Wounded

Between 1861 and 1865 scores of hospitals sprang up all along the eastern seaboard, from Boston to Washington, DC, to deal with the enormous number of sick produced by routine camp life as well as those injured in the great battles. Quite a few of the Third Michigan soldiers found themselves patients in hospitals in Baltimore, Philadelphia, New Jersey, New York and Boston. (photo: George Kibbee, lost his arm at Fair Oaks, VA., May 31, 1862; source: National Archives and Recods Administration.)

But the great majority of Third Michigan men wound up in the hospitals in the Washington, DC, area, and were quite often discharged from those same hospitals never to return to either their Regiment or Virginia again. And some men spent their final hours or days of life in Washington hospitals.

During its time in service the Third Michigan suffered 388 men wounded.

A – 28
B – 38
C – 37
D – 39
E – 37
F – 33
G – 35
H – 45
I – 48
K – 36
F & S – 2
UN – 1

It remains unclear why Companies H and I suffered significantly higher rates of wounding than the others.

Of the major engagements in which the Regiment participated:

92 men wounded on May 31, 1862, at Fair Oaks
100 at Groveton (Second Bull Run)
41 at Chancellorsville
22 at Gettysburg
9 at Mine Run
63 at the Wilderness
24 at Spotsylvania

In the week of May 5-12, 1864, alone, the Third Michigan suffered 88 wounded (or nearly 23% of the total wounded).

The first man wounded in battle was probably Henry Kampe of Company C, at Germantown, Virginia, on July 17, 1861, the day before the Regiment was engaged at Blackburn’s Ford, near Bull Run.

The last man in the Third Michigan to be wounded was Philo Wier of Company G on June 10, 1864, and he subsequently died of his wounds on July 1.

The last Third Michigan member to be wounded in wartime was George D. Hill, while serving as a member of the First Michigan cavalry, on April 9, 1865.

Of the 388 men who were wounded while serving in the Third Michigan some 335, or mroe than 86& of the total wounded, suffered gunshot wounds Gunshot wounds. Moreover, very few men of the Third Michigan were wounded by cannon fire and virtually no reports of men being wounded the bayonet although hand-to-hand combat did happen.

Inclusive of the entire war period, 426 men who served at one time or another in the Regiment suffered wounds, or 30% of the total enrolled.

Of 744 disabilities reported by the members of the Third Michigan during the war, 303 were disease and 403 were trauma of which 388 were gunshot wounds. Indeed, one man in four would be shot during the war, and more than half of the men who served in the Third Michigan at one time or another would be disabled from wounds or disease.

Present research has shown that at least 43 men suffered the loss of a limb.

Next: reentering the army