Archive for March, 2012

John F. Ludington, Company K

Posted in Soldier Profile with tags , , , on March 27, 2012 by 40thindiana

Source: A Portrait and Biographical Record of Boone and Clinton Counties, Ind. Containing Biographical Sketches of Many Prominent and Representative Citizens, Together with Biographies and Portraits of all the Presidents of the United States, and Biographies of the Governors of Indiana. Published 1895 by A.W. Bowen & Co. Chicago, Ill.; . pp. 769 – 770

LUDINGTON, John F. , farmer of Jackson township, Clinton county, Ind., was born in Clinton county, Ohio, March 4, 1833. son of Stephen and Ann Ludington. Stephen Ludington was the son of Thomas, whose father came from Ireland. Thomas Ludington was born in New York, and died in the state of Ohio. Stephen Ludington was born in New York early accompanied his parents to Ohio, thence emigrated to Wisconsin, where he lived a short time, and in 1850 became a resident of Clinton county, Ind., where his death occurred in the month of October, 1857. His wife, whose maiden name was Anna Holdcraft, died in February, 1867. They were the parents of six children, namely: John F., Anna (deceased), Lucinda, wife of Joseph Halcy, Harvey, Delilah, wife John W. Witt, and Ellen (deceased). John F. Ludington was reared to a life of labor on his father’s farm and was unfortunate in not having the advantages of an education in his youth. He learned to read and write after reaching manhood, and early chose the machinist’s trade for his occupation. He first worked in the city of Chicago for one William Tuttle, in whose employ he remained about seven years, after which, for about fourteen years, he ran stationary engines at different places. He enlisted October 20, 1861, in Company K, Fortieth Indiana Infantry, Capt. A. E. Gordon, and went into camp at La Fayette, remaining there about a month. Later, his regiment went to Indianapolis, thence to Louisville, Ky., and Mr. Ludington saw his first active service in a forced march through Kentucky and a portion of Tennessee to Shiloh, in the bloody battle of which he took part. From Shiloh his command went to Holly Springs and Iuka, thence to Tuscumbia, Ala., and various other places in that state. Later, after devious marching, the regiment reached Munfordsville, Ky., and thence marched back to the city of Louisville. He took part in the battle of Perryville, after which the regiment followed in pursuit of Gen. Bragg. It would be difficult, in a sketch of this kind, to narrate, in detail, all the marches, skirmishes, and battles in which Mr. Ludington took part, but suffice it to say that throughout his varied experience, covering a period of nearly four years, he earned a reputation for duty bravely and uncomplainingly performed, of which he feels deservedly proud. He took part in the battle of Murfreesboro and the Chattanooga campaign, and met the enemy in the bloody fights of Missionary Ridge and Lookout Mountain. From Chattanooga he accompanied his command to Knoxville, thence to Georgia under General Sherman, and participated in the battles around Atlanta, among which were Buzzard’s Roost, Ringgold Station, Big Shanty, Kenesaw Mountain, Dallas and New Hope Church. At Strawberry Plains his regiment veteranized, after which he went home on a furlough. At the expiration of thirty days he rejoined his command at Round Top, Ga., thence went to Atlanta in time to take part in the battle of Peach Tree Creek. His regiment assisted in the pursuit of Hood to Franklin, Tenn., and after taking part in the battle at that place went to Nashville, where the army of Hood was almost annihilated. After various other movements in Tennessee, Arkansas, and Texas, Mr. Ludington was finally discharged at Indianapolis in 1865. He was wounded in the battle of Shiloh but refused to be taken to the hospital, and at Perryville he also received a severe wound in the arm. At Murfreesboro he received a gun-shot wound in the thigh, and on the twenty-fifth of September, 1863, was captured by the enemy and held until the twenty-eighth of December following. After leaving the army Mr. Ludington resumed his trade, but subsequently engaged in farming, which he still carries on. He has been twice married–the first time on the twenty eighth of August, 1857, to Susannah Daugherty a union blessed with the birth of six children four living–Mary J., wife of Frank Gunion; Minerva A., wife of Samuel West; James and Armetta M. The names of those decease are Anna E., born June 11, 1857, died February, 1875; Ida, born November, 1865, died December, 1865. The mother died August 28, 1887, and on the sixteenth day of March 1890, Mr. Ludington married his present wife Mrs. Sarah A. Heimick, nee Harbaugh. Mr. Ludington is a member of the Masonic fraternity, of the Odd Fellows’ order, and of the G. A. R. Politically he is a republican and in religion a Methodist.

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Assault on Kennesaw, 57th Indiana Inf.

Posted in Atlanta Campaign, Wagners Brigade with tags , , , on March 26, 2012 by 40thindiana

Source: “Annals of the Fifty-Seventh Regiment Indiana Volunteers. Marches, Battles, and Incidents of Army Life.” Asbury Kerwood,1868; pp 262-264

“We remained behind the works until the morning of the 27th, when an attempt was made to pierce the line of the enemy by a simultaneous assault at several points. In a series of the most brilliant movements yet executed by the western army, Gen. Sherman had succeeded in dislodging Johnston’s army from every position, whether on mountain-top, on the hills, or in the valleys; so after six days’ operation in front of Kenesaw, he resolved to make a bold strike, and, if successful, drive the enemy in confusion across the Chattahoochie River. Newton’s division was the one assigned, by Gen. Howard, to make the assault in front of the 4th Corps, and the point designated was in front of Stanley’s division. At 7 o’clock A.M. our brigade formed , and marched over to the rear of the line where the attack was to be made. Gen. Wagner gave Col. Blanch his choice of position, either to join in the column or deploy his regiment as skirmishers, and move up in front of the column. Col. Blanch chose the latter, and at once deployed the regiment five paces apart, preparatory to an advance. The 40th Indiana occupied the front of the assaulting column. At 8 o’clock A.M. the signal was given to advance, when our regiment crossed the works, and drove the rebel skirmishers into their fortifications. The enemy reserved their artillery fire till the 40th advanced to within a short distance of their works, had raised the yell, and were moving forward on the double-quick, when they opened a withering fire of grape and canister, which carried death and destruction in it’s pathway. The assualting party was checked, and the men laid down. Other regiments were now thrown forward, and the assault was several times renewed, but all in vain. The order was given to fall back by companies from the rear, but in the confusion and excitement it was misunderstood, and a general retreat commenced. The slaughter among our troops at this moment was even greater than when they advanced, for the enemy now rose from behind their works, fearless of danger from the retreating force, and fired with greater presision than when the column advanced. In one hour the engagement was over, and our brigade again returned to their former position, behind the line of works. The 57th lost twenty-two in this bloody and almost fruitless engagement. The assault, although it secured no immediate victory, was evidence to the enemy that we could assault as well as flank, and thus prevent them from weakening their lines to extend their flanks.”

Note: The 40th Indiana lost 106 men killed and wounded during the June 27th assault.

Stones River Dispatches Recieved by “The New York Times”

Posted in Stones River, Wagners Brigade with tags , , on March 26, 2012 by 40thindiana

Published Jan. 4, 1863

THE VERY LATEST.; A Great victory Won by Gen. Rosecrans. Terrible Slaughter and Reut of the Rebels. BRAGG REPORTED KILLED.

LOUISVILLE, Ky., Saturday, Jan. 3.

FIRST DISPATCH

Telegraphic communication is restored between here and Nashville.

It is reported that Gen. BRAGG was killed to-day.

There has been fighting all day, but no particulars are given.

Our forces are advancing, and the rebels are falling back across Stone’s River.

The following officers are wounded slightly:

Col. MILLER.

Col. BLACK, of the Fortieth Indiana.    Blake

Lieut.-Col. NEFF.   also of the 40th

Col. HILL.

Capt. PATE.

It has been raining heavily all day in the vicinity of the battle-field.

SECOND DISPATCH

There was heavy cannonading to-day until noon, when the rebels attacked our left wing and were terribly repulsed.

There was very little fighting yesterday.

Our forces do not yet occupy Murfreesboro.

The rebels attacked and destroyed our hospital buildings on Thursday.

The rebels are being strongly reinforced from the rebel army at Richmond.

THIRD DISPATCH

There was a spirited engagement at Lavergne to-day between the Mechanics and Engineers under Col. INNIS, and Gen. WHEATON’s rebel Cavalry. The latter were routed with the loss of thirty-three killed.

All “contrabands” captured by the rebels on the Federal wagon trains are immediately shot. Twenty thus killed are lying on the Murfreesboro Pike.

Maj. SLENMER and Capt. KING, who were being conveyed away wounded from the battle-field in an ambulance, were captured by the rebels, taken four miles away and then paroled and thrown out on the road.

Gen. WILLICH is not killed, but is wounded, and a prisoner.

Yesterday, Gen. ROSECRANS personally took command of the Fourth United States Cavalry, and attacked Gen. WHEELER’s rebel cavalry, who were cut to pieces and utterly routed.

Captain MACK, Chief of artillery and on Gen. THOMAS Staff is mortally wounded.

A despatch from Col. ANDERSON to Headquarters here says:

“We have whipped the rebels decidedly, and are at Christiana, nine miles South of Murfreesboro on the railroad.”

FOURTH DISPATCH

NASHVILLE, Tenn., Saturday, Jan. 3.

Col. MCKEE is reported killed. Our loss of officers is heartrending.

The fighting to-day has been light. It closed last evening with terrible slaughter of the enemy.

FIFTH DISPATCH

NASHVILLE, Tenn., Saturday, Jan. 3 — 5 P.M.

The first day’s fighting was all our own way, but the right wing of our army fought itself into a bad position.

The third day we repulsed the rebels with terrible slaughter, ourselves sustaining but slight loss.

Letter From Lt. Stillwell for Widow’s Pension

Posted in Missionary Ridge, Soldier Profile with tags , , , on March 24, 2012 by 40thindiana

On November 25, 1863, Cpl. Josiah Davis of Company C was wounded in the right shoulder during the charge up Missionary Ridge. On December 16, 1863 Cpl. Davis died as a result of his wounds in a Chattanooga army hospital. Josiah’s wife, living in the Waveland, IN. area applied for a Federal Pension shortly after his passing. The letter below was written by Lieutenant S.A. Stillwell (Co. C), confirming to the pension examiner’s office that Cpl. Davis was wounded and died doing his duty.

“Head Quarters 40th Reg’t Ind. Vol. Infantry

Near Marietta, GA .June 26, 1864″

‘I here certify on honor that Josiah Davis

 corporal of Company C 40th Reg’t Ind Vols.

Infantry died in military hospital Chattanooga,

Tenn, the 16th day of December 1863 in consequence

of gunshot wound received in the Battle of

Mission Ridge Tenn., on the 25th day of Nov. 1863.

I further certify that the said Josiah

Davis when wounded was in the ranks of

his company, and in the line of his duty.’

Signed S. A. Stillwell 1st Lieutenant

Comdg. Co. C 40th Reg’t Ind. Vols.

Six men from the Waveland area were killed as a result of the Missionary Ridge charge.Taylor McIntosh (Co. H), Cpl. Josiah Davis, Serg’t. William Galey, James Elrod, Lt. James Hanna, Cpl. Robert Hanna (Co. C) Josiah’s body was shipped home, as were three other members of his company (Hanna brothers & Galey), all four are buried in Freedom Cemetery, Montgomery Co., Indiana.

Major Leaming Letter; Battles of Franklin and Nashville

Posted in Franklin, Regimental History with tags , , on March 20, 2012 by 40thindiana

Source: “The Soldier of Indiana In The War For The Union Vol. 2″; Author Catharine Merrill; Published Merrill and Company 1889. pp 764-766

“Huntsville, Alabama, Fortieth Regiment, January 9, 1865”

“You will readily pardon my long silence when you remember that since the last of October we have, save the short time spent at Pulaski, been constantly on the go. Besides it is but poor business writing letters when you are living in the open air, without shelter of any kind, in the winter at that, with the ground for a seat, and your knee for a desk, while your eyes have become fountains of tears, as the smoke from burning fence rails compels them to the outward show of grief for the destruction worked. Now, however, we have been in that Potomacian condition known as ‘winter quarters,’ for several days, (about three,) and having built a chimney to my tent, which has arrived, much to my satisfaction, from the hearth of said chimney is dispensed a genial glow, which, despite the warning winds and dashing rain, almost convinces one that he is enjoying ‘comfort.’  ‘Tis true the ground on which my feet rest, is wet and cold, and occasional droppings here and there remind me at best, tents are leaky things, and not over warm, (except in the summer time,) but in that spirt of cheerful philosophy which urges one to be thankful, not that things are so well as they are, but that they are no worse, I accept the situation, and shall undertake, by most vigorous efforts of the imagination, to persuade myself that there might be something more miserable than ‘comfortable winter quarters,’ and therefore be most thankful that the unknown possibility had not fallen to our lot. As usual my good fortune did not desert me, and I came out of all  the fights without any holes through my flesh. I had a horse killed under me as quick as lightning could have done it, and a ball cut a strap from my saddle , directly in my front, not two inches from where it would have hurt me, if it had hit, making the farther digestion of hard-tack and fat pork impossible.”

” By the way, Hood was terribly thrashed in those same battles, but there can be no doubt that the greatest battle was that of Franklin. There his army was ruined. When we came back over the ground, we could see by the graves the fearful destruction of our fire. I met no prisoners of any rank who did not agree that their repulse there was most unexpected and disastrous. They largely outnumbered us, and our works were very hastily put up, and not finished when the attack was commenced; yet their loss was numerous, and their repulse complete. We fought three corps with three of our divisions. Our regiment captured a battle flag, the man who took it running the bearer of it through the body with his bayonet.”

” At Nashville, where we outnumbered the Rebels, and they had the advantage of position and defences, we took them squarely out of their works, and completely routed them. ‘Tis true they used but little artillery at Franklin, and we an enormous ammount at Nashville, still it was not in the killed or wounded by cannon shots, or in their moral effects that the difference lay, but in the growing conviction in rebellious minds, that they are now paying for a very dead horse, and that a life as an individual concern is a rather big price to pay. Sixteen general officers  and any quanity of smaller fry were killed or wounded at Franklin. It is well known that generals do not expose themselves usually on either side, save in some desperate emergency. General Adams was killed right on our breastwork, and so were some others. Do you not see how difficult it must have been to bring the men to the scratch, when it became necessary to urge them forward by the generals themselves leading them? When we assaulted their works at Nashville, and began to go over them, I never saw more abject terror than among those we captured. It was real, genuine fright. ‘ What would we do with them!’ ‘Would anybody hurt them!’ ‘Do give me a guard,’ &c, &c, they were constantly saying – in fact a badly thrashed set of rascals.”

” The country is now full of deserters. Hood and his army, who were to go to the Ohio river , are completely played out, and quiet reigns in Tennessee. Thus it happens that we go into winter quarters. The men are now busy as bees, cutting and hewing logs for their huts. Soon the men will settle down to daily drills and the consumption of rations, and the officers to the recception of orders to do or leave undone this, that and everything under Heaven that somebody else can think of when having nothing else to do but to devise and issue orders. Reports, returns, tri-weekly, tri-monthly, monthly, weekly, daily and hourly, are called for, and the grand aggregate carefully filed away at Washington, never more to be seen by eye of man. The paper wasted on all these things would each day freight a large ship, and Satan himself would yeild to despair at the task of making head or tail of them. The idea is beginning to force itself upon me that, as it is after eleven o’clock at night, I had better stop writing, and go to bed, ‘To sleep – perchance to dream’ of home, and wife, and chicks, and then to wake homesick beyond expression. Ehen!”

” The war is playing out fast. There can be no doubt of that now. Sherman and Grant will prove to heavy for Lee; and the Rebel plan of arming ‘niggers’ will only give us so many more of that sort of soldiers. ‘Tis folley in them, but so was the Rebellion an insane piece of folly. ‘Deus vult perdere prius dementat'”

“Henry Leaming”

1st Sergeant John A. Baer, Company A

Posted in Atlanta Campaign, Soldier Profile with tags , on March 20, 2012 by 40thindiana

John A. Baer one of the well and favorably known citizens of Sheffeld Township, is a native of Missouri, born in Ray County, October 8, 1841, a son of Jacob Baer, who died in Missouri, in February 1852. The mother of our subject died in 1848. Being left an orphan when in his eleventh year he has always had to fight the battles of life alone. He came to Tippecanoe County when a lad, and here he grew to manhood, spending his youth in working on farms. At the breaking out of the Rebellion, he enlisted, April 17, 1861, in Company A of the 10th Indiana Infantry for three months, and in September following he re-enlisted in Co. A., 40th Indiana Infantry and during his term of service was promoted to 1st. Sergeant. He was taken prisoner at Kennesaw Mountain and was confined in Andersonville prison. He received an honorable discharge from the army and returned to this county, where he resumed the more peaceful pursuit of farming. Mr. Baer is a member of the Stockwell Lodge No. 439 I.O.O.F., and is also a Comrade of Carrol post G.A.R, at Stockwell. He is a member of the Christian Church and one of the respected men of the township. Politically he casts his sufferage with the Republican party.
Biographical Record and Portrait Album of Tippecanoe County, Indiana, p. 763-764
Lewis Publishing Company, Chicago,IL.; 1888