Thursday, December 13, 2018 – $10.00/person • Members Free
Elmer Ellsworth and the 11th New York Fire Zouaves
The famed Fire Zouaves raised by celebrity Elmer Ellsworth had more than their share of mischief. Even after the death of Ellsworth, they were counted on to carry the field at the Battle of Bull Run. The 11th New York Volunteer Infantry Regiment was organized in New York City in May1861 as a Zouave regiment, known for its unusual dress and drill style, by Colonel Elmer E. Ellsworth, a personal friend of President Abraham Lincoln. Drawn from the ranks of the city’s many volunteer fire companies, the unit was known alternately as the Ellsworth Zouaves, First Fire Zouaves, First Regiment New York Zouaves, and U.S. National Guards. The unit was among the first to occupy a Confederate state when it captured Alexandria Virginia on May 24, 1861, less than 24 hours after the Commonwealth seceded from the Union. The regiment suffered extensive casualties during the First Battle of Bull Run. Sent back to New York City in May 1862, the regiment was mustered out of service on June 2, 1862. There were several attempts to reorganize the regiment through the summer of 1863, and many new enlistees were involved in suppressing the New York Draft Riots, but those efforts failed and the enlistees were transferred to the 17th New York Infantry regiment.
Did they live up to expectations? Find out the history and story of this celebrated unit.