California Militia and National Guard Unit Histories
Chico Light Infantry
 
 
Organizational Data
 
Military Unit Designation: Chico Light Infantry, 5th Brigade, California Militia
Date of Organization: 28 November 1863
Date of Disbanding: 28 July 1866
Inclusive dates of units papers at State Archives: 1863-1866
Geographical Location or Locations: Chico, Butte County
 
 
Unit papers on file at the California State Archives

a. Organization Papers 2 documents (1863)
b. Bonds 1 document (1864)
c. Correspondence (Unclassified letters) 5 documents (1864)
d. Election Returns 2 documents (1864-1865)
e. Exempt Certificates, Applications for none
f. Muster Rolls, Monthly returns 6 documents (1864-1865)
g. Oaths Qualifications 8 documents (1863-1866)
h. Orders none
i. Receipts, invoices 5 documents (1864-1866)
j. Requisitions 1 document (1864)
k. Resignations 1 document (1866)
l. Target Practice Reports none
m. Other none


Commanding Officers

Joseph Eddy, Captain: Elected 28 November 1863, commissioned 10 December 1863, reelected 7 December 1864 and 2 December 1865.
Edward Hallet, First Lieutenant: Elected 28 November 1863, commissioned 10 December 1863, reelected 7 December 1864
J. H. Frost, First Lieutenant: Elected 2 December 1865.
 
Official History:

At a meeting of the citizens of Chico, Butte County, a volunteer military company known as the Chico Light Infantry was organized. Officers elected were Joseph Eddy, Captain and Edward Hallet, First Lieutenant.

The requisition for arms was approved December 21, 1863, however, the equipment was not received until late in 1864. According to the Law, 43 active members was the minimum required before a unit was officially recognized, and as the Chico Light Infantry had only twenty men on the Muster Roll/ at organization, the delay of receiving the arms was apparent. A Bond of $1,500 was filed to cover the cost of the arms and one for $1,770 for clothing. When the clothing arrived it proved a disappointment as the shipment was incomplete with no hats and only 43 pairs of pants while 73 coats had been issued.

The Chico Light Infantry was organized soon after the horrible murders and depredations caused by the Indians in Butte and Tehama counties, and the residents felt it was necessary to have military protection.
 
However, the corps was mustered out of service July 28, 1866, under the Military Law of that year which was the result of the recommendation by Brigadier-General George S. Evans that it was impossible for companies in the interior mining sections where the population was transient, to maintain their organizations under the stringent requirements of the law.[1]
 
 
Footnotes:

1. Adjutant General Report, 1865-1867, page 7.
This history was completed in 1940 by the Works Progress Administration (WPA) in conjunction with the California National Guard and the California State Library.
 

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Updated 8 February 2016