Date of Award

Spring 2012

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



Committee Director

Timothy J. Orr

Committee Member

Lorraine M. Lees

Committee Member

John W. Weber

Call Number for Print

Special Collections LD4331.H47 G37 2012


In Civil War historiography, consistent attention and public interest has illuminated the history of various Irish organizations, no regiment more so than New York's famed "Fighting Sixty-Ninth." During the conflict, the State of New York fielded three regiments designated the Sixty-Ninth, but the scholarship has tended to favor just one of them, the 69'" New York Volunteers of the Irish Brigade. The 69" New York National Guard Artillery, the first regiment in General Michael Corcoran's Irish Legion, has been virtually forgotten. This regiment was, in essence, the standing 69ia New York Militia in federal service for three years or the war. The service of the 69" New York National Guard Artillery had local and international ramifications. It represented a subculture within the Irish immigrant community that was the core of a transnational Fenian Brotherhood. Its service complicates commonly-held assumptions about Irish- American support for the war and its regimental history provides new insights into the conflict. Oddly enough, the 69'" New York National Guard Artillery's uniqueness ultimately wrote itself out of the historical record. This thesis is an attempt to reclaim its history and analyze an unknown chapter of the Irish experience in America.


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