Hans  Lenvig

Hans Lenvig

15th Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry

The Scandinavian Regiment

Name at Enlist Hans Lenvig
Birth Name Hans Pedersen Lenvig
Other Names Lemvig; Linvig; Lenvik; Lewis
Patronymic Name Pedersen
Lived 23 Oct 1837 - 11 May 1864
Birth Place Lenvig, Hafslo, Sogn and Fjordane fylke
Birth Country Norway
Residence at Muster-In Rushford, Fillmore County, MN
Company at Enlistment E
Rank at Enlistment Private
Muster Date 20 Dec 1861
Cause of Death killed in action
Death Location Rocky Face Ridge, GA
Mother Birtha Johannsdtr
Father Peder Olsen
Immigration 11 Apr 1853

Hans Lenvig was enlisted in Company E of the 15th WI by Captain John Ingmundson at La Crosse, La Crosse County, WI on December 18, 1861 for a 3-year term of service. The men of the company called themselves "Odin's Rifles." His half-brother Ole Lenvig enlisted with him. The men of Company E called themselves Odin's Rifles. Hans was mustered into Federal service as a Private (Menig) on December 20, 1861 at Camp Randall near Madison, Dane County, WI. At the time he was listed as 22 years old and not married. His residence was recorded as Rushford, Fillmore County, MN.

After several months at Camp Randall learning to be a soldier, Private Lenvig left there in early March 1862, with his company and regiment to join the war. From then until November 1863 he was listed as "present" with the 15th. As such he would have participated in the successful siege of Island No. 10 on the Mississippi River in TN and the surprise raid on Union City, TN in March and April 1862. That summer he would have been with the 15th on campaign through TN, MS, and AL. In August and September he would have participated in the grueling 400-mile retreat with General Buell up to Louisville, KY, with the last 2 weeks being on half rations and short of water. He is listed as having served as a "wagoner" beginning September 16, 1862 for about a month. Private Lenvig would have been present at the October 8, 1862 Battle of Perryville, KY, which is also called the Battle of Chaplin Hills. While this was the first big battle the 15th was in, it emerged without any fatalities. On December 26, 1862, he would have participated in the 15th's desperate charge upon a Confederate artillery battery at Knob Gap, TN just south of Nashville. There the 15th captured a brass cannon. He would have also fought at the long, cold, wet, and bloody Battle of Stone River, TN, also called the Battle of Murfreesboro, on December 30-31, 1862. It is there that the 15th first suffered serious battle casualties, and was cited for bravery.

The 15th camped in the Murfreesboro area for the next 6 months, except for 2 weeks in February when it was sent to Franklin, TN. Starting June 23, 1863, the regiment took part in General Rosecrans' Tullahoma campaign. On July 3, 1863, it camped at Winchester, TN. On August 17, 1863, the 15th left there to participate in General Rosecrans' Chickamauga campaign. Private Lenvig is believed to have been present at the daring early morning crossing of the Tennessee River on August 28th, which the 15th led. He was present at the September 19-20, 1863 Battle of Chickamauga, GA -- the second bloodiest battle of the Civil War. He survived the vicious fighting around Viniard's Farm on the first afternoon, as well as the near capture of the regiment around midday on the 20th during Longstreet's Breakthrough. Some 63% of the 15th's soldiers who were at Chickamauga were killed, wounded, or taken prisoner. Private Lenvig would have then served with the regiment during the Confederate siege of Chattanooga, TN, which began right after the battle. The siege caused severe shortages of food and firewood. It was not until the Union Army's victorious charge up Mission Ridge on November 25, 1863, which the 15th took part in, that the siege was finally broken.

Starting right after Mission Ridge the 15th was engaged in almost non-stop marching and counter-marching all over eastern TN throughout the winter of 1863/1864. By many original accounts, this was the worst period of the regiment's 3-year term of service. Poor rations, inadequate clothing and shelter, and unseasonably cold weather made these months nearly unbearable. Private Lenvig missed the first part of this when he was "left sick at Chattanooga" starting November 28, 1863. He apparently caught up with the regiment in January or February 1864, because he was listed as "left sick in Knoxville" TN, on February 24, 1864. He returned to the 15th sometime in March or April 1864.

Starting in May 1864, the 15th participated in General Sherman's famous campaign to capture Atlanta, GA. This campaign was marked by almost daily marching and/or combat for 4 months. It began with skirmishing at Rocky Face Ridge, GA on May 11, 1864. It was there that Private Hans Lenvig was killed in action. His half-brother Ole was killed in action 2 weeks later at Pickett's Mill, GA. His mother, Britha, filed a pension in his name in 1890 from MN.

 

Sources: Genealogical data from Doug Purdy; Sogn og Fjordane fylke, Hafslo, Ministerialbok nr. A 5 (1834-1852), Fødte og døpte 1837, page 22; Sogn og Fjordane fylke, Hafslo, Ministerialbok nr. A 18 (1853-1886), Utflyttede 1853, page 6-7; Civil War Compiled Military Service Records by Office of Adjutant General of the United States (Washington, DC); Det Femtende Regiment, Wisconsin Frivillage [The Fifteenth Regiment, Wisconsin Volunteers], Ole A. Buslett (Decorah, Iowa, 1895); Regimental Descriptive Rolls, Volume 20, Office of the Adjutant General State of Wisconsin (Madison, Wisconsin, 1885); Roster of Wisconsin Volunteers, War of the Rebellion, 1861-1865, Volume I, Office of the Adjutant General State of Wisconsin (Madison, Wisconsin, 1886); U.S. Civil War Soldier Records and Profiles; Civil War Pension Index, Roll #32959_032945.


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