Sunday, August 7, 2011

August 1861: Charles Mutchler's Bull Run-Related Gunshot Wound

In early August 1861, First Sergeant Charles Wesley Mutchler, of Company D ["Phillipsburg Garibaldi Guards"], 1st Regiment of New Jersey Volunteer Infantry, returned to Phillipsburg on a 30-day medical furlough.  Mutchler was shot in the hand by his own revolver in Washington, DC on July 21, after returning from the Manassas, VA area.

The 1st New Jersey Volunteer Infantry (three years enlistment), commanded by Colonel William R. Montgomery and Lieutenant Colonel Robert McAllister, had been assigned rear-guard duties near Centerville, VA as the Federal Army of the Potomac retreated to Washington, DC after the First Battle of Manassas (or Bull Run).  After returning to Washington City, Mutchler, age 20, was shot in the right hand as he was putting his pistol in his pocket. 

Two or three Army physicians looked at the wound, but Mutchler preferred to return home and go to Dr. C. C. Field, of Easton, PA, to have the bullet removed.  Dr. Field removed the bullet, and Mutchler recuperated at home for a couple of weeks. 

On September 18, 1861, Mutchler was commissioned a Second Lieutenant of Company D, 1st NJV Regiment.

Copyright 1999-2011: Jay C. Richards

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