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5th Wisconsin Infantry History | Wisconsin Historical Society

Historical Essay

5th Wisconsin Infantry History

Wisconsin Civil War Regiment

5th Wisconsin Infantry History | Wisconsin Historical Society
EnlargeSeated carte-de-visite portrait of Colonel Amasa Cobb, F & S, 43rd Wisconsin Infantry and 5th Wisconsin Infantry.

Colonel Amasa Cobb, 1861 ca.

Seated carte-de-visite portrait of Colonel Amasa Cobb, F & S, 43rd Wisconsin Infantry and 5th Wisconsin Infantry. View the original source document: WHI 70125

The 5th Wisconsin Infantry was organized at Camp Randall in Madison and mustered into service for three years on July 12, 1861. It left Wisconsin for Washington, D.C., on July 24, 1861. During the war it moved through Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and New York, where it helped to quell New York City's famous draft riots.

It participated in the battles of Williamsburg, Antietam, Fredericksburg, Gettysburg, the Wilderness, and the surrender of Gen. Robert E. Lee and his army. Soldiers who chose not to re-enlist were ordered home to Wisconsin and mustered out of service on August 3, 1864.

The veterans were consolidated into a battalion of three companies who continued to serve until June 24, 1865, and mustered out of service on July 11, 1865. The regiment lost 329 men during service. Fifteen officers and 180 enlisted men were killed. Two officers and 132 enlisted men died from disease.

[Source: Estabrook, Charles E, ed. Records and sketches of military organizations... (Madison, 1914?)]