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Doubleday Avenue, Oak Ridge
Field & Staff---Unassigned---Band
Organized at Philadelphia September, 1861. Left State for Washington, D.C., October 1. At Kendall Green, Washington, D.C., until October 12. Provost duty at Alexandria until April 17, 1862. (Cos. "A," "C," "D," "E" and "I" garrison forts on Maryland side of the Potomac River February 18 to April 17.) At Cloud's Mills, Va., April 17-23. Guard Orange & Alexandria Railroad between Bull Run and Fairfax C. H. until May 7. Attached to 1st Brigade, Ord's 2nd Division, Dept. of the Rappahannock, to June, 1862. 2nd Brigade, 2nd Division, 3rd Corps, Army of Virginia, to September, 1862. 2nd Brigade, 2nd Division, 1st Army Corps, Army Potomac, to March, 1863. 3rd Brigade, 2nd Division, 1st Army Corps, to May, 1863. 2nd Brigade, 2nd Division, 1st Army Corps, to March, 1864. 2nd Brigade, 2nd Division, 5th Army Corps, to June, 1864. 2nd Brigade, 3rd Division, 5th Army Corps, to March, 1865. 3rd Brigade, 3rd Division, 5th Army Corps, to June, 1865.
SERVICE.--Duty near Fredericksburg, Va., until May 25. Expedition to Front Royal to intercept Jackson May 25-June 18. Duty at Manassas, Warrenton and Culpeper until August. Battle of Cedar Mountain August 9. Pope's Campaign in Northern Virginia August 16-September 2. Fords of the Rappahannock August 21-23. Thoroughfare Gap August 28. Battle of Bull Run August 30. Chantilly September 1. Maryland Campaign September 6-24. Battles of South Mountain September 14; Antietam September 16-17. Duty near Sharpsburg, Md., until October 30. Movement to Falmouth, Va., October 30-November 19. Battle of Fredericksburg December 12-15. Burnside's 2nd Campaign, "Mud March," January 20-24, 1863. At Falmouth and Belle Plains until April 27. Chancellorsville Campaign April 27-May 6. Operations at Pollock's Mill Creek April 29-May 2. Fitzhugh's Crossing April 29-30. Chancellorsville May 2-5. Gettysburg (Pa.) Campaign June 11-July 24. Battle of Gettysburg July 1-3. Pursuit of Lee July 5-24. Duty on line of the Rappahannock until October. Bristoe Campaign October 9-22. Advance to line of the Rappahannock November 7-8. Mine Run Campaign November 26-December 2. Demonstration on the Rapidan February 6-7, 1864. Regiment reenlisted February 6, 1864, and on furlough until April 7. Rapidan Campaign May 4-June 12. Battles of the Wilderness May 5-7; Laurel Hill May 8; Spottsylvania May 8-12; Spottsylvania C. H. May 12-21. Assault on the Salient May 12. North Anna River May 23-26. Jericho Ford May 25. On line of the Pamunkey May 26-28. Totopotomoy May 28-31. Cold Harbor June 1-12. Bethesda Church June 1-3. White Oak Swamp June 13. Before Petersburg June 16-18. Siege of Petersburg June 16, 1864, to April 2, 1865. Mine Explosion, Petersburg, July 30, 1864 (Reserve). Weldon Railroad August 18-21. Hatcher's Run October 27-28. Warren's Expedition to Weldon Railroad December 7-12. Dabney's Mills, Hatcher's Run, February 5-7, 1865. Appomattox Campaign March 28-April 9. Lewis Farm near Gravelly Run March 29. White Oak Road March 30-31. Five Forks April 1. Pursuit of Lee April 2-9. Appomattox C. H. April 9. Surrender of Lee and his army. Moved to Washington, D.C., May 1-12. Grand Review May 23. Mustered out June 30, 1865.
Regiment lost during service 8 Officers and 101 Enlisted men killed and mortally wounded and 72 Enlisted men by disease. Total 181.On the 9th of August, 1861, George P. M'Lean, then Major of the Twentysecond Pennsylvania regiment, three months' service, received authority from the Secretary of War, Hon. Simon Cameron, to organize an infantry regiment, which was at first known as the Cameron Light Guards, subsequently the Eighty-eighth. A camp was formed at Wissahickon, near Philadelphia, recruiting actively commenced, and the regiment was scarcely filled before orders were received on October 1st, to report to General Casey, at Washington, for assignment to duty. The following were the field officers:
Companies A, B, and H, were recruited in Berks county, and the remaining companies in Philadelphia. Immediately on its arrival in Washington, it was ordered into camp at Kendall Green.
- George P. M'Lean, Colonel
- Joseph A. M'Lean, Lieutenant Colonel
- George W. Gile, Major
- Benezet F. Foust, Adjutant
On the 12th of October, it moved to Alexandria, Virginia, and was assigned to provost guard duty, in and around the city, relieving the Fourth New Jersey. Until this time the command was without arms, having left Philadelphia but partially uniformed, and without equipments. The regiment here received the State colors, which were presented by Hon. Galusha A. Grow, Speaker of the House of Representatives, and were received in behalf of the regiment by Hon. William D. Kelly, member of Congress from Philadelphia. Patriotic speeches were also made by Colonel M'Lean, General Montgomery, in command of the district, and others. It was armed with the Enfieid rifle.
Guard duty was relieved of its monotony by company and battalion drills, and parades. The regiment continued on this duty, much to the satisfaction of the loyal citizens, until February 18th, 1862, when companies A, C, D, E and I, under Colonel M'Lean, were ordered to garrison the forts on the Maryland side of the Potomac. The remaining companies continued on duty in Alexandria, under command of Major Gile.
On the 17th of April, the regiment was re-united, both battalions having been ordered to report to Brigadier General Duryea, at Cloud's Mills, near Alexandria. Here it remained until the 23d, when it was detailed to guard the Orange and Alexandria Railroad from Bull Run to Fairfax Court House. Continuing on this duty until May 7th, orders were received to report to Major General M'Dowell, then in command of a corps near Fredericksburg, and upon its arrival, it was placed in General Ricketts' Brigade, composed of the Twenty-sixth and Ninety-fourth New York, Eighty-eighth and Ninetieth Pennsylvania, of Ord's Division.
On the 20th of May, the division was reviewed by General M'Dowell, and on the 23d, by President Lincoln. On the 25th, the corps received marching orders. Leaving camp in the afternoon, the regiment after a forced march arrived at Acquia Landing at midnight, and taking a transport next morning, reached Alexandria and encamped on the night of the 26th, near Manassas.
On the following day commenced a series of forced marches up the Shenandoah Valley, passing through Thoroughfare Gap, White Plains, Salem, and Piedmont, arriving at Front Royal on the 31st. On the 1st of June, heavy firing was heard in the direction of Strasburg, supposed to be between General Shields and the enemy. The regiment was formed in line of battle expecting an attack, but after remaining some hours, was ordered to go into camp at the Forks of the Shenandoah River. The weather was very severe, the rain falling incessantly for eight days, causing much sickness.
On the 18th of June, the command left its unhealthy camp ground, and moved by rail to Manassas, thence to Warrenton, and subsequently to Culpepper. On the 4th of August, General Pope having assumed command, preparations were made for an active campaign, and on the 9th, while on the march, cannonading was heard in front, and the column was hurried forward towards Cedar Mountain. The Eighty-eighth, now in General Tower's Brigade, General Ricketts being in command of the Division, was immediately led to the extreme right of General Banks' Corps, to relieve troops which had been actively engaged during the afternoon. Darkness was coming on, but the regiment while getting into position, was discovered by the enemy, who immediately opened upon it with artillery, which was replied to by Captain Hall's Second Maine Battery, the regiment being between the two fires. The enemy's guns were in a short time silenced, and the troops placed in position to open the battle early next morning. But at day-break it was found that the enemy had fled, leaving his dead unburied.
On the 14th of August, the line of march was taken up towards the Rapidan, halting near Pony Mountain. Large details were made for picket along the river bank, the rebel pickets being within hailing distance. On the 18th, orders were received to keep the camp fires brightly burning, and at midnight a retreat commenced. The enemy was endeavoring to flank the corps. A detail was made from the regiment to destroy a bridge near Mitchel's Station, to impede the progress of the enemy in his pursuit. A portion of it fell prematurely, crushing Lieutenant Henry Hudson of company C, a brave and valuable officer, killing him almost instantly.
Being on rear guard the regiment was frequently drawn up in line of battle, as the enemy were in close pursuit. After a hard and laborious march, about midnight of the 19th, the Rappahannock was crossed, and a halt made on the north bank. The next day the artillery on either side was continually engaged, the Eighty-eighth supporting the Second Maine Battery, posted in an exposed position. During this engagement several men were severely wounded. Skirmishing continued daily until August 25th, when the whole command commenced falling back. After a severe march, the day being intensely hot, the regiment was about bivouacking at Warrenton, when a heavy cannonading commenced a few miles to the left, which continued without cessation for several hours. Orders were received to march in the direction of the firing. It was soon ascertained that Sigel's Corps was engaged. After marching about five miles the firing ceased, and the command returned, encamping just outside the town of Warrenton.
The regiment opened a withering fire and was at once actively engaged. Colonel M'Lean being absent, sick, the command devolved upon Lieutenant Colonel Joseph A. M'Lean, who shortly after the action opened was mortally wounded, the command devolving on Major Gile. The fire in front was incessant and very severe. Portions of the line on the left had broken, and batteries forced from their positions, had been driven through the ranks of the Eighty-eighth, when suddenly on their left appeared a heavy column of the enemy pouring in an enfilading fire. Meanwhile the battle raged with great fury. Captain Belsterling fell instantly killed. Captains Wagner and Stretch and Lieutenants Street and Patterson, were wounded. General Tower had fallen, and been carried from the field. Men were falling rapidly on every side under the withering fire, and the regiment was at length forced to fall back closely followed by the enemy. Re-forming, it again contested the enemy's advance, but it was impossible to stand the fire of artillery and musketry which was centred upon it, and it was again forced to retire, crossing Bull Run Creek, and taking position near Centreville at midnight. The loss in this engagement was fifteen killed, one hundred and two wounded, and forty-eight missing. The body of Lieutenant Colonel M'Lean was left upon the field and never recovered.
General Pope in his official report of the battle, thus refers to the
action of the brigade:
"The conduct of Tower's Brigade, Ricketts' Division, in plain view of all the forces on the left, was especially distinguished, and drew forth hearty cheers. The example of this brigade was of great service and infused new spirit into all the troops who witnessed their intrepid conduct."About noon of September 1st, the regiment was advanced some distance in the direction of Chantilly. The brigade was filed into a wood and placed in line of battle. In a few moments rapid musketry firing commenced some distance in front of the regiment, which proved to be a portion of the division engaging the enemy. Remaining in line until next day, the fighting being over, the regiment moved through Fairfax, to Upton's Hill, near Washington, and remained until the 8th. The command then broke camp, and crossing the Potomac at Aqueduct Bridge, passed through Georgetown, Washington, New Market and Frederick City, where the regiment was detailed as guard to a wagon-train.
At day-light next morning, heavy musketry opened in front. Moving rapidly to the right, which afterwards proved to be the right of line of battle, General Hooker having command of the corps, the brigade was advanced under a heavy artillery fire. Arriving on the advanced line of battle, which was then hotly engaged, it immediately opened with rapid volleys, which was continued for two hours. The enemy endeavored to flank the command, but was met by stubborn resistance, the men standing firm in the face of his repeated assaults.
Major Gile and Captain Steeples were severely wounded early in the fight. Captain Carmack assumed command, but he also was soon wounded, and the ranks were becoming rapidly decimated.
The enemy having been re-inforced, with renewed zeal again charged and succeeded in driving the regiment through the woods, but not without receiving a heavy fire in return. Re-inforcements now came up, and the ammunition being exhausted, the command was conducted to the rear, where a fresh supply was issued. and preparations made to return to the front.
About three P. AM. the regiment advanced under a heavy fire, but night coming.on, the firing gradually died away and the men, after their hard fought battle, threw thenselves upon the ground for rest. The loss during this engagement was ten kiIled and sixty-one wounded.
On the 19th the regiment marched a few miles and halted on the, Hagerstown road, near the Potomac, where clothing and fresh supplies were received. On the 29th it crossed the river at Berlin, remained a few days at Waterford, and on reaching Warrenton was ordered into camp. Only a few days were allowed for rest, when the march was continued in inclement weather, over muddy roads. Stopping to destroy the bridge at Rappahannock Station, it reached Stafford Court House, November 22d, and afterwards encamped at Brooks' Station. While here notice was received of the resignation of Colonel M'Lean, whereupon Lieutenant Colonel Gile was promoted to Colonel, Captain Louis Wagner to Lieutenant Colonel, and Captain David A. Griffith to Major.
On the 10th of December orders were received to be ready at a moment's notice to cross the river at Fredericksburg. Before day the brigade, now commanded by General Taylor, of the division of General Gibbons, Franklin's Grand Division, started for the river. Resting near the banks of the stream until the morning of the 12th, under cover of the artillery, the regiment, under Major Griffith, crossed on the pontoon bridges, which had previously been laid. On reaching the opposite bank, skirmishers were thrown out, and preparations made to attack. Advancing to the Bowling Green Road, the regiment bivouacked for the night.
At daylight of the 13th orders were received to advance the brigade, which was promptly done. General Taylor ordered the Eighty-eighth to go forward to the brow of a hill to silence a battery which was annoying the troops by a flank fire. On reaching the hill it poured in a volley, but in return received a severe fire of canister, by which a number of men in the color company were wounded, causing the regiment to fall back under cover of the hill. Again forming on the right of the brigade, the whole line moved forward, making an effective charge and taking a large number of prisoners. The fighting now became general and other brigades of the division charged, the Eighty-eighth keeping in position on the right after the balance of the brigade had gone to the rear. The ammunition having been exhausted START 1863 FREDERICKSBURG AND GETTYSBURG. 71 and supports failing to come up, with the entire corps, it was forced back to the Bowling Green Road. Here the line was re-formed, and marched a short distance to the left, where it remained until midnight, and was then placed on picket. A little later it was quietly withdrawn from the picket line, and on marching to the rear, found that the whole army had re-crossed the river. It quickly followed, and at daylight the bridges were removed. The loss during the battle was seven killed and forty wounded. Among the killed was acting Lieutenant George H. Fulton, and among the wounded Lieutenant James A. Napier. The next day the brigade marched to White Oak Church, and from thence to Fletcher's Chapel, where it went into winter-quarters. Log huts were built, a neat camp formed, and all were in a few days comfortably housed.
On the 18th of January, 1863, orders were unexpectedly received to move, when the regiment, under command of Lieutenant Colonel Wagner, was marched towards United States Ford, but owing to the inclemency of the weather and the condition of the roads, it ended in the famous " Mud March," and the command returned to its old camp. After the resignation of Major Griffith, on the 31st of December, Adjutant Benezet F. Foust was promoted to Major, and Cyrus S. Detre to Adjutant.
Upon the initiation of the Chancellorsville campaign the brigade, on the 28th of April, was marched to the Rappahannock below Fredericksburg, to support the First Division of the corps, which had effected a crossing. The enemy concentrated a well directed fire upon the regiment, which caused it to change its position for shelter. Early next morning a forced march was made from the extreme left to the extreme right of the line, a distance of thirty miles, reaching Chancellorsville at midnight, and relieving the Eleventh Corps, where the regiment threw up a line of earthworks, in anticipation of an attack. Remaining there until the night of the 5th of May, orders were received to withdraw. Before moving, Lieutenant Sylvester H. Martin, with a number of men was sent out between the lines to gather up the abandoned entrenching tools, which he successfully accomplished without loss. Marching towards the river, in a drenching rain and over muddy roads, the regiment re-crossed the Rappahannock and proceeded to White Oak Church, where a handsome camp was formed.
During the night other corps of the army arrived and were posttd in
readiness to open the struggle. The First Corps had lost its commander, General
Reynolds, killed early in the fight, and heavily in prisoners. The next day the
regiment was moved to a position in support of a portion of the Eleventh Corps.
It remained in reserve until evening, when a portion of it was placed on picket.
On the afternoon of the third day, during the heavy artillery fire from the
enemy, it was led across the cemetery under that terrible cannonade, by Captain
Whiteside, Major Foust having been wounded on the first day, to a position on
the right centre, where it was immediately put to throwing up breast-works. It
was detailed for picket the next morning, and occupied an advanced position
until the morning of the 5th, when it was found that the enemy had withdrawn.
The regiment lost seven killed, thirty wounded, and about forty prisoners, among
whom were Captains Mass and Schell, and Lieutenants Grant, Boone and Beath.
On the 6th the regiment joined in the pursuit, passing through Emmittsburg and Middletown, crossing South Mountain, and reaching Shepardstown on the 12th, where fortifications were thrown up. On the 14th it advanced to Williamsport, where it was found that the enemy had escaped across the river. Marching down the Loudon Valley, and passing through White Plains, Warrenton, and Bristoe Station, it arrived at Rappahannock Station on the 31st of July. It now had but two hundred men fit for duty.
On the 16th of September it advanced to Culpepper, thence to Stevensburg and Mitchell's Station, and established a picket line at Raccoon Ford, on the Rapidan. On the 12th of October the whole army commenced falling back rapidly, the regiment crossing the Rappahannock at Kelly's Ford, and marching to Centreville. It advanced to Thoroughfare Gap on the 19th, and returning moved along the Orange and Alexandria Railroad, to Bristoe Station, where it was engaged for several days in re-building the railroad.
During the winter a large proportion of the regiment re-enlisted and left the front on a thirty days furlough. Upon its arrival in Philadelphia, it met a warm reception. At the expiration of the furlough, with a number of new recruits, it returned to the front, arriving at Culpepper on the 7th of April.
Charging upon him, he was soon routed, and the pursuit was continued about two miles, where he was found well posted and fortified. The order to charge was given, and the command endeavored to carry his entrenchments, but met with a murderous fire in front, and an enfilading fire from the left. After a half hour's fruitless struggle, finding it impossible to withstand the destructive fire, it fell back a short distance and threw up a line of works. General Robinson, commanding the division, was severely wounded. The loss was ten killed and thirty wounded, Lieutenants Nichols and Donnelly being of the latter.
On the 10th the division advanced through a wood, again charged and was again repulsed, Lieutenant Bemesderfer being wounded. Remaining behind breast-works until the 12th, the regiment participated in the last charge at Spottsylvania, but was repulsed with considerable loss.
On the night of the 17th, it pushed forward under a heavy artillery fire in support of a portion of the corps which had been actively engaged. On the morning of the 18th, the regiment advanced slowly, crossing the Norfolk and Petersburg Railroad, and driving the enemy's skirmishers into their main line of works. About five P. M., the whole corps charged upon his entrenchments. The Eighty-eighth was in advance and after getting within sixty yards of his first line, was compelled to lie fiat upon the ground, a terrific fire of artillery being centered upon that portion of the line. Night coming on, slight earth-works were thrown up with the aid of bayonets, the regiment being so far in advance of the rest of the division that it could not be withdrawn or re-inforced. The colors were sent to the rear, Sergeant Ewing, of Company B, who had originally enlisted as a drummer boy, crawling back with them.
About midnight small spades were sent out to the command, the bearers being compelled to crawl along the ground, the enemy's sharp-shooters having complete control of the position. By daylight, sufficient entrenchments had been thrown up to afford some protection, and in the afternoon the regiment was relieved. Arriving at the railroad, it was ordered to the left of the brigade, and compelled to march over an exposed piece of ground, upon which his sharp shooters were directing their fire. The loss here was about thirty killed and wounded, Lieutenant Atwood G. Sinn being among the killed. Moving to the left it went into position at the Jerusalem Plank Road, and was engaged in building forts and entrenchments.
On the 30th of July it moved to the extreme left of the entire line, where the regiment was engaged on picket duty until the 18th, when it marched to the Weldon Railroad, meeting with but slight resistance. Assisting for a few hours in destroying the railroad, the command was advanced along the road towards Petersburg and filed into a dense wood where fortifications were thrown up. The enemy soon commenced a sharp skirmish fire at various portions of the line, as if to test its strength, when suddenly he charged upon the right of the division, breaking through, taking many prisoners, and gaining the rear of the brigade. Orders were given to jump to the other side of the works and open fire. The wood was composed of dense underbrush, and the enemy became scattered. Taking advantage of his confusion, the brigade charged through, routing him, taking some prisoners, and reaching an open space in the rear under cover of the Union batteries. Here it re-formed, and while returning to its first position, Captain Jacob Houder, commanding the regiment, was instantly killed.
Early on the following morning it marched to the left to support the First Division, which had been attacked, and the enemy was repulsed with great slaughter. A few days later the regiment was actively engaged in building fortifications, among which was Fort Dushane, and on its completion, the Eighty-eighth was ordered to garrison it. On the 11th of November two hundred conscripts were received, making about three hundred and fifty officers and men for duty.
On the 7th of December the regiment joined in the movement on the Jerusalem Plank Road, extending to the South Side Railroad. On the 5th of February, 1865, it moved towards Hatcher's Run, and on the 6th, after a severe fight of about two hours near Dabney's Mill, was repulsed. The next day it encountered the enemy at Hatcher's Run and suffered severe loss, Lieutenants Sylvester H. Martin and Edward L. Gilligan being among the severely wounded.
The regiment went into camp near Hatcher's Run, and remained until the 29th of March, when it joined in active operations, being hotly engaged and losing Lieutenant Daniel J. Lehman killed, and Lieutenant M'Callicher wounded. On the 1st of April it was again engaged, losing Captain Thomas J. Koch killed. With the Fifth Corps it participated in the marching and fighting which ensued, until the 9th, when Lee surrendered and it commenced the homeward march. Passing through Petersburg, Manchester, and Richmond, it proceeded to Washington, where, on the 30th of June, 1865 it was mustered out of service.
Source: Bates, Samuel P. History of the Pennsylvania Volunteers, 1861-65, Harrisburg, 1868-1871.