Origins of the Zouave | Duryee's Zouaves | Gallery | Roll of Honor | Additional Resources
I doubt whether it had an equal, and certainly no superior among all the regiments of the Army of the Potomac.
- General George Sykes, speaking of the 5th New York Infantry

Duryee's Zouaves: The 5th New York Volunteer Infantry

Above, a sketch by Thur de Thulstrup of the 5th New York Infantry drilling atop Federal Hill, Baltimore, in 1862.

The 5th New York Volunteer Infantry, "Duryée's Zouaves," was one of the most renowned fighting regiments of the American Civil War. Their colorful Zouave uniform, precise maneuvers, effectiveness in combat and steady bearing under fire, won them universal respect and recognition. Many observers considered the 5th New York to be the best-drilled volunteer unit in the Federal Army. In addition to a casualty list that totalled 211 dead out of 1,508 men borne on the rolls, nine of its soldiers attained the rank of general - five the full rank, and four by brevet.

Here we'll trace the origins of the French Zouaves, describes the "Zouave craze" that swept the United States on the eve of the Civil War, and recount the valorous record of the 5th New York, the most famous of dozens of American Zouave units that served in our nation's bloodiest conflict.

The Additional Resources page has links to related Internet resources, as well as a selected bibliography for additional reading.

Image above, a corporal in the 5th New York Infantry at Federal Hill, Baltimore, 1862. Photo courtesy of Richard Tibbals  

The Roll of Honor is a complete regimental roster, an alphabetical list of men who served in the 5th New York Volunteer Infantry during the period of the unit's service, 1861-1863. We maintain a detailed database with dates of birth and death, wounds, hospitalization, and promotion, as well as biographical information on these soldiers. If you think you are related to one of these men, please contact us, and we will check the database for further information.

This site also offers more than 100 vivid illustrations of the men, life, times and history of the Zouaves in the pages of the Gallery. We have organized The Gallery into four sections that highlight key themes: Origins of the Zouaves, The Zouave Craze, and Duryee's Zouaves.

If you would like to know when we add new information to the site or in the event of news we think you will find of interest, please e-mail address here

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