“2nd Infantry Regiment Volunteers”
The 12th North Carolina Infantry Regiment was organized as the 2nd Infantry Regiment Volunteers near Garysburg under the command of Colonel Solomon Williams (West Point Class of 1858).
Company A – Catawba County
|May 18||Mustered into Confederate service.|
|May 22||Left the training camp at Garysburg by rail for Richmond, then to Norfolk, assigned to the Department of Norfolk.|
|Summer||Drilled at Camp Carolina.|
|October-April||Assigned to Mahone’s Brigade, Department of Norfolk.|
|November 14||Redesignated as 12th North Carolina Infantry Regiment when North Carolina’s “state troops” and “volunteers” were renumbered into one series.|
|November 18||Company C mustered out.|
|November 29||Companies L, M, N & O were redesignated Companies A-D, 1st North Carolina Infantry Battalion. This was expanded into the 32nd North Carolina Infantry Regiment.|
|December 16||Company D mustered out.|
|Winter||Went into Winter quarters at Camp Arrington near the Seward’s Point Battery.|
|February 25||Second Company I was assigned.|
|March||Second Company K was assigned.|
|April||Assigned to Mahone’s Brigade, Huger’s Division, Department of Norfolk.|
|May 6||Left by rail for Petersburg and then Gordonsville and assigned to Branch’s Brigade, Department of Northern Virginia|
|May-June||Assigned to Branch’s Brigade, A.P. Hill’s Division, Army of Northern Virginia and picketed the right flank of the army.|
|May 11||Henry P. Coleman was promoted to colonel.|
Battle of Hanover Court House
Engaged at Peake’s Crossing. The regiment lost 7 men killed and 20 wounded.
|June 5||Colonel Williams transferred to command the 2nd North Carolina Cavalry Regiment.|
|June||Transferred to Mahone’s Brigade, Huger’s Division, Army of Northern Virginia|
|June 17||Transferred to Garland’s Brigade, D.H. Hill’s Division, Army of Northern Virginia|
|June 25-July 1||
Seven Days Battles
The regiment suffered 211 casualties during the Seven Days.
King’s School House
Beaver Dam Creek
Battle of Gaines’ Mill
White Oak Swamp
Battle of Malvern Hill
Returned to camp in Richmond.
Moved to Hanover Junction.
Rejoined D.H. Hill’s Division at Orange Court House, then marched to Manassas. It was not engaged in the Second Battle of Manassas. “After the Seven Days’ Battles the regiment scarcely numbered two hundred men.” – Lieutenant Walter Montgomery, Company F.
Hill’s Division caught up with the army at Chantilly.
|September||Assigned to Garland’s-Iverson’s-Johnston’s Brigade, D.H. Hill’s-Rodes’ Division, Jackson’s Command-2nd Corps, Army of Northern Virginia.|
Crossed the Potomac into Maryland.
Moved out of Frederick, erving as Longstreet’s rearguard.
Posted at Fox’s Gap on South Mountain.
The remnants of the regiment were commanded by Captain Shugan Snow of Company G. The regiment numbered less 92 men in the battle, having left behind a rearguard detachment that had not yet caught up. Of these few it suffered 58 casualties. When ordered forward to support the 5th North Carolina it scattered into fragments, with one group supporting the 13th North Carolia and others leaving the field.
“Garland’s Brigade had behaved nobly until demoralized by the fall of its gallant leader and being outflanked by the Yankees.” – Colonel Duncan K. MacRae, who took command of the brigade when Garland fell.
The regiment continued to be commanded by Captain Snow. The rearguard had rejoined, restoring a small handful of men.
|November 21||Captain Snow resigned.|
|December 3||Moved to Port Royal to guard the crossing of the Rappahannock.|
The regiment lost 5 casualties to artillery fire.
|January||D.H. Hill left division command and was replaced by Major General Robert Rodes.|
The regiment took part in Jackson’s flank attack against the Federal line. It lost 118 casualties but captured three Federal colors and a Union colonel.
The regiment was commanded by Lieutenant Colonel William S. Davis. It brought 219 men to the field and suffered 36% casualties. The terrain prevented the regiment from suffering the near annihilation of the other regiments in its brigade during the assault on July 1. After that attack General Iverson was unfit for command, and the 12th North Carolina was temporarily part of Ramseur’s Brigade.
From the monument to Iverson’s Brigade on the Gettysburg battlefield:
July 1. The Brigade was one of the first of the Division in the battle. It advanced against the Union line posted behind stone fence east of Forney Field. Its right being assailed by 2nd Brigade First Corps and its left exposed by the repulse of O’Neal a vigorous assault by Union forces in front and on left flank almost annihilated three regiments. The 12th Regiment on the right being sheltered by the knoll suffered slight loss and the remnants of the others joined Ramseur’s Brigade and served with it throughout the battle.
July 2. Lay all day in the town. At dusk moved to aid in an attack on Cemetery Hill but two of Early’s Brigades having been repulsed the Brigade withdrew.
July 3. With other brigades in the sunken road southwest of town. At night withdrew to Seminary Ridge.
July 4. Marched at 2 P. M. as wagon train guard on road to Hagerstown.
Battle of Hagerstown
The regiment lost 3 men killed and 11 wounded,
Raccoon Ford and Stevensburg
Mine Run Campaign
The regiment was advncing into the Mule Shoe salient when the Federal attack hit and pushed it back. As many as two thirds of the regiment became casualties.
|May-June||Assigned to Johnston’s Brigade, Early’s Division, 2nd Corps, Army of Northern Virginia|
Battle of North Anna
Assigned to Johnston’s Brigade, Early’s-Ramseur’s-Pegram’s Division, Army of the Valley
Lieutenant Colonel Wiliam S. Davis commanded the regiment until he was wounded.
Assigned to Johnston’s Brigade, Pegram’s Division, 2nd Corps, Army of Northern Virginia
Battle of Sayler’s Creek
The 12th North Carolina surrendered 8 officers and 139 enlisted men.
The regiment’s field officers were Colonels Henry E. Coleman, Benjamin O. Wade, and Solomon Williams; Lieutenant Colonels Edward Cantwell, William S. Davis, and Thomas L. Jones; and Majors Robert W. Alston, Augustus W. Burton, and David P. Rowe.