15th CORPS VETERAN’S IDENTIFICATION BADGE OF WILLIAM RUEBELMANN, BATTERY B 1st MICH LIGHT ARTILLERY 1861-1865, P.O.W. SHILOH

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Item Code: 480-345

This two-piece badge is silver and consists of a T-bar pin-back top bar in the shape of a banner scroll from which is suspended a 15th Army Corps badge. Both the scroll and lower badge have narrow border lines with small arrowhead accents in the corners, likely stamped, but the pinback bar has the owner’s name and unit engraved in script in the center: “Wm Ruebelmann / Battery B 1st Mich LA.” The corps badge is diamond shaped and bears the image of a cartridge box flap with oval “US” plate on it and the words “FORTY ROUNDS,” which is the well-known badge adopted by the 15th Army Corps, with the apocryphal story attached to it that a veteran, when asked about a corps insignia, had slapped his cartridge box, carrying the full load of forty cartridges, saying it was the only badge they needed. Both elements of the badge show a natural, uncleaned tarnish from age. The pin is present and functional on the upper bar.  NOTE: The first photo above shows most accurately its appearance to the naked eye; the others are enhanced to show detail.

Ruebelmann, appearing in some records as Riebelmann, enlisted at Detroit 11/5/1861, giving his age as 18, and mustered into Battery B, 1st Mich. Light Artillery 12/16/61. He was captured at Shiloh 4/6/62 and spent 53 days at Macon, GA, and other prisons. He re-enlisted 12/24/63, finally mustering out 6/15/65 at Detroit. We have not had much luck in finding more personal information about him and do not find him in the index cards for the 1890 veteran census, so he may have died some time before that, but he was certainly proud of his service to have acquired the badge.

The battery’s first service was in the District and Army of West Tennessee in March-April 1862, during which time it was captured at Shiloh. It was reorganized in January 1863 and served thereafter in the Department of the Tennessee as part of the 16th Corps from March 1863 to September 1864, and then in the 15th Corps to the end of the war. It was credited with the following engagements: Pittsburg Landing, Tenn., April 6, 1862; siege of Corinth, Miss., May 10 to 31, 1862; Corinth, Miss., Oct. 3, 4, 1862; Resaca, Ga., May 9, 1864; Lay's Ferry, Ga., May 14, 1864; Calhoun Ferry, Ga., May 15, 1864; Rome X Roads, Ga., May 16, 1864; Cave Springs, Ga., Oct. 13, 1864; Turkey Ridge, Ala., Oct. 26, 1864; Griswold, Ga., Nov. 22, 1864; Ogeechee River, Ga., Dec. 8, 1864; Savannah, Ga., Dec. 11 to 20, 1864; Salkehatchie River, S. C., Feb. 6, 1865; Columbia, S. C., Feb. 15, 1865; Cox's Bridge, N. C., March 29, 1865; Bentonville, N. C., March 21, 22, 1865.

Michigan records give the history of the battery as follows: Battery B was organized at Grand Rapids and mustered into service Nov. 26, 1861, The officers at organization were as follows:

The Battery left Grand Rapids December 17, 1861, and received its guns after arriving in the field.  Its first engagement with the enemy was at Pittsburg Landing, Tenn., April 6, 1862, where it made a gallant fight but was overpowered by three regiments of confederate Infantry, urged forward by General Beauregard in person.  After a severe struggle four guns of the Battery fell into the hands of the enemy and nearly all of the officers and fifty men were taken prisoners.  One section under command of Lieutenant Laing escaped capture and served in the siege of Corinth in May and in the battle of Corinth the following October.

The officers and men taken prisoners at Pittsburg Landing were exchanged and under command of Captain Ross, left Detroit Dec. 25, 1862, for Columbus, Ky.  The following January it was joined by the section that had been on duty at Corinth and themen who had escaped capture, and again was furnished with guns, horses and equipments.

In December, 1863, the Battery was at Pulaski, Tenn., where forty-eight members re-enlisted and received veteran furloughs. In April, 1864, the Battery commenced a march through Huntsville, Bridgeport, Ala., Chattanooga, Tenn., Resaca, Ga., where it was engaged with the enemy but sustained no serious loss.  The Battery had a number of contacts with the enemy on the march to Atlanta, Ga., and on the 13th of November left

Atlanta for the long march with General Sherman's army for Savannah, Ga.

At Griswold, Ga., the Battery had an engagement with the enemy and sustained a loss of seven wounded.  It took part in the capture of Savannah, Ga., and entered that city on the 21st of December.

The Battery participated in the march through the Carolinas, engaging the enemy at a number of different places and arrived at Raleigh, N. C., April 14, 1865.  From this point

it proceeded to Washington, D. C., via Petersburg and Richmond and took part in the grand review of Sherman's army May 24.

Leaving their guns at Washington, the officers and men of the Battery started for Detroit, Mich., where they were paid and disbanded the 14th of June, 1865.

 

Total enrollment............................................236

Died of disease..............................................24

Discharged for disability (wounds and disease)...............30

 

CW Data shows casualties at Shiloh; Calhoun Ferry, GA; Rome Crossroads; Griswoldville; and, Bentonville, with one officer and one enlistedman killed or mortally wounded.

 

The Official Records include the following report of the battery at Shiloh:

Report of Lieut. Cuthbert W. Laing, Second Michigan Battery.

On Sunday morning, about 6 o'clock, heavy firing was heard, that

seemed to be some distance from us. Half an hour after it was much

nearer. All were then ordered to turn out. We were soon ready, and

started in the direction. After going about a mile, took position in an

open field and immediately opened fire upon the enemy, whose line of

battle could be seen very distinctly. We remained in that position but a

few minutes, being ordered to retire and let the infantry advance, who

were in line immediately behind us. We soon advanced again, and came

into battery very near the same place, which we held for nearly an hour.

Meanwhile the Thirteenth Ohio Battery had formed on our right and a

little in advance. They had just got unlimbered when one of their

caissons was shivered to pieces, and the horses on one of the guns took

fright and ran through our lines. All then left the battery without having

fired a shot. Two of our sergeants went to the spot and cut a number of

the horses loose. Our battery then fell back though an orchard and

ceased firing for about twenty minutes.

Gen. Hurlbut then told us to advance again and bear to the right.

This brought us into a level, open field. Held this position for about an

hour and a half, during which time Lieut. Arndt had his horse shot

under him and Lieut. Bliss' horse wounded; also two team horses

on gun shot and two cannoneers wounded. The enemy's fire was now

so hot we were obliged to retire. We soon advanced again still farther

to the right, running up a narrow road, and came into battery beside a

log house; it was an elevated spot and very much exposed. We here

silenced the enemy's six-gun battery.

We had been there but a short time when the general sent one of his

aides, ordering one section of our battery to move up and support the

left. We remainder in this position about half an hour, when a shot got

wedged in the Parrott gun and could not be got out. Not having any

wormer, the captain ordered me to retire with it. Sent one of the

sergeants to camp for another wormer. I now lost two more horses and

a driver wounded.

Lieut. Nash, of the First Missouri, now came up with his section

of 20-pounder Parrotts. He went to the left, where our battery was.

At the same time I advanced with the Parrott gun, having got the shot

out. I had not gone far when our forces began to fall back. Turned

around, as I had only four horses left, and waited here until the captain

came up, and we fell back together. We next came into battery near our

camp, the enemy driving our left at a run. The captain now ordered me

to go to our camp, get what horses I could, and retire with my section.

I only found four horses that could walk, so that I only got the Parrott

away, leaving a corporal to spike the 6-pounder if it became necessary.

After running the gun down to within half a mile of the river returned

to join the battery, but could hear nothing of them.

I afterward learned from two of our men who managed to escape that

the battery was captured about 4.30 o'clock, being surrounded by a

body of rebel cavalry to the left and a little in rear of our camp. On

Monday morning recovered the 6-pounder.

I am, sir, your obedient servant,

CUTHBERT W. LAING,

Lieut., Cmdg. Second Michigan Battery.    [sr] [ph:L]

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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

THIS ITEM, AS WITH ALL OTHER ITEMS AVAILABLE ON OUR WEB SITE,

MAY BE PURCHASED THROUGH OUR LAYAWAY PROGRAM.

FOR OUR POLICIES AND TERMS,

CLICK ON ‘CONTACT US’ AT THE TOP OF ANY PAGE ON THE SITE,

THEN ON ‘LAYAWAY POLICY’.

THANK YOU!

- See more at: http://www.horsesoldier.com/products/military-accoutrements/leather/belts/9900#sthash.ABdCa9bl.dpuf

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