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1864 February 13: News of the 12th and 30th Wisconsin Infantries

February 14, 2014

The following two articles on Wisconsin regiments that include local companies are from the
February 13, 1864, issue of The Prescott Journal.  We know, from Edwin Levings’ January 26, 1864, letter that the 12th Infantry was not coming home on furlough, but the people of the St. Croix Valley did not yet know that.

The 12th Regiment.

The 12th Regiment has mainly re-enlisted, and Co. A. was expected home on furlough, but it appears they have joined an expedition down the Mississippi under Gen. Sherman [William T. Sherman].

The State Journal says: “The 12th expected to return as a veteran regiment re-enlisted, for a thirty days furlough, but by some mistake their re-enlistment papers were not completed until after the order to join this expedition was received.  They will therefore not return until the expedition has been completed.”

The Thirtieth Regiment.

We have recently seen a letter from our Member of Congress, stating that this fine regiment should be collected together, and immediately ordered into active service.  Capt. Fulton’s company [David C. Fulton] and another, are in Dacotah Territory, and would have to march through deep snow and intense cold, several hundred miles before they would reach a railroad.  It would be a matter of great difficulty, and extreme hazard to the lives of the soldiers, to undertake to march for their regiment before next May or June, as the spring floods will make the sloughs and small streams quite impassable.

We see no reasonable prospect, therefore, of the Regiment being collected together before the middle of next summer.

It has always appeared to us, that this regiment, nearly 1100 strong, has been kept idle through an influence at Madison that is not creditable to the executive powers that be.  We notice that Gov. Lewis [Lewis] has inaugurated several new reforms, and we hope that he will take this matter in hand, and send this regiment, or at least what there is left of it in the State, to the front.  Officers and privates are all desirous of going where they can be of some service.  It is a pity and a shame that so fine a body of men, so well drilled, and offcered [sic], should not have an opportunity to earn for the government even the rations they consume.—Hudson North Star

The Star, we thing [sic: think] is unjust in its criticism on the State authorities, as the 30th has done much useful service, and the Governor had little or nothing to do in retaining the Regiment in the State.

At the same time, we hope the 30th may be ordered into active service, which we know they generally desire.

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