Thomas Franklin McCoy was six years old when his father died. He received a good education, and while still a young man, became editor and publisher of the McVeytown Village Herald.
For seven years previous to the breaking out of the Mexican war, he had served in the Pennsylvania State militia, and in February, 1847, he was commissioned by President Polk as first lieutenant in the Eleventh United States Infantry. With his regiment he marched to the Rio Grande, thence to Vera Cruz, and thence into the interior of Mexico, first meeting the Mexican forces at the National Bridge.He was afterwards in the fight at La Hoya. After Contreras, Cherubusco, Molino del Rey, Chapultepec and Garita San Cosme, the young lieutenant was brevetted captain for his gallant and meritorious conduct. At Molino del Rey, four of his superior officers having fallen in that desiderate engagement, the command of the regiment devolved upon him. General Cadwalader, the brigade commander, referred to his conduct in these words: A reference to the official reports will show that his services were not overlooked either by the late commanding officer of his regiment, Lieut. Graham, or after his death, by his successor, Major Hunter, and that he is also particularly named in high terms in my own report. After his return to his home in Mifflin County, Thomas F. McCoy was for two consecutive terms prothonotary of the county. He then applied himself to legal studies under the preceptorship of William J. Of Lewistown; he was admitted to the bar of the county in 1857. Having offered his services to Governor Curtin at the beginning of the war of the Rebellion, he was appointed in April, 1861, to the position of deputy quartermaster-general of the State of Pennsylvania, and served efficiently and with his characteristic fidelity in this branch of the service until, upon the death of Col. Ziegler, of the One Hundred and Seventh Veteran Volunteers, he was solicited by the officers of that regiment to assume its command.
The stirring scenes of the camp and the field, with all their perils, possessing strong attractions for a spirit like his, he willingly consented, and in August, 1862, was commissioned by the Governor as colonel of that regiment; he assumed command of the regiment, then attached to General Pope's army, at Cedar Mountain, near Culpeper, Va. From this time until the close of the war he was in active service; he took, part in more than twenty engagements, not seldom commanding whole brigades, or detachments of various regiments, and always, to quote the words of General Duryea, as an officer, cool and deliberate under fire, and subordinate and respectful in an eminent degree, commanding the confidence of his companions in arms. At the battle of Fredericksburg, his daring and successful charge won for him the highest commendation from Colonel Root, then brigade commander, in his official report.
At Chancellorsville he held the skirmish line on the right of the army for two days and nights without relief. At Mine Run he was designated, with his regiment, to lead the charge on the enemy's line. At Delmeys Mill, in February, 1865, the One Hundred and Seventh, under his leadership distinguished itself by two valiant and desperate charges. There General Morrow, having been severely wounded, passed the command of the brigade over to Colonel McCoy, with the brigade flag which he had borne through the perils of the fight; the latter received the trust, and through the fight and through the wintry storm of snow and sleet, carried the precious ensign of his brigade to the close of the battle.
'His conduct, " General Morrow said, "was such as to inspire me with a high regard for his courage as a man and skill as an officer; and from all I have heard from General Crawford and others, I know his conduct during the whole engagement, February 6 and 7, to have been gallant and skilful. At Mitchells Station, in the winter of 1863- 64, he performed dangerous outpost duty to the satisfaction of his superior officers. In the great flank movement of the Army of the Potomac in June, 1864, to the James River, the duty of protecting the army from the attacks of the enemy was placed upon Warren's Fifth Corps, and in recognition of Colonel McCoy's gallantry in that movement he received the following commendatory words from Major General Crawford, his division commander: The general commanding the division expresses his satisfaction at the efficient manner in which you, and the officers and men of your command, performed the part assigned you on the 10th instant, in effectually holding your position without support.
In the ten months Siege of Petersburg, from June 18, 1864 to April 2, 1865, many battles were fought by different corps. Three battles were fought by Warren's Corps for the possession of the Weldon Railroad, in one of which Colonel McCoy was surrounded and made prisoner, but in the excitement of the raging battle, at the risk of being shot down, he made a sudden dash for liberty, and reached the Union lines in safety.
For his services in the noted battle of Five Forks, he was brevetted brigadier-general, and had the honor of receiving the thanks of his brigade commander, Gen. Henry Baxter, on the battlefield. All his superior officers, among whom were Gen. Peter Lyle, one of his brigade commanders, and Gen.
Robinson, his division commander, were unanimous in their expressions of praise and admiration of his skill, bravery and personal worth. General Baxter, with whom he served more than two years, said: I wish to express my high appreciation and regard for the moral worth and integrity of purpose that have governed him in every action, and the promptness and ability with which his services have been rendered under all circumstances. But the key to General McCoys absolute devotion to duty, to his valor, his subordination, and all his other fine soldierly qualities, is found in that fidelity to conscience which is at once the foundation and the crowning merit of a character like his.
This moral integrity rendered him as successful in promoting a dignified and manly self restraint among the men under his command in their hours of relaxation, as he was in leading them on the march or in the field. Without cant, but at the same time without reserve, he never failed to acknowledge the protection and guidance of God, nor to show an interest in the moral and religious welfare of his command. He has ever been interested in the enterprises and improvements projected for the advantage of the borough. For over thirty years he has been connected with the Lewistown Water Company, is a director of the same, and has been its secretary for many years. He is a member of Colonel Hulings Post, 176, G.
The item "Civil War CDV of Union Colonel Thomas Franklin McCoy 107the Pa Vols" is in sale since Thursday, July 06, 2017. This item is in the category "Collectibles\Militaria\Civil War (1861-65)\Original Period Items\Photographs". The seller is "civil_war_photos" and is located in Midland, Michigan.This item can be shipped worldwide.