(c. 1839 - 1864)
Home State: Georgia
Branch of Service: Infantry
Unit: 61st Georgia Infantry
He enlisted in Company C as Private - October 20, 1861.
On the Campaign
He was wounded in action on 17 September 1862 while carrying the flag at Sharpsburg.
The rest of the War
Appointed Color Sergeant May 4, 1863. Captured with flag at Spotsylvania, Virginia, May 12, 1864.
[At Spotsylvania] Our regiment (Sixty-first Georgia) was on the extreme left of Evans' brigade. We charged the enemy where we did not have any support on our left, and our color bearer, Francis Marion McDow, planted our battle-flag on the works and we had a hand to hand battle with club-guns. Our line being very thin and the enemy's fully three times as strong as ours, we were overpowered and a great many of our regiment had to surrender. Here the enemy captured sixty-five of our regiment, McDow and our old tattered and torn battle-flag.He died while a POW at Point Lookout, Maryland, August 3, 1864.
I must stop and say a few words about Sergeant Francis Marion McDow. He was an Alabamian by birth and as brave as the great hero General Francis Marion, after whom he was named. He was like the brave Sergeant Jasper, unlettered. He was about 23 years of age and had received a severe wound at Sharpsburg, Md., while carrying the flag so bravely. He was complimented by the noble and brave Colonel Douglas just before Colonel D. was killed. The flag was nearly shot to pieces by shot and shell. It was nothing but a tattered and torn rag, for it had been in every battle the regiment had ever been engaged in, and the regiment loved it and its noble bearer. We mourned the loss of McDow and the dear old flag.
References & notes
Basic information from Henderson1, who lists him as F.M. McDow. The quote above and his full name from George Washington Nichols' A Soldier's Story of his Regiment (61st Georgia) (1898).
c. 1839 in AL
08/03/1864 Point Lookout, MD