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57th Pennsylvania Infantry

Online Books
57th Pennsylvania Infantry Soldier Roster - History of Pennsylvania Volunteers, 1861-5, Volume 2 by Samuel P Bates, 1869     View Entire Book

Regimental History
Fifty-seventh Infantry. Cols., William Maxwell, Charles T. Campbell, Peter Sides, George Zinn ; Lieut.-Cols., Elhannan W. Woods, Peter Sides, T. S. Strohecker, William B. Neeper, L. D. Bumpus, George W. Perkins; Majs., Jeremiah Culp, S. C. Simonton, William B. Neeper, Samuel Bryan. The 57th regiment was recruited in the autumn of 1861, principally in the counties of Mercer, Crawford and Venango, though some came from Tioga, Bradford, Susquehanna and Wyoming counties. Co. K was originally recruited at Titusville as an independent company of sharpshooters, but was not accepted by the government. The regiment rendezvoused by companies and squads at Camp Curtin and was slowly mustered into service during September, October and November for three years. It left the state for Washington on Dec. 14, 1861 ; went into camp on the Bladensburg pike until Feb., 1862; then moved to Fort Lyon below Alexandria, where it was assigned to the 1st brigade (Gen. Jameson), 1st division (Gen. Kearny), 3d corps (Gen. Heintzelman), and moved with the army in April upon the Peninsular campaign. From the beginning at Camp Curtin, the 57th had suffered much from sickness ; its camp at Washington was on low, wet ground ; at the siege of Yorktown it labored for a month in trenches and on picket amid the malaria of the swamps and marshes ; and in a very debilitated condition took part in the battle of Williamsburg. The long, hard campaign which followed greatly reduced the regiment, so that when it reached Harrison's landing on July 2, it was without a field officer, had only a few line officers, and only 56 effective men, out of upwards of 1,000 who had started three months before. It had been active at Fair Oaks, where it lost 11 killed and 49 wounded, Maj. Culp being killed, Capt. Chase mortally and Col. Campbell severely wounded. It was in reserve at Savage Station, but was active at Charles City cross-roads, losing 7 killed and 56 wounded, Maj. Simonton and Lieut. Morse being among the wounded. Its conduct in this fight elicited high praise from Gen. Kearny, and on the following day it was again heavily engaged for a short time at Malvern hill, losing 2 killed and 8 wounded. Lieut.-Col. Woods left the regiment here on account of sickness and was shortly afterwards honorably discharged. Soon after the close of this campaign the ranks of the 57th were again filled by returning convalescents and recruits. It shared in the ensuing campaign under Pope, attached to Gen. Birney's brigade; suffered a small loss at the second Bull Run ; was present, but not active at Chantilly, where four companies from the 57th were detailed to bring into the Union lines the body of the gallant Kearny, who fell in the fight. The regiment was posted at Conrad's ferry for a month and on Oct. 10 Col. Campbell resumed command. On Nov. 25 it went into winter quarters at Falmouth ; was active at the battle of Fredericksburg, losing 21 killed, 76 wounded and 78 missing out of 316 men in action. Col. Campbell was again wounded in this action. The command now returned to its old quarters, and in March was assigned to the 1st brigade (Gen. Graham), 1st division (Gen. Birney), 3d corps (Gen. Sickles), and on April 28 moved on the Chancellorsville campaign. Its loss at Chancellorsville was 13 killed, 48 wounded and 23 missing. On June 11, it started on the Gettysburg campaign, where it was heavily engaged, with a loss of 12 killed, 45 wounded and 47 missing, Col. Sides being among the wounded and Maj. Neeper among the captured. During the balance of the year it was active at Auburn creek, Kelly's ford, and Locust Grove and went into winter quarters near Culpeper. More than two-thirds of the regiment reenlisted about this time and went home on veteran furlough on Jan. 8, 1864, returning after 49 days with a large number of recruits. Assigned to the 2nd brigade (Gen. Hays), 3d division (Gen. Birney), 2nd corps (Gen. Hancock), it started on the Wilderness campaign and participated in all the fierce fighting up to Petersburg, losing heavily at the Wilderness, Spottsylvania, the North Anna river and Cold Harbor. It shared in the first assault on the enemy's works at Petersburg, and in the general work of the siege during the summer and early autumn. It was posted on the Jerusalem plank road in October ; skirmished at Hatcher's run ; later shared with its corps in driving back Mahone's division ; and shared without loss in the raid on the Weldon railroad in December. By reason of its losses, it was consolidated into a battalion of six companies on Jan. 11, 1865, and united with the 84th Pa. infantry a few days later, Lieut.-Col. Zinn of the 84th, becoming colonel. It engaged without loss in the movement to Hatcher's run in February; was conspicuous for its gallantry in the assault on the enemy's works near Watkins' house in March, capturing over 100 prisoners ; shared in the subsequent operations leading up to the evacuation of Petersburg and Richmond and the surrender of Lee; was active at Sailor's creek and was within a mile of Appomattox Court House when the news of the surrender was received. Moving thence to Burkesville, it encamped there until May and was mustered out at Alexandria on June 29. Its record proves it to have been essentially a fighting regiment.

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

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