Joseph F. Field papers  1859-1866 (bulk 1862-1866)
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Field, Joseph F.

Rank : Pvt., Sgt., Lieut. (1863 June 4)

Regiment : 46th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment. Co. C (1862-1863)
2nd Massachusetts Artillery Regiment (Heavy). Co. L (1863-1865)

Service : 1862 September 24-1865 September 3

Not every soldier in the Civil War fought in the great battles or struggled for survival. Many passed their service in garrison duty or in reserve corps. Joe Field was one of these soldiers. Prior to his enlistment, Field spent his time carousing, as he put it, as a salesman in Westfield, Mass., but he found some stability upon meeting and courting Kittie Chapman in about 1860. Kittie, herself something of a flirt, and Joe had developed a fairly close relationship before it was interrupted by the war. In September, 1862, Field joined Company C of the 46th Massachusetts Infantry , a nine-month regiment, and was stationed at comparatively quiet New Berne, N.C. Despite his enthusiasm upon first enlisting, when the time for mustering out drew near, Field wrote to Kittie that he was unwilling to remain in the army, primarily because he hated being separated from her. "Prehaps if they make me a Brigadeer General," he wrote, "I may return. Not that I have lost my faith & patriotism. No I believe this accursed war can be stoped and that too by a force of arms. We can lick them if the North will turn out and help..." (1863 May 10).

Nevertheless, Field did reenlist almost immediately, receiving a Lieutenant's commission in Co. L of the 2nd Mass. Heavy Artillery Regiment on June 4th. He found time to marry Kittie in the summer of 1863, and remained in Massachusetts to help recruit for the regiment until December. Company L was sent to the vicinity of Norfolk, Va., where it was stationed for the first months of 1864, and saw service at Forts Tillinghast Hazlett, and Ringgold, Va., at Portsmouth, Va., and at several locations in northeastern North Carolina during the remainder of the war. Field's service was again relatively uneventful, but while he was occasionally near to groups of Confederate soldiers, near enough to converse at times, his company apparently never saw action. Field was appointed Adjutant in April, 1865, which position he filled until he mustered out on the 3rd of September.