Col. Ernest M.P. Von Vegesack, 20th New York Infantry "United Turner Regiment" (Captain in Swedish army)


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Col. Ernest M.P. Von Vegesack, 20th New York Infantry "United Turner Regiment" (Captain in Swedish army)

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A full-body glass plate negative of Union Colonel
Ernst Mattias Peter von Vegesack in uniform in front of a tent

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Full-body glass plate negative of soldier in uniform

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Glass plate negative

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This item is in the Public Domain under the laws of the United States because copyright has expired, but we have not determined its copyright status under the copyright laws of other countries. You are responsible for your own use.

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Library of Congress

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Colonel Ernst Mattias Peter von Vegesack
(1820 - 1903)
Home State: New York
Command Billet: Commanding Regiment
Branch of Service: Infantry
Unit: 20th New York Infantry
On the Campaign-At Antietam, Baron von Vegesack led his regiment in a mid-day assault to and across the high ground immediately east of the Dunkard Church. His understated post-action report described it

...Advancing through the woods the regiment came into an open field, where they attacked the enemy and drove him across the field and the adjoining heights. The regiment occupied these heights until relieved the next morning ..."
The scene was later immortalized in a painting by Thulstrup. Their Brigadier, William Irwin had this to say:
"The Twentieth New York Volunteers by its position was exposed to the heaviest fire in [the Brigade] line, which it bore with unyielding courage and returned at every opportunity. The firmness of this regiment deserves very great praise. Colonel Von Vegesack was under fire with his men constantly, and his calm courage gave an admirable example to them. Each of their stand of colors is rent by the balls and shells of the enemy, and their killed and wounded is 145. This regiment was under my own eye in going into action and frequently during the battle, and I take pleasure in strongly testifying to its bravery and good conduct."

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