New York's Fighting Sixty-ninth: A Regimental History of Service in the Civil War's Irish Brigade and the Great War's Rainbow Division
Formed in 1851 by Irish immigrants, the Fighting Sixty-Ninth has served with distinction since the Civil War. The regiment's flagstaff boasts 23 streamers (for each campaign) and 62 silver battle rings (for each battle), more than any other regiment in the United States Army at the close of World War II. Initially known as 69th New York State Militia (and seeing action under that name at the Battle of Bull Run), the regiment later cadred the 69th New York Volunteers. This is a complete illustrated history of the regiment's service in the Irish Brigade and the Rainbow Division.
Functioning as the 1st Regiment, Irish Brigade, 2nd Corps, Army of the Potomac throughout the Civil War, the regiment made history at Malvern Hill, Antietam, Fredericksburg, Gettysburg, Spotsylvania, Cold Harbor, Petersburg and Appomatox. Confederate generals Lee christened them the Fighting Sixty-Ninth. According to legend, an exasperated General Jackson (who rarely cursed) recognized them as part of that damn brigade.
Functioning as the 165th Infantry, 42nd Division (Rainbow Division) throughout World War I, the regiment helped turn back the last German offensive, counterattacked at the Ourq river, spearheaded one of Pershing's pincer at St. Mihiel, and helped break the Hindenburg Line in the Argonne Forest. Today, the regiment is known as 1st Battalion, 69th Infantry (Mechanized), New York Army National Guard.
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165th Infantry 1st Battalion 3rd Battalion 42nd Division 69th New York 83rd Brigade 84th Brigade advance Alabama Allied American Expeditionary Force April Argonne artillery assault attack August battle battlefield Boche British Expeditionary Force Bull Run campaign Captain captured casualties Civil Colonel command Company Confederate Corcoran Cote de Chatillon defensive Divi division's Donovan enemy eral Father Duffy Federal army fighting fire flank Foch fought France Fredericksburg French German Gettysburg Grant Hill Ibid Irish Brigade July killed Kriemhilde Kriemhilde Stellung Landres-et-St later Lee's army Lieutenant losses Ludendorff Luneville MacArthur machine gun Major March McCoy Meagher Meuse-Argonne Meuse-Argonne Offensive Mihiel miles military moved night November October offensive officers ordered Ourcq Ourcq River parade Pershing Pershing's Petersburg positions Potomac Rainbow Division rank Rebel regiment Reilly salient Second Corps Sector Sergeant Sixty-Ninth Smythe soldiers Summerall troops U.S. Army Union Union Army units wounded York City York State Militia York Volunteers Yorkers