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1864 August 6: 12th Wisconsin Infantry Casualties Before Atlanta, and Other News

August 12, 2014

Following are the smaller news items from the August 6, 1864, issues of The Prescott Journal and The Polk County Press.

From The Prescott Journal:

CO. A, 12th Regiment.

Co. A, of the “marching 12th,” has received the baptism of battle.  Always in active and arduous service, it never was their lot to be much under fire, until the recent great battle near Atlanta.  How well they there fought is attested by the severe loss they sustained.  The following is, we believe, a correct list of the casualties¹ :

KILLED—David Dresser, M. E. Hodges, U. Bowers, Julius Oleson, George Hope, John Hudson, Stanly Ralston, Robert Triggs.

WOUNDED—J. N. Holman, arm amputated, Morris Dendam, severely, J. Carniff, severely, J. McCullum, N. K. Hammer, A. McKee, M. E. Syness, W. Burnett, Barrett, Barrett, T. Ottman, A. N. Olin, J. Carruthers, T. Halverson.—Wounded, and either buried or taken prisoners by rebels, S. Huddleston, Thos. Dean.

Finger002  The Ladies Loyal League held a festival for the benefit of the Sanitary Commission, at this place, on the evening of the 26th ult.  Ice cream in freezing quantities was dealt out by fair hands from an illimitable fount.  Hilarity and good feeling ruled the hour, “and all went merry as a marriage bell.”  The change was counted out by handfulls, and the thing was a perfect success.  We heard the managers express their unbounded obligations for the very prompt and efficient material aid rendered by the patriotic ladies of Oak Grove, among whom we heard the names of Mrs. Wm. D. Dennison, and Mrs. F. Otis, of Trimbelle.

Finger002  W. H. Winchester returned home last week, having served out his three years in the army.  “Well done, good and faithful servant.”

Finger002  Lt. Allen White, who has been in the war from the beginning, is at his brother’s in River Falls, on a furlough, and we regret to learn is seriously ill.

Finger002  A large number of citizens of this city and River Falls have gone into the service of the Government as mechanics.

THE BATTLE OF ATLANTA ON FRIDAY.—The Washington Republican extra says :

“Dispatches to the Government represent that a great battle was fought in Atlanta on Friday, resulting in horrible slaughter, and a complete repulse of the enemy at every point.  The rebels, holding the largest part of the city, assaulted our works on that day with great fury, evidently expecting to drive our forces out of the city.  The 15th Corps, commanded by Gen. Frank Blair [Francis P. Blair], seemed to be the special object of rebel wrath, as they massed against it in overwhelming force.—The 15th received the shock gallantly, and held its own until Gen. Dodge [Grenville M. Dodge], with the 16th Corps, came up, when the rebels were hurled back with great slaughter.  Gen. Logan [John A. Logan], at the head of the 17th Corps, went into battle with the rallying cry of ‘Remember McPherson’ [James B. McPherson].  This Corps, as well as Blair’s, both constituting the army under Maj. Gen. McPherson, fought desperately, the news of the death of their brave commander having been communicated to them just before going into battle.

“Our troops buried 1,000 rebels, left on the field within our lines, besides which the rebels buried many of their own dead near their works.  It is estimated that the rebel killed and wounded on Friday will exceed 6,000.  Our loss will reach about 2,500 in killed and wounded.  The 15th Corps suffered severely.”

ANOTHER RAID.—Gen. GARRARD’S [Kenner Garrard] expedition from SHERMAN’S [William T. Sherman] army has been successful, destroying bridges at Covington, 40 miles east of Atlanta, toward Augusta.  He destroyed public stores at Covington and Conyers, including 2,000 bales of cotton, a locomotive and a train of cards, capturing 200 prisoners and a number of horses.

TRADE RESTRICTIONS.—An order has been received at Cairo, from the Treasury Department, prohibiting the granting of “authorizations for the purchase or transportation of products or merchandise to or from any insurrectionary States or districts whatever, either under existing trade regulations or otherwise.”  This resumption of trade restrictions is owing to the fact that certain treasonable parties have abused the trade privileges by rendering aid and comfort to the enemy.

A FAIR PRIZE.—General SHERMAN’S army has captured four hundred women, employees in a rebel tent cloth factory, and sent them off to Ohio, there to be set at liberty.  We shall soon expect to hear of plenty of marriages in the Buckeye State.

Finger002  A Fortress Monroe dispatch says that General “Baldy” SMITH [William F. Smith], who has been on a flying visit to New York, has returned to the front.

RESIGNED.—Major General W. H. T. BROOKS [sic: William T. H. Brooks],² lately commanding the 10th army corps, has resigned his commission and his commission has been accepted.

ROBERT T. LINCOLN, son of the President, graduated at Harvard University on the 20th.  His father was unable to be present.

REBEL DESERTERS.—We have frequent accounts of large numbers of deserters to our lines from the rebels.  We see that in the interior of the Southern states, where these deserters cannot reach our lines, they organize for self protection, and defy the rebel authorities.  The Richmond Whig of the 20th has a paragraph from the Salisbury (N. C.) Watchman, saying that tories and deserters to the number of seventy-five or one hundred, made a descent recently upon Edgcomb Co. jail, and forcibly released three prisoners confined there for murder.  “One thing is certain,” says the Watchman, “the loyal Confederates here must either subdue these raiders or be themselves subdued.”

The Lynchburg Virginian says that on the 14th a regular fight took place near Pleasant Branch, Campbell county, between some citizens and a gang of deserters.  Two of the deserters are reported mortally wounded and four captured.  The Virginian adds that there are several regular camps and gangs of deserters in Campbell county.

From The Polk County Press:

THE 42D REGIMENT.—Gov. LEWIS [James T. Lewis] has received authority to organize one or more new regiments, and has made the following appointments as officers of the 42d regiment :

Colonel, EZRA T. SPRAGUE, Adjutant of the 8th regiment ;  Lieut. Colonel, W. W. BOTKIN, Capt. of Co. G, 12th regiment ;  Major, JOHN W. BLAKE, Capt. of Co. H, 29th regiment ;  Adjutant, WM. H. HOWES, Co. H, 30th regiment.

ON FURLOUGH.—We had the pleasure of welcoming home our old friend, Surgeon C. P. GARLICK, of the 35th Wisconsin regiment, on Monday last.  Surgeon GARLICK has been in charge of the Post Hospital, Camp Washburn, Milwaukee, for the past three months, and has done himself great credit, in keeping up the “best Camp Hospital in the West.”  He starts to join his regiment in Arkansas on Monday next.  May good fortune attend him.

RETURNED VETERANS.—We had the pleasure of meeting C. BOUCHER, and JOSEPH NUTTER of the 4th Wis. Cavalry.  Their term of service having expired, they have returned to take up the tasks of citizens among us.  Welcome brave boys, you have done nobly.

LOSSES IN THE 7TH MINNESOTA REGIMENT.—Surgeon L. B. SMITH, killed ;  Sergt. Major ORIN RICHARDSON,³ ankle, very serious ;  Chief Musician [Erastus E.] GUARD, hand, serious ;  1st Sergeant ANDREW COLBY, through both lungs, left on the battle field ;  DAVID CANNEDAY, missing.  The above list were all from our neighboring town, Taylors Falls.

—  JEFF. DAVIS [Jefferson F. Davis] has achieved a victory in North Carolina, by the re-election of Governor VANCE [Zebulon Baird Vance] over Mr. HOLDEN, who was the peace candidate.

— The body of Col. JAMES A. MULLIGAN,4 who was wounded in COOK’S [sic: George Crook] battle with EARLY [Jubal A. Early], and died a few days afterwards, was recovered by his wife and friends from the rebels, and is now on the way to Chicago for burial.

— The reports from the Upper Potomac are, as usual, very conflicting.  It seems certain that the rebels fire now, or have been, committing serious depredations in Southern Pennsylvania.  There is a report that Chambersburg has been burned.—Great alarm prevails, and Gov. CURTIN [Andrew C. Curtin] has demanded the removal of Gen. COUCH [Darius N. Couch] for inefficiency.  It is shameful that Pennsylvania, with a population equal to the united thirteen colonies at the time of the revolution, cannot defend itself from these rebel raiders.

1.  Killed and wounded from the 12th Wisconsin Infantry’s Company A (Prescott’s Lyon Light Guards), listed alphabetically. The information in quotation marks comes from the Regimental Muster and Descriptive Rolls (Wisconsin Adjutant General’s Office), commonly known as the “Red Books.” The University Archives and Area Research at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls has microfilm copies of the complete set for all regiments (River Falls Micro 183; a finding aid is available online).


  • Henry Bowers, from Marinette, killed in action July 21, 1864 — “had widow mother who was depending on him for support”
  • David L. Dresser, from Kinnickinnick, killed in action July 21, 1864
  • William H. Hodges, from Hudson, killed in action July 21, 1864
  • George W. Hope, Diamond Bluff, killed in action July 21, 1864
  • John Hudson, from Pleasant Valley, killed in action July 21, 1864 — was in COMPANY C
  • Julius O. Oleson, from Prescott, killed in action July 21, 1864, but also reported prisoner
  • Stanley Ralston, from Pleasant Valley, killed in action July 21, 1864 — was in COMPANY C
  • Robert Triggs, from Kinnickinnick, killed in action July 21, 1864.


  • Albert J. Barrett, from Prescott, “slightly” wounded July 21, 1864
  • Francis M. Barrett, from Prescott, wounded “in shoulder” July 21, 1864
  • William A. Burnett, from Clifton Mills — NOT wounded
  • Jeremiah Canniff, from Prescott, “severely wounded and crippled for life,” July 21, 1864
  • John Caruthers, from River Falls — NOT wounded
  • Thomas Dean, from Perry, wounded July 21, died July 22 — was in COMPANY I
  • Morris Denham, from Pleasant Valley, “dangerously” wounded July 21, 1864
  • Torbion Halverson/Hulverson, from Martell, wounded, missing in action, prisoner
  • Nathan K. Hammer, from Prescott — NOT wounded, but was “absent sick” frequently and perhaps that is why he made this initial list of wounded
  • James H. Holman, from Prescott, wounded July 21, died from wounds September 17, 1864 — “widow mother who depended on him for support”
  • Samuel Huddleston, from Prescott, wounded July 22, 1864
  • John McCullum/McCallum, from Prescott — NOT wounded
  • Alva McKee, from Prescott — NOT wounded
  • Anthony N. Olin, from River Falls — NOT wounded
  • Andrew F. Ottman, from Trimbelle, “severely” wounded July 21, 1864
  • Michael E. Syness/Synes, from Martell, — NOT wounded

2.  Brooks resigned from the Army due to poor health.
3.  Oran Richardson, “lost foot at Tupelo.”
4.  James A. Mulligan (1829-1864) was the colonel of the 23rd Illinois Infantry. He was mortally wounded at the Second Battle of Kernstown on July 24, 1864.

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