Brief History of The Seventh Ohio
Immediately following the surrender of Fort Sumter President Lincoln issued a proclamation to raise troops to thwart the southern uprising. The initial call was for 75,000 troops and enthusiasm was so high that the State of Ohio had enough volunteers to fill the quota alone. It was on April 27th, 1861 that the order was given to form the 7th Ohio from companies gathered at Camp Taylor, Cleveland. These companies represented a thorough cross section of northeastern Ohio communities. Ten companies comprised the original format of the Regiment.
Eramus B. Tyler, of Ravenna Ohio, was elected Colonel commanding the regiment in favor of James A. Garfield. The Seventh Ohio consisted of men of every vocation, farmers, teachers, blacksmiths, doctors, lawyers, and college men. It was a true representation of northeastern Ohio and its beliefs and stance towards the secession of southern states. The Seventh served for over three years and compiled a record on the battle field equal to any who served.
From a small skirmish in the hills of Western Virginia to the mighty battles of Antietam, Gettysburg, and Chancellorsville as well as the movement on Atlanta. From the frost bitten hands and numb feet during their movements in early 1862 against Jackson's forces in northern Virginia to the suffocating death causing heat at Cedar Mountain. From the bloody feet of worn out shoeless men on the march, to the hunger and thirst of countless days without rations and water. It was amazing that they were able to survive much less wage battle at every turn.
The men served in every theater of war except the far west. They were part of the Army of the Potomac which operated in the Shenandoah Valley and Pennsylvania, then sent to the Army of the Cumberland in Tennessee to recover Chattanooga, after which they were then sent on as part of the Atlanta Campaign in the Twelfth Army Corp. When their three year service expired the men who had not fulfilled their commitment were transferred to the 5th Ohio which completed the Atlanta Campaign, the March to The Sea, the Carolina Campaign, and finished in Washington D.C. at the conclusion of the War.
In the Battle of Ringgold their commanding Colonel, William R. Creighton, the second in command Lt. Colonel Orrin J. Crane, their Adjutant Morris Baxter, and two lieutenants were killed, while their remaining officers, with the exception of one, were all wounded.
Out of a total enrollment in three years service 17.5% died while serving their country. That meant 237 men would never answer roll call again. These men died on the battlefield, in the hospitals, and in the prisons of the south. Fifty one of the 237 who died were wounded and died either lying on the battle field or in the field hospitals; another 468 men, or 34.5% of the 3 year enrollment, were wounded in some degree during battle. Another 187 men were captured during their tenure, of which 17 died in Confederate prisons. Fifty seven men died of disease while another six died an accidental death, including one Oliver Trembley, who fell overboard and drowned in the Ohio River while on their way to muster out of the service. He had served the entire three years.
During their term of service the regiment recruited 250 men for duty. These men were to backfill those who had left the regiment. It was, however, not nearly enough to support the tremendous loss of men and during the battle of Ringgold, Georgia there were but 206 men able who answered the call of duty. That is the equivalent of two companies out of ten.
The loyalty of the men went unquestioned as further displayed by the reenlistment into other units of 79 members after their discharge from active duty. Many of the Civil War scholars have deemed the Seventh Regiment, men from northeast Ohio, as one the the most respected units to have served during the entire war, from either North or South.
To get a perspective of their adventure I have included a chronology of the regiments movements in this Web Site. I tried to put together a fairly complete diary of their travel through their entire three year enlistment including most of the key events in which they participated.
Brief Campaign Chronology
Created and Maintained by Larry Hardman- 1999, Rights Reserved; For Inquires or Information Contact: mailto:LHARDMAN1@neo.rr.com