SURVIVORS ASSOCIATION BADGE: 27th AND 33rd NY INFANTRY & 1st NY. VET. CAVALRY

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Item Code: 30-2217

This badge is in excellent condition and consists of an upper pin-back brooch in the shape of an Army of the Potomac Cavalry Corps badge consisting of crossed sabers in gold on a blue oval with white border with gold dots in an oval surrounded by a sunburst or “glory.” From this two short chains suspend a gilt edged white cross, with “33d. Regt” at top, “N.Y.Vols.” at bottom, and an additional “33” at either side. A gilt bordered red cross at center reads “27th Regt.” (the “N.Y. Vols.” doing duty for both outfits) and is surrounded by a gilt circle with “Survivors Association” in black enamel, separated by two stars in blue.

Both the 27th and 33rd were two-year regiments from New York (organized before the U.S. government specified three-year terms.) The 27th lost 2 offices and 72 men killed or mortally wounded during its service, which included significant losses at Bull Run and Gaines Mill, and duty in the 1st Division of the 6th Corps, explaining the red cross. The 33rd lost 3 officers and 44 men killed or mortally wounded at engagements such as Garnet’s Farm, Antietam, and Second Fredericksburg and Salem Heights. It served in the 2nd Division of the Sixth, hence the white cross. The 1st NY Veteran Cavalry was organized in Fall  1863 and lost 4 officers and 56 men killed or mortally wounded, which is a heavy count for a cavalry unit, and saw action at some sixty points, mostly in the Shenandoah, during their service in the Department of West Virginia.

All three regiments organized and recruited in central and western New York, so it makes sense that their veterans’ organizations would combine resources for reunions, etc. We find the 27th NY and 1st NY Vet. Cav. members publishing proceedings of joint reunions and banquets as early as 1876 and the veterans of the 33rd NY joining them as early as 1887. This is a very nice badge in excellent condition, and the creation of a “survivors” association shows their awareness of both their wartime sacrifices and the gradual thinning of their ranks as older men by time.  [sr]

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