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2023.03.29 01:42 Sarge45k "Missing Colors" of the 45th PVI.
It has been found!! The "missing colours" of the 45th PVI! An incredible story that has direct lines to General Lee & his family.submitted by Sarge45k to CivilWarVexillology [link] [comments]
Exceedingly rare outside of museum collections are regulation American battle standards, much less such historical flags with applied battle honors that was thought lost and has just recently been consigned by direct family descent of last caretaker. The 45th Pennsylvania was a magnificent fighting unit who lost 3 battle flags during the war. This was their last flag issued & it saw the battles of the Wilderness, Spotsylvania, Cold Harbor, Battle of the Crater, Weldon Railroad & Poplar Springs Church where the unit was decimated & much of the unit was captured. The 45th served the entire war from October 1861 to finally being mustered out July 1865 with casualties totaling about 500. General U.S. Grant planned simultaneous attacks on both of Lee’s flanks at Petersburg in Sept., 1864. Lee’s left was attacked by the Army of the James under Butler. Lee’s right was attacked by Gen. Gouverneur Warren of the 5th Corps with a goal of cutting the Boydton Plank Road supply line. Units of the 9th Corp were attached, including a brigade containing the 51st NY, the 58th MA, and the 45th PA, all posted on the extreme Union left. CS General Henry Heth formed a frontal infantry attack to counter the Union move. Cavalry General Wade Hampton supported the attack by taking on the Federal left flank. He sent Gen W.H.F. “Rooney” Lee’s brigade completely around the Union line, and Lee personally led the dismounted 9th and 10th VA cavalries which attacked the exposed rear and flank of the enemy. The result was decisive. The three Union regiment noted above, which include the 45th PA, were nearly annihilated by Lee’s Virginians. Hampton recorded it like this: As the enemy moved up to reinforce, he exposed his flank to me. I at once ordered Gen. Lee to attack, which he did with the 9th and 10th Va. Regiments in the handsomest style, leading his men in person. These regiments went in, in the line of battle, dismounted and reserved their fire until very near the enemy. Delivering it regularly, they charged, routing the enemy completely, capturing about nine hundred prisoners and ten standards. From the Union perspective, the fighting that Sept. 30 was a disaster (though fighting the next several days stabilized and advanced the Union line). Known as the Battle of Poplar Springs Church or Pebbles Farm, Division commander Gen. R. B. Potter claimed in a report a month later that the 51 NY and the 45th PA destroyed their colors before capture. This was just wishful thinking. A complete version of events is available in the History of the Forty-Fifth Regiment Pennsylvania Veteran Volunteer Infantry: According to Sergeant J. D. Straight of company I, who was with the colors and ought to know, General Potter was evidently misinformed about the colors of the Forty-fifth being destroyed. Sergeant Straight says in substance that after our line of battle had been attacked in flank and rear and had been thrown into confusion, and he, as one of the color guard, and Sergeant Joe Reigle, the color bearer, who although partially disabled by a flesh wound, was still carrying the flag, became separated from their comrades and began making their way through the brush and timber, as they supposed, into our own lines, they were suddenly confronted at close quarters by a line of dismounted Rebel cavalry. There was no time or opportunity to destroy the flag or do anything else but surrender when summoned to do so or be shot down… the boys evidently did everything within reason to save the flag. In this connection Sergeant Straight says further that the flag captured that day was the colors of the Forty-fifth Pennsylvania Veteran Volunteers, the one we received after our reenlistment and which Sergeant Reigle carried from the time we left Annapolis in April, 1864, until the battle of Cold Harbor where Reigle was wounded and Straight himself took the flag and carried it until Reigle, having recovered from the effects of his wound, resumed his duties as color bearer on the 19th of June; Reigle carrying the flag from that time until it was captured. It is not known which soldiers of the 9th and 10th VA actually captured the flag, but Gen. W. H. F. Rooney Lee kept it as a trophy. In the post war years Lee settled at Ravensworth Plantation in Fairfax County, Virginia. Putting him near the hub of DC politics, Lee became a Congressman representing that part of Northern Virginia. Within Lee’s district in Alexandria was (and still is) Episcopal High School and Seminary. Today it is one of the oldest high schools in the US, with many Washington elites sending their children to this full time boarding school. The school was well represented in the Confederacy, and the names of 61 alumni killed in Confederate service are engraved in marble in the school’s chapel. Alexandria, as everyone knows, was quickly occupied by Union troops in 1861 and Elmer Elsworth’s death was the first of the conflict. Episcopal High School and the Seminary were also occupied and ravaged by Union troops. In the 1880’s, the school petitioned Congress for reparations of some sort. Congressman Rooney Lee introduced such a bill to repay the school for damages. From Lee’s biography: the bill came up for consideration upon a favorable report; the Democrats generally favored it, but the General [Lee], fearing that the Republicans would oppose it, quietly and with dignity walked to the center of their side, and made his speech in behalf of his bill directly to them. They listened attentively and with profound respect. Finally there came an interruption from behind him: “…Was this school continued during the Rebellion?” “Yes, as far as possible. Most of the professors remained there,” said the General. “For whom did those professors pray? Did they pray for the Unionists or the Confederates?” The General’s reply was instant, “I do not know; I never heard them pray, but they were saintly men, and I assume they prayed for all sinners, and left the good Lord to say who were the sinners.” The whole House applauded…and his bill was passed. William Henry Fitzhugh “Rooney” Lee gave the flag to the principal of Episcopal high school, Launcelot M. Blackford, in 1889. The above bill passed in Congress in 1889. It is speculated that the flag was a gift or gesture of victory over the Republicans. The regulation flag staff top has inscription “W.H.F. Lee to L.M. Blackford 1889” “MAY YOU EVER INSPIRE OUR SOUTHERN BOYS TO GREATNESS”. What a wonderful sentiment from the son of Gen. Robert E. Lee who spent his life in education after the war as President of Washington College to L.M. Blackford a lifelong educator who served under Lee in the Army of Northern Virginia. L. M. Blackford who was principal for 40 years, gave the flag to Patrick Henry Callaway who in turn taught at the school for 72 years (taught from 1916 to 1988) and died in 1995 at age 100. The flag was said to be still on its staff in the Blackford years. Shredded and deteriorating, Mr. Callaway removed it from the staff and kept it in a box until his death. CONDITION: Flag is very good as professionally conserved & framed. A conservation report is available to interested parties. Flag staff is very good with mixed chocolate patina with verdigris. Inscription quite discernible.
2023.03.29 01:06 AdPatient3710 Looking at the idea of moving to the belair area. Any positives or negatives about the area.
2023.03.29 00:04 CNHTours How to upgrade to Bus. Class when booked via Ethiopian Airlines?
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