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I INDER date of December 20, 1893, General J. S. Fullerton, Chairman of
the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park Com
mission, addressed a communication to the Chief Executives of such states as were represented by military organizations in the battle of Chickamauga, and the various other engagements in the vicinity of Chattanooga, Tennessee, asking their co-operation in the work of correctly locating the positions of the organizations so engaged. In response to this request, His Excellency, Governor Robert E. Pattison, on the 30th day of April, 1894, appointed a Commission from the survivors of these regiments and batteries to aid in this work on behalf of the State of Pennsylvania. Promptly within two weeks after such appointment, the gentlemen so selected met at Harrisburg for organization and the transaction of other business. The record of this initial meeting which led up to all the important work which has since been done to perpetuate the history of Pennsylvania troops on these fields, is best told in the report of Captain Waltman, recording secretary, which is here inserted in full.
THE PENNSYLVANIA DELEGATION TO THE CHICKAMAUGA
CHATTANOOGA BATTLEFIELDS COMMISSION.
AN ACCOUNT of the appointment, organization and proceedings of delegates commissioned by the Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, to act with the United States Commissioners, for the establishment of the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park, in locating the positions of Pennsylvania troops engaged in the battle of Chickamauga and the battles about Chattanooga, in the year 1863 of the War of the Rebellion,
His Excellency, Robert E. Pattison, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, having commissioned ninety-six of the survivors of the Pennsylvania troops engaged in the battle of Chickamauga and the battles about Chattanooga, to act with the United States Commission for the establishment of the Chickamauga and Chattanooga Military Park, in locating the positions of the Pennsylvania troops in those engagements, the following list of the persons thus commissioned has been prepared, alphabetically, with -ank, organization and present address of each delegate.
ROLL OF DELEGATES.
Adans, Joseph H., Private, Seventh-ninth Infantry, Lancaster, Pa.
Beecher, George R., Sergeant, Forty-sixth Infantry, Pittsburgh, Pa.
Craig, John, Lieutenant Colonel, One Hundred and forty-seventh Infantry, Lehigh Gap, Pa.
Davis, Charles C., Major, Seventh Cavalry, Harrisburg, Pa.
hompson, Sergeant, Seventy-eighth Infantry, Pittsburgh, Pa Gillespie, Chas, B., Captain, Seventy-eighth Infantry, Freeport, Pa. Goodman, Wm. E., Major, One hundred and forty-seventh Infantry, Philadelphia, Pa.
Greeno, Charles L., Major and Brevet Lieutenant Colonel, Seventh Cavalry, Cin-
Jordan, Thomas J., Colonel, Ninth Cavalry, Brevet Brigadier General, Philadelphia,
Longsdorf, Wm. H., Major, Ninth Cavalry, Carlisle, Pa.
PalmerWm. J., Colonel, Fifteenth Cavalry. Brevet Brigadier General, New York,
Parree, Ario, Jr., Colonel, One hundred and forty-seventh Infantry, Brevet Brigadier General, Wyncote, Pa.
Porter, Jno. M., Major, Ninth Cavalry, New York, N. Y.
Robinson, Wm. A., Lieutenant Colonel, Seventy-seventh Infantry, Brevet Brigadier General, Pittsburgh, Pa.
Rose, Thomas E., Colonel, Seventy-seventh Infantry, Brevet Brigadier General, Lebanon, Ky.
Kussell, R. M., Lieutenant Colonel, Ninth Cavalry, Hanover, Pa.
Sherck, Henry C., Musician, Seventy-ninth Infantry; Corporal, Ninth Cavalry, Lancaster, Pa.
Shipp, James A., Corporal, Forty-sixth Infantry. Shamokin, Pa.
(Coat of Arms of Pennsylvania.]
Executive Department. To all to whom these presents shall come, greeting:
Whereas, General J. S. Fullerton, Chairman of the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park Commission, engaged under the direction of the Honorable Secretary of War in carrying out the provisions of the act of Congress, approved August 19, 1890, and subsequent amendments, in establishing the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park, has requested the appointment of a delegation from tinis State to co-operate with the National Commission in the work of correctly locating the positions of regiments and batteries from this state that participated in the battles of Chickamauga and Chattanooga, including Lookout Mountain and Missionary Ridge: Now Therefore, Having been informed that
of the County of
vas connected with an organization the members of which participated in one or more of said battles, and reposing especial trust and confidence in his judgment, integrity and ability. I have appointed and do by these presents commission him to be a delegate on behalf of and to represent the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania mentioned.
A preliminary meeting of the delegation from this State will be held at Harrisburg on Tuesday, May 15, 1894, to organize and to select a suitable time to visit the fields emhraced within said park. As no funds are available, delegates will have to bear their own expenses.
Given under my hand and the Great Seal of the State, at the City of [ Great Seal.] Harrisburg, this thirtieth day of April, in the year of our Lord one
thousand eight hundred and ninety-four, and of the Commonwealth
ROBT. E. PATTISON.
Secretary of the Commonwealth.
Under the call set forth in the commissions, the delegates convened, May 15, A. D. 1894, in the Supreme Court Room of the Capitol Building, at Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, when Comrade Alexander W. Bergstresser, Seventy-ninth Infantry, arose and called the deiebates to order, whereupon Comrade Joseph G. Vale, Seventh Cavalry, moved that Comrade Alexander W. Bergstresser be elected temporary chairman; the motion being seconded, was put by Comrade Vale and carried unanimously. Chairman Bergstresser thanked the delegates in most appropriate words for the honor conferred upon him. and called for nominations for temporary secretary.
Comrade H. B. Waltman, Ninth Cavalry, was nominated and unanimously elected temporary secretary.
On motion, duly secunded and carried, the chair appointed Comrades s. S. Clair, Seventy-ninth Infantry; R. M. Russell, Ninth Cavalry; H. C. Demming, Seventy-seventh Infantry, a committed to notify the Governor of the assembling and organization of the delegates, and requesting his presence.
The committee returned, escorting Humphrey D. Tate, Esq., Private Secretary to the Governor, who being introduced by the chairman of the.committee, spoke as follows:
Mr. President and Gentlemen:
Governor Pattison will deeply regret his inability to meet with you on this interesting occasion. He anticipated great pleasure in meeting with some of the survivors of the great battles of Chickama uga and Chattanooga, and had made all his arrangements for so doing; but death, which did such havoc on those memorable fields of carnage, and has persistently followed those who there escaped, has further diminished your ranks by calling away your comrade, General Robert Porter Dechert, whose remains the Governor is this hour following to their last resting place.
To you, old soldiers, such an engagement is a sufficient excuse for the absence of the Governor.
It was his pleasure to respond with alacrity to the request of the National Commissioners to appoint a delegation from Pennsylvania to co-operate with the National Commission in the work of correctly locating the positions of Pennsylvania regiments and batteries in the battles of Chickamauga and Chattanooga, including Lookout Moun
1 and Missionary Ridge, and he greatly regretted that there was not a fund, over which he had supervision, out of which the expenses attending this important work coulâ be defrayed.
It is timely, old soldiers, and pre-eminently proper that you should thus assemble. The hoary locks and bowed heads of many of you betoken that the weight of years is upon you, and that, in the natural course of human events, soon the last survivor of these hard-fought battles will be followed by patriotic citizens to the grave, and these battles will remain only in recorded history. This is a sadiy solemn thought, but we dare not refuse to entertain it. Pennsylvania is proud of the record made by her sons on the great battlefields of the war, and it is just to her, as well as to her sons, that no doubt should ever be raised as to their true position on each field. Who can do this work for her so well as the actual participants in the several engagements? Go then forwaril in the performance of the duty assigned you remembering that the people of
I bespeak for the Governor his hearty co-operation in any and every way that tends to make your "labor of love" a perfect success, ending in a consummation or your most sanguine expectations, the erection of monuments to perpetuate to unborn generations the exact positions where Pennsylvanians dared to die.
At the conclusion of the address, Secretary Tate was warmly applauded.
Comrade William W. Ker, Seventy-third Infantry. then moved the appointment of a committee of five on permanent organization; the motion being seconded and carried, the chair appointed Comrades
William W. Ker, Seventy-third Infantry.
The committee retired, and after considerable time spent in consultation, returned and reported the following organization:
President. Archibald Blakeley, Seventy-eighth Infantry.
John Craig. One hundred and forty-seventh Infantry.
H. B. Waltman, Ninth Cavalry.
John P. Nicholson, Twenty-eighth Infantry.
E. A. Hancock, Ninth Cavalry.
With the following committees to be appointed by the president:
A committee of five to confer with the United States Commission.
The report of the committee on permanent organization being read, it was unanimously adopted, and the committee discharged.
Comrade Archibald Blakeley, being escorted to the chair and introduced by Comrade Bergstresser, spoke as follows:
It is an old saying, that a falsehood oft repeated, in time is accepted as truth. A great poet, however, formulated a better maxim when he wrote:
"Truth crushed to earth shall rise again:
The eternal years of God are her's;
And dies among his worshippers.
The popular idea of the campaign and battle of Chickamauga is a falsehood, oft repeated, commonly accepted by those who do not investigate, and I regret to sa who do investigate, but are consciously or unconsciously swayed into error by prejudice.
T'he campaign and battle of Chickamauga, combined, was one of the greatest Union victories of the war of the Rebellion. The truth of that campaign and battle have been largely crushed to earth but will rise again, for the eternal years of God are her's" May we, in the work we have now to do, materially aid in wounding the error, and lifting crushed truth from the earth, that the world to-day and hereafter may see and know the reality of that wonderful campaign, and more wonderful battle, where two monster armies, cut off from supplies, support and lines of retreat, fought in the wilderness of Northwestern Georgia until the dark waters of the Chickamauga ran red with the blood of the contending hosts!
y of the Cumberland. commanded by General Rosecrans. rested from its Tulla homa campaign on the western slope of the Cumberland mountains, well advanced to the Tennessee river. The Confederate army, commanded by General Bragg, held the country south of the river, its centre at its key point, Chattanooga. The leading military men of the south, including Jefferson Davis, pronounced Chattanooga, with the force then there, impregnable to all the forces that could be brought against it.
By a feint in front of Chattanooga, and a feint to cross the Tennessee, east of Chattanooga, General Rosecrans was enabled to throw his army across the Tennessee, west of Chattanooga, and across the Sand mountains of Alabama and the Lookout range, striking the rear of Bragg's arniy east of the latter range, south of Chattanooga, thereby compelling the surrender and abandonment of Chattanooga, with its fortifications,
nd heights, with the Confederate army in full retreat. This was the movement and this the result, without appreciable loss to the Union army.
The primary object of the movement was the possession of Chattanooga as a base for future movements into the South. With the contending armies at their relative strength when our movement commenced, we could have held the positions attained and also