In the American Civil War, Ohio provided the federal government with 260 regiments of men, including infantry, artillery, and cavalry units. Ohioans also served in several other regiments from other states, most notably from Kentucky, West Virginia, and Massachusetts, as well as in federal units.
In the American Civil War, Ohio provided the federal government with 260 regiments of men, including infantry, artillery, and cavalry units. Ohioans also served in several other regiments from other states, most notably from Kentucky, West Virginia, and Massachusetts, as well as in federal units. Almost 330,000 Ohio men, including 5,092 African Americans, served in the Union military during the conflict.
Infantry regiments formed in Ohio became known as regiments of Ohio Volunteer Infantry. They served for varying lengths of time, averaging one hundred days to three years.On August 25, 1862, the 107th Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry organized at Camp Taylor, at Cleveland, Ohio. The men in the 107th were to serve for three years, and most enlistees were German Americans.
In late September 1862, the 107th moved to Covington, Kentucky, to help defend Cincinnati, Ohio from an expected attack by General Kirby Smith's Confederate force. The attack did not occur, and after staying at Covington for approximately one week, the regiment moved to Delaware, Ohio. The organization soon boarded train cars and traveled to Washington, DC, where the 107th helped construct fortifications. In early November 1862, the regiment moved to Fairfax Court House, Virginia, remaining at this location for two weeks before marching to Stafford Court House, Virginia. At Stafford Court House, officials placed the 107th in the 2nd Brigade, 1st Division, 11th Army Corps. Following the Union Army of the Potomac's defeat at the Battle of Fredericksburg, Virginia (December 11 to 15, 1862), the 107th left Stafford Court House and participated in a march designed to flank the victorious Confederate Army of Northern Virginia. Known as the "Mud March," Union officials cancelled the movement due to virtually impassable muddy roads. The 107th then entered winter quarters at Brooke's Station, Virginia.
On April 29, 1863, the Army of the Potomac, including the 107th, crossed the Rappahannock River and moved to Chancellorsville, Virginia, where the Battle of Chancellorsville occurred (April 30 to May 6, 1863). The 107th was among the first units to come under attack in Confederate General Thomas Jackson's flanking movement. In this battle, the 107th had 220 soldiers killed, wounded, or captured. After this engagement, the commanding officer of the 107th issued the following report:
CAMP NEAR BROOKE'S STATION, VA., May 9, 1863.
SIR: In compliance with orders, I hereby subjoin a brief statement of the part taken in the engagement of the 2d instant by the One hundred and seventh Ohio Volunteer Infantry.
At the commencement of the action, the One hundred and seventh consisted of eight companies, Companies D and F having previously been ordered forward as skirmishers. The regiment was posted on the left of the Second Brigade, First Division, the Fifty-fifth Ohio Volunteer Infantry on its immediate right and the Seventeenth Connecticut Volunteers on its immediate left. It was deployed in the trenches, which had been erected in the rear of and facing the open space between the frame house and the woods, and running parallel with the road. For several minutes the regiment could not see the enemy, and consequently had to reserve its fire, while at the same time a heavy enfilading fire of bomb shells, grape, and canister, and a brisk musketry fire from the woods in front, was thinning its ranks. Notwithstanding the regiment being thus brought between a deadly cross fire without being able to reply, it remained firm in the trenches until a portion of the battery posted on the extreme right of the First Brigade came down the road in full flight.
At that moment the center of the right wing attempted to break, whereupon it was promptly rallied by Col. Meyer, myself, and Adjutant Koch, and ordered back to the trenches. The enemy, in an oblique line, could now be seen approaching in heavy columns. The regiment immediately commenced firing, and had fired about 5 rounds (left companies more), when the regiments on the right of the One hundred and seventh began to break and come down upon it in confusion and disorder.
The One hundred and seventh necessarily joined the retreat, and continued the same until it arrived at the second line of trenches. Here it was rallied, and again opened fire, firing about 6 rounds (some companies more), when the retreat commenced anew and became general. The One hundred and seventh was swept along with the current, but shortly after assembled about half a mile in the rear of the then headquarters of Gen. Hooker, where a portion of the Eleventh Corps was forming.
With this portion of the corps the regiment marched to the meadow situated in front of the then headquarters of Gen. Hooker, and in rear of the main battle-field, where the battle still was raging. There the regiment rested on its arms all night, ready for action at a moment's warning. I was then in command, Col. Meyer having been wounded early in the engagement.
Although the result of the first engagement of this regiment has not been what one would desire it to be, yet I cannot refrain from stating that the regiment behaved well. Officers and men stood like veterans, i.e., as long as a stand could be made against the overwhelming numbers and the early fire pouring in upon the flank and front of the regiment.
Many a deed of coolness and bravery I had occasion to witness.
Many of the men on the retreat filled their cartridge-boxes out of the boxes of the dead, and many fired as often as twenty times.
The report of the killed, wounded, and missing has been sent in. Respectfully, &c.
Lieut. Col., Cmdg. One hundred and seventh Ohio Vol. Inft.
ACTING ASSISTANT ADJUTANT-GEN.,
Second Brigade, First Division, Eleventh Army Corps.
On May 6, the 107th returned to Brooke's Station.
The Confederate victory at Chancellorsville permitted Southern General Robert E. Lee to launch his second invasion of the North, which culminated in the Battle of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania (July 1 to 3, 1863). Leaving Brooke's Station on June 12, 1863, the 107th participated in the Union's pursuit of Lee's Army of Northern Virginia, marching through Catlett's Station, Virginia, Manassas Junction, Virginia, Centerville, Virginia, Frederick, Maryland, and Emmitsburg, Maryland. The 107th arrived at Gettysburg on July 1–one of the first Union infantry regiments to engage the Confederates in this battle. On the engagement's first day, Southern forces drove the regiment through Gettysburg, with the 107th establishing a new line on Cemetery Hill. A part of the Union right, the regiment repulsed a Confederate charge late on the battle's second day and only participated in light skirmishes the final day. Over the course of this three day battle, the 107th had approximately four hundred of its 550 members available for duty killed, wounded, or captured. After this engagement, the commanding officer of the 107th issued the following report:
In the Field, near Gettysburg, Pa., July 4, 1863.
Sir: The following is the report of the part this regiment has taken in the action of July 1, 2, and 3:
The regiment arrived at Gettysburg, Pa., at about 1 p. m. July 1, and at about 2 p. m. marched through the town to the front, and engaged the enemy about half a mile north of the town.
The engagement lasted until about 4 p. m., during which time the regiment, being exposed to a heavy fire of artillery and musketry, suffered heavily in killed and wounded. The enemy appearing in heavy force, the regiment was ordered to the south end of the town, where it was posted behind a board fence, holding this position until 7 p. m. July 2, during which time heavy skirmishing was going on between the regiment and the enemy's sharpshooters.
At about 7 p. m. the enemy appeared in force. We fought them, retiring at the same time behind a stone wall and in front of a battery, at which the enemy made a desperate charge upon us, but without success. They were repulsed with great loss. It was at this point the regiment captured a stand of colors from the Eighth Louisiana Tigers. The engagement lasted about one hour and a half, after which the regiment retired for the night.
On July 3, the regiment was posted in front of the batteries, doing duty as skirmishers.
JOHN M. LUTZ,
Capt., Comdg. 107th Ohio Volunteers.
Comdg. Second Brigade, First Division.
Following the Battle of Gettysburg, the 107th engaged in the Union pursuit of the retreating Confederates, marching via Hagerstown, Maryland to Catlett's Station.
On August 1, 1863, the 107th sailed to Folly Island, South Carolina, where the organization performed picket duty until January 1864. That month, the regiment advanced to Seabrook Island, driving the Confederates from this location. The 107th returned to Folly Island, remaining here until February 7, 1864, when the organization moved to Jones's Island. The regiment returned to Folly Island on February 11. On February 23, the 107th boarded transports and sailed to Jacksonville, Florida, where the regiment mainly performed garrison duty, but the organization did have a few small skirmishes with Confederate forces. In July 1864, the regiment moved for one month to Fernandino, Florida, before marching back to Jacksonville.
On December 29, 1864, officials ordered the 107th to Devos Neck, South Carolina, where the regiment engaged in several skirmishes with Confederate forces. The 107th then advanced to Pocotaligo Station, South Carolina, followed by Gardner's Corners, South Carolina and Charleston, South Carolina. At Charleston, the regiment participated in an expedition to rid the area around Charleston of Southern guerrillas. The organization next moved to Georgetown, South Carolina, performing garrison duty at this location until March 23, 1865. On that date, the 107th marched to Sumterville, South Carolina, where the regiment engaged a Confederate force, capturing three artillery pieces, six horses, and fifteen prisoners, while only having four men wounded. At Singleton Plantation, South Carolina, the regiment had another skirmish with Confederate forces, having two men wounded. A few days after this encounter, the 107th captured and destroyed a railroad train loaded with supplies at Singleton Plantation. On April 16, 1865, the organization marched to Georgetown, South Carolina, remaining three weeks, before sailing on transports to Charleston, where the regiment performed garrison duty until mustered out of service on July 19, 1865.
During the 107th Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry's term of service, fifty-seven men, including three officers, died on the battlefield. An additional seventy-six men, including two officers, succumbed to disease or accidents.