Sunday, March 30, 2008

54th Regiment - 1864 - Part I

A couple of years ago I scanned and transcribed articles concerning the 54th Infantry Regiment NY Militia in the Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser for most of the period the regiment was in existence. Today I am posting the first half of the articles from 1864. It was in 1864 from July until November that the Regiment was Federalized and sent to the Prisoner of War Camp in Elmira, NY as a guard unit.


Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: January 2, 1864, p. 2

ROCHESTER UNION GRAYS—The Grays still keep up their time-honored custom of meeting their many friends on New Year's day. We dropped in, as had been our wont these many years, and all things wore the old-fashioned appearance. Sandwiches, followed by huge piles of donuts, cheese that came not from a skim milk dairy, "links" that were fresh and juicy sardines [?] from the press. That was good fare for the soldier, and the civilians did ample justice thereto. We missed the face of one old friend, however—the dish of pork and beans. It may have been forgotten, but we hereby notify Capt. Lewis that we shall call him to account [remaining illegible].

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: January 9, 1864, p. 2

FLOUR CITY CADETS—ANNUAL ELECTION—The annual meeting of Co. "G," for the election of non-commissioned and civil officers took place last evening, also a special meeting for the election of First Lieutenant, to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of Lieut. Wrenn. The result was as follows:

1st Lieutenant—John C. Smith; 2d do. John O'Loughlin; Oderly, James Finnucane; 2d Sergeant, James Nells; 3d do., A. M. Howland; 4th do., John H. Boyd; 1st Corporal, George A. Begy; 2d do., Munro Crittenden; 3d do., John Whitley, Jr.; 4th do., A. H. Thompson; President and Treasurer, Capt. L. Brown; Secretary, John Whitley, Jr.; Armorer, F. M. Carnes.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: January 11, 1864, p. 2

THE STATE MILITARY CONVENTION—The adjourned meeting of the National Guard is to reassemble at the city of Albany on the 19th inst., (one week from to-morrow.) The officers of the convention are in communication with the Railroad authorities to get the fare reduced to half price for those wishing to attend and there is no doubt but that they will be successful. Our own 54th regiment should make an effort to have every company in the regiment represented at said convention. Each regiment is entitled to five delegates. The 54th is well represented in the following officers as delegates, viz: Col. C. H. Clark, Major Wm. H. Briggs, Capts. Wm. M. Lewis, Wm. T. Kennedy, Jr., and Lt. M. C. Mordoff. The convention undoubtedly, will be the largest ever held in the Empire State, as the old "State Military Association" is to meet at the same time and there will be an endeavor made to unite the two conventions under one organization. We shall endeavor to give our readers a full report of the proceedings, which will no doubt be of interest to the public as well as ever member of the National Guard.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: January 13, 1864, p. 2

THEATRE—BENEFIT OF CO. E—MRS. NOAH—To-night Co. E, Capt. Macauley, 54th Regiment, will take a benefit at the Theatre. Mrs. W. G. Noah, the favorite actress, has consented to appear for this occasion only as Widow Cheerly in the favorite play of the Soldier's Daughter. The historical drama of Robert Emmett will also be produced. The appearance of Mrs. Noah after so long an absence from the stage will draw to the Theatre a crowd of her old friends and admirers, who will be delighted to greet her once more on the boards where she was so famous in other days.

Capt. Macauley has a fine corps of young men who should be encouraged in their laudable enterprise.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: January 15, 1864, p. 2

NEW YORK NATIONAL GUARD—It is evident that this organization of military, of which the 54th regiment forms a part, is to be put under ban by the present Legislature. The Guard has been very useful to the country and has stood ready at all times under its present organization to serve, and some of the regiments have performed invaluable service in contingencies when no other troops could be had. The Guard have expressed a desire to preserve their organization and perform duty at the same time. Resolutions with a view to the accomplishment of this object have been introduced in the Assembly by Mr. Crooke. He called them up in the House yesterday, and said:

He desired to refute an error which might prevail in this House, from reports that the National Guard desired to avoid a draft. The Guard has done noble service once, twice, and thrice, and are willing to serve the United States at a moment's notice and to do their whole duty. But they desire to preserve their organization intact, and to serve as a body whenever called upon to do so. Such action, however, could not be had without consultation with the federal authorities, and he therefore moved its reference to the Committee on Federal Relations.

The Speaker [immaculate Tom Alvord] said he doubted the propriety of this House expressing any opinion on this subject. He doubted very much whether the people of this State were in a temper to sanction any such action, especially under the manipulations which this Guard had received at the hands of the powers that be, and their experience of the practical workings of the organization. He therefore hoped that the resolutions would take the direction indicated, without any expression of opinion on the part of the House as to the propriety of adopting them.

The resolution was referred.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: January 16, 1864, p. 2

The National Guard of New York—shall it be made a Reserve for the support of Government?
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The Democrat [the rival Rochester newspaper] is out this morning in opposition to the proposition to exempt the National Guard from draft upon condition that it will enter the service of the Government in a body when required. The arguments urged against the measure by our contemporary, have little weight, and some of his objections are quite absurd. First, it is alleged that the effect of the measure would be to call into the ranks of the State Military force every man who desired to avoid service in the field. Now, our contemporary ought to know that the National Guard cannot exceed a given number of men, and the maximum is far less than all the men of this State. But those men who go into the National Guard would not escape service, but would be rendered liable to serve in an emergency when the Government might call for them. They might be called out for three or six months at a time, to serve in the Border States, and they would prove as any of the volunteer regiments. Again, it is said this scheme would compel the Government to revolutionize its whole military system. Nonsense. Did the Government revolutionize its military system when the regiments of National Guard from New York State went into Pennsylvania and assisted to drive back the Rebel host under Lee? And did they not then prove the utility of their organization as a reserve force in time of danger?

It is said by our contemporary that if this favor is shown to the National Guard of New York other States will claim it and there will be no men left to fill up the armies. If the measure is good for New York extend it to other States and there will soon be an army of six or eight hundred thousand troops who might be called suddenly to the field, and with the army the government has there, or will have the coming year, put an end to the war is so short a period as to throw the vast army of contractors and stealing office-holders into spasms. As to there being no men left to go into the volunteer ranks that is idle talk. Mem will go where they get the large bounties, and that is not to the National Guard—all that e are entitled to under the law, yet our city has furnished always more than its quota of volunteers, thus refuting the argument of the Democrat at once, and at home.

The next objection, and the last that could have entered into the head of the astute writer, is that the Federal Government would be dependent upon the State Executive for those regiments of National Guard, and it is possible that in some of the States the next elections may bring about a change and elect men not friendly to the government. Our neighbor is foreboding evil truly. We hope that no such change will take place—that no State Executive may be chosen who is unfriendly to the Government, or would refuse to furnish troops to maintain the authority of the Federal Government and sustain the flag of the Union whenever and wherever assailed. One thing is certain, that Democrat Governors can be relied upon in such emergencies. Governor Seymour, of New York, and Governor Parker, of New Jersey, were the first to respond to the call for troops when Pennsylvania was invaded, and they received the acknowledgement of the Federal Administration for their promptness and the respectable portion of the Republican press gave publicity to the acknowledgement. We do not believe the Abolition Executive would dare to withhold troops when called for. Governor Andrew, of Massachusetts, intimated his intention to do so unless his policy was adopted, but he was compelled to back down, or received assurance that his wishes would be complied with.

The objections of our contemporary to the measure proposed can have little force with those who understand the question. The measure is not a party one in any sense. It is supported by men of all parties in the National Guard and out of it. If the measure has a fair consideration and its merits are considered, it will surely be adopted. But there is unmistakable evidence that it is not to be fairly discussed in the Legislature. The Speaker left his Chair to give the weight of his influence against it in the outset, and those who follow his lead will take their cue from the few words of condemnation, without argument, that he gave.

The National Guard of new York has been the nursery of volunteer troops. It has furnished tens of thousands of officers of every grade, and men without limit. The success of recruiting all through the war in this city may be attributed in no inconsiderable degree to the existence of an excellent State regiment here. The military spirit had been cultivated for years, and when the war broke out our young men in that regiment raised their standards and drew about them their fellows to go to the scene of real conflict, for the honor of our flag and the defense of our country. As fast as the ranks of the regiment were thinned by volunteers for the war the vacancies were filled, and as soon as the men began to feel that they were soldiers they in turn went to the field. And so it has been all through the war, and so it will be as long as the war continues. The National Guard will serve the two-fold purpose of a military school for the civilian, and a reliance of the Government in every emergency.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: January 21, 1864, p. 2

MEETING OF OFFICERS—The line officers of the 54th Regiment are to meet this evening at rooms of Co. R., at 7 1-2 p. m. All officers interested in the pay-roll for duty at Camp Sprague are suggested to be present.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: January 23, 1864, p. 2

NON-COMMISSIONED OFFICERS OF CO. R.—At the annual election of Co. R, (Rochester Union Grays) 54th Regiment, the following persons were elected non-commissioned officers for the ensuing year:

Orderly Sergeant, M. Heavey; 2d do. F. W. Parmlee; 3d do. Hugh Regan; 4th do. Thomas Colbert; 5th do. Wm. T. Cooksley; 6th do. Max Mock; 1st Corporal John A. Tholens; 2d do. Jas. F. McNulty; 3d do. Stephen W. McGoway; 4th do. Rufus K. Dryer; 5th do. F. O'Neil; 6th do. Eugene Love; 7th do. Chas. H. McGoway; 8th do. Henry Stillvagen. Appointed—Commissary Sergeant, James F. Evans; Asst. do. Jacob LeHan.

The Grays now number 36 men rank and file. They expect soon to receive their new Sharp's carbines and revolvers together with a new uniform—then the Grays will be the best equipped Light Artillery Company in the State.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: January 29, 1864, p. 2

ATTENTION FIFTY-FOURTH REGIMENT—Capt. W. H. Ward, Paymaster of the 25th Brigade will be at the Regimental Armory, to-morrow evening, (Saturday,) Jan. 30, at 7½ o'clock, for the purpose of paying the members of the Regiment who did duty at Camp Sprague last summer. It is desirable that the men should be on hand promptly.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: February 12, 1864, p. 2

BATTALION DRILLS—The second of a series of battalion drills of the officers and non-commissioned officers of the 54th Regiment was held last evening, under the command of Lieut. Col. Frederick Miller, at the Regimental Armory.

The movements were highly creditable to all concerned. The Lieut. Colonel who is a thorough disciplinarian, managed the men with that skill in going through his evolutions, as to draw econimums from visitors present who had seen services in the field. The next drill will be held on Friday evening, 19th inst. It is desirable that all officers and non-commissioned officers of the regiment should often attend these drills, as it is the place to learn the school of the Battalion, which it is highly important they should understand.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: February 16, 1864, p. 2

THE UNIFORM OF THE NATIONAL GUARD—One of the changes which Speaker Alvord, the leader of the Republicans in the Assembly, brings against Governor Seymour is the expenditure of money to procure uniforms for the National Guard. He calls the Guard a political organization and wishes it distinctly understood that he is opposed to the expenditure of money for this organization.

What will the members of the 54th Regiment say to these declarations from the Republican giant of the Assembly, who has the majority entirely under his control? Mr. Alvord either tells a falsehood willfully or through ignorance. He could have learned that in this city the National Guard is composed of men of both parties who act politically just as they please. A majority of the officers of the 54th Regiment are Republicans.

But it is gratifying to know that the 54th will have the new uniform notwithstanding the opposition of Mr. Alvord.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: February 18, 1864, p. 2

GRAYS BATTERY—Some time since Captain Lewis made application to the State authorities on behalf of the Union Grays, that they be detached from the 54th Regiment and made an independent battery in the 25th brigade, under Gen. Williams. The application has been granted and Capt. Lewis has been appointed Major to command this Battery and recruit others in the brigade.

It is not probable that Maj. Lewis will do more than perfect his battery, which now contains 80 men. It has four guns—two ten pound steel Parrots and two six pound brass Napoleons. He desires to raise the organization to an eight gun battery, and will require in all 135 men for the purpose.

The Grays is probably the oldest military organization in the State and has performed gallant service as a corps of citizens. We are glad to hear that they are to have an independent organization if that will give more prominence and better gratify the ambition of the members. We suppose the 54th is full of infantry companies and could not properly retain the battery however agreeable it would have been to al concerned.
Young men who desire to join the Grays and increase the battery to the maximum number, will now have an opportunity. We have no doubt that it will be speedily filled.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: February 20, 1864, p. 2

BATTALION DRILLS, &c.—The third drill of the officers and non-commissioned officers of the 54th Reg't came off last evening at the Armory, the Battalion under the command of Lieut. Col. F. Miller. The proficiency made in the drill is truly surprising and reflects not only great credit on the drill officer, but on all in attendance. If there could be some way devised by which our Regiment and Independent Battery could procure the new State uniform, the troops of citizen soldiers could not only make a parade with credit to themselves, but would prove an honor to our city. We understand they are anxious to make a parade on the 22d, but have no uniform in which to make a creditable appearance. Therefore, in all probability no military display will be made.

We were in the hopes to have announced, ere this, the arrival of the new uniforms ordered, but there seems to be a hitch somewhere about the matter, just where we are unable to learn. We understand the arms and equipments ordered under a resolution of the Common Council, some time since, and for which the city gave bonds to the amount of $35,000, have arrived and are stored at the Regimental Armory. This makes $70,000 for which the city has given its bonds for arms to be kept here in charge of the Regiment. Now let our city fathers, as other cities have done, give or donate a site to the State for the purpose of building an Arsenal in this city and make an application to the Legislature for an appropriation to erect buildings thereon, and the arms sent here will be secure. The necessity for a State Arsenal at this place is or should be apparent to every one, situated as we are on a long line of exposed frontier. Who of our citizens will make a move in the matter, in connection with the military and Common Council. We understand that Senator Munger is ready and willing to do all in his power for the furtherance of this object.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: February 22, 1864, p. 2

Armory of Independent Battery A,
Rochester Union Grays
Rochester, Feb. 20


The above named Battery, at a regular meeting held at this armory on the 18th of Feb. 1864, passed the following vote of thanks, and ordered the same published, and a copy forwarded to the parties named:

To Gen. J. T. Miller, Inspector General of the State; Col. S. W. Burt and Maj. Jas. McKown, Assistant Inspector, for the kindness and courtesy shown to the "Grays" on the several occasions upon which our officers have called upon and addressed them, relative to business connected to the corps.

To Mr. Tucker of the Executive Department, for the interest manifested by him in our behalf relative to pay rolls for waiting orders, &c.

To Paymaster Capt. Wm. H. Ward of the 25th Brigade, for the gentlemanly manner in which he performed the duty of paying off our corps, with others and the interest he has on all occasions, and at all times manifested in our behalf.

To all the above gentlemen, the "Grays" wish to tender their thanks, collectively and individually, for the kindness and courtesy thus extended.

Thos. Barnes, Sec'y
Wm. M. Lewis, Chairman

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: February 22, 1864, p. 2

GRAYS INDEPENDENT BATTERY—On Saturday last Major Lewis received an invoice of sixty carbines (Smith's patent) and six army chests shipped from New York, for the Grays Independent Battery.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: February 22, 1864, p. 2

THE REPUBLICANS AND THE NATIONAL GUARD—At the caucus of the Republican members of the Legislature, held last week, it was agreed that the bill appropriating $200,000 for the National Guard, to furnish uniforms, &c., should be defeated, the organization disbanded, and the old military laws revived. This will be discouraging to our 54th regiment, which is in such excellent condition, lacking nothing that this bill will not supply.

The real secret of this opposition to the National Guard may be traced to Alvord, the Speaker of the Assembly. He rules that body—or at least the Republican members—as imperiously as the Czar governs the Russians. John A. Green is a Brigadier General. Alvord hates Green. To throw Green out of commission he [ ] the whole organization into [ ]. That is [ ] Alvord entirely.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: February 25, 1864, p. 2

Our City Fathers and Martial Bands
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EDS. UNION:—According to the published reports of the proceedings of the Common Council at their last meeting it appears a resolution was introduced to appropriate $200 for the purpose of procuring uniforms for "Glover's Martial Band," and the only reason why such sum was not granted was because of the inability of "assembled wisdom" to decide from "what fund it should be drawn."

There was a period in the life of your correspondent when devotion to the "fine arts" was deemed a worthy trait in the character of individuals or corporations, and it may be all correct—as our Council evidently possess a musical taste—that this city should pay for the education in this Divine art. Still a query or two may not be deemed out of place. And, first, who is the leader of this band, where did he receive his "do, re, mi" instructions, and does he come well recommended? Second, is any person, or class of persons, to be benefited aside from our venerable fathers, and, if so, when will the classes be opened so that those "who pay the fiddlers" (I beg pardon, drummers and fifers,) may join and obtain a "tooting" lesson as part return for "taxes" rendered? Third, as the music is at hand, would it not be well to procure the services of a dancing-master, having it understood previously that all political quadrilles shall be excluded? Fourth, have the Council gone into the express business, ignoring the old-time maxim of "Slow but sure," and if not, why the indecent haste exhibited in the endeavor to push this appropriation through?

This Band, it was stated, was for the "Union Grays," and it is commonly reported that other companies of the Fifty-fourth regiment intend to ask for like appropriations should this project pass, and why should they not? The Cavalry and Infantry are as well entitled to a $200 appropriation as the Battery—making for the twelve companies the neat little sum of twenty-four hundred dollars.

The writer is not inimical to our home to our home regiment; in fact, he knows that the 54th have never received a tithe of the support they deserve from the city, and any measures adopted for their permanent advancement, and real good as a whole, will be cordially welcomed and supported, but this expenditure for wind and noise, signifying nothing, should not receive the sanction of those intrusted with our financial interests. CIT.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: February 26, 1864, p. 2

ROCHESTER LIGHT GUARDS—At an election of the Rochester Light Guard the following were chosen as officers: C. L. Fredenburg, Captain; J. H. Woodbury, 1st Lieut.; T. Whalen, 2d Lieut.; Jno. E. Flint, 1sr Serg't; E. Blackford, 2d Serg't; Geo. Weldon, 3d Serg't; W. J. Dalton, 4th Serg't; W. J. Stickel, 1st Corp'l; F. A. Madden, 2d Corp'l; J. B. Garrison, 3d Corp'l; President, C. L. Fredenburg; Secretary, Jno. E. Flint; Treasurer, C. L. Fredenburg; Trustees, W. J. Dalton, J. B. Garrison, and E. Blackford.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: February 27, 1864, p. 2

PROMOTION AND PRESENTATION—When the work of recruiting the 22d Calvary commenced, Lieutenant John Wrenn of the 54th regiment, National Guard, undertook the work of recruiting a company with Captain Charles Brown. They opened a rendezvous in front of the Arcade, and Lieutenant W. applied himself earnestly to the work. The result was that the company was the first filled and is letter A in the regiment. Captain Brown was made a Major, and Lieutenant Wrenn was promoted to the Captaincy, which he now holds. A few days since the members of the company united in presenting to him an elegant sword, sash, belt and brace of pistols. Captain Wrenn is, we believe, justly entitled to his promotion and this mark of respect from his company.

Company A will be mustered for pay on Monday, the papers all being ready. It is expected that the Regiment will leave on Monday evening.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: March 1, 1864, p. 2

BATTALION DRILLS—The fourth of the series of Battalion Drills of the officers and non-commissioned officers of the 54th Regiment, was held last evening under the command of Lieut. Col. F. Miller. The attendance of officers was not as large as usual, and we are sorry to be compelled to remark that there seems to be a lack of interest manifested on the part of some of the commissioned officers—some of the companies being entirely represented by commissioned officers; while others were represented by only one—whereas there should have been three present. So also, some of the companies were represented by one or two non-commissioned officers. This looks really bad for the former discipline and promptness of the regiment. Yet the Lieut. Colonel should be expulcated from this tardiness on the part of the Regiment. He is desirous to impart that instruction to the Regiment which will make them proficient and perfect in the drill of the Battalion; but this never can be accomplished, however well the drill-master may be predisposed, unless both line and non-commissioned officers are present. This evil should be remedied at once for the good of the Regiment—it is injustice to those officers who are always on hand, as well as a downright insult to the drill-master. Let the line be formed hereafter promptly on time, and show that promptness in days past characterized the action of the Regiment.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: March 3, 1864, p. 2

PRESENTATION—Last night the officers and members of Company B, 54th Regt. N. Y. N. G. presented to Capt. D. Schoever [sic] an elegant sword, as a testimonial of their good will. The presentation was made for the company by John R. Horn, and Capt. Schoen responded in a suitable manner.

The officers and members of Company I, Capt. Maloney, were present on the occasion at Military Hall. An entertainment was prepared for the occasion and partaken of by all, with much good feeling.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: March 3, 1864, p. 2

ELECTION OF OFFICERS—At a regular meeting of Co. E, 54th regimen, held at the Regimental armory on Wednesday evening, March 2d, the following officers were chosen: For 2d Lieut., Sergeant Henry B. Henderson vice Lieut. R. H. Warfield, Lieut. 50th (Engineering) regiment N. Y. V.; for 1st Sergeant, Byron Wilson vice Sergeant H. B. Henderson, promoted.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: March 11, 1864, p. 2

COMPLIMENTARY TO THE 54TH REGIMENT—Adjutant General Sprague, in his annual report just published, pays the 54th Regiment of this city a compliment, in alluding to the measures taken to suppress the New York riots. He says:

The timely arrival of these regiments enabled Major General Sandford to restore order and safety. The organized militia in the interior of the State was ordered to repair forthwith to the city. Regiments responded promptly, but upon reaching Albany, the railroad and steamboat companies refused transportation, as the destruction of their depots and boats had been threatened by the mob if facilities were granted. The arrival of the 54th regiment National Guard of the State was most opportune.—The mob had assembled in force, threatening the Provost Marshal, the Delavan House, and the lives of all who dared to interpose any obstacle. The discipline of the regiment, and the firmness of their commander, frustrated their designs, and gave peace and security to the city. At this time, applications were received at these headquarters from all parts of the State, for arms and ammunition. These events, though disastrous, are not without their lessons of instruction. Tumults and disorders within the limits of the State jeopardize the interests of her citizens, as well as the threatened invasion of enemies upon the borders.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: March 12, 1864, p. 2

THE "GRAYS" PARTY—The "Grays" will commence issuing cards of invitation to their 26th Annual Sociale on Monday next. The party will be given at Washington Hall on the 28th inst. The invitations are, of themselves, the finest specimens of printing we have seen in a long time, and seem to be in keeping with everything the Corps undertake—unique and beautiful. All who may have the good fortune to attend the coming party will undoubtedly have a "good time," for the Corps have set out with the determination to make this the greatest party of the season. Capt. Newman's full Quadrille Band will furnish the music for the occasion, while the whole will be under the direction of Prof. G. E. Bradley, which is a sure guarantee in itself that everything in that line will be "all right." Success attend Independent Battery "A."

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: March 15, 1864, p. 2

Arrival of the Remains of Major Jerry Sullivan—His Funeral
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At 11:20 this morning the remains of Major Jerry Sullivan arrived from Baltimore via the Erie Railway, attended by his brother, Capt. Sullivan, of the 140th Regiment, The Union Blues, Capt. Hill, were at the Depot as an escort, and the Alert Hose Company received the remains. They were taken to the residence of Mr. Sullivan on Hunter street. The funeral, which was to take place to-morrow, has been postponed to Friday morning, when it will take place at St. Patrick's Church. The arrangements will be announced in due time.

Companies "B," Capt. Sellinger, "D," Capt. Schoen, "F," Capt. Westcott, and "H," Capt. Kennedy, the 54th Regiment, are ordered by Col. Clark to form an escort to the funeral.

An invitation is extended to all officers now in the city, also to the officers and privates of the late 13th Regiment, N. Y. Vols., to participate in the funeral obsequies of Major Sullivan, and to assemble for that purpose on Friday morning at 9 o'clock, at the Armory, Exchange street.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: March 25, 1864, p. 2

THE GRAYS SOCIAL—The party of the season, we need hardly remind our readers, is to be given by the "Rochester Union Grays," on the 28th inst., (Easter Monday,) at Washington Hall. The arrangements have all been completed, so as to make the affair the greatest party ever given in this city. The Hall is to be splendidly decorated—the music is to be Capt. Newman's best—the general management of which is to be under the immediate charge of Prof. G. E. Bradley, which is a sure guarantee that that part of the programme will be filled to the letter. The supper rooms will be under the charge of Mr. Norris, who is no novice in catering to the appetites of the dancing or party-giving public.

The number of tickets have been limited by the corps to 200 so as to prevent such a rush as was experienced at the last Annual Social. This we deem a good move and in the right direction—making it far pleasanter for all concerned—both the "Grays" and their guests. That all who attend this party will have a "good time," is not to be questioned, and from our knowledge of the gentlemen who have the matter in charge, and from the reputation of the "Grays," all who "trip the light fantastic toe," will be delighted with the arrangements, as perfected.

We understand that several military gentlemen from abroad, to whom invitations have been sent, have signified their intention to be present. We also learn that the tickets are being disposed of rapidly, and persons intending to participating in the festivities of the occasion should make a note of the fact, and not let the opportunity pass unheeded, but secure their tickets at once, which may be had at Darrow's Book store, at Quinn's 137 Main street, and of Lieut. Barnes, at Wamsley's.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: March 26, 1864, p. 2

GRENADIERS' BALL—On Monday evening the German Grenadiers will give their fifteenth Annual Ball at Military Hall. At will be a very pleasant party, as all have been by the corps.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: March 28, 1864, p. 2

PARTIES TO-NIGHT—The Union Grays will give their 26th annual social to-night at Washington Hall.
The German Grenadiers will give their 15th Annual Ball at Military Hall.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: March 29, 1864, p. 2

PARTIES LAST NIGHT—The Grays' annual party at Washington Hall was largely attended and was a very pleasant affair. The arrangements were well made in all respects and the company appeared to be delighted.
The ball of the German Grenadiers at Military Hall was liberally patronised. There was as many there as could well be accommodated. The affair passed off creditably in all respects.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: April 9, 1864, p. 2

MAJOR MCMAHON—A PRESENTATION—The Flour City Cadets, Co. G, last evening tendered to Major McMahon, their former Captain, an entertainment at which were present the field and several of the line officers of the regiment, together with other invited guests. Speeches and toasts were given, and altogether the guests had a very pleasant time.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: April 12, 1864, p. 2

Gov. Seymour and the State Militia
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We give to our readers this afternoon, an extract from the official report of Inspector General Miller, relating to the action of Governor Seymour in organizing the State Militia, now called the National Guard. This becomes important as a matter of history, as it is now proposed by the amendments to the law, reported by Gen. Crooke, to take from the Governor all power over this organization of the Militia, and to vest the same in sundry Brigadier and Major Generals, of whom General Crooke, Chairman of the Military Committee of the Assembly, is one.

The report of Inspector General Miller, also details the action of the Governor, and of the State Militia during the New York riots. As our Rochester boys bore no inconsiderable part in those events, we may at some future time give that chapter to our readers:

STATE OF NEW YORK, INSPECTOR GENERAL'S OFFICE
ALBANY, Jan. 1864


To His Excellency Horatio Seymour, Governor and Commander-in-Chief:

SIR: On the 15th day of June last, during the temporary absence from the Capital, of every member of your staff, a telegram was received by you from the Secretary of War, asking for the assistance of the Militia of this State to repel an advance of the Confederate forces, under Gen. Lee, into Maryland and Pennsylvania. Within an hour from the receipt of this telegram and before you left the Executive Chamber, orders were issued by you, for every available regiment of the National Guard, within the State, to march with all possible speed to the points of danger. These orders were cheerfully responded to by the officers and men to whom they were addressed; and in an unprecedently short time, over thirteen thousand disciplined troops were sent out of the State to the assistance of other States, and of the Government. By the ready and vigorous assistance of these men, the [ ] of Pennsylvania was relieved from the presence of the invader, and aid was given to the National Armies, which helped to win the victory at Gettysburg.

The regiments thus sent forward remained out of the State from thirty to sixty days, during which time the State was virtually left without any organized militia. Events transpired during that period, which demonstrated the necessity of such an organization, not only in the cities and larger towns, but throughout the whole State.

Your Excellency has at all times attached great importance to the Militia; and spared me efforts to promote its interest, and to increase its efficiency. Deeming a well regulated militia necessary to the peace, good order and security of a free State; and that the maintenance is expressly enjoined upon the people by Constitutionally provisions, you have zealously labored to raise its character, to perfect the organization, to extend its usefulness and to win for it, and for those who have been long engaged in its service, the respect, confidence and support of the Legislature and of the people.

Soon after your inauguration, steps were taken to induce the War Department to accept into the service of the United States, a sufficient number of the regiments of the National Guard, to man and attend the forts guarding the harbor of New York, and other points along our frontier. Your object was, not only to assist the National Government by relieving the regular troops stationed at these points; but also to provide for the National Guard, an opportunity for drill and practice under experienced officers, which could not otherwise be obtained. The plan was to turn over to the United States without expense to it as many men of the National Guard as could be used for this special service, keeping the number at all time good, yet relieving the men so as not to impose an undo burden upon any individual. In this manner [ ] each company or regiment might [ ] service the instruction of United States Officers, for thirty, sixty or ninety days during the year, and yet no citizen be required to remain absent form his home and business, for such a period of time, as to seriously incommode him.

The plan seemed to meet the approbation of every intelligent and patriotic officer. Members of the National Guard tendered their services with unanimity and alacrity. All said that by this means the State should procure at small cost an educated militia distributed through every district, and which could be relied upon in any emergency; available alike to suppress insurrection, rebel invasion, or to sustain the rightful authority of the Government. A favorable response was not obtained from the War Department, until after the march of the militia of the State into Pennsylvania, when information was received through Major General Wool(?), commanding the Department of the East, having his headquarters at New York, that State troops were immediately required for the defense of the forts around New York harbor, and that such troops should be received for that service.

Anxious to render every possible assistance to the General Government, and at the same time to secure to the militia of the State the desired opportunity for instruction, you resolved to organize at once a sufficient number of new regiments to meet this requisition. At this time the entire of the people of the State seemed impressed with the importance of a speedy and thorough organization of the State militia. Letters of great urgency were addressed to your Excellency on the subject by leading men of all parties, and petitions and resolutions and recommendations [ ] that the militia law of 1862 might be put into immediate and effective operation.
Under these circumstances you directed the Inspector General to proceed at once with the organization of the National Guard pursuant to the provisions of chap. 477 of the laws of 1862. This act had received the approval of your immediate predecessor, and it was understood to embody the well considered views not only of the intelligent Legislature which enacted it, but also of the great body of the able and experienced militia officers of the State, under whose auspices and by whose service it was prepared.

Thus far the law had remained comparatively a dead-letter. Though approved by Governor Morgan, no attempt had been made by him to put it in operation. The pressure of other duties precluded an alteration to the State Militia. The funds provided by the act were used to defray other military expenses of the State, and you was [sic] called upon to put in operation the new plan for "the enrollment of the militia, the organization and discipline of the National Guard, and for the public defense."

The report now gives a full analysis of the laws of 1862 and a minute statement of the section of the military authority of the State thereunder, and the reasons for such action. The candid reader will fail to find any evidence of the partisan "manipulation" charged upon the Governor and his Inspector General,—but our space does not admit of a more extended extract to-day.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: April 20, 1864, p. 2

THE ARSENAL BILL PASSED THE HOUSE—We announced briefly in our second edition, yesterday that the important bill locating an arsenal in this city, had passed the Assembly. Mr. M'Convill telegraphed to Major Lewis immediately on its passage, this welcome intelligence which will be hailed by our citizens as an event of no small importance to the interests of not only the city but to Western and Central New York. The bill provides for the appointment of three Commissioners under whose supervision $50,000 is to be expended for building purposes, the land to be donated by the city. The Commissioners named in the bill are Gen. John Williams, Ald. D. D. T. Moore and Mayor James Brackett. To [sic] much credit can not be awarded Mr. M'Convill, for the zeal he has manifested in procuring the passage of this bill in his branch of the Legislature, coming up as it did at almost the last moment of the session. The action taken by him in this matter will only tend to confirm the favorable opinion of his constituency, that he leaves nothing undone for the city's interest, that he is emphatically the right man in the right place.

All this bill needs now to become a law is prompt action upon the part of Senator Munger, which, no doubt, will meet with hearty co-operation of the Democratic members of the Senate. If the bill passes, as it should that branch of the Legislature, it will become a law, and Rochester will pride herself in having what has been needed so long—an Arsenal worthy of herself and her citizen soldiers. Messrs. Darrow, Mordoff, Lacy and Lewis, the committee which has had this matter in charge, are entitled to great credit for the part they have performed in getting this measure before the Legislature.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: April 28, 1864, p. 2

THE MILITARY TO BE CALLED OUT—The Troy Whig [newspaper of Troy, NY] learns from good authority that the Governor has been notified that a call will be made on this State for all the effective militia regiments of this State, for three months service or less—such call to take effect on the 10th of May next, at which time the regiments called out are to be ready for service. It is stated that some of the brigades have already been notified. The notice to the Governor is said to have been received on Thursday evening last.

No knowledge of such an order is in the possession of the officers of the National Guard here. They have simply been enquired of as to what number of men they can command.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: April 30, 1864, p. 2

THE 54TH REGIMENT—The Sunday Mercury says there will probably be 14 regiments from New York and Brooklyn first called out from the State militia, and then nine from the interior, including the 54th in this city.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: May 10, 1864, p. 2

UNION BLUES—This gallant corps of young men will celebrate its third anniversary by a dinner at the Osburn House this evening. The honorary members of the corps, and other friends will be the guests of the Blues to-night. They will meet at the Armory at 7½ o'clock, before repairing to the Hotel—that is the guests as well as members.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: May 11, 1864, p. 2

ANNIVERSARY OF THE UNION BLUES—The Blues celebrated the third anniversary of the corps last night. The weather was very stormy but there was a large attendance of members and guests. The company gave an exhibition of a military character at the armory before going to the hotel which was witnessed by a large party, chiefly honorary members. At nine the company repaired to the Osburn House. The Dining Hall was superbly decorated for the occasion as was the Armory. The tables were prepared with much taste and an abundance of choice viands. The Blues sat down with a party of one hundred or more and spent three or four hours.

The physical man having been duly cared for an intellectual entertainment followed. Speeches and toasts, regular and volunteer, came from tongues and hearts ready for the occasion.—There was a fine flow of spirits without the aid of wine as none was introduced to the tables.

We have no report of what transpired to publish in detail but the affair may be spoken of in general terms as one every way worthy of the spirited corps which gave the entertainment.—The Blues know no such word as fail in what they undertake. May the corps survive many such anniversaries.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: May 30, 1864, p. 2

FUNERAL OF CAPTAIN AUGUST MEYER—The funeral of this gallant captain took place yesterday, and was attended by an immense crowd of friends of the deceased. The procession was headed by the Masonic Fraternity, then followed by Company B, 54th New York Militia, Capt. Schoen, the hearse, officers of the 140th, the Sharpshooters, the Maennerchor, and a large procession of friends in general. The sidewalks were thronged with people, and when the procession moved from the corner of North Clinton and Andrews street it is estimated that nearly 5,000 people were in the vicinity. Most of those present would undoubtedly have followed the remains of Capt. Meyer to their last resting place but for the rain which began to fall. Nevertheless a very large number of friends followed, and the last honors were performed with the same regularity as if fine weather had prevailed. The Masonic Fraternity performed performed their impressive ceremonies first for a good and true brother. Capt. Graebe then spoke a few patriotic words, reminding the people of the services which Capt. Meyer had rendered his country, falling as a hero. The Maennerchor then sang a piece which the deceased, when living, sang many times with the Society.

"On the grave of slumbering friends."

The military honors, rendered with great precision, concluded the ceremonies. During the funeral ceremonies the storm rather increased. Although very unpleasant, it was appropriate weather for the funeral of a soldier who fell in the Wilderness in Virginia. The elements even seemed to mourn over the loss of so good a man as Capt. Meyer. Amidst wind, dust and rain his body was committed to mother earth by his numerous friends, who braved the storm to honor a man who braved the storms of the battle field and had fallen for his country. Sympathy for his bereaved widow and orphan and peace to his ashes!

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: June 4, 1864, p. 2

ROCHESTER UNION GRAYS INDEPENDENT BATTALION LIGHT ARTILLERY
Wm. M. Lewis, Major Commanding.

STAFF—Adjutant, Thos. Barnes; Quartermaster, Calvin C. Merritt; Surgeon, Dr. Rider; Chaplian, vacant; Sergeant Major, John Roche; Quartermaster Sergeant, Lyman M. Blakeslee; Commissary Sergeant, Jas. T. Evans; Trumpet Major, Geo. Trumbull.

BATTERY "A" OFFICERS—Captain, M. Heavy; 1st Lieutenant, C. J. Sullivan; 2d Lieutenant, Geo. Frauenberger; 2d Lieutenant, John A. Tholens; Orderly Sergt., H. Ragan; 2d Sergt., Rufus R. Dryer; 3d Sergt., Geo. Hartell; 4th Serget., C. H. McGorry; 1st Corporal, Henry Stillvagen; 2d do., Val Fleckinstein; 3d do., John Hunter; 4th do., Frank C. Ratt; 5th do., John B. Hawthorn; 6th do., Thos. White.

BATTERY "B" OFFICERS—Captain, M. R. Quinn; 1st Lieutenant, Wallace Darrow; 2d do., Edward J. Kelly; 2d do., Fred. W. Parmelee; Orderly Sergeant, Thos. Colbert; 2d Sergeant, Eugene Love; 3d do., Jas. E. McNulty; 4th do., Wm. F. Parmalee; 1st Corporal, John Brown; 2d do., Marshall Hall; 3d do., Nicholas Euler; 4th do., John A. McCarthy; 5th do., Thos. Smith; 6th do., James Hoctor.

The Battalion numbers 164, rank and file.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: June 14, 1864, p. 2

HEADQUATERS, WILLIAMS' CORPS, COMPANY I, 54TH REGIMENT—At a regular meeting of this company, held June 13th, the following preamble and resolutions were adopted:

Whereas, It has pleased the Supreme Dispenser of life and death to call to himself John Willetts, a worthy member of this company, who, though removed from the scenes of life, still lives in the hearts and affections of those with whom he was associated; and,

Whereas, In his demise, we, the members of this company, regret the loss of a true soldier—one who, through weal or woe, stood fast by that country which he served so earnestly and to perpetuate which he deemed no sacrifice too great; therefore be it
Resolved, That we, the members of this Corps, while bowing in humble submission to the divine dispensation which has deprived us of a tried friend and beloved companion, present our most sincere sentiments of sorrow and sympathy to the family of the deceased.

Resolved, That a copy of these resolutions be transmitted to the family of the deceased, and that they be published in the daily papers of this city.

F. G. Maloney, Captain
R. Lavers, Orderly

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: June 16, 1864, p. 2

HOME MILITARY OUT—This morning the Light Guard (Co. C, 54th Regt.) Capt. Fredenberg, turned out with Perkin's Band and went to Palmyra to form an escort at the funeral of Lt. Huntoon, late an aid on General Owens' staff.

The Union Guards, another Company of the 54th, Capt. Sellinger, went to Charlotte for a target shoot and recreation.

Both corps presented a highly creditable appearance as they passed along the streets.

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Rochester, NY Union & Advertiser: June 17, 1864, p. 2

THE FUNERAL OF LT. HUNTOON—The funeral of the late Lt. Huntoon took place at Port Gibson yesterday, and was attended by a large number of people. The Rochester Light Guard with Perkins' Band went to act as escort. The company were met at Palmyra by the Committee of Arrangements, and carried in wagons to Port Gibson, where an excellent dinner was provided. The company then marched to the house, where the procession formed and proceeded with the remains to a beautiful grove fitted up for the funeral ceremonies. Suitable platforms and benches were prepared and over 2,000 people were present. Three clergymen participated in the exercises which occupied some two hours.

The remains were then interred in the burial place.

The Light Guard returned about 9 o'clock and the members speak highly of the hospitality of the people of Port Gibson.

We suspect that the Democrat is in error in stating that the expense of the funeral was defrayed by General Owen. We hear that the people of Port Gibson incurred the expense.

Since the above was written, the following communication has come to our hand:

PORT GIBSON, June 17, 1864

MESSRS. EDITORS UNION:—Generous actions, when prompted by the proper spirit, demand grateful acknowledgement; will you, therefore, through the columns of your paper give publicity to the following testimonial as freely offered as deserving:
Yesterday the residents of our village and vicinity were overshadowed with gloom and sadness on account of the burial of one of our most promising young men, Lieut. Asbrah Huntoon, Jr., Co. H, 126th Regiment, N. Y. S. Vol., and acting A. D. C. to General Owen. His remains were attended by an escort from your city, Co. C of the 54th Light Guard, accompanied by Perkins' Band, and it is his due then that mention should be made of their very efficient service. For their ready response to our invitation, and their gentlemanly and dignified bearing while performing their respective duties as soldiers and musicians they have endeared themselves alike to the relatives and acquaintances of the deceased and this community, and with one vote would unite to do them honor, the most we may now do in reciprocation is to render them this public expression of our thanks.

We congratulate the citizens of Rochester upon the possession of two such organizations. They have our best wishes for the future and or hope that they may long live to grace other occasions with similar honor as that of ours.
By order of the Committee of arrangements.
J. W. Parker, Sec'y

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