Michigan made a great contribution to the American government during the American civil war. Even after it had been removed from the war Michigan continued offering its help by supplying large troops as well as generals. A good example of the general that was supplied was the George Armstrong Custer. At the initial stages of the war, Michigan had been requested to only supply four regiments but it went further and supplied seven. Michigan played a great role in the war until the president of the US during those times congratulated them for their great effort. The men of Michigan who served in the war were about ninety thousand in the approximation that is about a quarter of the whole of Michigan’s male population. In addition to that more than 600 men joined the United States Union Navy besides that they also deplored about 47 regiments to the war (Michigan 3).
One of the Michigan units which were greatly celebrated was the 24th Michigan Volunteer Infantry. This group encompassed the famous Iron Brigade though this team underwent great loss in defense of Macpherson’s Ridge. About eighteen thousand of Michigan’s population perished in the war. Statistics show that about five thousands of all these deaths were compact deaths though most of those who died passed on from diseases due to poor sanitation as well as food. Modern medicines became a problem rather than a solution to their problem. Michigan was rated amongst the six states that had encountered great loss. It’s recorded that Michigan State responded to the war quickly than many states. The people who Michigan offered to the military force were about twenty-eight militia companies. Despite their contribution in the American war this group of armies were immediately forgotten and forsaken after one year. As a result of the neglecting the large team was greatly reduced to about 1300 people.
The Michigan Men
The majority of these men were volunteers who were sourced during the 1st Michigan regiment. The number of soldiers that were deplored to the field was more than required and as a result of much waiting many of them decided to escape from the war. Those who were not immediately accepted in Michigan regiments opted to join the regiments of other states. One of the questions that were greatly asked was the reasons why the young men gave themselves largely to the war. Some scholars think that these young men were ready to fight for the union of the American country. They had the spirit of patriotism since they were willing to fight any rebellion in order to preserve the unity of the American Union. The many people who were recruited were from offices, shops and even firms. These men were full of patriotism, enthusiasm and loyalty, this was clear because of the zeal they had in ensuring that their union had to be maintained at all cost (Hoffman 43).
They had made a vow to remain loyal and to serve their nation at whatever expense. Since this oath was not an idle one, these men were determined to accomplish that which they had decided. The Michigan men were determined to keep their country secure from any malicious people who were about to derive them of their rights. One of the men of the ninth infantry was quoted saying that he personally enrolled in the army because the rights of his nation which were so dear to him were in great danger and he vowed that he will not return until the security of his nation was assured. For this reason, most of these men were able to serve in a number of infantries.
Many other Michigan men confessed the same thing and that is the reason many of them enrolled to take part in the war. These men could not find comfort in staying home because they loved their country. Therefore they took part in the war not on the basis of loving war but because they had to make a sacrifice for what they really treasured in order that it’s not taken away from them. There was some kind of unity which cannot be easily found. The Michigan men came out as one in a patriotic spirit knowing that, it was the moment that their country greatly needed them. They had important things to take care of but they chose to fight and defend their beloved country. Some of the men eventual found pleasure in war though others realized that it was a risky life and for that reason they prayed for protection from the Almighty (Herek 45).
Michigan is one of the states that responded to the appeals of the president of that time faster than any other state. For instance, the recruitment of volunteers was very successful and as a result it earned its popularity. Though these men became angry when the Northern armies were denied responsibility in the war they never gave up on what they had purposed accomplishing. The response to the later regiments that were formed was poor because of the hardships and much abandonment that was experienced in the latter years. For these reason replacement of the people that were already in the filled became difficult as well as formation of new regiments. If these men received warm reception they would have continued to fight for the unity of their union but the bad welcome and harsh treatment made many of them to change their minds.
For this reason Michigan had no other option but to offer bounties in order to entice many of their men to keep joining the upcoming regiments. This was a practice of the other American states since their men were not determined to go for war like the Michigan men. As a result, a draft was enacted in order to help the states that were having problems in getting the required men to take part in the war. The brand that was enacted didn’t go well with the Michigan men because they thought that was a way of depriving them their patriotic rights. These men thought that the enacted draft was going to create a bad picture about them for instance people would take them as men who are not ready and willing to fight for their country. Therefore as a result the Michigan men felt obliged to take part in the war and as a result, the number of volunteers that were recruited greatly multiplied (Eggleston 194).
This act formed the basis for some Michigan men who were not willing to return to war to go back. They had experienced many hardships which made them loose the zeal that they had. The intensity of the war reduced with time after encountering great difficulties. Some soldiers were heard saying that they no longer had the strength to whip people as they had done before. The most celebrated Michigan regiment during the American war was the Iron Brigade. These men wore a uniform that distinguished them from the rest. The regiments which were rated as the most effective were volunteer regiments which were only five. And the one which is greatly remembered is the 24th regiment. The men of Michigan left a legacy that will always remain in the hearts of the American generations. They willingness to take part in the war was immeasurable (McGinnis 77).