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Federal Regiment

12th Massachusetts Infantry

"Webster Regiment"
Organized: Fort Warren, MA; mustered in 6/26/1861
Disbanded/Mustered out: 7/8/1864

 

Commanding Officers at Antietam:
  Maj. Elisha Burbank
  Capt. David Allen, Jr.
  Capt. Benjamin F. Cook

 

This Regiment's Chain of Command:
  Army - Army of the Potomac
  Corps - First (I) Army Corps
  Division - 2nd Division, I Corps
  Brigade - 3rd Brigade, 2nd Division, I Corps


Unit history

Named for their first commander, they were organized at Boston in 1861. Colonel Fletcher Webster (son of Senator Daniel Webster) was killed in command of the Regiment at 2nd Bull Run on 30 August 1862.

On the Antietam Campaign

A three-year unit recruited largely from Boston, the 12th suffered the highest percentage of casualties among all Federal Regiments at Antietam.

"The reorganization of the army in early September, 1862, made Ricketts' Division a part of Hooker's (1st) Corps, and as a part of Hartsuff's Brigade the 12th Regt. joined in the operations which forced the Confederates out of Frederick, Md., and on toward South Mountain. The 12th was engaged in the battle of South Mountain, Sept. 14, suffering only slight loss. On the 17th, at Antietam, it fought in the [Miller's] Bloody Cornfield, losing 224 officers and men, of whom 74, including Major Elisha Burbank and Assistant Surgeon A. A. Kendall, were killed or mortally wounded. Here it came into conflict with the famous Texas Brigade and captured the colors of the 1st Texas Infantry"1.
Colonel Coulter, in his after-action report for the Brigade said
"The Twelfth Massachusetts had killed and disabled eleven officers of fifteen taken into the field. The loss of this regiment, owing to its position, was by far the most severe in the brigade. Major Burbank commanded at the commencement of the action and was disabled early. He performed his whole duty while in the field. Captain Allen, who next assumed command, was also severely wounded. I cannot express too high an opinion of this officer. He has proved himself one of the most gallant officers in the brigade. The command of this regiment next devolved upon Capt. B. F. Cook, who commanded during the reminder of the action, and brought the regiment off the field."

Statistics

Initial Strength: 334; Killed in Action (KIA): 49; Wounded (WIA): 165;
Losses, % of Initial Strength: 64.1%

Maps Showing this Unit

Battlefield Tablets for this Unit

Tablet #1: First Army Corps - 16 Sep, 2 PM to 16 Sep, 6 PM
Tablet #14: Ricketts' Division, First Army Corps - 16 Sep, 2 PM to 16 Sep, 8 PM
Tablet #120: Army of the Potomac - 17 Sep, 5 AM to 17 Sep, 12 PM
Tablet #7: Ricketts' Division, First Army Corps - 17 Sep, 6 AM to 17 Sep, 5 PM
Tablet #10: Hartsuff's Brigade, Ricketts' Division - 17 Sep, 6 AM to 17 Sep, 8 AM
Tablet #81: Ricketts' Division, First Army Corps - 17 Sep, 6 AM to 17 Sep, 9 AM

We have 223 individuals in the AotW database for this unit:

 

Co. Rank Name Casualty? Details*
APvtBurke, Dennis A.WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
APvtDwelley, George C.WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
ACorpDyer, Nathaniel H.KIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
ACorpFerguson, William WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
APvtHinds, Patrick WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
APvtKelleher, Patrick WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
ACorpKimball, William L.WIA   09/17
APvtKummer, Henry W.KIA   09/17
APvtMcCabe, James WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
APvtMcCarthy, Thomas F.KIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
APvtMurdock, George WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
APvtNorwood, james W.KIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
APvtO'Brien, James KIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
APvtO'Donnell, Michael KIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
ALtOrne, George W.MWIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
APvtSeavey, William H.WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
APvtSprague, Jr., Samuel WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
ASgtTinkham, Cornelius GranvilleMWIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
APvtTobin, John WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
ALtWhite, William G.KIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
APvtWhitney, Edmund S.KIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
BPvtBaldwin, Joseph H.WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
BPvtCampbell, Patrick WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
BPvtCavanaugh, John WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
BPvtCollins, James WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
BPvtCronan, Daniel AWOL   09/12     We have some details for this person
BPvtCushing, Thomas J.KIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
BPvtDaley, James AWOL   09/16     We have some details for this person
BPvtDavidson, Herbert WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
BPvtDesmond, Bartholomew KIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
BPvtDobson, William WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
BPvtDonovan, Patrick KIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
BPvtDuran, Alonzo G.KIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
BPvtEdmester, Lemuel A.WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
BPvtFernald, Robert KIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
BPvtFoster, Ansel J.WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
BSgtFrench, George H.WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
BPvtGorman, James B.WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
BSgtHough, Palmer W.WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
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BCaptPackard, Charles T.WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
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BPvtSmith, Granville H.Died   10/20     We have some details for this person
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ECorpAyers, Benjamin F.KIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
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ECorpCarey, Charles E.KIA   09/17
ECaptCook, Benjamin Franklin        We have a picture for this person We have some details for this person
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IPvtPeck, Rufus A.Died   09/23     We have some details for this person
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IPvtSherman, Henry C. R.KIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
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IPvtWentworth, Henry M.WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
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KPvtAllen, Edward F.WIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
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KCaptAllen, Jr., David WIA   09/17     We have a picture for this person We have some details for this person
KCorpCrouse, James T.MWIA   09/17     We have some details for this person
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Notes

1   Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Adjutant General, Massachusetts Soldiers, Sailors, and Marines in the Civil War, 8 Vols, Norwood (MA): Norwood Press, 1931-35, Vol 2, pg. 1  [AotW citation 1223]