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Eagle and Shield25th Ohio Infantry


The following is a list of battles in which this Regiment bore an honorable part, as recognized by the War Department:


Ohio FlagThis Regiment was made up of recruits from different parts of the State, and was organized June 28, 1861, at Camp Chase. Company K was from Lucas County-the Anderson Guards, organized at Toledo, under the laws of Ohio. It left Toledo June 25th, when it was escorted to the Railroad by the Zouave Cadets and Fire Engine Company No. 1. At that place a large concourse of citizens had assembled to bid the Company a hearty farewell. When mustered in, its officers consisted of Captain, Jonathan Brown; First Lieutenant, Nathaniel Houghton; and Second Lieutenant, Harlan Millikan.

On the 29th July, the Regiment proceeded to Western Virginia; serving at first along the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, in operations against " Bushwhackers." August 21st it reported to General Reynolds at Beverly, and soon proceeded to the summit of Cheat Mountain, where it suffered severely during the ensuing Fall and Winter. The men were constantly on duty without overcoats, and many without shoes or blankets; and the successive falls of sleet and snow caused much distress. Little of interest occurred, until September 12th, when a wagon-train on its way to the Valley for rations, was surprised and captured. Steps were taken for the pursuit of the Rebels, who were driven to their main support, when it was found that the Rebel force was under command of General Robert E. Lee. Preparations were made for strenuous defense, and for eight days skirmishing was continuous, when troops from below broke through the Rebel lines with supplies of provisions, and Lee gave up the movement on the Union camp. November 25th the Regiment marched into the Valley and entered Winter quarters at Huttonsville. Here the duty was light, giving the men opportunity to recover from their exposure.. December 11th a detachment of 460 men, under Colonel Jones, participated in a movement against the enemy at Camp Baldwin, where an engagement took place in which, at first, the Rebels were driven in; but being re-enforced, they made a stand, when a fight of three hours ensued, in which the enemy three times were driven inside their cabins; but from absolute exhaustion Colonel Jones's troops were compelled to retire. In the engagement the Regiment lost nine killed and 35 wounded. On the return it marched 60 miles in 26 hours. On the 31st it moved on a raid to Huntersville, marching 106 miles in five days, penetrating far into the enemy's country and destroying large quantities of Rebel stores. At the time this was regarded as one or the greatest feats of the War. At Huttonsville Co. D had been detached as a Battery of Artillery, armed with Wiard's steel guns, and subsequently known as Twelfth Ohio Battery.

February 27, 1862, the Regiment marched to Beverly, where its "smooth-bores" were exchanged for Vincennos rifles, which, being too heavy, were subsequently exchanged for Springfield rifles. April 1st the Regiment moved on the Seneca scout, crossing Cheat and Alleghany Mountains, passing through Circleville and reaching Monterey, after a march of 125 miles. On the 12th the Rebel General Johnston made an attack on Monterey, but after a sharp engagement, was repulsed; and on the arrival of General Milroy, with the remainder of the Division, he fell back to McDowell, and afterwards retreated to Staunton. Here the Union troops remained quiet until May 7th, when it was confronted by a large force under Johnston and Jackson. A general engagement was delayed until the 8th, when General Schenck with his Brigade arrived, and the battle of Bull-Pasture Mountain occurred. In that the Twenty-Fifth Ohio opened by a charge in which the enemy was driven from his position. Each side being reenforced, the engagement assumed a serious character, and continued until after night-fall, when it was deemed best to fall back to Franklin, the Twenty-Fifth being the last Regiment to retire, they covering the retreat, after losing nine killed and 56 wounded.

May 26, 1862, the Regiment accompanied Fremont from Franklin to Strasburg and up the Shenandoah Valley in pursuit of Jackson, participating in the battle of Cross-Keys with a loss of eight killed, 54 wounded and two missing. in July, with Sigel's Corps it passed into Eastern Virginia, and took part in General Pope's campaign along the Rappahannock, and from the Rapidan to the plains of Manassas, where, August 29th and 30th, it was in the second battle of Bull Run, losing 10 killed, 78 wounded and 22 missing. On the evening of the 30th it fell back to Centerville, and on the 30th of September moved to Upton Hill, having marched since August 8th, 220 miles, been under fire 14 successive days on the Rappahannock and taken part in the second battle of Bull Run. Until the Spring of 1863, the Regiment was engaged in marches and counter-marches and in building winter-quarters, until it settled down near Brooke's Station, where Battalion drill occupied much attention.

April 25, 1863, the Regiment started on the Chancellorsville campaign, with 443 men, and took 444 into camp at Chancellorsville -- one man having joined the force and none being lost. The Regiment was in Second Brigade, First Division, Eleventh Army Corps. With it was the Fifty-Fifth Ohio, Colonel J.C. Lee. Colonel Richardson of the Twenty-Fifth and Colonel lee on the 2d May, with a sense of impending danger, sent tried scouts into the wilderness, for information as to the enemy. They soon returned with the intelligence that they were massing on the right and rear of the Union force, and that there were no pickets between the two Armies. With this information, the Colonels hastened to Division headquarters; but the General commanding gave it no credence, remarking that the scouts were "probably scared," and sent the Colonels back to their commands. It was but an hour from this time, that Stonewall Jackson came down upon the unprepared Division, finding large numbers of its troops with guns in stack and others eating their supper. Not a picket-shot or other signal had told of the approaching enemy. The First Brigade gave way in confusion, the men not stopping to unbuckle their knapsacks, but cutting the straps. The Twenty-Fifth deployed, changed front and moved some 100 yards, exposed to a merciless fire, men from other Regiments, meantime, breaking through their lines. The Fifty-Fifth and Seventy-Fifth Ohio joined the Twenty-Fifth, and the three Regiments held their position until the broken fragments of the First Brigade passed to their rear and the enemy had encircled them on three sides, when they, too, fell back. The Corps was reorganized the next morning, and remained in the trenches until the 5th, when, with the Army, it recrossed the River, and went into the old camp at Brooke's Station.

June 27, 1863, the Regiment started on the Gettysburg campaign, with General Ames in command of the Brigade, and General Barlow in command of the Division. It passed over the Bull Run battlefield, crossed the Potomac at Edwards's Ferry, marched through Maryland, arriving at Emmetsburg on the 29th. In the sanguinary conflict which followed at Gettysburg, the Regiment bore an. active and effective part, sharing fully in the danger and losses of the fight. At Cemetery Hill, July 1st, it numbered 45 men, commanded by a Second Lieutenant; on the 2d and 3d, it still occupied the advanced lines, suffering severely from Rebel sharp-shooters, and on the 4th it was honored with the advance into Gettysburg. It went into action with 220 men, and lost 20 killed, 113 wounded and 50 missing. The majority of its officers had been killed or wounded, and the Regiment was commanded by a Lieutenant who had been wounded the first day of the battle.

July 5th, the Regiment moved in pursuit of the Rebels, going as far as Hagerstown, where the Division supported Kilpatrick's Cavalry in driving the Rebel Cavalry and Infantry through the town to their main supports. The force moved on to the Department of the South, taking up quarters at Folly Island, when the Regiment numbered 72 men, under command of a Lieutenant. Subsequently it took part in the siege of Fort Wagner, and then went into camp at Folly Island for rest.

January 1, 1864, the Regiment re-enlisted, and on the 15th started for Ohio on veteran furlough, which began February 3d, at Camp Taylor, Cleveland, Ohio. Co. K, or what remained of that command, reached Toledo on the 4th, where it was met at the Railroad Depot by a goodly number of citizens with the Union Silver Band, and escorted down Summit street to Cherry, whence they counter-marched to the McKenster House, S. Groff, proprietor, where they were welcomed in a speech by M.R. Waite, who thanked them for their brave and noble conduct. They then entered the McKenster House, and partook of a dinner prepared for them. At the close of the meal, toasts were drank and speeches made by Charles Kent, Lieutenant John Kehn, Orderly William P. Scott, M.R. Waite, Mayor Dorr, and others. Of the 97 men who left Toledo in 1861, only 16 returned to Cleveland; and but 14 came to Toledo-an extent of deeimallen shown by very few, if any, commands in the service. On calling the roll after the sanguinary fight at Gettysburg, only four men responded to their names.

On the 5th March the Regiment rendezvoused at Camp Chase, when many recruits had been added to it. On the 16th, the Regimental flags, which had passed through 20 battles, and under which 18 color-bearers had been killed or wounded, were presented to Governor Brough for the State archives, and the Regiment received a beautiful stand of new colors. Leaving Columbus the same day, it proceeded to Camp Grant, Virginia, remaining there until April 23d, it proceeded to Hilton Head, South Carolina, arriving the 26th. In this vicinity it did service until September, meantime suffering severely from the malaria of the swamps, most of the men being prostrated by sickness. On the 25th of that month, Cos. A, G and K were ordered to Fort Pulaski, Georgia, returning October 23d to Hilton Head. November 2d Dearly 300 recruits were added to the Regiment. November 28th, in the Coast Division, it left on an expedition to the Charleston and Savannah Railroad, remaining in that region until December 4th, when the Regiment proceeded by water up the Coosa River, capturing a Rebel Battery, and thence up Broad River to Devereaux Neck, in which vicinity the Regiment did good service, meeting the enemy .at different points, one day losing 54 men killed and wounded.

February 26, 1865, the Regiment marched into Charleston, quartering at the South Carolina Depot. February 28th it moved by rail to Goose Creek, 20 miles, and thence marched to Santa River, and returned to Charleston March 10th. April 3d, by steamer it went to Georgetown, South Carolina, and joined the force under General B.E. Porter, in an expedition against the Central and Eastern South Carolina Railroad, in which engagements were fought at Dingle's Mills, Strasburg, Rafting Creek, Boykin's Mills, Swift Creek and Red Hill. April 20th, 16 locomotives and 245 cars loaded with ammunition and clothing were totally destroyed. The next day a Staff-officer of General Beauregard, with a flag of truce, brought information that Lee had surrendered to Grant, that Sherman and Johnston agreed to a cessation of hostilities, and that the way had probably closed. Great was the joy caused by such tidings, and the next 100 miles to the Coast was marched in three days, the last two days on rations of two ears of corn. Reaching Georgetown April 25th, the Regiment proceeded to Charleston, and went into its old camp at Mount Pleasant. In consequence of the sad condition of affairs at Columbia, the State Capital, caused by the liberation of the slaves and the terrible destruction of property by fire, it was found necessary to send there a military force to preserve order. For that purpose, the Twenty-Fifth Ohio was detailed, under command of Lieutenant-Colonel Haughton. It arrived May 25th, and encamped on the grounds of the South Carolina College. Of the condition of affairs there, a reliable correspondent, under date of June 21st, said:

The once beautiful Capital of South Carolina did not escape the avenging hand of Sherman. Her beautiful blocks of elegant mansions and public buildings are in ashes. Probably no City of any size in the United States could compare with Columbia in beauty or in the wealth and refinement of its inhabitants. There was its Capitol, and here were congregated the elite and chivalry of the State. All that nature, art and wealth could do to embellish and adorn its streets and gardens and to make it attractive had been done. The streets are wide and the walks lined with every variety of foliage most attractive to the eye. Flowers in infinite number and variety are to be seen on every side; while the parks, gardens and door-yards are most tastefully arranged. The inhabitants, from the highest to the lowest, are to-day in the most abject state of poverty. They have neither provisions nor the wherewith to obtain them. People who occupy elegant mansions, and who, a few weeks since, were worth their thousands, are now penniless and without the means of buying the actual necessaries of life. Money, there is none, with the exception of a little put in circulation by the officers and soldiers of the garrison.

In talking with the citizens I find them generally ready and willing to submit to the necessities of the case, but without any abandonment of the principles of State rights for which they have been contending. The negroes have all learned that they are free, and, as is usually the case at first, most of them stopped work, both on the plantations and in the City, and congregated in large numbers at Columbia. As there are in South Carolina more than double the number of negroes than of white people, it was found necessary to have a military force distributed through the country to preserve order. Lieutenant-Colonel Houghton, commanding the Twenty-Fifth Ohio Volunteers, was accordingly sent to Columbia for this purpose. Upon arriving near the Town he found the roads and streets of the City blocked up with negroes. The next morning he sent out and arrested all the able-bodied male negroes, and set them to work clearing the rubbish from the burnt district. They worked all day faithfully, expecting when night came to get something to eat; but such was not the Colonel's plan. He allowed them to go hungry, and in the morning not a negro could be found. All of them returned to their homes, glad to work again.

An order was then issued requiring owners of slaves to call them up and tell them that they were free, advising them to continue their work, with the understanding that they should share the crop when harvested, but notifying all those who wished to leave that they were at liberty to do so. Many took advantage of the offer and left, and have since been roaming about the country, living on what they could steal, for the supply of labor is greater than the demand, and their only method of obtaining a living this year is by living with their former masters, who are compelled to keep them if they wish to remain.

As a whole, the state of society at the South is in a deplorable condition. The men have neither the means nor ambition to take hold and try to extricate themselves from their embarrassments. In the loss of their negroes they think they have lost all worth living for, and prognosticate all manner of trouble and danger in the future. The crops are in many instances suffering from want of care, and unless they wake up to a sense of their duties the coming winter will bring famine and suffering.

In September, a Sub-district, comprising five Counties, was constituted, of which Lieutenant-Colonel Haughton was made commander, and which was garrisoned by his Regiment. During the Fall and Winter the service was arduous in the extreme, made so by the bands of outlaws which infested the country. Several of the Soldiers were wounded, and one was assassinated. The outlaws roamed about, killing the negroes and committing other depredations. April 30,1866, the Regiment moved to Summeryule and garrisoned the surrounding country.

On the 7th June the Regiment left Charleston by steamer for New York, whence it proceeded to Columbus, Ohio, arriving there on the 12th. On the 16th, in front of the State Capitol, it held its last parade, when its colors were presented to Governor Cox, and on the 18th June, 1866, after over five years of faithful and effective service, it was mustered out and discharged.

From History of Toledo and Lucas County, by Clark Waggoner
Volume I, pages 154-157

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