(c. 1827 - 1863)
Home State: Virginia
Branch of Service: Artillery
A 35 year old driver in Richmond, he enlisted and mustered as a Private in Parker's Richmond Battery, Light Artillery on 14 March 1862 in Richmond. He was absent without leave and listed as a deserter on 15 May 1862 but returned to duty.
On the Campaign
At Sharpsburg on 17 September 1862:
The fight commenced at break of day, and by sunrise the smoke of battle hung like a pall over the scene of conflict. Men and horses fall in rapid succession ... A shot crashes through a caisson, and McNeil, who escapes as if by a miracle, significantly holds up the blessed beads given him by the good ladies at Frederick.
The rest of the War
He was wounded in action at Fredericksburg, VA on 13 December 1862 and court-martialed in April 1863 - found guilty of desertion. He was mortally wounded at Gettysburg on 3 July 1863 and died of wounds later that month.
References & notes
Service information from Musselman1 via the Historical Data Systems database. The quote above from Royall W. Figg in "Where men only dare to go!" or, The story of a Boy Company (C.S.A.) (1885); thanks to Andy Cardinal for the pointer to that volume.