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124th Infantry Regiment
Civil War
American Guard; Orange Blossoms

History

Mustered in: September 5, 1862
Mustered out: : June 3, 1865

The following is taken from New York in the War of the Rebellion, 3rd ed. Frederick Phisterer. Albany: J. B. Lyon Company, 1912.
Colonel A. Van Horne Ellis received authority, July 11, 1862, to recruit this regiment; it was organized at Goshen, and there mustered in the service of the United States for three years September 5, 1862. Part of the 71st Regiment of the National Guard formed its nucleus. September 1, 1864, Mr. Charles Gale of Mooers, Clinton county, received authority to recruit a company, the Mooers Company, which later was assigned to this regiment and became part of its company E. February 28, 1865, a number of men of the 1st U. S. Sharpshooters were transferred to this regiment. June 2, 1865, the men not to be mustered out with the regiment were transferred to the 93d Infantry.
The companies were recruited principally: A at Newburgh, Cornwall, Chester and Goshen; B-Goshen Company-at Goshen, Warwick, Florida and Newburgh; C-Cornwall Company- at Goshen, Cornwall, Newburgh, Monroe and New Windsor; D at Warwick and Goshen; E at Goshen, Crawford, Otisville, Wallkill, Newburgh, Bullville, New Windsor, Mt. Hope and Port Jervis; F at Port Jervis and Deer Park; G at Washingtonvil1e, Blooming Grove, New Windsor, Monroe, Newburgh, Craigsville and Chester; H at Montgomery, Walden and Goshen; I at Newburgh and Windsor, and K at Wallkill, Goshen, Middletown and Newburgh.
The regiment left the State September 6, 1862; it served in Piatt's Brigade, Whipple's Division, from September, 1862; in 1st Brigade, 3d Division, 3d Corps, from October, 1862; in 2d Brigade, 1st Division, 3d Corps, from June, 1863; in the 1st Brigade, 3d Division, 2d Corps, from March, 1864; and it was honorably discharged and mustered out, under Col. Charles H. Weygant, June 3, 1865, near Washington, D. C.
During its service the regiment lost by death, killed in action, 9 officers, 93 enlisted men; of wounds received in action, 2 officers, 45 enlisted men; of disease and other causes 1 officer, 94 enlisted men; total, 12 officers, 232 enlisted men; aggregate, 244; of whom 11 enlisted men died in the hands of the enemy.

The following is taken from The Union army: a history of military affairs in the loyal states, 1861-65 -- records of the regiments in the Union army -- cyclopedia of battles -- memoirs of commanders and soldiers. Madison, WI: Federal Pub. Co., 1908. volume II.
One Hundred and Twenty-fourth Infantry.—Cols., A. Van Horn Ellis, Francis M. Cummins, Charles H. Weygant; Lieut.-Cols., Francis M. Cummins, Charles H. Weygant, Henry S. Murray; Majs., James Cromwell, Charles H. Weygant, Henry S. Murray, James W. Benedict. This regiment, known as the "Orange Blossoms," was recruited in the county of Orange, organized at Goshen, and there mustered into the U, S. service Sept. 5, 1862, for three years. A part of the 71st regiment national guard, on their return from their second three months' service in Sept., 1862, formed the nucleus of the 124th. It left the state on Sept. 6, 1862, 930 strong; served for several weeks in Virginia; then joined the Army of the Potomac at Harper's Ferry; was attached to the 1st brigade, Whip-pie's (3d) division, 3d corps, in Nov. 1862; joined Burnside's army on its way to Fredericksburg and arrived at Falmouth Nov. 24. The corps was only lightly engaged at Fredericksburg and the loss of the 124th was small. It was hotly engaged at Chancellorsville, losing 28 killed, 161 wounded and 15 missing—a total of 204 out of 550 engaged. The heroic efforts of Col. Ellis during the battle to redeem the fortunes of the day evoked general commendation. In the 2nd brigade, Birney's (1st) division, 3d corps, it marched on the field at Gettysburg with 290 officers and men, of whom 28 were killed, 57 wounded and 5 reported missing, both Col. Ellis and Maj. Cromwell being killed while bravely cheering on their men. A beautiful monument has been erected by the regiment at Gettysburg, surmounted by a life size marble statue of their heroic colonel. During the pursuit of Lee after the battle, the regiment was engaged at Jones' cross-roads and Wapping heights. In the subsequent campaigns in Virginia it was under fire at Auburn and Kel-ly's ford, suffered a loss of 16 during the Mine Run campaign, and then went into winter quarters at Brandy Station. In April, 1864, the 3d corps was discontinued and Birney's division became the 3d division of the 2nd corps, but the men were allowed to retain the beloved diamond shaped badge on their caps and the piece of orange ribbon on their coats. Gen. Ward was still in command of the brigade. The regiment lost 58 killed, wounded and missing at the Wilderness, and 61 at Spottsylvania, where the regiment was in the front line during the celebrated charge of Gen. Hooker, both Col. Cummins and Lieut.-Col. Weygant being among the wounded. Continuous hard fighting followed at the North Anna river, Toto-potomy, Cold Harbor, Petersburg and the Weldon railroad. In July, 1864, Gen. Mott succeeded to the command of the division, and Gen. DeTrobriand to the command of Ward's old brigade. During the remainder of the year, while before Petersburg, it was engaged at Deep Bottom, Strawberry Plains, Poplar Spring Church, Boydton plank road, the Hicksford raid, and early in 1865 it was active at Hatcher's run, Fort Stedman and the final assault on Petersburg. It then entered on the Appomattox campaign, being engaged at White Oak ridge, Deatonsville road, Farmville and Appomattox Station. In reporting the action of March 25, near Wat-kins' house, Lt.-Col. Weygant, commanding the regiment, says that his men charged in gallant style a force of the enemy composed of the 42nd, 59th and 60th Ala. regiments, "capturing the battle flag of the 59th Alabama, 6 officers and 159 men, about 20 of whom were wounded, including Lieut.-Col. Troy of the 60th Ala. The enemy being completely dispersed I returned to my former position, leaving between 20 and 30 of their dead upon the field. At 11:30 p. m. I received orders to withdraw and return to camp, which I did, bringing with me about 75 stands of arms. All this, I am happy to say, was accomplished without the loss of a man, either in killed, wounded or missing." The regiment was mustered out, under Col. Weygant, June 3, 1865, near Washington, D. C. The total enrollment during service was 1,320, of whom 11 officers and 137 men, or 11.2 per cent, were killed and mortally wounded; 1 officer and 94 men died of disease and other causes; 11 men died in Confederate prisons; 516 officers and men were killed and wounded. Private Archibald Freeman and Corp. George W. Tomkins were awarded medals of honor by Congress for the capture of battle flags, at Spottsylvania and near Watkins' house, respectively.

Battles and Casualties Table from Phisterer

Monument at Gettysburg

Civil War Newspaper Clippings
This is also available in PDF format. These are large files; however, they are exact images of the pages.
      Pages 1 - 10
      Pages 11 - 20
      Pages 21 - 30
      Pages 31 - 40
      Pages 41 - 44, 49 - 54 (there are no pages 45 - 48
      Pages 55 - 64
      Pages 65 - 68

124th Infantry Regiment Battle Flag 124th Infantry Regiment Battle Flag

Unit Roster

Further Reading
This is meant to be a comprehensive list. If, however, you know of a resource that is not listed below, please send an email to ng.ny.nyarng.list.historians@mail.mil with the name of the resource and where it is located. This can include photographs, letters, articles and other non-book materials. Also, if you have any materials in your possession that you would like to donate, the museum is always looking for items specific to New York's military heritage. Thank you.

Bailey, William Wirt. Civil War Letters Home. The Office of the Orange County Historian, 1987.
Thank you to Julia Everett for pointing out this resource.

Beakes Family. Wilken-Beakes family papers,1850-1916.
These papers consist chiefly of letters and photographs of the Wilken and Beakes families of Middletown, New York. Most of the letters concern personal and family matters. One letter of special interest was written by Adam Wikken Beakes in regards to his experiences of military service during the Civil War. He was enrolled in Company E of the 124th New York Regiment of Infantry.
1 box (0.25 cubic ft.).
Located at the New York State Library Manuscripts and Special Collections.

Bowery, Charles R. "Encounter at the Triangular Field : The 124th New York and the 1st Texas at Gettysburg, July 2, 1863." Gettysburg: Historical Articles of Lasting Interest. 30 (January 2004) 49-62.

Braun, Robert A.  "The Fight for Devil’s Den." Military Images. 5:1 (July-August 1983) 5-12.

Bush, Ira F. LeighColl Bk 5: 25
(Enlisted man's letter, Nov 11, 1863).
Located at the Military History Institute in Carlisle, PA.

Clock, Edward. The life and time of Francis Markoe Cummins. Clinton, Mo.:E. Clock,1985. [26] leaves (in loose-leaf binder) : ill., ports., maps ; 38 cm.

Ellis, A. VanHorn. AndersColl
(Notes on his live, incl R.A. Braun's "Fight for Devil's Den").
Located at the Military History Institute in Carlisle, PA.

Gage, Ethel B.  Orange County in the Civil War. Goshen, N.Y.:Orange County Community of Museums and Galleries, 1963. 2 pts. (p. 3-7; 4-8) 28 cm.
Located at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library.

Georg, Kathleen R. '"Our principal loss was in place" : Action at the Slaughter Pen and the south end of Houck's Ridge.' The Morningside Notes. 1984. 1-9.

Haynes, Calvin A.  Letters, 1862-1863.
Letters of Calvin A. Haynes to his wife, Lucy, dated September 3, 1862 - July 19, 1863. These letters provide details of the surrender at Harpers Ferry: he claims, "Miles sold us to the rebels". After parole he was ordered to Chicago, but the regiment returned east in the Fall of 1862 (they camped at Wolf Run Shoals and Bull Run Battle Field still littered with dead). In July 1863, the regiment faced Pickett's Charge at Gettysburg, well described in the final letter. The details of camp life are vivid and his description of his experiences at Harpers Ferry and Gettysburg are an interesting addition to the record of the 125th New York Regiment of Infantry.
25 items.
Located at the New York State Library Manuscripts and Special Collections.

Kowalis, Jeffrey J. Died at Gettysburg! : "no prouder epitaph need any man covet" : illustrated biographies of the Union casualties at Gettysburg. Hightstown, NJ: Longstreet House, 1998.

LaRocca, Charles J. This regiment of heroes : a compilation of primary materials pertaining to the 124th New York State Volunteers in the American Civil War. Montgomery, N.Y. C.J. LaRocca, [14], 255 p., [66] p. of leaves : ill. ; 24 cm.

Lash, Garry. "The March of the 124th New York to Gettysburg." Gettysburg: Historical Articles of Lasting Interest. 9 (July 1993) 5-16.

Murray, Henry Spencer.  Letter, 1863 December 15.
Letter written at Camp Parole, Maryland to his friend Will, Murray subtley condems slavery an favors emancipation in recounting an event,"we have big times at dinner discussing the Amnesty & Emancipation Proclamation."
1 item (3 p.) ; 26 cm.
Located at the New York State Library Manuscripts and Special Collections.

Murray, Henry Spencer. Letters,1862-1864.
Civil War letters of Captian Murray, 124th New York Infantry, describing his arrival in Washington, D.C.; camp life in the Washington area; and his attempts to secure a promotion to the rank of major.
5 items.
Located at Duke University.

Nearpass, W. H.  (William Henry). Letters 1861-1865.
Consists of letters received by William Henry Nearpass of Port Jervis, New York from 1861 to 1865. Includes correspondence from soldiers serving in the 124th New York Volunteer Infantry and other military units serving in Virginia during the American Civil War. Amc archives.
9 items. 0.25 cu. ft.
Located at Auburn University Special Collections and Archives.

Osborne, Seward R. "They Wore an Orange Ribbon." Military Collector & Historian. 38 :1 (Spring 1986) 40-41.

Plank, Will. Banners and bugles; a record of Ulster County, New York and the mid-Hudson region in the Civil War. Marlborough, N.Y. Centennial Press, 1972.Price, John

H. and Price, William George. Price family papers,1854-1905. Correspondence, diary, genealogical material, military records, photographs, and other papers of Price family members. Papers of John H. Price include the Civil War diary which he kept while serving with the 8th Pennsylvania Cavalry Regiment and a regimental order-book. The order-book also contains financial records, poetry, and recipes of William George Price, Jr. Papers of William George Price, Sr., include letters which he wrote to family members during his service in the 124th New York Infantry Regiment, his military commission, and discharge record. 50 items. 1 container. 0.2 linear feet. New York State Library.

Tucker, A. W . '"Orange blosssoms" Services of the 124th New York at Gettysburg.' National Tribune, (January 21, 1886).

United States.; Army.; New York Infantry Regiment, 124th (1862-1865). Roster of survivors of the 124th regt. N.Y. vol. infantry. August, 1891. 21 p. ; 24 cm.
Located at the New York Historical Society, New York, NY.

United States.; Army.; New York Infantry Regiment, 124th (1862-1865). Roster of survivors of the 124th Regt. N.Y. Vol. Infantry. New York? : S.n. 1800s-1900s.

Vanamee, William.  Address in behalf of the Daughters of Orange in presenting a new stand of colors to the Regiment :thirty-first annual reunion of the 124th Regiment, N.Y.S.V., held at Highland Falls, near West Point, August 19th, 1896. New York : Livingston Middleditch Co., 1896. 11 p. ; 27 cm.

Weygant, Charles H . 1839-1909. History of the One hundred and twenty fourth regiment, N.Y.S.V., by Charles H. Weygant. Newburgh: Journal print. house, 1877. vi, [7]-460 p. front. (port.), fold. chart. Reprinted 1986.

 

New York State Division of Military and Naval Affairs: Military History
Last modified: April 17, 2013
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