The Civil War in the East

3rd Michigan Infantry Regiment

The regiment lost 4 officers and 154 enlisted men killed or mortally wounded and 2 officers and 89 enlisted men to disease during the Civil War.


It is honored by a monument at Gettysburg (right).

Monument to the 3rd Michigan Infantry Regiment at Gettysburg


May 21

Organized at Grand Rapids, Mich., and mustered into State service

June 10

Mustered into United States service under Colonel Daniel McConnel, Lieutenant Colonel Ambrose A. Stevens and Major Stephen Champlin

June 13

Left State for Washington, D.C., travelling on two trains on the Detroit & Milwaukee Railroad to Detroit, where they transferred to two boats for an overnight trip to Cleveland.

June 14

Left Cleveland by rail for Washington via Pittsburg, Harisburg and Baltimore

June 16

Arrived in Washington and marched to Chain Bridge, where camp was set up on the bluffs overlooking the Potomac. Attached to Richardson's Brigade, Tyler's Division, McDowell's Army of Northeastern Virginia for Duty in the Defenses of Washington, D.C.

July 16

Advance on Manassas, Va.

July 16-21

Occupation of Fairfax Court House, Va.

July 17

Action at Blackburn's Ford

July 18

Battle of Bull Run

July 21

Duty in the Defenses of Washington, D.C.


Attached to Richardson's Brigade, Division of the Potomac

October 21-24

Reconnaissance to Occoquan

October 21

Colonel McConnel resigned for medical reasons.

October 28

Major Champlin was promoted to colonel over Lieutenant Colonel Stevens.


Assigned to Richardson's Brigade, Heintzelman's Division, Army of the Potomac


February 3

Reconnaissance to Occoquan Village (Companies H & I)


Attached to 3rd Brigade, 3rd Division, 3rd Army Corps, Army of the Potomac

March 17

Moved to the Virginia Peninsula

April 5-May 4

Siege of Yorktown

Commanded by Lieutenant Colonel Stevens

May 31-June l

Battle of Fair Oaks or Seven Pines

The regiment lost 30 killed, 124 wounded and 15 missing, including Colonel Champlin, who was wounded in the hip.

June 1-2

Reconnaissance beyond Seven Pines

June 25-July 1

Seven days before Richmond

June 25

Oak Grove

June 29

Savage Station and Peach Orchard

June 30

Charles City Cross Roads and Glendale

July 1

Malvern Hill

July - August 15

Duty at Harrison's Landing


Attached to 3rd Brigade, 1st Division, 3rd Army Corps

August 16-27

Moved to Fortress Monroe, then to Centreville

August 29

Battles of Groveton

August 30

Bull Run

Colonel Champlin was wounded for a second time, leaving command of the regiment to Major Pierce.

September 1



Lieutenant Colonel Stevens was appointed colonel of the 21st Michigan Infantry. Major Pierce was promoted to replace him.

September -
October 11

Duty in the Defenses of Washington, D.C.

October 11-
November 23

March up the Potomac to Leesburg, thence to Falmouth, Va.

November 29

Colonel Champlin was promoted to brigadier general. Lieutenant Colonel Pierce was promoted to colonel and command of the regiment.

December 12-15

Battle of Fredericksburg, Va.


January 20-24

"Mud March"

April 27

At Falmouth

April 27-May 6

Chancellorsville Campaign

May 1-5

Battle of Chancellorsville

The regiment lost 63 casualties.

June 11-July 24

Gettysburg Campaign


July 1-3

Battle of Gettysburg

The regiment was commanded by Colonel Byron Root Pierce until he was wounded on July 2nd. His brother, Lieutenant Colonel Edwin S. Pierce then took command.


From the monument: "July 2nd 1863. This regiment deployed as skirmishers 150 yards in advance of this position. Held the line extending from the Peach Orchard east to the woods. Was the right of De Trobriand's Brigade, and connected with the left of Graham's."


"Went into action with 19 officers, 267 men, total 286. Casualties: 7 men killed, 3 officers and 28 men wounded, 7 men missing - total 45."

July 5-24

Pursuit of Lee to Manassas Gap

July 23

Action at Wapping Heights

August 17-
September 17

Duty at New York and at Troy, N.Y., during the draft disturbances

October 9-22

Bristoe Campaign

October 3


November 7-8

Advance to line of the Rappahannock

November 8

Kelly's Ford

November 26-
December 2

Mine Run Campaign

The regiment lost 31 casualties during the campaign

November 27

Payne's Farm

December 23

207 men reenlisted and were granted Veteran furlough.


February 6-7

Demonstration on the Rapidan


Attached to 2nd Brigade, 3rd Division, 2nd Army Corps

May 4-June 9

Campaign from the Rapidan to the James

May 5-7

Battle of the Wilderness

May 8-21

Battle of Spottsylvania Court House

May 8

Laurel Hill

May 10

Po River

May 12

Assault on the Salient ("Bloody Angle")

May 19

Harris Farm, Fredericksburg Road

May 21-23

North Anna River

May 26-28

On line of the Pamunkey

May 28-31


June 1-9

Battle of Cold Harbor

June 9

Left front

June 10

Non-veterans mustered out

June 13

Veterans and Recruits transferred to 5th Michigan Infantry as Companies A, E, F and I

About the Author • ©2015 Steve Hawks