The Civil War in Massachusetts

1st Company, Massachusetts Sharpshooters

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John Saunders formed his own independent company of sharpshooters in August of 1861 and led them in battle until he was 'shot through the heart' and killed in action at Antietam in September 1862. The Sharpshooter Company continued in service and was active until July 1863.

The company was first assigned to Gen. Lander's Brigade, which formed a part of Gen. Stone's force at Poolesville, Md. It remained on the upper Potomac under Gen. Lander until his death in March, 1862, then served for a time under Gen. Shields. During the siege of Yorktown in April, 1862, the company became attached to the 15th Mass. Regt. of Gorman's Brigade, Sedgwick's Division, Sumner's (2d) Corps. With this command the sharpshooters served through the Peninsular campaign, the Antietam campaign, and until the following spring.

The company lost during service 3 Officers and 21 Enlisted men killed and mortally wounded and 15 Enlisted men by disease. Total 39.

On Line site dedicated to this Company.

Information on this company at Gettysburg.

Capt. William Plumer (1823-1896). Graduate of Harvard University and lawyer in Lexington. Due to wounds received in June 1863, he rode to Gettysburg in an ambulance.


Attached to the 15th Massachusetts Infantry




Bowen, James L. Massachusetts in the War, 1861-1865. Springfield, MA: Clark W. Bryan, 1889. E513B78. A brief history of the regiment.

Dyer, Frederick H. A Compendium of the War of the Rebellion. Vol. 2. Powder Springs, GA Eastern Digital Resources, 2003 Ref. A concise summary of the regiment's service.

Massachusetts. AGO. Massachusetts Soldiers, Sailors and Marines in the Great Civil War. Norwood, MA: Norwood Pr, 1931. pp. 682-734. E513.3M32v1. Contains a roster of the regiment.


Dyer, Frederick H. - A Compendium of the War of the Rebellion

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