(1838 - 1863)
Home State: Rhode Island
Branch of Service: Artillery
A carriage maker from Fall River, MA he enlisted as a Musician, Battery G, First Rhode Island Light Artillery on 2 December 1861.
On the Campaign
He was with the Battery in Maryland and helped to rally men of Sedgwick's Division in action at Antietam on 17 September 1862
The men of the Second Division continued to run for their lives all around Battery G. Lieutenant Otto Torslow saw the retreating troops. He summoned Bugler Thomas Mars to his side as the two galloped into the confused mass, trying to form the shattered force. Riding up and down the lines, Mars gave rallying calls on his bugle but to little avail; Sedgwick's men continued to retreat. For their actions, Lieutenant Torslow was mentioned in dispatches, while Mars was promoted to sergeant on October 5.
The rest of the War
He was demoted back to Musician by his Captain in April 1863. He was mortally wounded in action near Fredericksburg on 3 May 1863 and died of wounds in Washington, DC on 9 May 1863.
References & notes
His service dates from the Adjutant General's Annual Report.1 Some details and the quote above from Robert Grandchamp's The Boys of Adams' Battery G (2009) and A Connecticut Yankee at War (2015). The photograph of Mars kindly provided by Mr. Grandchamp, from his collection.
05/09/1863; Washington, DC; burial in Soldier's Home National Cemetery, Washington, DC
1 State of Rhode Island, and Henri Crandall, Acting Adjutant General, Official Register of Rhode Island Officers and Soldiers ... 1861 to 1865, in the Annual Report of the Adjutant General of the State of Rhode Island for 1865, Providence: Providence Press, 1866, pg. 779 [AotW citation 21931]