Civil War Blog

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Monuments at Gettysburg – 23rd Pennsylvania Infantry

Posted By on August 2, 2014


The 23rd Pennsylvania Infantry Monument at Gettysburg is located Southeast of Gettysburg on Slocum Avenue.  It was dedicated on 5 August 1886 but was later renovated in 1888 to include the Zouave statue and moved to the other side of the avenue.  It was originally topped by a cannonball pyramid.  The drawing of the statue appeared with an article in the Philadelphia Inquirer on 11 September 1889 on the dedication and re-dedication of Gettysburg battlefield monuments.

For more information about this monument and the 23rd Pennsylvania Infantry as well as an additional view of the monument see Steve Recker’s Virtual Gettysburg Web Site.

A full description of the monument, its GPS coordinates, and some of the history of the 23rd Pennsylvania Infantry can be found on the Stone Sentinels Web Site. There are also additional photographs of the monument and a note about Captain John B. Fassett of Company F who received the Medal of Honor.


On 11 September 1889, the Philadelphia Inquirer provided the following information about the 23rd Pennsylvania Infantry:



Lay Down Under the Fire

The 23rd Regiment, Pennsylvania Volunteers, was partly the 1st Regiment, 3rd Brigade, 1st Division of Militia, composed entirely of Philadelphians.  Recruiting commenced at the arsenal, at Sixteenth and Filbert Streets, 18 April 1861, and the regiment was ordered into active service on the day it was mustered in by Major C. F. Ruff, U.S.A., moving to Perryville over the P. W. and B. Railroad.  It was reorganized after the Shenandoah Campaign, the officers being Colonel David B. Birney, Lieutenant Colonel Charles Wilhelm, Major George C. Spear, Junior Major John Ely, Adjutant James E. Collins.  It was commanded at Gettysburg by Colonel John Ely on the second day and by Lieutenant Colonel John F. Glenn on the third day.  Its fresh strength in reinforcement of the 5th Corps drove the enemy back on the 2nd.  Colonel Glenn was ordered at 10 A.M. on the 3rd to advance skirmishers to test the lull in the enemy’s firing.  At fifteen paces advance they were met by terrific fire and compelled to lie down under protection of the line occupying the works.  Later in the day the regiment was ordered to reinforce the left centre, in doing which it crossed the open plane under the heaviest artillery fire ever known and lost 2 officers and 22 men.  Its service expired a short time after Sheridan too command in the Shenandoah Valley and it was mustered out at Philadelphia, 8 September.



Lt. Col. John Francis Glenn was from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and joined the 23rd Pennsylvania Infantry in Philadelphia on 8 September 1861 as Captain of Company A.  On 20 July 1862 he was promoted to headquarters as Major.  On 12 December 1862 he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel.  He gallantly led the 23rd Pennsylvania Infantry at the Battle of Gettysburg.  On 9 January 1864 he was promoted to Colonel.

John Francis Glenn died on 8 January 1905 and was buried in Westminster Cemetery, Bala Cynwyd, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania.  His Pennsylvania Veterans’ File Card (shown below) is from the Pennsylvania Archives.


More information about Lt. Col. John Francis Glenn can be found at his Findagrave Memorial.


Around the base of the Pennsylvania Memorial at Gettysburg are a series of plaques which, by regiment and company, note the names of every soldier who was present at the Battle of Gettysburg.  The plaque for the 23rd Pennsylvania Infantry is pictured below.  By clicking on the plaque it should enlarge so the names can be more clearly read.  If a name does not appear, it could be that the soldier did serve in the 23rd Pennsylvania Infantry, but was not part of the regiment during its days at Gettysburg.  There could also be errors on the plaque.



The news clipping is from the on-line resources of the Free Library of Philadelphia.


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