The Cheshire Historical Society
Hitchcock Phillips House
43 Church Drive
Cheshire, Connecticut 06410 USA

Telephone: 203-272-2574

Civil War Cartes de Visite

Selections from the Nettie Smith Collection of 20th Connecticut Regiment Memorabilia

Compiled and Edited by Carla Hill, Summer Intern (July 2011)
Original Research by Martha Connolly, Society Member

Nettie Smith was the daughter of Alonzo and Mary Smith of Cheshire. She was born in 1862, the year her father enlisted in Company A, 20th Regiment Connecticut Volunteers In 1910, Nettie played a leading role in organizing Cheshire’s Lady Fenwick Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution Even more important for Cheshire history, Nettie took over and completed Joseph P. Beach’s history of Cheshire manuscript. After her father died, Nettie Smith filled his position as Secretary earning herself honorary membership in the 20th for her efforts. She kept a careful record of 20th veterans and helped plan their reunions for the rest of her life The Cheshire Historical Society acquired her collection of 20th Regiment memorabilia in 1959 The cartes de visite that follow are those that could be securely identified from the more than one hundred in the collection


8 September 1862: the Twentieth Connecticut, whose soldiers come mostly from New Haven County, are mustered into service

1 May 1863: the battle of Chancellorsville, Virginia, which lasts three days, begins with a furious attack of the enemy; although the result of the battle was disastrous to the Union army, the Twentieth are among the last to retreat, and do some good work, losing eighty-five men in the process

3 July 1863: Battle of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania; the Twelfth Corps are among the first to arrive and act on the defensive until the commanding general reaches the place; placed at the extreme right of the line at Culp’s Hill, the Twelfth Corps held Ewell’s (formerly Stonewall Jackson’s) Corps at bay for seven hours, finally driving them back with heavy loss

20 January 1864: attack on Tracy City, Tennessee; Captain Upson is killed

11 April 1864: an order issued forming the Twelfth and Eleventh Corps into the Twentieth Corps, with which the Twentieth Regiment remains until the end of the war

9 May 1864: Boyd’s Trail, Tennessee is taken by the Twentieth Corps after a sharp contest

15 May 1864: in a four day engagement at Resaca, Georgia, the Twentieth acquits themselves with bravery, and captures four new brass guns by the rather novel method of digging through top of the mountain for them

19 May 1864: the Twentieth, with the Nineteenth Michigan, captures Cassville, Georgia, where they camp for three days

10 July 1864: the Twentieth drives the enemy from their entrenchment at Chattahoochee River

20 July 1864: the Twentieth regiment distinguishes itself at Peach-Tree Creek, Georgia, by a gallant charge which drove the enemy from the field, capturing prisoners and arms

2 September 1864: the Siege of Atlanta ends with the surrender of the city; the Twentieth were with the first to enter

15 November 1864: the Twentieth regiment, under command of Lieutenant-Colonel Buckingham (Colonel Ross commanding brigade), moves with Sherman’s army on its “March to the Sea”

20 December 1864: Sherman’s army, together with the Twentieth Army Corps, enters the city of Savannah, capturing a large amount of artillery and ordnance stores, together with 30,000 bales of cotton

15 March 1865: the Twentieth regiment meets the enemy at Silver Run, North Carolina, and after a sharp engagement drives them from their line of works, losing nineteen officers and men

19 March 1865: the Twentieth regiment participates in the Battle of Bentonville, North Carolina, sustaining a loss of thirty-six enlisted men killed, wounded, or missing

13 June 1865: the Twentieth regiment is mustered out in Washington, D. C.

Identified Photographs from Collection

Click on the name below to see the photo and brief biography of this Civil War soldier.

Abbott, Edward T.
Abbott, Nathan B.
Arms, Charles J.
Beardsley, Ambrose W.
Benham, Robert L.
Billings, Henry R.
Boardman, Arthur
Brown, David R.
Brown, Peleg T.
Buckingham, Alex H.
Buckingham, Philo B.
Burbank, James B.
Doolittle, Edward A.
Doolittle, John H.
Fenton, Ebenezer B.
Fenton, James
Foley, James
Frisbie, Alvah L.
Guilford, Timothy
Jack, William
Jepson, Theodore
Jewett, Daniel Lee
Johnson, William H. H.
Judd, Thomas W.
Kellogg, Charles E.
Kirby, Thomas B.
Lyman, Charles N.
Mintie, Alexander E.
Moore, Samuel
Morse, William M.
Moulthrop, Evelyn E.
Moulthrop, Elihu
Newton, Charles W.
Nolan, John H.
Pardee, Henry C.
Peck, John A.
Platt, John R.
Post, Oliver R.
Ross, Samuel
Royce, John E.
Sherman, George W.
Smith, Francis H.
Smith, Franklin S.
Smith, Henry C.
Smith, Wilbur W.
Spencer, William W.
Spencer, William W.
Sprague, Ezra
Spruce, James
Stanley, Henry D.
Stevens, S. Strickland
Usher, Robert C.

Commanding Generals

Hooker, Joseph
Meade, George Gordon
Knipe, Joseph
Farmer Williams, A. S.


Click Here for Civil War Cartes de Visite - 72 page PDF file

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