William Henry Harrison Marlett was born on June 25, 1841, in Ionia, Ionia County, Michigan, the son of Elijah and Sarah (Goodwin, b. 1810).
In 1840 Elijah was living in Ionia, Ionia County. He was married to New York native Sarah, and by 1850 Sarah was living in Ionia where William was attending school with his two sisters. By 1860 William was working as a sawyer and living with his mother, his sister Harriet, and his brother-in-law Daniel Cuff, a blacksmith in North Plains, Ionia County.
William stood 5’10” with brown eyes, dark hair and a dark complexion, and was 19 years old and probably still living in Ionia County when he enlisted in Company D on May 13, 1861. William was wounded in the left arm on May 31, 1862, at Fair Oaks, Virginia, subsequently hospitalized at Judiciary Square in Washington, DC, and by early July he was reported to be “getting along well.” He remained hospitalized until he was discharged on August 19, 1862, at Judiciary Square hospital in Washington, DC, for a gunshot wound to the left arm “rendering the arm paralyzed and useless.”
William returned to western Michigan where he reentered the service in Company K, Twenty-first Michigan infantry on February 1, 1864. at Grand Rapids for 3 years, and was mustered on February 4, crediting North Plains. He joined the Regiment at Chattanooga, Tennessee, probably in February or March and while the regiment remained at Chattanooga engaged in a variety of engineering duties, building bridges, storehouses, etc., until June 11, 1864. The regiment was also involved in building hospitals near Lookout Mountain, until late September when it was relieved of engineering duties.
The regiment participated in the March to the Sea November 15-December 10, 1864, and the siege of Savannah December 10-21 and in the Campaign in the Carolinas from January to April of 1865. It was also involved in the battle of Bentonville, North Carolina March 19-21, in the occupation of Goldsboro and Raleigh, North Carolina and the surrender of Johnston’s army. It subsequently marched to Washington April 29-May17 and participate d in the Grand Review on May 24. William was reported a Corporal on May 11, 1865, and transferred as a Corporal to Company H, Fourteenth Michigan infantry on June 9, 1865, probably at Washington. The Fourteenth was moved to Louisville, Kentucky on June 12. William was mustered out with that regiment on July 18, 1865, at Louisville.
After the war William returned to Michigan, probably to Ionia County. He was married to New York native Eliza D. (b. 1843), and they had at least two children: Albert W. (b. 1864) and Benjamin W. (b. 1872).
By 1870 William was working as a farmer and living with his wife and one son in Hubbardston, Ionia County. By 1880 he was working as a laborer and living with hsi wife and two sons in Hubbardston; also living with them was his mother Sarah. He eventually settled in St. Louis, Gratiot County, where he worked as a blacksmith, a trade he followed for many years. By 1883 he had returned to Hubbardston.
He was still living in Hubbardton in 1888, 1890, in December of 1891 when he became a member of the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association, and in 1894. By 1907 he was residing in St. Louis where he lived until he was admitted to the Michigan Soldiers’ Home (no. 5396) on January 11, 1909.
In 1862 he applied for and received a pension (no. 62,040, dated January of 1867), drawing $4.00 per month for a wounded left arm in 1883, and by 1909 it had increased to $12.00 then to $15.00 in 1911 and in 1912 to $24.00.
William lived at the Home until he died a widower of myocarditis, at 2:55 p.m. on Wednesday May 16, 1917, in the Home hospital. The funeral was held in the Home chapel at 2:00 p.m. on Friday, and he was buried in the Home cemetery: section 7 row 10 grave 11.