63d Regiment
Pennsylvania Volunteers

History of Company I

"The McKeesport Rifle Grays"

At a meeting called August 12, 1861, in Alliquipa Hall, foot of Market Street, McKeesport, Pa., for the enrollment and enlistment of a company, Rev. D. K. Rine, a very stirring and patriotic speech and at its close some sixty-one young men enrolled their names. Two days after they left on the steamer Bayard for Camp Wilkins, near Pittsburgh, command of James F. Ryan, who was the unanimous choice as Captain.

With a week after enlisting, one hundred having been recruited and added to the company, we were mustered and sworn into the United States service by Captain Hays, U. S. Army, and immediately, via Pennsylvania Railroad Company, in box cars, went to Washington, D. C., remaining over night and part of next day in a large barracks known as “The Soldiers' Rest,” when we were sent out to our first camp, Georgetown, D. C. and assigned to the Sixty-third Regiment, without tents, uniforms or guns, sleeping for the first time on the ground without covering, but beautifully refreshed about midnight with a heavy rainfall. A few days later we were marched to the United States Arsenal to receive guns and ammunition. Will we ever forget the guns that fired from both ends? Took boat at Washington to Alexandria, Va., went into Camp Johnson, Arlington Heights, Va. Here George W. Gray, of McKeesport, having recruited some eighteen men which completed the full complement of one hundred and one men which was added to Company I, Color Company.

James F. Ryan was commissioned as Captain; George W. Gray, First Lieutenant; James M. Lysle, Second Lieutenant; James M. Lysle, being September 1st promoted to Regimental Quartermaster, was killed six months later at Pohick Church, Va. James F. M'Mullen, commissioned to fill vacancy of second Lieutenant September 1, 1861, vice Lieutenant Lysle, resigned July 26, 1862. David C. Crawford was commissioned September 1, 1864, Second Lieutenant, vice James F. M'Mullen, resigned. First Lieutenant George W. Gray promoted as Captain, Company C, transferred September 1, 1862. Andrew C. Critchlow promoted September 1, 1862, to First Lieutenant, vice George W. Gray, transferred to Captain Company C. Captain James F. Ryan promoted Major, December 19, 1863. William M'Intosh was commissioned January 3, 1864, Captain, vice James F. Ryan, promoted to Major.

At the close of the three years' service, the company was mustered out September 19, 1864; those of the company re-enlisting as Veterans, were transferred to the One Hundred and Fifth Regiment, Pennsylvania Volunteers. The enrollment of the company, including recruits, drafted, etc. numbered 131.

Source:   Gilbert Adams Hays, Captain. Under the Red Patch: Story of the Sixty-third Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers, 1861-1864. Published by the 63d Pennsylvania Volunteer Regiment Association. Pittsburg: Market Review Publishing Company, 1908.






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