|Flag carried by the 62nd Illinois|
While John returned to his home in Edgar County after his 3 month enlistment, he continued to be involved in the war efforts. According to his biography in the History of Bates County, John was instrumental in organizing Company K of the 62 Infantry. On December 9, 1861, John joined the Illinois 62 in Coles County, Illinois. On April 10, 1962 John Wesley Hannah was mustered in as a2nd lieutenant for 3 years, receiving $105.50 for each month of service. Twelve days later, on April 22, 1862, the company moved to Cairo, Illinois, then to Paducah, Ky., May 7 and to Columbus, Ky., June 7, 1862. The 62nd then moved to Crockett Station, Tennessee, where its task was to guard the tracks of the Mobile and Ohio Railroad. A little research about railroads during the Civil War, and I found that troops and supplies were moved by rail. To keep the enemy from destroying the tracks, they were guarded by troops.
The 62nd stayed in Tennessee through the Fall of 1862. On December 3, the 62nd moved to Jackson Tennessee, and then on to Grand Junction. In December of 1862 the 62nd was involved in the raid by General Grant on Holly Springs. After Holly Springs had been captured on December 13, 1862 General Grant left about 200 men there and returned to Jackson, Tennessee and then on to Grand Junction. A week later on December Van Dorn for the Confederates retook Holly Springs, and paroled 170 men, including the Major and 3 Lieutenants, from the 62nd. Van Dorn also destroyed all the regimental equipment, supplies, and papers. I do not know whether or not John was one of the lieutenants that were captured and paroled.
Harper’s Weekly described the events at Holly Springs as follows:
WE publish …illustrations of HOLLY SPRINGS, Mississippi, lately occupied by our troops. This little town, one of the prettiest and most salubrious in the State of Mississippi, was for a long time occupied by the rebel army of the Southwest. They were driven out of it early last month by General Grant, who pushed through it and on to Oxford. Since then the rebels, or rather some guerrilla band claiming to act on behalf of the rebels, fell upon a couple of companies of infantry whom General Grant had left at Holly Springs, captured and paroled them; so that, to the best of our knowledge, at present Holly Springs is in the hands of the insurgents. It is situate on the line of the Mobile and Ohio railway, and is about twenty miles south of Grand Junction, and twenty-eight miles north of Oxford.
After their defeat at Holly Springs, the 62nd remained at Grand Junction until April 18 when it moved to LaGrange, Tennessee. From January 5 until February 28, 1863, John was on detached service as Field Officer of the Day at Jackson, Tennessee. On June 7, 1863, John was promoted to a 1st Lieutenant. He also was due extra pay as the Company’s Bounty Officer. During the Civil War, money (bounty) was paid to men who enlisted and I assume John was the person who recruited for Company K, Illinois 62 and paid the bounty to them.
To be continued