Summary Statement, 3rd Quarter, 1863 – 1st New York Light Artillery

We turn now to the New York listings in the third quarter summary.  Appropriately, the clerks allocated a complete page to document all of the batteries and sections from the state:

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That’s enough New York Yankees to fill the major league team and the farm system!  The First, Second (one battery), and Third regiments of artillery are there.  Along with lines for thirty-three independent batteries, though not all in service at the time.  Rounding out the page are five entries for sections from cavalry and infantry regiments (unfortunately split up within the page).  A lot to discuss.  We’ll break these down by section and start with Colonel Charles S. Wainwright’s 1st New York Light Artillery Regiment:

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Compared to our Missouri postings, the 1st New York offers a relatively clean set of returns without need of much speculation.  Be that due to Wainwright’s attention to administration… or the proximity to Washington.  Let’s cover the locations, cannon reported, commanders, and command assignments:

  • Battery A: At Pottsville, Pennsylvania, on an April 1864 receipt date, with four 12-pdr Napoleons.  Battery A, under Captain Thomas H. Bates, transferred to the Department of the Sesquehanna in early June 1863, specifically the District of Philadelphia.  They pulled the “arduous” duty of guarding Pottsville and the vital Yuengling Brewery… right….
  • Battery B: At Culpeper, Virginia with four 10-pdr Parrotts. Recall Lieutenant Robert E. Rogers brought this battery off the field at Gettysburg, after more senior officers fell.  At that time the battery supported Second Corps.  After Gettysburg, the battery moved to the 2nd Volunteer Brigade, Reserve Artillery, Army of the Potomac.  Lieutenant Albert S. Sheldon, recovering from his Gettysburg wound, was promoted to command the battery. Later in December, Rogers would replace Sheldon permanently.
  • Battery C: Listed at Three Mile Station, Virginia (three miles from Warrenton Junction, at a village named Casanova today) with four 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  Captain Almont Barnes remained in command and the battery remained with Fifth Corps.
  • Battery D: Reporting from Brandy Station, Virginia with six 12-pdr Napoleons.  Supporting Third Corps, Captain George B. Winslow remained in command.
  • Battery E: “Not in the service.”   Reduced by sickness and other causes during the Peninsula Campaign, members of this battery were then serving with Battery L, below.  Lieutenant William Rumsey is the ranking officer I know of, from this period, in the battery.
  • Battery F: At Camp Barry, Washington, D.C. with four 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  Captain William R. Wilson remained in command.  The battery, assigned to the Artillery Camp of Instruction, was in the Twenty-second Corps.
  • Battery G: Now at Mitchell’s Station, Virginia, in Culpeper County, with six 12-pdr Napoleons. Captain Nelson Ames’s battery transferred out of the 4th Volunteer Brigade, Artillery Reserve in August, returning to the 2nd Corps.
  • Battery H: Also at Camp Barry with four 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  Captain Charles E. Mink remained in command.  At the end of September, the battery transferred to First Corps, Army of the Potomac.
  • Battery I: No report. Captain Michael Wiedrich commanded this battery, assigned to Eleventh Corps.  The battery had six 3-inch Ordnance Rifles at this time of the war.  The battery was sent west, with the rest of Eleventh Corps, to reinforce Chattanooga, with movement starting in late September.
  • Battery K: Reporting at Brandy Station, Virginia with six 3-inch Ordnance Rifles. The battery remained with the battery assigned to Third Volunteer Brigade, Artillery Reserve.  The 11th New York Independent Battery was attached to Battery K at this time, and manned two of the guns.  In August, Captain Robert H. Fitzhugh was promoted to Major.  In his place Lieutenant Edward L. Bailey led the battery.
  • Battery L: Simply “in the field” with six 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  Listed on the order of battle as a combined Batteries E & L, Captain Gilbert H. Reynolds commanded.  The battery supported First Corps and was in Culpeper County at the end of the reporting period.
  • Battery M: Reporting from Bridgeport, Alabama, in January 1864, with four 10-pdr Parrott rifles.  Lieutenant Charles Winegar commanded this battery, supporting Twelfth Corps.  The battery started movement in late September with its parent formation on the long journey to reinforce Chattanooga.  So while the location as of the end of September was Virginia, within a few weeks they were transiting through Bridgeport as they played a part in the relief of the Army of the Cumberland.

For perhaps the brief moment of a single quarter within the war, all of the 1st New York Light Artillery was operating in the same theater.  When Battery H transferred to the First Corps, only Battery A (in Pennsylvania) and Battery F (in D.C.) were outside the Army of the Potomac.  However, with the departure of the Eleventh and Twelfth Corps for Chattanooga in the last days of September, that arrangement changed.

Moving to the ammunition pages, we start with the smoothbore rounds reported on hand:

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Three batteries reporting, all with Napoleons:

  • Battery A: 192 shot, 64 shell, 320 case, and 136 canister.
  • Battery D: 288 shot, 96 shell, 288 case, and 96 canister.
  • Battery G: 262 shot, 100 shell, 262 case, and 144 canister.

And as for the Hotchkiss projectiles:

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All for those Ordnance rifle batteries:

  • Battery C: 92 canister, 140 percussion shell, 146 fuse shell, and 456 bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.
  • Battery F: 123 canister, 56 percussion shell, 160 fuse shell, and 480(?) bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.
  • Battery H: 180 canister, 130 percussion shell, and 160 fuse shell for 3-inch rifles.
  • Battery K: 120 canister and 362 fuse shell for 3-inch rifles.
  • Battery L: 120 canister and 39 percussion shell for 3-inch rifles.

We can trim the next page down to look just at Parrott rounds:

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Two of those Parrott batteries:

  • Battery B: 354 shell, 297 case, and 95 canister for 10-pdr Parrotts.
  • Battery M: 298 shell, 412 case, and 94 canister for 10-pdr Parrotts.

The rifled-gun batteries also reported Schenkl rounds on hand:

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Four reporting:

  • Battery B: 57 shell for 10-pdr Parrott.
  • Battery H: 293 case for 3-inch rifles.
  • Battery K: 353 shell and 555 case for 3-inch rifles.
  • Battery L: 441 shell and 600 case for 3-inch rifles.

Lastly the small arms:

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A little fuzzy, but we can work with these:

  • Battery A: Seventeen Navy revolvers.
  • Battery B: Nine Army revolvers and thirteen cavalry sabers.
  • Battery C: One Army revolver, eight Navy revolvers, and twenty-eight horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery D: Eight Army revolvers and eight horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery F: Eighteen Army revolvers, six horse artillery sabers, and sixteen foot artillery swords.
  • Battery G: Nineteen Army revolvers and twenty-seven horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery H: Twenty Navy revolvers, fifteen cavalry sabers, and five horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery K: Nine Army revolvers and thirty cavalry sabers.
  • Battery L: Sixteen Navy revolvers and nine horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery M: Eight Army revolvers and two horse artillery sabers.

Once again, we see a very good set of returns for the 1st New York Light Artillery.  Where there are empty entry lines, other (official) records fill in many of the open questions.

 

Summary Statement, 2nd Quarter, 1863 – 1st New York Light Artillery Regiment

Moving in order through the second quarter summaries, New York is the next state to consider.  And Colonel Charles S. Wainwright’s 1st New York Light Artillery Regiment is the first of those entries.

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We find returns registered for nine of the twelve batteries of the regiment.  And of those nine, three were not received until 1864.  That’s what happens to paperwork due in the middle of the campaign season!

  • Battery A: At Pottsville, Pennsylvania, on the March 1864 receipt date, with four 12-pdr Napoleons.  Battery A, under Captain Thomas H. Bates, reformed at Camp Barry, in Washington, D.C., after losing all its guns during the Peninsula Campaign of 1862.  On June 4, 1863, the battery transferred to the Department of the Susquehanna and was assigned duty around Philadelphia.
  • Battery B: At Warrenton Junction, Virginia, reflecting the October 1863 receipt date, with four 10-pdr Parrotts. The battery was assigned to Second Corps, Army of the Potomac.  Captain Rufus D. Pettit, in command of the battery at the start of the quarter resigned at the end of May.  Captain James M. Rorty then took command.  Rorty was mortally wounded on the afternoon of July 3 at Gettysburg.  The next in command, Lieutenant Albert S. Sheldon, was wounded a little later.  Lieutenant Robert E. Rogers then became the third officer to command the battery that day.
  • Battery C: Listed at Rappahannock, Virginia, also reflecting the fall reporting date, four 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  This battery was assigned to support Fifth Corps, and thus on the march toward Gettysburg at the end of the reporting period.  Captain Almont Barnes remained in command.
  • Battery D: Bealton, Virgina!  Again, under the fall reporting date.  This battery had  six 12-pdr Napoleons.  This battery supported Third Corps as part of the Gettysburg Campaign.  Lieutenant George B. Winslow remained in command.
  • Battery E: No return. Reduced by sickness and other causes during the Peninsula Campaign.  At the start of the quarter, the men of Battery E was assigned to 1st New York Independent Light Artillery, in Sixth Corps.  In mid-June, the men transferred to support Battery L, 1st New York (below).
  • Battery F: Yorktown, Virginia with four 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  Captain William R. Wilson’s battery remained part of Fourth Corps, Department of Virginia.  Later in July, the battery moved to Camp Barry in Washington.
  • Battery G: Accurately reported at Taneytown, Maryland, with six 12-pdr Napoleons. The battery moved from Second Corps to the 4th Volunteer Brigade, Artillery Reserve in June.  Captain Nelson Ames remained in command.
  • Battery H: Reporting at Camp Barry with four 3-inch Ordnance Rifles, in October 1863.  However, as the end of June, the battery, under Captain Charles E. Mink, was assigned to Fourth Corps and stationed at Yorktown.  The battery was involved with Dix’s Peninsula Campaign.
  • Battery I: No report. Captain Michael Wiedrich commanded this battery, assigned to Eleventh Corps.  The battery had six 3-inch Ordnance Rifles at Gettysburg.  And its employment on the field on July 1 might explain the lack of report.
  • Battery K: Reporting at Brandy Station, Virginia with six 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  For the third straight quarter, this battery’s location reflects a  January, 1864, report. In June 1863, Battery K was assigned to the 4th Volunteer Brigade, Artillery Reserve, under Captain Robert H. Fitzhugh.  The 11th New York Independent Battery was attached to Battery K at this time, adding two guns (up from four the previous quarter).
  • Battery L: Another “late” return, posted in February 1864, has this battery at Rappahannock Station, Virginia with six 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  This battery was on the field at Gettysburg supporting First Corps, on the first day of July.  Captain Gilbert H. Reynolds took command in March.
  • Battery M: No return. Battery M, under Lieutenant Charles Winegar, served in Twelfth Corps.  The battery had four 10-pdr Parrott rifles at Gettysburg, with one section on Power’s Hill and another on McAllister’s Farm.

Thus nine of the twelve batteries were directly involved with the Gettysburg Campaign.  We might say the other three were indirectly involved to some degree.  Many stories I could relate and wealth of quotes related to those hot summer days of 1863.  But for brevity, let us focus on the data of the summary.

Moving on to the ammunition, we have three batteries with 12-pdr Napoleons:

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And three lines to consider:

  • Battery A: 192 shot, 64 shell, 192 case, and 72 canister for 12-pdr Napoleons.
  • Battery D: 288 shot, 96 shell, 288 case, and 96 canister for 12-pdr Napoleons.
  • Battery G: 308 shot for 6-pdr field guns; 120 shell, 116 case, and 144 canister for 12-pdr Napoleons.

I would guess the tally of 6-pdr shot for Battery G was a transcription error, and rightly should be 12-pdr.

We have 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  So that means we should have Hotchkiss projectiles:

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Five lines to consider:

  • Battery C: 92 canister, 40 percussion shell, 136 fuse shell, and 424 bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.
  • Battery F: 80 canister, 80 percussion shell, 160 fuse shell, and 480 bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.
  • Battery H: 21 canister and 34 fuse shell for 3-inch rifles.
  • Battery K: 120 canister, 363 fuse shell, and 350 bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.
  • Battery L: 120 canister, 39 percussion shell, and 600 (?) bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.

A couple more lines to consider on the next page:

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Dyer’s Patent:

  • Battery H: 128 shell, 530 shrapnel, and 160 canister for 3-inch rifles.

Parrott’s Patent:

  • Battery B: 320 shell, 520 case, and 96 canister for 10-pdr Parrott.

The last page indicates some Schenkl projectiles on hand:

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Four batteries with Schenkl:

  • Battery B: 80 shells for 10-pdr Parrott.
  • Battery H: 3 shells for 3-inch rifles..
  • Battery K: 356 shells for 3-inch rifles.
  • Battery L: 441 shells for 3-inch rifles.

Again, we see a mix and match of projectiles, by patent, in the ammunition chests.

Lastly we turn to the small arms:

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By battery:

  • Battery A: Seventeen Navy revolvers.
  • Battery B: Twelve Navy revolvers and three cavalry sabers.
  • Battery C: One Army revolver, eight Navy revolvers, and fourteen horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery D: Eight Army revolvers and eight horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery F: Thirteen Army revolvers and sixteen foot artillery swords.
  • Battery G: Nineteen Army revolver and thirty-five horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery H: Sixteen Navy revolvers and fifteen cavalry sabers.
  • Battery K: Nine Navy revolvers and thirty cavalry sabers.
  • Battery L: Seventeen Navy revolvers and ten horse artillery sabers.

A very fair assortment, with reasonable numbers, of small arms for the 1st New York.  These were field artillerymen, first and foremost.

Summary Statement: December 31, 1862 – 1st New York Light Artillery Regiment

New York’s contribution to the Federal war machine was not just a “cog” in a wheel.  Rather we might say the Empire State provided a whole wheel.  And part of that was of course a number of artillery batteries.  I could well spend several posts discussing the various formations – heavy artillery, light artillery regiments, independent batteries, independent battalions, National Guard batteries, etc…. oh, and don’t forget some rocket batteries.  But for the Fourth Quarter 1862 summaries we need focus on four groups – 1st New York Light Artillery Regiment, 3rd New York Light Artillery Regiment, 1st New York Light Artillery Battalion (sometimes cited as the “German” battalion), and numbered independent light artillery batteries.  There’s one additional line for reporting artillery assigned to a volunteer cavalry formation.  And we should also mind the German battalion’s batteries were later assigned independent battery numbers.  But that was the future.  For December 1862 we have two regiments, one battalion, thirty-two (minus four that were at the time in the battalion) independent batteries,  and one “other” line to consider.

So let us start with the 1st Regiment, New York Light Artillery… Colonel Charles S. Wainwright’s boys:

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The clerks posted information from seven of the twelve batteries, most being received in 1863.  At this time of the war, most of the 1st New York batteries supported the Army of the Potomac in the east.  The breakdown by battery:

  • Battery A: No return.  This battery’s guns were captured earlier in the year at Seven Pines.  Most of the surviving men were transferred to other batteries while Captain Thomas Bates went about recruiting and reorganizing.  So in December 1862, there was no equipment to report.
  • Battery B: No return. Captain Rufus D. Pettit’s battery was part of Second Corps, having just participated in the Fredericksburg Campaign with six (or four?) 10-pdr Parrotts.
  • Battery C: At Falmouth, Virginia with four 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  This was Lieutenant William H. Phillips’ battery assigned to support Fifth Corps.
  • Battery D: Fredericksburg, Virginia with six 12-pdr Napoleons.  Battery assigned to Ninth Corps and under Captain Thomas W. Osborn.
  • Battery E: No return. Reduced by sickness and other causes during the Peninsula Campaign, Battery E was assigned to 1st New York Independent Light Artillery at this reporting interval.
  • Battery F: Yorktown, Virginia with four 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  Captain William R. Wilson’s battery was part of Fourth Corps, Department of Virginia.
  • Battery G: No return. This was Captain John D. Frank’s battery supporting Second Corps with four 12-pdr Napoleons.
  • Battery H: Fort Keys, Gloucester Point, Virginia with four 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  Also assigned to Fourth Corps.  Captain Charles E. Mink commanded this battery.
  • Battery I: Falmouth, Virginia with six 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  Captain Michael Weidrich’s battery supported Eleventh Corps.
  • Battery K: Brandy Station, Virginia with four 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  This location is obviously in error for December 1862.  It was correct for January, 1864, when the return was received in Washington.  Backing up a year and a month, Battery K was with the Twelfth Corps for the 4th Quarter, 1862.
  • Battery L: No location given but with four 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  Captain John A. Reynolds’ battery supported First Corps, which was near Fredericksburg at the time.
  • Battery M: No return. This battery was also part of Twelfth Corps in December 1862.  Lieutenant Charles Winegar commanded the battery at the time, with Captain George W. Cothran on leave.  I believe it was equipped with 10-pdr Parrotts.

 

Of note here is the listing for Battery K with the discrepancy indicated with regard to reported location.  Often in correspondence (present day correspondence, that is), folks will eagerly inquire about these summary statements.  The perception, which I held when first looking them over, is we have a gold mine of “facts” to work with.  Not entirely true.  What we have are a lot of numbers that must be shaken down for some useful information.  The example seen here, with Battery K, one of the many issues that demonstrate the data is not “clean”.    The summaries are far short of the sound foundation of facts that might lead easily to solid information.  Though those summaries are a bit firmer than clay, I would quickly point out.

At the December 1862 reporting time, I believe Battery K was commanded by Lieutenant E. L. Bailey.  It was part of a battalion commanded by Captain Robert H. Fitzhugh, the battery’s former commander.  Batteries K and M constituted 2/3rds of the battalion. And it was part of Wainwright’s regiment.  Wainwright who, as we know from his diary, was very particular about keeping up with his paperwork.  Yet, this battery didn’t give a fourth quarter, 1862 report until over a year later.  And when that report was registered by the Ordnance Department, an erroneous location was recorded.

One would think such tardiness wouldn’t be allowed.  And one would rightly supposed Battery K’s officers would report on time and accurately.  Our impression is the chain of command above Battery K would insist on timely reporting.  Furthermore that the clerks in Washington were efficient and never lost such important paperwork.  Yet, the record indicates otherwise.

So we have reason to dispute one column for Battery K, why not the rest?  Was the clerk entering the 1862 data with just one cell (location) incorrect? Or is all the other data now suspect?  Enter that discussion with ample salt…. With that salt applied, let us walk through the reported ammunition quantities, starting with smoothbore:

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The only smothbores among the reporting batteries were the Napoleons of Battery D.  That battery reported 288 shot, 96 shells, 238 288 case, and 96 canister.

We have more rifled guns to feed. Those projectiles start with the Hotchkiss Patent listings:

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Four batteries reporting Hotchkiss projectiles on hand:

  • Battery C: 102 canister, 40 percussion shell, 235 fuse shell, and 576 bullet shell all in 3-inch caliber.
  • Battery F: 80 canister, 80 percussion shell, 160 fuse shell, and 430 bullet shell of 3-inch.
  • Battery I: 120 canister, 290 fuse shell, and 651 bullet shell in 3-inch.
  • Battery K: 97 canister, 117 percussion shell, 118 fuse shell, and 54 bullet shell also 3-inch.

We might attach some significance to the proportionally larger numbers for “bullet shell” or what I prefer to call case shot.

One battery reported Dyer’s patent projectiles:

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Battery H had 140 shells, 576 shrapnel (case), and 164 canister, all in 3-inch caliber.

There are a couple of entries for the Shenkl patent projectiles:

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Battery H had 285 3-inch shells and Battery I had 116 of the same.

None of the batteries known to have Parrott rifles had a return complied.  So we are certainly missing more than a handful of pieces to the puzzle.  And I would point out that while Battery K’s data did not include any projectiles, the other pages indicate the battery had other supplies accounted for in the belated report.

Finally, the small arms:

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By battery:

  • Battery C: One Army revolver, eight Navy revolvers, and fourteen cavalry sabers.
  • Battery D: Eight Army revolvers and eight horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery F: Nineteen Army revolvers and sixteen foot artillery swords.
  • Battery H: Sixteen Navy revolvers and fifteen cavalry sabers.
  • Battery I: Seventeen Navy revolvers and thirty horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery K: One Navy revolver and eight cavalry sabers.
  • Battery L: Seventeen Army revolvers and ten horse artillery sabers.

In summary, and to reinforce the point made above in the battery details, we cannot take this summary as a clear, clean “snapshot” of what equipment was on hand at the specified time.  Even here for a set of Eastern Theater units, very close to Washington, we see easily recognized errors in the data.  So we are obligated to ask questions and search for answers that validate… or invalidate.