Chicopee Archives Online

Henry McElwain, Civil War Soldier

Dublin Core


Henry McElwain
Born in Lowell, Mass. Son of William McElwain. By occupation a Weaver. Single. At the age of 20, on 5 Octo., 1861, enlisted for 3 years in the 24th Reg. Infantry, Mass. Vol’s, Company “K”. Mustered into the U.S. Service 9 October, 1861, as Corporal.
Participated in all the campaigns, marches and battles of Regiment till it went to Florida. Was engaged in the following battles and skirmishes: Roanoke Island, Newbern, {Traitor’s} Creek, {Rawles’} Mills, those of the {Tacboro} and Goldsboro Expeditions and of the siege on Morris Island. On the 23 October 1863, was detailed for duty in the commissary {Dep’t}, at St. Augustine, Fla. His duties in this department were ordnance, and were creditably executed. It was Chief {Headsmen} for the {Sub-Dep’t} of Florida, and as such he was compelled to collect cattle outside of the Federal lines for the {subservice} of the {Wools} {???} {???} devolved this duty of sending the marks or {???} open the cattle so as to enable the government to compensate all owners who would testify to their allegiences by the taking of the oath. On one occasion with 25 men, he went out beyond our lines 250 miles into Georgia, Just beyond the limits of Florida, and collected from the plantation of a M. Barber a head of {3000} cattle which he and his comrades safely brought within our lines, This party surrounded the house of {???} at midnight, so as to {???} the escape of its occupants. M. Barber and son {???} from their house fired upon the party and were instantly killed. Capt. {Scotland}, chief {commy} for the {Sub-Dep’t}, or {???} of Fla, testified to the efficiency and value of McElwain’s services. On the 22 June 1864 he rec’d a furlough of 30 days and returned to Chicopee Having been ordered to report to his reg., he rejoined the Command, then at Deep Bottom, Va., on the expiration his furlough, and continued on duty with Reg. till 6th Aug. 1864, when he was detailed to {???} the slaughtering and {assuming} of cattle for 10th Corps, on which duty he continued till his discharge, by virtue of expiration of term of service, 8 Octo., 1864. McElwain on his detail for duty on {???} Dep’t, Florida, there on his warrant as Corporal. In this {Dep’t} and in the performance of the duties of his position he continued from date of detail to date of furlough 22 {June}, 1864. While with his Reg. before Petersburgh he rec’d a slight wound in the left hand.


ca. 1861-1865


Public Domain



“Henry McElwain, Civil War Soldier,” Chicopee Archives Online, accessed November 29, 2015,