U.S. Ambulance Corps

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U.S. Ambulance Corps field training. Photograph by William F. Browne

The U.S. Ambulance Corps was a unit of the Union Army during the American Civil War. The Ambulance Corps was initially formed as a unit only within the Army of the Potomac, due to the effort of several Army officials, notably Dr. Jonathan Letterman, medical director of the Army of the Potomac, and William Hammond, the US Surgeon-General. Until August 1862, the lack of trained ambulance drivers meant that the wounded had to wait a long time to receive medical care. This changed at the Battle of Antietam in September 1862 when his new system allowed the wounded men to be transferred quickly so there could be fewer deaths. The corps also meant that ambulances had a more centralized organization. [1]

Due to public pressure, the Army created an Ambulance Corps for all units and theaters of operation, through the Ambulance Corps Act of March 11, 1864. The Confederate armies did not have any such service available within their military.[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Wagner, page for Oct. 13 (all pages numbers for this book are indicated as dates).


  • Wagner, Margaret. The American Civil War: 365 Days. Abrams, New York, in association with the Library of Congress.
  • Purcell, Peter N.; Hummel, Robert P. (1992). "Samuel Preston Moore: Surgeon-general of the confederacy". The American Journal of Surgery. 164 (4): 361–5. doi:10.1016/S0002-9610(05)80905-5. PMID 1415944.