United States Regiments & Batteries > New York

“1st Excelsior Light Artillery”

The battery lost 4 enlisted men killed and mortally wounded and 13 enlisted men to disease during the Civil War. It is honored by a monument at Gettysburg.

Organized at New York City. The battery was raised to serve with Daniel Sickles’ Excelsior Brigade and was referred to as the 1st Excelsior Light Artillery.
November 8 Mustered in under Captain Elijah Taft, a state legislator and militia officer.
November 16 Left State for Washington, D.C.
November Duty in the Defenses of Washington, D. C. attached to Artillery Reserve, Army of the Potomac
March Peninsula Campaign
April 5-May 4
Siege of Yorktown

First Sergeant Russell Durando was wounded

May Attached to Artillery Reserve, 5th Army Corps, Army of the Potomac
May 31-June 1
Battle of Seven Pines or Fair Oaks

Private Edwin Flynn was wounded

June 25-July 1 Seven days before Richmond
June 26 Battle of Mechanicsville
June 29 Savage Station
June 30 White Oak Swamp and Glendale
July 1 Malvern Hill
July-August At Harrison’s Landing
August 16-24 Moved to Alexandria
September 6-22 Maryland Campaign. Attached to Reserve Artillery, 5th Army Corps
September 16-17
Battle of Antietam

Private Michael Ryan was wounded

September-October Duty in Maryland
October 29-November 19 Movement to Falmouth, Va.
December 12-15
Battle of Fredericksburg
December Attached to Artillery Reserve, Army of the Potomac
January 20-24 “Mud March”
February-April At Falmouth
April 27-May 6 Chancellorsville Campaign
May 1-5
Battle of Chancellorsville
May Attached to 2nd Volunteer Brigade, Artillery Reserve, Army of the Potomac
June 3-July 31 Gettysburg Campaign
July 1-3

Battle of Gettysburg

Commanded by Captain Elijah D. Taft, the batter brought 146 men and six 20-pounder Parrott Rifles to the field, losing 1 man killed and 2 wounded.

From the marker:

July 2. Arrived and halted in park about 10:30 a.m. Moved to the cemetery at 3:30 p.m. and engaged from 4 p.m. until dark. Four guns south of and facing Baltimore Pike firing on a Confederate battery on Benner’s Hill. Two guns firing westwardly.

July 3. Engaged at intervals in same position until 4 p.m. One gun on Baltimore Pike having burst, the other three relieved the section firing westwardly. Remained in this position until close of battle.”

Privates Anton Thalheimer and Adolph Wittenberg were mortally wounded on July 3, Thalheimer dying on July 4 and Wittenberg on September 3 at Summit House General Hospital in Philadelphia. Private John Begg was mortally wounded by the accidental explosion of a caisson, dying in a field hospital in Gettysburg on July 7.

July-October On line of the Rappahannock
October 9-22 Bristoe Campaign
November 7-8 Advance to line of the Rappahannock
November 7 Rappahannock Station
November Attached to 1st Volunteer Brigade, Artillery Reserve
November 26-December 2 Mine Run Campaign
November 30
Mine Run

Private George Woods was wounded and was transferred to the Veteran Reserve Corps in April of 1864

March Attached to 2nd Brigade, Artillery Reserve
May 3-19 Campaign of the Rapidan. Attached to Artillery Brigade, 5th Army Corps
May 5-7
Battle of the Wilderness
May 8 Laurel Hill
May 8-21
Battle of Spotsylvania Court House

Private James Lyon was captured at Hawkins Church, Va., and died of disease in captivity in Anderson Prison on September 10.

Private Thomas Newman was killed in action on May 18 and Privates James Biggs and August Zehorsh were wounded on May 17 and 18

May 15-19 Ordered to Washington
May 19 Duty in the Defenses of attached to DeRussy’s Division, 22nd Army Corps, Dept. of Washington
July 11-12 Repulse of Early’s attack on Washington
July Attached to Artillery Brigade, 6th Army Corps
August 7-
November 28
Sheridan’s Shenandoah Valley Campaign. Attached to Artillery, 1st Division, 19th Army Corps, Army of the Shenandoah, Middle Military Division
September 19

Third Battle of Winchester

September 22

Battle of Fisher’s Hill

Private Michael Ryan was wounded for the second time

October 19

Battle of Cedar Creek

October Duty in the Shenandoah Valley and in the Dept. of West Virginia
December Attached to Artillery Brigade, 19th Army Corps
February Attached to Artillery Reserve, Army of the Shenandoah
July 6 Mustered out under Captain Taft at Hart’s Island, New York Harbor