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125th Illinois Infantry
in the American Civil War
125th Illinois Infantry Soldier Roster - Report of the Adjutant
General of the State of Illinois, Volume 6, Revised by Brigadier General J.N.
Reece, Adjutant General, 1900
|One Hundred and Twenty-fifth Illinois Infantry. — Col., Oscar F.
Harmon; Lieut -Col., James W. Langley; Maj., John B. Lee. This regiment
was formed of good war material, mainly drawn from the rural precincts
of Vermillion and Champaign counties, with a sprinkling of mechanics,
professional and laboring men and clerks from the towns, practically all
of whom could read and write, so that the war and its possible
requirements were well comprehended by them before enlistment. A brief
rendezvous at Danville, the muster-in Sept. 3, 1862, the equipment, the
sad farewells, and the command moved to Cincinnati, thence across the
Ohio to the heights above Covington on the "neutral" ground of Kentucky,
where it relieved a provisional regiment of "squirrel hunters."
Excepting a slight taste of war at the battle of Perryville, the
regiment was not actually engaged in conflict until at the battle of
Chickamauga, where it was under fire all of the afternoon on the second
day, and also the following day at Rossville gap. Crossing the Tennessee
on Sherman's pontoons, the regiment engaged in the battle of Missionary
ridge. At the battle of Kennesaw mountain its loss was 120 killed and
wounded in the short space of 20 minutes, nearly half of whom, including
5 officers, were killed outright, and 4 officers were wounded. On July
18 the regiment crossed the Chattahoochee on pontoon at Pace's ferry,
advanced with strong skirmishing to Peachtree creek, where in a spirited
charge at dusk it drove the enemy from a commanding height, and from
this point on through the siege of Atlanta until the signal victory at
Jonesboro, the regiment was practically under fire every hour, at the
latter place being the center and guide regiment in the assault. The
regiment marched with Sherman to the sea, and up through the Carolinas.
In North Carolina its progress was checked at Averasboro and stubbornly
resisted at Bentonville. The fighting at the latter place was very
severe, a full share of which fell on the regiment, when it not only
well sustained its past reputation for courage, but justly added new
laurels to its victorious crown. A peaceful "on to Richmond" from the
south, then to Washington, the grand review, and the muster out on June
9, 1865, were the closing scenes in the regiment's part of the great
Regimental history taken from "The Union Army" by Federal Publishing
Company, 1908 - Volume 3