ADJUTANT GENERAL’S REPORT
Tenth West Virginia Volunteer Infantry Regiment
MEMORANDA: – From the time that recruiting for this Regiment commenced, in the latter months of 1861, the men, as soon as enlisted, were assigned to duty on the frontier of the Department of Western Virginia, then commanded by Gen. Rosecrans. These men, many of them driven from their homes by the guerrillas of Gilmer, Braxton, Webster and Pocahontas Counties, were especially adapted to the frontier defense, by their knowledge of the country and of the habits of the rebel marauders by whom it was infested and were stimulated to extraordinary exertions by wrongs already suffered and homes to defend.
In March 1862, organization was commenced by the muster of’ four companies into the United States service with Thomas M. Harris (now Brig. General) as Lieut. Col. commanding, and the line to be guarded by this Regiment, one company of Cavalry, and a section of Artillery, was extended from Glenville to Elkwater.
Under this arrangement the border was protected for seven months, many guerrilla bands being effectually dispersed or driven out of West Virginia, whilst others were, almost to a man, exterminated. Indeed, so successful was this small command in the defence of that large territory, as to elicit frequent expressions of commendation and thanks from the Major General commanding, and also to secure the confidence and gratitude of the loyal people of those Counties for the skillful management, zeal and courage displayed. In the meantime, organization of the Regiment was completed. Lieut. Col. Harris promoted to the Colonelcy, and in the month of September, 1862, headquarters were removed from Buckhannon to Bulltown, where, for the first time, as many as seven companies were concentrated.
While here, the command was, as heretofore, successful in breaking up the marauders of that section. In the latter part of October, 1862, the Regiment was attached to the command of Gen. Milroy, under whom it took up the line of march (Nov. 4th) for Beverly, where all detachments were collected, and the command moved via Webster and New Creek to Winchester, Va., reaching the latter place on the first day of January, 1863.
While in the Division of Gen. Milroy, at Winchester, the Regiment took part in several expeditions up the Valley of the Shenandoah. No casualties were sustained in any of these expeditions, but, unfortunately, exposure to the changing weather of a most inclement winter on the march from Bulltown to Winchester, and afterward, resulted in disease from which the command did not recover until the ensuing summer. The deaths from disease (chiefly fever) from Dec. 1st, 1862, to June 1863, numbered forty-three.
On the tenth of May, 1863, the Regiment was ordered back to West Virginia, and soon after its arrival at Webster station, was attached to the Brigade of Gen. Wm. W. Averell, by whom it was sent to Buckhannon, and thence on the 7th of June to Beverly. On the 2nd of July following, while stationed at Beverly, an attack was made upon the place by the enemy under Col. Wm. L. Jackson. This was the first time that the Regiment in a body had met the enemy, who were here held at bay for two days, notwithstanding their great numerical superiority, until the arrival of reinforcements compelled them to retreat, beaten.
The Regiment was engaged in the battle of Droop Mountain, on the 6th of November, 1863, and was highly complimented by Gen. Averell, commanding, for gallantry displayed in that action, and afterward formed a part of a number of those expeditions or “raids,” which have reflected so much credit upon the command of that distinguished officer.
With headquarters at Beverly, the Regiment remained in West Virginia until about the 15th of June, 1864, when it was removed to Martinsburg. On the 3rd of July, the advance of the enemy under Early was encountered, and for some time successfully resisted, at Leetown, Va., by a small body of troops, of which the Tenth W. Va. was a part. On the 6th and 7th of the same month, it was engaged in a series of skirmishes at Maryland Heights, and for some days afterward was on the march with the troops then retreating before Early, who was pressing his invasion into Maryland, with the capture of the National Capital an avowed object. Engaged at Snicker’s Ferry, Va., on the 17th, and on the 24th of July, at Winchester, Va. In the latter engagement, the Regiment was in the command of the lamented Col. Mulligan, who fell on that day, and the losses sustained prove how gallantly the Regiment held its portion of the line until the commanding General ordered a retreat; in the immediate front of the Regiment, the enemy in very heavy force, were more than once repulsed with terrible slaughter. In a small engagement at Berryville, Va., Sept. 3rd, 1864, and in the battle of “The Opequan,” it suffered a heavy loss in killed and wounded, and was complimented on the field by Gen. Sheridan. At “Fisher’s Hill,” on the 22nd of September, the battle flag of the Tenth W. Va. was one of the first on the enemy’s works, which were carried by assault by the Army of West Va. On the 13th of October, 1864, the Regiment was engaged at Strasburg, Va., and on the 19th of that month, in the great battle of “Cedar Creek”- in a word, the history of this Regiment during the months of September, October and November, 1864, is co-incident with that of Sheridan’s Army in the victorious campaign of the Shenandoah Valley. The Regiment, with the rest of the First Infantry Division, Army of West Va., was ordered, December 19th, 1864, to Washington City, where it embarked for the Army of the James, arriving on the 25th of that month, and is now encamped on Chapin’s Farm, about seven miles from the rebel capital.
Battles in which the
Tenth West Virginia Volunteer Infantry Regimentwas engaged . . .
July 2 & 3, 1863
5 killed, 3 wounded, 3 missing, 11 aggregate
Droop Mountain, W.Va
November 6, 1863
10 killed, 26 wounded, 0 missing, 36 aggregate
July 3, 1864
0 killed, 7 wounded, 2 missing, 9 aggregate
Maryland Heights, Md.
July 6 & 7, 1864
2 killed, 5 wounded, 0 missing, 7 aggregate
Snicker’s Ferry, Va.
July 18, 1864
1 killed, 5 wounded, 1 missing, 7 aggregate
Winchester, Va. (Kernstown)
July 24, 1864
14 killed, 60 wounded, 15 missing, 89 aggregate
September 3, 1864
1 killed, 0 wounded, 0 missing, 1 aggregate
Opequan, Va. (Winchester)
September 19, 1864
27 killed, 77 wounded, 0 missing, 104 aggregate
Fisher’s Hill, Va.
September 22, 1864
1 killed, 9 wounded, 0 missing, 10 aggregate
October 13, 1864
1 killed, 9 wounded, 0 missing, 10 aggregate
Cedar Creek, Va.
October 19, 1864
5 killed, 21 wounded, 0 missing, 26 aggregate
About Eighteen Skirmishes
at different times
7 killed, 30 wounded, 75 missing, 112 aggregate
74 killed, 252 wounded, 96 missing, 422 aggregate
Updated 12 April 2010