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51st Indiana Infantry
in the American Civil War

Online Books:
51st Indiana Infantry Officer Roster - Report of the Adjutant General of the State of Indiana, Volume 2, by W.H.H. Terrell, Adjutant General, Indiana, 1865 View Entire Book
51st Indiana Infantry Soldier Roster - Report of the Adjutant General of the State of Indiana, Volume 5, by W.H.H. Terrell, Adjutant General, Indiana, 1866 View Entire Book

Regimental History
Fifty-first Indiana Infantry.— Cols., Abel D. Streight, David A. McHolland, William N. Dunny; Lieut. -Cols., Benjamin J. Spooner, William H. Colescott, James W. Sheets, David A. McHolland, William N. Dunny, William W. Scearce; Majs., William H. Colescott, Clark Willis, David A. McHolland, William N. Dunny, William W. Scearce. This regiment was organized at Indianapolis in the fall of 1861 and was mustered in Dec. 14. It moved at once to Bardstown, Ky., and with Buell's army in Feb., 1862, towards Nashville, reaching the Tennessee river too late to participate in the battle of Shiloh. It took an active part in the siege of Corinth and moved from there with Wood's division of the Army of the Ohio through Alabama, Tennessee and Kentucky. It moved for Murfreesboro in December and participated in the three days' battle at Stone's river, losing 5 killed, 36 wounded, and 8 missing. It remained near Murfreesboro until April, 1863, when it joined a force under Col. Streight for a raid in the rear of Bragg's army at Tullahoma. It was attacked by Forrest's cavalry at Day's gap, but defeated the enemy, losing 31 killed and wounded, Lieut. -Col. Sheets being mortally wounded. It was in a fight at Crooked creek, where it again repulsed the enemy, and administered a third defeat near Gadsden, Ala. The following day, while hastening towards Rome, Ga., the expedition was overtaken near Gaylesville, Ala., by Forrest's command and was compelled to surrender, the entire force being consigned to rebel prisons, where they were held for some time. Upon being paroled, the enlisted men went into camp at Indianapolis until exchanged in November. The officers were treated with great severity. Col. Streight escaped from Libby prison in Feb., 1864, by means of a tunnel. The regiment joined the army at Nashville in November and was assigned to the duty of guarding the communications between Nashville and Chattanooga. It was sent into eastern Tennessee and in the winter of 1863 a portion of the regiment reenlisted and was sent home on furlough in March. The regiment was on duty at Chattanooga during the summer of 1864, going to Atlanta after its occupation, and with the 1st brigade, 3d division, 4th corps, took part in the campaign against Hood in Tennessee. The regiment participated in the battle of Nashville, Dec. 15, and then joined in the pursuit of Hood to Huntsville, Ala., remaining there until March, 1865, when it moved into east Tennessee. It returned to Nashville about May 1, where a number of recruits, remaining in service after the muster-out of the 79th regiment, were transferred to the 51st. The regiment was sent to Texas in June, and was mustered out Dec. 13, 1865, the non-veterans having been mustered out Dec. 14, 1864. Original strength, 939; gain by recruits, 723; reenlistments, 295; total, 1,957. Loss by death, 266; desertion 130; unaccounted for, 51.

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

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