Question of the Week: Oct. 12, 2015

What is your favorite story from the Civil War regiment(s) that came from your local area?

10 Responses to Question of the Week: Oct. 12, 2015

  1. The story of Col. Patrick O’Rorke’s 140th NYVI continues to resonate in the greater Rochester, NY community. The facts are well documented by a superb local author and historian, Brian Bennett. While the unit’s performance at Gettysburg stands as one of the highlights of the Union victory, O’Rorke’s short life is an inspiration for entire community. A number of years ago, a new bridge across the Genesee River was dedicated in his honor as a lasting tribute to his determination and self sacrifice. A relative on my Mom’s side served with the 140th from the initial muster to the unit’s discharge.

  2. I live in Davidson County, North Carolina. 90 men and boys from this county were killed at Antietam. They were from the various NC regiments and batteries present. If that many died today, it would be a disaster. Back then it was a catastrophe. Of course, there was no official notification given to the families. Word just trickled back.

  3. while not a formal military unit per se, a company of Federal sympathizing bushwackers from Monroe County, Tennessee (including my g-g-g-grandfather “Big Ike” Lindsey) led by former Capt. Timothy Lyons moved across the Smokey Mountains and, after dispersing a small band of Confederate soldiers, burned the Court House at Murphy, Cherokee County, NC in April 1865.

  4. 13th, 14th and 16th Vermont who did a flank attack on Kemper’s brigade of Pickett’s division at Gettysburg making a major contribution to the repulse of “Pickett’s Charge,” then did an about face and drove back Lang’s and Wilcox’s brigades that got a late start in moving up to protect Kemper’s right flank. They brought so many Confederate prisoners to the rear that one of Meade’s subordinate officers thought that the Confederates had actually broken through the Union lines on Cemetery Ridge.

  5. The 4th Kentucky (Union) Infantry at the Battle of Mill Springs. They played a critical role holding an important position during this battle that kept Kentucky in the Union at a crucial time (January 1862). Their commander, Col. Speed Fry, was credited with killing Confederate General Felix Zollicoffer (who was struck by Fry’s pistol shot and two shots from the men in the ranks).

  6. I’ve lived so many places, it’s tough to narrow down. Two that come to mind are:

    – The 44th New York at Little Round Top. One company came from the New York State Normal School, later the State University of New York at Albany (my graduate alma mater)

    – The 43d New York at the Wilderness. The unit’s commander, 27-year-old Lieutenant Colonel John Wilson, was smoking a cigar when the alarm of Gordon’s Flank Attack was sounded. He put out the cigar and led the 43d into action where he was mortally wounded. Years later his coat was found in the collection of the New York State Museum with the extinguished cigar in its pocket.

  7. With my family hailing from St. Paul, MN, though I am a military brat, there is a lot of admiration for the actions of the 1st Minnesota at Gettysburg. That being said, I am also quite fond of noting the regiments actions in the West Woods at Antietam.

Please leave a comment and join the discussion!