Union Light Guard
Ohio, Civil War

compiled by Larry Stevens

References for this Unit


This Organization was perfected in December of 1863, and was intended by Governor Tod as the Body-guard of President Lincoln. The Governor had previously visited Washington, and while there noticed the unguarded situation of the Capitol, the President's house, and the person of President Lincoln, and, knowing the desperate character of the Cabinet at Richmond, he came home somewhat apprehensive for the safety of the public offices, and more especially for the life of the President. He at once commenced raising the Union Light Guard, by recruiting one man in each county of the State. By December 22d, 1863, the company was completed, and on the morning of that day it started for Washington City.
Reaching the capitol, its commanding officer, Captain George A. Bennett, reported to the Secretary of War, and was assigned to duty in and around the city, a strong detail being placed near the President's house, the Treasury Building, War Office, and other public buildings. In this description of duty the Union Light Guard served through 1863-4-5, and part of 1866, when it was sent home to Ohio, paid, and mustered out of the service. Its original strength was one hundred and three men.

From: Ohio in the War. by Whitelaw Reid

From Dyer's Compendium

Union Light Guard. Organized at Columbus, Ohio, December 17, 1863, for duty as body guard to President Lincoln. Left State for Washington, D.C., September 22, 1863. Duty as guard at the White House and at the War Department and other public buildings till September, 1865. Mustered out September 9, 1865.

More about the Civil War in Ohio.

Copyright © 1995 Larry Stevens

Last updated August 7 1999