Civil War Blog

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Monuments at Gettysburg – 42nd Pennsylvania Infantry

Posted By on October 21, 2014

The 42nd Pennsylvania Infantry (13th Pennsylvania Reserves or Bucktails) Monument at Gettysburg is located south of the town of Gettysburg on the summit of Big Round Top.  It was not dedicated until September 1890 due to the conflict between what the regiment wanted (a memorial hall for all the reserve units) and the Pennsylvania governor who vetoed the proposal.  The view of the monument (above) is from Steven Recker’s Virtual Gettysburg Web Site which has more information about the monument and the 42nd Pennsylvania Infantry.

A full description of the monument, its GPS coordinates, a photograph, and some of the history of the 42nd Pennsylvania Infantry can be found on the Stone Sentinels Web Site.  In addition, there is information about Sergeant James B. Thompson who received the Medal of Honor for his heroics at the Battle of Gettysburg.



Why the 42nd Will Not Dedicate.

The “Bucktails” were the sharpshooters connected with the Pennsylvania Reserves.  These Reserves desire to combine the $150 voted each Pennsylvania regiment and erect on the field at Gettysburg a grand emorial building instead of individual monuments.  By judicial decision this $1500 can only be used for monumental purposes.  The 42nd, Bucktails, will participate with their comrades, 150 strong.  They hope in the near future to have something to dedicate.


Charles F. Taylor (1840-1863)

Charles F. Taylor commanded the 42nd Pennsylvania Infantry at Gettysburg.  On the second day of the battle, he was killed in action.

Taylor was born on 6 February 1840 in Chester County, Pennsylvania.  He was a 21 year old farmer when he enrolled in the 42nd Pennsylvania Infantry as the Captain of Company H.  On 1 March 1863 he was promoted to Colonel of the regiment.  At the spot where he was killed, the Bucktails have placed a monument to him.

Charles Frederick Taylor is buried at Longwood Cemetery, Kennett Square, Chester County, Pennsylvania.  More information about him can be found at his Findagrave Memorial.


William R. Hartshorne (1839-1905)

William R. Hartshorne, who had helped to raise one of the companies in the 42nd Pennsylvania Infantry, took over command of this regiment at Gettysburg upon the death of Colonel Taylor.  Following his leadership of the Bucktails as Major, he helped form the 190th Pennsylvania Infantry, where he served for the remainder of the war.  On 13 March 1865 he was honored with the rank of Brevet Brigadier General.

Gen. Hartshorne is buried at Oak Hill Cemetery, Curwensville, Clearfield County, Pennsylvania.  More information about him 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 42nd 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 42nd Pennsylvania Infantry, but was not part of the regiment during its days in 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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