20th Infantry Regiment
United Turner Rifles
Mustered in: May 6, 1861
Mustered out: June 1,1863
The following is taken from New York in the War of the Rebellion,
3rd ed. Frederick Phisterer. Albany: J. B. Lyon Company, 1912.
This regiment, Col. Max Weber, was accepted by the State for a service of
two years, May 11, 1861; organized at New York city, and there mustered in
States service May 6, 8 and 9, 1861, the field and staff and Companies A, B,
C, D and E for three months, the remaining companies for two years. At the
of the general government, the Governor of the State, August 2, 1861, ordered
the portion of the regiment mustered in for three months only into the service
of the United States for the unexpired portion of the regiment's term of State
service. The three years' men of the regiment were, May 7, 1863, transferred
to the 3d N. Y. Volunteer Battery, and Battery F, 5th Regiment, U. S. Artillery.
companies were recruited principally: A in Newark, N. J., and vicinity;
B, C, E and F in New York city; D in New York city, Albany, Poughkeepsie, and
a few men in New Jersey; G in New York city, Poughkeepsie, Rochester, Syracuse,
and in Newark, N. J.; H in New York city, Brooklyn, Hudson, Morrisania, Saugerties
and Union Hill; I in Brooklyn, Williamsburgh and College Point; and K in New
York city, Brooklyn, and in New Jersey.
The regiment left the State June 13,
1861; served at and near Fort Monroe, Va., from June 15, 1861; at Fort Hatteras,
N. C., from August 28, 1861; at Fort
Monroe, Va., from September 13, 1861; at and near Norfolk, Va., in 7th Corps,
from May 10, 1862; in the 3d Brigade, 2d Division, 6th Corps, Army of the Potomac,
from June 9, 1862; and it was honorably discharged and mustered out, commanded
by Col. Ernest Von Vegesack, June 1, 1863, at New York city.
of the regiment was attempted but failed, and the men enlisted were transferred
to the 16th N. Y. Volunteer Cavalry, October 14, 1863.
During its service the
regiment lost by death, killed in action, 3 officers, 42 enlisted men; of wounds
received in action, 4 officers,
12 enlisted men; of disease and other causes, I officer, 58 enlisted men; total,
8 officers, 112 enlisted men; aggregate, 120.
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.
Twentieth Infantry.—Cols., Max Weber, Francis Weiss, Baron Ernst Von
Vegesack; Lieut.-Cols., Franz Weiss, Egbert Schnepf; Majs., Engleberth Schnepf,
Lorenz Meyer. The 20th regiment, the "United Turner Rifles," was
composed of volunteers from the Turner societies of New York city and vicinity
and was mustered into the U. S. service at New York city, May 6, 1861, for
two years. For more than a month the regiment was quartered at the Turtle Bay
brewery and on June 13, embarked for Fortress Monroe, where-it encamped at
Tyler's point for a month and then moved to Hampton. At the time of the organization
of the regiment, a portion of the men were mustered into the state service
for two years and the U. S. service for three months and on Aug. 2, under special
orders the three months men were mustered into the U. S. service for the remainder
of the two years' term. On Aug. 26, the regiment embarked for Fort Hatteras,
where it participated in the capture of the fortifications and remained quartered
until Sept. 25, when it returned to Virginia. The entire- regiment occupied
Camp Hamilton until Oct. 7, when four companies were sent to Newport News,
engaging the enemy at Sinclair's farm and New Market bridge and rejoined the
regiment at Camp Hamilton on Feb. 20, 1862. On May 9 the 20th embarked for
Norfolk; moved from there via Portsmouth, White House landing and Savage Station
and joined the Army of the Potomac at Camp Lincoln, where it was assigned to
the 3d brigade, 2nd division, 6th
corps. During the Seven Days' battles the loss of the command was 64 killed,
wounded or missing, after which it was encamped at Harrison's landing from
July 2 to Aug. 16, when it was ordered to Fortress Monroe and from there to •Alexandria
and Manassas. It participated in the battle of South mountain and suffered
its heaviest loss at Antietam, when 145 of its number were killed, wounded
or missing. From Nov. 18 to Dec. 4, it was encamped at Acquia creek, then proceeded
to Falmouth arid was placed in support of artillery during the battle of Freder-icksburg.
Winter quarters were established at White Oak Church and occupied, except during
the "Mud March," until April 20, 1863. Toward the last of April 202
members of the command refused further service, claiming that the term of enlistment
had expired. They were disciplined by arrest and the regiment was active in
the Chancellorsville campaign. The term of service having expired, the regiment
left for New York on May 6, and was there mustered out June 1, 1863. During
its service it lost 62 members by death from wounds and 59 died from other
Battles and Casualties Table from Phisterer
Civil War Newspaper Clippings
Historical Sketch from the 3rd Annual Report of the Bureau of Military Statistics
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 firstname.lastname@example.org 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.
Lehigh Valley Railroad. Tour of 20th (Turners) regiment
of the City of New York, September 9-15, 1906. [New York, 1906].
Sturcke, Roger D. "20th New York Volunteer Infantry Regiment, (United Turner Rifles), 1861-1863." Military Collector & Historian. 34 :3 Fall 1982. 121.
Items the museum owns are in bold.
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New York State Division of Military and Naval Affairs: Military History
January 25, 2018