Wisconsin 38th Infantry (Union)
01 Apr 1864
Wisconsin 38th Infantry organized.
31 May 1864
Participated in the Battle of Cold Harbor at Hanover Co; near Mechanicsville, VA.
After two days of inconclusive fighting along Totopotomoy Creek northeast of Richmond, Lt. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant and Gen. Robert E. Lee turned their sights on the crossroads of Cold Harbor. Roads emanating through this critical junction led to Richmond as well as supply and reinforcement sources for the Union army. On May 31, 1864, Maj. Gen. Philip Sheridan’s cavalry captured Cold Harbor. The next day, Sheridan held the crossroads against a Confederate attack. With reinforcements from both armies arriving…
15 Jun 1864
Participated in the Battle of Second Petersburg at Petersburg, Virginia.
As the Overland Campaign concluded, the strategic goals of Lieut. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant shifted from the defeat of Robert E. Lee's army in the field to eliminating the supply and communication routes to the Confederate capital at Richmond. The city of Petersburg, 24 miles south of Richmond, was the junction point of five railroads that supplied the entire upper James River region. Grant knew Petersburg was the key to the capture of Richmond and that Lee would be forced to defend it. Marching south fr…
21 Jun 1864
Participated in the Battle of Jerusalem Plank Road at Petersburg, Virginia.
30 Jul 1864
Participated in the Battle of Crater at Petersburg, VA.
Two weeks after Union forces arrived to invest the Confederate defenders of Petersburg, the battle lines of both sides had settled into a stalemate. Since Cold Harbor, Lieut. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant was reluctant to mount a frontal attack against well-entrenched Confederates. By late June, Grant's lines covered most of the eastern approaches to Petersburg, but neither side seemed ready to risk an offensive move. Part of the Union line was held by Maj. Gen. Ambrose E. Burnside's Ninth Corps. Some of Burnside'…
18 Aug 1864
Participated in the Battle of Globe Tavern at Petersburg, Virginia.
27 Oct 1864
Participated in the Battle of Boydton Plank Road at Dinwiddie County, Virginia.
25 Mar 1865
Participated in the Battle of Fort Stedman at Petersburg, VA.
By March of 1865, Lieut. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant's grip on the Confederate lines around Petersburg was having its desired effect. Outnumbered and weakened by disease, desertion and shortage of food and supplies, Gen. Robert E. Lee had few options. After careful study of the Union troops in his sector of the line, Maj. Gen. John B. Gordon suggested to Lee the possibility of a successful offensive strike against Grant. In front of Gordon's men, Union-held Fort Stedman seemed the best target for a Confederate a…
02 Apr 1865
Participated in the Battle of Third Petersburg at Dinwiddie County, Virginia; Petersburg, Virginia.
With the Confederate defeat at Five Forks on April 1st, Lieut. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant and Maj. Gen. George Meade ordered a general assault against the Petersburg lines by the Second, Ninth, Sixth and Twenty-Fourth Corps to take place April 2nd. In the pre-dawn darkness, the Union infantry gained a successful breakthrough where Maj. Gen. Horatio G. Wright's advancing Sixth Corps met the Confederate lines held by Maj. Gen. A. P. Hill near the Boydton Plank Road. Hill was killed trying to reach his troops in t…
09 Apr 1865
Participated in the Battle of Appomattox Court House at Appomattox Court House, VA.
Between 26,000 and 28,000 Confederate soldiers surrendered and were paroled.
26 Jul 1865
Wisconsin 38th Infantry mustered out.
Wisconsin, United States of America
Brigadier General John F. Hartranft
Brigadier General Orlando B. Willcox