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|3rd Regt History|
THE Third regiment was composed of independent volunteer companies, existing prior to the breaking out of the war, and as such, responded to the first call of the Governor for troops. Company G arrived in Harrisburg, early on the morning of the 18th of April, 1861, and was the first company to enter Camp Curtin. Company K arrived on the same day, and the two companies alone occupied the camp during the day and night of the 18th. Other companies arrived on the 19th and 20th. The regiment was organized on the 20th of April, by the choice of the following officers: Francis P. Minier, of Hollidaysburg, Blair county, Colonel; John M. Power, Johnstown, Cambria county, Lieutenant Colonel; Oliver M. Irvine, of Pittsburg, Major. James C. Noon, Second Lieutenant of company F, was appointed Adjutant. On the same day the men were mustered into the service of the United States.
The regiment was ordered from Camp Curtin, on the evening of April 20th, and immediately started by the Northern Central railroad for Baltimore. Arriving at Cockeysville, Maryland, further advance by rail was found to be cut off, by reason of the destruction of the bridge at that point. Orders were received from General Scott, directing the regiment to remain, and not attempt, from considerations of policy, to pass through Baltimore. Encamping near the village, the regiment remained till the night of the 22d of April, when it returned to York, and went into camp. Regimental and company drill was at once commenced, and was continued daily when the weather would permit. The hospitality of the citizens of York, in voluntarily contributing food, until the commissary department was fully organized, proved not only a relief to officers, but a great source of comfort to the men. Raw recruits hastily transferred from private life, accustomed to a varied and generous diet, to the camp with its simple regimen of uncooked rations, feel the change most sensibly. Added to this, is the difficulty of immediately perfecting a system of supply for large bodies of men suddenly thrown together. Hence, these supplemental contributions proved highly acceptable and timely.
On the 27th of May, the regiment proceeded by rail to Chambersburg, and went into camp at Camp Chambers, about three miles from the town. It was assigned to the 2d Brigade,* of the 2d Division, and continued its regular drill acquiring marked proficiency.
On the 7th of June, the regiment proceeded by rail to Hagerstown, and thence marched on the same day to Funkstown, in position to operate against Harper's Ferry, where the enemy had taken position under General Joseph E. Johnston. Drill and camp duty was little varied during the three succeeding weeks which were passed in this encampment.
On the 1st of July, the command proceeded to Williamsport, and on the following day crossed the Potomac. Advancing with Patterson's Column, it arrived at Martinsburg on the 3d, and encamped to the north of the town. Almost the entire supplies of the army were transported by wagon train from Williamsport, where the main depot was established. To guard this, and the communications leading thereto, the 3d regiment was detached from the Brigade, and ordered back to Williamsport. Remaining on duty in this position till the 26th of July, the term of enlistment having expired, it was ordered to Hagerstown, and from thence moved by rail to Harrisburg, where it arrived on the 27th, and on the 29th was mustered out of service.
*Organization of 2d Brigade, Brigadier General George C. Wynkoop, 2d Division, Major General William H. Keim. 1st Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers, Colonel Samuel Yohe; 2d Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers, Colonel Frederick S. Stumbaugh; 3d Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers, Colonel Francis P. Minier.
|Source: Bates, Samuel P., History of Pennsylvania Volunteers, 1861-5 (Harrisburg: B. Singerly, State Printer. 1871)|