Lemuel B. Norton, Chief Signal Officer at Gettysburg, Civil War Requisition Book, December 1862-June 1863
Requisition book, 5 x 10 in., identified to Lt. L.B. Norton, AAQM of Signal Corps. December 1862-June 1863. Containing approx. 34pp of manuscript entries. Highlights include:
Covering supplies ordered by him or turned in to him during period of Dec. 4, 1862 to June 4, 1863, such as the following entry dated Jan. 7, 1863: Requisition made for 30 haversacks, 20 canteen straps, 20 great coats in assorted sizes, 30 Cavalry jackets assorted sizes, 50 pair mounted pants, assorted sizes, 30 woolen shirts, 20 pick handles, 90 pair of boots, 4 stable forks, etc.
Listing of Fords of Rappahannock and Rapidan Rivers, describing various places where rivers were forded, giving descriptions by depth, width and what purpose each ford could be used for.
Listing of railroad distances as follows: 19 locations on Richmond-Fredericksburg & Potomac Railroad, giving mileage between towns and fort locations. Also 10 bridges on same R.R., describing bridge construction, length, and height.
Virginia Central RR, mileage from Richmond through 13 towns to Gordonsville.
Old Stage Road to Richmond, mileage from Fredericksburg through 14 towns to Richmond.
Telegraph Rd. to Richmond, mileage from Fredericksburg through 13 towns to Richmond, also from Fredericksburg west through Chancellorsville and 6 other towns or forts.
Streams to Old Post Road to Richmond, giving width and best location to ford streams.
Stage Road from Fredericksburg to Winchester through 11 towns, mileage to each town.
Water distances from Washington, D.C. to Norfolk through 20 towns or forts.
List of abbreviations used in war department correspondence during the Civil War.
Lemuel B. Norton, Chief Signal Officer for the Army of the Potomac at Gettysburg
Warren County, PA native Lemuel B. Norton (1839-1871) enlisted on June 22, 1861 at the age of 21 as a 1st lieut. and was commissioned into Co. A of the 10th Infantry Regiment of the Pennsylvania State Guard and was later promoted to captain, but left that position when appointed by President Abraham Lincoln to the rank of captain in the Army of Potomac Signal Corps, a military organization pioneered by Maj. Albert J. Meyer. The new group utilized communication tactics and information as a weapon.
Norton served as Chief Signal Officer at the Battle of Gettysburg. He established a complicated line of men at important vantage points near Cemetery Hill, Powers Hill, Culp’s Hill and Little Round Top. He used them to communicate with other generals the positions and movements of enemy troops. His group on Little Round Top forced Longstreet to detour the approach march to his attack on July 2nd. Longstreet rerouted his march to a more concealed route, but failed. The Signal Corps warned Meade of their approach and reinforcements charged toward the flank that narrowly fought off the Confederates. In addition to his men, he had field telegraph trains he chose not to deploy.
Norton was recognized for "Gallant and Meritorious Service" in the Battle of Gettysburg, for "Meritorious Service" in the Signal Corps during the war, and for "Meritorious Service" in the Campaign against Richmond, VA. He continued his service after the war and ended his military career as a major in July 1867. Norton died in Philadelphia, PA, in December 1871 of pulmonary tuberculosis as a result of military exposure.
The papers, commissions, and personal effects offered here were previously passed down through members of Norton's family, and were sold in 1997 to a private collector.
Several pages separated from the binding. There is tape on the spine in order to strengthen it. Several of the pages have brittle margins.