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79th Illinois Infantry
Regiment History

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Adjutant General's Report

The Seventy-Ninth Illinois Volunteers was organized at Mattoon, Ill., in August 1862, by Colonel Lyman Guinnip, and was mustered into United States' service August 28, 1862. Ordered to Louisville, Ky., and September 13, assigned to Third Brigade, Brigadier General Craft's Division, Army of Kentucky. On the 29th, it was transferred to Colonel Buckley's (Fourth) Brigade, General Sill's (Second) Division.

October 1, 1862, commenced the march through Kentucky. At Frankfort, it was transferred to General Kirk's Brigade (Fifth). Arrived at Perryville, Ky., October 9, and continued its march to Crab Orchard; thence to Lebanon, Bowling Green, and Nashville, Tenn., arriving November 7. Colonel Guinnip resigned October 17, and Lieutenant Colonel Sheridan P. Read was promoted Colonel.

Moved toward Murfreesboro, December 26, and on the 31st, entered the battle of Stone River. Colonel Read was killed early in action, and the command devolved upon Major Buckner. The Regiment was engaged until the 4th of January 1863, losing one officer killed, 3 wounded and 3 missing; 23 men killed, 68 wounded and 121 missing.

During the winter, the Regiment remained at Murfreesboro, and was assigned to Second Brigade, (Colonel Dodge commanding) Second Division, Twentieth Army Corps.

April 25, Major Buckner was promoted Colonel.

June 24, 1863, moved to Liberty Gap. 25th, engaged the enemy, losing Captain John Patton killed, Captain H. D. Martin mortally wounded, Captain Lacey and Lieutenants Foulke, Jones and King wounded, 5 men killed and 36 wounded.

The Division then marched to Tullahoma.

August 16, crossed Cumberland Mountains, Tennessee River, Sand Mountain, Lookout Mountain, and went into the battle of Chickamauga, September 19, and was engaged during the day and on the 20th. Losses, 7 officers missing, 4 men killed, 13 wounded and 97 missing. On the evening of the 20th, fell back to Chattanooga with the Army.

The Regiment was assigned to Colonel C. G. Harker's (Third) Brigade, General Sheridan's (Second) Division, Major General G. Granger's (Fourth) Army Corps.

On the 23d, 24th and 25th of November, was engaged in the battle of Chattanooga. On the 25th, stormed Mission Ridge, and captured two pieces of artillery.

On the 27th of November 1863, marched with Fourth Corps towards Knoxville, Tenn., went to Blain's Cross Roads, and remained there till January 15, 1864, when it advanced to Dandridge, but fell back January 18, to Knoxville. The Second Division being ordered to Loudon, the Seventy-ninth went to Sweetwater, 42 miles south of Knoxville, on the railroad. April 27, moved to Cleveland.

On the 3d of May, started on the Atlanta Campaign - General Newton commanding Division, and General Howard commanding the Corps. Was engaged at Rocky-Faced Ridge, May 9; Resaca, May 13 and 14; Dallas, Kenesaw Mountain, June 27; Peach Tree Creek, July 20, Atlanta, July 22, 27 and August 3; Jonesboro, September 11 and Lovejoy, September 2. The losses were 4 officers wounded, 6 enlisted men killed and 53 wounded.

September 25, ordered to Chattanooga - Brigadier General Bradley commanding Brigade, and Major General Stanley commanding Corps. Moved to Bridgeport, Ala., and remained until October 19th, when it returned to Chattanooga. On 22d moved to Alpine Pass, and, 30th, returned. November 1, moved to Pulaski, Tenn.

November 22, commenced falling back toward Nashville. 29th, the Brigade was attacked by Pat Cleborne's Division, and driven into the city. At Franklin, the Seventy-ninth was engaged four hours, losing, out of 210 veteran soldiers, 3 officers and 80 men killed, wounded and captured. That night fell back to Nashville.

December 15 and 16, took part in the battle of Nashville, and afterward followed the retreating enemy until he crossed the Tennessee River. The Third Brigade was sent to Decatur, Ala., arriving January 6, 1865. March 30, moved to Bull's Gap, by rail, 60 miles east of Knoxville, Tenn., and remained until April 22. Moved to Nashville.

June 12, 1865, mustered out of service. Arrived at Camp Butler, Ill., June 15; and June 23, received final pay and discharge.

Transcribed by Susan Tortorelli

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