Eastern North Carolinians in the Union Army: The First and Second North Carolina Union Volunteer Regiments By Dr. Donald E. Collins
The War Between the States was truly a civil war in every sense of the word. Although the popular image is of North fighting South, it is also true that Northerners in significant numbers supported the South, and Southerners in significant numbers fought for the North. Eighty-five [White] Union army regiments were recruited in the Confederate States: 51 from Tennessee; 10 from Arkansas; 10 from Louisiana; 4 from North Carolina; 4 from Texas; 2 from Florida; 1 from Alabama; 1 from Arkansas; 1 from Georga; 1 from Mississippi; & 1 from Virginia. While many of these Southern Unionists confined their service to within their native states, many others took active roles in fighting against the Southern Confederacy.Alabama and Tennessee Union regiments fought under Sherman in the Atlanta campaign and joined him for his March to the Sea. At least two Tennessee regiments fought at Fort Fisher, occupied Wilmington, fought at Avrasboro and Bentonville, occupied Raleigh, and were present at Johnston's surrender at Bennett Place.
North Carolina's four [White] Union regiments were: the First and Second North Carolina Union Volunteer Infantry, and the Second and Third North Carolina Mounted Infantry. The two mounted infantry regiments were stationed in Knoxville, Tennessee and saw service primarily in the mountains of Western North Carolina and (Eastern) Tennessee. The two infantry regiments were organized in eastern North Carolina and remained in that region for the entire war.