Company I

I will be adding information about members of this company periodically.


Conrad Basel aka Basil

On the night of April 3rd [probably April 1st] our whole army was in line of battle.  Just before daybreak Grant attached the enemy and after a few hours of hard fighting, we captured their whole line, took all their forts and many prisoners.  The loss on both sides was very heavy.  I found my old schoolmate, Conrad Basel, from our company, lying on the field with a serious wound in the head from being hit by a fragment of shell.  He was unconscious.  I reported Sergeant’s Basel’s condition to our Captain.  He ordered my to take him to a field hospital and stay with him until evening, then to find the Regiment and report to him.  I stayed with the poor lad until 10 P.M.; he did not know me, but would call me “Frank,” and talked about his mother.  The doctor told me he could not live until morning, but I hoped he would; I had heard that a train of box cars had arrived to carry the wounded to City Point.  How I wanted to stay with that poor boy!  But orders must be obeyed in the army, so I got a card and wrote his name, company and regiment on it and was tying it in the button hole of his coat, when a man in citizen’s clothes tapped me on the shoulder.  He was a newspaper man from Pittsburgh and gave me a Pittsburgh paper – the one h was connected with.  I told him my mate’s story and asked him to let Basel’s family know, and then when I told him my time was up, he said he would see that the boy would be in City Point by morning where he could have better care.  That was the last time I saw my schoolmate.  I thanked the man and bade him good bye (I don’t remember his name); then I hurried out into the dark, over the battlefield, to hunt the regiment.

About May 17th some of our boys who had been wounded at Petersburg came back to us, and one of them told me that he saw Conrad Basel at City Point, that he was crazy, and died at Annapolis, Maryland, some time in June ([actually April 25th].  His body was sent to his mother in Pittsburgh.1)Conrad Smith, My Early Life and the Civil War, pages 41-42, 45


Conrad Basel enlisted in the 139th regiment as a private when it was formed on September 1, 1862.  In January, 1863 he was promoted to Corporal and in February, 1865 to Sergeant.  He was wounded during the attack on Petersburg on April 2, 1865 and died of his wounds on April 25, 1865 at Annapolis.2)Bates, Samuel P., History of Pennsylvania Volunteers, 1861-5, 1870

Basel’s mother applied for a mother’s pension in May of 1865 and was finally approved in October of 1866.3)images from

Basil claim approval

Basil mothers app
































Although he is buried in Birmingham Cemetery in Pittsburgh, he also has a headstone in Annapolis.4)images from Find A

Headstone at Annapolis

Headstone at Annapolis

Birmingham headstone

Headstone at Birmingham Cemetery, Pittsbugh

References   [ + ]

1. Conrad Smith, My Early Life and the Civil War, pages 41-42, 45
2. Bates, Samuel P., History of Pennsylvania Volunteers, 1861-5, 1870
3. images from
4. images from Find A

Leave a Reply