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to more than twice their term of service, and up to this date, the Confederates had been successful on every field. An enlistment for three years’ service at this time meant more than a brief term of a few months. The first spontaneous outburst of patriotism had been succeeded by a candid and thoughtful consideration of the momentous task before us, with the record of past events pointing to possible failure. This was the condition of affairs when it was decided in September, 1861, by a group of young men in Chillicothe, to raise a. regiment in response to the President’s first call for three hundred thousand troops for a period of “three years, or during the war.” After due consideration, these young men determined to make the attempt, and Capt. Orland Smith, then in command of the Chillicothe Greys, was invited to accept the colonelcy, and the second position was offered to Jacob Hyer of Greenfield. Both these gentlemen accepted, and at once began the establishment of recruiting stations in Ross and adjacent counties. The headquarters of the embryo regiment was established at “Camp Logan,” near Chillicothe. Company
encampments were opened at Hallsville, Clarksburg, and Massieville, _
in Ross county. Enlistments moved along slowly, but by the 12th of November, the first company (A) with a complement of one hundred men, was organized. November 20th companies 13 and F were completed, and company G was organized on the 13th of December. In the meantime a number of parts of companies were brought into camp by the recruiting officers, and all were being drilled and schooled in the art of war.
On the 30th of December, these detachments were consolidated, by which means ten minimum companies were organized and the regimental organization completed, and mustered into the service of the United States. The work of drilling and equipping the regiment went steadily on, and by the time it was ordered to the field, the discipline, drill and apparent efficiency of the regiment were alike creditable to the ofiicers and the men.
The “Chillicothe Greys," a company organized just prior to the War, was the nucleus of this regiment, and, as before intimated, its captain was chosen as the colonel of the new organization, and subsequently became the commander of a brigade, in the Eleventh Army corps. That the reader may have some idea of the casualties of the regiment, let it be said that eighty men were commissioned as field, stafl’, and line officers, while thirty-six is the complement for a regiment. Of these, a few resigned, and some were promoted, but it is safe to assert that at least thirty officers were killed or disabled in the service. The regiment lost one hundred and fifty-six enlisted men, killed in battle, or died of wounds; five hundred and sixty-eight; were wounded in battle, and one hundred a.nd twenty-nine died of disease. A “minimum” company was sixty-one men, hence the eas
ualties exceeded, by forty per cent, the number of men 811t'Bl‘1ng the service with the organization of the regiment. _ f W t
The active service of the Seventy-third began_1n the army 0 _ 9:; Virginia, under Gen. W. S. Rosecrans. It would be 1I1TBl‘8SlZlIlg'.l follow the regiment through its wonderfully active career of neg y four years at the front; but a brief resume of events must 1511 ‘@9It participated in twenty hard-fought battles, some of Whlcl \f81‘9 the most disastrous in the annals of the war. To reach these Vfll'l1l°115 scenes of carnage in a half dozen difl'erent states, it traveled t 0&1: sands of miles on weary marches, through rain and snow and 11111 , in intense heat, or equally uncomfortable cold; wading st_rean1‘l-ii climbing and descending mountains, each soldier carrymg, 111 f“_ equipment, some sixty pounds of baggage. It_1s estimated that 111 ordinary warfare, a soldier is under fire in skirmishing, and 0'11?!‘ desultory fighting, at least five times to each general engagement 111 which he participates; hence a record of battles is no fair estimate as to a soldier’s actual service. i _
The Seventy~third fought under Rosecrans, Schenck, Mllroy, and Fremont in West Virginia; under McClellan, Sigel, Howard, POPE’. Burnside, Hooker and Meade, in the Army of the PotoIn80;fl11d under Rosecrans, Thomas, Sherman, Grant and Hooker in Tennessee, and on the Atlanta campaign, thence on the memorable “March to the Sea.” It received complimentary mention by General Grant for valiant services in the “midnight charge” in Lookout Valley, which Gen. S. H. Hurst, its colonel, characterized as “the hottest and most bravely contested battle of any in which the regiment had participated.” General Grant in his oflicial report, pronounced the charge of the Seventy-third Ohio and Thirty-third Massachusetts 111
this engagement “one of the most daring feats of arms in the W111‘-”
The campaign in East Tennessee followed this, and after much weary and apparently fruitless marchin
g, the regiment returned to Lookout valley, and there re-enlisted,_ ' in the entire regiment refused to continue in the service after the expiration of the first term of enlistment. January 15, 1864, the regiment reached Chillieothe on veteran furlough, being accompanied by the Sixty " ' '
was'accorded them in the veterans, after two ed ones around the home
, g and speech making. But years absence, were more anxious to meet lov
d to their several
111 Lookout vallev, on the 2nd of March, and there resumed the routi '
ne of camp life, until the beginning of the
almost to a man. But four men
thrilling events in the campaign of 1864. It participated in the battles, marches and skirmishes of the Atlanta campaign, and the skirmishers of the Seventy-third were the first to enter the beleaguered city. Continuing the triumphal march to the sea, and up through the Carolinas, fighting its way, as enemies confronted it, the Grand Review at Washington put a fitting finale to the record of the preceding years.
The Rebellion was crushed, and the citizen soldiery was no longer imbued with the military spirit. It was “Home, Sweet Home,” in the minds of all. The Cincinnati Gazette of July 25, 1865, thus summed up the homecoming of the gallant old regiment: “The Seventy-third regiment was mustered out at Camp Dennison today. The history of this noble veteran organization is a record of heroism and endurance, of which every Ohioan should be proud. Its flag bears the names of twenty bloody fields, where the regiment fought and sufiered. Its roll of honor shows seven hundred and fifty killed and wounded in battle. The graves of its three hundred dead mark its victorious pathway through six states of the Union. In the midnight charge at Lookout, it performed a feat unsurpassed in the annals of war. It has been in the front of many battles and its old flag has never known repulse.”
The field and staff oificers of the Seventy-third were subject to frequent change, there being ten resignations, one discharge, and one death. A number of resignations were due to promotions to higher rank in other organizations, and the places thus made vacant were filled by promotions from the line ofiicers. The distinguished Chillicothean, now serving as postmaster, and who has filled several other prominent positions in civil life, passed up from the position of second lieutenant in 1861, to the rank of brevet brigadier-general. Reference is'made to Gen. S, H. Hurst, who commanded the regiment for nearly two years, passing through the various grades of second lieutenant, captain, major, lieutenant-colonel, colonel and brigadiergeneral. This is a most distinguishing honor, and an attainment seldom reached in the annals of the civil war. It speaks of faithfulness to duty, efficiency in ofiice, bravery on the field, and confidence of the men under his command.
A number of line officers were chosen from the ranks of the Chillicothe Greys, that company being specially well drilled at the organization of the regiment, and hence capable of instructing others. But usually promotions were made from the companies where the vacancies occurred. Some of the Ross county ofiicers in this regiment were the following: Brig.-Gen. Orland Smith; Col. Richard Long, who was detached on the stafl‘ of Major-General Howard: Surgeon Jones P. Satford, who suffered humiliation but was subsequently vindicated. and restored to former rank of major; Adjutant John Spence, who rose from the ranks; Adjutant John B. Smith, who
second lieutenant to that of niajol‘, P359‘ utenant and captain, but owing t0_th9 nient, not mustered in the higher p0S1t10l1§ Capt. Presley T. Talbot, promoted from the ranks, serving a_fl Cal?’ min from April 18, 1864, until June 25, 1865, when he resigned» pending the final muster-out of the armies; Capt. J ames C. Mc_K_9l1, passed through the various grades from private to captain, attamlllg
that position by promotion, on April 18, 1864, resigned January 1, 1865; Capt. Samuel R. Peters, passed through the various g'1'flde5 from private to second lieutena
as a private, October 26, 1861
ond lieutenant and first lieute ant, an_d receiving his commission as captain, March 26th, 1865; W
Bentonville, North Carolina, one of the ‘last battles of the War, and was discharged by reason of his wounds May 19, 1865; Capt. Sam" uel Ambrose, enlisted in the r
anks, and attained the rank of captain
decimated ranks of the regi
on the 28th of March, 1865, having been a commissioned ofiicer from the 23rd of September, 1864. Capt. John W. Adams, served in the capacity of private, second lieutenant, and first lieutenant, and attained the rank of captain on the day of Lee’s surrender; Capt. Martin L. Buchwalter, attained to his highest. rank after the war was over, becoming a distinguished lawyer and jurist, and occupying the position of judge in the courts of Cincinnati; enlisted as a private,
October 12, 1861, on January 1, 1865, was commissioned first lieu- .
tenant, in which position he served until the 22nd of May, 1865, when
.he was promoted to a captaincy; Capt. Asa F. Couch received his
most distinguishing military honors just prior to the home-coming period, being promoted from first lieutenant to captain, on the 25th of June, 1865.
First Lieut. Rufus Hosler enlisted October 26, 1861, and served in the ranks until October 25, 1862, when he was conunissioned as second lieutenant. After two months’ service in this capacity, he was promoted to the rank of first lieutenant, this commission dating
. from the 23rd of December, 1862. He received a disabling wound
in the battle of Peachtree Creek, Georgia, by reason of which he was discharged, on the 24th of 1\*o\-ember, 1864. Mr. Hosler is at present a member of the board of county commissioners of Ross county, and a well known and highly honored citizen. First Lieut. Isaac N. Hawkins was discharged May 15, 1865, by reason of wounds received in battle at Atlanta, Georgia. The following named first lieutenants served the full term with their respective companies, and were mustered out with the regiment: John Burke, John Hildebrand, James Ferguson, James Ross, and Michael S. Mackerly. Second Lieut. Igdaliah B. Dresbach resigned his commission August 12, 1863, after nearly two years of service.
Should space permit it would be a pleasure to include the names and service of the “men who bore the guns,” many of whom performed feats of daring, and services of incalculable value to the cause, wholly prompted by the innate desire for national preservation, and without the hope of official reward. Some even declined promotion, on the conscientious ground that they would then be serving for the emoluments and honors of office, while the charge would be groundless if the salary remained at thirteen dollars a. month! The title of “Lincoln hirelings” and “coffee coolers” hardly applied to such men as these.
The Sixty-third Ohio Veteran Infantry was another military organization in which Ross county had more than ordinary interest. Five companies were recruited at Chillicothe for the Twenty-second regiment, largely through the efiorts of Col. William E. Gilmore, after his return from the “three months’ ’ service; but the organization did not materialize as rapidly as was desired, and these companies (F, G, H, I, and K) were consolidated with a like number