Lawrence McGrath, Civil War Soldier


Lawrence McGrath.

by occupation a Mechanic,___Unmarried,___at tjhe age of enlisted for three years in the 10th' Regiment of Infantry, Mass. Vols._Company F. Mustered into the service of the United States on the 21st. of June, 1861, at Springfield, Mass.
Promoted to Corporal of his company while the regiment was encamped at Brightwood.
He shared the fortunes of the regiment from Springfield to Brightwood, thence to Fortress Monroe, and up the Peninsula.
In the Battle of Fair Oaks, May 31st. 1862, about three o'clock in the afternoon, McGrath was struck in the left breast by a spent ball, which passed through all his clothing but did not penetrate the flesh. He fell to the ground, completely unconscious. Private W.H. Day of the same company raised him up, and succeeded in reviving him so that he drank some water. But he told Day to go on and leave him, as he could not live long. "Tell mother", said he, as he fell back to the ground, "that I died doing my duty". He was, therefore, left on the field by his comrades, as they believed, to die.
He recovered his strength, however, so that he crawled off the field; and late at night, when the company were on the retreat, they were surprised at finding him alive. In spite of the severe contusion which he had received, he rejoined his companions and persisted in performing all his regular duties.
In the Battle of Malvern Hill, July 1st., 1862, late in the afternoon, during some skirmishing, he was shot through the groin. The field hospital, to which he was carried, was taken by the enemy, and he, with others, made prisoner. The rebels transferred him afterwards to Richmond, where he died in the Libby Prison about a week after the battle.


ca. 1861-1865


Public Domain




“Lawrence McGrath, Civil War Soldier,” Chicopee Archives Online, accessed January 16, 2018,