Mexican War veteran and Lieutenant Colonel Richards McMichael commanded the 53rd Pennsylvania Infantry on the Maryland Campaign of 1862 while Colonel Brooke had the Brigade. He led them again at Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, and in the Wilderness, after which (9 May 1864), a soldier later remembered,

Hancock’s only significant casualty was Lieutenant Colonel Richards McMichael of the 53rd Pennsylvania. Well fortified with drink, he skinned his nose on a tree, complained loudly about being the only man wounded in his regiment, then unsteadily led the way several hundred yards ahead of his troops. Somehow he survived until darkness, when he attracted a crowd by beating his horse to punish it for sniffing conscripts. Such was the drama of our officers who freely indulged in that dark beverage of hell, a witness declared.

He was relieved and discharged for disability but returned to duty as Lieutenant Colonel of the 194th Pennsylvania from June to November 1864.

His carte-de-visite (CDV) was offered for sale by the Excelsior Brigade.

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