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12th Regiment Cavalry, NY Volunteers
Civil War Newspaper Clippings

Missing Correspondence.
The following letter should, as appears from its date, have been printed early in June. It just appears on our desk, by what means we are unable to say. As most of the matter will be interesting to our readers, we print it, notwithstanding its long delay:
Camp of the 12th N. Y. Cavalry,
Tarboro, N. C., May 20th, 1865.
EDITOR PATRIOT & GAZETTE:—Our regiment has been attached to the 3d Brigade of Kilpatrick's Cavalry Division, and ordered to establish its Head-Quarters here, and assist the citizens of this (Edgecombe,) Halifax, and Northhampton counties, in forming Home Guards, and securing peace and quiet until the re-establishment of the civil government. We left Goldsboro on Tuesday, the 9th instant, and arrived here after a lively march on the following Thursday morning.
We were quietly but cordially welcomed by the citizens of the town through which, a little less than two years ago, a part of the regiment rode in the wild fury of a charge, driving the Rebel forces stationed in town across the river to the main body of the enemy, strongly ambushed in the woods and supported by masked artillery, placed so as to command the two roads leading from the bridge, and the open field through which they run, and in which our camp is now placed. It will be remembered by friends at home that while a part of the forces of that expedition were destroying the boats on the river, the commissary and other army stores in the town, and a part had gone to destroy the railroad &c. at Rocky Mount, some miles above, Troop A, P, and F, of our regiment, with one Howitzer of the 3d N. Y. Cavalry, were holding the east side of the river opposite the village. Our pickets being put out so near to the woods as to draw a fire of musketry from the advance line of the enemy, a general charge was ordered up the river road, which circling half way around the open field before alluded to, bears suddenly to the left and leads for a long distance through woods, in which whole regiments of Infantry might lay concealed on either side of the road, but which are perfectly inaccessible to Cavalry. No sooner had one Troop entered the woods than they seem saturated with a perfect storm of bullets through which they rode for more than a mile, the enemy firing and falling back further into the woods, when, finding it impossible to reach the enemy mounted, the order was given to return, which was done in good order, but in sorrow and anger, for they left behind, either dead or dying, Captain Cyrus Church, Sergt. John P. Miller, and privates William Davis and David Carl of A Troop; Hiram C. Rude of O Troop; and Bugler Marcus Mulluay, of F Troop, besides having many others seriously wounded, among whom were a number of well known residents of Oswego county.
The main object of the expedition having been soon after effected in the destruction of rebel property, and ascertaining the force in this vicinity, our Troops recrossed the river, under a heavy fire from the enemy's artillery, partially destroyed and set fire to the bridge, joined the rest of the expedition, and returned safely to New Berne, though followed and flanked and cut of by overwhelming numbers of Infantry, Cavalry and Artillery, obliging our forces to fight, retreat, halt, travel ten miles to gain one, to arrive finally at Camp, probably as completely a worn out body of men and horses as has been seen during the war.
Immediately on our arrival here, on this occasion, Capt. Simeon Church, of B. Troop, commenced arrangements for the reinterment of our dead, who fell here at the time of "the raid." We had before ascertained about where the negroes had buried them, by permission or direction of the rebel authorities, and their graves had been visited by members of A Troop, who were captured at Plymouth and passed through here on their way to Richmond. Arrangements having been completed, including neat head boards with name, Troop, place residence, time and manner of death, and age, painted on each respectively, the remains were removed from the grave or pit where they had been buried together; although every vestige of clothing had been stripped from them, previous to their burial, after the manner of the chivalry, the bodies were identified by well remembered distinctive marks. They were placed in separate coffins, and on the 17th instant, a bright and beautiful May day, when the air was laden with the perfume of roses and the many flowers of this semi-tropical clime, they were escorted by the regiment to the cemetery in the village, pleasantly situated on the western bank of the river, and reburied with military honors. It was a solemn and interesting occasion." They whose remains we followed, were the first offering of our regiment to the cause for which we had left homes and friends and all that men hold dear in social life; and although since they fell hundreds of our comrades had fallen in action, been deliberately shot in cold blood on lonely picket and murdered slowly by starvation and ill treatment in almost every prison of the South, yet these seemed peculiarly Our Dead, from the fact that they had first fallen, and that we were now, on the first dawning of peace, permitted thus to pay them this tribute of respect.
And so, with gleaming arms reversed, and our horses moving with slow and stately steps, amid the solemn music of the band and the silent sympathy of thousands of spectators, the procession moved to the burial place, and after a few appropriate remarks by our chaplain and the reading of the burial service, we laid them down to their last rest; unless the home friends of all or some of them hereafter remove their remains, to finally rest near the banks of our noble Oswego, which in life they loved so well.
M. F. S. Troop B, 12th N. Y. Cavalry.

LETTER FROM A PRISONER OF WAR.
— We have been permitted to publish the following letter written by Lieut. A. COOPER, of the 12th N. Y. Cavalry, to a friend in this city:
DEPOT OF FEDERAL PRISONERS,
CAMP DAVIDSON,
SAVANNAH, GA., Aug. 27th, 1864.
DEAR HAL :—
Nearly four months have elapsed since I took up my abode in this land of corn, dodgers and bacon, and like the prodigal son, I often think of my father's mansion, "where there there is bread enough and to spare," and dream nightly of fatted calves and awake daily to the sad reality that my veal cutlets have all been transformed into salt bacon, my wheaten loaves into corn dodgers, and my wine into bran coffee. I had proposed to visit the North during the summer months, but the many friends I have found here have been so anxious to have me remain, that I find it impossible to tear myself away. But I expect that "General Exchange" will be here soon, and I shall then be obliged to say farewell to my Southern friends and with much reluctance, leave their sunny clime for my cold, chilly, Northern home. But their kindness and hospitality shall ever be green in my memory, and I shall always improve every opportunity to show my gratitude. My health, I am happy to say, was never better. Col. MILLER is a guest here, and seems to appreciate the hospitality as well as myself. My regards to your father and mother and all friends.
Yours, truly, &c.,
A. COOPER.

[For the Rondout Courier.)
On the Death of Levi Snyder.
Among the thousands who have enlisted in the Federal armies, none, perhaps, have been impelled by more patriotic motives, than our deceased friend, Levi Snyder, who departed this life on the 5th of August, at Sprague Barracks, New Drop, L. I. It was his desire from the beginning of the war to serve his country in any capacity he might be accepted. His heart was with the cause of the Government to sustain and uphold the Constitution and the Union.—Twice he went to enlist as a private in the 120th Regiment, but was rejected on account of his imperfect eyesight. But he could not give it up so. He tried again; and finally through the influence of a friend he obtained a position as quarter-master sergeant in the 12th N. Y. Cavalry.
He came up once on a furlough to visit his friends, but soon returned to duty, his heart seeming to be with his regiment.
But his service was destined to be of short duration. He was smitten down with typhoid fever, which resulted in his death. He had been a member, of the Methodist Episcopal church but a few months. But immediately after his conversion he, became a zealous and active christian, not standing aloof from his duty whenever it stood in his way. The church at Eddyville lost a good member, when he was separated from it.
How cheering it must have been to him while on his death bed, to reflect that only a short time before God, had called him from the darkness of the world, into the glorious light of the Gospel; that God for Christ's sake had pardoned his sins; and that instead of being unprepared he was prepared to live with him in glory. He would look back with delight at the kind providence of God in calling him in time to be saved. Had he delayed the time of repentance he might have died without a hope. But he was snatched as a brand from the burning, and died in the triumphs of faith.
His parents and sisters could not be with him to administer to his wants, and speak kind and soothing words to encourage him while tortured with burning fever. They were not informed of his dangerous condition. But Christ was there: and with his Word he could comfort his dying saint with promises of deliverance. "Be thou faithful unto death and I will give thee a crown of life," (Rev. 2:10) is calculated to cheer the soul of the departing one, and cause him to bear up under his pain, until he is relieved and ushered info the light of the other world. "And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain, for the former things are passed away," (Rev. 21:4) is to the afflicted what the oil and wine was to the wounded Samaritan. Though full of pain and bodily anguish, the hope of soon being within the realms of bliss, and free from every thing which makes frail man unhappy, enables us to endure disease, and view approaching death without a murmur.
He had not the pleasure of seeing his relatives around his bed to bid them goodbye, and admonish them to meet him in heaven. But no doubt he importuned God to guide them into the way of all truth, and lead them all into the paths of rectitude and holiness, that they might eventually meet him in a home where there will be no more separation. And though they had not the consolation of seeing him depart; of hearing his last words; of receiving his last blessing; and of hearing his last prayer, they can comfort themselves with the pleasing anticipation of a future meeting "on the other side of Jordan," where they can greet him with joy, unmingled with the fear of a future parting.
He went forth to aid in overcoming the enemies of the Government, but death, the "last enemy" of all mankind, found him and overcame his mortal body for the time being. But Christ shall finally destroy this last enemy, and our departed friend shall be more than conqueror through him that loved us.
We could wish that every one in the Northern states was as truly loyal, and full of devotion and patriotism as was Levi Snyder. The rebels would long ago have succumbed to the superior numbers and prowess of hearts impelled to action by their love of liberty and the unalienable rights of all mankind. No party prejudice or political gambling would have fermented discord and disunion to embarrass the Government in its efforts to cope with treason. All would have gone on smoothly, and peace, so much desired by all, would have been restored to our war distracted nation. JOHN VAN WAGENEN.
New Salem, Sept. 21st, 1863.

CAVALRY RECRUITS.—Capt. Taylor yesterday mustered in Company K, of the 12th Cavalry comprising 100 men, enlisted here, for the most part, in the past fortnight. The men will leave for Staten Island on Monday evening. They received their government bounty yesterday. A finer looking body of men has not been enlisted in this city.
Capt. Taylor will now proceed to assist Capt. Mahon in filling up his company for the same regiment. It has now 70 names on its roll, and places are open in it for a 1st Duty Sergeant, a Quarter-Master's Sergeant and a Commisary Sergeant.

...Cavalry.—Capt. Mahon is having excellent success in recruiting his company for the 12th New York (3rd Ira Harris) Cavalry. Although he has only been two or three weeks at work he has now about seventy men, and the company will soon be organized and filled up. It will be officered by men of experience, and altogether bids to be a model company. We call the attention of those contemplating volunteering to its claims.
Capt. R. M. Taylor, has also been doing admirable work, recruiting for the same regiment. He expects to send off to-night a full company which he has enlisted principally since the departure of a previous company about a fortnight ago. Who says that men will not volunteer nowadays?

THE NEW YORK 12th CAVALRY.—
Letters received from members of this regiment, which is now stationed at Newbern, N. C., represent that both officers and men are well pleased with their present quarters. The regiment is well equipped as regards clothing, arms and horses.
Lieut. COOPER is now recruiting in this city for the above regiment, and is meeting with good success. Last week he obtained fourteen recruits and they have been forwarded to the regiment. His office is located on West First street, near the TIMES office, where he will be happy to enlist all who desire to serve their country in this branch of the service. Extraordinary inducements are held out to discharged soldiers for re-enlistment. Besides the State bounty of $150, is the National bounty of $402. The term of enlistment is for three years, if not sooner discharged. A few more installments of such news as we have been receiving for a few days past, and the duration of the war will be short.

THE 12TH N. Y. CAVALRY.—Major GASPER and Lieut. COOPER, who are engaged in recruiting for the above organization, are meeting with good success, and enlistments are quite rapid. Since the opening of their office in this city, they have recruited fifty men, the majority of whom have been forwarded to the rendezvous of the regiment at Staten Island. Lieutenant COOPER will leave here on Monday next with another squad, and persons desirous of entering this branch of the service should enroll themselves immediately and depart with him.
We learn from members of the regiment that the utmost satisfaction prevails among the recruits at Staten Island. The men promptly recieve their bounties as promised, and the annoyance hitherto experienced by the non-payment of the bounty money is entirely avoided now.

12TH CAVALRY.--Capt. R. M. Taylor has received orders from Gen Dix to use all dispatch in forwarding to headquarters the men recruited here by him. His troop is nearly full, lacking less than 20 men. Capt. T. will pay down to each recruit $5 over and above all bounty, and will also pay $5 to each person bringing a recruit. Two experienced men are wanted—one for Orderly and one for Commissary Sergeant. Office over 157 Main street. ault4

Andrew R. Palmer, late of the 21st regiment, has re-enlisted, and is now recruiting for the 12th N. Y. Cavalry, (Col. Savage,) headquarters at Buffalo.

ATTENTION.—Lieut. E. A. Mahon of the 12th New York, 3d Ira Harris Cavalry, has opened an office at No. 145 Main street, (next door to Justice Burt's office,) for the purpose of enlisting all those wishing to join this favorite arm of the service. This regiment offers a line inducement to veteran volunteers, entitling them to a bounty of $552. It is now stationed at Newbern, N. C., and numbers about seven hundred strong. The Colonel of the regiment, James W. Savage, is an experienced and efficient officer, as is also Lieut. Col. Vought, a former resident of this city. The regimental headquarters are 498, Broadway, New York.

LEFT FOR NEWBERN.—Major, late Capt., R. M. Taylor, left for New York last evening, on his way to Newbern, N. C. The last company of the 12th Regiment of cavalry will leave New York on Wednesday, and Major Taylor will accompany them. He has raised four full companies in this city since July 15th, and now takes the field. Ald. Taylor has been one of the most successful recruiting officers in the city, and he desires us to say that he owes his success, in a great measure, to the kind aid of the Buffalo press. He also wishes, in this informal way, to express his obligations to the following gentlemen, who have rendered him valuable assistance: Brig.-Gen. Lansing, William Wilkeson, H. W. Chittenden, A. R. Ketcham, I. T. Hathaway, Robert Dick and Zenas Clark. We wish Major Taylor a prosperous voyage and a safe return.

THE TWELFTH N. Y. CAVALRY.—The Fulton Patriot and Gazette publishes an account of an expedition from Newbern a few days since, in which the 12th New York Cavalry was engaged. The information is received through a letter from Mr. GEO. GREGG, one of the cavalry company enlisted in that village last Fall. The expedition had several battles while on the raid, and the Fulton company lost fourteen in killed, wounded and missing. He says that Stephen Lashlie is wounded, but is recovering; Abiel Laws, wounded in the arm; Henry Rood, David Wilson, Mr. Thompson, Simeon Church, E. Moshier and Mr. Hubbard, killed; Henry Breed, missing. Mr. Gregg is unable to give the other names.
Another letter leaves a doubt as to the death of Mr. Church.
Mr. Gregg says they passed through great hardships and severe battles, but the victory in every case was on the side of the Union forces.

LETTER FROM THE TWELFTH NEW YORK CAVALRY. (1863)
[Correspondence of the Buffalo Daily Courier.]
NEWPORT BARRACKS, N. C., July 10th.
EDS. COURIER:—When my last letter was written, it was but a short time after our regiment arrived in this State from New York, and we were at the time camped in the vicinity of Newbern. There we made calculations about remaining for a considerable time to come, but alas, our hopes and our exertions to make ourselves at home were soon knocked in the head by an order from headquarters to "strike tents" and move in companies to different sections of the State. Where all the companies composing the 12th New York cavalry are stationed now, I cannot tell, and only know this much, that they are reconnoitering in search of the rebels night and day, and patiently bearing the numerous fatigues of a bloody campaign. The headquarters of the regiment, however, is at Newbern, where our Colonel and one or two others, as lucky as himself, are enjoying themselves a la mode. Enough at present about the regiment as a whole, and you must not deem me top selfish or superfluous if I confine my remarks solely to the movements, &c, of the company to which I belong.
We are stationed at a small place known by the name of Newport, (it should have been called No-port, for hang me if I can see anything that entitles it to such a name,) on the military railway that runs from Newbern to Morehead. In the beginning of the war our camp ground was occupied by the 7th N. C, (rebel) regiment, who erected log barracks as much for the accommodation of their invaders as themselves. We find our log houses much preferable to the crowded tents in which we lately took shelter, and half bless the labors of the defeated enemy for the comfort they afford us. Two companies of the 98th N. Y. Volunteer Infantry, with an excellent staff of officers, are companions of ours in camp, and all do duty together—our pickets doing the outside guard some six or eight miles from camp, in woods and swamps as dreary as any ever pictured by the romance writers of ancient times. Lonely occupation is this picket work, I assure you, and as dangerous as one can imagine. No sleepy heads are wanted in our army, and I am somewhat pleased to relate that the Erie county boys are careful upon their posts and can be depended upon in every time of danger. A great many incidents, as laughable as they are ludicrous, might be related in regard to some of our midnight picket duty, when the more superstitious among the men fancy approaching rebels in the sonorous squeaking of reptiles, and the short spasmodic grouts of hogs, half wild, around them. And no wonder, for, I believe, there is not in the world such a swarm of loathsome reptiles, from alligators down to ants, as is to be seen and heard here. Confound their noise; they make one wish that some St. Patrick would visit us in mercy and give us rest from such a provoking plague.
But I almost forgot to tell you about the 4th of July. It was not such a day with us as one would see in the North, but, however, we had our own little time to suit our own little army, in such a manner as to remind us of the heroes of our infant nation, and to inspire us with fresh courage to do as they did, and hope for victory over all who scorn the flag they proudly flung to the breeze. But the day did not close to bring us rest, for early in the afternoon we received orders to saddle and be ready to ride away at sundown, and as orders are seldom disobeyed we were ready at the appointed time, to do anything by way of duty. Off we were led by Col. Weed, commanding this post, and Capt. West of our troop, through the woods, along roads we never trod, and to where we knew not. A weary ride it was till at length we bivouacked for a short rest in the woods before daylight, and then dashed off again till we came within sight of Cedar Point, on the Bogue Sound, into which the White Oak river empties itself. At this place we expected to have encountered a camp of rebels, and for that reason we rode at it in full charge, with all the will bent to gain a victory for their country and a soldier's glory for themselves; but we were disappointed—the "rebs" were absent, although our videttes in advance saw their pickets retreating into a neighboring jungle. After a short reconnoissance we took the road that leads to Swansborough, opposite the Point just named, and by which we would have to travel some fourteen miles to get around and across the river to enter it. This was on Sunday, and during the heat of the day we dismounted at a place called Peltier's Mills, a secesh locality of course, where we received some information respecting the enemy at Swansborough, and from which we concluded it prudent and safest not to attempt a raid upon the place until we brought with us a few howitzers and a company of infantry in addition to one that accompanied us thither. This being the case, we threw out pickets for the night and camped at the mills, beneath trees that sheltered a company of rebel cavalry last summer, and who were nearly all taken prisoners by the 3d N. Y. Cavalry during one of their raids in that section of country. Although weary after the ride, we earnestly hoped for human prey, by way of remuneration for our trouble, but found none, and the only thing we did was to strip a field of oats for our jaded horses, belonging to old Peltier, who, no doubt, ere this conveyed the information into the rebel camp and increased his hate and contempt against us "Yankees."
I mentioned in my last letter that Capt. West had received a severe injury from falling from his horse. He is now quite well, and was with us during our late expedition. A similar accident happened since then to Lieut. Sturgeon, brother of Capt. Sturgeon of Buffalo; but he is fast improving, and will soon be ready for active service. The health of the men has been excellent up to the present—very little sickness in this department. The weather is not too hot, but we have rain almost every day—fine, soft, cooling rain. The news throughout the department is cheering. We hold every point as firm as a rock, and the stars and stripes wave as proudly in North Carolina as it does in the Empire State. A few days ago our companions in arms, the 3d New York Cavalry, made a move from Newbern towards Wilmington, 97 miles distance, and encounted a strong force of rebel infantry, cavalry and artillery there. On their way they did some daring work, but were forced to retire at length, not however without making some very valuable personal "hauls" of goods, which they immediately convert into greenbacks. All is quiet this side of Newbern: north and west of it a good deal of skirmishing is going on. Tomorrow we move upon the rebels. You will hear of it. The news received from the north is cheering to us folks here, and the only thing we regret is not getting enough of it. Send us an odd copy of the Courier; we want no abolition paper, but one that is democratic in every sense would be as much relished here as anything I know of. Take the hint and oblige a number of Buffalo boys.
HILLAM.

Adventures of a Syracuse Cavalry Officer Among North Carolina Rebels.
We find in the Newbern (N. C.) Times of the 12th inst. an account of daring and heroic exploits by Capt. James L. Graham, of this city, who commands a company of cavalry stationed at Washington, in that State. The account gives the following particulars:
Yesterday morning at three o'clock, ten men of Co. L, First N. C. Vols., and ten men of Co. D, Twelfth N. Y. Cavalry, went out from Washington on an expedition. Owing to some difficulty in crossing Tranter's Creek, they were obliged to send back six of their men. After crossing the creek, they encountered two rebel companies.—The little Spartan band showed an invincible front, under the modern Ethan Allen, and the Lieutenant. When three miles in advance of their main picket posts, Capt. Graham, with all the shrewdness of Bonaparte, exchanged uniforms with a courier whom he had just captured, and placed his Lieutenant behind him as a federal prisoner: Really for daring and strategem, this stands alone in the history of our war. Dashing bravely on to their main picket post, he found instead of three men, seven stalwart rebels.—Nothing daunted, the door was burst open by the Lieutenant. Capt. Graham then rode up to the window, and with one arm in a sling, wholly disabled, and very painful, and with the other thrust his fist through the glass, and, looking in at the terrified men, commanded them all to surrender. One rebel seized his gun. The Captain placed his pistol to his head, and coolly told him and all the rest, in the name of the old Continental Congress and the great Jehovah of the old flag, to surrender at once. This was enough. Such thunder and lightning was too much even for the land of thunder-storms and fire-eaters. Who is not proud of such a man? Well may Col. M'Chesney be proud of such a hero. All honor to such bravery.

PRESENTATION TO CAPTAIN ELLISON, TWELFTH NEW YORK CAVALRY.
Captain John Ellison, commander of Troop B, Twelfth New York cavalry, was presented with a splendid sabre, sash, belt and pistol by the officers under his command, on Christmas day, at Plymouth, N. C. Lieutenant Wm. A. Irwin made the presentation in a neat speech, and Captain Ellison responded most fittingly, stating that be hoped ere long to be able to return to the old Empire State, and there enjoy the blessing and prosperity of a well earned peace.

THE 12TH CAVALRY.--Capt. Taylor who is again recruiting for the 12th New York Cavalry, has opened an office at 156 Main street. He is desirous of securing a 1st Lieutenant, who must be an officer of proved capacity, who has served his term in some other regiment and can control a few men to enlist. No second rate man need apply.

AN OSWEGO SOLDIER AT NEWBERN
— Writes to his parents, dating his letter from "Camp near Rocky Run, near Newbern, N. C.," and gives some interesting details of a scouting expedition, and in the narration speaks of the death of a comrade enlisted here, but hailing from Canada.—For the lack of room we omit a large portion of the epistle, explaining that the scene of the exploits alluded to was near Kinston, N. C. The regiment to which the writer belongs is the 12th N. Y. Cavalry, a company of which was raised in this city:
" As the men of the battery were loading the first charge, a ball struck Clarence Kelly, (who tended vent) in the forehead, and passed out of the back of his head, killing him instantly, his brains flying all over the gun. He fell on the trail of the gun. They soon manned the gun again, and poured grape and cannister into the bushes where the firing came from, which soon silenced them. Meanwhile we dismounted and deployed in the woods to our left, and kept up a heavy skirmish fire.
Captain Roach, who was in command of the expedition, after silencing them, finding that we could not cross the creek, gave orders to fall back. So we mounted and started for our camp, which we reached at about half past eight o'clock, p. m.
Our casualties were one man killed, one wounded, and three horses shot.
Co. A captured 1 prisoner, 2 horses, 1 carbine, and one saddle and horse equippage complete.
Kelly was from Canada, and enlisted with us in Oswego. He was the life of the battery. His Lieutenant felt dreadful about him. I assisted in carrying him back from where he fell to a wagon, when his Lieutenant saw us and inquired who it was. We told him it was Kelly. "Oh, my God," said he "is that Kelly?"
Do not worry for me; thank God, as I do, that He has spared me unhurt so far, while my comrades fell around me. Affectionately,
JAMES M. HIMES.

New York State Division of Military and Naval Affairs: Military History
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