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"Fighting at Monocacy’s Thomas Farm" Topic

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779 hits since 11 Jul 2017
©1994-2018 Bill Armintrout
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Tango0111 Jul 2017 3:31 p.m. PST

"Today is the 153rd anniversary of the battle of Monocacy—the "Battle that Saved Washington." Fought just miles south of Frederick, Maryland along the banks of the Monocacy river the battle was Federal Maj. Gen. Lew Wallace's last-ditch effort to slow Lt. Gen. Jubal Early's march on the District of Columbia. To commemorate the battle, I wanted to look at the climatic fighting around the Thomas farm—combat that lasted about ninety minutes and was by far the bloodiest part of the battlefield on July 9. It was fighting that left men battered, bloodied, and absolutely stunned by its ferocity.

By the afternoon of July 9, Wallace's Federals had managed to parry a number of light attacks by Confederate divisions of infantry and two assaults of dismounted cavalry. On Wallace's left flank stood Brig. Gen. James Ricketts's division of hardened Sixth Corps troops—rushed to Maryland from Petersburg to held defend the capital. It would be Ricketts's two brigades, about 3,500 men, who fought around the land of Christian Keefer Thomas, whose brick home Araby dominated a small plateau…"
Full article here


Personal logo gamertom Supporting Member of TMP11 Jul 2017 8:32 p.m. PST

I have an ancestor who was an officer in the 14th New Jersey and fell severely wounded in this battle. The family account was that he had been in charge of a guard detail over several Confederate prisoners a year or so earlier. The prisoners were badly in need of new clothing and the detail took up a collection to buy them new clothes. One was a surgeon who was subsequently released and rejoined his unit. He supposedly found my wounded ancestor shot through the chest, recalled his generosity, and took a small silk cloth that he drew through the wound to drain blood from the chest cavity. It was this action that saved my ancestor's life. After months healing, my ancestor returned to the 14th New Jersey and later received a brevet promotion during the Petersburg battles. After the war he married and shortly thereafter contracted a "blood infection" from a cut from a farm implement and died.

Who knows how much of this is true versus family lore. it certainly sounds legitimate for the period. That this ancestor existed is fact as his name is mentioned in the Official Records.

davbenbak Supporting Member of TMP12 Jul 2017 6:15 a.m. PST

Yes, Thanks for posting. I have an ancestor who was in the 26th Georgia, was wounded in the ankle during their advance and was later captured. He was exchanged in March of 1865. Both he and his brother joined the army in August 1861. His brother had been wounded in a skirmish action a few days before the battle and died in hospital. I found all their records on the website Fold3

davbenbak Supporting Member of TMP12 Jul 2017 8:39 a.m. PST

Sorry, too late to edit. He returned home after the war and lived to be 90 years old.

Tango0112 Jul 2017 10:31 a.m. PST

A votre service mon ami!. (smile)

Interesting histories…


14th NJ Vol Supporting Member of TMP27 Aug 2017 5:50 p.m. PST

GamerTom- I have a great, great grandfather who was
In the 14th NJ. He was killed at Cold Harbor.

Bill N28 Aug 2017 8:41 a.m. PST

I have fond memories of visiting Monocacy. Showed up and hardly anyone was there. Person at the desk said the other staffer on duty had left with a small tour a few minutes earlier and called to find out where I could meet them. It is relatively underdeveloped, which is how I remember many of the battlefields I visited as a kid.

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