A nice badge worn by veterans of the 126th New York Infnatry at their 1906 reunion held at Geneva, New York. The hanger is a pressed metal with a celluloid of one of the officers of the regiment. It loks like a major. A red, white, and blue ribbon is attached. Written on the ribbon is a gold ink is "Reunion 126th N.Y. Vol. 3rd Brigade - 1st Division - 2nd Corps - Geneva, N.Y. - Aug. 22, 1906". The badge is approximately 7 inches by 2 7/8 inches.
126th Infantry Regiment
Mustered in: November 23,1861.
Mustered out: June 27, 1865
The following is taken from New York in the War of the Rebellion, 3rd ed. Frederick Phisterer. Albany: J. B. Lyon Company, 1912.
Colonel Eliakim Sherrill received authority, July 15, 1862, to raise this regiment in the counties of Ontario, Seneca and Yates; it was organized at Geneva, and there mustered in the service of the United States for three years August 22, 1862. December 25, 1864, it was consolidated into a battalion of five companies, A to E, and June 2, 1865, the men not to be mustered out with the regiment were transferred to the 4th Artillery.
The companies were recruited principally: A and B in Yates county; C and I in Seneca county; D, Hand K in Ontario county; E at Geneva and Rushville; F in the counties of Ontario and Seneca; and G in Ontario, Seneca and Yates counties.
The regiment left the State August 26, 1862; it served in the Middle Department from August, 1862; at Harper's Ferry, W. Va., where it was surrendered, from September, 1862; at Camp Douglas, Chicago, Ill., from September 27, 1862; in the defenses of Washington, in the 1st Brigade, Casey's Division, later 22d Corps, from December, 1862; in the 3d Brigade of the same, from January, 1863; in the 3d Brigade, 3d Division, 2d Corps, from June 25, 1863; in the 3d, for a time in the Consolidated, Brigade, 1st Division, 2d Corps, from March, 1864; and it was honorably discharged and mustered out, under Col. Ira Smith Brown, June 3, 1865, near Alexandria, Va.
During its service the regiment lost by death, killed in action, II officers, 95 enlisted men; of wounds received in action, 5 officers, 43 enlisted men; of disease and other causes, 1 officer, 121 enlisted men; total, 17 officers, 259 enlisted men; aggregate, 276; of whom 30 enlisted men died in the hands of the enemy.
The following is taken from The Union army: a history of military affairs in the loyal states, 1861-65 -- records of the regiments in the Union army -- cyclopedia of battles -- memoirs of commanders and soldiers. Madison, WI: Federal Pub. Co., 1908. volume II.
One Hundred and Twenty-Sixth Infantry.—Cols., Eliakim Sher-rill, James M. Bull, William H. Baird, Ira Smith Brown; Lieut-Cols., James M. Bull, William H. Baird, Ira Smith Brown, John B. Geddes; Majs., William H. Baird, Philo D. Phillips, Ira Smith Brown, Charles A. Richardson. This regiment, recruited in the counties of Ontario, Seneca and Yates, was organized at Geneva, and there mustered into the U. S. service for three years, Aug. 22, 1862. At the close of 1864, when it had become much reduced in numbers by reason of its hard service, it was consolidated into a battalion of five companies, A to E. The regiment left the state on Aug. 26, 1862, and took part in its first fighting during the siege of Harper's Ferry, where it received the brunt of the enemy's attack and suffered a large share of the casualties at Maryland and Bolivar heights. It lost 16 killed and 42 wounded during the fighting, and was surrendered with the rest of the garrison on Sept. 15. The men were immediately paroled and spent two months in camp at Chicago, Ill., awaiting notice of its exchange. As soon as notice of its exchange was received in December, it returned to Virginia, encamping during the winter at Union Mills. The following extract is taken from Col. Fox's account of the regiment in his work on Regimental Losses in the Civil War: "In June, 1863, it joined the Army of the Potomac, and was placed in Willard's brigade, Alex. Hays' (3d) division, 2nd corps, with which it marched to Gettysburg, where the regiment won honorable distinction, capturing 5 stands of colors in that battle. Col. Willard, the brigade commander, being killed there, Col. Sherrill succeeded him, only to meet the same fate, while in the regiment the casualties amounted to 40 killed, 181 wounded and 10 missing. At Bristoe Station the regiment won additional honors by its conspicuous gallantry and sustained the heaviest loss in that action; casualties, 6 killed, 33 wounded and 10 missing. The 126th haying been transferred to Barlow's (1st) division, entered the spring campaign of 1864 with less than 300 men, of whom 100 were detailed at headquarters as a provost-guard. Its casualties at the Wilderness were 5 killed, 62 wounded and 9 missing; and at Po river and Spottsylvania, 6 killed, 37 wounded and 7 missing. Col. Baird was killed at Petersburg." The regiment took part in the following important battles: Siege of Harper's Ferry—including Maryland and Bolivar heights; Gettysburg, Auburn ford, Bristoe Station, Morton's ford, Wilderness, Po river, Spottsylvania, North Anna, Toto-potomy, Cold Harbor, Petersburg, Weldon railroad, siege of Petersburg, Deep Bottom, Reams' station, Hatcher's run, and Sutherland Station, and was also present in the Mine Run campaign, at Strawberry Plains, Boydton Road, Farmville and Appomattox. Commanded by Col. Brown, it was mustered out at Washington, D. C, June 3, 1865. The total enrollment of the regiment during service was 1,036, of whom 16 officers and 138 men were killed and mortally wounded, or 14.7 per cent.; 1 officer and 121 men died of disease and other causes; total deaths, 17 officers and 259 men, 30 of whom died in the hands of the enemy. The total of killed and wounded in the regiment amounted to 535. The percentage of killed and mortally wounded at Gettysburg amounted to over 15, and the total casualties to 57.4 per cent.