United States Regiments & Batteries > New York > 50th New York Engineer Regiment

The 50th New York Infantry Regiment, which became the 50th New York Engineer Regiment, lost 1 officer and 19 enlisted men killed or mortally wounded and 1 officer and 206 enlisted men to disease during the Civil War. It is honored by a monument at Gettysburg shared with the 15th New York Engineers.

September 18 Organized at Elmira, New York as the 50th New York Infantry Regiment
September 20 Left New York for Washington, D.C. under the command of Colonel Charles B. Stuart, Lieutenant Colonel William Pettes (West Point Class of 1832) and Major Frederick Embrick
September 22-30 Attached to 3rd Brigade, Porter’s Division, Army of the Potomac and duty at Hall’s Hill, Va., and near Navy Yard, Washington
October 22 Detailed as sappers, miners and pontooners, and designated 50th New York Engineer Regiment at Washington, D.C. Attached to Woodbury’s Engineer Brigade, Army of the Potomac for duty at Alexandria, Virginia.
March Duty at Washington, D.C.

Peninsula Campaign

Attached to Engineer Brigade, Army of the Potomac and moved with Army of the Potomac to the Virginia Peninsula.

April 5-May 4

Siege of Yorktown

May Advance up the Peninsula; constructed bridges on the Chickahominy River
May 31-June 1

Battle of Fair Oaks, Seven Pines

June 25-July 1

Seven days before Richmond

June 27

Battle of Seven Pines

June 30

White Oak Swamp and Charles City Cross Roads

July 1

Malvern Hill

July – August At Harrison’s Landing
August 16-22 Moved to Washington, D.C.

Maryland Campaign

Operating at and about Harper’s Ferry, Virginia, and Berlin, Maryland, during and after the battle of Antietam. Threw two pontoon bridges over the Potomac River at Berlin, Maryland, for the crossing the Army of the Potomac in their pursuit of Lee from Antietam.


Rappahannock Campaign

December 12-15

Battle of Fredericksburg

The regiment lost 1 officer and 9 men killed or mortally wounded and 3 officers and 37 men wounded

January 20-24 “Mud March”
April 27-May 6

Chancellorsville Campaign

April 29-May 2 Operations at Franklin’s Crossing
May 3

Maryes Heights, Second Fredericksburg

May 3-4

Salem Heights

May 4

Banks’ Ford

June 3 Lieutenant Colonel William Pettes was promoted to colonel.
June 5-13 Operations at Deep Run Ravine
June 13-July 24

Gettysburg Campaign

July 1-4

Battle of Gettysburg

The 50th New York Engineers has a monument on the battlefield although it was not present at Gettysburg. It played an important role in the campaign.

From the Engineer Brigade monument on the Gettysburg battlefield:

Engaged in arduous duties from June 13 to July 18 1863 bridging rivers and transporting pontoons to enable the Army to cross the Potomac River and its tributaries into Pennsylvania and to recross into Virginia.

October 9-22

Bristoe Campaign

November 7-8 Advance to line of the Rappahannock
November 26-December 2

Mine Run Campaign

May 3-June 15

Campaign from the Rapidan to the James River

Laid all bridges for Army of the Potomac during the Campaign.

May 5-7

Battle of the Wilderness

May 8-21

Battle of Spottsylvania Court House

May 10 To expedite the transportation of the wounded three companies of the regiment made a forced march to Fredericksburg, starting at 11:30 a.m. They built a bridge over the Rappahannock at Fredericksburg’s Lower Crossing, having it completed and ready for use at 4:30 p.m., having marched 8 miles and built a bridge 420 feet long in 5 hours.
May 23-26

North Anna River

May 26-28 On line of the Pamunkey
May 28-31 On line of the Totopotomoy
June 1-12

Cold Harbor

June 15 Crossing of James River
June 16-18

First Assault on Petersburg


Siege of Petersburg 

T.M. Blythe of the 50th Engineers is quoted on a wayside marker on the Petersburg battlefield:

“The romance of a soldier’s life disappears in a siege. The change of scenery and the lively marches are gone, and the same monotonous unvaried rounds of toil take their place. Sunday and weekday are all alike.”

June 22-23

Jerusalem Plank Road

July 27-29 Demonstration on north side of James River
July 27-28
Deep Bottom
February 5-7

Hatcher’s Run

March 28-April 9

Appomattox Campaign

April 2

Fall of Petersburg

April 9

Appomattox Court House

Surrender of Lee and his army.

April 23-27 Company I march to Danville with 6th Corps
June 13 The 50th New York Engineer Regiment mustered out at Fort Berry, Virginia under the command of Colonel William Pettes