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7th Regiment, South Carolina Infantry, C.S.A.

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The best source of manuscript material on the 7th South Carolina exists at the South Caroliniana Library at the University of South Carolina. Other manuscript material exists in university libraries, county archives, and in the battlefield parks (especially Fredericksburg & Spotsylvania National Military Park). The war­time newspapers contain letters written by the soldiers, rosters, casualty lists, obituaries, etc. The University of South Carolina has these papers on microfilm, see especially the Edgefield Advertiser. The Compiled Service Records are on microfilm at the National Archives in Washington and the South Carolina Archives & History in Columbia

7th Infantry Regiment was assembled at Columbia, South Carolina, during the spring of 1861 and moved to Virginia in June. After fighting in Bonham's Brigade at First Manassas, the unit served under Generals Kershaw, Kennedy, and Conner. It participated in the campaigns of the Army of Northern Virginia from the Seven Days' Battles to Gettysburg, then accompanied Longstreet to Georgia. The 7th was active at Chickamauga and Knoxville, returned to Virginia, and saw action at The Wilderness, Spotsylvania, and Cold Harbor. It continued the fight in the Shenandoah Valley with Early and ended the war in North Carolina. This regiment totalled 581 officers and men in April, 1862 and sustained 82 casualties at Savage Station and 40 at Malvern Hill. During the Maryland Campaign, there were 13 killed and 100 wounded of 466 at Maryland Heights and 23 killed and 117 wounded of the 268 at Sharpsburg. It lost 4 killed, 57 wounded, and 61 missing at Fredericksburg, twenty-seven percent of the 408 engaged at Gettysburg, and 2 killed and 12 wounded at Bentonville. On March 23, 1865, there were 222 present for duty, and it surrendered in April. The field officers were Colonels D. Wyatt Aiken and Thomas G. Bacon; Lieutenant Colonels Elbert Bland, Robert A. Fair, Elijah J. Goggans, and Emmet Seibels; and Majors John S. Hard and William C. White.

One flag from the 7th survives at the Confederate Relic Room, Columbia, South Carolina. We would love a picture for this record but cant find one anywhere.

Manassas I OTHER NAME: First Bull Run CAMPAIGN: Manassas Campaign DATE(S): July 1861 PRINCIPAL COMMANDERS: Major General Irvin McDowell [US] Lieutenant Colonel Joseph Johnston [CS] FORCES ENGAGED: 31680 total (US 28450; CS 3230;) ESTIMATED CASUALTIES: 4878 total (US 2896; CS 1982;) DESCRIPTION: This was the first major land battle of the armies in Virginia. On July 16, 1861, the untried Union army under Brig. Gen. Irvin McDowell marched from Washington against the Confederate army, which was drawn up behind Bull Run beyond Centreville. On the 21st, McDowell crossed at Sudley Ford and attacked the Confederate left flank on Matthews Hill. Fighting raged throughout the day as Confederate forces were driven back to Henry Hill. Late in the afternoon, Confederate reinforcements (one brigade arriving by rail from the Shenandoah Valley) extended and broke the Union right flank. The Federal retreat rapidly deteriorated into a rout. Although victorious, Confederate forces were too disorganized to pursue. Confederate Gen. Bee and Col. Bartow were killed. Thomas J. Jackson earned the nom de guerre "Stonewall." By July 22, the shattered Union army reached the safety of Washington. This battle convinced the Lincoln administration that the war would be a long and costly affair. McDowell was relieved of command of the Union army and replaced by Maj. Gen. George B. McClellan, who set about reorganizing and training the troops. RESULTS: Confederate Victory CWSAC REFERENCE #: VA005

Gettysburg OTHER NAME: CAMPAIGN: Gettysburg Campaign DATE(S): June-July 1863 PRINCIPAL COMMANDERS: Major General George Meade [US] Major General Robert Lee [CS] FORCES ENGAGED: 158343 total (US 83289; CS 75054;) ESTIMATED CASUALTIES: 51000 total (US 23000; CS 28000;) DESCRIPTION: Gen. Robert E. Lee concentrated his full strength against Maj. Gen. George G. Meade's Army of the Potomac at the crossroads county seat of Gettysburg. On July 1, Confederate forces converged on the town from west and north, driving Union defenders back through the streets to Cemetery Hill. During the night, reinforcements arrived for both sides. On July 2, Lee attempted to envelop the Federals, first striking the Union left flank at the Peach Orchard, Wheatfield, Devil's Den, and the Round Tops with Longstreet's and Hill's divisions, and then attacking the Union right at Culp's and East Cemetery Hills with Ewell's divisions. By evening, the Federals retained Little Round Top and had repulsed most of Ewell's men. During the morning of July 3, the Confederate infantry were driven from their last toe-hold on Culp's Hill. In the afternoon, after a preliminary artillery bombardment, Lee attacked the Union center on Cemetery Ridge. The Pickett-Pettigrew assault (more popularly, Pickett's Charge) momentarily pierced the Union line but was driven back with severe casualties. Stuart's cavalry attempted to gain the Union rear but was repulsed. On July 4, Lee began withdrawing his army toward Williamsport on the Potomac River. His train of wounded stretched more than fourteen miles. RESULTS: Union Victory CWSAC REFERENCE #: PA002

Chickamauga OTHER NAME: CAMPAIGN: Chickamauga Campaign DATE(S): August-September 1863 PRINCIPAL COMMANDERS: Major General William Rosecrans [US] Major General Braxton Bragg [CS] FORCES ENGAGED: 0 total (US 0; CS 0;) ESTIMATED CASUALTIES: 34624 total (US 16170; CS 18454;) DESCRIPTION: After the Tullahoma Campaign, Rosecrans renewed his offensive, aiming to force the Confederates out of Chattanooga. The three army corps comprising Rosecrans' s army split and set out for Chattanooga by separate routes. In early September, Rosecrans consolidated his forces scattered in Tennessee and Georgia and forced Bragg's army out of Chattanooga, heading south. The Union troops followed it and brushed with it at Davis' Cross Roads. Bragg was determined to reoccupy Chattanooga and decided to meet a part of Rosecrans's army, defeat them, and then move back into the city. On the 17th he headed north, intending to meet and beat the XXI Army Corps. As Bragg marched north on the 18th, his cavalry and infantry fought with Union cavalry and mounted infantry which were armed with Spencer repeating rifles. Fighting began in earnest on the morning of the 19th, and Bragg's men hammered but did not break the Union line. The next day, Bragg continued his assault on the Union line on the left, and in late morning, Rosecrans was informed that he had a gap in his line. In moving units to shore up the supposed gap, Rosencrans created one, and James Longstreet's men promptly exploited it, driving one-third of the Union army, including Rosecrans himself, from the field. George H. Thomas took over command and began consolidating forces on Horseshoe Ridge and Snodgrass Hill. Although the Rebels launched determined assaults on these forces, they held until after dark. Thomas then led these men from the field leaving it to the Confederates. The Union retired to Chattanooga while the Rebels occupied the surrounding heights. RESULTS: Confederate Victory CWSAC REFERENCE #: GA004

Wilderness OTHER NAME: Combas at Parker's Store, Craig's Meeting House, Todd's Tavern, Brock Road, The Furnaces CAMPAIGN: Grant's Overland Campaign DATE(S): May-June 1864 PRINCIPAL COMMANDERS: Lieutenant General Ulysses Grant [US] Major General Robert Lee [CS] FORCES ENGAGED: 162920 total (US 101895; CS 61025;) ESTIMATED CASUALTIES: 28800 total (US 18000; CS 10800;) DESCRIPTION: The opening battle of Grant's sustained offensive against the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia, known as the Overland Campaign, was fought at the Wilderness, May 5-7. On the morning of May 5, 1864, the Union V Corps attacked Ewell's Corps on the Orange Turnpike, while A.P. Hill's corps during the afternoon encountered Getty's Division (VI Corps) and Hancock's II Corps on the Plank Road. Fighting was fierce but inconclusive as both sides attempted to maneuver in the dense woods. Darkness halted the fighting, and both sides rushed forward reinforcements. At dawn on May 6, Hancock attacked along the Plank Road, driving Hill's Corps back in confusion. Longstreet's Corps arrived in time to prevent the collapse of the Confederate right flank. At noon, a devastating Confederate flank attack in Hamilton's Thicket sputtered out when Lt. Gen. James Longstreet was wounded by his own men. The IX Corps (Burnside) moved against the Confederate center, but was repulsed. Union generals James S. Wadsworth and Alexander Hays were killed. Confederate generals John M. Jones, Micah Jenkins, and Leroy A. Stafford were killed. The battle was a tactical draw. Grant, however, did not retreat as had the other Union generals before him. On May 7, the Federals advanced by the left flank toward the crossroads of Spotsylvania Courthouse. RESULTS: Indecisive CWSAC REFERENCE #: VA046

Spotsylvania Court House OTHER NAME: Combats at Laurel Hill and Corbin's Bridge, Ni River, Laurel Hill, Po River, Bloody Angle, Piney Branch Church, Harrison House, Harris Farm CAMPAIGN: Grant's Overland Campaign DATE(S): May-June 1864 PRINCIPAL COMMANDERS: Lieutenant General Ulysses Grant [US] Major General Robert Lee [CS] FORCES ENGAGED: 152000 total (US 100000; CS 52000;) ESTIMATED CASUALTIES: 27000 total (US 18000; CS 9000;) DESCRIPTION: After the Wilderness, Grant's and Meade's advance on Richmond by the left flank was stalled at Spotsylvania Court House on May 8. This two-week battle was a series of combats along the Spotsylvania front. The Union attack against the Bloody Angle at dawn, May 12-13, captured nearly a division of Lee's army and came near to cutting the Confederate army in half. Confederate counterattacks plugged the gap, and fighting continued unabated for nearly 20 hours in what may well have been the most ferociously sustained combat of the Civil War. On May 19, a Confederate attempt to turn the Union right flank at Harris Farm was beaten back with severe casualties. Union generals Sedgwick (VI Corps commander) and Rice were killed. Confederate generals Johnson and Steuart were captured, Daniel and Perrin mortally wounded. On May 21, Grant disengaged and continued his advance on Richmond. RESULTS: Indecisive CWSAC REFERENCE #: VA048

Savage's Station OTHER NAME: CAMPAIGN: Peninsula Campaign DATE(S): March-July 1862 PRINCIPAL COMMANDERS: Major General Edwin Sumner [US] Major General John Magruder [CS] FORCES ENGAGED: 0 total (US 0; CS 0;) ESTIMATED CASUALTIES: 1363 total (US 919; CS 444;) DESCRIPTION: Fourth of the Seven Days' Battles. On June 29, the main body of the Union army began a general withdrawal toward the James River. Magruder pursued along the railroad and the Williamsburg Road and struck Sumner's Corps (the Union rearguard) with three brigades near Savage's Station. Confederate Brig. Gen. Richard Giffith was mortally wounded during the fight. Jackson's divisions were stalled north of the Chickahominy. Union forces continued to withdraw across White Oak Swamp, abandoning supplies and more than 2,500 wounded soldiers in a field hospital. RESULTS: Indecisive CWSAC REFERENCE #: VA019

Malvern Hill OTHER NAME: Poindexter's Farm CAMPAIGN: Peninsula Campaign DATE(S): March-July 1862 PRINCIPAL COMMANDERS: Major General George McClellan [US] Major General Robert Lee [CS] FORCES ENGAGED: 0 total (US 0; CS 0;) ESTIMATED CASUALTIES: 8355 total (US 3000; CS 5355;) DESCRIPTION: This was the sixth and last of the Seven Days' Battles. On July 1, 1862, Gen. Robert E. Lee launched a series of disjointed assaults on the nearly impregnable Union position on Malvern Hill. The Confederates suffered more than 5,300 casualties without gaining an inch of ground. Despite his victory, McClellan withdrew to entrench at Harrison's Landing on James River, where his army was protected by gunboats. This ended the Peninsula Campaign. When McClellan's army ceased to threaten Richmond, Lee sent Jackson to operate against Maj. Gen. John Pope's army along the Rapidan River, thus initiating the Northern Virginia Campaign. RESULTS: Union Victory CWSAC REFERENCE #: VA021

Antietam OTHER NAME: Sharpsburg CAMPAIGN: Maryland Campaign DATE(S): September 1862 PRINCIPAL COMMANDERS: Major General George McClellan [US] Major General Robert Lee [CS] FORCES ENGAGED: 0 total (US 0; CS 0;) ESTIMATED CASUALTIES: 22700 total (US 12400; CS 10300;) DESCRIPTION: On September 16, Maj. Gen. George B. McClellan confronted Lee's Army of Northern Virginia at Sharpsburg, Maryland. At dawn September 17, Hooker's corps mounted a powerful assault on Lee's left flank that began the single bloodiest day in American military history. Attacks and counterattacks swept across Miller's cornfield and fighting swirled around the Dunker Church. Union assaults against the Sunken Road eventually pierced the Confederate center, but the Federal advantage was not followed up. Late in the day, Burnside's corps finally got into action, crossing the stone bridge over Antietam Creek and rolling up the Confederate right. At a crucial moment, A.P. Hill's division arrived from Harpers Ferry and counterattacked, driving back Burnside and saving the day. Although outnumbered two-to-one, Lee committed his entire force, while McClellan sent in less than three-quarters of his army, enabling Lee to fight the Federals to a standstill. During the night, both armies consolidated their lines. In spite of crippling casualties, Lee continued to skirmish with McClellan throughout the 18th, while removing his wounded south of the river. McClellan did not renew the assaults. After dark, Lee ordered the battered Army of Northern Virginia to withdraw across the Potomac into the Shenandoah Valley. RESULTS: Indecisive CWSAC REFERENCE #: MD003

Fredericksburg I OTHER NAME: Marye's Heights CAMPAIGN: Fredericksburg Campaign DATE(S): November-December 1862 PRINCIPAL COMMANDERS: Major General Ambrose Burnside [US] Major General Robert Lee [CS] FORCES ENGAGED: 100007 total (US 0; CS 100007;) ESTIMATED CASUALTIES: 17900 total (US 12600; CS 5300;) DESCRIPTION: On November 14, Burnside, now in command of the Army of the Potomac, sent a corps to occupy the vicinity of Falmouth near Fredericksburg. The rest of the army soon followed. Lee reacted by entrenching his army on the heights behind the town. On December 11, Union engineers laid five pontoon bridges across the Rappahannock under fire. On the 12th, the Federal army crossed over, and on December 13, Burnside mounted a series of futile frontal assaults on Prospect Hill and Marye's Heights that resulted in staggering casualties. Meade's division, on the Union left flank, briefly penetrated Jackson's line but was driven back by a counterattack. Union generals C. Feger Jackson and George Bayard, and Confederate generals Thomas R.R. Cobb and Maxey Gregg were killed. On December 15, Burnside called off the offensive and recrossed the river, ending the campaign. Burnside initiated a new offensive in January 1863, which quickly bogged down in the winter mud. The abortive "Mud March" and other failures led to Burnside's replacement by Maj. Gen. Joseph Hooker in January 1863. RESULTS: Confederate Victory CWSAC REFERENCE #: VA028

Bentonville OTHER NAME: Bentonsville CAMPAIGN: Campaign of the Carolina's DATE(S): February-March 1865 PRINCIPAL COMMANDERS: Major General William Sherman [US] Lieutenant Colonel Joseph Johnston [CS] FORCES ENGAGED: 0 total (US 0; CS 0;) ESTIMATED CASUALTIES: 4133 total (US 1527; CS 2606;) DESCRIPTION: While Slocum's advance was stalled at Averasborough by Hardee's troops, the right wing of Sherman's army under command of Maj. Gen. O.O. Howard marched toward Goldsborough. On March 19, Slocum encountered the entrenched Confederates of Gen. Joseph E. Johnston who had concentrated to meet his advance at Bentonville. Late afternoon, Johnston attacked, crushing the line of the XIV Corps. Only strong counterattacks and desperate fighting south of the Goldsborough Road blunted the Confederate offensive. Elements of the XX Corps were thrown into the action as they arrived on the field. Five Confederate attacks failed to dislodge the Federal defenders and darkness ended the first day's fighting. During the night, Johnston contracted his line into a "V" to protect his flanks with Mill Creek to his rear. On March 20, Slocum was heavily reinforced, but fighting was sporadic. Sherman was inclined to let Johnston retreat. On the 21st, however, Johnston remained in position while he removed his wounded. Skirmishing heated up along the entire front. In the afternoon, Maj. Gen. Joseph Mower led his Union division along a narrow trace that carried it across Mill Creek into Johnston's rear. Confederate counterattacks stopped Mower's advance, saving the army's only line of communication and retreat. Mower withdrew, ending fighting for the day. During the night, Johnston retreated across the bridge at Bentonville. Union forces pursued at first light, driving back Wheeler's rearguard and saving the bridge. Federal pursuit was halted at Hannah's Creek after a severe skirmish. Sherman, after regrouping at Goldsborough, pursued Johnston toward Raleigh. On April 18, Johnston signed an armistice with Sherman at the Bennett House, and on April 26, formally surrendered his army. RESULTS: Union Victory CWSAC REFERENCE #: NC020

Historical Narrative While much of the first year was spent near the front in Northern Virginia and on the Virginia Peninsula between the York and James Rivers, the men of the 7th only saw minor skirmishing. It was time well spent learning their trade as soldiers. The weak died or were sent home as they were of no value to the army. The survivors spent countless hours learning Civil War drills and maneuvers, suffered the rigors of long marches, witnessed the dangers of combat and became accustom to a lack of sufficient food and clothing. The regiment was reorganized with twelve companies A to M, May 14, 1862, Companies A and M being formed of men who had previously served in other companies of the regiment. The first serious combat occurred at Savage Station on June 29, 1862 during the Seven Days Campaign. In this brief but intense fight, the regiment lost 25 killed or mortally wounded and 59 wounded. Two days later they again came under fire at their 7th battle, Malvern Hill. While they escaped the worst of the slaughter, an additional 11 died and 19 more were wounded. Held in the Richmond area to protect the Confederate capital, the 7th South Carolina missed the severe fighting of 2nd Manassas. During the siege of Harpers Ferry, Kershaws Brigade drew the key assignment of capturing Maryland Heights. On September 13, the 7th bore the brunt of the fighting in the successful capture of the heights, but paid a high price losing 28 killed and about 85 wounded. Four days later, they fought near the Dunker Church at Antietam losing another 39 killed and 137 wounded. Three months later at Fredericksburg, the 7th South Carolina stood atop Maryes Heights next to the Marye House. Lieutenant Colonel Elbert Bland brilliantly used the terrain to his advantage by having his command load their weapons while protected by the reverse slope of the hill and exposed themselves to enemy fire only briefly while they fired. The right wing of the regiment being more exposed by the lay of the ground suffered the majority of the 7 killed and 62 wounded. A long cold winter allowed time for the exhausted soldiers to regain their strength and many of the wounded to heal.In the first week of May, 1863, their brigade held many important positions at Chancellorsville, but were only lightly engaged suffering 2 killed and 11 wounded. The momentum of back to back victories along the Rappahannock River propelled the Confederate army north to the Pennsylvania college town of Gettysburg on July 2, 1863. The 7th marched across the Rose Farm and seized Stony Hill, only to be forced back by a counter attack from the Wheatfield. The unit lost 29 killed and 87 wounded in the bloodiest day of the war for Kershaws Brigade. The Confederates returned to Virginia in late July for badly needed rest. Six weeks later, Kershaws Brigade boarded trains for northern Georgia. Then, Sept 20, 1863 on Snodgrass Hill at Chickamauga the regiment lost about 100 more men including two of its best officers, Lieutenant Colonel Elbert Bland and Major John Hard. Beginning in November, the brigade participated in the East Tennessee campaign. Although not heavily engaged at several smaller engagements, the casualties continued to mount and morale suffered during the long cold winter in a section of the South where Union sentiment dominated. In April, the brigade joyfully returned to General Robert E. Lees army in central Virginia. But joy quickly turned to blood, sweat and hard work as Lee tangled with General Grants forces in a series of five battles that went on for six weeks without a day of rest. The survivors choose not to remember the bloodiest and toughest campaign in American history. Twice in 48 hours, Kershaws Brigade helped save Lees army on May 6th at Wilderness and then at Spotsylvania. By the third week in June, the armies had reached Petersburg. After an Union effort to seize Petersburg failed, Grant steadily stretched out his lines to the west to seize the roads and railroads into the city. At the same time, Grant tried a series of quick thrusts to the northeast to capture Richmond. Kershaws Brigade participated in one of these actions known as 1st Deep Bottom at the end of July. In early August, the brigade went to the Shenandoah Valley where they fought in several small engagements as well as the highly significant action at Cedar Creek on October 19 in which the Confederate force in the valley was routed after an early morning success. The Carolinians returned to the Richmond area for a few weeks and in early January, 1865 went to their home state of South Carolina in an attempt to stop General William T. Sherman march. Badly outnumbered and outmaneuvered in the Palmetto State, the brigade fought their last battles in North Carolina at Averasboro and Bentonville in an unsuccessful attempt to stop Sherman. About April 9, 1865, the 7th Regiment South Carolina Infantry was consolidated with the 15th Regiment South Carolina Infantry and a part of Blanchard's South Carolina Reserves to form the new 7th Regiment South Carolina Infantry. On April 26, General Joseph E. Johnston surrendered his Confederate force to Sherman. A week later newly consolidated 7th Reg SC Infantry was paroled at Greensboro, NC, on May 2, 1865. The field officers were Colonels D. Wyatt Aiken and Thomas G. Bacon; Lieutenant Colonels Elbert Bland, Robert A. Fair, Elijah J. Goggans, and Emmet Seibels; and Majors John S. Hard and William C. White.