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21st Michigan Infantry
in the American Civil War
|Twenty-first Michigan Infantry. — Cols., Ambrose A.
Stevens, William H. McCreery; Lieut. -Cols., William L. Whipple, Morris
B. Wells, Loomis K. Bishop; Majs., Isaac Hunting, Seymour Chase, Benton
D. Fox. This regiment was organized at Ionia and was mustered in Sept.
4, 1862. It left the state Sept. 12, reported at Cincinnati, was sent to
Louisville, entered upon the march through Kentucky, and was in the
battle of Perryville, rendering efficient service. It reached Nashville
Nov. 12, and joined the advance towards Murfreesboro, being engaged at
Lavergne, Stewart's creek and at Stone's river, where it lost 17 killed,
85 wounded and 37 missing. It was with Sill's brigade, Sheridan's
division, which blocked the enemy and saved the army. It remained on
picket and guard duty at Murfreesboro until June, when it moved to
Tullahoma, and was afterward stationed at Cowan, Anderson's station and
Bridgeport. On Sept. 2, it advanced into Georgia, participated in the
battle of Chickamauga, with the same brigade as at Stone's river, and
was in the hottest of the fight after the breaking of the line by
Longstreet. Sheridan's division was forced back, but in good order, and
by a charge drove the enemy back and regained its position. Being
unsupported, it was again driven back, the 21st losing 11 killed, 58
wounded, 35 missing and 3 prisoners. It was detached to form part of the
engineer brigade and was engaged in that work during the engagement at
Missionary ridge. It was stationed near Chattanooga until June, 1864,
building a bridge and erecting storehouses. On June 11 it was ordered to
Lookout mountain, engaging in building hospitals, running mills, and on
picket duty. It was relieved from engineer duty in September and joined
Rousseau's forces in pursuit of Forrest into Alabama. It was ordered to
Chattanooga, and Dalton, Ga., in October, and received orders on Nov. 1
to join the 2nd brigade, 1st division, 14th army corps, for the march to
the sea. It moved to Milledgeville, then toward Augusta, but changed its
course and marched to Savannah, where the regiment was in the trenches
on short rations and without covering until Dec. 18. After the
evacuation it refitted for the Carolina campaign, proceeded to Sister's
ferry, where it crossed the Savannah river Feb. 5, was in the engagement
at Averasboro, and was heavily engaged at Bentonville, losing 92
officers and men killed and wounded out of 230. It reached Goldsboro on
March 25, after a 64 days' march, with an issue of but 12 days' rations.
It moved to Haywood, where it remained until Johnston's surrender and
then marched to Richmond, 280 miles, in less than 8 days. It
participated in the grand review at Washington and was mustered out June
8, 1865. Its original strength was 1,108: gain by recruits 369; total
1,477. Loss by death, 368.
Regimental history taken from "The Union Army" by Federal Publishing
Company, 1908 - Volume 3
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