Model 1850 Non-regulation Field and Staff Officers Sword Presented to Lt. Col. Luke Lyman 27th Massachusetts Infantry in 1861
Model 1850 Non-regulation Field and Staff Officers Sword Presented to Lt. Col. Luke Lyman 27th Massachusetts Infantry in 1861 – This Field and Staff Officers sword is quite unique in design and construction and is unlike any we have encountered. The sword, a product, as many Civil War era swords, of Germany, is constructed of steel and polished steel, as well as silvered, brass, scabbard mounts. The blade is finely engraved with a unique style U.S. Eagle with the motto “E. Pluribus Unum” on one side of the blade and an ornate “US” on the other side, as well as additional foliate, decorative elements, on both sides. The spine of the blade is marked, in raised letters – “Iron Proof”; the ricasso is stamped – “W CLAUBERG / SOLINGEN”. The sword’s grip is covered in shagreen or rayfin, wrapped with two, thin, twisted brass wires. The quillon also presents a completely unique raised decorative element on its underside – a cast, raised U.S. Eagle, sitting above raised letters “US”. The scrolled end of the quillon exhibits a raised, integrally cast star. The pommel is a “birds head” variety, with a multi-tiered cap with a raised, ball-like covering of the peening and an extension over the grip, that presents a raised decorative motif. The scabbard is a heavy, black leather, with silvered, brass mounts and drag. Of significance, is the finely engraved inscription on the upper mount that reads as follows:
Lt. Col. L. Lyman
27th Ms. Inf.
Sept. 17, 1861”
Lt. Col. Lyman enlisted, as a member of the Field and Staff, at the rank of Lt. Colonel, in the 27th Massachusetts Infantry in September of 1861; he would accompany Gen. Ambrose Burnside to North Carolina during Burnside’s expeditionary movements and was involved in the combat episodes on Roanoke Island, in 1862. Records indicate that Lyman resigned in May, 1863, yet he was breveted, in 1865, to the ranks of Colonel and Brigadier General. Given Lyman’s enlistment date, he must have been presented this fine sword upon his initial enlistment.
The sword and scabbard remain in excellent condition. Measurements: Overall Length – 37.25” (sword out of the scabbard); Blade Length – 31.5”
|Residence Northampton MA; a 39 year-old Register Of Probate.
Enlisted on 9/17/1861 as a Lieut Colonel.
On 9/20/1861 he was commissioned into Field & Staff MA 27th Infantry
He Resigned on 5/27/1863
* Colonel 3/13/1865 by Brevet
* Brig-General 3/13/1865 by Brevet
born 11/1/1824 in Northampton, MA
died 11/12/1889 in Montreal, Canada
|REGIMENT:||27th Regiment, Massachusetts Infantry|
|RANK IN:||Lieutenant Colonel|
|RANK OUT:||Lieutenant Colonel|
27th MA Infantry
( 3-years )
|Organized: Camp Reed, Springfield, MA on 9/20/61
Mustered Out: 6/26/65 at New Berne, NC
Officers Killed or Mortally Wounded: 9
|Dec ’61||Apr ’62||Foster’s||Burnside’s Expeditionary Corps||New Organization|
|Apr ’62||Jul ’62||2||1||Department of North Carolina|
|Aug ’62||Nov ’62||1||1||Department of North Carolina|
|Nov ’62||Dec ’62||3||1||Department of North Carolina|
|Dec ’62||Jan ’63||Lee’s Unatt||Department of North Carolina|
|Jan ’63||Jul ’63||2||1||18||Department of North Carolina|
|Jul ’63||Aug ’63||Defenses of New Berne||18||Department of North Carolina|
|Aug ’63||Oct ’63||Defenses of New Berne||Dist of North Carolina||18||Department of Virginia and North Carolina|
|Oct ’63||Nov ’64||US Forces, Newport News||18||Department of Virginia and North Carolina|
|Jan ’64||Apr ’64||Unattached||US Forces, Portsmouth, VA||18||Department of Virginia and North Carolina|
|Mar ’64||Apr ’64||2||Getty’s||18||Department of Virginia and North Carolina|
|Apr ’64||Sep ’64||1||2||18||Army of the James|
|Sep ’64||Jan ’65||Sub Dist of Beaufort||Dist of North Carolina||18||Department of Virginia and North Carolina|
|Jan ’65||Mar ’65||Sub-Dist New Berne||Department of North Carolina|
|Mar ’65||Mar ’65||2||2||Dist of Beaufort||Department of North Carolina|
|Mar ’65||Jun ’65||Sub-Dist New Berne||Department of North Carolina||Mustered Out|
MASSACHUSETTS VOLUNTEER INFANTRY
Three Years (Re-enlisted)
| The 27th Regt. Mass. Vol. Inf. was raised in the western
counties of Massachusetts by Horace C. Lee of Springfield, who
became its colonel.
The companies reported at Camp Reed, Springfield, between the
19th and 24th of September, and three quarters of the
regiment had been mustered in by September 27. On November 2
the regiment entrained for Annapolis, Md., where it arrived on
the 5th. January 9, 1862, as a part of Foster’s Brigade,
Burnside’s Coast Division, it embarked with the Burnside
expedition to North Carolina. It was engaged with loss at
Roanoke Island, Feb. 8, and with greater loss at Newbern, March
In May, 1862, Burnside’s force was organized into three
divisions, the 27th becoming a part of Stevenson’s (2d)
Brigade, Foster’s (1st) Division. Expeditions or
reconnaissances were made to Batchelder’s Creek, Trenton,
Washington, and almost to Tarboro during the summer and fall.
Plymouth was visited Nov. 10, and on Dec. 3, the regiment
returned to Newbern. From Dec. 11 to Dec. 21, the 27th was on
the Goldsboro expedition, but suffered only slight loss. The
winter was without event of importance after the return from
From March 30, 1863, to April 16, eight companies were
shut up in Washington, N.C., which was then besieged by Gen. D.
H. Hill. The siege being raised, they returned to Newbern,
April 25. Two days later they were sent to Core Creek on the
Gum Swamp expedition, again returning to Newbern where the
regiment stayed most of the time until October.
On October 17, the regiment embarked under orders to
proceed to Newport News, Va., arriving on the evening of the
18th. Here it became a part of Heckman’s Star Brigade, 2d
Division, 18th Corps, Army of the James. During the early
winter of 1863-64, 220 members of the regiment re-enlisted and
on Jan. 15 went home on a veteran furlough, remaining until
Feb. 19. During the winter months 213 recruits joined the
regiment, so that it entered the spring campaign with
933officers and men.
After fruitless expeditions to Yorktown and Williamsburg in
May, 1864, the regiment returned to Fort Monroe and embarked
May 5 for Bermuda Hundred. It was engaged at Port Walthall
Junction, May 6 and 7, losing 22 men, 5 of whom were killed or
mortally wounded, also at Arrowfield Church, May 9, with a loss
of 38, of whom 10 were killed or mortally wounded. At Drury’s
Bluff, May 16, in the dense fog of early morning the regiment
was outflanked and lost over 300 officers and men, 17 of whom
were killed or mortally wounded and 259 taken prisoners, many
of them dying in Andersonville. In this action Gen. Heckman,
their brigade commander, was captured. Transferred to the
north side of the James, the regiment was engaged at Cold
Harbor, June 2 and 3, losing 104, of whom 30 were killed or
mortally wounded. In the four weeks ending June 3 the regiment
suffered 488 casualties, 62 being officers and men killed or
The 27th now recrossed to the Petersburg front, being in
action June 15, on the very day of its arrival, and again on
the 18th, when it lost 11 killed and 28 wounded.
August 25 it was withdrawn to the Bermuda Hundred region.
In September 179 men whose term of service had expired were
sent home to Massachusetts. The rest of the regiment was
transferred to North Carolina, where it had seen its first
service. After various experiences at Carolina City,
Williamston, Newbern, and elsewhere, early in March, 1865, the
regiment proceeded to Southwest Creek near Kinston, where it was
surrounded by the Confederates March 8, losing 7 killed,
40 wounded, and the rest of the regiment numbering over 200
taken prisoners. The prisoners were taken to Libby Prison in
Richmond, Va., and soon paroled and sent home. A fragment of
the regiment still performed guard duty at Newbern until June
26, 1865, when it was mustered out and sent home. The
survivors reached Readville, Mass., July 7, and on the 19th
were paid off and discharged.
Of the members of this regiment who were taken prisoners,
mostly at Drury’s Bluff and Southwest Creek, 142 died in
27th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment
The 27th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment enrolled 1,543 men. It lost 9 officers and 128 enlisted men killed or mortally wounded and 3 officers and 261 enlisted men to disease, of whom 132 died in prison.
|Late summer||The 27th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment was organized in the western part of the state.
Company A – Northampton
|September 20||Mustered in at Springfield under the command of Colonel Horace Clark Lee, a Springfield dry goods merchant, Lieutenant Colonel Luke Lyman and Major William Walker.|
|November 2-5||Moved to Annapolis, Maryland, and duty, instruction, and drill there.|
|January 7-February 7||Burnside’s Expedition to Hatteras Inlet and Roanoke Island, North Carolina.
Attached to Foster’s 1st Brigade, Burnside’s Expeditionary Corps
|February 8||Battle of Roanoke Island|
|March 11-13||Moved to New Berne|
|March 14||Battle of New Berne|
|March-May||Duty at Batchelor’s Creek .|
|April||Assigned to 2nd Brigade, 1st Division, Dept. of North Carolina.|
|June 1||At New Berne|
|July 24-28||Expedition to Trenton and Pollocksville. Assigned to 2nd Brigade, 1st Division, 9th Army Corps, Army of the Potomac.|
|July 28||Expedition on Neuse River Road (Cos. “D,” “G” and “H”).|
|August||Assigned to 1st Brigade, 1st Division, Dept. of North Carolina|
|September 9 to October 30.||Companies “A,” “C” and “I” at Washington North Carolina, and five Companies at Newport Barracks|
|November 2-12||Expedition from New Berne. Assigned to 3rd Brigade, 1st Division, Dept. of North Carolina.|
|November 11||Kinston Road|
|December 11-20||Foster’s Expedition to Goldsboro. Assigned to Lee’s Brigade, Department of North Carolina|
|January 4-5||Moved to Washington, North Carolina. Assigned to 2nd Brigade, 1st Division, 18th Army Corps, Department of North Carolina.|
|January 27 to May 8||Companies G & H were detached for duty at Plymouth, then rejoined Regiment at New Berne.|
|February 13||Near Washington.|
|March 10-13||Demonstration on Plymouth.|
|March 30-April 20||Siege of Washington, North Carolina|
|April 4-5||Rodman’s Point (2 Companies).|
|April 24||Moved to New Berne.|
|April 27-May 1||Expedition toward Kinston.|
|April 28||Dover Road and Wise’s Cross Roads.|
|May 20-23||Demonstration on Kinston.|
|May 22||Gum Swamp.|
|June 5 to October 1||Provost duty at New Berne
Assigned to 2nd Brigade, 1st Division, Defences of New Berne, North Carolina.
|July 4-8||Expedition to Trenton|
|July 6||Quaker Bridge|
|July 17-20||Expedition to Swift Creek|
|July 25-30||Expedition to Winton.|
|October 16-18||Moved to Newport News, Virginia. Assigned to Heckman’s Brigade, Newport News, Virginia, Department of Virginia and North Carolina.|
|November 18||To Norfolk. Provost duty there untill March 22. Assigned to United States Forces, Portsmouth, Va., Dept. of Virginia and North Carolina|
|March||Companies “A,” “D” and “K” at Portsmouth, and “F” at Norfolk till April 15. Assigned to 2nd Brigade, United States Forces, Portsmouth, Virginia.|
|March 4-5||Demonstration against Portsmouth|
|April 13-15||Expedition to Isle of Wight County. Assigned to 1st Brigade, 2nd Division, 18th Army Corps, Dept. of Virginia and North Carolina|
|April 14||Smithfield, Cherry Grove|
|April 26||Camp near Julian Creek|
|April 26||Moved to Yorktown.|
|May 4-28||Butler’s operations on south side of the James and against Petersburg and Richmond.|
|May 6-7||Port Walthal Junction, Chester Station
The regiment lost 5 wounded, while another 50 men were disabled by sunstroke.
|May 9-10||Swift Creek or Arrowfield Church|
|May 12-16||Battle of Fort Darling (Or Drewry’s Bluff, Proctor’s Creek)
Much of the regiment was captured, losing 252 men as prisoners, incuding Colonel Clark and Lieutenant Colonel Lyman. Over 120 of the captured would die in Confederate prisons. Major William Walker took over command of the regiment.
|May 17||On Bermuda Hundred front|
|May 28||Moved to White House, Virginia|
|May 28-June 1.||Continued to Cold Harbor|
|June 1-12||Battle of Cold Harbor
Major William Walker was killed during the main assault on June 3. The regiment lost 22 men killed, 68 wounded, and 4 missing.
|June 15-18||First Assault on Petersburg
The regiment lost 13 men killed, and 30 wounded. For a time it had no surviving officers on the field.
|June 15-August 24.||Siege of Petersburg|
|August 24 –
|On Bermuda front.|
|September 27||Old members mustered out|
|September 17-21||Moved to Carolina City, North Carolina. Assigned to District of Beaufort, North Carolina, Department of Virginia and North Carolina.|
|November 28||Moved to Beaufort, North Carolina|
|December 4||To New Berne|
|December 7||To Plymouth|
|January 8-11||Moved to New Berne and duty there. Assigned to Sub-District, New Berne, North Carolina, Department of North Carolina|
|March 4||Moved to Core Creek. Assigned to 2nd Brigade, 2nd Division, District of Beaufort, Department of North Carolina.|
|March 4-12||Movements on Kinston|
|March 7||Southwest Creek|
|March 8-10||Wise’s Fork
Most of the regiment were captured. The colors were hidden under a rotten log covered with leaves and grass, and were recovered in April.
|March 12||The regiment’s survivors were ordered to New Berne and assigned to guard duty there. Attached to District of New Berne, Department of North Carolina.|
|June 26||The 27th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment was mustered out|
27th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment
|27th Regiment Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry|
|Active||September 20, 1861 – June 26, 1865|
|Country||United States of America|
|Massachusetts U.S. Volunteer Infantry Regiments 1861-1865|
|26th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment||28th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment|
The ten companies of the 27th Massachusetts Volunteers were recruited in the western part of the State in the late summer and fall of 1861. The original recruits were officially mustered in for 3 years at Springfield between Sept. 19 and 27. The original recruitment of each of the 10 companies were centered in the following communities: Company A (Northampton), Company B (Athol), Company C (large variety of Western Mass. towns), Company D (Amherst, Hadley), Company E (Great Barrington, Lee, Pittsfield), Company F (Westfield, Granville, Southwick, Tolland), Company G (Chicopee, Northampton, Holyoke), Company H (Adams, Williamstown), Company I (Ludlow, Wilbraham, Brimfield, Palmer) and Company K (Springfield).
Once fully outfitted, they were sent south to Annapolis, Maryland. in November and remained there undergoing instructions and drill for two months. In January, 1862, the regiment was shipped to North Carolina and assigned to Foster’s (1st) Brigade. The regiment’s first battles were fought at Roanoke Island and New Bern.
General Luke Lyman
The regiment remained in North Carolina during the next two years. Because Colonel Horace Clark Lee was in command of the brigade most of the time, the regiment was mostly under the direct command of Lieutenant Colonel Luke Lyman. During its stay in North Carolina it was engaged with credit in numerous minor battles and skirmishes. In April, 1863, it aided in the siege of Washington, North Carolina. After the return to New Bern an expedition to Gum swamp was undertaken and in an engagement there a number of prisoners were captured. New Bern was the regiment’s headquarters until Oct. 10, 1863, when it was ordered to Newport News and was for a time occupied with routine duties at Norfolk and Portsmouth.
In April 1864, the 27th Massachusetts was assigned to the Army of the James. It embarked for Virginia, docking at Yorktown, thence to Williamsburg, Fortress Monroe and Bermuda Hundred, where it landed and marched to Cobb’s hill. Soon afterward, the 27th was sent into action. The battles of Dunn’s farm and Port Walthall Junction followed and during one day the regiment had 5 wounded, while 50 were disabled by sunstroke. At Arrowfield Church the 27th was engaged as well.
On May 16, the regiment was engaged at the Battle of Proctor’s Creek (alternately Drewry’s Bluff or Fort Darling). After a brave defense of their position, much of the regiment was surrounded while fighting in a dense fog, losing in addition to its killed and wounded, 252 of its number taken prisoners. Among the captured were the colonel, lieutenant colonel, and General Heckman; some 120 would later die in prison suffering appalling conditions at Andersonville.
On May 26, the regiment was transferred to the Army of the Potomac. Within a week, Major William A. Walker was killed leading the regiment in the bloody assault on Confederate positions at the Battle of Cold Harbor on June 3. In this battle, an additional 22 were killed, 68 wounded, and 4 missing.
The remnants of the regiment were ordered to Petersburg to join in on the assault this city. In the assault on Petersburg, June 15, 1864, the 27th Massachusetts Infantry sustained a further loss of 13 killed, and 30 wounded, and was briefly left without any officer to lead them. After a very short rest, they were returned to active duty before Petersburg, which was the last service of those who had not reenlisted.
The reenlisted men and recruits of the regiment were sent south to Beaufort, North Carolina, encamped at Carolina City, then moved to Beaufort, Plymouth and Jamestown, where the enemy’s skirmishers were encountered. The Confederates disputed the possession of the bridge at Foster’s mills, but after the 27th crossed, retreated and the regiment pushed forward and captured a Confederate force at Butler’s bridge.
It returned in January 1865 to New Bern. On March 8, it was attacked at Southwest Creek (Wise’s Forks), where the whole brigade, with a few exceptions, was captured, after resisting for an hour in an engagement with Confederate General Hoke’s entire division of 8,000 men. The national and state colors barely escaped capture. Color Sergeant John McCleary (national) and Color-Corporal William W. Cummings were both wounded and the colors taken over by Corporal Lafayette Babb and Private Leverett Clarke. When capture became certain, these two men wrapped the colors around the staffs, hid them under a rotten log, and covered it with leaves and grass. When the prisoners were exchanged in April they told other members of the regiment at New Bern where to find the flags and they were recovered. The captives were taken to Richmond, paroled and then furloughed. The few who escaped, reinforced by recruits and convalescents, were assigned to guard duty at New Bern until mustered out.
During the course of the Civil War, there were three regiments that were recruited from towns located in the four westernmost counties of Massachusetts (Berkshire, Franklin, Hampden, and Hampshire). These included the 10th, 27th, and 46th Volunteers. In the 27th Massachusetts, the towns that supplied at least 10 men to the regiment include:
Springfield (124) Northampton (86) Amherst (72) Chicopee (61) Adams (60) Athol (56) Westfield (54) Granville (35) Hadley (34) Ludlow (34) Great Barrington (31) Lee (29) Pittsfield (29) Wilbraham (28) Montague (24) Brimfield (20) Easthampton (20) New Salem (19) Williamsburg (19) Belchertown (19) Williamstown (18) Holyoke (18) Southwick (17) Greenfield (16) Leverett (16) Palmer (16) Worthington (16) Blandford (15) Tolland (14) Wendell (14) Deerfield (13) Ware (13) Charlemont (12) Erving (12) Granby (12) Northfield (12) Huntington (11) Shelburne (11) Shutesbury (11) Enfield, MA (10) Monterey (10) Pelham (10) South Hadley (10) Orange (10)
Roll of Honor
The total number of men who served under the flag of the 27th Massachusetts was 1,543. Of this number, 329 did not survive the war. This total includes 121 killed or mortally wounded in battle, 132 who died in prison, 68 who died by disease, and 8 that died by accident.
In addition, 49 men were discharged for wounds, and another 265 for disability. An additional 56 men were transferred to the Veteran Reserve Corps. Three men were discharged by court martial. Five officers left the 27th Massachusetts to accept commissions as officers in U.S. Colored Troops.
Between October 18, 1861, and June 15, 1864, eight flags were presented to the Massachusetts 27th Infantry Regiment. Of the eight flags, three were displayed in Hall of Flags in the Massachusetts State House during the 20th Century and are now preserved in environmentally controlled storage in the State House.
1 Nov 1824
Northampton, Hampshire County, Massachusetts, USA
12 Nov 1889 (aged 65)
Northampton, Hampshire County, Massachusetts, USA
Northampton, Hampshire County, Massachusetts, USA