There are two monuments to the 143rd Pennsylvania on the Gettysburg battlefield.
The first monument, erected in 1889 by the State of Pennsylvania, is west of Gettysburg on the southwest corner of Chambersburg Road and Reynolds Avenue. (39.836596° N, 77.249245° W; Tour map: South Reynolds Avenue) It shows the regiment’s location during the fighting of July 1st. (Google maps to both monuments)
The front of the monument is a bas-relief of Sergeant Ben Crippen shaking his fist at advancing Confederates. Crippen was killed bearing the flag during the retreat through the town on July 1st. His body was not recovered and he is assumed to be one of the “unknowns” in the National Cemetery.
The 143rd’s second monument is south of Gettysburg on Hancock Avenue. (39.809861° N, 77.236135° W; Tour map: Hancock Avenue Part 3) It was erected in 1895, and shows the regiment’s position on July 2nd and 3rd.
The 143rd Pennsylvania was commanded at the Battle of Gettysburg by Colonel Edmund L. Dana. He took over the brigade during the fighting, and Lieutenant Colonel John D. Musser took command of the regiment.
The regiment brought 515 men to the field, losing 21 killed, 141 wounded and 91 missing.
|Sergeant James M. Rutter of Company C was awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions on July 1st when “at great risk of his life went to the assistance of a wounded comrade, and while under fire removed him to a place of safety.”|
See Lieutenant Colonel John D. Musser’s Official Reports for the 143rd Pennsylvania in the Battle of Gettysburg
From the front of the monument:
143d Penna. Infantry
2d Brigade 3d Div. 1st Corps
From the rear of the monument:
This monument marks right of first position July 1, 1863, facing north and second position facing west, which the Regiment held from 11:30 a.m. until First Corps fell back. Last position on Seminary Ridge right resting on railroad cut. July 2d & 3d Regiment was in line on left centre and on the 3rd assisted in repulsing the final charge of the enemy
Present at Gettysburg, 45
Killed officers 1, men 20.
Wounded officers 11, men 130.
Captured or missing 91 men.
Total loss 253
Recruited in the counties of
Luzerne, Susqueshanna, Wyoming
Mustered in Aug. Oct. 1862
Mustered out June 12th 1865
From the Hancock Avenue monument:
143rd Penna. Infantry
2nd Brig. 3rd Div. 1st Corps
Held this position July 2nd and 3rd 1863 and assisted in the repulse of the enemy on the 3rd.
Monument erected on 1st days field near Reynolds Grove where the regiment lost 145 killed and wounded and 91 missing out of 465 present for duty. Losses here 16 killed and wounded.
Army of the Potomac
From the rear:
Wilderness. Laurel Hill.
Spotsylvania. North Anna.
Bethesda Church. Cold Harbor.
Petersburg. Weldon R.R.
Vaughn Road. Hatchers Run.
Mustered in Luzerne Co. Aug. 26, 1862.
Mustered Out. June 12, 1865.
See more on the 143rd Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry Regiment in the Civil War