A new book (Chicago's Irish Legion) about an Irish regiment that was formed in Chicago and served in the Western Theater (primarily with W.T. Sherman) raises the question of what other Irish regiments served in the Union's Western Armies. The Irish Brigade and Corcoran's Irish Legion are famous Irish units that received a lot of attention during the war and are remembered in Civil War history today. Both of these units contained several regiments and both fought in the East. Why are Irish units in the West not as well kown? I might suggest that their smaller size may contribute to their being overlooked. Perhaps the lesser attention by the press during the war may contribute? Were the Irish more integrated across many regiments in the West than were the Irish in the East? Ed Gleeson has written of a Confederate unit, The Rebel Sons of Erin, which fought in the West. Were there other such units fighting in the Confederate Western Armies? Finally, what constitutes an "Irish Regiment."
____________________ "While we live we will cherish, protect and defend her."
There was the 5th Missouri that was part of the Missouri State Guard. That was made famous in the song entitled Kelly's Irish Brigade even though it was just a regiment. It was composed of mainly Irish immigrants. The MSG always overinflated the size of their units, where brigade-sized units were called divisions.