United States Regiments & Batteries > Massachusetts

The 19th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry Regiment lost 14 officers and 147 enlisted men killed or mortally wounded and 133 enlisted men to disease during the Civil War. It is honored by a monument at Gettysburg.

August 28 Organized at Lynnfield under Colonel Edward W. Hinks (formerly colonel of the 8th Massachusetts Infantry) Lt. Colonel Arthur Devereux (former captain in the same regiment) and Major Henry How
August 30 Left State for Washington, D.C. via Philadelphia; attached to Lander’s Brigade, Division of the Potomac
September 12 Camp at Meridian Hill
September 12-15 Moved to Poolesville, Md. and guard duty on the Upper Potomac
October Assigned to Lander’s Brigade, Stone’s (Sedgwick’s) Division, Army of the Potomac
October 21-24 Operations on the Potomac
October 21 Action at Ball’s Bluff
December 4 Moved to Muddy Run
March Assigned to 3rd Brigade, 2nd Division, 2nd Army Corps, Army of the Potomac
March 12-15 Moved to Harper’s Ferry, thence to Charlestown and Berryville March
March 24 Ordered to Washington, D.C.
March 27 To the Peninsula
April 5-May 4 Siege of Yorktown
May 7-8 West Point
May 31-June 1 Battle of Fair Oaks, Seven Pines
June 25-July 1 Seven days before Richmond
June 25
Oak Grove, near Fair Oaks

Lieutenant Warner and several enlisted men were killed and Lieutenant J. H. Rice and around 60 enlisted men wounded.

June 29 Peach Orchard and Savage Station
June 30
White Oak Swamp and Glendale

Colonel Hincks and Captain Devereux (Lt. Colonel Devereux’s brother) were wounded and Major How and Lieutenant David Lee killed. Captain Edmund Rice took command of the regiment.

July 1 Malvern Hill
July 8 – August 15 Harrison’s Landing
August 15-28 Movement to Alexandria
August 24-28 Moved on the steamship Atlantic to Alexandria
August 28-31 To Fairfax C. H.
August 31-
September 1
Cover Pope’s retreat from Bull Run
Maryland Campaign

Colonel Hinks resumed command

September 14 Battle of South Mountain (Reserve)
September 16-17
Battle of Antietam

Colonel Hinks was the first to fall, seriously wounded, leaving Lt. Colonel Devereux in command. Devereux was ill and exercised command for only a short time before turning it over to Captain Harrison G. O. Weymouth. Captain George W. Batchelder was killed.

From the brigade marker at Antietam:

Dana’s Brigade, following Gorman’s in column of attack, passed through the East Woods, crossed the Cornfield and the Hagerstown Pike, about 50 yards in rear of Gorman, and entered the West Woods, where its advance was checked about 40 yards east of this point.

Its left flank having been attacked and turned, by McLaws’ and Walker’s Divisions, it was compelled to retire.

A portion of the Brigade, with the 1st Minnesota Infantry, occupied a line near the Nicodemus house which it held for a time until, its flank having been again turned, it retired to the woods and fields east of the Hagerstown Pike.

September 22 Moved to Harper’s Ferry
October 30-November 17 Advance up Loudon Valley and movement to Falmouth, Va.
November 29 Colonel Hincks, still on convalescent leave, promoted to brigadier general
December 11-15
Battle of Fredericksburg

The regiment was a “forlorn hope” to cross the Rappahannock at Fredericksburg. Lieutenant Colonel Devereux was still very sick in camp, so the regiment was commanded by Captain Harrison G.O. Weyouth, who was badly wounded, losing his leg.

Decmber – April Duty at Falmouth, Va.
April 27-May 6 Chancellorsville Campaign
May 1 Lieutenant Colonel Devereux promoted to colonel
May 3 Maryes’ Heights. Fredericksburg
May 3-4 Salem Heights
June 11-July 24 Gettysburg Campaign
July 2-4
Battle of Gettysburg

The regiment was commanded by Colonel Arthur F. Devereaux. It brought 231 men to the field, losing 9 killed, 61 wounded and 7 missing.

Colonel Devereaux noted that the opening shot of the artillery barrage preceding Pickett’s Charge struck Lieutenant S.S. Robinson of the 19th, “cutting his body nearly in two, killing him instantly.” While there is no doubt of Robinson’s death, there are four other contradictory accounts of the first shot, including one by the 19th’s own Lieutenant J.B.G. Adams, who claimed to have had the shot pass over him while lying in a field hospital just behind the lines.*

From one of a series of iron signs on the south side of the Copse of Trees (below right): 

Nineteenth Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry. The position of this regiment in line of battle was 119 yards S.S.E. and is represented by its monument. The 19th Massacusetts and 42d New York Regiments were the first troops to attack Pickett’s Division in flank. “Passing at this time Colonel Devereux, commanding the 19th Massachusetts Volunteers, anxious to be in the right place, appled to me for permission to move his regiment to the right and to the front where the line had been broken.” – Hancock’s official report.

Major Edmund Rice was awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions at the height of Pickett’s Charge, when he led a countercharge into Confederate attackers who had broken the Union lines, holding them in check with a thin line of men for several minutes until reinforcements arrived to turn the tide. He fell severly wounded, the officer nearest the enemy.

The regiment captured the colors of the 14th, 19th, 53rd and 57th Virginia Infantry Regiments.

*From George R. Stewart, Pickett’s Charge: A Microhistory of the Final Attack at Gettysburg, July 3, 1863, p126

September 13-17 Advance from the Rappahannock to the Rapidan
October 9-22
Bristoe Campaign
October 14 Bristoe Station
November 7-8 Advance to line of the Rappahannock
November 26-
December 2
Mine Run Campaign
November 27 Robertson’s Tavern, or Locust Grove
December – May At Stevensburg
February 6-7 Demonstration on the Rapidan
February 27 Colonel Devereux resigned
March Assigned to 1st Brigade, 2nd Division, 2nd Army Corps
May-June Campaign from the Rapidan to the James
May 5-7 Battle of the Wilderness
May 8 Laurel Hill
May 8-21 Battle of Spottsylvania Court House
May 10 Po River
May 12 Assault on the Salient
May 23-26
North Anna River
May 26-28 On line of the Pamunkey
May 28-31 Totopotomoy
June 1-12
Battle of Cold Harbor
June 16-18
First Assault on Petersburg
June 16
Siege of Petersburg
June 22-23 Jerusalem Plank Road
July 27-29 Demonstration north of the James
July 27-28 Deep Bottom
August 14-18 Strawberry Plains, Deep Bottom
August 25 Ream’s Station
October 27-28 Boydton Plank Road, Hatcher’s Run
February 5-7
Dabney’s Mills, Hatcher’s Run
March 25 Watkin’s House
March 28-April 9 Appomattox Campaign
March 31 Crow’s House
April 2 Fall of Petersburg
April 6 Sailor’s Creek
April 7
High Bridge and Farmville
April 9
Appomattox Court House

Surrender of Lee and his army.

April 10 – May 2 At Burkesville
May 2-13 March to Washington
May 23 Grand Review
May 24 – June 30 Duty at Washington
June 30 Mustered out
July 22 Discharged