Martin Van Buren Hapeman was born on February 8, 1840, in Rushville, Yates County (or possibly Walden), New York, the son of Phillip Hale (b. 1800) and Henrietta Bodine (b. 1815).
Both New York natives, Martin’s parents were probably married in New York and they resided there for some years. By 1850 Martin was attending school with his younger sister Angeline and living on the family farm in Waterloo, Seneca County, New York. In any case Martin was probably living in Wauwatosa, Milwaukee County, Wisconsin (a suburb of Milwaukee) in 1860, possibly with his mother who was listed as a widow.
Martin was 21 years old, stood 5’7,” with dark complexion, brown eyes and dark hair and had possibly just arrived in Muskegon County, Michigan, where he was probably working as a logger, from Wisconsin when he enlisted in Company H on May 13, 1861. He was sick in the Division hospital from March of 1863 through July, and on September 18, 1863, he was admitted to the Second Division hospital in Alexandria, Virginia, for treatment of secondary syphilis. (That same year his mother was reportedly still living in Wauwatosa.)
Martin remained hospitalized until he was transferred to Sickles’ Barracks (probably Camp Sickles), Virginia, on May 23, 1864, and was mustered out on June 20, 1864, at Detroit.
It is not known if Martin ever returned to Michigan.
He worked for many years on the Northwestern railroad out of Chicago.
Martin married Welsh-born Augusta Henrietta Emily Webber (1854-1951) on March 14, 1872, in Toronto, Ontario, Canada and they had at least four children: Vaughn Webber (b. 1875), Harriet Lee (b. 1873), Ruby E. (b. 1885) and Vivia Lorraine (b. 1887).
By 1875 they had settled in Chicago, Cook County, Illinois where they resided for some years. According to one family source Martin “and his wife’s brother, Harry Webber, invested in a furniture store in Chicago. Unfortunately, due to embezzlement by another partner, a depression, or a serious illness of horses, which had them, dying in the Streets,”this particular business venture didn’t work out and Martin then “returned to his old job on the Northwestern railroad. Harry, who had also been working on the trains, began a career as a theatrical producer and it was he who put Martin’s wife ‘Millie’ on the stage.” The family moved from Chicago to Wisconsin in about 1876, eventually settling in Baraboo. By 1885 and 1887 they were still living in Baraboo, but around 1888 or 1892 Martin and his family moved to Necodah, Juneau County, Wisconsin where he was living in 1895. In fact he probably lived in Necodah until his death in 1912.
In 1889 Martin was living in Wisconsin when he applied for and received a pension (no. 961116).
Martin died on December 23, 1912 in Necodah and was initially buried in Bayview cemetery in Necedah but his remains were removed to Rose Hill cemetery in Chicago after his wife died.
Augusta was living in Illinois in February of 1913 when she applied for and received a widow’s pension (n. 958014). She was probably living in Park Ridge, Cook County, when she died in 1949 (or 1951) and was buried in Rose Hill cemetery.