A Regimental History of the 5th Michigan Infantry Regiment From Its Formation Through the Seven Days Campaign

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Virginia Tech

Every regiment that fought in the Civil, Union and Confederate, has a story to tell. Unfortunately, too many of these historic units’ legacies are not recorded and made available to modern-day scholars and citizens. Such was the case for the 5th Michigan Infantry before this thesis was written.

This work is part one of a regimental history of the “Fighting Fifth,” covering the first year of the war. It draws from the unit’s soldiers’ diaries and letters, as well as those of members of the 5th Michigan’s “sister” regiments: the 2nd and 3rd Michigan and 37th New York. The perspectives of Detroit-area newspapers are included, as are the Regimental Descriptive Books and Order Book. No longer are these documents simply sitting in a vault, but now are largely included in this thesis and made available for all people.

Here is the first part of the story of a unit that led charges against enemy lines frequently and suffered the fifth highest casualty rate of all Union regiments during the Civil War.

Fighting Fifth, 5th Michigan Infantry