Friday, April 13, 2012

Shiloh, Apr 13, 1862

Even before the Battle of Shiloh, plans had been made toward the consolidation of the 17th and 25th regiments.  In the past four months, the ranks of both units had been thinned by all of the factors discussed in last month's post, Abominable Care , as well as routine discharges from the service.  On this day of their official consolidation, the sixty-five remaining members of the 25th Kentucky Volunteer Infantry were placed under the command of Col. McHenry and the combined unit was designated the Seventeenth Kentucky Volunteer Infantry, USA.

The troops were quite satisfied with the new arrangement.  Since their organization at Calhoun, Kentucky they had fought and lived sided by side.  They were the first regiments from Kentucky to see the elephant while serving in Cruft's Brigade at Fort Donelson.  From their camps at Fort Henry, their steamboat ride up the Tennessee River, their camps at Cloud Field and  throughout the Battle of Shiloh, they were side by side.  They had developed a level of trust and respect for each other that few men ever know.  That trust would be tested time and time again over the next 33 months and never fail.

Colonel James M. Shackelford, who had organized and commanded the Twenty-fifth was sent back to Kentucky to regain his health and organize more volunteers.   In January of 1863 he was promoted to Brig. General of Volunteers and commanded  the 1st Brigade, 2nd Division, XXIII Corps.  In July of 1863, serving in this capacity, he engaged and captured fellow Kentuckian John Hunt Morgan at the Battle of Salineville in northeastern Ohio.

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