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    6th Regiment New Jersey Volunteers reports its losses at Gettysburg

    Documents (5) Related to the Battle of Gettysburg From the Papers of Union Officer John Willian. Includes:

    Secretarial Copy of Circular Calling for a Troop Report.
    Two pages (front and back), 8" x 10"; Inspector General's Office, Army of Potomac; July 16, 1863. Issued at the command of Major General Meade, the circular calls for a "Report of Strength Present & statement of losses at the Battle of Gettysburg." It reads, in part: "...make a special report to this office, without delay, giving the strength present this date, by Regiments and Batteries of this Corps - the losses sustained in the 'Battle of Gettysburg,' and since, (naming the place and action in killed), wounded and missing, including the loss of horses and guns; the deficiencies to be supplied in arms, ammunitions, clothing, transportation, &c., to fully equip their corps, and the quantity already supplied, since the Battle of Gettysburg; also, the member of public animals and wagons, &c., on hand, specifically the kind, and stating what number are unserviceable." Signed by Nelson Henry Davis, Lieutenant Colonel and Assistant Inspector General

    Three Signed Reports from Captain John Willian of the 6th Regiment New Jersey Volunteers prepared in response to the aforementioned circular. All one page, measuring approximately 8" x 9.75", one dating August 14, 1863, near Beverly, VA, and two dating August 29, 1864, near Petersburg; listing the supplies lost at the Battle of Gettysburg and conveying the events that led to their loss. The August 14 report reads, in part: "The Regt to which my Company belongs was directed to advance under the fire of the enemy to take a certain position, in so doing, three privates were severely wounded, and two private taken prisoners. The Camp & Garrison Equipage carried by all these men was left on the field, as we were repulsed, and it could not be recovered."

    Also included is an Abstract of Expenditures form for "Co. C, 6th Reg't NJ Vol Infantry, part of 3d Quarter 1863," signed by John Willian.

    Condition: Documents range from good to fine, with some light toning at folds and a few small areas of soiling.


    More Information:

    Willian served in four different Union regiments, and on the staff of three separate Union Generals. Willian's military service began right after the bombardment of Fort Sumter, when he served as a Second Lieutenant in the 4th New Jersey Militia. When the regiment was mustered out at the end of July 1861, he received a commission as Captain in the newly-raised 6th New Jersey Volunteer Infantry. In August 1863 he was assigned to the staff of Brigadier General Henry Price as his Assistant Commissary of Musters. After returning to his unit, Willian was promoted to the rank of Major in April 1864 before being transferred to the staff of Brigadier General Gershom Mott (who had been a colonel in the 6th New Jersey Infantry). He served as General Mott's acting Assistant Inspector General before being transferred to the 8th New Jersey Volunteer Infantry, becoming its Lieutenant Colonel in October 1864. Willian was then again assigned as an Assistant Inspector General, this time on the staff of Army of the Potomac II Corps Commander Major General Andrew A. Humphreys. Finally, in January 1865 he was promoted to Colonel, and was given command of the remnants of the 12th New Jersey Volunteer Infantry, a unit that had fought continuously since the Battle of Chancellorsville in May 1863, and had been reduced to only a fraction of its original size. Even though he was the unit's Colonel, John Willian did not serve much time in that capacity, being assigned to brigade command soon after his appointment. He was breveted Brigadier General, U.S. Volunteers on April 9, 1865.



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    Auction Dates
    October, 2017
    19th Thursday
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