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31st Regiment, Michigan Infantry (1864)
Organized at East Saginaw, Michigan.

1864 Formation. (Transcribed April 2008.)

The Bay City Press and Times -- September 24, 1864

The 31st Regiment.

When the project was first broached in this State of raising six new regiments, it was thought by many that the effort wo'd not be crowned with success. These regiments are now rapidly filling up, and the 31st Regiment is nearly full. A telegram from Saginaw on Saturday state that eight companies of 100 men each had already been mustered for this regiment, and a full company of 100 men are on their way to join it from the Upper Peninsula. In addition to the above, about 100 more have been recruited, and are not yet organized into a company.

On the 22nd of July, Gov. Blair gave authority to raise this regiment to Hon. John F. Driggs, of Saginaw, member of Congress of the 6th Congressional District. On the 2d of August Mr. Driggs issued his circulars to communities and neighborhoods, for them to select some man, in whom all parties would have confidence to command companies, with the understanding that every officer who would raise 40 men should be entitled to a Captaincy; those recruiting 30 men should have the position of 1st Lieutenant, and those raising 20 men should have a 2d Lieutenancy. This plan worked well, and relieved Mr. Driggs of the embarrassment of choosing the line officers. Men were recruited rapidly, and as fast as they would enlist they were furloughed to go home and secure their crops, and act as recruiting agents. Mr. Driggs at once commenced the work with a perseverance and zeal that could not fail to eventuate success. The camp was located on the west side of the river between Saginaw City and East Saginaw on the Pennoyer track, the commandant donating the use of the ground. As fast as the furloughs expired the men came into camp, and although nearly all of the officers have been constantly absent on recruiting service, yet the men have been orderly and quiet; there have been but few desertions and none have run the guard. The men were put on their good behavior and they have caused no trouble, either to their officers or the citizens. The county of Tuscola is the banner county, and has the honor of raising the first company of the regiment. It is composed of 101 men, all hardy farmers and lumbermen the best materials for soldiers in the State. In the ranks of this company are four clergymen and one member of the Legislature of 1863. Col. Richardson aided very materially in raising the company. The company raised in East Saginaw is composed almost entirely of Germans. The quota of the little town of Frankenmuth was 22. The population of the town is mostly German. A meeting of the citizens was call to fill this quota. The citizens filled it on the spot, selecting 22 young married men, who, without any extra bounty, nobly responded to the call, and were placed in the company of Capt. Meyer, of East Saginaw. -- The entire regiment is made up of the hardy sons of toil, trained many of the to life in the woods, and will form a regiment that will make an honorable record. The following is a list of the staff and line of officers:

Colonel Thomas Sailor
Lieut. Colonel E. Frank Eddy, of Flint.
Major Alpheus M. Beebe, of Owasso.
Adjutant Henry P. Seymour, of Genesee.
Quartermaster Wm. A. Bryce, of Bay City.
Surgeon Dr. Farrand, of East Saginaw.
Assistant Surgeon Dr. J.S. Garrigues, of Bay City.
2d Assist. Surgeon Dr. Henry Giesmar, of Marquettee.
Champlain Rev. John Hawker, of Portsmouth.
Company A Capt. Alson Greenfield, of Tuscola.
Company B Capt. Wm. L. Lewis, of Bay City.
Company C Capt. Edward Saunders, of Saginaw City.
Company D Capt. Charles G. Meyers, of East Saginaw.
Company E Capt. Andrew J. Patterson, of Shiawassee.
Company F Capt. Blackmar, of Bridgeport.
Company G Capt. Eldridge, of Flint.
Company H Capt Schram, of Genesee county.
Companies I and K are not yet organized.

There may be some changes in the above, but we give them as reported to us. The Sutler is Mr. Beach of Fentonville. Mr. Bryce, the Quartermaster, was the editor of the Bay City Press and Times. Thus in a little over six weeks has this regiment been raised and mustered in. To Mr. Driggs, more than any other man, the credit of this work belongs. Thoroughly loyal and patriotic, he has been indefatigable in his efforts to fill up the regiment, laboring to this end with rare fidelity and zeal, even to the neglect of his other business. For his disinterested efforts in this direction his fellow citizens will remember him at the polls, and return him to Congress with an increased majority. -- Col. Sailor, who is to command this regiment was Major of the 3d Michigan Cavalry, and is now on his way to take the position from Little Rock, Ark. He is an able officer and a brave soldier. His regiment will be ready if necessary, to march for the front in two weeks. -- Det. Adv. & Trib.

1864 Sep. - Call for help (Added June 2008).

The Bay City Press And Times September 24, 1864

To the Friends of the Soldier.

The friends of the 31st Infantry are earnestly appealed to for aid for the sick in the hospital at Camp Saginaw. Our people should promptly respond to the call. Let each neighborhood take hold of the matter; every family can do something. As there are but few sick, a little will go a great way. If you have dried berries, pickles, tomatoes, bread, butter, cheese, or anything that you would prepare for invalids at home, you should cheerfully give. Cotton cloths, to be dampened for the brow of the fevered patient, will be very acceptable. All articles intended for the sick should be addressed William McCormick, Ward Hospital, East Saginaw; or should be left at the office of this paper, from whence they will be immediately forwarded by Rev. Mr. Hawker, Chaplain of the 31st Regiment.

Related Notes & Pages
*Bay Co. Civil War History
People Referenced
Beebe, Alpheus M. Maj.
Blackmar, Capt.
Blair, Gov.
Bryce, Wm. A. QtrMaster
Driggs, John F. Hon.
Eddy, Frank E Lt.Col
Eldridge, Capt.
Farrand, Dr. Surg.
Garrigues, J.S. Dr. Surg.
Giesmar, Henry Dr. Surg.
Greenfield, Alson Capt.
Hawker, John Rev.
Lewis, Wm. L. Capt.
McCormick, Wm.
Meyers, Charles G. Capt.
Patterson, Andrew J. Capt.
Richardson, Col.
Sailor, Thomas Col.
Saunders, Edward Capt.
Schram, Capt.
Seymour, Henry P Adj.
Subjects Referenced
3rd Mich. Cavalry
31st Mich. Infantry
Bay City, MI
Camp Saginaw
East Saginaw, MI
Fentonville, MI
Flint, MI
Frankenmuth, MI
Genesee Co., MI
Little Rock, Ark.
Owasso, MI
Portsmouth, MI
Saginaw City, MI
Upper Peninsula, MI
Ward Hospital, E. Sag.
WRITINGS: History As It Was Written Then.