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  • Major Arnold Wyman

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    Major Arnold Wyman - Inventory Number: CDV 385 

    Bust view of Major Arnold Wyman

    1st Rhode Island Cavalry

    1st New Hampshire Cavalry

    Wounded November 12th 1862 at Middletown, VA

    Prisoner of War June 8th 1863 at Middleburg, VA

    Enlisted from Manchester NH at 35 years old on 10/1/1861 as a Private into Company "K" 1st RI Cavalry.

    He was transferred out on 1/7/1864 and he transferred into Company "K" 1st New Hampshire Cavalry.  He was Mustered Out on 7/15/1865 at Cloud's Mills, VA

     

    Arnold Wyman:

    Residence Manchester NH; 35 years old.

    Enlisted on 10/1/1861 as a Private.

    On 10/24/1861 he mustered into "K" Co. RI 1st Cavalry

    He was transferred out on 1/7/1864

    On 1/7/1864 he transferred into "K" Co. NH 1st Cavalry

    He was Mustered Out on 7/15/1865 at Cloud's Mills, VA

    He was listed as:

    * Detached 5/15/1862 Luray, VA

    * Returned 6/11/1862 (place not stated)

    * Wounded 11/12/1862 Middletown, VA

    * Detached 8/10/1863 Conscript Camp, RI

    Promotions:

    * Ordnance Sergt

    * 1st Sergt 10/28/1861

    * 1st Lieut 12/3/1861

    * Capt 8/4/1862

    * Major 3/18/1864

    Intra Regimental Company Transfers:

    * 3/18/1864 from company K to Field & Staff

    Other Information

    Born in Greenfield, NH

    After the War he lived in Middletown, VA

     

    Rhode Island:

    First Regiment Rhode Island Cavalry.

    (Three years)

         The First Regiment Rhode Island Cavalry was originally composed of three battalions, two of which were recruited by the State, and one by New Hampshire.  This was under a modification of an order of the War Department, dated September 27th, 1861, for the organizing of a Regiment of Cavalry to be composed of companies or squadrons recruited in the New England States.  In the work of enlistment in Rhode Island, Colonel George W. Hallett, Major Willard Sayles, Major William Sanford, General Gould and others were actively engaged.  In New Hampshire the squadron of four companies was enlisted under the direction of Colonel Robert B. Lawton.  The Regiment was organized in the autumn of 1861, and placed temporarily under the command of Colonel George W. Hallett, subsequently appointed Chief of Cavalry in Rhode Island.  Its first camp named " Camp Hallett," was in Cranston.  In November Colonel Lawton received his commission.  In December the Regiment was removed to the Riding Park in Pawtucket, which received the name of " Camp Arnold," in honor of Lieut. Governor Samuel G. Arnold. Here the two Rhode Island battalions were joined by the battalion from New Hampshire, and the winter was passed.

         March 12th, 1862, the second battalion under Major Sanford left for Washington, followed on the 14th by the first and third.  On arriving in Washington the Regiment was assigned to the Cavalry of the Army of the Potomac, under Brigadier General George Stoneman, Chief of Cavalry.  March 19th Company D went as escort with Governor Sprague and party to Manassas, to obtain the remains of Colonel Slocum, Major Ballou and Captain Tower.  On the 30th the Regiment was attached to General Hatch's Cavalry Brigade of the Fifth Corps, commanded by Major General Banks, then in the valley of the Shenandoah.  On the 4th of April it proceeded to Warrenton Junction, where its camp, from the unfavorable nature of the ground, received the name of " Camp Mud."

         On the 5th of May the Regiment with the brigade removed to a more healthy locality on high ground near Catlett's Station, and on the 12th was transferred to Brigadier General Duryea's brigade.  On the 22d, the third battalion reported to Brigadier General Shields, then en route for Fredericksburg. On the 24th the first battalion was ordered to report to Brigadier General John W. Geary, at Thoroughfare Gap, and on the 27th the first and second battalions joined each other at Centreville.  May 29th General McDowell's First Corps commenced a march to Front Royal, the third battalion leading the advance, and the remainder of the Regiment acting as rear guard.  At Front Royal a sharp engagement ensued between the third battalion and the rebel cavalry, infantry and artillery occupying the town, which resulted in their rout, with the loss of 117 men taken prisoners.  There were about one hundred men of the First Rhode Island Cavalry in this charge and the enemy's force was the 12th Georgia Infantry, 1000 strong, one company Asby's Cavalry and a section of artillery.  They took 117 rebel prisoners, recaptured twenty Union prisoners, among whom were Major Collins of the First Vermont Cavalry, the Quartermaster and Adjutant of the First Maryland Infantry, and the Adjutant of the Third New York Cavalry; also saved bridges after they had been set on fire by the rebels, and captured cars, engines, arms, ammunition, wagons, stores, to an immense amount, the city being at that time Jackson's depot.  The highest military officers warmly applauded this gallant charge and the reputation of the Regiment was firmly established. The Colonel of the 12th Georgia Infantry was court-martialed for allowing his Regiment to be routed by Yankee cavalry.  The loss of the battalion was ten killed and wounded among the former Captain William P. Ainsworth, of Company L.  Captain Ainsworth belonged in Nashua, N. H.  He was a brave officer and highly esteemed.

         On the 2d of June the Regiment was again united and marched to Luray, the rebels retiring on their approach, and thence to Front Royal, where all but companies E and G were assigned to Brigadier General Rickett's division.  From Front Royal it marched to Manassas, which it reached June 17th, much worn by hard service and reported to General McDowell.  Here it received a visit from Governor Sprague, and was reviewed by him.  Colonel Lawton having resigned, Major Alfred N. Duffie, an accomplished French officer of the 2d New York Harris Light Cavalry, was appointed, July 4th, to succeed him.  A thorough course of drill for the next four weeks under his immediate inspection prepared the Regiment for greater efficiency in the work that was to follow.  Joining General Pope's army at Culpepper, it was assigned to picket duty at Raccoon Ford.  It marched thence and opened the fight at Cedar Mountain, August 9th, losing three men killed, six men wounded and two men captured and eleven horses killed.  Lieutenant J. P. Taylor died the morning after the battle from the effect of a sunstroke received during the action.  It participated in all the battles and skirmishes of Pope's campaign.  At Groveton, August 29th, and at Bull Run, August 31st, it was under fire. At Chantilly, September 1st, it drew the enemy's fire and engaged in the fight, losing two men wounded, and two horses. On General McClellan assuming the command of the Army of the Potomac, after the second Bull Run disaster, the Regiment was assigned to duty with General Stoneman, commanding the Corps of Observation.  Resting for a few weeks at Poolesville, Md., it was again in motion October 27th, for Falmouth, and during the entire march was constantly on the flanks of the army anddoing picket duty.  In an affair at Montville, in the Loudon valley, where it was attacked by a large body of Stuart'scavalry, Captain Lorenzo D. Gove was killed, and Lieutenant Joseph F. Andrews and several privates were taken prisoners.

         On the 1st of December the Regiment was assigned to the second brigade of cavalry of the Centre Grand Division, Brigadier General William W. Averill commanding.  During the battle of Fredericksburg, December 13th, it was sent from Falmouth to Dumfries, twenty-five miles distant, to protect the trains.  December 19th, it received through Governor Sprague a handsome flag from the ladies of Providence.  The presentation was made at dress parade by Colonel Tristam Burges, of the Governor's Staff, and the gift was accepted with hearty cheers.  From this date until March following, the Regiment was engaged on hazardous outpost duty, rendered doubly trying by the severity of the weather, the deprivation of shelter, and to a great extent of fires.  March 1st, Colonel Duffie's command was enlarged to that of a brigade, comprising the 1st Massachusetts, 1st Rhode Island, 4th New York and 6th Ohio Cavalry, and constituting the first brigade of the first cavalry division.  February 25th, 1863, Stuart with his cavalry attacked the picket line in the rear of the Federal army and was handsomely repulsed.  In this encounter, Lieutentant Lothrop B. Shurtliff, and nineteen men were taken prisoners.  What was called " the first cavalry fight of the war," took place at Kelly's Ford, March 17th.  Here the Regiment displayed great gallantry and achieved an honorable distinction.  It charged across the river, the fords of which were deep, well defended and barricaded, repulsed the enemy, and took twenty-five prisoners.  In crossing the river, Lieutenant Simeon A. Brown with eighteen men took the advance, and drove the rebels from their rifle pits.  The 4th New York Cavalry had made two unsuccessful charges before Lieutenant Brown led forward his eighteen men.  On the opposite bank one hundred rebels sheltered in earth works rained a deadly fire on the ford; on this side was a barricade so built that only one horse could leap over it at a time.  Of the nineteen gallant soldiers who rode to the ford, only Lieutenant Simeon Brown, Sergeant Emmos D. Guild, privates John A. Medbury and Patrick Parker reached the opposite bank, the other fifteen men were stopped by bullets striking them or their horses.

    The main body of the Regiment under Major Farrington promptly moved across the ford in support of Lieutenant Brown's forlorn hope, and the rebels fled from the rifle pits towards their horses, but twenty-five were captured by the 1st Rhode Island before they could mount.  The river at the ford was four feet deep, the current very swift and some of the best rebel cavalry made a desperate defence.  Three bullets pierced Lieutenant Brown's uniform and two wounded his horse, and the brave officer, after the battle, was summoned to the headquarters of General Hooker, who in person complimented Lieutenant Brown and recommended his promotion to the rank of captain.  Colonel Duffie, in crossing at the head of the Regiment, had his horse wounded and fall under him.  In an open field across the river three charges were made by the Union forces, each time driving the enemy.  In this fight, the accomplished Assistant Adjutant-General of the Brigade, Lieutenant Nathaniel Bowditch, received a mortal wound.  Major Farrington, Captains Allen Baker, Charles H. Thayer, and Augustus H. Bixby, Lieutenants George H. Thompson, George W. Easterbrooks, and George W. Darling, Sergeant James E. Bennett, and Corporal James W. Vincent, were among the wounded.  Captain Thayer and Lieutenant Darling and fourteen enlisted men were taken prisoners.  Lieutenant Henry L. Nicolai, a promising officer, and Sergeant Jeremiah Fitzgerald, were killed.  The whole number of killed and wounded was twenty-six, and sixteen were taken prisoners, having charged too far into the enemy's lines.  Colonel Duffie, in his official report of the battle to Adjutant-General Mauran, speaks in enthusiastic terms of the courage and good conduct of the men.  " They have fully justified," he says, " every high hope, every noble impulse with which you sent them, and with which they came to the field of war, to share either its glories or its honorable graves."  The total loss on the Union side was eighty, of which forty-two were from the 1st Rhode Island.  It had more than one-half the loss, out of a force less than one tenth the whole number engaged.

         In April following this battle, the Regiment accompanied General Stoneman in his raid towards Richmond, and in May took part in the battle of Chancellorsville, losing a few men taken prisoners.  June 9th, during the battle of Brandy Station, it was with the division commanded by Colonel Duffie, and was engaged in the capture of Stephensburg.  Two men were killed and three captured in this battle.  June 17th the Regiment advanced to Middleburg, where the rear-guard of Stuart's command was encountered.  After a brisk fight of half an hour, the rebels retreated in disorder.  The town was held till 7 o'clock, P. M., and barricaded.  At about 5 o'clock, Captain Frank Allen with two men was despatched to General Kilpatrick, at Aldie, for re-enforcements.  In the meantime the enemy surrounded the town and attempted to storm the barricades, but were repulsed with great slaughter.  In three successive charges they were driven back, but in view of his perilous situation, and no aid arriving, Colonel Duffie retired from the town, crossed Little River and bivouacked for the night. With no prospect of succor, and being informed by scouts previously sent out that the-roads in every direction were full of the enemy's cavalry, Colonel Duffie on the 18th directed the head of his column on the road to Aldie, when a severe engagement with the enemy commenced.  Though hemmed in by a vastly superior force in the front and rear and on both flanks, the Colonel succeeded in cutting his way through, and escaped by Hopeville Gap.  This fight resulted in five killed, fourteen wounded, and 200 taken prisoners.  Among the former was Lieutenant Joseph A. Chedell; of the wounded were Captain Augustus H. Bixby, who in a charge had a horse shot under him, Captains Edward E. Chase and George N. Bliss, and Lieutenants Charles G. A. Peterson, Hiram P. Barker, Ezra B. Parker, Simeon A. Brown and Barnard Ellis.  Surgeon Augustine A. Mann rendered essential service in rallying the men and leading a command to the charge.  He was taken prisoner to Richmond, and released in November, 1863.  In effecting their escape, the officers and men of the Regiment were greatly scattered. Three days after the battle, Colonel Duffie with four officers and twenty-seven men reported to the Military Governor of Alexandria, and on the fourth day, June 22d, Lieutenant-Colonel Thompson arrived with eighty-seven men.  Major Farrington with two officers and twenty-three men was for a time cut of F from the rest of the Regiment, and afterremaining twenty-four hours within the rebel lines, succeeded in bringing his party safely in.  Captain George N. Bliss crossed Bull Run Mountains with six men and joined the Regiment at Alexandria.  Sergeant Palmer and twelve men were also cut off, but rejoined the Regiment without loss. Sergeant George A. Robbins, having charge of the flag, was taken prisoner, but after about a week of captivity made his escape.  He saved the flag from falling into the hands of the rebels by concealing it about his person.  For this, and for meritorious conduct in battle, he was promoted to be First Lieutenant.  Colonel Duffie, in his official report of this battle, attributes the unfortunate result to the neglect of the General commanding cavalry to send forward the aid solicited.  He says, " had re-enforcements been sent me during the night of the 17th as I requested, Stuart's cavalry would have been destroyed."  It appears by the report of Captain Allen, bearer of Colonel Duffie's despatch, that on arriving at Aldie he delivered it to General Kilpatrick at 9 P. M.  The General informed him that his brigade was so worn that he could not send any re-enforcements to Middeburg, but that he would report the situation of Colonel Duffie's Regiment to General Gregg.  Returning, he said that General Gregg had gone to state the facts to General Pleasanton, and there, so far as the record shows, the matter ended.  At all events nothing was ever heard from the latter headquarters.

         On the 23d of June, Colonel Duffie was promoted to be Brigadier General of Volunteers for gallant services, and on the occasion of separating from those with whom for nearly a year he had shared the fatigues and perils of war, he issued a fraternal farewell order.  The command of the Regiment was now assumed by Lieutenant Colonel John L. Thompson, who proceeded at once to re-organize, equip and prepare it for the field. With about one hundred men he joined the Army of the Potomac at Gettysburg, Pa., and was in all the cavalry reconnoissances and skirmishes attendant upon the retreat of the rebel army after their defeat at that place.  July 18th, Captain Allen Baker with one hundred men reported to Brigadier General Rufus King, and went to Centreville, the advance line of the defenses of Washington, to look after Colonel Mosby and his guerrillas.  Major Farrington with the residue of the Regiment, joined the Army of the Potomac at Warrenton, at which place all the different detachments concentrated in August, and under Lieutenant Colonel Thompson joined the 1st brigade 2d cavalry division, commanded by Colonel J. B. McIntosh of the 3d Pennsylvania Cavalry, Brigadier General Gregg being division commander.  Subsequently the Regiment was detached with the 1st Massachusetts and 6th Ohio Cavalry, under Colonel Sargeant, as an advance force at Orleans, and in the beginning of September again rejoined the brigade at Warrenton.

         From September 12th to November 10th, the Regiment participated in engagements at Culpepper Court House, Rapidan Station, Pony Mountain, Sulphur Springs, Auburn, Bristoe Station, Wolf Run and Rappahannock Station, besides guarding the rear and the railroad communication at Catlett's Station. About the 20th of November it was detached from the brigade and reported to Brigade General Kenly for duty with the First Corps in guarding the railroad.  The army advanced to Mine Run, and during the battle there on the 27th, the Regiment was engaged in scouting for guerrillas.  Relieved from duty with the 1st Corps by Major General Sykes, it was again scattered; the first battalion under Captain John Rogers, being stationed at Warrenton Junction; the second battalion, Captain Joshua Vose, at Bealton; and the third battalion, Major Farrington, at Catlett's Station.  And this brings the synoptical history of the Regiment down to the close of the year 1863.

         January 5th, 1864, the New Hampshire battalion was permanently detached from the Regiment to form a nucleus of a regiment from that State, and subsequently went home to recruit.  February 16th, an order was issued by the War Department to consolidate the First and Third Rhode Island Cavalry, which was shortly after annulled.  March 26th the Regiment, including the re-enlisted veterans, came to Providence on furlough, under command of Major Farrington, and were greeted on their arrival with a national salute.  They were escorted to Howard Hall, where they were welcomed by Adjutant-General Edward C. Mauran and by Lieutenant Governor Padelford.  After a brief response by Major Farrington, the men partook of the collation provided, and were dismissed. April 8th, the Regiment left for Washington, and on the 9th of May was ordered (unmounted) on duty in the defense of the Capital and was assigned to the cavalry brigade commanded by Colonel Charles R. Lowell.  May 14th it reported to Brigadier General Abercrombie, at Belle Plain, and was there equipped and mounted.  May 24th it was stationed on both sides of the Rappahannock at Port Conway and Port Royal.  May 30th it marched to White House on the Pamunky river; June 22d to Charles City Court House and Wyanoke Landing; June 28th crossed the James river; the next day marched to Reams' Station on the Weldon Railroad, and after scouting in that vicinity returned to Light House Landing, to recruit horses and men, and to equip.  July 26th, the Regiment crossed the Appomattox river; on the 27th crossed the James river at Dutch Gap, and had a brisk skirmish with rebel cavalry; and on the 28th attacked the rebel infantry with the loss of one man killed.  

         Early in August the Regiment joined General Sheridan in the Shenandoah Valley, and participated in the movements against General Early in that quarter.  It was engaged in skirmishes and battles at Charlestown, Kearnysville, Smithville, Berrysville, Summit Point, Opequan river, Winchester, Fisher's Hill, Milford Creek, New Market, Waynesboro, where Captain George N. Bliss was wounded and taken prisoner, Kernstown, Woodstock, Cedar Creek and Road's Hill.  Captain Bliss was sent to Libby Prison, and December 9th, 1864, placed in a cell as one of several hostages for rebels sentenced to be hanged. 


    Inventory Number: CDV 385