The 178th New York Volunteer Infantry
in the U.S. Civil War


U.S. Civil War




The 178th New York Volunteer Infantry was formed in the summer of 1863 at Staten Island, NY. The first five companies assembled by June 18 and left for Washington DC to join the XXII Corps. In July, the draft riots broke out in New York City, but afterwards the ranks continued to fill with draftees, new immigrants, substitute soldiers, and returning veterans, many from regiments decimated by casualties from earlier battles.

In late October 1863, after brief service with the XXII Corps in Washington, DC, the 178th NY was sent to Eastport, Mississippi near the Tennessee/Alabama border. The unit was attached to the XVI Corps for the remainder of the war. The 178th participated in campaigns and actions in Tennessee, Mississippi, Louisiana, Missouri, and Alabama. Their last and most famous fight occurred on April 9, 1865. As Confederate General Robert E. Lee was surrendering to Ulysses S. Grant in Virginia, the 178th NY was part of the assault and capture of Fort Blakely in southern Alabama.

Only eighteen enlisted men from the 178th NY were killed or mortally wounded during their service. Nearly two hundred died from disease. A few miscellaneous facts about soldiers in the 178th NY are gathered on a separate page, where contributions about members of the organization are welcome.

A history of the 178th NY has not been written or published to my knowledge. Some very interesting personal accounts of some battles can be found in the Civil War History of John Ritland. Ritland served with the 32nd Iowa Infantry, a unit that participated in many of the same battles as the 178th New York.

Lost During Service: 18 Enlisted men killed and mortally wounded; 2 Officers and 190 Enlisted men by disease. Total: 210

Campaigns & Actions | Index to Roster | Lore of the 178th NY | Bibliography

Copyright 1997 Judith Haller,