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Welcome to Montgomery County Indiana in the Civil War. During the four year struggle Montgomery County would send 2,971 of her sons to the Union Army. The county seat of Crawfordsville was home to U.S. Senator Henry S. Lane and five Union Army Generals - Lew Wallace, Edward Canby, Mahlon D. Manson, William H. Morgan and John P. Hawkins. Students of the conflict are aware of three popular organizations that Montgomery County raised companies for, Lew Wallace's 11th Indiana Zouaves, 72nd Indiana (Mounted) Infantry of Wilder's Lightning Brigade and Eli Lilly's 18th Indiana Battery. Other organizations that had one or more companies from Montgomery County were the 10th, 15th, 40th, 63rd, 86th, 120th, 135th Infantry Regiments and the 9th Indiana Battery. Several other Indiana military units contained heavy pockets of men from the county, including the 21st (1st Heavy Artillery),26th, 27th, 31st, 33rd, 35th, 38th, 43rd, 60th, 79th, 85th,115th,and 123rd Inf.Regt's. This site is meant to honor the deeds of the 2,971 Montgomery County soldiers who suffered four years of conflict and hardships.

Sunday, January 17, 2010




The 35th Indiana Infantry, known also as the "1st Irish" was the only regiment composed of all Irishmen from in Indiana. Several Irishmen from Montgomery County enlisted in the regiment and saw hard service in the western theatre. Two of them would die during their service.

Company A

Michael Fitzpatrick, mustered in as 1st sergeant November 24, 1861; promoted to 2nd lieutenant March 18, 1862

Timothy McMahon, mustered in as sergeant November 24, 1861; mustered out January 13, 1865

John McMahon, mustered in as company wagoner November 24, 1861; mustered out October 17, 1864

Company E

William Figg, mustered in December 14, 1861, deserted; later joined U.S. Regulars

Patrick O'Conner, mustered in December 14, 1861, killed Marietta, GA. July 4, 1864

Charles Woodruff, mustered in December 14, 1861, died June 13, 1862

Andrew Carroll, mustered in December 14, 1861, transferred to the Veteran Reserve Corps March 10, 1865

Book Review



Three Years With Wallace's Zouaves; The Civil War Memoirs of Thomas Wise Durham; Editted by Jeffery L. Patrick, Mercer University Press (June 1, 2003)


A wonderful book of Civil War memoirs from a Montgomery County soldier that served in the 11th Indiana Infantry. Thomas W. Durham was raised in the Waveland area and starts his memoirs as a young man still in school. He relates the story of how he became a soldier with several other men from his area. Thomas first enlisted in Lew Wallace's three month 11th Indiana Zouave Regiment, Company "I" and was present at the battle of Romney, Va. in the western Virginia Campaign. He returns home and re-enlists in the three year 11th Indiana Regiment as a sergeant in Company "G". He is first engaged in the battle for the river fort of Heiman on the Tennessee River and Fort Donelson on the Cumberland River. Mr. Durham holds no opinion back while telling of the hardships of soldiering and battle. The regiment moves south to Crump's Landing, where Lew Wallace's division encounters problems marching to the battlefield on the 6th of April. The regiment is in action at Shiloh on the 7th of April and Thomas is wounded in action. He tells of his trip home traveling on a steamboat and his homecoming.


Thomas returns to his regiment and things are set in motion for the Vicksburg Campaign. Again he relates the hardships and suffering of the cold and heat. During this time he is promoted to the rank of lieutenant in Company "G", where new problems of paperwork arise for Thomas. His description of the battle for Champion Hill puts the reader in the thick of the action. Several small stories are told about friends and enemies in and out of the regiment through each chapter.
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Thomas recieves a furlough in late 1863 and returns to Waveland, he tells of his dislike for the young men in town who did not enlist to fight. Thomas also runs into trouble while at home with a group of "Copperheads" from neighboring Ripley Twp. He gets a small band of young men from Waveland and raids the "Copperheads" in Ripley Twp. The "Copperheads" want revenge and plan their own raid. This is a bit of unknown history for Montgomery County.
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Thomas again returns to his regiment in the Trans-Mississippi West, where things are slow in early 1864. He thinks the war is about over and decides to resign from the army. He then states his regret when the 11th Indiana is moved to Virginia and fights another battle.
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The book is very entertaining and full of Montgomery County History, as well as the war in the west. Mr. Patrick does a wonderful job of laying the groundwork for the 11th Indiana Infantry. I am glad Mr. Patrick was impressed by Tom Durham's memoirs and decided to edit and publish it. For those that have an intrest in the 11th Indiana Infantry or Montgomery County this book is worthy to buy. It will be read more than one time.


Colonel David H. Patton, 38th Indiana Infantry


Officers of the Army and Navy who served in the Civil War, Edited by Lt. Col. Wm H. Powell, U.S. Army, Published By L.R. Hamersly & Co., Philadelphia, PA., 1893, p. 129


Colonel D.H. Patton, whose proudest title is that of "The Hero of Jonesborough's Skirmish-Line," was born November 26,1837, near Flemingsburg, Kentucky. His boyhood days were spent upon the farm and attending the village schools. In 1857 the family moved to Indiana, taking up residence at Waveland, Montgomery County, where David, then in his twentieth year, entered the Waveland Collegiate Institute, completing a scientific course in 1860, when he immediately entered upon the study of medicine. While engaged in the study of his chosen profession, Fort Sumter was bombarded; following this came the disastrous defeat of the Federal forces at Bull Run. The future colonel laid aside his books, relinquished his cherished ambitions for the present, and with twelve others hastened to New Albany to join the Thirty-eighth Indiana, already organized and ready for the field. The regiment passed into Kentucky, and after innumerable skirmishes and marching and countermarching for nearly eighteen hundred miles they were face to face with the Confederates at Perryville, where a battle was fought. It was the fate of the thirty-eighth Indiana to bear a conspicuous part on that field, where their percentage of loss was as great as that of either of the contending armies at Waterloo. Of the color-bearer and guard, Patton and Sullivan alone stood erect, and the former, as Colonel Scribner will testify, could touch the colors any time during the engagement. Of the seven that lay upon the ground, five were killed outright and one dangerously wounded. The flag-staff was shot in two twice, and the colors were shot into shreads on that day.Their next severe engagement was Stone River, where the colors were pierced by thirty-one balls, and private Patton again distinguished himself so much that he was promoted. The regiment participated in the capture of Lookout Mountain and the "battle in the clouds," in which they again distinguished themselves. The regiment served in the Atlanta campaign, participating in all the battles till that city was taken. In the battle of Jonesborough Lieutenant Patton rendered signal service, and recived the highest praise of his commanding officer, being styled "the hero of Jonesborough's skirmish-line."
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To fully understand the importance of the service rendered, it must be understood that Jonesborough was the key to Atlanta, and that certain works lying in front of Carlin's brigade were the key to Jonesborough, and Carlin's brigade was ordered to take the works. Two regiments were ordered to attack, but were repulsed; but they had succeeded in getting close enough to the works to learn that an abatis lat just in front of it that would have to be torn away to make room for the assaulting colimn. General Carlin ordered Lieutenant-Colonel Griffin to take the Thirty-eighth, as it was all there was left, and take the works. Colonel Griffin ordered Company G, Captain H.F. Perry, and Company H, Lieutenant David H. Patton, as skirmishers, to take advantage of the smoke and gathering shades of evening, reserve their fire, to move noiselessly as possible, tear away the abatis, and open a way to carry the works. Captain Perry fell early in the advance, but lieutenant Patton and skirmishers cleared away the abatis, and the Thirty-eighth carried the works. To the bravery of Colonel Patton on that occasion, Colonel Griffin, in his farewell address to the regiment, feelingly alludes when he says, "To the brave boys I can but say that everything is due to their valor on the field; and remember that you have a leader in the commander of Jonesborough's gallant skirmish-line," meaning Captain Patton, who was then the ranking officer and in command.After the fall of Atlanta the Thirty-eighth went with Sherman to the sea; from Savannah they marched into North Carolina and fought the battle of Bentonville, where the senior officer, Captain Lowe, fell, leaving the regiment in command of Captain Patton, who brought it to victory.While in camp at Goldsborough, Captain Patton was elected colonel by his brother officers, and received his commission as such. His military record is a heritage that his children will prize above gold and silver, and will stimulate them to noble deeds and aspirations.
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After the close of the war, having been mustered out with his regiment, Colonel Patton resumed the study of medicine, graduating from the Chicago Medical College in 1867, since which time, up yo 1890, he has been in the continuous practice of his profession at Remington, Indiana. He is at present a member of Congress from the tenth Indiana District, and is well and favorably known.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Atlanta Campaign Letter



Early 1864 letter by Henry "Tip" Lough of the 31st Indiana Infantry. He gives some great personal insight into the campaign. He mentions seeing the 40th and 85th Infantry Regiments, which had members from Montgomery and Parke Counties.

HH Lough,Waveland Independent; Waveland, Montgomery County, Indiana,Friday, April 3, 1931

Readers of the Independent will note a letter that HH Lough wrote to his brother, Levi in March 1863. His daughter, Mrs. Frank Gardner, has handed us another dated May 21, 1864, and written from Camp of 31st Indiana Volunteers near Kingston, Georgia on the famous "March to the Sea.

“Dear Brother having a few spare moments for the first time in a long time, I will try to let you know how I am getting along. We left Ooltawah [sic] May 3rd and have been on the march every day since we have just been booting the Rebs through Georgia. We have had no very hard fighting but we have skirmished with them every day. We have only had six killed and twenty wounded in our regt none in our company. We stopped to rest yesterday and I don't know whether we will stay here today or not but we will leave soon for they are sending all the sick to the hospital. I think that if our Army can hold out successful two weeks longer that this War will soon be over for they are getting in a small pen some of their deserters say that they are in great confusion and some say they are only falling back to a better position but they have left two of the strongest positions that our Army ever fronted, that was Buzzard Gap and the hills in front of Rasaka [sic] but then we have a few thousand men too many for them. We can march clear around them and fight them on all sides but that they don't like so they kept moving to the rear all the time. I have come to the conclusion that you have concluded not to write for I have not received a letter from any of you since I have been back. I think it is getting time. I saw the 85th regt a few days ago. They had been in a fight and more of the boys was hurt. They looked pretty hard. They are not guarding railroad now and I don't think they will be soon. The boys of the 40th are well. I never saw the Army in as good spirits as they are now but we are almost worn out marching but anything to get this war put down. Well I believe I have written all I feel like writing at present but will write as soon as I can get in camp again. This leaves me in good health and I hope it may find you the same. So no more but remain as ever your brother. "

H.H. Lough

"The letter is addressed to Bethany, a post office that is now off the map.(W.I.)”

Letter From Missionary Ridge


Crawfordsville Daily Journal
Thursday, December 10, 1863

Camp 86th Regiment Indiana Vols.

Chattanooga, Tenn, Nov.27, 1863

Editor Journal: - Now that the noise and din of the bloody strife around Chattanooga is over, and I am again quietly resting in the comfortable quarters of our former camp, I will tell you of the part enacted in these engagements by the gallant boys of the 86th.

The 86th and 79th Indiana Regiments were temporarily consolidated into one regiment, under the command of Col. Heftner of the 79th and Col. Dick of the 86th Ind., the consolidation only to last during this battle. On Monday morning our regiment came in off of picket, where we had been on duty for 24 hours. Immediately after dinner we were formed in line and marched out near our picket lines. Our Division was formed in column by Brigades- the 79th and 86th constituting the front line of our brigade. The 19th Ohio, then on picket, advanced as skirmishers, the rest of the brigade coming up to it’s support. Gen. Willich’s brigade was on our right and Gen. Wagner’s on our left. A brisk skirmish fire was kept up by each party as we advanced, and they fell back until within shooting distance of their reserves when they opened quite lively on us. These were gallantly charged and driven about a mile, many of them being captured. Here we established our line, threw up breastworks, fell trees for abates, and held our ground until Wednesday about half past three in the afternoon, when Gen. Sherdian, who had advanced to the left of us, in undertaking to flank and turn the position of the enemy, was so hotly engaged that fears for his safety were entertained, and to relieve him, we were ordered to advance about a half mile farther to the front, and charge a line of rebel breastworks and divert the fire of rebel guns on Missionary Ridge. At the command we advanced in fine order, on the double quick, charged and took that line of enemy defenses, and still charged on and on until the foot of Missionary Ridge was gained, and on up the Ridge still we charged against eight pieces of heavy artillery directly in our front; thirty more pieces of artillery constantly pouring their fire upon us both from the right and left, and Gen. Hardee’s Corps of three entire Divisions in our front, right and left, from behind breastworks pouring their galling fire into us. On up the mountain still charged the noble 86th and 79th. The top of the mountain is at length reached. The enemy stand to their guns that are belching forth their missiles of death. Their infantry rally close behind their breastworks and fill the air with musket-balls. Inch by inch the ground is gained; their firing becomes weaker. Whenever a head is shown above the breastworks it is doomed by the unerring aim of the Indiana riflemen. To our right and left all stop in their charge to know the result of the gallant charge of our boys. Generals hold their breaths and tremble. Gen. Grant, anxiously watching our every movement, says, “they can’t make it.” The enemy rallies to the defense of this fort, and volley after volley of deadly effect is poured upon us. Our boys never falter, they take deadly aim and every trigger pulled is a death knell to some poor rebels soul. Inch by inch our gallant boys crowd upon the ramparts of the enemy! The flag of the 86th floats upon their breastworks and our men are in the fort. Some of the enemy lay flat behind their breastworks, praying for us not to kill them; some fight on until shot down at the muzzles of our rifles; thousands rush over the mountain and down through the woods; while many rush along the brow of the mountain and rally in the next fort still to defeat the possession of the ridge. This fort gained on a charge, our men to the left to assist others is carrying the long range of forts still between us and the river, and for a distance of two miles on still goes the 86th and 79th to contribute their share of the work in hurling from thence the enemy and these forts are only taken in regular succession after the arrival of our regiments. The flag of the 86th being the first flag planted by our troops upon both forts, and the last fort captured on the left in the great battle. Night closes the scene, the entire range of heights known as Missionary Ridge having fallen into our possession, together with 38 pieces of artillery, wagon loads of small arms, and prisoners of every grade in almost countless numbers.

No sooner had our flag been planted upon the first fort which was taken, than Gen. Grant left his seat at Fort Wood and at the top of the speed of his noble war- horse dashed over to the ridge, his first inquiry being to ask whose flag it was that first planted on the fort. He said our charge was the grandest thing of the whole war. The 86th and 79th are now on everybody’s tongue. All are enthusiastic and unbounded in our praise. These two regiments have not only won imperishable renown by their heroic conduct, but they have added new luster to American arms. The most brilliant charge recorded in the annals of history fails to furnish its equal. It must be bore in mind that it was a charge of only four hundred men, over two miles in distance, on the double quick, to a mountain height and then up that steep mountain side, eighteen hundred feet, capturing a fort considered impregnable and garrisoned by men well armed as men could be, and whose numbers exceeded ours as greatly as the position was advantageous for defense. Wednesday night we rested in the fort we had first taken, and remained there quietly until Thursday night about nine o’clock, when we returned to camp. The night after these grand achievements of our arms, the enemy was fleeing southward, applying the torch to every bridge; pontoon, station and store-house, illuminating the vast valley before us with the light of their burning property.

Where all done so well it might seem invidious to particularize individuals who have greatly distinguished themselves , but I cannot forebear mentioning a few whose noble bearing come directly under my notice. Col. Dick of the 86th, and Col. Heftner were all the time in their places, nobly and fearlessly discharging their duty commanding universal admiration by their coolness, decision and tact. Captain W. S. Sims, commanding the color company, was at the head of his men, bravely calling them forward. From the time we commenced the ascent of the mountain, it became evident to all that his conduct here would,, if possible surpass that at Chickamauga. Steadily he led his men forward until their flag was planted on the fort and it in our full possession; when calling them onward, he never ceased his efforts until the last fort, with our regimental flag proudly waving over it, was greeting Fort Wood, he having placed our flag there with his own hands. We returned to the ground selected for us to occupy, having in our possession the Major of the 32nd Arkansas, whom Capt. Sims captured himself, whilst the rebel officer was endeavoring to capture our flag. Never did men do better than the boys of our company. They all done their whole duty. Eli N. Tipton, a brave boy that feared no rebel noise, would have been the first to enter the fort, but fell mortally wounded by a musket shot in the head, while calling to the other boys to follow him into the fort. Private John Kent received a very severe wound in the neck about the same time and near the same place where Tipton fell. Oliver Wood, private, had his arm broken, previously, in ascending the mountain; and Sergeant Jas. F. Robertson fell, mortally wounded, when about half way up. These constitute all the casualties to our company in this unequalled charge. Capt. Carnahan placed himself at the head of his boys and led them most gallantly. Capt. Southard was shot in the breast and instantly expired, at the head of his men, when about half way up the mountain. His conduct is well spoken by all who witnessed him on the battlefield, and his death is severely felt, not only by his own company, but by all the officers and men of the regiment. Poor Billy! His is another good life given for our country. The other casualties sustained by his company are Sergeant B. F. Snyder, severely wounded in left hip; Corporal Tilman A. Howard, slightly wounded in left breast; privates Morris Welch, severely, through the right arm; James Herrington, slightly in left side; Wm. M. Saunders, slightly on left elbow. Lieutenant John Yount was pretty severely bruised by a fall, but it did not prevent him from bravely leading on the noble boys of Company K. “Long may he wave,” and enjoy the honors so nobly won. Captains Garner, Gregory, Stephens, Rodman and Ream, and Lieutenants McInerty, Goram, Turk, Brant, Hough and Olive, deserve great credit for their gallantry throughout the battle. Adjutant Darwin Thomas, here, as at Chickamauga, distinguished himself by his coolness and bravery. Major Jacob Dick was wounded in the leg, early after the ascent of the hill was commenced, whilst gallantly cheering the men forward. In fact all have crowned themselves heroes in these great achievements which have blest our arms with victory. There names will live as long as Indiana has a place in the memory of men, and brilliant deeds of arms remains a theme for praise. Napoleon and Wellington would have glorified, as Grant glories, to command such men.
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The rebel Major, captured by Capt. Sims, when asked what he thought of our charge, replied; “Sir, troops so few in numbers, that will charge and take such works as these when so well defended, would charge through hell. There is nothing on record to compare with what they have here done.” The men were pleased that they had Col’s Dick and Heftner to command them. They have very justly an exalted opinion of the judgment and military capacity of these gallant chieftains, and will go where these Colonel’s would order them, let what may obstruct their way. Whilst I am writing, a complimentary address from Brigadier General Wood, commanding our Division, says that “our achievements are unequaled in the annals of military warfare.”

Sergeant Henry Newton Ornbaun of the 79th, I saw fall, severely wounded in the thigh, whilst bravely charging the rebel breastworks. I hope he may soon be able for duty again , for he is one of the bravest and best soldiers. Sergeant Sater and private Saunders were near me most of the time after we entered the first fort, and I never saw braver men. Saunders says this fight has knocked the last drop of Butternut blood out of his veins. While charging the rebel works and when within about twenty feet of the fort, I noticed a rebel raise up and level his piece in a very uncomfortable position for me. At the same time I noticed that the brave young Robert G. Thornton sent a ball through his head. There are many incidents that occurred during this battle, that I have not time now but will relate in my next.

Bragg’s Army is badly cut up. The town is filled with prisoners. I have heard no estimate of losses, but in a few days it will be accurately known, as we hold all the ground fought over. If we can only manage to arrest their flight long enough to give them one more thrashing equal to the last one, there will be no Southern army left to prevent us all returning home to eat our Christmas dinners.

Most of our wounded are in critical condition, but our Surgeon, Joseph S. Jones, is a most accomplished physician and gentleman, untiring in the discharge of his duties, and all that medicinal science can do for the sick and wounded, will be done. They are all in our possession, which must be a great satisfaction to both them and their friends.

Most respectfully.
W. H. Laymon

Monday, January 11, 2010

Death of Serg't Ornbaun


"'The Crawfordsville Journal'
Thursday,January 21,1864

Funeral of Serg't Ornbaun

'The remains of Serg't H.N. Ornbaun,of Company K,79th Indiana Regiment, who fell mortally wounded at the battle of Missionary Ridge,on the 25th of November last,and who died on the 1st day of December,arrived at home on Saturday morning last for interment.On Tuesday of this week,under military escort,the remains were conveyed from the family residence to the Methodist E. Church;(where appropriate funeral exercises were had);and thence to the town Cemetery,where they were consigned to the tomb-the final resting place of all that is mortal of man.'

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Sidney Speed, Hero of Chickamauga

In the heat of battle at Chickamauga, Crawfordsville artilleryman Sidney Speed would save the lifes of several battery mates, in a heroic act that even Hollywood could not think of.




Sidney was one of six children born to Scottish parents, John and Margaret Speed. John was a stone cutter who was also known locally for his work and politics. John had been a Jackson Democrat, an intense abolitionist, a Wig and finally a Republican. John, the strong abolitionist, had traveled to North Carolina during the 1830's and supervised the construction of the new state capital's edifice. He also planned and patented the unusual stair for the building. After the job was completed, John would travel back to his family in Crawfordsville. The garret of the Speed home was known to have been used for harboring runaway slaves for the Underground Railroad. Sidney and the other children would help in the buying and collecting food to feed the runaway slaves. Sidney's adult life seems to have been greatly influenced by his father.

By the summer of 1862 Sidney had seen many Montgomery County residents come to Crawfordsville and enlist in the companies being formed there. At this time, Sidney was a student attending Wabash College, while also helping as a clerk in his fathers stonemason business. A new artillery battery was being organized by Greencastle druggist Eli Lilly. Captain Lilly started recruiting in Putnam and Montgomery counties, one of his new recruits was Sidney Speed. After a year of war Sidney thought it was his time to enlist, although there was one problem, his age. In July 1862 Sidney had just turned 16 years old, under age to enlist for military service. In order to avert the situation, Sidney had to lie about his age, as many other young men did who joined the battery. Eli Lilly's Indiana Battery would be numbered the 18th Indiana Battery, but was usually called the former by the men. The rest of 1862 would be spent learning how to use the guns and campaiging in Kentucky.

In early 1863 Colonel John Wilder wanted the men in his brigade fitted as mounted infantry and arm them with the Spencer Repeating Rifle. His dream became a reality and Lilly's Battery would be attached to Wilder's Brigade. Sidney knew many men in the 72nd Indiana, two of it's companies, "B" and "E" had been recruited in Montgomery County. On June 24, 1863 the brigade began moving from their camps in Murfreesboro, Tn. toward the Confederate Army at Shelbyville, Tn. Lilly's Battery was goning to taste it's first hard combat at Hoovers Gap. Wilder and Lilly's men would fight and hold two Confederate brigades. They were at least twice the size of Wilder's Brigade. It was here that the brigade pushed and held the Confederates in the gap and earned the name "Wilder's Lightning Brigade".

Wilder and Lilley would continue south in pursuit of the Confederate Army. They would end up on the banks of the Tennessee River, opposite Chattanooga. Here Lilly's guns would shell the city, and confuse Confederate General Braxton Bragg of the Union Army's intentions. The brigade would move toward Ringgold, Georgia and then into McLemore's Cove. Along the banks of the West Branch of Chickamauga Creek the Confederates hoped to defeat an isolated portion of the Union army near Lee and Godon's Mill. The battle of Chickamauga would be a three day event for Wilder's and Lilly's men. For this brigade the battle of Chickamauga started on September 18, 1863.


On the morning of September 18, the brigade had been posted to hold Alexander's Bridge and prevent the crossing of Confederate troops there. Around 10:00 a.m. a Confederate Brigade and Battery attacked Wilder's position. Four of Lilly's rifled guns went into battery near the Alexander cabin. Feverishly working one of these guns was Sidney Speed. The battery quickly began loading and firing long range canister and shell at the oncoming Rebels. A half mile oppoisite of Lilly's guns, Fowler's Alabama Battery went into action aginst the guns posted near the Alexander cabin. Lilly's gunners could hear the first round from Fowler's guns coming toward them. Bugler Henry Campbell of Crawfordsville wrote in his diary, " I don't think I will ever forget the awful, unearthly screeching that shell made as it approached us. It seemed as if it would never strike, it was so long coming." Campbell along with four or five comrads attempted to take cover behind a small sapling near by. Campbell reported, "We all knew, from the sound of it, that it would strike some place close by." It did strike close by, the shell bounced in front of the number two gun, then hit the corner of the Alexander cabin, where it ricocheted back toward the guns, landing near some of Lilly's huddled gunners. Sidney could see the danger to his comrads, calmly he picked up the shell, while the fuse was still burning and "heaved it over" the Alexander cabin where the shell would explode. Captain Lilly witnessed Sidney's heroic act that had saved the lifes of some of his artillerymen. In his after-action report, Captain Lilly would praise Sidney for this courageous act.


Sidney would continue to serve until the war's end, he would obtain the rank of corporal in January, 1864. He returned to Crawfordsville where he took up his father's trade as a stone mason. More that Fifty years had passed when Lt. Joseph A. Scott, of the 18th Battery and Lilly's grandson tried to obtain the Medal of Honor for Sidney. Speed was not very fond of the idea, stating he "didn't give two hoots" about the medal. After it was explained to Sidney that he would be entitled to more money in his soldier's pension, he had a chane of heart. He said he was, "willing to have the medal forced on me." Unfortunately Sidney never recieved the medal he deserved for his unselfish action at Chickamauga.

On September 18-20, 1895, the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park was dedicated. The monument to Lillyls 18th Indiana Battery was not yet erected on the battlefield. Almost a year after the park's dedication , a monument to honor the 18th Indiana Battery was placed in the West Viniard Field, alongside other monuments to the regiments of Wilder's Brigade. The design contract for the gray oolitic limestone monument went to the Crawfordsville firm of Sidney Speed, hero of Chickamauga.

By Scott Busenbark

Link to - "Blue Lightning; Wilder's Mounted Infantry Brigade in the Battle of Chickamauga" By Richard A. Baumgartner

http://www.blueacornpress.com/NewRelease.html

Friday, January 8, 2010

Letter from George W. Powell, 1st Ind. Cavalry



Helena, Arkansas May 3, 1863 To: Thomas M. Powell From: George Powell

Dear Brother

Sunday morning has come again finding me well and in a tolerably good humor though there are (it seems to me) a great many things to annoy me.

I can't be said to be homesick, but some way or other there is a kind of longing about me to see the 15th of July which is not far distant.

I have been anxiously expecting a letter from some one at home for two weeks but none have come to hand yet (so far as heard from).

This is a fine morning sun shines hot - everything seems still & lonesome.

The troops as I have before told you are mostly gone.

Only 5 or 6000 now here.

We have been sending out a scout every day for two weeks of about 200 men.
And on Friday last (May 1st) a portion of the 3rd Iowa Cavalry numbering about 150 men came in contact with the Rebels about 12 miles N.W. of here and got whipped like thunder, in fact the whole union force had like to have been gobbled up, before they knew what they were about.
Our Iowa boys were marching along perfectly unconcerned (as I suppose) when all of a sudden they were fired upon by the Rebs from an ambush.

Our boys returned the fire, but being through the brush had but little effect on the enemy, when our men got their pieces emptied - here come the Rebel Cavalry down a lane in the rear of them as hard as they could drive.

Our Iowa Friends now began to think all was up with them and broke every man for himself (as I am informed).

I asked one of them afterwards if they came back in a hurry - He replied that they didn't come slow.

We had 10 or 15 killed, a proportionate number wounded and from 20 to 50 prisoners taken.
The Rebs sustained but little loss. About 1 o'clock we got wind of the fracas, and all the Cavalry about Helena were ordered out on quick time.

On our way out we met several Iowa boys, some had lost their hats, some their horses, and a good many were badly scratched up, and had their heads tied up with handkerchiefs.
When we got there it was all over and nobody to be found, just as I expected.

I doubt very much if the Rebels had over 200 m en though our men report from 500 to 800 of them. Our Genls don't seem to know anything at all about fighting these bushwhackers.
I am of opinion that 200 men to go out and fight them Indian style and stay out in the country all the time, would do more execution than 5,000 Cavalry have done since I have been here or ever will do, the way we are managed.

Our Generals are looking for an attack on this place - have been for some time.
Helena is being fortified, another Fort is being built - heavy guns mounted on the hills (64) pounders and rifle pits dug - breastworks made (Clarksburg Style).

For my part I don't have any fears of being attacked here at all, only by a few bushwhackers now and then who ran our Picket in to get to chuckel over it afterwards.

However I would like to see General Price or Hindman make an avalanche on us some of these times.

I think we could interest them a short time.

Our Regiment is doing heavy duty now furnishing 60 Pickets a day 100 Troopers each alternate day, and 20 new Camp Guard daily out of a report of about 300 men for duty.
I am lucky enough to be exempt from Guard and Scout duty for the time being only when I see proper to go out. I wrote to you some time ago and told you to have my part of the land set off with yours and Eliza's if you have it divided soon.

If that letter has not reached you I would say for you to have it done in that way if you can.
Please let me hear from you and the folks at home soon, Yours Truly,

G. W. P.

38th Indiana Infantry Regiment


This 38th Indiana Infantry Regiment was raised in New Albany Indiana by Colonel Benjamin Scribner. Most of the compamies were raised from southren Indiana counties. The list of Twenty-two men below were from Montgomery County, Indiana and traveled to New Albany, IN. In Colonel Benjamin Scribners book, " How Soldiers Were Made", he mentions David Patton twice. He stated that "thirteen students from the northern part of our state came down to New Albany, and were mustered in as private soldiers."(p. 208-209) Among them was a man that would become the last Colonel of the 38th Indiana Infantry, David H. Patton. Many of the names below, including Patton, were students at the Waveland Collegiate Institute, in Waveland, Indiana. There are twenty-three men on the 1861 Company "H" rolls that are known to be from Montgomery County. Of the original twenty-three men, eleven would not survive the war. Several other men could not serve out their three year enlistments because of wounds or disease, a sad testament to the hard service the 38th Regiment performed. Also included are four recruits who enlisted in 1864, two of them would die of disease.
The 38th saw major action at Perryville, KY., Stones River, TN., Chickamauga, GA., Chattanooga, TN. and the Atlanta Campagin. It was also involved in Sherma's "March to the Sea" and the march north through the Carolians. It has the honor of being listed as one of "Fox's Fighting 300 Union Regiments" from the Civil War.

David H. Patton - Waveland, Indiana Mustered Sept. 18, 1861, Enlisted as a Corporal, Mustered out as Colonel of the 38th IND., 1865

Joseph E. Sterrett - Waveland, Indiana Mustered Dec. 5, 1861, Enlisted as a private, Mustered out as Second Lieutenant of Company "H"

Samuel W. Sterrett - Waveland, Indiana Mustered Sept, 18, 1861, Killed at the battle of Perryville, Kentucky October 8, 1862

John C. Bush - Waveland, Indiana Mustered Sept. 18, 1861, Discharged 1863, disability

Alexander Buchanan - Montgomery County Mustered Oct. 4, 1861, Died of wounds 1863, no specific date given

Robert H. Canine - Waveland, Indiana Mustered Oct. 4, 1861, Discharge 1863, disability

William G. Canine - Crawfordsville, Indiana Mustered Oct. 4, 1861, Died 1863 of disease

John Cassady - Montgomery County Mustered Sept. 18, 1861, Wounded Sept. 1, 1864 battle of Jonesboro, Georgia, Died Sept. 2, 1864

William S. Demaree - Montgomery County Mustered Oct. 4, 1861, Discharged 1863, disability

Charles E. Fowler - Montgomery County Mustered Sept. 18, 1861, Killed in Georgia, August 26, 1864, Buried Marietta Georgia National Cemetery

John T. Hanna - Montgomery County Mustered Oct. 4, 1861, Died in Kentucky Feb. 13, 1862, disease

Joseph L. Logan - Montgomery County Mustered Sept. 18, 1861, Mustered out as Corporal Sept. 17, 1864

John L. Martin - Crawfordsville, Indiana Mustered Sept. 18, 1861, Veteran, promoted to Captain of Company A

John W. McDaniel - Waveland, Indiana Mustered Sept. 18, 1861, Killed at battle of Perryville, Kentucky October 8, 1862

John W. Milligan - Waveland, Indiana Mustered Oct. 4, 1861, Mustered out 1864

Thomas Noon - Montgomery County Mustered Sept. 18, 1861, Died Nashville, Tennessee September 2, 1863

John W. Randolph - Montgomery County Mustered Oct. 4, 1861, Discharged, date not stated, wounds
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William J. Richards - Montgomery County Mustered Sept. 18, 1861; Commissioned 2nd Lt., 81st Ind. Inf. Co. "H"

William Riley - Montgomery County Mustered Sept. 18, 1861, Killed battle of Chickamauga, Georgia Sept. 19, 1863

James M. Steele - Montgomery County Mustered Sept. 18, 1861Mustered out Sept. 12, 1864

Lorenzo D. Stone - Montgomery County Mustered Sept. 18, 1861, Mustered out Sept. 17, 1864

Columbus W. Veatch - Montgomery County Mustered Sept. 18, 1861, Died in an explosion on the Steamer Sultana April 27, 1865

James H. Wells - Montgomery County Mustered Sept. 18, 1861, Killed, no date given
Recruits

George Couchland - Waveland, Indiana Mustered Oct. 20, 1864, Mustered out July 15, 1865

Joseph A. Patton - Waveland, Indiana Mustered Jan. 14, 1864, Promoted to the U.S. Colored Troops, declined

Luther H. Patton - Waveland, Indiana Mustered Oct. 20, 1864, Died of disease at Chattanooga Tennessee Feb. 20, 1865

Chauncy Richardson - Waveland, Indiana Mustered Oct. 20, 1864, Died of disease at Beaufort, South Carolina May 5, 1865

From the History of the Thirty-Eighth Indiana Infantry

Colonel David H. Patton

Colonel David H. Patton was born in Flemingsburg, Ky., Nov. 26, 1837, and was mustered into the service of the United States as a Corporal of Company H, Thirty-Eighth Indiana Volunteers, September 18th, 1861.
At the battle of Perryville Ky., he was one of the famous color guard that lost nearly all its numbers, and was himself slightly wounded. He was promoted and mustered as First Lieutenant, same company, June 5th, 1864; Captain Sept. 6, 1864; Lieutenant Colonel, May 5th, 1865, and Colonel, May 26th, 1865.
Colonel Patton, at the time of his enlistment, was a student of medicine. He was of robust constitution, and was one of few who took part in every battle and skirmish in which the regiment was engaged. He was modest and unassuming, devoted to duty, and acted well his part in every position which he was called upon to fill, from Corporal to Colonel.
He was mustered out with the regiment at Indianapolis, July 15th, 1865. On the 25th of September, 1867, he was united in marriage to Miss Clara Bennett. They have three children: Miss Fannie Ramsay, Miss Alice Patton and Luther Patton.
Colonel Patton served one term as Congressman from a district in northern Indiana, and served as Receiver of United States Land Office from September, 1893, to September, 1897.
He now resides in Woodland, O.T., and is engaged in the cattle business.

Joseph E. Sterrett

Joseph E. Sterrett was born in Juniata County, Pennsylvania, November 7, 1842, and mustered into service as a private in Company H, December 5, 1861; promoted to Third Sergeant, April 1, 1865; regimental Commissary Sergeant, June 1, 1865; and commissioned Second Lieutenant same date. Comrade Sterrett was a veteran and took part in every engagement of the regiment. He was wounded at the battle of Jonesborough, Georgia.
He married Miss Amanda J. Little, May 6, 1869. Their children are Anna V., and Elsie I. Sterrett. Comrade Sterrett is a physician and resides in Logansport, Indiana.

"How Soldiers Were Made" by Colonel Benjamin F. Scribner

http://www.amazon.com/Soldiers-Were-Made-Benjamin-Scribner/dp/1885033141
38th Indiana Regimental History Online

Losses in Companies E & I; 15th Ind. Inf.


The Crawfordsville Daily Journal


Thursday, December 10, 1863


Losses in the 15th Indiana


“In the recent battles before Chattanooga, Company “E”, 15th Ind., which is composed principally of men from this county substained the following loss;
Killed – Sergeants Rob’t Gilbert, musket shot in heart; Fred Waltz, musket shot in breast; Solon Bower, musket shot in bowls; Private Wm. Emmerson, musket shot in head; Wm. R. Cank, musket shot in breast.
Wounded – Lieutenants, 1st Wm. M. Graham, slight, in bowls; 2nd Jas. T. Harvey, severely, in side; Corporals, Silas Cooley, severe, in leg; Wm. L. Hess, slight, in arm; Privates, Henry H. Mercer, severe;Wm. W. Campbell, slight, in hand; Wm. Hartman, slight, in shoulder; Albert Robinson, slight, in chest; J.C. Tyson, severe, in hand.
This company went into the fight with only 28 men; rank and file; and came out with a loss of just one-half – 5 killed and 9 wounded. The wounds of a majority of the boys, we are pleased to learn, were but slight. Lieutenant Graham is now in this city, and is doing well – his wound being in the left side and not at all serious.
We also subjoin a list of the killed and wounded of Company “I”, same regiment. This company, though recruited in and about Liberty, in this State, have many relatives and friends in our county:
Killed – W.D. Sering, 2nd Lieut., rifle ball in head; A. Crist, Sergeant, rifle ball in head; H.H. Orman, rifle ball in breast; W.J. Stanton, rifle ball in the breast.
Wounded – Sergeants, A.B. Cole, in neck, slight; Victor Miller, in the side, slight; G.B. Cliff, in head, severe; Corporals, A.H. Conover, in hand, severe; M.J. Salsan, in shoulder, slight; Henry Aldor, in foot, severe; Jas. Mullen, in thigh, severe; Privates, Isaac Allen, in thigh, severe; Moses Cory, in side, severe; John Dunton, in thigh, severe; A.J. Hiller, in nose, slight; J.B. Macy, in shoulder, severe; George Banks, in thigh, severe; S.J. Wylie, in left ankle, severe.”
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"First Flag on the Summit": History of the 15th Indiana Infantry in the Civil War

General Lew Wallace


History of Montgomery County, Indiana. Indianapolis: AW Bowen, 1913 (Indianapolis: AW Bowen, 1913) p. 561

Gen. Lew Wallace - There could be no more comprehensive history of a state than that which deals with the life-work of those who by their own endeavors and accomplishments have helped to give that state an eminent position among its sister commonwealths. It is a far cry from the humble rank held by Indiana in the field of literature in the days of "The Hoosier Schoolmaster" to the present proud position held by the Hoosier state as the literary center of America. Her masters of literature have included names which have become familiar in every town and hamlet of this country, and are not unknown in foreign countries. Edward Eggleston, David Biddle, Charles Major, Sarah Miller, Booth Tarkington, Meredith Nicholson, George Ade, James Whitcomb Riley and Lew Wallace comprise a galaxy of writers whose productions, in prose and verse, have reflected the highest honors on their state. Of these, none has contributed as much of a permanent character and acknowledged value as Gen. Lew Wallace, to the record of whose notable career the following lines are devoted. American history offers few examples of public men who have become really eminent in so many distinct fields of endeavor as General Wallace. Lawyer, soldier, tactician, diplomat and author - in each of these spheres of effort he exhibited qualities of the highest order and his deeds were those of definite accomplishment. He was a conqueror with both sword and pen, his achievements as a soldier, eminent as they were, being of no higher order than his attainment in literature. Not only his beloved Indiana, but the whole nation, reveres his name, which has been, by universal consent, placed high in the temple of fame.
Lew Wallace was the second in the order of birth of the four sons born to Governor David and Esther French ( TEST ) Wallace, his birth having occurred at Brookville, Franklin County, Indiana, on April 10, 1827. His paternal grandfather, Andrew Wallace, was from Fayette County, Pennsylvania, from which place he moved his family to Cincinnati, Ohio, and thence to Brookville, Indiana, where he kept a hotel and became a man of influence.David Wallace, father of the subject, went from this state as a cadet to West Point Military Academy, where in due time he was graduated and entered the regular army, where he served three years. He then studied law and, upon being admitted to the bar, began the active practice of that profession at Brookville, Indiana. He was well grounded in the principles of law and was a brilliant attorney. He was recognized as a man of unusual ability and was called into public life, serving successively as a member of the Legislature, twice as Lieutenant Governor, as Governor in 1837, and as a member of Congress from 1841 to 1845, two terms. After his retirement from Congress he served as judge of the court of common pleas with eminent ability. His death occurred in 1859, at the age of sixty years. Governor Wallace was twice married, his first wife, whose maiden name was Esther French Test, being a sister of the late Judge Charles Test and the daughter of Hon. John Test, a pioneer of Indiana and congressional representative from his state. Lew Wallace was a child of this marriage, being but six years old when his mother died. Two years later the father married Zeralda G. Sanders, of Millersburg, Kentucky. [added note: Zarelda's sister Jemima Sanders was 2nd wife to Richard Jordan Gatling, the inventor of the Gatling gun, steam powered tractor, and several tools for agriculture] To her wise counsel, loving care and strong will can be attributed much of her son's success in after life. She became his model of a loving, tender, helpful mother. Upon his first visit to her, after the publication of the book "Ben-Hur", he said, "Mother, what do you think of my book?" "Oh, it is a grand book, my son" said Mrs. Wallace. "Where did you get that beautiful character of the mother of Ben-Hur?" He answered, "Why, my dear mother, I thought of you every line while wrote it."Lew Wallace's maternal grandfather, John Test, was a native of Salem, New Jersey. He was a man of great ability, a Hicksite Quaker, and he and another Hicksite Quaker, Butler, were pioneers of Brookville, Indiana, in 1805. He was regarded as the best lawyer and scholar in the state, and he was foremost in progress in every line. He brought the first carding machinery to Franklin County and was instrumental in introducing other improvements for the benefit of the community. He was admitted to practice in 1811, and was the first congressman from Indiana. Scarcely a vestige remains of the old Test mansion, the home of a family which furnished as much good brain and ability to the making of the early history of Indiana as any other family of the state. John Test was the grandson of John Test, who came over in the good ship "Welcome" with William Penn, and whom Penn regarded as the bravest and best man in his colony, having him appointed high sheriff. Thus it is seen that from ancestral lines Lew Wallace inherited qualities of the highest order.Lew Wallace was largely self-educated, though he attended the common schools and became a student at Wabash College, but did not graduate. In his youth he began the study of law in his father's office, but the Mexican war disturbed his plans for a legal career and he left Covington as the second lieutenant of an Indiana company. He was promoted to first lieutenant and served through the war with great credit. At the conclusion of hostilities he returned home, resumed his studies and in due time was admitted to the bar. He entered upon the active practice of his profession in Covington, but in 1852 he removed to Crawfordsville, Montgomery County, where he maintained his home during the remainder of his life. He was elected a member of the state Senate, and served four years there to the entire satisfaction of his constituents, but he did not take kindly to a political life and had no further ambitions in that direction.At the breaking out of the great Southern rebellion Mr. Wallace was appointed adjutant general of the state of Indiana and entered actively upon the discharge of his duties, which at that time were unusually responsible. But to one of his active temperament and ardent patriotism such an office was not suited, and he determined to enter the active military service. He was commissioned colonel of the Eleventh Indiana Volunteer Infantry, with which command he served in West Virginia, participating in the capture of Romney and the ejection of the enemy from Harper's Ferry. On September 3, 1861, he was promoted to the rank of brigadier-general, commanded a division at Fort Donelson, and on March 21, 1862, he became a major-general. He was in command of a division at Shiloh and participated conspicuously in the events of that fated field. In 1863 General Wallace assisted in the defense of Cincinnati and saved that city from capture by the Confederate raider, Gen. Kirby Smith. Later he commanded the middle division of the Eight Army Corps, with headquarters at Baltimore, Maryland. With five thousand eight hundred men, he marched to the banks of the Monocacy and there offered battle to the overwhelming forces of Gen. Jubal A. Early, who, with twenty-eight thousand men, was marching triumphantly upon the national capital. On the afternoon of July 9th, near the railroad bridge that spans the Monocacy river near Frederic, Maryland, was fought one of the bloodiest engagements of the war, in proportion to the number of combatants. General Wallace was entrenched behind stone fences that stretched along the heights near the bridge and at right angles with the river. McCausland's cavalry, which led the vanguard of Early's army, crossed the stream and made a vigorous assault upon Wallace's lines, but, after a very spirited and bloody engagement, they were forced to retreat, taking up and holding a position in the rear. Soon thereafter a long line of infantry, famous as the "Stonewall Brigade", formerly made immortal by Jackson, now consolidated with other seasoned veterans into a division commanded by Gen. John C. Breckenridge, advanced on Wallace's main position and carried it. Though defeated, Wallace and his gallant troops had accomplished the important duty of delaying Early until reinforcements could reach Washington, thus saving the national capital.General Wallace was second member of the court that tried the assassins of President Lincoln, and was president of the court-martial that tried Henry Wirz, commander of the notorious Confederate prison at Andersonville, Georgia. At the close of the Civil war he was mustered out of the service with every official mark of honor. Later he represented the secret service branch of the United States, with the rank of brigadier-general, in the Mexican army. From 1878 to 1881 General Wallace served as territorial governor of New Mexico and from the latter date until 1885 he served as United States minister to Turkey. Upon returning home, he retired to Crawfordsville and engaged in literary work up to the time of his death, which occurred on February 15, 1905.Of all the honors achieved by General Wallace, his greatest fame will rest on the productions of his pen, the most enduring of which is the book "Ben-Hur, a tale of the Christ," which has been translated into every civilized tongue and has had the greatest circulation of any book in the English language, save "Uncle Tom's Cabin" and Macaulay's "History of England," having been read on the banks of the Mississippi, as well as on the banks of the Thames and Nile, and doubtless will be read by all peoples of all lands to the end of time. The spiritual power of "Ben-Hur" goes unchallenged, and it is significant that many have been won to the Christian life by the reading of "Ben-Hur." It was accepted into the homes of the luxurious, indifferent and self-satisfied; men following the paths of pleasure and immersed in business; women, wearied with social successes, read the book and wept over it, and, as insensibly and certainly as the author, yielded to the story of the Christ.General Wallace's first literary production, "The Fair God," appeared in 1873; "Ben-Hur" in 1880; "Life of General Benjamin Harrison" in 1888; "Boyhood Christ" in 1889; "Prince of India" in 1893; "The Wooing of Malkatoon" and, later, his "Autobiography," in two volumes. Few people can understand the great amount of study, research and careful analysis ofhistorical facts required for the production of these great historical novels. The late Bishop Newman, LL.D., of the Methodist Episcopal Church, paid Mr. Wallace a great compliment when he said the General, in his wonderful description of the crucifixion of our Saviour {sic}, gave the impression that he must have been an eye-witness. In writing his "The Fair God," he was obliged to learn the Spanish and Mexican languages, and his "Prince of India" as by far the most difficult of all.In 1852 General Wallace was united in marriage with Susan Arnold ELSTON, a native of Crawfordsville, a writer of marked ability and a gentlewoman in the highest sense of the word. Though his busy life brought General Wallace in close touch with many great and prominent men, he enjoyed most the quiet of his home life, where, with his wife of his youth, who was so much to him in his labors and ambitions, he passed his declining years. Her death occurred on October 1, 1907, more than two years after the passing of her distinguished husband. One child was born to them, Henry Lane Wallace, now a resident of Indianapolis. General Wallace was an appreciative member of McPherson Post No. 7, Grand Army of the Republic, at Crawfordsville.