The Civil War in the East

69th New York Infantry Regiment

The 69th New York Infantry Regiment lost 13 officers and 246 enlisted men killed and mortally wounded and 142 enlisted men to disease, a total of 401, the highest number of any New York Regiment and the 6th in total losses in the Union army during the Civil War.


It is honored by a monument at Antietam and a monument at Gettysburg along with the 63rd and 88th New York, its sister regiments in the Irish Brigade.

Monument to th Irish Brigade at Antietam Monument to th Irish Brigade at Gettysburg



Organized at New York, with a large number of the members of the 69th New York State Militia forming the nucleus

November 18

Mustered in under Colonel Robert Nugent, Lieutenant Colonel James Kelly and Major James Cavanagh as one of the regiments of the Irish Brigade. Father Thomas Ouellet was the regiment's chaplain.

November 18

Left State for Washington, D.C.


Attached to Meagher's Brigade, Sumner's Division, Army of the Potomac for duty in the Defenses of Washington, D. C.


March 10

Advance on Manassas, Va. Attached to 2nd Brigade, 1st Division, 2nd Army Corps, Army of the Potomac

March 28

Ordered to the Peninsula, Va. via the steamers Ocean Queen and Columbia

March 29

Seven men missing at Rapahannock Station

April 16-May 4

Siege of Yorktown

The regiment lost its first casualty, Private Patrick Casey of Company B, killed when a tree fell on him while working on siege emplacements

May 31-June 1

Battle of Seven Pines or Fair Oaks

The regiment lost 2 men killed, 1 man mortally wounded, and 11 men wounded.

June 25-July 1

Seven days before Richmond

During the seven days of fighting the regiment lost 1 officer and 32 men killed, 12 men mortally wounded, Lieutenants Joseph Burns, Philip Carr, Lawrence Cahill, Thomas Reynolds and 108 men were wounded, and 48 men were missing.

June 27

Battles of Gaines Mill

Arriving late for the battle in spire of a forced march, the regiment helped cover the retreat of the army to Fair Oaks.

June 29

Peach Orchard and Savage Station

June 30

White Oak Swamp and Glendale

Hundreds of mules stampeded through the regiment's lines, but they recovered to again provide the rearguard as the army retreated toward Malvern Hill. Lieutenant Joseph Burns was wounded.

July 1

Malvern Hill

The regiment suffered heavy casualties, at one point fighting with fixed bayonets against the 10th Louisiana. Lieutenant Thomas Reynolds was killed, Lieutenant Philip Carr was wounded and captured, Lieutenant Lawrence Cahill was wounded, and Private Peter Rafferty was awarded the Medal of Honor for refusing to leave the field in spite of being severely wounded.


At Harrison's Landing. Only 295 men were able to answer the roll by mid-July.

August 16-30

Movement to Fortress Monroe, then to Alexandria and Centreville

August 31-September 2

Cover retreat of Pope's Army to Washington

September 6-22

Maryland Campaign

September 16-17

Battle of Antietam

The regiment suffered heavily in the attack on the Sunken Road, or Bloody Lane.


Out of 317 men engaged, 196 became casualties. Eight color bearers were lost and the staff of the colors was split in half from bullet holes. One hundred twenty new recruits had joined the regiment the day before the battle, and 75 of them became casualties during the fight.


Captain Felix Duffy and Lieutenants John Conway, Patrick Kelley and Charles Williams and 40 enlisted men were killed, Captain Timothy. L. Shanly and 26 enlisted men mortally wounded, and Lieutenant Colonel James Kelley, Captain Jasper Whitty and Lieutenants Patrick Carney, Garret Neagley and Richard Kelly and 120 enlisted men were wounded.

September 22-October 29

At Harper's Ferry, W. Va.

October 16-17

Reconnaissance to Charlestown

October 29-November 17

Advance up Loudoun Valley and movement to Falmouth, Va.

December 12-15

Battle of Fredericksburg

The Irish Brigade advanced the closest to the stone wall in the desperate attack on Marye's Heights.


Lieutenant Patrick Buckley and 23 enlisted men were killed, Lieutenant Andrew Bermingham and 10 enlisted men mortally wounded, Colonel Nugent, Major Cavanagh, Captains John Donovan, Thomas Leddy and John Toal, Lieutenants Michael Brennan, David Burke, James Collins, Patrick Callahan, Murtha Murphy, Bernard O'Neill, Martin Soully and 70 men were wounded, and 9 men missing.


At Falmouth, Va. Following the casualties of Antietam and Fredericksburg, Father Ouellet felt that there was no longer need for two chaplains with the Irish Brigade and transferred to North Carolina, "leaving the brigade in the capable hands of Father William Corby."


January 20-24

"Mud March"

April 27-May 6

Chancellorsville Campaign

May 1-5

Battle of Chancellorsville

The regiment lost 3 men killed, 2 men mortally wounded, Lieutenant Soucoth Mansergh and 3 men wounded and 10 men missing.

May 19

Major Cavanagh was discharged for disability due to his wound from Fredericksburg

June 11-July 24

Gettysburg Campaign

June 12

Consolidated into a battalion of two companies, A and B. Lieutenant Colonel Kelly was mustered out while absent due to illness as a result of the consolidation

July 1-4

Battle of Gettysburg

Commanded by Captain Richard Moroney until he was wounded on July 2. Lieutenant James J. Smith then took command. The battalion lost 5 men killed, Captain Moroney and 13 men wounded and 6 men missing out of 6 officers and 69 enlisted men engaged.

July 5-24

Pursuit of Lee to Manassas Gap


Duty on line of the Rappahannock

September 13-17

Advance from the Rappahannock to the Rapidan

October 9-22

Bristoe Campaign

October 14

Auburn and Bristoe

November 7-8

Advance to line of the Rappahannock

November 26-December 2

Mine Run Campaign

November 28

Colonel Nugent mustered out


Duty at and near Stevensburg, Va.



Returned from 30 days veteran's furlough with six companies: A, B, C, F, G and K

February 6-7

Demonstration on the Rapidan

April 12

Captain John Garrett of the 15th New York Engineers was transferred in and promoted to major

April 16

With additional recruits arriving, the 69th was once again formed as a regiment with a full complement of companies and officers. Captain James McGee of Company A promoted to lieutenant colonel. Captain Richard Moroney was promoted to major. And Father Ouellet returned from North Carolina to resume his post as Chaplain.

May 3-June 15

Campaign from the Rapidan to the James

May 5-7

Battle of the Wilderness

The battalion lost 7 men killed, 3 men mortally wounded, 34 men wounded and 8 men missing.

May 8-21


In the two weeks of fighting Captain Richard Kelly and 16 men were killed, Captain John Blake, Lieutenant Richard King and 7 men were mortally wounded, Lieutenants Edward O'Connor and John Conway and 72 men were wounded, and 23 men were missing or captured.

May 10

Po River

May 12

Assault on the Salient or "Bloody Angle." Captain Richard Kelly was killed.

May 23-26

North Anna River

May 26-28

On line of the Pamunkey

May 28-31


The battalion lost 1 man killed, 1 man mortally wounded, 1 man wounded and 3 men missing.

June 1-12

Cold Harbor

The battalion lost 5 men killed, 6 men mortally wounded, Captain Robert Milliken, 1 other officer and 23 men wounded and 5 men missing.

June 4

Captain Robert Nugent of the 13th United States Infantry returns to the regiment and is recommissioned colonel


Assigned to Consolidated Brigade, 1st Division, 2nd Army Corps.

June 16-23

Assault on Petersburg and Weldon Railroad

Captain Bernard O'Neill and 2 enlisted men were killed, 3 enlisted men mortally wounded, Lieutenants Peter Sweeney and Luke Brennan, 1 other officer and 15 men wounded and Lieutenant Maurice Wall and 17 men captured.

June 18

Siege of Petersburg

During the nine months of the siege the regiment lost 4 enlisted men killed, 6 mortally wounded, 41 wounded and 1 officer and 127 men missing or captured, not including men listed below.

June 22-23

Jerusalem Plank Road, Weldon Railroad

July 27-29

Demonstration north of James River

July 27-28

Deep Bottom

August 13-20

Demonstration north of James River

August 14-18

Strawberry Plains, Deep Bottom

The battalion lost 1 man killed and Lieutenant Henry McQuade and 4 enlisted men wounded.

August 25

Ream's Station

Lieutenant James Smith and 5 enlisted men were wounded and Major John Byron, Captain Maurice Wall, Lieutenant David Lynch and 44 men captured.

October 11

Lt. Colonel McGee mustered out due to disability

October 20

Major Garrett dismissed

October 30

Captain Henry McQuade and Lieutenant George Patchen captured on picket


Attached to 2nd Brigade, 1st Division, 2nd Army Corps

November 23

Captain Ricard Moroney promoted to major, with rank from October 20


Lieutenant Wall escapted Confederate prison and returned to his company

December 9-10

Reconnaissance to Hatcher's Run


January 31

Adjutant James Smith promoted to lieutenant colonel, with rank from January 1

February 5-7

Dabney's Mills, Hatcher's Run

March 25

Watkins' House

The battalion lost 11 enlisted men killed, 15 enlisted men mortally wounded, and Captain John Mulhall, Lieutenant Michael Leddy and 30 enlisted men wounded.

March 26

Lieutenant Michael McConville died of injuries

March 28-April 9

Appomattox Campaign

The regiment lost 1 officer and 2 enlisted men killed or mortally wounded and Lieutenants John Meagher and Robert Murphy and 17 enlisted men wounded during the last two weeks of fighting

March 29-31

Hatcher's Run or Boydton Road

March 31

White Oak Road

April 2

Sutherland Station and fall of Petersburg

April 6

Sailor's Creek

Lieutenant Robert Murphy was wounded

April 7

High Bridge and Farmville

April 9

Appomattox Court House. Surrender of Lee and his army.

May 2-12

Moved to Washington, D.C.

May 23

Grand Review

June 30

Mustered out under Colonel Robert Nugent, Lt. Colonel James Smith and Major Richard Moronoey

About the Author • ©2015 Steve Hawks