Thursday, December 13, 2012

Oliver's Story - Battle of Fredericksburg

Saturday, December 13, 1862

Oliver Stanton Bates survived another hellish battle during the three day siege at Fredericksburg. Oliver was heavily engaged in the street fighting on December 11, as Company A, one of the leading companies in the advance along Hawke Street, sealed the right flank of the intersection at Hawke and Caroline Streets in a maelstrom of gunfire. On December 13 Oliver was injured during the attack on Marye's Heights, very likely during the second attempt to take the Heights. Captain Henry Abbott of Company I reported that sixty-three men were killed or wounded in a matter of minutes during this assault. The severity of Oliver's wounding is not stated on his military service record, but he was present for muster rolls in January 1863.1

1Compiled service record, Oliver S. Bates, Pvt., Co. A, 20th Massachusetts Infantry; Carded Records, Volunteer Organizations, Civil War; Records of the Adjutant General's Office, 1780s-1917, Record Group 94; National Archives, Washington, D.C. Richard F. Miller, Harvard's Civil War: A History of the Twentieth Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry (Lebanon, New Hampshire: University Press of New England, 2005), 202. Francis Augustin O'Reilly, The Fredericksburg Campaign: Winter War on the Rappahannock (Baton Rouge, Louisiana: Louisiana State University Press, 2003), 331.

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