Monument At Antietam National Battlefield, Dedicated In 1997
The lineage of the Irish Brigade has been officially assigned to “Fighting 69th” of the New York National Guard, which is the only currently active military unit that formed part of it.
On September 17, 1862, the Union and Confederate armies met at Sharpsburg Maryland, in the Battle of Antietam. Command confusion led to the disjointed use of the II Corps, and instead of supporting renewed assaults on the Confederate left at the West Woods, the Irish Brigade found itself facing the center of the Confederate line, entrenched in an old sunken farm road.
The brigade again acted conspicuously, assaulting the road, referred to after the battle as “Bloody Lane”. Although unsuccessful, the brigade’s attack gave supporting troops enough time to flank and break the Confederate position, at the cost of 60% casualties for the Irish Brigade.