The Weary Boys: Colonel J. Warren Keifer and the 110th Ohio Volunteer Infantry

The Weary Boys: Colonel J. Warren Keifer and the 110th Ohio Volunteer Infantry

The Weary Boys: Colonel J. Warren Keifer and the 110th Ohio Volunteer Infantry

The Weary Boys: Colonel J. Warren Keifer and the 110th Ohio Volunteer Infantry

Synopsis

Milroy's Weary Boys was the derisive nickname Maj.Gen. Winfield Scott Hancock gave to the survivors of the 110th Ohio Volunteer Infantry after the Second Battle of Winchester. Author John E. Pope reconsiders the men of this infantry and their contribution to the Army of Potomac.

Excerpt

As an adolescent, I visited my grandparents and looked through many of their prized possessions. Several items remain in the forefront of my memory: a diary, a captain’s log, and a medal. During those visits, I spent many hours pouring over the diary and log, and I was thoroughly intrigued by the information contained in those treasured items. My ancestor, John McColley, faithfully recorded his business transactions and daily occurrences for many decades. It was this initial exposure to primary-source material that started my journey into historical research.

In a walnut display case handcrafted by my grandfather, my grandparents kept several items of sentimental value. I was always drawn to one in particular that was prominently displayed there, my great-great-grandfather’s Grand Army of the Republic medal. Like any inquisitive youngster, I questioned my grandmother about this fantastic artifact, and she proudly proclaimed that it was her grandfather’s Civil War medal.

On subsequent visits, I was continually drawn to these wonderful treasures. With a desire for more information, I questioned my father about the medal. Being a former social studies teacher, he began telling me stories about the Civil War. Then, while in junior high school, I continued my quest for more knowledge about the war and how my ancestor fit into it. My father quickly suggested that I read some Civil War books that he had, handing me Bruce Catton’s classic works. I was hooked.

Shortly after beginning my teaching career at Graham High School in St. Paris, Ohio, I entered graduate school at Wright State University and chose the thesis track. Early on, I decided to research and write a regimental history. I discovered that a local regiment, the 66th Ohio Infantry, did not have a written unit history. I spent a year conducting preliminary research and was just beginning to search for primary sources when I discovered . . .

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