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Hi! My name is Ulrik, and this is my student blog. My posts will be based on tasks and subjects given to the class by my English teacher Ann. I am currently in my third year at Sandvika High School, Norway.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

The 15th Wisconsin

One of The 15th Wisconsin flags. The text says
"For God and our country"
Statue of Heg in Madison, Wisconsin
When writing my post about photography, I used some photos from the US Civil War. When reading about the photographer, I began (as I often do), clicking around on Wikipedia. One thing led to another, and suddenly I found myself looking at a regiment from the same war. The Regiment was "The 15th Wisconsin Volunteer Regiment".
I knew that there was about five thousand Norwegians who fought in the war, but I had never heard of this union regiment, consisting of about 400 soldiers, with about ninety percent Norwegians.

The 15th was during most of the war led by Hans Christian Heg. He was born in Buskerud, Norway, and migrated to America in 1840 as a child. He was killed in 1863, at the Battle of Chickamauga. In the battle the regiment lost almost fifty percents of it's men, and a total of  35000 men were either killed, wounded or captured on both sides. The regiment is apparently well known in the US, and there's a statue of Hans Christian Heg in Wisconsin.
The regiment was formed in 1862, and dissolved in 1865 when the war ended. Even though it was formally known as "The 15th Wisconsin", they were also called "St. Olaf Rifles" and "Wergeland's musketeers".
Most of the soldiers in the regiment were first generation immigrants, and had only been in the country for a couple of years when they joined the war. The regiment participated in 26 battles, and sustained heavy casualties throughout the war. In 1914 regiment survivors had their last big reunion, celebrating the one hundred year anniversary of the Norwegian constitution. 27 of them was still alive at the reunion.

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