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Of the 115,000 men who joined the military during the Civil War, 85,000 or 77% joined the Union Army, while the remainder joined the Confederate Army. Lincoln went so far as to jail certain pro-south members of the State Legislature at Fort McHenry, including the Mayor of Baltimore. The grandson of Francis Scott Key was included in those jailed. The constitutionality of this action is still being debated.

Pvt. Charles Able

By SCV Camp 1708, Scottsdale AZ

Pvt. Charles Able answered the bugle call of the War Between the States when he joined the 1st Infantry Regiment when it was assembled at Winchester, Virginia, during the early summer of 1861 with about 600 men.

It fought in General Elzey’s Brigade, then the Maryland Line, and was active at First Manassas, in Jackson’s Valley Campaign, and the Seven Days’ Battles. On August 11, 1862, the unit disbanded at Gordonsville, Virginia.

Its commanders were Colonels Arnold Elzey, Bradley T. Johnson, and George H. Steuart, and Lieutenant Colonel Edward R. Dorsey.

Pvt. Walter Bell

By Kent Worley

Pvt. Walter Bell was an eager volunteer for the 1st Cavalry regiment when it began its formation in May 1862 and became a four-company battalion at Winchester, Virginia in November.  It appears that only four additional companies ever joined the unit.

The 1st Cavalry served in W.E. Jones’, F. Lee’s, and Lomax’s Brigade, then the Maryland Line. Later it was under the command of W.L. Jackson, W.H. Payne, and T.T. Munford. It fought in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, the Pennsylvania Campaign, and at Beaver Dam Station, Pollard’s Farm, and Trevillian’s Station.

The unit continued the fight in Early’s Washington Campaign, McCausland’s raid on Chambersburg and later in the Shenandoah Valley and around Appomattox and disbanded. The field officers were Lieutenant Colonels Ridgely Brown, Gustavus W. Dorsey, and Robert C. Smith. Private Bell returned homed to Maryland after the unit disbanded.