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C.W. Soldiers

Belgian Civil War soldiers


Medals of honor Staff and special Units Regulars Navy old soldier's home DRaft

during the civil war, by unit (with biographies)

1st Artillery 5th Artillery 2nd Infantry 7th Infantry 10th Infantry 15th Infantry 19th Infantry
2nd Artillery 1st Cavalry 4th Infantry 8th Infantry 12th Infantry 16th Infantry General Services
4th Artillery 5th Cavalry 6th Infantry 9th Infantry 14th Infantry 18th Infantry Volunteers

list of all the people recorded as
"belgians" in the Regulars (by date of enlistment from 1830 to the end of the Civil war)

An alphabetical list is available at the end of this page


The following data is extracted from the "Descriptive and Historical Register of Enlisted Soldiers of the Army" used in Washington to track all of the soldiers enlisted in the regular army by date and then alphabetically. Those registers are now accessible in the Ancestry web site. By chance for us, allong numerous information, is the "Place of birth". The other information are the Name, City of Birth, enlistment date and place, presiding officer, hair color, eye color, complexion, height, regiment and company, and date and place of discharge, desertion or death with sometime other comments.

I transcribed here and checked the entries for the men born "Belgium" and enlisted between 1830 and 1859 and extracted the pertinent information. To say: Name, age, city of birth when précised, civil occupation, date and place of enlistment, the Unit(s) were they served and all the information concerning their separation from the army. And to better understand their conditions of life in the Army I added information concerning their pay and recruitment and included parts of their Units histories, when found and when pertinent, and also added information as to their army life. Some enlisted before 1830, but they here not listed here.

Recruiting for the US Army has always been difficult and keeping them in the service even more difficult. You'll see here a lot of "deserters" but it was a common way and maybe the only one to get out of the service before their term of 5 years. Between 1823 and 1830 the rate of desertion was estimated at 42 %. In the Army General Report of 1826, it is stated that " a majority of private soldiers...scarcely regard... desertion as an act of turpitude. In 1833, the problem was so acute than some measures were taken:
- the private's pay was raised to $6 per month but $1 a month was withed for two years and only paid after that time
- the army term, usually 5 years, was shortened to 3 years.

In an army of 12 500 men only 2 Belgians enlisted under those conditions. The first was sent in Florida to fight in the Seminole or Florida War. The historian of the 4th Infantry state: "The region in which the troops were compelled to operate consisted of swamps, overflowed thickets, and dense tropical forests of unknown extent. Poisonous insects and serpents under foot and an atmosphere reeking with fevers and disease overhead... For days at a time the troops waded in the swamps or patrolled the streams in search of an enemy who only showed himself when in sufficient numbers to massacre isolated detachments... the Fourth Infantry bore an honorable part. It participated in nearly all of the engagements and lost severely in killed and wounded, and, what in that region was worse, in missing, the totals for the regiment being: Officers killed in action or died of disease, 6; men killed in action or died of disease, 128". The second spent those years on the Canadian border.

In 1838 the strength of the army was reduced to 8 500 men. This was done by reducing the strength of each company from 100 to 64 men instead of eliminating Units. The traditional 5 year enlistment was restored and the pay increased to $ 7 but $1 was withheld each month till the end of the enlistment. None of those measures changed anything in the soldier’s behavior and the still low pay was not very attractive. And still very few Belgian emigrants enlisted.

The war with Mexico (April 24, 1846, to May 30, 1848) brought more change in the army. In May 1846 it was increased by 10 000 to reach a potential of almost 18 000 men but at the end of the year the number of enlisted men was far from attaining that limit. 7 000 soldiers were still missing. Few people were eager to enlist as by that time: too many men had heard of the disease, death or drudgery that awaited them in Mexico.

Note : Frederick Donates and Charles Cools were maybe the victims of diarrhea : "Diarrhea "in its most fatal and destructive form" struck Scott's men when they reached Puebla. In one regiment men were soon dying at the rate of two a day. Over 1,000 there were on sick report as of 4 June 1847. Surgeons blamed the disease rate on bad food, the change in diet, poor cooking, the weather, and the weakened condition of the men. When the army left Puebla during the second week in August, 2,000 men who were sick or convalescent stayed behind".

The solution to the problem of recruitment came from the "Ten Regiment Bill" voted in February 1847. The enlistment was only for the duration of the war and a soldier was assured at discharge of a land bonus of 160 acres for 12 months of service and 40 acres if he served less than one year. The regiments so formed were a regiment of Dragons, the 9th to 16th Infantry and a regiment of "Voltigeurs and foot riflemen". The strength of the companies was also raised anew from 64 to 100 men to replenish the existing Units. Some Belgians enlisted in those new regiments:

Note : The Voltigeurs were assembled at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and made movement by land and river transport to New Orleans, Louisiana. After the war, the Voltigeurs performed routine garrison and occupation duties in Mexico until their disbandment in August 1848.

Mexico City surrendered 14 September 1847 and on February 1848 a peace treaty was signed at Guadalupe Hidalgo. The Mexico war increased greatly the western territories of the USA, from Texas and California to the Canadian border (treaty of 1846 with Great Britain). Nevertheless, the regiments created by the "Ten Regiment Bill" were disbanded and the army reverted to a peacetime strength of 10 000 men, the same as it was authorized in 1815. Regiments were stretched very thin and scattered in the West in small posts often garrisoned by only one company at a time. 80 % was infantry, not a very good response to the Indian tribes on the warpath, all mounted warriors.

In June 1850, the Army was expanded to 14 000 but failed to stretch much above the 10 000 mark until a second troop increase in 1855. During the 1850s twice as many immigrants enlisted as native Americans. Half of the foreigners came from Ireland and a fifth from Germany. During those years, the U.S. Army suffered an annual attrition rate of 28 % due to desertion, discharge and death from combat, accident or disease. Desertion alone emptied the ranks almost as fast as they were filled. Soldiering in the West was rarely fun. Either a tedious sort of life or demanding the last ounce of physical strength such as only an iron constitution can stand.

In August 1854, Congress allowed a substantial pay raise for te enlisted soldier. A Private salary rose from $ 7 to $ 11, a Corporal to $ 13 and a Sergeant to $ 17. In March 1855 new Regiments were crated for frontier service: the 9th and 10th infantry and the 1st and 2nd cavalry, expanding the Army from 14 000 to 18 000 men. But the desertion rate, "french leave" as it was called, remained the same. In 1856 for example, 3 223 soldiers took it from a total of 15 753 officers and men.

 Alphabetical list of the Belgian enlisted in the US Army between 1830 and 1865.

Argenot Henry. Enlisted 17/3/1848 at New Orleans in 30 Orgs G
Basthons John. Enlisted 18/9/1861 at Columbus, Oh in 18 Inf. A
Beande John. Enlisted 13/4/1864 at New York in 4 Inf
Beets William. Enlisted 12/5/1855 at Albany in 2 Art. D 3 Inf. E
Berger Louis. Enlisted 25/5/1857 at Philadelphia
Berj Beather C. Enlisted 6/9/1860 at New York in 6 Inf.C 9 Inf. A
Block Cornelius. Enlisted 8/11/1851 at New York in 2 Inf.
Boboy Thomas. Enlisted 11/1/1859
Boboy Thomas. Enlisted 11/3/1854 at Utica in 2 Inf. C
Bohardt Peter. Enlisted 7/12/1862 at Brooks Stn? Na in 5 Art. C
Braeckmans Henry. Enlisted 25/10/1852 at Albany in Genl Serv.
Brasckmans Henry. Enlisted 21/10/1857 at New York in Genl Depot Co A
Camper Peter. Enlisted 11/5/1852 at Baltimore in 4 Inf. E
Campion Peter. Enlisted 17/12/1864 at Los Pinos? NM in 5 Inf. G
Cantoni Francis. Enlisted 9/8/1849 at Philadelphia in 7 Inf.
Cemper Peter. Enlisted 20/7/1857 at San Francisco in 3 Art. H
Cleen John T. Enlisted 12/12/1849 at Albany in 3 Inf. A
Cleenerverck Desire. Enlisted 26/11/1855 at Newport Ky in 1 Inf. K
Clement Edward A. Enlisted 30/12/1858 at Syracuse
Collin Henry. Enlisted 26/10/1852 at Albany in 8 Inf. F
Coninck Henry. Enlisted 9/1/1855 at Newport Ky in 7 Inf. H
Cook Leonard. Enlisted 12/3/1862 at Mc Gregor Ja in 16 Inf. A
Cools Charles L. Enlisted 7/8/1846 at Detroit in 6 Inf. A
Coramons Francis. Enlisted 15/4/1861 at New York in 1 Art. E
Covemans Francis. Enlisted 5/2/1864 at Stevensburg Pa in Art. E
Coyens John. Enlisted 30/4/1855 at Albany
Cramer John A. Enlisted 26/8/1846 at New York in 5 Art. G
Cross William. Enlisted 27/8/1860 at New York in G. M. S.
Davis John. Enlisted 5/1/1865 at Brooklyn in 4 Art. F
Davis (Daus?) John. Enlisted 29/5/1855 at Baltimore in 9 Inf.F A.K.
Dannerol Adolph. Enlisted 17/3/1855
De Bleeckere Aime. Enlisted 8/1/1861 at Washington in 4 Art. D 1 Art. A
De Cuyper Charles. Enlisted 3/12/1862 at Washington DC in clerk A G O
De Hilder Edward. Enlisted 1/4/1865 at Franklin, Tex in 5 Inf. P,Band
De Kay Louis. Enlisted 12/6/1845 at Detroit in 6 Inf. C&K
De Meyer Antoine. Enlisted 5/5/1854 at New York in 2 Art. L
De Meyers Antoine. Enlisted 5/3/1859 at Fort Ripley in Art. L 1 Art. A
De Pell Charles. Enlisted 9/8/1853 at Baton Rouge in Ordnance
De Reiffenburg Hermann. Enlisted 31/12/1862 at New York in 5 Art. B E
De Simony John W. Enlisted 19/10/1857 at Boston in 2 Cav. D 1 Art. M
Debarbieri (De Bastine) Emile. Enlisted 6/2/1856 at Ft Hamilton in 4 Art. F
Decaluwe Bruno. Enlisted 27/5/1861 at New York in 5 Art. A
Decline James. Enlisted 6/1/1848
Delannoy Benjamin. Enlisted 29/3/1864 at Buffalo NY in 4 Art. B
Deom Hyacinthe. Enlisted 21/10/1846 at New Orleans in 1 Art. C
Dhondt Eugene H. Enlisted 22/9/1846 at Miwaukee in 6 Inf. A
Donates Frederick. Enlisted 7/3/1845 at Detroit in 5 Inf. H
Draime Henry J. Enlisted 27/3/1839 at Cleveland in 2 Art. F
Draime John. Enlisted 27/3/1839 at Cleveland in 2 Art. F
Draime John F. Enlisted 15/8/1845 at Ft Niagara in 2 Inf. A
Draper (or Deper) John. Enlisted 3/3/1862 at Harrisburg in 5 Art. L
Dubois William. Enlisted 10/9/1852 at Albany in 7 Inf. A
Eisken John C. Enlisted 10/5/1855 at Newport Ky in 3 Inf. F
Eiseschmied Louis. Enlisted 9/10/1838 at Baltimore in 1 Dragon
Ellis Thomas. Enlisted 19/8/1847 at Newport Ky
Fierson Michael. Enlisted 31/7/1847 at Canton O. in 15 Inf.
Flesch William. Enlisted 11/4/1861 at Buffalo NY in 4 Art.
Forden Frank. Enlisted 4/5/1861 at Saint Louis in 4 Art. E
Forrest Joseph. Enlisted 12/10/1841 at St Louis in Ordnance
Fournier Joseph. Enlisted 28/7/1864 at Toledo O in 19 Inf. G
Gerard Nicholas. Enlisted 12/3/1852 at Buffalo in 1 Inf. B
Gerard Nicholas. Enlisted 7/11/1858 at Fort Leavenworth in 1 Cav. C
Gillis Romains. Enlisted 17/1/1865 at Oswego in 16 Inf. B
Grame William. Enlisted 3/6/1857 at Baltimore in 10 Inf. H
Hanus Francois. Enlisted 13/2/1857 at New Albany in 1 Cav. H
Hencke Joseph Dominick. Enlisted 10/11/1838 at New Orleans in 3,7 Inf. D
Henry John N. Enlisted 31/5/1847 at Buffalo in 2 Inf. K
Hentgen John. Enlisted 1/3/1862 at New York in 5 Art. L
Horner Jus. Joseph. Enlisted 10/2/1850 at New York in 1 Art. Band
Hubert Francis. Enlisted 15/5/1862 at Detroit Mich in 16 Inf. A
Jacoby Joseph. Enlisted 4/6/1859 at Ft Leavenworth, Ks in 2 Art. A
Jacoby Joseph. Enlisted 19/2/1864 at Culpepper Va in 2 Art. A
Jerome Louie. Enlisted 17/9/1863 at Concord? NY in 4 Art. B
Johnson Daniel H. Enlisted 22/8/1837 at New York in 1 Art. A
Johnston Daniel H. Enlisted 22/6/1840 at Houston in 1 Art. A
Knepper Emil A. Enlisted 2/2/1858 at New York in 7 Inf. H
Krebsbach John. Enlisted 17/4/1862 at Albany Ohio in 19 Inf
Lacombe Joseph C. Enlisted 19/10/1858 at New York in 2 Cav G
Lesaffre Amand. Enlisted 31/8/1857 at Albany in 1 Drgs K
Lonhienne Hubert C. Enlisted 7/3/1864 at Gerardsville in 19 Inf
Lorge Jean Baptiste. Enlisted 5/6/1862 at Boston Mass in 5 Cav D
Man Charles. Enlisted 15/2/1839 at
Macumber Oliver. Enlisted 1/1/1863 at Beaufort SC
Michel Nicolas. Enlisted 28/8/1862 at Dubuque Ia in 12 Inf
Michiels Jean Louis. Enlisted 8/5/1857 at Philadelphia in 3 Inf. G
Morel Louis. Enlisted 20/9/1849 at Newport
Noirsain Edmond. Enlisted 20/8/1855 at New Yok in 8 Inf. K Hospital
Olens Charles. Enlisted 25/11/1862 at Baltimore, Md in 5 Cav. K
Onrod George. Enlisted 8/12/1864 at Ft Wayne Mich in 19 IInf. A
Ores Jules. Enlisted 21/11/1862 at Philadelphia, Penn in 15 Inf. Rect
Paplimans Dennis. Enlisted 26/6/1857 at San Francisco in 1 Drgs C
Poplemons Dennis. Enlisted 3/5/1852 at Albany in 4 Inf. K
Parant John. Enlisted 5/5/1853 at St Louis in 3 Inf. D
Pennelle Frank. Enlisted 26/11/1852 at New York in 2 Drgs B
Pernas Nicholas. Enlisted 24/4/1862 at Oshkosh Wis in 14 Inf. E
Peters Joseph. Enlisted 24/5/1862 at Marinetta W in 18 Inf. G
Pierle John. Enlisted 19/8/1847 at Newport Ky
Portelange Leon. Enlisted 20/8/1864 at New York in 5 Art. L
Poslen John. Enlisted 19/9/1864 at New York in 7 Inf. D
Roegiers Edward. Enlisted 29/11/1860 at Newport K in Gen. Ser.Rect. (2)
Roegiers Edward J. Enlisted 30/8/1855 at Newport Ky in Rifle K
Roland John. Enlisted 10/3/1845 at Detroit in 5 Inf. I&H
Ross Louis. Enlisted 26/8/1851 at Dayton
Sanfort John B. Enlisted 5/12/1862 at Indianapolis Ind in 18 Inf. C2 A2
Saure George. Enlisted 11/12/1862 at New London Conn in 14 Inf. Rect
Scheppers Charles. Enlisted 5/3/1847 at Philadelphia in Volt. B
Schumacher Nicolas. Enlisted 3/1/1845 at
Schuman Bemard. Enlisted 9/7/1862 at Detroit Mich in Genl Serv
Seghers Jean B. Enlisted 7/6/1848 at Buffalo
Smith Henry. Enlisted 30/4/1855 at
Smith John. Enlisted 2/1/1863 at Beaufort SC in 1 Art. D
Sneader Frederick. Enlisted 10/5/1841 at in. Remarks:
Soucy Louis. Enlisted 27/2/1863 at Baton Rouge La in 2 Art. C
Stevens Paul. Enlisted 14/12/1852 at
Storm Francis. Enlisted 23/12/1840 at
Tenaert Levere. Enlisted 22/9/1855 at St Louis in 2 Drgs C
Theiss Peter. Enlisted 18/11/1856 at Philadelphia in 5 Inf. C
Till Peter. Enlisted 13/4/1847 at Hellesburg? in 15 Inf. I
Van Dan Sypen Augustus. Enlisted 21/8/1861 at Milwaukee, Wis in 16 Inf. B
Van Grieker Jan. Enlisted 21/2/1865 at Detroit, Mich. in 19 Inf. A
Van Mieghem Felix. Enlisted 6/12/1864 at New York in Art. F
Vandervest Charles. Enlisted 1/10/1861 at Milwaukee, Wis in 16 Inf. C
Vanthuyne Julian. Enlisted 28/4/1858 at Newport Ky in 10 Inf. H
Vereecken Desire. Enlisted 1/4/1861 at Chicago, Ill. in Genl Serv.
Verlongen Charles. Enlisted 17/11/1864 at Newport Ky in 2 Inf. G
Von Pickerson Gerard. Enlisted 5/10/1853 at St Louis in Ordnance
Von Pickron Gerard. Enlisted 8/9/1848 at
Wagner Edward F. Enlisted 18/5/1858 at Buffalo in 2 Inf. C K
Wagner Jean P. Enlisted 7/1/1851 at Buffalo in 8 Inf. G
Wagner Jean P. Enlisted 3/5/1856 at New York in 2 Inf. K
Wagner Jean P. Enlisted 20/5/1861 at Buffalo NY in 2 Inf. C
Wagner Joseph A. Enlisted 3/5/1856 at New York in 2 Inf. K
Wagner Joseph A. Enlisted 20/5/1861 at Buffalo NY in 2 Inf. K
Wathier Francis. Enlisted 8/5/1861 at Chicago, Ill. in 2 Art. D
Weber Stephen. Enlisted 16/2/1847 at Albany in 3 Art. E
Willems John Edward. Enlisted 11/12/1852 at Rochester in 8 Inf. A
Williams John E. Enlisted 11/10/1857 at Ft Davis in 8 Inf. A
Willibrod Franc. Enlisted 11/8/1836 at Louisville in 4 Inf. D
Williman Henry. Enlisted 26/6/1849 at New York in 1 Art. Band
Williman Leopold. Enlisted 26/6/1849 at New York in 1 Art. Band
Wiseler Johan. Enlisted 14/5/1855 at Chicago
Youghbluth Peter. Enlisted 8/7/1847 at Canton O. in 15 Inf. I

Sources :

(When specific sites were consulted, I added the reference with the page but generally a lot of web sites are the basis of those researches)

Find a grave

The Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War

At Ancestry :

-          The Civil War Pension files

-          The U.S. Army, registers of Enlistments

-          The censuses

At Footnote :

-          The Civil War Pension Index

-          The Union Soldier Service Records

-                The Confederate Soldier Service Records

The various “State Adjutant Generals' Reports for the Civil War” and genealogy books available at :

-          Internet Archives

-          Ancestry

-          Heritage Quest

-          Making of America (MOA)

*The Army of The United States, historical sketches of Staff and Line with portraits Of Generals-In-Chief

*Crossed Sabers: Researching Your Civil War Ancestor: The Regular Army
*The army medical department, 1818-1865

*The Regiment of Voltigeurs, USA. A Case Study of the Mexican-American War,usa

*The United States Infantry: An Illustrated History, 1775-1918 by Gregory J. W. Urwin