Welcome to "Remembering the 142nd PVI". The purpose of this site is post pictures, information, and the final resting places of this regiment of the American Civil War. It seeks to tell a "bottom up" history, straight from the common soldiers themselves. If you have any information concerning the 142nd, please email me at bmonticue@gmail.com. Thank you and enjoy.

Friday, June 17, 2011

1st Sgt Jacob J. Zorn, Co. F

Jacob J. Zorn, son of Michael and Louisa (Domm) Zorn, was born on April 30, 1838 in Berlin, Somerset County, PA. His father died when Jacob was very young, and he assumed the financial support of his mother at the age of 14.

When it was time for a company to be formed in his hometown, Jacob took part in the responsibility of helping to recruit soldiers. This unit would become Co. F 142nd PA Infantry.  Enlisting was not a decision that Jacob came to lightly. He only enlisted after he received the consent of his mother. He was enrolled in the 142nd on Aug 8, 1862 and was mustered in on Aug 25, 1862 at Camp Curtin, near Harrisburg, PA.

Sgt. Zorn was with his company during their first engagement at Fredericksburg, VA in December of 1862. About one moment of the battle, he wrote:  

"The balls or bullets come thick and fast I had no Idea I would ever get over that fence alive. but I had no time to consider I threw myself across the fence and walked about twenty or likely forty Steps then I lay down in the open field..."  

Sgt Zorn made it out of the Battle of Fredericksburg unscathed and even kept records of his company's dead, wounded, and missing. Six months later, at Gettysburg, PA, Sgt Zorn would be counted among those missing.

(The 142nd was part of Magilton's Brigade, and was in line of battle on the far right of that brigade. The black arrow is pointing to their position.The top picture was taken from the spot of the red "You Are Here" star on the map below, looking toward that position)

The 142nd took part in the July 1, 1863 battle on Seminary Ridge in Gettysburg. After the death of Col. Cummins, their commanding officer, the 142nd, along with the rest of their Division, were driven back from Seminary Ridge and retreated through town.

"C.P. HEFFLEY and I Scurried up Main St to the upper end of town where we were cut off and had to Surrender and taken down the Street and to the Rebels Rear. as prisoners of war. where we found many traveling the Same direction who were captured."

 Sgt Zorn was exchanged a month later and stayed with his unit for the remainder of the war. The 142nd was present at Lee's Surrender at Appomattox Courthouse and Jacob wrote:

"We can hardly realize the fact of the Surrender. after fighting LEEs army for nearly three Years, and now finished, it makes us feel Glad."

After the war, Jacob married Jenny D. Statler on Dec 31, 1867 in Philadelphia, and the two lived in Berlin, where Jacob was a plasterer, contractor, and owned an insurance company.

1st Sgt. Jacob J. Zorn now rests, along with sixteen of his comrades, in the Berlin IOOF Cemetery in Berlin, PA.

Information on Jacob Zorn courtesy of A Sergeant's Story, edited by Barbara M. Croner. Copies of this fantastic work can be purchased from the good folks at the Berlin Area Historical Society.

No comments:

Post a Comment