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13th Illinois Infantry
in the American Civil War

Online Books:
13th Illinois Infantry Soldier Roster - Report of the Adjutant General of the State of Illinois, Volume 1, Revised by Brigadier General J.N. Reece, Adjutant General, 1900       View Entire Book

Regimental History
Thirteenth Illinois Infantry. Cols., John B. Wyman, Adam B. Gorgas; Lieut.-Cols., Benjamin F. Parks, Adam B. Gorgas, Frederick W. Partridge; Majs., Frederick W. Partridge, Douglas R. Bushnell, James M. Beardsley. The 13th infantry was one of the regiments organized under the act known as the "Ten Regiment Bill." It was composed of companies as follows : I from Cook county, H from Kane county, K from Du Page county, E and F from DeKalb county, A and C from Lee county, B and G from Whiteside county, and D from Rock Island county. The regiment was mustered into the state service on April 21, and into the U. S. service on May 24, 1861, at Camp Dement, Dixon, Ill., for three years or during the war. It was the first regiment organized from the then 2nd Congressional district of the state and was composed of as good citizens as northern Illinois contained, many that enlisted as privates rising to field officers in later regiments. Its colonel, John B. Wyman, organized and commanded the "Chicago Light Guards," the first crack corps the Garden City ever had, and he soon brought the 13th to a degree in proficiency in drill and soldierly deportment that was never excelled by any regiment with which it was afterward associated. On June 16 it was ordered to Caseyville, Ill., 10 miles east of St. Louis, and on July 5 it passed through St. Louis to Rolla, Mo., where it remained until the spring of 1862. It was a part of Gen. Sherman's army in his attack upon Chickasaw bluffs and from that time on was a part of the noted 15th army corps, commanded so long by Gen. Sherman in person. In the second day's fight at Chickasaw bluffs the regiment was a part of Gen. F. P. Blair's brigade that distinguished itself by approaching nearer to the Confederate works than any other command in that part of the field. The losses to the regiment on that day were 183 in killed and wounded. It was present at the capture of Arkansas Post, after which it returned to Young's point opposite Vicksburg. While there, Gen. Steele's division, of which the 13th was a part, made a very successful raid to Greenville, Miss., and up Deer creek, driving the Confederates out of that region and destroying an immense quantity of corn intended for the Confederate garrison at Vicksburg. It was with Gen. Grant's army that crossed the Mississippi at Grand Gulf below Vicksburg, participated in several of the battles in the rear of Vicksburg and in the capture of Jackson, and was with Gen. Sherman's corps on the right of the army during the siege of Vicksburg. It was with Gen. Steele's division in the fruitless assault on the Confederate works in May, when it suffered severely. It was present at the second capture of Jackson and moved still further east to Brandon, where the pursuit of Gen. Johnston ended, when with the remainder of the command the regiment returned to the Black river and went into camp. It marched from Memphis to Chattanooga, the journey being a continuous light, as the Confederates tried every way in their power to prevent Sherman from joining Grant's army. It was with Gen. Osterhaus' division, temporarily attached to Gen. Hooker's command at the battle of Missionary ridge, where the regiment captured 2,500 prisoners, then followed the retreating forces to Rossville, where the enemy was overtaken and a severe skirmish ensued. From there the Confederates were driven to Ringgold gap, where they massed their batteries to protect their retreat. Osterhaus' division formed in line of battle, the 13th being directly in front of the gap and the masked batteries. The regiment and division held their ground till their ammunition gave out, and were finally relieved by the 14th army corps. The losses of the regiment in this battle were 67. The term of enlistment being so nearly expired it was not taken on the march to the sea, but was left to guard the communications in the rear. On June 18, 1864, it was mustered out at Springfield, Ill., having served three years and two months.

Footnotes:
Regimental history taken from "The Union Army" by Federal Publishing Company, 1908 - Volume 3

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