19.5.2016

Note. If you have any ancestral links to any of the soldiers of the 69th.Pa. Infantry of the Civil War I would very much like to hear from you or if you perhaps know where any of the old soldiers are buried this would be of great interest to me. You can quickly name check on the company listings below. Perhaps you have an old photo ?. You can contact me via this email address.Click on icon below. Many thanks.

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THE 69th. Pa. VOLUNTEER INFANTRY.

"Pennsylvania's Gallant 69th"

(Philadelphia)

NOTE A.
Information is given in good faith and as accurate as I can make. Be aware that the spellings of the soldiers names especially the Irish ones vary, it really depends on what the recruiting clerk "heard" on the day or the way the individual soldier spelt his name. I see names such as Donaly which I have no doubt should have been recorded as Donnelly. Good point to keep in mind when looking for that Civil War ancestor. If a name is not found in a specific Co. try the others as soldiers in same cases were transferred between Companies.There were quite a number of transfers betweeen the 71st and the 69th Pa. The reason for this is explained on the Homepage of the website. One source states that there were as many as 334 transferred from the 71st to the 69th towards the end of the war when the enlistment period of the 71st soldiers expired. It is thought only about 51 actually fought with the 69th. Its kind of a grey area but it should be kept in mind when one finds out a name that is shown as belonging to the 69th they may well have initially enrolled in the 71st. The lists are basically based on the Bates lists but I have added information that might be found interesting.
NOTE B,
Only three soldiers are known for sure to have returned to Ireland and buried there.James McPeake of Co D, Charles Gallager Co. E. and William Forbes Co. A. ( See bio's in website.).
Some of you may may come across the names Queens Co, Kings Co, Queenstown and Kingstown in your research. These are name hangovers from the past. Queens Co. is in fact the modern Irish County of Co. Laois, Kings Co. is Co. Offaly, Kingstown is the port of Dun Laoghaire south of Dublin. Queenstown is Cobh (pronounced Cove) is the port for Cork.
NOTE C.
This regiment is often confused with the 69th. New York Regiment. Though the 69th. New York has a major link to Irish history and had many Irish officers of note and many Irish soldiers in its companies the one considered here is the 69th. Pennsylvania Regiment formed up in Pennsylvania and centered in the city of Philadelphia.
NOTE D.
Lieutenant Anthony W. McDermott was a soldier in the 69th Pa Company I. He came up through the ranks. He was promoted from Sergt. Major July 11th 1854 and became the Regimental Adjutant. He survived the war and wrote the original "Brief History of the 69th. Reg. Pa.Vet. Vols. It is of interest to note that two Co's of the 69th I and K were allowed to use green trimming on their uniform.
Click below to read PDF file format of McDermott's book.

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Note: Click on silver Icons below to access soldier data bases.
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See Note D above.
With thanks to Villanova University's Digital Library for allowing us to share their excellent work. Appreciated.

"The Forgotten Irish" - " 'Paddy' Owen's Regulars"

Website: www.69thpa.co.uk
Email address: Pa69thire@aol.com

Colonel Dennis O'Kane.

Colonel Dennis O'Kane.
Image "Courtesy of The Civil War and Underground Railroad Museum of Philadelphia"
Photo probably taken Philadelphia circa 1862.


Click on Icons for links:

  Colonel Dennis O'Kane Regimental Commander 69th Pa.
Images of ancestral home in Ireland and memorial plaques in America and Ireland.

   Capt. Charles McAnally (McNally) Co. G. 69th Pa Vols. M.O.H. Glenviggen townland, Sixtowns Rd. Ballinascreen (Draperstown) Sperrin hills Co. Derry.
Sgt. Peter McAnally Co. D. 69th. Pa. Vols. (Brother). Glenviggen townland, Sixtowns Rd. Ballinascreen, (Draperstown) Sperrin hills Co. Derry.

  Irish born pre and Civil war era religious leaders in Philadelphia. Regimenal chaplain Michael F Martin.

   Brig. General Joshua Thomas - Owen. Commander Phil. Brigade Sept 1862-June 1863 and Aug. 1863-June 1864.

Dedication.

This site is dedicated to the soldiers mainly from the counties of Derry, Tyrone,and Donegal and some other counties of Ireland and the Irish American, American and other soldiers from Wales, Scotland, England, Germany and from some other named and unnamed nationalities who fought and in many cases gave their lives fighting with the 69th Pa. Volunteer Infantry of the Union Army in the American Civil War 1861-65 under its commander Colonel Dennis O'Kane from Park village Learmount-Upper Cumber parish in Co. Derry who led, and fought alongside them until he himself was killed at Gettysburg. A great percentage of the unit's soldiers were mostly Irish immigrants or the children of Irish immigrants American born from the Philadelphia area of Pennsylvania.


Irish born soldiers in the 69th. Co's Tyrone Derry and Donegal being highest percentages of all 32 counties of Ireland.

Derry city, Glasgow, Liverpool were the main emigration ports of these men and their families and Philadelphia was one of the main emigrant destination ports. This volunteer unit fought bravely and successfully in many of the main battles of the Civil War perhaps with most effect at Gettysburg where the tide of rebellion was turned.
Though his website is primarily about the 69th Pa. and its men one must never forget that there were other regiments in the Army of the Potomac identified with the Irish ethos and with many Irishmen in the ranks. Most notably perhaps the New York 69th. the 9th Mass, 28th Mass, 37th New York, 63rd New York, 88th New York, 155th New York, 164th New York, 170th New York, 182nd New York, and the 116th Pa. Many other regiments had sizeable numbers of Irish soldiers. Indeed many regiments of the Confederate army had many Irish soldiers and this should always be kept in mind.

Comments on researching 69th.Pa - 71st. Pa.

My research on the 69th. Pa. is primarily done from the "human" aspect of the war. Who the men were, where they were from, what happened them after the war etc. Most research seems to be done from the usual military aspect, which unit fought which, the numbers involved, the outcome be it victory or defeat etc. Little is ever written about the men who were brave enough to put on a cloth uniform grab a rifle and face rifle fire and cannon shells. These are the men who interest me. However it is impossible to avoid some military jargon and in fact it is necessary to have some basic understanding to assist the research. With the 69th Pa. I was very quickly confronted with such statements as "the California" regiment, the "Philadelphia Brigade" names totally confusing to me. Here are a few pointers that may assist clarifying these.
The "California Brigade". What is it's meaning? Well very soon after Fort Sumter was fired on and the Civil War commenced one Edward D. Baker a senator in the state of California wanting to show his loyalty as a personal friend of Abraham Lincoln volunteered to raise a regiment for Lincoln mostly with citizens of California and Oregon who were already based in New York and the greater Philadelphia area. He had in the Mexican war recruited a regiment to fight in Mexico for Lincoln. However there were just not enough "native" Californians and men from Oregon available. To compound Bakers problem the state of California would not allow recruits travel east to join Bakers brigades. However at the end of the day he got enough men recruited from around New York and Philadelphia to be designated the "1st California Brigade". This brigade entered the war and was active in the fall of 1861 but in action at the battle of Balls Bluff Oct 22nd 1861 Baker was killed. Baker had by this time recruited four brigades. However on Bakers demise the Governor of the state of Pennsylvania had to sort things out. He did this by assigning the 1st California Brigade as the 71st Pa, the 2nd California Brigade as the 69th. Pa. and also named the other brigades as the 72nd. Pa. and 102nd Pa. These four regiments seem to have carried the name "California" as an associated name throughout the war though the four units ie the 69th, 71st, 72nd and 102nd also carried the name as the "Philadelphia Brigade" of the Army of the Potomac. I will leave the historians amongst you to sort the detail! However as in any army due to loss of men or logistics regiments and brigades can be reassigned, amalgamated or renamed. One important point to remember in looking at the men of the 71st. Pa. proper is the number who transferred to or re-listed into the 69th. Pa. after their three year agreed term of service expired in 1863 when the 71st was disbanded. One such example is Private Leonard Syler a German soldier who transferred on June 12th. 1863 to the 69th. Pa. as his term in the 71st Pa. had expired. It is of interest to note that the 71st seemed to have quite a few German born soldiers or from German stock who later found their way into the 69th. Pa. from the 71st. The 71st Pa. regiment fought during its period of existence in many major battles of the war. At Antietam, Fredericksburg, Gettysburg, Spotsylvania and Cold Harbour.
Initially enlistment in the 71st Pa. was for a three year period which took the regimental enlistment period up to early June 1864. Co-incidentally by early 1864 there was less need for this 71st. Regt. Thus those in the 71st had to make choices. Re-enlist properly into the 69th. as many did, some others did not want to go beyond their enlistment period and these men simply wanted to finish off their term of enlistment and were simply allowed to have what were "administrative transfers" into the 69th system to finish off their agreed enlistment period then leave. Some others chose to hang on in a 69th. Pa re-enlistment agreement to enable them have hospital treatment, claim pension etc. However it should be noted that though the 71st had not the Irish ethos of the 69th many of the recruits in both Regts would have a lot in common as being from Philadelphia. Both regiments had also fought in mutual support especially at Gettysburg in July 1863. All 71st. Inf. soldiers who ended up named in the Bates listings and regiment listings of the 69th. will be treated as being members the 69th Inf. Regiment for the purpose of this website. I am aware that quite a lot has been researched in America on the 69th. Pa. and many articles and books written on the unit and the militia units in the Philadelphia area from which the 69th. evolved. However little is known about the "ordinary" soldiers from Ireland who took part in this war. Few of the people who now live in the parishes of Co. Derry, Tyrone, Donegal and other counties of Ireland would know much about the American Civil War and less about any of their ancestors who took part in it. The mindset of the Irish who flocked from Ireland in their hundreds of thousands after the famines especially those around 1847 basically closed their minds on the dreadful event. Few of the succeeding generations in America though they would have great interest and wanted to learn much about what happened would have little handed down history. It was very painful for the emigrants into America at the time to relate their experiences of the Ireland from which they fled. So often I have heard the story of Americans simply saying that their ancestors did not want to talk about the Ireland they left behind.
This website simply tries to put together information on the Irish born soldiers of the 69th. Pa. Volunteers who fought for the Union Army in the American Civil War. Most people here in Ireland who have knowledge of the American Civil War when they hear the term "the 69th" automatically think of the New York 69th. unit.
I will try and include information on the circumstances associated with their life in Ireland and America. I hope also to obtain information on other soldiers with Irish links in the 69th. who fought in this war. So little is known of them in Ireland and I hope to at least give credit to the ones I can identify and link.

Battles fought in. Plinth base inscription on the 69th monument at Gettysburg.

The information gathered for this site has been obtained from many sources. Where possible it has been checked or at least the circumstances of the events have been rationalised on a probability basis. I do not claim that it is all totally correct. That would be impossible to guarantee. However my intention is to make as accurate as I can. No doubt as time goes on other pieces of information on Colonel O'Kane and the soldiers of the unit will turn up and will be noted and appropriate corrections made.

The 69th Pa. Vol. Inf. was unrecognised for near 140 years until the city of Philadelphia saw fit to present in 1999 its highest honour The Philadelphia Medal of Honor to the unit. In March 2005 the General Assembly of Pennsylvania passed a Resolution No.50 to honour the 69th.

THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA SENATE RESOLUTION No. 50 Session of 2005

INTRODUCED BY RAFFERTY, O'PAKE, THOMPSON, GREENLEAF, BOSCOLA,FERLO, WOZNIAK, PUNT, CONTI, ERICKSON, MELLOW, M. WHITE, BRIGHTBILL, LOGAN, ARMSTRONG, TARTAGLIONE, EARLL, PIPPY, TOMLINSON, D. WHITE, LAVALLE, COSTA, PICCOLA, PILEGGI, STACK AND LEMMOND, MARCH 16, 2005
INTRODUCED AND ADOPTED, MARCH 16, 2005

A RESOLUTION

Recognizing and honoring during the month of March 2005 the men of the 69th Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry, a regiment of the famous Irish Brigade, for their outstanding battlefield performance during the Civil War.
WHEREAS, The 69th Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry was organized in the City of Philadelphia in August 1861, and consisted of approximately 1,000 officers and soldiers, the vast majority of whom had emigrated from Ireland to America in the 1850s to escape harsh conditions and seek a better life; and
WHEREAS, The 69th Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry, known originally as the Second Regiment (Irish Brigade), 2nd Division, Pennsylvania Militia, was formed from several state militia groups, including the Irish Volunteers, Hibernian Greens, Emmett Guards, Jackson Guards, Meagher Guards, Shields Guards, Patterson Light Guards and United Guards; and
WHEREAS, The 69th Pennsylvania was assigned to a brigade of four regiments which became known as the Philadelphia Brigade; and
WHEREAS, The 69th Pennsylvania, although not the only Irish regiment from Pennsylvania, was the only one to carry green regimental colors; and
WHEREAS, Although many of the Irish immigrants of the 69th Pennsylvania filled the lowest-paying jobs in the City of Philadelphia, earning their bread by the sweat of their brows, they did not find a warm welcome and were intensely disliked; and
WHEREAS, When the 69th Pennsylvania marched out of the city bound for battle in the summer of 1861, bricks and stones were thrown at them by other Philadelphians; and
WHEREAS, Hard marching brought the 69th Pennsylvania to the battlefield at Gettysburg early on the morning of July 2, 1863, at which time only 284 officers and men remained as a result of battlefield casualties, disease, desertion or reassignment; and
WHEREAS, During the evening of July 2, 1863, after the 69th Pennsylvania was placed on the forward slope of a gentle ridge, behind a stone wall and near a brushy clump of small trees, the regiment met a strong Confederate attack by charging out against Wright's Brigade, which had taken the 2nd Rhode Island Artillery battery, and managed to retake those guns; and
WHEREAS, In the struggle to repel the Confederates, six men were killed and 12 were wounded; and
WHEREAS, On the afternoon of July 3, 1863, the regiment was placed at a small stone wall in front of a copse of trees which became the focal point of Pickett's Charge; and
WHEREAS, During Pickett's Charge, none of the 250 men who remained in the regiment left his post, although at one point they were completely surrounded, and they continued hand-to-hand combat until the charge was broken, suffering 60% casualties and leaving only 100 men fit for duty; and
WHEREAS, The members of the 69th Pennsylvania distinguished themselves throughout the Civil War, earning 45 battle ribbons, never losing their colors and never leaving the battlefield unless ordered to do so; therefore be it
RESOLVED, That the Senate recognize and honor during the month of March 2005 the men of the 69th Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry, a regiment of the famous Irish Brigade, for their outstanding battlefield performance during the Civil War.

Sadly as now little is known of these soldiers in their native land. They left Ireland pre, during and after the 1847 famine era. They left basically to improve their lot or indeed to survive.
I would like to contribute thanks to all those who so willing gave me information on the various people, aspects and historic backgrounds for this small website. Without their generous input it would not have been possible to collate such good information.

In order to keep a managable size website image files been converted into PDF format. It will be possible to open, select and print selected pages. Adobe Reader software is already available on most home computers or can be downloaded free courtesy of Adobe from the link icon below.

The quality of the files is a compromise between file size, webspace and the quality of the original images some of which were already photocopies. The website is more suited for broadband high speed systems.
As more information and images obtained the website will be updated or corrections made on an ongoing basis so please call back from time to time. Broadband speeds do not always run at the speed claimed so be patient if you find some slowness in download. All downloads have been tested on broadband.
Use can be made of your "Magnifier" tool on the Adobe tool bar. I find that "Fit Visible" from the drop down menu gives the best clarity but experiment to suit your own computer.

Some images of a dedication ceremony at the New Cathedral cemetery Philadelphia May 2011 for soldiers of the 69th buried there. Ceremony carried out by the 69th Pa. reenactment unit and attended by many descendants of the men being honoured. Click on icon above for PDF file.

Forgotten-Never. Under a blue Pennsylvania sky. The memorial to the 69th.Pa at Gettysburg.
Image courtesy John Gaffney descendant relative Sergt.Nicholas Farrell Co.B

Where ghosts walk
Where spirits never die
A sacred place.

The 69th. monument and wall at Gettysburg where men from Derry,Tyrone,Laois,Wateford,Louth and most other Irish counties along with comrades from other countries fought,died but held the Union line on July 2nd and 3rd 1863.The vertical granite pillars linked into the chain fence show the approx position of each Co. Co I being the furthest away towards the far tree.

The view facing the men of the 69th Pa on July 2nd and 3rd 1863. Panoramic view of the "angle" in the wall at Gettysburg.The wall seen running from the copse of trees on the left past the 69th Pa. monument at the left hand side cannon, sweeping past the tree on the right and angling towards the right hand side of image. The Codori house and barn in the center.

The view from Little Round Top with the Pa memorial to the right and the Codori House in the center middle distance.The 69th would have been stationed further along from the Pa. monument and facing the Codori House on July 2nd. and 3rd.1863

Muster out Munsons Hill Va. 1865,

With thanks to Massachusetts Commandery Military Order of the Loyal Legion and the U.S. Army Military History Institute.

The above is an image of the formal muster out of the 69th. Penn. Regt. The photo was taken at Munson Hill Va. after the war ended but for logistical reasons and fear of another Mexican war the unit was kept in service a few extra months. Most officers can be identified as follows. There are 9 soldiers. From the left:
1. Unknown private soldier.
2. Unknow officer.
3. Seated Major James O'Reilly born Belturbet Co. Cavan 1835.
4. Unknown officer.
5. Seated Colonel William Davis born Cork Ireland and a one time officer in the 69th. New York Regt.
6. Adj. Anthony W. McDermott a first generation Irish - American from Philadelphia who later wrote a history of the 69th. Penn. Vol.
7. Probably Capt. John McHugh.
8. Surgeon F. F. Burmeister an American from Philadelphia promoted into the 69th. as full surgeon from the 75th. Pa.
9.Regimental musicians Carr and Caulfield. Caulfield next Capt McAnally.
10. Capt. Charles McAnally Congressional Medal of Honour holder. Capt Co.G of the 69th. Born Glenviggan townland, Six Towns Road, Draperstown Co. Derry. Ireland.

2005 some 140 years later 69th Pa re-enactment unit re-enact the 1865 muster out.

  
Pvte.James Elloitt Co. D. 69th. Pa. Maguires Bridge Co. Fermanagh.
Pvte. Patrick H. Lydon 69th. Pa. Co. H. Civil War. Sergt. 30th Regt. Co. B. Regular Army post Civil War. From Co. Galway,
Pvte. Hugh Bradley 69th. Pa. Co. D. from Ballinascreen (Draperstown) Co. Derry.
Father Arthur M.McGinnis. Curate at Gettysburg July 1863.
Sergt. John O'Connor Co. G. Born Urney townland near Strabane Co.Tyrone. Killed Gettysburg 3rd July 1863. Buried National Cemetery Gettysburg July 1863.
Pvte John Campbell Co. D. 69th. Pa. Born Belfast 1823. Killed Petersburg June 22nd. 1864.

   1st.Lieut. Joseph Henry McHugh Co D 69th. Pa. Castlederg Co. Tyrone
Pvte. Edward John Ormsby Co. I 69th Pa.Castlebar Co. Mayo
Pvte Charles Gallagher Co. E.69th. Pa Carrigart Co. Donegal
Pvte Moses Granlees Co. A 69th Pa. Brookborough Co. Fermanagh.

   Private Charles Mullen (McMullen) Co. D. 69th. Pa. Co.Antrim.
Colour Sergt. David Kiniry. Co. C. 69th. Pa. Vols. Co. Cork
Sergt. Stephen Dooley Co. A. 69th. Pa. Vols. Co. Laois.
Private James Lawler Co. A. 69th. Pa. Vols. Co. Laois.
Capt. Thomas Woods Co. E. 69th. Pa. Vols Cootehill Co. Cavan.
Sergt. James Duffy Co. D. 69th. Pa. Vols Lettermacaward Co. Donegal.
Pvte. Francis Shiels Co. K. 69th. Pa. Vols. Kilmacrennan Co. Donegal.
Lieut Murdock Campbell Co. B. 69th Pa. Vols. Co. Clare.
Sergt. Patrick Hart Co. C. 69th Pa. Vols Co Kildare.
Sergt. Neal Gillen and Capt Daniel Gillen Co I. 69th Pa.Vols. Co.Donegal
             

   Soldiers from Derrygarve, Aughrim, Anahorish, Newbridge, Desertmartin Ballyronan, Magherafelt areas Co. Derry.
Pvte. Edward McCann Co.G
Pvte. James McPeake Co. D,
Sergt. Robert Stinson Co. G,
2nd Lieut.Thomas Stinson Co.G.
Pvte. John Stinson Co. G,
Pvte. James Stinson Co. I.
Pvte. Thomas Stinson Co. I.
Pvte. Bernard McErlane Co. G.
Pvte. Andrew McGuckin Co. B.
Pvte. William Forbes Co A.
Sergt. Edward Hinphey Co. E.
              

     Sergt. Ambrose Wilbur Co A 71st Pa. and Co F 69th Pa.
Sergt. William Jeffries Co. N 71st Pa. and Co. D 69th Pa. Regimental wagonmaster.
Private Leonard Syler Co. C. 71st.Pa. & Co. A. 69th. Pa. Vols.Germany.
Pvte. John E. Clopp M.O.H. Co F. 71st. Pa. and Co. B. 69th Pa.
Lieut. Alexander H Lovett Co. E. 69th Pa. Co. Tyrone.         
Lieut Charles B. Tanner M.O.H. Co H 1st Del Regt. Co.H 69th Pa.Inf.
Pvte G Skinnider Co. G. Mising in Action Co Monaghan.
Pvte. Cornelius (Neal) McDade Co H. 69th Pa. Landsman U.S. Navy.

    Private Roger Loughran Co. B 69th. Pa. Vols. Co. Tyrone.
Capt. Thomas Furey Co. B 69th. Pa. Vols. Co Kildare Ireland.
Corp. Matthew Biggins Co. C. 71st Pa. and Co. F. 69th Pa. Co. Cavan Ireland.
Regimental musician Alban Caulfield born Dublin Ireland. 71st Pa./69th.Pa.
Regimental musician Timothy Shannon Carr.69th. Pa.
1st Lieut. William McNamara Co. I.
Pvte Patrick F Devenney Co F 69th Pa. Derry City Co. Derry Ireland
        

   The three McNamara brothers Co. I 69th. Pa.

   The Men from Co. Tyrone. Union Generals Shields and Patterson. Note: Initial Philadelphia militias named after these two men.
Confederate General James Hagan.

   Group 1. Obituary notices soldiers of the 69th Pa Vols.

   Group 2 Obituary notices soldiers of the 69th Pa Vols.

   The Price of Victory. Men of the 69th Pa. Vols.

  Group I. Know of and marked graves of men of the 69th Pa. Vols. buried in other locations in the United States and Europe.

  Group II.Know of and marked graves of men of the 69th Pa. Vols. buried in other locations in the United States and Europe.

  Group III. Know of and marked graves of men of the 69th Pa. Vols. buried in other locations in the United States and Europe.

  Know of and marked graves of men of the 69th Pa. Vols. buried in the New Cathedral Cemetery Philadelphia.

  Known of and marked graves of men of the 69th. Pa. Vols. buried in the Old Cathedral Cemetery Philadelphia.

  Marked graves of men of the 69th. Pa. Vols. Andersonsville Prison Ga.

  Derry-Londonderry. Links to Philadelphia.
The 69th Pa. links to the Philadelphia Militias.
Missing in Action. M.I.A. Pvte James Skinninder killed Gettysburg 3rd July 1863. No known grave.
General Alexander Webb, a friend of the 69th?
.

  Airbrushing, Misinformation, Begrudgery, Revisionism, the enemies of Truth.

    Enhansed images of the men of the 69th. Pa Vols.
Some images of the current 69th. Pa. re-enactment group.

    Montage of images of the men of the 69th.Pa. Vols.
Includes those transferred from the 71st when it was mustered out mid 1864.
        

    Pvt. Edward Lawrence the Brigade-Regimental Butcher.
Regimental surgeon Charles Carroll Bombaugh
Sergt.Francis McClelland Co I 69th Pa and 6th U.S. Cavalry

  Rebels in the ranks. Pvte Robert R Howington Co D 44th.Ga. Regt. Conf. Army alias Pvte."Jesse Davis" Co. C. 69th Pa. Inf.
Pvte. Peter P Kivett Co A 69th Pa. ex Co. M. 22nd Regt. N.C. Conf. Army.

  Some images from around Upper Learmount Cumber parishes Co. Derry. Colonel O'Kanes homeland.

   Andersonsville Prison Ga.

   Old enemies-new friends at the Wall Gettysburg 1887
69th. Pa. Regimental flag history. Miscellaneous items.

  Images and Notes of Interest from Co. Derry. Famine era lazy beds and lumper potatoes!

  Ireland. A Little Background History.

  The Famine Replica Ship "Jeanie Johnston".

  The Life and Memoirs of Private James Gillaspie Co. A. 16th. Iowa Vol. Inf. from Tullybrick Townland Sixtowns Road Ballinascreen (Draperstown) Co. Derry. (Union Army Civil War).

   Some Irish or Irish American soldiers/Sailors of interest found in the course of my research. Various wars.

View of the 69th monument,center right,from the West along the Wall. The white dome of the Penn.State monument seen in center background.

Thankgiving 20th. Nov. 2004. Their memory perpetuated. 69th. Reenactors at the 69th. Pa. Vol. Inf memorial at the Wall at Gettysburg. Capt.John Kopich center front row.The famous copse of trees at rear of group.

Philadelphia's Old Cathedral church Our Mother of Sorrows and associated cemetery to the rear. A church with perhaps the greatest links to the families and men of the 69th Pa. Inf. Opened 1852. Closed 2013.

The psyche of the Irish Brigade soldiers and Irish soldiers in general.

Though much history has been written about the exploits of the various units of the Irish Brigade as far as I am aware mostly written in America in many cases by Irish American descendants who have never been to Ireland. Would they be able to see into the mindset of the Irish soldier in the Civil War? Well maybe. Let me illustrate my point. The great deeds of bravery of the officers and men are legendary and well recorded. They would be ruthless enemies and great friends but there was another side to them. Let me illustrate my point and leave you thinking.
On that fateful day of Aug. 3rd. at Gettysburg when the chips were down Colonel Dennis O'Kane ( a Derry man) the colonel of the 69th. Penn. was no doubt leading from the front. Private Hugh McKeever in Co. D. ( another Derry man) was defending his spot in the middle of the 69th. line when in a lull in the fighting some of his comrades started to shout for food. Hugh was as we say here "his own man" and had decided on that fateful day to wear a deep large wide brimmed hat to protect him from the sun and perhaps get a better view of the Confederates. He however used it as a carrier of the provisions he cadged from some other units. He made it back to his position on the wall just as the bombardment started. He survived the war and is noted in some sources as having changed his name to Joseph. Ah! Derry men.

Acknowledgements:

With special thanks to Karl Jensen for his help and uncanny ability in collating information from many Internet sites and documents. Much appreciated.
With special thanks to Mike Kane Military Researcher Pittsburgh Pa. for his great help in researching this project. Without his input the quality of this website would not nearly be so good. Greatly appreciated. Thanks Mike.
With thanks to Kevin Frye who gave me the names and details of the men of the 69th Pa. who died at Andersonsville and buried there or who passed through there. This greatly appreciated. See above for link to Kevin's excellent website. Andersonsville Prison Ga.
With thanks to Don Ernsberger, chairman of the 69th. Pa. Reenactor History Committee author of those two recently issued and excellent tomes "Paddy Owen's Regulars. A History of the 69th. Pennsylvania Irish Volunteers" Vol. I and Vol II. Greatly appreciated.
With thanks to John Kopich the 69th Pa. Vol. Re-enactment unit for his help. Image of the 69th unit at the Wall at Gettysburg Nov. 2004 courtesy of John. Thanks to both John an his men. Greatly appreciated.
With thanks to Bill Meehan and the other members of the 69th Pa. Vol. Re-enactment unit for their help. Greatly appreciated.
With thanks to Terry Carpenter someone interested in the history of this Regiment for his particular information on McAnally's life and marriages in Texas. Greatly appreciated.
With thanks to Mary Wack for her excellent images of the 69th monument and views from around the monument and across the Gettysburg battlefield.
With thanks to Marialice P. Mangan who contributed so much to our research and seemed to always come back with what was eluding the rest of us. Many Thanks.
With thanks to the Digital Library of Villanova University for allowing link to their material by Adjutant Anthony McDermott on the 69th.
1865 Munsons Hill muster out image With thanks to Massachusetts Commandery Military Order of the Loyal Legion and the U.S. Army Military History Institute.
With thanks to the General Assembly of the Penn. Senate for Resolution No. 50 quotation.
Colonel O'Kane's image "Courtesy of The Civil War and Underground Railroad Museum of Philadelphia". Much appreciated.
Co. A recruiting poster image courtesy of Chicago Historical Society. Much appreciated.
With thanks to the PPL (Philadelphia Public Ledger)and the PI (Philadelphia Inquirer )for bereavement notices copy.

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Disclaimer. This website is simply done as a hobby and the webmaster does not make any claim as to the total accuracy of all the material or image exchange. Exchanges are done in good faith. I do try and make the information as accurate as possible and also stay away from revisionism. I know that thousands of you in the United States take pride in your Irish Civil War ancestors but have had little opportunity to understand the land from whence they came. I try to do this as far as possible.