bunting graphic

47th Illinois Infantry
Regiment History

flagbar graphic

Adjutant General's Report

The Forty-seventh Regiment, Illinois Infantry Volunteers, was first organized and mustered into the service of the United States, at Peoria. Illinois. on the 16th day of August, 1861.

On the 23d day of September, 1861, the Regiment moved, by rail, from Peoria to St. Louis, Missouri, going into quarters at Benton, Barracks, near the city, where it was clothed and armed complete. Remained in Benton Barracks, undergoing a thorough drilling, daily, until the 9th day of October.when it moved by rail, to Jefferson City, Missouri. where it remained doing garrison duty until the 22d day of December, when it moved, by rail, to Otterville, Missouri. Remained there drilling and doing garrison duty until the 2d day of February, 1862, when it marched north to the Missouri River; crossing at Booneville, marched down to the north side of the river St. Charles, where it arrived on the 18th day of February; crossed the river at St. Charles, and moved, by rail, to St. Louis, where it embarked on the steamer War Eagle, and moved down the river, arriving at Cairo on the 23d day of February,

On the 25th day of February, moved back up the river 30 miles to Commerce, Missouri, where the Regiment disembarked and joined Pope's command, then preparing for a campaign against Island No. 10 and New Madrid,

Marched from Benton, Missouri, March 2, arriving in front of the enemy's works at New Madrid, March 4.

On the night of March 10, the Regiment, with the Eleventh Missouri Infantry, marched 10 miles below New Madrid, taking with them a battery of Light Artillery, to Point Pleasant, blockading the river and cutting off the enemy's communication by river below New Madrid and Island No. 10. Here the Regiment was brigaded with the Eleventh Missouri Infantry Volunteers, Twenty-sixth Regiment Illinois Infantry Volunteers, and the Eighth Regiment Wisconsin Infantry, and placed under command of Brigadier General Joseph B. Plummer. Remained at Point Pleasant. encamped in a disagreeable swamp, with continual heavy rains, until the 7th day of April.

The enemy having evacuated New Madrid on the night of the 5th of April, the Regiment marched with the Brigade up to New Madrid on the 7th, and on the 9th were paid four mouths' pay by Major Witherell.

On the morning of April 10, the Regiment embarked on board of steamer Aleck Scott, and proceeding, with the army, down the river nearly to Fort Pillow, returned on the morning of the 11th, and disembarked at Tiptonville, Tennessee, 20 miles below New Madrid.  April 12, re-embarked and moved up the river to Cairo, drew clothing and took on coal, and, on the night of the 20th, moved up the Tennessee River, arriving at Hamburg Landing, Tennessee, on the morning of the 22d of April; disembarked and encamped near the river.

During the following 15 days the Regiment accompanied General Pope's Army in its advance in the direction of the enemy's position around Corinth. A portion of the way it had to construct corduroy roads through extensive swamps. On the 9th day of May, was engaged at Farmington, Mississippi, in which engagement Lieutenant Colonel Daniel L. Miles was killed. On the 28th day of May the Regiment participated in an engagement near Corinth. On the night of May 29, the enemy evacuated Corinth, and the Regiment accompanied General Pope's Army, In pursuit of their retreating forces, as far as Booneville, Mississippi, returning to Camp Clear Creek, six miles south of Corinth, June 11, 1862, where in a few days, the Regiment received two months' pay from Major Etting.

On the 3d of July. the Regiment marched to Rienzi. Mississippi, remaining there until the 18th day of August. on which day Colonel John Bryner took leave of the Regiment--his resignation having been accepted, on account of poor health.

August 18, broke camp at Rienzi and marched to Tuscumbia, Alabama, rejoining the Brigade on the road, arriving there August 22, and on the 24th received two months' pay from Major Hempstad.

Marched from Tuscambia September 8. and arrived at Camp Clear Creek September 14. Left Clear Creek on the morning of the 18th, and marched towards Iuka, Mississippi; participated in the battle of Iuka, on the 19th, where the army under General Rosecrans, defeated the enemy's forces under General Sterling Price. In this engagement Major John N. Cromwell was taken prisoner. Followed the retreating army of the enemy one day and then returned to Corinth. arriving there on the 3d day of October, and took part in the battle of Corinth, October 3 and 4. In the engagement of the 3rd, the brave and honored Colonel William A. Thrush, was killed while bravely leading his command in a charge. Captain David DeWolf, of Company K, was killed. Captain Harmon Andrews was severely wounded and taken prisoner. The Regiment lost in this engagement thirty (30) killed and over one hundred (100) wounded.

After this battle, the Regiment accompanied General Rosecrans' Army in pursuit of Price and Van Dorn's defeated army, following them to Ripley, Mississippi, so close as to cause them to abandon some of their artillery and nearly all their wagons and equipage.

On the 14th of October the Regiment returned with the army, and encamped near Corinth until November 2d, when it marched to Grand Junction, Tennessee, and joined General Grant's expedition into Central Mississippi. Marched to Oxford, Mississippi, with the army, and returned to Grand Junction, Tennessee. January 1,1863.

January 8, marched from Grand Junction, by way of Bolivar, Tennessee, for Corinth, where it arrived January 14. Moved, by rail, from Corinth, January 26, to Ridgeway Station, Tennessee. where the Regiment remained, guarding the railroad until March 12, when it marched to Memphis. Tennessee, and embarked on board steamer Empress, for the vicinity of Vicksburg. Remained near Helena, Arkansas,. ten days; and again moved down the river, disembarking on the 1st day of April. at Duckport, twelve miles above Vicksburg. Here the duties of the men were of various kinds--guard duty, loading and unloading steamboats, digging on a canal, and contriving the best plans at their hands to keep from reposing in water at nights.

On the 2d of May, the Regiment marched with the army down the west side of the Mississippi River. crossing it at Grand Gulf. and, with the Fifteenth Army Corps, then commanded by General Sherman, marched to Jackson, Miss., where, on the 14th day of May, 1863, it participated in the engagement which resulted in the capture of that city. On the morning of the 16th, was rear guard. On leaving the city, Colonel Cromwell. then commanding the Regiment, rode back to see if a detachment of troops, left back to bring up stragglers, were doing their duty, when a body of rebel cavalrymen came up between him and his command, and called on him to surrender, which he refused to do, and tried to escape, but was killed in the attempt, several bullets passing through his body.

The Regiment participated in the charge on the enemy's works at Vicksburg. May 22, losing 12 men killed, and quite a number wounded. During the siege of Vicksburg. Major John D. McClure received a severe wound, and carries the bullet in his body to-day.

On the 4th of June. the Regiment participated with the Brigade, under command of General Joseph A. Mower, in the defeat of a force of the enemy at Mechanicsville, Miss., 30 miles froft Vicksburg, near the Yazoo River.

After the fall of Vicksburg, during the months of August, September and October. the Regiment encamped at Bear Creek. 20 miles east of Vicksburg.

In the middle of November, 1863, the Regiment moved up the river to Memphis, Tenn., and from there to Lagrange, Tenn., guarding the Memphis and Charleston line of railroad. A portion of the time, however, was occupied scouting after the rebel General Forrest's command.

On the 26th of January, 1864, left Lagrange and arrived at Memphis, January 28.

February 1, embarked on board steamer for Vicksburg, where it arrived February 3, and went into camp at Black River Bridge, 12 miles from Vicksburg. February 23, marched to Canton, Miss. Returned to Black River March 3, and to Vicksburg, March 7, where it embarked March 10, on board steamer Mars, for the Red River expedition. Was present at the capture of Fort DeRussey, La., March 14.

Participated in the battle of Pleasant Hill, La., April 9, 1864. During this expedition the Regiment was under fire several times, and endured many very severe hardships.

On the 22d of May, the Regiment arrived, with General Smith's command, at Vicksburg, having been for nearly three months engaged in as tedious and fatiguing a campaign as has ever fallen to the lot of any army to undergo.

June 5, Regiment embarked for Memphis. Moved up the river to Lake Chicot, disembarked, moved inland, and came in contact with a force of the enemy under General Marmaduke, who was defeated and completely routed. Regiment lost in this engagement 11 men killed, and quite a number wounded.  Major Miles received almost a fatal shot in the neck, and Captain Biser was killed.

Regiment then proceeded to Memphis, and accompanied General A. J. Smith to Tupelo, Miss., with the exception of the men who had re-enlisted, numbering about one hundred, who left the Regiment at Moscow, Tenn., and went to Illinois on veteran furlough.

The veterans returned to the Regiment on the 8th day of August, and, with the Regiment. accompanied General A. J. Smith's expedition to Oxford, Miss. Returned to Memphis, August 27, 1864. The original term of service of the Regiment having expired, it was ordered to Springfield, Ill., where it was finally discharged on the 11th of October, 1864.

The veterans and recruits of the Regiment, numbering 196 men, left Memphis, September 2, 1884, under command of Lieutenants Edward Bonham and Royal Olmstead, accompanying General Mower's expedition up White River, to Brownsville, Ark., and from there marched north into Missouri, after the rebel General Price's army, which was raiding in that State.

Arrived at Cape Girardeau, Mo., October 4, and took steamer for Jefferson City, October 6, arriving at Jefferson City on the 15th; thence moved by rail, to Otterville; thence marched to Warrensburg. where it arrived October 26. Left Warrensburg, by rail, for St. Louis, November 2d; arrived at St. Louis on the 4th. From St. Louis, the veteran detachment was ordered to Chicago, Ill., on 9th November, 1864, to assist in quelling any riot, should there by any, on the day of election. Their services not being required, they were ordered to report to the Superintendent of Recruiting Service, at Springfield, Ill., and were stationed at Camp Butler, where, on the 28th of November, it received 200 drafted men, and a Battalion of four full companies was organized, and Lieutenant Bonham commissioned as Major, and Lieutenant Olmstead commissioned Captain of Co. A. On the 3d day of December, the command was ordered to the field, reporting by way of St. Louis, to General Rosecrans. At St. Louis the order was modified, and its destination changed to Louisville. Ky. From here it was orded to Bowling Green, Ky., where it remained until January 27, 1865. when it moved, by rail, to Nashville. From Nashville, down the Cumberland and up the Tennessee River, to Eastport, Miss., where it joined its old Brigade-- Second Brigade, First Division, Sixteenth Army Corps, accompanying it to New Orleans; thence to Mobile Bay. taking part in the reduction of Spanish Fort.

While laying in front of Spanish Fort, six additional companies arrived from Springfield, Ill., making the organization once more complete.

After the fall of Mobile the Regiment marched with the Sixteenth Corps to Montgomery, Ala,, where it arrived April 25, 1865. December 31, 1865, the Regiment was stationed at Selma, Ala.

Mustered out January 21, 1866, at Selma, Ala., and ordered to Springfield, Ill., where it received final pay and discharge.

Transcribed by Susan Tortorelli

Return to Main Page   Return to Regiment Page

NOTICE: This material may be freely used by non-commercial entities for educational and/or research purposes as long as this message remains on all copied material. These electronic pages cannot be reproduced in any format for profit or other presentation without the permission of The Illinois USGenWeb Project.   © 1997 The ILGenWeb Project All Rights Reserved

Valid XHTML 1.0 Transitional