Eric was kind enough yesterday to send me directions to the 16th Pennsylvania Cavalry monument at Gettysburg. This caused a few synapses to fire (or misfire, depending on one’s outlook), as I had a couple of distant relatives who served in this regiment. A bit of research turned up a couple interesting family and 6th US Cavalry connections.
The first commander of the newly-raised 16th Pennsylvania Cavalry, and its commander during the Gettysburg campaign, was J. Irvin Gregg. Gregg was detached from regular service as the captain of Company G, 6th US Cavalry, and mustered into the regiment on November 11, 1862. He was selected to command the new volunteer regiment after service in the Peninsula and Maryland campaigns. Although detached from his regiment following brevet promotions to brigadier and major general, Gregg mustered out with them on August 11, 1865. (Gregg’s life will be covered more fully in an upcoming Fiddler’s Green entry.)
Six months after taking command of the regiment, Gregg brought his former first sergeant in Company G to join him. According to the 6th US Cavalry muster rolls, Andrew F. Swan was discharged from the regiment on May 22, 1863 by order of General Pleasonton. I would imagine that his former commander had something to do with that, since Swan had apparently mustered into the 16th Pennsylvania as captain of Company C ten days earlier on May 12th. He was wounded at Hawes’ Shop on May 23, 1864, and promoted to major on September 4. He apparently never fully recovered from the wound, and was discharged on a surgeon’s certificate of disability on March 7, 1865. He received a brevet promotion to lieutenant colonel on March 13, 1865.
This is where my distant relatives join the story. Robert C. Caughey mustered into the regiment as a first lieutenant in Company C on September 6, 1862. Following Swan’s promotion to major, he was promoted to captain of Company C. He was promoted to major by brevet in the avalanche of brevet promotions on March 13, 1865 (might have to do a post on that event someday), and discharged by general order on July 24, 1865.
Lockwood Caughey mustered into the regiment as the first sergeant of Company C on the same day that Robert did. He was promoted to second lieutenant on January 2, 1863 and first lieutenant on May 21, 1864. I have no idea if these promotions were due to merit or nepotism, as I’m unsure exactly how the two were related. Lockwood was mortally wounded in a mounted charge at Deep Bottom, Virginia on June 29, 1864. He died nearly three weeks later, on August 16th.
A history of the regiment as well as company rosters can be found on Alice Gayley’s excellent Pennsylvania in the Civil War website.
And to think, all of this snowballed from an innocent comment about a monument….