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A.F. Hill

A.F. Hill

Federal (USV)


Ashbel Fairchild Hill

(1842 - 1876)

Home State: Pennsylvania

Branch of Service: Infantry

Unit: 8th Pennsylvania Reserves

Before Antietam

An 18 year old store clerk in Smithfield, PA, he mustered into service as a Private in Company D, 8th Pennsylvania Reserves on 21 June 1861. He was promoted to Corporal on 1 July and Sergeant on 1 May 1862.

On the Campaign

He was wounded by gunshot to his left thigh in action in or near the Miller Cornfield at Antietam on 17 September 1862.

The rest of the War

His leg was amputated at field hospital near the battlefield and he was discharged on a Surgeon's Certficate in December 1862.

After the War

He published a memoir of his war service - Our Boys: the Personal Experience of a Soldier in the Army of the Potomac - in 1864 [online]. He was an editor for several newspapers, including the Mercury in Philadelphia and the Golden City in San Francisco, and wrote novels and stories. His most widely known was John Smith's Funny Adventures On A Crutch (1869) [online]. He took ill after giving a speech in the rain, and died suddenly, barely 34 years old, in November 1876.

References & notes

Service information from Bates,1 who has him as Archibald F. Hill. Details from his own Our Boys and family genealogists. His gravesite is on Findagrave, source also of his picture, from a photograph contributed by Scot Novak.

He was named for the Reverend Ashbel Fairchild, an early Presbyterian minister in Fayette County.

He married Mary Jane Harris in San Francisco about 1873, but they divorced in 1875 or 1876.

More on the Web

See Hill's own narration of his Antietam experience transcribed and annotated online by Andy Cardinal on Civil War Talk.


10/23/1842; German Township, Fayette County, PA


11/07/1876; Uniontown, PA; burial in Methodist Episcopal Cemetery, Masontown, PA


1   Bates, Samuel Penniman, History of the Pennsylvania Volunteers, 1861-65, Harrisburg: State of Pennsylvania, 1868-1871  [AotW citation 11878]