This regiment was organized for active service on April 28, 1861, and was mustered into the United States service for three months, May 3, at Portland. Its departure from the state was somewhat delayed by sickness and it did not leave for the seat of war until June 1. It was raised at a time when Washington was in great danger, when a feeling of gloom pervaded the North, and every man who enlisted fully expected that the regiment would be called into active service at the front. It numbered 779 men. Eight of its companies were highly esteemed organizations in the state militia before entering the service of the United States. Two were of recent organization and enlisted to make up the quota of the regiment. Their camp was at Westbrook, near the marine hospital, and was called Camp Washburn, in honor of the governor. On their way to Washington, they were the recipients of marked attention at Newburyport, the birthplace of Col. Jackson, at New York, Philadelphia, and in fact all along the route. Both at Newburyport and New York they were presented with beautiful American flags. At Baltimore they marched over the same route as the 6th Mass., but were not molested. Soon after their arrival in Washington they went into camp on Meridian Hill. Though eager and ready, the regiment was not allowed to participate in the first battle of Bull Run, as it was not thought best to withdraw it from the defenses of Washington. The 1st Me. was noted for its fine discipline and was regarded as a model regiment. After Bull Run it was stationed for a time to guard the Long Bridge, which was considered the post of honor. It performed necessary guard duty at exposed points in the immediate vicinity of the capital until Aug. 1, when the term of enlistment having expired it returned to Portland, and was mustered out on the 5th. The men returned bronzed and healthy, not a single one missing. Though enlisted in the state service for two years, they could not be moved outside the state after the expiration of their three months' muster in, and they were disbanded. On the formation of new regiments, a large proportion of the officers and men reenlisted in other organizations. Col. Jackson was soon after placed in command of the 5th infantry and had a long and honorable record. He was subsequently promoted to brigadier-general, and later placed in command of the rendezvous camp at Ricker's island. New York harbor.
Col., Nathaniel J. Jackson; Lieut.-Col., Albion Witham; Maj., George G. Bailey.
Organized at Portland and mustered in for three months April 28, 1861.
Ordered to Washington, D.C., June 1. Duty in the Defenses of that city until August 1. Mustered out at Portland, Me., August 5, 1861.
The roster of this unit contain 877 names.