Morris O’Connor, Civil War
Submitted by Kathleen O’Connor Sly
Morris O’Connor was born October 28, 1843 in Mercer County, Pennsylvania. At the outbreak of the Civil War, he was nineteen years of age and, like thousands of other young men, was drawn into that great conflict. He and Henry W. Seibert, who later became his brother-in-law, accompanied by an Alexander Lindsay all enlisted in the Pennsylvania Volunteer Cavalry at Franklin, Pennsylvania, on September 9, 1862, and was soon transferred to the mobilization area at Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, were they were all mustered into Company E, Sixteenth Pennsylvania Volunteer Cavalry, 161st Regiment of the Line, for a period of three years on September 27, 1862. This regiment saw much action under Generals Grant, Sheridan and Meade. A list of the major engagements it participated in include: the Wilderness, Cold harbor, Chancellorsville, Petersburg and Gettysburg. Minor engagements include Kelley’s Ford, Middleburg, Ashby’s Gap, Shepardstown, Sulphur Springs, Bristow Station, Mine Run, Todd’s Tavern, Howe’s Shop, Trevillion Station, St. Mary’s Church, Ream’s Station, Boydton Road, fortifications around Richmond and Stony Creek Station. Morris O’Connor was honorably discharged from the United States Army on June 17, 1865 at Lynchburg, Virginia.
While in service and in the line of duty on or about the 16th day of July, 1863, Morris O’Connor received a shell wound of the left leg near the ankle, and was very much disabled in consequence of this wound ever since.
Morris O’Connor was present at and engaged in the battle between the Union and Confederate forces which occurred at or near Shepardstown, Virginia on or about July 16, 1863. During which battle and while in the line of duty Morris O’Connor was wounded in the left leg by a fragment of an exploding rebel shell. Morris O’Connor was present and took part in the battle of Stony Creek Station, Virginia, when a rebel fort was taken by the Union forces, on or about Dec 1, 1864 an that O’Connor led the front skirmish line at the time the fort was taken. That on Christmas Day, 1864 O’Connor, in the line of duty near Petersburg, Va when the squadron commanded by Captain A.H. Rush, forming the rear guard of their regiment was attacked by a band of rebel guerrillas. O’Connor and his detachment stood their ground and repulsed the guerrillas after Rush and the balance of his squadron had fled from the field.
Kathleen O’Connor Sly