Tag Archives: 1st Maine Heavy Artillery

Webster Warriors of Bangor

  Webster was a common Bangor surname in the mid-19th century. Then the Civil War intervened, one Webster household from the Queen City dispersed several sons throughout the Union army, and Dr. Bill Hopkins of Wisconsin discovered two of those Webster brothers in Florida many years later. One day “as I was researching Union soldiers […]

Blanket Brigade: hard luck on the Potomac

  Note: This is the second part of a three-part series about the “Blanket Brigade.” A hard-luck infantry regiment that Maine fielded in midsummer 1862 later drew scathing ridicule as the autumn rains and cold literally dissolved clothing, men, and equipment in those wretched weeks after Antietam. Commanded by Col. Asa W. Wildes of Skowhegan, […]

Maine’s ‘Heavies” charged to the gates of hell: Part II

For a brief moment in mid-June 1864, Union troops could have swept through the wide-open doors of Petersburg to capture that Virginia city and its key railroads. Confederate troops would have fled Richmond, and the Army of the Potomac might have caught and destroyed the Army of Northern Virginia somewhere during that retreat. But Union […]

Maine’s Band Box Soldiers’ endured veterans’ scorn: Part I

  There stands at Petersburg National Battlefield a name-laden monument to a shattered regiment, the 1st Maine Heavy Artillery. Located slightly off the beaten National Park Service path, the monument honors the “604 brave members who fell charging here” on a late spring afternoon in ’64. Two bronze markers inset in the monument’s rear face […]