The Story of the 116th Regiment, Pennsylvania Volunteers in the War of the Rebellion


The 116th Pennsylvania was no ordinary regiment. For two hard years it fought with Thomas Meagher's celebrated Irish Brigade of the Army of the Potomac. Though only partially Irish itself, the 116th won an honored place in this famous unit's history by its faithful service in some of the bloodiest campaigns of the war. The mutual respect between the Irish and the 116th was certainly founded on their shared bravery and suffering during the campaigns from Fredericksburg to Petersburg, but it no doubt also owed something to the remarkable Irish colonel, St. Clair Mulholland, who commanded the 116th through most of its battles. Mulholland was a soldier's soldier: disciplined, courageous, caring, and dedicated to the men of his regiment. Wounded four times (once, it was thought, mortally), he time and again rose from his hospital bed to return to command. Winner of the congressional Medal of Honor for his actions at Chancellorsville, he was later brevetted brigadier general and major general for service in the Wilderness and at Petersburg.


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