Ninety-Ninth Infantry Commanding Officers 1861-1865
Col., David W. Wardrop; Lieut. - Col's., Gustave B. Helleday, Richard Nixon; Maj’s., Richard Nixon, John Franklin Bates, T. Edward Rawlings.
The 99th known as the Union coast guard, or Bartlett's naval brigade, was organized early in the war in New York city, and was mustered into the state service (six companies) May 14, 1861. The brigade was to be provided with gunboats and cruise along the Atlantic coast.
The organization left the state May 28, 1861, proceeding to Fortress Monroe, Va., where it reported to Maj.-Gen. Butler for duty, but it was not accepted by that officer. In Aug., 1861, it was reorganized as a regiment of infantry by order of the war department, and eight companies were mustered into the U. S. service between June 14 and Oct. 21, 1861, for three years.
Two more companies were organized in Sept., 1861, and March, 1862, and on June 14, 1864, on the expiration of its term of service the original members (except veterans) were mustered out, the veterans and recruits being consolidated into a battalion of four companies, A, B, C, and D.
These were consolidated into three companies, Sept. 15, 1864; and finally into two companies in Feb., 1865. A detachment of the regiment, operating as a coast guard, participated in a skirmish near New Market bridge, Va., in July, 1861, losing 6 killed and wounded, Maj. Rawlings being killed in this action.
Detachments also took part in the skirmishes at Fletcher's wharf, on the Pocomoco, and at Cherry Stone inlet, the capture of Forts Clark and Hatteras, Hatteras inlet, and a skirmish at Beacon island, N. C. On the steamers Southfield and Hunchback, Co. B formed part of Burnside's forces, and accompanied the expedition of that general to North Carolina in Feb., 1862, taking part in the battle of Roanoke island, and the action at Elizabeth City; Co. D, on the U. S. frigate Congress, took part in the naval engagement in Hampton Roads, in March, 1862, losing 2 killed and 5 wounded.
Co. B was again in action at New Berne, where it lost 19 killed, wounded and missing, and in April, 1862, assisted in the siege and capture of Fort Macon, N. C. A part of the regiment participated in the skirmish at Tranter's creek, and the occupation of Norfolk, Va., and Co. I, on the steamer C. P. Smith, skirmished near Windsor Shade, Chickahominy River, Va., and on the James river, near Harrison's landing.
During the latter part of 1862, and until March 1863, the regiment (except Co. I, on the gunboats West End and Smith Briggs) served by detachments at Fortress Monroe, Norfolk, Fort Wool and Sewall's point, Va. In the spring of 1863, it took an active part in the defense of Suffolk, during which Co. I suffered severely in the attack on the steamer Smith Briggs, and the regiment met with further losses in the skirmishes on the South Quay road and at South Quay bridge.
The casualties during the siege aggregated 71 killed and wounded. It was at this time attached to the reserve brigade, Peck's division, 7th corps, and afterwards served in Wistar's brigade, Department of Virginia, at the White House, Yorktown and Gloucester.
In May it skirmished at Antioch Church and Baker's cross-roads, Va., and in June at Franklin, Va. Detachments were also engaged at Walkerstown, Va., and at South Anna Bridge. In Oct., 1863, the regiment was ordered to New Berne, N. C., and attached to the 18th corps and from Jan. to April, 1864, was in Palmer's brigade, Peck's division, 18th corps.
It sustained a loss of several men captured in the affair at Smithfield, Va., on Jan. 1st, 1864, and met with a further loss of 54 men during the attack on New Berne, in February. The regiment, now consolidated into a veteran battalion, continued to serve in North Carolina, taking part in a skirmish at Beech Grove, and closed its active service by embarking on the campaign of the Carolinas in 1865, as a part of Carter's division, provisional corps, afterwards in the1st brigade, 2nd division, 23rd corps.
It was present at Johnston's surrender and was finally mustered out, July 15, 1865, at Salisbury, N. C. The regiment lost during its term of service, 2 officers, 37 enlisted men, killed and mortally wounded; 3 officers, 161 enlisted men died of disease and other causes; total deaths, 203; of these, 71 enlisted men died in the hands of the enemy.
Source: The Union Army, Vol. 2, p. 121