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. In 1864, the governors of several Northern states convinced federal authorities to call up state militia forces for regular military duty. The governors believed that these militiamen would free regular soldiers currently serving in forts or guarding other important sites in Northern states for duty with the Union's invading armies in the Confederacy. Hopefully this surge of men, known as Hundred Days' Men, would allow the North to defeat the South in one hundred days or less while keeping Northern states safe from Confederate attack and anti-war unrest.
On May 12, 1864, the 160th Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry mustered into service at Zanesville, Ohio. The men in the regiment were to serve one hundred days.
On May 13, 1864, authorities dispatched the 160th Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry to Harper's Ferry, West Virginia. Upon reaching Harper's Ferry, the regiment escorted a supply train to Martinsburg, West Virginia, where officials assigned the 160th to the 1st Brigade, 1st Division of General David Hunter's army that was advancing up the Shenandoah Valley. On May 25, 1864, Hunter's force advanced towards Woodstock, West Virginia, but the 160th was soon detached to escort a supply train back to Martinsburg. Near Middletown, West Virginia, the 160th realized that another wagon train that was a short distance away was under attack by Colonel John Singleton Mosby's Confederate partisan rangers. The 160th rushed to the train's aid, killing fourteen rangers and wounding several others. Several members of the 160th were wounded, but the Confederates killed none.
The 160th continued to serve as guards of supply trains in the Shenandoah Valley for the remainder of its term of service. The regiment participated in numerous skirmishes, especially with Mosby's Rangers. For most of this time, the 160th operated in the vicinity of Harper's Ferry. On August 25, 1864, officials ordered the 160th to return to Zanesville. The regiment arrived on August 29, and on September 7, 1864, authorities discharged the 160th from military service.
During its time of service, the 160th Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry had one man killed on the battlefield, and an additional fifteen men, including one officer, died from disease or accidents.