|November 29||The 1st North Carolina Infantry Battalion was created from four extra companies left over from the creation of the 12th North Carolina Infantry Regiment. They were under the command of Lieutenant Colonel William T. Williams and Major Edmund C. Brabble. The battalion was assigned to Clarke’s Brigade, Department of Norfolk.|
|March 17||The 32nd North Carolina Infantry Regiment was created at Drewry’s Bluff, Virginia, by expanding the 1st North Carolina Infantry Battalion (Compaies A-D) to a full regiment. Major Brabble was promoted to colonel. Lieutanant Colonel William T. Williams continued in his rank.
Company A – Tyrrell County (transferred from Company L, 2nd Regiment Volunteers) – Captain Henry G. Lewis
|April 1||Companies B, H, I & K were mustered out at the end of their one year term of service.
Two new companies were assigned to the regiment:
|April||Moved to Suffolk, Virginia, and assigned to Blanchard’s Brigade, Huger’s Division, Department of Norfolk.|
|May-September||Assigned to Daniel’s Brigade, Department of North Carolina|
|July||Captain James W. Ferebee of Company B died. Lieutenant Joseph C. Rudds was promoted to captain of Company B.
Captain John M. Moody of Company C retired. Lieutenant Joseph W. Coker was promoted to captain of Company C.
Captain Manuel E. Shell of Company E died. Lieutenant Gilbert M. Sherrill was promoted to captain of Company E.
|July 4||Two new companies were assigned:Company I (2nd) – “Chatham Rifles” – Chatham County (transferred from Company M, 5th Regiment Volunteers) – Captain L. London
Company K (2nd) – Franklin Rifles” – Franklin County (transferred from Company L, 5th Regiment Volunteers) – Captain James I. Foster
|July 22||The last new company was assigned:
Company H (2nd) – Nash County (transferred from Company H, 2nd Regiment Volunteers) – Captain John J. Drake
|September-December||Stationed near Petersburg and Drewry’s Bluff, assigned to Daniel’s Brigade, Department of North Carolina and Southern Virginia.|
|December||Assigned to Daniel’s Brigade, Elzey’s Command, Department of North Carolina and Southern Virginia.
Captain John Ray of Company F retired. Lieutenant Peter F. Smith was promoted to captain of Company F.
|December-January||Assigned to Brabble’s Command, Elzey’s Command, Department of North Carolina and Southern Virginia.|
|January 3||Moved to North Carolina and assigned to Daniel’s Brigade, French’s Command, Department of North Carolina and Southern Virginia.|
New Bern Expedition
Assigned to Daniel’s Brigade, D.H. Hill’s Division, Department of North Carolina and Southern Virginia.
|April-May||Assigned to Daniel’s Brigade, Department of North Carolina.|
|May 17||Returned to Virginia and assigned to Daniel’s-Grimes’ Brigade, Rodes’ Division, 2nd Corps, Army of Northern Virginia.|
|June 14||Skirmish at Martinsburg|
|June 15||Lieutenant Colonel William T. Williams retired. Major David C. Cowand was promoted to lieutenant colonel, Captain Henry G. Lewis of Company A was promoted to major, and Lieutenant John H. Thomas became captain of Company A.|
|June 27-29||Occupied Carlisle, Pennsylvania, the farthest north of any Confederate advance into Federal territoty.The regiment was chosen to be awarded the first example of the new design for the Confederate flag just adopted by the Confederate Congress, which was hoisted atop the roof of Carlisle Barracks.|
|June 30||Although the regiment anticipated advancing on Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, it was instead ordered to join Lee’s main body at Cashtown, They marched 22 miles to Heidlersburg.|
The regiment was ordered to Gettysburg. It brought 454 men to the field under the command of Colonel Brabble, and lost 147 casualties. Major Lewis was wounded, captured, and not released until war’s end. Captain Solomon H. Wite of Company G was mortally wounded. Captain John J. Drake of Company H was wounded. Lieutenant Calvin Pritchard of Company G was captured.
From the monument to on Oak Hill:
July 1. The Brigade formed the right of Division and its line extended from Forney Field to the railroad near the McPherson Barn. The regiments did not at first move together nor attack the same troops. The 43rd and 53rd Regiments aided by O’Neal’s 3rd Alabama and Iverson’s 12th North Carolina attacked the Union line in the Sheads and Forney Field. The 45th Regiment and 2nd Battalion fought the 2nd Brigade 3rd Division First Corps near the railroad cuts and being joined by the 32nd Regiment and other troops compelled retreat. The regiments fought under a heavy artillery fire. The Brigade was reunited and lost heavily in the struggle which dislodged the Union forces from Seminary Ridge.
July 2. On Seminary Ridge all day. After night moved into town.
July 3. Marched before daylight to Culp’s Hill to aid Johnson’s Division.
July 4. Occupied Seminary Ridge. At night began the march to Hagerstown.
A second monument at Gettysburg on East Confederate Avenue has additional informtion:
July 3. After taking part in the battles of the First and Second days elsewhere on the field the Brigade marched about 1.30 A. M. from its position in the town to Culp’s Hill to reinforce Johnson’s Division. Arriving about 4 A. M. it fought at different points wherever ordered through the long and fierce conflict its main position being in the ravine between the two summits of Culp’s Hill. At the close of the struggle near noon it was withdrawn by Gen. Johnson with the rest of the line to the base of the hill from whence it moved during the night to Seminary Ridge west of the town and there rejoined Rodes’s Division.
July 4. Occupied Seminary Ridge. Late at night began the march to Hagerstown.
From Colonel Brabble’s Official Report on the battle:
On the first day, about 2:30 p.m., the regiment was drawn up on the right of the brigade, and, advancing, met the enemy about 4 o’clock. At the time the regiment became actively engaged, it was near a railroad cut, the right supported by a regiment of Brig. Gen. Joseph R. Davis’ (MS) Brigade. Beyond the cut was a large stone barn, where the enemy was strongly posted. He had also planted on a wooded hill between us and town a battery, which thoroughly commanded the ground in our front and about the barn.
The brigade made an advance to dislodge him from the barn, but the cut in front of the other regiments was too difficult for them to cross, and the 32nd NC Regiment fell back for want of support.
After a short time this regiment charged up to the barn and dislodged the enemy; but being unsupported on the right and left, and the battery on the hill opening a terrific fire upon it, it again fell back near the cut. The rest of the brigade having now changed direction, so as to advance without hindrance, the 32nd NC Regiment moved up beyond the barn, and, waiting a few minutes for the troops on the right, advanced near the edge of the town, where it joined the other regiments and rested for the night. In its advance it took a considerable number of prisoners; how many I did not stop to ascertain. Its loss during the day was 78—none of them as prisoners.
The second day, the 32nd NC Regiment was posted behind the Theological Seminary, as a part of the support to our batteries. It sustained a very heavy fire from the enemy’s artillery, and lost many men.
The third day the regiment, with the rest of the brigade, moved to the left and front, to the northeast of Gettysburg, and being drawn up in line, advanced to the foot of Gulp’s Hill, upon which the enemy was posted. It had sustained a very galling fire from artillery and sharpshooters, losing many men and doing little injury to the enemy. Then, in pursuance of orders, it moved farther to the left, and formed on the right of the 43rd NC Regiment, to hold an entrenchment that had been captured. It here lost several men, but, having the enemy at advantage, it did good execution upon him. From this position it fell back, by orders, about 5 p.m., and a little before midnight it withdrew with the rest of the troops to the range of hills west of Gettysburg.
During the engagement the conduct of the regiment was all I could desire, there being very little time during the three days when it was not perfectly under my control. Both officers and men, with scarcely an exception, did their duty faithfully and unflinchingly. Where all behaved so well it is difficult to discriminate, yet justice requires that I should mention Capt. William L. London of 2nd Company I. To his skill and gallantry is greatly due whatever of service the regiment may have rendered in the battle.
During the three days’ fighting the regiment lost in killed and wounded 147 officers and men. Of the 14 reported missing two have since joined the regiment and two others have been heard from, and are not in the enemy’s hands.
The regiment lost 3 men.
Mine Run Campaign
The regiment lost 3 men.
The regiment lost over half its strength in casualties.
|May 10||Colonel Edmund Brabble was killed on May 10. Lieutenant Colonel David C. Cowand was promoted to colonel. Major Lewis was promoted to lieutenant colonel, although still a Federal prisoner.|
Battle of North Anna
Assigned to Grimes’s Brigade, Rodes’s-Grimes’s Division, Army of the Valley
|June 18||Arrived at Lynchburg.|
|June 19||Began the pursuit of Hunter’s Federal forces, skirmish at Liberty.|
|June 20||Skirmish at Buford Gap|
|June 21||Skirmish at Salem|
|June 22-27||After resting for a day resumed the pursuit to Staunton.|
|July 4||Arrived at Harpers Ferry, capturing Bolivar Heights in the morning. By evening Federal forces were driven across the Potomac to Maryland Heights.|
|July 6||Crossed the Potomac at Pack Horse Ford at Shepherdstown, engaged the Federal garrison at Bolivar Heights and moved through Crampton’s Gap to Frederick.|
The regiment was in reserve and not actively engaged.
|July 10||Resumed the march to Washington|
|July 11||After a very hot, duty and fatiguing march arrived in the evening in front of Fort Stevens of the Washington Defenses, within sight of the Capitol dome and skirmished with Federal troops.|
|July 12||Reinforcements of the Federal 6th Corps arrived from the Petersburg front and the day was spent in heavy skirmishing in which President Lincoln came under fire. The Confederates began their retreat after sundown.|
|July 15||Crossed the Potomac near Leesburg during the night, pursued by Federal cavalry.|
|July 17||Crossed the Blue Ridge at Snickers Gap.|
|July 19-20||Moved toward Stratsburg and to the support of Ramseur’s Division.|
|July 21||Retired to Fisher’s Hill|
|August 17||Skirmish at Winchester|
|August 21-22||Skirmish at Charlestown|
|August 29||Skirmish at Smithfield|
|September 3||Skirmish at Bunker Hill|
|September 13||Abraham’s Creek|
|September 14||Skirmish near Berryville|
|September 15||Sevier’s Ford, Opequan Creek|
Captains Henry May Warren of Company F and Samuel Kelly of Company K were wounded and captured.
|September 23-24||Withdrew up the Valley to Waynesboro.|
|September 26-28||Port Republic|
|October 1-13||Advanced down the valley to Fisher’s Hill.|
The regiment was deployed as sharpshooters. It launched a counter charge against Sheridan’s afternoon attack, but was forced to fall back when troops to their left retreated in disorder.
|November 23||Skirmish at Rude’s Hill near Mount Jackson|
The regiment rejoined Lee’s army around Richmond and was assigned to Grimes’ Brigade, Grimes’s Division, 2nd Corps, Army of Northern Virginia. It went into winter quarters at Swift Creek. Colonel Cowand commanded the brigade as senior colonel.
Major John W. Rierson, in temporary command of the regiment, was killed.
Battle of Sayler’s Creek
The regiment surrendered 4 officers and 110 men.