Cultural Groups in the American Civil War

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Canadians[edit | edit source]

More than 50,000 Canadians fought in the U.S. Civil War. The majority fought on the Union side, but many fought with the Confederates.

For additional information, see:

Records[edit | edit source]

  • Johnson, Daniel F. The American Civil War : the service records of Atlantic Canadians with the State of Maine volunteers. (Saint John, New Brunswick : D.F. Johnson, c1995). 2 volumes. FHL book 971.5 M2jd

Germans[edit | edit source]

Hispanics[edit | edit source]

Union Lieutenant Colonel Julius Peter Garesché (1821-1862), born in Havana, Cuba

Hispanics from various states and countries fought on both sides, Union and Confederate. In the Southeast, Hispanics mostly served in the Confederate military.[1] About 2500 fought for the Confederacy and about 1000 for the Union.  However, by the end of the war, 10,000 were in the military.[2]

The highest levels of Hispanic participation occurred in the Southwest states and territories.[1]

For additional information, see:

Confederate Military Units[edit | edit source]

Alabama[edit | edit source]

The Spanish Guards company was exclusively men of Spanish ancestry. It served as a home guard for the city of Mobile.[1]

The 55th Regiment, Alabama Infantry Volunteers had many Hispanic soldiers.[1]

Florida[edit | edit source]

Florida's 2nd Infantry had many Hispanic soldiers.[1]

Louisiana[edit | edit source]

New Orleans' European Brigade had nearly 800 Hispanics. This was a home guard of 4,500 to keep order and defend the city.[1]

The Louisiana Tigers were the brigades of Brigadier General Harry T. Hays's and Brigadier General William E. Starke. These brigades included  Anglo and Creole Louisianans, "plus men from Spain, Cuba, Mexico, and other Latin American countries."[1]

Union Military Units[edit | edit source]

New York[edit | edit source]

The 39th Regiment, New York Infantry, also known as the Garibaldi Guard, had a company of Spanish and Portuguese soldiers.[1] This was Company D, also called The Spanish Company.[2]

New Mexico[edit | edit source]

The New Mexico Volunteer Infantry had 157 Hispanic officers.[2]  Union commander, Colonel Edward Canby met Confederate forces in New Mexico on February 21, 1862, with 3,800 troops, including 2,500 Hispanic soldiers of the New Mexico Volunteers and militia.[1]

Hungarians[edit | edit source]

Approximately 800 Hungarian immigrants fought in the Civil War. Many were refugees from the civil unrest in Hungary during the 1840s and 1850s.[3]

Sources[edit | edit source]

  • Pivány, Eugene, Hungarians in the American Civil War, (Cleveland, Ohio, sn, 1913), has biographies of several Hungarians who fought in the Civil War, as well as a partial list of Hungarian Union officers, pp. 52-61. Internet Archive.
  • Kune, Julian, Reminiscences of an Octogenarian Hungarian Exile, (Bethesda, Maryland : University Publications of America, c1993). FHL fiche 6084215.

Irish[edit | edit source]

Norwegians[edit | edit source]

There is a searchable database of Norwegians in the Civil War at the Vesterheim Norwegian Historical Museum. To access online visit their website.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 National Park Service, Hispanics in the Civil War, (accessed 10 April 2012).
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Wikipedia contributors, Hispanics in the American Civil War, (accessed 10 April 2012).
  3. Pivány, Eugene, Hungarians in the American Civil War, (Cleveland, Ohio: sn, 1913), p. 13.