1861 August 31: Governor Randall Calls for More Troops
From the August 31, 1861, issue of The Prescott Transcript we find this proclamation by Wisconsin Governor Alexander W. Randall regarding raising more troops for the war.
Following the proclamation is a short article from the September 4, 1861, issue of The Prescott Journal about possibilities for recruiting the five new regiments in Northwest Wisconsin.
Madison, Aug. 20th, 1861.
To the Patriotic People of Wisconsin:
I have this day received from the Secretary of War , a request and authority to raise, in this State, Five additional regiments of infantry Volunteers for three years, or the war, and Five batteries of artillery, over and above the 7th and 8th regiments already accepted for service.—The utmost promptitude is demanded in the organization of these forces, and I confidently rely upon the patriotism of the people of Wisconsin, who have so nobly responded to the calls thus far made upon them, and who have since the breaking out of the rebellion, persistently pressed their services upon the Government, to enable me to respond speedily to this new call.
Here follows the list of officers in the companies. The minimum will be 83 officers and privates; the maximum 101. The minimum composing a regiment is 866, the maximum 1,046. He says:
Of the five regiments of infantry, one will be composed of Germans, to be encamped at Milwaukee immediately. Special orders for the organization of this regiment will be issued in a few days.
In order to ensure the early enlistment and organization of the other four regiments all persons who have heretofore received commissions to enroll companies for the war, and all other parties who are engaged in enlisting companies, are invited and requested to report forthwith the number enlisted in their several companies. Whenever companies are reported, by reliable men, to be enlisted to the number of 40 able bodied men for the war, and their service tendered, they will be accepted, and ordered to such rendezvous as may be designated, to be mustered into the service of the U.S., and thereafter recruited until full.
In may localities there are numbers of men who desire to enter into the military service, but who have no connection with any organization. To such persons information will be readily given, on application to this office, enabling them to realize their wishes.
Company officers will be elected by the members of the several companies as soon as there are sixty men enlisted.
The five artillery companies will be organized as follows, to wit: to each
OFFICERS, MEN, HORSES.
Captain 1 – –
Lieutenants,* 4 – –
Staff Sergeants,† 2 2
Sergeants,‡ 6 6
Corporals,§ 12 –
Artificers, 6 6
Buglers, 2 2
Drivers, 52 84
Cannoneers, 70 –
Spare Horses, – 10
5 150 110
* Commanding Sections and Caissons.
† First Sergeant and Quartermaster’s Sergeant.
‡ Chief of pieces.
§ Gunners and Chiefs of Caissons.
The Washington Artillery Co., of Milwaukee, Capt. E. F. Herzberg, and the La Crosse Artillery, Capt. J. F. Foster, are accepted as two of the companies to be raised, and, under special orders, will recruit immediately to the required number of men. We have a large number of trained artillerymen in this State, many of who have already tendered their services to me in aid of the Government.—Persons who can bring testimonials as to their experience and ability to command batteries of artillery, are invited to communicate with this office forthwith. * * *
The following Companies, heretofore reported full for the war, are authorized to be placed at board and quarters in their respective localities as not to exceed 30¢ per day per man, and will hold themselves in readiness to move to the appointed rendezvous by the first of September at the latest. Such of them as are ready with 65 men previous to that date, will advise this office of the fact forthwith, that arrangements may be made for their transportation and reception in camp:
Wolf river Rifle, New London, Lt. Hyde.
Eau Claire Badgers, Cau Claire, Capt. Perkins.
Bad Axe Volunteers, De Soto, “ —–
Kingston G’ds, Prairie du Hse, “ Dennet.
Lancaster Union Guards, Lancaster, ” Callis.
Sheboygan Co. Ind., Greenbush, ” —-
Fox Lake Volunteer Rifles, Fox Lake, “ Lawes.
Badger State G’ds, Fennimore, “ Finicum
Rough & Ready Guards, Fitchburg, ” Young.
Sugar River Rifles, Belleville, “ Estee.
Island City Guards, Neenah, “ Wheeler.
Waterloo Rifles, Waterloo, ” Perry.
Dixon Guards, Portage, “ Chrystee
Washington Rifles, Milwaukee “ Orff.
Janesville Fire Zouaves, Janesville, “ Britton.
La Crosse Co. Rifles, La Crosse, “ Baker.
Crawford Co. Volunteers, Prairie “ Green.
In testimony whereof, I have
hereunto set my hand, and caused
the Great Seal of that State to be
affixed this 20th day of August,
A. D. 1861.
By the Governor, [LS] A. W. RANDALL.
Edward Ilsley, Assistant Sec’y of State.
A Question to Answer.
Five new regiments are called for from this State. The St. Croix Rifles are fast filling up, and will soon be off. There is no doubt but it will be necessary to raise another company in the St. Croix Valley. This company will neccessarily [sic] be made up of many who have not thought hitherto that the exigences [sic] of the case would call on them. We are happy to state that Rev. N. McLeod of this place, has been solicited by some of his friends to raise a company, and will very likely do so. In addition to his qualifications as a man, he has received a thorough military education.—It is time for all to ask, “shall I go?” “For this is a question the hour is putting to each of us: Are you ready, if need be, to sacrifice all that you have and hope for in this world, that the generations to follow you may inherit a whole country whose natural condition shall be peace, and not a broken province which must live under the perpetual threat, if not in the constant presence, of war and all that war brings with it?” How will we answer this question?