"We Lost Many Brave Men": A Statistical History of the Seventh Rhode Island Volunteers.


On May 22, 1862, Governor William Sprague issued general orders for the raising of the Seventh Rhode Island Volunteers. Camp Bliss was erected in Southern Providence as the destination for these recruits and many men came to Camp Bliss in the summer of 1862. A few had seen service in the United States Army and other volunteer regiments, and some were politicians and gentlemen from the hierarchy of the state, but the majority were farmers and mill workers from southern and western Rhode Island. By the end of August 1862, over 900 Rhode Islanders had gathered at Camp Bliss. Governor Sprague selected Zenas Randall Bliss of Johnston as their commander.

The ten companies of the Seventh Rhode Island were recruited from the following Rhode Island communities: Company A (Charlestown, Hopkinton, and Richmond), Company B (Providence), Company C (Glocester), Company D (Burrillville and West Greenwich), Company E (Cumberland, Smithfield, and Woonsocket), Company F (Exeter and North Kingstown), Company G (South Kingstown), Company H (East Greenwich and Warwick), Company I (Bristol and Newport), and Company K (Coventry, Foster, and Scituate). These brave Rhode Islanders fought (and many died) in the following engagements: Fredericksburg, Vicksburg, Jackson, the Wilderness, Spotsylvania, North Anna, Cold Harbor, Petersburg, Weldon Railroad, Poplar Springs Church, and Hatcher’s Run.

The book opens with a brief history of the Seventh Rhode Island Volunteers and a new look at Rhode Island Civil War Casualties. Individual chapters are devoted to Companies A through K; and Companies B, D, and G of the New Organization, which were composed of the veterans of the Fourth Rhode Island Volunteers when the Fourth was combined with the Seventh Rhode Island Volunteers in the fall of 1864. Other chapters include: Field and Staff, Enlistments by town, Regimental Statistics, and Further Reading.

Robert Grandchamp

2018, 6x9, paper, alphabetical, 264 pp.

ISBN: 9780788457906