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85th New York
Roster - Annual Report of the Adjutant General of the State of New York For the Year
1893, Volume 30 View the Entire Book
|Eighty-fifth New York Infantry. Cols., Uriah L. Davis, Robert B. Van
Valkenburgh, Jonathan S. Belknap, Eurice Fardella, William W. Clark; Lieut. -Cols.,
Jonathan S. Belknap, Abijah I. Wellman, William W. Clark, Seneca Allen; Majs., Abijah J.
Wellman, Reuben V. King, Walter Crandall, Chauncey S. Aldrich. This regiment, recruited in
the southern part of the state, was mustered into the U. S. service at Elmira, from Aug.
to Dec, 1861, for a three years' term, and left for Washington on Dec. 3. It served in the
defenses of Washington until the advance of the army to the Peninsula in March, 1862, when
it was assigned to the 3d brigade, 2nd division, 4th corps. It performed trench duty
before Yorktown and other duties incident to the siege, was active at the battle of
Williamsburg and was closely engaged at Fair Oaks, where its total loss was 79 in killed,
wounded and missing. Upon the return from the Peninsula, the regiment was stationed at
Newport News and late in the autumn moved to Suffolk, where it was assigned in Dec, 1862,
to the 1st brigade, 1st division, Department of North Carolina, and ordered to New Berne.
There it took part in the Goldsboro expedition, and in Jan., 1863, became a part of the
1st brigade, 4th division, 18th corps, in the summer of 1863 it was located in the
District of Albemarle and undertook various expeditions into the surrounding country,
meeting the enemy in several minor encounters. In Jan., 1864, the 85th was assigned to the
3d brigade, 1st division, 18th corps, and ordered to Plymouth, N. C., where in April, it
was obliged to surrender to a superior force of the enemy, almost the entire regiment
being captured. As a result of this disaster the loss of life in Southern prisons was
appalling 222 deaths during imprisonment being reported. The remnant of the
regiment received by transfer the members of the 16th N. Y. cavalry and having previously
reenlisted, served throughout the war as the 85th regiment. It was posted at Roanoke
island and was active in the Carolina campaign in March, 1865, after which it performed
garrison duty at New Berne until June 27, 1865, when it was mustered out in that city.
During its term of service the command lost 36 members by death from wounds, 103 from
accident or disease, and the 222 who died in prison.
Regimental history taken from "The Union Army" by Federal Publishing
Company, 1908 - Volume 2