Julesde Schenofsky


Jules (Charles Antoine)de SCHENOFSKY 


U.S. Army



























Biography :

Fils du Colonel Jean-Népomucène de Schenofsky. Sous-lieutenant au 3eme de Ligne, Lieutenant en juillet 1861 dans l'infanterie de Ligne de l'armée belge après avoir fait l'école militaire. Il démissionne le 27 février 1862 pour partir
aux Etats-Unis fin 1862. Il est nommé Capitaine d'Etat Major et aide de camp du Général Carl Schurtz au 11 juin 1862 et y sert toute la guerre.

"Il se distingua au passage du Rappahannock et dans des raids de reconnaissance" ce qui lui valut l'honneur de figurer dans les journaux illustrés du pays.

   By the middle of April Hooker was ready to move. His plan was excellent. Lee occupied the heights on the south side of the Rappahannock skirting the river to the right and left of Fredericksburg in skillfully fortified positions. Hooker set out to turn them by crossing the upper Rappahannock so as to enable him to gain Lee's rear. A cavalry expedition under General Stoneman, intended to turn Lee's left flank land to all upon his communications with Richmond, miscarried, but this failure, although disagreeable, did not disturb Hooker's general scheme of campaign. On the morning of April 27th, the Eleventh, Twelfth, and Fifth Corps started for Kelly's Ford, 27 miles above Fredericksburg, which they reached on the afternoon of the 28th. I remember those two days well. The army was in superb condition and animated by the highest spirits. Officers and men seemed to feel instinctively that they were engaged in an offensive movement promising great results. There was no end to the singing and merry laughter relieving the fatigue of the march. A pontoon bridge was thrown across the river, and our corps crossed before midnight. The Seventeenth Pennsylvania calvary regiment was sent ahead to clear the country immediately opposite. Something singular happened to me that night. While it was still light, one of General Howard's staff officers pointed out to me a strip of timber at some distance on the other side of the river, at the outer edge of which I was to stay until morning. Between that timber and the river there was a large tract of level, open ground, meadow or heath, perhaps three-quarters of a mile across, which I was to traverse. When I set out at the head of my division to pass the pontoon bridge, General Howard gave me a cavalryman as a guide who "knew the country perfectly." Meanwhile a dense fog had arisen over the open ground in which we could distinguish nothing a few paces ahead. With the guide who "knew the country perfectly" at my side, I marched on and on for a full hour without reaching my belt of timber, which I ought to have reached in much less than half that time. I asked my guide whether he knew where we were. He stammered that he did not. Almost at the same moment I heard a well-known voice say something emphatic a short distance ahead of me. It was Colonel Hecker, whose regiment, the Eighty-second Illinois, was, as I knew, at the tail of my column. A short investigation revealed the fact that any whole division was standing on the open ground in a large circle, and that we had been marching round and round in the fog for a considerable time. We struck matches, examined our compasses, and then easily found our way to my belt of timber, which was close by. There I halted again to ascertain my location, and seeing the glimmer of a light through the window of what I found to be a little house near at hand, I dismounted and went in, accompanied by Brigadier General Schimmelfennig, to look at our maps. We had hardly entered the lighted room when one of my orderlies rushed in, excitedly exclaiming: "There is rebel cavalry all around. They have already taken Captain Schenofsky prisoner." Captain Schenofsky, a Belgian officer, whom the government had assigned to my staff, was one of my aides whom I had ordered to look for the Pennsylvania cavalry regiment supposed to be ahead of us. The orderly had seen him "run right into a bunch of rebels," who promptly laid hold of him. As fast as we could we hurried back to our column, which we found in a curious condition. The men, having marched all day and several hours of the night, had dropped down where they stood, overwhelmed by fatigue. With the greatest effort we tried to arouse some of them to form something like out-posts, and as this was a slow and rather unsuccessful proceeding, I and my officers, as well as the brigade staffs, stood guard ourselves, revolver in hand, until day broke. Then it turned out that the Pennsylvania cavalry regiment which u-as to clear the ground and to cover our front, had gone astray we could not ascertain where-and that rebel scouting parties had been hovering closely around us. Captain Schenofsky rejoined me several months later, having spent the intermediate time in Libby Prison at Richmond until he was liberated by an exchange of prisoners.
Source : Reminiscences, by Carl Schurz. McClure and Company, 1907

I first caught sight of the tall form, and had an opportunity to grasp the hand, of, Captain Schoenofski, a , of the staff of Major General Schurz. The gallant Captain wore a
triste but defiant air, - it was his first captivity - and frequently ejaculated his favorite parbleu! With true Belgic vehemence, at the treatment to which prisoners are subjected in
the South. "In France,"said he, I have served, prisoners are treated with great courtesy; but here - augh! no gentlemen - parbleu!"

Captain Schoenofski had been surprised, surrounded and captured soon after the crossing of our troops at KellyFord. When taken before General Stuart he was offered a commission in the rebel service and a position on the staff of that general, which was, of course, declined.
Source : OUR CAPTURED CORRESPONDENT. His Adventures in the Rebel Confederacy. The Experiences of Mr. J.H. Vosburg, One of Our Special Army Correspondents;.The New York Herald; May 9, 1863


Capitaine des U.S. Veteran Volunteers entre la fin de la guerre et avril 1866, il est nommé Major puis Lieutenant Colonel pour "his gallant conduct upon the battlefield" et fait partie des troupes d'occupation dans le Sud. 

Engagé comme sous-lieutenant dans le 7th Infantry de l'armée régulière au 11 mai 1866, il est envoyé dans l'Ouest lutter contre les Indiens. Est versé au 5ème de Cavalerie le 30 avril 1867 et est nommé Lieutenant le 12 septembre 1868

Il démissionne en 1870 et rentre en Belgique/France pour participer à la guerre franco-prussienne. On perd sa trace en 1876.  

Sources :
Francis Balace : Officiers Belges de l'armée Fédérale américaine
Antoine de Smet : voyageurs Belges aux Etats-Unis