North Carolina was organized at Camp Mangum, about three miles west of Raleigh, in March 1862,
by Colonel , Captain Thomas S. Kenan and Captain Walter J. Boggan
Company B, from Mecklenburg: Robert P. Waring, William E. Stitt; enlisted men, 73
Company B, Henry Ringstaff, William E. Stitt.
Company B, William E. Stitt, Julius Alexander, Robert T. Burwell.
became part of Daniel’s brigade, along with the 32
under the command of Major General Holmes. During operations
around Richmond, the regiment came under intense shelling from gunboats on the right and batteries on Malvern Hill in the front. They were not in the
regular engagement but were ordered to Drewry’s Bluff, as part of Major General G. W. Smith, protecting Richmond and advancing into Maryland in
Ten days later they returned and in December were ordered as reinforcements to Goldsboro, only to find the enemy had succeeded in burning the
railroad bridge over the Neuse river the day before.
In the spring of 1863, the 43
were stationed at Kinston. The 43
were ordered to attack an entrenched enemy at Deep Gully, but after only a few
shots, the enemy abandoned the works and retreated.
At Fredericksburg the regiment were assigned to Rhode’s division of the 2
corps. The brigade being made from 32
with the 2
North Carolina battalion. It was here General Lee ordered them to commence the Pennsylvania campaign in June. They marched to Brandy Station
then on through Martinsburg, Williamsport, Hagerstown and Chambersburg to Carlisle where they occupied barracks. Later to be ordered to Gettysburg
arriving on Wednesday, the 1st day of July, 1863, about 1 o'clock P. M. a line of battle was formed near Forney's house, northwest of the town and to
the left of Pender's Division of Hill's Corps, which had repulsed the enemy and the troops advanced to the attack. The enemy were driven back.
Seminary Ridge was gained and occupied the right of the 43d resting on the railroad cut.
they were ordered to reinforce Johnson’s position on Culp’s Hill and after a night march formed a battle line at Benner’s house. During a charge
the colonel of the 43
was wounded and taken from the field. The 43
occupied its first position on Seminary Ridge until the army moved to
Hagerstown. Later they crossed the Potomac and fell back to the village of Darkville. The enemy were engaged at Mine Run and retreated North.
Winter quarters were built, but the regiment were assigned to General Hoke’s brigade in the winter.
During the Battle of Plymouth, April 18
, Lewis of the 43
was promoted to Brigadier General after
Colonel Mercer was killed during a night charge. The fort at Plymouth was taken and the CSS Albemarle was
able to engage the enemy and sink one of their gunboats.
In May the 43
moved on Newburn forcing the enemy back, but within sight of the town, the regiment was
ordered back to Kinston and then Petersburg. The subsequent march covered 37 miles in 12 hours.
the Battle of Drewry’s Bluff commenced at daybreak under cover of fog. The battle was a success
and the regiment was ordered to Richmond by boat, then on to Milton Station by railroad. Arriving on May
they then marched to Spottsylvania Court House. The enemy were engaged on the morning of 23
Hoke’s brigade was commanded by General Lewis, Daniel having been killed at Spottsylvania on May 12
Battles were fought at Bethesda Church on May 30
, Gaine’s Mill June 2
and Cold Harbor June 3
. Onward to Lynchburg Va to engage the enemy on
. Bolivar Height’s was captured on July 4
and the enemy were driven from Harper’s Ferry at around 8pm. On the 5th the 43d occupied
Harper's Ferry, skirmishing continued most of the day and then on the 6th the Corps crossed the Potomac at Shepherdstown and engaged the enemy
in the rear of Maryland Heights, the battle continuing nearly all day.
In a period of 30 days the army, including the 43
had covered about 500 miles and taken part in around 12 battles.
On July the troops had crossed the Blue Ridge at Snicker’s Gap. The enemy were forced across the Shenandoah river suffering heavy casualties. 43
engaged in daily skirmishes and battles in Winchester, Charlestown, Smithfield, Bunker’s Hill and getting defeated at Fisher’s Hill on September 22
They retreated to Waynesboro, there to be reinforced. Then back to Fisher’s Hill for October 13
. They were defeated again at Cedar Creek, but
Rhode’s division attacked and routed General Sheridan’s cavalry between New Market and Mount Jackson on November 22nd.
This ended the Valley Campaign and the 43
returned to Petersburg and winter quarters before Christmas.
At Petersburg Rode’s division, composed of about 2,200 men, covered a distance of three and a half miles of trenches. This included a third of the men
on picket duty.
March 24th General Gordon’s corps including the 43
, captured and then occupied the enemy’s works for some distance on Hare’s Hill. Holding them at
great odds for 5 hours. Fort Mahone was later captured and held until the army treated to Amelia Court House on April 4
. Exhausted, they were able to
rest, they resumed marching the next day.
They reached Appomattox Court House April 8
, then at sunrise on April 9
the division engaged the enemy, driving them back a mile and capturing a
artillery battery. They were later ordered back to a valley to receive the sad news that the Army of Northern Virginia had surrendered.
On the morning of April 12
they laid down their arms and dispersed on foot.
If you wish to read a more detailed account please see the Eastern North Carolina Digital Library
Thomas S. Kenan