New Bedford men fell on land, and some at sea; they died at Antietam, at Bull Run, at Newbern. They were part of the carnage at Gettysburg and in the Cumberland. They died of dysentery and hunger at Andersonville prison camp; they were with Grant at Vicksburg and as they closed in on Lee outside Richmond.
William Manchester was killed at Bull Run; Walter Potter at Newbern, along with Charles Sears and William H. Williston. New Bedford lost men at Gettysburg like John Canty, John Hathaway, and Warren Soule. Alex Akin (also listed as Eagan) Sgt. James Leavens, and Luke Miller, who was wounded, taken prisoner and shipped to Andersonville where he soon died. Grant’s great victory at Vicksburg cost the life of Al Aldrich. Luther Blake and Tim Dwyer died at Fredericksburg. A regimental musician, named Charles R. Akin died at Fort Monroe; the war crimes at Andersonville prison camp cost the lives of Francis Spooner, Edward Boyd, Thompson Blood, William F. Davis, James Gooding, Edward Graham, George W. Harvey, George Heilman, and John McGowan, as well as Edward Londen. Philip Mosher died in a Florida Confederate prison camp. Other confederate prison camps were the site of other deaths as well.
But Sgt. Tim Corkery died in battle at Chantilly, and George Hawes in Hampton, Va. Ephraim Nye was killed at Petersburg.
The valorous assault on Fort Wagner won glory for the Black troops of the 54th but it also cost them a steep casualty toll. William Carney, the son of escaped slaves, survived serious wounds, but the 11 other New Bedford troops were listed as killed, wounded, or missing. William T. Chase; Joseph Campbell, 23, a caulker in civilian life; Joseph Hall, 19, a laborer; Abram Torrance, an older trooper; Lewis Fleetwood; Treadwell Turner, 21, a laborer; were among the dead, as was Nathan Young, a barber.
Sgt. Tom Tillinghast, as well as Charles Tillinghast, both died at Cedar Creek, and Fredericksburg cost the lives of Angus Young and Luthan Blake and Tim Dwyer; Stephen Crapo died in the Spotsylvania Courthouse fighting.
New Bedford seamen who perished included Anton Frates, lost at sea; Jeremiah Harrington, who died of wounds aboard the Rattler; and Charles Milliken, killed in the attack on fortifications in Mobile Bay.
More information on the New Bedford dead can be found here.
For more information on the war, read “New Bedford’s Civil War” by Earl F. Mulderink III, Fordham University Press, 2012.
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