Cemetery Works
Boulder, Colorado, USA
established 2001
Superior Cemetery, Superior, Colo
American Civil War Soldiers' Stories
James Morton
Private James Morton, Company A, 142nd Pennsylvania Infantry

James Morton enlisted as a Private, at 31-32 years of age, on 22 August 1862.
He was mustered into Company 'A' of the Pennsylvania 142nd Infantry Regiment on 22 August 1862. [Company A was recruited in Mercer County.] He served 33 months in the 142nd Pennsylvania Infantry, 22 August 1862 to 29 May 1865.

The 142nd Pennsylvania Infantry regiment was assigned to the Federal / Union Army of the Potomac for the duration of its service. The regiment fought in many savage battles, Fredericksburg I; Gettysburg; Grant's Overland Campaign from the Battle of the Wilderness to the Battle of Cold Harbor; the 9 month siege of Petersburg [trench warfare], including the first assault and the Crater [the Mine Explosion]; and the Appomattox Campaign, including being present at Lee's surrender at Appomattox Court House.

Grant's Overland Campaign has been described as 60 miles/60,000 casualties; albeit, 80,000 casualties seems a better number for the total died, wounded, or missing [in American Civil War parlance, 'missing' means: unidentified dead, taken prisoner, or taken flight, deserted].

The 142nd Pennsylvania Infantry regiment has the unwanted / unsought distinction of sustaining the 9th highest loss in battle, killed or mortal wounded, of the more than 2,000 regiments in the Union Army. The 142nd PENN Infantry loss 155 of the 935 soldiers and officers; 16.5 percent. Of these, 66 were lost in the battle of Fredericksburg, Va., 12 - 15 Dec 1862, and 49, in battle of Gettysburg, Penn., 01-03 July 1964.

While James Morton was in service, the 142nd PENN Infantry regiment was engaged in the following battles that had a direct impact on the course of the war and / or a decisive influence on a campaign:
  • Fredericksburg_I [Marye's Heights], Va., 12 - 15 Dec 1862
        where it made a heroic charge and suffered severely, losing 243 in killed, wounded and missing
  • Chancellorsville, Va., 02 - 05 May 1863
  • Gettysburg, Penn., 01-03 July 1863
        where a total of 211 were lost in the battle;
        officers: 03 killed, 11 wounded, 02 captured or missing;
        ranks: 10 killed; 117 wounded, 68 captured or missing
  • Mine Run, Va., 27 Nov - 02 Dec 1863
  • the Wilderness, Va., 05 - 07 May 1864
  • Spotsylvania Court House, Va., 12 - 21 May 1864
        including the assault on the Bloody Salient on 12 May 1864
  • North Anna, Va., 23 - 26 May 1864
  • Totopotomoy Creek, Va., 28 - 30 May 1864
  • Cold Harbor, Va., 01 - 12 Jun 1864
  • assault on / siege before Petersburg, Va., Jun 1864 - Feb 1865
        including the initial assault on 16 June and the Crater [or Mine Explosion] on 30 June
  • Globe Tavern or Weldon Railroad_II, Va., 15 - 21 Aug 1864
  • Peebles' Farm, Va., 29 Sept - 02 Oct 1864
  • Boydton Plank Road or Hatcher's Run, Va., 27 - 28 Oct 1864
  • White Oak Road, Va., 31 Mar 1865
  • Five Forks, Va., 01 Apr 1865
        where its losses were severe
  • Appomattox Court House, Va., 09 Apr 1865

    The 142nd PENN Infantry regiment was present at the surrender of Gen. Lee and his army at Appomattox Court House, Virginia, on 09 April 1865. Following the surrender, the 142nd PENN Infantry escorted captured stores to Burkesville Station and then marched to Washington, D.C., 01 - 12 May, where they participated in Day 01 of the Grand Review in Washington, D.C., on 23 May 1865.

    James Morton was discharged on 29 May 1865 in the vicinity of Washington, D.C by the General Order of 26 May 1865.

    The 142nd PENN Infantry regiment participated in the infamous Burnside "Mud March"; 20-24 January 1863.

    Other Information
    James Morton, age 48, born in England, a coal miner by trade, is reported in the 1880 Boulder County, Colorado, Census. This is taken to be the James Morton who served in the 142nd Pennsylvania Infantry regiment and buried in Superior Cemetery.

    The SUPERIOR CEMETERY, An Historical Report, by R. Michael Collard, 30 Nov 1976, reports that James Morton worked in Marshall as a coal miner until he lost an arm, then in Louisville, Colorado.

  • CVGR, Colorado Veterans' Grave Registrations, 1862-1949, cards available at the
        Colorado State Archive, Denver, CO.
  • Historical Data Systems, Inc., Duxbury, MA 02331
  • History of Pennsylvania Volunteers, 1861-65; prepared in compliance
        with acts of the Pennsylvania legislature by Samuel P. Bates.
  • Regimental Losses In the American Civil War, 1861-1865, Lt. Col. William F. Fox,
        U.S. Volunteers, Albany, NY; Albany Publishing Company, 1889.
  • US NPS CWSSS Regimental Histories
  • US NPS CWSSS Battle Summaries
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