at Parkei;3burg on the 17th, and next day, Sunday, the 18th, 
embarked on a fleet of steamers for the trip down the Ohio Biver. We had 
a most delightful voyage, passing Cincinnati at 6 p. m. on Monday, arriving at 
Louisville Tuesday morning, the 20th, and, marching out on the Bardstown pike, 
encamped about four miles south of the city. Here the next twenty days were 
passed in awaiting the decision of the War Department as to our final discharge. 
Some of the troops were being sent to Texas and to other Southern states, and 
while we knew that the larger part of the army would soon be discharged, we 
could not know that we might not be elected to remain in the service indefinitely. 
But orders came at last for our muster-out, and on the 10th of July the rolls 
were all ready and the final inspection, muster and parade were made. Orders 
relieving all detached duty men had been received, and our camp and garrison 
equipage were turned over to the quartermaster. The corps commander issued 
his farewell orders, directing the regiment to proceed to Fort Snelling, Minn., 
for final discharge, and accompanied them with a complimentary letter, and our 
officers made a parting call on Oen. Baird, commanding our division. 

Next morning, the 11th, we marched out of our camp, leaving the tents all 
standing,*and a few minutes later halted at corps headquarters, where General 
J. C. Davis, the corps commander, made us a brief but feeling address, then the 
march was resumed to Louisville. There we crossed the Ohio Biver, and at ten 
o'clock left Jefferson ville, by train, for Chicago, where, when we arrived at 6 P. 
M. next day, the regiment was quartered in Soldiers' Best. Early on the 13th we 
marched through the city and took the train for La Crosse, by way of Water- 
town, Wis. B^kching La Crosse at 2 A. M. on the 14th, we went immediately on 
board the steamer McLellan for St. Paul. At Winona, at eight o'clock, a crowd 
of people were at the levee to meet us, and the captain kindly consented to hold 
the boat there long enough to permit us to go ashore for a parade march. Wi- 
nona had hospitably entertained us on several occasions, and we all gratefully 
remembered it. 

The next morning, the 15th, we landed at the lower levee at St. Paul. The 
city semed to be having a general holiday and crowds of people were on the bank 
to welcome us with bands of music and salvos of artillery, and a parade of the fire 
department and other organizations. Colonel John T. Averill of the Sixth Min- 
nesota Begiment marshaled the grand procession, and under its escort we marched 
in column of platoons up Third street to Wabasha and by that street to the capi- 
tol, where we were received by Hon. John S. Prince, then mayor of the city, and 
Hon. Stephen Miller, then governor of the state, in appropriate addresses of wel- 
come. Then we were invited to a bountiful collation, which the ladies had spread 
for us in the capitol building, and which they personally served to the hungry 
soldiers with gracious words and kind attentions. All this over, our march was 
resumed to the upper levee, where we embarked for Fort Snelling. About 5 p. 
M. we were encamped on the parade ground at that historic post, where four 
years before we had been mustered into the service. Here we were obliged to 
wait several days for our final payment. Our camp was enlivened by visiting 
friends during the day, and throngsof people came out from St. Paul and Minne- 
apolis in the evening to attend our dress parades. At the close of the last 
parade, Wednesday, July 19th, a brief farewell address was made to the regiment 
by the colonel. The next day, the 20th, the final payment was made, and the 


men received their individual discharges, and the Second Regiment of Minne- 
sota Veteran Yolanteer Infantry ceased to exist. The men Aspersed to their 
homes with a loyal pride in the record made by their regiment, with a warm and 
steadfast friendship for each other as comrades and with the satisfietction that 
comes only from duty well performed. 

May they find these sentiments revived and strengthened as, after twenty-five 
years have intervened, they (who yet survive) shall review in this imperfect 
record the service of the regiment. 

Date of mastering of first two companies June 26, 1861 

Date of organization as a regiment Jnly 22, 1861 

Date of remnster in as veterans Dec. 29,1863 

Date of final payment and discharge July 20, 1865 

Number of men mustered into regiment 1,735 

Number of men commissioned as officers 91 

Number of men wounded in action. 274 

Of whom were killed or mortally wounded 74 

Number of men died of diseases 167 

Number of men discharged for disability 277 

Number transferred or promoted out of the regiment 76 

Number reported as deserted/ 61 

Number of officers resigned 40 

Number of men discharged at end of three years' time (or away from the regiment) 353 

Number of men present at final discharge of regiment 699 

It appears that of the whole number of men mustered into the regiment from first to last 
about sixteen per cent were wounded in battle, and more than one-fourth of these were kiUed or 
mortally wounded. 

Nearly ten per cent of the whole number died in the service of disease, and sixteen per cent 
were discharged for disability; four and one-half per cent were transferred or promoted out of the 
regiment, three and one-half per cent deserted the service, and two per cent (officers) Resigned for 
various reasons during the four years' service. Twenty per cent or the whole number were dis- 
charged at the expiration of the original three years' enlistment at the close of the war but away 
from the regiment, and forty per cent of the whole number were present in the regiment at ito 
final muster-out. 

Of the thirty-seven commissioned officers who were in the regiment at the end of its service, 
only three were commissioned officeis at the beginning; all the oUiers (except surgeons) had been 
promoted from the ranks. 

While the regiment had various periods of encampment or post duly, it had also considerable 
exercise on foot. In 1862, '63 and '64 it marched, by the record, 5,153 miles, an average of four 
and three-fourths miles a day, including Sundays, for the whole time. No record was kept for 
1861 or 1865. It is believed, however, that the average daily marching in those years would ex- 
ceed that for the years given. 





klwhn DtKbirKcdbTorderOan. Buell April H,' 

]jiDCHi«r q « DlKtamrgnlbT order Oan.Buall April 14,' 

Mmlvr DlKhi^ed br on]« Om. ButU April 34, 

r«>n. Dlichuwd b; ordar Oen. Buell April 24, 

"-" " "l«hiiisedhjorderOen.Bu«1IApnl»- 

BaiDhart LtUell .. . 44 Dticbirnd br order Oen. Buall April !4 

w_ •■ ai. . ..- ni«h«r([edl.joraBrOeo.BmllApfilS4. «. 

PiKhuKed br order Gen. Buell April 24, -GJ. 

I>1kIui^ br aider Oca. Buell April 14, 'SI. 

Wbl II. DhemuD ( W DlKhariied bjoraer Oen. Buall April !4 

■*"-iD TlbljctU. IS IMKhuKedbf order Gen. Buell April 24 



DcMTtcd Dec. 14, '6J. 

SutailluM; dlKhiivaiHT Older JuLf 

3irg«d per order Julr T, *S&, 

Jo. f. <lh U. 8, AitlllBTT, Not. M,'«. 

Corponl: prDinot«d In Sernant; iliKbivnd June 3S, 'M. 

DlsBhvged for dlublUlr Aug. S, 61 

IHKhiKedODeip.oricnii,BRit.27, '3^ wad. U Cblckimuui. 

Ra^nllHM] D«c. IS, tA. 

Dlicharfied perorder Jaaell, 19. 

PmnoUd Q. U. tjcrfaut, lit ucuMnut uvl QuirtcnuMUr. 

Be-aaliiwd Dec ifc, '63. 
DlMliuged per order Jud 


*: « UliBioiurj RUgt. 

»*rT« Corpa, Aog. I, 'ti. 

Ka'tMaUA Dm. M, 'SS. 

Re.«nll«sd Dec. IS, ItSj appointed Corporal and Sergeant. 

Re-eallil«d Deo. 2«, '63. 

Dlacbirged od eiplratlou ottam. 

Re^nllRed Deo. IS, SI; wouDded » ChickamiDga. 

~~ ' ■iLonliTUle.Kr., Uanti] 

Dbcharged per order June 11, tS. 

DiKharnd for dlsabllltT 8«>t. IS, 'El. 

Died at Lebanon, Kt., Uarcb 16, 'e2. 

Re^Dllalal Dec M, ■si 

Died at DaTldi Iiland. N. T. Harbor, Mansh i.'Si; drafted. 

Died at Columbia, Tenn., Haj 2, '62. 

IHacharged on expiration of term; wnd. at Mlialonar^ Rldgfl. 
Dbcbarged for dbabllU; Jauuaij, '63. 
B»«oUited Dee. V, ■&" 

Med at Pltlaborgb leading, Tenn., April 
Died M SoDerML, Kj.. March 1 1, Vt. 
Dltchargedoneiplratloc '' '■ — "" 

June 2S, >64; wounded at 

Be-enllited Jan. 18, 'M; wounded at Cbickamauga; Muaic\an; 

Wounded at Cbl°kan»ufn: dlKharged fordlaabUltf June S,'61. 
Promoted Carpoial; ni.enllited Dec. 14, '93. 


Died at KaibTllle, Tenn., March 9, -10. 

Dlicbarged on eiplratloa of term, June IS, '&4. 

Dlachargcd rordlublllir Not. 4, 'tt, 

Traur.IoReglDieDlalBaDdDec. 1,'tl;dU.aiieiplrallaDortenD. 

DlKbarg«d per order June II, ■««. 

Sergeant! dltcbargsd Oct. 21, '&*; aiplrallon of (erm. 

Dlwbarnd JuoaS, ■M; expiration of lerm; wnd. Cbickamauga. 

Dlacharged for dliablUtT Not. 23, '6,1. 

DIachamd for dliabllllr Maj IS >G9. 

Corponl; trantbrnd W 4th V. s. Artllleir Dec. 22, '&Z 

n Baierre Coipa Sept. It, 'N. 

RoerxB OF Company A — QnUintMl. 








June 26, -81 





Janalfi, |in 


DlMHiiuYed June 2S, 'M: iiplntLDD of Urm; re«nlliL«d 6(ii>- 


joir 11, '« 

DlKhfti-ged June 2G, 'H; aipintion of term; pnimoled Coi^ 

Wortt,(W«M.„ ,., 


Jillf 11, >H 

July 11. -aB 


Roster of Coupany B— Cb>i(i)ii««d. 

RosTBK or COUPANT B — Omftnued. 



nrt«[ UtDlor 

Uudal UeuwT 

aiaton A. anej^ 

Uatblu Ttaoenr , 

ftnr Lieulencnu — 

dui1^b!bi1j«t ..."!" 

HUTlMIl E. Cou» 

WiUlun I. Mill! 

JODklbiD P. JackKD. 

Acker, Jain ZZZ''. 

Adwni, Gcorn H 


AlltD.Hinni W~ 

Amea, Geo. H. 

Berlin, Htnklah U... 

Bajliu, Frank D 

Bacon, Wm. A 

Beaman, Heorr 

B«onla, Wm. EI 

Beau d«tls, Joseph 

Bingham, Wdi 

Sic^id, Uaraula L.... 

Black, Danl«] 

Blelui, Jeremiah 

Boolb, Thomas 

Bornhoun, RUey 

BoDBor, Uriah 

Brown, John J 

Bredford, Isaac W 

Brunnrr Rudolph 

Breoggeman, Henry 

Bumel^, Omiael 

I Rslnied. 
. lalLlniMni 

Not. IB, "M ._ 
Ang.SS.'M J 
JunetS, t 

JamTt, 'S 
Dec 1,'S 

June 19. •« 
Feb. 2B, -G 

Jane 29' -6 
JuneJS, '6 
Apl. 8. '6 

g CoTponl. & 

It CompanyB Juna!6,-ei;A4)uuuitJuD*I1,'Rti 

_,., SlaffOfflcerJultIO,'*!. 

. Sergeanl Major June 16, ■61; id UeuteoiDt Dec «, '61^ latLtm. 

. .__;.,, "i-rMignedSjiil, ll,'M;>peclalni«nlioil. 

,juna IS, 'Si; 2d lieutenant Sot. IB,'** 

Bh A.^uajjuu.,Linc1l0D Deo. 1,'61. 

euUnaaC JUD« 3», '61; reglgoed April le, 'Gl. 

int JuneSS.'ei; resigned No>. 9, 'M; apeclal mention. 

June 29. 'HI; Selg.; wod. al Chick amauga; dla. with reg. 

rafted; dlacbarsed wllb regli 
. -ransferred to Veteran RcKn 
I Wounded al Joneaboro, La.; p 
. Wounded at CMckaiaauga; ii 
t Subslltuls, 

„_ __ealined Dec. H 

Corporal and Sergeant. 
- 'harged on *>prrallon of term, June 2*. 'fit 

Re-en tilled Dec 2E 

1. June 2 

Wounded al Mlsalonarr Ridge; re^nllited Dec.H, >S3. 
DlscbargHl on eiplrailon orierm, June 28, 'SB. 
Dlacharged on eiplratioa of term, June 2», '6B. 
Re-oDlimed Jan. 35, •64; promoted Corporal aod Sergomt, 
Re-enllated Dec. 28, '63; promoted Muilcian. 

Sargeant; diachiugsd lo 


RoBTEB OF Company C — CmtinM*d. 








Not. 12, -M 





Fob. 19, "M 


Jaae^', <B1 

JUDSW, '61 

Oct. ISp-Bl 

M.J 80,;* 

Jun«», '«] 

SSi ?■? 


Oct. M.'W 

uneU, ■61 




DtKhused on viplnUan 


July 11. •« 



July tl, '« 



July 11, -M 

JulJ ii; ■« 

JuJjll 'U 










July II. 'aB 


July 11. 'ae 



DlMh*rx«l per ukIut June. 'U. 



July tl. ■« 



July 11. -M 





July 11. ■« 

July 11. ■« 




July 11, •« 

July 11. W 


ROBTEB OF COUPANY C — Cotttimitll. 


Samusi G. Trimbla.,.. 

Hlnm LobdtIL 

Jicobl. UcCor 

July 5,-81 

Apr. a,'M 

. RMlgnid Oct. n, -61. 
Sarg. July G, Vl; 3d LleuL Jan. IT, '63; 1M Lieut. Uaj 1, >62, 

■P«cla! meDllon: piomoted Hijor April I, '6H, 
FriT. July .\ 'SI; Corp., SeTg.,Serg. Miliar, Int Lleul. Co. I Mit 
\S,-IH:Aiit.iSt,j1a,-6t;aptc.tin!alion; di>. witb. rFgimeal. 
. R«lgiitid Mar 1, '62. 
. Sergaint Julys, '61; MLieutenanlMBTl,'fll;kllledatMiMipn- 

■ry RIdse Kot. 2S, '63; upedal nHiitiuii, 
. Corponl July a, '61; Scrireanl, 2J Lieulenanl Dee. 21, '6!; re- 

nlliled Dcc'», '63; Corpoial jHlT's,ei; Sergeant. 

RosTEB OF Compact D — Oontiimed. 


BOSIBB 07 COMPAKT D — OmfilltMri. 

BosTEB or COHFANT D — Continued. 







Wil» Job D 




1 - 

j«„ n, '^fl E^r^^i'^°^^..^s«^^ r^^^'js^.s 

DlKbuged Tor dJublUtr Aug. i, '61. 




Jnl* S.'Sl .. 
July B, '81 ... 

July B.'Il 

Julf «,— 
^"!' i''. 

juir «.'- 

Oct. II, >M 
Oct. II, 'M 
July a,>«l 

Joir II, t 

Jair It, •»> 

Oct. 30, 'U J 
July B,'fll ... 
July e, '81 ... 

July iS'8 

JU^ B,'«] 
July fl,'<l 
Meh. a,'Ct 

S Sub«itul«. 

. I>i«d*tKMbTill*,Tenn ,. 

 UlBctiu^ed OD aiplimtloil ot la 

. M Mill Spring*; dli.foT illubUIi:r Jin* 

) Drifted. 

, DlKhirgedtordlubilUyMiircli, >«3. 

DUclwrgcd pel ordar Juiib,>6£. 

. Dljcbiifedfordlublllty WiTcli,'BI. 

S B»«nlialKlDM.2e, '&S. 

i Dnrud. 

. Di«fk«d; dlKhugsd par order June, '6$. 

. DIjctiuiedoDeiplntloDorwnu. July 4,>U 

. Corponl: dlMbumd ror dlnbiUly. 

S Subnllule. 

July B, tl ... 
July a,>Sl ... 
"-Tt.M.'Sl -. 

. July sitl 

July II, ■< 
July 11, 'U 

July B,'. 
Met. IT, '< 

, July 1 


July 11, ■«■ 

1 1 


.. 1 



wDd. It Ctalckmuiugii 

Roster of Oiiipant E^Omliinud. 







BOSTKK OF OOHPAKT F — Cbnf iniinl. 




KosTKR or COHPAITY Q — OmMnant. 


BosTEB OF Company O — Continutd. 



' Feb.ll, •U; )• 

Koem OF CosfPAHT H— OmO'iMMil. 





ROSTBB or COHPAMT I — Cbnft'nueif. 




RosTBB OF Company K — Oonlinutd. 

llMjil.t*] JuIt1I,>«S 

Jun. *^'m' 1....!_...| 

M»SI/«t[ JdItII.'M 

MlTll.'M JbItI1,>wI 

JuneM,-**! Julrll.'tS BuUlllote. . ,. „. 

Aui2l "ei _ D|(chanredrorillul>llllTH>nhlS.''n. 

Aug. I»', Vl DftniS from LouiitUfc, K j., Ociobet, 't% 

J^u.'aa, •Mi'jii'iT lV,"'«* SalHlilnl*. 
Jin. 1S,-M JulTll.'SE Subnitute. 
Mcb. 9, jfi.!! July II, *» Dr«flrd. 

A JJ. »; -ai ...,." J.:!!l!°i I^lumd rwdlubHilr Uoi. », •»!. , , 
Aag.W, 'SU_ I t>kd «lut«. Mm., July H, ■«; woundrt >t 1 



R06TSB OF Company K — Continued. 








Williams, Henry C~ 

Wilaon, William 

WilaoD, James M„. . ^. 

Willey, George H .^...... 

Woodward, George. ^.... 

Zimmerman, Caraer ^.... 

Zimmerman, Christ. 

Aug. 1,'61 
Aug. 26, '61 
July 81, '61 
Sept. 16, '61 
Aug. 14, '61 
May 80, '64 
Oct. 8, '64 

» ••—•»•■>—<••»••■ • • • 

July 11, »65 
July 11, '65 
July 11, '65 

Died at Somerset, Ky., Feb. 28, '62. 

Died fh>m wounds receiTed at Mill Springs. 

Corporal, Sergeant. 

Died at Chattanooga, Ttonn.. Not. 10, *63. 

Musician; re-enlisted Decemoer, '68. 



*The words " special mention" mean that the man was commended by name in official reports for gallant and meri- 
torioos conduct in action. 



Recruiting for the Third Regiment^ Minnesota Infantry, United States Vol- 
unteers, commenced early in the autumn of 1861, when people were still feeling 
the thrilling influence of the battle of Bull Run. The regiment was recruited 
from all parts of the state, and the work was rather slow in the more sparsely 
settled counties. Even in such counties there were in every neighborhood a 
few young men who were eager to go to the war, but it was often too great a 
pang for their parents to consent. Instances occurred where, after a full talk 
and consideration of the matter, a young husband agreed to enlist, but the wife, 
on hearing the decision, burst into tears, and seemed unable to consent to spare 
him. In Kuch case, of course, the man was promptly released from his promise. 
Instances of this sort are recalled where husbands subsequently went in other 
raiments and returned after the war safely to their families. If one had 
dreamed that in courae of a year our peaceful frontier would have been swept 
by Indian war, success in recruiting would probably have been much less than 
it was. 

The pecuniary inducements which the Government then offered to the sol- 
dier were not slight. He was promised a bounty of one hundred dollars. The 
pay of a private soldier was thirteen dollars a month, as fixed by act of August 
6, 1861, besides his ^'rations" or subsistence; and, in addition, clothing of the 
value of forty-two dollars per annum. The latter was always of good quality, 
and furnished at cost. The coat, blouse and trousers were all wool and dark 
blue, but after the first year of the war the trousers were light blue. The 
bootees, or gaiter shoes, of split leather came up over the ankle, were tied with 
leather strings, had sewed soles, were very comfortable and durable, yet cost 
only one dollar and a half. 

An infantry regiment consisted of ten companies. Each company had three 
commissioned officers, — a captain, first lieutenant and second lieutenant; also, 
thirteen non-commissioned officers, namely, a first or orderly sergeant, four 
other sergeants and eight corporals; likewise two musicians (drummer and 
fifer), a wagoner and at least sixty-four privates; the latter being the minimum 

'The following were the field, staff, non-commissioned staff and oompanj officers on the organi- 
zation of the regiment, Nov. 15, 1861: Colonel, Heniy C. Lester of Winona; lieutenant colonel, 
Benjamin F. Smith of Blue Earth county; migor, John A. Hadley of Steele county; surgeon, Levi 
Butler of Minneapolis; assistant surgeon, Francis H. Milligan of Wabasha; chaplain, Chauncey 
Hobartof Ked Wing; adjutant, Cyrene U. Blakeley; quartermaster, James P. Hewlett; sergeant 
major, William D. Hale; quartermaster sergeant, A. G. Lincoln; oommissaiy seiveant, Josiah 
Oathout;' hospital steward, Ezra Peabody. Company A, captain, WiUiam W. Webster; first 
lieutenant, James P. Hewlett; second lieutenant, Adolphus P. Elliott. Company B, captain, 
Chauncey W. Griggs of St. Paul; first lieutenant, James B. Hoit; second lieutenant, BoUin C. Olin. 
Company C, captain, John A. Bennett; first lieutenant, William H. Mills; second lieutenant, Lewis 
Hardy. Company D, captain, Hans Mattson of Ked Wing; first lieutenant, Lars K. Aaker; second 
lieotennnt, Hans Eustrom. Company E, captain, Clinton Gumee of Red Wing; first lieutenant, 
Edwiird L. Baker; second lieutenant, Willet W. De Kay. Company F, captain, John B. Preston; 
firat lieutenant, Iftaac Tichenor; second lieutenant, Samuel H. Ingham. Company G, captain, 
Everett W. Foster of Wabasha; first lieutenant, Ezra B. Eddy; second lieutenant, John C. Devereux. 
Company H, captain, Benjamin F. Kice of Mankato; first lieutenant, David Misner; second lieu- 
tenant, Isaac Taylor. Company I, captain, Christopher C. Andrews of St. Cloud; first lieutenant, 
Joseph H. Swan of Le Sueur; second lieutenant, Damon Greenleaf. Company K, captain, Mark 
W. Clay of Olmsted county; first lieutenant, James L. Hodges; second lieutenant, Cyrene H. 


namber. Every company was allowed to have eighty-two privates, which was 
the maximam namber. Usually the namber of privates in a company varied 
between the minimum and maximum. The largest company in the Third Begi- 
menty as first organized, was G, which had seventy-six privates. The aggre- 
gate strength of the regiment, including all officers and men, at the date of its 
organization, November 15th, was nine hundred and one. Company officers of 
in&ntry regiments always marched afoot with their companies, but the field and 
staff officers, — colonel, lieutenant colonel, major, adjutant, quartermaster, sur- 
geon, assistant surgeon and chaplain, — also non-commissioned staff — sergeant 
major, quartermaster sergeant, commissary sergeant and hospital steward, — were 

Never again was the line of the Third Eegiment so long as it was on the one 
or two occasions that it turned out on dress parade at the early November sun- 
set, just before leaving Fort Snelling. Everyone wore the light blue overcoat 
with cape. And the line! — it was a brigade, compared with its numbers on 
some subsequent occasions. As soon as a regiment gets into the field its num- 
bers present for duty rapidly decline for awhile. Men who are competent as 
clerks will be detailed away at offices of the staff and headquai*ters; some will 
be detailed as teamsters and some as nurses; many more will be sick. 

It was an uncommonly clear and beautiful day, Saturday, Nov. 17, 1861, that 
the Third Regiment, under command of Lieutenant Colonel Smith, embarked at 
Port Snelling for its Southern field of duty. The boats were detained several hours 
at the Mendota sand-bar, and did not reach the upper landing in St. Paul till 
afternoon; the regiment there debarked, marched up Eagle street to Third, down 
Third to Jackson, and thence to the lower levee and re-embarked on the three 
steamboats. Northern Belle, City Belle and Frank Steele. It arrived at La 
Crosse at 7 A. M. Sunday, left there at noon on a train of twenty-five cars, and at 
Portgage partook of a generous supper tendered by the ladies. It left Chicago 
Monday noon, arrived at Jefferson ville, Ind., Tuesday morning, November 19th, 
the same day crossed the Ohio Biver to Louisville, where it was treated to a fine 
lunch served by prominent Union people of that city. It had been greeted with 
cordial expressions of sympathy by large crowds at various cities in its progress, 
and particularly at La Fayette, Ind. Afl^er lunch at Louisville it marched 
five miles out on the Oakland turnpike to Camp Jenkins, where it was at- 
tached to a brigade commanded by General Mitchell. It there remained about 
two weeks, during which time it was supplied with arms and equipments, the 
former being a poor lot of Belgian muskets; also, with army wagons and teams. 
At that time a six-mule wagon was allowed to each company, one for headquar- 
ters, one for the hospital, and probably a few more for quartermaster supplies. 
The following year transportation was reduced to six wagons for a regiment, and 
later still, when the army got down to business, to several less. Even at Gamp 
Jenkins, regimental, company and squad drill was diligently practiced. 

Leaving Camp Jenkins December 6th it first marched to Louisville and 
then out on the road toward Shepherdsville, camped at 3 o'clock p. m., and ar- 

The foUowing was the list of officers at the date of the regiment's discharge: Colonel, Hans 
Mattson; lieutenant colonel, James B. Hoit; adjatant, P. £. Folsom; surgeon, A. C. Wedge; 
assistant snigeons, M. B. Greeley and Ns^am Bizby; quartermaster, Bonde Olson. Company A, 
captain, Otto F. Dreher; first lieutenant, N. C. Parker. Company B, captain, J. F. Fuller; first 
lieutenant, H. D. Pettibone. Company C. captain, J. M. Moran; first lieutenant, A. J. Borland. 
Company D, captain, J. A. Vanstrum; first lieutenant, E. T. Champlin. Company E, captain, 
O. W. Knight; first lieutenant, A. C. Pease. Company F, captain, W. F. Morse; first lieuten- 
ant, Thomas Hunter. Company G, captain, L. C. Hancock; first lieutenant, Eben North. Company 
H, captain, G. L. Jameson; first lieutenant, Jonas Lindall. Company I, captain, W. G. J. Akers; 
first lieutenant, N. B. Johnson. Company K, captain, J. L. Hodges; first lieutenant, J. W. 
Kirby. In addition to the above the following promotions were made and commissions issued, 
but for want of full quota in the ranks the appointees had not been mustered: Captain J. A. Van- 
strum, major; First Lieutenant Bonde Olson, captain; First Lieutenant A. J. Borland, quarter- 
master; First Sergeant Philip Quigley, first lieutenant; First Sergeant James Boardman, first 
lieutenant; Sergeant Mf^or H. W. Donaldson and First Sergeants H. J. McKee, Lewis Parker, 
Peter Lundberg, Patrick Maloy, J. N. Martin, David Thompson, J. O. Crummet, and Commissaiy 
Sergeant A. Eastman, aU second lieul^nants. 


rived at Shepherdsville, on the Louisville & Nashville railroad, at 4 P. m. the 
next day. With six companies at the latter place and foar at Lebanon Junction 
it was charged with the responsibility of guarding against injury the railroad 
and turnpike bridges at Shepherdsville, of holding Lebanon Junction, and of 
guarding the bridge over Wilson's Greek a few miles in advance of the Junction. 
It was brigaded with the Thirteenth and Fifteenth Kentucky and Ninth Michi- 
gan regiments as the Sixteenth Brigade of the Army of the Ohio. At this time 
General Buell had just relieved Oeneral Sherman of the command of the Depart- 
ment of the Ohio, headquarters at Louisville. Gtoneral George H. Thomas with 
a small force was at Peach Orchard, Lincoln county, eighty miles southeast of 
Shepherdsvllle; while the principal Union force was on Kolin Greek (near Abra- 
ham Lincoln's native spot), sixty miles south of Shepherdsvllle, under General 
McGook. In his front at Bowling Green was General Albert Sidney Johnston 
with 19,000 Gonfederates. The Confederates also held Golumbus, Ky^ The 
armies in the field on both sides were constantly being reinforced, and a battle 
seemed impending. 

At Shepherdsvllle the colonel, Henry 0. Lester, who had been a captain in 
the First Minnesota, arrived from the Army of the Potomac, and took command 
of the regiment. He was a man of prepossessing appearance, being of average 
height, strongly built, with a fine intellectual head and pleasant black eyes, and 
proved to be a well-informed, modest and hospitable gentleman. He at once 
started an evening school of tactics and the manual of arms for the commissioned 
officers, and organized that instruction and drill which, rigidly adhered to for 
many months, gradually brought the regiment to an unusually high degree of 
discipline and efficiency. This, with his care for the material wants of the men, 
and his uniformly just and dignified conduct, won for him the admiration of 
officers and enlisted men alike, so that probably the very misfortune of the 13th 
of July following was partly owing to such an extreme confidence of some of the 
company commanders in lum as to deprive them of Independent judgment in 
that crisis. Headquarters were shortly moved to Belmont, a deserted iron- 
producing village, whose vacant workmen's cottages afforded ample shelter. It 
was a hilly, brush-wooded, and lean region, but had enough level eround for 
knax)sack battalion drill. Four companies were separately detached a week at 
a time, guarding railroad bridges at Elizabethtown, Golesburg, Lebanon Junc- 
tion and Shepherdsvllle. There were thus always six companies at the main 
camp being habitually exercised two hours every afternoon in battalion drill. 
Each company, likewise, wherever stationed, spent two hours every forenoon 
in squad and company drill. In very wet weather the manual of arms and mark- 
ing time were practiced under cover. One of the first things the colonel did at 
Belmont was to establish a bakery, by which the regiment was supplied with 
excellent bread. The bugle band which he organized, and compared with which 
the ordinary brass band is but parlor music, was a novel and attractive feature. 
To make sure that commissioned officers would not shirk the morning roll call, 
which was at daylight, company commanders were required to immediately re- 
port the result of it, in person, at headquarters, which was frequently done be- 
fore the adjutant was up. Company D, being mostly Swedes, followed the 
practice in the Swedish army of singing the ^'Doxology " immediately after the 
evening roll call, and it sounded so well and seemed so appropriate that Com- 
pany I, which was camped nearest to D, adopted the same practice. "No one 
will forget the thin pies that were brought into camp and sold by x>oor country 
I>eople. But those, probably, will have the pleasantest recollection of the pies 
who enjoyed them by the exquisite sense of sight. Once, as a company officer 
was about visiting Louisville, he was authorized by the colonel to call on the 
commanding general to see if better muskets could be had. General Buell, a 
large and fine-looking man, in the prime of life, was found in his rooms in the 
Gkdt House, in the evening, at work in his shirt sleeves. He asked a number of 
questions about the regiment, the answers to which appeared to gratify him, and 
a few days afterward it received a supply of rifle muskets that were entirely 


number. Every company was allowed to have eighty-two privates, which was 
the maximam number. Usually the number of privates in a company varied 
between the minimum and maximum. The largest company in the Third Eegi- 
ment, as first organized, was G, which had seventy-six privates. The aggre- 
gate strength of the regiment, including all officers and men, at the date of its 
organization, November 15th, was nine hundred and one. Company officers of 
infantry regiments always marched afoot with their companies, but the field and 
staff officers, — colonel, lieutenant colonel, major, adjutant, quartermaster, sur- 
geon, assistant surgeon and chaplain, — also non-commissioned staff — sergeant 
major, quartermaster sergeant, commissary sergeant and hospital steward, — were 

Never again was the line of the Third Eegiment so long as it was on the one 
or two occasions that it turned out on dress parade at the early November sun- 
set, just before leaving Fort Snelling. Everyone wore the light blue overcoat 
with cape. And the line! — it was a brigade, compared with its numbers on 
some subsequent occasions. As soon as a regiment gets into the field its num- 
bers present for duty rapidly decline for awhile. Men who are competent as 
clerks will be detailed away at offices of the staff and headquarters; some will 
be detailed as teamsters and some as nurses; many more will be sick. 

It was an uncommonly clear and beautiful day, Saturday, Nov. 17, 1861, that 
the Third Begiment, under command of Lieutenant Colonel Smith, embarked at 
Fort Snelling for its Southern field of duty. The boats were detained several hours 
at the Mendota sand-bar, and did not reach the upper landing in St. Paul till 
afternoon; the regiment there debarked, marched up Eagle street to Third, down 
Third to Jackson, and thence to the lower levee and re-embarked on the three 
steamboats. Northern Belle, City Belle and Frank Steele. It arrived at La 
Crosse at 7 A. M. Sunday, left there at noon on a train of twenty-five cars, and at 
Portgage partook of a generous supper tendered by the ladies. It left Chicago 
Monday noon, arrived at Jefferson ville, Ind., Tuesday morning, November 19th, 
the same day crossed the Ohio Biver to Louisville, where it was treated to a fine 
lunch served by prominent Union people of that city. It had been greeted with 
cordial expressions of sympathy by large crowds at various cities in its progress, 
and particularly at La Fayette, Ind. After lunch at Louisville it marched 
five miles out on the Oakland turnpike to Camp Jenkins, where it was at- 
tached to a brigade commanded by General Mitchell. It there remained about 
two weeks, during which time it was supplied with arms and equipments, the 
former being a poor lot of Belgian muskets; also, with army wagons and teams. 
At that time a six-mule wagon was allowed to each company, one for headquar- 
ters, one for the hospital, and probably a few more for quartermaster supplies. 
The following year transportation was reduced to six wagons for a regiment, and 
later still, when the army got down to business, to several less. Even at Camp 
Jenkins, regimental, company and squad drill was diligently practiced. 

Leaving Camp Jenkins December 6th it first marched to Louisville and 
then out on the road toward Shepherdsville, camped at 3 o'clock p. M., and ar- 

The following was the list of officers at the date of the regiment's discharge: Colonel, Hans 
Mattson; lieutenant colonel, James B. Hoit; adjutant, P. E. Folsom; surgeon, A. G. Wedge; 
assistant surgeons, M. R. Greeley and Naham Bixhy; quartermaster, Bonde Olson. Company A, 
captain. Otto F. Dreher; first lieutenant, N. C. Parker. Company B, captain, J. F. Fuller; first 
lieutenant, H. D. Pettibone. Company C, captain, J. M. Moran; first lieutenant, A. J. Borland. 
Company D, captain, J. A. Vanstrum; first lieutenant, £. T. Champlin. Company £, captain, 
G. W. Knight; first lieutenant, A. C. Pease. Company F, captain, W. F. Morse; first lieuten- 
ant, Thomas Hunter. Company G, captain, L. C. Hancock; first lieutenant, Eben North. Company 
H, captain, G. L. Jameson; first lieutenant, Jonas Lindall. Company I, captain, W. G. J. Akers; 
first lieutenant, N. B. Johnson. Company K, captain, J. L. Hodges; first lieutenant, J. W. 
Eirby. In addition to the above the following promotions were maSe and commissions issued, 
but for want of full quota in the ranks the appointees had not been mustered: Captain J. A. Van- 
strum, major; First Lieutenant Bonde Olson, captain; First Lieutenant A. J. Borland, quarter- 
master; First Sergeant Philip Quigley, first lieutenant; First Sergeant James Boardman, first 
lieutenant; Sergeant Major H. W. Donaldson and First Sergeants H. J. McKee, Lewis Parker, 
Peter Lund berg, Patrick Maloy, J. N. Martin, David Thompson, J. O. Crummet, and Commissary 
Sergeant A. Eastman, all second lieutenants. 


rived at Shepherdsville, on the Louisville & Nashville railroad, at 4 P. m. the 
next day. With six companies at the latter place and foar at Lebanon Junction 
it was charged with the responsibility of guarding against injury the railroad 
and turnpike bridges at Shepherdsville, of holding Lebanon Junction, and of 
guarding the bridge over Wilson's Creek a few miles in advance of the Junction. 
It was brigaded with the Thirteenth and Fifteenth Kentucky and Ninth Michi- 
gan regiments as the Sixteenth Brigade of the Army of the Ohio. At this time 
General Buell had just relieved General Sherman of the command of the Depart- 
ment of the Ohio, headquarters at Louisville. Gteneral Gteorge H. Thomas with 
a small force was at Peach Orchard, Lincoln county, eighty miles southeast of 
Shepherdsville; while the principal Union force was on Nolin Creek (near Abra- 
ham Lincoln's native spgt), sixty miles south of Shepherdsville, under General 
McCook. In his front at Bowling Green was Gteneral Albert Sidney Johnston 
with 19,000 Confederates. The Confederates also held Columbus, Kj^ The 
armies in the field on both sides were constantly being reinforced, and a battle 
seemed impending. 

At Shepherdsville the colonel, Henry C. Lester, who had been a captain in 
the First Minnesota, arrived from the Army of the Potomac, and took command 
of the regiment. He was a man of prepossessing appearance, being of average 
height, strongly built, with a fine intellectual head and pleasant black eyes, and 
proved to be a well-informed, modest and hospitable gentleman. He at once 
started an evening school of tactics and the manual of arms for the commissioned 
officers, and organized that instruction and drill which, rigidly adhered to for 
many months, gradually brought the regiment to an unusually high degree of 
discipline and efficiency. This, with his care for the material wants of the men, 
and his uniformly just and dignified conduct, won for him the admiration of 
officers and enlisted men alike, so that probably the very misfortune of the 13th 
of July following was partly owing to such an extreme confidence of some of the 
company commanders in him as to deprive them of Independent judgment in 
that crisis. Headquarters were shortly moved to Belmont, a deserted iron- 
producing village, whose vacant workmen's cottages afforded ample shelter. It 
was a hilly, brush-wooded, and lean region, but had enough level ground for 
knapsack battalion drill. Four companies were separately detached a week at 
a time, guarding railroad bridges at Elizabethtown, Colesburg, Lebanon Junc- 
tion and Shepherdsville. There were thus always six companies at the main 
camp being habitually exercised two hours every afternoon in battalion drill. 
Each company, likewise, wherever stationed, spent two hours every forenoon 
in squad and company drill. In very wet weather the manual of arms and mark- 
ing time were practiced under cover. One of the first things the colonel did at 
Belmont was to establish a bakery, by which the regiment was supplied with 
excellent bread. The bugle band which he organized, and compared with which 
the ordinary brass band is but parlor music, was a novel and attractive feature. 
To make sure that commissioned officers would not shirk the morning roll call, 
which was at daylight, company commanders were required to immediately re- 
port the result of it, in person, at headquarters, which was frequently done be- 
fore the adjutant was up. Company D, being mostly Swedes, followed the 
practice in the Swedish army of singing the "Doxology'' immediately after the 
evening roll call, and it sounded so well and seemed so appropriate that Com- 
pany I, which was camped nearest to D, adopted the same practice. No one 
will forget the thin pies that were brought into camp and sold by poor country 
people. But those, probably, will have the pleasantest recollection of the pies 
who enjoyed them by the exquisite sense of sight. Once, as a company officer 
was about visiting Louisville, he was authorized by the colonel to call on the 
commanding general to see if better muskets could be had. General Buell, a 
large and fine-looking man, in the prime of life, was found in his rooms in the 
Gait House, in the evening, at work in his shirt sleeves. He asked a number of 
questions about the regiment, the answers to which appeared to gratify him, and 
a few days afterward it received a supply of rifle muskets that were entirely 


namber. Every company was allowed to have eighty-two privates, which was 
the maximum number. Usually the number of privates in a company varied 
between the minimum and maximum. The largest company in the Third Eegi- 
ment, as first organized, was G, which had seventy-six privates. The aggre- 
gate strength of the regiment, including all officers and men, at the date of its 
organization, November 15th, was nine hundred and one. Company officers of 
infontry regiments always marched afoot with their companies, but the field and 
staff officers, — colonel, lieutenant colonel, major, adjutant, quartermaster, sur- 
geon, assistant surgeon and chaplain, — also non-commissioned staff — sergeant 
major, quartermaster sergeant, commissary sergeant and hospital steward, — were 

Never again was the line of the Third Eegiment so long as it was on the one 
or two occasions that it turned out on dress parade at the early November sun- 
set, just before leaving Port Snelling. Everyone wore the light blue overcoat 
with cape. And the line! — it was a brigade, compared with its numbers on 
some subsequent occasions. As soon as a regiment gets into the field its num- 
bers present for duty rapidly decline for awhile. Men who are competent as 
clerks will be detailed away at offices of the staff and headquarters; some will 
be detailed as teamsters and some as nurses; many more will be sick. 

It was an uncommonly clear and beautiful day, Saturday, Nov. 17, 1861, that 
the Third Regiment, under command of Lieutenant Colonel Smith, embarked at 
Port Snelling for its Southern field of duty. The boats were detained several hours 
at the Meudota sand-bar, and did not reach the upper landing in St. Paul till 
afternoon; the regiment there debarked, marched up £^gle street to Third, down 
Third to Jackson, and thence to the lower levee and re-embarked on the three 
steamboats. Northern Belle, City Belle and Frank Steele. It arrived at La 
Crosse at 7 a. m. Sunday, left there at noon on a train of twenty-five cars, and at 
Portgage partook of a generous supper tendered by the ladies. It left Chicago 
Monday noon, arrived at Jefferson ville, Ind., Tuesday morning, November 19th, 
the same day crossed the Ohio River to Louisville, where it was treated to a fine 
lunch served by prominent Union people of that city. It had been greeted with 
cordial expressions of sympathy by large crowds at various cities in its progress, 
and particularly at La Payette, Ind. After lunch at Louisville it marched 
five miles out on the Oakland turnpike to Camp Jenkins, where it was at- 
tached to a brigade commanded by General Mitchell. It there remained about 
two weeks, during which time it was supplied with arms and equipments, the 
former being a poor lot of Belgian muskets; also, with army wagons and teams. 
At that time a six-mule wagon was allowed to each company, one for headquar- 
ters, one for the hospital, and probably a few more for quartermaster supplies. 
The following year transportation was reduced to six wagons for a regiment, and 
later still, when the army got down to business, to several less. Even at Gamp 
Jenkins, regimental, company and squad drill was diligently practiced. 

Leaving Camp Jenkins December 6th it first marched to Louisville and 
then out on the road toward Shepherdsville, camped at 3 o'clock p. M., and ar- 

The following was the list of officers at the date of the regiment's discharge: Colonel, Hans 
Mattson; lieutenant colonel, James B. Hoit; adjutant, P. £. Folsom; surgeon, A. C. Wedge; 
assistant surgeons, M. R. Greeley and Naham Bixby; quartermaster, Bonde Olson. Company A, 
captain. Otto F. Dreher; first lieutenant, N. C. Parker. Company B, captain, J. F. Fuller; first 
lieutenant, H. D. Petti bone. Company C, captain, J. M. Moran; first lieutenant, A. J. Borland. 
Company D, captain, J. A. Vanstrum; first lieutenant, E. T. Champlin. Company E, captain, 
G. W. Knight; first lieutenant, A. C. Pease. Company F, captain, W. F. Morse; first lieuten- 
ant, Thomas Hunter. Company G, captain, L. C. Hancock; first lieutenant, Eben North. Company 
H, captain, G. L. Jameson; first lieutenant, Jonas Lindall. Company I, captain, W. G. J. Akers; 
first lieutenant, N. B. Johnson. Company K, captain, J. L. Hodges; first lieutenant, J. W. 
Kirby. In addition to the above the following promotions were made and commissions issued, 
but for want of full quota in the ranks the appointees had not been mustered: Captain J. A. Van- 
strum, major; First Lieutenant Bonde Olson, captain; First Lieutenant A. J. Borland, quarter- 
master; First Sergeant Philip Quigley, first lieutenant; First Sergeant James Boardman, first 
lieutenant; Sergeant Miyor H. W. Donaldson and First Sergeants H. J. McKee, Lewis Parker, 
Peter Lundberg, Patrick Maloy, J. N. Martin, David Thompson, J. O. Crummet, and Commissary 
Sergeant A. Eastman, all second lieutenants. 


rived at Shepherdsville, on the Lonisville & Nashville railroad, at 4 P. M. the 
next day. With six companies at the latter place and foar at Lebanon Junction 
it was charged with the responsibility of guarding against injury the railroad 
and turnpike bridges at Shepherds ville, of holding Lebanon Junction, and of 
guarding the bridge over Wilson's Creek a few miles in advance of the Junction, 
It was brigaded with the Thirteenth and Fifteenth Kentucky and Ninth Michi- 
gan regiments as the Sixteenth Brigade of the Army of the Ohio. At this time 
General Buell had just relieved General Sherman of the command of the Depart- 
ment of the Ohio, headquarters at Louisville. General (Jeorge H. Thomas with 
a small force was at Peach Orchard, Lincoln county, eighty miles southeast of 
Shepherds ville; while the principal Union force was on Nolin Greek (near Abra- 
ham Lincoln's native spot), sixty miles south of Shepherdsville, under General 
McCook. In his front at Bowling Green was Gteneral Albert Sidney Johnston 
with 19,000 Confederates. The Confederates also held Columbus, Kj^ The 
armies in the field on both sides were constantly being reinforced, and a battle 
seemed impending. 

At Shepherdsville the colonel, Henry O. Lester, who had been a captain in 
the First Minnesota, arrived from the Army of the Potomac, and took command 
of the regiment. He was a man of prepossessing appearance, being of average 
height, strongly built, with a fine intellectual head and pleasant bls^k eyes, and 
proved to be a well-informed, modest and hospitable gentleman. He at once 
started an evening school of tactics and the manual of arms for the commissioned 
ofi&cers, and organized that instruction and drill which, rigidly adhered to for 
many months, gradually brought the regiment to an unusually high degree of 
discipline and efficiency. This, with his care for the material wants of the men, 
and his uniformly just and dignified conduct, won for him the admiration of 
officers and enlisted men alike, so that probably the very misfortune of the 13th 
of July following was partly owing to such an extreme confidence of some of the 
company commanders in him as to deprive them of independent judgment in 
that crisis. Headquarters were shortly moved to Belmont, a deserted iron- 
producing village, whose vacant workmen's cottages afforded ample shelter. It 
was a hilly, brush-wooded, and lean region, but had enough level ground for 
knapsack battalion drill. Four companies were separately detachea a week at 
a time, guarding railroad bridges at Elizabethtown, Colesburg, Lebanon Junc- 
tion and Shepherdsville. There were thus idways six companies at the main 
camp being habitually exercised two hours every afternoon in battalion drilL 
Each company, likewise, wherever stationed, spent two hours every forenoon 
in squad and company drill. In very wet weather the manual of arms and mark- 
ing time were practiced under cover. One of the first things the colonel did at 
Belmont was to establish a bakery, by which the regiment was supplied with 
excellent bread. The bugle band which he organized, and compared with which 
the ordinary brass band is but parlor music, was a novel and attractive feature. 
To make sure that commissioned officers would not shirk the morning roll call, 
which was at daylight, company commanders were required to immediately re- 
port the result of it, in person, at headquarters, which was frequently done be- 
fore the adjutant was up. Company D, being mostly Swedes, followed the 
practice in the Swedish army of singing the "Doxology" immediately after the 
evening roll call, and it sounded so well and seemed so appropriate that Com- 
pany I, which was camped nearest to D, adopted the same practice. No one 
will forget the thin pies that were brought into camp and sold by poor country 
I)eople. But those, probably, will have the pleasantest recollection of the pies 
who enjoyed them by the exquisite sense of sight. Once, as a company officer 
was about visiting Louisville, he was authorized by the colonel to call on the 
commanding general to see if better muskets could be had. General Buell, a 
large and fine-looking man, in the prime of life, was found in his rooms in the 
Gait House, in the evening, at work in his shirt sleeves. He asked a number of 
questions about the regiment, the answers to which appeared to gratify him, and 
a few days afterward it received a supply of rifle muskets that were entirely 


Even before qaitting Belmont the regiment coald well have been taken for a 
regular army regiment for the precision of its movements, general appearance 
and adherence to regulations. Even the leather neck-stock was not disdained, 
thoagh finally it had a peculiar tendency for getting lost. The brass plates on 
the belts and equipments, the bugles and eagles on the hats, also the shoulder- 
scales, were as bright aa gold. An enlisted man of the Third in full uniform, 
and especially with his shoulder-scales, was more striking than a commissioned 
officer, and was sometimes taken by the citizens for an officer of high rank. It 
was partly the effect of those gleaming shoulder-scales upon the plain people, 
probably, that caused the men to be so frequently invited out to tea. At the 
colonel's request (for not being required by regulations it could not be order^), 
all the men, at their own expense, provided themselves with white cotton gloves 
to wear on parade, on guard duty, and at inspections. Here and there would 
be a f%wso averse to everything like style that they were slow to adopt the prac- 
tice, and to see just these very men, after some weeks, washing their gloves, 
showed that willing spirit which is the source of good discipline. 

The flank operations of the Union forces up the Tennessee and Cumberland 
rivers, crowned with the victory of Port Donelson, caused the retreat of the 
Confederate armies from Kentucky, and even to the southern borders of Ten- 
nessee. The general forward movement consequent took our regiment to Nash- 
ville, where, March 24, 1862, it went into camp, in Sibley tents, on the Ewing 
place, two miles out of the city, near the Murfreesboro pike. It performed guard 
duty in the city, and watched the railroad bridge at Mill Creek. It made a very 
good impression at Nashville, was visited and reviewed at its camp by Andrew 
Johnson, then military governor of Tennessee, and by him addressed in an elabo- 
rate oration on the great theme of the Union. At his invitation the r^ment 
visited Nashville, was there welcomed by him as governor, and conducted by 
him in person around the spacious marble paved veranda of Tennessee's beau- 
tiful capitol. 

April 27th, twenty days after the battle of Shiloh, and the same day our 
armies under Halleck began a cautious movement against Beauregard-s lines 
at Corinth, we marched for Murfreesboro, a town in the heart of Tennessee, 
whence radiate eleven highways, some of which were good macadamized pikes. 
It contained a depot of supplies; also, was a place requiring much picket duty. 
The first camp was about a mile below the town, on open land, watered by a 
clear stream, and in the vicinity were some fir or cypress thickets. The country 
around Murfreesboro is a natural park; the surface is undulating, well watered, 
with here and there groves and open forests of hardwood. There were frequent 
rumors of expected attacks. Sometimes one company, sometimes two companies, 
would be posted out on a road all night as a picket reserve. One night, when 
the whole regiment, in perfect silence, took position out on one of the roads, an 
attack was regarded as certain. We had a good position and some field guns, 
and thought, as we waited there in the darkness, we had a sure thing on the 
enemy; but he did not come. It was at Murfreesboro that we drilled in street 
firing. With Kentucky regiments and the Ninth Michigan we also practiced 
brigade drill under Colonel Duffield, in the field where Jefferson Davis after- 
ward reviewed a Confederate army. May 17th moved by rail, via Nashville and 
Franklin, to Columbia, Tenn., in the centre of a garden region, but returned 
in a few days to Murfreesboro and camped in the outskirts of the southeast part of 
the town. It was while the regiment was in that camp that a false alarm of an 
attack was raised by Company I practicing target firing. One afternoon this 
company went out with its captain about a mile south of camp, yet inside the 
picket lines, and engaged in target firing, which was not a very unusual proceed- 
ing. However, an ^arm waa caused, and the troops called out. Suddenly, Com- 
pany I saw, with amazement, two lines of our own cavalry approaching in line of 
battle through the open timber from opposite directions. One of the lines was just 
ready to charge, but its commander fortunately took in the situation in time to 
prevent the movement. Target firing ceased for that afternoon, and when Com- 
pany I marched into camp it was greeted with more or less cries of * * Guard 
house!" '* Guard house!" from wags in neighboring companies. 


Shortly after the return from Oolnmbia, Lientenant Oolonel Smith, an 
esteemed officer, resigned on account of ill health, and was succeeded by Major 
Griggs, who had been promoted on the resignation, May 1st, of Msy'or Hadley. 

June 11th the regiment moved with the expedition (column of 3,000 with 
about eight hundred cavalry), under General Dumont, to Pikeville, Colonel 
Lester having immediate command of the troops. Marched the first forty 
miles to McMinnville in twenty-four hours. Pikeville was reached the 14th 
of June, and the column got back to Murfreesboro the 18th. The Cumberland 
Mountains were thus twice rapidly crossed amid intense heat and dust. The 
regiment first resumed its former camp, but soon moved to the level ground 
on the southeast suburbs of the town, near the l^inth Michigan; yet on account 
of its overfiow during heavy rains, it moved out near the Nashville pike, on Stone 
Biver, nearly two miles distant, on the opposite side of Murfreesboro. 


The Government deemed it of very great importance to redeem east Ten- 
nessee; and after our forces gained possession of Corinth, the last of May, General 
Buell, who had gained brilliant laurels at Shiloh, was selected to conduct an 
army to Chattanooga. He acted under instructions from General Halleck, who 
was at Corinth till July 16th. General Buell was also at Corinth till June 11th, 
but toward the last of the month fixed his headquarters at Huntsville, in 
northern Alabama, on the railroad from Memphis to Chattanooga. He continued 
busy preparing for his campaign. It took sixty wagons for one day's supply 
of provisions and forage for his army of 90,000, of whom 67,000, though not 
in one body, were present for duty. It was of vital importance that ho should 
have the Nashville & Chattanooga railroad (via Murfreesboro and Steven- 
son) in operation, but in addition to that he undertook the repair of the 
railroad running from Memphis to Chattanooga. He was told by Halleck, 
July 10th, that the president was not satisfied with his progress, and that 
he ought to move more rapidly. He replied that his arrangements were 
being pushed as rapidly as possible; that the reports of (General Mitchell, who 
had charge of some of the railroad repairs, had led him to expect that the Chat- 
tanooga road would be completed by the 1st of July; that he had doubled the 
force on it, and it could not be finished before July 14th. By July 12th, how- 
ever, the day before Forrest captured Murfreesboro, preparations were so ad- 
vanced that he appears to have been on the eve of moving. On that date 
Wood's division was ordered to march the following day to Stevenson; the 
quartermaster and commissary at Nashville were ordered to send through sup- 
plies to Stevenson the following day. But, alas! though now, apparently, on the 
eve of moving, his campaign never was accomplished. The Confederates knew 
his plans. They had possession of east Tennessee, but their force at Chatta- 
nooga was inferior to his, and as Bragg's reinforcements could not begin to 
arrive there for two weeks, or before July 27th, they sent Morgan into Kentucky 
and Forrest against Murfreesboro to cut BuelPs lines of communication and 
delay his movement. The Confederate general, B. Blirby Smith, writing near 
Knoxville July 14th, says: *' Colonel Forrest, with three regiments, was sent 
into middle Tennessee to delay BuelPs movement till Bragg's columns make 
their appearance.'' Unhappily, BuelPs army was so held in check by this and 
succeeding raids (for Forrest, encouraged by his capture of Murfreesboro, made 
another raid a week afterward, destroying three bridges nine miles from Nash- 
ville), that the Confederates not only gained all the time they wanted to throw 
reinforcements into Chattanooga, but actually to take the offensive and strike 
out boldly for Louisville. Then began that race toward the Ohio, of the armies 
under Buell and Bragg, culminating October 9th in the battle of Perryville. 

Turning now to the attack of July 13th on our forces at Murfreesboro and 
the part which the Third Minnesota played in that affair, it is to be noticed 
that the regiment at that time formed a part of the Twenty-third Brigade, com- 
manded by Colonel W. W. Duffield of the Ninth Michigan, and which was under 
orders to march to McMinnville about July 18th. The other regiments of the 


brigade were the Ninth Michigan, the Eighth and Twenty-third Kentucky, the 
two last being resi)ectively at Waaiirace and Pulaski. For two months Colonel 
Duffield had been absent on leave, during which time Colonel Lester had been 
in command of the brigade and other forces at Murfreesboro, leaving Lieutenant 
Colonel Origgs in command of the Third. But a day or two before the 13th, 
Duffield had returned and resumed the brigade command, and Colonel Lester had 
resumed command of the Third Regiment. Likewise, (General T. T. Crittenden 
of Indiana, who had been promoted for gallantry at Shiloh, had arrived at 
Murfreesboro July 11th, and taken command of the post the forenoon of July 
12th. The force of enlisted men fit for duty at Murireesboro was fully 1,000. 
Forrest reported that the whole number of enlisted men captured, taken to 
McMinnville and paroled, was between 1,100 and 1,200. Our forces, how- 
ever, were separated. There were five companies, two hundred and fifty 
strong, of the Ninth Michigan in camp three* fourths of a mile east of the town, 
on the Liberty turnpike (another company of the Ninth Michigan, forty -two 
strong, occupied the court house as provost guard). Near the camp of the Ninth 
Michigan were eighty men of the Seventh Pennsylvania Cavalry under Major 
Seibert, also eighty-one men of the Fourth Kentucky Cavalry under Captain 
Chilson. More than a mile distant, on the other side of the town, on undulating, 
rocky and shaded ground near Stone Biver, were nine companies of the ThiM 
Minnesota, five hundred strong; near it, also, two sections — four guns — of Hew- 
itt's Kentucky Field Artillery with sixty-four men for duty. Forty-five men of 
Company C, Third Begiment, under Lieutenant Grummons, had gone the after- 
noon of July 12th as guard on a supply railway train to Shelbyville, and had 
not returned the 13th. Murfreesboro, as we have seen, was on the Nashville & 
Chattanooga railroad. Its principal business buildings were in a large square 
in the centre of which was the court house. We had at Murfreesboro valuable 
military stores, and it is somewhat remarkable that none of the commanding 
generals had directed the construction of any fortifications or even a stockade, 
although about that time General Buell began to issue orders for building stock- 
ades at railroad bridges, and after he had regained possession of Murfreesboro 
caused some fortifications to be built there. 

July 12th, the day before Forrest's attack, General Buell, from Huntsville, 
telegraphed Halleck: '^ Information from various quarters leaves but little room 
to doubt that a heavy cavalry force is being thrown across from Chattanooga to 
operate in middle Tennessee and KeDtucky." The same date Captain O. D. 
Greene, Buell's adjutant at Nashville, telegraphed from there to General BueU's 
headquarters at Huntsville, as follows: ^'A heavy movement is taking place 
upbu Murfreesboro, via McMinnville, from Chattanooga. Over 2,000 cavalry 
under General Forrest had already crossed the river at Chattanooga when 
my informant left to-day week.'' Why was this information not sent prompt- 
ly to Murfreesborot There were rumors that some such information was sent 
tiiere before July 13th. Anyhow, we all got notice of the movement at day- 
break Sunday morning, July 13th. Forrest having come on a forced mardi 
from Woodbury, captured our picket guard without resistance and dashed into 
Murfreesboro that morning with a mounted force of about 1,500 men, a part 
of which charged first upon the camp of the Seventh Pennsylvania Cavalry, 
then re-formed and charged upon the Ninth Michigan Infantry, which made 
a very gallant defense in line of battle and repulsed repeated charges. Many 
of the Ninth Michigan fell by the enemy's first charge, and its loss during the 
day, including that of the company at the court house, was eleven killed and 
eighty-nine wounded. The enemy suffered considerable loss in that part of the 
town, including a colonel killed, up to about noon, when the Ninth Michigan 
surrendered. General Crittenden was captured at his quarters, in a house in 
town, at about eight o'clock. Almost simultaneous with the first attack a part 
of Forrest's force moved toward the Third Minnesota, which, however, had 
sprung up at the first sound of the firing, formed intx) line, Colonel Lester in 
command, and with two guns of Hewitt's battery on each flank, marched in the 
direction of Murfreesboro. It had gone not more than an eighth of a mile^ 


arriving at an open piece of ground in front of Mnrfree's large frame house, 
when about three hundred of the enemy were perceived through the fog five 
hundred yards distant and a little to the left, approaching in a gallop from the 
town. They were moving in some disorder and appeared to fall back soon after 
the Third Regiment came in sight. The latter was immediately brought for- 
ward into line, and in a few moments Hewitt's artillery was in x>osition and 
opened fire. The enemy soon retired out of sight, and in course of half an hour 
the Third Regiment advanced in line six hundred yards, over a piece of grass 
land which had been its drill ground and sloping a little toward Stone Eiver, 
— there crooked and tree-skirted, — to a somewhat commanding position at 
the edge of a large body of brush and open timber extending toward Murfrees- 
boro. The regiment's right rested near the Nashville pike. Skirmishers were 
deployed in the woods. A Parrott gun was placed so as to have complete range 
for nearly a mile down this road toward Murfreesboro. The other guns were 
six-pounders, and continued to &re wherever the enemy was supposed to be. 
During the forenoon about three hundred rounds were fired by the four guns of 
Hewitt's battery, the greater part of them appearing to have been at random. 
Some, however, did good execution, killing or wounding the enemy when he 
dared to come in sight, worrying and dispersing him when he attempted to form 
in the woods, also making him desist from an attempt to tear up the railroad. 
Up to this hour the only ground of discontent that had ever existed in the Third 
Regiment was that it had never had an opportunity to fight. Probably no regi- 
ment was ever more eager to meet the enemy in battle than was the Third Min- 
nesota on that occasion. Yet while it was there in line of battle from daylight 
till about noon, impatiently waiting for the enemy to approadi, or, what was 
better, to be led against him, he was assailing an inferior force of our comrades 
near by, and wantonly destroying valuable United States commissary and quarter- 
master stores in town, which we were all bound in honor to protect. The regi- 
ment was kept standing or lying motionless hour after hour, even while plainly 
seeing the smoke rising from our burning depot of supplies. While Colonel 
Lester sat upon his horse at his proper post in rear of the line, different officers 
approached and asked him, in tone of entreaty, if he would not march the regi- 
ment into town. He replied, ** We will see." 

In course of the morning Mr. A. B. Cornell, acting sutler (previously news- 
paper editor at Owatonna), having exchanged clothing with a prisoner, with 
great courage and energy, went across fields and communicated with the com- 
manding officer of the Ninth Michigan, and brought to Colonel Lester informa- 
tion of the severe loss the Ninth Michigan had sustained, and that it would 
endeavor to hold its position. Only once did any of Forrest's forces venture 
within musket range of the main line of the Third Regiment. About eight 
o'clock a Georgia regiment formed down in the woods to charge, but only two 
of its companies persevered in the charge, and they, finding they could not 
move a man in our line, galloped off as rapidly as possible to our left, sufifering 
some loss. The effect of this was to increase the ardor and confidence of our 
men. The casualties that occurred to this main body of the regiment were in 
having three men wounded, two in Company E while deployed as skirmishers, 
and one in Company H while standing in line of battle. About the time of the 
attempted charge just mentioned, or between seven and eight o'clock, a consider- 
able force, which, as will be seen, was under Forrest's immediate command, 
made three assaults upon the camp of the Third Regiment, now out of sight 
and half a mile distant in the rear, and which was defended by a camp guard 
of about twenty men, a few convalescents, teamsters and cooks. In that strug- 
gle, which we will let General Forrest's historian describe later on, several fell 
on both sides. The camp was finally taken, the officers' tents and property 
burned, and the ground hastily abandoned by the enemy. The firing at the 
cjimp had l)een plainly heard by the regiment, and while it was occurring Cap- 
tain Hoit went to the colonel and asked, but was refused, permission to go with 
his company (B; to the protection of the camp. 


While the regiment was in line Surgeons Butler and Wedge established a 
hospital tent at a quiet place near Stone River, and there treated the wounded 
on both sides. About noon the Third Begiment and Hewitt's battery deliber- 
ately retired to the ample front yard, having shrubbery and trees inclosed by a 
fence, at Murfree's house, and which, from its rather commanding situation, was 
a good position. [This house is shown on the map of the battlefield of Stone 
Eiver, in Gen. Sheridan's memoirs. The Third Begiment camp was on the 
next spur in the rear of the house.] In the rear were several farm buildings. 
Befreshments were there taken, coffee having been brought from the company 
kitchens. Not a few had blackberries with their lunch. Up to this time the 
men thought they had not been having much more than a picnic. At about 
half-past one o'clock, when we had present in the Third Begiment some five 
hundred effective men, well armed, in good spirits and eager for a fight, also 
with us four pieces of field artillery, well manned and with a fair supply of am- 
munition, a white flag appeared over the brow of rising ground near where the 
regiment had been in line, which proved to be a request for our colonel to go 
into Murfreesboro for a consultation with Colonel Duffield. Forrest, as stated 
in his carefully prepared and published memoirs of his campaigns, on that oc- 
casion '^ostentatiously displayed his several commands along the path Colonel 
Lester was led in going to and returning from the interview with DuflSeld, so as 
to make an appearance of greater numbers than were really present." Forrest 
at the time was generally credited with having had a force of 2,500. [In his 
official report, published in the ^'Bebellion Becord," he says his force was 
about 1,400 besides **some few volunteers" — meaning citizens.] But a force 
of even 2,000 mounted men in one body was very uncommon. General Grier- 
son when he made his celebrated raid through Mississippi had only 1,700 men. 
Nothing is easier than to overestimate the numbers of a cavalry column. After 
deducting Forrest's loss in killed and wounded, and the different detachments 
he had sent off to guard prisoners and transportation, it is doubtful if he had 
over 1,000 effective men with whom to engage the Third Begiment that 
afternoon. His failure throughout the day to make any serious attack on the 
main body of our regiment satisfied the most of us that we had no cause to fear 
him. It is very doubtful if he would have made any further attack. Indeed, 
it is stated in his '^ Campaigns," just referred to, that about noon and previous 
to the capture of the Ninth Michigan, '^ Among many of his officers there was 
manifest a x>erilous want of confidence in the ability of the command to triumph. 
So far did this spirit reach that some of the officers urged Forrest to rest content 
with what had been accomplished and quit the field without further, and, as 
they were satisfied, fruitless yet costly efforts to carry the federal position." 

Unfortunately, however, the result of Colonel Lester's visit was that he be- 
came strongly inclined to surrender the regiment, which he finally did between 
three and four o'clock, and utterly to its amazement, regret and grief. 

Colonel Lester, in his report addressed to Lieutenant H. M. Duffield, acting 
assistant adjutant general. Twenty-third Brigade (and brother of Colonel Duf- 
field, commander of the brigade), says: *' While taking up our new position a 
flag of truce appeared, borne by yourself, and sent at the request of Colonel Duf- 
field, commanding Twenty-third Brigade, for the purpose of procuring an inter- 
view with me. I returned to town with the flag, had an interview with the 
colonel commanding, in which I learned that we were attacked by the rebel gen- 
eral Forrest, with a brigade of cavalry. Learning from the colonel that the 
enemy were in overwhelming force, and that, even should the road be uninjured, 
the forces at Nashville were absent upon an expedition and that there was no 
hope of reinforcements, at his suggestion I agreed to refer the matter of sur- 
render to my officers. Accordingly the matter was represented to them as de- 
rived from Colonel Duffield, and the great majority looking upon further resist- 
ance as involving the certainty of an ultimate defeat with great loss, and with 
no possibility of an escape or assistance, it was decided to surrender, which was 
done at 3:30 p. m." 


Colonel Duffield, though regarded as an able man, was at the time of this in- 
terview a prisoner and suffering from a painful wound, and his views were not 
entitled to great weight. But Colonel Lester's representations of his views is 
confirmed by the fact that Colonel Duffield's brother, Lieutenant Duffield, who 
came to our regiment with the flag, earnestly expressed himself in favor of our 
being surrendered. Captain Hewitt, commanding the two sections of the Ken- 
tucky artillery, also earnestly advocated a surrender. The statement of General 
T. T. Crittenden in his report is also true, that on the first vote of our company 
commanders and the lieutenant colonel, which was open, a majority voted to fight; 
that one or more lefb the council and returned to their companies; that Colonel 
Lester afterward reopened and reargued the matter; that a vote by ballot was 
then taken, resulting in a majority for surrender. But it is well known that 
Lieutenant Colonel Griggs and two company commanders in that ballot voted, 
as they had strongly counseled throughout, to fight. Major Mattson was absent, 
sick. The council was public and informal, in the front yard of Murfree's house, 
and the commanders of all the companies in the regiment were present except 
First Lieutenant Vanstrum of Company D, who was with his company. The first 
vote was by a show of hands, and those who voted against the surrender were 
Lieutenant Colonel Griggs and Captains Foster, Andrews and Hoit, and Lieu- 
tenant Taylor, commanding Company H. Two captains did not vote, and the 
result was four for surrender and five against. A request was made that all 
should vote. Thereupon the colonel reopened the discussion, stating the rea- 
sons which induced him to favor surrender. Other officers briefly expressed 
their views, some earnestly against, others for, surrender, and among the latter 
some lieutenants who had no vote. Forrest even at that time had a reputation 
for being tricky as well as for effrontery. His presuming to demand the surren- 
der of the Third Eegiment, which he had not dared to attack, was scouted as a 
piece of impudent bravado. ^ The disgrace of surrender was then and there just 
as strongly felt, pointed out, denounced and protested against as it ever could 
have been since. But, "Who can control his fatef Up to that day Colonel 
Lester and his regiment had been uncommonly fortunate. His prospects were 
brilliant. He was immensely popular in his regiment and in his state. Yet how 
often it is the case that the highest good fortune is succeeded by the deepest mis- 

The colonel proposed there should be a final vote by ballot; but meantime 
Captain Foster and Lieutenant Taylor had gone to their respective companies, 
and there were only three officers who voted against surrender, — namely. Lieu- 
tenant Colonel Griggs, Captain Andrews and Captain Hoit. Six voted to surren- 
der. Lieutenant Vanstrum was on his way to the council, and, not knowing that 
it was over, stopped and wrote a ballot opposing surrender on a piece of pai)er 
which he held against a tree and handed it to Colonel Lester, who, however, told 
him it was too late, as the council was over. 

Some of the stories that were circulated in Minnesota after the surrender, 
such, for example, as that one of the officers who opposed surrender broke his 
sword, and that the colonel was actuated by corrupt or disloyal motives, were 
without any foundation. General Buell characterized the surrender in general 
orders as one of the most disgraceful examples in the history of wars. The an- 
nouncement of surrender was received by the men with sorrow and indignation 
too deep for utterance. They silently, though with tears in their eyes, gave up 
the well-kept arms which, through many months of hard service, they had hon- 
ored. When the Confederate officers ciime up and saw the number of the men, their 
excellent muskets and equipments, and especially when, in column by compa- 
nies, the regiment marched off with measured st^p toward Murfreesboro, it was 
plain to see in the countenances of the Confederates an expression of astonish- 
ment as well as delight at the capture they had so cheaply made. 

* Lieut. Col. J. G. Parkhnrst, commanding the Ninth Michigan, in his official report qnotes the 
written demand which f\)rreMt made for the surrender of that regiment, and in which he used the 
nnuAual and nnmilitary language as follows: *' I must demand an nnconditional surrender of your 
force as prisoners of war or I will have every man put to the sword." Substantially such a demand 
was communicated to the Third. 


After the surrender, several officers of the regiment, with General Forrest, 
went through our camp and observed the burned remnants of the officers' tents 
and x>ersonal property. The aggregate loss must have been considerable, as most 
of the officers lost everything but the every-day clothing they had on. Probably 
none of them ever made a claim or received any comx>ensation for any loss of 
property on that occasion. Forrest was a man over six feet in height, with mus- 
cular frame, had regular features, black hair, very dark complexion, and deep 
blue eyes, was serious, and used very few words. 

Let us now notice the Confederate account of this affair, and especially of the 
fight at the camp, when the regiment was half a mile away, given in the work 
before referred to — Generals Jordan and Fryer's history of General Forrest's 
campaigns, a narrative which General Forrest himself pronounced authentic 
It is there stated that Forrest, who at that time, it seems, had not received his 
commission as brigadier general, on July 6th began to cross the Tennessee Biver 
at Chattanooga, with about 1,000 cavalry — Eighth Texas, 400; Second Georgia, 
450; battalion of Tennesseeans under Major Baxter Smith, 120, and two companies 
of Kentuckians. He reached Altamont, near the summit of the Cumberlands, the 
10th; formed junction with Colonel Morrison and his battalion, some three hun- 
dred strong, the evening of the llth, at a point ten miles northeast of Sparta, and 
reached Woodbury, eighteen miles from Murfreesboro, "with somewhat above 
thirteen hundred men," at eleven o'clock the night of the 12th. That on the 
morning of the 13th, after the combat with the Ninth Michigan, "Forrest made 
his dispositions immediately to attack the Third Minnesota, reported to be en- 
camped on the east bank of Stone Biver, about one mile and a half from the town. 
On reaching the encampment it was found comparatively evacuated, the federals 
having just moved out in the direction of Murfreesboro to join their comrades in 
that quarter. Forrest's force assembled for this affair consisted of the Georgians, 
Major Smith's Tennesseeans, the Kentucky squadron, and some twenty men under 
Paul F. Anderson. Seeing the Confederates approach, the federals, then about 
six hundred yards southward of their camp, halted and formed in line of battle, 
some nine companies of infantry and four pieces of artillery. Directing the 
Georgians to confront and menace the enemy and engage with skirmishers, taking 
Major Smith with his men, including the Kentuckians and three companies of 
Morrison's Georgians under Major Harper, Forrest pushed rapidly around to 
the right and rear of the encampment, which proved to be still occupied by about 
one hundred men, posted behind a strong barricade of wagons and some large 
limestone ledges, which afforded excellent cover, difficult to carry. He there- 
upon ordered a charge, Majors Smith and Harper leading their men. They were 
met, however, with a stubborn, brave defense. Twice, indeed, the Confederates 
were repulsed. But Forrest, drawing his men up for a third effort, made a brief 
appeal to their manhood, and putting himself at the head of the column, the 
charge was again ordered, this time with success." 

We thus see, from Forrest's own account of the combat, written soon after 
the war, that the little camp guard of the Third Minnesota, numbering about 
twenty, with convalescents, teamsters and cooks, gallantly repulsed two separate 
charges of fully four times their number, led by two field officers, and were only 
defeated after a third charge led by Forrest in person. That was a flEiir sample 
of the fighting qualities of the Third Minnesota, and no one well acquaintied with 
the regiment has ever doubted that had an opportunity been afforded it would 
have engaged Forrest's whole force with the same heroic valor. The brave 
corporal, Charles H. Greene of Company I, who rallied our little force at the 
camp, did not yield until he had received a severe saber cut on his head and two 
bullet wounds, one of which was mortal. He lived but two hours; and while lying 
at the point of death, at the camp, described the combat to his captain sub- 
stantially as stated in Forrest's memoirs. Private V. Woodburn of Company 
C was also killed in that action and nine others wounded. The Confederate loss 
there has never been reported, but the Third men, who fought from cover, in- 
sisted that ten were killed besides several wounded. Corporal Greene had 
formerly served in the regular army and was every inch a soldier. His home 


and family at that time were iu Morrison county, Minnesota, and a prairie and 
township there have since been named in his honor. 

It will be of peculiar interest here to refer to the criticism which General 
Grant in his memoirs has made of General Buell's failure to march into east 
Tennessee. We have seen that Buell, to prepare for his movement, had under- 
taken not only to rebuild the Nashville & Chattanooga railroad, which was 
ready July 12th, but also the railroad from Memphis to Chattanooga, which was 
not yet quite ready. General Grant thought that his waiting to repair the latter 
railroad was a great mistake, and that the road from Nashville to Chattanooga 
(via Murfreesboro) was sufficient for his purpose. He says if General Buell 
'^had been sent directly to Chattanooga as rapidly as he could march, leaving 
two or three divisions along the line of the railroad from Nashville forward, he 
could have arrived with but little fighting and would have saved much of the 
loss of life which was afterward incurred in gaining Chattanooga. Bragg would 
then not have had time to raise an army to contest the possession of middle 
and east Tennessee and Kentucky; and the battles of Stone Eiver and Chicka- 
mauga would not necessarily have been fought; Burnside would not have been 
besieged in Knoxville without the power of helping himself or escaping; the 
battle of Chattanooga would not have been fought. * * * The x)Ositi ve results 
might have been a bloodless advance to Atlanta, to Yicksburg, or to any other 
desired point south of Corinth in the interior of Mississippi." If the conse- 
quences of Buell's failure to take Chattanooga were so momentous, then a deep 
interest will always attach to whatever retarded his movement and especially to 
the reverse at Murfreesboro. It may be saying too much to attribute Buell's 
failure solely to that disaster. One of its immediate effects, however, was to put 
his army on half- rations. It compelled him to send a division under Nelson to 
reoccupy Murfreesboro, and two brigades of Wood's division, by forced marches, 
from Decatur to Shelby ville. The use of the railroad was set back two weeks. 
If the forces under Forrest July 13th had been thoroughly whipped and routed, 
as they ought to have been, and as they would have been had the Third Minne- 
sota had a chance to engage them, it can hardly be doubted that General Buell 
would have seasonably put his army in motion and that it would have accom- 
plished its object.^ 

Immediately after the surrender the regiment was marched rapidly to 
McMinnville. From there the commissioned officers, except Captain Mills and 
Lieutenants Hodges and Taylor, who had escaped, were taken, via Sparta and 
Knoxville, to Madison, Ga., and there kept in a Confederate prison — a cot- 
ton factory building — three months, when they were taken to Libby Prison, 
Riehmoud, and paroled. Most of the other prisoners at Madison at the time 
were commissioned officers who had been captured with General Prentiss at 
Shiloh. The non-commissioned officers and enlisted men of the regiment were 
paroled at McMinnville and then, under a Confederate officer, marched back to 
Murfreesboro, already reoccupied by a division under General Nelson. That 
brave but impetuous officer hotly berated the men for the surrender as if it had 
been their fault. Arriving at Nashville they were desired, in violation of their 
parole, to take arms to help defend the place in case of an attack. Befusing to 
do this, they were ordered into camp in the outskirts of the city, and the next 
day a lot of old muskets were sent them with orders to detail a camp guard. 
Considering it a violation of their parole they refused to receive the arms. The 
humiliating manner in which they had been surrendered and the treatment they 
had since received, naturally tended to lessen their respect for commissioned 
officers and to impair their discipline. After staying at Nashville about a week 
they were sent, under command of Major Mattson, to Benton Barracks, going by 
railway to Louisville and thence by steamboat to St. Louis. They remained at 
Benton BarrackvS, under command of Lieutenant R. C. Clin, till called for service 
iu the Indian campaign. 

^ The official correspondence relating to the snrrender of Murfreesboro may be found on pages 
792-811, chapt4?r 28, " Kehellion Record." It is also fre<inently referred to in the Toluminons testi- 
mony taken before the *' Buell Commission/' published iu '* Rebellion Record," toL 16, part 1. 


Lieatenant Grnmmons and the forty-five men of Company were at Shelby- 
ville the morning of Jaly 13th, and distinctly heard the firing at Murfreesboro; 
they returned by railway to the latter place, yet rather slowly, arriving at the 
railroad bridge, three miles or so below Murfreesboro, at about 3 o'clock p. M., 
finding a number of men of the Ninth Michigan on picket. The train went 
back for reinforcements; and toward evening, learning that their regiment 
had surrendered, Company C, though against the protest of some of the ser- 
geants, marched in retreat along the railroad to Wartrace, arriving there at two 
in the morning. July 15th the detachment marched with four companies of the 
Ninth Michigan to Tullahoma. On the 17th Captain Mills joined it and took 
command. About the 22d it went to Murfreesboro and there remained several 
weeks, performing guard duty. It was then sent to Nashville in charge of some 
prisoners; there joined the Second Minnesota, with which it marched, in Gen- 
eral BuelPs army, to Louisville, and about the 1st of October, pursuant to in- 
structions from the War Department, proceeded to Fort Snelling. 


But the regiment was destined soon to fly to the protection of its own Min- 
nesota frontier. The Sioux Indian revolt and massacre commenced August 
18th. Authentic information of it reached St. Paul on the 19th. The same 
evening ex-Gov. Heniy H. Sibley was appointed by the governor of Minne- 
sota to conduct a military force against the hostile Sioux, and he started the 
next day with four companies of the Sixth Begiment for St. Peter. In com- 
pliance with the request of Gov. Bamsey, Gten. Halleck, August 22d, instructed 
Gen. Schofield to send the Third Begiment to Minnesota. The War Depart- 
ment announced, August 27th, that the enlisted men of the regiment, as paroled 
prisoners, were fully exchanged. A high value, even in their disorganized con- 
dition, was placed upon their service in the Indian campaign, and their arrival 
was anticipated with much interest. September 13th, Gen. Sibley, whose expe- 
dition had reached Fort Bidgley, wrote that the Third Begiment was within six 
or eight miles of his camp, 'Hhey having," he says, '*made a rapid march to 
join me." And on the 15th he writes that he has little fear that his raw troops 
will be panic struck, even if a superior force of Indians were to make a desperate 
stand, *' since the skeleton of the Third Begiment has joined me, under Major 
Welch, composed of 270 men only." Again on the 19th he writes: *' My troops 
are entirely undisciplined, excepting the few belonging to the Third Begiment." 
On the 28th of August two hundred and fifty of the regiment, being all that 
were then at Benton Barracks, embarked at St. Louis, under command of Liea- 
tenant R C. Olin, for Minnesota, on the steamer Pembina, and reached Fort 
Snelling on the 4th of September. Here, at his own request, it was put under 
the command of the young and gallant Major A. E. Welch, who had served as a 
lieutenant in the First Begiment. Second to him was Lieutenant Olin. It now 
had about two hundred and seventy men present for duty, an unusually large 
number to be conducted by merely two commissioned officers, and one of them 
a comparative stranger. However, the non-commissioned officers who acted in 
the place of commissioned officers were very competent, and much credit is due 
them for the service they rendered in the Indian expedition. September 5th 
the Third, under Major Welch, started out, and first by steamer up the l^Iinnesota 
Eiver to Carver, for the protection of the settlers and to join Gen. Sibley's expe- 
dition. The 6th they marched to Glencoe, finding the inhabitants in a stockade; 
the 7th to Hutchinson, whose inhabitants were also in a stockade; the 8th to 
Cedar Mills; the 9th to Forest City, by the way of Acton, twenty-eight miles, 
and stopping on the way to bury four or five mutilated victims of the outbreak; 
the 10th to Cedar Mills direct, eighteen miles. On the 12th they were under 
way at six in the morning, and, except for a few hours' rest, marched rapidly till 
eleven at night, making fully forty miles. The 13th they reached Fort Bidgley 
at 11 A. M. and joined the forces under Gen. Sibley. They had traversed a 
region alternating with noble forests and fertile prairie, but at almost every 
halting place they had seen traces of the widespread and awful massacre. After 


leaving Fort Ridgley the men of the Third were always in the advance, and for 
a good part of the time, especially when any Indians were visible, used as 

Early the afternoon of September 22d the command camped on both sides 
of the old Government road, and on the east side of a small lake which is now 
only a marsh, mostly situated on the northwest part of section 9, in township 114, 
range 38. The surface there is rolling prairie. A small creek, which a person 
could jump, ran from the north end of the lake easterly to the Minnesota River, 
through a ravine some thirty feet deep, and which bends round to the south. The 
side of the ravine toward the camp was rather steep. The opposite side rose 
gradually into the undulating prairie extending to the Yellow Medicine River, 
two or three miles beyond. More or less willow bushes were growing along the 
banks of the creek, and it was bridged where the road crossed it, near the lake. 
The Sixth Regiment camped on the left of the road, the Seventh on the right, 
and the Third Regiment, being in the advance, camped further to the front, or 
within about a quarter of a mile of the creek, the company of Renville Rangers 
being near. 

At the Lower Sioux Agency the Third Regiment had obtained some potatoes 
which the Indians had left buried, and the supply was now about exhausted. 
On the morning of the 23d, therefore, after waiting till the sun had been up sev- 
eral hours, for it was a clear morning, and supposing the command would not 
march that day, a few of the Third men thought they would go over to the Yel- 
low Medicine Agency and replenish their stock of potatoes. They went, it 
seems, on their own responsibility. Major Welch, their commander, had notice 
of their going, and while he did not consent to their going, neither did he posi- 
tively forbid them. Four or five teams, driven by citizen teamsters, with four 
men in each wagon, started. They had crossed the bridge over the creek, as- 
cended the other side of the ravine, and gone about a hundred yards over the 
high prairie, when up sprang a squad of Indians and fired at the men in the 
wagons, mortally wounding Degrove Kimball and wounding some others. Leap- 
ing to the ground, the men returned the fire. The teams were ordered to face 
al^ut and wait to carry any men who might be wounded to camp. They, how- 
ever, did not stop, but drove to the rear. On hearing the firing, the Third Regi- 
ment men rushed for their arms, and, led by Major Welch, were in a few 
moments on the double quick to the support of their comrades. Reaching the 
scene of action, about half the regiment wei'e held as a reserve, the rest deploy- 
ing and advancing as a line of skirmishers. Soon the horizon became picturesque 
with Indians, some mounted and some afoot, single and in squads, advancing 
rapidly from the direction of the Yellow Medicine River. They came in front, 
also moved to the right and left. The skirmish line and reserve of the Third ad- 
vanced, and soon were in fair musket range of a force of Indian warriors which, 
before the contest was over, numbered about seven hundred, although some were 
present by compulsion. When the firing was progressing at &irly short range, 
an Indian, who proved to have been Little Crow, rode out a short distance from 
a mounted group, and, swinging his blanket above his head, gave the war-whoop, 
when an answering yell rang from the prairie, and scores of Indians, not before 
seen, rose from the grass, ''until," as one who was present states, '*the whole 
prairie seemed to be alive with them.'' About two hundred and fifty of the 
Third men were engaged, and were getting well warmed in the fight, when an 
officer came from Gen. Sibley with instructions to fall back to camp. Major 
Welch told him to go back and tell the general that he could hold his ground, 
and that he wished reinforcements. The foe now in front of the Third Regiment 
uttering their demoniac shrieks, now visible and the next moment concealed in 
the grass, and maneuvering in characteristic manner, were, many of them, the 
identical Indians who had helped to massacre 1,000 defenseless pioneer set- 
tlors—men, women, and children— on our Western frontier. To give way an 
inch on the field of battle to such a foe seemed intolerable. The Third men 
could hardly endure it. It was not till the officer returned with orders to *'po8i- 
tively fall back'' that the regiment began to retreat. It was now a mile from 


camp. The way the order to retreat was given caused confosion, which, how- 
ever, was soon over, as the men passed the words along the line, "Remember 
Murfreesboro!" Ko attack elsewhere having been made, the Indians were left 
free to charge and close in upon them. However, the great majority of the men 
preserved their self-possession and dauntless spirit, retiring gradually and firing 
effectively. Their principal loss, ^ which was severe, was while they were cross- 
ing the creek and regaining the steep bank of the ravine toward their camp. It 
was here that Major Weldi was struck by a ball, breaking his leg. Along the 
brow of that ravine, and now supported by the Renville Rangers, a company 
of forty half-breeds, under Lieutenant Gk>rman, who rallied on their right and 
fought bravely, they for an hour longer held the Indians at bay, and inflicted 
upon them considerable loss. * * The Third and Rangers, ' ' says Captain Champlin, 
who, as a non-commissioned officer, took part in the battle, ** covered by the tall 
grass and intervening knolls, with grass bound on their hats, fought them Indian 
fashion ; their fire kept little knots of them constantly bearing away their killed and 
wounded, and beyond our reach. ' ' All this time the principal part of the command 
had been in line waiting orders, ready, of course, to do their full duty. Finally 
a simultaneous and determined charge was made by the Third Regiment with 
fixed bayonets (now under Lieut. Olin), the Renville Rangers, under Lieut Gror- 
man, and the five companies of the Seventh Regiment on their right, under 
Lieut. Colonel Wm. R. Marshall, which swept through the ravine, driving the 
enemy from the field. The bodies of fourteen Indians were buried by our troops 
on the field of battle. General Sibley, in his official report of the battle, made 
on the day it occurred, says: ** Major Welch of the Third Regiment (temporarily 
in command) was instantly in line with his command, his skirmishers in the 
advance, by whom the savages were gallantly met, and, after a conflict of a seri- 
ous nature, repulsed." And the adjutant general of Minnesota, in his official 
report, says: **As the hottest of the enemy's fire was borne by the Third Regi- 
ment and Renville Rangers, the heaviest part of the loss was confined to those 

This battle of Wood Lake, so called, of which the Third Regiment and Ren- 
ville Rangers bore the brunt, did not, it is true, terminate the Indian War, for it 
did not prevent the necessity of a campaign to the Missouri River the next sum- 
mer, but it was very importont and useful in its results, and in some respects it 
was decisive. It effected the release of about three hundred captives which the 
Indians held, and of whom one hundred and fifty were white women and chil- 
dren — many of them refined and educated women and teachers, who had been 
and were being subjected to barbarous treatment. It also effected the surrender 
of 1,500 Indians, including four hundred warriors, among whom were those 
afterward convicted and executed for having perpetrated some of the massacres. 
On the 26th the Third, with the command, went into camp at a point about 
twenty miles further on, opposite the mouth of Chippewa River, and which was 
afterward appropriately named Camp Release. The Indian camp was near 
there, and the negotiations which had commenced immediately after the battle 
concluded in the course of a few days by the delivery of the captives and prisoners. 
For a week or two different parties of Indians came in and surrendered; but 
there were yet some hostile fugitives, with their families, whose capture was 
necessary, and in this duly the Third took active part. October 15th twenty- 
five mounted men under Sergeant Fox accompanied a scout commanded by Cap- 

^ The following is the list of casnalties snstained by the Third Regiment in the battle of Wood 
Lake, as reported by the assistant surgeon of the regiment, Moses R. Greeley: Killed — Company 
A, A. C. Collins, Edwin E. Ross; Company G, Degrove Kimball (mortally wounded); Company I, 
Mathew CantweU, Richard McElroy (the last named was a paroled man belonging to Company I 
of the Second Minnesota). "Wounded — Major A. E. Welch, severely; Company B, Joseph Eigle, 
John Oger; Company C, S. K. Satterlee; Company D, Peter Nelson, severely, Nicholas Nelson, 
severely, John P. Thellander, Fred. Miller; Company E, Benjamin Densmore, A. M. Reed, J. 
Schwieger, S. J. Smith; Company F, Heman D. Pettibone, A. Eastman, David Griffin; Company 
G, Richard Custard, J. G. Canfield, J. Knox; Company H, W. McLeod, Charles Stokes, T. A. My- 
rick; Company I, William F. Morse, J. P. Kirby, James C. Cantwell, James Buchanan, James E. 


tain Merriman beyond Lac qui Parle, which resulted in the capture, without 
resistance, of twenty-two men, and about forty women and children. At mid- 
night of October 13th, Lieutenant J. H. Swan, who had a narrow escape from 
death at Birch Coolie, with forty-five men of the regiment, mounted, marched in 
an expedition under Lieut. Col. William B. Marshall to within thirty -five miles 
of the James Eiver in Dakota, and returned the 21st, having marched nearly two 
hundred miles in eight days, with over a hundred captives, including several who 
had participated in the massacre. Shortly after this the Third was mounted by 
order of Ckn. Pope, and then moved down to the Lower Sioux Agency, where it 
remained about a week. Then, under Lieut. Swan, Lieut. Hodges accompanying, 
it marched southwest by the way of Lake Shetek and Bed Pipestone quarry, 
where it buried the remains of several murdered settlers. There were no signs 
of recent presence of Lidians. After traversing a good part of the southwestern 
frontier, much of the way over burnt prairie, and accomplishing several long, 
and arduous marches in face of the autumn blast, it came by way of the Cotton- 
wood Valley to N'ewXJlm; then marched (apart, however, returning to Fort Eidg- 
ley) to Henderson and arrived at Foit Snelling the 14th of November. It soon 
afterward received a furlough till the 3d of December. Lieutenant Olin, whose 
service and influence had been very valuable, particularly in the Indian cam- 
paign, was, September 28th, detailed as judge advocate of the military commis- 
sion to try several hundred Indian prisoners, yet continued in command of the 
r^ment till the arrival of officers who outranked him. He was afterward ap- 

Sointed acting assistant adjutant general, in which capacity he served on Grenei^ 
ibley's staff. 
While the greater part of the regiment was hastening to reinforce Gen. Sib- 
ley, about seventy other of its members, who had come from the South on sick 
fiarlough, reported at Fort Snelling, and September 11th, under command of Ser- 
geant Dearborn, marched with Capt. Emil A. Burger's detachment for the relief 
of Fort Alfercrombie, over two hundred miles distant, on the Bed Biver of the 
North. The Third men, being unwilling to arm themselves with a refuse lot of 
Belgian muskets, requisition was made by proper authority on the gun stores in 
St. Paul. *'Some," says W. E. Hale in his sketch of the expedition, *'took rfiot 
guns, others squirrel guns, and others armed themselves with the long Kentucky 
rifles. Each man carried his own lead, powder horn and bullet mould." Captain 
Burger arrived at Fort Abercrombie September 23d, ^ and the next day reported 
that on September 20th the expedition crossed the Alexandria woods; the next day 
marched sixteen miles to the Pomme de Terre, but was delayed burying the body 
of Andrew Austin; September 22d reached old crossing of the Otter Tail, twen- 
ty-four miles; and the 23d marched twenty -six miles to Abercrombie. When 
he had come within about a mile of the Bed Biver a party of Indians was seen 

^ The following letter from Brevet Brigadier General Theo. H. Barrett, who, as captain of 
Company 6, Ninth Minnesota, was in the expedition sent to relieve Fort Abercrombie, throws im- 
portant light npon that movement : 

Babbett's Ranch, Feb. 18, 1890. 
Otneral C. C. Andrews, Editw Official Military History: 

Sib: Replying to your not« of Jannaiy 3d I have to say. General Malmros is correct in his 
statement that Captain McCoy's company, Eighth Minnesota, and Company G, Ninth Minnesota, 
had gone to Sank Centre previous to Lieutenant Burger's starting for Abercrombie. When McCoy 
reached Sank Centre he found Captain Freeman alret^y there, and as McCoy was the senior officer, 
Freeman's company, while at Sauk Centre, became temporarily a part of his (McCoy's) command. 
Freeman's company of mounted men had been hastily gathered up at St. Cloud and marched to 
the frontier to protect the settlements and fight Indians wherever found. He was desirous of pro- 
ceeding to the relief of Abercrombie, but did not consider his company strong enough to go alone. 
He was therefore anxious that the other troops accompany him. Lieutenant Oscar Taylor of 
Freeman's company (afterward captain) was especially urgent that we hasten on to Abercrombie. 
At last a consultation was held at McCoy's headquarters, at which were present Captain McCov, 
Captain Freeman, Lieutenant Oscar Taylor, Lieutenant Christ Becker, the writer, and, I think, 
also. Lieutenant E. E. Hughson, now of St. PauL My impression is that Lieutenant Edward 
Paist of McCoy's company wjis also present. 

Oiptain McCoy, under the order he had received directing him to Sauk Centre, did not 
feel authorized to proceed further, nor did he consider himself authorized to order any portion 
of his command beyond Sauk Centre. After a flill discussion, the conference broke up with 


coming out of the woods, and he says: *'I at once sent Lient. Taylor of Capt, 
Freeman's cavalry with twenty mounted men, and twenty Third Regiment men 
(the latter to act as skirmishers in the woods), to cross with the greatest speed and 
give them chase. I took the rest of the Third Regiment company and the can- 
non and proceeded to a point np the river, where I expected the Indians would 
appear again, and where I would not be seen by them. But I soon discovered 
that they were retreating, under the cover of the woods, toward Wild Rice River. 
I then gave orders for the whole expedition to cross the river, which was effected 
in less than an hour, the men not waiting to be carried over in wagons, but 
jumping into the water breast-deep and wading through." While at the fort 
the detachment, on the 26th and 29th, took part in slight skirmishes with the 
Indians. On the 30th they started back with Oapt Freeman's mounted com- 
pany, as escort for about sixty citizens, including women and children coming 
to St. Cloud, and where they arrived October 6th. In two days more they 
reached Fort Snelling, were there mounted, and, under command of Lieutenant 
C. H. Blakeley, soon joined the rest of the regiment at Camp Release, whence 
they marched with Lieutenant Swan to the Lower Agency. 

The Third Regiment regarded some of General Sibley's movements as unnec- 
essarily slow and cautious. But our American history, as he well knew, had 
furnished some awful examples of lack of caution in Indian warfare. Braddock 
and St. Clair, each with a force like his, had been ambushed and utterly de- 
stroyed. Sibley was bound to guard against every possibility of a reverse. A 
campaign must be judged by its result, and his was successful. 


About the 1st of December the commanding general of the Department of the 
Northwest transmitted to the War Department a statement of the condition the 
regiment was then in, and the &cts in regard to the Murfreesboro surrender, 
but without making any recommendation. Thereupon the president issued an 
order Dec. 1, '62, dismissing all the officers who vot€^ for or counseled the sur- 
render. The governor of Minnesota then, on the recommendation of a meeting 
of twenty, of the field and line officers that had been held at St. Paul December 
13th, promoted Lieut. Col. Griggs to be colonel and Captain Andrews to be lieu- 
tenant colonel. Several promotions were also made in different companies, a» 
will be seen by reference to the roster. There had been some delay in the pay- 
ment of the r^ment before it started for the South, but on Jan. 16, 1863, five 
companies, which had assembled at Fort Snelling, marched, in severe wea^Oxer^ 
under command of the colonel, to Winona, and joined the other five companies, 
who had met there under the charge of the lieutenant colonel. At Winona the 
regiment was given a fine dinner by the ladies. Friday, January 23d, a stormy 

the nnderstandiDg that McCoy woald remain with his compaDj at Sauk Centre and the other 
two companies proceed to the relief of Abercrombie. Acoonlmglj, late in the afternoon of the 
same day. Captain Freeman's companj and Company G, Ninth Minnesota Volunteers, withont 
orders and on oar own responsibility, marched out of town and camped near the Ashley, a few 
miles distant. Next day we made a circuitous march of some twenty-five miles, and at night 
camped on the open prairie, on high g^round, a little west of Lake Amelia. About ten o'clock 
that night a messenger came into camp with written orders directing us to await the arrival of 
Burger and join him at some point on the state road. We therefore marched across the country to 
Wyman's Station, six miles east of Alexandria, and awaited the coming up of Burger. 

Had we been permitted to continue our march, we would, if successful, have reached Aber- 
crombie three or four days earlier than the expedition under Burger, and probably have saved 
several lives, and among them that of Mr. Edward Wright, Captain Taylor's brother-in-law. 
Company G, Ninth Minnesota, had seventy effective men, and in Freeman's company of mounted 
men there were thirty to forty, — in aU an effective force of from one hundred to one hundred and 
ten men. Our intention was to keep southward, west of the timber, marching only on the 
prairie, so as to avoid ambuscades. Captain Taylor and myself were both well acquainted with th« 
country and felt confident that we could get to Abercrombie without being surprised or ambushed. 

There were about fifty men of the Third Minnesota Volunteers in Bulger's expedition, but no 
commissioned officer of the Third. I think they were detachments from several different oompanies.. 
One of the Thifd non-commissioned officers. Sergeant Pell, acted as Burger's adjutant. 

Very respectfully, 

Theodore H. Babbeit. 


winter morning, reveille was sounded at three and a quarter o'clock, and the 
regiment was on the march from Winona by daylight. There was continuous 
fell of snow, rain or hail through the day. Arrived at La Crescent before dark, 
the teams coming in at five. The next day crossed the Mississippi, and left La 
Crosse at eight o'clock in the evening, reaching Chicago the next afternoon at 
four, and arriving safely in Cairo at 11 P. M. the 26th, and there remained seven 
days. The regiment had left in Minnesota the ordinary arms it had temporarily 
used in the Indian campaign, and it now required a supply of the best kind. 
Gen. Tuttle, who was in command at Cairo, was repeatedly seen by the colonel 
and lieutenant colonel in regard to the matter. There were plenty of Enfield 
rifles at Cairo, but no accouterments. A telegram was sent to one of the Minne- 
sota senators in Washington, and a letter to the governor of the state, urging 
that the regiment be supplied as promptly as possible. It moved to Columbus, 
Ky., where Gen. Asboth was in command, February 3d, but in spite of the ur- 
gent appeals that were made, muskets were not obtained till February 17th, and 
accouterments not till March 10th. Such delay seemed inexcusable, and was 
aggravating to a regiment impatient, as was the Third, to get to the front. (Jen. 
Charles S. Hamilton, commanding the district of west Tennessee, February 3d 
ordered Gen. Asboth to send the regiment to Memphis, but Asboth excused 
himself for not doing so because it was not armed. Gen. Asboth was a Hunga- 
rian, a colleague of Kossuth, industrious, brave almost to a fault, and generous. 
He waa aftjerward badly wounded, and just aft^r the war represented the United 
States as minister to the Argentine Eepublic At Columbus the officers assem- 
bled evenings at the colonel's quarters in the school of the regiment. As soon 
as arms were received there was battalion drilL Li all the history of the r^- 
ment there never was idleness. 

March 12th the re^ment embarked on a steamer, and, with other forces, 
proceeded on an expedition under (Jen. Asboth to reoccupy Fort Heiman, on 
the west bank of the Tennessee. The 14th it landed two miles above the fort, 
and, marching seven miles around, came up to it at 2 P. M., finding nothing but 
ruins. Col. Griggs was left in command of the post of Fort Heiman with a force 
consisting of the Third Eegiment, the One Hundred and Eleventh Illinois 
and Companies A and D, Fifteenth Kentucky Cavalry, being a brigade of the 
Sixth Division, Sixteenth Corps, of General Grant's Army of the Tennessee. 
While here the regiment was under the immediate command of Major Mattson. 
The lieutenant colonel, March 2d, had been detailed as president of a military 
commission at Columbus for the trial of prisoners, but obtained permission to 
accompany the expedition. He resumed his duties at Columbus the 17th, but 
got relieved June 4th to accompany the regiment to Vicksburg. The regiment's 
principal duty at Fort Heiman was to break up Confederate conscription in the 
surrounding country, and with this object, and in part mounted with horses 
from the country, it made numerous enterprising scouts, which often involved 
long and weary marches. Three of these were under the command of Major 
Mattson. In the last one, he, with 0>mpanies B, D, G and H, Third Minne- 
sota, and a detachment of Companies A and D, Fifteenth Kentucky Cavalry, 
left Fort Heiman May 26th and marched through several counties on the west 
side of the Tennessee and on both sides of the Big Sandy; had several little skir- 
mishes, and captured four officers and eleven privates. His loss was two men 
supposed to have been captured. It was on this scout that Corporal Jesse Bar- 
rick of Company H, with a squad of five men, captured two Confederate officers. 
Major Algee and Captain Grizzel, who were together and well armed. Another 
scout, or *' guerrilla hunt," as the expeditions were frequently called, was made 
by Captain Edward L. Baker, Company E, Third Minnesota, and occupied nine 
days, the men, as was customary, living on the country. He marched from Fort 
Heiman at sundown. May 18th, with forty of the Fifteenth Kentucky Cavalry 
and fifteen mounted men from the Third Minnesota and One Hundred and Elev- 
enth Illinois each; went through Paris, Marlborough and Huntington, and, 
dividing his force into squads, scoured thoroughly the counties of Henry, Car- 
roll and Benton, and returned with several prisoners. May 29th, General Hurl- 


but, from Memphis, telegraphed General Asboth to abandon Fort Heiman and 
^^send, with all possible dispatch, the Third Minnesota by steamer to Yicks- 
bnrg," with iSve days' rations, six wagons, one hundred rounds i)er man, and only 
shelter tents. These instmctions were executed as soon as the scouting parties 
were all in. Passing by steamer down the Tennessee, Ohio and Mississippi rivers, 
the regiment arrived at Columbus, Ky., at 9 a. m., June 4th, there spent the rest 
of the day receiving its pay, and at daylight the next morning was under way to 
its new field of action. 


The Yicksburg campaign, which was undertaken to regain full i>osseBsion of 
the Mississippi Eiver, began the night of April 16, 1863, by our fleet and some 
transports running the batteries there, and thence passing further down the river 
to afford means of transporting Gen. Grant's army to the Vicksburg (east) side. 
His army then marched circuitously sixty-three miles fix)m Milliken's Bend to 
Hard Times, and April 30th crossed over to Bruinsburg, and the next day 
**turned" and secured Grand Gulf for a base. Two divisions of Sherman's corps, 
which had been left behind to confuse the Yicksburg garrison by a feigned attack 
on Haines' Bluff, overtook the rest of the army May 8th. Northeast from Bru- 
insburg Landing, and fifty miles due east from Yicksburg, is Jackson, which 
the Confederates held, and where Joseph E. Johnston, one ojf the very ablest of 
their generals, arrived and took personal command May 13th. The Big Black 
Biver, two hundred and fifty feet wide, flows about fifl^een miles behind and east 
of Yicksburg, joins the Mississippi thirty miles below that place and twelve 
miles above Bruinsburg. The surface of the country between Yicksburg and 
Jackson thus divided by the Big Black Biver is about four hundred feet above 
the level of the Mississippi, has a light brown, clayey loam soil, is broken by 
many densely wooded ravines, bears naturally a variety of hardwood timber, 
principally oak, but with here and there a handsome magnolia, and at that time 
had many wealthy plantations, particularly on the rich bottom lands bordering 
the streams. Grant's army, as will have been seen, was separated from Yicks- 
burg by the Big Black Biver, but he soon sent a detachment across to make a 
demonstration on the southern approadies to Yicksburg. Learning that Confed- 
erate reinforcements were assembling at Jackson, he decided to cut entirely 
loose from the Mississippi Biver, march to Jackson and destroy that place as a 
railroad centre, then face about and move upon Yicksburg. This part of his 
campaign was accomplished in twenty days, during which his army fought five 
battles, though all of it was not engaged in any one battle, and gained succes- 
sively the victories of Port Gibson, May 1st; Baymond, May 12th; Jackson, May 
14th; Champion's Hill (also called Baker's Creek), May 16th; and Black River 
Bridge, May 17th. Pemberton's forces, which had sustained all of these defeats 
except that of Jackson, instead of forming a junction with Johnston, as the latter 
desired, took shelter behind their fortifications at Yicksburg, and were closed in 
upon by Grant the evening of May 18th, the investment being completed the 
next day. This daring campaign of Grant's, in which the Fourth and Fifth Min- 
nesota regiments took part, struck terror into the Confederacy and revived con- 
fidence in the l^orth in a corresponding degree. Beinforcements were hurried 
forward to him without stint, so that by the time the Third Minnesota arrived 
and took position his line extended from Haines' Bluff on the right a distance 
of fifteen miles. On the fall of Jackson Gen. Johnston retreated north to Canton 
and began to work with the utmost zeal, yet with secret misgivings, collecting 
and organizing troops with a view to attack Grant and release Pemberton. His 
scouts duly inform^ him day after day of the many steamboats passing down 
the Mississippi crowded with reinforcements for Grant; and as early as May 
27th he wrote to the War Office at Eichmond: ** Grant's army is estimated a4i 
60,000 or 80,000 men, and his troops are worth double the number of northeastern 
troops." He repeatedly assured the Confederate war minister and president 
that he had not half forces enough to make a successful attack. He, however, 
did all he could. Beinforcements were forwarded to him, and, among others, 


6,000 men who had been sent from Charleston by Beauregard. Finally he had, 
as he said, a little over 24,000 effective men. But rumor gave him double that 
force and credited him with an intention to attack. 

Such was about the situation when the Third Regiment, which had left Col- 
umbus, Ky., June 5th, on the steamer Izetta, landed, and bivouacked June 
8th at Haines' Bluff, Col. Griggs in command, to form a part of the covering army 
to operate against Johnston. It was brigaded with the Fortieth Iowa and Twen- 
ty-fifth and Twenty-seventh Wisconsin regiments, also in General Nathan Kim- 
ball's provisional division of the Sixteenth Cori)s, which, with Gen. William 
Sooy Smith's division, comprised the detachment of the Sixteenth Corps com- 
manded by (General C. C. Washburn, and all posted at Haines' Bluff. Rich- 
mond's brigade of Kimball's division, however, was posted as a picket seven 
miles further north, where, in its capacity of outpost, it was visited June 10th 
by the field of&cer of the day from the Third Regiment. At this date no de- 
fensive works had been made at Haines' Bluff; but on the 12th the lieutenant 
colonel of the Third had charge of a detail that felled the oak trees, and with 
them made obstructions (abatis) on the north end and slope of Haines' Bluff, 
half a mile from camp. The whole regiment was out all of the same night in line 
as an advance picket on the low lands bordering the Yazoo. On the 13th the 
lieutenant colonel of the Third Regiment was permanently detailed to take 
charge of the fatigue party, furnished every day from Kimball's division, and 
numbering six hundred men, in felling trees in the ravines and in digging rifle- 
pits. In this toil the Third Regiment, of course, furnished its share of men. 
The weather was intensely hot, and the labor of chopping down the gum, oak 
and other sorts of trees of primeval growth which filled some of the ravines was 
severe in the extreme. Work of this sort, and digging rifle-pits at Haines' and 
Snyder's bluffs, was continued for several successive days, and was shared by 
Smith's division. Rapid progress was made. Every man seemed to feel ths^ 
the rifle-pits would have a moral effect, as indeed they did, in keeping off Johns- 
ton's army. General Sherman, who had command of the troops watching for 
Johnston, personally visited the works at Snyder's Bluff on the 16th of June, 
and reported that they would enable the troops there "to hold any force from 
north and northeast." June 15th the regiment moved with Kimball's division 
to Snyder's Bluff, two or three miles nearer Vicksburg, and camped on rather 
low ground at the foot of the bluff, and about three miles from Chickasaw Bayou 
Landing. A small stream flowed near the camp to the Yazoo River. 

All these days we were almost constantly expecting an attack from Johnston. 
On June 7th he telegraphed Pemberton from Canton, ** We are nearly ready to. 
move, but don' t know the best route. " June 8th he was for a day at Benton, on the 
west side of the Big Black, disposing of his cavalry ''as near the Union forces as 
circumstances would permit." June 11th his preparations for advancing were 
nearly completed and Jackson's division was ordered to the Big Black at Vernon. 
June 16th the Confederate secretary of war, Seddon, telegraphed him: "Vicks- 
burg must not be lost without a desperate struggle. Attack in concert with the 
garrison if practicable, but otherwise without; by day or night, as you think 
best." June 22d Johnston telegraphed Pemberton: "I will have the means of 
moving in a day or two, and will try to make a diversion in vour favor." 
Gen. Grant says in his memoirs: ''On the 22d of June positive inmrmation was 
received that Johnston had crossed the Big Black River for the purpose of 
attacking our rear, to raise the siege and release Pemberton." That same night 
Gen. Smith's division marched out nine miles from Snyder's Bluff in the sup- 
posed direction of Johnston. But he had not come; and finally he found it would 
not be prudent to attack at Haines' or Snyder's Bluff. In his report as pub- 
lished in the "Rebellion Record," he states: "On June 29th, field transporta- 
tion and other supplies having been obtained, the army marched toward the Big 
Black, and on the evening of July Ist I encamped between Brownsville and the 
river. Reconnaissances, which occupied the 2d and 3d, convinced me that attack 
north of the railroad was impracticable. I determined, therefore, to make the 
examinations necessary for the attempt south of the railroad. * ^ *^ On the 


night of the 3d a messenger was sent to G^n. Pemberton with information that 
an attempt to create a diversion would be made to enable him to cut his way out, 
and that I hoped to attack the enemy about the 7th." But Yicksburg fell on 
the 4th of July. He had made no attack, and the Third Eegiment did its full 
share in keeping him at bay. 

Just as soon as the Yicksburg garrison became prisoners Grant was able to 
let Sherman, with Ord's, Steele's and Parke's eori)s, attack Johnston and send 
him flying in disorder beyond the vicinity of Jackson. The movement began 
July 5th. The same morning, at nine o'clock, the Third Begiment received orders 
to march with five days' rations to Oak Bidge, more than half way to the Big 
Black Biver, and which is on the road leading to the important Birdsong Ferry, 
where Sherman's headquarters had been for several days. It was an intensely 
hot and dusty march. The regiment arrived at Oak Bidge at 2:30 p. M. The 
campaign having proved successful and Johnston being on the retreat many 
miles east of Jackson, Sherman's command began to march back to Yicksburg 
on the 20th of July. The next day the Third Begiment received orders to 
return to Snyder's Bluff; it started at 6 p. m. and arrived at 10 P. M.; distance, 
eight miles. At Oak Bidge, Col. Griggs, on account of poor health, and to the 
regret of the regiment, tendered his resignation, which was accepted, and he was 
succeeded by Lieutenant Ck>lonel Andrews, who took command July 16th. 


The 23d of July the regiment was paid by Major Bailey, and the next day it 
embarked on the Autocrat for Helena, where it was destined to take part in 
the Arkansas expedition. On the passage there were fifteen of the men who 
were sick abed. The regiment arrived at Helena at 9 a. m., Sunday, the 26th, 
landed, put its wagons together, loaded them, and all were in column on the 
march to camp in an hour from the time the steamer arrived. It camped two 
miles below town, in a grove on the bank of the Mississippi. Its strength was 
four hundred present for duty. As was usual in hot weather, when there was 
likelihood of remaining in camp several days, an arbor of tree branches was 
built over the tents. 

During its twenty days at Helena it had four battalion drills, also company 
drills on several days. It there for the first time executed a part of the bayonet 
exercise on dress parade. July 29th half the regiment marched eight miles to 
a plantation and returned with two wagon-loads of ears of green corn. August 
12th Major General Frederick Steele, who on the 5th had assumed command of 
''the army to take the field from Helena, Ark.," and of which the regiment was 
a part, came and reviewed it, and expressed much satisfaction at its appearance 
and marching. It was now in the Second Brigade with the Twenty-second Ohio, 
Twenty-seventh Wisconsin, Fortieth Iowa and One Hundred and Twenty-sixth 
Illinois, Colonel Oliver Wood of the Twenty-second Ohio, by seniority, brigade 
commander, and was in the Second (Kimball's) Division, temporarily com- 
manded by Col. William E. McLean of the Forty-third Indiana. The object of 
the expedition was to expel the Confedei^ate forces from Arkansas and perma- 
nently occupy the state. The Confederate army, which, July 4th, had been re- 
pulsed at Helena, now numbered 9,000, and was near Little Bock, under Gen. 
Sterling Price. Gren. Steele's column now to move from Helena numbered 
only 6,000; but at Clarendon, fifty miles further on, he was to be joined by Gen. 
Davidson's cavalry division of nine regiments and some field artillery, number- 
ing 4,000 effectives, which had marched from Missouri. Near Little Bock he 
was reinforced by True's infantry brigade; and September 10th, after captur- 
ing that place, the number present for duty in his army was only 10,479. On 
the march, however, he, from sound policy, let the impression get to the enemy 
that his army numbered 25,000. 

The Third Begiment, Colonel Andrews commanding, with three hundred and 
eighty effectives, which made it one of the largest, if not the largest regiment, 
in the column, marched from Helena, August 13th, at 2:20 p. M. The heat was 
intense. It marched slowly a few miles over low ground, then ascended a high 


ridge lying behind Helena, and camped at nine o'clock in an elevated body of 
hard timber; distance, eight miles. The regiment was up according to orders 
at two and a half o'clock the next morning, was ready to march at four, but, 
having to wait for some other part of the brigade to get ready, did not move 
out tiU five. It marched twelve miles to Big Creek, halting to rest frequently 
in the shade, and came on to its camping ground at noon in fine spirits. The 
next morning, August 15th, it was up at half -past two, the inspiring reveill6 
being sounded as usual by our bugles; marched at four and a half, but was de- 
layed an hour and a half for a wagon train to cross a bridge, and camped at 
Cyprus Swamp at 4 p. m. ; distance, twelve miles. Sunday, the 16th, it was up 
at 1:30 A. M., started at three and a half o'clock and marched twelve miles to 
Cyprus Creek through a low, level country of timber, with some pine, and 
camped at 9:30 o'clock A. m. Cyprus Creek is a sluggish stream, and was covered 
with a green scum. Begular Sunday inspection at 6 P. M. Monday, the 17th, 
marched at 4 a. m. ; reached Clarendon, on the White fiiver, at 1 p. m. ; distance, 
twelve miles, and camped one mile and a half from the river. Remained there 
a week, during which time its sick list increased and numbered forty on the 
20th. Clarendon at that time had only about fifty buildings, scarcely one of 
which appeared occupied. Windows had been broken, and the ashes here and 
there told the tale of previous destruction. There was not a trading shop open. 
The army having all crossed White River by the afternoon of the ^d, the regi- 
ment resumed its march and reached Devall's Bluff at noon of the 24th, and 
camped half a mile back from the west bank of White Biver in a forest of large 
oaks, the general surface being sixty feet above the river. White River is a 
clear, rapid and fine navigable stream. Much of the soil at the Bluff is a stifi^ 
red clay . The malaria, to which very many of the troops had been exposed in the 
Yazoo Valley, was showing the effects in disease, especially fever. Glen. Steele 
wrote from Devall's Bluff August 23d: **The sick list is frightful." Over 
1,000 of his command were then sick. The Third Re^ment, however, was 
not suffering so much as some other regiments. August 31st its effective force 
present was three hundred and sixty-two; present, sick, fifty-two. The advance 
was resumed September 1st, the regiment mardiing at seven and a half o'clock. 
The first three miles was through oak forest; then we came out upon a hand- 
some prairie, skirted on each side with hard timber. The air was bracing, and 
we could almost realize we were on one of the beautiful prairies of Minnesota. 
The supply train of one hundred and sixty wagons had started on another road, 
and was moving in full view about a mile to our right. When the whole col- 
umn had got upon the prairie it afforded an interesting picture. We campe<L 
after a march of twenty miles, near Bayou Meto, and the next morning marched 
eight miles further to Browusville, arriving at ten, and camped two miles south 
of the town. Twenty miles of our march from Devall's Bluff had been over 
low prairie, bearing luxuriant grass; but in all that distance we did not see 
more than six farms. We waited at BrownsviDe three days for a train to go 
back to Devall's Bluff and return with supplies. Then, September 6th, marched 
twelve miles and went into camp ten miles from Brownsville. The next day 
the regiment was the rear guard of the brigade, and though in line ready to 
move at four in the morning, it could not start till eleven. Halts were frequent 
in consequence of bad places in the road which the teams encountered, and the 
march was tedious. Went eight miles, and at 5 P. M. camped two and a half miles 
north of the Arkansas River and ten miles from Little Rock. There was here 
a halt of two days, partly to enable Oen. Steele to select the best place for 
crossing the river, during which we tested Arkansas sweet potatoes and water- 
melons. Commencing in the vicinity of Brownsville, the advance of the column, 
naturally, had met more or less resistance, resulting in several spirited skir- 
mishes, and there had been repeated occasions when, from the firing in front, 
the regiment seemed liable to be called into action. 

The combat of Bayou Fourche and capture of Little Rock occurred Thurs- 
day, September 10th, the principal part of the action falling on the cavalry divis- 
ion. At three o'clock that morning the Third Regiment, under command of 


the colonel, and followed by the Eleventh Ohio Battery, marched in the advance 
two and a half miles, and at break of day halted on the north and convex side 
of a big bend of the Arkansas Biver at a place selected for laying a pontoon bridge. 
A road down the bank to the water's edge was being finished. The channel 
of the river was about three hundred feet wide, and between that and the oppo- 
site bank was a sand- bar six hundred yards wide. The regiment immediately 
formed in line on the right of where the bridge was to be laid, leaving room for 
the battery on its left. Its position was behind a levee, with some of its sharp- 
shooters (^oser to the river. Soon the Twenty-second Ohio, Twenty-seventh 
Wisconsin and Fortieth Iowa arrived and took position on the right and in rear 
of the Third. Other troox)s formed on our left later. The enemy's artillery in 
woods on the opposite bank opened on the party laying the bridge before it was 
done, and continued for an hour firing upon them and on our line, but without 
very serious effect. It was replied to and finally silenced by three of our bat- 
teries. The engagement thus far was only amusement for the men of the Third. 
The bridge was ready at ten o'clock, when two regiments of infantry, the 
Fortieth Iowa, followed by the Twenty-seventh Wisconsin, crossed over in column 
by company at full distance, each as soon as it was upon the sand-bar deploying 
into line and steadily advancing and gaining the main bank. Every one ex- 
pected that at any moment a terrible fire would be opened .upon them. It was a 
spectacle seen by our whole army stretched along the river bank. The cavalry 
now began to cross the bridge, continuing an hour and a half. But soon after it 
had begun a good ford was discovered a little above the bridge, through which a 
file continued to cross. After the cavalry had crossed it advanced with its ar- 
tillery toward Little Bock, along the south side of the Arkansas Biver, and be- 
fore dark drove the enemy from their works at Bayou Fourche, and moved on 
five miles further to the city. Meantime the two infantry regiments recrossed 
the river, and Gen. Steele's main force advanced slowly over a dusty road in the 
timber along the north bank. We were stopped by several skirmishes, and in 
fact artillery firing continued in our front nearly all the afternoon. But the re- 
sistance was only enough to enable the enemy to make a safe retreat from his 
strong fortifications on the north side of the river, and which he was led to do 
from the effective demonstration which Gen. Steele caused to be made on the 
south side. Gen. Price with his army retreated south to Arkadelphia as rapidly 
as he could, and so rapidly indeed that he failed to destroy his pontoon bridge 
at Little Bock. The Third Begiment passed his well-built and formidable earth- 
works late in the afternoon, and it was dark when, having been on the alert 
nineteen hours, it reached camp on the river bank a mile below Little Bock, and 
where it found the Confederate kitchen fires still burning and their corn cakes 
yet warm. 


At seven the next morning the regiment, pursuant to instructions from the 
division commander, marched over the pontoon bridge into the city of Little 
Bock, and, while ascending the high ground from the landing, Gen. Steele in- 
formed Gol. Andrews that he would be put in command of Little Bock, and that 
he had selected his regiment as one of two infantry regiments to come into the 
city on duty because of its efficiency and good discipline. This compliment, 
which was a surprise, was, of course, without request or the slightest suggestion 
of any one connected with the regiment. The regiment in column by company 
proceeded up the main street to the capitol, which it exclusively occupied for 
quarters during most of the eight or nine months that it remained on guard duty 
in the city. On the dome of the capitol it raised the federal flag, which was 
destined to remain the permanent ensign. The following day, September 12th, 
the colonel was by special order detailed as commander of the post of Little 
Bock, with a brigade composed of the Third Minnesota, Forty-third Illinois and 
Seventh Missouri Cavalry, for service in preserving good order in the city. The 
immediate command of the regiment then devolved on Lieut. Col. Mattson 
till the beginning of November, when he went to Minnesota on recruiting 


service. Post headquarters were in a bank building opposite the capitol. 
The private quarters or mess of the colonel and the field officers of the regiment 
were at a cottage, a few rods distant, and owned by Mr. Waite, a citizen. The 
grounds around the capitol were ample for company drill, which was not 
neglected. It was not uncommon for considerable numbers of x)eople to gather 
in front of the capitol to witness the regiment's skill in the manu^ of arms on 
dress parade. During the autumn and winter, when the weather would admit, 
brigade drills were conducted by the colonel on the ground in front of St. John's 
College, with the Third Minnesota and Forty-third Illinois divided into three 
battalions. Little Bock at that time was a handsome town situated two hun- 
dred feet above the Arkansas Ei ver. Many of the residences were tasteful, with 
ample and pleasant grounds. The arsenal, which had cost the United States 
$1,000,000, was in fair condition. The citizens were all respectful and civil, 
many even cordial. There was a respectable union element, which soon began 
to express itself openly and with systematic organization. To a delegation of 
citizens from Pine Bluff Gen. Steele read, as expressive of his sentiments, a 
short order which had been issued by the colonel on his own responsibility as 
post commander, September 16th, and which contained the following: "The true 
interest of the (Jovernment at this time,*so far as it is represented by troops here, 
is by all means to abstain from unnecessarily irritatiDg the citizens: to abstain 
from all conduct that will tend to tarnish the good name of the federal army, 
and by courtesy and good conduct to command the respect and encourage the 
loyalty of the people." The prominent position which the Third Regiment occu- 
pied at Little Rock, its exemplary conduct, intelligence and friendly intercourse 
with the people, contributed not a little to the development o£ loyal feeling. A 
Confederate colonel, writing from the Confederate camp in Arkansas, Novem- 
ber 6th, to Jefferson Davis, said: "General Steele, the federal commander, is 
winning golden opinions by his forbearance, justice and urbanity. Anyone can 
judge what will follow." Gen. W. T. Sherman, in a letter to Gen. Steele, dated 
Oct. 24, 1863, congratulated him on his ^'marked success" and said: ^' I have 
no doubt you have made more progress in Arkansas toward a reconstruction 
of government than we have in any part of the country east of the Mississippi." 
Delegates to frame a free state constitution met at Little Eock on the 8th of 
January, 1864. It being a spontaneous movement of the people, and not initi- 
ated by any official authority, the convention was scouted by many as an illegal 
body. The colonel of the regiment, who was in a position to be of some service 
to the delegates, gave it earnest support from the start. President Lincoln re- 
8X>ected its action, and even changed the day he had previously appointed for 
election to harmonize with it. The free constitution which it submitted was 
ratified by popular vote, Isaac Murphy was elected governor for four years, and 
held his office till a successor was chosen under the final reconstruction act. Gen. 
Steele's success in promoting reconstruction in Arkansas, and thereby contribut- 
ing great moral aid in the suppression of the Bebellion, was distinguished, and 
the Third Minnesota will always be justly entitled to a share of the honor. 


General Order 191, War Department, June 25, 1863, promulgated regula- 
tions for enlisting "Veteran Volunteers," to be organized as such at the expira- 
tion of their original terms of enlistment. Those who so re- enlisted were to 
receive one month's pay in advance, and a bounty and premium, amounting in 
all to $402, payable as follows: On being mustered in, 1 month's pay, $13; first 
installment of bounty, $25; premium, $2; in all, $40; 2 months after muster in, 
$50; expiration of 6 months' service, $50; expiration of 12 months' service, $50; 
expiration of 18 months' service, $50; expiration of 2 years' service, $50; expir- 
ation of 2i years' service, $50; expiration of 3 years' service, $75. If the Gov- 
ernment should not require such troops 3 years and they should be honorably 
mustered out before the expiration of their term of enlistment, they were to re- 
ceive the whole bounty; also, as soon after the expiration of their original term 
of enlistment as the exigencies of the service would permit, they were to re- 


ceive a thirty days' farloogh. Moderate progress only toward the veteran re- 
enlistment of the regiment was being made; and on Tuesday afternoon, Jan. 
5, 1864, at three and a half o'clock, the colonel had the regiment assembled in 
the hall of the house of representatives, and explained to the men the regula- 
tions for re-enlisting. They were also told that in such an act of patriotism they 
could not make a mistake; that they were worth more to the country than new 
men, that probably the war would not last more than about a year longer, that 
they would not be contented to be in civil life and leave others to strike the fin- 
ishing blows; and that for the honor of their state and the good of the service, 
they ^ould keep the Third Regiment in existence as long as the war lasted. By 
Thursday, the 7th, the re-enlistment was completed. Company K having been 
the first to veteranize, started January 12th for Minnesota on its furlough. Feb- 
ruary 7th Companies A, D, and F left on their furloughs. 


Wednesday, March 23d, Oeneral Steele, with about 9,000 men, being the 
main part of his army, marched south fi*om Little Bock to co-operate in 
Oeneral Banks' Bed Biver campaign, leaving Brigadier General Nathan Kim 
ball in command of troops along and north of the line of the Arkansas Biver. 
The next day General Kimball assigned all the troops left in the vicinity of 
Little Bock, some 3,000, to the command of Colonel Andrews. March 30th, Gen- 
eral Kimball received from a citizen residing near Augusta, a fertile and popu- 
lous part of northeastern Arkansas, information of a camp of a Confederate 
recruiting party in that locality, and learning from Captain Oarr, chief quarter- 
master, that a boat could be in readiness early the next morning at Devall's 
Bluff to convey a small force up White Biver, Colonel Andrews was authorized 
to make the expedition. The latter immediately conferred with M%jor Foster, 
in command of the Third Begiment, who cordially entered into the movement. 
Volunteers numbering one hundred and eighty-six, from Companies B, C, £, G, 
n, and I of the Third, under the immediate command of Msyor Foster, left Little 
Bock with Colonel Andrews by railway the same evening; embarked early the 
next morning on the steamer Dove with Captain L. I. Mathews' company, 
numbering forty -five, of the Eighth Missouri Cavalry, and ascended White Biver, 
the gunboat Covington, under Lieutenant Lord, accompanying. Arriving at 
Gregory's Landing at dusk, the command marched, in rain and darkness, three 
miles to C^he Bayou, which the cavalry forded with difficulty but without 
accident, and found thatoneof General McBae'scampswhichithad been intended 
to surprise had been abandoned that morning. Beturning to the transport the 
command moved on to Augusta, where it landed early the next morning, April Ist^ 
and, little supposing it was to have so serious a confiict as the battle of Fitz- 
hugh's Woods, marched north on the Jacksonport road. A detail from the 
Third Begiment was left as a guard on the steamboat under Sergeant Early, and 
the whole force with which <>>lonel Andrews inarched out of Augusta did not 
exceed two hundred men. It had been learned that General McBae's principal 
camp was near Antony's plantation, seven miles distant. Our advance met and 
charged a small party of the enemy a mile out from Augusta, and captured two 
prisoners. Some three miles out, at the fork of two ro^ls, the cavalry advance 
waited for the Third to come up, when a force, which proved to be Major Buther« 
ford's, was met and driven into the woods on a road leading to the right. At 
the bayou, six miles from Augusta, another mounted party, of which, as subse* 
quently learned, Greneral McBae was one, was met and diased a mile or two. 
Beyond Fitzhugh's plantation a Confederate camp was found which appeared 
to have been recently and suddenly abandoned. About twelve and a half 
o'clock rest and lunch were taken at rather a wild place some twelve miles 
above Augusta, near a cJiurch, and where the ground was hilly and wooded. 
The actual situation, with regard to any Confederate forces, instead of being as 
reported at Little Bock, was that Brigadier General Dandridge McBae, who had 
handled a brigade in several important battles and was an able officer, had there 
in the surrounding locality a brigade, though composed partly of conscripts^ 


and was meditating a crashing attack. Colonel Andrews, thongh not learning 
all these facts, there obtained information from a citizen which made him 
apprehend an attack from a superior force on his retnrn march, and which led 
him to keep his command well in hand. 

On the way back to the transport the Third Eegiment had passed the road 
leading to McCk>y's, and less than a mile further on halted near Fitzhngh's to 
rest, it being then two o'clock. While it was there a mounted force of the 
enemy advanced in line through a field from the direction of McCoy's, fired and 
charged with a yell. Some men of the Third met their attack with a volley fire 
which dismounted a few, then charged and drove them back in disorder into 
the woods, where they disappeared. Resuming its march, with the rear guard 
strengthened, it had gone about two miles further and was emerging from some 
woods within a few hundred yards of a large swamp and bayou where there 
were slashings, which, together with the overflow, obstructed the road, when 
the enemy appeared in much greater force, first attacking our rear guard fierce- 
ly. At our front there was, on the left and east side of the road, a field in which 
stood a thin body of dead trees, while immediately on the west side of the road 
was heavy timber, with more or less dead logs lying about, but not much under- 
brush. It was at once apparent that the enemy had collected all his forces and 
meditated our destruction. His lines, having previously been deployed, ad- 
vanced through the field on the left in good order, but shouting loudly, and 
seemed almost to encircle us. The Third men came into line, and with their 
effective fire were not long in repulsing the attack on the left; but soon there 
was a sharp attack from the woods on the right. A line of skirmishers of the 
Third was deployed to the right in the woo<&, firing at will, a strong company 
being held in reserve. Captain Mathews' company of the Eighth Missouri 
formed on the left and fought dismounted. In the early part of the action 
XTnion and Confederate lines were not more than two hundred yards apart. 
Both sides used defiant shouts. The clamor for awhile was intense, yet above it 
the Confederate chiefs could be heard urging their men to charge. Finally they 
started on a charge which appeared so threatening and formidable that, to re- 
pulse it, the Third Begiment, led by its colonel, made a counter-charge with 
fixed bayonets, which was effective, and seemed to prove the decisive feature of 
the action. It was a few minutes after the charge that the horse which the ool- 
onel was riding was killed, the bullet striking near the colonel's left knee. At 
one time the firing and clamor were so intense that '^ cease firing " was sounded 
on the bugle so that commands might be heard. A stubborn battle had lasted 
an hour when a part of the Confederate force was seen moving around to the 
right at difficult range, apparently to intercept our passage of the bayou. To 
prevent that, the larger part of the Third B^ment was moved one hundred 
and fifty yards nearer the bayou, and where it also had the protection of a clus- 
ter of log buildings and some fences. The Confederates, supposing this was a 
retreat, rose up and advanced with a great deal of noise, but received a very 
damaging fire from the Third men in their new position, wliich they held for 
about an hour and a half. The firing, which had been interrupted by several 
lulls, then ceased, and the enemy had practically disappeared. The ford at the 
bayou was over a hundred yards wide, and to guard against a possible attack 
in crossing, before resuming the march, Major Foster, by direction of the 
colonel, posted a line of sharpshooters concealed on both flanks of the crossing 
in the woods. The march was then resumed, the crossing of the ford was made 
without accident, and the little column marched in good order to the steamboat 
at Augusta, a distance of about six miles, the road passing through woods, by 
cross-roads and open fields, where the Confederates, if they had felt it prudent, 
could have chosen their position and renewed the fight; but they made no fur- 
ther attack and the detachment of the Third Begiment and Captain Mathews' 
company of the Eighth Missouri Cavalry deliberately embarked and returned 
to their respective camps. 

During the action a detail from the Third Begiment was in the rear guarding 
prisoners, of whom twelve besides a commissioned officer were held; so, that 


deducting also the guard which had been left on the steamer, the whole number 
of men which Colonel Andrews had actually engaged in the fight was only one 
hundred and eighty. * His loss was eight killed and twenty-one wounded, one of 
the killed being from the Eighth Missouri. First Sergeant Corydon D. Bevans 
of Company £, who was among the killed, had lately received a commission as 
lieutenant and was about to be mustered. Washington J. Smith of Company I, 
killed on the skirmish line, seems to have had a presentiment of his fate. On 
leaving his quarters at Little Bock he shook hands with his chum, Charles D. 
Lamb, saying he never would see him again. The brave and faithful behavior 
of Major Foster and all the officers and men of the Third B^iment, likewise of 
Captain Mathews of the Eighth Missouri, and his company, during the action 
were deserving of the highest praise. Adjutant E. T. Champlin of the Third 
moved about on his horse in the thickest of the fight, in the more critical stages 
regardless of danger, cheering and rallying the men. His distinguished ^- 
lantry and efficiency drew the warmest commendation from the colonel com- 
manding there on the field. There were, no doubt, moments when the contest 
seemed critical and desperate. Sergeant, afterward captain, O. W. Knight, 
reported to the colonel that his company was out of ammunition. The reply 
made was, ''We have our bayonets left." The sober feeling prevalent was for a 
moment relieved by a droll expression from Lieutenant Swan as a riderless 
cavalry horse came jumping in front of our line. The Third Eegiment men 
about exhausted their ammunition in the action, and it was after^^rd learned 
that the Confederates had done the same. A few of the severely wounded of 
the Third were left at the house above mentioned, were kindly cared for there 
and by citizens at Augusta, and returned to Little Bock with the expedition 
which a short time aftsrward revisited Augusta. The loss in Ceneral McBae's 
command was understood to have been severe, especially among the commis- 
sioned officers, of whom one or more prominent ones, including ^ptain Bland, 
were killed. Among the wounded were Colonel Freeman and Major Shaver. 
(General McBae's force actually engaged inthe action consisted of a regiment of 
four hundred men under Colonel Thomas Freeman, three companies under Major 
Ceorge Butherford, and an independent company, in all about six hundred men. 
Confederate sympathizers in Augusta had counted the Union force as it marched 
through the village in the morning, and its defeat and capture was confidently 
expected by them. The battle had an important effect in discouraging and 
breaking up recruiting in that i)opulous agricultural region. The Third K^- 
ment reached Little Block the afternoon of April 2d, having made an expedition 
of one hundred and sixty-eight miles and back inside of three days. On Sunday, 
April loth, memorial religious services in honor of those who fell at Fitzhugh's 
Woods, conducted by Chaplain Putnam, were held at the regiment's camp. 

On Monday, April 18th, the regiment marched in a fine civic and military 
procession at Little Bock for the inauguration of Isaac Murphy, the first free 
state governor of Arkansas. 

April 19th Colonel Andrews repeated his expedition up the White Biver 
with a larger force, comprising the Third Minnesota, under immediate command 
of Lieutenant Colonel Mattson, and Sixty-first Illinois regiments of infantry, and 
a company of the Eighth Missouri Cavalry. A march was made on two roads 
from Augusta. The enemy could not be brought to make a stand, but a Confeder- 
ate field officer and a few men were captured. A steam mill where the Confed- 
erate troops ground their com was disabled. A junction was also formed at 

^ The following are the casualties sustained hy the Third Eegiment in the hattle of Fitzhngh's 
Woods, April 1, ISSA: Killed — Priyates Beigamin Sanderson, Ole Hanson, Company B; Priyate 
Henry W. Famsworth, Company C; First Sergeant Coiydon D. Bevans, Private Clark D. Harding^ 
Company £; Corporal Greorge H. Peaslee, Company H; Private Washington J. Smith, Companj 
I. Wounded — Quartermaster Sergeant Heman D. Pettibone, First Sergeant Henry A. Darant^ 
Sergeant Albert G. Hant, Corporal Edward Frygang, Privates William F. Ingham, George Breuer, 
William Shearer, Company B; Corporals Henry W. Wallace and Orrin Case, Company C; Corporals 
Isaac Sawyer and Albert G. Leach, Company E; Privates Andrew Brigham, Albert Pierce, Com- 
pany G; Privates Rollin O. Crawford, John Eaton, Company H: Privates Joseph Markling, Andrew 
Clark, John Pope, Company L 


Augusta with the forces stationed at Jacksonport. The only casualty occurring in 
Colonel Andrews' command was the drowning of a man who walked off a trans- 
X>ort in his sleep. While this movement took place a detachment of the Eighth 
Missouri Cavalry under its lieutenant colonel, the detail having been made by 
the commanding officer of the regiment, who had for a considerable i)eriod been 
stationed at Devall's Bluff, marched up the east side of Cache Eiver to prevent 
the enemy escaping in that direction. It was, however, attacked by a superior 
force, and though it fought a spirited combat it was prevented from accomplish- 
ing the object it had in view. 

Some months previous to this time one or two commissioned officers and 
several non-commissioned officers and privates of the Third Begiment had been 
detailed by General Steele, at Colonel Andrews' request, to recruit men for a 
colored regiment. On the latter's recommendation, and after they had under- 
gone an examination, two commissioned officers and twenty-one non-commissioned 
officers and privates were promoted as commissioned officers in the United States 
Colored Infantry Regiments. ^ At that time, and even later, many Union officers 
obstructed rather than facilitated the enlistment of colored troops. The Third 
Begiment held different views. Instead of leaving able-bodied freedmen to cul- 
tivate plantations of men who were absent in Confederate armies, it preferred to 
make Union soldiers of them. Details from the regiment recruited in all, while 
at Little Bock, nearly enough men to fill a colored regiment. Every expedition 
that the regiment made brought back a number of bright and able-bodied freed- 
men. Those who accepted commissions in colored regiments incurred, though 
unjustly, more or less prejudice, and more risks than other officers in case of 
their falling into the hands of the enemy. These facts entitle them to considera- 
tion which, probably, in many cases they have not received. Naturally the 
slave-holding class often made the colored men fear they would be roughly 
treated if they became soldiers, and, as a counter-measure, recruiting sometimes 
had to partake the nature of conscpption. One morning, in a street at Little 
Bock, an officer met a colored soldier with musket on his shoulder, running aftier 
a freedman, and asked: ^' What are you chasing that fellow fort" ^'I want him 
for to volunteer!" was the reply. During the Third's first expedition up White 
Biver, and while the steamboat, April 1st, was lying at Augusta with no troops 
on board but a guard under Sergeant Early, the captain of the boat intrusively 
undertook to release to their former masters a number of able-bodied freedmen, 
who had voluntarily come, or been brought, on board. Sergeant Early, as soon 
as he detected the proceeding, had the steamboat captain retire to his stateroom, 
and there pass the balance of the day in quiet meditation on minding one's own 

^ The foUowing members of the Third Regiment received commissions in colored regiments: 
Company A, Sergeant J. N. Fox, captain 57th U. 8. C. I. (United States Colored Infantry); Musi- 
cian C. F. Redlon, second lieutenant 113th U. S. C. I.; Private T. H. Green, first lieutenant 67th 
U. S. C. I.; Private J. E. Jenks, first lieutenant 112th U. S. C. I.; Company B, Sergeant B. F. 
Simmons, captain 112tb U. S. C. I. ; Corporal J. H. Ward, first lieutenant 113th U. S. C. I. ; Company 
C, Private L. L. Ruudell, first lieutenant 112th U. S. C. I. ; Private C. F. Wagoner, first lieutenant 
57th U. S. C. I. (Private Marion L. Freeman of this company had been designated for promotion, 
and was captured, it is believed, at the battle of Jenkins' Ferry, with some colored recruits. He 
died a prisoner of war at Camp Tyler, Texas, Dec. 14, 1864.) Company D, First Lieutenant John 
G. Gustafson, lieutenant colonel 1 12th U. S. C. I. ; Company £, Sergeant Mtgor W. D. Hale, migor 
4th U. S. C. Artillery; Corporal T. A. Baker, second lieutemmt 4tb U. S. C. Artillery; private B. 
Densmore, captain 4th U. S. C. Artillery; W. D. Bryant, first lieutenant 112th U. S. C. I.; Private 
J. Morrell, second lieutenant 112th U. S. C. I.; Private H. K. McGaughey, first lieutenant 112th 
U. S. C. I.: Private Henry C. Collins, second lieutenant 49th U. S. C. 1.; Company F, Captain J. 
M. Bowler, major 113th U. S. C. I.; Private B. MoKenna, first lieutenant 57th U. S. C. I.; Com- 
IMmy G, Sergeant R. C. Custard, captain 112th U. S. C. I. ; Sergeant A. F. Dearborn, first lieutenant 
Company G, 4th U. S. C. Artillery; Corporal F. SkiUman, first lieutenant 113th U. 6. C. I.; Pri- 
vate P. Skillman, second lieutenant 113th U. 8. C. I.; Private W. W. De Ix)ng, first lieutenant 
113th U. S. C. I.; Company H, Sergeant J. Seible, captain 4th U. S. C. Artillery; Corporal Jesse 
Barrick, second lieutenant 57th U. S. C. I. ; Company I, Sergeant J. J. Cantwell, captain 112th U. 
8. C. I. ; Sergeant S. M. Bruce, captain 112th U. S. C. I.; Private Frank Becker, second lieutenant 
113th U. S. C. I.; Private O. E. Boughton, first lieutenant 57th U. S. C. I.; Private James C. 
Cuitwell. first lieutenant 57th U. S. C. I.; Private F. SchUplin, first lieutenant 113th U. S. C. L; 
Private P. Shippman, captain 113th U. & C L 



When, after General Banks' defeat on the Red River, General Steele, wha 
had hoped to join him, was at Camden, Ark., on his way back to Little Rock, 
and pursued by a superior army under E. Kirby Smith, a heavy supply train 
for his hungry army, with a column of 3,000 of all arms as escort, was about being 
started from Pine Bluflf, Ark. Colonel Andrews, having April 26th received 
his commission as a general officer, was put in command of this escort and train. 
An empty wagon train with brigade escort, coming from Camden to Pine Bluff 
on the road he was to take, after hard fighting h^ just been captured. The 
road for some distance lay through woods swarming with the enemy, and the 
duty seemed extremely perilous. The Third Raiment was still on duty as 
provost guard in Little Rock, and knowing, as Andrews did, that he could de- 
pend absolutely on its skill and bravery in a desperate fight, at his request a 
newer regiment, which was marching to Pine Bluff to take part in the movement, 
was sent back to Little Rock, and the Third Minnesota taken in its place. The 
Third went to Pine Bluff on the steamer Leonora, April 28th; the train got 
lengthened out, the advance, under Col. Powell Clayton (who at Cten. Andrews' 
request generously volunteered to accompany the expedition), had gone twenty 
miles and laid a bridge, and the main column was waiting final instructions to 
start, when, the evening of the 29th, in midst of a heavy rain, a lieutenant arrived 
from Gton. Steele with orders not to move, he being on the retreat to Little Rock, 
and having just fought a hard battle at Jenkins' Ferry, on the Saline River. 
The Third Regiment's discipline and excellent fighting qualities thus brought it 
to the then very unhealthy locality of Pine Bluff, where, on account of that place 
being threatened, it was detained through the summer working on fortifica&onSy 
and suffered excessive mortality from midarial poison. During its stay there 
thirty of its original members died from disease, besides many more recruits, and 
nearly all suffered much sickness. Its condition was deplorable; and, under all 
the circumstances, its loss there may be viewed in the same manner as if it had 
occurred in battle. Gen. Andrews, who shortly afterward was placed in com- 
mand of Devall's Bluff and of the Second Division of the Seventh Corps, made 
an earnest appeal to Gen. Steele to return the Third Regiment to Little Rock, 
but the commander at Pine Bluff represented that it could not be spared. ^ 

^Dr. A. C. Wedge of Albert Lea, the efficient and faithfal surgeon of the regiment, who also 
snfifered from illnesd there, explains the nature and cause of the prevailing disease in the following 
observations by him on the sanitary history of the regiment: ''When I joined the regiment at 
Murfreesboro, Tenn., in Biay, 1862, 1 found the men reasonably healthy. They were suffering to 
some extent from the effect of an epidemic of measles which they had undergone the winter previ« 
ons in Kentucky. The disease in an army camp is much more malignant than in civil life, and 
the chances for contagion much more favorable. A soldier who has not had the disease in child- 
hood is quite sure to contract it in the army. A large proportion of those who had measles were 
so much Droken down in health that they had to be disdiarged from the service. 

'^The most prevalent disease in an army camp is chronic diarrhea, the result of a sudden change 
in the manner of living, the lack of properly cooked food, and the lack of some kinds of food fur- 
mshed in civil life. An army should, as far as possible, be composed of young men (unless they 
are veterans), as a man past middle age cannot adapt himself to the changes in manner of living 
and the irregularities incident to active military service. The command did not suffer much from 
the influence of malaria until we went to Vicksburg. There the poor water and the miasma of the 
Yazoo River poisoned every one to some extent, but we brought every one of our men out of tha^ 
'valley of death,' though many of them afterward suffered from the poison that they there ab- 
sorbed. At Helena, Ark., and on the march to Little Rock, they were constantly under the influ- 
ence of malaria. We rallied during the winter of 1863-64, and had suffered but little loss of life 
from the effects of the summer campaign, and in the spring of '64 we had quite a healthy, vigor* 
ous body of men. 

"I come to the memorable summer of 1864, at Pine Bluff, Ark. While there our regiment 
suffered from a most violent epidemic of malarial fever, and I will only attempt to deal with the 
causes. In the first place, it is a flat, swampy, unhealthy locality — the Arkansas River on the 
north and a filthy bayou on the south. The season was dry and hot. The south wind came over 
the bayou night and day, bringing miasma into our camp. One reason of suffering was the addi* 
tion to our regiment of a lot of onacclimated men fresh from the North. In April, 1864, several 
hundred recruits joined us, and were immediately taken into this unhealthy locality. Of these 
recruits about eight-tenths were stricken down of malarial fever, and eighty-nine died. In June 
there were added to our number some drafted men. Nearly all of these fell sick of the diseasOi 




When, on Sunday, August 14th, Companies B, C, E, G, H and I arrived at 
DevalPs Bluff en route home on veteran furlough, their situation was pathetic. 
Many of the poor fellows were so lean and pale that their own mothers could 
scarcely have recognized them. Gren. Steele had telegraphed the commanding 
officer at DevalPs Bluff that they would arrive, by whom some extra provision, 
including roast beef, was made for their comfort. 

June 27th information was received by Steele that Price, with 15,000 men, 
was near Princeton, advancing on Little Rock. During the summer the enemy 
occasionally showed himself near Pine Bluff. One of these demonstrations by 
cavalry was made in June near the camp of the Third Begiment. Lieutenant 
Isaac Taylor, with Ck)mpany H, was immediately across the bridge over the 
bayou close by, and after advancing a quarter to half a mile drew a brisk fire 
from the enemy, which was answered by his men. Firing continued for twenty 
or thirty minutes and then ceased. Taylor advanced a quarter of a mile fur- 
ther, protected by trees and stumps, and after a few more shots the enemy dis- 
appeared. During this skirmish the rest of the regiment was in line in camp 
ready to move. Apparently the object of the enemy, who had about five hun- 
dred men, was to surprise the camp. 

AT DEV all's BLUFF. 

September 24th General Steele telegraphed the commander at DevalPs Bluff 
that he intended to send him the men of the regiment remaining at Pine Bluff. 
They did not start, however, till October 10th. The six companies which had 
gone on veteran furlough arrived back at DevalPs Bluff October 17th, recuper- 
ated; and the whole regiment, quartered in neat log houses which it made, 
remained there through the ensuing winter, working on fortifications and per- 
forming picket and scouting service. C^en. Andrews continued in command of 
the forces at Devall's Bluff, which was Oen. Steele's base of supplies, till Decem- 
ber 28th, when he was relieved by Gen. Shaler. The scouting parties sent out 
from there by the former during the two months of November and December, 
and in which the regiment took an important part, captured and brought in 
eighty prisoners of war, including fourteen commissioned officers, with a loss of 
only one man. Ck)l. Mattson soon had command of a brigade at Devall's Bluff, 
leaving Lieutenant Colonel E. W. Foster in command of the regiment. Decem- 
ber 13th, under command of the lieutenant colonel^ the regiment embarked on a 

SDd thirty died. It is Tery nnfortuDate to be compelled to put men into snch an intensely un- 
healthy locality in the very beginning of their service. We suffered here very much for the want 
of medical supplies. I conld not get a dose of quinine to break the fever on myself. I was relieved 
fiom duty August 1st, aud went home with the veterans. Had it not been for that circumstance 
I probably would not be writing this. We moved to DevalPs Bluff about the last of October, 1864, 
and during the winter following recovered to some extent from the effects of the Pine Bluff cam- 
paign. I am free to say I would much rather have been in a hard fought battle every week during 
the summer (in a healthy locality) than to spend such a summer in that deadly locality. From 
this time to the date of our muster-out there is nothing of interest in our medical history." 

Colonel Mattson states: *'At Pine Bluff, in the summer of 1864, while the whole command was 
down sick, I wrote repeatedly to Senator Ramsey and to the governor of Minnesota asking relief, 
and a surgeon was finally sent down from Minnesota with a large supply of quinine. I also got an 
order, through the War Department, to take six companies home on veteran furlough. Many of 
the men and officers, including myself, were carried on board the steamer on stretchers, and sev- 
eral died before we reached home.'' 

A graphic account of the sufferings of the regiment at Pine Bluff was read by Lieutenant Phil 
Skillman at its reunion, September, 1888, and printed. Interesting narratives of experience there 
by Lieutenant Colonel Hoit and Hon. F. D. Bayless have also been published. 

Lieutenant Skillman, in a letter, states: **The camp was situated from one-half to three-quar- 
ters of a mile west from the Arkansas River. A bayou extended partly around the town, and our 
camp was just within this bayou. At first water was taken from the bayou, but it soon became 
80 vile that it could not be used for any purpose. We were too far away to use river water, hence 
wells were sunk within the camp ground, and thereafter used. The well water was little better 
than from the bayou; the soil being sandy the wells partook of the nature of the latter. North, 
west and south, for a considerable distance, the country was wooded and brushy, with openingi 
at the plantations. * ' 


steamer and went np White Biver to Augnsta on a scout that was led by Col. 
Mattson, the other troops consisting of a detachment of the Ninth Iowa Oavalry 
and two companies of the Twelfth Michigan Infantry. The force landed near 
Augusta at one and a half o'clock the morning of December 14th, and marched 
over muddy roads to the ferry at Gache Biver, the cavalry taking a circuitous 
route. Colonel Mattson's advance guard before daylight secured the ferry; the 
Third Begiment and other troops crossed, moved out through the country and 
captured twentynseven prisoners, including Col. Crabtree and two other com- 
missioned officers, their horses and camp supplies. Such was a sample of its 

At length the winter had passed. Lee had surrendered; the war was over; 
yet the regiment had duty still to perform in helping to restore civil authority. 
Colonel Mattson having been ordered with the r^ment to establish a i>ost at 
Batesville, it embarked with him at Devall's Bluff May 13th and arrived at Bates- 
ville on the 20th. ' ^ It was, ' ' he says, ^ ' a delightful change from barren mud hills 
to a beautiful town, rocks, hills, mountain views, flowers, shade trees, and above 
all, pure, cool, sparkling spring water — not to speak of chickens, fresh butter, eggs 
and vegetables, which the old soldiers knew how to appreciate." In a gen- 
eral order May 22d the colonel announced to the people of Batesville and 
surrounding country that the object of the federal occupancy of the place was 
'^ their protection against armed forces of whatever kind, to give encouragement 
to agriculture and other peaceful pursuits, and restore commercial intercourse." 
People who desired to take the oath of allegiance were required to register 
their names in the provost marshal's office. Befugees of all sorts soon gathered 
in crowds, asking protection, food, grain for seed, mules for plowing and other 
assistance. About the 1st of June Colonel Mattson, by instruction, moved his 
headquarters to Jacksonport. Companies D and G were left at Batesville, and 
the balance of the command (including some cavalry) returned down the river 
to Jacksonport, from which point Companies A and F were sent to Searcy and 
E and H to Augusta. On the 3d of June t|ie Confederate general Jeff Thomp- 
son arrived at Jacksonport and surrendered his command, which had been 
gathering about the place for some days, to Colonel Mattson. After the sur- 
render, Jeff Thompson delivered his famous farewell address to his men. 
^'Frequently," says Colonel Mattson in Us paper read before the regiment Sept. 
1, 1886, '^ reports came from the mountains that bands of marauders were threat- 
ening the Union men, and on the 19th of July Companies C and I were sent to occu- 
py Powhatan for the better protection of the upper country. And thus the sum- 
mer months passed, pleasantly enough in some respects, — good health, easy work, 
plenty of amusement and good living, — but we were all volunteer soldiers, and 
felt that our duty was done when the war had ceased; a strong desire to return 
to home, families and friends took possession of every one. Every steamer and 
every courier was expected to bring orders for our muster-out." 

The Third Begiment was relieved August 21st, and the detached companies 
having come in, it left Jacksonport August 28th, was mustered out of the service at 
Devall's Bluff September 2d, and was finally discharged at Fort Snelling, Sept. 16, 
1865. During its four years of service it had in all 1,417 members, of whom there 
remained on the rolls only four hundred and thirty-two at the muster-out. It 
had a checkered, striking, yet important experience. It served continuously 
two years in Arkansas, a commonwealth of ridi natural resources and destined 
to become one of the great states of the Union. More than a hundred of its dead 
sleep beneath her soil; and possibly when the era of the Civil War shall become 
classic the name of the Third Minnesota will be mentioned in her annals. Cer- 
tain it is, however, that this veteran regiment never received more spontaneous 
and disinterested praise than was bestowed upon it by an eminent patriot of 
Arkansas. Isaac Murphy, who was the only man in the secession convention of 
Arkansas who voted **no," and who, like a sturdy patriot worthy of the best days 
of republican Borne, steadfastly adhered to the Union cause, and was finally 
installed as the first free state governor of Arkansas — this incorruptible and 
enlightened patriot, in a voluntary communication which he sent to the gover- 


nor of Minnesota in token of his admiration of the Third Begiment, said: 
** While they have been on duty in our capital good order has prevailed, and 
they have won the respect and esteem of the citizens. When called to meet 
the enemy, they have proved ready for any undertaking and reliable in every 
emergency. Such men are an honor to the Government and the cause they serve. 
Their state may justly be proud of them, as they will do her credit wherever 
^uty calls them." 








OoloneU — 

Henry C. Lester 

Chauncev W. Griggs 

Christopher C Andrews 

Hans Mattaon. 
Lieutenant OoUmeU — 

BenJ. F. Smith 

Everett W. Foster.. 

James B. Hoit. 

Mofors — 

John A. Hadley 

Benj. F.Rice 

Wm. W. Webster-., 
Adjutants — 

Cyrene H. Blakely.. 

Ephraim Pierce 






Jed. F. Fuller 

Wm. F.Morse 

Philander E. Folsom 

Samuel P.Ingman 

James P. Howlett. 

Wm. G. J. Ackers. 

George L. Jameson 

Bonoe Olaon 

Surgeone — 

LeTi Butler 

Alberta Wedge 

Aeeittant Surgeon* — 


Mooes R Greeley 

Naham Bixby 

Chaplains — 

Cnauncey Hobart.. 


Simeon Putnam 

Anthony Wilford. 

Sergeant Amors — 

William D. Hale. 

Eben North 

Asa C. Pease 

Hugh W.Donaldson 

Quartermaster Seroeants — 

Heman D. Pettibone 

Nathaniel C. Parker 

Lewis L. Herrick 

Commissary Sergeante— 

Joslah Cnithout... 

Jeaae G.Jones 

Adoniram Eastman. 
Hospital Stewards — 

Ezra F. Peabodv...... 

Chas. E. Bolanaer... 
Principal Mtuicians — 

Joseph J. Mertz 

Lucien W.Allen 

Lucius A Hancock . 

••■• • ••••••• 









Nov. 15, '61 
Dec 1/62 
July 15, '63 

June 13, '64 

Not. 5. '61 
June 18, '64 
May 25, '65 

Nov. 6, '61 








Sept. 21, '64 

Jan. 9, '62 
June 14, '64 

July 21, '64 
June, '63 
May 8, '65 

Aug. 80. '61 
Dec 1,'61 
Apl. 15, '64 
Jan. 1,'65 
May 8, '65 

Not. 11, »61 
Sept. 22, '63 

Sept. 6, '62 
June 18, '64 

May 4, '62 
Sept. 20, '63 
Dec. 80, '64 

Oct. 11, '61 

Oct. 6, '61 

Not. 15, '61 
June 13, '64 

Sept. 2, '65 
Sept. 2/66 

Sept. 2. '65 

Sept. 2, '65 

Sept. 2, '65 
Sept. 2, '65 

Sept. 2, '65 

SepU 2, '65 
Sept. 2, '65 

Sept. 2, '65 




2, '65 
2, '65 


2, '65 

2, '65 


2, '65 
2, '65 


Dismissed Dec. 1, '62. 

Capt. Co.D, Mijor May 29,'62; Lt.Col. July 15,'63; Col. Apl. 27,*64. 

Resigned May 9, '62. 

Capt.Co.G,MiO-July 15,*63: LtCol.Apl.27,'64; resigned May 22,>65. 

1st U. Co. B, Capt., M^. Not. 13, '64; Lt. Col. May 25. '65. 

Resigned Maj 1, '62. 

Capt. Co. H, Maj. Apl. 27. '64; res. before mustered, July 20. '64, 

Captain Company A, M^}or July 21, '64; resigned Not. 12,*64. 

2d Lt Co. K, Adit Jan. 9, '62: Capt. Com. Sub. June 18, >64. 
Serg. Company B, 2d Xx.. Ist Lt., Adit Jan. 14, '64; Capt Co. F. 

Apl. 17, %5; died at DeTall's Bluff July, '65. 
Capt June 10,'65;2d LtDecl,'62;l8tLtJuly 21,'64;A^ July 21,'64. 
2d and 1st Lt.,AdU..Capt Co. F. July 19 '65; dis. perorderOct'69w 
Serg., Serg. Bii^., 2d and 1st Lieut, A^J. May 8, '65. 

Dismissed Dec 1, '62; 2d Lieutenant Company F. 

Resigned March 2. '64. 

Corp., Serg., Serg. Mid., Q. M.Mch. 8, '64; Capt. Co. I Jan. 1,'65. 

Sergt.2d Lieut^ 1st Lieut, Quartermaster, Capt.Co.H May8,'85r 

Pro. Corp., Serg., 1st Lieut Co. K, Quartermaster May 8, '65. 

Resigned Sept 20, '63. 
Assistant Surgeon May 2, '62. 

Resigned April 8, '62. 

Resigned April 13, '62. 

Resigned June 2, '63. 

Died Sept 11, '64, at Alton, Minn.; originally PriTtte Co. EL 

Promoted Mi^or 4th U. 8. Colored Artillery. 
Corp., Serg.,Serg. Mi^}..2d Lt Co. K, 1st Lt Co. G April 10,'65. 
Promoted Serg., Serg. Mi^., 1st Lieut Co. E June 10, '65. 
Pro. from Company £[, C^artermaster Sergeant and Seraeant 
Major July 7, '65; commissioned, but not mustered, 2d Lieat F Oct5,'68: 2d LtCcH ApL15 '64; 1st U.CO.B Jan J'65, 
2d Lieut Company G Jan. 80, '65; ist Lieut. Company A. 
July 7, '65, from Sergeant Company K. 

Promoted from Sergeant Company A Oct 5, '68. 
Promoted from Company F Not. 15, '64. 

Promoted from Company A 
Promoted from Company D. 

Transferred to Veteran Resenre Corps Jan. 23, '64. 
Promoted from Company C. 
Promoted from Company E. 





ROBTZa OF OOXPANT A — Continutd. 


ChMinrej W. Grigg) 

t. Durud... 

ADd«BOD, Job n 

AndcnoD. Lin. 

Andnia. {i«arg«. 

Ocl. li, '6 
May 1.'6 
j July J. '6 

Mfh. IS, •« 


II, •&■ Sept. 2 'I 
l|8«|rt. 2. -I 

Malor Mar 1, •^■, Ueat. Col. Miy 

, laO-Icul. Not. 7, '61; MiiJor No'. I 

i Promoinl 2d Lieutenant sn4 lit . 


. Reilined Dtc.'si, 'M, l>t Serecan 
' PrivtleComwiiirF;proniol*iild 
21. ■»!; m lieuleiiBi ~" 
6crK»Dt 6q>t. 2G, 'Bl 
I^trnanl Aug. 13, 

D\fi at t.lttl. -■' ' ■' 


ant CiTDjpaor E Jnl; 

. „, tl Captain. '». 

-enlisted Feb. 2, *&!; pranioted El 
realgneil Dec. 2S. "6*. 

'(. BeseneCoTTHJaD. lS,'6Ii. 

RosTBR OF Company B— CV««(iMii«f. 


Km. J,'6. 

D«e. 1«, t4. 

Kov. 1, 
Ocl, li, ._ 


Aug. 1.1, VW] 
Oct. W,'«ll 

Oct, li.'SlI 

Oct 1 a, ■81 Sept a,' 

Jan! B|'u'ee|«."3i''69 

o«. M^-si .....rr...?.. 

Ocl. M, "Sll „ 

AjJ. 18. W 




Juiis2T.^«l Stpl. 2,' 

Feb.' ^■St'Bifpu'v 

Sept.M.'SI .. .-„ 

Oct. 26, -Si' Spi*. Z.' 

OM. 11. 'SI, 

Feb. «,■«' 

Feb. t-M' BiT.1. !,■.. 
Ort. M,-6l! Sept. I,'W 
Oct. IJ.WI. Bep*. i,— 


JillWiT, 154:. 

6r|il.!W,<<{l Snt. t,' 

Sf|rt.!6,'fll| Sept. =^ — 

Oci.'w,'«| e*iii"i,''ei 

S*pl.M, 'M' 

JiinoOT,'*4: „ 


»<ppi.!e,-iti'Bept. I,' 
Srpi.w -SI. 

Ocl. II, '811 


<V1, ll.'Bll 

Oct. 11, '81 

Pre. ?», ■8.1 



id Uke, UlDn.^ dlichugrf 

Not. 18, '84. 

inkof Cipt., HiT?»,'62. 


DIacfaarKed per order Jiilr lit. "84. 
blwhiTgad per Drd«r la>j 13. '81. 

Sargcaul; wnd. April 1, '84; dit. on eip. o 

RHDllaud Fcl,.'i. '8*. 

DiKburged for diHbllltr Ilareh IS, '81. 

DlKbugnl fordlublUtf Deo. 7, 'M. 

R#4a]litHl Feb. 1, '84. 

RoOTBK OF COUPANT B — Oontiniud. 



B08TER OF CouPAirr C— CbnHimerf- 

Rosier of Compahy C— QntfiimwJ. 



imoted Corporal 11 

l>ied M PlM Blu^ Ark., Aug. 19. 'si. 

Died on uttDKi 1.8. Fripila on Uladi^ppi RItbi Dec 3, 'M. 

Dtactmrged fo--""-!.""- <•'•>■ ■<• •^■> 

Re-cnliMed Dec. 2 J 
Re-enliiiFd Dccll. 

R»«Dll>ted Dec. 21. '63; Ist Lleat-flTlh C. S. C 

Be-enliiled Dec Zl, 'S3; protnoled CoqionJ. 


. April 17. 'M 

1P.E7 G. 

Bluff, Ark.. Sept. 25. -U. 

iA LieuleDkDt; pronioted 
'61: diMliugtd Sept. 2. 

ia'BliiirSept. 14, >M. 

R08TEB OF Company D — Coniinued. 







on. . 

J DlKbugri ftirdinUlllrVoT. 





RoeTEB OF Company iL—Conlinved. 



] Sept. 2,-es 

I Bept i.'" 
I Sept. 2, 

I 6*pL !.•» 

Sept. 17 -ei t 
Oct. I8,'»l ... 

DlKhirced per (trier Aug. », '«5. 

DlKhnrnd for diutiLlltT Marcb 29, '63. 

DUchsrged for ditubllUy Julj. '62; re-eullrted Sepl. SO, -sa. 

R»«aU3l«l Dw. 20, 'S3. 

Be-«nlUt«d Dec 20, ■63. 

Corp-, Berg.; re^nllited Dec. 30, ■63; dlj. per order June 27, t 
Be-enllii*dFeb. 17,'61; promoiedCmn.Serg. Kot. IS.'W. 

1 Sept. i,'>csl R»«iill>te 

I I>iKhUX« 

I Dinchtrite* 


Bept.n', ■si ..; 
Bepl.27, '(11 .„ 

1 Re-enllned Dec 10, XS. 

iibllllT Aug. IT, ■M. 
JiD. 10, 'e£ 
a. •ea; diacbtrged for dlMblKt; March 17,'W. 

. Dni)ed;dleditPlDeBluffOct.», 'H. 

.i Promoted QuarttmiuteT Sergemt; 

K. C.'ei. 

Roster of Cohpaity F — Continued. 


r, ILvquli 1 


Faiwiibal. Sartd 



Pltehn.Jotan B 

BkhD»iid.Cl<«ro T... 

RUfewn', Fnudi J 


RtfacbChulaa B.... 
Salu. Wm 

StoH, EugeiM H^ 

fitrlckluid, AloKad C, 


Tbeda, CuM*D. 

Tniu.Bobt. J. 


VcTTtll, Alonio. 

Wariwr. Robert 

Wiru, NcbtmUh- 

Wiwnnin, Heory C-... 

h, JohD n 

WUIUnuoD. Dmdld W... 

Woodwoith, Derrick 

WlboD, JofaD. 

WladbDHD, Cmnul 

WriglU,J*m** II 

SlDke, Aupjst 


0«. H,' 

on. 11.'-., 

Feb. Sl,'C4l... 


Feb.M -H . 

I Jiim2I,'U f 
I Juite21,'M' 

id Serg. iDd lit Seig. 

: RMDlliud Dec 25, -IS; promoted 
iittnei ittj W.'»i. 
Seiseint; reduced; diubirged for |>nmolloD Mircb 8, '&< 

BfrfiillilHl Dec iO, 'eS; promoted Corponl. 
Dudurgsd (or dlublllir April », '«!. 

MKlurged for dUihllltr June 10 '81. 

 ■tHergeant; m-enlialed Dec. M. 'e.1; reduced to nnke. 

DiKbarged lai dlHibimr NoTembei, 'ft. 

Re-anllsted Dec 20, 'tS; died il Pl» Bluff Oct. 11, 'M. 
Re-eollited Dec 21), '&I; promoted Cocpoiml.SergeHil. 
B»«i>llit«l Dm. 20. ■M-. died; Muilclin. 
Re-enliiled Dec. 10. 'fi3; promoted Coiponl. 
RHDlliledDec.W, 'E3. 

Died stltDe Bluff Aug U, 'N. 
Diuliirged fur dlublirtT M«t ii, 01. 
DlKhnrgtd for diubllllT Mlf ^ 'Si. 

It Pine Bluff, Ark., Mot. R, tL 

Be-eoUiled Dec. 10, 'S3, promoted Corponl. 

Be-enllited Dec 10, '68. 

DlKburged per order Julf H, 'W. 

Drifted; died at Pine Bluff, Ark., Not. 1 'U. 

Promated Coiponl and Seiveant; r»4DlIned December, 'U. 

I>r*n«d: died (t Pine Bluff, Ark., Sept. :i, -6*. 
Corporkl; prouoied 6crK«*Di; i 


'^•. », 'M; dieu 


unlisted Dec 20, 'oa. 
*n1l»tnl Dec, M, 1W; promi 
>viied from Sleemer Ixetti 

dlrd Dersll'i B 




tlrii ItfMitiaiai — 


SleplieB Khodn 


Srmwl Limmatii — 
EirsT.rblmpllD ... 

A«h°oD,J»bo K.'.Z 
Berber, Mudlioa .. 

I i 

i Not, S.'b1 Promote 

.... .\ua. 9,-R.i 2dl,le.ii 

K ' A|d. 10, '« Sept. 2, 'U BergraDi 

Not. O,-!!!: Renlune. 

» j.iiri.i,'(a pk '— 

Apr. |il,'01l| Sept. 2, 'Oi't Coi 

n Jan.Kt.'U'.... 

I Mijor JulT l.l.'Kt: LleuIeniDl Colonel A 
. pro. lai Uevl. rnd Cupl-j tnlgnrd Mini 

. led Pec. il, •< 

eeuit,Si'r||Kanl U^raod lit Lieutenant, 

.1  f-orponil. Serartni, 2d 


_. .-d 

^■ni .".'... .T!..~! DiachargedrordlubllllT Ji 

Jan. S.'S)! Srji. 2. 
I <icl.' in.'lll 

and Adit, 
roller Jul; 



ROSTEK OF CoMPATfT G — Omlinmid. 

RosTEB OP Company G — CoiUiniied. 


^njuuJD F. Ri«. 

luu TyLor 

Cv^orge L. JuDCK). 

iMTld UliDcr 

uLlDiJill Api-JS^'Sfi B 

UD I>. Pctllbau.. Julj 11. ■it 


Birtlck. Ikuc a 

Bnditum. T 
Bn'D, Uanr 

'. SI i FiSr jsi |*i ;;; 

'. SI Oct, M.'fll 

. M <>i?t. B.'SL ... 

. 41 Sm. go, -SI ... 

. M I Fob. !«,■«« S 

 RalcDBd Julj Ifl.'M; commlKloiitd M^or, but not miulend. 
.' Id Unt.; pramotfd lu Lieut. indCipt.; nalgned April 18 '6S. 
t. Corponl Compuj F Sept. It, 'tl. 

-I Pro. C«'« 

pTDiaated from nnki Compui; P 3d Ll«lciiiinl Juir 31, 'M; 
promoted InLlniWDiDtOoiDpaqT B F«b.2e,'GG. ; B<I.C>p<. 
Re-«iLiai«d Dw. II, tt; promotod Osiponl. 

Carp.;n-en1. D*c.Sl,'B3:pn).!d LlniL ITTIliCoi 
Piomotcd Corponlj diu U Bclou, Ark., Aug 


Corp.; ro-en1. Dec. !l 
D ._. "---poi^J; ail 

K<d M PIdo Btult, Ark. ' "" "" °'' 

Corponl; trantllErTtd to Vctaru RcHTic Carpi KoTsaber, tt. 

DlBhirnd for dlHbiniT Sept. 1 '" 

B«-*pll««l Dm. SI , tS; dlKliui 


_3; dlHiltaunl ror dliabllliT Ju. IlttS. 

It. IS, '81. 


Roster of Comp&ky H — Continurd. 


1 i"',"- 


Prem<«Ed Corponl: R-eollFtcd I>«, Il,'aa; killed >t Fluhughl 

Woods April 1,'iii. 
B»«nliiled Dec 11, 'U. 

Died tt Deinir. Bluff. Ark.. M.T S. W. 

IVultr.Cbu'lwA. „ 






Koi. 14, 

»•' - 



Fvb. 18. 'e 
OcU 29, 'B 




Piwton.OutiM W 





DiMharged fordluMlitr Mmrcb 1». 'S2. 



pToiiioled Corponl. 

Died U PiDB tfluff, Ark., Sept. M, ■«. 


Dbchirged per order U>t 21, 'GS. 

Serg.; Jewried fram Fort HDellIng Jul 10, ■M; re^oL Id P«. 

Connril; re-enlliled !>«. SI. 'M. 

Wngoner; dLKhmiged for dluWlllr Jnlj- 11, "61. 




I>i«h.rged Mf order Julj 28, '6*. 


W.kradJ,H™^ D 

Iietened froni BelmoBt, Kt-. December, "SI. 

Wtitrcxt, IlugliB 



TnnirerTKl rrom tompiDy I. 


I ^' Uc9Tt:KEi> Mustkhk 

Julr iS.'Uj Sc'pl. 2,'G« UbSergeut 

I J»p, S, -64; M>i. God. bi bi.. - __ , 

1 ItiLtenteUDtOct.ll.'Si; CiptiinDecI, 
i Prl'Ue Co. E Oct. II, '61; pro. Corp — ' 

M«)or, Reg. QunrtarniMWr April li 
l' PrW:Od,ll,-61;2dLieul.No..*,'a: 
y lilSergeint Ocl. U.^l; 2d LleuMoi 

'  "- Cept-Co.F Julf 19, 'M 

^ D Oct., 'Cli lit Lleul 


B..U.-11...1. rirr..!, f. 
Hrak-AfM. .lohn. .. 

Sepl, 1,'BJ Julr38,'ffi 

Oct. aijiii' 

Oil. a?,-*! 

V; Vll Bept. J. ti 


Oil. It.V.I KaT.14,'SI 

I. 31. T.]! 8q4. !,•«' 

. Died >l Uemphli, Ten 

iider's Bluff. Mia.. JiiIt 13. -M. 

,„..iDl.J*n.1.'6J; ldtleui.*Dd in Unit. ( 

Pruuoted Corponl. 

Died •( DeTill'i Bluff. Ark., Nor. W, -fit. 
I«l roDiixnT I ia Hull chirKe In ballle ot Wooil 
PmnioMSdSrrHfaDt NoTewber.MI: Color StrKet 
e<l Jmo, L '«4; CHplllu llllb U. S. Colored Inrini 

Lliedul Fort Eavllini *Dec. 29, >i:2. 

J Cook. 


Bmteb of Company I— OmttiuMriL 


R09TKB OP CouPANY I— Contintitd. 




I Sept. I,' 
4 SfpU S.'M 
1 BepL " — 

OcU t«, 

Srpt. 2, 


>M. M.M1| 

(Vt. T.-SllSplrt. J. 
>fh. B.-Bll Sppt, I, 
Ik-t. IB.-rtll Kepl.lil. 

jiiijf w|Ma|i*TiVifi; 

iki; Isl'Hi ! 

IM. WI.'W 


tin, I7,-fi1 Scpl.lS, 


Ke-enlUUd Deo. IB, '13; promoisa OorponJ. 



Aug. II,-*!. 
R»<plliied !<«. li, ■K: diKlwrgeil for dIuhlUtr Julf J9, "K. 

l>[vX 11 Pin 

UuffOct. I 




Rosmt OF Company K—Qmiinued. 



RosTEB OF C03IPANY K— Continued, 








Weston. Chaa. H 

Feb. 5, '64 
Oct 80, '61 
Oct. 80, '61 
Feb. 10, '64 
Feb. 29, '64 
Dec 81, '62 
Oct 11, '61 
Feb. 15, '64 

Drowned in Mississippi RiTer Aug. 27, '65. 

Re-enlisted Dec 18, '68n>n)moted Corponl and Sergeant 

Died at Murfreesboro, l%nn., June 21, '62. 

White. John C 

Sept 2, '65 

Withers. John 

Wilkins. Edward D 

Discharged per order June 2i2, '65. 
Died on hospital steamer Oct. 17, '64. 
Died in Little Bock Nor. 17. '6B. 

Williams, Edward R 

Wilkins. Julius E 

Wright, Thomas C »... 

Zimmerman. Lewis. 

Not. 14, '64 
Sept 2, '65 




The Foarth Begiment of Infantry was organized during the autumn of 1861, 
in compliance with a request of the secretary of war made to Oov. Alexander 
Bamsey on September 7th, '^to adopt measui*es to organize two more regiments 
of in£ftntry at the earliest date possible." On the IStii of the same month John 
B. Sanborn, who was at this time adjutant general and acting as quartermaster 
of the state, by direction of the governor issued Oeneral Orders, No. 18, which 
directed the organization of two more regiments of infantry, to be known as 
the Third and Fourth. The call also informed the public that ^'the Fourth 
Begiment would be retained to garrison the forts on the frontier." The order 
also specified that two companies were needed forthwith to garrison Fort Bidgley 
and relieve the troops stationed at that post, and the two which reported first 
should be mustered at once into the service and pay of the Unit.ed States, and 
should be designated respectively as Companies A and B. This call was a broad 
intimation that the Fourth would be home guards, and the people so understood 
it, and a good deal of fun was enjoyed at the expense of those who enlisted in 
this regiment; but our men believed that the war would be a long one, and that 
they would have an opportunity to see all the fighting that they would desire to. 

As the captain of A would be the ranking captain in the regiment, and 
the first one entitled to promotion as a field officer, quite a strife at once 
began in various parts of the state to see who would be the lucky person. Cap- 
tain Luther Baxter, who commanded a company of militia called the Carver 
Grays, and Captain Bobert B. Toung, who had raised a company which was 
called the Scott Guards, united their forces, and, by this means. Captain Bax- 
ter was enabled to muster first, and his company was A. Company B was organ- 
ized at Glencoe by James C. Eilson, who became its captain. The men who 
composed it were mostly residents of McLeod and the southern part of Meeker 
counties; others came from Carver, and some from other parts of the state. On 
the rolls nearly all of the company was credited to Glencoe, and thus the village 
received credit for more than it was entitled to. We mention this fact because 
such errors occurred in other companies all over the state, and the rural town- 
ships did not receive the proper credit. We will here remark that the writer 
enlisted in Company B on the 26th day of September, and that he was 7iot the 
first man to enroll his name. By the records in the office of the adjutant general 
at St. Paul, Company A mustered in on October 4th and B on October 2d. These 
companies, however, were given preference by the adjutant general in the order 
in which they had reported as full and ready for complete organization. 

During the latter days of September and the early part of October three regi- 
ments, viz., Che Second, Third and Fourth, and a company of sharpshooters, 
were being organized at the same time at Fort Snelling, and the strife to fill up 
the ranks of the Third and Fourth regiments waxed warm. Companies A and 
B departed from Snelling for Fort Bidgley about the 10th of October, and garri- 
soned that post until the regiment assembled at Snelling in the spring of 1862, 
for its departure South. The nucleus of Company C was a company called D, of 
the state militia, commanded by Captain Robert S. Donaldson. It was organized 
July 13, 1861, and the most of its forty-eight privates enlisted in the new com- 
pany. The men were mostly from Dakota county, the headquarters of the com- 
pany being at Lakeville. The company proceeded to Fort Snelling, and was 
mustered in on October 7th, and soon after proceeded to Fort Ripley and garri- 


soned that post until the next spring. Company D was organized in St. Cloud 
and vicinity by Captain Thomas E. Inman and those who were afterward its 
officers. The nucleus of this company was also a company of state militia, and 
designated as A. This company was organized on June 22, 1861, with Thomas 
E. luman as its captain. A great many of its sixty-one privates enlisted in the 
new company, and, with a large number of men who joined its ranks from Good- 
hue county, it mustered in as D on the 10th day of October. This company pro- 
ceeded to Fort Abercrombie, D. T., and remained at that i>ost during the winter. 
Company E was organized at Ottawa, in Le Sueur county, by Captain Robert 
Wiuegar, with men from that place and Le Sueur, Cleveland, and some from 
Sibley and Nicollet counties. About forty-eight of the company went to Fort 
Snelling, and at that place twelve or fifteen men joined the company under Cap- 
tain Ebenezer Le Gro, from Owatonna. The captaincy of this company was 
given to him, and Winegar was elected as first lieutenant. This company was 
mustered in on November 27th, and remained at Snelling during the winter. 
Company F was composed of men who were mostly from Freeborn county and 
vicinity. It was organized by Captain Asa W. White, and expected to become 
a part of the Third Begiment, but did not fill its ranks soon enough for that or- 

Captain William F. Wheeler also raised some men who went with him into 
this company, which mustered in on October 11th and remained at Snelling 
until spring. Company G was composed of men who lived in Stearns and adjoin- 
ing counties. Two-thirds of the company was raised by Captain Charles Lu^ 
and Lieut. Abner St. Cyr. After they came to Snelling Captain D.M. G. Murphy 
joined the company with a number of men whom he had caused to enlist, and 
the company mustered in on November 22d. This company soon after proceeded 
to Fort Abercrombie, and formed a part of the garrison of that post, also having 
a detachment of its men at Georgetown during the winter. On the march to the 
frontier the company experienced some very severe weather, the thermometer 
being below zero a considerable portion of the time, and some of the time six- 
teen degrees below; and this after the snow had covered the ground. To march 
nearly three hundred miles, and camp out under such conditions, was not a very 
easy task. Company H was organized as the *^ Valley Sharpshooters" by Cap- 
tain John E. Tourtellotte and those who were its officers, with headquarters at 
Mankato. The men comprising its ranks were mostly from Blue Earth, Waseca, 
Le Sueur and Kicollet counties. It was the intention to make it a part of the 
Third Eegimeut, but it was not filled in time for that purpose. It mustered in 
as H of the Fourth, on the 20th day of November, much against the will of the 
company. It remained at Snelling during the winter. On July 6, 1861, a militia 
company was organized at Warsaw, in Rice county, called the "Warsaw Rifles." 
John H. Parker was the captain, and Henry Piatt the second lieutenant. The 
company contained fifty-three privates. This company was the basis of Com- 
pany I of the Fourth Regiment. It mustered into the army on the 23d day of 
December, and remained at Snelling until spring. Company K was started by 
Captain Robert P. Mooere at Otranto, in Mower county, near the Iowa state line, 
at which place Captain Mooers was in business. William B. Spencer of Le Roy 
wa8 also engaged in raising recruits for the same company. Several at Austin 
wt*re also recruiting and these parties joined, and together organized Company K. 
They called themselves the *' Mower County Guards." These proceeded to Snell- 
ing. They were joined at the fort by some men who had been recruited by Cap- 
tain L. B. ^lartiu and George G. Sherbrooke, and mustered in as K on the 23d 
day of December, 18G1, and completed the ten companies necessary to organize 
the regiment. Ou the l.'^th day of October Gov. Ramsey, as commander-in-chief, 
announced, through Adjutant General J. B. Sanborn, to the public that Min- 
nesota had already furnished her quota of forces demanded by the general Gov- 
ernment, and (expressed the hope **that she will not stop even here, but, like 
many of her loyal sister states, continue to offer to the nation company after 
company of the best and bi-avest of her sons, until this unholy and unjust Re- 
bellion is completely subdued.^' 


(General Orders, No. 24, of Nov. 5, 1861, announced the following persons as 
officers of the Fourth Eegiment: Colonel, John B. Sanborn of Bamsey ooanty; 
lieutenant colonel, Minor T. Thomas of Washington county; m^jor, Lieutenant 
A. Edwards Welch of Goodhue county. Commissions were issued to these offioera 
on this date, but as Lieutenant Welch had been wounded in the battle of Bull 
Bun while serving in the First Minnesota, and taken prisoner by the enemy, he 
could not be present and muster. The regimental organization was completed 
on Dec 23, 1861, but Colonel Sanborn was not mustered in as colonel until 
the 1st day of January, 1862. Although he had been commissioned as lieuten- 
ant colonel on Nov. 5, 1861, and muster^ in as such on that date, and discharged 
the duties of that office between November 5th and December 23d, his muster 
was not returned to Washington. Welch was held by the enemy as a prisoner 
of war for thirteen months. The regiment consequently had no major during 
the winter of 1862, and in the spring Captain L. L. Baxter was commissioned as 

During the winter of 1862 the five companies of the regiment at Fort Snelling, 
as well as those at the frontier posts, were very thoroughly drilled in squad, 
company and battalion. Lieutenant Colonel Thomas had been a first lieutenant 
in Ck)mpany B of the First Minnesota Infantry, and had served in that regiment 
in the Army of the Potomac, and being thoroughly informed in the drill and a 
splendid disciplinarian, he very soon brought the companies at Snelling in the 
way of acquiring a very thorough and practical military education. At the other 
posts the time was occupied in drilling the men, out of doors when the weather 
permitted, and in the buildings at the forts during stormy weather. The ord- 
nance sergeant who was stationed by the Government at Bidgley was the drill 
master at that post, and, as he had been a long time in the regular army, he 
proved a very proficient instructor. He not only drilled the men, but a school 
was opened for officers^ and they were very thoroughly instructed in their duties, 
and in a few weeks the independent spirit of the men in the ranks began to be very 
quietly changed, and from the belief that ''one man was just as good as another," 
some of them concluded that he must be quite often ''a good deal better." The 
men were informed, and taught to believe, that good order and discipline must 
be maintained and orders obeyed, or the army, instead of being a mighty ma- 
chine, capable of being moved and used with precision for the accomplislunent 
of a great object we had in view, would be only a mob, and in times of great 
danger faM to pieces and prove a fiEdlure. All went along pretty smoothly at 
Eidgley, but occasionally a free and independent spirit would step outside the 
bounds of military propriety. One day the fresh beef was thought by the men 
to be deficient in adipose, and a few organized a burial party, and, using the 
I)olice cart for a hearse, they marched, with reversed arms, led by fife and drum 
playing the dead march, to the centre of the parade ground where they were 
about to perform the solemn rites of a military funeral. The mourners, hearse 
and escort halted beneath the garrison flag which waved overhead, when the 
commander of the post appeared on the scene and adjourned the mournful cere- 
monies. All this was fun for the boys, but hurt the feelings of the beef contrac- 
tor, who gazed at the rebellious proceedings from the door of the commissary 
building. A somewhat similar experience was enjoyed by the garrison at Fort 
Abercrombie, when the post commander appeared at the exercises, delivered a 
lecture on mutiny and insubordination, and the resulting consequences of such 
conduct, when he ''dismissed the parade." As he did this one of the men called 
out: "Captain, you did not say anything about bull beef." 

The troops on the frontier posts went on several expeditions among the Indi- 
ans, and although the weather during the entire winter was extremely cold, they 
scraped away the snow and camped out during their journeys. Finally the long, 
cold months began to draw to a close, and on March 18th Adjutant Oeneral O. 
Malmros issued an order for the regiment to proceed to St. Louis. This order 
he modified on the 19th, by directing a delay of the movement until the opening 
of navigation. Orders, however, were sent at once to the frontier posts for those 
companies to repair to Snelling, and they started at once on foot and in sleighs. 


The snow at this time was very deep and getting soft, and the high roads were 
veiy difficult to travel. The troops coming down from Abercrombie had a very 
serions time, as the snow in some of the ravines was from twelve to twenty feet 
deep, and as the teams would at times go in all over, the mules would have to be 
unhitched and pulled out by the men. Finally all assembled at Snelling, and 
two or three weeks were then spent in battalion drill. Before leaving for the 
South ten of the tallest corporals in the regiment were detailed as ^'pioneers," 
and, wearing mammoth bearskin caps, and carrying huge axes, attracted consid- 
erable attention as they marched at the head of the regiment. 


On April 20, 1862, the side- wheel steamboat Sucker State landed at Fort 
Snelling, and six companies of the regiment, accompanied by the regimental 
band, and in command of Lieutenant Colonel Thomas, embarked upon it and 
started for St. Louis, to report to Major General Halleck. As the boat ap- 
proached St. Paul the bluffs and river banks were crowded with people, who 
waved their hands and 'kerchiefs, and bid the command a heartfelt ^^Qod bless 
you all and give you success!" The steamer soon swung around and headed 
down stream on its journey, the band playing **The Girl I Left Behind Me," and 
soon the Saintly City and its warm-hearted, generous people were shut from our 
sight, and from that of many of our members forever. On the next day the 
other four companies, in command of Colonel J. B. Sanborn, and with Captain 
William Hotchkiss' battery also on board, left Fort Snelling on the steamboat 
Hawkeye State for the same destination. His command landed at St. Paul 
at Chestnut street and marched down through the city to the levee, where it em- 
barked on the same boat and proceeded on its journey. Nothing of importance 
and worthy of note occurred on the journey down. The people at the various 
landings along the river waved their handkerchieb and cheered, but we saw 
nothing to remind us that a great and mighty war had been inaugurated and was 
being waged, and that a short journey on our boat would take us into the lines of 
the opposing forces. When the command of Lieutenant Colonel Thomas arrived 
at Dubuque, it debarked and had dress parade in Julian, the principal street of 
the city, and on arriving at the rapids in the river above Davenport, Iowa, in 
order to lighten the boat so that it would pass over the rapids, the command 
landed, and, marching past the bridge, through Davenport and into a park on a 
hill that was within the city limits, and which contained some temporary build- 
ings erected as barracks for the Iowa troops, we had a short season of battalion 
drill, after which we again embarked and proceeded on our journey. At Mont- 
rose, at the head of the lower rapids above Keokuk, Iowa, we once more landed, 
and our goods and supplies were conveyed about twelve miles by railroad around 
the rapids, when we again embarked upon the same boat. 

We arrived at St. Louis on the 23d of April, and next day marched out to 
Benton Barracks, which were located on the fair grounds in the outskirts of the 
city. On the 25th the other four companies under Colonel Sanborn arrived at 
Benton Barracks. As the command marched through the streets of St. Louis, 
evidences of the patriotic feelings of the people were manifested by waving of 
handkerchiefs and many other acts expressive of their joy at the sight of our 
men of the North Star State. As w€f were passing a girls' boarding school the 
pupils came to the windows and sang the *^ Red, White and Blue" for us. While 
at this place our regimental quartermaster procured for the regiment, on requi- 
sition, the necessary field transportation and supplies, and, aided by his efficient 
corps of assistants, only a short time elapsed before the regiment was ready to 
take the field. 

On Sunday, the 2d day of May, 1862, the regiment left Benton Barracks, and, 
marching through the city, embarked on board the steamboat John J. Boe, 
and at sundown proceeded on its way to join the army under Major General Hal- 
leck before Corinth. Our boat landed at Cairo and Paducah, and then proceed- 
ed up the Tennessee River. On arriving at Fort Henry we were detained several 
houre, and after moving about eight miles further up the river, we debarked at 


Paris Landing, and, accompanied by the Curtis Horse and some artillery, marched 
twenty miles to the vicinity of Paris, when, not meeting the enemy, we returned 
to the Landing. The weather was extremely hot and saltry during this expedi- 
tion, and the men suffered severely. During the absence of the raiment the 
steamboat was unloaded by a detail left for that purpose. On the 12th our tran- 
sient supplies were loaded on the steamboat Gladiator, and, embarking, we 
proceeded on our way up the Tennessee Eiver. This boat was not as large as 
the Eoe, and was more crowded. Boats were very numerous, passing up and 
down laden with supplies for the army; several had steam calliopes and played 
.inspiring tunes. As we were landing at Brown Landing, Tenn., on the 13th, the 
men crowded forward on the boiler deck as thick as they could stand, and their 
great weight, in addition to that of the supplies and ambulances, broke down 
both the hurricane and boiler decks, and several of our men were severely in- 
jured. On May 14th we arrived at Hamburg Landing, Tenn., and, debarking 
from the Gladiator, marched about two miles to Childers' Hill, where we en- 
camped. Our raiment at this time contained about 1, 000 men. On the next day 
the regiment marched a few miles and joined the army under General Halleck, 
and was assigned to the Firs* Brigade (Buford's), Third Division (Hamilton's), 
Army of the Mississippi. 


The army was at this time engaged in its snail-like approach toward Corinth, 
where General Beauregard was fortified, and believed to have an army superior 
in numbers to ours. On the 12th, only three days previous to our arrival, quite 
a severe engagement was fought with parts of the hostile forces near Farming- 
ton. Every move that our army made was done according to the science of war 
and with the greatest of caution. Spades were trumps in this game, and if a 
move was made by any part of the army the other commands were moved up at 
once and the line connected, so that no intervals were left through which the 
enemy could pass. 

On the 18th of May We advanced to Farmington, and were only a short dis- 
tance in front of the rebel intrenchmeuts that surrounded Corinth, and it was 
thought that any further advance by us would bring on a general engagement. 
Colonel Sanborn was here assigned to the command of the first demi-brigade of 
the First Brigade of our division, and Lieutenant Colonel Thomas took command 
of the regiment. We at once began to pile up a large part of the earth in that 
vicinity, and expected attack. Our army was at this time very large, and 
contained probably over 100,000 men, while the Confederate force was far 
inferior. Halleck's policy seemed to be to avoid attacking the enemy behind 
his intrenchments, and to compel the enemy to attack his army in intrench- 
menta. Our line advanced on the 28th, and a part of our forces had quite a sharp 
engagement with the enemy. Cannon balls and shells flew recklessly by us and 
overhead, where they went howling into the wilderness, but doing very little 
damage to our forces. 

The country here was mostly covered with heavy timber, the streams were 
sluggish, and the bottoms swampy. Hamburg and Pittsburgh landings were the 
points at which Halleck had his base, and from which he received supplies for 
the army. Where the wagon roads to these places passed over streams and 
through swamps they were made double and corduroyed, and wagon trains con- 
taining 1,200 teams were frequently on the road. For several days previous to 
the 29th of May the enemy had been engaged in moving his supplies and strip- 
ping for a footrace. A few shells thrown by our thirty-pounder Parrotts over 
the heavy body of timber in our front and into Corinth had exploded near the 
railroad depot and destroyed some property, which admonished Beauregard and 
his generals that if they remained much longer at that place they would have 
to fight a battle with a superior force, and might, perhaps, be defeated and lose 
their supplies. They therefore decided to evacuate, and for several days their 
movements were so cunningly planned and executed that our generals believed 
that the rebels were receiving large reinforcements. On the morning of May 


30th, when the enemy was moving away, oar generals expected an attack. How- 
ever, after daylight of the 30th the noise of explosions at Corinth and the sight 
of rising smoke caused oar pickets to advance, when it was discovered that the 
enemy had evacaated the place and le(^ bat little war material for our use. In 
the pursuit of the enemy our regiment moved about twenty miles south to Boon- 
ville, and then returned to within five miles of Corinth, where we established a 
camp in the pine woods on the hill near a clear little stream called Clear Creek. 
This little brook was made largely by springs coming out of the hill and was 
the only clear stream in the vicinity. The ground at Corinth and for miles 
around had been used for camping purposes, and this undoubtedly made the 
health of our troops very bad. Our men soon began to be afflicted with typhoid 
and other fevers, and in a short time one-third of them were in the hospitals. 
Death soon began to reap a rich harvest, and at sundown the dead march and 
funeral volley would be heard in the various camps. During the latter part of 
June our regiment, with most of the army, marched toward Holly Springs, pass- 
ing through Bienzi and on as far as Eipley, after which we returned to our camp 
at Clear Creek. The weather was excessively hot during the march to Eipley, 
and the men being compelled to carry one hundred rounds of ammunition be- 
sides their other things, a good many of them were disabled by hernia and from 
the effects of the march. 

In August we marched about twelve miles south to Jacinto, and established 
our camp near to that town. While there, and during the latter part of that 
month, we received information of the outbreak of the Sioux Indians in Min- 
nesota, and our regiment was very anxious to be ordered home and fight the 
Indians. We remained in the vicinity of Jacinto, changing our camp occasion- 
ally. Lieutenant Colonel M. T. Thomas, having been commissioned as colonel 
of the Eighth Minnesota Infantry, left us on the 9th of September for Minnesota. 
On the 12th we became aware of the fact that the rebel army under General 
Price was within a few miles of us, and for several days we formed line of battle 
each morning, and had our trains all loaded for immediate movement. Price 
passed within a few miles of us on the Bay Springs road, and, moving to luka 
on September 13th with his army of about 16,000 men, captured that place, 
which was garrisoned by a small brigade under Colonel R. C. Murphy of the 
Eighth Wisconsin. He also captured a large amount of commissary and other 
stores that were to be moved from that place to Corinth. While here at Clear 
Creek, June 25th, General Buford went north on leave, and Colonel Sanborn 
assumed command of our brigade. 


We marched from Jacinto with General Hamilton's division on September 
18th, and proceeded toward luka. General Stanley's division marched from 
Clear Creek to join us, but taking a wrong road, through the fault of the guide, 
was delayed, and prevented the consummation of the plan agreed upon between 
Generals Bosecrans and Grant. The understanding was that Eosecrans was to 
move on luka with the divisions of Hamilton and Stanley, and, dividing the 
force, occupy the Bay Springs and Fulton roads, running south from luka, to 
cut off the retreat of Price's army. Grant and Ord, in the meantime, were to 
move a force by rail to Burnsville and attack Price's army from the north. By 
the delay of Stanley's division Bosecrans saw that he could not get to his posi- 
tion near luka at the appointed time, and he so notified General Grant. He also 
discovered that the distance between the two roads was too great for his divisions 
to be within supporting distance of each other. And so he moved both divisions, 
consisting of about 9,000 men, forward on the same road. Grant and Ord were 
stationed a few miles north of luka with a force of about 8,000, and concluding 
that General Kosecrans could not get into position south of luka before the morn- 
ing of the 20th, they would await until they heard the guns of Rosecraus' army 
to the south before they moved. Rosecraus' troops pressed forward, and after 
skirmishing with the enemy's pickets and driving them back to within two miles 
of luka, were brought to a halt by a line of battle the enemy had formed. He 


opened the battle of Inka with musketry and artillery on onr advance, and onr 
troops, moving up on the double-quick, formed a short line consisting of Colonel 
Sanborn's brigade, on the left of which was the Tenth Iowa Infantry and two 
guns of the Twelfth Wisconsin Light Battery. This was the length and front of 
our line, and contained about 2,200 men. The battle began at about 4:30 
o'clock P. M. of the 19th, and raged with the greatest of fury for an hour and a 
haJf. Generals Price and Little had withdrawn a brigade from the front of Ord's 
army, and, going with it in person, formed their line and awaited the approach 
of Bosecrans' troops. Price soon after ordered the other two brigades of Little's 
division to the scene of action. The first two arrived in time to take part in the en- 
tire battle. Our regiment, with four hundred and eight men present, was formed 
in the front line on the left of the Forty -eighth Indiana Infantry. Captain E. Le 
Grow had command of it, and Captain J. C. Edson had command of the left wing. 
Soon after the battle began the Forty -eighth Indiana left the line, and to prevent 
the enemy from flanking us Le Grow ordered our right wing to reverse front and 
face the break in the line. We did as ordered. The enemy concentrated their 
attack upon the right of the line, and, after a prolonged struggle, succeeded in 
driving the troops from that part of it. Our regiment was then moved to the 
right by flank, and then in line of battle to the front. While marching through 
the woods after dark toward the enemy, and when within a few rods of them, we 
marched up to the rear of a regiment of Ohio infantry, when, mistaking us for 
the enemy, they fired a volley into and over us, killing several and wounding a 
good many of our men. In about an hour we were marched to the rear, and 
slept on our arms in an old field, expecting to renew the conflict at daybreak, 
but at that time the enemy had fled. The loss in our regiment, according to the 
official list, was 3 killed and 44 wounded. Bosecrans reported the entire loss as 
790, of which number 141 were killed and 36 missing. The losses of the enemy 
exceeded ours. On the morning of the 20th we formed a line, and, advancing, 
discovered the rear of the enemy's column moving away on the Fulton road. 
We then marched back to Jacinto, meeting General Buford on the road on re- 
turn from his leave of absence. We moved with Hamilton's division from Ja- 
cinto on October 1st, and on the 2d were in camp about three miles south of 


After the battle of luka Price moved his army south to Baldwyn, and from 
thence to Ripley, where he joined his forces to those of Van Dorn, and with 
the latter command they moved out on the morning of the 29th, with an army, 
according to Van Dorn's report, of about 22,000. They marched north to Poca- 
hontas, threatening Bolivar, then, turning east, crossed the Hatchie and Tus- 
cumbia rivers, and hoped to surprise Bosecrans' forces at Corinth, and, defeating 
his army, capture that place before the troops at the outlying posts could be 
called in. Bosecrans gradually drew the most of his command into and near 
Corinth, and when the enemy moved to the attack on the 3d they found the 
Union forces, consisting of about 15,419 men, prepared to receive them. On the 
morning of the 3d our regiment, under command of Colonel J. B. Sanborn, 
General Buford having assumed command of his brigade, left its camp south of 
Corinth, and, marching through the town with the rest of Hamilton's division, 
formed with it in line across the wagon road to Purdy, and about two and a half 
miles north of the village. Davies' division occupied the ground northwest of 
the town between the Mobile & Ohio and Memphis & Charleston railways, while 
McKean's and Stanley's were formed on Seminary Hill, to the southwest. Our 
line as thus formed extended in a semicircular form from the northeast to the 
southwest, and covered the approaches by the wagon roads to Kossuth, Bolivar, 
Chewalla and Purdy. The rebel troops advanced by the Bolivar road and struck 
Davies' troops at the point where that road passed through the old rebel line of 
works. By 10 A. m. Davies' skirmishers were driven in along his line, and the 
opposing forces in Davies' front were in line of battle confronting each other. 
The action along his front soon became general, and raged with desperation. As 


the enemy pressed Davies' troops back Hamilton gradually changed the front of 
his division to meet the advance of the rebels, and as Davies' troops were falling 
back he prepared to assaalt the left flanks of the enemy. In these operations 
Buford^s brigade came upon quite a large force of rebels, and Company K of our 
regiment deployed as skirmishers, and its captain was killed while in the act of 
signaling some important information to Colonel Sanborn, who, after communi- 
cating the fact to General Buford, was directed to dislodge the enemy. Colonel 
Sanborn states in his report: ** I at once changed the front of my battalion to the 
rear on the tenth company. This was done, under a heavy fire of musketry, in 
double-quick time, and with as much coolness and precision as if on ordinary 
battalion drill. This movement completed, I ordered the regiment forward at 
quick time until within about one hundred and fifty paces of the enemy's line of 
battle at this point, when his fire was increased to a perfect shower of balls. I 
gave the further command, * Forward one hundred and fifty paces, double-quick.' 
This was executed in the most gallant and splendid manner. The regiment, in 
perfect line, with triumphant shouts, rushed forward against a most murderous 
fire, and when within fifty yards of the enemy's line he fled to the rear with the 
greatest precipitancy, receiving two or three volleys from my regiment as he re- 
tired. ' ' Colonel Sanborn then withdrew the regiment from its advanced position, 
and formed on the right of the Fifty-ninth Indiana, and threw out skirmishers to 
the front. After dark orders were received to march back to the first position held 
in the morning. In obeying this order the regiment made quite a detour to 
avoid the enemy, who had advanced his forces between us and the town. At 11 
p. M. bivouacked, where we remained during the night. During the day the 
heat was 108° in the shade, and the men suffered severely from its effects, 
many being sunstruck. The regimental wagonmaster, Alonzo L. Brown, fur- 
nished the men with two loads of water, whidi wafi issued to them on the field* 
On the 4th the enemy advanced his infantry and opened the battle about 9 A. M., 
and having had the satisfaction of driving in Davies' division in our centre on 
the 3d, expected to have an easy victory. After a stubborn resistance, Davies' 
troops, holding the centre, gave way, and the enemy entered their works. They 
were, however, driven back. During this action. our regiment had, with the 
rest of our division, repulsed the force that came against it, and then was moved 
a little to the left and on a ridge, where it support^ the Eleventh Ohio Battery, 
which enfiladed the enemy's line in front of Davies, and poured its shot fast and 
thick into the advancing and retreating rebels. As the enemy was being driven 
from the front of Davies he charged with the brigade on Fort Bobinett, at Semi- 
nary Hill, and after a short hand-to-hand conflict, was repulsed by Stanley's 
troops. The enemy was defeated at all points before noon, and was fleeing from 
the field in all directions. Colonel Sanborn, in his official report, commended 
the conduct of the following named officers and non-commissioned officers: Cap- 
tains J. E. Tourtellotte and J. C. Edson, Quartermaster T. B. Hunt, Adjutant 
J. M. Thompson, Quartermaster Sergt. F. E. Collins, Commissary Sergt. T. P. 
Wilson, Sergt. Maj. W. T. Kittredge, Surgeon J. H. Murphy and Second Asst. 
Surgeon H. R. Wedel. (First Asst. Surgeon E. W. Cross was absent, sick, dur- 
ing the battle.) Major Baxter was unfit for duty on account of sickness. 

The losses in our regiment during the action on both days were two killed 
and ten wounded. General Rosecrans reported his entire losses at 355 killed, 1,841 
wounded, and 324 captured or missing, and in an order announcing the result of 
the battle he stated that we had killed and buried 1,423 officers and men of the 
enemy, and taken 2,268 prisoners. When the battle was over our men rested 
until the morning of the 5th, when Rosecrans put his army in motion to pursue. 
Our regiment, with the rest of Hamilton's division, followed the enemy to near 
Cruni's mill, on the Hatchie River, when we marched with the division toRienzi, 
and from there west to the Hatchie, and on the 11th of October returned to our 
old camp, about three miles south of Corinth, and soon after moved our camp 
into the outskirts of the village. General N. B. Buford, on account of sickness, 
gave up the command of our brigade Oct. 15, 1862, and soon after went 
north, and Colonel Sanborn now took command of it permanently, having com- 


manded the same daring the absence or sickness of Qeneral Bnford, all the time 
after first assuming command in Jane, with the exception of the time between 
September 20th and October 4thy and Captain J. C. Edson took the command 
of the regiment. General Bosecrans then pat his army to work strengthening 
the old and bailding ne^ fortifications on Seminary Hill, and oar regiment was 
employed in that labor daring the remainder of the time that we were there. 


(}orinth having been made secare so that it coald be held by a small force, 
Grant made preparations at once to begin his campaign through northern Mis- 
sissippi, the redaction of Yicksbarg being its main object. We left Corinth 
with the army daring the beginning of November, and marched west to Grand 
Junction. While here the army from Bolivar and Jackson, under General 
James B. McPherson, joined ours. We moved with the army about ten miles 
south of Grand Junction, to the vicinity of Davis' grist mill, and from thence south, 
with other troops, on a reconnaissance, to within a few miles of Holly Springs. 
The country we were then operating in contained au abundance of everything 
that betokened a rich and prosperous farming region, and our troops f^red 
sumptuously. Negroes in considerable numbers, and driving unique outfits, 
came into our lines from surrounding plantations. We marched from Davis' 
mill to La Grange, and thence west to Moscow, where we remained about ten 
days. We marched from Moscow with the army under General Grant during 
the last of November, on the campaign down the Mississippi Central railroad, 
to Cold Water, Holly Springs, and on to the Tallahatchie Eiver. The weather 
was warm and pleasant when we left Moscow, but turned cold and wet, and the 
mud made tramping very hard and disagreeable. It was expected that we would 
meet with serious opposition at the crossing of the Tallahatchie, as the enemy 
had built strong fortifications on the opposite shore and burned the bridge. The 
advance of our army, however, after a short engagement, put him to flight, and 
after building a new bridge we moved on through the rain and mud to Oxford, 
and in a few days resumed the line of march to the vicinity of the Yohna- 
patafa Eiver, about six milea south of the latter place. While we were at this 
place the rebels under General Van Dorn raided our lines at Holly Springs, and, 
capturing the town, destroyed our supplies stored there. We marched back to 
Oxford on December 21st, and at midnight had a little experience which we will 
call the *' Battle of Oxford.'' General Sanborn describes it as follows: 

"The campaign down the Mississippi Central railroad in November, 1862, 
to reach Vicksburg by that line, was filled with exciting incidents, but no real 
battle between the armies. The command of the writer reached the Yohna- 
patafa Biver, about ten miles below Oxford, Miss., which was as far south as 
any infantry marched in this movement. While in this x>osition, on a. quiet, 
smoky Indian summer afternoon, information was received that Van Dorn, with 
a column of 10,000 cavalry, had passed north, ten miles east of our left flank. 
This meant trouble with our line of communication and our supplies. Every- 
thing was put in readiness for action or marching. By ten o'clock the next day 
the information that Holly Springs and all our supplies and ammunition had 
been captured or destroyed was received. Orders were expected momentarily. 
It was past twelve o'clock at noon when they were received, and directed the 
command to fall back to Oxford. The march was made with vigor, and Oxford 
was reached after sunset. The troops of the brigade occupied the same camp 
as when they rested there over night marching south, and the commander occu- 
pied the same bedroom, which had a bed which would pass for a rough one in 
St. Paul, but seemed quite a luxury in the field. Profound sleep, after a hard 
march, naturally came early upon the troops and commander. At midnight 
there was pounding upon the door. *Who is there!' exclaimed the sleeper. 
*Aids-de-camp from Generals Grant and Quinby, with orders,' was the reply. 
The door was of course opened and the orders read. In substance they directed 
the brigade to move without delay to the west of the town (the camp was on 
the east), across the railroad, and to form in line of battle in the position that 


wonld be designated by the aid, and to be prepared and held in readiness for 
action at the point until farther orders. The long roll was beaten, the troops 
formed and the march made, and the line of battle formed and the troops 
ordered to rest on their arms. Upon reaching Grant's headquarters, which the 
command had to pass, the windows were all aglow with light, while all others in 
the town were dark. I went in; C^neral Grant had retired, but General Eaw- 
lins was roaring like an enraged lion. The burden of his wrath was, that the 
campaign for Vicksburg had failed through the faithlessness of certain officers, 
whom he dared to name; and the cavalry had reported that the whole rebel 
army was advancing by our right, and would reach our flank at Oxford by four 
o'clock in the morning, and he supposed a general engagement between the two 
armies would be fought in the morning. ^ Is the army concentrated, general f 
I asked. *A11 the commands are moving toward Oxford, and the most remote 
can reach this place by ten o'clock in the forenoon; and,' he added, 'compel 
the enemy to form in Hue of battle as far out as possible, and make all the re- 
sistance you can, and we will have troops enough on the field by the time the 
skirmishers are driven in.' This from the adjutant general of the army made 
the battle a reality to me. Ko doubt was left in my mind that a general engage- 
ment must be fought in the morning, and that my command was to bring it on. 
Four companies of infantry and a section of artillery were stationed a h^f mile 
from the line, and about half-past one in the morning the orderly took charge 
of my horse, all saddled and ready, while I reclined against a tree. A half mile 
beyond the infantry pickets a strong cavalry picket had been stationed by the 
commander of the army. At just about half-past four a lieutenant of this cav- 
alry force came in upon full gallop to me, and with great excitement delivered a 
dispatch in writing from the officer in command of the cavalry, to the effect 
that the head of the enemy's columns was within a mile of his position, and 
that he was advancing rapidly with an immense force of infantry and artillery. 
The infantry and artillery settled the question that it was the whole army, and 
with the impression on my mind lefb by Rawlins' instructions, not a doubt was 
left that it was the opening of a great battle. } wrote upon the back of this 
dispatch the time of its receipt by me, and directed the officer to proceed with 
it to General Grant's headquarters. 

*' I moved out immediately the six companies more of infantry, and two sec- 
tions more of artillery. Before reaching the picket station the drums were 
beating and bugles blowing in all directions about Oxford. Before the line of 
skirmishers was fully formed, another cavalry officer came up, as excited as the 
first, but not so serious a look upon his face, and at once said, ^That column that 
we thought was the enemy is one of the army trains that has been lost and has 
been marching all night to get away from the enemy and join the army at 
Oxford.' I proceeded with great speed, with the officer, toward Oxford. My 
own command had torn down fences, houses and barns while I was gone, that all 
obstructions to their fire might be removed. Columns were coming upon the 
field by every avenue leading from Oxford. Generals and stafis were riding in 
all directions. Upon reaching Grant's headquaiters, his horse and those of all 
his stafl" officers were caparisoned, and some of the staff were mounted. The 
general stood in the door giving a verbal order to one of the staff. He looked 
surprised at my approach, and I at once said: * General,, this is all a farce; that 
column is one of our own trains.' *Well,' said the general, *the cavalry has 
reported that this column was the enemy, positively. It seemed impossible to me 
that the enemy would bring on a general engagement here.' The sudden change 
did not seem to he the occasion of joy or sorrow. He was unmoved. The hurry- 
ing to and fro and mounting in hot haste was soon succeeded by general quiet, 
and the only farce in which I had to play in the war was over. All the anxiety 
and excitement of a general battle had been suffered or enjoyed without a battle, 
and the army marched quietly back to Memphis, but not till after much discus- 
sion and doubt. Rawlins insisted that the army could move down to Jackson, 
antl e\\< to Vi(•ksl>ur^^ subsisting on the country, which was full of corn, with a 
good supjily of cattle and swine, and that the result of the movement would be 


the evacaation of Haines' Bluff, which woald give as the Mississippi as a line 
and base of supplies. Boomer and many of the colonels concurred in this idea. 
General Grant said he believed it was feasible, but in view of the genersd con- 
dition of the country, he considered it would be unmilitary to thus risk the 
whole Army of the Tennessee. Sherman was already demonstrating on Haines' 
Bluff, and the enemy was rapidly concentrating there, and whether the further 
prosecution of the campaign of November, 1862, down the Mississippi Central 
railroad, relying wholly upon the enemy's country for supplies, and to the 
result of battle ibr a new base, involved any greater hazzard than the campaign 
that was successfully made to the rear of Yic^burg, from the south, is a question 
to be determined by the future writers upon the art of war, and future his- 
torians. If the question had been left to the colonels of that army, at that time, 
they would have voted, so far as I know, to continue the march south to Vicks- 
burg, without any base of supplies, subsisting wholly upon the enemy's country, 
and opening our base, when we reached there, by battle and victory, if necessary. 
The commander of the army, probably more wisely, ordered otherwise, and all 
attempts to reach Vicksburg by using railroads as a base line and base of sup- 
plies were abandoned." 

General Grant, on the 21st of December, issued an order for a retrograde 
movement of his army to the line of the Tallahatchie Biver and the Memphis 
& Charleston railway. It now became necessary to send large wagon trains to 
Memphis to procure supplies for our forces, and the commander of each division 
was ordered to send fifty wagons, which, with the train of the Seventh Division, 
would proceed on the Pigeon-roost road, escorted by General Quinby's division. 
Our regiment marched with the rest of these troops as a guard to the train. 
The weather was wet and the mud almost fothomless. While en routes the 
enemy, with a small force, attacked the train and captured a few of our men. 
After a four days' struggle with the elements we arrived at Memphis and 
encamped below Fort Pickering, near the river, in the outskirts of the city. 
Our train being partially loaded, and with a large herd of cattle to drive, 
we left Memphis on December 31st and marched east along the wagon road, 
on the line of the Memphis & Charleston railway, as far as La Fayette. The 
weather was cold, and, having no tents, we bivouacked. Ice formed half an inch 
thick. The supplies were conveyed to La Grange and Grand Junction, and from 
thence to the army. From La Fayette our regiment returned to White's Station, 
about nine miles east of Memphis, where we remained about four weeks, guard- 
ing the railway, which was repaired to Grand Junction, and was used in con- 
veying our army supplies. The weather was extrenfely wet, cold and disagreeable 
during our stay at this place. On January 16th and 17th we had sixteen 
inches of snow; notwithstanding the inclemency of the weather we made our- 
selves quite comfortable while at the station, which contained three or four 
houses. The farms in the immediate vicinity yielded us an abundant supply of 
as fine sweet potatoes and fat Berkshires as we had had the pleasure to meet 
with. The expedition under General Sherman against Vicksburg by the river 
route in aid of General Grant's advance down the Mississippi Central rail- 
road had met a disastrous failure at the Chickasaw Bayou, on the Yazoo Eiver, 
where he landed his forces on December 28th and attacked the rebels, he beiug 
still in ignorance of the Holly Springs disaster, meeting with a loss of about 2.000. 

On the 15th of January General Grant, from his headquarters at Memphis, 
issued Special Orders, Ko. 15, which, among other things, specified that the 
divisions of McArthur, Logan and Quinby should reinforce the expedition 
operating down the Mississippi Eiver against Vicksburg; McArthur was directed 
to embark at once with his troops, Logan to follow as soon as transports could 
be supplied, and Quinby to hold his in readiness. In the beginning of February 
we moved our camp from White Station and established it about two miles from 
Memphis, where we remained about four weeks, and then embarking on steam- 
boats with the rest of the division proceeded from Memphis down the river. 
On arriving at Bunches Bend, La., about three .hundred miles below, we de- 
barked for the purpose of aiding in the operation of opening Bayou Macon for 


the passage of transports through that channel to convey men and supplies to 
a place below Vicksburg. This route being found impracticable, the troops 
went on board the transports and we moved up the Mississippi River to an old 
sand-bar three or four miles below Helena and opposite the place where General 
Grant had caused the levee on the Mississippi Biver to be cut, thus opening 
a passage into Moon Lake, where we remain^ for several days awaiting the 
arrival from the north of small steamboats to transport us down the tortuous 
channel of the old abandoned watercourse called *' Yazoo Pass.'' We embarked 
on the steamboat Pringle with **Dan" for our pilot. Grossing the river we 
passed through the cut made in the bank, and after a short and perilous journey 
ran into Moon Lake, and were soon at the entrance to the pass. Boss, with a 
force of about 5,000 men on transports convoyed by ironclad gunboats, had 
been operating down this stream for months before our arrival. 


General Sanborn says: ** Late in the winter of 1862 the Yazoo Pass expedi- 
tion was organized with the renewed hopes of turning the enemy's right «t 
Haines' Bluff and compelling the evacuation of that position, and using it as a 
landing and base in the operations against Yicksburg. My command formed part 
of the expedition. About 12,000 men and two ironclad monitors were trans- 
ported through this narrow pass to the Cold Water Biver, down the Cold Water 
to the Tallahatchie, and down the Tallahatchie to near the junction of the Yal- 
labusha, where we came upon gunboats, forts, enemies' forces, and a flooded 
country. The waters were so high that no troops could operate except by 
means of transports; and running Mississippi steamers through forests was any- 
thing but satisfactory. The currents were swifb, the channels narrow and over- 
hung with trees. The pilot's bells were constantly ringing to the engineer, and 
the captain of the steamer Pringle, upon which I had my headquarters, was con- 
stantly shouting to tlie engineer, * Back her, Dan,' while the steamer, with seven 
hundred tons freight, would go right on through cottonwood forests, snapping 
off trees from three to nine inches in diameter as if they were pipestems. After 
a day's performance of this kind, I went down to see the engineer, after the boat 
had tied up for the night, and asked him how he had got along. Said he, 'O! 
pretty well, I am only twenty-live bells behind for the day, and nearly all of 
them are to back her, and I am going to make them up the flt*st thing to morrow 
morning after we start.' That force that went into the Yazoo Pass was in great 
peril, and the enemy ought to have captured it. It could not have been landed 
anywhere to operate, and there were many points where batteries might have 
been stationed within their reach that would have rendered it impossible for 
the transports to ptiss. As soon as General Grant was advised of the situation 
he ordered the command back, and added that he would wait with great solici- 
tude the arrival of the troops in the Mississippi Biver. The command returned 
safely and joined the main army at Milliken's Bend. General Quinby, who had 
commanded the division in this movement, was sick when the command came 
out of the, and for the first time command of a division fell upon me, while 
we lay just below Helena in Arkansas, and this was continued until after the 
battle of Poit Gibson.'' 

We returned to our old bivouack on the sand-bar below Helena on April 10th, 
and on the l.'Uh embarked again on the Pringle, and proceeded down the river 
to Milliken's Bend. General Grant's base was at Milliken's Bend, and on our 
arrival we found a large fleet of transports at the landing, and among them sev- 
eral boats which some troops of General Logan's division were protecting with 
wet bales of hay and cotton to enable them to run in safety by the batteries at 
Vicksburg, which were about twenty miles below. The night of April 16th was 
very dark, and eight gunboat^s and three transports, with barges laden with sup- 
plies, at ten o'clock started on that perilous journey. 

General Hanhorn says: **Xo difficulty was met in obtaining volunteers to un- 
dertake the hazardous task of acting as pilots, engineers and firemen upon these 
frail crafts that were to run by the heavy batteries. A few had doubts and mis- 


giviDgs. The request for volanteers was sent to all of the division commanders 
and was read to each regiment at its dress parade. The volanteers were reqnest- 
ed to report at division headquarters. Quite a large number reported from the 
Seventh Division, and one who said that he supposed he was the best pilot in the 
division stated that he had some misgivings about going, but concluded that he 
would volunteer, and did so, and, as I now recollect, he was the only man who 
was killed on the transports in that undertaking. His body waa Mrly severed 
by one of the heavy cannon shot from the Vicksburg battery.'' 


General Sanborn says of this: ^'As the gunboats and transports, laden with 
supplies, were about to start, a large number of other transports were filled with 
officers, and started down the river to a point that would be just beyond the reach 
of the rebel batteries, to see the venturous fleet off on its i)erilous voyage. So 
long a time elapsed after they parted company from their visitors that the hopes 
began to be indulged that they would run past the batteries without being seen 
at all, for there was no moon. The night was one of intense darkness; there was 
not a glimmer of light upon any gunboat or transport. They moved along, si- 
lently and sullenly, in the dense darkness. But suddenly, almost as if by 
flash of electricity, the whole heavens and earth were illuminated, fires blazed 
in every direction, the batteries opened from every point, while the gunboats 
responded with equal vigor, and the heavens seemed to blaze, while 3ie earth 
and river shook. An hour or two passed, and the rockets sent up by the fleet 
below were read to mean that the gunboats had all run past safely, and that but 
one transport had been sunk — the Henry Clay. The news was the occasion of 
inexpressible joy. Now all who had an idea of the sdieme of the campaign that 
had been adopted by the general-in chief knew that it would progress with the 
utmost vigor. From this time on General Grant seemed to make superhuman 
efforts and to be endowed with superhuman power. None who had known him 
the previous year could recognize him as being the same man. During the pre- 
vious year he had been a great deal of the time under a cloud after the battle 
of Shiloh, and when not under a cloud, was, by force of arbitrary orders from 
Washington, on the defensive, and was at no time himself; but from this time 
his genius and his energies seemed to burst forth with new life. In all the move- 
ments the preceding year I never recollect to have seen him upon a gallop, or 
even a trot; he would oftentimes during the campaign down the Central road go 
upon a fast, steady walk with his staff past the columns to the front when the 
skirmishing was heavy, seeming to show no anxiety and to feel no excitement; 
but whenever he was seen now Ms horse was upon a fast trot or gallop, he seemed 
wrought up to the last pitch of determination and energy, and the whole army 
partook of this spirit. The troops were at once put in motion, and with these 
three corps he had the double task to perform of holding a portion of the enemy 
in Vicksburg while he could make a landing with the advance of his column oa 
the east bank of the river below Grand Gulf, and then resist any attacks that 
were made by the combined force of the rebel army upon his advance until he 
could bring up the corps and troops left in the rear to attract the attention of the 
enemy while he made his march down and across the Mississippi Eiver. All 
this was accomplished in the shortest i>ossible time, and without any considerable 

**From Milliken's Bend to the point a little below Grand Gulf, where the 
army embarked and crossed the river to Bruinsburg, by the route marched 
was probably a little more than sixty miles, and a worse march no army ever 
made in the history of military operations. It was a common occurrence for the 
earth, that had become a little hard on top, to break through, and under the tramp 
of the soldiers and the movement of the artillery and trains, had become almost a 
bottomless pit. Guns and carriages that were ordinarily drawn with the greatest 
ease by six horses for quite a long distance, would require from twelve to 
dj^hteen horses to draw a single gun or gun carriage. The infantry picked their 
^y as best they could, but were frequently in the mire to their knees; but no 


one heard a word of complaint, and the marching was continued, without any 
reference to the light of day or the darkness of night, controlled wholly by the 
orders of the commanders. To reach a point on the west bank of the river 
opposite Grand Gulf on the morning of the 1st of May, my division had 
marched most of the time for three nights and rested but a few hours during 
the day. So severe had this effort been, that when a little after sunrise the com- 
mand arrived on the banks of the Mississippi River, opposite Grand Gulf, it 
was met by General McPherson, who congratulated the troops upon getting up, 
and informed them that they could rest until afternoon, and probably untS the 
next morning, without making any movements, and they all fell, as soldiers do, 
at once to making cofifee and getting what they termed a square meal, and mak- 
ing themselves comfortable, but were not half through with their meal before 
the sound of guns at Port Gibson, on the other side of the river, greeted their 
ears and made them a little anxious; and in less than an hour an aid-de-camp 
came back from the corps commander stating that he had received a dispatch 
from General McClemand to the effect that he was attacked by the whole rebel 
army near Port Gibson, and that the whole army must be brought up immedi- 
ately; that Logan had gone forward with his division, and directed me to cross 
at once with the Seventh Division and come forward as rapidly as possible. 
This, according to my best recollection, was about nine o'clock in the morning. 
The entire division, numbering more than 6,000 present for duty, was on the 
east bank of the river by twelve o'clock, and an hour before eunset was in line 
of battle within a few miles of the battlefield, where it had been ordered to form 
across a road running to Grand Gulf, and protect the left flank of the army. 
The men lay upon their arms, but before midnight received the further order to 
come forward immediately to Port Gibson, as it was believed that the battle 
would be renewed in the morning; and before one o'clock the entire division 
was again marching, and did not reach the headquarters of the army until sun- 
rise in the morning. At this place the division, which I had been commanding 
by virtue of my rank as senior of the twelve colonels in the division, in the 
absence of General Quinby, sick, was placed under the command of General 
Crocker, and I took command of my brigade at noon on this day, and continued 
in this command to the surrender, except when commanding the division on the 
afternoon of the 22d of May in the assault. The first great point of the campaign 
had now been made. At least seventy regiments of infantry and thirty batteries 
of artillery were on the high ground south of Vicksburg, in the State of Missis- 
sippi. During all the time that this movement had been going on (General 
Sherman with his corps had been making demonstrations in the vicinity of 
and at Haines' Bluff; had actually moved up the Tazoo, disembarked his 
corps, formed in line of battle, put batteries in position and made every demon- 
stration that would indicate an assault upon that stronghold. The guns at 
Haines' Bluff could be distinctly heard on the day we were crossing the Missis- 
sippi Biver, fifty miles away. Immediately upon learning that the army was 
across, he drew off and followed with all possible speed. The corps and troops 
that had fought the battle of Port Gibson moved on, rebuilt the suspension 
bridge across the north branch of the Bayou Pierre, and on the following day, 
the M of May, drove the enemy across the Black River, at Hankinson's Ferry, 
which was only fifteen or twenty miles below Vicksburg. And here for ten days 
was the most critical condition that the army was placed in during the entire 
campaign. The entire rebel army might come out from Vicksburg any night 
and throw its whole force upon the two corps of the Army of the Tennessee that 
had reached the Black River. Why it was not done cannot be accounted for, 
except upon the theory that the commander of the rebel forces was bewildered 
by the strategy and movements of General Grant, not knowing whether Vicks- 
burg was to be attacked from the Yazoo and Mississippi rivers, or from the 
army that had crossed the Mississippi south of the bluffe. Delay was necessary 
to bring forward the rations for the army, and to enable General Sherman to 
come up with his corps before the main iMtttles were fought. There seemed to 
be no anxiety and no excitement among the offtoers and men during ttiis delay. 


They were equally ready to fight or to await their reinforcements and rations 
without fighting, and it seemed to be a matter of perfect indifference to one and 
to all.'' 

With the exception of one team to each regiment, all of the regimental teams 
were left behind on the west side of the Mississippi River, for the purpose of 
transporting supplies for the army. And leaving Bruinsburg, the army pro- 
cured the most of its supplies from the country through which it passed. Our 
regiment met with no loss at Port Gibson, nor at Forty Hills on May 3d, nor 
at Raymond on May 12th, but at the latter place, in moving up on the double- 
quick, to form on the left of Logan's division, several members of it were sun- 
struck. The enemy's battery commanded the road for some distance on which 
the regiment was advancing, and threw shells recklessly about, but no serious 
damage was inflicted. At Jackson, on May 14th, our regiment was in reserve 
supporting the Seventeenth Iowa Infantry during the engagement, and, while the 
Seventeenth suffered severely, we had but two men wounded and none killed. 


At Champion Hills, the various regiments of our brigade were sent to 
different parts of the field; on arriving at the scene of action our regiment 
formed in support of a battery belonging to Logan's division, but when the line 
of battle had become somewhat broken, and Logan's troops on the right were 
hard pressed, he asked for aid, and our regiment was ordered to advance. An 
aid of Logan's staff directed Lieutenant Colonel Tourtellotte where to go by 
pointing with his finger, and then lefb him. The regiment moved to the front on 
the double quick, and in its advance passed through an interval and on beyond 
the line. A battery of the enemy opened upon us with shells, but shot too high. 
The regiment in its advance came upon quite a large body of the enemy, and the 
lieutenant colonel, seeing quite a large number with their hands up, in token of 
a desire to surrender, ordered the men not to fire and threatened to shoot the 
first man who did. Two or three companies wheeled around and captured one 
hundred and eighteen prisoners. Many more could have been taken, but he did 
not want to advance the regiment beyond the point then held, for fear of the fire 
from our own troops on the left. I^rge bodies of the enemy in marching off 
the field passed within a short distance of our regiment, which was again very 
fortunate in this battle, as it had but two men wounded and none killed. On 
the 17th it moved with the rest of Colonel Sanborn's brigade and aided in build- 
ing a bridge across the Big Blaek, over which the Seventeenth Corps crossed, 
and on the 20th marched to the line investing Vicksburg, and performed the full 
share of duty in the trenches and sharpshoot'ing in front of the enemy's works. 


On May 22d it moved with the other regiments of our brigade to the left 
to support Burbridge's brigade of McClernand's corps, and advanced, under a 
severe and destructive fire of shot and shell, into a position in front of the 
enemy's works, where it remained until after dark. Lieutenant Colonel Tourtel- 
lotte says in his report: ^'No sooner had we taken such position than General 
Burbridge withdrew his brigade from the action under a direct fire from the fort 
in front, and a heavy cross-fire from a fort on our right. The regiment pressed 
forward up to and even on the enemy's works. In this position, contending for 
the possession of the rebel earthworks before us, the regiment remained for two 
hours, when it became dark, and I was ordered by Colonel Sanborn to withdraw 
the regiment." When the regiment retired. Captain R. S. Donaldson had his 
company (C) dmw a cannon that Burbridge's troops had left, off the field, and 
thus prevented its capture by the enemy. Our regiment in this assault had 
twelve men killed and forty-two wounded. A great many of the wounded of our 
army lay up under the enemy's works beyond our reach, suffering dreadful agony 
until the 26th, when the enemy permitted our troops to bury the dead. The 
enemy reported that he found one brave hero of some Union regiment in a 
ditch with his flag wound around his body. General Grant had, on the cessation 


of the battle, requested of Pemberton permission to bury the dead, but it was re- 
fused; finally, when the effluvia from the dead bodies became intolerable, Pem- 
berton was obliged to grant the request. 


The threatening operations of General Joseph E. Johnston made it necessary 
to send an expedition about forty-five miles to the northeast, to a town of three 
or four houses, called Mechanicsburg, and our regiment, with the rest of Colonel 
Sanborn's brigade, marched to that place. The rest of the forces consisted of 
several brigades, and all were under command of General Frank P. Blair. 
Thinking the enemy in force in our front, a line of battle was formed, but one 
or two shots from our battery put the small cavalry command of the enemy, 
which formed a corps of observation, to flight, when we then moved north to the 
Yazoo bottoms, and then down to Snyder's Bluff, near Vicksburg, destroying on 
our route all grist mills, bridges, and all supplies that could be used by the 
enemy during the investment of Vicksburg. The weather during this time was 
intensely hot. We returned in a few days to our former position in front of the 
enemy's works, and actively engaged in aiding in their capture. "We had four 
men of our regiment wounded by the shots of the enemy during these operations. 
On the surrender of the city, July 4th, our regiment marched with the brigade 
into the city, our splendid brass band leading the troops. After the capitula- 
tion and surrender of the city and the army commanded by (Jeneral Pemberton, 
our regiment, with the rest of the division, which was at this time under the 
command of General John E. Smith, moved into Vicksburg and formed a part 
of the army of occupation, and was engaged in guarding the line of works and 
the captured army. During the latter part of July the regiment was assigned 
to duty as provost guard. Sickness and death had reduced its numbers so that 
the returns for the month of June show but 291 enlisted men present in the ranks 
for duty. The enlisted present sick numbered 56. The returns for July show 
the enlisted present to have been 239; on extra and daily duty, 43; sick, 102. 
The returns for August show 213 enlisted men present for duty; on extra and 
daily duty, 50; sick, 46; total enlisted present, 309, besides 16 officers present. 
The balance of the regiment, making an aggregate number of 631, were absent, 
and nearly all sick in hospitals. 

Col. John B. Sanborn had been appointed brigadier general by the president 
after the battle of luka in 1862, but the senate had adjourned in the spring of 
1863 without having taken any action upon this appointment, whereby it lapsed. 
Immediately after the surrender of Vicksburg, (Jeneral Grant had sent to Wash- 
ington a list of officers recommended by him for promotion for services in that 
campaign. This list included Col. Sanborn. The promotions recommended by 
General Grant were all made at once, except this one, and the commissions 
issued were received from Washington at G^eneral Grant's headquarters, on or 
about the 3d day of August, 1863. On this account Col. Sanborn at once ten- 
dered his resignation as colonel of the Fourth Minnesota Infantry. This resig- 
nation was accepted by General Grant, and the colonel left for St. Paul. But 
the order of General Grant accepting the resignation was disapproved and re- 
voked by the president, and on Sept. 12, 1863, the president again appointed 
Col. Sanborn brigadier general of volunteers, said appointment to date, and he 
to take rank from the date of Aug. 4, 1863, and he remained in the service 
through the war and until June, 1866. 


On the 12th day of September, 1863, our regiment and the balance of the 
division left Vicksburg for the purpose of aiding General Steele's army in ^he 
operations against Little Rock, and on arriving at Helena debarked, ready to 
march for that place; but as his forces had been successful in their capture of 
that city, it moved by boat with the division to Memphis, and there awaited the 
arrival of General Sherman with his corps, to proceed across the country to 
Chattanooga to the relief of the army under General Bosecrans, then besieged 


by Braggs' army. Oar division, for this purpose, was attached to the Fifteenth 
Army Corps. It moved by rail to Corinth, then, debarking from the cars, the 
line of mardi was continued along the railroad to Bear Creek bridge, a few miles 
east of luka, where a halt was ms^e and the railroad repaired. During the latter 
part of October the commanding general abandoned the railroad and started 
with the army on a march across the country to Chattanooga. Crossing the Ten- 
nessee Biver, the army marched in an easterly direction, and gathered such 
scanty forage as the country produced while moving along. The weather during 
the march was for the greater part of the time cold, wet and disagreeable, and the 
roads rough, rocky and muddy. Small creeks and large streams were numerous 
and difficult to cross. The day's marches would range from twelve to twenty- 
two miles each. On arriving at Winchester the rations were very short, and 
supplies were obtained from Ducherd, and after passing the latter place dead 
mules and horses were encountered in considerable quantities along the roadside. 
The army passed up the Cumberland Mountains to the summit, thence down 
Sweden Cove and on to Bridgeport, at which place it crossed the Tennessee 
Biver. It crossed again at Brown's Ferry, and bivouacked in the ravines near 
Crane's Hill, across from Chattanooga. There was, on November 23d, of enlist- 
ed men present for duty, 191; on extra and daily duty, 41; sick, 10; total en- 
listed, 242, besides 17 commissioned officers. General Sherman's army crossed 
the Tennessee Biver in boats built for that purpose, and landed a few miles above 
the city of Chattanooga. The troops of General Giles A. Smith's brigade were 
the first to make the crossing. The boats then returned, and the Fourth Minne- 
sota Infantry was ferried over, and were the first troops of our brigade or divis- 
ion to make the crossing. The brigade commander called the r^mental 
commanders together, and Lieutenant Colonel Tourtellotte volunteered to lead 
the troops of our brigade with our regiment, and that is why they led. This 
act saved the command from taking the lead the next day, when it would un- 
doubtedly have met with a severe loss in that engagement. On landing on the 
north bank of the Tennessee Biver our regiment deployed as skirmishers and 
covered the division front while it was crossing, and also its advance in column 
by divisions. It was in front as skirmishers during the entire day, being relieved 
at 8 p. M. by the Forty-eighth Indiana. We were in reserve during the 25th, 
and as Bragg's army had retreated, our regiment, on the 25th, with the remain- 
der of the division, took the road in pursuit. The regiment had lost in the bat- 
tle but one man, who was thought to be slightly wounded; he died, however, on 
December 3d. We marched for several days in pursuit of the enemy, and then 
we turned to the old camp across the river from Chattanooga, where our camp 
equipage, horses and trains had been left. The weather was very cold and dis- 
agreeable during these operations, and our men were on very scanty rations, a 
part of the time the supply being quarter-rations, and some of the time we had 
none at all. In a few days the command marched to Bridgex>ort, where it re- 
mained about three weeks, and then moved with the rest of the brigade on a 
forced march to Huntsville to relieve troops at that point. Soon after arriving 
at HuBteville the regiment went on an expedition to the Tennessee Biver, about 
twenty five miles away, to destroy some ferryboats that the enemy was using, 
and marched all night, passing through Madison Station on the route. In return- 
ing we gathered a large drove of animals and poultry of all kinds, and returned 
to Huntsville with forage enough to supply the whole brigade. The weather 
during the return march was extremely cold, and ice formed two inches thick. 


On Jan. 1, 1864, about three-fourths of the men present re-enlisted as veterans 
for three years moreof service, and on March 5th started on the cars for Minnesota 
on* veteran furlough. On arriving at Anderson Station, Tenn., another train 
collided with ours, several of our cars were burned, and one man of Company K 
was burned to death in the wreck, as were also several ladies who were passen- 
gers. On arriving at La Crosse the citizens entertained us with a bountiful 
dinner, and a newspaper in that city published an article of two or three 


colamns in length, commendatory of the services of the regiment and the gentle- 
manly conduct of oar men. On arriving at Winona the regiment partook of a 
sapper prepared by the ladies of the city, and then continued the journey by 
boat to Be&d's Landing, where it became necessary to travel on the ice to Bed 
Wing by wagons. The weather at this time was very cold. The command ar- 
rived at St. Paul on March 20th, and the next day was fdrloughed for thirty 
days. We left St. Paul to return to the army at Huntsville on April 24, 1864, on 
the steamboat Itasca. On arriving at Dunleith we took the cars and proceeded 
by rail to Cairo, and from there by boat to Nashville, and from thence by rail 
to Huntsville, where we arrived May 4th and remained until June 22d, when we 
marched with the rest of the division for Atlanta. 


On arriving at Stevenson, Ala., the command took the cars and prqueeeded to 
Kingston, Oa., where our regiment was stationed on provost and fati^e duty. 
The regiment arrived in time to celebrate the Fourth of July. We marched with 
the brigade from Kingston to Altoona, and formed a part of the force stationed 
there. Lieutenant Colonel Tourtellotte was the post commander, and M^yor J. 
C. Edson commanded the regiment. This place, which afterward became famous, 
was located at a point of the mountain range where a railway passed through 
a deep cut. During the latter part of August several companies of the regiment 
went north on the cars to Cowan Station, and Elk Biver, Tenn., to guard the 
railway against the enemy's cavalry, and were gone about thirty days on 
that duty. Altoona was about forty miles north of Atlanta, where General 
Sherman's army was operating against the rebels under Hood, who, about the 
2d of September, evacuated that city and moved against Sherman's line of com- 
munications. There were two small redoubts and some rifle-pits on either side of 
the hill at the pass, and General Sherman had established his depot of supplies 
for the army at this place* Hood detached the division of General French, and 
sent them to capture the post and supplies. Our little command had for several 
days previous to the attack seen the heavens to the south shining with the glare 
of the burning railroad, and on the night of the 4th were aware of the presence 
of a considerable force of the enemy, by their attack upon the picket posts, and 
knew that when dawn appeared they would be upon us. The garrison consisted 
of less than 1,000 men and the guns of the Twelfth Wisconsin Battery. Gen- 
eral Corse arrived from Bome about midnight with another 1,000, making the 
total less than 2,000. These troops came on a freight train, and had just time to 
get in before the enemy cut the line of communication. On arrival. Corse and 
his troops, with a portion of Tourtellotte's force, occupied the works on the west 
side of the track. Tourtellotte remained on the east side with the Fourth Min- 
nesota and a part of the Eighteenth Wisconsin under Lieutenant Colonel Jack- 
son; the guns of the battery being divided three upon either side. Tourtellotte 
during the action commanded the troops on the east. Picket firing was lively 
during the night, and at daylight the ball opened by a shell fired from our eastern 
redoubt at the place where, about three-fourths of a mile to the south, it was be- 
lieved the enemy had planted his batteries. They soon replied and a lively can- 
nonade was kept up until about 8 A. M. of October 5th, when French sent in a 
demand for the surrender of the Union forces. Corse answered and declined. 
During the night the enemy had placed his infantry upon three sides of the 
works, and at once moved to the assault. Company E of our regiment had been 
sent out during the night by Major Edson to hold a pass in the wagon road that 
led to the north, and at 9 A. M., being hard pressed, Company K was sent to its 
support. The enemy attacked these, and being flanked and in great danger of 
being captured, they managed to get back into our lines. The battle raged with 
a fury and desperation seldom equaled and never surpassed, until about 4 p. m., 
when the enemy, who had charged repeatedly up under the works, and been as 
often repulsed and driven back, gave up the contest, and in single numbers tried 
to make his escape from the field. About eighty men and officers of the Thirty- 
fifth and Thirty-ninth Mississippi Infantry had charged over a ridge and into a 


gully down iu front of Company A, and the adjntant of our regiment, taking 
Companies H and C out on an unprotected hillside, they opened fire on their 
left flank, which caused them to surrender. Corse reported his loss at 142 killed, 
353 wounded and 212 missing. The Fourth Minnesota numbered 450 muskets, 
and met with a loss of 13 killed and 31 wounded; total, 44. It also captured 
the flags of the Thirty-fifth and Thirty-ninth Mississippi, and they were sent to 
the adjutant general of Minnesota by Major J. C. Eiison, and they are now in 
his office. Several of our men fought in this battle after the period of their en- 
listments had expired, and some of these were killed in the action. The esti- 
mated strength of the enemy by our forces was 7,000, and his estimated loss 

During the progress of the battle. General Sherman, from the heights of 
Kenesaw Mountain, and about eighteen miles away, toward Atlanta, signaled to 
Altoona to learn if Corse had arrived, and received a signal reply that satisfied 
him, and this circumstance is referred to in the song, ^'Hold the Fort for I am 
Coming.'' Sherman's army soon followed closely after Hood's, who retreated 
toward Alabama, and in a few days our communications were again open. 
Active preparations were now made for the campaign through Georgia to 
Savannah. Supplies were rapidly brought to the front, the convalescent and 
those unable to travel were sent Korth, and the army was stripped of surplus 
animals and property, which were sent to the rear, and, on the 14th of Novem- 
ber it had assembled at and near to Atlanta. On the 15th it started on the 


Our regiment marched with the rest of General John E. Smith's Third Division 
of the Fifteenth Corps, Colonel Tourtellotte in command, and having received 
several hundred recruits from Minnesota while at Altoona, during the months of 
September and October, was pretty full in numbers. Hood's army, left behind, 
had started on its pilgrimage toward Nashville, while ours was running in 
another direction, and to be the guests of the people of G^rgia for a (£ort 
season. These two armies in their movements at this time presented a spectacle 
seldom seen in military campaigns. The kind people of Georgia made but little 
opposition to our advance. Their sweet potato patches were generally numer- 
ous, their corncribs abundant and the melody of their garden fowls sounded as 
sweetly to the ears of our ** bummers" as that of their relatives had over in 
Mississippi and Tennessee. And as the country had not been stripped of its 
supplies by the operation of hostile forces, it yielded sufficient, so that, with the 
rations carried in the army trains, and a very large drove of cattle that we 
started with, there was not much sufifering on the excursion through the state. 
There was no battle, and only an occasional skirmish fought. With the exception 
of three rainy days the weather was pleasant during the entire time previous 
to December 7th, and, as the course of the streams was ordinarily in the same 
direction as our line of march, it lessened the difficulties. On arriving at Gor- 
don, a few days out from Atlanta, we worked until eleven o'clock at night and 
destroyed a mile and a half of the Macon railroad, by burning the ties and twisting 
the rails like doughnuts. Our army arrived before Savannah on the 10th day of 
December. During the picnic through the state our regiment had met with no loss, 
but soon after reaching the lines near Savannah three of our men were wounded, 
and before the surrender of the city, several of them, while out with a train forag- 
ing, were taken prisoners. Our rations got short on approaching the vicinity 
of Savannah, and the men sufiered considerable privation. The city having 
been evacuated by Hardee's forces, our army took possession on the 21st. When 
General Sherman's army started on its campaign through the Carolinas, a part 
of the army was moved by boat to Beaufort. Our regiment started across the 
Savannah Eiver, but the excessive rains had raised the water over the narrow 
dike, so that the wagon trains could not get to the mainland, and a part of the 
division train was lost in the river. Details of our men worked all night trying 
to save the train, and the next afternoon we returned to our old camp in the 
suburbs of the city. We then embarked on a steamship and were conveyed to 


Beaufort, and after a few days' sojoarn at this place, marched inland by Pocoto- 
ligo to McPhersonville, where, on January 31st, we found the rest of our brigade, 
and the next day started inland on the campaign. On coming to Duck Greek at 
noon on the fifth day out, it was expected that serious opposition would be met 
in crossing it, as the enemy held the opposite Wnk. Our regiment was sent 
to drive them away, and after deploying several companies as skirmishers, 
our boys charged through the stream, which was waist-deep, and found a fine 
plantation on the other side, which abounded in comforts of which our men stood 
in need — poultry, sweet potatoes, etc. The Johnnies had concluded to vacate, 
but left our men the supplies. That was a charge that paid. The country we 
were then in was level and covered with small pines and oaks. Another day's 
march brought the command to the Salkehatchie Swamp and Biver, on which 
our regiment passed without any opposition. On reaching the railroad near 
Bamberg our men helped to tear it up, burn the ties and twist the iron, then 
marched across the Edisto Biver toward Orangeburg, and when near that city 
turned north toward Columbia. On the 17th of February we marched through 
the city and established our camp outside its limits. Our regiment aided in 
destroying the ammunition and ordnance stores captured at the arsenal, and 
in doing so had one man seriously injured by the explosion of several wagon- 
loads of ammunition as they were being thrown in the river. Our part of the 
army left Oolumbia on the 20th, and, marching over a high, rocky and rolling 
country, crossed the Wateree Biver, near which place the enemy captured one 
of our men. On arriving in the vicinity of Little Lynches Creek the country 
became flat and the rain fell incessantly. The enemy hovered near, and, in an- 
ticipation of an attack, breastworks were thrown up. We moved on a few miles 
to Big Lynches Creek and found the bottoms submerged and a flood of water 
three-fourths of a mile wide before us. Our troops bridged this, and we moved 
on toward Cheraw, which we reached on the night of March 3d, after suflering 
many hardships and privations; a part of the time being very short of rations, aa 
most of the country through which we had passed was thinly settled and yielded 
very little to our foragers. The enemy in evacuating Charleston had moved a 
large quantity of ordnance and commissary supplies to this city, which we cap- 
tured. We were now abundantly supplied, and the starvation period had, for a 
short season, ended, and our feasting began. It is either a feast or a starve with 
OS. We remained but a few days here, when we marched for Fayetteville. The 
weather was still broken by rainstorms, one afler the other, and the roads were 
horrible. On arriving near Shoe-Heel Creek, our men worked all night long, 
pulling and lifting the mule teams and wagons over a bottomless swamp, rain 
^ling incessantly. On the 12th of March we reached the vicinity of Fayette- 
ville, and, crossing the Cape Fear Biver, established our camp near the town. 
We left this camp in a rainstorm, and marching all day, over, under and through 
a flat country, night overtook us stuck in the mud, with the teams down in all 
directions. For three days we fought with the elements of mud and rain. The 
country was sparsely settled, and contained nothing that we hankered for. The 
people were barefooted, and even razor-back, rail-splitter hogs were a curiosity. 
On the fourth day we traveled over a finer country. Pitch pine, however, still 
abounded as the principal kind of timber, bat the country was higher, more 
rolling, the plantations larger and more numerous. During the 


on the 19th, 20th and 21st, our regiment was not actively engaged. It built 
three different lines of breastworks, but, with the rest of the division, was held 
in reserve, and while the shots of the enemy passed freely overhead we had only 
two or three men wounded during the battle. Johnston having retreate<l with 
his army our command marched to Qoldsboro. On arriving, established our 
camp two miles from the city, and opened communications once more with 
** God's country,'' and procured a supply of all things needed for our dbmfort ex- 
cept money. The army expected to receive pay in this place, but was disap- 
pointed. Many of our men were barefooted, and all were ragged. Ctoneral 


Sherman reorganized his army at this place. Colonel Toortellotte took command 
of the brigade of which oar regiment formed a part, and Captain L. B. Wellman, 
in the al^nce of Lieutenant Colonel James C. Edson, who went North on sick- 
leave from this place, assnmed command of the regiment. Our army left Golds- 
boro on April 10th, and took the line of march for Baleigh, where we remained 
in camp near the city. General Johnston snrrendered his army to General Sher- 
man while our forces were here, on April 26th, and we received information a 
few days previous of the assassination of President Lincoln. While here at Ba- 
leigh our brigade was broken up and the regiments assigned to different com- 
mands, and Colonel Tourtellotte resumed command of the regiment. On the 
29th of April our troops left their camps and marched for Bichmond. Kothing 
worthy of note occurred on the march. The war had ended; foraging for sup- 
plies to sustain the army had ceased. The country was better, more beautiful, 
aud the plantations contained an abundance of everything we needed, and our 
men would have rejoiced a short time previous to have become acquainted with 
it, but strict discipline and good order was maintained. The orders were to 
march by easy stages, ten miles a day, and to rest over Sundays, but the day's 
marches would average from eighteen to twenty-five miles each. The army, 
traveling by different roads, rac^ to Bichmond and Washington to see which 
corps would get there first, and many men were literally marched into their 
graves. The country passed through was higher and better; the weather had 
also improved. The gin houses had been left behind, and King Tobacco, instead 
of Cotton, held sway. The army in its march passed through Petersburg. On 
the 10th day of May our regiment, with the rest of our division, encamped on 
the i)luff opposite Bichmond, and within a half mile of the little town of Man- 

The march was resumed, and, passing through Bichmond, the army pursued 
its course to Washington. Our division passed through Fredericksburg, Dum- 
fries, and the grounds at Mt. Vernon; passed, with uncovered heads, by the 
tomb of Washington, paying a tribute of respect to the memory of the patriot 
of 1776. The column then resumed its mardi to Alexandria. Lieutenant Col- 
onel Edson and a large number of our men who had been North joined our regi- 
ment at this camp. On the 24th of May the regiment marched at the head of 
the column of General Sherman's grand army of 65,000 veterans in the review 
at Washington, and, passing through the city, established its camp five miles out 
at Crystal Springs. Leaving its camp near Washington the last of May, the 
regiment marched to the city and with the rest of the Army of the Tennessee 
moved by rail to Parkersburg on the Ohio Biver. Embarking on the steamboat 
Champion, it proceeded with the rest of the army down the river to Louisville, 
Ky. , and established its camp near that city, and there remained until July 19, 
1865, when it was mustered for discharge out of the service. The next day the 
command embarked upon the cars and proceeded on its journey to St. Paul, 
passing through Indianapolis, Chicago and Milwaukee. On arriving at La 
Crosse we embarked on the steamboat Northern Belle, and on July 24th arrived 
at St. Paul. The fire companies of the city escorted the command to the state 
house, where the governor of the state and the mayor of the city addressed our 
men. The veterans then dispersed, and all who desired proceeded to their 
homes with orders to report at St. Paul on August 5th, to sign the pay rolls and 
receive their final discharges. The men reported, and, having signed the rolls, 
were paid to include Aug. 7, 1865, and were once more free citizens of the great 
republic Many of them had served almost four years of the best part of their 
lives to preserve our (Government; having had but little honor and no adequate 
pay for their services. Many of them in the ranks were men of fine ability, able 
and worthy to command a company or the regiment, with credit to themselves 
and honor to the Government. Many of these heroes were entitled to promotion 
but never received it. I have not included in this narrative a statement of their 
numerous and often long foraging expeditions, and were I to estimate the num- 
ber of miles traveled on them I would at least double the distance given in this 
record; nor have I included each day's march with its number of long weary 


miles that oar gallant heroes measured, often with blistered feet and galled 
bodies from carrying their loads; nor names of those wounded and killed in bat- 
tle by the rebels, nor in the camps and hospitals by disease. In using the word 
"tre" I refer to those who were with the regiment at the time mentioned and 
not to myself. There were in all about 1,602 officers and enlisted men who were 
members of this regiment at different times. 

I have been aided in my work by many persons, and I extend my thanks to 
them all, but more especially to George E. Sly and Thomas M. Young of Com- 
pany A, Washington Muzzy of CJompany H, and Captain W. W. Bich, as these 
gentlemen placed their records at my disposal and helped me more than any of 
the others. ^ 

^On April 17, 1863, while our army was at Mllliken's Bend, La., C^neral Lorenzo Thomas, 
adjutant general of the armies of the United States, visited it at that place, and in an address to 
the soldiers informed them that the Government of the United States had decided .to arm the ne- 
groes and make soldiers of them to aid in patting down the Rehellion. He informed the troops of 
oar division that he woald give them the officers for two regiments, and he did not care if they 
were all private soldiers provided they were competent; that whoever the regimental and division 
commander recommended he wonld commission. After General Thomas had ceased speaking sev- 
eral other officers expressed their views npon this subject, and when the exercises were over our 
men began to discuss among themselves the propriety of arming the freedmen and nsing them to 
aid ns in onr great straggle. The enemy used them against us in all ways but to shoot guns. We 
believed that those who entered the service and were captured by the enemy would not be treated 
as prisoners of war, but as outlaws, and perhaps killed at once. Colonel Sanborn soon received 
four times as many applications as were needed. The foUowing named persons were discharged at 
different times from our regiment and entered this branch of the service: Thomas P. Wilson, com- 
missary sergeant, was promoted to first lieutenant and quartermaster Eleventh Louisiana Imantiy 
(afterward numbered the Forty-ninth United States €k)lored Infantry), which he helped to organ- 
ize. Maj. Wilson's record is given in the volunteer staff. He was brevetted miyor at the end of 
the war, and has served as quartermaster general of Minnesota since Nov. 10, 1871. Francis 
£. Collins, quartermaster sergeant, promoted to first lieutenant Eleventh Louisiana Infantiy, and 
helped to organize the regiment; resigned in 1863. Augustus Pintler of Company I promoted to 
lieutenant Eleventh Louisiana Infismtry; he helped to organize the regiment. Thomas F. Sturte- 
vant of Company F promoted to first lieutenant Company C, Forty-ninth United States Colored 
Infjemtry, Feb. 6, 1864. John H. Thurston of Company C promoted to quartermaster sergeant 
Forty-ninth United States Colored Infantry, and also first lieutenant and adjutant of the same 
regiment; resigned in the fall of 1864, and then acted as clerk for Captain T. P. Wilson until the 
close of the war. William H. Hall of Company D promoted to commissary sergeant Forty-ninth 
United States Colored Infantiy, and first lieutenant and quartermaster of theeame regiment: dur- 
ing the last year of his service was ordnance officer on the staff of General P. J. Osterhaus; finally 
mustered out March 22, 1866. Julius F. Putnam of Company I promoted, Oct. 31, 1864, to 
Forty-second United States Colored Infantry. (Am unable to find any other record.) Robert S. 
Donaldson, captain of Company C, promoted, July 24, 1863, at Vicksburg, to lieutenant colonel 
Twelfth Louisiana Infantry (afterward numbered Fiftieth United States Colored Infantiy) ; helped 
to organize the regiment; promoted and transferred to Sixty-fourth United States Colored Infantry 
in July, 1865; was detailed in the Bureau of Refugee Freedmen and Abandoned Lands as superin- 
tendent in charge of the northern half of Mississippi, with headquarters at Jackson; finally mus- 
tered out of service March 17, 1866. Alonzo L. Brown of Company B, on July 24, 1863, at 
Vicksburg, was promoted to first lieutenant Company E, Twelfth Louisiana Infantry, or Fiftieth 
United States Colored Infantry, and helped to organize the company and regiment; promoted to 
captain of the same company; was with his command at Blakely, Ala., in the assault over the 
works on April 9, 1865; on May 9th, 1865, was detailed and served as acting assistant quartermas- 
ter at Montgomery, Ala., and also as assistant superintendent and aid on the staff of M^j. Gen. 
Wager Wayne in the Bureau of Refugee Freedmenand Abandoned Lands in Alabama until March 20, 
1866, when he was finally mustered out of service. Ebenezer M. Broughton of Company H, on 
July 24, 1863, at Vicksburg, was promoted to captain of Company E, Twelfth Louisiana Infantry, 
or Fiftieth United States Colored Infantiy, and helped to organize the company and regiment; he 
resijjned at Vicksburg, on Aug. 29, 1864, by reason of sunstroke received at the battle of Raymond 
on May 1*2, 1863. Joseph Meyer of Company G, on July 24, 1863, at Vicksburg, was promoted to 
second lieutenant Company E, Twelfth Louisiana Infantry, or Fiftieth United States Colored In- 
fantry, and helped to organize the company and regiment; he resigned, in 1864, at Vicksburg. 
KoWrt P. Miller of Company K promoted, July 27, 1863, at Vicksburg, to second lieutenant of 
Company K. Twelfth Ix>uisiana Infantry, or Fiftieth United States Colored Infantry, and helped 
to organize the coin])any and regiment; resigned Feb. 1, 1864. John A. Davis of Company C pro- 
moted, Dec. 31, 1-^63, to second lieutenant Company F; resigned in 1864. Zinab B. Chatfield of 
Company A wa.s for a short time in the Twelfth Louisiana Infantry, and then promoted to captain 
in another colored rejrinient. Calvin Amidon of Company C promoted to first sergeant of Com- 
pany I, Twelfth Louisiana Infantry, at Vicksburg, and died before being commissioned an officer. 


The first or orderly sex'geants of these colored regiments were white soldiers, who were transferred 
to these regiments, and generally had to serve bat a short time before they were promoted to com- 
missioned officers. 

Promoted as officers in the Mississippi Marine Brigade: Francesco V. De Coster of Company D 
promoted, on Jan. 1, 1863, to captain Company D, cavalry, Mississippi Marine Brigade; finally mas- 
tered ont Ang. 9, 1664. Frank W. Handsoombe promoted, Feb. 19, 1863, to first lieutenant Mis- 
sissippi Marine Brigade; discharged in Angnst, 18^3. 

In Regular Army : John E. Toortellotte, colonel; resigned June 21, 1865, because of disability; 
captain Twenty-eighth United States Infantry July 28, 1866; assigned to Seventh Cavalry Dec 13, 
18i70; appointed aid-de-camp (with rank of colonel) to the general of the army Jan. 1, 1871, and 
continued on that duty until Feb. 9, 1884; was made major of Seventh Cavalry Sept 22, 1883, and 
was retired for disability March 20, 1885. 






OAoneU — 

John B. Sanborn 

John E. Tourtellotle. 

Lieutenant ColoneU — , 

Minor T. Thomaa 

James C. Edson 

Majors — 

A. Edward Welch 

Luther L. Baxter 

Leverett R. Wellman.... 
Adjutant* — 

John M. Thompson 

Wm. T. Kittredge 

Watson W. Rich 

Frank S. De Mera 

Quartermasters — 

Thos. B. Hunt 

D. M. G. Murphy 

Samuel W. Russell 

Surgeons — 

John H. Murphy 

El isha W. Cross 

Henry R.Wedel 

A ss ista n t Sn rgeon — 

Geo. M. D. Lambert 

Chaplains — 

AsaS. Fiske 

Chaa. H. Savidge 

Strgeant Major — 

Daniel W. Porter 

Quartermaster Sergeants — 

Francis El. Collins 

Joseph A. Qoding 

Wm. S. Longstreet 

(hmmijmrp Sergeants — 

Tho«. P.Wilson 

Frederick 8. Woodward 

Jeremiah Fredenberg... 
Hosyifat Stetrards — 

Gfo. M. D. Lambert 

Charles Primbs 

Princiy»al Musicians — 

James Davis 

Hiram Marcves 

Wilburs. Kimball 









Jan. 1. '62 
Oct. 5, '64 

Nov. 6, '61 
Sept. 16, '64 

Apl. 10, '62 
June 22, '65 

Oct. 30, '61 
Dec. 3, '62 
May 4, '64 
June 22, '65 

Jan. 1,'62 
Apl. 9, '6.S 
Jan. 6, '64 










Dec. 4, '61 
Aug. 9, '63 
Feb. 9, '65 

Feb. 9, '65 

Jan. 30, '62 
Dec. 19, '64 

Oct. 29, '64 

Dec. 23, '61 


July 19, '65 

July 19, '65 

July 19, '65 


July 19, '65 

Dec 10, '61 

July 19, '65 
July 19, '65 

July 19, '65 

Apl. 22, '65 
July 19, '65 

July 19, '65 

July 19, '65 
July 19, '65 


Brigadier General Aug. 4, '63; Brt Mi^. Gen. Feb. 10, '65. 

Captain Company H, Lieutenant Colonel Aug. 24, '62; re- 
signed June 21, '65; Captain U. 8. A. July 28, '66. 

Colonel 8th Minnesota Infantry Aug. 24, '62. 

Captain Company B, Mi^or Feb. 11, '64; Lieutenast Colonel 
Sept. 16, '64. 

Died Feb. 1, '64, at Naahyille, Teon. 

Resigned Oct. 10. '62. 

2d Ueutenant Company C, Ist Lieutenant, Captain Company 

Captain Company E Nov. 20, '62. 

Serg. Mid., 2d Lt. Co. B Not. 7, '62; Capt., A. A Gen. Aug. 12, *64. 

Captain Company D June 21, '65. 

Promoted ftx»m Sergeant Major, 2d Lieutenant Company K 
Not. 7, '64. 

Captain and Acting Quartermaster April 9, '63. 

Captain Company B May 3, '64. 

Sergeant Company G, 2d and Ist -Lieutenant Company I. 

Resigned July 9, '68. 

Pro. from Assistant Surgeon July 9, '63; resigned Dec. 22, '64. 

Promoted from Assistant Surgeon Jan. 9, '65. 

Promoted flrom 1st Lieutenant Company A Dec. 21, '64. 

Resigned Oct. 8, '64. 

Dis. for pro. in 49th U. 8. Colored Infantry as Ist Lieut, in 'OS. 
Discharged for disability June 14, '61. 

Dis. for pro. in 49th U. S. Col. Troops as Ist Lt. and A. A. Q. Bf. 

Re-enl. Jan. 1,'64; pro. 1st Lieutenant Company A March 25/64. 

Reduced and transferred to Company E March 2, '64. 


BOSTBB OF Company A — Qmlia«ed. 

Diftljuij- ;;, '62. 

DlMbiTged per onJ*r'jun« li.'ttl. 
Rc-eulialed Jm.l.'ei. 
Dlscbirged for diubllltT Feb. 16, '63. 
t(«^nLlMfilJan. 1/64. 
DUcliirged p«r order JuDS II, 'tS. 


Dn(wd;di«blrged per order JuIt I0,>S3. 

Dtwned Jan.2», '63. 


Dlschirged per order Mar i7, '-V. 

DiKhflreed fur promotlou in U. S. Hrrlce June!, ' 


Dbcbftrged per erdef May 2T, '65, 

CorponT; dJKbarged for di^ablUlT Kot. 19, '62. 

l>Tafted^ dlBchuged per order June iO, '6S. 

DledorVoundarecelTedat battle or luka, Sept. IS 
Dlacbarged (or diublUIr fcam woDodi Jan. 19, '63. 
Re'«Dllsled Jan. J, 'U: promoted Corporal. 
DlKtaatged for dla*blllty Dee. 31 , '62. 

Dltcbarnd pet order June Ifl, 'S5. 

EUllfd OcC 6, '64, *t Altoona, G*., aAer eip. (erm otaerrlce. 

Irt Serg.; pro. M Lieul., lit Lleul. and Capl.; Re. Dec SO, '61. 

Promoled Cotporal; diacbarged Od. IJ, '64. 

Promoted Corporal; dlscbareed Oct. II, '64. 

Dijcharged per order JuEie 12, '65. 

DlKbur^ed hr dlnbllllT Aug. 31, '53. 

Promoted Corporal; m-enllated J»o. I, '64; promoted SergMnt 

tU-enlliled Feb. 16, '64; pro. Corporal; dii. per order Ma; 23, '6S 

Drafted; dlacharged per order June 21, '60. 

^iTsd UaT 21, '63, VIduburs; Sent. 

- Ji.!a,'«i. 

Died Juoe, 'SS,at Uilllkeu'i Bend, Ll 
DlHharged per order Umj m, ti. 
Di>cb«ived per Older jDDe It, '6!. 
MuilcUn:re4Dllited Jin.  '■ 
Pnfted; dlHhi 
Treiiarerred to 
I>ltf barged for < 
Promoted Corporal 

Dnned; d«er<ed from Loulitlile. K*., Jult I. '69. 

Died at Memphb.Tenn., Feb. I6,e3. 

Servant; promowd lat Sernani; dlKharged Sept. JO, 'M. 

Servant; promowd latSernanl; 
DtKhar^ed for dlubllllr tfoT. t: 
Plicbarged par order June II, '« 

8u bit Hull. 

D«Hrted Oct. S, '81, from Fort 8nelUng. 

Dlacbarged per order Jooe II, '69. 

Con> , Sergeant; rfr4nL Jan. 1. 'H; dis. for dlub. No>. 10. 'M. 

SutatUuU; dlKbarged per order Xtj IS, '69. 

DUcharjod for dlaabllltr Oct. SO, '61. 

pro. Conxinil, lit Lleuteuaol.CapUIn CempanT C Jan. 7. '64. 

Draltrd; dl«b.rged per order Uaj' 19, '65. 

ranil^rr«l lo Velerau Beeerie 
iMharged lor ^'liab'illtT Sept. t: 

Worklnu, Fr.'dertck Diecbarged for dlaabilllj Not. 17, t 

Woironr ['arid ^uballtulc. 

Wur-t. Ilenrv DfKbarKed for dlaablUtr Juir " " 

Taoni.Thaiiiai M , , : 4 Promoled Corporal: commlMJ 

Yoiinif, .lobn ; Kllledal Alloena, t3<L,Ool.B, 

. _. . . ._, dlKhargod Julj l,t! 
ditablllirOet.?, '62, 


Font, FavriieF: 33 Connnl; dlKharnd for dliibllllTOcI. 3, '6' 

FnucbJohDK 1» 

Fnuk, .lofan. is Tnnafeind rrom CampuDj K. 

Fu1ler..S»nitcl t n 

Ortehell, Wm. W Wigoner; dlKli»rgtil for dliubiliij D.-c. 31, ' 

Gwl>li'h,Chu R 

GIlMin, (imnn W..... 

Oadllw, Jixepb A ._.. M Promolod Qii«rtenout»r9ergMTit; transferred lo ». C. a«ff. 

Grahun.Orliinila Corponl; pronioUd 2d LisuteoaDtCo. B. Isl LLniltDut Co. D. 

GrOttr.JohnB Rt-»nlLMM Jlin ' 1U- nmrnnteil Cnmnr.1 

Gunderfon.Kniidt,.. IMedSenu 17, ' 

HiDBCom, Frincii W UlwhirgMl Pf 

HuTli, Wllkrd L Bfr^Dllaled Ji 

Heck, j£ 


Hern, D*TJdW. IS Dlscbareed rocdiuhiUtT Aui«. 6, '6?. 

Hcmerlch, Mlchul... N 

HIUbiireT^iii!!!!!!:!!!! 21 , DiKbaned rord<ubl[[ly Sept. 7. '«2. 

HopklniiChu-ln. SO . IJIschaived fordijablliiy June 18.'G3. 

Boptlns, AnaoD so ..^ ripsened Ocl. 1», '61. 

HunWr, Jobn P 17 Died Marjl, '63, «u boiplta] boat; Ion 1e 

Roaraa of Compakv B— Continued. 


... Il_ 





June 12. -M 

Aug. IB, -64 

Died Oct. W. 'flS. 


PromauS Corponl uidSsneanl' dli. fordlHbUKj Jiil*l" 'U. 

IHmIuj^ tor diMbllliT Aug. 6, 'fL 

Apr, H. -83 

Apl. 2i;'« 


Sept. S» -61 

Oct. 11, '64 

Corporal; pnnnoted SeigeiDt. 


Juir 18. t6 


Oct. 11 '64 

July 19, '6» 

UDdoUDi dlKbarged for dlMbUItT Sept. 4, '«2. 



Oct. 11, '61 


Aug. 15, 'M 

Aui[,a), '64 


Mcfi.i:,'W JuljlB,'M 


Mcb.20,'fi0 Juir 19. 'M 



Stpcgo •«■ 

DIsa Sept. 33, 'S3. 

Sept. 17 '01 



Sept. 3D 'M 



Died Dec 3, '03. 



Oct. Il,'ft4 


Aug. 15^ -U 



Ity Deo. 18, ■S2. 

Jul7 19, -ti 



Oct. 11, 'B) 

Mch. 8.'6. 

July 19, '65 

Dec, 22 -a. 

July 19, 'M 

Jun«e 'M 

July 19, 'SS 







July is! ;« 



July I9| •* 

^ HMrie Corps April 22, "SI. 

Rr|M. 2S', -SI 




Ucta. «,•« 




S«i>, '«i 


Corpanl^dledSepl.2. '63. 

DledJan. 3U, >«2, at Fort Bldglsj', Minn. 

Died Aug. i, '«3,or diKue. at\ouDg'i Point, U. 

Aug. 19, -M 

June II, -OS 

June 13, >«4 

SiibBtltalei died Maicb 2. 'K. 

June e, '64 

j'uiji »',''» 


A»g, 1*: -6* 


Srpl.M, '61 



M.7 W), -61 



Aug. IS. -ft! 



DUcbarged for diiiWlllT Aug. B, '8], 


Died Auk, h, 'BJ. >i Cl«r Croek. Mix. 


SepI.M, W 

Oct; II, '64 




DraRed; died Feb. 16, '6S. 

Sp,,1. 3,-M 

June 12, tl 


M^b. »,'6^ 

JuIt 19, %•: Dnried. 

......"....: DledM.Tl7,'62. 



Oct. 11, ■64' 

tW, i,'9l 

Julj 19, '«S, B«-«n1lnal J«n. 1, -64; imntftmd from a>. H April 


Juljr is, '154 

JultlS-M llnfted. 

Sppt.30.1I1 Oct: llL'W 


Jul. m.'BS 

Rfrealljted Jan. 1. 'B4t promoted Coipaml, 


Roster op Company C — Continued. 



RosTKB OF Company D— Continued. 


R08TEB OP Company E—Contiinud. 



Roster of Compastt F—Omtiitved. 



Roster of Company G—Cotiiinufd. 



ss- !:-5l 

"! ?9 

s im; 

"l W 

Api: ii.ta 

Vattr. Ftrdliuml... 






OP Company S—Omlinved. 

RosTEE OF CosiPAXT B — Coniinned. 


Wllliim. Juum A., 

Wblte, iOOxntL 

Teadi,ETkk. ....... 



BOSTTB 07 COUPAVy l—Oanlimud. 



KosTCR OF Company K— Omfinufd. 

<M-1. n/Bl 

!•«. i7,iii!;;!"™;; 

"d. iV,'sii iiilil'ii'M 

VoT.14,'Sl' z. 

t'tpt- »,■«, 

(lot, n,%i\ Ore.Xl, 

Fell, t.'n 

Aug.SO.-Mt Juucll, 
Mi.]r»l.1i4l Juljlf. 

Oct. Id,-!!!- 

Oct l*,'6Ii JalylS, 

S..V. l.Wl 

TramrEired to 




IMed Feb. S.' 

Died Mir 13, 03, 11 

QTilId Cwpf Mirch 1 

It QulDCT, lit. 

T. Corpg U>r, IS, U. 

.1 TmuhrrfdiDCoDipaDT I Jin 










Van Buren, Hiram^ 

Vanwalkenburg, H. W 

Whitfield, Wm.B 

Sept. 18, '64 
Aug. 80, '64 
Oct. 18, '61 
Mch. 7, '62 
Sept. 6, '64 
Oct. 18, '61 

June 12, '65 
June 12, '65 

MnsicUn; di^harged for disability July 22, «68. 

Re-enlisted March 21, '64; transferred to CompanjD Ju]74,'64. 

R»-enlisted March 21, '64, as Musician; transferred from Co. K. 

Whitoomb, Edward A 

WileT. Oscar H 


WIckMn. If"n»l 

Woodwortb, Sylvanus 

Discharged for disabiUtr Feb. 19, '62. 
Drafted; died AprU 28, V», at Beaufort, N. C. 

Wolf, John 

Not. 21, '64 



The Fifth Begiment, Minnesota Volunteer Infantry, was the last of Minne- 
sota's quota under the first call of President Lincoln for 500,000 men. It ren- 
dezvoused at Fort Snelling and was recruited during the winter of 1861-62, the 
first detachment being mustered into service Dec. 19, 1861, and the organization 
completed March 20, 1862, by the appointment of the following field and staff 
officers: Ck)lonel, Eudolph von Borgersrode; lieutenant colonel, Lucius F. 
Hubbard; major, William B. Gere; adjutant, Alpheus E. French; quartermas- 
ter, William B. McGrorty; surgeon, Francis B. Etheridge; assistant surgeon, 
Vincent P. Kennedy; chaplain, James F. Chaffee. While the regiment was 
recruiting its several detachments occupied Fort Snelling, and for a time 
acted as its garrison under command of its senior captain. During this time 
the several commands acquired reasonable proficiency in drill and a general 
knowledge of tactics and army regulations, so that upon its complete organiza- 
tion as a regiment it was fairly fitted to take the field. ^ 

Before the regiment was fairly organized. Companies B, C and D were de- 
tached and ordered to the Minnesota frontier, where they served as garrisons 
for Forts Ridgley, Ripley and Abercrombie during the spring and summer of 
1862, or until the occurrence of the Sioux Indian outbreak, uiat desolated the 
western border of the state, in August of that year. The bloody events of that 
period of horrors are yet fresh in the minds of the early settlers of Minnesota, 
but probably have little lodgment in the memories of much the larger portion 
of the present population of our state. To many of our then frontier settlers 
and to those members of the Fifth Regiment who participated in the events here 
narrated, the horrors thereof leave a more lasting impression upon mind and 
heart than the mightiest events of the War of the Rebellion. A recital of the 
horrible atrocities committed by those Indian devils, and the brutalities and 
terrible deaths suffered by many of the defenseless pioneers upon our then 
western border, is sufficient to curdle the blood and chill the heart of the 
hearer. That those horrors were not multiplied tenfold and additional thous- 
ands numbered among their victims, is due in great measure to the service ren- 
dered by Companies B, C and D of the Fifth Minnesota. 

^ Those portions of this narrative that relate to the Indian War of 1862 have been prepared by 
members of the regimeut who were present at the frontier posts and participated in the events of 
which they write. The events that preceded the Sioux outbreak and those connected with the 
fight at the ferry, or Redwood, and the defense of Fort Ridgley, are related by Lieut. T. P. Gere 
of Company B. Those that transpired at Fort Abercrombie are related by Capt. John Vander 
Horc'k of Company D, and those at Fort Ripley by Lieut F. B. Fobes of Ck>mpany C. — [L. F. H. 

^ The Fifth Regiment numbered eight hundred and sixty men, rank and file, at the time of its 
organ iz;it ion. It received 8iib8ec}uently three hundred and three recruits and drafted men, mak- 
ing a total of 1,U);$ names )>orne upon its rolls during its term of service. Like most of the regi- 
ments raised in Minnesota, the Fifth was recruited generally throughout the state, the nucleus of 
each com])any being from one of the more populous counties. The members of Company A were 
principally from CJoodhne and Dodge counties. Those of Company B from Fillmore county, with 
a few from adjacent territory. Company C was from Freeborn and Faribault. Company D largely 
from Carver and Ramsey. Company E from Ramsey, Scott, Carver and Hennepin. Company F 
from Waseca, Ramsey, Anoka, Faribault and Le Sueur. Company G from Wabasha and Dakota. 
Company H from (Joodhue and. Wabasha. Company I from Ramsey, Hennepm, Dakota, Dodge, 
Mower, Olmsted and Scott. Company K from Washington, with a few representatives from 
other counties. Most of the companies had a few members from counties not named. 



At the outbreak of the great Bebellion the iDdian tribes of Minnesota were, 
by virtue of treaties with the United States, occupants of the northern and west- 
ern portions of the state; the Chippewas to the eastward, mostly in the timbered 
regions drained by the upper Mississippi, the Sioux to the westward, on the 
h^ulwaters of the Minnesota and the Bed Biver of the North. As outposts for 
the frontier on these three rivers, respectively, had been established Forts Bipley, 
Eidgley and Abercrombie, garrisoned previous to war-time by troops of the 
regular army; these commands, when ordered to the South, being relieved by 
companies from Minnesota's volunteer regiments. Thus, upon the organization 
of the Fifth Begiment, three of ite companies were assigned to this garrison duty 
as follows: To Fort Abercrombie, Company D — cap^n, John Yander Horck; 
first lieutenant, F. A. Gariveau; second lieutenant, John Oroetch. To Fort Bip- 
ley, Company C — captain, Francis Hall; first lieutenant, Timothy J. Sheehan; 
second lieutenant, Frank B. Fobes. To Fort Bidgley, Company B. Captain John 
S. Marsh of this company had not yet joined. Second Lieutenant N. K. Culver, 
having been designated to relieve the post quartermaster at Bidgley, preceded his 
command, and the company, commanded by First Sergeant Thomas P. Gere, left 
the rendezvous at Fort Snelling at noon on March 22d, moving up the Minnesota 
Valley. It was still winter, deep snow covering the ground. The command 
occupied the Scott county court house at Shakopee on the night of the 22d, and 
on the following day, passing through Belle Plaine and Le Sueur and crossing 
the Minnesota Biver on the ice at Traverse de Sioux after dark, reached St. Peter, 
where the Nicollet county court house afforded shelter for the night. On the 
24th the company moved to La Fayette, a settlement eighteen miles southeast of 
Fort Bidgley, arriving at that post at noon on March 25th. Captain Marsh 
joined his company April 16th, assuming command of the post. Second Lieu- 
tenant Culver had been appointed first lieutenant and was post quartermaster 
and commissary. First Sergeant Crere had been promoted to be second lieuten- 
ant and was detailed as post adjutant. At all these posts during the spring and 
early summer months, very little occurring to interrupt the usual routine of 
garrison duty, these companies were actively exercised in daily drill and in- 
structed in everything that could increase their military efficiency, their daily 
hope being for an order that should relieve them from mere garrison service 
and direct them to join their regiment in active duty in the South. 

At Fort Bidgley, in addition to Company B, there were in the United States 
service Post Surgeon Alfred Muller, Sutler B. H. Bandall, Indian Interpreter Peter 
Quinn and Ordnance Sergeant John Jones, the latter in charge of the six pieces 
of artillery which had been left there. Company B, having rapidly reached a 
high efficiency in the manual of arms and infantry evolutions, especially in skir- 
mish drill, was now daily and vigorously exercised in the artillery drill, under 
the able instruction of Ordnance Sergeant Jones, and by midsummer had several 
trained squads well qualified in all the details necessary to use the guns. While 
this work was undertaken more to promote the general efficiency of the company 
than in anticipation of its necessity or actual use at the fort, subsequent events 
proved that it was probably the most important element among all that pre- 
vented the- capture of Fort Bidgley by the Sioux. Save the occasional minor 
individual disturbances incident to the frontier, the relations between the whites 
and the Indians located on the reservation to the northwest of Fort Bidgley were 
apparently profoundly peaceful. During a long period no circumstance had 
occurred calling for military interference or aid. But under existing treaties 
the time for payment by the United States of their annuities to the Indians was 
at hand, and that possible disorder from the coming together of the various 
bands in such large numbers might be prevented, it was deemed advisable to 
temporarily increase the force of troops in this locality; therefore the following 
order was issued: 


** Headquarters Fort Ripley, 

June 18, 1862. 
''[Special Order, No. 30.] 

'' 1st. Lieut. T. J. Sheehan of Company C, Fifth Begiment Minnesota Volun- 
teers, will proceed with fifty men to Fort Ridgley and there report to Gapt. 
Marsh, commanding post, for further orders. 

''Francis Hall, 
''Captain Commanding Post.^^ 

Lieut. Sheehan, with the command above designated, left Fort Ripley on 
June 19th, and marching via Elk River and Henderson, a distance of about two 
hundred miles, reached Fort Ridgley on the evening of June 28th. Here the 
following order was issued: 

"Headquarters Fort Ridgley, 

June 29, 1862. 
"[Special Order, No. 67.] 

"1st. Lieut. T. J. Sheehan, Fifth Minnesota Regiment, with detachmentof fifty 
men of Company C and one lieutenant and fifty men of Company B of said regi- 
ment, will proceed forthwith by the most expeditious route to the Sioux Agency 
on the Yellow Medicine River, and report to Major Thomas Galbraith, Sioux 
agent at that place, for the purpose of preserving order and protecting United 
States property during the time of the annuity payment for the present year. 
**2d. Interpreter Quinn will accompany the troops. 

**3d. The A. A. Q. M. and the A. A. C. S. will furnish the necessary trans- 
portation, forage and subsistence for the command. 

'*JoHN S. Marsh, 
" Oapt Fifth Begiment, Commanding Post.^^ 

This command marched from Fort Ridgley on June 30th with fifl)een days' ra- 
tions, taking in addition to small arms one twelve-pounder mountain howitzer; 
camping that night at Lower Sioux Agency, having crossed the Minnesota River 
by the ferry near that place, continuing the march on the following day, and 
on the 2d of July arrived at the Upper Sioux Agency at Yellow Medicine, 
fifty-two miles from Fort Ridgley, going into camp on an eminence about one 
hundred and fifty yards from the government buildings. The Indians were al- 
ready arriving in quite large numbers in anticipation of their annuities, and 
every succeeding day brought accessions to the number. The expected payment 
to the Indians was the one topic of absorbing interest; as early as July 8th, a 
party of warriors sent word through Interpreter Quinn to Lieuts. Sheehan and 
Gere that they desired a ^'council'' with them. Their request for an interview 
having been granted, the substance of their address was as follows: *' We are 
the braves. We have sold our land to the Great Father. The traders are allowed 
to sit at the pay table and they take all our money. We wish yoa to keep the 
traders away from the pay table, and we desire you to make us a present of a 
beef To this the officers replied that the regulations concerning payment were 
in the hands of the Indian agent appointed by their Great Father; also, that the 
soldiers had no provisions except their own rations, but that their request would 
be communicated to the agent. Indian dances and similar demonstrations vari- 
ous in character and import became quite frequent as the numbers arriving in- 
creased, and some dissatisfaction was expressed at the non-arrival of the annui- 
ties. A detail was sent to Fort Ridgley, returning with fifteen days' additional 
rations for the command. It being reported that quite a number of Yanktonais 
and Cut he:uls not entitled to pay were encamped near the annuity Indians, a 
visit to their camp on July 14th developed the presence of six hundred and fifty- 
nine lodges of annuity Indians, seventy-eight lodges of Yanktonais, thirty-seven 
of Cut-heads, and five said to be Winnebagos. Major Galbraith at this time looked 
for the arrival of the annuities about the 18th or 20th inst. As the day passed 
the limited quantity of supplies in the possession of the Indians was rapidly re- 
duced. On the 18th they reported they were starving; trouble was anticipated un- 
less they could obtain something to eat; yet Mtyor Galbraith was of the opinion 


that any alarm was wholly uncalled for, the Indians being qaiet and peaceable 
and making no threats. Lieut. Sheehan dispatched a detail to Fort Eidgley for 
a second mountain howitzer, which arrived on the 21st. On that day, at a con- 
ference between Lieute. Sheehan and Gere and Maj. Galbraith concerning the 
situation, the latter stated that he would soon count the Indians, issue the pro- 
visions, and send them back to await advices from him of the arrival of their 
money. On the morning of the 24th a war party of about 1,200 Sioux, stripped 
and painted, over four hundred of them mounted, passed close by the agency 
buildings and camp of the soldiers in headlong pursuit' of a party of Chipi)ewaSy 
who had a day or two before killed two Sioux about eighteen miles from the 
agency. It was exi>ected to find the Chippewas about seven miles south, but the 
party returned in the afternoon unsuccessful. 

On July 26th, in conformity with an agreement reached at a council held on 
the day previous between the Indians and Maj. Galbraith, the counting of the 
Indians took place. This was accomplished by congregating all the Indians in 
a space adjacent to the government building and encircling the same by a con- 
tinuous chain of sentinels. The various chiefis called up their bands in succes- 
sion, and as the number in each family was recorded, each passed outside the 
line of guards homeward. Twelve and one-half hours were required for this 
work. Crackers were issued and scattered by the soldiers throughout the unique 
congr^ation to the infinite satisfaction of the recipients. On July 27th the fol- 
lowing communication was made by Maj. Ckdbraith: 

'^Sir: I have to request that you detail a small detachment of your com- 
mand, and with it proceed forthwith in the direction of Yellow Medicine River, 
in search of Inkpaduta and his followers, who are said to be camped somewhere 
in the region, having in their possession stolen horses, etc. You will take said 
Inkpaduta and all Indian soldiers with him, prisoners, alive if i>08sible, and de- 
liver them to me at the agency. If they resist, I advise that they be shot. Take 
all hoi-ses found in their possession and deliver them to me. A party of reliable 
citizens will accompany you; they will report to you and be subject to your 
orders. Ten or twelve men will in my opinion be sufficient. They should by all 
means be mounted on horses or mules. You should take at least nine days' ra- 
tions, and should start a sufficient time before daylight to get away without the 
knowledge of the Indians. While I recommend prompt and vigorous action to 
bring these murderers, thieves and villains to justice, dead or alive, yet I advise 
prudence and extreme caution. 

"Very respectfully, your obedient servant, 

** Thomas J. Galbraith, 
" Lieut. T. J. Sheehan, '^ Sioux Agent. 

" Commanding Camp at Sioux Agency. ^^ 

Upon receipt of this Lieut. Sheehan addressed orders to Lieut. Gere to take 
command of the camp, and with fourteen soldiers, four citizens and an Indian 
guide, left about midnight on the service indicated; but, notwithstanding the pre- 
caution taken, the Indian camp learned promptly of the departure of the party, 
and Inkpaduta was duly warned. On the evening of August 3d Lieut. Sheehan 
returned to the agency, having been unsuccessful in his search. Early on the 
morning of August 4th, the Indians sent two messengers to the camp, saying they 
were coming down to fire a salute and make one of their demonstrations; that 
they desired to inform the soldiers in advance, so they would understand it was 
all right. This propc^ition involving nothing unusual, no remonstrance was 
made, and soon some eight hundred warriors, mounted and on foot, came down 
with wild yells, firing their guns in the air, completely surrounding the camp of 
the detachment, and riding about wildly in all directions. It became at once 
apparent that this was something beyond their ordinary demonstrations, but the 
object was not developed until the leader of a party that had ridden past the 
camp, rushed to the door of the government warehouse and struck it with his 

The situation was now perilous in the extreme, the soldiers being outnumbered 
eight to one by red devils, who were cocking and priming their guns on all sides 


at a distance of less than one hundred feet; and had a single shot then been fired, 
not a soldier could have lived to tell the story. But no panic ensued, and the 
command sprang promptly into line. Bealizing quickly that the object of the 
attack was to secure provisions stored in the warehouse, that had bloodshed and 
not intimidation been intended, the former would have commenced at once, it 
was resolved to meet the issue as presented. Promptly removing the tarpaulin 
covering from a mountain howitzer, by direction of Lieut. (Jere, the men of Company 
B trained the gun to bear on the warehouse door, through which the Indians had 
by this time broken and were removing flour in sacks. Instantly the Indians 
fell back to either side from the line covered by the gun, and through the open- 
ing thus formed a squad of sixteen men. Sergeant S. A. Trescott at the head, 
and accompanied by Lieut. Sheehan, marched straight to the government build- 
ing. Upon reaching the government building, Lieut. Sheehan at once repaired 
to the office of Maj. Galbraith to seek the presence and advice of that officer; 
while Trescott with his men drove every Indian out of the warehouse, from which 
by this time twenty sacks of flour had been removed. Meanwhile the command 
at the camp stood steadily in line awaiting developments. Now came a period 
of excitement and uncertainty. The Indians who were surrounding the camp 
moved toward the warehouse, and forming in groups were addressed by the chie& 
and leading braves, who told them these provisions had been sent to them by 
their Great Father at Washington; that the agent refused to let them have food 
while their wives and children were starving; that the provisions were theirs; 
that they had a right to take them, etc. Lieut. Sheehan favored an issue of provisions 
to the Indians; Maj. Galbraith feared a concession would be destructive of any 
control of the Indians in the future, and desired the return to the warehouse of 
the flour that had been removed. After much parleying, however, tiie agent 
decided to make an issue of pork and flour upon the promise of the Indians that 
they would immediately retire and send their chiefs for a council on the next 
day. Upon receiving the provisions, however, they again became insolent, de- 
clining to go; whereupon the entire detachment of troops was moved to the 
warehouse, forming in line of battle with both howitzers in position. These dis- 
positions having been made, the Indians decided to return to their camps, and 
at once withdrew. 

On August 5th, the camp of the detachment having been established in close 
proximity to the government buildings, and information being received from the 
Indian camp that much excitement existed there, also that a general attack was 
proposed, the command was held In position for action, while the citizens with 
all the arms available collected in the warehouse. No attack, however, was 
made. The following letter was received from Maj. Galbraith: 

<< Office Sioitx Indian Agency, 

^^FajtUazee, Aug. 5, 1862. 

**SrR: Your interpreter, Quinn, is a man whom I cannot trust to communi- 
cate or correspond with my Indians. I have therefore to respectfully request 
that said Quiun be at once ordered to hold no communication, director indirect, 
with any Sioux Indian under my jurisdiction. And I further request that he be 
ordered oir the reservation and placed in charge of Capt. Marsh, commanding 
at Fort Ridgley, with a copy of this request. 

''Very respectfully, your obedient servant, 

*' Thomas J. Galbraith, 

^^U. S, Indian Agent. 
^' First Lieut. T. J. Sheehan, 

^'Commanding, EtCj Yellow Medicine^ Minn.^^ 

Upon receipt of this letter Lieut. Gere was instructed to proceed at once to 
Fort Kidgley with Interpreter Quinn; also, to advise Capt. Marsh of the situa- 
tion of affairs and request him to come in person to the agency. On these 
orders Lieut. Gere left Yellow Medicine at 4 o'clock P. M., and, driving as rap- 
idly as possible, passed through the lower agency at midnight, reaching Fort 
Ridgley at three o'clock on the morning of the 6th. Capt. Marsh promptly re- 


Bponded, and at five o'clock was on his way to the front with Lient. Qere, arriv- 
ing at Yellow Medicine at 1:30 o'clock p. M. of the same day. On the 7th a 
conncil with the Indians was held by Capt. Marsh and Agent Oalbraith, result- 
ing in an agreement that all the annuity goods should be issued immediately, 
whereupon the Indians would return to their homes and there remain until ad- 
vised by the agent that the money to which they were entitled had reached the 
agency. This agreement was carried out in good faith, the delivery of goods 
beginning immediately and continuing on the 8th and 9th. By the 10th the In- 
dian camp had disappeared, and on the 11th the detachment marched for Fort 
Bidgley, arriving at that post on the evening of August 12th. All prospect of 
trouble in this region seemed now to have disappeared. The upper agency 
Indians had dispersed. The Lower Sioux Indians had taken no part in the 
events above recounted. All had apparently decided to wait patiently for the 
arrival of the annuity money. Beceiving no information on the latter subject, 
and believing that no good reason existed for a longer detention of the detach- 
ment of Company G, (^pt. Marsh instructed Lieut. Sheehan to report at Fort 
Bipley, and, in compliance, that detachment marched from Fort Bidgley at sev- 
en o'clock on August 17th. On the same day Lieut. Culver and six men of Com- 
pany B were detached to St. Peter with transportation for a company of some 
fifty recruits, just enlisted at the Indian agencies, now en routs for Fort Snelling 
for muster, leaving at Fort Bidgley two officers and seventy-six men. Such 
was the military situation on the very eve of one of the most horrid massacres 
recorded on the pages of American history. 


On Monday morning, August 18th, at ten o'clock, Mr. J. C. Dickinson reached 
Port Bidgley from the Lower Sioux Agency, bringing the startling news that a 
wholesale massacre of the whites was in progress at the last named place, this at 
first incredible rumor being a moment later confirmed by the arrival of other 
refugees bringing a wounded man. Capt. Marsh at once resolved to go to the 
rescue. The long roll was sounded, the little garrison was promptly under arms, 
and hastily dispatching a mounted messenger (Corporal McLean) with orders 
to Lieut. Sheehan to return immediately with his command to Fort Bidgley, and 
directing teams with extra ammunition and empty wagons for carrying the men 
to follow as soon as harnessed, Capt. Marsh with Interpreter Quinn and forty- six 
men marched for the agency, within thirty minutes of the first alarm, leaving 
at Fort Bidgley twenty-nine men under command of Lieut. Gere. Captain 
Marsh and the interpreter were mounted on mules. About three miles out the 
teams overtook the command, and, placing the men in the wagons, Capt. Marsh 
hastened toward the scene of slaughter, meeting on his way scores of affrighted 
citizens fleeing toward the fort for protection. Only six miles from Fort Bidg- 
ley houses in flames, and mutilated but not yet cold corpses of men, women and 
children at the roadside, marked the limit thus far reached by the savages, and 
revealed the appalling character of the outbreak; but still in the hope that all 
this was the work of some desperate band of outlaws among the Sioux, and 
strangely confident that it was in his power to quell the disturbance, Capt. Marsh, 
again forming his command on foot, hurried on. 

At Faribault's Hill, some three miles distant from the lower agency, the 
wagon road descended from the high prairie and crossing a small stream stretched 
across a wide bottom land of the Minnesota Biver, covered at this time with tall 
grass, to the ferry. Half way across this bottom, Capt. Marsh halted his com- 
mand for a moment's rest, and proceeded in single file, advancing in this order 
to the ferry house, which stood on the north side of the road some two hundred 
feet east of the ferry landing. Here, on the east bank of the river, on either 
side of the road, the heavy grass merged with scattered thickets of hazel and 
willow, interspersed with open sand patches left by the river's overflow, one 
larger thicket extending southward along the river bank some two miles in vary- 
ing width from twenty to two hundred feet. Across and close to the west bank 
were the high bluffs on which the lower agency was located, their steep face 


then covered by a thick growth of young trees and nnderbmsh. Halting at the 
ferry house shortly after noon, the boat was discovered to be on the east side in 
apparent readiness for the command to use for its crossing, though the dead body 
of the ferryman had been found on the road. Up to this time but few Indians 
had been seen, and these on the high prairie west of the river, south of the 
agency, on their horses. Now appeared some squaws and children on the bluff 
west of the river, and near the ferry was a single Indian who seemed marching 
as a sentinel. This was the chief White Dog, and Capt. Marsh addressed him 
through his interpreter. White Dog said, ''Come across; everything is right 
over here. We do not want to fight and there will be no trouble. (>)me over 
to the agency and we will hold a council." During this discussion two soldiers 
went to the river to obtain water for the men and discovered the heads of many 
Indians concealed behind logs in the brush on the opposite side. A drunken 
man at the ferry house told the soldiers, ^' You are all gone up; the Indians are 
all around you; that side hill is covered with Indians." Capt. Marsh then 
ordered the soldiers forward to the ferryboat. The posts to which the ferry 
ropes were attached had apparently been loosened, and pending attention to 
these, the command formed in line facing the river. Sergeant John F. Bishop 
stepped to the water's edge to fill his cup, and, returning, reported to Capt. Marsh 
his belief that Indians were crossing above to the east to surround the command. 
The plan of the ambuscade was to withhold the attack until the soldiers were 
on the ferryboat, but apparently doubting its exact fulfillment, at this juncture 
White Dog leaped back, firing his gun. "Look out!" shouted Quinn, and the 
next instant came a volley from the concealed Indians on the west side. Several 
men fell at the first fire, among them Interpreter Quinn, riddled by twelve bul- 
lets; but fortunately most of the volley passed over the heads of the men, and 
Capt. Marsh gave the order to fall back to the ferry house. This command had 
hardly been uttered when, with demoniac yells, large numbers of the savages 
attacked from the east, pouring from the grass and bushes along the road^nd 
firing from the ferry house and barn, of which they had gained possession. Here 
for several minutes ensued a contest, at short range and hand-to-hand, most san- 
guinary but unequal, the little command holding its ground until nearly half its 
numbers had fallen, and Indians by the score lay dead. But Capt. Marsh now 
seeing that he would soon be completely surrounded and overpowered gave the 
order to gain, if possible, the thicket along the river to the south, this l^ing the 
only quarter not held by the savages; and, fighting every inch of the way, fifteen 
of the men succeeded in reaching this thicket. Capt. Marsh now only hoped to 
reach Fort Eidgley with the remnant of his command. The Indians riddled the 
thicket with buckshot and ball, but had the troops no longer at such a serious 
disadvantage; and deterred too, by their own heavy losses, they fired at longer 
range. Husbanding their now scanty ammunition and gradually working down 
the river, the surviving soldiers maintained the fight until four o'clock, by which 
time the south end of the thicket was nearly reached. Discovering a large party 
of Indians moving down the fort road with the evident intention of intercepting 
him at the open ground south of the thicket, and thinking escape possible only 
by reaching the west bank, Capt. Marsh determined to cross the river, which 
was here some Um rods wide, and, taking his sword and revolver in hand, led the 
way. He had succeeded in wading, perhaps two-thirds of the distance, when he 
found the water beyond his depth, and, dropping his arms, attempted to swim 
across, but had proceeded only a short distance when he called loudly for help. 
Privates Brennan, Dunn and Van Buren swam to his assistance, the former reach- 
ing him as he was sinking the second time. Brennan drew him above the surface 
and the captain grasped his shoulder for an instant, but losing his hold, the 
brave oflicer sank beneath the remorseless waters to rise no more. The men 
joined their comrades on the shore. The command now devolved on Sergeant 
John F. Bishop, the party now comprising, besides himself, three corporals and 
eleven privat(»s. Bishop himself had been wounded, Private Svendson was 
badly shot and had to be carried, and Bishop decided they must continue south- 
ward on the east side. Believing that the soldiers had reached the west bank. 


many of the Indians had crossed at an adjacent ford and were hiding in ambush 
in a convenient thicket; providentially, an overhanging bank of the river en- 
abled the little command to pass unperceived those who were opposite the open 
ground on the east side; and so, out of the very jaws of death, they passed, car- 
rying the wounded men, and in momentary expectancy of encountering other 
savages. Ko pursuit, however, was made. Five miles from the fort, darkness 
approaching, Bishop dispatched two brave men, Privates Dunn and Hutchison, 
in advance with the tidingsof disaster, and himself reached Fort Bidgley at about 
ten o'clock. Eight other men of Capt. Marsh's party afterward reached Fort 
Eidgley, having eluded the Indians by hiding in the bushes near the ferry until 
nightfall, and escaping in the darkness. Five of the survivors were wounded, 
and thus the total loss was one officer drowned, twenty-three men killed and five 
wounded. Some weeks later the bodies of the :^len were removed by their sor- 
rowing comrades to Fort Eidgley, and buried in one grave beside their leader, 
Capt. Marsh's body having been recovered in a search made by members of his 


On Monday, August 18th, after the departure of Capt. Marsh, refugees from 
the surrounding country, mostly women and children, flocked into Fort Eidgley 
in large numbers, all bringing tales of murder and desolated homes. The few 
available small arms in the fort were furnished to the men who seemed most 
likely to handle them to advantage, these men being placed on duty with the 
soldiers, of whom, besides the sick and hospital attendants, only twenty-two were 
available for active duty. At about noon there arrived at the fort in charge of 
G. O. Wykoff, clerk of the Indian superintendent, and his party of four, the long- 
expected annuity money, $71,000 in gold. Here this party was of course halted. 
As the day passed, the frightened fugitives continued to come in, until at night- 
fall more than two hundred had arrived. Intelligence from Capt. Marsh so 
anxiously awaited came not. Pickets were posted in every direction by Lieut. 
Gere in person, instructed, as this duty required nearly every man in the com- 
mand, to rally promptly on the fort in case of attack in any quarter. Shortly 
after dark, the two men sent forward by Sergeant Bishop reached the fort, bring- 
ing to the young officer in command the direful news of the slaughter of his 
comrades and death of his commander; a tale whose import, in view of the x>os- 
sible result to the helpless and wellnigh unprotected mass of frightened human- 
ity now in his charge, was sufficient to appall the stoutest heart. Knowing, 
however, that new regiments were at this time forming at Fort Snelling, the 
nearest military post, Lieut. Gere, without a moment's delay, penned a dispatch 
to the commanding officer of that post, briefly detailing the situation and ask- 
ing for immediate reinforcement; also, requesting that officer to acquaint Gov, 
Eamsey with the state of affairs. This dispatch was written at 8:30 o'clock, and 
sent forward immediately by Private William J. Sturgis, mounted on the best 
horse in the garrison. The messenger was also instructed to report the situation 
to Lieut. Culver and Agent Galbraith at St. Peter, hastening, if possible, their 
return with the men in their charge. 

Pending the uncertainty concerning the result of Capt. Marsh's expedition, 
apprehension of an attack upon the fort had not been grave, but when the extent 
of the disaster to the greater part of its usual garrison was fully known, such a con- 
tingency was indeed imminent. Immediately upon the dispatch of the courier, 
Lieut. Gere ordered the removal of all the women and children, who were scattered 
in the frame houses forming three sides of the fort, to the stone building used as 
soldiers' quarters, which stood on the north side of the square; but before this 
order could be executed, one of the citizens on picket fired his gun, and came 
running in crying, ^'Indians!" Panic beyond description seized the refugees, 
who rushed frantically for the quarters, terror-stricken men even breaking 
through the windows in their haste for safety. The few soldiers, true to their dis- 
cipline, rallied promptly to their designated positions; the alarm proved false, but 
good in effect, as now all but the fighting men were in the quarters; the pickets 


-were replaced and the first night of unceasing vigil wore away. The Indians, 
hilarious at the desolation they had wrought daring the day, were at the agency, 
celebrating in mad orgies their successes, and neglected their opportunity to 
capture what proved to be the barrier to the devastation of the Minnesota Valley. 
Tuesday morning dawned on mingled hope and apprehension for the coming hours, 
and when sunlight shone upon the prairies, every quarter was closely scanned 
from the roof of the highest building through the powerful telescope fortunately 
at hand. At about nine o'clock Indians began congregating on the prairie some 
two miles west of the fort, mounted, on foot and in wagons, where, in plain view 
from the fort, a council was held. This council was addressed by Little Crow, 
and their movements for the day decided upon. While this was in progress, 
cheers of welcome announced the arrival at the fort of Lieut. Sheehan with his 
fifty men of Company C. The courier dispatched by Capt. Marsh on the previous 
day had reached this command at evening, soon after it had gone into camp, forty- 
two miles from Fort Eidgley, between New Auburn and Glencoe. Promptly obey- 
ing the order for his return, Lieut. Sheehan at oncestruck tents, and the command 
commenced its forced march, covering during the night the entire distance trav- 
ersed in the two preceding days, arriving the first to the rescue, and meriting 
high praise. Lieut. Sheehan now took command at Fort Bidgley. 

Little Crow's intention had been to attack Fort Ridgley promptly, but at the 
council above mentioned it was determined to first proceed to New XJlm, and 
soon after the dispersion of the council the Indians were seen passing southward 
on the west side of the river. No demonstrations at the fort were made during 
the day. Meanwhile, at St. Peter, at 6 P. M. on Monday, news of the outbreak 
reached Lieut. Culver and Agent Galbraith. Obtaining there during the night 
fifty old Harper's Ferry muskets, the company of recruits in their charge was 
armed and a small supply of powder and lead collected. Before morning courier 
Sturgis arrived with Lieut. Gere's dispatches, and, fully advised of the perilous 
situation they were approaching, at six o'clock Tuesday morning this gallant 
party left St. Peter with barely three rounds of cartridges, and twelve hours 
later had reached Fort Eidgley, completing its roll of defenders. Thus aug- 
mented the effective force at the fort consisted of fifty-one men of Company B, 
first lieutenant, N. K. Culver, second lieutenant, T. P. Gere; fifty men of Company 
C, first lieutenant, T. J. Sheehan; fifty men Benville Bangers, James Gorman com- 
manding; Ordnance Sergeant Jones, TJ. 8- A.; Post Surgeon MuUer, Post Sutler 
Bandall, and about twenty-five armed citizens, a total of one hundred and eighty 
resolute men, Lieut. Sheehan in command of all. The non-combatants now num- 
bered about three hundred. Men of Company B, who, it will be remembered, 
had been instructed and were expert in the use of artillery, were detailed to man 
the guns, of which three were put into service, one six-pounder field-piece under 
Ordnance Sergeant Jones, two twelve-pounder mountain howitzers, one of them 
under Sergeant James G. McGrew of Company B, and one in charge of J. C. Whip- 
ple, an artillerist of experience during the Mexican War, who had himself escaped 
from the lower agency to the fort. Thus organized the garrison was confident 
of a sturdy defense should an attack be made. 

The fort, which consisted of a group of buildings standing at intervals, sur- 
rounding an open square ninety yards across, stood on a spur of the high prairie 
ta])leland which extended from the northwest toward the Minnesota Biver, that 
stream being about one-half mile to the south. Along the east and north side of 
this spur, and within easy musket range of the fort, a long and deep ravine ex- 
tended southeasterly to the main valley; to the south, at a distance of about three 
hundred yards, ran the line of a quite abrupt descent to the valley, while from 
this line, and nearly opposite the southwest corner of the fort, another lateral 
ravine i)roJ<'cted into the spur, terminating not over three hundred feet from the 
]>uildiu^^s on that angle. The buildings on the east, south and west sides of the 
s(iuare above referred to were two-story frame houses erected for officers' quar- 
tei*8, excepting a one-story storehouse for commissary supplies, which stood adja- 
cent to the northwest corner, while on the north side stood the two- story barracks 
built of stone. In rear, to the north of the barracks, was a row of log buildings 


comprising hooses for families of post attaches and the post hospital, while at 
the northeast corner, and near the end of the barracks, stood the post bakery 
and lanndry. Thns, while conveniently arranged for occupancy in time of peace, 
neither by location nor construction was the post well adapted to repel attack. 

Eepnised in the attack made at New XJlm on the 19th, Little Grow had de- 
termined to carry ont his original plan and to attempt the capture of Fort 
Bidgley, and on Wednesday, August 20th, made his dispositions to this end. 
Knowing the facility of approach afforded by the long ravine to the east, also 
that the usual park of the artillery was on the west line of the buildings, the 
main attacking party was moved down the river valley to the north of this 
ravine, thence under its shelter to a point opposite the fort, this movement being 
executed under cover and entirely unobserved. To divert attention from the 
real point of attack, Little Grow himself, at about 1 o'clock p. m., made his ap- 
pearance just out of range of the pickets, on the west side of the fort, mounted 
on a pony, and apparently inviting conference. Sergeant Bishop, at the time 
sergeant of the guard, endeavored to induce his nearer approach, but without 
success. At this juncture the advance of the party approaching from the north- 
east was discovered by the pickets on that side, and skirmishing commenced. 
Lieut. Sheehan ordered the troops to form in line on the west side of the parade 
ground at the south end of the commissary building, facing east. By this time 
the Indians coming up the hill from the ravine had reached the level ground, 
and, driving in the pickets, poured a heavy volley through the opening at the 
northeast, gaini ng possession of some of the outbuildings at that quarter. Lieut. 
Gere was ordered with a detachment of Company B directly to the point of at- 
tack, and moved at double-quick, stationing Whipple with his howitzer in 
the opening between the bakery and the next building to the south; a detach- 
ment of Company G moved on a run around the north end of the barracks to the 
rowof log buildings, while McGrew wheeled his howitzer rapidly to the north- 
west corner of the fort and went into position on the west side of the most west- 
erly building in the row. All these forces were at once engaged in a hard fight 
at short range. 

The infantry, advantageously located around Whipple, kept up a hot fire, 
enabling him to work his gun to good advantage, and some admirable work was 
here performed. The men of Company G similarly covered McGrew's operations. 
McGrew first trained his gun to bear northeasterly on the most northerly point 
at which the enemy appeared, and from which a heavy fire was coming; but his 
fuse had been cut for a range of a quarter of a mile and the first shell, though 
passing close to the grass, exploded over the ravine. Running his piece quickly 
behind the building, McGrew cut his next fuse to its short^t limit, reloaded, 
ran the howitzer out amidst a shower of bullets, and exploded his second shell 
in the very midst of this extremely troublesome party, wholly dislodging the 
savages from their position. The converging fire of these two howitzers, with 
their musketry supports, soon drove the Indians from the buildings they had 
reached and forced them back to the line of the ravine. The plan to capture the 
fort in the first rush had been frustrated. Meanwhile, upon the attack at the 
east, the pickets in other directions, in accordance with their instructions, had 
rallied on the fort, and Little Crow quickly closed in with the balanceof his force 
on the west and south to divert, as far as possible, the defense from his main 
attack. Ordnance Sergeant Jones, with his six-pounder field-piece, took position 
at the opening at the southwest angle of the square, supported by Lieuts. Culver 
and Gorman, while the remaining men were posted in and around the various 
buildings and sheds in the most advantageous positions obtainable. Jones' posi- 
tion was particularly exposed by reason of the short ravine before described, up 
which the savages swarmed to easy musket range in large numbers, compelling 
him to deliver his fire under the most trying circumstances. 

It becoming soon apparent that the Indians were in large enough force to 
maintain a continuous siege if so disposed, and that all the artillery ammunition 
was likely to be required, it was decided to remove at once into the stone build- 
ings, from the magazine, the ammunition remaining there, consisting principally 


of the supply for the extra field-pieces. The magazine stood on the open prairie 
to the northwest and distant some two hundred yards, the one quarter from 
which the Indians could not approach under cover. McQrew now took position 
so as to command any locality from which men detailed for this duty could be 
reached by the enemy, and the ammunition was all safely brought in* Little 
Crow's original plan having met with such vigorous repulse on the northeast, 
the attacking force was distributed to all quarters, and the battle became general. 
For five hours an incessant fire was kept up on the fort. The men in the garrison 
were directed to waste no ammunition and fired only when confident their shots 
would be effective, but found sufficient opportunity to maintain a steady 
return of the enemy's fire. The artillery did most efficient service in all direc- 
tions throughout the entire engagement. At dark the firing ceased, but the men 
remained each where night found him, all in almost momentary expectation 
of further attack by the wily foe. Little Crow had, however, withdrawn his 
forces to the lower agency. Eain commenced falling at midnight and continued 
throughout most of the following day. Thursday passed without an engagement, 
and the day was improved by the construction of barricades, made of everything 
available, for the better protection of the gunners, especially at the southwest 
corner where Jones was in position. A twelve-pounder field-piece was manned 
and put in position in reserve on the parade ground under Sergeant Bishop of 
Company B; otherwise, the officers, men and guns remained in the positions as- 
signed in Wednesday's battle, and so continu^ generally during the remainder 
of the siege. 

But Little Crow believing that Fort Bidgley once taken his path to the Mis- 
sissippi would be comparatively clear, resolved to make one more desperate at- 
tempt at its capture, and on Friday, August 22d, his numbers having been 
largely augmented, a second and more furious attack was made. At about 1 
o'clock p. M., dismounting and leaving their ponies a mile distant, with demoniac 
yells the savages surrounded the fort and at once commenced a furious musketry 
fire. The garrison returned the fire with equal vigor and with great effect on the 
yelling demons, who at first hoped by force of numbers to effect a quick entrance 
and had exposed themselves by a bold advance. This was soon checked, but 
from the cover of the slopes their fire was unceasing, while the very prairie 
seemed alive with those whose heads were clothed with turbans made of grass to 
conceal their movements. Little Crow's plan in this attack, in case the first 
dash from all sides proved unsuccessful, was to pour a heavy continuous fire into 
the fort from every direction, exhausting the garrison as much as possible, and to 
carry the fort later by assault upon the southwest corner. To this end he col- 
lected the greater portion of his forces in that quarter, and, taking possession of 
the government stables and sutler's store, the fire literally riddled the buildings 
at that angle. It was found necessary to shell these buildings to dislodge the 
foe, resulting in their complete destruction by fire. Attempts were made to fire 
the fort by means of burning arrows but the roofe being damp from recent 
rains, all efforts to this end were futile. Still, in pursuance of the plan of battle, 
the hail of bullets, the whizzing of arrows, and the blood-curdling war-whoop 
were incessant. From the ravine to the northeast came an especially heavy at- 
tack, the object being to divert as far as practicable the defense to this side, and 
here was some gallant and effective service again performed. Whipple from the 
northeast corner, protected in every discharge by the hot musketry fire of Gere's 
detachment and the men of Company C to the lefb, swept the very grass to its 
roots all alon<^ the crest of the slope, while McGrew, improving the opportunity, 
with most conspicuous bravery ran his howitzer out from the northwest corner 
to the very ed^e of the ravine and delivered several enfilading volleysof canister 
down along the hillside, practically sweeping the savages from their position. 

Now began the convergence to the southwest, the Indians passing from the 
opposite si<le in either direction. In moving around the northwest corner a 
wide detour was necessary toavoid McGrew's range, butthe open prairie rendered 
the movement plainly apparent. Divining its object, McGrew hastily reported 
to Jones what was transpiring, and was authorized to bring out the twenty- 


foar ponnder, still in park,' with which McGrew went into position, on the west 
line of the fort and at the south end of the commissary building. Meanwhile 
the fire in front of Jones' gun had become so hot and accurate as to splinter al- 
most every lineal foot of timber along the top of his barricades, but he still re- 
turned shells at shortest possible range, himself and his gunners most gallantly 
exposing themselves in this service. During an interval in the fusilade Lit- 
tle Crow was heard urging, in the impassion^ oratoiy of battle, the assault on 
the position. Jones double charged his piece with canister and reserved his 
fire; meanwhile McGrew had fired one shot from the twenty-four pounder at the 
party passing around the northeast, and, training his gun westerly, dropped his 
second shell at the i>oint where this party had by this time joined the reserve of 
squaws, ponies and dogs west of the main body. A great stampede resulted; 
the gun was swung to the left, bringing its line of fire between the two bodies of 
Indians. Its x>onderous reverberations echoed up the valley as though twenty 
guns had opened, while the frightful explosion of its shells struck terror to the 
savages and effectually prevented a consolidation of the forces. At this junc- 
ture Jones depressed his piece and fired close to the ground, killing and wound- 
ing seventeen savages of the party who had nerved themselves for the final as- 
sault. Completely demoralized by this uuexx>ected slaughter, firing suddenly 
ceased and the attacking party precipitately withdrew, their hasty retreat at- 
tended by bursting shells until they were beyond range of the guns. Thus, 
after six hours of continuous blazing conflict, alternately lit up by the flames of 
burning buildings and darkened by whirling clouds of smoke, terminated the 
second and last attack. 

During the engagement, many of the men becoming short of musketry am- 
munition, spherical case shot were opened in the barracks and women worked 
with busy hands, making cartridges, while men cut nail rods in short pieces to 
use as bullets, the dismsd whistling of which strange missiles was as terrifying 
to the savages as were their fiendish yells to the garrison. Incredible as it may 
appear, during these engagements at Fort Eidgley the loss of the garrison was 
only three men killed and thirteen wounded. Fighting on the defensive, and 
availing themselves of all the shelter aflbrded by buildings and barricades, the 
infantry were admirably protected; while, as before note<^ as each piece of ar- 
tillery was fired the enemy was kept down by a hot musketry fire. The num- 
ber of Indians engaged in the attack on the 20th is estimated at 500 to 600, and 
in the battle of the 22d 1,200 to 1,500. Their loss in the two days could hardly 
have been less than 100, judging from the number found buried afterward in the 
immediate vicinity of the fort. 

It was a battle on the part of the garrison to prevent a charge by the savages, 
which, had it been made, could hardly have failed, as Little Crow seemed confi- 
dent, to result in the destruction of the garrison and the consequent horrible 
massacre of its three hundred refugees. It is but truth to add that no man in 
the garrison failed to do his duty, and that, worn by fatigue and suspense, and 
exhausted by loss of sleep, to the end every man was at his post bravely meet- 
ing whatever danger confronted him. The conspicuous gallantry of the artiller- 
ists was the theme of general praise, and the great value of their services was 
conceded by all, while the active and intelligent support that rendered their 
work possible is entitled to no less credit. Post Surgeon Muller was active in 
attention to the wounded and ill, nobly seconded by his brave wife, who was, 
throughout the dark days, an angel of mercy and comfort to the sufferers, and 
who, with many other ladies, admirably illustrated the quality of most praise- 
worthy courage in the midst of surrounding danger. While the withdrawal of 
the Indians on the 22d terminated the fighting at Fort Ridgley, the weary gar- 
rison could not be aware that such would be the case, nor for a moment relax its 
vigilance; hence the forces continued to occupy the positions to which they had 
by this time become accustomed. The construction of a line of earthwork on the 
south side of the fort was begun, the roof of the commissary building was cov- 
ered with earth to prevent fire, and the barricades were strengthened as much as 
possible. Four more long days of suspense ensued, no word from friend or foe 


reaching the garrison nntil the morning of Wednesday, August 27th, just nine 
days after the first dispatch for help had been sent by courier, when Col. Samuel 
McPhail, of the Minnesota mounted troops, and Wm. B. Marshall, at that time 
a special agent dispatched by Governor Bamsey to hasten the relief of Fort 
Eidgley, rode into the fort with one hundred and seventy-five volunteer citizen 
horsemen, having left St. Peter at 4 o'clock P. M. on the day previous, the ad- 
vance of the expedition under General Sibley, whose infantry reached the fort 
on the 28th. Thus was terminated the siege, and with its end came the much 
needed rest to the exhausted garrison. * 

During the early progress of General Sibley's campaign against Little Crow 
Company B remained in garrison at Bidgley. Lieut. Sheehan left with his de- 
tachment of Company C on September 18th to join his company at Fort Bipley, 
Company B marched for Fort Snelling on November 9th, bs part of the escort 
under Col. W. B. Marshall accompanying the captured Indians en rotUe to that 
post. Uniting there with Company C, these two companies proceeded south and 
joined their regiment near Oxford, Mississippi, on Dec 12, 1862. 


Company D, Capt. John Vander Horck, was mustered into service March 
15, 1862, and was ordered the same day to proceed to Fort Abercrombie, !)• 
T., to relieve the troops stationed at that post. The company arrived on the 
29th of March, and Capt. Vander Horck took command of the post the next 
day. The order to proceed to Fort Abercrombie also stated that a detachment 
should be stationed at Georgetown, fifty-two miles north of the fort, dn the Bed 
Biver of the North; accordingly thirty men under command of First Lieut. 
Francis A. Cariveau were ordered to take station at Georgetown. -Fort Aber- 
crombie, the post proper at this time, consisted of but three buildings; the 
men's quarters for one company, the commissary building and commanding offi- 
cer's quarters. Along the river bank a few scattering log huts were occupied by 
half-breeds, the interpreter and other attcuihea of the post. Fortifications there 
were none at all, not even a board fence. August 13th the commanding officer 
received orders to guard an Indian treaty train which was to arrive at the fort 
about the 19th en route to Bed Lake, where a council was to be held with the 
Bed Lake Indians. Upon the arrival of the treaty commission at St. Cloud 
the report of the Indian outbreak reached them. The order to guard the treaty 
train was thereupon countermanded, and instructions issued to detain the train 
at the fort. This order, however, was not received until the 20th of August, 
after the train had already left its camp on Whisky Creek, about two miles 
from the post. This last order was accompanied with a proof slip from a St. 
Cloud newspaper, containing dispatches of the Indian outbreak. This was the 
first notice at Fort Abercrombie that the Indians were on the warpath. A 
courier was immediately dispatched to Mr. Thompson, who was in charge of the 
treaty train, to return to the post for protection. The courier also carried orders 
to Lieut. Cariveau to return with his command to the fort immediately. The 
treaty train came back about noon the same day, and the detachment from 
Georgetown arrived on the third day following. 

As soon as the news of the outbreak reached the fort the garrison began to 
construct fortifications of earthen breastworks, hewed logs, etc. When the de- 
tachment from Georgetown arrived, ten men under command of Lieut. John 

' List of killed and wounded Fifth Minnesota Infantay Volanteers in battle of Redwood 
and siege of Fort Kidgley: Comp;iuy B — Drowned, Capt. John S. Marsh. Killed, First Sergt. 
K. H. Findley, Sergt. S. A. Trescott, Corp. J. S. Besse; Privates C. R. Bell, E. F. Cole, Q E. 
French, John (Jardner, J. A. Gehriug, John Holmes, C. Joerger, D. Kanzig, J. H. Kerr, W. Kusda, 
If. McAllister. W. Norton, J. \V. Parks, M. P. Parks, John Parsley, H. Phillips. N. Pitcher, If. A. 
Shepherd, C. W. Smith, N. St^wanl. Wounded, Sergt J. F. Bishop; Privates W. H. Blodgett, E. 
Rose, W. .\. Satlierland, O. Svend.son, Wm. Good, A. RnfFridge, J. R. Spomitz. Company C — 
Killed, Private M. .M. Greer. Wounded, Sergt. F. A. Blackmer, Corp. D. Porter. Privates P. 
Ifarris, A. Lntlier, Isaac Shortledge. Total killed, 25; wounded, 13. The bodies of the dead 
were hurled in one ;:rave in the cemetery at Fort Ridgley, and in 1873 a handsome monament 
bearing their names was erected there by the State of Minnesota. 


Groetch were detailed to reconnoiter as far as Breckenridge (a distance of fifteen 
miles), if x>0S8ibi^ They arrived there without having seen an Indian, but 
found that the inmates of the hotel, three men, a woman and a child, had been 
murdered and terribly mutilated. This was the first evidence secured that the 
Indians were in the vicinity. The same evening there was observed in the direc- 
tion of Breckenridge a large fire, and the belief that the Indians had fired the 
large four-story hotel, the only building in the place, was confirmed by another 
scouting party under Lieut. Groetch the next day. This scouting detachment found 
an old lady, Mrs. Eyan, creeping along the river bank at Breckenridge, having 
been shot by an Indian at her place, a station about twelve miles east of Breck- 
enridge. She reported that the Indians had also fatally shot her son and kid- 
naped her little grandson. She was taken to the fort, and under the skiUfuI 
care of Dr. Brown, the i>ost surgeon, soon recovered. August 23d, Mr. Kent and 
Mr. Tarble, citizens, were dispatched to St. Paul to report the situation, and 
ask for reinforcements and ammunition. These gentlemen left the fort at night 
without escort. Quiet now prevailed for a few days, no one believing that 
the Indians would attack the fort; even the interpreter, Joseph Demarais, a half- 
breed, did not think it probable. In the meantime work upon the breastworks 
was prosecuted as rapidly as passible. About the 29th of August a good protec- 
tion had been provided, and in the bastion of the work on the southwest corner 
of the garrison there was placed a twelve- pound howitzer. This commanded the 
approaches to the south and west line of the fortifications. Another howitzer 
was placed in a log house to protect the north and east sides of the garrison, and 
also as a defense against an attack from Slab Town, the old site of Fort Aber- 
crombie. A third howitzer was placed near the men's quarters. These three 
pieces were manned by experienced men of Company D, who had been in the 
artillery service in Germany. About 2 p. M., August dOth, a party of Indians 
appeared within a mile of the fort, near the Wild Bice River, and drove off a 
herd of stock grazing in the vicinity. That evening two more messengers were 
sent to St. Paul with duplicate dispatches, stating what had transpii^d. The 
following morning a detachment was sent out to recover the stock, if x>06sible, 
and returned in the evening with about forty head. The Indians made no 
demonstrations for several days, except to watch our movements, from the thick 
underbrush across the river. The work on the fortifications was continued. The 
men were much exhausted, half of them being on guard during the day while 
the other half worked on the breastworks. During the nights the whole com- 
mand was on guard, half being on post at a time, the relief occurring every two 
hours. It was feared that the men thus tired out would relax in their vigilance, 
and to guard against this, the officer of the day made the rounds at night every 
two hours, and the commanding officer visited the guard and post every night, 
usually before daybreak. On the 3d of September, Oapt. Vander Horck and 
the orderly sergeant inspected the outside picket line, between four and five 
o'clock, as usual; on reaching the last post of the line, the guard, mistaking the 
party for Indians, fired. The shot wounded the captain in the right arm. The 
guard, in explanation, claimed he had seen Indians crawling near the line during 
the night. At daybreak, an hour later, while Dr. Brown was dressing Capt. 
Vander Horck's wound, the Indians attacked the post from the south side, in 
large force. First Lieut. Cariveau being sick, Lieut. Groet<;h was ordered to 
take command of the post. The fight lasted from 5 to 11 A. M., when the Indians 
were repulsed and retired to their camp south of the fort. It was estimated that 
over four hundred warriors participated in the attack. Many of the Indians 
were killed and wounded, the loss of the garrison being but two, Corp. Nicolas 
Hettinger wounded in the right shoulder and Private Edwin D. Steele in the 
abdomen, of which he died September 7th. After the fight was over and the In- 
dians had retreated, it was ascertained that there were but three hundred and 
fifty rounds of musket ammunition left in the garrison. The arms in the hands of 
the men were the Harper's Ferry muskets, caliber 69, and on leaving Fort Snelling 
the command was furnished with only 2,000 rounds of ammunition, the company 
commander being told that there were 40,000 cartridges at Fort Abercrombie. 


On examination, however, it was found that these cartridges were 58-caliber. 
This discovery was made in April, and the commanding officer at once made requi- 
sition for 20,000 rounds 69-caliber to the chief of ordnance. About the Ist of 
May he was advised that the requisition had been ordered to be filled from the St. 
Louis arsenal. Not hearing from it, a report was made to the chief of ordnance 
about June 10th. July 30th notice was received from the St. Louis arsenal that 
ammunition would be shipped, but none reached the post before the attack. For- 
tunately, there were on hand several cases of canister for the twelve-pound how- 
itzers, which contained round balls of caliber 69; these were used for the muskets, 
the powder for the cartridges being obtained from the treaty train. The canisters 
were refilled with broken pieces of cast iron and other materials. In this way 
about 2,000 cartridges were provided. The ladies of the garrison rendered 
material assistance in making them. 

September 4th and 5th frequent shots were fired from across the river. About 
daybreak on the 6th the Indians attacked the post with an increased force. They 
succeeded in getting into the stable, where a sharp fight took place for about 
ten minutes. Two Indians were killed and many wounded, and two of our men 
slightly wounded. After being driven from the stable the Indians attacked the 
fort from three sides, south, east and north. The hottest of the contest was at 
the commissary buildings, and at this point the howitzer did very effective ser- 
vice, as was shown by the fact that the Indians lefb their dead upon the battle- 
field. Eight or ten dead were found there, half buried in the sand, on the bank 
of the river. On the west side of the new commissary building there was also 
a hot contest. Here was a small breastwork of hewed logs, defended by about 
ten privates under Sergeants William Deutch and Fred Simon. This small force 
fought nobly, though greatly outnumbered, and succeeded in killing and wound- 
ing many braves. Two of the killed were within thirty or forty feet of the breast- 
works. The Indians failing to penetrate the garrison at these two points, con- 
centrated their entire force at the southeast corner near the stables and the 
ferry. Here the fight, at times most furious, lasted until 3 P. M., the Indians 
losing many warriors. The post interpreter, Joseph Demarais (a half-breed), 
subsequently learned from the attacking force that their losses were so great they 
were discouraged from renewing the attempt to take the fort. Our loss was one 
killed. Private Wm. Siegel, and two wounded, in the whole day's fight. 

From this date there were no further attacks except from small squads of 
Indians, who would fire at the fort from the opposite side of the river. On the 
21st of September two more dispatch carriers were sent to St. Paul, with an escort 
of ten soldiers and ten citizens to accompany them a part of the way. This de- 
tachment on its return was ambushed by the Indians, and one soldier, Wm. Schulz, 
and a citizen, Mr. Wright, were killed. September 23d brought reinforcements, 
about five hundred strong, under command of Capt. Burger. Immediately after 
this Ck)mpany D was relieved and ordered to join its regiment in the South, which 
it did at Germantown, Tenn., on the 14th of February, 1863. 


There was a guo^i-uuderstanding between the Sioux and Chippewa Indians 
that they should make common war upon the whites, notwithstanding the two 
Indian nations were hereditary enemies, either of whom would kill the other at 
sight, and the one who took the scalp wore an eagle's feather. At the time of 
the Sioux outbreak a portion of the Chippewa Indians had gathered at Gull Lake, 
about twenty-five mik\s north of Fort Ripley, which at that time was one of the 
frontier military posts, and, being only about ten miles from the Chippewa Agen- 
cy, served as its defense. 

This post, Ijefore the war, was usually garrisoned by a company of regu- 
lars, but during the summer of 1862 the command consisted of thirty men of 
Company C, Fifth Minnesota Volunteers, under command of Capt. Francis Hall, 
the balance of the company being away on detached service, under command of 
Lieut. T. J. Sheehan, at Fort Bidgley, where they nobly aided in the defense of 



the fort against a lar^e body of Sioux. Fort Bipley was situated on the west 
bank of the Mississippi Biver, one hundred and thirty miles by wagon road north 
of St. Paol and fifty miles from St Cloud. 

This troop, small as it was, seemed sufficient, as no one had anticipated trou- 
ble with the Indians who for years had been perfectly friendly with the whites, 
so much so, that ^^Good Ii\jun" was applied to all except a few wild bucks who 
would occasionally fill themselves with fire-water and amuse themselves by carv- 
ing each other with hunting knives; but as this diversion was among themselves 
no one felt any uneasiness. The boys at the fort spent their time in hunting and 
fishing and such other amusements as their ingenuity might invent; consequent- 
ly it was a season of pleasure to this little band until a messenger from the 
agency brought the intelligence that the Indians at Oull Lake were killing cattle 
and were about to commence war upon the whites. 

The Indian agent, Msy. Walker, requested the commander of the post to send 
soldiers to the agency to protect the government property. A glance at the 
situation revealed our helpless condition. Our arms consisted of old ^^ Brown 
rifles," without bayonets, and for which we had no cartridges. We had four six- 
I)ound howitzers standing on the river bank, where they were usually kept dur- 
ing the summer months. For these we had ammunition, but only one man had 
ever loaded a gun larger than a blacksmith's anviL That man was Ordnance 
Sergeant Frantzkey of the regular army, who was appointed to that x>osition as 
a reward for twenty years' service in the regular army, and assigned to duty in 
charge of ordnance at that post. The fort consisted of several one-story frame 
buildings, situated so as to form three sides of a square, the fourth side being the 
Mississippi Biver, which at this point runs from €«st to west. On the southwest 
comer upon the river bank, and the northeast corner diagonally opposite, were 
block houses, built of logs, with port-holes from which the cannon could com- 
mand the four sides, providing there had been gunners to man them alL Be- 
tween the buildings forming the fort were openings from ten to twenty-five feet 
wide, through which any one might enter the indosure unobstructed, except on 
the east side, where a stockade mA been built of logs placed on end. 

The reader can judge how helpless we would have been had the Indians at- 
tacked us unawares. JPortunately, however, we were warned of the approach- 
ing danger by a chief of the Pillager band, named Bad Boy, who refhsed to Join 
with Holein-the-Day, head chief of the Chippewas, in his war upon the whites, 
and, to escape the wrath of the other tribes, took refuge at the fort with his 
fEunily and a few of his tribe. 

Upon receipt of the message from the agency all hands were set at work by 
candle-light making cartridges. At daylight, the morning of the 20th, the 
writer with twenty men started for the agency, leaving the fort in charge of Ser- 
geant Frantzkey. We had proceeded as &r as Crow Wing village, seven miles 
from the fort, where we met Indian Agent Walker, with all the whites at the 
agency, in full retreat, having abandoned the government property. They re- 
ported the Indians were coming down from Oull Lake in force, and an attack 
was expected at any time. 

Walker then issued the following order: 

"Chippewa Agency, Minn., 
"Commander at Foet Bipley: Aug. 19, 1862. 

"You are hereby directed to proceed immediately to the house of Puga-Nege- 
Sliek, or Hole-in-the-Day, in Crow Wing, or wherever else you may find him, 
and then arrest and at the fort or elsewhere hold him in close confinement until 
otherwise ordered. Your obedient servant, 

"Lucius C. Walkek, 

^^ Indian Agent,^^ 

Walker thought by arresting the ringleader a check would be put upon the 
outbreak. A good house had been built for Hole-in-the-Day near the river, 
about two miles from Crow Wing village, where he lived with his squaWs (three 
in number) and a few of his trusty lieutenants, for it was necessary for him to 


keep a body guard, being acknowledged as head chief of all the ChippewaSr 
Many of the tribes feared and hated him, as was proven a few years later when 
some of the Pillager Indians shot him from ambush, killing him on the spot. 

Thinking we might find him at his house, we started in that direction. Just 
as we got outside the village we discovered him in company with another chief, 
whom we succeeded in capturing, together with a six-shot Ck)lt rifle, the prop- 
erty of Hole-in-the-Day. Suspecting what our intentions were, Holein-the-llay 
took to his heels, the soldiers in hot pursuit, through the woods. Having a better 
knowledge of the paths around the marshes, he succeeded in reaching his house 
in time to give the alarm to his squaws and Indian friends, who made their escape 
across the river in canoes. Sergeant D. K. Stacy and Privates Horning and 
Gk>dley came up just in time to see them land, and give them the command to 
halt. This order not being obeyed, a bullet was sent after them, which fire was 
promptly returned. Several shots were exchanged. "When Homing shot, Hole- 
inthe-Day fell. We afterward learned that he was confined to his tepee for 
several days, and we supposed he was wounded, though we could never learn 
positively, for an Indian considers it a great disgrace to be wounded, and will 
keep it secret if possible. 

Having failed in capturing the object of our chase, we returned to the fort, 
and Sergeant Stacy started for St. Paul to advise the governor of the situation, 
and ask for reinforcements. Mounted upon a mule, the sergeant made good 
time, and reached St. Cloud in time to catch the stage for St. PauL 

Upon our return to the fort, the ordnance sergeant was ordered to move the 
howitzers into the block houses, and instruct the soldiers iiow to use them. 
This move, as was afterward learned, saved us an atti^k, and consequently our 
scalps, for had the Indians made a determined effort we could not have success- 
fully resisted it. Hole-in-the-Day had sent scouts to watch our movements, and 
when they reported that we had moved the big guns from the river l]«ink to 
the block houses they were puzzled, and conclud^ to wait until the Bed Lake 
Indians joined them, notwithstanding they had two hundred and seventy-five war- 
riors at Gull Lake, only twenty-five miles from the fort. 

It is a matter of history that the outbreak of the Sioux was hastened by a few 
wild young bucks who commenced their depredations before the older ones 
were ready to strike. A similar state of affairs existed among the Ghippewas. 
They were not ready to attack, but the early depredations and the timely infor- 
mation furnished by old Bad Boy put us on our guard, which, togetibier with the 
fear an Indian entertains for a big gun, saved the whole norttiem part of the 
state from their murderous designs. 

Agent Walker with his family started for St. Paul, and when a few miles 
from St. Cloud committed suicide, whether from fear or remorse no one ever 
knew. Immediate steps were taken to strengthen our position. Martial law 
was declared. All white citizens were ordered to take refuge at the fort and 
assist in its defense. An additional stockade was commenced and barriers placed 
at the opening between the buildings. Gov. Bamse^ immediately ordered Capt. 
Tattersall, Company H, Sixth Minnesota, Capt. Libby, Company O, Seventii 
Minnesota, and Capt. Burt, Company C, Seventh Minnesota, to go to our relief. 
They arrived at the fort about the last of August. Capt. Hall luiving heard of 
the trouble hastened his return and resumed command of the x>ost before rein- 
forcements arrived. The Bed Lake and Leach Lake Indians joined Holein-the 
Day, making his force number about five hundred warriors, who moved their 
camp from Gull Lake to near the agency on the west bank of the Mississippi, 
north of the Crow Wing River, and about ten miles from the fort. The junc- 
tion, however, was too late, as reinforcements were within reaching distance of 
the fort. 

Immediately following the troops came Mr. Dole, commissioner of Indian 
affairs, accompanied by C. W. Thompson, superintendent of Indian affairs for 
Minnesota, John G. Nicolay, President Lincoln's private secretary, and several 
persons of less note from Washington and other Ikistern cities, making a party 
of about thirty. 


Com. Dole sent a messenger to his royal highness Hole-in-the-Day, requesting 
an audience, to which the wily chief gave assent. It was arranged that a council 
should be held at Crow Wing village the next day, to which place the commis- 
sioner went, accompanied by his body guard, one company of infantry and a 
detachment of Company C, Fifth Minnesota, all under command of Capt. Hall, 
to meet, as they supposed, the chiefs of the various tribes. Imagine our sur- 
prise when we found ourselves surrounded by the whole force of Indians. The 
situation was anything but pleasant, but fortunately Hole-in-the-Day, who was a 
very shrewd fellow, expecting to gain more by diplomacy than by war, was will- 
ing to concede to the demand of Capt. Hall, that the Indians who had taken 
possession of the road leading to the fort "must withdraw or they would be 

blown to in five minutes." The commissioner was not ready to treat with 

them at such disadvantage, and by various pretexts adjourned the council until 
the next day, when we took the precaution to increase our force one company of 
infantry and a six-pound howitzer. It was whispered that tiiere would l^ some 
fun that day, but not an Indian appeared upon the scene. 

The Indian traders and some of the Indians had taken a dislike to Agent 
Walker, and when they learned of his death one cause of their trouble was re- 
moved. Knowing that their game had been checkmated, they were only too 
willing to negotiate with Com. Dole for a treaty of peace and disperse. Com. 
Dole returned to Washington, the citizens to their houses and the soldiers went 
South to take part in the War of the Eebellion. 

It is impossible to measure the magnitude of the service to Minnesota and to 
her people of the gallant defense of Forts Bidgley and Abercrombie, and the 
vigilance of the garrison at Fort Bipley, nor would it hardly be possible to 
exaggerate it. With scarcely a warning signal, the state was precipitated into 
all the horrors of an Indian war. The entire Sioux nation was upon the war- 
path. With fire and tomahawk they had desolated and depopulated a wide 
stretch of the frontier, and were sweeping onward toward the populous x)ortions 
of the state. The Chippewas in the north were restless and eager to join them. 
They were crouching, ready to sound their war-whoop and spring into the fray. 
Had these outposts &llen, a horde of barbarians from the north would have made 
common cause with these savages of the west, and the fairest portions of Min- 
nesota would have become their easy prey. 

Aside from the garrisons of these forts the state was practically in a defense- 
less condition. She had suffered a serious drain of her able-bodied men for 
service in the Bebellion, and though she had yet ample material for her defense, 
it required time to rally and organize it. The desperate stand made at these 
posts arrested the progress of the savages in the west, caused those in the 
north to hesitate, and gave time for the authorities and the people to come to 
the rescue, and save the populous portions of the state from the horrors of deso- 
lation and death that had lain the frontier waste. Minnesota can never forget the 
debt of gratitude she owes to these gallant men of the Fifth Minnesota for this 
most timely and effective service. 


The seven companies^ not engaged in frontier service were ordered South in 
May, 1862, and on the 24th of that month reported to Gen. John Pope, in the 
field before Corinth, Miss., and were assigned to the Second Brigade, First Divis- 
ion, Army of the Mississippi. The regiment had hardly time to establish its 
camp and realize its surroundings before it was brought into action. On the 
28th of May, four days after it ha^ reached the front, it participated in the bat- 
tle of Farmington, one of the most important of a series of actions that culmi- 

* Company A, Capt. Josiah R. Dartt; Company E, Capt. John C. Becht; Company F, Capt. 
Ebenezer F. Rice; Company G, Capt. Orlando Eddy; Company H, Capt. Otis S. Clark; Company 
I, Capt, Luther E. Clark; Company K, Capt. Gold T. Curtis. 


dated in the captare of Corinth. Thoagh this was its baptism of fire the regiment 
bore itself with the gallantry of veterans, and contributed its fall qaota of cas- 
ualties to the list of killed and wounded. Its first campaign began with a battle 
and was followed by a succession of forced marches in an effort to outstrip and 
outflank a column of retreating rebels who had evacuated Corinth. The partici- 
pants in that campaign will ever retain a vivid recollection of those terrible 
marches under the scorching rays of that Mississippi sun. The regiment made 
many equally hard marches later in the war, but then it had become seasoned, 
and was capable of enduring anything. This was its initiation. The men were 
fresh from the cool and exhilarating atmosphere of Minnesota. They were vig- 
orous in body and strong in spirit. They had prepared themselves for service 
by much drilling and strict attention to soldierly duty during the preceding 
winter, and thought they were equal to any possible campaign service, but by 
the time the pursuit of the enemy was abandoned and the regiment reached 
Camp Clear Creek, on its return to the vicinity of Corinth, they realized there 
were sterner realities in war than had been "dreamed of in their philosophy." 
It required many days to recover from the fatigue and exhaustion of this brief 
campaign, and too many, alas! never recovered at all. There were more deaths 
in the regiment resulting from the excessive effort required and the intolerable 
heat endured during these marches than it suffered in some of the most desperate 
battles in which it was subsequently engaged. The capture of Corinth resulted 
in the abandonment by the rebels of western Tennessee and northern Alabama 
and Mississippi. The Union lines were established along the Memphis & Charles- 
ton railroad from Memphis on the Mississippi Biver to Decatur on the Tennessee, 
and beyond. For some weeks following the army did little else than occupy the 
country. The Fifth Minnesota lay for some time in Camp Clear Creek, during 
July participating in an expedition, without adventure, to Bienzi, a few miles 
south, and in August was given charge of a stretch of the railroad referred to in 
the vicinity of Tuscumbia, Ala. 

The regiment did not enjoy life much at Camp Clear Creek. It was an un- 
healthy locality. Disease lurked in the earth and in the air, and its seeds be- 
came implanted in the constitutions of many of the men. Since the war, the 
writer has been much impressed, when furnishing certificates in support of ap- 
plications for pensions made by members of the regiment, by the large propor- 
tion who trace their disability to disease contracted while on duty at Camp 
Clear Creek, Miss. The surroundings near Tuscumbia were more favorable. 
The country was healthy, and abounded in supplies that in a large measure sup- 
planted, or at least relieved, the monotony of the historical hardtack and side 
bacon. While the regiment was on duty here Col. Borgersrode resigned, and, 
in consequence. Lieutenant Colonel Hubbard and Major Gere were promoted one 
grade each, and Capt. Hall of Company C commissioned as major. 


The summer's quiet in northern Alabama was occasionally slightly dis- 
turbed by a guerrilla raid, with no result other than to relieve the monotony of 
camp life. The repose of the regiment, however, was ruthlessly broken in 
September. The rebel generals Van Dorn and Price had organized during the 
summer a large force in central Mississippi, and had commenced a movement 
northward. The Union army was ordered to hastily concentrate near Corinth. 
The regiment moved westward as far as luka, where it joined the balance of the 
Second Brigade, then commanded by Col. Murphy of the Eighth Wisconsin. 
By the time it got there the place was threatened by a column of the enemy, and 
Murphy was ordered to hold the place until the stores, of which there was a 
large accumulation, could be removed. Murphy made his dispositions for de- 
fense, but upon learning the strength of the threatening force, decided to destroy 
the stores and continue the movement toward Corinth. In leaving luka the 
Fifth Minnesota acted as rear guard, and was charged with the duty of keeping 
at bay any pursuing force. It had no trouble "^ith the enemy in tibe discharge 


of this daty, but was nearly overwhelmed and almost trampled into the earth 
by a mob of 6,000 or more contrabands with their worldly effects, who crowded 
the oolamn on flank and rear, in their eager efforts to escape the dangers of rebel 

At the first bivouac from luka, Murphy was arrested for disobedience of orders, 
and the troops ordered to countermarch under command of Col. Mower of the 
Eleventh Missouri, the next senior colonel of the brigade. The purpose of this 
movement, as the event seemed to prove, was a reconnaissance with a view to ascer- 
tain the strength of the enemy. The fact was soon developed that Price with 
several rebel divisions was in occupation of luka, and our forces thereupon retired 
to the main body of the army near Corinth. Gen. Rosecrans, who was then in 
command of the Union army, determined to attack Price at once, and two days 
thereafter, Sept. 19, 1862, occurred the bloody battle of luka, in which the Second 
Brigade actively participated. It was a decisive victory for the Union arms, but 
the bulk of the rebel army succeeded in getting away in a shattered condition, 
retreating in the direction from whence it came. Price rejoined Van Dorn, who 
was near Pontotoc, Miss., some miles southwest of Corinth, and in a few days the 
combined force of the enemy was put in motion on its northward march* Bose- 
crans concentrated all available troops in or near Corinth, which had been forti- 
fied with elaborate earthworks. 

On the 3d of October the combined forces of Price and Van Dorn made a 
vigorous attack upon Bosecrans' lines, and by the evening of that day had driven 
them almost into the defenses of Corinth. The Fifth Minnesota was posted on 
the morning of the 3d at a crossing of Tuscumbia Creek, about four miles out, with 
orders to d&pute its passage by the enemy. The ;>oint was southeasterly from 
the town, while the approach of the enemy was from the west. The regiment 
saw no enemy, the entire region being covered with a heavy growth of timl^r, but 
it could correctly judge of the progress of the fight by the discharges of artillery 
and musketry. It was evident that our lines were being pressed back, as the 
sounds of the battle became nearer and more distinct. Toward evening the sound 
of the conflict indicated that there was fighting between our x>osition and the 
town. It seemed as though the regiment ought to retire and join the main body, 
but it was ordered to hold that crossing of Uie creek, and there it must remain 
until relieved, or forced to retire by the enemy. Just at dusk, Quartermaster 
McGrorty, with an escort of cavalry, brought an order for the regiment to retire 
into the town. The quartermaster had gone into Corinth during the day to pro- 
cure rations, and, seeing the unfavorable aspect of affairs, reported to Bosecrans 
our position, who immediately sent by him the order stated. The night was 
pitchy dark, and in conducting the regiment into the town there was great danger 
of straying into the enemy's lines. It passed across and within a few rods of the 
right flank of the rebels, some of whom must have seen or heard it, but probably 
mistook it in the darkness for a body of their own troops moving into position. 
However, the regiment safely reached its destination, and bivouacked in one of 
the streets of the town. During the night Bosecrans withdrew his forces within 
the fortifications of Corinth, and prepared for the events of the morrow. 

The reveille that called the troops into line on the morning of the 4th of Oc- 
tober, 1862, was not sounded upon the bugle, nor was it followed by the cus- 
tomary roll call. Long before the first gray streaks of dawn began to lighten 
the horizon, a shell from a rebel Parrott gun exploded not a dozen feet from 
where the colors of the Fifth Begiment lay firmly grasped by its ever-vigilant 
though now sleeping guard. This was a signal gun, and was immediately fol- 
lowed by volleys from half a score of rebel batteries. A more summary and 
startling awakening could hardly be conceived, and for the moment it seemed 
that an earthquake was about to envelop the army. Some of the heavy siege 
guns of the forts were soon brought to bear upon the rebel batteries and shortly 
checked their operation. The usual infantry assault did not follow the artillery 
firing, for the reason, doubtless, that no intelligent movement of infantry could 
be made in the darkness of early morning over the rough, heavily timbered and 
obstructed approaches to the defenses occupied by the Union army. Daylight 


was followed by considerable fighting, bat confined mostly to the artillery, with 
no perceptible advantage to either side. It was well along toward noon before 
Van Dorn had made his complete dispositions for a general assault upon the 
Union lines. The Fifth Minnesota had remained in the vicinity of where it 
bivouacked the night of the 3d, in the northwest edge of the town, considerably 
to the rear of the lines of defense, though more exposed to the enemy's fire than 
if it had been in the trenches. Company A had early been detached for sharp- 
shooting duty, and was well to the front. The balance of the r^ment stood m 
line awaiting orders. There had been a lull in the firing, when suddenly, about 
11 A. M., the rebel batteries opened and the earth seemed convulsed by the in- 
cessant discharges of artillery that followed, as every gun on either side was 
being worked with the utmost effort. Soon the d^ening roar of musketry 
plainly indicated the enemy was assaulting our lines. The regiment was becom- 
ing restive. The men clamored to be sent to some point where their rifies could 
do service. Their impatience was soon relieved. The determined assault by 
Van Dorn's army had been gallantly met and firmly withstood, except upon the 
right. There the rebels h£^ succeeded in x>enetrating our lines, had captured 
some of our batteries and were pouring into the streets of Corinth. The situa- 
tion was critical. Unless the enemy was turned back and that gap closed it 
would admit a column of Van Dorn's army to the town, and Bosecrans' lines 
would be taken in the rear, the consequences of which could not be otherwise than 
calamitous. Tlie Fifth Minnesota dosed that gap! It was sent like a whirlwind 
against the fiank of that penetratingforca The enemy recoiled under theshock. 
The pent-up energies of the Fifth Kegiment were released and it did the work 
of a brigade of men. Stunned by the terrible execution of the volleys i)Oured 
into it, the confused mass of the enemy halted and fell back, closely pressed by 
the Fifth Regiment. It retook the batteries that had been lost and re-estab- 
lished the line at the point where it had been broken. 

The Fifth Minnesota may justly claim that it saved the day at Corinth. 
Gen. Stanley, who commanded the division to which it was attached, accorded 
that credit to the regiment upon the field of the battle, as also did Gen. Bosecrans 
commanding the army, which he has recently confirmed by the following letter, 
addressed to Archbishop Ireland, who was at the time of the battle chaplain 
of the regiment. 

Washington, D. C, 
My Dear Friend and Comrade: Aug. 26, 1889. 

y*^ %^ %^ m^ ^^ ^^ •^ ^0 ^0 ^0 ^0 ^0 ^V ^^ ^^ 

^^ ^^^ ^^^ ^^^ ^^^ ^^^ ^^^ ^^^ ^^1 ^^^ ^^^ ^^^ ^^i ^^1 ^^1 

Yes, you were with me at the battle of Corinth, Miss., Oct. 3 and 4, 1862. 
We were of the 17,500 patriots, dying and living, who offered up their best 
that this nation might live. You wish me to write what I remember of the ser- 
vices in that battle of the Fifth Minnesota, United States Volunteer Infantry. 

There were many things to think of at that time, and many things when 
writing my official report of it which excluded observation of numerous details, 
and of individual and regimental action. The memory of many I then noted, 
but did not recount, has been laid under twenty-seven years of strivings in the 
battle of life. The sunshine of young manhood has given place to the grayer 
lights of autumn, yet when digging down I find the events of the Fifth Minne- 
sota's work on the 4th come vividly before me. Colonel Mower had ordered the 
Fifth Minnesota to guard the bridge across the Tuscumbia on the 3d, when, with 
the remainder of the brigade, he went to help Davies. Late in the evening 
Colonel Hubbard brought up his regiment and formed facing westward on the 
Mobile & Ohio railway, with its left near the depot, where they bivouacked 
for the night. On the next morning, when the enemy from the north assaulted 
our line and forced it back a few hundred yards into the edge of town, Colonel 
Hubbard, moving by his right fiank, faced the coming storm from that quarter, 
and, by his promptitude, anticipated General Stanley's order from me, to use the 
reserves of his division in meeting the enemy's charge. He drove back the frag- 
ments of his columns, overtaking and bringing back some pieces without horses 
of our reserve artillery, which the enemy hsMl seized, and covering the retiring of 


a battery which had gone too far to t\LG front. Veterans could hardly have 
acted more opportunely and effectively than did the gallant Fifth Minnesota on 
that occasion. 

* ^^ ^^ %^^ ^^ ^^ ^^p ^^ ^k ^^ ^^ ^# ^^ ^fe ^^ 

^^* ^^* ^^^ ^^^ ^^^ ^^^ ^^^ ^^^ ^w* ^^^ ^^^ ^^^ ^^^ *^^ 

Gk>d bless the members of the gallant Fifth and the land we love! 

Yours fraternally, 
Most Eev. Archbishop Ibeulnd, W. S. Bobecbans. 

Bt, Faulj Minnesota. 

This testimony surely establishes the claim the Fifth Minnesota has ever 
maintained, that its timely presence and prompt and effective action at the 
critical point turned the tide at Corinth. The Fifth Minnesota was the only 
force in position to act upon the instant in that particular spot, and the occasion 
was one of those emergencies where seconds of time count for success or fulure. 

Van Dorn was now repulsed at all points, but, gathering his strength for another 
effort, he attempted to pierce the centre of Bosecrans' position. Here occurred 
that memorable charge of Col. Rogers and his brave Texans upon battery Bobi- 
net. Eogers fell upon the escarpment of the fort, and his troops, almost suc- 
ceeding in capturing the work, were finally repulsed, suffering severely. This 
ended the battle of Corinth. Van Dorn's defeated forces retreated southward, 
whence they were vigorously pursued by Bosecrans as far as Bipley, Miss., and 
from thence the army returned to the vicinity of Corinth, where the regiment 
remained through the month of October. 


Early in November the Fifth Begiment was ordered to Grand Junction and 
there joined Gren. Grant's column that had been organized for a campaign 
through central Mississippi. Here the regiment was reinforced December 12th 
by Companies B and C, which had been relieved from duty on the Minnesota 
frontier. Company D joined the regiment on the 14th of February following. 
The objective point of Qen, Grant's movement through Mississippi was Yicks- 
burg, but he fell &j: short of reaching it. His army penetrated as far south as 
Oxford, when his communications were cut at Holly Springs by a rebel cavalry 
force, and his depot of supplies at that point destroyed. This compelled a 
retrograde movement to the line of the Memphis & Charleston railroad, the 
command reaching La Grange, Tenn., late in December. While the army lay 
in winter quarters along the line of this railroad, it underwent a complete re- 
organization and the regiment became a part of the Second Brigade, Third 
Division, Fifteenth Army Corps, commanded by G^n. W. T. Sherman. The 
brigade was then composed of the Fifth Minnesota, Eighth Wisconsin, Forty- 
seventh Illinois, Eleventh Missouri and the Second Iowa Battery. The Ninth 
Minnesota was added to the brigade a few months later. These regiments re- 
mained together until the close of the war, and formed and maintained such a 
feeling of regard, and even affection, for each other, that it seemed like the 
breaking up a family when they were finally separated. There had been some 
changes in the staff of the regiment during the preceding summer. Bev. J. F. 
Chaffee had resigned as chaplain, and was succe^ed by Bev. John Ireland (now 
archbishop of St. Paul) June 23d, and Surgeon Francis B. Etheridge, who re- 
signed September 3d, had been succeeded by Dr. V. P. Kennedy. The va- 
cancy occasioned by Dr. Kennedy's promotion was filled by the appointment of 
Dr. W. H. Leonard. 

Late in December the Fifth Begiment was sent with other troops, under 
command of Gen. B. P. Buckland, on an expedition against the rebel General 
Forrest through west Tennessee. This proved a severe campaign without much 
fighting. The command had many a footrace and an occasional skirmish with 
Forrest's cavalry, enduring great hardship at times, being exposed to severe 
weather, with scanty protection from the cold and sometimes scantier rations. 
Aft;er marching day and night much of the time for two weeks or more, the ex- 
pedition finally brought up at Jackson, Tenn., where the regiment was given a 
brief respite. 



About Feb. 1, 1863, the Fifth Begiment was ordered to rejoin its proper 
command near Memphis. Gren. Grant was here collecting an army for opera- 
tions against Vicksburg by way of the Mississippi Eiver. Early in April it 
moved down the river on transports to a point opposite Yazoo Pass, expecting 
to co-operato in an expedition intended to open that route to the rear of Vicks- 
burg. The undertaking proved a failure and the movement continued down the 
Mississippi to Milli ken's Bend, a point on the Louisiana shore a short distance 
above Vicksburg. Here was awaited the concentration of the army and its ac- 
cumulation of supplies; in the meantime the regiment serving its turn in details 
that were at work upon a canal, the purpose of which was to open a channel 
from the Mississippi Biver to an interior bayou, through which it was expected 
steamers could be floated to the river below Vicksburg. The men regard^ this 
the most menial, and, as the event proved, it was the most unprofitable, service 
they were called on to perform during the war. Standing in the water up to 
one's knees and delving in the mud with a spade, was to their minds unsoldierly 
in the extreme, and a mighty poor way to crush the Rebellion. There was very 
little regret expressed at the total failure of the project. About the time the 
canal was ready to admit the water, the Mississippi rapidly subsided and left 
the bed of the canal above the level of the river. There was hardly a soldier in 
the command who didn't predict this very result from the inception of the 
scheme. The failure of the canal necessitated an attempt to run steamers past 
the rebel batteries on the river in front of Vicksburg. This proved successful, 
though the boats were considerably damaged by rebel shell and some of them 
destroyed. Facilities for navigating the Mississippi below this fortified position 
were thus provided. Everything was now in readiness for the grand campaign 
that ended so gloriously in the capture of Vicksburg. On the 2d of May Sher- 
man's corps, which had just returned from making a diverting demonstration 
against Haines' Bluff, was put in motion down the west bank of the river, moving 
to a poi nt opposite Grand Gulf. Here the steamers that had run the rebel batter- 
ies ferried the troops across to the Mississippi shore and from there they struck 
out for the interior. The impedimenta of the army had been left behind. The 
column was incumbered only with such transportation as was required to haul 
the ammunition. No rations were taken, except such as could be carried in the 
haversacks of the men. The army was stripped for fighting. It was this cam- 
paign in which it was said that Gen. Grant's baggage consisted only of a tooth- 

It seemed to be the fortune of the Fifth Minnesota to be generally very near 
the front. In this movement it led the column until it reached the vicinity of 
Jackson, Miss. The regiment had acquired the reputation of beiug very effec- 
tive on the skirmish line, and, as the column was constantly being impeded by a 
body of the enemy in front, the Fifth was ordered, the second day out from 
Grand Gulf, to take the advance and deploy as skirmishers. The regiment held 
this formation during most of the march of that day. May 13th, and though 
constantly moving forward, it was almost as constantly exchanging shots with 
the retiring force of the enemy, and just at night became quite sharply engaged 
at Mississippi Springs, where the rebels made a somewhat determined stand. 
This force had just been dislodged when orders were received to halt and biv- 
ouac for the night. The regiment expected, of course, to be relieved of this 
duty the next day, as it was customary to change the order of the troops in each 
day's march, but in the evening, Gen. Tuttle, who then commanded the division, 
rode up, and, after complimenting the regiment for its good work during the 
day, added that it might keep the advance and move forward at four o'clock the 
next morning, maintaining its formation as skirmishers. At that stage of their 
army experience the men were not as susceptible to compliments as was the case 
earlier in the war. Tlie writer's recollection recalls some vigorous protests 
from members of the regiment upon learning these orders, in which their offi- 
cers, perhaps, did not join, but most assuredly sympathized. The next day the 


regiment skirmished the country all the way to the vicinity of Jackson, where, 
Biboat 3 p. M., the enemy was met in considerable force, and the Fifteenth Corps 
was deployed in line of battle. There was some sharp skirmish fighting, inter- 
spersed with artillery dnels, lasting perhaps an honr, when the command was 
ordered to assault the rebel intrenchments. They proved to be held by but few 
troops and were easily taken, when the Fifbeenth Corps moved triumphantly 
into the capital city of Jeff. Davis' own state. The Fifth Minnesota, with its 
associates of the Second Brigade, was at once assigned to duty as provost guard 
of the city, and located its bivouac on the capitol grounds. Its stay in Jackson, 
however, was exceedingly brief. After destroying the railroads in the vicinity 
and such property as was regarded contraband of war, the army evacuated the 
city on the morning of the 16th of May and marched toward Yicksburg. Cen. 
Grant had succeeded in interposing his army between Pemberton's, who had 
sallied out of Yicksburg, and t^at of Gen. Joe Johnston, who was moving to 
his relief from the east, and it was Grant's evident purpose to overwhelm Pem- 
berton and capture Yicksburg, if possible, before Johnston could give him 
trouble in the rear. The battles of Baymond and Champion Hills had been 
fought by other columns of the army, and Pemberton, defeated in both, had re- 
tire to his defensive position. 

Yicksburg was a veritable Gibraltar in the strength of its fortifications and 
the inaccessibility of its approaches. Monster forts, connected by elaborate 
earthworks,crowned the heights of Walnut Hills, and impenetrable abatis of fallen 
timber guarded all approaches. Grant's advance divisions were in line before 
these defenses early on the 19th, and, assuming Pemberton's army to be in a 
demoralized condition, he made an assault. It proved wholly ineffectual, and he 
withdrew and waited until he could get his entire army into position. Grant's 
strategy had compelled the evacuation of the rebel defenses on the Yazoo Biver, 
so that upon our arrival in front of the rebcd works communication was opened 
with the Mississippi Biver north of Yicksburg, and ample supplies conveyed to 
the army. Most timely, indeed, as the haversacks of the men were not only 
empty, ^but they had already missed several meals. 

Everything was in readiness by the 22d of May, and the preceding night orders 
had been issued to assault the rebel lines along their entire length. The terrible 
slaughter and total failure of this attempt to carry Yicksburg by assault are 
matters of history known to everyone who has read the story of the Bebellion. 
The old Second Brigade moved grandly up to the performance of its work. Its 
line of advance was along a wagonroad leading up to and through the rebel fortifi- 
cations, which, however, had been'obstructed with elaborate abatis. The Fifth 
Minnesota was upon the left of the brigade, and this circumstance saved it from 
annihilation. As it was impossible to move in line of battle, the brigade was 
ordered to charge by the fiank, and as the leading regiment, the Eleventh Mis- 
souri, emerged from behind the protecting timber, charging at a run and closely 
followed by the balance of the brigade, it was met, and, as it moved forward, it 
was literally melted down by the fire from the rebel works, which, from the right 
and left of the road, was concentrated upon it. Scarcely a man, from the right 
of the regiment to its colors, but fell, either killed or wounded. The slaughter 
was simply horrible. The heaps of dead and wounded men of themselves formed 
an obstruction almost as effective as the abatis they were seeking to surmount. 
It was apparent that no troops could reach the enemy's works, and the order 
came to desist and seek cover the best they could. The Fifth Minnesota filed to 
the right of the road, and sought refuge among the fallen timber in one of the 
ravines running parallel to the rebel works. It had suffered some casualties, but 
nothing compared to what would have been its fate had the movement continued 
even a minute longer. The men awaited the darkness of night to retire from 
their dangerous situation, and seek a spot where they could sa^ly indulge in the 
luxury of a long breath. The soldiers fittingly characterized this manner of as- 
sault as *' charging endways." It was an entirely new evolution in tactics, and, 
so far as known, was never subsequently adopted as among possible maneuvers 
in battle. 


G^n. Grant now concladed that Yicksburg could not be taken by assault, and 
at once made his dispositions for a siege. Large reinforcements were sent him 
from the North, so that he was enabled to defend his rear and keep at bay Joe 
Johnston's army from the east. The Fifth Minnesota performed duty in the 
trenches a few days, but early in June was detached and sent with other troops 
on an expedition up the valley of the Yazoo Biver. In the course of this move- 
ment it was engaged in a sharp fight with a body of rebels at Satartia June 4th, 
and another at Mechanicsburg June 5th, in both of which the enemy was worsted. 
About this time there was trouble on the Louisiana side of the river. Dick Tay- 
lor, with an army from Texas and Arkansas, was approaching from the west for 
the relief of Vicksburg. The Second Brigade was ordered into the breach, and 
sent over into the interior of Louisiana to head off this new danger. It struck 
Taylor's force at Bichmond, La., June 14th, and here the Fifth Minnesota again 
displayed its efficiency in skirmish duty. The entire regiment was deployed, 
covering a large part of the front of our advancing force. The enemy's skirmish 
line was met, strongly posted, a mile or more from Bichmond. The regiment was 
ordered to charge. The conditions were so different from those under which it 
charged at Yicl^burg that the men seemed to almost regard it as pastime. Here 
they had room according to their strength, and with a wild hurrah they over- 
whelmed and gobbled up the entire skirmish line of the enemy. Advancing 
rapidly on Bichmond, it was occupied with but slight resistance. Dick Taylor 
was in retreat. A part of his transportation and baggage and quite a squaid of 
his men were captured, but his main body was making rapid strides for the cy- 
press swamps of the interior. 

This experience with Dick Taylor warned the general commanding that It 
would be prudent to keep watch upon the west bank of the river, and the Sec- 
ond Brigade was assigned to that duty during the remainder of the siege. It 
was also determined to erect batteries behind the levee, on the Louisiana shore, 
from which shell and hot shot could be thrown into the town. This work had to 
be prosecuted at night, and a detail from the brigade was each night sent out to 
aid in or protect the prosecution of the work. The rebels soon began to suspect 
what was going on, and one night when the Fifth Minnesota was on duty near 
one of these batteries, well progressed toward completion, the enemy opened 
fire with all the heavy guns that fringed the river front. The men crouched 
behind the levee, which at that point was high and wide, thinking, or at least 
hoping, the rebels would soon tire of their random practice. But the enemy 
was evidently determined there should be no work done upon the batteries that 
night. The monstrous shot and shell from ponderous siege pieces plowed into 
the levee, covering us with earth, or screeched over our neads as they cut the 
trees in twain in the rear. The minutes grew into hours and the hours length- 
ened interminably as the continuous fire was kept up, and during that whole 
mortal night, which, it seemed, would never end, the men lay there, flattened out 
upon the ground behind that levee, none of them daring to hope they would be 
spared to see another dawn. Strange to say, but few men were injured. Most 
of the missiles of the enemy passed to the rear, or buried themselves in thesolid 
earth of the levee. Occasionally a shell would explode dangerously near, and 
its fragments wound some of the men, but the percentage of casusdties to the 
amount of ammunition expended was small. The horrors of that night were 
sufficient to have made its victims prematurely gray, and the release from that 
*' hell hole," as the men termed it, at daylight was one of the most grateful ex- 
periences of the war. There wasn't much work done on those batteries after 
that night, nor would they have proven of much utility if they had been com- 
pleted, for the garrison of Yicksburg was now starved and exhausted, and ready 
to capitulate. 

The survivors of Vicksburg have doubtless participated in many celebrations of 
our great national holiday since the war, but none of them have ever experienced 
the same degree of joy and enthusiasm, of patriotic exultation and delight, that 
they felt on the morning of July 4, 1863, when it was announced to the army 
that Pemberton had surrendered and that Vicksburg was taken. Early in the 


day as many of the regiment as conld crowd onto a little steamer that lay moored 
to the river bank near camp were taken to the Yicksbarg wharf and given an 
opportunity to inspect the place for the redaction of which they had endured so 
much. They felt amply repaid for all the trials and dangers through which they 
had passed, in the glories of the achievement to which they had contributed; 
and it may be safely assumed that none of them to-day would exchange the 
laurels they wear as one of the victors of that memorable campaign for any earthly 
gift. The surrender of the garrison of Vicksburg caused the retirement of Joe 
Johnston's army that had pressed upon Grant's rear during the siege, and Gen. 
Sherman at once moved in pursuit of him. The Fifth Minnesota, which had 
now resumed its position in the Fifteenth Army Corps; composed a part of this 
pursuing force. Johnston made a faint show of fight at Jackson, Miss., but was 
soon dislodged and ingloriously fled eastwai*d, and Sherman returned to the 
vicinity of Vicksburg. 

The Fifth remained in camp some weeks near the Big Black Biver, where it 
had an opportunity to recruit from the fatigue of the late campaign. Its ranks 
had been sadly thinned. Many a comrade had made his last sacrifice for his 
country, and many more lay languishing in the hospitals from wounds or disease. 
Though reduced in numbers its patriotism was more fervid, if possible, than 
ever, and it renewed its strength for future service. During the latter part of 
the summer and early autumn it participated in two expeditions to Canton, Miss., 
and was engaged in actions of greater or less importance at Canton, Brownsville, 
Barton's Station and on the Big Black. In November it was ordered to Mem- 
phis, and from thence to La Grange, Tenn., a locality with which it was familiar, 
where it remained on duty, undisturbed by exciting incident, until the commence- 
ment of the new year. Late in January, 1864, it was again ordered to Memphis, 
and, taking steamers, sailed down the Mississippi Biver the second time to the 
scene of its former glories near Vicksburg. Its camp was re-established on the 
Big Black Biver, where it awaited further orders. Indecision and confusion of 
purpose seemed to be the controlling influence in these forward and retrograde 
movements of the army to which the regiment was attached, but it had the good 
effect of giving the men exercise and keeping them in condition for more serious 


The Fifth Begiment remained at Big Black perhax)S a month, during which 
it made a campaign into central Mississippi for the purpose of breaking up the 
communications of the enemy. It was while encamped on the Big Black, Feb. 
12, 1864, that the members of the regiment re-enlisted, almost in a body, for a 
second term of three years, and thereby became, under the orders of the War 
Department, in name, what they had for a long time been in fact, — veterans. 
Further changes had also occurred in the field and stafTof the regiment. Capt. 
J. C. Becht, Company E, was promoted major, vice Francis Hall, resigned May 
1, 1883; Lieut. Thos. P. Gere, Company B, was appointed adjutant, vice A. R. 
French, resigned March 19, 1863, and Bev. Henry N. Herrick was commissioned 
chaplain, vice Rev. John Ireland, resigned April 3, 1863.^ Colonel Hubbard 
had for some time been in command of the Second Brigade as its senior colonel, 
and though always with the brigade or division to which it was attached, was 
not in immediate command of the regiment (except while on its veteran furlough) 
at any time subsequently during the war. That command now devolved upon 
Lieut. Col. W. B. Gere. There had also been further changes in the organiza- 
tion of the army, which transferred our division to the Sixteenth Army Corps, 
commanded by Gen. A. J. Smith. The Fifth Regiment was now a part of the 
Second Brigade, First Division, of the Sixteenth Ck)rps. 

^ Subsequent changes in the field and staff of the regiment were as follows: Capt John P. 
Honston, Company K, promoted migor, vice J. C. Becht, whose term expired March 18, 1865; F. G. 
Brown appointed quartermaster, vice W. B. McGrorty, resigned March 19, 1865; Alfred Rhode ap- 
pointed adjutant, vice T. P. Gere, whose term of service expired April 5, 1865; W. H. Leonard pro- 
moted surgeon, vice V. P. Kennedy, whose term expired May 1, 1865; J. A. Vervais appointed 
assistant surgeon. 



On the 4th of March, 1864, the regiment with its associates of the Sixteenth 
CJorps was ordered into Vicksburg, thence aboard transports, and on the 10th 
of the month sailed with the fleet down the Mississippi Biver, bonnd npon the 
famous Bed Biver expedition. Prominent among the mysteries of the war 
that seem to have never been solved was the purpose and strangely peculiar 
management of this campaign. While successful in most of its details, its finale 
was a miserable failure. While our army won in every encounter with the 
enemy, with a single exception, it was apparently driven out of the country 
with all its feathers plucked. The apparent purpose of the expedition was to 
eliminate rebel occupancy from the trans-Mississippi territory. The capture of 
Vicksburg had wrested from the rebels their last stronghold in the Mississippi 
Valley and efifectually cut the Confederacy in two. The Mississippi Biver was 
wholly in possession of the Union arms. There was no considerable force of 
the enemy in an organized form west of the river, except that of the rebel gen- 
eral Dick Taylor, whose headquarters were at Shreveport, on the upper Bed 
Biver, near the border of Texas. The destruction of this army, whose strength 
was variously estimated at from 25,000 to 40,000 men, was supposed to be the 
objective.purposeof the expedition. The plan of the campaign contemplated 
the co-operation of Gen. Bank's army of the Gulf with that of G«n. Steele from 
Little Bock, Ark., the former to move up the valley of the Bed Biver and the 
latter southward toward Shreveport. Before the movement was inaugurated, 
Gen. Banks asked of Gren. Sherman the loan of a column of 10,000 men for thirty 
days, to aid in the proposed expedition. In compliance therewith, the Sixteenth 
Army Corps and a division of other troops were detached for that duty. 

Gen. Smith's command was disembarked at Simmsport, on the Atchafalaya 
Bayou, near the mouth of Bed Biver, March 12th, and proceeded up the valley. 
There were small bodies of rebel troops occupying fortified points on the lower 
Bed Biver, the most easterly one being Fort De Bussy, a casemated battery that 
commanded and blockaded the river. This work was invested and assaulted on 
the 14th of March, the Fifth Minnesota actively participating in all the opera- 
tions that resulted in its capture. The entire garrison, with its armament of 
heavy rifled guns, were the important trophies of this brilliant action. From 
this point the command moved to Alexandria, La., where Gen. Smith was or- 
dered to await the arrival of Gen. Banks. A large part of the thirty days for 
which the Sixteenth Corps had been loaned was spent in waiting here for 
Banks' army that was marching across the country from New Orleans. The 
time was utilized, however, in clearing the country of detached bodies of the 
enemy that were prowling in the vicinity. On the 21st a reconnaissance to Hen- 
derson Hill, in which the Fifth Begiment participated, resulted in the surprise 
and capture of a rebel battery of four guns, with its men and equipments. On 
the 25th the New Orleans troops arriv^ at Alexandria, and the next day the 
movement in force up the valley of the Bed Biver commenced. 

The Army of the Gulf, the designation borne by Gen. Banks' command prop- 
er, was composed of two full army corps and a column of several thousand cav- 
alry. Most of it had been doing garrison duty at New Orleans and along the 
Gulf for many months. The regiments, as a rule, had full ranks, and were ap- 
parently a finely disciplined body of men. Their arms wereof the most approved 
pattern and their uniforms were new. Their equipment in all details was as 
elaborate as the regulations allowed, and altogether it was the proudest army in 
bearing and appearance that graced the valley of the Mississippi during the war. 
Quite in contra*st was the appearance of the Sixteenth Army Corps. Its recent 
service had greatly decimated its ranks. Some of its regiments were but skele- 
tons. Tlieir uniforms had been through several campaigns, and were soiled and 
much worn. It was in light marching order, and hence was without the attach- 
ments that are conspicuous in the make-up of a well equipped army. As a con- 
sequence its tout ensemble was positively shabby in comparison. It was, however, 
quite iudiflerent to the sentiments of scorn with which its proud allies seemed 


to regard it, and accepted, rather as a compliment than otherwise, the sobriquet 
of '^Smith's Guerrillas," given it as a distinguishing designation by some of the 
tony fellows of Banks' command. 

Oen. Banks brought with him from New Orleans an enormous baggage and 
supply train. The boys of the Sixteenth Corps always insisted that it was 
largely loaded with paper collars and linen dusters. It so incumbered the col- 
umn that the Sixteenth Corps, which was assigned to the rear in the order of 
march, was not within supporting distance of the hc^ of the column in the ad- 
vance up the valley. To this &ct may be attributed largely the disaster which 
befell Gen. Banks' army on its first encounter with the enemy. The army 
reached Grand Ecore April 4th, where the Sixteenth Corps was halted for two 
or three days, during which the Fifth Minnesota, with other troops, under com- 
mand of Col. Hubbard, was sent against a body of 2,000 rebels posted near 
Compti on the north side of Bed Biver. The enemy in this action was decisive- 
ly defeated and driven in confusion into the swamps of the interior. April 7Ul 
the march toward Shrevei>ort was resumed. During the after part of the day on 
the 8th, the second day's march from Grand Ecore, a vague rumor came along 
the line of march that Gen. Banks was having a fight far to the front, but noth- 
ing definite respecting its character was learned until, as the Sixteenth Corps 
went into bivouac that night near Pleasant Hill, the intelligence was received 
that the main body of Dick Taylor's army had been encountered at Sabine Cross- 
roads, and that Banks had been decisively defeated, losing heavily in killed and 
wounded, and in prisoners, artillery and transportation. Could it be i>06sible, we 
thought, that that magnificent army, that had so dazzled our vision as it marched 
past our camp at Alexandria, had been so soon brought to grief, overwhelmed 
and defeated! But the worst reports were soon confirmed in all their disastrous 
details by fugitives from the front and Banks' routed column, as it retired, in 
broken fragments, to Pleasant Hill with Dick Taylor hard upon its heels. 


The Sixteenth Cori>s was ordered into line of battle at two o'clock on the 
morning of the 9th, to dieck the advance of the enemy and to perform such duty 
in connection therewith as events might impose. The position of the Fifth 
Minnesota was well toward the right of the line and somewhat in reserve. €ton. 
A. J. Smith, with his *^ guerrillas" in line, presented an obstacle that Dick Taylor 
could not brush from his path. His pursuit was arrested, and Banks' demoral- 
ized troops, hastily reformed, were placed in xK)sition to co-operate in resisting 
a further advance of the enemy. Taylor, intoxicated with his previous success, 
made his dispositions for attacking our line, presuming, doubtless, that he would 
repeat his achievement of the pr^eding day. Deluded man! If he could have 
looked into old A. J. Smith's face as he sat astride that black charger, and into 
the eyes of that line of veterans that had never been whipped, he might have 
read his fate, and by a timely movement to the rear have saved himself a most 
painful experience. But he did not do it. There was some desultory fighting 
during the early part of the day, without result. About 3 p. M. the enemy 
advanced in force and made a vigorous attack. It was easily repulsed, resulting 
in much punishment to the reikis. Taylor, evidently astonished and perhaps 
indignant, now massed his troops and threw them vehemently against our lines, 
determined to overwhelm them. Then followed some of the hardest fighting and 
bloodiest work for the numbers engaged of any battle of the war. Our troox)8 
stood as if rooted in their tracks. They could be killed, but they could not be 
driven. Our losses were heavy, but the slaughter of the enemy was appalling. 
Again and again did Taylor assault our lines, and again and again was he re- 
pulsed. These repeated efforts and failures greatly weakened and demoralized 
the enemy, and made him finally an easy prey of Gen. Smith, who now called 
into action a few regiments held in reserve, and, hurling his whole force with the 
energy of a cyclone against the now faltering foe, broke him in pieces. Defeated 
and almost destroyed, Taylor's army retired in disorder toward Shreveport, 
leaving dead and wounded, prisoners and artillery, in our hands. 


The battle had extended into the night, and oar ezhansted army was in no 
condition to immediately pursue. The troops bivouacked on the field where the 
fight ended, and sought such rest as might be possible among the harrowing cries 
of the wounded, who lay prostrate on every side. The army was aroused at two 
o'clock on the morning of the 10th, expecting to be sent in pursuit of the fleeing 
enemy. To its astonishment, however, as the troops filed into the road, the head 
of the column was turned to the rear, and we commenced marching, as if for dear 
life, in the direction from whence we had come. What could this movement 
meant Were we dreamingt Were we the defeated instead of the victorious 
army, and were we fleeing from a pursuing force! This wasn't the kind of strat- 
egy in which the old Sixteenth Ck)rps had been educated, and we were dumb with 
amazement. All but Gen. A. J. Smith; he was quite the reverse. His indigna- 
tion was thoroughly aroused, and in his energetic characterization of the cow- 
ardly business, he reflected the sentiments of his entire command. It was sub- 
sequently learned that although our army had achieved a great victory at Pleasant 
Hill, yet Gen. Banks found, upon investigation, that his New Orleans army had 
been so badly crippled by its defeat at Sabine Cross-roads, that he felt it was in 
no condition to aid in pursuing the defeated enemy, and he tiierefore determined 
to retire to a defensive position and reorganize it. Smith protested. He offered 
to conduct the pursuit with the Sixteenth Corps alone. He couldn't consent to 
the disgrace of retreating from a victorious field, but Banks ordered the retreat, 
and Smith's ebullition of wrath thereat almost illumined the horizon as we 
marched to the rear on that early, frosty April morning. 

Dick Taylor, of course, expected to be vigorously pursued, and was there- 
fore making a forced march in the opposite direction. The situation, therefore, 
presented the unique spectacle of two hostile armies running away from eadi 
other. The army retired to Grand Ecore, where it was ordered to intrench. Here 
it lay, practically inactive, for several days. The Fifth Minnesota with the balance 
of the brigade was sent out on a reconnaissance on the 14th, but saw no enemy. 
About the 20th of April, indications pointed to the presence of a considerable 
body of rebels in our immediate neighborhood, and the Sixteenth Corx>s was moved 
to Natchitoches, a few miles southeast of Grand Ecore, where it met quite a force 
and offered battle, but the invitation was declined. Gen. Smith did not urge the 
matter, as his orders were not to bring on a general engagement if it could be 
avoided. The next day Banks' army moved out of Grand Ecore on its further 
retreat down the valley of the Bed Biver toward Alexandria. The Sixteenth 
Corps was ordered to follow, and the duty assigned it to keep the enemy at bay 
and protect Banks' rear. It had the rear of the column in the advance up the 
valley, and now held it on the retreat out of it; but in the latter movement it 
was the post of danger and of honor. 

Dick Taylor's army, now reorganized and reinforced, and its spirit revived by 
our retrogade movement, assumed a vigorous offensive, and harassed our rear at 
almost every step. The Sixteenth Corps was often compelled to halt, form line 
of battle and drive him back, and thereby gain time for Ban)cs to make headway 
down the valley. There were sharp engagements, in all of which the Fifl}h Min- 
nesota participated, at Grand Ecore, at Cloutiersville and at C^e Biver Cross- 
ing. The command arrived at Alexandria on the 26th, nearly worn out by it» 
continuons day and night duty, marching, skirmishing and fighting. The fleet 
of gunboats and transports that had followed the movement of the army up Bed 
Biver found upon its return to Alexandria that the stage of water was now so low 
that it could not pass the rapids in the river at that point. It seemed at one time 
that it must be determined to destroy the fleet to save it from being abandoned 
to the enemy. A system of wing dams was, however, devised, by means of which 
the rapids were passed, and the fleet floated into the channel of the river below 
them. This work detained the army at Alexandria about two weeks, during 
which the enemy kept it upon the alert by frequent feints or attacks upon its 
lines. Banks' supplies, particularly for his animals, ran short, and the troops 
were compelled to drive the enemy back at several points for the sole purpose 
of obtaining corn and forage with which to feed tiie mules. In the oourse of 


these operations the Fifth Minnesota participated in sharp and spirited engage- 
ments at Moore's plantation, and on Bayous Robert and La Moure, brides 
numerous skirmishes of which no account was kept. Indeed, hardly a day passed 
that the regiment was not in some form under fire. 


On the 13th of May the last boat of the fleet passed the rapids, and on the 
morning of the 14th the army was put in motion for its final exodus from the 
Bed Biver country. But its pathway did not prove to be a smooth one. Indeed, 
it was found to be strewn with thorns. Dick Taylor, concluding this would be 
his last chance at us, evidently determined to make the most of it He had i>08- 
session of the roads on which Banks must march. He gave him but little trouble, 
however, except to harass the column and delay its movement by an occasional 
show of force, until the command reached Mansura;, a little French village 
twenty-five miles, perhax>s, from Alexandria, where the Sixteenth Ck)rps biv- 
ouacked on the night of the 15th. Here Taylor made a stand and essayed to 
dispute our further progress. Banks' entire army was called to arms before 
daybreak of the 16th to repel a threatened attack. It did not develop into any- 
thing serious, but daylight disclosed the fact that Taylor's army was strongly 
posted in the edge of a body of timber that crossed at right angles the road we 
must take in our further progress out of the country. Clearly he was intending 
to fight. That had been our daily occupation for weeks, so, without ceremony, 
our troops advanced rapidly to the attack, the Fifth Minnesota well to the front, 
and though momentarily checked and suffering some loss from the volleys with 
which we were greeted, the enemy's lines were quickly broken and the road 
cleared from all obstructions. Taylor retired on a road that led to the right, 
pressed moderately by a column of our cavalry, while Banks pushed on toward 
the Mississippi Biver. 

There was no more enemy in front, so the Sixteenth Corps again brought np 
the rear. Taylor had not been so badly whipped but that he gathered himself 
together suf&ciently to give the column trouble before the day's march had been 
completed, and as the Sixteenth Corps bivouacked for the night he saluted its 
camp with shells from his artillery. Before the army* got fietirlyBtartedonits 
march on the morning of the 17th, Taylor opened upon it with several guns at 
long range. The Second Brigade, which included, of course, the Fifth Minne- 
sota, with two batteries of artillery, was detailed to entertain him while the col- 
umn was getting stretched out upon the road. It moved back in line of battle 
about a mile, the enemy retiring to a favorable position, where he made a stand. 
A few rounds from the artillery, followed by a spirited charge, resulted in the 
rout of the rebels. This maneuver had to be repeated twice during that day's 
march, but at night the command reached Yellow Bayou, or Bayou de Glaise, 
near the Atchafalaya, across which Banks' army was moving. The Sixt^eenth 
Corps was required to remain here most of the day following, waiting for Banks' 
army, with its impedimenta^ to get across the Atchafalaya. About noon the 
irrepressible and omnipresent Taylor came down upon us for a last salutation. 
The entire Sixteenth Corps was ordered into line, and with one of the sharpest 
fights of the campaign we wound it up, if not in a blaze of glory, certainly with 
infinite credit to ^^Smith's Guerrillas." Taylor was handsomely whipped, and 
troubled us no more. 

The Sixteenth Corps reached its fleet on the Mississippi, at the mouth of Bed 
Biver, on the 21st, and, embarking, steamed up the river. Gen. Banks, with 
his army, marched down the bank of the Mississippi in the direction of New Or- 
leans. The Fifth Minnesota, in common with their comrades of the Sixteenth 
Cori)S, were a happy lot of veterans when they finally realized they were 
done with that expedition. They were proud of their contribution to it, but 
they felt it was a military failure, and that all their hard campaigning, desperate 
fighting and fearful losses had been for naught. They had won in fully a dozen 
fights, but their advantages had been neutralized and their fruits wasted by mis- 
takes and mismanagement in the conduct of the campaign. 



The Fiflh Eegiment with the balance of the Sixteenth Corps was disembarked 
at Vicksburg on the 24th of May, where it was furnished with mnch-needed 
supplies in the way of clothing and camp equipage. On the 4th of June it again 
boarded the fleet and moved up the Mississippi. The regiment was now looking 
anxiously for orders granting its veteran furlough, it being one of the condi- 
tions upon which it re-enlisted that the men should begiven a furlough of thirty 
days and allowed to visit their homes. They began to feel a little restive under 
the long delay, but, like good soldiers, kept their impatience under restraint. On 
the 6th of June its progress up the river was suddenly arrested. As the fleet 
approached Greenfield it encountered some rebel batteries posted on the Arkan- 
sas shore. Though it had been a long time comparatively since the regiment had 
had a fight — nearly three weeks — it was by no means spoiling for one, but 
of course expected to take in anything of the kind that came in its way. 
The troops were landed and the battle of Lake Chicot followed. Gen. Marma- 
duke with several thousand men and some heavy batteries was intrenched hear 
the lake named, where he commanded the Mississippi and efiectually blockaded 
it. After a spirited fight, in which the regiment suflered quite severely, the posi- 
tion was captured and Marmaduke fled. The fleet then proceeded on its way and 
reached Memphis on the 10th. Here the regiment was granted its furlough and 
on the 17th took a steamer bound for St. Paul. The joyous experiences during 
that thirty days' furlough, among friends and with families at home, are not 
proper subjects for recital here. They are sacred remembrances fondly cherished 
in the hearts of every member of the Fifth Minnesota. The regiment was 
grandly received upon its arrival in St. Paul. The authorities and the citizens 
vied with each other in their efforts to make the veterans feel that their welcome 
home was as cordial as loyal hearts could make it, and for the moment they for- 
got the trials and dangers of the field, while partaking of the hearty hospitality 
of their generous hosts. 


The regiment started on its return to the front on the 7th of August, and 
reached the Tallahatchie River, near Holly Spring, Miss., where it joined its old 
command on the 17th. While the veterans were takingtheir furlough those mem- 
bers of the regiment who had not re-enlisted, under command of Capt. T. J. 
Sheehan, were engaged in the battle of Tupelo, Miss., July 14th, where they 
acquitted themselves in a manner that reflected credit upon the regiment to 
which they belonged. Gen. Sherman was now conducting a campaign South, 
through central Mississippi, along the line the regiment had traversed in the 
winter of 1862-63. It was not, however, a pronounced success. Like that of 
Gen. Grant, over the same route, its purpose was defeated by incursions of the 
enemy i n his rear. The army had penetrated as far south as OxfoM, when it was 
learned that Forrest, with a large force of rebel cavalry, had made a successful 
raid into Memphis, and was smashing things in that vicinity. Gen. Sherman 
thereupon faced to the rear and began a retrograde movement. On the 23d of 
August, the Fifth Minnesota, which held the rear of the column, was attacked 
and became sharply engaged with several regiments of rebels near Abbeyville, 
Miss., near the crossing of the Tallahatchie Eiver. The result of this fight was 
the capture of a number of prisoners, with but small loss upon our part. Our 
supplies ran short on this retreat, but by industrious foraging upon the flanks 
the men eked out the half rations to which the commissary had reduced them. 
Memphis wius reached on the 29th, and a few days thereafter the Sixteenth Corps 
embarked aboard transports and started on an expedition up White River in 
Arkansas. Debarking at Devall's Bluff it marched across the country to the 
vicinity of Little Kock. 


On the 17th of September the command started on that long chase after the 
rebel Gen. Price and his army, over the mountains and through the swamps of 


Arkansas into and across the State of Missouri, daring which the regiment 
inarched over seven hundred miles. This was, all things considered, the hardest 
campaign it made during the war. The route lay through almost impenetrable 
cypress swamps and over unused mountain roads, washed by continuous rains 
down to their rocky beds. Severe storms prevailed much of the time, and the 
men often lay down at night, drenched, sore, weary and hungry, feeling that 
they would never be able to rise to their feet again. It was developed af^r the 
command had been out several days that its supply train was loaded with mouldy 
and decayed hard bread, refuse stores issued by the commissary at Little Bock. 
In consequence of this the army was early put upon half-rations, then one-third, 
and much of that unfit to eat. The men became nearly starved, and driven to 
that extreme that they sought for nourishment in the bark of sassafras boughs 
and beech leaves, which the forest trees afforded. The country was largely 
uninhabited, and hence afforded nothing upon which an army could subsist 
At long intervals a cabin might be seen occupied by a cadaverous native, who 
supported himself by trapping in the mountains, and who first learned from us 
that there was a war in progress in the country. After crossing the mountains 
of Arkansas, the army was turned eastward and couriers dispatched to the Mis- 
sissippi Biver for supply trains to be sent out to meet it, and by this means its 
great necessities were relieved. The river was reached at Cape Oirardeau, Mo., 
October 6th, and from there the command was conveyed by steamer up the Mis- 
sissippi and Missouri rivers to Jefferson City, Mo. Debarking there, the chase 
after Price, who was cutting a wide swath with an army of mounted men 
through that section of the state, was continued. He was followed to the Kan- 
sas line where the pursuit was abandoned. From Kansas the regiment marched 
aJl the way across the State of Missouri to the city of St. Louis. Its route lay 
through a fine country, however, and it suffered no hardship, except tlmt a 
severe snowstorm was encountered on the 3d of November in the central part 
of the state. The men marched one entire day through a foot of snow, with a 
blizzard blowing from the north. This was extraordinary weather for that 
latitude, but they concluded that it was just their luck, and, though nearly 
perishing with cold and fatigue, they accepted the situation with commendable 
resignation. The regiment reached St. Louis November 15th, and was quartered 
in &nton Barracks. 


On the 24th of November the regiment took passage on the steamer W. L. 
Ewing, under orders to report to Gen. Thomas at Nashville, Tenn. When a few 
miles below St. Louis the steamer struck a snag and went to the bottom in about 
ten feet of water. The loss in this accident was confined to the steamer itself 
and the 8tores»and property on her decks. The troops were transferred to other 
boats of the fleet and reached Nashville on the 30th of November. Gen. George 
H. Thomas had just fought the battle of Franklin and was retiring on Nashville. 
The rebel general, Hood, though roughly handled at Franklin, was advancing 
northward, and all the probabilities indicated that the regiment would soon have 
business to attend to in its new theatre of operations. The Sixteenth Corps, now 
a part of the Army of the Tennessee, was assigned a position on the right of the 
line of defense, with which Thomas had enveloped Nashville. Intrenching tools 
were distributed and quite extensive fortifications constructed; Hood in the 
meantime investing the place with an army of about 40,000 men. The battle of 
Nashville would have been fought some days before it was but for the extraordi- 
nary condition of the elements. A storm of freezing sleet had covered the earth 
with an icy crust, upon which neither men nor animals could move. The 
authorities at Washington and at the headquarters of the army became impatient 
at the delay, and came dangerously near committing what might have proven a 
fatal error, in supereeding Gen. Thomas. After the battle the whole of them 
were so effusive in their praises of the '* Rock of Chickamauga'' that they seemed 
almost ready to abdicate in his favor. 


On the evening of the 14th of December, 1864, orders were issued to be ready 
to advance against the enemy at six o'clock the following morning. At the bom 
appointed the army lefb its intrenchments behind it and moved to the front. 
The Fifth Minnesota, veterans of many campaigns and of more than a score of 
battles, responded with alacrity to the order to advance. It had lately received 
many recruits, and presented a magnificent front with its lengthened line. Every 
man of the regiment knew too well that it was no frolic upon which he was going, 
but, fully realizing the danger soon to be encountered, had nerved himself to the 
discharge of his full daty, though it might involve the sacrifice of his life. 

The enemy's skirmishers were soon met but easily pressed back. Consider- 
able maneuvering and change of front was required to fully develop Hood's 
position, but about noon his line of battle was uncovered, which presented a firm 
resistance to our advance. Directly in front of our division were.two small re- 
doubts, containing field batteries, supported by lines of infantry. Gen. A. J. 
Smith turned to Gen. Mc Arthur, our division commander, and quietly asked him 
if he thought he could carry the redoubts. The old Scotchman's prompt response 
was ^^ Yes, sir!" and without further orders from Smith he directed his brigade 
commanders to assault them. The result was an astouisher to the rebels. Our 
lines advanced with a cheer. The storm of Minie-balls and grape-shot did not 
even check them. They struck the enemy a staggering blow, smashed his in- 
fantry supports, and carried the redoubts with the gunners at their pieces. The 
command did not stop to inventory its trophies, but, pursuing the fieeing rebels, 
gathered them in by the hundreds. This seemed easy work, and for the moment 
the impression obtained that the battle was practically over; but presently the 
thundering discharges of artillery from the edge of a body of timber toward which 
the regiment was advancing admonished the men that other lines of battle were 
yet to be encountered. The command was halted, its artillery ordered up and 
much ammunition expended in an exchange of courtesies with the rebel guns. 
By the time the lines were readjusted and ready for another advance it h{^ be- 
come quite dark, and, resting on their arms, the troops passed a comfortless night, 
drearily dreaming of the morrow. 

Daylight of the 16th found the reginent in line, with replenished cartridge 
boxes, awaiting orders. The lines of the enemy could be easily traced. Along 
the front of the Fii^t Division the rebels were posted behind a stone waU, which 
served as an excellent breastwork, and through which the guns of their artillery 
looked threateningly forth. The Fiilh Minnesota was ordered forward to a line 
of willows that skirted a ditch and within musket range of the enemy. The men 
knew this was the prelude to an assault, but hours passed before it was ordered. 
Evidently Gen. Thomas did not intend to move until he was ready. He had 
often been called slow but sure. There could be no doubt about his being 
slow, we thought, a4id later in the day we knew for a certainty that he was sure. 
There had been much artillery firing since daylight, and some sharpshooting 
along the infantry lines, but no important movement attempted except far to the 
left, where an attack by a division of colored troops had been repulsed. About 
4 p. M. a general assault was ordered. The line of our advance lay across a 
level, open field, exposing the command to a direct fire from the enemy. The 
instant the regiment rose to its feet and commenced its advance it received a 
withering volley, and at every step of its progress across that deadly field great 
gaps in its ranks were made. The colors fell repeatedly, but in every instance 
were niised aloft and borne to the front by someone yet unscathed. Nearly 
four hundred gallant spirits of the old Second Brigade, one-fourth its whole 
number, aud one hundred and six from the Fifth Minnesota, were laid prostrate, 
dead or disabled, before that field was passed. Though itseemed that none could 
survive there was no faltering or thought of failure. The stone wall was reached, 
surmounted, and the enemy was ours. The following spirited account of the 
final charge at Nashville made by the division to which the Fifth, Seventh, Ninth 
and Tenth Minnesota regiments were attached, was written from the field a few 
days following the battle by a gentleman whose name will be recognized by most 
of the early settlers of Minnesota. It was published in the St. Paul Prew at the 

276 the fifth regiment. 

"Camp Neab Columbia, Tenn., 

Dec. 20, 1864. 

"the final ohabge. 

"At 3 o'clock p. M. the clouds had thickened and a moderate rain commenced 
to fell. The atmosphere became prematurely darkened, as if night was setting 
in. The cavalry force, which had been operating vigorously on the extreme 
right, and well toward the rear of the enemy, apparently became blinded by the 
mists which settled upon the hills, and their firing materially slackened. But 
* Old Man Smith ' — as the boys of his command delight to call him — and General 
McArthur were about, and the First Division— Jo. Mower's old division — 
must maintain its dearly bought laurels of former days. The division was to 
charge Cheatham's veterans,— not only to charge them but to rout them, — cap- 
ture and destroy them, and, if possible, write their history in lines of blood as 
doomed rebels who once existed, but after this charge were not to exist It was 
not known in military and confidential circles in Nashville that this telling 
charge was to be made, or at what time it was to be made, but somehow or 
other people felt it in their bones that it would come oflf about the time it 
did, and hundreds were there to witness it We find, also, Gen. Thomas at 
hand, — accidentally, perhaps, — but he was there to witness the exciting scene. 
Gen. Smith himself was there, of course, muscle and nerve all in motion, know- 
ing then as well what would be the result as he did when it was all over, the very 
embodiment of the towering, all-conquering veteran that he is, eyeing with more 
than wonted confidence the compact lines of his veterans. McArthur, with that 
powerfully knit frame, and that intelligent and well-developed Scotch fiEtce, — 
firmness amounting almost to stubbornness visible in every feature, — sat on his 
horse awaiting the proper moment to give the final order. And, as if to make 
the picture complete, Andrew Johnson, whom the soldiers of the Union and the 
people at home have just honored with the second office in the gift of the nation, 
was close at hand to behold the grand military drama about to be enacted. 

" The hour arrives — four o'clock precisely by McArthui^s time. The order 
goes forth, and with a shout that is heard plainly away off in our old lines near 
Nashville — seven miles — the division starts for the works before it. The Sec- 
ond Brigade leads off. Colonel Hubbard, with hat in hand, waving it over his 
head, l^ds on his trusty warriors. He knows what is coming, but he also 
knows ti^e men he leads. Across the cornfield, the soft ground giving away un- 
til men and horses sink at every step knee-deep; under a shower of canister, 
shell and Minie-balls filling every inch of the atmosphere and meeting them 
square in the face, they keep onward. The works are gained; no faltering yet; 
and now goes up the flag of the Ninth Minnesota on the works; simultaneously 
with it the flag of the veteran Fifth — which has been shotvdown four times in 
this advance and riddled with a fall charge of canister — ascends; the works are 
carried in front of all the brigades of the division, and Minnesota holds the 
position in an unbroken line of half a mile in extent. Prisoners commence 
passing to the rear. First comes Capt. McGrew of the Fifth, a staff officer of Col. 
Hubbard's, with about a regiment of them; then we meet officers and enlisted 
men of all the regiments with squads larger than they can be supposed to take 
care of — in all, the captures amounting to at least as many men as there were in 
the Second Brigade. The whole work — a work that all military men who wit- 
nessed it agree in pronouncing a charge of scarcely equaled brilliancy in the 
annals of warfare — was accomplished in ten minutes' time. The enemy was 
completely routed and driven to the adjacent hills in utter confusion. Ten 
pieces of artillery of the first quality were captured, in addition to small arms 
and prisoners without number. Of the ten pieces four were taken by the Second 
Brigade. Minnesota gained more glory than the war had previously allowed 
her to gain. The gallantry of her officers and men is the theme of all tongues 
and pens. Col. Hubbard was personally complimented immediately after the 
action by Generals Thomas, Smith and McArthur uniting in a telegram to the 
president requesting his promotion. 


^^In the final charge Col. Hubbard had another horse shot under him and 
was slightly wounded in the neck. One of his staff officers, Lieut. Sargent of 
the Eighth Wisconsin, a brave and accomplished officer, was killed in pursuit 
of the enemy, on the advance, after the charge was over. Lieut. Gere, adjutant 
general of the staff, captured a battle flag on the enemy's works, and in otiier 
respects showed the most daring gallantry, as did also Captains McOrew and 
Cleland, members of the staff. They, with the lamented Sargent, were along- 
side the colonel when he went over the works. 

** J. P. OWENB." 

The assault along the entire line had been successful, and Hood's army was a 
wreck. Abandoning his artillery, wagon trains, and all property that would in- 
cumber his movements, such of his army as was not captured fled in a mob 
southward, hotly pursued by Thomas. Through capture and desertions it under- 
went a rapid process of disintegration all the way to the Tennessee Eiver. A 
few straggling detachments crossed the Tennessee, and thereafter scattered, leav- 
ing, practically, nothing as an organization of that grand army of invasion, 
whose original objective was the country north of the Ohio Eiver. The battle of 
Nashville has often been quoted as the most decisive battle of the war. The 
army of the enemy was not simply defeated, but it was destroyed. It left the 
field in demoralized fragments, and even those rapidly dissolved, likesnow under 
an April sun. The Fifth Minnesota received a distinguished compliment through 
its gallant young adjutant, Thomas P. Gere, in connection with the battle of 
Nashville, by that officer being detailed by the general commanding to proceed 
to Washington in charge of the rebel flags captured in the battle, pursuant to the 
following orders: 

** Headquarters Second Brigade, First Division, 

"Detachment Army of the Tennessee, 

''EastpoHj Miss., Jan. 17, 1866. 
**Maj. J. Hough, 

Asst, Adjt, General, Detachment Army of the Tennissee, 

** Major : I have the honor to herewith transmit the colors of the Fourth 
Mississippi Eegiment, C. S. A., captured in the battle before Nashville, on the 
16th of December, 1864. This flag was taken in the works of the enemy in the 
position carried by this command, and was captured by and surrendered to the 
hands of First Lieut, and Adjutant Thomas P. Gere, Fifth Minnesota Veteran In- 
fantry, and acting assistant adjutant general of this brigade. 

* * Respectfully, your obedient servant, 

**L. F. Hubbard, 

^^ Colonel Commanding.^^ 

^* Headquarters, Department of the Cumberland, 

''Nashville J Tenn., Feb. 13, 1865. 

''[Sjyecial Field Orders, No. 38.] 


* ^ XIX. By virtue of permission received from the honorable secretary of war 
the following named officers and enlisted men, captors of rebel battle flags at 
the battles of Franklin, Nov. 30, 1864, and the battles before Nashville, Dec. 15 
and 16, 1865, will proceed with the trophies to Washington, D. C, where they 
will report to the honorable secretary of war, turning over to him the flags now 
in their possession, after which they will rejoin their various commands in the 

**The detachment will be in charge of First Lieut, and Adjt. Thomas P. Gere, 
Fifth Regiment, Minnesota Veteran Volunteer Infantry, who will be accountable 
for their good conduct while en route. 

'*The quartermaster department will furnish the necessary transportation. 

*'By command of Maj. Gen. Thomas. 

**Wm. D. Whipple, 

* * Assistant A djutant General. ' ' 


The experience of the regiment in its participation in the pursuit of the 
fragments of Hood's army was particularly severe. The weather was cold and 
wet, raining and snowing by turns; the roads embargoed with mud almost un- 
fathomable at times, and again frozen into rocky ruts that even the animals re- 
fused to tackle in their efforts to drag along the artillery and trains. The troops 
were without camp equipage of any sort and much of the time but scantily 
supplied with rations. Many who survived the battle succumbed to the rigors 
of the campaign that followed it. On the 10th of January, 1865, the command 
to which the Fifth Minnesota belonged reached Eastport, Miss., on the Tennes- 
see River, where it went into winter quarters with the expectation of a long rest. 
Shortly after its arrival at this point the weather became severely cold for that 
latitude. The temperature was so low that the Tennessee Biver, which was the 
line of communication to the rear, became closed with ice and the army was 
effectually cut off from its base of supplies. This occurred before time had been 
given for any accumulation, and the troops were suddenly confronted with the 
frightful possibility of suffering from starvation. Fortunately, the weather 
moderated in a few days, the ice in the river weakened and supply boats got 
through, but in the meantime there was a period during which the only article 
of food issued to the men was raw corn, of which there was a meager supply on 
hand for the animals. The soldier and the mule were fed from the same measure, 
and for a time subsisted upon Substantially the same rations. 


February 6th, following, the Sixteenth Corps was ordered to New Orleans, 
and, taking transports, the Fiftih Begiment sailed down the Tennessee, Ohio and 
Mississippi rivers to that point, disembarked and established its camp on the 
old Jackson battlefield. Early in March it was conveyed by steamship, via the 
Gulf of Mexico, to Dauphin Island, at the entrance to Mobile Bay, where it came 
under the command of G^n. R E. S. Canby, who was organizing an army for 
the reduction of Mobile. The regiment enjoyed a nov-el exi)erience while en- 
camped on Dauphin Island. It was a sort of picnic. Along the gulf shore 
there was located an extensive oyster bed, from whence its luscious product was 
conveyed to camp by the wagon-load. Every man became his own commissary. 
The traditional army ration was wholly neglected, its substitute being oysters in 
every style. It is presumed that the soldiers had not before seen a fresh oyster 
since their enlistment, and it is certainly assured that none of them cared for 
them for years afterward. Their efforts to exhaust that oyster bed was the only 
failure they acknowledged in all their enterprises during the war. On the 23d 
of March the regiment regretfully lefb Dauphin Island and moved by steamer up 
Fish Eiver, an eastern affluent of Mobile Bay. Disembarking a few miles from 
its mouth and marching northward, it soon encountered the enemy in consider- 
able force. Some sharp fighting followed, but the enemy sullenly retired to 
Spanish Fort, a succession of strong earthworks occupying the heights along the 
northeast shore of Mobile Bay, and constituting one of the defenses of, though a 
considerable distance from, the city of Mobile. Ordinarily the command would 
have expected orders to assault the works at once, and it was said that Gen. 
Smith came near doing it with the Sixteenth Corps alone, but it had already 
been observed that we were now under the orders of a very cautions commander. 
At every bivouac on our march from Fish Eiver the troops had been required to 
intrench, and all our movements indicated the presence of conservative influ- 
ences in control of the army. No assault was attempted. The fort was invested 
upon the land side and siege operations prosecuted by regular approaches, which 
were conducted with the precision of exact tactical rules. Parallel after parallel 
was constructed, until the surface of the ground presented the appearance of a 
monster gridiron. Military engineering was here given an opportunity for the 
display of the highest proficiency, and the men became experts in handling the 

These operations covered a period of about two weeks, when the last pai'allel 
reached a point where it enveloped the trenches occupied by the enemy's picket 


X>08tBy and in dangerous proximity to the rebel fortiflcatlons. The constmction 
of these approaches was very arduous and dangerous duty. Many a poor fellow 
literally dug his own grave while prosecuting this work. Sharpshooters from 
behind the rebel works were constantly busy, and the enemy's mortars and 
artillery frequently deposited shell that exploded in the trenches. The last 
puullel constructed by the Fifth HiDnesota and other regiments of the Second 
Brigade was nearest to the rebel works of any of the appnmohes to Spanish Fort. 
This fact is certified to by the engineer in charge, M%|. 0. J. Allen of Gen. Oan* 
by's stafif. The troops under8t(x>d, of course, that an assault would follow tiie 
completion of these approaches, and orders preliminary to such a moTement 
had been issued to the army. It was expected to take place on tiie 8tii of April, 
but during the night of the 7th an unusual conmu^on within the rebel fortiflca* 
tions attracted the attention of the men on duty in the advance trtmches, and 
suspicion of an evacuation at once possessed them. A spirit of enterprise and 
adventure prompted a few daring men of the Second Brigade to investigate. 
They crawled from the trenches, stealthily apprMohed the works, surmounted 
the parapet and found themselves in unopposed possession of Spanish Fort. 
The situation was instantly made known to tiie troops, and within five minutes 
the Second Brigade had bounded forward and over the fbrtifloations, fbllowed by 
the line to the right and left. 

It was a bloodless capture. The enemy was gene^ escapii^[ across the bay to 
Mobile. A few stragglers were taken and quite a quanti^ of spiked artillery. 
The capture of the fort, however, was a most important strategic acquisition, 
as it proved to be the key to the defenses of Mobile, and was followed shortly l^ 
the occupation of that city. Fort Blakely, another earthwork of the enemy, a 
short distance from Spanish Fort, near &e month of tiie Aliribama Biver, had 
occupied the attention of a column of Oanby's forces for several days. The 
Sixteenth Corps was immediately ordered to reinforce the troops thus employed. 
It got into position in time to participate moderately in an assault upon the fort 
on the 9th. The defense, though quite obstinate, did not avail, and the work 
was captured with its entire garrison. This was followed by the evacuation of 
Mobile and its formal surrender on the 12th of April. 


This was the last fighting of the war for the Fifth Minnesota. Mobile was the 
^^last ditch" of the rebels in the Southwest and the regiment had been ^'in at 
the death" of the Confederacy in that section of the country. This &ct was 
not known, however, at the time. Soon after the surrender of Mobile the Six- 
teenth Corps was ordered upon a march nortiiward, em romte to Montgomery, Ala. 
This march was becoming painfally monotonous, being almost without incident 
for several days, until as the command neared Montgomery there transpired a 
scene that none who were present will ever foreet The column had been halted 
for a brief rest The day was hot. The men, footsore and weary, were redininff 
upon the grassy roadside, grateftd for the few minutes^ respite beiiu; granted 
them, when the attention of every man was directed to the approach of a courier 
from the direction in which the column was moving, riding at a ^^Sheridan gait" 
down the road. Was he bringing orders to double-quick to the firont to m^ an 
enemy unexpectedly encountered t What else could be the purport of such a hasty 
errand Y But what was the meaning of the hilarious antics of the men along the 
column in front t All were for a moment bewildered, but as ttie courier df^hed 
past shouting, ^^ Richmond is captured and Lee's army has surrendered!" the 
men became simply frantic in their demonstrations of joy. There wasn't aweary 
or footsore man in that army then. The old veterans embraced each other, 
laughed, cried, shouted and sang. They threw hats, blouses, canteens, haver- 
sacks, and even their muskets in the air, and as the column moved forward in 
continuation of the march, every voice joined in tliat grand refhdn, ^^Hail 
Columbia ! ' ' The boys were happy. They knew that Lee's surrender meant thafe 
the war was over; that their years of toil and danger, privation and rafTerini^ 


were at an end, and that they would soon embrace the loved ones at home. 
They went into bivonac that night after a long, hard march, with a feeling of 
buoyancy they had not exx>erienced in many months. 

But tiieir joy was turned to sadness and their hearts cruelly crushed when 
the army reached Montgomery, a day or two later, and learned of the assassina- 
tion of President Lincoln. The revulsion of feeling caused by that event was 
simply terrible. Thoughts of muster-out and return home were banished. The 
one and almost only desire that now animated the soul of the old soldier was to 
remain in the service until that terrible crime could be avenged. 

During the following summer the Sixteenth Corps constituted the army of 
occupation of southwestern Alabama and southeastern Mississippi, its line 
stretching from Montgomery to Meridan. The headquarters of the Second Bri- 
gade were at Demopolis, Ala., on theTombigbee Biver, where the Fifth Minne- 
sota was located, and where it remained until ordered home for muster-out 
of service. The war was over and the soldiers' duty, aside from the routine of 
camp life, was to preserve order in the country, which was then under martial 
law. We found ourselves among a i>eople at first intensely hostile, but with 
whom very friendly relations were soon established. Altogether the regiment 
spent a very pleasant summer, though the (lelay in relieving it from military 
service became irksome, and a feeling of impatience thereat quite generally i>er- 
vaded the command. Late in •August the welcome order came that relieved the 
war-scarred veterans from duty as soldiers of the republic and rehabilitated 
them as citizens of the country they had helped to save. The Fifth Begiment 
was ordered to Minnesota for muster-out, and received its discharge at Fort 
Snelling on the 6th of September, 1865. 

During its nearly four years of service, the veteran Fifth Minnesota, as the 
facts herein stated go to show, performed its ftill share of the severest possible 
military duty. In its many thousand miles of campaigning it nearly ''boxed the 
compass" of the theatre of war in the Southwest, traversing and retraversing the 
states of Missouri, Arkansas, Louisiana, Tennessee, Mississippi and Alabama. 
It participated in thirteen campaigns, five sieges and thirty-four battles and minor 
engagements, and lost nearly as many men by casualty in battle and by disease 
engendered by its service, as it numbered in its ranks when it first reported at 
the front. It was a victor in every fight in which it was engaged. The only ex- 
perience possible in war that it did not acquire was that of defeat. ^ 

* At the mnster-ont of the Fifth Regiment its memheiship was acooanted foras foUows: Re- 
signed, 26; killed, 64; died of wounds, 37; discharged for wounds, 43; died of disease, 147; dis- 
charged for disability, 218; discharged to accept promotion, 9; transferred to other organizations, 
28; captured, 6; deserted and missing, 51; discharged for illegal muster, 5; discharged on expira- 
tion of term of enlistment, 169; mustered out with regiment, 370. Total, 1,163. 

It has not been possible to obtain accurate lists of casualties suffered by the Fiflh Regiment 
in the several engagements in which it participated, hence they have not appeared in this narra- 
tive. The roster which follows* and from which the foregoing statistics are gathered, gives ap- 
proximately the aggregate of killed and died of wounds, but does not show, except to a limited 
extent, the number of wounded in the different battles. A diligent search among the records of 
the adjutant generaPs office of the state has not resulted in furnishing the necessary data in this 
respect, but from documents and memoranda found there it is ascertained that the total casualties 
(killed and wounded) suffered by the regiment in seven of its battles were as follows: Farming- 
ton, Miss., May 28, 1862, 16; Redwood and Fort Ridgley. August, 1862, 38; Ck)rinth, Miss., Oct. 4, 
1862, 22; Richmond, La., June 14, 1863, 9; on Red River expedition, 1864, 15; Lake Chicot, La., 
June 6, 1864, 17; Nashville, Dec. 15 and 16, 1864, 106. Of the casualties in its other numerous 
engagements there seems to be no record in the hands of the state, except as they are partially 
noted in the following roster. It was expected, when this work was undertaken, that the roster 
of Minnesota soldiers would be furnished by the War Department, the only source from whence 
these facts can now be obtained, but this has been found impracticable; hence this narrative is 
defective in respect to the record of losses the regiment suffered in battle. 

The list of campaigns, sieges, battles and minor engagements in which the Fifth Minnesota 
participated is as follows: 

Campaigns — Against Corinth, Miss., May and June, 1862; through northern Mississippi and 
Alabama, July, August and September, 1862; through central Mississippi, November and Decem- 
ber, 1862; through west Tennessee, January and February. 1863; against Vicksburg, March, April, 
May and June, 1863; through central Mississippi, July and August, 1863; same, October and No- 


vember, 1863; southern Mississippi, January and February, 1864; on Red River, La., March, April 
and May, 1864; northern Mississippi, Angost, 1864; through Arkansas and Missouri. September 
and October, 1864; in Tennessee and Mississippi, December, 1864, and January, 1865; against, 
Mobile, Ala., March and April, 1865. ' 

Sieges — Corinth, Miss., May, 1862; Fort Ridgley, Minn., August, 1862; Fort Abercrombie, 
Minn., August, 1862; Yicksburg, Miss., May and June, 1863; Spanish Fort, Ahk March and 
April, 1865. 

Battles and Actions — Farmington, Miss., May 28, 1862; Redwood, Minn., Aug. 18, 1862; Fort 
Ridgley, Minn., Aug. 20-22, 1862; luka. Miss., Sept. 19, 1862; Corinth, Miss., Oct. 4, 1862; Mis- 
sissippi Springs, Miss., May 13, 1863; Jackson, Miss., May 14, 1863; assault on Yicksburg, May 
22, 1863; Satartia, Miss. June 4, 1863; Mechanicsburg, Miss., June 5, 1863; Richmond, La., June 
14, 1863; Canton, Miss./Oct. 16, 1863; Brownsville, Miss., Oct. 18, 1863; Barton's Station, Miss., 
Oct. 20, 1863; assault on Fort De Russy, La., March 14, 1864; Henderson Hill, La., March 21, 
1864; Grand Ecore, La., April 2, 1864; Compti, La., April 3, 1864; Pleasant Hill, La., April 9, 
1864; Cloutierville, La., April 23, 1864; Cane River, La., April 24, 1864; Moore's Plantation, La., 
May 3, 1864; Bayou La Moure, La., May 6 and 7, 1864; Bayou Roberts, La., May 7, 1864; Man- 
sura, La., May 16, 1864; Bayou De Glaise, May 18 and 19, 1864; Lake Chicot, Ark., June 6, 
1864; Tupelo, Miss., July 14, 1864; Oxford, Miss., Aug. 21, 1864; Abbeyville, Miss., Aug. 23, 
1864; Nashville, Tenn., Dec. 15 and 16, 1864; Fish River, Ala., March 24, 1866; capture of Span- 
ish Fort, Ala., April 8, 1865; Fort Blakely, Ala., April 9. 1865. 

The writer greatly regrets his inability, for lack of space, to make such personal mention and 
commendation of members of the regiment, both officers and enlisted men, as in numerous cases 
their conspicuous merit deserves in an eminent degree, and without which this sketch of the regi- 
ment seems most incomplete. I have, however, already exceeded the limits allotted the regiment 
in the apportionment of space made by the commission in charge of this work, and I have there- 
fore been compelled not only to omit all that does not relate to the narrative of the regiment as a 
whole, but have found it necessary to condense the recital of, or but briefly mention, many of the 
important events in which the regiment participated. A complete history of the Fifth Minnesota 
would make a volume of itself, every page of which would bristle with interesting and exciting 
narrative. — [L. F, H. 






Rudolph Boraesrode. 
Iiuoius F. HuBtMtrd.... 

LietUenant Colonel^ 
William B. Gere.... 

Major i — 
Francis Hall. 

John C. Becht 

John P. Houston...^ 

Alpheus R. French. 
Thoniaji P. Qere 

Alhert Rhode.. 

Quartermattert — 
William B. MoGrortj.. 
Francis G. Brown 

Surgeons — 

Francis B. Etheridge., 

Vincent P. Kennedy... 

William H. Leonard... 
Assistant Surgeon — 

J. A. Verraia.. 

C9iMipto<iu — 

James F. Chaffee.. 

John Ireland 

Henry W. Herrick — 
Seraeani Minors — 

juerman Maehlberg... 

Ahner N. See... 

William J. Sturgis 

(Quartermaster Sergeants- 

James C. McLean 

Jerome C. Thompson.. 
CbrnmUsary Sergeants — 

H. C. WUklnson 




Abner N. Remington.. 
Charles L. Littlefield... 

SamuelW. Franklin. 
Hospital Stewards — 
Francis Etheridge.... 
K.J. Burns. 

Martin Webster 

Principal Musicians — 
Jacob Metzgar 


Henry Ley 




















Apl. 80, '62 
Aug. 81, '62 

Aug. 81, '62 

Aug. 31, '62 
3iay 1,'63 
May 10, '65 





Aug. 81, '62 
Sept. 6, '65 

Sept. 6, '65 

ApL 80, '68 
Sept. 6, '65 

ApL 5, '65 

Apl. 6, '65 

Dec 20, '61 

Sept. 8, '62 
May 28,*65 

Sept 8, '62 

May 17, »62 

June 23, '62 
Junell, *64 

Feb. 19, '62 

Dec. 19, '61 

Jan. 17, '62 

Feb. 10, '62 
Jan. 15, '62 

ApL 2, '62 

Jan. 25, '62 

Jan. 4, '62 

Feb. 8, '62 

Feb. 15, '62 

Jan. 6, '62 

Jan. 31. '62 

June 17, '62 

Feb. 19, '62 

Sept. 6, '65 

Sept. 15, '64 
Sept. 6, '65 

Sept. 8, '62 
May 1,'65 
Sept. 6, '66 

ApL 8,*68 

June 28, '62 
ApL 8, '63 
Sept. 6, '65 

May 15, >65 

ApL 7, '64 

Aug. 7,»65 

Sept 6, '65 
Sept. 6, '65 

Jan. 24. '65 

Sept 6, '6.5 
Oct '62 

Sept 6, '65 

Sept 6, '65 

Sept 6, '65 

Sept 6, '65 


Enlisted as prirste Company A December 19, 1861; nromoted 
CapUin February 6, 1862; Lieutenant Colonel Blaren24, 1862; 
Colonel August 81, 1862: mustered as Veteran February 12. 
1864; Brevet Brigadier General December 16. 1864; wounded 
at Corinth May 28, 1862, and at Nashrille December 16, 1864. 

Enlisted as private in Company B January 17, 1862; promoted 
Captain <^mpany B March 2, 1862; Mi^or March 24, 1862; 
Lieutenant Colonel August 81, 1862; mustered as a Veteran 
February 12, 1864. 

Mustered as Captain Company C March 9, 1862; promoted Ma- 
jor August 81, 1862; resigned. 

Mustered as Captain Company E March 19, 1862; promoted 
M^jor May 1, 1863. 

Enlisted as private January 80, 1862; promoted First Lieuten- 
ant Company K April 80, 1862; Captain July 24, 1862; Mi^or 
May 10, 1865; wounded at Nashville December 16, 1864. 


Enlisted January 17, 1862; First Sergeant March 8, 1862; pro- 
moted Second Lieutenant Company B March 24, 1862; First 
Lieutenant August 20, 1862: AdiJutant March 19, 1868: Acting 
Assistant AdJuUnt General Second Brigade, First Division. 
Sixteenth Armv Corps, March 7, 1884; wounded at Nashville 
December 15, 1864; awarded medal of honor by Secretary of 
War February 22, 1865. 

Veteran; enlisted March 11, 1862: promoted Sergeant M^or 
May 1, 1864; First Lieutenant Company D January 18, 1865; 
AdJuUnt April 6, 1865. 


Veteran; enlisted January, 1862; appointed Quartermaster 
Sergeant; promoted Second Lieutenant Company K July 24, 
1862: First Lieutenant July 15, 1863; Regimental Quarter^ 
master March 18, 1865. 


Assistant Surgeon from April 22, 1862. 

Assistant Surgeon from November 22, 1862. 


Resigned on account of ill health. 


Enlisted March 21, 1864, as Private in Company A. 

Enlisted February 19, 1862; appointed Senreant April 2, 1862; 
Sergeant Major April 30, 1862; promoted Second Lieutenant 
Company D Msy 4, 1863; Captain May 6, 1863. 

Sergeant Company A; appointed Sergouit Major September 2, 
1863; discharged to accept promotion in United States Col^ 
ored Infantry. 

Veteran; enlisted in Company B; promoted Sergeant Mi^o' 
February 18, 1865. 

Veteran; enlisted in Company B; promoted Corporal, Sergeant 

Veteran; enlisted in Company H; appointed Quartermaster 
Sergeant March 1, 1863. 

Enlisted in Company F; appointed Commissary Sergeant April 
15. 1865: discharged for disabiiitv in 1862. 

Enlisted in Company A; appointed Commissary Sergeant Au- 
gust 1, 1862. 

Veteran; enlisted in Company A; appointed Commissary Ser- 
geant January 25, 1865; aied July 13, 1865, at Demopolis, Ala. 

Veteran; enlisted in Company F; appointcwl Commissary Ser- 
geant July 15, 1865. 

Enlisted in Company I; appointed Hospital Steward October, 

Veteran; enlisted in Company A; appointed Hospital Steward 

October 7, 1863. 
Veteran; enlisted in Company F; appointed Principal Musician 

January 1. 1863; returned to Company F March 1, 1865. 
Veteran; enlisted in Company B; appointed Principal Musician 

July 1,1863. 
Veteran; enlisted in Company E; Regimental Bugler. 




Roster op Company A — Continued. 


Jordon, Nathaniel 

Jones, Buf^s 

Knapp, Augustine 

Killmartin, Patrick.... 

Kubns, Joeeph 

Kuhns, Henry 

Kulker, Henry 

LAudenechlacer. John. 
LitUefleld, Charles L... 

Marshall, George.... 
Mcintosh, Michael. 
McCurdj, John A... 
Mercer, George R... 
Miller, Abraham.... 
Miller, Pulaski 

Otterson, Enud.. 

Otterson, Albert 

Patterson, Hiram B.. 

Partlowe^Darid 8 , 

Perkins. Hiram. , 

Suinneil, Thomas 
emington, Abner N. 

Beade, uenry 8 

Beade, Henry M 

Beed, Nelson 

Binearson, James. , 

Both, Henrrl 


Byder, James M 

Sackett, Francis.. 

Saratha, Jacob. 
8ee, Abner N.... 

Shaw, James 

Bhumway, BuAis E........ 

Shum way, Jeraniah 

Simpson, John 

Sickler, John 

Stranahan, William 0... 

Stranahan, Oscar L 

Stranahan, Henry M... 

Strang, David M. 

Strong, George X 

Taylor, Edmund 

Tompkins, John C 

Truman. Charles.. 

Truesdell, Gilbert 

Wait,Beriah C 


Webster, Noah 

Webster, Martin. 

Willoughby. John H.... 

Wilson, Pytniuroras 

Will wording, Michael. 

Wooster, G«>rge C 

Wright, Beverly M 

Zibble, Lewis.. 














Jan. 27, '62 
SepU 1,'68 
Feb. 4, '62 
Feb. 10, '62 
Dec 19, '61 
Dec 19, '61 
Dec 19,*61 
Apl. 2,*64 
Jan. 4, '62 

Mch. 4, '62 
Dec 19, '61 
Aug. 81, '64 
Jan. 25, *62 
Dec 19. '61 
Feb. 4, '62 

Jan. 7, '62 

Jan. 25, '62 
Jan. 1,'62 
Sept. 16, '62 
Aug. 21, '62 
Jan. 7, '62 
Jan. 25, '62 
Dec 19, '61 
Dec 24, '61 
Jan. 29, '62 
Sept. 1,'&4 
Aug. 81, '64 
Jan. 4, '62 
Mch. 14, '62 
Sept. 1,'62 

Dec 19, '61 

Dec 19, *61 
Nov. 15. '64 
Nov. 19, '6J 
Dec 19, '61 
Jan. 18, *62 
Dec 28, '61 

Feb. 12, '62 
Mch. 15, '62 
Feb. 26, '62 
Aug. 31, '64 
Feb. 4, '62 
Jan. 26, '62 
Dec. 19, '61 
Feb. 27, '62 
Jan. 4. '62 
Jan. 17, '62 
Dec 19, '61 
Jan. 6, '62 
Sept. 16, '62 
Aug. 30, '64 
Nov. 22. '64 
Dec 19, '61 
Dec 19, '61 




Sept. 6, '65 
Sept 6, '66 

Sept. 6 '65 
Sept. 6, '65 
Sept. 6, '65 

Mch. 16, '63 
Sept. 6, '65 
Sept. 6, '65 
Sept. 20, '62 

Sept. 6, '66 

Jan. 17. '68 
Sept. 2, '65 

Jan. 15, '63 

Jsn. 24, '6ft 
June 12. '65 
Sept. 23, '62 
Dec 28, '64 
Sept. 6, '65 
Sept 6, '65 

Dec. 8, '62 
Jan. 13, '63 

Sept 6, '65 
Apl. 7, '64 

July 80, '64 
Sept 6, '65 
Sept 6, '65 

Feb. 2, '62 

Oct 6, '62 

Sept 6, '65 

Sept 6, '66 

Feb. 8, '65 

Sept 6, '66 

Sept 6, '65 
Sept 27, '65 
Sept 6, '65 
Sept. 6, '65 
Sept 6, '65 
Sept 6, '65 
July 28, '62 

Dec 19, '61. Mch. 16, '63 

Killed at Corinth October 4, 1862. 

Died August 80, 1864, at Camp Sherman, Mississippi. 

Veteran; promoted Corporal, Sergeant; wounded at Nashville. 


Killed at Corinth October 4, 1862. 


Veteran; captured at Corinth October 4, '1862; exchanged. 

Veteran; Corporal; promoted Sergeant, Commissary Sergeant; 

died Julv 13, 1865, at Demopolis, Alabama. 
Veteran; deserted in November, 1864. 
Transferred from Company D; discharged for disability. 


Discharged for disability. 

Veteran; Corporal; promoted Sergeant; wounded at Corinth 

May 28, 1862; killed in battle of Nashville December 15, 1864. 
Veteran; wounded at Nashville December 16, 1864, and at Bich- 

mond, Louisiana, June 15, 1868. 
Discharged for disability. 

Died August 7, 1863. at Milllken's Bend. Looisiana. 
Discharged for disability. 

Veteran; died June 8, 1861. at Memphis, Tennessee. 
Promoted Sergeant, Commissary Sergeant 

Discharged for disability. 
Veteran; promoted Corporal. 

Killed October 4, 1862, at battle of Corinth, Mississippi. 
Discharged for disability. 

Transferred from Company B June 25, 1862; discharged for 

Veteran: Sergeant; promoted Sergeant M^jor September 2, 1863, 
dischargea to accept promotion in United States Colored In- 

Per order. 

Died July 6, 1862, at Farmington, Mississippi. 
Discharged for disability; died while en route home. 
Promoted Corporal; deserted March 7, 1863, at Germanton, Ten- 
Transferred to Signal Corps October 1, 1863. 
Discharged for disability. 
Veteran; promoted Corporal, Sergeant 

Wounded at Corinth October 4, 1862. 

Died July 14, 1863, at MiUiken's Bend, Louisiana. 


Died July 20, 1863, at Fort SnelUng. 

Transferred to Signal Corps August 7, 1863. 


Promoted Corporal; discharged for disability. 

Veteran; Wagoner; promoted Hospital Steward October 7, 1868, 

Discharged for disability. 

ProraotM Corporal; died on steamer, on Mississippi River, SefH 

tember or October, 1862. 
Discharged for disability. 


Vrwnii; promolcd Corporml, SeifMot. 



RosTEB OF Company B — Continued. 






McAllister, Henry 31 

Murray, James.. ; 18 

Munday, James M -- 42 

Nebrhood. Edward F | 21 

Norton, Wenzel 29 

Olson, Tolac i 87 

Parsley, Thomas 

Parsley, John 

Parks, Moses P.. 

Parks. John W 

Perrlngton, William J..., 

Peterson, John 

Pettis, Edwin 

Pfiremer, MichaeL 

Philips, Harrison A 

Pitcher, Nathaniel 

Pray, Henry F 

Prouty, Chester A... 

Rathbum, D. C. 

Rea, John 

Rabenski, Antoine 

Robinson. Heber.. 

Rose, Ezekiel 

Rolf,C. B 

Roberts, Eugene W. 
Rufredge, Andrew.. 

Scriptare, Lorin. 

Serning, John 

Svendsun, Ole. 

Sevensjon.Tellof , 

Sevain, William 

Shepard, Henry A. 
Smith, Allen. 

Smith, Chas. W 

Smith, Joseph E.... 

Stewart, Samuel 

Sturgis, William J. 

Stewart, Nathan 

Spornitz, Robert J. 





Sutherland, William A ; 18 

Tanner, Martin J > 26 

Taylor, Jonathan i 44 

Trescoti, Solon A | 

Torger, Christian 

Underwood, Joel A 21 

Tan Buren, Stephen. 
Wait, Ell 

Wall, Oscar G 

Wall, Gilbert W 

Winslow, Wlliam E 

Williamson, Andrew W. 


Jan. 13, '62 

Jan. 17, '62 
Mch. 2, '62 




Wilson. Martin H I 18 

White, William i 31 

Woodard, Willard 31 






















Apl. 29, '63 


10, '62 
10, '62 
29, '64 

18, '62 
18, '62 
17, '62 
17, '62 

19, '62 
80 '64 

7, '64 

17, '62 

10, '62 

17, '62 

17, '62 

.29, '64 

29, '64 

.29, '64 

. 2, '62 

17. '62 

17, '62 

Sept. 6,*65 

Sept. 6, '65 
July 22, »65 

Mch. 29, '64 
Nov. 12, '64 
Jan. 17, '62 

Wounded at Fort Rldgley August 20, 1862; discharged for dis- 

Killed at Redwood August 18, 1862. 

Veteran; promoted Corporal, Sergeant. 

Promoted Corporal; woundea in battle August 20, 1862; died 
January 2, 1863, at Ja Grange, Tennessee. 

Veteran; promoted Corporal, Sergeant. 

Killed at Redwood August 18, 1862. 

Captured near East port, Mississippi, January, 1865. 
Killed August 18, 1862, at Redwood. 
Killed August 18. 1862, at Redwood. 
Killed Aueust 18, 1862. at Redwood. 
Discharged for disability. 

Mch. 16, '63 

Sept. 6, '65 

June 8, '65 Per order. 

Mch. 3, '65i Corporal. 

Killed August 18, 1862, at Redwood. 

Killed August 18, 1862, at Redwood. 

Died August 11, 1863, at Mound City, Illinois. 

Sept. 6. '65 
Sept, 6, '65 
Sept. 6, '65 

Jan. 17, '65 
Sept. 6, '65 

May 10, »65 


17, '62 

10, '6-» 

. 2, '62 

80, '64 

7, '64 

7, '64 
10, '62 
10, '62 
10, '62 
,29, '64 
17, '62 
17, »62 
17, '62 
10, '62 

Feb. 18, '62 
Feb. 10, '62 
Feb. 10, '62 
Feb. 10, '62 
June 17, '62 
Jan. 17, '62 

Jan. 17, '62 
Jan. 17, '62 

Feb. 10, '62 

Jan. 17, '62 

' Jan. 17, '62 

Jan. 17, '62 

Jan. 17, '62 
Sept. 2, '64 
Mch. 29. '64 

Sept. 6, '65 
Feb. 10, '65 
Sept. 6, '65 
Sept. 6, '65 
June 9, '65 

Oct. 21, '62 

Sept. 6, '65 



Sept. 6, '65 
SepU 6, '65 
Mch. 15, '63 

Sept. 6, '65 
Not. 6, '64 

Aug. 29, '62 

July 29, '63 

Dec. 1.'63 
Sept. 6, '65 

Wounded at Nashrllle December 16, 1864. 

Deserted December 81, 1864. 

Veteran; Principal Musician July 1, 1868; wounded at Red* 
wood August 18, 1862. 

Wounded at NashTille December 16, 1864; discharged for same. 
Wounded August 20, 1862, at Fort Rldgley; discharged October 

24, 1862. 
Veteran; promoted Corporal. 

Veteran; wounded August 18, 1862, at Redwood. 

Per order. 

Killed August 18, 1862, at Redwood. 
Promoted Corporal; discharged for disability. 
Killed August 18, 1862, at Redwood. 

Died Augfist 7, 1863, at Vicksburg. 

Veteran; promoted Corporal, Sergeant Mi^or. 

Killed at Redwood August 18, 1862. 

Discharged on account of wounds receired at Fori Ridgley 

August 20, 1862. 
Veteran; wounded August 18, 1862, at Redwood, Minnesota. 

Discharged for disability. 
Sergeant; killed August 18, 1862, at Redwood. 
Killed August 18, 1862, at Redwood. 
Veteran; promoted Corporal. Sergeant; died January 19, 1865, 

of wounds received in the battle of Nashville, Tennessee. 
Veteran; promoted Corporal, Sergeant. 
Wounded at Richmond, Louisiana, June 15, 1863; discharged 

for disability. 
Discharged for disability. 

Musician; transferred to Company A June 25, 1862. 
Corporal; discharged for disability. 
Veteran; promott^ Sergeant; discharged for promotion In the 

71st United SUtes Colored RegimenU 
Discharged for disability. 

Killed at Nashville December 16, 1864. 



•^ . Mustered . Mustered 
In. i Out. 



Oapfains — \ 

Francis Hall ' 28 

Timothy J. Sheehan • 24 

J-)rst LUutcnanU — i 

Frank B. P'obes 21 

Dorr K. Stacy 19 

Second Lieutenant — I 

Horatio D. Brown 26 

enlisted men. I 

Ames, David ' 43 

Mabcock, Nathan E 19 

Bar, John 38 

Battles, John I 32 

Moh. 9, '62 
Aug. 31, '62 

Aug. 31, '02 

Sept. 26, '63 

Aug. 31, '62 

Feb. 17, '62 
Feb. 7,'r.2 
Mch. 9,'G4i 
Nov. 10, '64.' 


Aug. 31, '63 
Sept. 6, '65 

July 21. '63 

Sept. 6, '65 

Aug. 5, '04 

Dec. 19, '62 
Sept. 6, '65 
hfept. 6, '65 

Promoted Major August 31, 1862; resigned. 

Veteran; First Lieutenant March 9, 1862; previously served a» 

private in the Fourth Minnesota Infantry. 
Enlisted March 9, 1862; promoted Second Lieutenant February 

IS, 1862; resigned. 
Veteran; Sergeant March 18, 1862; enlisted February 7, 1862. 

Enlisted March 9, 1?62; promoted First Sergeant March 18, 1862; 

Adjutant Eleventh Minnesota lofantry August 5, 1864. 
Discharged for disability December 19, 1862. 
Veteran; Musician. 
Promoted Corporal. 
Killed December 16, 1864. at Nashville. 

Roster or Company C — Ooulinued. 

RosTKB op Company C—OoMinued. 



Feb. ; 

MctLlS, 'e 
UelLSO, ■«. 
FstL 17, •S3 

Feb. IT, '8S 
Feb, 17, '62 
Feb. 17, '(2 

Not. IS, •04 

.1 Died Mm 

> W<wDdedilN)iibi.... 
1; iLjfihftrged fo 

IM2, It Fort 


Aof. »,■« 

FA. n,-** Ucfl.I«,'63 
Feb. U, '«2 

indolnh ( 

Died Jane 16, 1SS3, in hoipltiil st Chlckui 

Dled^iilj It, 1M2, et Fort BUglej, Mlunet 
DiMbuEtdrur dlsiblUiT. 
CoipormT; wounded il (JoriDth; died Aogas 
■QD BuTuikB, Miaou rL 

D!«h«rgtd fpr dluliilli/. 

DlKhiTKed fordluhllilT. 

TrdMlemd 10 IiiTelid Corpi Jmnunry 111, IMS. 

Died Augiut IT, IBSS, U MouDd Clir. Illinois. 


I: died December »,lMi 


EDllItcd Feb. 1, lUZ; wounded In bailie witb lodluia at Fort 

Abercrombie September 3, IKl; leiliDed. 
EnlUted FfbniuT l», IM2; praiuoled Seijeant April 2, ISSl; 

SergesnluigorAprtl 30, lUSiSecondUeuleoaatUaT 4,1863. 
Enllited la Conpanr Q Hmroh 10, IM2: died Januu? 7, IMS, 

of wounds Te»ra In "- >— -- -' -'-->■-"■- 

illned Muehll,1862, Seraeant MajorMiTl, 1S^ 
itanl April R.isea. 
menliaied Jinuarr I, 1S6I; Sergeant Much 15, 1862; 

Dlscbarged for dlabllitr. 

Died JuIt 13, lM3,al Vounc'a Point, LouUUlu. 
DCMftrd Janairr ^ 1363; Sergeant. 
Veteran; Corporal, promoted E^rgeapt. 
Pled September 10, 1363, at Camp Sherman, MlululppL 
Tranaferred to InTalld Corn September S2, 13S3. 
Died Ju«T 12, 1S«3, at VouDf'i Point, LoulaUoa. 
Transterred to Company G Februarr t, 1363. 
DiKharged lor dlsabllliy. 

DIscbarEed for diubllliT ai Fort 
Died March 1?, IW3, n«r Germa 

MuXdan; dtscbarged for dliabllllT. 

IMscbirged for dliabUity. 

>wD, TeuaMMe. 



. Died Jun« 30, Ifex. it Y(tunir-> Palm, Loulslini. 
. DirdAuguit 2,1883, It Vlcluburg.ldluisalppl, 

CIlT, 1 1 II noli, 
llubllllr In ie 


SnelllDg, UIddchU. 

. iK^, tt DnBDpoll). Al*1»mii. 
dLKUrg«il fniQ hnpltat JftDuur it 

i Vetarim; promiHed Corponil. 

Sergtlol; dlnl June K, 1903, U IhickpoH, 

Killed U HuhTill* Deoembcr IS, ItM. 

^ WoandediDtettleDrNubTllleDKambeTlMUI. 

a; Corporal; promolod SeTKvant. 

-. -—- MiAlCarpormI; vauodrdrnt NubTi]lfl,1>eccmb«r 

1, MlHiHlppl. 


KOSTKB OP CouPANT T>—Cbnliniie<!. 

Victor, Ptiil 



Moh.iT.', s.'aa 

Sff-s!!'^ ""^ *•'" 

Woir, Henrr 

1 1 
Mcb. B ■B- 


Dnvniber ](. ItH. Id 
rgsDt April 2, IMS; 

t XMhil11« DeMuber IS, lSt4; 

li iWiutirrl], )B<H. 

nilrd al CorlDib Mif 28, liCl; Htd Uif T, ]8«3, II Dock'* 

VtivrMi: promolH rorTii>n],Serg«nt. 
""-'■irRKl forJlMblUli. 

-■■ ^'--^harmil fordlHbllilT. 




Dewrwd March 14 

1963. at 


Ij a. 18K1, at You ng'a Point, 




Veirrnii; i.roiuoic. 
Iliwrtr<l Sfinh 14 




i>uri^lH:b'ai»nl fgr'jliabll 

DInl S«pt(iab«r il 


ROSTEB 07 COMPAirr E—Oontimud. 




1.C.i.lrr. _ 

,|g«. at Corinth. 

. tter|«st April 3J 

hurnd for dlgnbllltr. 

Iferred Into Coumd; B Juds 3, 1864; died (ton- 

Wt, It I>[niipbia,T«iDea«L 

kk iDd iwTer reportfd for ilulj. 

rponl; diei Anguai 9, IgSS, *l Cunp Gtacnun. 

:h 14, 1SG3. 

Dih October 4. l«f!i 
iiotAl Coqtonl, S*rg«mnt. 

>om Compuj H Uirch SI, 1861; deMtt«d Ko> 

IM4,M61, Loiiii. 

geul; died ScpUmber la, 1BG3, *l B«r Cnak, 


uoied Corporal, 

rorlnth October t, IKI: killed *t NMbTllto !)•- 

> Companr D Uuch 11, IM2. 


r dlubllllT Uirch 21, IMS. 

iru JukKO, MiHiulppi, Mir 16. IBO- 

a Compuj E April 90, 1K3. 

CompaDT D Mit 9, IB 
larged tor diul>iUl«. 
r*i Black KlTer,l>liBls 

II, ISAS.itMtmnhLi. 

iDg Hub of iree^ar SO, IBOa. 

T»>, lAOS.ilMrmpliig. 

ned SU7 u 

mot«d OorpuiBl, Sernaut. ' 

ir dinbilitf . 

iTuarr », tees, it FuJuab, Kenluckr. 

chirieii for dlubllllT. 

irporil; tr>D>f«Tred lo SlEtiil Corp* Sept. T, ISO. 

r<)iIAI>l«-tilJle, MiwlHlprl. AiiEii>l!4,ieM. 

rorinib Miy 3^ 1B6J; diwhirged for diMblUIr, 

2I,IHL', II lirki, Mls>l!«tppi. 

1863, 11 Duckpan, I.ouisiiui. 


NubTill^ dlBchugcd for dlubillty. 

23, 1865, It Seliua, Alab^iui. ' 

7 B, IBW, of wounili rwel'ed it Nubiille, 1 

i>mot<-d 5erguDt; dl«d Auguil K, 18611, • 

onioled" Senreint; dtod Scplenlwt W. 1 
r Bridgr, Mliaivlp]>i. 


SOBTZB OP CosirAMT F — CbaAwMd. 



BasiKR OP Cdhpamv G — (Vnifiiiii«I. 


RosntK or CoKPAirs' 6 — CbwUmwrf. 


Itel^D, Frudl 


WalkcTiKnuT C.~ ... 
WcMon, EdouDd F.... 

•WMdi . And mr J 

Fah. 35, •«! 
Jan. 12| ft 

8*p«. S, .- 
SepL «,'» 

8«pL «,■» 

Sept. a,ia 

Dladwrnd foi dlnbiUtj. 


SlHliupd br dlMblUtr. 

v«Mnn: prooKtwl varaoru. 

IIiuldu;nwiMl bTdTiTutlKwltla mt Fat BdilllDg Hn 

DtaAund bt«m.Winj. 
DM Jub 10, UO, *t YouD)^ Potnt, LmlMBiu. 
"-' " ' idad M NMhTllto, Vtemxha 10, ISM. 

BoerrEB of ooupakt i 



R06TEB OF Company H — Continued. 


I-amb, Winfield S ; 21 

Lamb, William A... , 23 

Lewis, Simeon ~; 30 

Leach, Albert j 30 

Lo7,JohD ! 29 

LudTiinoD, Christian^ 19 

MayiiaTd,E<lwinW 84 

Maxwell, Edwin W , 24 

Mar, Thomas R 35 

McGuire.John i 30 

McOee, WillUm H ' 21 

McDonoagh, Patrick 29 

Meighan,Owen. ; 40 

Mitchell. Amos a 42 

Moreland, Wilson : 37 

Mortenson, Martin^ ' 80 

Morger, Thomas J. B 36 

MuDSOU.OIirer. : 22 

Myer, PhiUp 22 

Pratt, James 27 

Prcsby, Francis E 18 

Putnam, Henry 88 

Ressiegne, David C 22 

Rowe,8imeonW 18 

Bobb, Samuel C 21 

BoUo, Thomas. 2S 

SeTern, JeweD 22 

Seag, William 30 

Sibley, Charles H 42 

Smith, William F 23 

Stoddard, Lrman 2*j 

Strong, Charles G 25 

Struthers, Benjamin 21 

Stramberg, Andrew 83 




Thompson, Jerome C 22 

Sterens, Monroe..., 
St ruthers, Tacitus. 
Suits, George H. 


Thompson, Stephen R ... 

Tilden, George , 

Tome, O.J 1 18 

Treue,JohnA. I 30 

Warring, Cornelius V 21 

Wsskey, James M 25 

Wilson, William 34 

While, Orlo F 20 





Nor. 14, '64 
Nov. 19, '64 
Jan. 15, '62 
Jan. 16, '62 
Nov. 1,'64 
Nov. 1,'64 
Dec 24, '61 
Feb. 19, '62 
Nov. 14, '64 
Sept. 1,'61 
Jan. 15, '62 
Nov. 2, '64 
Feb. 24, '62 
Nov. 2, '64 
Sept. 3/64 
Sept. 8, '64 
Feb. 1,'62 
Feb. 19, '62 
Feb. 19, 'G2 
Jan. 15, '62 
Feb. 20. '621 
Feb. 4, '62 
Feb. 1,'62 
Feb. 16, '62 

Apl. 27, '62 

Sept. 6, '65 
Sept. 6, '65 
Sept. 6. '65 
Dec 5, '62 
Apl. 8, '65 
Sept. 6, '65 
Sept. 6, '65 
Sept. 6, '65 
Sept. 6, '65 

Sept. 6, '65 
Sept. 6, '65 
SepU 2, '63 
June 8, '♦V'i 
July 10, '62 

Sept. 6, '65 
Sept. 6, '65 
Sept. 6, ^65 
May 10, '65 

Apl. 3, '65 

Dec. 11, '62 
Sept. 6, '65 


Feb. 19, '62 Feb. 3, »63 
Jan. 10, '62 

Feb. 1,'62; Sept. 6, '65 
Mch. 7, '62: July 19, '65 i 
Aug. 8, '65' 
Sept. 6, '65 

Feb. 24. '62 
Jan. 15, *62 

Jan. 8, '62 
Jan. 8, '62 
Sept 10, '64 
Dec. 24, '61 
Feb. 27, '62 
Feb. 1,'62 
Nov. 12. '64 

MtLj 30, '65 
Sept. 6, '65 

Discharged for disability. 
Discharged for disability August, 1862. 
Died July 19, 1865, at Demopolis, Alabama 



Discharged for disability. 

Wounded at Corinth October 4, 1862. 

Wounded at Nashville. 



Died February 3, 1865, at Eastport, Miss. 


Discharged for disability. 

Wounded at Nashville; discharged for disability. 

Discharged for disability. 

Died September 4, 1865, at Demopolia, Ala. 


Veteran; discharged for disability. 

Transferred to Third Michigan Battery December 81, 1863. 

Discharged for disability. 

Deserted October 4, 1862; captured at Corinth. 

Deserted Mav 13. 1863, at Fort Snelling. 

Discharged for disability. 

Veteran; Corporal, promoted Sergeant; wounded at NaahTlUe* 

Sergeant; died December 2\ 1862, at Jackson, Tennessee. 

Veteran; promoted Corporal; discharged for wounds reoetred 

at Nashville 
Discharged for disability. 
Veteran; mortally wounded at Nashville December 16, 1864; 

died January 4, 1865. 

Veteran; discharged for disability. 
Veteran; disicharKed for disability. 
Veteran; transferred to Nnn-Commissioned StaffMarch ],!868» 

as Quartermaster Sergeant. 

Veteran: Corporal, promoted Sergeant. 

Died February 18, 1865, at Memphis, Tennessee. 


Discharced for disability. 

Corporal; discharged for disability. 

Sept, 6,'ri5 
Mch. 4, '63 
Feb. 7, '63 
Sept. fi,'65! 
Oct. 14, '62 Discharged ford i<fa)>ilitv. 



» Mustered Mi:steebi> 
In. OiT. 



Caplaitu — 
Lutht-r E. Clark. 
Adam S. Lybe.... 

32 ' Apl. 80, '62 
: May 13, '62 

Andrew A. Teele 

Alpheus P. French.. 

Ffrtt Lieutenants — 

Patrick Ryan 

James Farrell 

Second Lieutenant — 
Milton H.Pember... 


Arnold, Isaac W 

Barrett Hamilton E.. 

Barns, Joel 

Berkman, Frank. 

Brogan, James... 

Brushon, Henry 

Brennan, Bernard 



Nov. 18, '62 
Apl. 3. '63 

Mch. 19, '62 
Sept. 2, '63 

May 13, '62 
Nov. 18, '62 

Apl. 3, '63 
May, '65 

IKx;. 31, '62 
Sept. 6, '65 

Brown, Philip 24 

Brandt, August. 29 

Busch, Henry 28 

Burns, N. J 83 

Calvert, George W... : 18 

22 .;. Dec. 31, '62, July 22, '63 


Apl. 25, '62 Apl. 30, '65 

Mch. 19, '62 

Apl. 3n, »62l Dec 8, '62 
Apl. 28, '62 Apl. 8<», '65 
I>ec 23, '61' 

Si-pt, 3, '64: Sept, 26, '65 
Feb. 2, '62 

Feb. 8, '64! Sept 6, »65 
Sept. 1,'64 Sept. 6, '65 
Nov. 16, '641 Sept. 6, '65 
Feb. 15, '62 

Mch. 30, '621 Sept. 6, '65 

DUcharged per onler. 

Enlistetl iKicember 19, 1361; Second Lieutenant April 80, 1882; 
resign e<i. 

First Lieutenant of Company A December 21, 1861; resigned. 

First SerKeant .\pril 30, 1S62; Second Lieutenant May 13.1862; 
First Lieutenant December 31, 1^2; wounded at NasnvUw 
December 16, 1864; resigned. 


Veteran; enlisted February 14, 1862; promoted Corporal, Ser- 

Sergeant April 24, 1862; resigned. 


Sergeant; discharge<i for disability November, 186*2. 

Discharged for disability December 8, 1862. 

Drowned in Mississippi River March 14, 1868. 

Capturetl January 17, 1865. 

Veteran; transferred from Company D; killed at Spanish Fort, 

Alabama. April 2, IMTk 
Promoted Cor|ioral, iSergeant. 

Wounded at Nashville. 

Promoted Hospital Steward; transferred to Non-Commissioned 

Veteran; promoted Corporal, Sergeant. 


B or OcwrAVT l—GmttmiMd. 

Roster op Compaxv l — Canlinurd. 





PnncliG. BrovD.. 






Apt. M,'C2„ EdIIiIhIJid 

*7 : juij ail's! Scpi. e.-es '^' 

Jnifii.'ea Jui)ris,'63 

Jul! 15. 'sa' Sepl. «.'»sj 

Mdi.31, >S3 St-irt. e,>ss 

No*. !,•«. Seirt. S.'M, 

Jbd.31,'83 Cornonl. nnmiotcd Seivmit; 

IW:;; dltd Dwcmber M.ot 
[ I Dnemlwr 16, lt«4. 

Mch. B.'sa, V«er«n: iransftrrwl lo 

Ju.»,'K ~ I>H>crtrJMaTl2,l««2.> 

J*n. IT,<n ' BcUiwtbTclTiltutbDi 

Ju. m.'nl KI1M MiiT !». IKfrj, (I Corinib 

DecSI.'Cl I rintSenuut; ilacnnl Mucli 

Kav,IT,>Ml HaTlt1.V>.t DiKhifE^ for dIubllllT. 

JaD.ST,*fil' Pwricil .Msy lU, ii Fan 

l[|)b.2I,'ei ..~~ I I>«cn«1 prior 

FA. M, 1121 July 21. '62 

Ju.lT,'iU.... J 

FiAiiapMi, I 

jiiir J.H *t*- 6.'*^ 

FeSlS '« S 


JiilT T,>M Julr J.'M 

F*li2«C'iii :...Z...:- fr 

Feb. 1, MV Ai>L SO, VI: 
Jin.W,V,!l SipU 6,*l' 
Jib. 18, 112 Ai^29,'l)3 

1*6^ died 3a\r 24, ISd:^ « 61. UmK, UI^ 

._ii.24,'il _ 

Feb.Ill,"«ai _„ 

Jan. 3I,'6S EVpL CIM 
Jan. 17, WJ^ Jan. U, -03 
Jim. SI, '82, 

net m, '61, 

Jan. S^^■tfi| &!*. «,■<» 
Jan. 81/fi2, 

Juir 2, 'HI Sfiit. li.ta 

Jan. !<,'0'J Not. M, "62 
Apl. 7,T.2 Apl. an.-M 
Jan. a,;w| Apl. W.'M 

Mch.t2|'d ApL'soi'si 
Jan. 211, '62, Apl. SO. '6* 

Feb. 7, 'G21 Sept. i, '$3 


r Btia^v. Mlululppi. 

t luka, MiHlolppl, JuIr 

II, Olila, Jutf •:», net; Dol hrud 
SoeUiDH, MUioeut*. 

rorporah dlufaarged tor dlubilily 

BonsK or OoMPAiiT K — OiwtLimii. 



Enlistmente dragged in the snmmer of 1862. The Grovernment had started 
oat avowiug that the \rar would be over in ninety days, and by making a call 
for 75,000 three-months' volunteers to put down a rebellion for which the South 
had been preparing for a decade at least. Bull Bun was a rude shock. It dis- 
closed a desperate purpose among the Confederates, and an intention to fight. 
The call of May 3, 1801, for half a million men to serve three years, or during the 
war, was promptly filled up by the determination of the people to meet the respon- 
sibilities of the hour without trifling or ftirther overtures for compromise. The 
men raised under this call were distributed to the Potomac, to various points in 
the West, the Mississippi Bivcr and the Southern frontier. Minnesota furnished 
her full quota, and more. We had achieved victories at Mill Springs, Ky., at 
Fort Donelson, Pittsburgh Landing, Pea Bidge, Seven Pines and Fair Oaks. The 
winter of 1861-2 saw an army of 200,000 men under McClellan on the Potomac, 
eager to advance on Bichmond, and apparently able to capture the Ck)nfederate 
centre. The country believed that there were enough men under arms to subdue 
the Bebellionjand the men themselves, in glad anticipation of their early return 
home, were already singing, "When this Cruel War is Over." Of Minnesota 
troops the First, Second, Third, Fourth and Fifth Infantry regiments and auxiliary 
organizations were already in the South doing valiant service. The call for the 

^ When, daring the winter of 1888-89, I received a letter from Capt Whitney, Capt Cairer 
and Capt. Braden, the committee having charge of the compilation of the history of the Sixth Regi- 
ment, stating that they had selected me to make snch compilation, my first impression was that I 
should decline the duty. There were many others in the service of the regiment far more compe- 
tent. I had ser\'ed as a private soldier from the beginning to the end, but in such a work as thik I 
realized that I would be at a disadvantage. The private soldier knows but little of the inside work- 
ings of the military body of which he may be a member. The history of a raiment is marked ont 
by superior officers, who counsel together and determine the plan of battle or the line of march. 
The general in command promulgates his orders to the division commander, who embodies them in 
orders to the brigade commander; he distributes them to the colonels of regiments, and he comma* 
nicates his ordera in accordance therewith to the officers in command of companies; the men them- 
selves, with information filtered down to them through so many channels, are simply passive, or 
are moved about like so many automata. They know little of the origin or causes of military 
movements, or their ultimate purpose. They have the privilege of obedience, and that of contem- 
plating the results as they appear in the fortresses, guns and men taken, and the lists of the dead 
and wounded. 

" Theirs not to reason why : 
Theirs but to do and die.*' 

So my misgivings made mc hesitate; but I had the warmest assurances from the officers generallj 
of aid in the work and that co-operation has been most generously extended to me. It cannot be 
expected that I could well approximate perfection atler the scattering of so many records and data 
and a lapse of a quarter of a century, but I consented to do my best. I am under many obliga- 
tions in the preparation of this narrative of the Sixth Regiment to Col. William Crooks, who has 
given me his recollections in the form of interviews, from which I have quoted ku:ge]y in the ab- 
sence of more exact data; also, to Adjutant A. P. Connolly, who has furnished me from his personal 
data many interesting details. To Lieut Col. Grant, Capt Carver, Capt Braden, Capt Whitney, 
Capt. Stees and Private L. C. Arbuckle I also return my sincere {Acknowledgments. I have done 
this work with enthusiasm, and have greatly enjoyed living over those scenes among my comrades 
and the officers who commanded us in discharging every duty imposed on us with fidelity to the 
great cause of union, in behalf of which we enlisted. 

I submit what I have prepared with so much of a preface, asking the favorable judgment of 
those whose interests have been thus committed to me. 

Chas. W. Johnson, 
Private D Company^ Sixth Minnuota Infantry Volunieera, 


Sixth Begiment was issaed from the acUutant general's ofBloe, dated May 22, 
1862, with the significant remark appended to it that ^^The regiment will be 
moved to the seat of war as soon as fnll." The war meetings which had char- 
acterized the fervor and stimulated the fever of enlistments months before, had 
been suspended. Apparently, with the theory of a short duration of hostilities, 
and an immense army already under arms, it was evident that the Gk>vemment 
had men enough. Orders came from Washington to the adjutant general's office 
to suspend recruiting, at least temporarily; and so the effort to raise more men 
practically ceased for a time. But we had disasters in the summer, and immense 
preparations for a conflict between the great armies assembled in the Virginias, 
which led finally up to the second battle of Bull Bun. We had dissrasions in 
the army; dissensions among the i>eople at home; and dissatisfaction with the 
conduct of the war. Horace Oreeley was shouting his ''On to Blchmond" cry, 
and the War Department was again confronted with a demand for more men. 
The rebels were perfecting their organization and discipline, and accumulating 
supplies and munitions of war on an immense scale. The^ had engaged in diplo- 
matic negotiations that seemed on the point of successful issue. There was more 
than an even prospect of European recognition of their belligerent rights: and 
with that acknowledgment would flow to them immense moral, finandal and 
XK>litical aid. It was at this x>oint that the Government showed its true fiber 
and confidence in the people by caUing in July for 800,000 men, and in thirty 
days after for 300,000 more. Then t!he war meetings began again. The people 
b€^:an singing, ' < We are Coming from the Hillside, we are Goming from the Plain; 
we are Coming Father Abraham, 600,000 More." Circular after circular was 
sent out from the capitol at St. Paul, and public meetings were set on foot with 
great vigor. Commissions to enlist men were issued by the score, and every 
organiz^ town and county in the state was pledging bounties to recruits and 
aid to their families. 

On the evening of Thursday, July 25, 1862, there were two great war meet- 
ings held in the two principal cities of the state, — St Paul and St. Anthony. 
Others were held the same week at Stillwater, Faribault and other points. They 
gave a great impetus to enlistments. Mayor John S. Prince presided at the St. 
Paul meeting, and in opening he said that * * notwithstanding the vast expendi- 
ture of men and means the strength of the Bebellion is yet unbroken. The con- 
scription act of the rebels has filled their armies until they outnumber ours.'' 
Other speakers, among them Hon. H. H. Sibl^, Hon. John B. Brisbin, Hon. James 
Smith, Jr., Major CuUen and Hon. John M. Oilman, made eloquent pleas for the 
Government. Hon. James Gilfillan reported the resolutions expressing the sense 
of the meeting. At St. Anthony the meeting was held on Kioollet Island and 
Mayor Merriman presided. The speeches were made by Hon. David Heaton, 
Bev. Charles Secombe, Hon. W. S. King, Dr. G. W. Le Boutellier, Bev. J. O. 
Whitney, Bev. E. R Lathrop and Mr. Steiner of the Hickory Guard, a com- 
pany then forming. Mayor Merriman subsequently enlisted as a high private, 
'^an example worthy of being imitated by the mayors of other cities,'' as the 
local paper put it. Men were being enlisted everywhere, on the condition that 
they should be fnrloughed until after harvest. It was the busiest season of the 
year for farmers, who composed a large proportion of the recruits. 

Pui-suant to an order from the War Departn^ent, the acyntant general of 
Minnesota issued an order, July 17, 1862, announcing that a second lieutenant 
would be appointed and mustered into the service who should have authority toi 
muster in the recruits as they were enlisted, to be sent to Fort Snelling, the 
general rendezvous. It was also announced by the acting governor, Hon. Igna- 
tius Donnelly, lieutenant governor, ^^ that when the Sixth Begiment was full 
subsequent recruits would be used to complete Minnesota's quota" under the 
great call for 600,000. The recruiting officers, however, did not confine them- 
selves to the Sixth. The Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth and Tenth regiments 
were all forming at the same time. On the 18th of March the iVeM had made a 
vigorous call, editorially, for the filling up of the Sixth Begiment. ''We must 
have more men. So far the war has teen carried on without draft. Minnesotft 


has furnished 5,500 men; South Carolina 20,000 men." On the 5th of August it 
was announced that ^^ First Lieut. S. L. Hammon of the First Regiment was 
assigned to duty as temporary adjutant of the Sixth Begiment at Fort Snelling." 
In the call for the Seventh Regiment, August 6th, it was announced that the 
secretary of war "directed that if the Sixth and Seventh regiments of Minne- 
sota Volunteers to be organized are not full by the 18th inst., that the defi- 
ciency shall be made up by special draft from the militia of the state. Active 
and efficient mustering officers for the Sixth and Seventh regiments who may 
be unable to fill up their companies within the time above specified will receive 
appointments in the final organization of the several companies. All i>ersons 
besides the mustering officers who are recruiting for the Sixth Regiment must 
continue their efforts to fill up the quota of volunteers, but are at liberty to 
have their recruits mustered into such company in the Sixth or Seventh Regi- 
ment as they may select." The effect of this order, exciting competition for 
good places for the recruiting officers, was soon manifest, for on the 19th of 
August it was stated "that the companies of Captains Grant, Merriman, Bailey, 
Whitney, Schoenemann and McLaren were full, and that of Captain Bromley^ 
only lacked two men." 


But events more startling than defeats or victories on the Potomac or in the 
Western army, because nearer to the home^ of the citizens of Minnesota, were 
then occurring which gave a sudden impulse to the filling up of the grea^ call. 
The telegraph wire, the governor's mail, the daily newspaper and the swift- 
courier carried the intelligence that an Indian uprising among the bloody Sioux 
upon the reservations had broken out. Frontier towns were besieged and in 
flames; their citizens fleeing for safety to the cities. All the roads leading down 
the Minnesota River and through the Big Woods to St. Paul and Minneapolis- 
were crowded with them. They told the most horrible tales of massacre, torture 
and arson. Smoking ruins of deserted hdmes, mangled bodies of friends and 
relatives, rich crops, half gathered and spoiling in the fields, marked the prairies, 
but a few days before populated by prosperous farmers and hopeful villagers on 
the frontier. Between Fort Ridgley and Forts Abercrombie and Ripley, a dis- 
tance of one hundred and fifty miles, was a stretch of unprotected territory 
upon which the blood-thirsty Sioux descended, inspired with their hate of the 
white man, maddened by the withholding of their annuities, and driven te 
desperation by starvation, to wreak their vengeance and redress their wrongs 
upon innocent white settlers, their women and children. At once the cry rang 
out all over the state for the immediate filliug up and putting into the field of 
defense the regiments then forming. The three companies of the Fifth Minne 
sota, Volunteers guarding the property of the United States at the forts and 
reservations could not cope alone with a foe so determined and so well equipped. 

On the 20th of August, 1862, an order was issued from the adjutant general's 
headquarter of the state directing Col. H. H. Sibley to immediately take charge 
of an expedition of four companies of the Sixth for the relief of Fort Ridgley, 
the centre of the more alarming attacks. Citizens unenlisted, who were willing 
to join the expedition, furnishing their own arms and horses, for the defense of 
the state, were urged to come forward and join Sibley's command. There was 
but one resource to check the invasion of Indians, namely, the men who had 
been called from their harvest fields to enlist, and who had been furloughed 
until after harvest; who had been enlisted, but not yet mustered; who had no 
experience whatever in military life. Their furloughs were at once revoke<l, 
the broken regiments were massed together hurriedly, and oflScers appointed to 
command them. They responded promptly and cheerfully. 

The governor immediately issued orders commissioning Capt. A. D. Kelson 
as colonel of the Sixth Kegiment, and he proceeded as far as Bloom ington Ferry. 
Capt. Nelson had been on duty in the regular army almost continually since 
1848. He graduated at West Point in 1841, and entered the service as a second 
lieutenant in the Eighth Infantry. He had thus been in the service twenty-three 


years, fonrteen years of the time having been spent in Minnesota. He was a 
gentleman of the highest military skill, and punctilious to the last degree re- 
garding all matters of rank and military etiquette. To be assigned to duty 
under a civilian, as Sibley was, was not in accordance with the precedents nor 
the tenets of his military training. He was extremely restive under the circum- 
stances and exigencies that for the time being assigned him to a subordinate 
place. He finally determined to resign. 

General Orders, Ko. 42, from the adjutant general's ofBce of the state, dated 
Aug. 28, 1862, announced the full complement of officers of the Sixth Begiment 
as follows: Colonel, William Crooks of Ramsey; lieutenant colonel, John T. 
Averill of Wabasha; major, Robert N. McLaren of Goodhue; surgeon, Dr. Alfred 
Wharton of Ramsey; first assistant surgeon. Dr. Jared W. Daniels of Nicollet; 
second assistant surgeon, Dr. O. O. Potter of Dodge; quartermaster, Lieut. 
Henry L. Carver of Ramsey; adjutant, Florentine E. Snow of Blue Earth. Sub- 
sequently the following were also announced: Chaplain, Richard B. Bull: quar- 
termaster sergeant, H. H. Gilbert; commissary sergeant, Wm. S. McCauley; 
hospital steward, Amos Hyatt; sergeant major, Frederick W. Norwood; chief 
musicians, Milton R. Seaman, Levi Ix)ngfellow; drum major, Ernst Wagner. 

Colonel Crooks, in a personal interview, thus describes the situation when he 
was assigned to the command of the Sixth Regiment: ''The St. Paul & Pacific 
Railroad Company had just completed the first ten miles of road in Minnesota, 
from St. Paul to St. Anthony. I was the superintendent of that road, and had 
just commenced operating it. On the 19th of August, 1862, Gov. Ramsey came 
to my office and told me he had very bad news from the frontier — news of a 
terrible massacre of the people and destruction of their property by Indians. 
He hoped these reports were exaggerated, but from the confirmatory circum- 
stances he feared the matter was of the gravest character. Citizens were flock- 
ing to the cities; many had come to Fort Snelling with their arms and horses, 
volunteering for the occasion. The governor wanted someone to go to Fort 
Snelling at once to organize these volunteers in some shape so as to make them 
effective, and after canvassing all the reasons which I gave him to relieve me, he 
appealed to me to go, and I consented. He asked me, 'How soon f *In twa 
hours/ I replied, *I would report to him at the capitol,' which I did. The Sev- 
enth Regiment was then organizing. There were no supplies, but I was directed 
to get them in the country, and was given authority to act for the state in the 
emergency. The governor tendered me the lieutenant colonelcy of the Seventh 
Regiment, which I accepted. The governor gave me my commission and orders 
to assume command of the citizens at Fort Snelling. He also ordered me to join 
Col. A. D. Nelson, who had been appointed colonel of the Sixth Regiment, and 
had already started up the Minnesota River with that regiment for the scene of 
Indian disturbances. I started in the evening and reached Bloomington Ferry, 
where Nelson wi^, that night. I gave him the letter Gov. Ramsey had placed 
in my hands, which he read, saying but little. The next morning we were out 
at daybreak. I started to go with my command, saying to Nelson, ^I will go 
right on, and get through as fast as I can.' Heasked meif I was a commissioned 
officer of the state, and I produced the commission given me by Gk)v. Ramsey. 
Nelson then stated to me that he was directed to act under the orders of Mr. Sib- 
ley, a civilian. Ue did not want to report to a civilian, as he was a regular 
army officer. The situation, as related to the Indians and the immediate neces- 
sity of relief for the settlers, was so urgent, however, that he was in doubt as to 
the course he should pursue. It was believed that the Indians were incited to 
violence by rebel emissaries. He (Nelson) had been commissioned colonel of 
the Sixth liegiiuent by the governor, but not yet by the president. He knew the 
rules of the regular army respecting precedence, and was careful in observing 
them. Ho foresaw that complications might arise in respect to his orders and 
reports which might involve criticism and conflict of orders. So he proposed 
that I, bein^ a lieutenant colonel, with the commission of the governor as such, 
should take command of the Sixth Regiment, and he would return to St. Paul 
and resign his commission. I remonstrated against this arrangement, urging 


The camp was badly located for defense, being commanded by the deep ravine 
on one side and by a mound on the other, so that the savages were well sheltered 
from our fire. But this spot was chosen because it was near wood and water, 
and the Indians were supposed to be fifty miles away. It was a mistake which 
was discovered after it was too late. A brisk fire was opened by the boys, and 
soon the cartridge boxes were being depleted. Ammunition was called for, and 
upon opening a box it was found to be of too large a caliber. Other boxes were 
opened with a like result. In loading the ammunition a mistake had been made, 
and the men found themselves in an unfortunate dilemma; but no time was to be 
lost, as there was not more than an average of twenty rounds to the man, and a 
horde of savages about who seemed well supplied with powder and ball. At 10 
o'clock A. M. the firing of the Indians almost ceased. But the men in camp were 
very short of ammunition, their rations were gone, and the only supply of water 
was in the creek at the bottom of the ravine, which was alive with Indians, 
securely under cover, and well armed. But for their natural cowardice in mak- 
ing attacks, they would have charged and massacred every man of the command* 
That memorable day of suffering and anxiety passed without the arrival of ex* 
X>ected relief At an early hour in the morning the guard on picket at Fort 
Eidgley distinctly heard the volleys fired at the camp in Birch Coolie. A de- 
tachment of two hundred and forty men with two six-pounder guns was imme- 
diately organized under the command of Colonel McPhaill, and dispatched to the 
relief of the troops at Birch Coolie. When they had advanced to within three 
miles of Birch Coolie a large force of Indians attacked them. The fire was re- 
turned promptly, and with artillery. The beleaguered camp heard this firing^ 
with the liveliest anticipation of speedy relief, but it was not to be so soon real- 
ized. Col. McPhaill did not deem it safe to advance against the Indians, whe 
outnumbered him so heavily, without additional help. Lieut. T. J. Sheehan was 
dispatched to headquarters at Fort Bidgley, and upon his arrival the whole ex- 
I)editionary force was put on the march by Col. Sibley. This was a perilous ride 
for Sheehan, for, although unscathed himself, his horse was mortally wounded. 

The Indians continued their attacks on Birch Coolie, but without serious re- 
sults. At daylight on the morning of the 3d of September, Col. Sibley and his 
troops having overtaken McPhaill, they proceeded to Birch Ck)olie. As the col- 
umn approached, the Indians were soon again discovered, their numbers in- 
creasing as the troops progressed. Artillery forced them to retire. A large 
party of Indians remained constantly near the camp at Birch Coolie, and kept 
up the fire until the reinforcements were almost upon them. The meeting of the 
two forces, the rescued and the rescuers, was most affecting. It was the first 
view of bloodshed and suffering the men of the camp at Birch Coolie had seen, 
and the first similar view of the rescuer's party. It was war in earnest, and 
bloody Indian war at that. The loss of men in proportion to those engaged 
was very large. One of&cial report says, *' Twenty-three were killed outright, or 
mortally wounded, and forty-five were severely wounded. Thirteen were buried 
in the grounds where they fell.'' After the rescue the whole force returned to 
Fort Eidgley. 

From Captain Grant's account of this desperate engagement, furnished by 
request, I quote the following interesting narrative: 

** Sunday m