The Fifty-second Infantry Illinois Volunteers was organized at Geneva, Kane Co., Illinois, in November 1861 by Colonel J.G.Wilson and mustered into United States service November 19 by Lieutenant J. Christopher.
November 28, moved with 945 men to St. Louis, Missouri and went into quarters at Benton Barracks. Here Colonel Wilson resigned.
December 8 the Regiment, Lieutenant Colonel J.S. Wilcox commanding, moved to St. Joseph, Missouri January 16, 1862 moved to Cairo via Palmyra., Quincy and Mississippi River. January 24, moved to Smithland. February 7 T.W. Sweeny was commissioned Colonel of the 52nd.
February 10, 1862, embarked for Fort Donelson and arrived 17th. 18th, was sent with prisoners to Chicago. March 7 arrived at St. Louis. March 13 left for Army of the Tennessee and 20th, disembarked at Pittsburg Landing, and was assigned to 3rd Brigade, 2nd Division, Colonel Sweeny commanding Brigade and General Smith the Division.
The Regiment took a prominent part in the battle of Shiloh April 6 and 7, losing 170 killed, wounded and missing--Major Stark commanding first day and Captain Bowen on the second. The regiment was engaged in the siege of Corinth May, 1862. Pursued the retreating enemy to Booneville, Mississippi and returned to Corinth where the Regiment remained until the battle of Corinth, October 3 and 4. Was heavily engaged in this action., Colonel Sweeny commanding the Regiment--the loss being 70 killed and wounded. Pursued the retreating enemy as far as Ruckerville, and returned 12th.
October 3, moved to Hatchie River and returned.
December 9, 1862 moved with an expedition to Alabama. Met the enemy near Little Bear Creek, drove him 15 mile and returned to Corinth, arriving 14th. December 19, under command of Lieutenant Colonel Wilcox, left Corinth with the expedition of General G.M. Dodge to intercept Forrest. Marched 100 miles in four and one-half days and returned weary and foot sore.
January 2, 1863, moved to Tennessee River to intercept Forrest, and he had already crossed at Crump's Landing. Expedition returned.
January 26, moved to Hamburg Tennessee; embarked on a little steamer, and on the next day disembarked and returned to Corinth.
February 25,1863, moved, Major Brown commanding Regiment, Colonel Sweeny commanding expedition to Jacinto, Mississippi. Arrived 27th. Remained until March 4 when it returned to Corinth.
On the 15th of April Lieutenant Colonel Wilcox commanding Regiment, moved with an expedition of four brigades of infantry, one of cavalry, and 14 pieces of artillery. Brigadier General G.M. Dodge commanding to Northern Alabama. Marched to Burnsville on the 15th, through Iuka on the 16th; crossed Bear Creek on the 17th--Colonel Cornyn's cavalry skirmishing with the enemy.
April 20 Colonel Sweeny was promoted to Brigadier General. 23d the whole force advanced, driving the enemy. That night lay in line of battle. 24th, moved forward and entered Tuscumbia, Alabama.
April 27, moved toward Courtland. Met the enemy at Town Creek and skirmished till night. 28th gained possession of the railroad bridge, effected a crossing and drove the enemy three miles. 29th, returned arriving at Corinth.,May 2, 1863.
August 18, moved to Germantown, and Regiment assigned to guarding railroad,.
October 29, moved to Iuka. 31st bivouacked three and a half miles east of Iuka. November 6 the whole left wing of the Sixteenth Corps moved eastward. Arrived at Eastport and cross the the Tennessee. November 11, arrived at Pulaski Tennessee. Remained doing provost duty.
January 9, three-fourths of the Regiment having re-enlisted, it was mustered as a veteran organization. Started for Illinois and arrived at Chicago January 17. Proceeded to Geneva, Kane county and was furloughed 20th.
February 24, moved for Pulaski, Tennessee under command of Lieutenant Colonel E. A. Brown, Colonel Wilcox having resigned. Arrived at Pulaski 29th. April 29 in Colonel E.W. Rice's Brigade (First Brigade), General Sweeny's Division (Second), Left Wing, Major General G.M. Dodge, Sixteenth Army Corps, moved southward, arriving at Chatanooga May 2.
May 3, 1864 commenced the Atlanta campaign. The Regiment participated in the battle of Snake Creek Gap, Resaca, Lay's Ferry, Rome Cross Roads, Dallas, Kenesaw Mountain, Nickajack Creek, Decatur, July 22 and 28, before Atlanta and Jonesboro, and went into camp at East Point.
September 26, 1864, the Second Division, Left Wing, Sixteenth Army Corps, was transferred to Fourth Division, Fifteenth Army Corps, moved to Rome, and by rail to Cartersville and from thence marched to Allatoona. Arriving there too late for battle, it returned to Rome.
October 11, Lieutenant Colonel Bowen being mustered out, Major Boyd took command.
The Regiment marched with the Division, Brevet Major General J.M. Corse commanding, to Savannah, Georgia.
December 18th the non-veteran officers were mustered out, and J.D. Davis, having received a commission as Lieutenant Colonel, took command of the regiment.
December 21 marched into Savannah.
January 29, 1866, started on the Carolinas campaign. Was present at the battle of Bentonville and arrived at Goldsboro March 24.
April 10 marched to Raleigh. Lay at Morrisville during Johnson's surrender.
Marched via Richmond and Alexandria and was in the grand review at Washington May 24, 1865. June 2 moved to Louisville, Kentucky.
July 5, mustered out of the United States service. Moved to Camp Douglas, Chicago, IL and received final payment and discharge July 12, 1865.