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31st Wisconsin Infantry

Regimental History
Thirty-first Infantry. — Cols., Isaac E. Messmore, Francis H. West, George D. Rogers; Lieut. -Cols., Francis H. West, George D. Rogers; Majs., John Clowney, William J. Gibson, George D. Rogers, R. B. Stephenson, Farlin Q. Ball. This regiment was organized at Prairie du Chien in Aug., 1862, when six companies were recruited. It was ordered to Camp Utley, Racine, on Nov. 14, where the remaining companies were recruited, and the regiment was mustered in, Oct. 9. It left the state March 1, 1863, for Columbus, Ky., and was assigned to the 6th division, 16th corps. It remained there on picket, provost and reconnoissance duty during the spring and summer and was ordered to Murfreesboro in October. Cos. B, G and K were detached and stationed at Stone's river in guard and fortification work until April, 1864. The regiment was assigned to the 4th division, 20th corps, and divided into detachments for patrolling the Nashville & Chattanooga railroad, one detachment being mounted for dashes into the interior. The regiment was ordered to Nashville in June for provost guard duty, remaining there until July 3, when it was transferred to the 3d brigade, 1st division, 20th corps, joining the brigade on the 21st before Atlanta and remaining in the siege until Aug. 25. It took a position on the Chattahoochee river until the evacuation of Atlanta and was then on guard and forage duty until it joined the march to the sea. When within 10 miles of Savannah, accompanied by part of another regiment, it passed through a seemingly impassable swamp, charged the enemy in two redoubts commanding the road, and in the face of a severe fire carried the works. It accompanied the army in the campaign of the Carolinas, performing well its part in destroying railroads, building corduroy roads and foraging. At the battle of Averasboro it was in the front line under heavy fire from noon until dark. At Bentonville it held an exposed position at the front and was attacked in front and on both flanks simultaneously. It was thrown back, but reformed behind a rail fence, where it was speedily reinforced and withstood five determined charges, inflicting terrible punishment upon the enemy. This closed its active service. It participated in the grand review at Washington. Cos. A, B, C, D, E and F, were mustered out at Louisville June 20, 1865, and the remaining companies on July 15. The original strength of the regiment was 878. It gained by recruits, 200; total, 1,078. Loss by death, 114; missing, 2; desertion, 52; transfer 33; discharge, 167; mustered out, 710.

Regimental history taken from "The Union Army" by Federal Publishing Company, 1908 - Volume 4

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