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May 1, 1863
SEVENTH WISCONSIN - THEIR CLAIMS
The following, copied from the Richmond
Examiner's correspondent, dated May
1st., good authority became impartial, would seem to credit the 7th Wisconsin
with all they claim to have achieved during the late battles at Fredericksburg,
and which has been denied to them by other parties.
"During the night the Yankees had succeeded in launching and hooking the
pontoon together, ready to swing around - the heavy fog preventing the 15th
Georgia from seeing them. About 7 1/2 o'clock, when our men had all got into line
in the pits - which line extended about one mile and a quarter - we opened fire upon
them. The firing continued until about 9 1/2 o'clock, when the enemy double-quicked
a brigade down the opposite bank by the right of companies, and opened a brisk
and galling fire upon our men in the pits. As soon as a Rebel would put up his
head to take aim any number of rifles would crack away at him.
Behind each regiment in the Yankee Brigade were twenty to thirty men, each four
carrying a pontoon boat on their shoulders. They double-quicked down to the bank
of the river, our boys firing with good effect as often as they could, threw
their pontoons into the water, and a company jumped in and rowed over. In this
way a regiment crossed - which proved to be the 7th Wisconsin - and formed under the
bank on our side, perfectly safe.
Our pits were some distance from the
bank, and as soon as the enemy got ten yards from the side of the river they
could not be seen by our men. As soon as our men saw the enemy on this side they
got out of the pits, under the fire of the Yankee brigade, and fell back firing.
Our loss was pretty heavy."
Col. W. W. Robinson, commanding the 7th at the time reports as follows to Gov.
Salomon dating May 12th:
"Lieut. Col. John B. Callis and Maj. Finnicum rendered sufficient
assistance in crossing the river and storming the enemy's works; their coolness,
promptness and efficiency during the seven days under fire shows them to be
officers to be depended upon in any position. Adjutant Robert Monteith was on
hand ready for any and all duties, balls or no balls. Surgeon E. F. Spaulding, as
usual with them , accompanied the regiment on the field and were at all times
present with their instruments, bandages, cordial and arrangements for prompt care
and removal of the wounded; at the crossing of the river on the 29th they were amongst
the first to reach the Heights and were promptly engaged in dressing the wounds
of friends and foes."
May 4, 1863
CAPT. ALEXANDER GORDON JR.
In the sad list of the killed at the crossing of the Rappahannock at Fredericksburg
on Saturday and Sunday last many hearts in Beloit have been pained to find the
name that heads this article and we do but speak the feelings of hundreds of our
Citizens paying a tribute of respect to an old friend and a brave soldier. The
only information his friends have yet received of his fate has been the daily
papers, but there seems to be no reason to doubt that Capt.. Gordon has fought
his last battle.
Capt. G. was one of the youngest Captains in the service being but 24 years of
age. He has been a resident of Beloit since the age of 6 years - growing up among
us and endearing himself to all by his generous and amiable qualities. Was a
member of Beloit College for a time and afterward of Lawrence University,
Appleton but his health did not permit him to finish his education. When the
country began to call her sons to the rescue he willingly offered himself and
enlisted for three months as a private in Capt. Slaymaker's company early in the
Spring of 1861. The company being soon disbanded as the majority did not wish to
enlist for the war, Mr. Gordon, who was anxious to do so even as a private, came
home and commenced raising a company of which he was elected Captain and was
assigned to the 7th Regiment and took his men into camp at Madison.
While there he was married to Miss Whitmore who had been for a time a resident
of Beloit. The Regiment was soon ordered to the Army of the Potomac and the
bloody conflicts at Rappahannock Station, Gainesville, Bull Run, South Mountain,
Antietam, Fredericksburg in December and finally and fatally Fredericksburg in
May gave thrilling proof of the heroism and valor of Capt. Gordon.
When the first bombardment of Fredericksburg began he was lying sick in the
hospital; but the call of the battle stirred his soldier's heart till he could
stay away no longer and he arose from his bed and made his way to the battle
field where he soon received a wound in his leg which for sometime disabled
him. During this time he made a short visit at Beloit and many of our citizens
had the pleasure of seeing and hearing him.
Through not fully recovered he soon returned to his company saying as he left
his friends that he never expected to return again and in the terrible battle of
last week, when our brave men crossed the Rappahannock in the face of the rebel
batteries he received a ball in the chest and fell as a soldier should and now he
"Sleep the brave who sink to rest
By all their country s wishes best"
P.S. Since writing the above a letter has been received by G. H. Stocking from
Quartermaster, David Sherill, giving the particulars of his death &C. We
give below all that it contained of general interest:
In the field, Four miles below Fredericksburg
May 1st 1863
It becomes may painful duty to inform you of the death of our dear friend, and
brother Capt. Alex. Gordon, Jr. He was shot by the rebel sharp shooters on the
morning of the 28th, inst. while attempting to cross the river, - He lived but a
short time after he was hit. I was with the train at the time, but as soon as
informed by the messenger, hastened forward, but the poor boy was cold in the
embrace of death ere I reached him.***
I have done everything that was in my power to do. Before burial, his body was
wrapped in an oil cloth and blanket to prevent decomposition as much as possible
and there will be no trouble in identifying the place hereafter. I have all his
personal effects in my possession and will retain them until an opportunity
presents to send them home.***
Letter from the 7th Wisconsin
HEADQUARTERS, 7th Wis. Vols,
Camp in the field, May 12th, '63
FRIEND COVER: Again we are called upon to record
and name the loss of some of the officers and men of the old 7th; our thinned
ranks and officers posts vacant tell a sorrowful story of the past. On the
night of the 28th of April at 12 o'clock when all was quiet in camp we received notice that the old "Iron
Brigade" had been assigned the duty of
repairing at once to the river crossing in boats and storming the enemies works
on the opposite bank; the order was given and every man was up and ready for the
work; we marched in all haste to the point designated for the crossing, but for
some reason unknown to me the boats had not arrived ready to launch until the
dawn of day; and when the Pioneers attempted to launch the boats, it then being
daylight and the enemy by their pickets or otherwise having been apprised of our
intentions, were ready to receive us; the Pioneers, however, commenced the work which drew a murderous fire from the enemies earth works which caused the
Pioneers to fall back for a time, about 8 o'clock our brigade made a rush for
the river with a full determination to cross and charge their works at all
hazards; we rushed to the river banks launched the boats and crossed the river,
received a shower of bullets from the enemy and a storm of enthusiasm went up
from the "Iron Brigade." We succeeded in carrying the work with the
loss of eight officers and men, killed and wounded in the 7th Regt.; among the
killed were Capt. Alexander Gordon, Co. K, Lieut. W. O. Topping, Co. C, (of Grant
Co.) Private Wm. Ross, Co. F, (of Grant Co.; among the wounded were Lieut. Ryan,
Co. A, Private Benjamin Hayden, co. F, (slight) and others whose names I cannot
now call to mind.
Capt Gordon was the last of the original Captains of the Regt.; a fine officer, a
true patriot and a genial companion. May the God of the widow and the fatherless
strengthen his family in this the hour of their deep affliction and sorrow.
Lieut. Wm. O. Topping was a promising young officer who was always at his post
for duty, ever ready to lay down his life (as he did) for his country; he had
thus won the love of all the officers and men of the Regt., who now deeply mourn
his loss. Major Finnicum received a slight wound from a shell but is still on
On the 2d day of May we received intelligence that our right was sorely pressed
and orders to recross the river and march at once to U.S. Ford, above
Fredericksburg to reinforce the right. We did so, Col. W. W. Robinson covering
the crossing with 4 companies of the 7th without the loss of a man; we crossed
the river again and marched into the line of battle; while the battle was raging
with unparalleled fury it so happened that the enemy did not undertake to break that portion of the line
barricaded by the "black hats" (as they call
us) of the "Iron Brigade," it seeming to be their determination to
brake our confer and we being a little to the right of the center were in
constant expectancy of and ready for an attack on our front; we remained in
this situation for two days and nights while the terrific strife was going on
immediately in front of the left of our brigade the rebels made some 15 charges on
our center and were repulsed each time with terrible loss; our lines never gave
way but once and that was when the 11th Corps broke, (an almost irreparable
calamity.) I see that some of the papers say it was all the fault of the
"d--d cowardly Dutchmen;" now, I think it very unkind, ungenerous and
ungentlemanly to indulge in such personalities, for the same number of any
nation of people on earth might have done likewise under like circumstances; and
I must say that my own observation has proven to my satisfaction that this army
cannot produce more devoted and daring soldiers than the Germans, who I have
seen tried in the fiery furnace for the past 21 months of my service.
You have heard a great deal said about the "Irish Brigade;" and no
doubt have thought the story exaggerated; but Cover, I tell you the true story
of their fighting qualities cannot be told; a man must see it in action and
then he will known what kind of a picture to made of them. I think I never saw
such devils to fight a bloody fight as the Irish of the famous "Irish
Brigade." In the battle above Fredericksburg the rebels in charge killed
every horse in one of their batteries; whereupon a hand-to-hand conflict was had
for the guns and gunners all having been killed, thereby rendering the guns of
no other service than as a boon to fight for; the rebel's in overwhelming numbers
rather got the better of the Irish at first and took possession of the guns some
of them having first been spiked; but in the attempt to take them off the field
the hatless, coatless, gun less and bloody Irishmen resolved to rally and retake
the guns if in on other way by a regular smash-nose knock down and in they
went - and out they came with every gun, each gun taking 40 man team to haul it
through the mud; they saved the guns but with heavy loss; those that got out
with the guns were the bloodiest, muddiest, nakedest, most savage looking men I ever
witnessed; the Irish Brigade against the world in a hand to hand
I am told the enemy lost 18,000 and our loss will not exceeded 10,000; Hooker has
done just what he started out to do and can do again at his pleasure; we are
quietly reclining on the north side of the Rappahannock, ready for any order.
John B. Callis
REPORT OF COL. ROBINSON TO THE GOVERNOR.
HEADQUARTERS 7TH WISCONSIN VOL. IN THE FIELD
four miles below Fredericksburg, va,.
May 12th, 1863
Hon. Edward Salomon, Governor of Wisconsin:
Sir:-I have to report the deaths of Capt. Alexander Gordon, Jr., of
Company K and
2d Lieut. William O. Topping , of Company C., of this regiment. They were killed
in the action of the 29 of April in crossing the Rappahannock in boats. and
storming the enemy's field works at a point about four miles below Fredericksburg. In the same charge 1st Lieut
W. W. Ryan commanding Company A.
was severely wounded by a musket ball through the chest. Private William Ross of Co.
F. was killed. Serg't. Conrad Gunkle, Co. A, Corp. Spencer Bronson, Co. B, and
Private Benj. Hayden, Co. F, were slightly wounded. Major Finnicum was slightly
wounded in the right arm by a piece of shell in the artillery duel of the 30th.
In the death of Capt. Gordon the regiment has met with a heavy loss which cannot
be replaced. He was the last one of the original Captains in the line and one of
my most efficient officers, - prompt and faithful in the discharge of his duties,
remarkably brave under fire and a congenial gentlemanly companion. God and all
good spirits comfort his affected family. Lieut. Topping was a young officer
lately promoted from the rank of sergeant. From his fine soldierly
qualifications and gentlemanly bearing he had won the esteem of the whole
command. His loss is deeply regretted.
The duty of crossing the river in boats and carrying the enemy's first line for
the purpose of covering the laying of the pontoon bridges was assigned to our
brigade. The order was received at 12 o'clock at night of the 28th, the brigade
being camped at the time about one and a half mile back from the river. The
plan for crossing as shown by the order received was for the two flank
regiments (6th Wis and 24th Mich.) to cross over in the first boats, the other
regiments of the brigade (2d and 7th Wis. and 19th Ind) were to cover them while
crossing and to follow as soon as the boats could return.
The crossing was to be made at 2 o'clock a.m. of the 29th. Immediately upon the receipt
of the order we moved down near the river but from some cause unknown to
me, the boats were not ready to launch until daylight, when the enemy opened a
brisk fire upon us from their rifle pits. This was warmly returned by our
skirmishers. Our artillery got into position upon an elevation in our rear and
shelled the enemy till about 8 o'clock a.m. when we were ordered to cross over.
The men threw off knapsacks and haversacks and double quicked - the 6th Wis and 24th Mich leading.
The enemy opened a galling fire and we were ordered to jump into
the boats with out regard to regiments or companies and cross over which was
done amid a storm of balls from the enemy's rifle pits and a storm of enthusiasm
from the old brigade. Boats were seized from the wagons on the bank, thrown into
the river and filled with men as soon as they touched the water.
As near as I could see every boat had representatives from every regiment in the
From the time of receiving the order to cross over till the enemy line of works
was carried, prisoners taken and out, line of battle formed with every man in his
place in his own regiment was about twenty minutes.
The pontoon bridges were then thrown across and the other brigades of the
division crossed over. We entrenched and held our position till Saturday morning, May 2d (artillery duels being fought daily, over our heads between our
batteries on the hills on this side of the river and the enemy's on the opposite
heights) when we were ordered to cross the river for the purpose of reinforcing
Gen. Hooker on the extreme right. This retiring across the river by daylight was
rather a hazardous movement as the enemy's guns not only enfiladed the entire
plain on the south side of the river but also swept the north side to the
distance of a mile back.
Our Brigade was the last to retire and five companies of the 7th were left to
cover and support the pickets in retiring.
The companies left were A., 1st. Lieut Sloat, commanding; D. Capt, Bean; C,
Capt. Newman; F., Capt. Young and G., 1st Lt. Miller commanding. Company E,
was out on picket.
After the division had crossed over and passed out of range the pickets retired and these companies moved over in good order, deliberately and handsomely.
reached the vicinity of the United States Ford last Saturday evening and and
arrived on the battle field of the Rapidan, near Chancellorsville, about 5 o'clock
on Sunday morning.
We were immediately deployed a few yards to the right of the point where the
battle was at that time raging. This position we held until Wednesday morning
the 6th when the army retired. Although our position was close to the points where the heaviest fight occurred on Sunday and the following day, we did and
fire a gun. This was the first time the old brigade escaped participation in the
hardest part of the struggle in any of the battles where it has been present,
seven in number, besides a number of affairs. In retiring our army on the 6th our
division acted as rear guard and covered the crossing.
We reached our present camp on the 7th in good order and in as good trim with the
exception of the above mentioned losses, as when we left Belle Plain on the 28th
ultimo. I cannot speak in too high praise of the conduct of the entire command;
both officers and enlisted men performed their whole duty and for cool bravery
they are unsurpassed by any troops in the world. Lieutenant Col. John E. Callis
and Major Finnicum rendered efficient assistance in crossing the river and
storming the enemy's works, their coolness, promptness and efficiency during the
seven days under fire shows them to be officers to be depended upon in any
position. Adjt. Robert Monteith was on hand ready for any and all duties -,balls
or no balls.
Surgeon E. Cooper Ayres and Asst. Surgeon E. E. Spaulding, as usual with them,
accompanied the regiment on the fields and were at all time present with their
instruments bandages, cordials and arrangements for prompt care and removal of
the wounded; at the crossing of the river on the 29th they were among the first
to reach the Heights and were promptly engaged in dressing the wounds of friends
and foes. Asst. Surgeon Brainard was also on sick. Capt.. Hobart, Co. B; Capt.
Palmer, Co. H; 2d Lieut. Prutsman commanding Co., I; 1st Lieut. Hoyt commanding
Co. K after the death Capt. Gordon and 1st Lt. Sloat of co. F. who was assigned
to the command of Co. A after the wounding of Lieut. Ryan, as well as the balance
of the line officers behaved with their usual gallantry, no better officers can be
found. 23d Lieut. Johnson of Co. A, and Capt Warner of Co. G were absent on
leave in Wisconsin. Capt.. Richardson of Co. A was serving on Gen. Meredith's
I must here be allowed to bear testimony to the valuable services of your very
worthy Chaplain, Rev. Samuel W. Eaton. During such times as we have just passed
through as well as the quiet times in camp he promptly and cheerfully attend to
the sick and wounded and freely performs any other necessary duties compatible
with his position and does not hesitate to follow us to the battle field in the performance
of such duties.
I have the honor to be, sir.
Your Obd't servt.,
W. W. Robinson
Col. Comng. 7th Wis. Vol.
From the Seventh Wisconsin
The following private letter from Lt. Shirrell will be read with interest by the
numerous friends of the lamented Capt. Alexander Gordon:
Sunday, May 17, 1863
DEAR FRANK:-Yours dated the 9th at Grand Rapids is received. Although I may have
stated heretofore in the different letters I have written to the friends all
that I may now say, yet I know you will all be glad to have as detailed an
account of dear Alick's death as it is possible to give.
I last saw Alick alive in the old camp at Bell Plain. We had broken up camp and
he and I were sitting on a box where my tents had stood on the hill; the drum
beat the call and we immediately separated, he going to his company and I to
town. The line had been recently changed and Alick was assigned the position to
which his rank entitled him, the right of the regiment. The troops moved up that
night to with in about two miles of the river, but we did not get up to them
with the trains. During the night the troops moved on nearer to the river. In
the morning we came up with the teams and soon parked very near the place where
the troops had first stopped the night before.
At dawn the fire opened, but as near as I can learn a crossing was not effected
until about 9 o'clock. Soon after this hour John Clafin came riding hurriedly up
and told me that Alick was hit. I jumped on my horse and hurried forward, but
only to find that his spirit had flown.
The 7th were just about entering the boats to cross, (the 6th Wis. and 24th
Michigan were already nearly all across when a concealed body of rebels suddenly
opened upon them from across the river and a little down from where they were crossing. It was just at this time that Alick was struck. He
"Boys, I am struck" - grasped his belt and unfastened his accoutrements,
gradually settling to the ground (not falling suddenly) he said "the ball is
in me," placing his hands upon his breast.
One of the boys said "No, Captain it is in your arm". Alick replied "It is in my
breast ,I can feel it" Mr. Kinsman and some others immediately bore him to the
rear. While they were so doing his countenance rapidly changed showing that he
was fast failing. Before reaching the ambulance he said "My dear wife - I shall
never see her again"; and after a short pause he said "Boys"- which was the last
word spoken by him. Mr. Kinsman then attempted to rally him and said "Captain, don't you know me?" but he made no reply. He was put into the ambulance and taken
to the hospital. He died almost immediately after getting there.
I need not attempt to describe to you my feelings as I gazed upon his lifeless
form. In my anguish hardened as I am tears (the first since my mother's death)
came to my eyes. I knelt over him, cut a lock of hair, smoothed back the displaced
hair, gently covered his face and turned away feeling faint at heart and sick,
gathered up all his personal effects and gave the necessary directions about his
grave. In the afternoon he was buried near by his body being well wrapped in an
oil cloth and a blanket. Very soon after our troops were re-called from the
other side and we were immediately ordered up to the right some ten or twelve
miles away. I could do nothing more; we were all ordered away, the balls were
stopped and I could only await for a few days and see what could then be done.
By your letter I see that Dr. Brown was here and could not find Alick's body. It
must have been while we were up on the right as I saw nothing of him. The day
after we returned here he came out and I went with him to the grave. The body
was taken up and he took charge of it to send home.
Hill joined us when on the right and I sent all of Alick's things to Washington
by him. He was to deliver them to you He has not yet returned, but I presume
after finding you were away he either gave them to John Gordon or Elisha
Before leaving Bell Plain the officers sent away most of their baggage. Alick sent
a carpet bag. All of the articles were put on board of a boat and were to be
sent to Washington to be stored in some Government warehouse. The valise was
plainly marked. Morse can find it, and I think without much trouble.
O Frank! I can fully realize that our dear Alick has gone. I am as it were alone
now. I miss him at all times, and our mess is broken up; as I sit down at meal
times - at morning, noon and night I miss him. He is gone never more to return.
We mourn his loss yet we know he died most nobly in the service of his country.
Amid the din of battle his spirit took flight quietly and peacefully to that
land where neither wars or rumors of wars are known.
He died the death of the soldier. May he quietly sleep until the last "Reville"
It has been my endeavor to do all that could be done in regard to Alick's
remains and his effects. If I have seemed to err in any way I hope you will not
fail to tell me, that I may, if in my power, accomplish the wish of all the
Again I wish to express my heartfelt sympathies with all the friends. May our
Heavenly father give them strength to bear up under their great affliction.
I am as ever
Your sincere Friend,
(Correspondence of the State Journal.)
THE SEVENTH WISCONSIN REGIMENT
Washington, D.C., May 29, "63.
It is said that it is never too late to "render unto Caesar that which is Caesar's"
in view of this great truth, I have taken my pen in hand for the purpose of
paying a just tribute to a gallant regiment. The name of which heads this
article. In doing this, I do not desire to make any invidious comparisons which
will in any manner reflect upon other Western regiments which have so bravely
passed through the fiery ordeal of the campaign in Virginia and Maryland as to
much cannot be said or written in their praise. Believing that the meritorious
conduct of the veterans comprising this regiment have not received the extended
notice through the press, which they so richly deserve, I have taken this method
to place upon record, a plain and truthful statement of the services rendered by
the 7th during the eventful scenes of the recent terrible conflicts in Virginia
and Maryland dating back from the 20th of August, 1862 to the storming of the
Fredericksburg Heights, on the 29th of April, 1863.
During this campaign but little has been written of the part taken in the
battles by Gen. Gibbon's "Iron Brigade"; of the trials and hardships
which the sons of the far West have endured in "Dixie's land," and but
little praise ahs been awarded to the officers in command who have led their
brave comrades on to victory and imperishable glory. comparatively few are there
away from the blood-stained soil of Virginia and Maryland who know how
Wisconsin's sons have taken the lead in fierce conflicts, with Indiana's noble
19th by their side. That great battles were fought during the period above
mentioned is known to every school boy in the land but of the individual deeds
of heroism and the conspicuous parts performed by the distinguished regiments of
Gibbon's late command very little has appeared in print. As I am devoting this
article more particularly to the 7th, it may be well to state that the Colonel in
command, W.W. Robinson, is the senior Colonel of the Brigade and in every respect
a gentleman and a brave officer. It was at the battle of Gainesville, Va., on
the 25th of August, 1862. that Gen. Gibbons' command of Western troops
comprising the Wisconsin 2d, 6th, 7th and Indiana 19th engaged a full division
of the enemy and after a desperate engagement defeated them through we gained a
triumphant victory, the rank and file of the Brigade was sadly decimated.
The loss of this Regiment in killed and wounded was 217, among the field
officers wounded were Col. W.W. Robinson, Lt. Col. C. A. Hamilton and Maj. Gill.
These officers acquitted themselves in the most praiseworthy manner.
The most flattering encomium which your correspondent can pay to the heroic Col.
Robinson is to say that his own veteran followers fully appreciate his bravery and
military ability. If promotion is based upon a man's ability, courage and
military skill, a star upon the shoulder straps of this gallant officer would be
a just reward for his services. The wounding of these officers placed the
responsibility of the command of the regiment upon the senior Captain, John B.
Callis, He assumed the honorable position on the 30th of August and won laurel's
for his regiment and himself at the Second Bull Run battle. It was on that ever
memorable field of conflict that the 7th and 2d stood side by side and supported
a battery after three regiments had abandoned it in despair. Through the enemy
fought hard to take the battery it was saved through their indomitable courage.
when the fortunes of war turned against our arms and it became necessary for
our forces to fall back the "Iron Brigade" moved off in such a
military like and orderly manner as to attract the attention of Gen. Joe Hooker,
who was watching with a keen and observing eye the movements of the troops. So
proud was he of the splendid order which they observed that he stood up in his stirrups
and shouted out "that's the way to do it, boys!" From this disastrous
battle field we followed our western heroes to the South Mountain. Here the 7th
was assigned a place in the front to open the fight and carry the gorge in the
mountain at all hazards which it did against a determined and bloody resistance
on the part of the rebels disputing every inch of ground with the 7th which then
only numbered 299 men.
During this sanguinary conflict the 7th lost, in killed and wounded, 147. Here I
must remark in justice to the gallant Acting Colonel, Capt. Callis, that he distinguished
himself by his soldierly conduct and bravery. The morning after the splendid
victory of South Mountain, between day break and sunrise, our troops were in hot
pursuit of the enemy; the remnant of the war-worn veterans of the 7th, burning
to revenge their comrades pressed forward with the old Brigade to the historic
battle field of Antietam, where the fortunes of war again afforded the regiment
another fearless Acting Col. an opportunity to avenge the fall of the gallant
spirits who the day previous fought by their side. Those who witnessed that
fearful conflict on the plains of Antietam, Sept. 17, will remember the conspicuous
part acted by the 7th in charging front advance whole under a gallant fire, and
there by saving the celebrated Battery B belonging to the Western brigade from
being captured. In Gen Gibbon's official report of the part taken by his command
at Antietam he says great credit is due to Capt. Callis, Acting Col. of the 7th,
for the manner in which he maneuvered his regiment during the battle, and Capt..
Callis, in his official report of the conduct of his command, pays a well deserved
compliment of Captains Richardson and Gordon for their gallantry and efficient
Through the memorable battles of August 30th, Sept 14th, 15th, 16th, and 17th,
the 7th under the command of Capt. Callis have met the enemy and valiantly
sustained the reputation which our western soldiers have so nobly gained by
their power of endurance and heroic deeds.
In giving this brief review of the services rendered by the 7th, I have not been
influenced by any selfish motives or local preferences, as the patriotic sons of
Wisconsin bearing arms down in "Dixie's sunny clime" are as true as
steal, and courageous to a man.
No loyal State has greater reasons for being
proud of her soldiers than Wisconsin, which has freely poured out her best blood
in defense of the Republic. The men and officers of the fighting 7th, like those
of their comrades from the prairies and pineries of Wisconsin have won for
themselves a proud name, which the historians will record upon the pages of
Without any intention of treading upon delicate ground, I may with all
sincerity compliment the officers of the 7th for the military ability
perseverance and unflinching courage demonstrated by them during the trying
scenes through which they have passed in the bloody campaigns of Virginia and
I was pleased at hearing a few days since, of the promotion of Capt. Callis to
the honorable position of Lieutenant Colonel. His brief but brilliant career
entitles him to a higher position. When justice is meted out and true merit is
fully awarded the Colonel and Lieutenant Colonel of the old 7th will be placed
in a more responsible command in the national army of the Republic.