Private John D. Holmes, 15th Iowa Infantry


2nd Lieutenant
May 23, 2018
I have a membership in Fold 3 but all I can get for John D. Holmes, is a single card with his name and unit. How do I access his records? Appreciate any help.
It's probably because it's an Iowa unit. :frown: Some states have not had their CSRs digitized yet, so all that is up are index cards. You'll have to order his CSR from NARA.


Official Vendor
Jun 6, 2019
David, I make regular trips to the National Archives to get these Civil War records for people. I've helped several people on this forum get their ancestor's files. I'll be going back before Christmas, so if you wanted me to help get the pension and/or service records, let me know. There is a fee involved but it's much less than ordering directly from the National Archives, and you'll have the files before Christmas. Let me know.

Dec 31, 2010
Kingsport, Tennessee
I have a membership in Fold 3 but all I can get for John D. Holmes, is a single card with his name and unit. How do I access his records? Appreciate any help.

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Shiloh after battle report:

Report of Col. Hugh T. Reid, Fifteenth Iowa Infantry.

I have the honor to report that the Fifteenth Regt. of Iowa Volunteer
Infantry from Benton Barracks arrived at Pittsburg on Sunday morning,
with orders from Gen. Grant's headquarters to report to Gen.
Prentiss. Finding that his headquarters were some 4 miles from the
Landing, I proceeded at once to report to him in person, and found a
heavy fire of artillery and musketry already commenced along his lines.
Orders were received from his aide to bring up my command as soon
as possible, and I returned to the river for that purpose. The regiment
was rapidly disembarked, ammunition distributed, and the men for the
first time loaded their guns. We then marched to the heights in rear of
the Landing, and formed inn line of battle preparatory to an advance,
our right resting on the road leading from the Landing to the field. At
this time an order was received from a member of Gen. Grant's staff
directing me to hold the position upon which we had formed, and to
post such other troops as could be found about the Landing on the right
of the road, extending to the bluff of the creek, emptying into the river
below the Landing, in order to prevent the enemy from flanking it
through the valley of this creek, and also to prevent all stragglers from
returning from the battle-field to the Landing, and to hold ourselves as
a reserve. The regiment was then advanced across the road to the right,
so as to stop the progress of the multitudes returning from the
battle-field, which could only be done by threatening to shoot them
down. Some of them were induced by threats and persuasions to fall into
line, but most of them had the Bull Run story, that their regiments were
all cut to pieces, and that they were the only survivors, and nothing
could be done with them but to stop their progress. Capt. Benton
[Bouton] placed his battery on our right, commanding the road leading
from the battle-field to the river, and also commanding the ravines to
our right and left. Col. Chambers, of the Sixteenth Iowa, formed his
regiment on the right of Benton's [Bouton's] battery, resting the right
of his regiment on the bluff of the creek above mentioned. In this
position we remained for about an hour, when an order was received
from the engineer of Gen. McClernand's staff, by order, as he said,
of Gen. Grant, for the Fifteenth and Sixteenth Iowa to advance some
2 miles to the support of Gen. McClernand's division, on the
extreme right of our lines.

The advance was made the Fifteenth leading supported by the Sixteenth.
We were led by the staff officer of Gen. McClernand first to the
right, across a deep ravine and through thick underbrush, in a direction
directly from the firing; then one of Gen. Grant's staff came up and
said a wrong order must have been given us, in which opinion the
undersigned fully concurred, and after consultation of the two staff
officers the head of our column was turned to the left, and we marched
in search of Gen. McClernand's division, his staff officer showing us
the way. The road as we marched was filled with retreating artillery,
flying cavalry, straggling infantry, and the wounded returning from the
field. We reached an open field in front of the enemy, who were
concealed in a dense wood and among tents, from which other regiments
had been driven earlier in the day. Through this field the two regiments
marched under a heavy fire from the enemy's artillery, and took
position, by direction of Gen. McClernand, near the tents.

A regiment, said to be from Ohio, was on the field when we arrived,
or came on soon after, and took position on the extreme right of the
Sixteenth. The Fifteenth, which occupied the left, advanced upon the
enemy and drove a part of them from their concealment among the
tents and planted our colors in their midst, while the whole left wing of
the regiment advanced under a murderous fire of shot and shell from the
enemy's artillery and an incessant fire from the musketry. Our flag-staff
was host through and our colors riddled with bullets. For two hours,
from 10 to 12 o'clock, we maintained our position, our men fighting
like veterans. The undersigned was severely wounded by a musket-ball
through the neck, which knocked him from his horse, paralyzed for the
time, but, recovering in a short time, remounted and continued in
command throughout the fight. Fifteen of the 32 commissioned officers
who went on the field had been killed, wounded, or taken prisoners; 22
officers and men had been killed, and 156 wounded. The Ohio regiment
had left the field. The enemy were attempting to outflank us on the right
and left. We were unsupported by artillery or any other regiment except
the gallant Sixteenth, which had also suffered severely. It became
necessary for the two regiments to retreat or run the risk of being
captured, and by order of Gen. McClernand the retreat was made.
Portions of the regiments rallied, and fought with other division later in
the day and on Monday.

Where nearly all fought with bravery it might seem invidious to
particularize, but I hope to do no one injustice by specially pointing out
those whose personal valor during the action came under my notice.
Lieut.-Col. Dewey had his horse shot under him. Maj. Belknap
was always in the right place at the right time, directing and
encouraging officers and men as coolly as a veteran. He was wounded
but not disabled and had his horse shot under him, but remained on the
field performing his duty on foot. Adjutant Pomutz distinguished himself
during the action for his coolness and courage. He, too, was
wounded. Capt.'s Kittle, of Company A; Smith of Company B;
Seevers, of Company C; Madison of Company D; Hutchcraft, of
Company E; Cunningham, of Company G; Day, of Company I;
Hedrick, of Company K, who was captured in a charge upon the
enemy, all distinguished themselves for their gallantry and courage in
leading for ward and encouraging their men. Capt. Blackmar, of
Company F, was wounded in the action and disabled. First Lieut.
Goode, of same company, also wounded. Capt. Clark, of Company
H, was not in the engagement, having been left sick in the hospital at
Saint Louis. Capt.'s Hutchcraft and Day were both severely wounded.
Second Lieut. Penniman, of Company A, and Hamilton, of
Company I, were killed whilst bravely performing their duty. First
Lieut. King and Second Lieut. Danielson, of Company H, were
both severely wounded while acting well their part, thus leaving the
company without a commissioned officer. First Lieut.'s Studer, of
Company B; Porter, of Company D; Craig, of Company E; Hanks, of
Company G; J. Monroe Reid, of Company I, who, though wounded
himself, continued in command of the company after the captain was
disabled and the second lieutenant killed, and Eldredge, of Company K,
all deserve special praise for the manner in which they conducted
themselves on the field. Second Lieut.'s Lanstrum, of Company B;
Brown, of Company E, Second Lieut. Herbert, of Company C, and
Sergeant-Maj. Brown, who was severely wounded, conducted
themselves well on the field. The non-commissioned officers generally
were at their posts and performed their duty. The color-sergeant, Newton
J. Rogers, who fought in the First Iowa at Springfield, gallantly bore
our standard forward and planted it among the enemy, where it was
bravely maintained and defended by portions of Company C, Company
E, Company I, and Company K.

It must be remembered that this regiment had just received its arms, and
that the men had never had an opportunity of learning the use of them
until they came on the battle-field; that they had just landed and were
attached to no brigade, and fought the enemy without the support of
artillery in a position from which more experienced troops had been
compelled to retire. The enemy, too, against whom we fought, the
Twenty-second Tennessee and two Louisiana regiments, are understood
to be among their best troops.

We have no means of learning the loss of the enemy in this engagement
except from what they told some of our wounded men who were taken
prisoners by them and left behind the next day, when the enemy made
their final retreat, but from this source we learned that they had 40 men
killed in the immediate vicinity of our colors and a large number

While we mourn our comrades in arms the gallant dead whose lives
were sacrificed on the altar of their country, we are solaced with the
belief that a grateful people will in after times pay a proper tribute to
their memory.

To Quartermaster Higley great credit is due for the masterly manner in
which he performed the arduous duties of his office on the field and
elsewhere during the fight, and after it was over in providing for the
comforts of the wounded and protecting the property of the regiment.
To our surgeon, Dr. Davis, we are under great obligations for his
energy and skill in the performance of the numerous operations rendered
necessary. Assistant Surgeon Gibbon also performed valuable service in
the midst of great danger on the battle-field in attending the wounded
there and having them carried to our temporary hospital on board of the
steamer Minnehala. The chaplain, the Rev. W. W. Estabrook, too, for
the time laid aside his sacred office and resumed the use of the
surgeon's scalpel with great success, and the wounded of numerous
regiments besides our own shared in the skill of our medical staff.

Attached hereto will be found a list of the killed, wounded, and missing,
making a total loss of 186.*

Col., Cmdg. Fifteenth Iowa

Commanded by Gen. McClernand.

Source: Official Records: Series I. Vol. 10. Part I, Reports. Serial No. 10