104th Ohio Infantry
|104th Regiment, Ohio Volunteer Infantry|
|Country||United States of America|
|Branch||Volunteer Army, American Civil War|
|Size||1000 soldiers at enlistment|
|Engagements||Defense of Cincinnati
East Tennessee Campaign
The 104th Ohio Volunteer Infantry was an infantry regiment in the Union army during the American Civil War. It played a conspicuous role at the Battle of Franklin during the 1864 Franklin-Nashville Campaign, where six members later received the Medal of Honor, most for capturing enemy flags.
Staff: Col. James Reilly, Lt. Col. Asa Mariner, Major Laurin Woodworth, Adjutant J. Walter McClymonds, Surgeon K.G. Thomas, Chaplain M.W. Dallas
- Company A: Captain Oscar W. Sterl
- Company B: Captain Jesse Coates
- Company C: Captain Andrew Bahney
- Company D: Captain Marcus C. Horton
- Company E: Captain A.H. Fitch
- Company F: Captain Joseph F. Riddle
- Company G: Captain Ezra Coppock
- Company H: Captain Walter Scott
- Company I: Captain John Wells
- Company K: Captain William Jordan
Among the nearly one thousand recruits in the 104th OVI was future United States Congressman Laurin D. Woodworth.
The regiment moved to Covington, Kentucky, on September 1, 1862, in preparation for the Defense of Cincinnati against a threatened Confederate invasion by troops under Edmund Kirby Smith. It was involved in a skirmish at Fort Mitchel in northern Kentucky.
The regiment spent the rest of 1862 and most of 1863 in Kentucky defending railroads and Union installations against Confederate raiders. In August, it moved with General Ambrose E. Burnside's army to East Tennessee where it participated in the capture, occupation, and defense of Knoxville during the fall and early winter. Following a brutal winter at Strawberry Plains, TN in pursuit of James Longstreet's retreating forces, it was assigned to duty as part of the XXIII Corps for the Atlanta Campaign. It participated in skirmishes at Dallas, Resaca, and throughout the campaign in northern Georgia, including the relief of Sprague's brigade at the Battle of Decatur on July 22, 1864. The regiment successfully cut the Atlanta and Macon Railroad on 30 July 1864 as a part of the entire army's flanking movement on Jonesboro. The 104th played a key role in the 1st Brigade, 3rd Division's unsuccessful assault on Confederate fortifications at Utoy Creek on August 6, 1864, where it sustained its heaviest casualties of the war up to that point. Following the fall of Atlanta in early September, Schofield's corps was sent north to assist General George Thomas in the defense of Tennessee from General John B. Hood's advancing army. The 104th and Schofield's army escaped Hood's trap at Spring Hill and helped repel the furious Confederate frontal assault at Franklin, TN, where the Confederate Army of Tennessee suffered over 6,000 casualties. After successfully defeating Hood's forces at Nashville in Dec 1864, Schofield's commanded transferred via Georgia, and Washington D.C., reaching North Carolina for the concluding portion of the Carolinas Campaign. The regiment fought a skirmish near Wilmington, NC and was near Raleigh when word came of General Robert E. Lee's surrender at Appomattox, Va.
The 104th OVI mustered out of the army on June 17, 1865.
During its term of service, the regiment had 3 officers and 46 enlisted men killed or mortally wounded in combat. It also lost 4 officers and 130 enlisted men by disease, for a total of 183 fatalities out of the 1,740 men who served at various times in the regiment.
List of Medal of Honor Recipients from the 104th OVI
The Battle cry at Franklin was "Remember Utoy Creek"
Six men from the regiment were recipients of the Medal of Honor for gallantry at Franklin:
- Joseph Davis: Rank and organization: Corporal, Company C. Place and date: At Franklin, Tenn., 30 November 1864. Entered service at: ---. Birth: Wales. Date of issue: 4 February 1865. Citation: Capture of flag.
- John C. Gaunt: Rank and organization: Private, Company G. Place and date: At Franklin, Tenn., 30 November 1864. Entered service at: Damascoville, Ohio. Birth: Columbiana County, Ohio. Date of issue: 13 February 1865. Citation: Capture of flag.
- Abraham Greenawalt: Rank and organization: Private, Company G. Place and date: At Franklin, Tenn., 30 November 1864. Entered service at: Salem, Ohio. Birth: Montgomery County, Pa. Date of issue: 13 February 1865. Citation: Capture of corps headquarters flag (C.S.A.).
- Newton H. Hall: Rank and organization: Corporal, Company I. Place and date: At Franklin, Tenn., 30 November 1864. Entered service at: ---. Birth: Portage County, Ohio. Date of issue: 13 February 1865. Citation: Capture of flag, believed to have belonged to Stewart's Corps (C.S.A.).
- George V. Kelley: Rank and organization: Captain, Company A. Place and date: At Franklin, Tenn., 30 November 1864. Entered service at: Massillon, Ohio. Born: 23 March 1843, Massillon, Ohio. Date of issue: 13 February 1865. Citation: Capture of flag supposed to be of Cheatham's Corps (C.S.A.).
- John H. Ricksecker: Rank and organization: Private, Company D. Place and date: At Franklin, Tenn., 30 November 1864. Entered service at: ---. Birth: Springfield, Ohio. Date of issue: 3 February 1865. Citation: Capture of flag of 16th Alabama Artillery (C.S.A.).
- Bradley S. Keefer, "The Stood to Their Guns: the 104th Ohio Volunteer Infantry in the Civil War" M.A. Thesis, Kent State University, 1984.
- United States Army: Civil war Medal of Honor winners.
- Pinney, N. A., History of the 104th Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry from 1862 to 1865. Akron, Ohio: Printed by Werner & Lohmann, 1886.
- Civil War Soldiers and Sailors; National Park Service
- Keefer, Bradley S. "They Stood to Their Guns: the 104th Ohio Volunteer Infantry in the Civil War. M.A. Thesis, Kent State University, 1984.
- Smith, Barbara Bentley and Nina Bentley Baker, editors, Burning Rails As We Pleased: The Civil War Letters of William Garrigues Bentley, 104th Ohio Volunteer Infantry. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Company, 2004. ISBN 978-0-7864-1659-2.
- [History of the 104th Regiment of Ohio Volunteer Infantry, 1886]
- Gaskill, J. W., Footprints Through Dixie: Everyday Life of a Man under a Musket, on the Firing Line, and in the Trenches, 1862-1865. Alliance, Ohio: Bradshaw Printing, 1919.