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Ohio in the war : her statesmen, her generals, and soldiers (Volume 2) online

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was again actively engaged, and performed valuable service in the reduction and capture of tliat
place. Subsequently, it was ordered to accompany the Thirteenth Army Corps to New Orleans,
where it arrived about the middle of August. It followed General Burbridge on the Teche
expedition in the fall of 1863, and was hotly engaged in the fight at Grand Coteau, Louisiana,
November 3d, in which more than half the brigade was killed, wounded and captured. The
battery alone lost twenty-five men, twenty-one horses, one gun, and one caisson.

Immediately after the disaster the battery returned to New Orleans, and was stationed there
until August, 1864. It then went under General Granger to Mobile Bay, and took a prominent
part in the capture of Fort Morgan. That valuable service accomplished, the battery once more
embarked for New Orleans, where it remained until ordered to join the Sixteenth Army Corps,
General A. J. Smith, in March, 1865, in the expedition against the city of Mobile. It was
engaged against Blakesly in the following April, and thereafter marched, under orders, to Mont-
gomery, Alabama, where it lay until ordered to Ohio for muster-out, on the 16th of August, 1865,
five days before the expiration of its service by limitation.

While in the service the Seventeenth Battery participated in ten battles and sieges, fired
fourteen thousand rounds of ammunition, lost upward of forty men by death, and marched more
than ten thousand miles (by land and water). The battery entered the service with one hun-
dred and fifty-six men, and at its muster-out its rolls showed one hundred and fifty-eight. Dur-
ing its term of service there was, from time to time, two hundred and eighty-four names added
to its rolls.

In company with the Eighty-Third and Ninety-Sixth Ohio, it received the thanks (by joint
resolution) of the Ohio Legislature for services at Arkansas Post, and was honorably mentioned
in the official reports of Generals A. J. Smith, McClernand, Burbridge, Washburn, and Colonel
Owen : — by the last named, for special and valuable service at Grand Coteau.


Ohio in the WXb



I 'aptain

litt Lieutenant



r.l Lieutenant






Charles C. Alcsbire ...

Win. R. Morgan

Henry A. ftegnier

Joseph McCan'ertv

Albert 8. Bierre

Joseph McCafferty

Benj. W. Rutherford .

Albert S. Biercc- ,

Casey Roecburs

Janus W. Cliesnui

James C. Patterson....



Oct. 1, 1862 Promote'! Br>v<t Major U.S. \.

15, " " 1, " i Resigned March 3, 1863.

IS, " " 1, " Resigned April lfi, 1H63.

I March 3, 1862 April 22, 1-3 Mustered out June 29. W65.

April IB, " " 2M, " Mustered out Jnne 29, 1865.

,Juiy 15, 1862 Oct. 1. U62 Promoted to bit Lieutenant.

" 15, " " l, " Resigned March 3, 1-33.

March 3, " April 22, lHfi3j Promoted to 1st Lieutenant.

3, " " 29, " Resigned Sept. 18, 1864.

April lfi, " ' " L'y, " Mustered out June 2y, 1865.

Dct. 12, I8S4 Oct. 12, 1364 'Mustered out June 2H, 1865.


IN the spring of 18G2 the President called for three hundred thousand volunteers, and
before that number had been raised, another call was made for three hundred thousand
more. Under this call the Eighteenth Battery was raised. The men were principally
from Gallia and Pike Counties. Recruiting commenced July 18, 18G2, and, although these
counties had sent many men into the infantry service, yet, on the 13th of August, about one-half
the requisite number was sent to Camp Portsmouth. On the 22d of August the remainder
necessary to constitute a six-gun battery were enlisted and in camp.

The men were immediately put on foot-drill, and passed the time in this way until the 2d
of September. On the 13th of September the battery was mustered into the service, receiving
one month's pay in advance. From the above date it was kept drilling until the 9th of Octo-
ber, when marching orders were received, and the command proceeded by railroad to Cincin-
nati. The following morning it crossed the Ohio River and went into camp near Covington.
On the 12th of October it commenced receiving its equipment. The guns were the three-inch
Rodmans, rifled. On the 22d of October the battery was reported complete, and on the morn-
ing of the 23d was on the road to Lexington, Kentucky. It marched on the Covington and
Lexington Pike, and, when within three miles of Lexington, halted and went into camp. The
distance was ninety miles, and was made in six days. From October 28th drilling on foot, man-
ual of the piece and with the battery hooked up, was maintained regularly until November 1st,
when it moved out south-east of the city and went into camp on the Ashland farm, the home-
stead of Henry Clay. It remained in Camp Clay until the 30th of November, when it was
ordered to Camp Ella Bishop, west of Lexington, Kentucky. After arranging camp the drill
was resinned. Early on the morning of the 2G:h the battery was on the road, bound for Louis-
ville, Kentucky, and readied that place on the 30th, making the distance of eighty-eight miles
in five days. At Louisville it turned over some unserviceable horses, drew fresh ones, and
embarked on board the steamer Bostona No. 2, in company with some forty-five transports, and
eleven gunboats as convoy, for Nashville, Tennessee, by way of the Ohio and Cumberland Riv-
era. It arrived at Nashville on the 7th of February, disembarked, and went into camp three

Eighteenth Ohio Independent Battery. 873

miles south of the city, near the Franklin Turnpike, where it remained until the 21st. The
battery was now assigned to Colonel Coburn's brigade, First Division, of the Fourteenth Army
Corps. On the morning of the 21st of February it proceeded to Brentwood, a station on the
Tennessee and Alabama Railroad, thirteen miles south of Nashville. Here it was kept drilling
as long as it remained. Owing to the disagreeableness of the winter and change in manner of
living, the battery was, by sickness, deaths, and discharges, much reduced; and, to make the num-
ber required for a six-gun battery complete, a detail had to be made. Accordingly, on the 27lh
of February, thirty-nine men were detailed from Colonel Coburn's brigade. On the 2d of March
the battery moved to Franklin, Tennessee; thence on the 4th at daylight, on the road leading to
Spring Hill and Columbia. "When out about three miles the Rebels were found drawn up in
heavy force, of cavalry, mounted infantry, and one battery of artillery. The Eighteenth Bat-
tery was immediately placed in position, and opened fire. After a spirited engagement the
enemy fell back toward Spring Hill. This was the first engagement in which the battery par-
ticipated. The command moved up one mile and encamped on the ground which the Rebels had

It moved out early on the morning of the 5th, and had proceeded but a short distance when
skirmishing commenced, and w r as kept up for two miles. It moved cautiously along the road
toward Thompson's Station, on the Tennessee and Alabama Railroad. "When within about eight
hundred yards of the station the enemy opened with one of its batteries, which swept the road
on which the National line was advancing. Three pieces of the Eighteenth Battery were placed
on the left of the turnpike and two on the right. The pieces on the right were supported by the
Thirty-Third and Eighty-Filth Indiana Infantry, and those on the left by the Nineteenth Mich-
igan and Twenty-Second "Wisconsin. Soon after the engagement commenced the enemy opened
with two batteries on the right and one on the left of their center, thus making a cross fire of
three batteries on the Eighteenth. The artillery firing was spirited. A charge was ordered, but
the enemy arose in heavy force from behind a stone wall, and the National line was forced to
retire. The Eighteenth kept up a continuous fire on the enemy while the National line was
retreating. The battery was finally ordered back to Franklin, where it went into camp.

After the action at Thompson's Station the enemy attacked the National pickets daily. On
the 10th of April they made an attack on Franklin. In this battle the battery took a position
on the right of Fort Granger, on a high bluff on the north side of the Harpeth River. It
opened a brisk fire on the enemy's line, and kept it from getting its batteries in position. There
being but two twenty-four-pound siege-pieces in the fort, the right section of the Eighteenth was
ordered into the fort, that it might get a better sweep of the field. The lines were soon broken,
and the enemy retired with considerable loss, while the National loss was small.

The battery was kept drilling from this time until the 2d of June, when it was attached to
the First Brigade, of the First Division. On the 2d of June it moved to Triune, Tennessee,
where the Fourteenth Corps was concentrating, preparatory to a general move on the Rebel
forces at Tullahoma and Shelby ville. The Rebels were prowling around the front, occasionally
driving in the pickets. On the 11th of June they attacked the National line in force. Heavy
firing was going on in front, and the battery received an order to "double-quick" to the scene of
action. It was placed in position by section. As the right section was coming to an " action
front" the Rebels opened on it with a battery of ten-pound rifled guns. Not being able to hold
their position, they hauled off to the rear.

About this time the Fourteenth Corps was organized as the reserve of the Army of the Cum-
berland. This corps, to which the battery was attached, held the extreme right wing of the
army. Early on the morning of the 27th the whole corps moved in the direction of Shelbyville.
When about five miles from that place the outposts of the enemy were encountered. The Reb-
els were forced back until they reached Guy's Gap, where the main army was stationed. A run-
ning fight ensued, in which the battery was engaged. It kept pace with the cavalry until
within a short distance of Shelbyville. The Rebels were driven into the town. A few rounds
from the battery were fired, when the cavalry charged and captured the place, with all its stores,

874: Ohio in the Wae.

five hundred prisoners, four pieces of artillery, horses, and equipments. On the next day the
battery, with the command, moved back to the camp from which it had started on the 27th. On
the 1st of July it moved to Shelby ville and went into camp. On the 3d of July the battery was
ordered to Wartrace, a depot on the Nashville and Chattanooga Railroad, eight miles from Shel-
byville. After arranging the camp at Wartrace and giving the men a little time to recuperate,
the battery was again put on drill, and so continued drilling during its stay at that place.

On the 12th of August it was ordered to march. It reached Elk River at Estell Springs on
the following day, and remained here until the 21st of August, when two sections were ordered
back to Tullahoma, leaving one section at the river. On the 7th of September it was ordered
to march toward Chattanooga. On the 12th a dispatch was received that the National army was
about to engage in a general battle. The Eighteenth Battery was ordered to turn over its knap-
sacks and camp equipage. The next morning it was on a forced march for the extreme front.
Two days later it crossed Lookout Mountain, leaving Chattanooga two miles to the north, and
arrived at Rossville, where it awaited orders. Here the battery received fresh horses.

On the morning of the 18th orders were received for the First Brigade, with the Eighteenth
Battery, to advance on the Ringgold Road as far as the Chickamauga Creek and hold the bridge,
if it could be done without bringing on a general engagement. When out about four miles, near
the Little Chickamauga Creek, the enemy was met in considerable force, and immediately skir-
mishing commenced. The right section of the battery was put in position and opened on the
enemy. The enemy was forced back on their main line. On the 19th the enemy advanced from
the woods, and both pieces were brought into position. The enemy being in superior numbers,
forced these pieces back to a position in front of the other two sections. All opened on the
enemy, and the Rebels were repulsed. It being night, the battery moved one-half mile to the
rear, in an open field, near McAfee's Church, where it slept in line of battle.

In the ensuing battle of Chickamauga the battery did good service. At one time it was cut
off from the command. When the order was given to retreat it was with General Hazen's com-
mand, which covered the rear. The whole army fell back to Rossville, and about midnight set-
tled down to rest.

On the 21st of September the battery was put in position at the Rossville Road Gap, in Mis-
sion Ridge. Here the enemy made a furious charge, but was defeated. On the morning of the
following day the battery was ordered to the north side of the Tennessee River, to take a posi-
tion on Stringer's Ridge, in sight of and overlooking Chattanooga. It lay on this ridge until the
24th, when one section of the battery was sent two miles down the river to guard Brown's Ferry.
The other two sections were sent to the extreme south end of the ridge, and took a position so
as to watch a crossing at the foot of Lookout Mountain, and also to annoy the Rebels on the

On the 2Sth of September the right section of the battery moved up and joined the battery
on Moccasin Point. Soon after, the enemy planted batteries on the side of the mountain and on
the summit overlooking the valley. On the 5th of October they opened on the Eighteenth with
all their batteries, and a heavy artillery fight was kept up all day. At this time subsistence
became scarce. Half-rations were issued for a short time, then quarter-rations, and finally noth-
ing except eai-s of corn, which had been obtained by foraging the country for thirty miles
around. The men of the battery, having to be at their posts day and night, had no opportuni-
ties to forage, and, consequently, underwent terrible hardships. While at this place the battery
did some fine artillery shooting. On the 9th of October the enemy placed a signal-flag on the
top of the mountain. The perpendicular height of the mountain above the battery was eighteen
hundred feet. The artillerists feared that the guns would be dismounted, or would burst, as they
necessarily had so great an elevation in order to reach the flag. The first shell fell a few yards
short, but the second fell exactly at the feet of the signal- officer, and the flag was seen to fall.
The battery was under fire and engaged with the Rebel batteries for fifty-six days. Frequently
during the night-time the Rebels would open on it, and the men would have to rouse from their
slumbers to be ready for any emergency. On the 27th of October orders came to be ready to

Eighteenth Ohio Independent Battery. 875

protect the fleet of pontoon-barges which that night were to float down the river. All went so
quietly that the battery was not needed. On the morning of November 24th, when General
Hooker stormed Lookout Mountain, the Eighteenth received orders to stand at arms, and, when
signaled, to open on the enemy. The whole battery opened on the column of the enemy with
great accuracy, having, by prolonged practice, obtained the exact range to any point on the face
of the mountain.

After this battle the battery went into camp at Chattanooga, where it remained until the 1st
of December, when it was ordered to turn over its guns, horses, and camp equipage, and pro-
ceed by railroad to Nashville, Tennessee. Here it went into winter-quarters, and spent most of
the time in drilling.

On the 7th of March, 1864, fifteen recruits were received. The spring and summer were
spent in this camp, which was called " Camp Brough." On the 6th of October it was ordered to
march to Chattanooga, Tennessee, which place it reached on the 21st. Here it camped and
remained until the 17th of November, when it was ordered to move near Fort Wood and go into
cump on the line established for a regular reserve artillery. On the 27th of November orders
were received to move in the direction of Nashville, Tennessee. Part of the way was made on
boats and part by railway. While on the railroad, and within nine miles of Murfreesboro', two
cars became wrecked, wounding two men and killing nine horses. While removing the wreck
the Rebel line swung round and attacked a colored regiment, which was on a train in the rear.
The regiment fought bravely, but was overpowered. The battery succeeded in removing the
wreck, and proceeded into the National lines.

On the loth day of December occurred the battle of Nashville, in which the battery, having
got into a position for an enfilading fire, did great execution with shell and solid shot. It joined
in the pursuit, and experienced the most severe trials that soldiers endure. The command to
which it was attached, on account of misfortunes, did not reach its objective point, and was
ordered back to camp at Chattanooga, two hundred miles distant. The battery was not landed
at Chattanooga until January 8, 1865, the campaign having lasted forty days. Here it con-
structed houses and stables for winter-quarters. It remained in camp during the winter and
drilled occasionally. In the spring a regular system of drill was kept up until the 1st of May,
when the battery was ordered to Resaca, which place it reached on the 3d. It remained at
Resaca, with nothing but camp duty to perform (excepting one march and counter-march), until
the 20th of June, when the order was received to report to the proper authorities for muster out.
The battery was paid off and finally discharged at Camp Dennison on the 29th of June, 1S65.


Ohio in the Wak.
















28, 1S62
3, 1864
28, 1862
28, "
.1. 1864
28, 1862
28, "
Z\, 1864
26, 1865





20, isr.3
3, ISM
29, 1863
29, "
3, 1864
29, 1863
29, "
2.'!, 1864
26, 18J55

Resigned September 15, 186*.

Mustered out June 27, 1865.

1st Lieutenant

Fiank Wilson

Promoted to Captain.
Mustered out June 27, 1865.


2d Lieutenant


Charles B. Harris

Charles B. Harris

Robertson Smith

.lull n N. Es'abrook

Mustered out June 27, 1865.
Promoted to 1st Lieutenant.
R»sijrncd February 3. 1863.
Mustered out June 27, 1865.
Musteied out June 27, 1S05.


HIS battery was recruited in the vicinity of Cleveland, and left Camp Taylor, near
that place, on October 6, 1862, en route for Covington, Kentucky. Here it remained
until July, 1863, during which time not a shot was fired, except in the way of prac-
tice. In the latter part of July the battery joined in the chase after Morgan's Rebel cavalry
through Indiana and Ohio, after which it was ordered back to Kentucky and placed in the
reserve artillery of General Burnside's army. With that force it crossed the Cumberland
Mountains into East Tennessee, and in September, 1863, moved forward from Knoxville with
the forces that advanced on Cumberland Gap, and to whom General Frazier, the Rebel commander
of that stronghold, surrendered without firing a shot. It then returned to Knoxville, and
remained there up to the time of and during the siege. During the siege it occupied positions on
the extreme right of the line, but was not, to any extent, engaged. The right section was sta-
tioned in Fort Sanders during the entire siege, and did gottd execution, without the loss of a man.

The battery participated in the East Tennessee campaign of 1863-4, and shared all its hard-
ships. In the spring of 1S64 it was attached to the Second Division of the Twenty-Third Army
Corps (General Judah commanding), and moved with that corps from Knoxville on April 28th.
The corps was joined at Calhoun, Tennessee, by the Third Division. Beaching lied Clay,
Georgia, it joined the Army of the Tennessee, and on May 9th was hotly engaged in the battle
of Rocky Face Ridge.

On May 23d the battery was again engaged at very short range, using canister freely. From
this on to the close of the Atlanta campaign, from Rocky Face Ridge to Lovejoy's Station, it was
engaged in all the fierce battles of that march. On September 8th, with the whole army, it fell
back to Atlanta and vicinity. The battery was stationed at Decatur, and while there reorganized
and re-equipped for the next campaign.

The movements of the enemy did not allow much time for recruiting either horses or men.
October 3d found the battery again inside the fortifications of Atlanta, where it remained until
November 1st, when orders were received to proceed to Nashville by rail. At Nashville it drew


a complete new outfit, and on November 16th was ready to take a part in the reception of Gen-
eral Hood and his forces.

On December 15th the battery moved out of Nashville with General Thomas's army and
took part in the brilliant fights of the loth and 16th, the results of which were the utter defeat
of the Rebel army and its precipitate retirement from before Nashville.

• The battery followed the flying Rebels to a point on the Tennessee River, where, under
orders, it was placed on transports and taken to Cincinnati, and thence by rail and transports to
Fort Fisher, North Carolina. It arrived at Fort Fisher on the 22d of February, 1865, and,
without landing, was taken on up the river to Wilmington.

On March 6th the battery joined in the North Carolina campaign. In this there was much
hard marching and little fighting. A few skirmishes with the enemy at important points along
the route was about all that transpired. On March 21st it entered Goldsboro', and on the 24th,
near Goldsboro', made a junction with General Sherman's army. It lay at this place until
April 9th, and then moved to Raleigh.

"While at Raleigh, news of Lee's surrender and Johnston's capitulation was received. The
battery, however, was selected to do garrison-duty at Salisbury, North Carolina, and remained
at that place up to June 15th, when it was ordered to proceed to Greensboro', turn over its ord-
nance stores, and take transportation for Cleveland, via Danville, City Point, and "Washington
City. It arrived at Cleveland on the 23d of June, and was paid and mustered out of the service
on the 29th of June, 1865, after three years of faithful and arduous service.

The East Tennessee campaign of 1863-4 was probably the most trying of any that the bat-
tery passed through during the whole of its service. The winter was unusually severe, and the
ground almost continually covered with snow and ice. So severe, indeed, was the cold that
the men were almost constantly employed in cutting and hauling fuel to ward off death by freez-
ing. Provisions were very scarce. The country had already been closely foraged by both
armies, and it was an utter impossibility for the Government authorities to send supplies into
that bleak and almost inaccessible country. And yet the casualties of the battery were slight;
the men seemed to be as thoroughly inured to the hardships of their position as if they had
always lived in that part of the country.

In addition to the privations of cold and lack of rations, the men were compelled to impro-
vise habitations, as their tents had all been left in the rear. Under these circumstances "the
advent of spring was gladly hailed as the harbinger of better times and more comfortable cam-
paigns. Spring opened, and with it came the Atlanta campaign, one of the busiest and most
arduous of the war.


Ohio in the Wak.




Do.' !"™~
1st Lieutenant

2d Lieutenant




Louis Smithwright

John T. K. Grosskopff.

Win. Backus

Henry Koth

Francis 0. Bobbins

Oscar \V. Hancock

Charles F. Nitchelm....

Wm. Backus

-lolin Burdick

Hai Ian P. Josselyn

Henrv Horn

Henry Both

Matthias Adams

Oscar W Hancock

Frederick Nitchlem ....

Wm. Backus

John Burdick

Harlan P. Josselyn

Henry Hoehn

Wm. Nieracher















2, l.sf>2 Nov

25, l863!May
5, leG-J Dec

Online LibraryWhitelaw ReidOhio in the war : her statesmen, her generals, and soldiers (Volume 2) → online text (page 151 of 165)