The Iron Brigade, including the 19th Indiana, depicted at McPherson's Ridge during the Battle of Gettysburg 152 years ago. Of the 288 Hoosiers who fought, 27 died, 133 were wounded and 50 were missing in action.
Friday, July 03, 2015 10:11 AM
By CRAIG DUNN
– Pvt. Abram J. Buckles looked forward to the coming fight. Buckles
thirsted for all the honor and glory he’d seen others get; impatiently
he sought the chance to do his duty. He thought he knew how he should
seek it. “I had always had a great anxiety to carry the flag
of my regiment and did not know how I could get the place of
color-bearer, unless by serving in the guard until I could see a proper
chance to pick the flag up, should the color-bearer be killed or
wounded,” he later recounted. As Buckles drifted off to sleep that
evening, with full stomach and singleness of purpose, he could not have
dreamed what the next day would hold. There would be plenty of
opportunity for glory in Pennsylvania, in whatever form it was defined.
Maj. Asa Blanchard roused his men early on July 1. Blanchard was a
deep-voiced, popular soldier; there was no one more positive, and at
times even hilarious, in the regiment. From all indications, the
regiment was in for a hard day, and Blanchard wanted the men ready when
the time came to move out. At 8 a.m., the column got under way, marching
toward Gettysburg. First in column was the 2nd Wisconsin, followed by
the 7th Wisconsin. The Hoosiers were next, all 288 men and officers. The
24th Michigan followed; then the 6th Wisconsin brought up the rear of
The 19th Indiana that marched down the
Emmitsburg Pike was by now an experienced and battle-hardened regiment.
It was led by experienced officers and fleshed out by the hardiest and
bravest of the enlisted men, the rest having leeched out through storms
of fire and as a result of their own inadequacies. Shortly
after commencing the movement on Gettysburg, the men could hear the
deep-throated boom of artillery fire reverberating in the distance.