The following is from History of the 78th Regiment O.V.V.I, from its “Muster-In” to its “Muster-Out;” comprising Its Organization, Marches, Campaigns, Battles and Skirmishes, by Rev. Thomas M. Stevenson, Chaplain of the Regiment:
Company B was raised in Putnam and vicinity, by Z. M. Chandler and G. F. Wiles, of Putnam, Ohio, and organized December 12th, 1861. A braver and better fighting company of men never left the State. Many were strong farmers and mechanics, who were deeply in earnest in loving their wives and children, fine farms and pleasant homes — left them in obedience to their country’s call for defenders against traitors, who had kindled the flames of civil war and threatened the very life of the nation.
Z. M. Chandler was appointed Captain, Greenbury F. Wiles First Lieutenant, and Gilbert D. Munson Second Lieutenant.
Captain Chandler was then Superintendent of the Public Schools of Putnam, which position he resigned, believing it his duty to take the field of active operations in behalf of his country; but his health soon gave away to the miasma and debilitating heat of the Southern climate. He was appointed Major of the regiment, and afterward Lieutenant-Colonel, and after leading the regiment on the Mississippi Campaign, and thence to Vicksburg, was compelled to resign after crossing the Mississippi river, his constitution much broken and health altogether too feeble to enter further upon that terrible campaign.
Lieutenant Wiles, soon after leaving the State, was appointed Captain of company C. He was a citizen of Putnam, and seemed to have a more than ordinary tact in the government and successful management of men. He proved to be bone of the best disciplinarians in the army. He was appointed Lieutenant-Colonel, and took command of the regiment on the battle-field of Champion Hills. Under his command the regiment became the best drilled in the Corps, and without doubt one of the best in the Western army.. At Atlanta he was appointed Colonel of the regiment, and the greater part of the time during the siege of Atlanta and afterwards, was in command of the Second Brigade. After the South Carolina campaign, he was appointed Brevet Brigadier-General in honor of his own efficiency as well as that of the regiment.
Lieutenant Munson was promoted Captain of Company B, September 7th, 1862; George H. Porter to First Lieutenant and Joseph R. Miller to Second Lieutenant. Capt. Munson was afterwards detailed on General Leggett’s staff; also Lieutenant Porter. The former was promoted to Lieutenant-Colonel, and the latter Captain, and assigned to company K.
Lieutenant Miller resigned his commission in the Autumn of 1864, after having commanded his company through the entire campaign of Atlanta. He was an efficient officer, a soldier and a gentleman.
Under the new organization of the regiment, Lieutenant A. Adair was promoted to Captain, April 22d, 1865, and assigned to company B; James H. Gander to First Lieutenant and Amos Norman to Second Lieutenant.
These three officers, promoted and assigned to this company, are young men who enlisted in the regiment in 1861 and have passed through nearly four years of the most terrible rebellion and bloody conflicts. They have survived it all and came out promoted for gallant conduct, and well have they earned it; nobly have they sustained themselves and done honor to their friends.
Captain A. Adair is a young man of fine appearance, correct habits and quiet demeanor.
Lieutenant J. H. Gander is rather diminutive in size, but has a large soul. He possesses great energy of character, as most little men do, would fight in a “minite” unless some person would hold him, which would not be difficult for a large man to do. He is an efficient officer, highly respected and esteemed by his men, genial, affable and pleasant in his manners, and disposed to take things as good naturedly as circumstances will permit.
Amos Norman, Second Lieutenant, is a young man known more by what he does than what he promises to do. Portly in appearance, strong will and full of energy, and ambitious to discharge his duty faithfully. A man bound to grapple fearlessly with difficulties, and finally succeed. He is a very efficient officer.
The following are the names of the non-commissioned officers and enlisted men of the original organization:
1. Geo. W. Porter,
2. Adolphus W. Search,
3. Andrew McDaniel,
4. Joseph R. Miller,
5. Thomas S. Armstrong
1. David Sherrard, Jr.
2. James M. Thompson
3. Fenton Bagley
4. James H. Gander
5. Henry S. Axline
6. Lewis W. Rusk
7. Benjamin F. Scott
8. Harrison Varner
Charles H. Bunker, Musician. Corydon R. Wiles, Wagoner.
Austin, Randolph C.
Besser, W. H.
Baugus, Henry C.
Brelsford, Amos H.
Baird, John T.
Black, Samuel M.
Baker, Joseph II.
Beardslee, George W.
Cooper, George W.
Carson, James W.
Crouse, James P.
Crosby, Nelson D.
Dutro, Samuel H.
Dilts, Robert S.
Gander, John T.
Goulding, Samuel N.
Horne, Daniel, Jr.
Jones, John E.
Jones, Henry C.
Loy, George W.
Melick, James P.
Myers, James H.
Myers, Lewis E.
Miller, Branson S.
Miller, William F.
Moore, John T.
Mills, Andrew J.
Powell, James M.
Roberts, Lewroy A.
Spring, John W.
Sniff, Alva B.
Sims, John R.
Varner, Francis M.
Varner, John M.
White, Robert J.
Weaver, William H.
White, William J.
Younger, William C.
Of the above the following have been killed in action:
John T. Moore, near Columbia, S. C.
Lewis Moore, Canton, Miss.
John Skinent, Canton, Miss.
Benjamin F. Scott, Atlanta, Ga.
Asaph Cooper, Champion Hills, Miss.
The following have died of disease and wounds:
Randolph C. Austin, Vicksburg, Miss.
Jeremiah Norris, Memphis, Tenn.
William J. Norris, Vicksburg, Miss.
Harrison Varner, Clinton, Miss.
John Weaver, Shiloh, Tenn.
Corydon R. Wiles, Atlanta, Ga.
James N. Thompson, Shiloh, Tenn.
Charles W. Barrell, hospital, Cincinnati, O.
John T. Baird, Memphis, Tenn.
Andrew Dickson, Savannah, Tenn.
Samuel Dickson, Shiloh, Tenn.
Samuel H. Dutro, Stony Point, Tenn.
Andrew Francis, Stony Point, Tenn.
Hamlin Gardner, Vicksburg, Miss.
James Henderson, Vicksburg, Miss.
Daniel Horne Jr., Marietta, Ga., of wounds.
John E. Jones, hospital, Cincinnati, Ohio
Anthony Vineader, Shiloh, Tenn.
Samuel Lewis, Shiloh, Tenn.
George W. Loy, Raymond, Miss.
James P. Melick, Savannah, Tenn.
Joseph Osmond, Putnam, Ohio.
Lewroy A. Roberts, Shiloh, Tenn.
David Sherrard, hospital, Mound City, Ill.
Alva B. Sniff, Vicksburg, Miss.
January 5th, 1864, the following named men re-enlisted as veteran volunteers for three years more:
Sergeant George W. Beardslee.
Corporal Henry C. Beaugus.
Charles H. Bunker.
George Bash, discharged on account of wounds.
Sergeant Lewis Corder.
Nelson D. Crosby.
Robert S. Dilts
Sergeant William Fulkerson
James H. Gander, promoted to Lieutenant afterwards
James H. Myres
Corporal Andrew J. Mills
John T. Moore
Amos Norman, promoted to Lieutenant afterwards
John M. Varner
Sergeanmt Robert W. White
Corporatl William N. Weaver
Corporal Solomon Wilson
Corydon R. Wiles
Corporal John W. Spring
Since the original organization of the company, the following volunteers, substitutes and drafted men have been added:
Felix W. Baird
Charles P. Bowers
Oliver J. Boyer
John K. Brown
Theodore E. Dick
Obed R. Farnsworth
Thomas J. Howell
Sutter D. Morgan
William H. McClanahan
George H. Mathews
William J. Norris
Lewis C. Poowell
Thomas W. Ritchie
James G. Simms
Peter J. Snyder
Simeon C. Search
Daniel F. Ritter
Nicholas Crappt [last name is actually Krebs, error in the original]
Samuel S. Lewis
Stephen Stevenson [last name is actually Stephenson, error in original]
John W. Stevenson
Wiulliam G. Waltman
The following have died of disease and been killed in action:
Felix W. Baird, killed at Atlanta, Ga.
John Gochenower, killed at Atlanta, Ga.
James H. Gochenower, killed at Atlanta, Ga.
George H. Mathews, killed at Atlanta, Ga.
George Richardson, killed at Atlanta, Ga.
Abel R. Ransworth, died of disease.
John K. Brown, died of disease, Columbus, Ohio.
Joseph Jenkins, died of disease, Galesville, ala.
Paul Stippich, died of disease, Nerbern, N.C.
Alva Day, deserted at Shiloh, Tenn.
David Larrison, deserted at Memphis, Tenn.
William Innis, deserted at Memphis, Tenn.
Sergeant Lewis W. Rusk, deserted at Mephis, Tenn.
All names not in the foregoing list of disposition, are accounted for by being discharged for disability, contracted by disease or wounds in the service.
Henry S. Axline,
Thomas S. Armstrong
William H. Besser
Clements Bell (prisoner)
James W. Carson
Christopher J. Hart
Andrew J. Mills (prisoner)
John W. Sporing
Francis N. Varner
William J. White
The following letter from General Wiles, I take the privilege of inserting here in reference to this company:
Putnam, Ohio, July 23d, 1865.
“On the 26th day of October, 1861, I received a commission as Second Lieutenant to recruit for the Seventy-Eighth Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry, and at once traveled through the county north and west of Zanesville, to confer with my numerous acquaintances about the prospect of raising recruits, to engage in putting down this rebellion. They very frankly told me they did not believe I could get any men, for the reason that all who were going into the service, had already gone. I was of a different opinion, and at once commenced a series of meetings at Uniontown, Newtonville, and at different schoolhouses in the county, and for a time without success; but the people after a time became interested in the Union cause (for constantly holding meetings awakened them up to do their duty), and where all was coldness and apathy, there was soon a warm, patriotic feeling, and in connection with Z. M. Chandler, succeeded in a short time in raising a company of men.
The number of men enlisted by us amounted to one hundred and ten, and after transferring some to Captain Wallar, and some to Captain Gebhart, the remainder, about one hundred, was organized as Co. “B,” about the first of January, 1862, with the following commissioned officers: Z. M. Chandler, Captain; G. F. Wiles, First Lieutenant; G. D. Munson, Second Lieutenant. Afterward, Captain Chandler attained the rank of Colonel; and G. F. Wiles, Brevet Brigadier-General; and G. D. Munson, Lieutenant-Colonel. G. F. Wiles and G. D. Munson served until the close of the war and were mustered out with their command in Columbus, Ohio, on the 14th day of July, 1865.
I served with Company “B” until after the battle of Shiloh, when I was assigned to the command of Company “C,” April 16th, and soon after I received a commission as Captain, and was continued in command of said company until the 16th day of May, 1863, when I received a commission as Lieutenant-Colonel, and immediately took command of the regiment. The command of the company then devolved on Lieutenant Alex. Scales, of Zanesville,
In the month of December, 1862, I, with Company “C,” was detached from the regiment to organize a Pioneer Corps and Pontoon Train. I believe this was the first Pioneer Corps organized in the Seventeenth Army Corps. In that capacity the company served with distinction, making roads and constructing bridges, and destroying bridges and fortifications. They destroyed the heavy fortifications on the Tallahatchie, and also the bridges at that point. Better working men were not in the army. The company continued in the Pioneer Corps until after the siege of Vicksburg, and also on the Meridian Expedition. During the siege of Vicksburg the company was very efficient, and no like number of men conduced more to the downfall of that stronghold than did Company “C.” The men were from Zanesville and vicinity, and were a very robust set of men and very patriotic. At the mustering out of the command, and for a considerable time before, there were commanded by Captain John Mills, of Columbiana County. In addition to their pioneering qualities, they were a splendid fighting company.”