60th Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry (Three Years Service) (1864 - 1865)

Also Known As: Sixtieth Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry (Three Years Service)

Updated: June 23, 2011

In the American Civil War, Ohio provided the federal government with 260 regiments of men, including infantry, artillery, and cavalry units. Ohioans also served in several other regiments from other states, most notably from Kentucky, West Virginia, and Massachusetts, as well as in federal units.

In the American Civil War, Ohio provided the federal government with 260 regiments of men, including infantry, artillery, and cavalry units. Ohioans also served in several other regiments from other states, most notably from Kentucky, West Virginia, and Massachusetts, as well as in federal units. Almost 330,000 Ohio men, including 5,092 African Americans, served in the Union military during the conflict.

Infantry regiments formed in Ohio became known as regiments of Ohio Volunteer Infantry. They served for varying lengths of time, averaging one hundred days to three years. In early April 1864, the 60th Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry organized at Camp Chase, at Columbus, Ohio. The men in the regiment were to serve three years. Many sources list this organization as the 60th Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry, but Ohio also provided the Union military with one additional 60th Regiment during only 1862. The earlier 60th Regiment served for one year. The 60th Regiment (Three Years Service) that formed in April 1864 initially consisted of six companies of regular infantry and two companies of sharpshooters. The sharpshooters organized at Camp Taylor at Cleveland, Ohio.

Upon organizing, the 60th Regiment (Three Years Service) traveled to Alexandria, Virginia, arriving at this location on April 24, 1864. At Alexandria, officials brigaded the regiment with the 2nd Brigade, 3rd Division. On April 27, the 60th departed Alexandria for the Rapidan River in Virginia, where the regiment joined the Army of the Potomac. On May 6, 1864, the 60th crossed the Rapidan and engaged Confederate General Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia with the rest of the Union army at the Battle of the Wilderness, which was part of Union General Ulysses S. Grant's Overland Campaign. On May 9, the 60th, with the rest of the Army of the Potomac's 9th Corps, engaged Confederate forces at Mary's Bridge on the Nye River. The regiment also fought valiantly at the Battle of Spotsylvania Court House (May 8 to 21, 1864). During the remainder of 1864, the 60th also fought in the Battles of North Anna, Totopotomoy Creek, Bethesda Church, and Cold Harbor and participated in the Siege of Petersburg, Virginia. An additional infantry company joined the 60th in June 1864 at Cold Harbor and another in January 1865 near Petersburg. In early 1865, the regiment continued to operate in the vicinity of Petersburg and, once Union forces captured this city, pursued the withdrawing Confederate Army of Northern Virginia until its surrender at Appomattox Court House, Virginia on April 9, 1865. During the Overland Campaign and the Siege of Petersburg, the commanding officer of the 60th Regiment filed the following reports:

HDQRS. SIXTIETH OHIO VOLUNTEERS INFANTRY, Pegram's Farm, Va., October 23, 1864.

SIR: I have the honor to submit the following report of the part taken by this command in the recent campaign from the time it joined the brigade at Alexandria, Va., April 24, to May 12, 1864:

We marched with the brigade to Catlett's Station, where we relieved the Fourteenth U. S. Infantry, performing garrison duty, and where we remained until May 4, when we marched to Warrenton Junction, and reported to Col. Morrison, commanding Seventy-ninth New York Volunteers. On the 5th we marched to Germanna Ford, on the Rapidan River, which we crossed on the morning of the 6th, and were temporarily assigned to the Fifth Corps about 12 m.

We were ordered to the extreme left of the army, and reported to the commanding officer of the Second Corps. On the 7th we were relieved and rejoined our corps and brigade proper. On the 8th marched with the brigade, and on the 9th marched in advance of brigade and division, which marched for Spotsylvania Court-House. At 9 a.m. crossed Ny River. By direction deployed two companies on our left as skirmishers before crossing, and two companies in front at crossing (the command then consisted of eight companies). Having crossed and gained a hill beyond without serious opposition the skirmishers in front were thrown to the right to protect that flank. It now became evident that the enemy were making preparations to drive us from the hill. They opened a sharp fire of musketry on our front, which we soon silenced. They then, under cover of the woods, advanced on our left so as to enfilade our line. We then changed front to rear on first company and took advantage of a sunken road running perpendicular to our front, which enabled us still to retain the crest of the hill. Lieut.-Col. McElroy, commanding, then reported to Col. Christ that if the enemy advanced we could not hold the position. He directed us to hold it as long as possible. Were joined by one company of our skirmishers from the left before crossing the river. We kept up a constant fire on the enemy, who advanced on our right and left, very nearly enveloping us, consisting, as nearly as I could judge, of four regiments dismounted cavalry. When they were within 30 yards of us Col. McElroy ordered us to fall back. Up to this time no other troops were engaged, the brigade being in line about 200 yards in rear. In falling back we were in some confusion, but reformed on the left in line with our brigade. This was the first time the regiment was ever under fire. It was assembled on the 21st of April, and, with the exception of four days, had been on the move, some of the men never before having had arms in their hands. On the 10th and 11th we were not engaged, but occupied position on the extreme left of the corps.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

M. P. AVERY,

Lieut.-Col., Cmdg.

Capt. THOMAS MATHEWS,

A. A. A. G., Second Brig., Third Div., Ninth Corps.

 

HDQRS. SIXTH OHIO VOLUNTEERS INFANTRY, Before Petersburg, Va., August 9, 1864.

SIR: I have the honor to submit the following report of this regiment during the second epoch after I assumed command at 9 a.m., May 12, 1864:

The regiment had just been relieved from the skirmish line, and I was ordered to report with it to Col. Marshall, Fourteenth New York Heavy Artillery, who was protecting the left flank of the corps with skirmishers. I was ordered to deploy my men until I had extended the line from the left of the Twenty-fourth New York Cavalry to Ny River, and hold the rest of my command in reserve. To do this it required four companies as skirmishers. After lying in this position for about one  hour, I was ordered by Col. Marshall to march with my reserve to the right and in rear of the First Division of this corps, leaving the skirmish line of Capt. House, Sixtieth Ohio Volunteer Infantry. I was placed with my four companies in the third line of battle on the left of the division, supporting the Tenth U. S. Infantry. We lay in this position the remainder of the day, not engaged, but losing a few men from the enemy's sharpshooters. At night we were moved back about 50 yards and lay on our arms. On the morning of the 13th we were placed in position on the front line about 400 yards from the enemy by Col. Humphrey, commanding Second Brigade, Third Division, and the skirmishers under Capt. House joined. Here we lay until the morning of the 18th, when we were moved out to support the skirmish line. In so doing the enemy shelled us very severely, but our loss was slight. On the 19th we moved to the corps to the left, and threw up rifle-pits, in which we lay until the commencement of the march to the North Anna, May 21. We lost more or less men every day from the enemy's fire, and I respectfully refer you to the accompanying list of casualties.*

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

M. P. AVERY,

Maj., Cmdg. Sixtieth Ohio Volunteer Infantry.

Capt. THOMAS MATHEWS,

A. A. A. G., Second Brig., Third Div., Ninth Corps.

 

HDQRS. SIXTIETH REGT. OHIO VOL. INFANTRY, Before Petersburg, Va., August 9, 1864.

SIR: I have the honor to submit the following report of the part taken by this regiment during the march from Spotsylvania to North Anna River, and the action at the latter place:

We marched with the brigade on the 21st [May] and reached the North Anna on the 23d. Bivouacked for the night in range of the enemy's guns, and on the morning of the 24th we were ordered to prepare to cross the line and attack the enemy with the rest of the corps, but after the reconnaissance it was decided not to, and this regiment was moved down to the support of the pickets. We took up a position under cover and remained in it until the movement commenced to the Pamunkey. We lost a few men on picket, but the regiment was not engaged. The men suffered on the march for want of shoes.

For the loss I respectfully refer you to the accompanying report of killed and wounded.+

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

M. P. AVERY,

Maj., Cmdg. Sixtieth Ohio Volunteer Infantry.

Capt. THOMAS MATHEWS,

A. A. A. G., Second Brig., Third Div., Ninth Corps.

 

HDQRS. SIXTIETH OHIO VOLUNTEERS INFANTRY, Before Petersburg, Va., August 9, 1864.

SIR: I have the honor to submit the following report of the operations of this regiment after I assumed command May 31, 1864:

We were in support of First Brigade, Third Division. We moved forward 200 or 300 yards, but were not engaged. At night we slept on our arms, and on the 1st of June occupied the same position until about dark, when the regiment was moved to the extreme left of the division, supporting the Fifty-first Pennsylvania. We had hardly got into position when the enemy made an attack on the First Division of this corps, which joined us on the left, and forced it back in some confusion. At the request of a staff officer of the First Brigade, I formed four companies on the left of the Fifty-first Pennsylvania, perpendicular to the main line, the commanding officer of the Fifty-first at the same time having extended his line to the left. I moved the rest of the regiment into the gap caused by this between the Fifty-first Pennsylvania and One hundred and ninth New York. We became engaged on the left with the enemy, who were occupying the pits thrown up by the First Division, but after about twenty minutes, firing the enemy retired and the pits were occupied by skirmishers. In the morning we were ordered back to our position of the 30th May, and marched that afternoon with the brigade. In the fight of the 2d the regiment was not engaged. On the 3d we formed the connection between the Second and Third Divisions, but were not engaged. On the 4th we marched with the brigade and relieved a part of the Second Corps at Cold Harbor. Nothing occurred worthy of note until June 7, when the enemy attacked a working party of this regiment which was in front of the pickets. The party which was to support them on the right ran without firing a shot, and this compelled them to retire, which they did in some confusion, as the enemy had outflanked them and oft in their rear.

I am sorry to report the death of Lieut. Evans, a brave officer, who fell while attempting to get his men but their perilous position.

Before night the ground lost was regained and the fatigue party brought inside the picket-line. Nothing further occurred except the usual picket-firing until we started for the James River.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

M. P. AVERY,

Maj., Cmdg. Sixtieth Ohio Volunteer Infantry.

Capt. THOMAS MATHEWS,

A. A. A. G., Second Brig., Third Div., Ninth Corps.

 

HDQRS. SIXTIETH OHIO VOLUNTEER INFANTRY, Before Petersburg, Va., August 9, 1864.

SIR: I have the honor to submit the following report of the part taken by this regiment in the operations before Petersburg:

We left Cold Harbor with the division on the 12th of June, crossed the James River on the evening of the 15th, and marched all night and the next day till 5 p.m., when we formed our front line. The oppressive heat and the hard marching compelled a great number to fall out of the column. We moved with the brigade during the night, and the next morning (the 17th), when the division made the charge, we did not cross the skirmish line of the Second Corps, but halted and laid down in rear of it, by order of Col. Christ, commanding brigade. Here we staid until the First Division had cleared the enemy's rifle-pits, when we were ordered to fill up the gap between the Second Corps, which had advanced its line, and the First Division of this corps, but I had so few men that I was unable to make anything more than a skirmish line. We immediately became engaged and held our position until after the First Division had been forced back and the men out of ammunition. The enemy were outflanking us and the regiment fell back to the rear of the Second Corps line, where we lay till morning.

On the 18th we moved with the brigade till it had halted in the woods, when I was ordered to deploy my men as skirmishers to protect the flank of the division, and be governed by the movements of the Fiftieth Pennsylvania. We lay here for about two hours, when I was ordered forward by Gen. Willcox with my reserve (about thirty men) with the colors to the crest of the hill this side of the railroad. Here I halted, by order of Gen. Hartranft, and remained all day. Since that time we have followed the movements of the brigade, spending thirty-six days in the trenches up to the 31st of July.

During the campaign, and while I have had command of the regiment, my thanks are due to Capt. W. L. Stearns, acting field officer, and Lieut. J. F. Curren, adjutant (who was wounded on the 17th), for their promptness and efficiency in their respective duties.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

M. P. AVERY,

Maj., Cmdg. Sixtieth Ohio Volunteer Infantry.

Capt. THOMAS MATHEWS,

Acting Assistant Adjutant-Gen.

 

HDQRS. SIXTIETH OHIO VOLUNTEER INFANTRY, Pegram House, Va., October 17, 1864.

SIR: I have the honor to submit the following report of the part taken by this command in the engagements from the 30th of September to the 6th of October, inclusive:

On the 30th the regiment was the sixth battalion in the brigade and marched with it during the day. Whey the brigade fell back to the second line it formed the extreme left of the front line, the battalion on the left having been placed to protect the left flank. It remained there until the line on the right had fallen back. Owing to the formation of the ground we could not see the enemy until he was in rear of both our flanks, when we fell back to the third line formed by the brigade. In doing so the regiment got into considerable confusion, owing to the nature of the ground over which we had to pass and the fact that we were receiving a galling fire from both flanks and the front, which we were unable to return. The regiment was not under fire again that day.

On the 1st of October we marched with the brigade and that night were on picket duty, but had no casualties. On the morning of the 2d Maj. Stearns took command and continued to have command until after the 6th, but during the time there were no casualties.

Respectfully submitted.

M. P. AVERY,

Lieut.-Col., Cmdg.

Capt. THOMAS MATHEWS,

Actg. Asst. Adjt. Gen., 2d Brig., 1st Div., 9th Army Corps.

 

HDQRS. SIXTIETH OHIO VOLUNTEER INFANTRY, Before Petersburg, Va., December 14, 1864.

SIR: I have the honor to submit the following report of the part taken by my command in the late operations of the Provisional Brigade:

We marched to the rendezvous of the brigade on the evening of the 8th instant, where we remained ready to move at a moment's notice till 4 p. m. on the 10th, when we marched with the brigade to Hawkinsville, on the Jerusalem plank road, twenty-two miles from Petersburg, arriving at 5 a. m. on the 11th. Left Hawkinsville to return at 2 p. m. on the same day, and by your direction marched to my old camp, arriving at 12 p. m., where we remained until 5 p. m. on the 12th instant, when we rejoined the brigade near the trestle of the military railroad, where we remained until the morning of the 14th, when we returned, by your order, to our old camp and reported to or brigade commander.

During the time we were encamped at the rendezvous the men suffered considerably from the inclemency of the weather. On the march out it rained almost incessantly and in returning the mud was over shoe deep which rendered the marching very hard and gave the men very sore feet, so that when I left camp the second time I was compelled to leave forty men that could not march. On the return numbers of men strayed from inability to keep up with the command, but on the evening of the 12th all of my men had reported at camp or the hospital.

On the evening of the 12th I reported 5 officers and 151 men present. This morning I reported 5 officers and 171 men for duty.

Very respectfully submitted.

M. P. AVERY,

Lieut.-Col., Cmdg.

Bvt. Col. G. P. ROBINSON,

Cmdg. Provisional Brigade, First Division, Ninth Army Corps.

 

HDQRS. SIXTIETH REGT. OHIO VOLUNTEER INFANTRY, Before Petersburg, Va., March 29, 1865.

SIR: I have the honor to submit the following report of the part taken by my command in the action of the 25th instant:

We were aroused by the rapid and continued firing at 4.15 a.m. My men were immediately formed in the trenches, where they remained during the action. The left of my command, consisting of Companies B and C, commanded by Capt. Merkel, kept up a continual flank fire on the enemy as they advanced and retreated from their works. My company commanders are deserving of great praise for the promptness with which they got their men in line ready for action.

My loss consisted in 1 killed and 6 wounded.

Respectfully submitted.

M. P. AVERY,

Lieut.-Col., Cmdg.

Bvt. Maj. C. A. LOUNSBERRY,

Acting Assistant Adjutant-Gen.

Following the Army of Northern Virginia's surrender, the 60th traveled to Washington, DC, where the regiment participated in the Grand Review, before being mustered out of service at the Delany House on July 25, 1865.

During the 60th Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry's term of service, 113 men, including three officers, died on the battlefield. An additional 130 men succumbed to disease or accidents.

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MLA Style

"60th Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry (Three Years Service)," Ohio Civil War Central, 2019, Ohio Civil War Central. 14 Nov 2019 <http://www.ohiocivilwarcentral.com/entry.php?rec=613>

APA Style

"60th Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry (Three Years Service)." (2019) In Ohio Civil War Central, Retrieved November 14, 2019, from Ohio Civil War Central: http://www.ohiocivilwarcentral.com/entry.php?rec=613

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