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6th Wisconsin Infantry

Regimental History
Sixth Infantry. — Cols., Lysander Cutler, Edward S. Bragg, John A. Kellogg; Lieut. -Cols., Julius P. Atwood, Benjamin J. Sweet, Rufus R. Dawes, Thomas Kerr; Majs., John F. Hauser, Philip W. Plummer, Dennis B. Dailey. This regiment was organized at Camp Randall, Madison, in July, 1861, mustered into the U. S. service on the 16th and left the state for Washington on the 28th. It arrived at Washington on Aug. 7, was immediately assigned to King's brigade and went into camp on Meridian hill, where it remained until Sept. 3, when it marched, with the brigade, to Chain bridge and was employed in picket and guard duty at Camp Lyon until it was joined by the 2nd and 7th Wis. and the 19th Ind. The regiment remained in camp, engaged in various duties until March, 1862, when it took part in the advance on Manassas, encamping near Fairfax Court House. On Aug. 5 an expedition was sent out to destroy the Virginia Central railroad and the regiment, with a small force of cavalry and artillery, was detached and marched to Frederick's hall Station, where they destroyed 2 miles of the track, the depot and other buildings, and rejoined the command at Spottsylvania Court House. The regiment went into line at the battle of Gainesville and fought until darkness put an end to the contest, losing 14 killed or mortally wounded and 46 wounded. The following day the regiment was present on the battle-field of Bull Run, where it lost 9 killed and 93 wounded. It participated in the battle of South mountain, fighting during the day and occupying the field all night. In this engagement the regiment lost 15 in killed and mortally wounded and 67 were wounded. It was vigorously engaged at Antietam, the story of which is best told by the casualties, 38 being killed or died of wounds and 106 were wounded. The regiment was in the advance of a storming party at Fitzhugh's crossing, where it crossed the river in pontoon boats and charged upon the intrenchments of the enemy. For its gallantry in this desperate charge the regiment received special mention in a complimentary order from Gen. Wadsworth. The list of casualties in this daring exploit show that the regiment lost 4 killed and 12 wounded. During the early part of the first day's fighting at Gettysburg the regiment had been detached as a reserve, but later it participated in a charge under a terrible fire and captured a Confederate regiment. Reorganizing the shattered ranks, the 6th moved forward to the support of a battery in its front, which position it held until the enemy had pressed back the lines on the two flanks, when it fell back to the support of the brigade battery. During the day the regiment saved the 147th N. Y. volunteers from capture by charging down upon the enemy who was pursuing it and in conjunction with the 14th Brooklyn drove the Confederates from the field. The loss of the regiment at the battle of Gettysburg was 30 killed, 116 wounded and 22 missing. In November it took part in the operations at Mine Run, and the regiment was successful in preventing the breaking up of a train belonging to the 5th corps. In December, 227 of the regiment reenlisted as veterans. It was accordingly remustered into the service and in January the non-veterans were temporarily attached to other organizations and the regiment returned to Wisconsin on veteran furlough. The regiment participated in the battles of the Wilderness campaign in the spring of 1864. It lost from May 5 to June 10, 44 killed and no wounded, and from June 11 to July 1, 17 killed and 31 wounded, which was increased during the following month by 7 killed and a number wounded. The regiment fought with its accustomed gallantry at Dabney's mill, in Feb., 1865, and lost 18 killed and a larger number wounded. It took a prominent part in the famous battle of Five Forks and a few days later had the proud satisfaction of assisting in the capture of the army of Gen. Lee at Appomattox Court House. In the short campaign, from March 29 to April 9, the casualties in the regiment were 16 killed and a number wounded. It moved to Black and White's Station, where it remained in camp until ordered to Washington, arriving there in time to participate in the grand review, and thence was ordered to Louisville, where it was mustered out on July 14. The original strength of the regiment was 1,108; gain by recruits, reenlistments, drafted men and substitutes, 1,035; total, 2,143. Losses by death, 322; missing, 7; desertions, 79; transfer, 75; discharged, 513; mustered out, 1,147.

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

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