Heinrich Bohlen

Brigadier General Heinrich (Henry) Bohlen

Biographical Outline

  • Early Life
    • Born in Oct.22, 1810 in the free city of Bremen, Germany
    • Emigrated to US as a youth.
    • As a liquor dealer, became quite wealthy, and a respected citizen of Philadelphia.
  • Pre-Civil War military experience
    • During the Belgian Revolution of 1830, Bohlen served at the Siege of Antwerp in 1832
    • Had gone to the Crimea to serve in the Crimean War, but decided there would be no fighting. He left before the conflict started and returned after it ended.
    • Served as an officer in the Mexican War
  • Civil War Career
    • Organized and recruited the German regiment, the 75th Pennsylvania Volunteers, from the Philadelphia area.
    • Became colonel of the 75th PA on Sept. 30, 1861
    • Regiment wintered near Washington
    • 75th was attached to Blenker's Division in March of 1862, and sent to Frémont's command in western Virginia
    • Promoted to brigadier general April 28, 1862
    • Commanded a brigade under Blenker at Cross Keys and helped to cover the retreat of the army.
    • August 21 (or 22?), 1862- Bohlen's brigade attempted a reconnaissance in front of Stonewall Jackson's (or in a very futile attempt to stop Jackson from crossing there) whole force at Freeman's Ford on the Rappahannock River, about four miles above the village of Remington, Virginia. Bohlen was killed attempting to recross the river with his command. He was buried in Philadelphia.