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Civil War Blog

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Monuments at Gettysburg – 106th Pennsylvania Infantry

Posted By on February 26, 2015

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The 106th Pennsylvania Infantry Monument at Gettysburg is located adjacent to the Copse of Trees on Hancock Avenue.  It was dedicated in 1889 by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and is the second monument to this regiment at Gettysburg;  the first monument is located on Emmitburg Road at the Codori farmhouse.

The drawing of the monument pictured above is from a Philadelphia Inquirer article of 11 September 1889.

A picture of the monument can be seen on Stephen Recker’s Virtual Gettysburg Web Site which has more information about the monument and the 106th Pennsylvania Infantry.

A full description of the second monument, its GPS Coordinates, additional photographs, and some of the history of the 106th Pennsylvania Infantry, can be found on the Stone Sentinels Web Site.  There is also a picture and information about the first monument.

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Two brief articles about the 106th Pennsylvania Infantry appeared in the Philadelphia Inquirer of 11 September 1889:

A Magnificent Bayonet Charge.

Behind the low stone wall in front of and the the left of Meade’s headquarters the 106th Regiment bore a conspicuous part.  While the conflict, which began on the left, raged the 106th lay on the ground in the read of the the crest of a little hill which overlooked the field.  Marching to the left to support Sickles, as the rose to the top of the hill they beheld the elated enemy 60 years away.  The regiment fired one volley with a crash as of a single piece, and charging bayonets on the flank of the rebels hurled them back in confusion and chased them to the Emmittsburg Road.  This  charge and terrible slaughter was made under the command of Lieutenant Colonel Curry.  The 106th was among the first to enter the town after the victory.  Lieutenant William H. Smith was among the killed and adjutant Pleis was mortally wounded.

A Furious Bayonet Charge.

The 106th bore a conspicuous part at Gettysburg behind the low stone wall in front and to the left of Meade’s headquarters.  Marching to the support of Sickle’s crushed lines, the regiment, in General Webb’s brigade, reached the crest of the hill over which they came face to face with and advancing column of rebels not sixty years distant.  A volley like a crash from one piece shook the rebel lines and a bayonet charge utterly routed them.  Lieutenant Colonel Curry led the 106th in pursuit as far as the Emmittsburg Road and the carnage along the whole route was terrible.  It was in this raid that Adjutant Pleis was mortally wounded by a shell.  On 3 July, the 106th was on Cemetery Hill supporting the 11th Corps and withstood the fearful cannonade around Rickett’s Battery.

The oration at the monument of the 106th will be delivered by General James C. Lynch.

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William L. Curry

The commander of the 106th Pennsylvania Infantry at Gettysburg was Lieutenant Colonel William Levering Curry. Very early in the war, Curry, a wallpaper manufacturer from Philadelphia, received a commission as Lieutenant Colonel in the 3-month service, 22nd Pennsylvania Infantry, and served through his discharge on 7 August 1861.  Thereafter he joined the 106th Pennsylvania Infantry at Philadelphia as its Lieutenant Colonel.  Captured during the Peninsular Campaign on 9 June 1862, he was sent to Salisbury Prison in North Carolina, where he was exchanged and paroled later in the year.  He rejoined his regiment, led it at Gettysburg, received his Colonel’s commission on 5 April 1864, and fought through Spottsylvania where he was mortally wounded on 11 May 1864.  He was taken to a hospital in Washington, D. C., where on 7 July 1864, he died.

No record has been found for a pension based on his service, so it can be assumed that he was not married.

William L. Curry is buried at Laurel Hill Cemetery, Philadelphia.  More information about Colonel Curry can be found at his Findagrave Memorial.

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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 106th 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 106th Pennsylvania Infantry, but was not part of the regiment during its days at Gettysburg.  There could also be errors on the plaque.

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