Chapter 1: the organization of the 121st New York Volunteers
- 20th Senatorial District -- State and County Committees appointed by Governor -- townships in which companies were raised -- camp Schuyler -- muster of regiment
When on July 2, 1862, President Lincoln issued the call for 300,000 men, the war for the Union had reached such proportions, and the military situation was so critical, that the patriotic enthusiasm that had characterized the organization of the volunteer army in 1861 no longer availed to procure the troops necessary to fill the quota required from the State, and a systematic and earnest effort was necessary. This effort developed in two directions: first, to fill up the older regiments with recruits; and second, to organize new regiments, one in each Senatorial District. Under the latter plan the 121st was recruited in the 20th Senatorial District comprising the two counties of Herkimer and Otsego. To supervise the organization of the regiment, Governor Morgan appointed the Hon. Richard Franchot, and also a committee from the two counties which should appoint County Committees to prosecute the work in the several townships. The Senatorial Committee consisted of the following named persons: R. Ethridge, Wm. Gates, Ezra Graves, Amos H. Prescott, L. L. Lowell, H. H. Pomeroy, Thomas Richardson and Volney Owen, County Judge. It has not been possible to find the names of the County Committees, but under their direction patriotic meetings were held in the several townships, and recruiting officers appointed for the separate companies.  Headquarters were established at Herkimer, and the enlistment was pushed so energetically that by the middle of August a full regiment was assured, and the recruiting officers were ordered to report at headquarters with their men. The townships from which the several companies were recruited were as follows:
Company A. Manheim, Little Falls, Salisbury and Dunbar. Company B. Winfield, Plainfield, Litchfield, German Flats, Columbia and Stark. Company C. Fairfield, Russia, Herkimer and Newport. Company D. Frankfort, Warren, Manheim, Schuyler, Columbia and Salisbury. Company E. Middlefield, Milford, Cherry Valley, Hartwick, Springfield, Otego and Roseboom. Company F. Edminston, Exeter, Unadilla, Otego and Maryland. Company G. Cherry Valley, Roseboom, Decatur, Middlefield, Westford, Worcester and Herkimer. Company H. Little Falls, Richfield, Salisbury and Otego. Company I. Milford, Laurens, Morris, Worcester, Pittsfield, Hartwick and German Flats. Company K. Laurens, New Lisbon, Oneonta, Burlington, Otego, Butternuts, Pittsfield and Plainfield.A camp for the regiment was selected across the Mohawk River from Herkimer on German Flats, and named Camp Schuyler. The contract for this camp-site reads as follows:
There is nothing on record about the physical characteristics or structural features of this camp to suggest beauty or interest, and the stay of the 121st in it was so short after their muster in, that nothing worth remembering by the men seems to have occurred there. By a partial agreement among themselves the company offices were to be apportioned according to the number each had enlisted; and this agreement was so closely adhered to, that there was little dissatisfaction when the order of the Governor was received, completing the organization of the Regiment. 
The regiment was mustered into service under the above named officers, and for a week occupied Camp Schuyler, numbering 30 officers and 946 enlisted men. Besides these there had been enlisted 117 men who on August 20th were discharged by the Surgeon's certificate for disability.