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History of Cedar
County, Iowa, 1878.


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Thirty-First Infantry


The Thirty-First Infantry was mustered into service at Davenport by Captain Hendershott, on the 13th of October, 1862, and under command of Col. William Smyth, took transport and moved down the river November 1st, arriving at Helena, Arkansas, the 20th instant.  On the 27th of the same month, they started on an expedition to the Cold Water River, in Mississippi, returning to Helena December 7th.  Two weeks later, they started on the Yazoo River expedition, and the regiment was partially engaged in the battle at Chickasaw Bayou, on the 27th, 28th and 29th of December.

On the 2d of January, 1863, they started for a point near Arkansas Post, where they arrived on the 9th instant, and on the night of the 10th marched through swamps and mire to the rear of the enemy's works, where, on the 11th, they hotly engaged in the capture of the place.

From this point the regiment was ordered to Young's Point, Louisiana, where they remained in camp until April 2, when they moved again up the river to Greenville, Mississippi, and, after some skirmishing and considerable foraging for mules, cattle, horses, hogs, and even negroes, returned to Young's Point on the 26th of the same month.    From here they moved with Grant's whole army toward Grand Gulf, arriving May 7, when they again moved toward Jackson Mississippi.  The regiment was under fire at Raymond, on the 12th; was at the taking of Jackson, on the 14th; and again under fire at Black River, on the 16th, reaching the rear of Vicksburg on the 18th, where it was engaged, on the 22d, in a terrible but successful charge on the enemy's works, and was from this time steadily under fire till the fall of Vicksburg, on the 4th day of July.

The regiment, under Gen. Sherman, started for Jackson, Mississippi, on the 5th of July, being under fire until the second evacuation of that place, when it was moved to Canton, Mississippi, where it was again engaged, when it went into camp at Black River until the 22d of September.  From here they moved to Vicksburg, thence to Memphis, thence to Corinth, Mississippi, where it remained until October 11; thence marched to Iuka, and to Cherokee on the 20th, and on the morning of the 21st had a severe engagement with rebel cavalry.  On the 26th and 27th, had a running fight with the enemy, again returning to Cherokee Station.  On the 24th of November, was in the battle of Lookout Mountain, and on the following day had equally hard fighting at Mission Ridge, and on the 27th was again engaged at Ringgold and Taylor's Hills, where the regiment suffered severely.    Here they remained until December 1, when, moving by way of Chattanooga and Bridgeport, they reached Woodville, Alabama, on the 27th instant, and went into Winter quarters, where they remained until the 1st day of May, 1864.

On the morning of May 1, moved east, reaching Snake Gap, Georgia, on the 9th instant, where they encountered the enemy in force.  On the 13th, had a severe fight at Resaca, in which Lieut. Col. Jenkins was severely wounded.  The regiment laid in camp at Kingston, Georgia, from the night of the 19th until the morning of the 23d, awaiting supplies; then moved on, encountering the enemy at Dallas, on the night of the 26th, and the following morning, after a short but sharp conflict, the enemy was driven back; and again, on the 28th, the enemy charging on their works, were driven back.  The fighting lasted during the 29th, 30th and 31st.  On the 1st of June, the regiment moved to New Hope Church, and occupied rifle pits, under fire of the enemy, until the 6th, when the regiment moved to Ackworth, remaining there until the 10th, when they marched to Big Shanty, ten miles distant, again engaging the enemy in force.  Guarded wagon train until the 15th, when they moved into rifle pits near Kenesaw Mountain, and were constantly under fire until the evening of July 3, when the enemy evacuated Kenesaw Mountain.  July 4th, they again encountered the enemy at Chattahoochie River, and, building works, remained under fire until the 11th, when they moved to Rowel, Georgia.    From here they went to Viking Station, thence to a point near Atlanta.   August 26, they moved toward Jonesboro, on the Macon Railroad.  On the 31st, the enemy made a desperate fight, and the regiment was again under fire until the 2d of September, when Jonesboro was evacuated.  On October 4, the regiment, with a large portion of Shaman's army, moved north in pursuit of Hood, skirmishing with him at Resaca, Snake Gap, Little River, etc.; after this, went to Atlanta, November 15; thence into the heart of Georgia.  Marching about fifteen miles per day, they reached the rear of Savannah on the 10th of December, 1864, and ten days later the whole army entered that city.  By this victory the army was severed into three parts, and enemy compelled to loosen its grasp over a vast territory.  The Thirty-first were actively engaged in the North Carolina campaigns from this time till March 8, when Gen. Grant's famous dispatch, "Let us finish the job now," was announced, when the final blow was soon struck, and the year which promised to be so full of bloody strife was the end of the war of the rebellion.

The Thirty-first was mustered out of service at Louisville June 27, 1865, and came to Davenport, where they were paid off and disbanded.

(Note:  This regiment was mustered out at Louisville, Kentucky, June 27, 1865.)

Company C.

Captain Milo P. Smith, commissioned sergeant major August 16, 1862, promoted 2d lieutenant August 16, 1862, promoted captain March 31, 1863, resigned September 27, 1864.

First Lieutenant David Rorick, enlisted as private August 15, 1862, promoted 1st sergeant, then 1st lieutenant September 1, 1863, wounded at Jonesboro, Georgia, September 1, 1864.

Second Lieutenant Hannibal C. Freeman, commissioned October 13, 1862, resigned December 29, 1862.

Sergeant J. P. Ferguson, enlisted August 6, 1862, discharged April 7, 1863, disability.

Corporal Allen T. Ayes, enlisted August 7, 1862.

Corporal Jos. Blakeslee, enlisted August 6, 1862.

Corporal F. A. Swan, enlisted August 12, 1862, discharged January 9, 1863, disability.

Corporal T. Robins, died March 12, 1863, at Young's Pt., Louisiana.

Corporal Jon. A. Gerard, enlisted August 6, 1862, died March 12, 1863, on hospital boat.

Musician Henry Aldrich, enlisted August 12, 1862, discharged December 22, 1863, at Helena, Arkansas, disability.

Austin, Thos. enlisted August 8, 1862.

Ball, Lewis W., enlisted August 11, 1862.

Buglers, Geo. P., enlisted August 11, 1862.

Ball, A. J., enlisted August 11, 1862, died March 19, 1863, in Memphis, Tennessee.

Dubious, Walter, enlisted August 12, 1862.

Evens, Jos. H., enlisted August 15, 1862.

Ferguson, Wm., enlisted August 6, 1862.

Ferguson, John, enlisted August 5, 1862, died May 22, 1863, at Vicksburg, Mississippi.

Humphry, S. P., enlisted August 8, 1862, discharged March, 1864, disability.

Jackson, A., enlisted August 7, 1862, died April 28, 1863, on steamer.

Kellogg, Ethel, enlisted August 6, 1862, died March 17, 1863, at Memphis, Tennessee.

Kinston, R. F., enlisted August 9, 1862.

Mitchell, Thos. B., enlisted August 11, 1862.

Myers, John, enlisted August 8, 1862, discharged May 5, 1863, disability.

Miller, Jon. M., enlisted August 8, 1862, discharged March 23, 1863, disability.

McClure, David, enlisted August 12, 1862, died November 9, 1862, at Davenport.

Gnash, Augusts, enlisted August 7, 1862, died December 31, 1862, at Johnson's Landing.

Rolling, C. W., enlisted August 11, 1862.

Robins, A. B., enlisted August 9, 1862.

Rorick, Samuel, enlisted August 15, 1862.

Samson, Wm. B., enlisted August 15, 1862, died November 2, 1862, at Davenport.

Samson, Jon C., enlisted August 14, 1862, discharged April 22, 1863, at Davenport, disability.

Wooded, Jas. F., enlisted August 12, 1862, transferred to invalid corps.

Wood, Jas., enlisted August 9, 1862.

Beck, J. G., enlisted August 11, 1862.



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