Henry W. McRoberts was born around 1835.
Shortly after the war commenced Henry became a member of the Lansing company called the “Williams’ Rifles,” whose members would serve as the nucleus of Company G, and indeed he was 26 years old and probably living in Clinton County when he enlisted in Company G on May 10, 1861.
Henry died of disease on March 22, 1862, in the general hospital (probably Chesapeake hospital) at Fortress Monroe, Virginia.
William Bryce, also of Company G, wrote home on March 26 that “We lost a man [McRoberts] since we came here. He is the first man that died out of our comp[any] since we came to Washington. He has [had] been delicate ever since he came here. He felt better coming on the boat than he had since he [had] been here. On the 20[th] he was taken sick and died the 23[rd] yesterday. He was buried in military style. I am well at present.”
Frank Siverd, also of Company G wrote that McRoberts
was taken sick while in cantonment at Grand Rapids, from which he never recovered. He has never been able to do severe duty, but such was his patriotism that he refused an honorable discharge which was offered to him. When we had orders to embark on this expedition, he was again urged to remain, but he was determined to cast his lot with the company, and forfeited his life to his patriotism. The exposure we were subjected to after our arrival at the Fort, was too much for his fragile constitution, and he succumbed. He was sick but one day. Everything was done for him that science or attention could do. He was buried with military honors in a beautiful life oak grove on the beach, about two miles from the fortress. His ashes will there remain in peace,undisturbed, we hope, by the vandal grave robbers of Manassas. The beautiful, wide spreading branches of the live oak will wave over his resting place, while the waves of the Chesapeake almost lave his feet. Rev. Mr. May, Chaplain of the Michigan 2d, kindly volunteered to perform the funeral services, and while he discoursed most eloquently a practical sermon to the boys, I busied myself in rudely sketching the name, company and Regiment of our late lamented friend upon a shingle, which we nailed to an ancient live oak near the head of his grave. He is the first member of the company we have lost since we left Michigan, and his loss is deeply mourned.
McRoberts was originally buried at Fort Monroe, but when that cemetery was discontinued around 1898 his remains were transferred to Hampton National Cemetery: section F, row 7, grave no. 31.
No pension seems to be available.