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The History of the 5th Ohio Volunteer Infantry

by Patrick McSherry

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The following is the history of the 5th Ohio Volunteer Infantry. The unit served its term of service within the continental U.S.

The History:

The 5th Ohio Volunteer Infantry was organized at Cleveland, Ohio on April 26, 1898, and mustered into service between May 11, 1898 and June 30, 1898 at Columbus, Ohio. At the time of mustering in, the regiment, commanded by Colonel Kennan, consisted of forty-seven officers and 913 enlisted men. The companies were raised from the following locations:

Company A - Lorain
Company B - Cleveland
Company C  - Cleveland
Company D  - Berea
Company E - Genevatown
Company F  - Cleveland
Company G  - Norwalk
Company H  - Youngstown
Company I  - Cleveland
Company K - Cleveland
Company L  - Cleveland
Company M  - Painesville

With some recruiting and expansion still ongoing, the bulk of the regiment left Columbus on May 18, ordered to Tampa, Florida. It had been assigned to the First Brigade, First Division of Maj. Gen. Fitzhugh Lee's Seventh Army Corps, which was stationed at Camp Cuba Libre.  On June 11, the entire Division was transferred to the Fourth Army Corps, which was also located nearby, forming the Corps' Third Division. The regiment left Tampa on July 23, and arrived at Fernandina, Florida the following day. While the regiment was in Fernandina, an armistice was reached between Spain and the U.S. on August 12, 1898, ending the war's fighting. Also in August, the Fourth Army Corps transferred to Huntsville, Alabama, but the 5th Ohio apparently stayed behind in Fernandina, from which it departed on September 8 to return to Cleveland, arriving four days later. From September 30 to October 30, the regiment was given a furlough. On November 5, 1898 the regiment was mustered out of the federal service, though the war would not officially end until December 10, 1898 with the signing of the Treaty of Paris.

At the time of mustering out, the regiment consisted of forty-nine officers and 1,221 enlisted men. During its term of service, it lost 22 men to disease, and had three men desert.


Cleveland Press, June 1, 1898

Clerk of Joint Committee on Printing, The Abridgement of Message from the President of the United States to the Two Houses of Congress. (Washington: Government Printing Office, 1899) Vol. 3, 211, 218, 219.

Correspondence relating to the War with Spain And Conditions Growing Out of the Same Including the Insurrection in the Philippine Island and the China Relief Expedition. Vol. 1 (Washington: Government Printing Office, 1902) 610.

The Official Roster of Ohio Soldiers in the War With Spain 1898-1899. (Columbus: The Edward T. Miller Co., 1916) 314.

Statistical Exhibit of Strength of Volunteer Forces Called into Service During the War with Spain; with Losses from All Causes. (Washington: Government Printing Office, 1899).

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