So to start the review of the summary statements from the second quarter, 1863, the First Regiment of the US Artillery is appropriately at the front of the queue:
The batteries of the First were detailed to assignments across various theaters of war, though not to the Trans-Mississippi. Looking at the administrative details by battery:
- Battery A – Reporting at Port Hudson, Louisiana with four 12-pdr Napoleons and two 3-inch rifles. A location change from the previous quarter, but their charges remained the same. Captain Edmund C. Bainbridge remained in command of this battery, assigned to First Division, Nineteenth Corps. Of note, Bainbridge also served as the division’s artillery chief.
- Battery B – At Hilton Head, South Carolina with four 12-pdr field howitzers, and adding two 3-inch rifles (over the previous quarter’s report). Lieutenant Guy V. Henry commanded this battery, assigned to Tenth Corps. Henry temporarily served as the Chief of Artillery, Department of the South, from around June 19 through the first week of July. But no “fill in” battery commander is indicated on the records.
- Battery C – At Fort Macon, North Carolina with a dim annotation I interpret as “inf’y service”. However, the line does not tell the whole story. A detachment from Battery C, under Lieutenant James E. Wilson, served in the Tenth Corps, and would be active in South Carolina.
- Battery D – No change from the previous quarter. At Beaufort, South Carolina with four 3-inch rifles. Lieutenant John S. Gibbs assumed command of the battery. Though co-located with Battery M, the two were officially listed separately in organizational returns.
- Battery E – Reporting at, if I am reading this right, Manchester, Pennsylvania with four 3-inch rifles. If my read of the location column is correct, this is an excellent “snapshot in time” of a battery on campaign… at least for the location column, keeping in mind the return was not received until August 11, 1863. Of course, Captain Alanson Randol was in command of this battery, which was merged with Battery G (below), as part of the 2nd Brigade of Horse Artillery, Cavalry Corps, Army of the Potomac.
- Battery F – Port Hudson, Louisiana with six 12-pdr Napoleons. Under Captain Richard C. Duryea, this battery served Third Division, Nineteenth Corps. Duryea is also listed as commanding the division’s artillery at this time.
- Battery G – No report. Dyer’s has Battery G’s personnel serving with Battery E at this time.
- Battery H – At Warrenton, Virginia with six 12-pdr Napoleons. The location is an obvious error. The battery had moved from Third Corps to the Artillery Reserve after Chancellorsville. So the location might more accurately be Frederick, Maryland. Captain Chandler P. Eakin commanded the battery. Though just two days into the next quarter he was severely wounded, with Lieutenant Philip D. Mason assuming the role.
- Battery I – No return. But we are familiar with Lieutenant George Woodruff’s battery, which brought six 12-pdr Napoleons into action at Gettysburg. They were assigned to Second Corps.
- Battery K – Another difficult to read location entry. I cannot make out the town, but the state is “MD”. So we might also presume this to be a report reflecting an “on campaign” position, as of June 30. The battery reported six 3-inch Ordnance rifles. -Also with 2nd Brigade of the Horse Artillery, supporting the Cavalry Corps, Captain William Graham was the commander.
- Battery L – Reporting at Port Hudson, Louisiana with four 12-pdr Napoleons and two 10-pdr Parrotts. Captain Henry W. Closson’s battery was in Forth Division, Nineteenth Corps.
- Battery M – At Beaufort, South Carolina with four 12-pdr Napoleons (losing two 3-inch Ordnance rifles from the previous quarter). Captain Loomis L. Langdon lead this battery, assigned to the Tenth Corps.
As mentioned in the preface, as the transition between the second and third quarter of 1863 came at a critical stage of the war, we need to consider the “receipt at ordnance office” date with these details. For the 1st US batteries providing returns, six were not received until August of that year. Two more arrived in September. Another in December. And not until April 1864 did Battery F’s return arrive at the Washington offices. (As indicated above, there were two missing battery returns.)
All of which is good background to keep in mind. The particulars that were not tracked on the form speak to how the data arrived for entry into the form. With that in mind, let us look at the tallies for projectiles. Starting with the smoothbore ammunition:
The preponderance of entries were for 12-pdr Napoleon rounds.
- Battery A: 40 shot, 56 shell, 110 case, and 33 canister for 12-pdr Napoleon.
- Battery B: 400 shell, 500 case, and 100 canister for 12-pdr field howitzer.
- Battery F: 448 shot, 300 shell, 382 case, and 200 canister for 12-pdr Napoleon.
- Battery H: 288 shot, 96 shell, 288 case, and 96 canister for 12-pdr Napoleon.
- Battery K: One (1) shot for 12-pdr Napoleon. As this battery had only 3-inch rifles, we have to ask if this is just a stray mark… or the battery lugged around a single Napoleon shot for… perhaps… bowling?
- Battery L: 236 shot, 8 shell, 182 case, and 40 canister for 12-pdr Napoleon.
- Battery M: 475 shot, 138 shell, 494 case, and 96 canister for 12-pdr Napoleon.
Aside from the question about Battery K, there is also a question about some reported quantities. As related in the preface to this quarter, we have to ask for the batteries in action at Gettysburg if these are quantities on hand June 30? Or for some other point after the battle? And I would submit that question need be assess on a battery-by-battery basis.
Moving to the rifled projectiles, we note the number of Ordnance rifles results in a healthy sheet for Hotchkiss patent types:
Looking down by battery:
- Battery A: 12 canister and 202 percussion shell for 3-inch rifles.
- Battery B: 280 canister, 422 percussion shell, 227 fuse shell, and 275 bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.
- Battery D: 86 canister, 50 percussion shell, 176 fuse shell, and 150(?) bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.
- Battery E: 60 canister, 180 percussion shell, and 360 bullet shells for 3-inch rifles.
- Battery K: 60-canister and 56 bullet shells for 3-inch rifles.
- Battery M: 12 canister, 12 percussion shell, 24 fuse shell, and 20 bullet shells for 3-inch rifles.
First off, Battery M must have retained a small quantity of rounds on hand after transferring it’s 3-inch rifles to another battery.
The other question that springs to mind is regarding the low numbers reported for some batteries, such as Battery K. We might speculate if that reflects the quantity on hand after a battle or major campaign. But that’s speculation.
For the next page, we can cut down to the colums on the far right:
Let us focus first on the Parrott columns:
- Battery L: 150 shell and 220 canister for 10-pdr Parrott.
- Battery M: 130 case for 10-pdr Parrott.
Once again, we find Battery M with ammunition that will not fit its guns.
Moving over to the right, there is one entry here for Schenkl projectiles:
- Battery L: 20 shot for 10-pdr Parrott.
Then on the next page of Schenkl projectiles, two numbers to consider:
- Battery B: 100 shells for 3-inch rifles.
- Battery K: 127 shells for 3-inch rifles.
This explains some of the shortages noted on the Hotchkiss page. But we see batteries mixing the two types of projectiles, against the better wishes of General Hunt.
Lastly we move to the small arms:
Yes, we see a bunch of write-in column headers here! Only one of which applies to this set of batteries:
- Battery A: Nine Army revolvers and 119 horse artillery sabers.
- Battery B: One-hundred Army revolvers, seven cavalry sabers, and 153(?) horse artillery sabers.
- Battery D: 123 Army revolvers, eight cavalry sabers, and 107 horse artillery sabers.
- Battery E: Nine Navy revolvers and nine horse artillery sabers.
- Battery F: Ten Army revolvers, forty-seven cavalry sabers, and twenty horse artillery sabers.
- Battery H: Twenty-one Navy revolvers and sixteen horse artillery sabers.
- Battery K: Sixteen Army revolvers, thirty-six cavalry sabers, and seventy-eight horse artillery sabers.
- Battery L: Four Springfield .58 caliber muskets, sixty-two Army revolvers, eight cavalry sabers, and 107 horse artillery sabers.
- Battery M: Seventy-seven Springfield .58 caliber muskets, 104 Navy revolvers, nine cavalry sabers, and ninety-five horse artillery sabers.
We’ve discussed in earlier posts the peculiarities of small arms issue to field artillery batteries. Service in the Department of the South, were batteries were detailed to perform many non-artillery tasks, was one factor here. Still, the batteries of the 1st US Regiment would seem to be armed to the teeth!