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20th Maine Volunteer Infantry Regiment


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20th Maine Infantry Regiment

The 20th Maine Infantry Regiment lost 9 officers and 138 enlisted men killed or mortally wounded and 1 officer and 145 enlisted men to disease during the Civil War.


It is honored by three monuments at Gettysburg


August 29

Organized at Portland and mustered in under Colonel Adelbert Ames and Lieutenant Colonel Joshua L. Chamberlain

September 3

Left State for Alexandria, Va.; Attached to 1st Brigade, 1st Division, 5th Army Corps, Army of the Potomac

September 16-17

Battle of Antietam

The regiment is not engaged in the battle, staying in reserve with much of the Fifth Corps

September 19

Battle of Shephardstown

Corporal Waterhouse becomes the regiment's first casualty when he is wounded in the foot. Two other men are wounded, and Lieutenant Colonel Chamberlain loses the first of many horses shot from under him during the Civil War.


Attached to 3rd Brigade, 1st Division, 5th Army Corps

October - 

Advance to Falmouth, Va.

December 6

Two men freeze to death in their tent as four inches of snow fall

December 12-15

Battle of Fredericksburg

The regiment loses four men killed and 32 wounded, charging deadly Marye's Heights late in the day on the 13th and spending the next day and two nights lying in the open in front of Confederate positions. Serving as a rear guard, it is one of the last regiments back across the Rapahnnock.

December 20-30

Expedition to Richards and Ellis Fords


January 20-24

"Mud March"

April 17

Surgeon N. P. Monroe reports 84 cases of smallpox in the regiment. Three men die of the disease, which was probably due to a botched innoculation.

April 19

The regiment is moved to Quarantine Hill, while Colonel Ames is transferred to General Meade's staff at Corps Headquarters

April 27

Chancellorsville Campaign

May 1-5

Battle of Chancellorsville

The regiment misses the battle due to being under quarantine. Lieutenant Colonel Chamberlain pleads to Brigadier General Daniel Butterfield to put the men into the fight and is refused. Chamberlain replies, "If we couldn't do anything else we would give the Rebels the smallpox!" Instead, the regiment is assigned to guard duty on the telegraph line from headquarters to United States Ford, although Lt. Colonel Chamberlain joins the First Division for the fight and loses another horse shot from underneath him.

May 6

The regiment returns to camp in the night in a driving rainstorm as the army retreats back across the Rappahannock.

May 20

Colonel Ames is promoted to brigadier general and given command of a brigade in the 11th Corps, and Lt. Colonel Chamberlain is promoted to colonel and took command of the Regiment. The regiment is reduced to around 400 men.

May 23

About 120 three-year men from were 2nd Maine Infantry Regiment are transferred to the 20th at the end of the 2nd's two-year service.

June 12

Gettysburg Campaign

June 17


June 21


June 24


July 1-3

Battle of Gettysburg

From the main monument on Little Round Top:

Here the 20th Maine Regiment Col. J. L. Chamberlain commanding, forming the extreme left of the national line of battle on the 2nd day of July 1863, repulsed the attack of the extreme right of Longstreet's Corps and charged in turn, capturing 308 prisoners. The regiment lost 38 killed or mortally wounded and 93 wounded out of 358 engaged."


"Names of the officers and men of the Twentieth Maine Volunteers who were killed or died of wounds received in this action: Co. C, Capt. Charles W. Billings;  Co. I, 1 Lieut. Arad H. Linscott;
Co. G, 2nd Lieut. Warren L. Kendall; Co. A, Corp. Joseph D.Simpson, Priv. John Reed Jr., 1st Serg. Issac W. Estes, Priv. Elliott L. Fogg, Priv. Moses Davis,  Priv. Oliver L. Stevens,  Priv. Charles M. Beadle, Corp. Willard Pinkham,  Corp. Andrew D. Maybury, Priv. Stephen A. Prescott, Corp. Paschal M. Tripp,  Corp. John Foss, Corp. William S. Hodgdon, Priv. Seth W. Clark, Priv. John Wentworth;  Co. F, 
Priv. Oscar Wyer, Priv.  Charles F. Hall, Priv.  Benjamin W. Grant, Priv. Frank B. Curtis, Priv. Elfin J. Ross, Co. G, Serg. William S. Jordan, Corp. Melville C. Law, Priv. James A. Knight; Co. H, 1st Serg. Charles W. Steele, Serg.George W. Buck, Serg  Isaac M. Lathrop, Priv. Aaaron Adams, Priv. Goodwin S. Ireland, Priv.  Iredell Lamson; Co. I, Priv. Alexander E. Lester; Co. K, 1st Serg. George S. Noyes, Priv. James R. Merrill, Priv.  William F. Merrill, Priv.  Stephen C. Chase, Priv. Williard W. Buxton


From the Company B monument, located about 50 yards to the east of the main monument on Little Round Top:

"Position of Company B, 20th Me. Vols., Capt. Walter G. Morrill, detached as skirmishers, attacking the enemy's right flank, afternoon of July 2, 1863."


From the monument near the summit of Big Round Top:

"The 20th Maine Reg. 3d Brig. 1st. Div. 5th Corps Colonel Joshua L. Chamberlain captured and held this position on the evening of July 2d, 1863, pursuing the enemy from its front on the line marked by its monument below. The Regt. lost in the battle 130 killed and wounded out of 358 engaged. This monument marks the extreme left of the Union line during the battle of the 3d day."

July 5-24

Pursuit of Lee to Manassas Gap, Va.

August 29

Colonel Chamberlain takes command of the brigade. Captain Ellis Spear is promoted to major and takes command of the Regiment.

October 9-22

Bristoe Campaign

November 7-8

Advance to line of the Rappahannock

November 7

Rappahannock Station


Colonel Chamberlain returns to Maine on an extended sick leave for 'malarial fever.'

November 26-
December 2

Mine Run Campaign



Colonel Chamberlain returns from sick leave and court martial duty in Washington to resume command of the Regiment.


Campaign from the Rapidan to the James

May 5-7

Battle of the Wilderness

May 8

Laurel Hill

May 8-12


May 12-21

Spotsylvania C. H.

May 23-26

North Anna River

May 23

Jericho Mills

May 26-28

Line of the Pamunkey

May 28-31


June 1-3

Cold Harbor

June 1-3

Bethesda Church


Colonel Chamberlain took over brigade command, while Major Ellis Spear took command of the Regiment.

June 16-19

Before Petersburg; Siege of Petersburg begins


June 18

Rive's Salient

Colonel Chamberlain was badly wounded in the right hip and groin. It was considered a mortal wound and was reported as such in the newspapers, and General Grant promoted him to brigadier general based on the recommendation of Major General Gouverneur K. Warren. But Chamberlain recovered and returned to the army by the end of the year, serving until the end of the war. It is believed the wound was eventually responsible for Chamberlain's death, 50 years later in 1914.

June 21-23

Weldon Railroad

July 30

Mine Explosion, Petersburg (Reserve)

August 18-21

Six Mile House, Weldon Railroad

September 29 - 
October 2

Poplar Springs Church, Peeble's Farm


Major Spear brevetted lieutenant colonel of volunteers for "gallant and distinguished serves" at Peeble's Farm

October 27-28

Hatcher's Run

December 7-11

Warren's Hicksford Raid


February 5-7

Dabney's Mills, Hatchef's Run

March 28

Appomattox Campaign

March 29

White Oak Road. Brevet Lieutenant Colonel SPear is brevetted colonel for "faithful and meritorious service"

March 30

Quaker Road

March 30-31

Boydton Road

April 1

Five Forks

April 5

Amelia C. H.

April 6

High Bridge

April 9

Appomattox C. H.; Surrender of Lee and his army

May 2-12

March to Washington, D.C.

May 23

Grand Review

May 29

Brevet Colonel Spear promoted to full colonel

June 4

Old members mustered out

July 16, 1865

Regiment mustered out under Colonel Spear

Contributor: bruceyrock632
Created: April 7, 2014 · Modified: April 7, 2014

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