Summary Statement, 3rd Quarter, 1863 – Ohio Independent Batteries, Part 1

Ohio provided twenty-six numbered independent batteries to the Federal cause during the Civil War.  As mentioned in last week’s post, two of those twenty-six were discontinued before the middle of the war.  That leaves us, for the purposes of the third quarter, 1863’s summary statement, just twenty-four batteries to account for.   So two batches of a dozen.  Let’s look at the first twelve:

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Seven of the twelve submitted returns.  And we see service from Washington, D.C. all the way west to Little Rock, Arkansas:

  • 1st Battery: No report. Captain James R. McMullin commanded this battery, supporting the Third Division (Scammon’s), Department/Army of West Virginia, then based at Charleston, West Virginia.  Most likely the battery retained four 3-inch Ordnance Rifles received just after the battle of Antietam, a year earlier.
  • 2nd Battery: No return.  This battery was assigned to Third Division, Thirteenth Corps.  During the summer months, the battery followed its parent formation to New Orleans and became part of the Department of the Gulf.   Lieutenant Augustus Beach was promoted to captain in October 1863, and commanded the battery.  A corps-level return from September 26, 1863 indicates the battery had two 12-pdr field howitzers and four 3.80-inch James rifles.
  • 3rd Battery: At Vicksburg, Mississippi with two 6-pdr field guns and four 3.80-inch James Rifles.   The battery was assigned to Third Division, Seventeenth Corps.  Captain William S. Williams remained in command.  The battery remained at Vicksburg through April 1864.  Williams served as division artillery chief.  So on some order of battles Lieutenant Thomas J. Blackburn appears in command of the battery.
  • 4th Battery:  No return.  The battery was assigned to First Division, Fifteenth Corps.  After the battle of Jackson, Mississippi, the battery followed its parent formation back to the Big Black River and spent most of the summer there.  At the end of September, the battery was among those forces dispatched to reinforce Chattanooga. When Captain Louis Hoffman resigned at the end of June, George Froehlich took his place, and was advanced to captain.  The battery likely retained two 12-pdr field howitzers and four 3.80-inch James Rifles.  This mix would change in December, as the battery received replacements from what was left behind on Missionary Ridge.
  • 5th Battery:  At Little Rock, Arkansas with two 6-pdr field guns and two 3.80-inch James rifles.  With Captain Andrew Hickenlooper serving as the Seventeenth Corps’ Chief Engineer, Lieutenants John D. Burner and, later, Anthony B. Burton led this battery.  The battery served in Fourth Division, Sixteenth Corps and remained around Vicksburg through the early summer.  The battery was among the forces detached for Steele’s Expedition to Little Rock in August.  And thence became part of the garrison of that place.
  • 6th  Battery:  Reporting from Chattanooga, Tennessee with two 12-pdr Napoleons and four 10-pdr Parrotts. Captain Cullen Bradley remained in command of the battery, which was assigned to First Division, Twenty-First Corps.  The battery saw heavy action at Chickamuauga, as evidenced in Bradley’s very detailed report.  On September 19 the guns fired 209 rounds, “of this some 20 rounds were canister” attesting to the range at which the fighting occurred.  All told the battery fired 336 rounds in the battle.
  • 7th Battery: No return.  Captain Silas A. Burnap remained commander.  The battery was assigned to Fourth Division, Sixteenth Corps through August, 1863. However, the battery moved with its parent division as reorganizations occurred later in the summer, temporarily listed in the Thirteenth Corps before finally moving to the Seventeenth Corps.  The battery participated in the campaign to Jackson in July and was later moved to Natchez, where it stayed through November.  In the first quarter, the battery reported four 3.80-inch James Rifles.
  • 8th Battery: Reporting in January 1864 as at Vicksburg, Mississippi (with the annotation of “positions in Fort ????”).  The battery had two 30-pdr Parrotts (not listed, as those were not considered field artillery).  Commanded by Captain James F. Putnam, this battery was assigned to Second Division, Fifteenth Corps.  After Vicksburg, one section was sent with the expedition to Jackson. But the rest of the summer was spent at Vicksburg. In September, the battery transferred to First Division, Seventeenth Corps.
  • 9th Battery: Tullahoma, Tennessee with four 12-pdr Napoleons and two 3-inch Ordnance Rifles. The battery was commanded by Captain Harrison B. York and assigned to the Reserve Corps, Army of the Cumberland.  The battery was among the forces arrayed to protect the Army of the Cumberland’s supply lines.  The battery was at Murfreesboro until September 5, and then moved forward to Tullahoma.  At that position, the battery inherited two 24-pdr siege guns (which would not appear on our field artillery listings for this quarter).
  • 10th Battery: At Vicksburg, Mississippi with four 3.80-inch James Rifles. Under Captain Hamilton B. White, the battery remained with Sixth (later First) Division, Seventeenth Corps. Aside from the Jackson campaign, The battery remained at Vicksburg until April 1864.
  • 11th Battery: No report. Was part of the Seventh Division, Seventeenth Corps. Captain Frank C. Sands was commander (though Lieutenant Fletcher E. Armstrong appears on some returns, with Sands on detail away from the battery). The battery was among the troops assigned to Steele’s Little Rock Expedition in August 1863.  The battery had a mix of two (or three according to some reports) 6-pdr field guns, two 12-pdr field howitzers, and one (or two) rifled 6-pdr guns.
  • 12th Battery: At Camp Barry, District of Columbia with six 3-inch Ordnance Rifles. Captain Aaron C. Johnson commanded this battery.  Having lost their posting with the Army of the Potomac, the battery remained at the Artillery Camp of Instruction through the summer.  In late September, the battery received assignment back to the Eleventh Corps, then moving west to reinforce Chattanooga.

Thus of the five batteries not reporting, and the 8th Battery without any tallies, we can at least pencil in what should have been on those lines.  With a few reservations, of course.

Turning next to the ammunition, the smoothbore columns reflect the varied armament of these batteries:

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Four batteries reporting:

  • 3rd Battery: 70 shot, 40 case, and 56 canister for 6-pdr field guns.
  • 5th Battery: 5 shot, 633 case, and 154 canister for 6-pdr field guns; 102 shell, and 230 case for 12-pdr field howitzers.  (See comment below.)
  • 6th Battery: 42 shot, 65 shell, 64 case, and 72 canister for 12-pdr Napoleons.
  • 9th Battery: 104 shot, 153 shell, 307 case, and 223 canister for 12-pdr Napoleons.

5th Battery had a pair of 12-pdr field howitzers on hand the previous quarter.  It appears they still had ammunition to report, even after turning in the howitzers.

Moving to the rifled projectiles, first we have the Hotchkiss type:

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Interesting that we see a good number of rounds for the James calibers:

  • 3rd Battery: 113 percussion shell and 112 fuse shell for 3.80-inch James.
  • 5th Battery: 60 percussion shell and 80 fuse shell for 3.80-inch James.
  • 9th Battery: 85 canister, 50 percussion shell, 135 fuse shell, and 150 bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.
  • 10th Battery: 20 shot and 104 fuse shell for 3.80-inch James.
  • 12th Battery: 120 canister, 502 fuse shell, and 403 bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.

I’ll break up the next page for clarity, starting with a left-over set of Hotchkiss entries:

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  • 3rd Battery: 69 Hotchkiss canister for 3.80-inch James.
  • 10th Battery: 325 Hotchkiss canister for 3.80-inch James.

Then to the James (actual) columns:

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  • 3rd Battery: 15 shot and 35 shell for 3.80-inch James.
  • 5th Battery: 4 shot, 123 shell, and 87 canister for 3.80-inch James.
  • 10th Battery: 120 shell for 3.80-inch James.

Only one battery reported Parrotts on hand:

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  • 6th Battery: 351 shell, 90 case, and 53 canister for 10-pdr Parrotts.

Then completing this assortment of projectiles, we turn to the Schenkl columns:

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  • 5th Battery: 11 shell for 3.80-inch James.
  • 10th Battery: 204 shell for 3.80-inch James.
  • 12th Battery: 167 shell for 3-inch rifles.

And note, the 5th Battery could look in their chests to find Hotchkiss, James, and Schenkl projectiles.  Not to mention a few left over 12-pdr field howitzer rounds.  Enough to make a good ordnance officer wince!

Last we have the small arms:

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By Battery:

  • 3rd Battery: Twenty-three army revolvers and eight cavalry sabers.
  • 5th Battery: Seven navy revolvers and seven cavalry sabers.
  • 6th Battery: Ten horse artillery sabers.
  • 9th Battery: Thirteen horse artillery sabers.
  • 10th Battery: Two army revolvers and six cavalry sabers.
  • 12th Battery: Twelve army revolvers, four cavalry sabers, and twenty horse artillery sabers.

We’ll look at the other half of the Ohio independent batteries in the next installment.

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Summary Statement, 2nd Quarter, 1863 – 3rd Regiment, US Regulars

The wartime service of the 3rd US Artillery was, in my opinion, “cushy”.  Several batteries remained on the west coast.  No doubt a vital assignment, ensuring the gold of California remained secure (and that’s not said with any sarcasm).  But since so much of the regiment served as garrison artillery, that left little to report in the Ordnance Returns. Thus a lot of white space for the 2nd quarter of 1863:

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We find only four batteries reported having field artillery tubes on hand!

  • Battery A – At Albuquerque, New Mexico with two 12-pdr field howitzers and two 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  Same as the previous quarter.  And, updating my own notes here, Lieutenant John B. Shinn was in command of this battery (brevetted to captain for his service on the initial campaigns in New Mexico).
  • Battery B – Given the annotation “Infy. Stores.”  The battery remained at Fort Point, San Francisco, California.
  • Battery C – No location given, but with six 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  Part of the Second Brigade of the Horse Artillery, Army of the Potomac.  Lieutenant William D. Fuller was in command.  The battery was not on the field at Gettysburg (and thus often left off some order of battle listings) but was with the Second Brigade, Second Division, Cavalry Corps at Westminster, Maryland.
  • Battery D – At Alcatraz Island, California with the annotation “Infy. Stores.”  Captain William A. Winder, of the 3rd US Artillery, commanded the garrison of Alcatraz at this time of the war.  Under his command were Batteries D, H, and I (which we will mention below).
  • Battery E – No return. Serving in the Department of the South, posted to Folly Island, South Carolina at the end of June.  Lieutenant  John R. Myrick was in command.
  • Battery F – At Warrenton Junction, Virginia with six 12-pdr Napoleons. The location is certainly in error for the June 30th date, but accurate for August when the report was received in Washington.  This battery, combined with Battery K (below), was assigned to the 1st US Regular Brigade, Artillery Reserve, Army of the Potomac, under Lieutenant John G. Turnbull.  So the location was somewhere between Frederick, Maryland and Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.
  • Battery G – Fort Turnbull, Connecticut  but without any assigned cannon. The battery had been disbanded the previous fall and was being reorganized with new recruits.  Eventually, Lieutenant Herbert F. Guthrie would command, but I am not certain as to the date of his assignment.
  • Battery H – “Infy. Stores” with location as Alcatraz Island, California.
  • Battery I – Also “Infy. Stores” and at Alcatraz Island.
  • Battery K – Annotated as “with Battery F”.  See that battery’s notes above.
  • Battery L – At Columbus, Kentucky with six 10-pdr Parrotts. Combined with Battery M, below.  Captain John Edwards in command.  The battery was assigned to First Division, Ninth Corps.  At the start of the spring was posted to Kentucky.  In early June, the battery moved with its parent division to reinforce Vicksburg.  And after the fall of Vicksburg the battery was part of the pursuit to Jackson, Mississippi.  So a well-traveled battery.
  • Battery M – “With Battery L” at Columbus.  — At Lexington, Kentucky with six 10-pdr Parrotts.
  • Lieutenant – “Stores in Charge.”  This line tallied various implements and supplies, apparently assigned to a lieutenant of the regiment, but with no location indicated.

So the service details out of the way, we turn to the ammunition reported on hand, starting with smoothbore ammunition:

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Two lines to consider, but not without some notes:

  • Battery A: 148 shot, 112 case, and 216 canister for 6-pdr field guns; 170 shell, 240 case, and 88 canister for 12-pdr field howitzers; and 24 shells for 12-pdr field guns.
  • Battery F & K: 360 shot, 96 shell, 198 case, and 104 canister for 12-pdr Napoleon.

Battery F’s quantities, though with a rather high number of solid shot, are within reason.  But Battery A, out there in New Mexico, held on to ammunition for a pair of 6-pdrs that were no longer on hand.  I’m not going to say the 12-pdr shells there in Albuquerque were for Napoleons or the old 12-pdr heavy field guns.  Regardless, their listing here raises an unresolved question.

Moving to rifled projectiles, we have to consider Hotchkiss types first:

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Two batteries up again:

  • Battery A: 96 canister, 144 percussion shell, 110 fuse shell, and 288 bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.
  • Battery C: 30 canister and 50 fuse shell for 3-inch rifles.

We can trim the next page to focus only on the Parrott columns:

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That much traveled battery out at Vicksburg:

  • Batteries L & M: 618 shell, 435 case, and 265 canister for 10-pdr Parrotts.

And we have but one entry to consider for Schenkl:

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  • Battery C: 18 shells for 3-inch rifles.

That last entry fills up, somewhat, the allocation for Battery C.  But one expect to see more.  The report arrived in Washington in November, 1863.

We move last to the small arms:

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Hopefully those numbers are legible.  The original lacked clarity in the column lines. And overall the sheet’s quality diminishes towards the bottom of the page.  Here’s what I transcribe:

  • Battery A: Thirteen carbines, eighty-six Army revolvers, seventy-six Navy revolvers, and eighty-seven horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery C: One carbine, twenty-six Navy revolvers, thirty-five cavalry sabers, and 172 horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery F & K: Thirteen Navy revolvers and forty-five horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery G: Eighty-six horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery L & M: Fifteen Army revolvers and forty-five horse artillery sabers.

I can understand Battery A, out in the far west and given many non-artillery duties, would need carbines, pistols, and sabers.  But Battery C?  That’s a lot of sabers… even for a data entry error!