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S.M. Baily

S.M. Baily

Federal (USV)


Silas Milton Baily

(1836 - 1900)

Home State: Pennsylvania

Education: Madison College (PA)

Command Billet: Commanding Regiment

Branch of Service: Infantry

Unit: 8th Pennsylvania Reserves


see his Battle Report

Before Antietam

He had established himself in business as a jeweler at Waynesburg, PA before the War. He helped raise a company of infantry on the first call for troops in the Spring of 1861, and was elected their Captain. He mustered into service with them on 20 June 1861 as Captain, Company I, 8th Pennsylvania Reserves. He was promoted to Major of the regiment on 4 June 1862, replacing J. B. Gardner, who had resigned.

On the Campaign

At the battle of Gaines' Mill [27 June 1862], he was severely wounded in the face, and was carried, insensible, to Washington for medical treatment. When the Army of the Potomac entered upon the Maryland campaign, Major Baily, though pronounced by his surgeon to be unfit for service, determined to join his command. He overtook the division in camp near the Monocacy, and being the ranking officer, took command of the regiment, which he led with such distinguished gallantry, both at South Mountain and at Antietam, that he was promoted to the colonelcy as a reward for his meritorious conduct on the field of battle.

The rest of the War

He was wounded again in action at Fredericksburg in December 1862, and promoted to Colonel on 1 March 1863. He was with the regiment until he mustered out with it on 24 May 1864. He was honored by brevet to Brigadier General of Volunteers on 13 March 1865 for his service in the Wilderness and at Spotsylvania, VA.

After the War

He opened a jewelry store in Uniontown, PA. He ran for Congress in 1878, but was not elected. He was elected State Treasurer of Pennsylvania in 1881 and served one term. He retired and sold his business in February 1900, only 3 months before his death.

References & notes

Service from Bates,1 Sypher,2 source of the quote above, and Heitman,3 who has him as Silas Milton Bailey. Postwar details from his obituary in The (Connellsville) Courier of 11 May 1900, transcribed online by Marilyn Tolentino. His picture from a glass plate negative at the Library of Congress; thanks to Pennsylvania in the Civil War for the pointer to it. His gravesite is on Findagrave. He died unmarried, but the business he founded, later Bailey & Holland, was still in operation on Main Street in Uniontown to at least 1950.


01/04/1836; Brownsville, Fayette County, PA


05/05/1900; Uniontown, PA; burial in Oak Grove Cemetery, Uniontown, PA


1   Bates, Samuel Penniman, History of the Pennsylvania Volunteers, 1861-65, Harrisburg: State of Pennsylvania, 1868-1871  [AotW citation 18594]

2   Sypher, Josiah Rhinehart, History of the Pennsylvania Reserve Corps, Lancaster, PA: Elias Barr and Company, 1865  [AotW citation 18595]

3   Heitman, Francis Bernard, Historical Register and Dictionary of the United States Army 1789-1903, 2 volumes, Washington DC: US Government Printing Office, 1903, Vol. 1, pg. 182  [AotW citation 18596]