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Federal (USV)


John C. H. von Sehlen

(1829 - 1894)

Home State: Wisconsin

Command Billet: Battery Commander

Branch of Service: Artillery

Unit: Indiana Light Artillery, 15th Independent Battery

Before Antietam

He arrived in New York from Germany in about 1847 at age 17, and served in the Mexican War, being wounded at Chapultepec. He then worked in the Post Office in Milwaukee. He was Adjutant of the Indiana Artillery Regiment (Col. Fritz Anneke) during it's organization in early 1862. When that unit dissolved in favor of Independent batteries of artillery in March 1862, von Sehlen was commissioned Captain of the 15th Battery. He mustered for Federal service at that rank, and his battery was ordered to Baltimore on 5 July 1862. On 24 August they departed Ft. McHenry by train and arrived at Harpers Ferry the next day.

On the Campaign

He and his unit were captured on 15 September - along with the rest of the garrison - and paroled on the 16th, going through Annapolis, Maryland to Camp Douglas, Chicago.

The rest of the War

He and his battery returned to service in March 1863. He was honorably mustered out on 9 May 1864.

After the War

He lived in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and was a factory bookkeeper.

References & notes

Details of the Battery's service and von Sehlen's background from Fout1 and a c.1900 newspaper article of unknown provenance posted online. Life dates from his grave site on Findagrave.


1829 in Germany


1894; burial in Forest Home Cemetery Milwaukee, WI


1   Fout, Frederick Wilhelm, The Dark Days of the Civil War, 1861 to 1865, St. Louis: F.A. Wagenfuehr, 1904  [AotW citation 1182]