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  • Confederate Bowie Knife Picked up from a battlefield by Surgeon Benjamin Rohrer 10th PA

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    Confederate Bowie Knife Picked up from a Battlefield by Surgeon Benjamin Rohrer, 10th PA  - Inventory Number: CON 242

    Rohrer's Civil War story begins in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where he left in August 1861 to fight for a "righteous cause," as mentioned in a letter to his brother dated August 18 and ends in the furthest reaches of Florida four long years later. Dr. Rohrer's experience encompasses almost every phase of the medical system, ranging from time as a regimental surgeon to charge of a general hospital. He treated the wounded soldiers of the Tenth Pennsylvania Reserves at battles such as Second Bull Run, Antietam, Fredericksburg, and Gettysburg. Later he was transferred to Germantown, Pennsylvania, to operate the general hospital there. The final letter in the collection, dated May 9, 1865, reassigned Dr. Rohrer to Key West, Florida.  This knife was once part of the collection of Gordan Dammann and the Frederick Medical Museum.

     

    Benjamin Rohrer:

    Enlisted on 6/26/1861 as a Surgeon.

    On 6/26/1861 he was commissioned into Field & Staff PA 39th Infantry

    He was Mustered Out on 6/11/1864 at Pittsburgh, PA

    Promotions:

    * Lt Colonel 3/13/1865 by Brevet

     

    PENNSYLVANIA THIRTY-NINTH (Three-Years)

         Thirty-ninth Infantry. - Cols., John S. McCalmont, James T.  Kirk, Adoniram J. Warner; Lieut.-Cols., James T. Kirk, Adoniram J. Warner James B. Knox, Ira Ayer, Jr., Majs., Harrison Allen, Sion B. Smith, Ira Ayer, Jr., C. Miller Over. This was the 1Oth reserve regiment and was composed of men from the western part of the state, who rendezvoused at Camp Wilkins, Pittsburg.  It left camp on July 18, 1861, for Harrisburg, where it was mustered into the U. S. service on the 21st for a three years' term, and then moved to Washington.  On Aug. 1 it was sent to Tennallytown, and after a short service at Great Falls was assigned to the 3d brigade.  This brigade made its winter quarters at Langley; fought at Dranesville in December, was ordered to the Peninsula in the spring of 1862; took part in the battles of Mechanicsville, Gaines' mill, Glendale, the second Bull Run, South Mountain, Antietam and Fredericksburg and won many laurels.  After Fredericksburg the reserves were ordered to Washington to recuperate, and in June 1863, side by side with its old comrades of the 3d brigade, the 38th fought at Gettysburg, afterward joining in the pursuit of the enemy.  The regiment remained with the Army of the Potomac through the winter, took part in the Mine Run campaign, engaged at the Wilderness in May 1864 and then fought at Spottsylvania, Totopotomoy, and Bethesda Church.  Soon after the last-named action the veterans and recruits were transferred to the 190th and 191st Pa infantry and the regiment returned to Pittsburgh, where it was mustered out on June 11, 1864.

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    Inventory Number: CON 242