The 18th New York was mainly recruited from the Albany and Schenectady areas of New York. The 18th was formed after
President Lincoln called for 75,000 troops, and were a two-year regiment.Company's A
were recruited from Schenectady, New York.Company's B, F, H
were recruited from
Albany and its immediate vicinity. Co. H was half recruited in Middletown.Company C
was recruited from
Fishkill, New York.Company D "Wallkill Guards
" as they were known, were recruited from Middletown, NY and in Sullivan County, NY. Co. H
recruited from Middletown.Company G
was recruited from Canandaigua, New York.Company K
was recruited from Ogdensburg, New York.
The "New York State Rifles
" were mustered into the U.S. service at
Albany, on May 17, 1861, for a period of two years. They were encamped at the Albany Barracks outside of the city.
They participated in the funeral procession of Colonel Elmer Ellsworth's body in Albany as one of the two uniformed regiments
at the time in the city. On June 18, orders arrived that sent them to Washington, D. C.
They occupied their camp on Meridian Hill until July 12, when the regiment was ordered to Alexandria and became a part
of the 2nd Brigade, 5th Division, Army of Northeastern Virginia. The 18th pressed on with the army to Manassas. They encountered
the enemy on July 18, 1861, at a skirmish near Fairfax Court House. Under the reserve wing posted near Centreville during
the Battle of Bull Run, the 18th supported Greene's Battery and helped repel a counter-attack from Confederate Cavalry, and
the regiment acted as the rear guard for the disasterous retreat of the routed army.
The 18th returned to their camp near Alexandria and focused on training while the Army of the Potomac worked out their
kinks. On August 4, they were assigned to Franklin's Brigade, and later commanded by General Newton. They were stationed at
Camp King near the Theological Seminary. Daily construction was conducted as the 18th began digging entrenchments and
construction Fort Ward. Though they were never stationed at Fort Ward, they were key components in its construction, and the
fort still exists today as a preservered and protected landmark.
On March 10, 1862, the 18th were ordered to Fairfax Court House, but immediately returned to their camp as McClellan
orchestrated the ferry of troops down to the Peninsula. In April, the 18th were placed in the 3rd Brigade, 1st Division,
6th Corps, Army of the Potomac.
The 18th was active at many engagements. (check out the List of Engagements)
They were active at West Point and in the Seven Days' Battles, its loss being the heaviest in the Battle of Gaines
Mill. They participated at the Battle of Charles City Cross Roads (Glendale). It was then stationed at Harrison's Landing
until August 15, when they were ordered to Newport News and ended their time on the Peninsula Campaign. On the 24th,
they returned to Alexandria.
As the Confederates pushed into their first forray into northern territory, they were sent in September 1862 to
reel in Lee's forces. The 18th took a considerate roll in the South Mountain Campaign, and fought at Crampton's
Gap as a vital presence of the frontal assault of the 6th Corps that dislodged the Confederate stronghold that held the gap
after a miraculous bayonet charge. At Antietam, the 18th were brought in as a reserve force and were posted near the Dunkard
Church and subjected to constant artillery from the enemy.
At Fredericksburg, the 18th fell under Franklin's Grand Division and crossed at the lower crossing named for their commander.
After a pontoon crossing the 18th were posted on the Mannsfield farm and picketed with the enemy with minimal casualties
(2 wounded). After the disasterous battle the 18th retreated with what was left of the Army of the Potomac and prepared for
In January 1863, Burnside pushed again towards Fredericksburg and instigated yet another collasal debacle on account
of the weather. Torrential rain hovered over the march from Falmouth and turned the ground into a quagmire that halted the
Army, known as the "Mud March."
With just days left in their two-year contract, the 18th were pushed into another campaign under a new leader, the Chancellorsville
Campaign. Marye's Heights and Salem Church was the 18th's last battle and were held as a reserve force, though they had a
small participation near Salem Church. They were soon ordered back home on May 16, 1863 to Albany and were mustered out of
service, officially on May 28, 1863.
Thirty-five men who remained in the regiment by May 1863 who enlisted for three year terms were transferred and assigned
to the 121st New York Infantry.
Notes on who the 18th NY fought under
August 4, 1861, the 18th was put into Franklin's Brigade, Division of the Potomac.
October 15, 1861,
the 18th was part of Newton's Brigade, Franklin's Division, Army of the Potomac.
March 13, 1862, the 18th were part
of 3rd Brigade, 1st Division, 1st Army Corps, Army of the Potomac.
From May, 1862 - May 1863(breakup of the 18th),
the 18th were part of 3rd Brigade, 1st Division, 6th Army Corps. Commanded by George R. Myers.