Field & Staff---Unassigned---Band
Organized at Pittsburg September 9, 1861, and ordered to Washington, D.C. Attached to Jameston's Brigade, Heintzelman's Division, Army of the Potomac, to March, 1862. 1st Brigade, 3rd Division, 3rd Army Corps, Army of the Potomac, to August, 1862. 1st Brigade, 1st Division, 3rd Army Corps, to March, 1864. 2nd Brigade, 3rd Division, 2nd Army Corps, to July, 1865.
SERVICE.--Duty in the Defenses of Washington, D. C., until March, 1862. Moved to the Virginia Peninsula March 16-18. Siege of Yorktown April 5-May 4. Battle of Williamsburg May 5. Battle of Fair Oaks, Seven Pines, May 31-June 1. Seven days before Richmond June 25-July 1. Battles of Oak Grove June 25; Charles City Cross Roads and Glendale June 30; Malvern Hill July 1. At Harrison's Landing until August 16. Movement to Centreville August 16-26. Pope's Campaign in Northern Virginia August 26-September 2. Bristoe Station or Kettle Run August 27. Buckland's Bridge, Broad Run, August 27. Battles of Groveton August 29; Bull Run August 30; Chantilly September 1. Guard fords from Monocacy River to Conrad's Ferry until October. March up the Potomac to Leesburg, thence to Falmouth, Va., October 11-November 19. Battle of Fredericksburg, Va., December 12-15. Burnside's 2nd Campaign, "Mud March," January 20-24, 1863. At Falmouth until April, Chancellorsville Campaign April 27-May 6. Battle of Chancellorsville May 1-5. Gettysburg (Pa.) Campaign June 11-July 24. Battle of Gettysburg July 1-3. Pursuit of Lee July 5-24. Wapping Heights July 23. Duty on line of the Rappahannock until October. Bristoe Campaign October 9-22. Auburn and Bristoe October 13-14. Advance to line of the Rappahannock November 7-8. Kelly's Ford November 7. Mine Run Campaign November 26-December 2. Demonstration on the Rapidan February 6-7, 1864. Rapidan Campaign May 4-June 12. Battles of the Wilderness May 5-7; Laurel Hill May 8; Spottsylvania May 8-12; Po River May 10; Spottsylvania Court House May 12-21. Assault on the Salient May 12. Harris Farm, Fredericksburg Road, May 19. North Anna River May 23-26. On line of the Pamunkey May 26-28. Totopotomoy May 28-31. Cold Harbor June 1-12. Before Petersburg June 16-18. Siege of Petersburg June 16, 1864, to April 2, 1865. Jerusalem Plank Road June 22-23, 1864. Demonstration north of the James at Deep Bottom July 27-29. Deep Bottom July 27-28. Mine Explosion, Petersburg, July 30 (Reserve). Demonstration on north side of James at Deep Bottom August 13-20. Strawberry Plains August 14-18. Poplar Springs Church September 29-October 2. Boydton Plank Road, Hatcher's Run, October 27-28. Warren's expedition to Hicksford December 7-12. Dabney's Mills, Hatcher's Run, February 5-7, 1865. Watkins' House, Petersburg, March 25. Appomattox Campaign March 28-April 9. Boydton Road March 30-31. Crow's House March 31. Fall of Petersburg April 2. Sailor's Creek April 6. High Bridge, Farmville, April 7. Appomattox Court House April 9. Surrender of Lee and his army. At Burkesville until May. March to Washington, D.C., May 2-12. Grand Review May 23. Duty at Alexandria until July. Mustered out July 11, 1885.
Regiment lost during service 14 Officers and 231 Enlisted men killed and mortally wounded and 1 Officer and 139 Enlisted men by disease. Total 384.
EARLY in August, 1861, Amor A. M'Knight, a citizen of Brookville, who had for some time previous commanded a militia company, and who, during the three months' service, had led a company in the Eighth Regiment, received the requisite authority to raise a regiment for three years. Recruiting was immediately commenced, many re-enlisting from the returning regiments, and by the close of the month its ranks were full. The men were principally from the Congressional District popularly known as the Wild Cat District, embracing the counties of Jefferson, which was most largely represented, Clarion, and Clearfield were well formed and stalwart, and injured to hardships and privations in their struggles to subdue the forests. A regimental organization was effected by the choice of the following field officers:
Early in October the regiment was ordered to the front, and breaking camp at Pittsburg, where it had rendezvoused, it proceeded to Washington and encamped on Kalorama Heights, and subsequently at Camp Jameson, about a mile south of Alexandria. It was here assigned to Jameson's Brigade,1 of Heintzelman's Division, and was carefully and rigidly drilled. To the diligent study of elementary princples by the officers, and to the zeal displayed by them in training their men, is in a great measure due the reliability and steadiness which characterized this regiment in the hour of battle. During the winter considerable sickness prevailed, and some died.
- Amor A. M'Knight, Colonel
- W. W. Corbett, Lieutenant Colonel
- M. M. Dick, Major
The regiment broke camp and moved with the army on the spring campaign, and on the 17th of March proceeded by tiansport to Fortress Monroe. During the siege of Yorktown, which was immediately opened, it was engaged in fatigue duty upon the works, and in guard and picket duty, suffering much from sickness caused by severe toil and privation, and by the unhealthy location of its camp. After the quiet evacuation of the enemy's works, which occurred on the night of the 3d of May, it joined in the pursuit, and after a most exhausting march all day at double quick through deep mud and in drenching rain, arrived under fire on the battle ground at Williamsburg, where it lay until morning, when it advanced as skirmishers and planted the national standard upon his principal fort.
Battle of Fair OaksHaving moved up and crossed the Chickahominy, it was posted with the corps of Heintzelman and Casey covering the roads leading towards Richmond and the White Oak Swamp, where, on the 31st of May, the enemy attacked. Kearny's Division being on the extreme left, was not ordered into action until the battle had been raging for some time on the right, in front of Fair Oaks, where Couch and Casey stood."I had disposed of all my command," says General Jameson, "at different points, with the exception of three hundred and forty-eight men of the One Hundred and Fifth Pennsylvania, under Colonel M'Knight. All our men had fled from the abattis in the vicinity of the Richmond Road. Our only alternative was to make the best stand possible with the handful of men under Colonel M'Knight. We led them across the open field and up the Richmond Road into the abattis, at a double quick, and under a most terrific fire, deploying one-half on either side of the road. For more than an hour and a half this small force held every inch of ground. At last the enemy broke and ran, and M'Knight pursued them through Casey's old camp.When the regiment went into action company G was on guard at the bridge in the rear, and companies C and I were away on fatigue duty. On being relieved these companies hastened forward, but unable to join the rest of the command were ordered by General Heintzelman to form on the right of the Fifty-seventh Pennsylvania, and with that regiment did excellent service.
"During the time that M'Knight was engaged on the Richmond Road, our line had been gradually giving way about a quarter of a mile to his right. Just as M'Knight succeeded in routing the force in his front, our line gave way entirely at the point above indicated, and the rebel force came pouring into the Richmond Road directly in his rear, and while the gallant M'Knight was pursuing the South Carolina chivalry towards Richmond, the rebel forces directly in his rear were pursuing a portion of our forces towards the Chickahominy. I then received orders to withdraw my men if possible. With great difficulty they succeeded in filing off to the left in the woods towards White Oak Swamp, retreating along the edge of the swamp back to our second line of defences."
The regiment lost forty-one killed, one hundred and fifty wounded, and seventeen missing. Among the killed was Captain John C. Dowling, and Lieutenant John P. R. Cummiskey, and of the wounded Colonel M'Knight, Captains Duff, Thompson, Kirk, and Greenawalt, and Lieutenants S. A. Craig, Markle, Shipley, Geggie, and Baird.
Headley, in mentioning this regiment in the battle, says, "Napoleon's veterans never stood firmer under a devastating fire."
For nearly a month succeeding the battle of Fair Oaks the regiment was employed in fortifying and in picket duty, where the enemy's sharp-shooters were unusually vigilant. At ten o'clock on the evening of June 25th, while the regiment was deployed on the picket line, it was attacked, and in the slight engagement which ensued it lost two killed and six wounded. After the battles of Mechanicsville and Gaines' Mill, fought on the 26th and 27th, the army fell back across the Chickahominy, and commenced the retreat to the James.
Jameson's Rrigade, now commanded by Robinson, moved early on the morning of the 28th. After proceeding about a mile it was halted and occupied the second line of defence, which it held until three in the afternoon, when it moved with Birney's Division to Savage Station. Falling back about two miles further it again formed in line of battle, where it remained until the following morning, and then moved on to White Oak Swamp. The enemy pressing hard upon the left of the line, Robinson's Brigade was ordered back three miles to its support. After returning and crossing the creek, it was on the afternoon of the 30th held in line of battle at Charles City Cross Roads, where from two P. M. until dark it was sharply engaged, the enemy making frequent attempts to capture the battery which it supported. The loss was fifty-six killed and wounded. At night it retired to Malvern Hill, where it was in line during the battle on the following day, and under a heavy artillery fire, bnt not closely engaged.
On the 25th of July Colonel M'Knight, prostrated by disease which threatened his life, resigned, and in the absence of Lieutenant Colonel Corbett, the command devolved on Captain Calvin A. Craig. So wasted was the regiment by sickness and by battle that upon its arrival at Harrison's Landing it scarcely numbered one hundred rank and file.
Manassas JunctionUpon the return of the army at the close of the Peninsula Campaign, the One Hundred and Fifth was landed at Alexandria and was assigned, to duty in guarding the railroad between Manassas and Warrenton Junction, companies E, H, and K being posted at Bristoe Station, and B, and G at the Junction. On the evening of August 26th, a train from the station four miles above, arrived at the Junction, reporting that it had been fired into by a band of five hundred of the enemy's cavalry. The only force then at the Junction was that of the two companies named, barely seventy-five men, thirty-five men of the Eighty-seventh New York, and Lieutenant James' Battery of four or five guns. Dispositions were immediately made of this small force to meet the threatened danger. At midnight the enemy was discovered advancing in the darkness, and when within a few rods of the line a rapid fire was opened from infantry and artillery. The enemy replied and for a time a lively fire was kept up; but not expecting to meet artillery his fire soon slackened and he retired out of range. Quickly re-forming he again charged, yelling hideously, and delivering a destructive fire upon the handful of men that was opposing him. The little band held out heroically until surrounded, when it was forced to surrender.
On the following day they were paroled. Company B had three men killed. Captain S. A. Craig, in command of the detachment, was severely wounded. Companies H, E, and K, at Bristoe Station, had been relieved and were on the point of taking the cars for head-quarters at Centerville, but hearing the noise of the fray at the Junction, returned to their post. They succeeded in reaching head-quarters at daylight on the following morning, and were the first to report the presence of the enemy. Company H, which was the last relieved, fell into the hands of the enemy.
2d Battle of Bull RunAs soon as advised of his presence, the First Division, together with Hooker's, changed front to the rear to face him. At Bristoe they found him in force and a spirited engagement ensued, in which the portion of the regiment in column supported a battery, and rendered efficient service. The regiment lay upon its arms until ten o'clock that night, but heard nothing more of the enemy until it came up with him on the following day on the old Bull Run battle ground. Colonel Poe, with Berry's Brigade, was posted in the first line, with Robinson's Brigade on his right, partly in line and partly in support. Early in the afternoon Robinson's Brigade was sent diagonally to the front to relieve the centre, posted in woods. He drove forward several hundred yards, but the centre of the main body being shortly after driven back and out of the woods, exposed in front of all others, and both flanks in air, he was obliged to halt and confine his efforts to holding his own.
In the fighting on the following morning Kearny's Division did not take part, though it lost men by an enfilading fire of the enemy's batteries, the One Hundred and Fifth unfortunately being placed in an exposed position, which for hours, under the most deadly fire, it firmly maintained. At five P. M. the left and centre suddenly gave way, and Kearny massed his troops as directed by General Pope, but soon re-occupied with Birney's Brigade, supported by Robinson's, a very advanced block of woods, which was held until ten at night.
Soon after sun-down the One Hundred and Fifth was relieved from supporting a battery, and placed upon the picket line, where it remained until eleven, when it fell back and marched to Centreville. Here it lay until the evening of the 31st, when it again moved three miles towards Fairfax Court House, to the neighborhood of Chantilly.
At this juncture General Kearny passed and was enthusiastically cheered; the last cheer which the regiment ever gave him, as a few minutes after he was killed. In his report of the battle of Bull Run, made on the same day, he said,"The One Hundred and Fifth Pennsylvania volunteers were not wanting. They are Pennsylvanians-mountain men-again have they been fearfully decimated. The desperate charge of these regiments sustains the past history of this division."Of the small number who entered the battle thirteen were killed and forty-one wounded. Lieutenant John L. Gilbert was among the killed. Lieutenant Colonel Craig had his horse shot under him, and was wounded in the ankle. Captains Hastings, Kirk, and Thompson, and Lieutenants Neil, and Clyde were among the wounded.
At the close of Pope's campaign the division was ordered into the defences of Washington, where it remained until after the battle of Antietam. Lieutenant Colonel Corbett was, on the 29th of July, commissioned Colonel, but on the 10th of September resigned, and was honorably discharged.
In the meantime Colonel M'Knight having returned, was, on the 20th of September, recommissioned Colonel. On the morning of the 28th of October, the regiment was sent to White's Ford, where it crossed the Potomac and proceeded to the Ball's Bluff battle ground. For several days it was engaged in scouting in the neighborhood of Leesburg and Millville. At the latter place a large flouring mill, the property of a rebel, was taken possession of and run for the use of the Union troops. With the army it advanced to the Rappahannock, and on the 24th of November arrived at Falmouth.
Battle of FredericksburgGeneral Burnside, who had succeeded M'Clellan in command of the army, was now preparing to move on the enemy, securely posted upon the heights overlooking Fredericksburg. On the morning of December 11th, the One Hundred and Fifth moved from camp in brigade line to the crest of the hill overlooking the river, and a mile in rear of the batteries, where it rested until dark, when it moved down to the wood in front of the hill, and bivouacked for the night. At four P. M. of the following day it continued on down the stream passing general head-quarters, and again bivouacked for the night. At daylight on the following morning the march was resumed, and at two P. M. it crossed on Franklin's pontoons. It was immediately moved at double quick to that part of the field where the Pennsylvania Reserves were hotly engaged, and was posted by order of General Robinson in rear of Randolph's Battery. Here it remained until dusk. It was then moved in front of the battery, and here, in close proximity to the enemy's sharp-shooters animated with unusual activity and vigilance, it lay hugging closely the ground for thirty-six hours.
At seven A. M. of the 15th, it was relived by the Ninety-ninth Pennsylvania, and with other regiments of the brigade retired to a line two hundred yards back and parallel with the first. At night it re-crossed the river and moved back to the camp which it had left."During Saturday afternoon," says Colonel M'Knight in his official report, " the regiment was subjected to an almost uninterrupted fire of artillery, accompanied at times by discharges of musketry, all of which, from our position, had to be endured, without even the pleasure or excitement of sending a shot in return."Captain James Hamilton, Lieutenants George Patterson, and William J. Clyde, and eleven men, were wounded, two of whom afterwards died of their wounds.
1863Until the 20th of January, 1863, the regiment remained in camp employed in the usual round of duty. On that day it broke camp and moved with the brigade five miles back towards Warrenton, when it turned abruptly to the left and marched directly for the river, bivouacking at night a mile from the stream. This brigade had been selected for forcing a passage, and holding the thither bank while the pontoons were being laid. But before a crossing was effected, the army, when all in motion, was suddenly arrested by the breaking up of the roads. The movement was abandoned, and the army, with all its trains, with infinite labor, returned to camp.
Battle of ChancellorsvilleWith the advance of General Hooker to the chief command came re-organization and frequent inspections and reviews. On the 26th of March the division was reviewed by Governor Curtin, and on the 10th of April by President Lincoln and General Hooker. On the 28th of April the Third Corps, now commanded by Seckles, started on the Chancellorsville Campaign. It first moved down to a point four miles below Fredericksburg, as if to follow the Sixth Corps which had already crossed the Rappahannock at Franklin's crossing of the preceding December. But on the afternoon of the 30th it about faced and marched away to United States Ford, which it crossed, and followed where Hooker with three corps of his army had already gone before. At five o'clock in the afternoon the regiment was formed in line of battle near the Chancellor Brick Mansion. It was hardly in position when the enemy attacked, and it was for some time exposed to a heavy artilleiy fire.
At daylight on the morning of the 2d, the brigade was moved to the centre of the line, where the regiment was deployed as skirmishers. In the afternoon, a movement of the enemy in heavy force along the front and to the right having been discovered, it was sent forward with the division on a reconnoissance, in which Jackson's Corps was struck in flank. At nine in the evening it returned, and lay during the night in rear of batteries a mile south of the Orange Plank Road, a part of the division, in the meantime, making its famous midnight attack for the recovery of the works lost by the Eleventh Corps.
At daylight on the morning of Sunday the 3d, the regiment moved out a short distance, and was employed in constructing a corduroy road across low swampy ground for the movement of artillery. Scarcely was it finished when the command received a sweeping fire of musketry, by which severel in the regiment were wounded. The brigade was immediately moved to the rear of tbe batteries at the Brick Mansion, and re-formed, the regiment holding the extreme left with the One Hundred and Fourteenth on its right. A charge was ordered, and with well dressed lines it dashed forward into the woods in front of the batteries, meeting a terrific fire of musketry as it went. in making this advance, Colonel M'Knight, heroically leading, was shot through the head and instantly killed. Stung to madness by the loss of their Colonel, stricken down before their eyes, his men, now led by Lieutenant Colonel Craig, rushed on, though losing heavily at every step, and quickly drove the foe from his first line of works. Discovering that a movement was being made to outflank the regiment on the left, company B was ordered out beyond the breast-works to meet it, This order was promptly obeyed, and the enemy's advance checked, the company gaining a position where it did fearful execution, For nearly two hours did this gallant brigade hold the ground which it had wrenched from the enemy, and which he vainly struggled to recover. Finally, having been largely reinforced, he was able to outflank it on the right, when it was forced to retire again to the rear of the batteries. Replenishing its ammunition, which had now become exhausted, it again advanced into the woods near the Orange Road, and was alternately engaged in the entrenchments and in the rear of the abattis.
On the following morning the brigade was relieved and the regiment retired to the third line, where, until the close of the battle, it remained executing important movements. At three A. M. on the morning of the 5th it re-crossed the river, and returned to its camp near Falmouth. The regiment went into action with twenty-seven officers and three hundred and twenty men. Of these, three officers and eight enlisted men were killed, five officers and sixty men wounded, and seven missing, an aggregate of seventy-seven. In addition to Colonel M'Knight, Captain Robert Kirk and Lieutenant Charles H. Powers were killed, and Captain Clyde, and Lieutenants Shipley, Platt, Hewitt, and M'Henry were wounded.
At a meeting of the officers of the brigade, held shortly after the battle, resolutions of respect and condolence for Colonel M'Knight and directing the usual badge of mourning, were passed. Lieutenant Colonel Craig was promoted to Colonel, Major J. W. Greenawald being promoted to Lieutenant Colonel, and Captain L. B Duff, to Major. On the 27th the Kearny badge of honor was presented by General Sickles to those non-commissioned officers and privates who had especially distinguished themselves.
Battle of GettysburgOn the 2d of June the regiment was sent for picket duty to Banks' Ford, where unusual vigilance was required, as balloons were being daily sent up to watch the movements of the enemy, which he seemed especially intent upon capturing. It being evident that the enemy was moving northward, the Third Corps, on the 11th, commenced a corresponding movement, and after hard marches under a burning sun, reached Emmittsburg, Maryland, on the 30th.
Here at two P. M. on the 1st of July, the regiment was ordered to move rapidly to Gettysburg, where a battle had already opened. By a forced march it reached the left of the field a little after dark.
At daylight of July 2d it moved out to the right of the road leading to Round Top, and at a little before noon was led to the front, companies A, C, D, F, and I being deployed as skirmishers to support the Sixty-third, which had been thrown forward and had opened a brisk fire upon the enemy's skirmishers, now plainly visible in their immediate front. Sergeant Doty was shot through the head while these companies were resting in support, though not permitted to open fire. At a little after noon these companies were called in and the regiment took its position in line on the extreme right of the brigade, where it remained quiet until three P. M., when the battle opened in earnest, and the line was moved up to the brow of the hill, along the Emmittsburg Pike.
For an hour, under a heavy fire of shot and shell, from front and flank, it held its position unflinching, suffering considerable loss. At this juncture the enemy's infantry came on in heavy force and the command rose up to meet it, forming in the road. The fighting was now desperate, the brigade holding its ground and the enemy gradually advancing. Finally the line upon its left was broken through, and the rebels came pouring in upon its flank and rear, compelling it to fall back. In good order, re-forming at short intervals and at every favorable point, keeping up all the while a deliberate fire, it withdrew, and at evening took position on the line connecting the Cemetery Ridge with Round Top, where it remained until the close of the battle.
Of two hundred and forty-seven who went into the fight, one officer and fourteen men were killed, thirteen officers and one hundred and eleven men wounded, and nine missing, an aggregate of one hundred and sixty-eight, more than half its entire strength. Lieutenant George W. Crossly was killed, and Colonel Craig, Lieutenant Colonel Greenawalt, Captains Clyde, Woodward, Consor, and M'Henry, and Lieutenants Barr, Hewitt, Dunsten, Patterson, Dougherty, Van Vliet, and Boyington were wounded, fourteen officers out of the seventeen who stood with the regiment when the battle opened. Lieutenant James A. Dunsten subsequently died of his wounds.
Colonel Craig had two horses shot under him. In a letter written soon after the engagement Colonel Craig said,"The One Hundred and Fifth never fought so well as at Gettysburg. We rallied some eight or ten times after the rest of the brigade had left us, and the boys fought like demons. Their battle-cry was Pennsylvania. I could handle them just as well on that field of battle as though they had simply been on drill. This is a state of perfection in discipline that is gained by but few regiments."After the battle of Gettysburg the regiment returned to Virginia, and on the 28th of August was in camp at Warrenton, having marched almost constantly for forty-eight days.
On the 9th of October it was in position near Thoroughfare Mountain, where an attack was anticipated, lying in line of battle all night. Retiring to Sulphur Springs it rested for a night, and then set forward, the rebel cavalry hanging on its flank, greatly annoying it, and retarding its progress. After crossing the Rappahannock at Freeman's Ford, and advancing a short distance, it was suddenly re-called, it having been discovered that the enemy was turning the right flank of the army. Remaining at the Ford until the 12th, it commenced a retrograde march towards Washington. The regiment had the advance of the entire corps, which was on the left flank facing Washington, and was deployed as skirmishers on the left flank of the column. The enemy was moving in the same direction on a parallel road, and his column was frequently in sight. At Auburn a heavy skirmish occurred, in which the regiment was hotly engaged, losing one killed and five wounded.
At Fairfax Station, the One Hundred and Fifth was assigned to provost duty, Colonel Craig holding command of the post. After remaining here a few days the advance was again sounded, and the regiment was sent to the front, where it was kept at the post of danger and responsibility. On the 27th of October it was slightly engaged at Kelly's Ford, but sustained no loss. A month later it was in the battle at Locust Grove, and for an hour and a half was under a heavy fire. Fortunately its loss here was only seven wounded, the enemy for the most part firing over the heads of the men.
At the close of the Mine Run campaign it returned with the army and went into winter-quarters at its old camp at Brandy Station. On the 28th of December two hundred and forty men, nearly the entire strength of the regiment, re-enlisted and were given a veteran furlough. While away about fifty recruits were obtained.
Battle of the WildernessUpon its return to camp preparations were in progress for the spring campaign, and on the 4th of May it marched with the division for the Wilderness, crossing the Rapidan at Ely's Ford, and passing on the way the old Chancellorsville battle ground. Early on the morning of the 5th the division was aroused and commenced the march towards Spottsylvania, but was halted and countermarched, the enemy having come up and attacked in the Wilderness. On arriving where the battle was raging, it was immediately hurried into the fight, the One Hundred and Fifth forming line of battle on the plank road, and advancing a mile through dense undergrowth. Here it formed in rear of the Sixty-third Pennsylvania, occupying the front line.
At four P. M. it relieved the Sixty-third, and as it advanced to the front found the ground strewn with the dead and the dying. It was soon in the thickest of the fray, and men were dropping on every hand like grain before the sickle of the reaper. Here Captain James Hamilton was killed, and Colonel Craig and Lieutenant Colonel Greenawalt wounded, the latter mortally. The command now devolved on Major Duff. Until long after dark the position was held despite the furious assaults made to carry it. It was finally relieved and led to the rear.
On the morning of the 6th the battle was renewed, and the regiment advanced in line with the Sixty-third, until it reached the front line hotly engaged and lying flat upon the ground. The order was given to charge, and the brigade, passing the prostrate troops, with loud cheers, dashed on. The rebels, confused by this unexpected assault, gave way, and were pursued nearly two miles. Here they were reinforced, and taking advantage of the somewhat disordered state of the Union line flushed with its success, delivered a counter charge, and in turn drove our men back to a line of temporary breast-works, most of the advantage gained being lost.
Here fresh cartridges were supplied, just in time to receive the enemy as he came on in great force. Three successive attempts were made to carry the position, but without success, and he finally retired, having suffered great loss in his heroic but vain assaults. During the entire day the line swayed backward and forward with the shifting fortunes of the battle, and the dense forest which, was the scene of contention was covered with the dead and dying of both, armies. The aggregate loss in the two days of battle was eight officers and one hundred and sixty-two men killed and wounded. Captain William J. Clyde was among the killed.
On Saturday, the 7th, there was brisk skirmishing but not a general engagement. In the afternoon the division advanced over the disputed ground, the regiment just on the left of the road on which it had fought during the two preceding days. When two miles out, it came suddenly upon a masked battery which opened with grape and canister. As the regiments were marching in close column by division and not in position for fighting, it fell back to the breast-works which it had left, where it remained until after dark, and then started in the direction of the Rapidan. This was interpreted by the men as a retreat, and all through the ranks was heard cries of "Another Failure." But it had not proceeded far when it commenced a movement to the left, and the morning of the following day found it again faced towards Richmond. During the two following days the regiment was held in reserve.
Battle of Spotsylvania Court HouseOn the morning of the 10th the Second Corps lay south of the Po River, while the remainder of the army was on its left to the north of it. As the battle opened the Second Corps, with the exception of one division, was withdrawn to the north bank and was moved to parts of the line hardest pressed. The One Hundred and Fifth was at one time marched alone, along a ridge only a short distance from the enemy's works. His artillery, which was in position, opened upon it. The first two shells fell close, but exploded without doing any injury. The third struck private Enos Shirts, exploding upon the instant, blowing him to pieces. Lieutenant Reddick was wounded by a fragment of the shell, and a number were sprinkled with the flesh and blood of their fallen comrade, the splinters of his bones penetrating their clothing.
On the night of the 11th, after a day of drenching rain, the regiment marched to the left, where it remained in the mud until near morning, when, with the corps, it moved cautiously through the wooded space in front, and at early dawn charged the rebel works. The astonished foe were scarcely aroused from their sleep when they found their first line of works suddenly snatched from their hands. Five thousand prisoners with artillery and small arms graced the triumph. A part of his second line was captured, and in face of his most desperate assaults to re-take it, was held.
As the army moved forward on the 18th, Ewell came in upon the rear and attacked the train. The One Hundred and Fifth with other troops returned for its defence, and remained in line of battle during the night, but the train had already been relieved by fresh forces coming up from the rear. On the 23d the regiment arrived in front of the enemy's works at the North Anna. A charge was immediately ordered, and forming in a thick wood, advanced, led by Major Duff, without firing a gun. The enemy fled at its approach, and on reaching the open field his works were found deserted.
PetersburgFighting, fortifying, and flanking, the army about the middle of June crossed the James and commenced operations in front of Petersburg. The regiment charged with the brigade on the enemy's works, losing two killed and four wounded, Major Levi B. Duff, in command, was among the severely wounded, losing a leg. On the following day a portion of the enemy's line was captured, the regiment losing one killed in the fight.
Weldon RailroadOn the 21st it moved with the brigade in the direction of the Weldon Railroad, where, on the following day, breast-works were thrown up; but the enemy gaining the flank of the position, compelled its abandonment. In this movement two enlisted men were killed and two missing. On the 26th of July the regiment participated in the movement across the James, for a diversion in favor of the assault to be made after the explosion of the Mine, and returned in time to be in position for any advantage that should be gained thereby. In the operations of the day, 30th of July, two men were wounded.
On the 14th of August the brigade was detached from the corps, and again sent across the James to the assistance of the Tenth Corps. On the following day the regiment was under fire and lost six men wounded.
On the morning of the 16th the brigade, in command of Colonel Craig, was posted in line on the right of the Tenth Corps, the right of the regiment connecting with the First Maine dismounted cavalry. When the enemy's works were stormed the brigade was formed in front of, and at right angles to them, the left resting on a part of his line which had been previously captured by troops of the Tenth Corps. At the signal to advance the brigade moved gallantly forward, capturing two officers and seventy-five men. Suffering from an enfilading fire it was, however, forced to fall back, having lost severely. Colonel Craig, while in command of the brigade, and leading in the charge, was mortally wounded and died the following morning. The loss in the regiment was four killed and sixteen wounded, Captain Barr being of the latter.
After the engagement the division returned to its place in the corps on the Petersburg front. On the 5th of September one hundred and sixty-two enlisted men and one officer of the Sixty-third, whose terms of service had not expired, were assigned to the regiment. On the 1st of October it participated in the movement upon the Weldon Railroad, remaining until the 6th, when it returned to camp, and turning in the Springfield rifled muskets with which it had been armed, was supplied with Spencer Repeaters.
Southside RailroadAgain on the 26th of October it moved out to the Weldon Railroad, and thence towards the South Side Railroad, skirmishing in front on the forenoon of the 27th. In the afternoon it advanced into a thick wood connecting on the right with cavalry. In this position it attacked, the fighting being for a half hour very sharp. At the end of this time the cavalry gave way, letting the enemy in upon its flank and rear, compelling it to fall hastily back. Captain John C. Censor in command of the regiment, and Charles E. Patton, the two senior officers, and four enlisted men were killed, eighteen men wounded and forty missing-captured when forced to fall back, some of them afterwards escaping and returning to the ranks. The colors were lost, but in a manner reflecting no dishonor upon the surviving men.
Upon its return, the regiment was posted in the front line in Fort Davis, next to Fort Hell. Early in December it re-joined the division and participated in the raid upon the Weldon Railroad, assisting to destroy the road for a considerable distance. Upon its return it went into winter-quarters, and was engaged in drill and fatigue duty.
On the 24th of March, 1865, there were assigned to the regiment one hundred and twenty-two recruits, and four days later one hundred and seventy more. On the 27th the regiment, Major Miller in command, moved with the division and was ordered to charge the enemy's skirmishers, which was successfully accomplished, driving them into his main line of works. The loss was one man killed and five wounded.
Hatcher's RunAt Hatcher's Run, two days later, one hundred and fifty men under Captain Reddick were sent forward to develop the strength and position of the enemy in his fort in front. Reddick advanced to within sixty yards of the work, where he was met by a storm of missiles from artillery and small arms. His purpose having been accomplished he retired, losing only one killed and two wounded, the ground in front being of such a nature as fortunately to render the enemy's aim inaccurate. In the operations of the 6th of April, at Sailor's Creek, the regiment was actively engaged, Colonel Miller having his horse killed under him, capturing many prisoners and arms.
Appomattox and Muster OutOn the 9th the rebel army under Lee surrendered, and the regiment on the 11th commenced the march from Clover Hill, where it was encamped, for Washington, passing through Richmond on its way. Arriving at Bailey's Cross Roads, five miles above Alexandria, it went into camp, where it remained until the close of its term.
On the 23d of June it marched in the grand review at the Capital, and on the 11th of July was mustered out of service. A singular fatality seemed to attend the officers of the regiment. Two Colonels, two Lieutenant Colonels, one Major, five Captains, and five Lieutenants were killed in action or died of their wounds, while several others were crippled and disabled for life, attesting the hard service to which it was exposed. At the final muster out not a single officer, and but a handful of the men, who originally marched with the regiment, remained.