Lorenzo D. Lamphere was born on January 8, 1843, in Sanford, Monroe or Broome County, New York, the son of Elias (1791-1864) and Sylvia (Smith. b. 1795).
Rhode Island native Elias married Massachusetts-born Sylvia and by 181830 had settled in New York where they resided for many years. Sometime after 1843 the family left New York and moved west, eventually settling in western Michigan. By 1850 Elias had settled the family on a farm in Grand Rapids, Kent County, where Lorenzo attended school with four of his older siblings. By 1860 Lorenzo was working as a farm laborer, still living at home with his family and attending school with is younger sister Altava in Grand Rapids.
Lorenzo stood 5’7’’ with hazel eyes, fair hair and a fair complexion and was an 18-year-old farmer probably living in Grand Rapids when he enlisted in Company A on August 8, 1862, at Grand Rapids. (Company A was made up largely of men from Grand Rapids, and many of whom had served in various local militia units before the war, specifically the Valley City Guards, or VCG, under the command of Captain Samuel Judd, who would also command Company A.)
He joined the Regiment on September 18 at Fairfax Seminary, Virginia, and was admitted to Harewood general hospital in Washington, DC, on April 21, 1863, suffering from valvular heart disease. When he was transferred on May 9 to McClellan hospital in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, “he was very anemic -- and had his heart functionally diseased. The pulsations sometimes were over 100 in a minute while he was in a recumbent position.” On July 6 he was examined by a Dr. W. Wells and the conclusion was that his disease was produced by “exposure and overexertion while in the line of duty.” He was discharged on July 24, 1863, at McClellan hospital for “anemia and general debility,” as well as heart disease.
Lorenzo eventually returned to western Michigan and was living in Grand Rapids when he married English- or Welsh-born Phoebe Ann Williams (1847-1926) on July 1, 1866, in Grand Rapids; they had at least four children: Carrie (b. 1869), Lottie (b. 1874, Mrs. Donavan), Harriet “Hattie” (b. 1879, Mrs. MCCarthy) and Maude.
Lorenzo was working as a teamster and living with his wife and child in Grand Rapids in 1870; by 1880 he was working as a farmer and living with his wife and three daughters in Algoma, Kent County. By 1889 he was residing at the rear south side of Fountain Street near the cemtery working as a teamster, and he was working as a teamster and living at 10 Bruner’s alley in 1890, in Grand Rapids in 1898, and at 27 Holland Street from at least 1906 through 1917.
He was a member of the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association and he received pension no. 480,534, drawing $19 per month in 1913 and $22.50 per month by 1918.
Lorenzo died of myocarditis on December 31, 1920, in Grand Rapids, and was buried in Martin cemetery, Cascade.