91st Infantry Regiment

Nickname: Albany Regiment; Columbia County Regiment

Mustered in: September to December 1861
Mustered out: July 3, 1865

The following is taken from New York in the War of the Rebellion, 3rd ed. Frederick Phisterer. Albany: J. B. Lyon Company, 1912. 

This regiment was organized at Albany December 16, 1861, by the consolidation of the regiment recruited by Col. David S. Cowles, with the men recruited for the Fredendall Regiment, and the appointment of Jacob Van Zandt as its Colonel. It was mustered in the service of the United States for three years between September and December, 1861. While on its veteran furlough, in September, 1864, it received a large number of recruits, enlisted and mustered in for one year's service. At the expiration of its term of enlistment, the men entitled thereto were discharged and the regiment retained in service. June 5, 1865, it received the men of the I47th Infantry not mustered out with their regiment.
The companies were recruited principally: A, B, D, F and K at Albany; C at Redford and Albany; E at Hudson and Albany; G at Schenectady; H at Albany and Hillsdale; and I at Albany, Chatham, Castleton and Hudson.
The regiment left the State January 9, 1862; it served at and near Washington, D. C., from January 1862; at Key West, Fort Pickens and Pensacola, Fla., from later in January, 1862; at Baton Rouge, La., from December 19, 1862; in 3d Brigade, Grover's Division, Department of the Gulf, from January 12, 1863; in 1st Brigade, 4th Division, 19th Corps, from March, 1863; at Fort Jackson, La., as heavy artillery, from July, 1863; at Baltimore, Md., in 2d Separate Brigade, 8th Corps, from October, 1864; in 1st Brigade, 3d Division, 5th Corps, except Company E, which remained at Baltimore, from March, 1865; in 3d Brigade, 3d Division, 5th Corps, from June, 1865; and it was honorably discharged and mustered out, under Col. Jonathan Tarbell, July 3, 1865, near Washington, D. C.
During its service the regiment lost by death, killed in action, 2 officers, 62 enlisted men; of wounds received in action, 2 officers, 48 enlisted men; of disease and other causes, 1 officer, 187 enlisted men; total, 5 officers, 297 enlisted men; aggregate, 302; of whom 2 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. 

Ninety-first Infantry.—Cols., Jacob Van Zandt, Jonathan Tar-bell; Lieut-Cols., Jonathan Tarbell, William J. Denslow; Majs., Charles G. Clark, George W. Stackhouse, William J. Denslow, Alfred Wagstaff, Jr. The 91st, the Albany regiment, was recruited mainly at Albany, Redford, Hudson, Schenectady, Hillsdale, Chatham and Castleton, and was mustered in at Albany from Sept. to Dec., 1861, for three years. It left the state for Washington Jan. 9, 1862, was quartered there for a short time, then embarked for Fort Pickens, Fla., and was next ordered to Louisiana, where it served in the 1st brigade, 4th division, 19th corps. It was stationed at Fort Jackson, La., in July, 1863, equipped as heavy artillery, and was active with heavy loss during the siege of Port Hudson. A sufficient number of the regiment reenlisted to secure its continuance in the field as a veteran regiment and in the autumn of 1864, it returned to Baltimore, where it was assigned to the 2nd separate brigade, 8th corps. In March, 1865, the regiment, with the exception of one company which remained at Baltimore, was ordered to Petersburg, where it participated in the closing operations of the siege with the 1st brigade, 3d division, 5th corps, and lost 230 in the Appomattox campaign. The regiment was mustered out near Washington, July 3, 1865, having lost during its term of service 114 by death from wounds and 188 from other causes.


91st Regiment NY Volunteer Infantry | National Color | Civil War

On December 21, 1861, as the 91st New York Volunteers prepared to leave Albany, New York, for the seat of war, the regiment assembled outside Aldermanā€¦


91st Regiment NY Volunteer Infantry | Flank Marker | Civil War

Brigadier General Jonathan Tarbell, former Colonel of the 91st Regiment NY Volunteer Infantry deposited this unique flank marker with stateā€¦

NYSMM Online Resources

Battles and Casualties from Phisterer (pdf)
Battles and Casualties from Phisterer (spreadsheet)

Muster Roll

Unit Roster

Civil War Newspaper Clippings
This is also available in PDF format. hese are large files; however, they are exact images of the pages.

Pages 1 - 10
Pages 11 - 20
Pages 21 - 29
Pages 30 - 38

Search the Museum catalog for this unit

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Other Resources

This is meant to be a comprehensive list. If, however, you know of a resource that is not listed below, please send an email to ng.ny.nyarng.list.historians@army.mil with the name of the resource and where it is located. This can include photographs, letters, articles and other non-book materials. Also, if you have any materials in your possession that you would like to donate, the museum is always looking for items specific to New York's military heritage. Thank you.

Annual Re-union of the Ninety-First Regiment, N. Y. S. V. : on Thursday, July, 3rd, 1902. [Albany, NY] V. A. Peters, 1902.

Brown Family, (William R. Brown). Papers (1850-1930)
4 boxes (1 cu. ft.). 
Brown was aChaplain in the 91st New York Infantry.
Collection Call Number: SC16836
Located at the New York State Library Manuscripts and Special Collections.

Collin, John B. Correspondence, 1860-1865
Information on the enemy, defense positions, military authorities, and camp life, 6 letters, 20 pages total.
Photocopies of orginals.

Company B, 91st regiment New York vol. in fantry soldiers' memorial. Cincinnati: Ehrgott, Forbriger & co., lithographers, c1863. col. illus. broadside 56 x 45cm. Copyright by J. W. Waterman.

Coolaw, Joseph. Papers, 1864-1902.
Quantity: 23 items.
Abstract: Personal correspondence, primarily from his service with the 91st Regiment of the New York Volunteers, and with his siblings Andrew, Charles, John, Moses, and Mary, and his friend C.N. Park of Clark, South Dakota.
Located at the State University of New York College at Plattsburgh. Feinberg Library, Special Collections, Plattsburgh, NY.

Cromer (Family : Rochester, N.Y.) . John Cromer family papers. 1838-1948.
Description:    1 box
Abstract:    The main part of the Cromer family papers consist of forty-three letters, most of which were written by George Cromer to his parents in Rochester, while he was serving with the 91st New York Infantry in Key West, Florida in 1862. The letters chronicle daily camp life and describe the local inhabitants and economy, as well as several skirmishes with Confederate troops in the area. There are also a few letters by his brother, Phalon L. Cromer, who was serving with the 5th Regular Infantry in New Mexico Territory, and one letter by a third brother, William Cromer. There is a typescript of the letters with the collection. Also included in the papers are miscellaneous correspondence and documents relating to other members of the family, and to a Mauder family of Rochester. One group of correspondence relates to the murder of Phalon L. Cromer in Taos, New Mexico Territory, in 1885, and the efforts of his family in Rochester to determine the circumstances of his death and the disposition of his estate. Numerous legal instruments, such as birth certificates, baptismal records, deeds, indentures, wills, and receipts are in the papers, including an 1853 indenture of an apprentice to a ship-builder in Rochester.
Located at the University of Rochester.

Gardineer, William. Letter, 5 Septmeber, 1864.
2 pages.
Photocopies of orginal.
Located at the NYS Military Museum, vertical files.

Houghtaling, Robert. Letters (1862-1864).
18 items. 
Collection Call Number: 22422. 
Letters sent to Houghtaling's siblings from Fort McHenry and other army camps in Maryland. The content of these letters concerns mostly personal and family matters, but occasionally there is some discussion about military experiences. One letter includes a printed poem by Agnes B. Lynch, titled The Soldier's Farewell to His Sister. 
Located at the New York State Library Manuscripts and Special Collections.

Jones, Allen W. "A Federal Raid into Southeast Alabama." The Alabama Review 14.4 (October, 1961) pp. 259-269.
Resource submitted by Joe Paul.

Lowry, Thomas P. 1932- (Thomas Power) "Damned fool and illiterate whelp: Lt. Col. Jonathan Tarbell." Curmudgeons, drunkards, and outright fools : courts-martial of Civil War Union colonels. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2003, 1997. 213-218.

MacCormick, William M.,  author, and Daniel Patrick Wilson, editor,; transcriber. My Army life. [Schenectady, New York?] : [Daniel Patrick Wilson], 2017
Held by Union College, Schenectady, NY.

McCormick, William M. WineyColl 
(Sgt's diary, Jan 1, 1863-Jul 24, 1865; Letters, 1865)
Located at the Military History Institute in Carlisle, PA.

McCormick, William M. William M. McCormick papers, 1870.
Quantity: 1 volume
McCormick enlisted at Salem, New York and saw service in Louisiana and Virginia.
Abstract: Narrative entitled 'My Army Life, 1861-1865', by William M. McCormick describes company marches, encampments, and encounters with the enemy. Also roster of Company D, 91st New York Infantry.
Union College, Schaffer Library, Special Collections, Schenectady, New York 12308.

McDermott, John Grey. “Civil War Letters”. 1860-1865.
Civil War correspondence of Captain John McDermott, Company E, 91st Regiment New York Infantry, to his wife and other family members from areas in Louisiana, Key West, and Pensacola, Florida; describing his duties, camp life, and family news. 
Located at the Wisconsin Historical Archives.

Morse, George. Civil War Miscellaneous Collection 
(Enlisted man's letters, Sep 14, 1864-Jul 5, 1865)
Located at the Military History Institute in Carlisle, PA.

Reunion of the 91st regiment, N.Y. veteran volunteers at Albany, N.Y., December 20th 1882. Albany: Wentworth, 1882. "First annual reunion." At head of title: 1861. 1886.

Rider, George M. Civil War Miscellaneous Collection 
(Enlisted man's letter, Nov 20, 1864)
Located at the Military History Institute in Carlisle, PA.

Rifenburgh, Silas. Silas Rifenburgh papers, 1864-1913.
Description:    8 items
Abstract:    This collection contains four medals: 1902, 1861-91st NY Vet Vols-1865 (medal on gold ribbon); Annual Reunion, 91st Regiment N.Y.S., Vol. Albany, N.Y., July 3, 1902; Member, Annual Reunion, 91st Regiment, New York Vols, Albany, July 1, 1904 (medal on blue ribbon); and 1863 - 1913, New York - Gettysburg, Mead - Lee (2-part medal). And the following documents: 1864 discharge paper - Silas Rifenburgh, National Guard, Company A, 39th Regiment; 1865 - discharge paper - Silas Rifenburgh, Company B, 91st Regiment of the New York Veterans Volunteers; 1867 wedding certificate - Silas H Rifenburgh, Worcester, NY and Mary E. Hathaway, Maryland, NY. 1882 - certificate of membership to any post of the Grand Army of the Republic - Silas H. Rifenburgh, Private, Company B 91st Regiment, NY Vol, Inft.
Held by the The Farmers' Museum, Cooperstown, NY.

Shepard, Sylvester B. Civil War Miscellaneous Collection 
(Lt's letters, Jun 11-12, 1861 & Jun 13, 1863)
Located at the Military History Institute in Carlisle, PA.

Shepard, Sylvester Barrett. Letters (1861-1863).
Letters (1861-1863). 25 items. Collection Call Number: 13997. Group of letters sent to Shepard's wife, Anne, concerning campaigns at Big Bethel, 2nd Bull Run, and Port Hudson. These letters also discuss the problems of low morale and lack of discipline prevalent among his fellow soldiers.
Located at the New York State Library Manuscripts and Special Collections.

Southwell,William. Letters (1864-1865)
Southwell wrote mostly about his experiences of military life within the confines of Fort Marshall, a garrison near Baltimore, Maryland. 1 Box, 24 Letters.
Located at the New York State Library Manuscripts and Special Collections.

Stewart, James H. HCWRTColl 
(Sgt's letters, Mar 24-26, 1865 & genealogical history)
Located at the Military History Institute in Carlisle, PA.

Wilcox, Edmund A., and Margaret Wilcox Kellner. Who would not - be a soldier : The Civil War letters of Edmund A. Wilcox. New York, Heirloom, 1998.


Unit bibliography from the Army Heritage Center.

Items in the museum collection are in bold.