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.
Cavalry regiments established in Ohio were known as regiments of Ohio Volunteer Cavalry. Regiments formed in Ohio served for varying lengths of time, averaging one hundred days to three years. On May 6, 1864, the 13th Regiment Ohio Volunteer Cavalry mustered into service at Camp Chase, at Columbus, Ohio. The men in the regiment were to serve for three years.
On May 11, 1864, the 13th departed Camp Chase for Virginia, where the regiment joined the Army of the Potomac's 9th Corps. Although the 13th was a cavalry regiment, the organization's members spent their first months serving as infantrymen. During the regiment's first three months of service, the 13th participated in the Battles of White House Landing (June 19, 1864) and Charles City Court House (June 23, 1864) and in the Siege of Petersburg, including an assault on the Confederates' works on July 30, 1864. In this last engagement, the 13th had nineteen men killed, 103 wounded, and fifty-nine captured. During the late summer and autumn of 1864, the regiment fought in the Battles of Weldon Railroad (August 19-21, 1864), Ream's Station (August 25, 1864), Poplar Grove Church (September 30, 1864), Pegram's Farm (October 2, 1864), and Boydtown Plank Road (October 27, 1864).
On December 18, 1864, the 13th received horses and cavalry equipment. Officials assigned the regiment to the 2nd Division, Cavalry Corps, Army of the Potomac. On February 6, 1865, the organization participated in the Battle of Hatcher's Run. The regiment joined General Philip Sheridan's command on March 28, 1865 and, on March 31, 1865, fought in the Battle of Dinwiddie Court House, having two officers and several enlisted men killed. On April 5, 1865, at the Battle of Jetersville, Virginia, the 13th captured 850 prisoners and a stand of colors. At the Battle of Sailor's Creek (), the regiment destroyed a Confederate wagon train and captured 280 prisoners, 140 mules, and twenty-eight horses. At this same battle, the regiment assisted the rest of the Union forces in capturing an additional five thousand men. On April 7, 1965, the 13th conducted an expedition to Farmville, Virginia, capturing 308 prisoners. This same day, between Prospect Station and Appomattox Court House, Virginia on the Virginia and East Tennessee Railroad, the 13th, in conjunction with the 6th Regiment Ohio Volunteer Cavalry, captured a train of railroad cars bringing supplies to the Confederacy's Army of Northern Virginia. On April 8, 1865, the 13th moved to Appomattox Court House, where, on the next day, the regiment participated in the Battle of Appomattox Court House. This Union victory compelled the Army of Northern Virginia to surrender.
Officials soon dispatched General Sheridan's command to North Carolina to assist General William T. Sherman's army in defeating a Confederate army under the command of Joseph E. Johnston. Upon reaching Danville, Virginia, the Northern soldiers learned of Johnston's surrender and moved to Petersburg, Virginia. Officials ordered the regiment to Amelia Court House, Virginia, where the 13th served as the provost guard for Amelia and Powhatan Counties, Virginia.
On August 10, 1865, the 13th mustered out of service at Amelia Court House. The regiment traveled to Columbus, Ohio, where officials discharged the organization on August 18, 1865. During the 13th's term of service, the regiment had sixty-five men, including four officers, killed on the battlefield and an additional fifty-two men, including one officer, die from disease or accidents.