Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Fiddler's Green: Daniel Madden

Daniel Madden was born in England, and immigrated to the United States prior to his enlistment in the 2nd Dragoons on December 9, 1850. He served as a private in Company E, 2nd Dragoons at Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania until March, 1852, when he transferred to Company H, 1st Dragoons. He served with this regiment in New Mexico until December 9, 1855, where he participated in expeditions against the Navajo and Apache Indians.

Madden rejoined the 2nd Dragoons in May 1856 at Fort Riley, Kansas. He served as a private, corporal, sergeant, and eventually first sergeant of Company B, 2nd Dragoons from May 1st, 1856 to April 28, 1861. He served with his company in Kansas until September 1857, when the regiment was ordered to Utah. He participated in the winter march of the Utah expedition, and served with the regiment in Utah until 1861.

Madden marched east with the regiment at the outbreak of the war, and was transferred to the newly forming 6th US Cavalry as the Regimental Commissary Sergeant. He served in this capacity until November 1st, when he received an appointment as a second lieutenant, 6th US Cavalry. He accepted the appointment on the 3rd, and was discharged the next day. He was assigned to Company M on November 5, 1861. He commanded the company in December, as Captain Hays was still recruiting the rest of the company in Pittsburgh.

Lieutenant Madden served with his company during the first half of 1862, moving with them to the Peninsula. He was commended by his regimental and brigade commanders for bravery during the battle of Williamsburg, and participated in actions at Slatersville, New Kent Court House, New Bridge, Mechanicsville, and battle of Hanover Court House. He also served as an aide de camp to General McClellan during the Seven Days’ Battles. Madden participated in actions at Falls Church, Charlestown, Hillsboro, Philomont, Uniontown, Upperville, Barber’s Crossroads, Amissville, and Sulphur Springs with the regiment through the spring of 1863.

He was absent with leave sick in Washington during September 1862 before returning to service with his company until January 1863. He commanded Company E in February, 1863, as Captain David McMurtry Gregg had taken command of the 8th Pennsylvania Cavalry and First Lieutenant Hutchins was absent. He was absent for a brief leave in March before commanding Company D in April, still as a second lieutenant. Of the officers assigned to the company, Captain Abert was serving on General Banks’ staff, and First Lieutenant Brown was absent sick in Philadelphia. He returned to Company M the following month.

Lieutenant Madden fought with his company at Beverly Ford during the Battle of Brandy Station on June 9, 1863, where he was wounded. He was later brevetted first lieutenant effective the same date for gallant and meritorious services during the battle. He was absent recovering from his wounds until September, when he returned to service as a mustering and disbursement officer in Boston, Massachusetts until May 1864.
Madden was promoted to first lieutenant on May 4, 1864, and returned to service with the regiment. He participated in the Army of the Potomac’s 1864 campaign, serving at the battle of Trevillian Station, the action at Darby’s Mill, and the battle of Deep Bottom. When the 6th Cavalry was assigned to the Army of the Shenandoah, he was assigned as the army’s Assistant Provost Marshall, and served in that position from November 1864 to February 1865.

He was detached from the regiment in March 1865, and served for the remainder of the war on the staff of Major General Casey in Washington DC. He was brevetted captain on April 9, 1865, “for gallant and meritorious services in the campaign terminating with the surrender of the insurgent army under Gen. R.E. Lee.”

Following the war, he accompanied the regiment to the frontier where he served in Texas and other posts in the southwest until he retired. He was promoted to captain and the command of Company C, 6th Cavalry on May 10, 1867. Madden was promoted to Major, 7th Cavalry on May 21, 1886.

Major Madden retired at his own request on October 5, 1887, with over thirty years of service. I have not been able to determine when he died or where he was buried.

I've determined that one needn't have been famous or a general to be eligible for a Fiddler's Green, merely a member of one of the regular cavalry regiments. It is a place, after all, where the shades of ALL dead cavalrymen go. Volunteers are included also, but other people write about them. It is much more difficult to find information on the lesser known troopers, though.


Anonymous said...

Great post!

Anonymous said...

Regretfully, it looks like a helo from 4/6 Cav went down yesterday with 10 of our troops from Schofield Barracks here. RIP.

scott s.

Don said...


I'm sorry to hear it. I saw the news story, but they didn't disclose the unit. Our thoughts and prayers go out to their families.

Don said...


Glad you enjoyed it, and thanks for the plug on the Tompkins post. I put a lot of time into that one.

Anonymous said...

Captain Madden is mentioned in the memoirs of my great grandfather William Allen (W.A.) Baggett, who lived in Montague County, Texas during the period that Captain Madden was assigned to Ft. Richardson. W.A. was a very young but extremely capable scout\tracker
who served as a civilian volunteer for Madden, almost always accompanying a detachment led by Lt. G. E. Overton (but also in at least once instance by Madden) to recover stolen horses and Ft. Sill reservation (Commanche and Apache) fugitives who raided into Texas. Baggett also worked on occaison for Ft. Sill Brevet Major General Commandant Grierson (who he mistakenly referred to as Colonel Grayson). Baggett never served in the military, but was occasionally paid in cash by Grierson for his services, or more frequently was allowed to keep a number of capured Indian ponies in return for his services. He also hunted and provided buffalo, deer, antelope, bear and turkey meat for the garrisons at Ft. Richardson, Buffalo Springs and Ft. Sill. Baggetts's 143-page memoirs (covering mostly the period of 1852to about 1870 are on file at the Western History Collection of the University librairies, University of Oklahoma, in Norman, OK. The University's Western History collection does not check out materials. they must be used on site.

Michael Marcotte
Norman, OK