Tag Archives: Pennsylvania
Father Corby at Gettysburg (Memoirs of Chaplain Life)

Irish Examiner Feature: Remembering the Irish Lost at Gettysburg

As many regular readers of the site will know I have been campaigning for some time (along with colleagues) to see greater recognition in Ireland of the cost of the American Civil War to the Irish community. It was the second biggest conflict in terms of numbers in which Irishmen served in uniform, yet we […]

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Colonel Michael Kerwin, 13th Pennsylvania Cavalry, in later life

Irish Colonels: Michael Kerwin, 13th Pennsylvania Cavalry

Michael Kerwin was born in Co. Wexford on 15th August 1837. He emigrated with his parents to the United States at the age of 10, settling in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. There he was educated in a private academy and trained as a lithographic printer. In his spare time he spent a number of years involved with […]

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Michael Dougherty, 13th Pennsylvania Cavalry, in later life

Christmas as a Prisoner of War, Richmond, 1863

Private Michael Dougherty of Falcarragh, Co. Donegal, served in the ranks of the 13th Pennsylvania Cavalry during the American Civil War. His bravery in combat would be recognised in 1897, when he was awarded the Medal of Honor. However, as Christmas Day 1863 approached the only thing on Michael Dougherty’s mind was survival, as he […]

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Officers distributing the green boxwood sprigs to the Irish Brigade at Fredericksburg (Klem, The National Tribune)

Illustrations of the Irish Brigade at Fredericksburg

Private William McCarter of the 116th Pennsylvania Infantry, Irish Brigade, is best known for his memoirs My Life in the Irish Brigade. The Irishman’s account of the Battle of Fredericksburg, in which he was wounded, is amongst the most vivid of that engagement (for an account of the 116th Pennsylvania’s experiences on that day see […]

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One Irishwoman and her Umbrella at White Oak Swamp, 30th June 1862

Brian K. Burton’s book Extraordinary Circumstances: The Seven Days Battles makes reference to an account of a fascinating incident that occurred at White Oak Swamp Bridge on 30th June 1862, part of the Peninsula Campaign. The Irish Brigade were positioned here as part of the Union rearguard during the Federal retreat/change of base to the James River. Confederate […]

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Survivors of the 69th Pennsylvania at their old position in Gettysburg in 1887

‘We Thought We Were All Gone': The 69th Pennsylvania at Gettysburg

Shortly before 9pm on 2nd July 1887 a group of Confederate veterans disembarked from their train cars at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. There to greet them were some of their former foe, nearly 500 men of the old Union Philadelphia Brigade. Illuminated under red and green lights, roman candles were fired into the night sky as the […]

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Lieutenant Robert T. McGuire, 116th Pennsylvania Infantry. Wounded at Fredericksburg, he died of his wounds some years later.

‘Simply Madness to Advance': The 116th Pennsylvania at Fredericksburg

It was just past 9am on 13th December 1862 when Private William Dehaven of the 116th Pennsylvania Infantry was given the order to fall in with the men of his regiment. He and the rest of the Irish Brigade prepared to move through the streets of Fredericksburg and attack the Confederate positions beyond the town […]

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Father Corby at Gettysburg (Memoirs of Chaplain Life)

Father Corby Statue 100 Year Anniversary

A recent post told the story of Father Corby’s absolution of the Irish Brigade at Gettysburg in 1863. A statue of the chaplain was erected at the battlefield on the 29th October 1910, and will soon celebrate its 100th birthday. To commemorate the occasion the Father William Corby Division of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, […]

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An Irish Soldier’s Wartime Letter

The November 18th 1863 issue of the Huntingdon Globe carried on its front page an article entitled ‘An Irish Soldier’s Letter’, written by a young Irish volunteer in a New York Regiment to a friend in that part of Pennsylvania. Despite the numerous battles he had been engaged in and the horrors he had witnessed, […]

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Father Corby at Gettysburg (Memoirs of Chaplain Life)

Father Corby’s Gettysburg Absolution

On July 2nd 1863, 147 years ago today, the Irish Brigade of the Army of the Potomac were preparing to go into action on the second day of the Battle of Gettysburg. With the Federal Third Corps being pushed back by the Confederates, the Irish were ordered to fall in and take arms. Only minutes […]

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