Newspaper Articles re 185th N.Y.V.

During the 1930s and 1940s, the nephew of Charles A. Bunnell, Herman E. Bunnell, wrote several items for a newspaper in the near vicinity of Marathon, New York. Unfortunately, when the pieces were clipped neither the banner nor date was recorded. Charles E. Bunnell has been kind enough to transcribe two of these articles which make mention of the 185th and to send them to me.

NEWSPAPER: Unknown; possibly Whitney Point NY Reporter
DATE: March or April 1935
AUTHOR: Herman E. Bunnell


The Battle of Gravely Run

On March 29, 1865, the battle of Gravely Run in Virginia was fought in which the 185th New York regiment and the 198th Pennsylvania regiment were engaged. The Col. of the 198th was badly wounded and his horse killed and they fell back and left the 185th without support. The Confederate fire was close and rapid. About 180 men in the 185th were hit and over 30 killed. Company G. had perhaps more casualties than other companies. I think they carried the flag. Among the killed in Co. G. were 2nd Lieutenant Miner, color bearer Ezra Carter, Charles A. Bunnell and ___ Reed. One man who was in the battle said they were marching through the brush and one line of men rose and fired then dropped. Then another line rose and fired and dropped, and a third line also. One veteran who had been through the war said the Confederates fired a regular blizzard of bullets into the unsupported 185, the worst that he had ever seen.
Isaac Sherwood said that as they were going in that Lieut. Miner came along and said, "Maybe we will never drink again together." and handed him a drink and in a few minutes he was killed.
Gravely Run was fought between 4 o'clock and dark.
Charles A. Bunnell was killed in the brush and lay where he fell until the next morning. The next morning he was buried and his grave marked and Ezra Carter was buried in the open.
After Gen. Lee had surrendered Mr. George Tanner was sent down to get Ezra Carter's body and he also brought back Charles Bunnell's body. He got an escort of soldiers to go with him. They got Carter's body and then went to look for Bunnell's and found it. He shouted and the soldiers came with bayonets fixed, thinking he might have been attacked. There were guns lying about and they picked them up and put one in each coffin. Father (Wm. H. Bunnell) bought one of them. It is an Enfield musket made in England in 1863. It was picked up in the road and on the stock were wheel marks where it had been run over. The musket is marked R. I. S. It may have been a Confederate gun, as they had a good many of those English guns.
The 185th was marched and fought until April 9th and was in the battle line at Appomattox..
On one 9th of April I saw Isaac Sherwood and said to him, "Where were you a certain number of years ago?" He said, "I don't know." I told him Gen. Lee surrendered that day. Then he said, "I was in the battle line and saw the white flag come out and we were glad to see it."
The first Lieut. Hiram Clark sang "Hail Columbia" and marched his men behind the fence and they squatted down and a shell came over and struck and killed him -- the last man killed in the army of the Potomac. The 185th and other infantry regiments were called foot cavalry.
Another man in Co. G. was Abram Holland, brother-in-law of Charles A. Bunnell. He was on a furlough and said he would never come back alive. When he went in the battle of Gravely Run he gave his money and papers to the captain and said he would be killed but he came out without a scratch. Later he had the measles and died in a hospital in Washington. He was recovering from measles but so homesick. His wife, Sarah Bunnell Holland received two letters in the same mail. One said, "Come to Washington at once." The other said that he was dead. John Gardner Bunnell went and got the body. It was buried in East Berkshire.
Steve Wood, the drum major was called out one night to play the long roll summoning the men to battle. They came out saying, "Where's the battle." The officer said, "Fall in line." They marched them off for a distance. It was for a drill. I told Clem. Arnold about it and he said he lost his hat that night.
Ezra Carter and Reed are buried in the Marathon Cemetery. Bunnell was buried in the Berkshire cemetery.


NEWSPAPER: Unknown; possibly Whitney Point NY Reporter
DATE: Unknown, circa 1935 to 1940
AUTHOR: Herman E. Bunnell


Survivor Recalls Civil War Events

My memory goes back more than forty-seven or eight years when my wife and I were invited to an oyster supper at East Berkshire for the Sons of Veterans in the house where Henry Clark resides. It was then owned by Nancy Bunnell and her son Ed. Well, they had a dance and I did not like that part of the entertainment so I stayed out in the kitchen. There were two veterans. William Fultz and the other man, I do not remember his name, but he said that his regiment was next to the 185th N. Y. regiment at Appomattox where General Lee surrendered. After the white flag came and fighting ceased a shell was fired and it hit First Lieutenant, Hiram Clark and killed him. That is all that I remember that he said.
But William Fultz told his experience, he said that his father and a brother were in the service and his brother in his first engagement had a horse or mule fall on him and squeezed all the courage out of him, and they never got him into another engagement.
He said that after one engagement there was one man with both eyes shot out and he begged Fultz to kill him. He told him he could not do that; he turned away and he heard a shot and the man had got hold of a gun and had killed himself.
He said in all his service there was only once that they got near enough to use the bayonet. He said the excitement and the heft of the gun made it about as easy as sticking a fork into a pumpkin.
At another time he said his father was sick in the hospital and he asked for leave to go to see him and was refused. He said he went and saw his father and he said they gave him the most damnable punishment. They fastened his legs and arms to an artillery wheel with the small of his back against the hub and set the wheel rolling. Well when they let up on that he told the officer that he would kill him for that but he said he would not do that. Then they put him on a dead man's post where one or more men had been killed. He said he was very sleepy as he had been up two or three nights. He said he put tobacco juice in his eyes and he did not like his post and went back and sat down. He said he saw the glint of a bayonet and raised his gun and fired and the Confederate gave a most unearthly yell. The Confederate said the picket was off his beat or he would have gotten him. Well they put Fultz in the guard house and in the morning an officer cane and asked him what he was in there for. He said, "I shot a Johney [sic] last night." and that was all there was to it.
Well nearly all the veterans are gone to the "Grand Review." There is not one left that I ever knew.

East Berkshire, N. Y.

These newspaper articles were copied by:
Charles E. Bunnell
9318 Farewell Ct
La Plata, MD 20646
(301) 392-3899

Kenneth Jennings Wooster
File created: April 25, 1999.
File modified: April 25, 1999; September 5, 2002; December 28, 2002.