On July 1st.,after a march of 25 miles,the brigade reached Gettysburg late in the afternoon, moved along the Gettysburg and Hanover railroad to a point northeast
of the town near the junction of the York turnpike and the Hanover Road, and
turned south for a short distance. In a ravine in an open field,about one-half mile
northeast of the Benner House, protected by the hill of the same name, the
brigade and divison deployed into line of battle about twilight. As soon as the line
was formed, Jones put pickets well toward the front.A patrol from the 42nd, sent
out by Gen. Johnson, reached nearly to the summit of Culp's Hill. But on the east
slopes of that hill, in the dark, the "unsuspecting squad of scouts" encountered a
patrol from the 7th Indiana, and some of the 42ned men were captured.( The
roster does not indicate any men captured on July 1.) The remaining patrol
members returned to the 42nd and, with the regiment,slept on thier arms. Not until
4P.M. of the next day (July 2) did the brigade move foward, deploying to support
Latimer's Artillery battalion which was firing from Benner's Hill. The 42nd halted
near Dr. Lady's stone house, about 300 yards form the artillery position, and
remained there "about two hours." As Latimer's duel with Union batteries ended,
the brigade moved to the top of Benner's Hill, and then advanced with the division
"in a splendid line" to assault Culp's Hill. Halting temporarily at Rock Creek to
reform its lines,the brigade surged up the rugged,wooded slopes in the dark. The
42nd,which had suffered some casualties at the creek from artillery, moved
seventy-five yards from the creek and opened fire on the enemy.For an hour the
regiment kept "loading and firing and pressing up the hill." The darkness,rugged
terrain,and enemy fire disorganized the regiment. Most of the 42nd got within 30
paces of the enemy's breastworks. Some of the men pushed nearer. Lt. Col.
Withers was wounded. Capt. Saunders assumed regimental command. Brigade
command devolved upon Lt. Col. Dungan of the 48th Virginia afer the wounding of
Brig. Gen. Jones. The intense enemy fire, coming as it was from strong
breastworks,could not be overcome. Dungan ordered the brigade backdown the
hill. The 42nd fell back slowly "about half-way down the hill," and then back across
Rock Creek. There the brigade reformed and advanced again across the creek
about 50 yards and halted for the night. The official report of the 42nd's
casualties reflected the intensity of the day's fight:8 killed and 48 wounded. (The
offical report for the regiment claims that all the regiment's casualties occoured
on July 2. The roster indicates that there were also casualties on July 3.)On the
morning of July 3, as the remainder of the division renewed the assault on Culp's
Hill, Dungan's Brigade skirmished heavily all day with the enemy to its front, but
made no serious attempt to advance. About 10 p.m. , the brigade withdrew with
the division to Seminary Ridge, west of Gettysburg. On the 4th, Col. Bradley T.
Johnson took command of the brigade. About 10 p.m. he led the brigade away
from Gettysburg toward Fairfield, staying on the move until daylight July 5. After
repulsing a cavalry attack on the brigade's flank soon after daylight, Johnson
halted again to camp for the night a mile and a half west of Fairfield. Still at
Gettysburg were the 42nd's casualties ( as indicated by the roster ): 16 killed or
mortally wounded,43 wounded,12 captured. Sixteen wounded had to be left in
hospitals on the battefield and were captured on July 4. Another 19 wounded, as
well as two of the regiment's wagons, were captured on July 4 and 5 by Union
cavalry who raided the army's ambulance trains.
[The above text is taken from
42nd Virginia Infantry Regimental Series -H.E.Howard Pub.- John Chapla- 3rd edition.]
Sign it Private:
Thats an order!
Company A—Henry volunteers. Henry County. Enlisted June 15, 1861 at Lynchburg, Campbell County.
Company B—Floyd Guards Enlisted May 25, 1861 at Floyd Court House, Floyd County. Assigned to regiment on June 15, 1861.
Company C—Buford Grays. Enlisted May 18, 1861 at Lisbon, Bedford County. Assigned to regiment on June 22, 1861.
Company D—Campbell-Lee Guards. Enlisted May 31,1861 at Yellow Branch, Campbell County. Assigned to regiment on June 27, 1861.
Company E—Dixie Grays. Enlisted June 4, 1861 at Salem, Roanoke County. Assigned to regiment July 1, 1861.
Company F—Leatherwood Fencibles. Enlisted June 22,1861 at Martinsville, Henry County.
Company G—Second Company of volunteers from Henry County. Enlisted July 3, 1861 at Lynchburg, Campbell County.
Company H—Patrick Henry volunteers. Enlisted May 22, 1861 at Spoon Creek, Patrick County. Assigned to regiment on July 5, 1861.
Company I—Campbell Guards. Campbell County. Enlisted July 11, 1861 at Lynchburg, Campbell County.
Company K—Franklin Invincibles. Enlisted June 17, 1861 at Rocky Mount, Franklin County.
These companies remained with the regiment throughout its service and no companies were added to or deleted from the original ten.
Some of the battles the 42nd was involved in were:
MANASSAS No. 2
resources: 42nd. Virginia Infantry-H.E.Howard,Inc.-John D. Chapla 3rd. Edition
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