Stephen E. Longyear was born in 1833 in Ulster County, New York, probably the son of New York native Jerusha (b. 1789).
Stephen left New York, probably with his family, and eventually settled in Michigan. By 1850 he may have been the same “Steven” Longyear living with his older brother New York native Isaac (b. 1829) and their mother Jerusha in Alaidon, Ingham County. By 1860 Stephen was a merchant and probably also a lawyer, living and/or working with one Ephraim (possibly an older brother) and his family in Lansing’s Second Ward. Soon after the war broke out Stephen became a member of the Lansing company called the “Williams’ Rifles,” whose members would serve as the nucleus of Company G.
He stood 5’10” with brown eyes, dark hair and a light complexion and was 28 years old and probably still living in Lansing when he enlisted in Company G on May 13, 1861. Stephen was Quartermaster Sergeant and detached to the Quartermaster’s Department on November 21, 1861. Frank Siverd of Company G wrote on November 27, that several packages had arrived in camp from home, among which “there was one bottle of pure current [sic] wine, with Stanley Briggs' trade mark on it, marked for Steve Longyear, our efficient Quartermaster Sergeant.”
By the first of July 1862 Stephen was suffering from diarrhea, and on July 5 was among a group of sick and wounded soldiers who arrived at Chesapeake hospital at Fortress Monroe aboard the S. R. Spaulding. He was soon afterwards transferred to a hospital in New York City, and on July 17 he was discharged from Bellevue Hospital in New York City. Stephen was discharged from the army on August 13, 1862, at Fort Wood, New York, for paralysis of the right arm and hand.
He served subsequently as a First Lieutenant in Company A, Fifteenth Veteran’s Reserve Corps and as Regimental Quartermaster of the Fifth Veterans Reserve Corps.
After he was discharged from the army Stephen returned to Michigan, probably to his home in Lansing.
In 1865 he applied for and received a pension (no. 274706).
He was married to New York native and widow Mrs. Frances E. Dart Fuller (1829-1921), on February 3, 1864, and they had at least one child.
He was working as a mail agent and living with his wife in Lansing’s Second Ward in 1870.
He was a member of the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association.
Stephen died, possibly in Lansing on February 7, 1877 and was buried in Mt. Hope cemetery: 4-93-A, in Lansing.
In 1880 his widow and her granddaughter Maybell (b. 1871) were living with the Alfred Dart family in Lansing. In 1883 his widow applied for and received a pension (no. 208419), drawing $15 per month. Frances eventually married the Rev. George B. Stocking in 1908 and after he died in 1910 she sought a renewal of her widow’s pension, which was apparently granted by and by 1910 was drawing $15 per month when she was living at 315 Bartlett Street in Lansing.