Primary Source Material
on the Soldiers and the Battles
Home The Armies The Soldiers The Battles Civilians Articles
If this website has been useful to you, please consider making a Donation.

Your support will help keep this website free for everyone, and will allow us to do more research. Thank you for your support!

20th Massachusetts Infantry
in the Civil War

Regimental History
Twentieth Infantry. — Cols., William R. Lee, Francis W. Palfrey, Paul J. Revere, George N. Macy; Lieut.-Cols., Francis W. Palfrey, Ferdinand Dreher, George N. Macy, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., Arthur R. Curtis, Rufus P. Lincoln; Majs., Paul J. Revere, Ferdinand Dreher, George N. Macy, Allen Shepard, Henry L. Abbott, Arthur R. Curtis, Henry L. Patten, William F. Perkins, John Keliher, Mason W. Tyler. This regiment was mustered into the U. S. service at Readville in July and Aug., 1861, and was mustered out at Washington July 15, 1865. The total strength of the regiment was 2,550 and its death losses numbered 352. It left the state for Washington, Sept. 4, 1861, and was encamped near Edwards' ferry until the battle of Ball's bluff, its first engagement. During the next summer the regiment saw much hard service. It was in action before Yorktown, at West Point, Fair Oaks, Peach Orchard, Savage Station, Glendale and Malvern hill. At Antietam its losses were heavy, and before Fredericksburg it helped to clear the way for the passage of the army across the river. On Jan. 25, 1863, it went into camp at Falmouth and remained there till the beginning of Chancellorsville movement. The next important battle was Gettysburg and then followed an encounter at Bristoe Station, Va., and the Mine Run campaign, with winter quarters at Stevensburg. On May 3, 1864, it left camp with the rest of the army for the Wilderness battle-field, where it was again in action, followed by the many engagements of that spring, the campaign culminating in the battle of Cold Harbor. The repeated losses had left but few of the regiment in active service, and at Reams' station, Aug. 25, the remaining men were nearly all captured. Reinforcements and recruits enabled the regiment to keep its organization, however, and after several sharp encounters near Hatcher's run it went into winter quarters near Fort Emory. The year of 1865 was not so disastrous as the preceding and, though it encountered the enemy at several places near Petersburg, the losses were not great. After participating in the grand review at Washington the regiment was ordered home, having for four years performed most important services for the Union.

Regimental history taken from "The Union Army" by Federal Publishing Company, 1908 - Volume 1

Whats New
About Us


Copyright 2010 by
A Division of