Battles of the 34th Massachusetts Infantry
At Cedar Creek, on October 19, 1864, the 34th Infantry Regiment lost 9 wounded (2 mortally) and 32 missing. West Brookfield’s men in the 34th
Battle of New Market
On May 14 and 15, 1864, the 34th had its first great fight at New Market, VA. Though they fought like tigers, they were overcome by the overwhelming odds of the enemy. They went in with about 500 men, and in the fight of 30 minutes, lost 221 men of whom 39 were killed or mortally wounded, 2 officers and 16 men were taken prisoners, 164 wounded, nearly one-half of the whole number. In the Adjutant General’s report of the fight, it is said that the Regiment could only be stopped when commanded to retreat, by Colonel Wells laying hold of the color bearer and holding him by force. During and after the hostilities that day, members of the 34th were taken into a New Market home and were provided aid and comfort.
June 5, they were engaged in the Battle of Piedmont, where they charged the enemy, who were behind rail breastworks and drove them out, capturing more than 1,000 prisoners. The loss to the regiment was heavy, 110, of whom 22 were killed or mortally wounded. June 17, the Regiment reached the outskirts of Lynchburg and on the following day they lost 5 killed and 40 wounded.
July 18, the 34th was engaged at Snicker’s Gap with a loss of 4 killed and 11 wounded.
The succeeding 7 weeks were spent in marching and countermarching from Williamsport to Frederick, MD., and as far up the Shenandoah as Middletown near Cedar Creek.
At Winchester (Opequan), Sept 19 it lost 7 killed and 97 wounded, several mortally.
At Fisher’s Hill, Sept 22, it was engaged with slight loss. At Stickley’s Farm near Cedar Creek on Oct 13, it lost its Colonel, Wells, now commanding the brigade, and 9 men killed, 48 wounded, and 40 missing. At Cedar Creek, Oct 19, it lost 9 wounded (2 mortally) and 32 missing.
After a winter spent in front of Petersburg, the regiment was engaged at Hatcher’s Run, March 31, at Fort Gregg near Petersburg, with heavy loss, April 2, then joined in the pursuit and capture of the Army of Northern Virginia. After a short stay in Lynchburg it returned to Richmond, where on June 15, 1865, it was mustered out and sent home.