Purnell Legion Infantry

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Purnell's Legion Antietam
Behind (West) of the Dunker Church

Monument Text

Purnell Legion Infantry
3rd Brigade
2nd Greene's Division
12th Mansfield's Corps
Occupied a line running north from this marker. Loss, 3 killed, 23 wounded.

The monument to the Maryland troops is near the Dunkard Church.

Nathan Vannaman--Co. G
Thomas W. Smick--Co. D

THE Battalion of Cavalry, Purnell Legion, Maryland Volunteers, consisted of three companies. They were recruited for three years.

Companies A and B were organized at Pikesville, Md., in September, October and November, 1861, and Company O at Baltimore, Md., in September, 1862.

The battalion did not perform service as an organization; the companies were detached on special duty.

Company A was sent on duty to the Eastern Shore of Virginia, where it rendered good service; this company also performed duty in St. Mary's County, Md. The company also took part in the Gettysburg campaign and participated in the battle of Gettysburg, Pa., July, 1-3, 1863.

Company A was mustered out of the service of the United States, July 28, 1865.

Company B was assigned to special duty in different parts of Maryland and Delaware, and on special duty at Annapolis, Md.. under the immediate orders of Governor Bradford.

Company B was dismounted and equipped as infantry May 28, 1864, and joined the Army of the Potomac, June 7th, 1864, being attached to the Purnell Legion Infantry. Company B, cavalry (dismounted), participated in the following battles, viz.: Assault on Petersburg, Va., June 18, 1864., siege of Petersburg, Va.. June-October, 1864 ; battle of Weldon Railroad, August 18-21, 1864; battle of Poplar Springs Church, Va., September 30, 1864; battle of Chapel House, Va., October 1-3,1864; battle of Feeble's Farm, Va., October 7-8,1864.

The original members (except veterans) were mustered out of the military service October 26,1864, the veterans and recruits were transferred to Company C, which was subsequently transferred to the Eighth Regiment Infantry, Maryland Volunteers.

Company C was recruited at Baltimore City, September, 1862. The company was stationed at Camp Bradford, Md., until February 5, 1863, when it was sent to Harper's Ferry s Va., thence to Drummondtown, Va., thence to Wilmington, Del., then dismounted and sent to the Army of the Potomac, being temporarily assigned to the Purnell Legion Infantry, and whilst with this infantry regiment, participated in the same battles, already enumerated in the history of Company B (cavalry dismounted).

The veterans and recruits of Company B were transferred to and consolidated with Company C, October 26, 1864, and the consolidated Company C was transferred to the Eighth Regiment Infantry, Maryland Volunteers, November 17, 1864.

The casualties from death in the Purnell Cavalry Battalion were as follows:  Killed in battle or died of wounds, seven (7) enlisted men ; died of disease, etc., twenty-four (24) enlisted men, or an aggregate death list of thirty-one (31).

Organized at Pikesville, Md., near Baltimore, under special authority of the Secretary of War, October 31 to December 31, 1Attached to Dix's Division, Baltimore, Md., to March, 1862. Lockwood's Brigade, Middle Department, to May, 1862. 2nd Brigade, Sigel's Division, Department of the Shenandoah, to June, 1862. 2nd Brigade, 2nd Division, 2nd Army Corps, Pope's Army of Virginia, to August, 1862. 3rd Brigade, 2nd Division. 2nd Corps, Army of Virginia, to September, 1862. 3rd Brigade, 2nd Division, 12th Army Corps, Army of the Potomac, to October, 1862. 2nd Brigade, 2nd Division, 12th Army Corps, to December, 1862. Frederick, Md., 8th Army Corps, Middle Department, to February, 1863. 3rd Separate Brigade, 8th Army Corps, to June, 1863. 1st Separate Brigade, 8th Army Corps, to May, 1864. 3rd Brigade, 2nd Division, 5th Army Corps, Army of the Potomac, to June, 1865. 2nd Brigade, 2nd Division, 5th Army Corps, to October, 1864.

SERVICE.--Expedition through Accomac and Northampton Counties, Va., November 14-22, 1861. Duty at Baltimore and with Lockwood on Eastern Shore, Va., until May 25, 1862. Ordered to Harper's Ferry, W. Va., May 25. Defense of Harper's Ferry May 28-30. Operations in Shenandoah Valley, Va., until August. Battle of Cedar Mountain August 9. Pope's Campaign in Northern Virginia August 16-September 2. Fords of the Rappahannock August 21-23. Catlett's Station August 22. Plains of Manassas August 27-29 (Reserve). Battle of Bull Run August 30 (Reserve). Maryland Campaign September 6-22. Battles of South Mountain September 14 (Reserve). Antietam September 16-17. Moved to Bolivar Heights September 22, and duty there until December 10. Reconnaissance to Rippen, W. Va., November 9. Detached and assigned to duty at Frederick, Md., and in the Middle Department until May 26, 1864. Joined Army of the Potomac in the field May 26. Rapidan Campaign May 30-June 15. Shady Grove May 30. Cold Harbor June 1-12. Bethesda Church June 1-3. Before Petersburg June 16-18. Siege of Petersburg June 16 to October 24, 1864. Jerusalem Plank Road June 21-23. Mine Explosion, Petersburg, July 30. Weldon Railroad August 18-21. Poplar Springs Church September 29-October 2. Yellow House October 2-5. Peeble's Farm October 7-8. Mustered out October 24, 1864. Veterans and Recruits transferred to 1st Maryland Infantry.

Regiment lost during service 1 Officer and 42 Enlisted mortally wounded and 1 Officer and 73 Enlisted men by disease. Total 117.

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