Saturday, October 31, 2009

George O. Miller

George O. Miller was born in 1842.

George was 19 years old and probably living with his family in Kent County, Michigan, when he enlisted with his parents’ consent in Company A on May 13, 1861. George W. Miller, also of Company A and a tentmate in the winter of 1861-62, described George O. Miller “as different from me as day is from dark. He is a pretty wild fellow.” George O. was detached as a teamster from August of 1862 through April of 1863, and supposedly deserted on May 19, 1863, at Washington, DC, but in fact he was admitted to Armory Square hospital in Washington, DC, on May 2, 1863, possibly suffering from tonsillitis.

He was again absent sick, presumably in Washington, from October until he was transferred to the Veterans’ Reserve Corps on March 31, 1864. (The VRC was made up of men who while ambulatory were generally incapable of performing regular military tasks due to having suffered debilitating wounds and/or diseases and were assigned to garrison the many supply depots, draft rendezvous, camps, forts, prisons, etc. scattered throughout the northern cities, thus freeing able-bodied men for regular military duty.)

There is no further record.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Cyrus Miller

Cyrus Miller was born in 1816 in Alexander, Genesee County, New York.

Cyrus was married to New York native New York native Phoebe Ann (b. 1814) probably in New York, and they had at least four children: John (b. 1840), Roxana (b. 1842), Martha (b. 1844) and Rufus (*b. 1846). Sometime before 1840 they settled in Pennsylvania and between 1842 and 1846 moved on to Michigan. By 1850 Cyrus and his family were living on a farm in Ravenna, Ottawa County, and by 1860 he and his wife were residing in Tallmadge, Ottawa County. Also living with Cyrus was his newly married daughter Rozanna and her husband Oscar Robinson as well as a blacksmith named John Richberg, who wold also join the Third Michigan infantry. Two houses away lived Orlando Rowe and he too would join the Third Michigan.

Cyrus stood 5’10” with hazel eyes, brown hair and a fair complexion and was a 45-year-old farmer living with his wife Phoebe and John Richberg (who would enlist in Company B) in Tallmadge when he enlisted in Company I on November 16, 1861, at Grand Rapids for 3 years, and was mustered on December 23 at Detroit. Sometime during the first two weeks of March, 1862, Cyrus suffered a fall which injured his “left hip joint” making it impossible for him to fully rotate the leg. He was subsequently sent to the Patent Office hospital in Washington, DC, where he was discharged on June 24, 1862, for “chronic rheumatism (sciatica) of several months’ standing” which was aggravated by his accident.

Cyrus returned to Michigan. By 1870 he was working as a farm laborer and living with his wife in Lamont, Tallmadge Township, Ottawa County. In 1880 he was working as a farmer and living with his wife Phoebe Ann in Lamont. He was still living in Lamont, Ottawa County in 1888 and 1890.

He was probably married a second time to one Electa C.

In 1886 he applied for and received a pension (no. 360424).

Cyrus died on January 22, 1894, and was possibly buried in Lamont, Ottawa County.

In January of 1895 his widow was living in Michigan, when she applied for and received a pension (no. 443583).

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Charles Aldrille Miller

Charles Aldrille Miller was born on December 13, 1839, in Plainfield, Kent County, Michigan, the son of George (1799-1884) and Ann or Anna (Akley or Akerley, 1797-1877).

Both New York natives his parents were married in 1819 in Delaware County, New York (where George had been born). The family moved west and settled in Kent County in 1837. Charles was the fourteenth of sixteen children born to George and Anna. By 1860 Charles was living with his family in Plainfield, Kent County, settling on section 23, where his father eventually owned a substantial amount of property.

Charles was 21 years old and still living in Plainfield when he enlisted as Musician in Company F on May 13, 1861. He was absent sick from July of 1862 through November, and dropped from the company rolls on December 30, 1862. However, he was returned to the Regiment on March 25, 1863, at Camp Sickles, Virginia, and in April of 1864 he was reported to be guarding “contrabands” (runaway slaves) at Newport News, Virginia. Charles was a witness at the marriage of Laura Brewer and Ambrose Bell (his future brother-in-law), also formerly of Company F and who was also working with former slaves in the Norfolk, Virginia area. The wedding took place in Norfolk in March of 1863. Charles claimed later that he had been wounded in the right shin at the siege of Yorktown. He was mustered out on June 20, 1864, at Detroit.

After he left the army Charles eventually returned to Michigan and married New York native Annette Florilla Bell (1847-1921), on July 12, 1867, in Newaygo County, and they had at least eleven children: Winnie Grant (Mrs. Robert Blair, 1868-1951), Inez Opal (Mrs. Somers, 1885-1971), Leon (b. 1873), Cecil (b. 1877), Charnette (1870-1850), Clare (b. 1881), Guy Hugo (1883-1967), Earl Peter (1888-1963), Claude C. (1879-1969), Charles A. (1894-1932) and Lucy Maude (1886-1911). Annette was also the sister of Emer and Ambrose Bell, both formerly of Company F.

By 1870 Charles was working as a farmer and living with his wife and two children in Plainfield, Kent County; also living with them were two farm hands, the young teenage Darling brothers. (That same year his parents were also living on a large farm in Plainfield; in fact his father owned some $8500 worth of real estate.) In 1875 Charles and his family moved to Missaukee County, purchasing 160 acres in section 24 of West Branch township where he resided for many years. According to one source,

The land Mr. Miller took up in Missaukee county was at that time all wild and unimproved, but he has succeeded in reducing about forty acres of it to a fine cultivable condition and is reaping abundant harvests of hay and grain. He has a good dwelling, substantial barn and other out-buildings and has in many ways brought the place up to a high standard of cultivation. Besides his field crops, he also gives some attention to live stock and fruit, having a good orchard, which, though not as large as some others in the locality, is productive in degree.

By 1880 Charles was working as a and living with his wife and children in West Branch or Star City, Missaukee County; several doors away lived Ambrose Bell. Charles was living in Star city, Missaukee County in 1888 and 1890 (next door lived Ambrose Bell) and he and Annette were living in Star City in 1904. Indeed it is quite likely Charles lived in or near Star City for most of his life. He served as supervisor of West branch township and as justice of the peace as well as a school officer.

According to one source he had a “well earned reputation as a musician.” In fact, it was noted that “served in the army in the capcity of a musician and since his return to peaceful pursuits he has maintained his interest in the art. He is the possessor of valuable instruments and frequently delights his friends with his renditions.”

In 1864 Charles applied for and received a pension (no. 858329).

He was a member of the Caldwell GAR Post in Lake City, the Star City Grange, the Star City Church and Patrons of Husbandry. He reportedly attended the 50th Reunion at Gettysburg in the summer of 1913.

Charles died of cancer of the stomach on November 1, 1913, probably at his home in Missaukee County and was buried in Star City cemetery.

In 1914 his widow applied for and received a pension (no. 772858). By 1920 Annette was still living in West Branch (as the head of the household), Missaukee County; also living with her was her young son Charles E., her daughter Inez Somers and Inez’s daughter Juliette. Next door lived her son Leon and his family.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Charles Miller

Charles Miller was born on April 29, 1843, in Sterlingshire, Scotland, the son of Charles.

Charles immigrated to America with his family and may have settled in Muskegon, Muskegon County, Michigan in 1859. In any case, he was probably living in Grand Rapids, Kent County by the time the war broke out.

(In 1860 there was one Charles Miller, a gas house laborer, b. 1806 in Scotland, living with his two young children Mary (b. 1849) and Andrew (b. 1850), both of whom were born in Scotland, living with and/or working for a 26-year-old miller named Walter Nelthorpe, in Grand Rapids’ First Ward. In fact, John Nelthorpe, also from Grand Rapids would also enlist in Company B. This same Charles Miller had apparently remarried to Scottish-born Jane, and was working as a gas house laborer and living in Grand Rapids’ First Ward in 1870; he owned some $1600 worth of real estate.)

Charles (younger) stood 5’6” with gray eyes, black hair and a dark complexion and was 18 years old and probably working as a blacksmith in Grand Rapids when he enlisted with his parent’s consent in Company B on May 13, 1861. He was wounded slightly in the back and left arm on May 31, 1862, at Fair Oaks, Virginia, but soon recovered and was apparently wounded a second time, suffering a broken left arm during the battle of Fredericksburg, Virginia, probably on December 13, 1862. Charles was sent to a Washington hospital soon after the battle and remained hospitalized until he was discharged on March 18, 1863, at Detroit for a wound to the left arm.

Following his discharge Charles probably returned to Grand Rapids where he reentered the service on December 24, 1863, for 3 years in Company D, First Michigan Engineers and Mechanics, crediting Grand Rapids, and was mustered on January 4.

Charles probably joined the regiment somewhere in the vicinity of Chattanooga, Tennesse where it was on engineering duty as well as at Bridgeport, Stevenson and on line of the Nashville & Chattanooga Railroad, Nashville & Northwestern Railroad, Tennessee & Alabama Railroad and Memphis & Charleston Railroad building block houses, etc., till May, 1864. The Regiment was on duty on the Atlantic & Western Railroad building block houses, etc., till September when it was ordered to Atlanta, Ga., September 25. Old members were mustered out October 31, 1864.

It remained on duty at Atlanta September 28 to November 15; and participated in the March to the sea destroying railroad track, bridges and repairing and making roads November 15-December 10; in the siege of Savannah December 10-21, in the Carolina Campaign January to April, 1865; in the advance on Raleigh April 10-14, and occupation of Raleigh April 14; in the surrender of Johnston and his army. The regiment then marched to Washington, D. C., via Richmond, Va., April 29-May 20, and was in the Grand Review on May 24. Ordered to Louisville, Ky., June 6; then to Nashville, Tenn. Duty at Nashville July 1 to September 22. He was mustered out as an Artificer on September 22, 1865, at Nashville, Tennessee. The regiment was disacharged at Jackson, Jackson County, Michigan on October 1.

After the war Charles returned to western Michigan and settled in Muskegon.

Charles was married on June 4, 1867, to Lucy Granger (1844-1929); they had at least four children: W. R., Mrs. William Wasserman, Mrs. Lucy Black and Mrs. Mary Nichols.

With the exception of a brief stay in Menominee County in the 1880s, he resided in Muskegon the rest of his life. By 1880 he was working as a saw mill engineer and living with his wife and children in Muskegon. Indeed, he worked for many years as an engineer, although among his other jobs over the years was as a machinist at Alexander Rogers’ machine shop and foreman for Ryerson, Hills & company. For some time in 1890s he was the unofficial caretaker of the Indian cemetery on Morris Street near the downtown area.

The Muskegon Chronicle of April 28, 1928, reported that many years earlier, Charles had given

important testimony in connection with the litigation between Martin Ryerson and William Badeaux, over the title to this historical tract, located on Morris Street, near the center of the business district of the city. This suit was won in the circuit court and the [Michigan] supreme court by Mr. Ryerson, a son of Martin Ryerson, pioneer Muskegon lumberman and friend of the Ottawa Indians. Mr. Ryerson deeded the property to the city and he also provided money to improve it and an endowment fund to maintain it so that the spirit of the Ottawas buried there might not be disturbed. Only recently the work of beautifying this cemetery was completed. [During the trial Miller testified that at the time he was] acquainted with the Indian cemetery having passed through it previous to 1865. I do not know of my own knowledge of any bodies being buried there. My wife had a cousin buried there and her aunt used to put flowers on the boy's grave. That was in 1865. Her name was Granger and she was not an Indian but Irish. I have had something to do either actively or in superintending the keeping up of the fences and that cemetery is in good order and condition. In 1894, I think, we had to renew the fences and again along about 1896 the fence was renewed. I never got any pay or asked any. I did it simply as a matter of accommodation to my old employer Ryerson, Hills and company.”

Charles was an active member of the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association. During the annual reunion of the Old Third infantry association, on December 14, 1900, Miller was reported to have said that as a result of his wartime experience, and particularly that which he had during the battle of Fredericksburg and afterwards, some 38 years before, and which had left him wounded, “he learned to remember only the pleasant side of the war.” And in 1922, during the annual Old Third reunion, Miller, one of the few surviving members of the Regiment, was named vice-president of the association for the ensuing year. “‘I have missed,’” he told a reporter for the Grand Rapids Press, “‘just two reunions in 50 years,’ he said in his bluff Scotch way. ‘Twice I came down from the upper peninsula down across the lake to get here’.”

He was a member of the First Michigan Engineers and Mechanics Association, and attended the 1910 and 1920 reunions. He also belonged to the Grand Army of the Republic Kearny Post No. 7 in Muskegon. In 1863 he applied for and received a pension (no. 13407).

Charles died of cardiac hypertrophy at home at 132 Houston Street in Muskegon on April 27, 1928. “Mr. Miller,” observed the Muskegon Chronicle, “knew Muskegon history as few other men, over a period of 60 years. He saw the town enter its boom as a lumbering city. He saw the boats disappear with the acres of logs from the lake, witnessed the passing of the mills, and then he saw Muskegon come back as a manufacturing city.” Charles was buried in Evergreen cemetery, Muskegon: 7-10-1.

His widow applied for a pension (no. 1616656) but the certificate was never granted.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Andrew N. Miller

Andrew N. Miller, alias “Bernard Henry” and “Edward S. Taylor,” was born in 1838 in England, in Oakland County, Michigan, or in New York.

Andrew stood 5’8” with gray eyes, auburn hair and a florid complexion and was 23 years old and probably working as bookbinder and living in Ingham County (probably Lansing) when he enlisted in Company G on May 10, 1861. (Company G, formerly the “Williams’ Rifles,” was made up predominantly of men from the Lansing area.) According to Frank Siverd of Company G, Andrew was sick with “inflammation of the lungs” at Cantonment Anderson in Grand Rapids shortly before the regiment left Michigan in June of 1861.

Andrew has the dubious unique distinction of being one of only two men in the Regiment who enlisted in the Regiment twice (the other was Charles Spang), and was unique in the Regiment for having enlisted in two additional Regiments, one of them twice. He allegedly deserted while on the road to Bull Run in late July of 1861, although according to Frank Siverd of Company G, Andrew, who had been “missing since the first battle . . . was taken sick and started for Washington and was last seen near the city, since which time he has not been heard from.”

A week later, however, Siverd wrote home to Lansing that the friends of Miller and George Southerland, also of Company G and also missing, “should not be alarmed, for, although they could not be found, yet they are known to have reached Washington.” Siverd added that in his opinion “they have taken care of themselves.”

In fact, Miller apparently joined Company E, Sixty-seventh or Sixty-eighth Ohio infantry at Wauseon, Ohio, on November 15, 1861, under the name of “Edward S. Taylor.” He was appointed Sixth Corporal on December 15, 1861, and was a Corporal and absent sick in the hospital at Camp Chase, Ohio from February 9, 1862, through June. He was subsequently reported as AWOL through December. Andrew apparently returned to the Regiment and on January 1, 1863, was reduced to the ranks from Fifth Corporal. He was reported with the Regiment through April and again AWOL from May 1, 1863, and reported as having deserted on May 2, 1863, near Perkins plantation, Louisiana, while en route from Milliken’s Bend, Louisiana to Grand Gulf, Mississippi.

Apparently, when he was reported AWOL from the Sixty-eighth in July of 1862, Andrew had in fact returned to Michigan and enlisted (a second time) under the name of “Andrew N. Miller” in Company G, Third Michigan infantry on August 8, 1862, at Detroit.

He probably never joined the Third Michigan, however, and was discharged for consumption on December 21, 1862, at Cliffburne hospital in Washington, DC. Miller then returned to Michigan.

According to a letter dated October 21, 1863, from Captain E. Robinson of the provost marshal guard in Detroit to Colonel Hill the acting assistant provost marshal general for the state of Michigan, Miller had recently been arrested. “I have the honor,” Robinson wrote

to report to you the case of Andrew N. Miller who was arrested and sent to these Barracks as a deserter from Co. G 3d Mich Infantry By Prov. Marshal Barry 3d Cong. Dist. [on] October 16, 1863. At the time of his arrest he was recruiting for a position in the 11th Mich Cavalry, in the village of Mason, Ingham County Mich. His discharge papers at that time were about six miles from the place where he was arrested, but was not permitted to go and get them. At the time Miller was brought to this Barracks he was represented to be a desperate fellow and would get away if he could. Consequently I confined him in the guard house where he has remained ever since. I find upon the records at the Adjt. Genls office today -- which note you will find enclosed -- that Miller was discharged at the very time and place that he stated. You will also find enclosed the descriptive list sent by the Provost Marshal to these Barracks with Miller, together with the remarks made by the Provost Marshall. He (the Prov M) has allowed for his arrest $30.00 -- as you will see by the enclosed descriptive list.

It is not known what was the outcome of his arrest.

However, Andrew was apparently a substitute for one Harvey Miller, and on April 12, 1865, enlisted in Company G, Fifty-sixth Pennsylvania infantry under the name of “Bernard Henry,” at Williamsport (probably Pennsylvania) for one year. He was described as 26 years old, 5’6” with gray eyes, brown hair and a dark complexion, and by trade a laborer. He was promoted to hospital steward on June 13, and was last reported as having enlisted in the Pennsylvania infantry in violation of the 50th (old 22nd) Article of War, “prohibiting a soldier from enlisting in one organization, and then deserting to enlist in another.”

There is no further record.

In fact, Andrew survived the war.

He was married to Elizabeth.

In 1877 he applied for and received (?) a pension (no. 521723).

His widow was living in Washington, DC, in 1893 (?) when she applied for and received a pension (no. 390017).

Monday, October 26, 2009

Americus W. Miller

Americus W. Miller was born in 1845 in Steuben County, New York, the son of Lydia (b. 1818).

New York native Lydia and her husband were probably married ub New York, sometime before 1849 when their oldest child was born. By 1850 Lydia, probably a widow, was living in Campbell, Steuben County, and Americus was attending school with several of his siblings in Campbell. (Near by lived the family of John Robbins, who owned some $1000 worth of real estate.) By 1860 Lydia had remarried to a man named Robbins and was quite probably a widow again when she was listed as a farmer (she owned some $1000 worth of real estate); in any case Americus was working as a farmer and living with his mother, younger brother Norman B. and two Robbin’s children in Campbell.

Following the fall of Fort Sumter in Charleston harbor, Americus, who had left New York and settled in Michigan, joined the Lansing militia company called the “Williams’ Rifles,” whose members would serve as the nucleus of Company G.

He stood 5’7” with blue eyes, light hair and a light complexion and was 16 years old and probably working as a farmer in Ingham County when he enlisted with the consent of the Justice of the Peace in Company G on May 10, 1861. According to Frank Siverd of Company G, Americus was present for duty with the Regiment and actively engaged in the various actions, particularly the retreat on July 21 at Bull Run, Virginia. By the end of the year, however, Miller was sick with typhoid fever in a hospital in Alexandria, Virginia, but he soon recovered the eventually rejoined the Regiment.

Americus was shot in the left thigh on August 29, 1862, at Second Bull Run, and, according to Homer Thayer of Company G, Miller was wounded and reported to be missing after that action. In fact, as of October 6 he was convalescing in College hospital in Georgetown, DC, preparing to go home on sick furlough. He was hospitalized from November through February of 1863, and discharged on March 22, 1863, at Camp Pitcher, Virginia, for a gunshot wound of the left thigh. According to the surgeon’s report, “The ball entered on the inner side of the thigh near the middle, passing upwards and outwards making its exit on the posterior surface three inches above the level of entrance, bruising the sciatic nerve and impeding locomotion.”

It is not known if Americus ever returned to Michigan.

He was married to Indiana native Carrie (b. 1851), and they had at least one child: Maud (b. 1871).

In 1868 he applied for and received a pension (no. 12765).

By 1870 Americus was working as a farmer and living with his wife in Fort Dodge, Wahkonsa Township, Webster County, Iowa.

By 1880 Carrie was listed as having remarried one C. H. Richmond and living in Lincoln, Calhoun County, Iowa; also living with them was her daughter Maud Miller.

In August of 1921 Carrie Richmond was listed as Americus’ widow, when she applied for a pension (no. 1178378), but it appears no certificate was ever granted.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Mortimer Millard

Mortimer Millard was born on May 17, 1838, in Niagara County, New York or in Canada.

Mortimer’s parents were both born in England, and he had probably just moved from Somerset, Niagara County, New York, to Michigan when the war broke out.

In any case, he was 24 years and probably working as a farmer in Grand Rapids or Barry County when he enlisted in Company K on May 13, 1861. He was on detached service as of August 31, 1861, at Four Mile Run, Virginia, but by October he was sick in the Regimental hospital. Mortimer returned to duty and was wounded by a shell fragment in the neck on May 6, 1864, at the Wilderness, Virginia, and on May 12 was admitted from the field to Mt. Pleasant hospital, Washington, DC, with a shell wound in the anterior and right posterior of the neck and a bruise on the deltoid region of the arm. He was transferred on May 30 to a hospital in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and was mustered out of service on June 20, 1864, in Detroit.

Following his discharge Mortimer settled in East St. Louis, Illinois, where he married Missouri native Virginia Lount (d. 1913) on September 12, 1864, and they had at least two children: a daughter Olli (b. 1862), Frank (b. 1865), Chloe (b. 1867), Edward (b. 1870) and William (b. 1879). (When he was admitted to the hospital in May of 1864 he listed his nearest relative as one S. N. Lount of Illinoistown, Illinois.)

By 1880 he was working as a lawyer and living with his wife and children in East St. Louis. Indeed, he probably lived out the remainder of his life in East St. Louis where he worked as a lawyer for many years. He was residing at 130 N. Main Street in 1903, probably in 1906 when he was granted a pension (no. 1,074,169) drawing $8.00 per month, and in 1913. In 1920 he was still living in East St. Louis, with his daughter Chloe,

He was drawing $50.00 per month on his pension in 1923.

Mortimer died on March 7. 1923, East St. Louis, St. Clair County, Illinois, where he was presumably buried.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Joseph Milbach

Joseph Milbach, alias “Joseph P. McMullen,” was born in 1838.

Joseph stood 5’11” with hazel eyes, light hair and a light complexion and was 24 years and probably working as a carpenter in Wayne County, Michigan, when he enlisted in Company B on December 7, 1861, at Grand Rapids for 3 years, crediting Grand Rapids’ Third Ward, and was mustered on December 23 at Detroit. He was reported on “extra duty” in the hospital department from September of 1862 through December, and was serving at Third Brigade headquarters from March of 1863 through July. He was in the commissary department of the First Division in August and again in November.

Joseph reenlisted on December 23, 1863, at Brandy Station, Virginia, and was subsequently absent on veteran’s furlough. Curiously he was alleged to have deserted on January 8, 1864 at Grand Rapids, at just the time when he would have arrived home on veteran’s furlough; in any event, the charge was removed in 1889.

He returned to duty, probably in February of 1864, and was transferred to Company E, Fifth Michigan infantry upon consolidation of the Third and Fifth Michigan Regiments on June 10, 1864. He was reported on detached service in July, but from August through January of 1865 he was absent sick, and was discharged as a Sergeant on May 31, 1865, near Washington, DC, on account of disability.

It is not known if Joseph ever returned to Michigan.

He was married to Mary A.

By 1889 he was probably living in Illinois when he applied for and received a pension (no. 546575).

Joseph probably died in 1895 possibly in Illinois.

In December of 1895 his widow applied for and received a pension (no. 451095).

Friday, October 23, 2009

Levi Edward Metcalf

Levi Edward Metcalf was born in 1828, probably in New York.

Levi left New York and moved west, eventually settling in Michigan. By 1860 he was probably working as a farmer along with his older brother (?) Lewis in Venice, Shiawassee County.

Levi stood 5’7” with gray eyes, brown hair and a ruddy complexion and was 33 years old and working as a mason possibly in Shiawassee County, Michigan, when he enlisted in Company F on May 13, 1861. He was present for duty in July and August, absent on picket duty in September and October of 1861, and present for duty from November of 1861 through February of 1862, and again from May through July. Although he was supposed to have been killed in action on August 29, 1862, at the battle of Second Bull Run, in fact he was only wounded by a gunshot to the left leg. He claimed in 1883 that he laid on the field for seven days before he was removed and that he had been taken prisoner, held briefly and then paroled.

Levis was subsequently admitted to either Lincoln or Judiciary Square hospital in Washington, DC, on September 6 and transferred on November 4 to Stewart’s Plantation hospital in Baltimore, Maryland. Although he was first listed as having deserted from the hospital in Baltimore on January 1, 1863, in fact he was transferred to L Battery, Fifth United States Light Artillery on December 25, 1862. The battery was organized in October of 1862 and on duty in Baltimore until May of 1863 when it was assigned to duty in the Shenandoah valley. It participated in the battles of Winchester June 13-15, and shortly afterwards returned to Washington. The regiment was on duty at Camp Barry near Washington from July of 1863 until July of 1864. Levi served with the battery served until June of 1864 when he was mustered out at Camp Barry.

After his discharge Levi eventually settled in Iowa, and was probably living in Franklin County when he married his first wife, Margaret Braden (d. 1867) on January 11, 1865.

He soon moved to Wright County, Iowa, where he probably lived out the remainder of his life.

After his first wife died in June of 1867, Levi married his second wife, Azubah E. Lord (d. 1906, she was divorced from her first husband in 1865), on December 1, 1867, in Wall Lake, Wright County, Iowa, and they had at least four children: Myron H. (b. 1868), Olivia E.(b. 1869), Carrie S. (b. 1875) and Lillian Julia (b. 1879).

By 1880 Levi was working as a mason and living in Pleasant, Wright County, Iowa. Indeed, Levi probably lived out the remainder of his life in Wright County, working for many years as a mason.

In 1880 he applied for and received a pension (no. 266,245).

He died of pneumonia on March 2, 1903, at his home in Belmond, Wright County, Iowa and was presumably buried there.

In April of 1903 Azubah was still living in Iowa where she applied for and received a pension (no. 558434).

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Nehemiah D. Merritt

Nehemiah D. Merritt was born 1841 in Venice, Cayuga County, New York.

Nehemiah left New York and headed west, eventually settling in Michigan by 1860 when he was a farm laborer working for and/or living with one Levi Bross, a wealthy farmer in Otisco, Ionia County.

Nehemiah stood 5’5” with blue eyes, light hair and a light complexion and was 20 years old and still residing in Ionia County when he enlisted in Company E on May 13, 1861. (Company E was composed in large part by men from Clinton and Ingham counties, as well as parts of Ionia County.) He was reported missing in action, presumably taken prisoner, on June 30, 1862, at White Oak Swamp. Although he was returned to the Regiment at Harrison’s Landing, Virginia, possibly on August 8, in fact he was reported absent sick until he was discharged on February 4, 1863, at Camp Convalescent near Alexandria, Virginia, suffering from chronic rheumatic pericarditis.

He probably returned to Ionia County where he was working as a carpenter in Easton when he reentered the service in Company C, First Michigan Engineers and Mechanics on December 21, 1863, at Grand Rapids for 3 years, crediting Easton, and was mustered on January 5, 1864. He joined the Regiment on April 20 at Chattanooga, Tennessee, where it was on engineering duty maintaining and repairing rail lines and building blockhouses.

Nehemiah reportedly died of consumption on August 25, 1864, at Ringgold, Georgia. He was originally buried in Ringgold, but eventually reburied in the Chattanooga National Cemetery: section K, grave no. 586 (see also no. 10351).

(Curiously, there was one “Matthew” or “Nathan” Merritt, age 26, who also enlisted in Company C, First Michigan Engineers and Mechanics, on the same date and was mustered on the same day, crediting Easton, was also a carpenter and had the same physical characteristics but was sick in Alexandria, Virginia on April 22, 1865 and was mustered out as an Artificer on September 22, 1865 at Nashville, Tennessee.)

No pension seems to be available.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Dwight F. Merrill

Dwight F. Merrill was born on March 14, 1841, in New York, the son of Abram (or Hiram) and Almira (Giles).

Massachussetts native Abram or Hiram married Vermont-born Almira. Dwight came to Michigan, probably from New York sometime before 1864.

He was 22 years old and probably working as a farmer living in Orangeville, Barry County when he enlisted in Company E on January 2, 1864, at Grand Rapids for 3 years, crediting Orangeville, was mustered on January 5. He joined the Regiment on March 10, and was hospitalized (reasons unknown) on June 2.

He was still absent sick in the hospital when he was transferred to Company E, Fifth Michigan infantry upon consolidation of the Third and Fifth Michigan Regiments on June 10, 1864. He remained absent sick until he was transferred to the Veterans’ Reserve Corps on May 22, 1865, near Washington, DC. Dwight was discharged on September 28, 1865, from the Thirty-ninth company, Second Battalion, VRC, at Washington.

After the war Dwight returned to western Michigan, eventually settling in Newaygo County where he worked as a farmer for many years. He was living in Troy or Home, Newaygo County in 1890.

Dwight was married, probably to one Eula Lee in Detroit on March 14, 1893.

In any case, he was married a second time to Canadian native Elizabeth (b. 1866,); she had immigrated to the U.S. in 1869.

By 1920 Dwight and his second wife were living in Wilcox, Newaygo County.

In 1879 Dwight applied for and received a pension (no. 248569).

He was possibly living in White Cloud, Newaygo County where he died of chronic bronchitis on June 8, 1921, and was buried in Whipple cemetery, Newaygo County.

The week after Dwight died Elizabeth, who was still living in Michigan, applied for and received a pension (no. 910,572).

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Oscar D. Merrick

Oscar D. Merrick was born in 1839, probably in New York State.

In 1860 there was an Oscar Merrick residing in Farmersville, Cattaraugus County. Oscar eventually left New York and came to Michigan sometime before the war broke out.

He was 22 years old and possibly living in Grand Rapids when he enlisted in Company A on May 13, 1861. (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.)

Along with about three dozen other men of the Old Third, Oscar was left sick in Grand Rapids on June 13, 1861, when the Regiment departed for Washington, DC. Although nearly all of those men left behind eventually rejoined the regiment later that month near Chain Bridge, just outside of Washington, DC, Oscar was officially listed as “never heard from since” the regiment left Michigan. Consequently he was charged with desertion as of August 31, 1861.

Many years after the war Oscar claimed that soon after the the Regiment left Michigan he returned to New York, and was discharged from the service sometime between August 1 and 10, 1863, in Troy, New York. (The Third Michigan had been detached from the Army of the Potomac in late August and early September of 1863 and sent first to New York City and then to Troy, New York, to provide security for the upcoming military draft in that state.) However, there is no record of such a discharge.

Curiously, there is the record for one Oscar D. Merrick, age 28, who enlisted as a private on February 12, 1864, in Troy, New York, in Unassigned, Seventh New York Heavy Artillery, and was mustered the same day. There is no further record.

It is not known if Oscar ever returned to Michigan after he left the army and by April of 1872 Oscar was residing near Niles in Cayuga County, New York. In 1879 he was living at Owosso in Cayuga County, and in 1880 he was working as a servant on the Maria Dennis farm and listed as a widower in Niles, Cayuga County. By 1892 he was living at 1 East Genesee Street in Auburn, Cayuga County.

Investigation into his pension application (no. 1,094,041) of 1892 showed that “the charge of desertion has not been removed,” and his application was rejected in July of 1896 on the grounds that he could produce no honorable discharge.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Jackson Russell Meeks

Jackson Russell Meeks was born in 1836 in New York, probably the son of Michael (b. 1802) and Mary (b. 1805).

Commonly known as “Jack,” his parents were both New York natives and presumably married in New York sometime before 1833, and where they resided for some years. Between 1835 and 1840 the family moved to Pennsylvania and by 1850 Michael was working as a farmer in McKean County, Pennsylvania. “Jack” (who was probably listed as “Russell”) was living with his family and attending school in 1850 in McKean. The family was still living in Mckean in 1860 and in 1864. By the time the war broke out Jack had probably just recently moved to western Michigan from Eldred, McKean County, Pennsylvania. (In 1864 he listed Eldred as his official residence.).

Jack stood 5’8” with hazel eyes, brown hair and a dark complexion and was a 25-year-old lumberman probably living in Crockery, Ottawa County when he enlisted as a Musician in Company I on May 13, 1861.

In early 1862 Jack found himself in a rather difficult situation. Captain Stephen Lowing of Company I wrote home on January 5, 1862, asking his brother-in-law Franklin Bosworth in Georgetown, Ottawa County if Clarinda Bement, the sister of Harley Bement, also of Company I, “is in trouble by Jack Meeks” and is “she likely to become a town charge? If so, I will hold on to him. He wants to get transferred to some other Regiment, for the purpose of not coming home.” It is not known what if anything ever became of the “issue.”

Jack was described as a fun-loving sort. On May 3, Lowing wrote home that “Last night a part of our company was dancing cotillion at the sound of a violin played by Jack Meeks, while shells were laying on our position. . . .” By mid-summer Meeks was on detached service, probably with the Brigade Quartermaster’s department., and was driving an ambulance from July of 1862 through March of 1863.

In May of 1878, Jack claimed that “on or about the 1st day of July, 1863 [probably 1862], near Falmouth Va, while driving a medical supply wagon, having been detached for aid duty, while passing through the company streets of the 37th [New York], the horses that were driving the wagon became frightened, and in attempting to hold them the off horse became restive and kicked me on the right knee fracturing the cap of the knee.” Meeks claimed he “was sitting on front of said wagon at the time [and] that he was treated for said injury by Dr. [Walter] Morrison who was regimental surgeon, and that he was unable thereafter to perform military duty.” In fact, Simon Brennan, former lieutenant of Company I. and present when Meeks was injured, testified on May 28, 1877, that Meeks’ claim was basically correct, and so did Dr. Walter Morrison in a statement given the same day.

He was treated in the Regimental hospital and by November was in the First Division hospital, and was still absent sick in December of 1862. He was admitted to the Regimental hospital on February 28, 1863, with “wound of knee,” was returned to duty March 18, 1863, and probably readmitted for the same wound (noted in the records as an “incised wound”) to the Regimental hospital and then sent to the Division hospital sometime in April of 1863. He returned to duty on May 11, 1863, and in June and July was in the ambulance corps. By January of 1864 he was a teamster in the Brigade wagon train, and admitted to the Regimental hospital on February 25, 1864, with intermittent fever.

In 1864 he listed his nearest relative as Michael Meeks, living at Alleghana (?) Bridge, Pennsylvania.

Jack returned to duty March 6, but on May 11 was admitted to Emory hospital in Washington, DC, suffering from chronic rheumatism. He was mustered out on June 20, 1864, at Detroit.

It is not known if Jack returned to Michigan. (His parents were living in Ravenna, Muskegon County in 1870.) Following his release from the army Jack settled in Steuben County, New York, and by February of 1876 he was residing in Rathbonville, Steuben County. However, he had returned to western Michigan by 1877, when he applied for and received a pension (no. 150,195), and was probably living in Ravenna, Muskegon County where for for some years he worked as a lumberman. (His father Michael was living in Ravenna in 1880.)

In 1883 and mid-1888, he was living in Henrietta, Clay County, Texas, when he sought an increase of his pension (he was drawing $4.00 per month in September of 1889). Curiously, in February of 1893 he was dropped for “failure to claim,” and apparently his pension went “unclaimed three years.”

It is quite possible that he died sometime between 1889 and 1890, probably in Texas.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Harvey H. Mead

Harvey H. Mead was born in 1833 in New York, the son of Enoch (b. 1806) and Hannah (b. 1807).

Harvey’s parents were both New York natives and were presumably married in New York sometime before 1831. Between 1840 and 1838 the family left New York and settled in Michigan and by 1850 Harvey was working as a farmer and living with his family in Bedford, Calhoun County. By 1860 Harvey may have been the same “Henry” Mead working as a teacher and living with Stuart Rosegrant, a blacksmith in Wright, Ottawa County. (Enoch was still living in Bedford.)

Harvey was married sometime before the war, and had one child: Anson (b. 1857).

He was 28 years old and possibly living in Ottawa County (or Kent County) when he enlisted in Company K on May 13, 1861. (He may have been related to Charles Mead, also from Ottawa County, who enlisted in Company E in 1864.)

Harvey was a Corporal when he was shot in the chest and killed in action August 29, 1862, at Second Bull Run, and was presumably buried among the unknown soldiers removed from the battlefield and reinterred in Arlington National Cemetery.

In January of 1865 a minor child dependent’s application was made and granted in the name of Enoch Mead as guardian (no. 6850). By 1870 Enoch and Hannah were living in Bedford, Calhoun County; also living with them was Anson Mead.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Charles E. Mead

Charles E. Mead was born in 1846 in New York, possibly the son of Daniel (b. 1815) and Mary (b. 1837).

New York natives Daniel and Mary were married sometime before 1843, possibly in New York although by that year they were reported to be living in Michigan. Indeed, by 1850 Charles was living with his family in Polkton, Ottawa County, where his father Daniel worked as a laborer. (Next door lived one Cornelius Mead and his family, probably Daniel’s brother.)

Charles stood 5’4” with brown eyes, light hair and a light complexion, and was 18 years old and probably a farmer living in either Muskegon County or in Polkton, Ottawa County when he enlisted in Company E on February 8, 1864, at Grand Rapids for 3 years, crediting Muskegon, and was mustered the same day. (He was possibly related to Henry Mead of Ottawa County who enlisted in Company K in 1861.)

Charles joined the Regiment on February 10, and was reported sick when he was transferred to Company E, Fifth Michigan infantry upon consolidation of the Third and Fifth Michigan Regiments on June 10, 1864. Charles remained absent sick, possibly in Michigan, until he entered Harper hospital in Detroit, on October 25, 1864, and was discharged from Harper hospital on May 13 or 15, 1865.

After he was discharged from the army Charles returned to western Michigan.

He married Eliza J. Jones (1849-1920), and they had at least four children: Lillian (1869-1870), William F. (b. 1871), Charles H. (b. 1874) and Freddie E. (b. 1877).

By 1870 Charles was farming in Polkton, and in 1880 he was working as a shoemaker and living with his wife and children in Coopersville; also living with them was his father-in-law, Mr. Jones. By 1888 he was living in Coopersville, Ottawa County, and in 1891 he was residing in Allegan, Allegan County, where he possibly died.

In 1876 Charles applied for and received a pension (no. 491564).

Charles died on September 22, 1891, presumably at his home in Allegan.

He was buried in Coopersville cemetery, Polkton Township.

In 1891 his widow applied for and received a pension (no. 377467).

Friday, October 16, 2009

Calvin P. McTaggert

Calvin P. Calvin P. McTaggert was born in 1836.

By 1859-60 Calvin was working as a carpenter and boarding on the southside of Lyon between Division and Bostwick Streets in Grand Rapids, Kent County.

He was 25 years old and probably still working as a carpenter and living in Grand Rapids when he enlisted as Sixth Corporal in Company A on May 13, 1861. (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.)

Calvin was a Sergeant when he was wounded at Fair Oaks, Virginia, on May 31, 1862, resulting in the amputation of his left arm by Dr. D. W. Bliss on the field on June 1. In early August he was listed as a patient in City Hospital in New York City, and probably returned to Michigan on sick furlough because by the first week of October he was in Detroit at the Michigan Exchange Hotel.

Calvin eventually returned to duty and was reported as Second Lieutenant of Company F on October 7, 1862, commissioned the same day. In fact, Calvin was commanding the ambulance corps, probably near Falmouth, Virginia, from December 6 or 18, 1862, and was on detached service as chief of ambulance corps, Third Brigade, First Division, Third Corps from January of 1863 through April. Although still on detached service, he was transferred to Company H on May 1 and commissioned a First Lieutenant, replacing Lieutenant Thomas Waters.

(McTaggert’s transferals to Company F and later to Company H were probably on paper only and designed, it is assumed, to allow for his subsequent promotions. In fact, he probably never rejoined the Third Michigan following the loss of his arm but instead served in a managerial capacity in the Brigade Quartermaster department commanding the various ambulance units until the end of 1863 when he was transferred to the Veterans Reserve Corps.)

From his office in the ambulance corps at the Third Brigade hospital no. 2 at Belle Plain, Virginia, Calvin wrote to the mother of Third Michigan soldier Chester Adams, who was killed at Fair Oaks, sometime probably in 1863.

Mrs. Adams,

I received four letters from the Postmaster of Grand Rapids, asking for information regarding your son. I knew one corporal Chester Adams, he belonged to Co. B, 3rd Regiment Michigan V. He enlisted at Grand Rapids, Mich. & was wounded at the Battle of Fair Oaks, Va., on the 31st day of May, 1862 by a musket ball in the thigh, and was removed to New York City & afterwards died. I do not know whether he had any property or not, as I did not know him previous to his enlistment but I will find out & let you know., He has about four months pay due him. I have forgot the day of the month that he died. I was in the same hospital with him. You can find out the exact day of his death by applying by letter to the surgeon in charge of City Hospital, New York & then I will see the captain of his company & have him send you his descriptive list, stating the time he was last paid & then on the surgeon’s certificate of his death you can obtain his pay. You had better put it in the hands of some lawyer to collect it for you. I will try and ascertain all about his affairs previous to his enlistment & let you know. If you wish ask me any questions in regard to him for further information. Calvin P. McTaggert, Lieut. & Amb. Off. 3rd Brigade 1st Division 3rd Corps Army of the Potomac

From May of 1863 through July Calvin was absent as acting chief of the ambulance corps, but on the night of July 23 he was seriously injured when he was thrown from his horse, resulting in a second amputation of the left arm, also by Dr. Bliss at Armory Square hospital in Washington.

By early August Calvin had returned to his home in Grand Rapids on sick leave. McTaggert, wrote the Grand Rapids Eagle on August 10, “who recently belonged to the Third Michigan Infantry . . . and who is now a member of the ambulance corps in the army of the Potomac, has just returned to his home in this city, on a furlough, to visit his relatives and friends. All loyal men will greet him with a warm welcome and a hearty shake of his single hand.” At noon on August 13, McTaggert left Grand Rapids “for the field of his duties again.”

By early September of 1863 Calvin was again in need of medical attention for his arm. On September 11, Dr. D. W. Bliss, former Regimental surgeon for the Third Michigan and presently in charge of Armory Square general hospital, sent the following communication regarding McTaggert to Dr. Dewitt, in charge of Invalid officers in Washington. “I would respectfully request permission,” Bliss wrote, “ to take personal supervision of [McTaggert’s] case . . . for the purpose of performing an operation his case requires. I make this request at the instance of this officer, and agreeable to my own wishes, as he is a member of the Regiment to which I was formerly attached, and one of my patrons before entering the public service. The medical director informs me that upon your granting this request he will order Lt. McTaggert to be admitted to this hospital for treatment.’ The request was approved.

In December of 1863 Calvin resigned to accept appointment in the Veterans’ Reserve Corps, and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the VRC as of November 26, 1863, and was given a furlough in January of 1864. The Eagle reported on January 6, 1864, McTaggert, “of the 3rd who lost an arm in the battle of Fair Oaks, has just returned on a short visit to his friends in this city. The Lieutenant has been appointed Inspector General for Indiana, in the Invalid Corps, and he will leave for Indianapolis in a few days.”

Calvin eventually arrived in Indianapolis where he served as First Lieutenant Thirty-ninth company, First Battalion, under Colonel Ambrose A. Stevens, formerly Lieutenant Colonel of the Third Michigan, but now commandant of the prisoner-of-war at Camp Morton in Indianapolis, Indiana.

On October 3, 1864, Calvin married Mattie Gutteridge in Marion County, Indiana, and they possibly had one child, a daughter named Dora.

By mid-December of 1865 McTaggert was again back at his home in Grand Rapids. “Captain McTaggert,” wrote the Eagle on December 15, “originally of the noble Third Regiment, is in town. The captain lost his left arm at the battle of Fair Oaks and a subsequent injury necessitated a second amputation close to the shoulder, since which it has been quite troublesome. It is now improving and he hopes for its speedy and permanent healing. He has for some time been attached to the Invalid Reserve Corps, and on duty at Indianapolis. He has been ordered here to report by letter to Washington, being now without a command, and is awaiting the action of Congress in the matter of reorganizing the army for a peace footing.”

Calvin was honorably mustered out of service on September 24, 1866, at Thibodeaux, Louisiana, promoted to Second Lieutenant Forty-fourth United States Infantry on January 22, 1867, transferred to the Seventh United States Infantry on May 27, 1869, and promoted to First Lieutenant March 4, 1873.

He was on duty with the VRC at Washington from April 4, 1867 to June 1, 1868, after which he was on a leave of absence until July 10. He was then reported present for duty in Washington until March of 1869, and in Virginia as of April 1, 1869, on reconstruction duty in the First Military District until July 10, 1869, with the regiment in Virginia and North Carolina until April of 1870 and reported enroute to the Dakota Territory to August 1, 1872.

Calvin applied for and received a pension (no. 77347, dated December 18, 1866).

He was again on sick leave to May 1, 1873, back with the regiment in Dakota to May 30, 1875, on sick leave to August 26, 1876, and on recruiting duty at Loganport, Indiana in September 18, 1876, when he died of a drug overdose on September 18, 1876.

According to eyewitness testimony, Calvin was in the habit of routinely taking “chloral” as well as morphine “to produce sleep,” and that he had suffered regularly for at least two years from sciatica, diminished hearing loss and chronic pain in the stump of his arm. He was presumably buried in Loganport.

In October of 1876 his widow applied for and received a pension (no. 178,278). By 1878 she was residing at 15 Fourth Street NE in Washington, DC, in 1878, and by 1880 she had remarried.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Henry W. McRoberts

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.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

John McPherson

John McPherson was born on August 14, 1843, in New York, the son of Angus (b. 1817) and Angeline (b. 1820).

John’s parents were both born in New York and presumaby married there sometime before family moved from New York to Ohio sometime before 1842. The family settled in Michigan between 1842 and 1846. By 1850 John was living with his family in Otisco, Ionia County, where his father was working as a laborer, and by 1860 he was a farm laborer working for and/or living with Jeremiah Wright, a wealthy farmer in Walker, Kent County.

John stood 5’0” with hazel eyes, brown hair and a dark complexion and was 18 years old and possibly residing in Ottawa County (or perhaps in Walker) when he enlisted in Company B on May 13, 1861. He was taken prisoner on July 1, 1862, at White Oak Swamp, Virginia, and returned to the Regiment on August 6 at Harrison’s Landing, Virginia. In July of 1863 he was a Corporal and missing in action on July 2, 1863, at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania; in fact he was taken prisoner. He was returned (on paper) to the Regiment as a former prisoner-of-war, and on November 18 was at the parole camp in Annapolis, Maryland, where he had been since October 15. He remained absent sick in a general hospital from December of 1863 through March of 1864, and although reported missing in action at Brandy Station, Virginia in April, he was mustered out on June 20, 1864, at Detroit.

After he was discharged John returned to Michigan where he reentered the service in Company H, Twenty-first Michigan infantry on October 6, 1864, at Grand Rapids for 1 year, crediting Muskegon but listing Grand Rapids as his residence, and was mustered the same day. He joined the Regiment on October 18 at Chattanooga, Tennessee.

The Twenty-first participated in the March to the Sea November 15-December 10 and the siege of Savannah December 10-21 and in the Campaign in the Carolinas January to April of 1865. It was also involved in the battle of Bentonville, North Carolina on March 19-21. John was killed in action on March 19, at the battle of Bentonville. On April 15, the Grand Rapids Eagle wrote that they

regret to learn that John McPherson, a brave, true and reliable soldier of the 21st Mich infantry, was instantly killed in battle at Aiken Run, some 20 miles from Goldsboro on the 19th of March last. Young McPherson went out from this city in 1861 with the gallant Third Michigan Infantry, serving in that command some three years. While a soldier in that Regiment he was in numerous battles, always fortunately escaping unharmed. He was twice a prisoner in the hands of the rebels suffering the horrors of ‘Libby’ and other prisons some three and five months each, one time being exchanged and the other time paroled. On the expiration of his service in the Third [infantry] he enlisted in the 21st Regiment, and in which command has been in camp, siege, through numerous battles and in its grand march under Gen. Sherman through Georgia and South Carolina. Would that this brave soldier, and others like him who have done so much to save freedom and the Union to generations yet to come, could have been spared to enjoy the fruits of their gallant labor and the glory that covers the army and navy of the Union. Young McPherson has left a mother, sister and brothers in this city, to mourn his loss. Peace to the ashes of the heroes in blue.

John was reportedly buried on the battlefield, although there is a memorial to him in the family lot at Greenwood cemetery in Grand Rapids: section C, lot 40.

In 1870 his mother applied for and received a pension (no. 146559). By the time she died four years later she was the last member of the McPherson family left alive.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

John McNab

John McNab born January 2, 1841, in Edinburgh, Scotland, the son of Peter and Margaret (Forbes).

Shortly after emigrating to America John settled in Michigan and by 1860 he was a farm laborer working for and/or living with John Robson, a farmer in Cannon, Kent County.

John stood 5’5” with blue eyes, light hair and a light complexion and was 21 years old when he enlisted in Company A on November 13, 1862, at Grand Rapids for 3 years, and was mustered the same day. (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 was working as a wagoner in September of 1862, on detached duty at Third Brigade headquarters in October, probably as a wagoner and a Brigade wagoner from November of 1862 through July of 1863. He reenlisted on February 4, 1864, near Culpeper, Virginia, was absent on veteran’s furlough in March and probably returned to the Regiment on or about the first of April.

John was wounded in the face on May 6, 1864, at the Wilderness, Virginia, and subsequently lost his left eye. Dan Crotty of Company F wrote some years after the war that “Our Regiment, with all our corps, has suffered fearfully so far [at the Wilderness]. John McNabb, of Company A, or as he was more familiarly called, Scotty, has given his left eye as his mite for the cause.” John was subsequently hospitalized and was still absent wounded when he was transferred to Company A, Fifth Michigan infantry upon consolidation of the Third and Fifth Michigan Regiments on June 10, 1864.

He remained absent wounded in the hospital through June of 1865, and was eventually transferred to the Veterans’ Reserve Corps. He was discharged from the Fifth company, Second battalion VRC on November 10, 1865, at David’s Island, New York harbor by reason of wounds received in action.

After his discharge from the army John returned to western Michigan and lived the rest of his life in Grand Rapids.

He was married to Michigan native Jennie Ryan (1851-1943), the daughter of William Ryan, formerly of Company H, and they had at least five children: Bettie (b. 1870), John (b. 1872), Jennie (b. 1875), Cora (b. 1877) and Carrie (b. 1879). They may have also had a son Thomas. (Three of the daughters’ married names were Mrs. F. B. Parks, Mrs. E. E. Huling and Mrs. George Wilson.)

By 1880 John was working as a horseman and living with his wife and childrenon Scribner Street in Grand Rapids’ Sixth Ward in 1880, in the Tenth Ward in 1894 and in 1895, at 28 Dwight Street in 1906, at 34 Dwight avenue in 1922, and he lived on Dwight avenue the remainder of his life, working for some years as assistant superintendent of the Consolidated Street Railways of Grand Rapids.

In 1865 John applied for and received pension no. 58,643, drawing $12.00 for a gunshot wound to the face which destroyed his left eye. He became a member of the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association in December of 1883.

John died of carcinoma of the lip and upper jaw on Friday morning May 25, 1928, at his home at 34 Dwight Street, and private services were held at 2:00 p.m. on Monday at Metcalf’s chapel. He was buried in Woodlawn “Protestant” (now “east”) cemetery.

His widow applied for a pension (no. 1614988) but the certificate was never granted.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Samuel J. McMurray

Samuel J. McMurray was born in 1822 in Montgomery, Orange County, New York.

Samuel was married to Clarissa, probably in New York and probably before 1847. In any case, they had at least seven children: Adelia (b. 1847), Hannah (b. 1849), Lafayette (b. 1850), Maddison (b. 1853) and Lucretia (b. 1855), Eugenie (b. 1861) and Eva (b. 1864). Samuel and his wife moved to Michigan (probably from New York) sometime before 1847, and by 1860 he was working as a mechanic and carpenter and living with his wife and children in Hastings, Barry County.

Samuel stood 6’1” with blue eyes, dark hair and a light complexion and was 39 years old and probably still residing in Hastings when he was elected Fourth Corporal of the Hastings Rifle Company in April of 1861. Although the company was disbanded shortly after it arrived in Grand Rapids to become part of the Third Michigan infantry then forming at Cantonment Anderson just south of the city, Samuel eventually when he enlisted in Company E on May 13, 1861. In July of 1862 he was detached as a teamster driving an ammunition train, by August he was absent sick in the hospital, but was back on detached service in September and October. In January of 1863 he was serving with the Brigade wagon train, with the ambulance train from February through April, probably as a teamster, and in November he was a teamster in the First Division.

He reenlisted at Brandy Station, Virginia on December 23, 1863, crediting Wyoming, Kent County, was presumably absent on veteran’s furlough, perhaps at his home in Barry County, in January of 1864, and probably returned to the Regiment on or about February 1. Samuel was transferred to Company E, Fifth Michigan infantry upon consolidation of the Third and Fifth Michigan Regiments on June 10, 1864, and by August he was absent sick. On November 2, 1864, he was admitted to the Third Division hospital at Alexandria, Virginia, suffering from chronic dysentery, and according to his admission report he had been suffering from this disease “for about four months previous to admission into hospital [and] when admitted was considerably emaciated & having from ten to fifteen evacuations in 24 hours. Gave astringents & tonics, rice and milk diet. Was improving when transferred.”

Samuel was sent to Grosvenor Branch hospital, Alexandria, on November 19 where he died of chronic diarrhea on January 2, 1865, and was buried in Alexandria National Cemetery: grave no. 2864.

In 1865 his widow applied for and received a pension (no. In 1888 he applied for and received a pension (no. 550156), drawing $8.00 per month by 1883. Clarrissa was still living in Hastings in 1870, along with several of her children, and she was still living in Hastings in 1883, in 1888 and 1890.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

William A. McMann

William A. McMann was born on August 26, 1837, in Oswego County, New York, the son of Michael and Anne (O’Shassenesy).

William’s family possibly moved to Michigan from New York. In any case, by 1850 William was living with his older sistee Madora and his younger brother John with the family of Dr. Charles Kibbe in Crockery, Ottawa County. William married his first wife Michigan native Betsey (b. 1842) around 1859, probably in Michigan. (His sister Madora had earlier married Isaac Burbank who would also join the Third Michigan in 1861.) By 1860 William was working as a farmer and living with his wife in Nunica, Crockery Township, Ottawa County. (Two doors away lived Isaac and Madora Burbank.)

He stood 5’8” with brown hair and a light complexion and was 24 years old and still living in Ottawa County when he enlisted in Company I on May 13, 1861. He was discharged for consumption on August 5, 1861, at Hunter’s Farm, Virginia.

Apparently he returned to Crockery where he reentered the service in M company, Seventh Michigan cavalry on May 14, 1863, for 3 years, and was mustered on June 17 at Grand Rapids, listing Crockery as his residence. In July of 1863 he was on detached service at Centreville, Virginia, was reported to have received an injury to his right testicle in January of 1864, and on detached service in March and April. He was absent sick from September of 1864 through February of 1865, but may have rejoined the regiment by the time it participated in Lee’s surrender in April and the Grand Review in Washington on May 23, 1865.

The regiment was moved to Forth Leavenworth, Kansas on June 1 where it participated in various operations against the Indiana. On November 17, 1865, William was transferred to Company I, First Michigan cavalry, when the veterans and recruits of the Seventh were consolidated into the First. The First Michigan cavalry served was on duty in the District of Utah from November of 1865 until March of 1866. William was on duty with that Regiment in January and February of 1866, and probably until he was mustered out with the regiment on March 10, 1866, at Salt Lake City, Utah territory. (According to regimental records William was mistakenly listed as having died on July 1, 1864.)

In any case, William apparently returned to Nunica after the war where he worked for some years as a carpenter, and sometime around 1868 he married his second wife, Flora. William had at least two children: Harry and Mrs. William Kroll.

He lived off and on in the Muskegon area from 1893 to 1910, usually working as a carpenter, although he was probably living in Moorland Township, Muskegon County in 1894. By the summer of 1909 he was probably living at 1 Peck Street in Muskegon.

He was a member of the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association and a Catholic.

In 1890 William applied for and received a pension (no. 566593).

William entered the Michigan Soldiers’ Home (no. 5531) as a married man on July 16, 1909, and was dropped from the Home on November 8, 1910. (His wife Flora was reported as living at 1 Peck Street in Muskegon.) By 1914 he was living in Muskegon at 130 Harrison Street.

William died of a cerebral hemorrhage on August 19, 1917, in Montague, Muskegon County, and reportedly buried in Montague: grave 1-B-113.

In October of 1917 his widow applied for and received a pension (no. 902042).

Friday, October 09, 2009

Joel N. and Stephen O. McLenithan

Joel N. McLenithan was born on July 28, 1836, in Toledo, Ohio, probably the son of Norman (d. 1882) and Mary (Dean, 1815-1857).

The McLenithan family moved to Michigan sometime between 1836 and 1839 (it is possible that Norman emigrated from Ireland or Scotland), and Norman was probably living in Kent County by 1840. By 1850 Joel was living with his family in Grand Rapids where his father worked as a teamster.

In 1856 Joel was living in Newaygo County when he married his first wife Amelia Terwilliger, and they had at least two children: Henrietta (b. 1857) and Carrie A. (b. 1861). Amelia and Joel divorced around 1878.

In 1859-60 Norman McLenithan was working as a mail carrier and living on the east side of Sheldon between Wealthy and Wenham avenues in Grand Rapids. On July 27, 1860, the Enquirer reported that Norman “McLenathen, who was arrested in Adrian about two months ago, charged with running off with property upon which there was a chattel mortgage,” had escaped from Kent County Sheriff Anson Norton [brother of Everson who would also enlist in the Third Michigan] while on his way to Grand Rapids by jumping from the train near Saranac. Norton, however quickly recaptured McLenathen at St. Charles in Saginaw County and returned him to Grand Rapids.”

By 1860 Joel was working as a farmer and living with his wife and child in Paris, Kent County.

He stood 5’8” with blue eyes, light hair and a light complexion and was 24 years old and probably living in Grand Rapids when he enlisted in Company A on May 13, 1861, while his younger brother Stephen enlisted in Company K. (A younger brother Samuel O. or D., who served in the Sixteenth Michigan infantry, died in Grand Rapids in 1880.)

Joel was on duty at Brigade headquarters from October of 1862 through November, and a nurse in the Division hospital from December of 1862 through July of 1863. From September through November Joel was on special duty at Third Corps headquarters. He was supposedly absent on furlough in December of 1863 through January, implying that he had reenlisted in late December, although he did not reenlist until February 8, 1864, at Camp Bullock, Virginia, and was subsequently absent on veteran’s furlough, probably until about the first week of March.

In March he was absent sick (having probably just returned from furlough), but he soon returned to the Regiment and was shot in the left leg on May 5, 1864, at the Wilderness, Virginia. On May 13 he was admitted to Mt. Pleasant hospital in Washington, DC, with a gunshot wound of lower third of the left leg fracturing the tibia “about half way between the knee and ankle.”

He was still absent in the hospital when he was transferred as absent wounded to Company A, Fifth Michigan infantry in June, and was sent home on furlough probably from the hospital for 40 days from June 27, 1864. However, he may in fact have never returned to the eastern theater, and was admitted (date unknown) to St. Mary’s hospital in Detroit and transferred to Harper hospital in Detroit on December 20, 1864. He was discharged from the army on January 28, 1865, for “a gunshot fracture of the left tibia at middle third rendering him permanently lame;” in fact, his leg was eventually amputated in 1887.

(Franklin Everett in his Memorials of the Grand River Valley, mistakenly lists Joel as having died in Detroit on January 28, 1865. It is possible that it was in fact his brother Stephen who may have died in Detroit, although there seems to be no other evidence of this.)

Joel listed Grand Rapids as his mailing address on his discharge paper, and from 1870-71 he was living at 65 Monroe in Grand Rapids. He soon afterwards moved to the west side of the Grand River and in 1872-73 at the southeast corner of Fifth and Stocking Streets. On May 8, 1873, the Grand Rapids Democrat reported

an action of assault and battery on complaint of Mrs. McLanahan, wife of the respondent before Judge Bubbington yesterday. Prosecuting Attorney Burlingame for the people and Col. Leffingwell for the defense. A jury was summoned by Constable Bailey, who had the case in charge, consisted of the following: Lowell Hall, H. M. Hindsill, H. Jewett, C. A. Robinson, Warren Crippen and Daniel W. McNaughton. The witnesses for the defense [?] were the complainant, Mrs. Margaret Williams, mother of the complainant, and Mary McLanahan, daughter of the parties, a handsome little girl aged 14 years. The parties had been married 17 years, Mrs. McLanahan being a widow at the time of the marriage. They had been residing on Stocking Street. Mr. McLanahan offered no evidence but his own statement. The testimony showed much family discord, not unaccompanied by pushing, punching, knocking pipes out of mouth. After arguments by Counsel, the jury . . . returned into court with a verdict of guilty. The Justice imposed a fine of $5 and costs, amounting in all to $16.68, and in default of payment thirty days in jail. McLanahan was given until 8 o’clock this morning to produce the money.”

In 1873-74 Joel was working as an expressman and living at 106 Canal Street, and from 1874-75 he was employed as a contractor living at 128 Canal. From 1875-76 he was working as a grader and living at 11 Ionia Street, and in 1878 he was working in Grand Rapids as a laborer.

Soon after divorcing his first wife in 1878 he may have married Olevia or Levia Bennett (b. 1838) on October 24, 1878, in Grand Rapids, and they too may have eventually divorced. In the late 1870s Joel moved to Pentwater, Oceana County, where he was living in 1880 with his wife “Livia” and working as a laborer. He was still in Pentwater in1883, then in Muskegon, Muskegon County in 1885 and 1886, and in West Carlisle, Kent County in 1888.

The wound in his leg had never fully healed properly, plaguing him for years, and his leg was finally amputated on February 8, 1887.

In 1865 he applied for and received a pension (no. 40,381, dated 1865) at the rate of $8.00 per month in 1865, reduced in March of 1872 to $6.00, but subsequently increased in October of 1886 to $30.00, then $36.00 in June of 1887 following the amputation of his leg.

Joel was residing in Wyoming, Kent County in 1888, at 114 Ellsworth avenue in Grand Rapids by August of 1889, and was employed as a furniture repairer in Grand Rapids in 1891 and living at 25 Grandville avenue.

He was a member of the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association, and Grand Army of the Republic Custer Post No. 5 in Grand Rapids.

Joel was married a third time, on August 1, 1891, to Susan Anise McDonald Sink (b. 1850) in South Bend, Indiana (she had been divorced in 1891 from John F. Sink).

By 1892 he was a chair caner living at 22 Crawford Street in Grand Rapids and in 1894 he was living either in Grand Rapids’ Eleventh ward or in Wyoming, Kent County. The following year he was employed as foreman for the Michigan Chair co. and living at 48 Crawford Street; by 1896 he was working as a janitor and living at 39 Umatilla Street. In 1897 he returned to his old job of chair caner and worked at that trade from 1897 to 1899, residing at 991 Hall Street.

Joel moved to South Bend, Indiana in 1900 where he probably lived the remainder of his life. He was residing in South Bend in 1915 and 1917; his widow was residing in South Bend, Indiana in 1919

Joel died of pulmonary tuberculosis on December 12, 1917, in North Liberty, St. Joseph County, Indiana. According to his death certificate, Joel was buried in Sumption Prairie cemetery in North Liberty: section A, lot 57, grave no. 2, although there is a government marker for him in Fulton cemetery: section 1 lot 28 (along with a brother and his mother).

In 1918 Susan was probably living in Indiana when she applied for and received a widow’s pension (no. 870258).

Stephen O. or D. McLenithan was born in 1844 in Michigan, probably son of Norman (d. 1882) and Mary (Dean, 1815-1857).

The McLenithan family moved to Michigan sometime between 1836 and 1839 (it is possible that Norman emigrated from Ireland or Scotland), and Norman was probably living in Kent County by 1840. By 1850 Stephen was living with his family in Grand Rapids where his father worked as a teamster. In 1859-60 Norman was probably working as a mail carrier and living on the east side of Sheldon between Wealthy and Wenham avenues in Grand Rapids. By 1860 Stephen was a farm laborer working for and/or living with one L. Wilbur, a wealthy farmer in Paris, Kent County; his older brother (?) Joel lived two houses away.

Stephen stood 6’0” with blue eyes, light hair and a light complexion and was 17 years old and possibly residing in Grand Rapids when he enlisted with the consent of the Justice of the Peace in Company K on May 13, 1861; Joel joined Company A. Stephen was a company cook in October of 1862, a cook at Corps headquarters from December of 1862 through January of 1863, reported AWOL from February through March and a cook at Corps headquarters from April through July.

He was shot in the left hand on November 27, 1863, at Mine Run, Virginia, and admitted on December 5, 1863, to Third Division hospital at Alexandria for a “gunshot wound of left hand, fracturing thumb.” The digit was eventually amputated on December 9, 1863, and he was furloughed from the hospital on January 29, 1864, returned to the hospital on March 2, returned to duty on May 28, and was mustered out on June 20, 1864, at Detroit.

Stephen returned home to Grand Rapids where he reportedly reentered the service in Unassigned, Tenth Michigan cavalry on March 9, 1865, for 1 year, crediting Grand Rapids Second Ward, and was mustered on March 14. He was honorably discharged on May 6, 1865, at Jackson, Jackson County.

He is reportedly buried in Fulton cemetery, Grand Rapids: section 1 lot 28 (along with his brother Joel and his mother).

(Perhaps the marker in Fulton cemetery is a memorial to Stephen, although the burial records indicate that someone was actually interred in lot 85. The index of gravestones, in the Local Historical Collections of the Grand Rapids Public Library, lists Joel, one “S. O.” of Company K Third Michigan and their mother Mary, who died 1857, as buried in lot no. 85 in Fulton; no other burials are noted. However, the cemetery burial book lists Joel, Mary and one “Samuel” as buried in Fulton cemetery, yet there is no marker for Samuel, who died in November of 1880. Curiously, the cemetery records list Samuel’s death date as well as his birth date, but not Stephen’s.)

No pension seems to be available.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Theodore Robert McLain

Theodore Robert McLain was born in October 26, 1841, in Livonia, Wayne County, Michigan, the son of John (1791-1870) and Margaret (Magden, 1808).

Theodore’s parents were married in 1826 or 1827 in New York where they lived for some years. By 1839, however they had moved westward and were residing in Nankin, Wayne County, Michigan, but by 1842 had settled in Livonia.

Theodore stood 5’6” with blue eyes, light hair and a light complexion and was 23 years old and probably working as a farmer in either Ionia or Kent County, Michigan, when he enlisted in Company D on February 5, 1862, at Saranac, Ionia County for 3 years, crediting Grand Rapids’ Second Ward, and was mustered the same day. (Company D was composed in large part of men who came from western Ionia County and Eaton County.) Robert was sick in the hospital from July through August of 1862, and absent sick or wounded in the Division hospital in July of 1863.

He apparently had recovered and returned to duty by the time he reenlisted near Culpeper, Virginia on February 18, 1864, and was mustered on February 20. He was transferred to Company K on February 24, and subsequently absent on veterans’ furlough in March. He probably returned to the Regiment on or about the first of April and was transferred to Company I, Fifth Michigan infantry upon consolidation of the Third and Fifth Michigan Regiments on June 10, 1864. He was reported as an attendant in the Regimental hospital in September, in February of 1865 he was absent sick and was mustered out on July 5, 1865, at Jeffersonville, Indiana.

It is not known if Theodore (“Rob”) returned to Michigan after the war.

He was probably living in Wisconsin when he married Ellen Squires (1847-1914) in Black River Falls, Wisconsin, in April of 1866. They had at least 13 children: Sarah Roseltha (b. 1869), Emma A. (b. 1871), Theodore William “Dude” (b. 1872), James Washington (b. 1874), Amey (b. 1876), Addie (b. 1878), Baby boy (b. 1881), Orpha (b. 1882), Ella (b. 1884), Charles (b. 1886), Lewis Roy (b. 1887?) and Herbert A. (b. 1889).

Theodore and his family settled in Little Falls, Monroe County before 1870 and were still there in 1871 and eventually in Cataract, Wisconsin by 1874 where they lived for some years. “Rob” operated a wagon shop in Cataract from 1883 to 1890 and a blacksmith shop in Cataract between 1890 and 1895. In the late 1880s they were probably living in Sparta, Monroe County, Wisconsin. In about 1907 he was probably living in Fence (?), Florence County, Wisconsin. Around 1926 he moved to Wisconsin Rapids (then called Grand Rapids, Wisconsin).

In 1888 he applied for and received a pension (no. 978988).

Theodore was probably a widower when he died of “senility” in Wisconsin Rapids at 5:50 p.m. on February 7, 1927, and was buried in Cataract, Wisconsin.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Lewis H. McLain

Lewis H. McLain was born in 1840, probably in Bloomfield, Knox County, Ohio, the son of Aaron Jr. (b. 1814) and Rachel (Harris, 1813-1858).

Ohio native Aaron married Virginian Rachel in 1833 in Bloomfield where the family lived for some years. Sometime after 1840 Aaron moved to Michigan and by 1850 had settled on a farm in Chester, Ottawa County, where Lewis attended school with his older brother John. Lewis’ parents lived next door to Aaron Sr. and his family, and indeed would live the rest of their lives in Chester. (Rachel died in Chester in 1858 and Aaron in Chester in 1892.) Aaron remarried to Connecticut Adaline (b. 1811), and by 1860 they were still living on a farm in Chester.

Lewis stood 6’1” with blue eyes, light hair and a light complexion and was a 21-year-old farmer living possibly in Grand Rapids or in Chester, Ottawa County when he enlisted in Company F on May 13, 1861. (He may have been related to George McClain of Company E who may have also come from Chester.) Lewis was sick in the hospital at Annapolis, Maryland in July and August of 1862, and allegedly deserted on September 21, 1862, at Upton’s Hill, Virginia; he returned to the Regiment four days later, on September 25 at Fairfax Seminary, Virginia.

Lewis reenlisted on December 24, 1863, at Brandy Station, Virginia, crediting Lowell, Kent County, was presumably absent on veteran’s furlough in January of 1864 and probably returned to the Regiment on or about the first of February. He was missing in action on May 12, 1864, at Spotsylvania, Virginia, and in fact had been taken prisoner and wounded at Spotsylvania. However, he was reported not as a prisoner-of-war but as absent sick or wounded when he was transferred to Company F, Fifth Michigan infantry upon consolidation of the Third and Fifth Michigan Regiments on June 10, 1864, and he remained listed as absent sick until October. Apparently he rejoined the Regiment before the end of October since he was again taken prisoner, this time on October 27, 1864, at Boydton Plank road, near Petersburg, Virginia.

There is no further record.

It appears likely that Lewis perished in prison during the war and was buried in the somewhere in the South. (His mother was interred in Big Springs cemetery in Chester, Ottawa County.)

In 1889 his father applied for and received a pension (no. 333534).

His parents were still living in Chester in 1870.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

George W. McLain

George W. McLain was born in 1840 in New York, probably the son of Abner (b. 1805) and Seander (b. 1815).

George’s parents were both born in New York and presumably married there. Sometime after 1845 the family left New York and by 1850 Abner had settled on a farm in Gaines, Genesee County, Michigan where George attended school with his younger sister Elizabeth.

George stood 5’7” with blue eyes, brown hair and a light complexion and was 25 years old and possibly working as a farmer in Chester, Ottawa County when he enlisted in Company E on January 15, 1864, at Grand Rapids for 3 years, crediting Chester, and was mustered the same day. He joined the Regiment on February 17, and was transferred to Company F, Fifth Michigan infantry upon consolidation of the Third and Fifth Michigan Regiments on June 10, 1864. He was absent sick from June 12 through May of 1865, and was discharged “ by order” on June 9, 1865, at Washington, DC, for reasons unknown.

In any case, George eventually returned to western Michigan.

In 1865 (?) he applied for and reveived a pension (no. 147753).

He was probably married to Catharine .

George was living in Ashland, Newaygo County by 1890 and 1894.

George was possibly living in Shiawassee County when he died in 1925, and was buried in either McNitt cemetery, Chester, Ottawa County or perhaps in Pinetree cemetery in Newaygo County

Monday, October 05, 2009

William McKernan

William McKernan, also known as “McKerwan,” was born in 1837, in (possibly White Oak, Livingston County,) Michigan, the son of John (1784-1857) and Margaret (Mossy, b. 1804).

William’s parents were both born in Ireland but wre married in 1820 in Orange County, New York, where they resided for some years. Sometime around 1833 the family left New York and moved west, settling in Northfield, Washtenaw County, Michigan, and around 1836 moved to White Oak Township, Ingham County. By 1850 William was attending school with siz of his siblings and living on the family farm in White Oak. John died in April of 1857 in White Oak and was presumably buried there.

William, who was one of 16 children (eight boys and eight girls) was 24 years old and living in Muskegon County, Michigan, where he was probably working in the lumber industry, when he enlisted in Company H on May 6, 1861. (Company H, formerly the “Muskegon Rangers,” was made up largely of men from the vicinity of Muskegon and Newaygo counties.)

He was wounded in the foot by gunfire on May 31, 1862, at Fair Oaks, Virginia, and subsequently hospitalized at Judiciary Square hospital in Washington, DC, where he died of his wounds on July 6, 1862.

While recovering from his own wounds near Alexandria, Virginia, Peter Bergervin, who had been a sergeant in Company H, wrote on July 18 to William’s sister, “Mrs. Brannan,” who was back in Michigan.

Madam,

I am under the painful responsibility of informing you that your dear beloved brother died in Washington Hospital Judiciary Square July 6th. The cause of this long delay on my part for not writing sooner, is on account of your address not having it with me. The last letter I sent you before you got the money [?] I was then nearly certain that he would not live for he was very bad & was getting worse & worse all the time. As concerning his death I have little to say. He died very easy, was well taken care of until the last moment & was decently buried. I will now bring this to a close by endeavoring to explain to you what few effects he has got here coming to him. He has here one shoulder strap coat one pair of pants one pair of shoes one cap & he has paid up to May 1st, 1862 so he has pay coming from that date up to July 6th/1862 & there is his bounty money & Land Warrant if such can be got. About that you can tell as well as I can where you are by applying to some ____. Now then to get these things, as I understand his father is dead [so his] mother is next legal person to get it & no [other] person can so long [as] she is living. More than this. Mrs. McKernan has to prove herself by proper authority in the town or country where she lives that she is the identical mother of this said deceased William McKernan. For this she can apply [to a justice of the peace or mayor of the city after she has forwarded sufficient papers to prove this she then has to make an application stating all concerning his death, what battle he was wounded [in], the state & where he died & when & also stating the names of all his effects & up to what date he was paid & stating about his bounty money & land warrant. I suppose you know when he was wounded & where it was. [It was at] the battle of Fair Oaks on the 31st of May. [He was] shot through the foot. Now I think that the rest you can see for your self on this letter. More I think the surest way for you to get this is to apply to some member of Congress or a Senator if I was going to remain here I could get it for you & it would not cost a cent but I was wounded at the same battle William was & have now got well & in a day or 2 I am going back [to] join the Regiment again. This [is] all I can think of. Any further information needed on my part will be rendered with pleasure. Direct to P. P. Bergervin, Co. H, 3rd Regt Mich Vol. Washington D. C.

William was buried on July 7 in the Military Asylum cemetery (Soldier's Home National cemetery), section C no. 2996.

Another brother, Captain Phillip McKernan of Company B, Twenty-seventh Michigan, also died during the war.

In 1862 William’s mother, who was unable to read or write and living in Michigan, applied for and received a dependent’s pension no. 61,246.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Allen McKee

Allen McKee was born in 1846 in Jefferson County, New York, the son of Allen (b. 1819) and Diana (b. 1824).

New York natives Allen and Diana were probably married in New York where they resided for some years. Allen and his family moved from New York to Michigan and by 1860 Allen (elder) was working as a carpenter and living with his wife at the Fay Hotel in Manistee, Manistee County.

Allen stood 5’8” with hazel eyes, brown hair and a fair complexion and was an 18-year-old lumberman living in Manistee when he enlisted in Company I on February 6, 1864, at Grand Rapids for 3 years, crediting Manistee, and was mustered the same day. He joined the Regiment on February 17 at Camp Bullock, Virginia, and although officially reported as absent sick in May, he later claimed to be taken prisoner at the Wilderness, Virginia, and on November 11, 1864 confined at Andersonville for some five months. (If he was in fact taken prisoner it was probably while the Fifth Michgian was engaged at Boydton Plank road, Virginia on October 31, 1864.) Interestingly, he was reported as absent sick and not as a prisoner-of-war when he was transferred to Company I, Fifth Michigan infantry upon consolidation of the Third and Fifth Michigan Regiments on June 10, 1864, and he remained listed as absent sick until he was discharged on June 10, 1865, at Emory hospital in Washington, DC.

In late December of 1864, however, Allen was reported by an Agent for the Michigan Soldier’s Relief Association as a patient at Davidson hospital No. 1 at the Naval School in Annapolis, Maryland, and as having recently been released from Andersonville prison.

After the war Allen returned to Manistee where he engaged in sailing on the Great Lakes for a number of years. He was married to Maine native Arthea Lowry (b. 1848), and they had at least one child: Pearl (b. 1875). By 1870 he was working as an engineer and living with his wife in Manistee’s Second Ward; also living with him was a sailor named William Crawford and his family as well as Arthea’s younger sister Mary.

By 1880 Allen was working as an engineer and living with his children in Manistee, Manistee County. In 1883 he was working in the lumber industry and in the early 1880s was an engineer and machinist working at the mill of the Manistee Lumber company in Manistee. Allen lived in Manistee the remainder of his life. He was married a second time to New York native Mary (b. 1849). By 1920 Allen was living with his second wife in Manistee.

He was a Freemason and a member of the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association.

In 1906 he applied for and received a pension (no. 1144876).

Allen died on November 4, 1921, in Manistee and was presumably buried in Manistee County.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Willard McKay

Willard McKay was born in 1839 in Pontiac, Oakland County, Michigan.

He may have been the same Willard McKay who married Maria Robertson in Wayne County, Michigan on December 29, 1859.

In any case, Willard stood 5’8’ with blue eyes, light hair and a light complexion and was a 23-year-old painter possibly living in Shiawassee County when he enlisted in Company D on January 30, 1862, at Owosso, Shiawassee County for 3 years, and was mustered the same day. He was probably hospitalized in April for chronic rheumatism and was discharged on August 8, 1862, at the hospital at Fort McHenry, Maryland for “arthritic rheumatism of ankle joints unable to stand erect” after having been in the hospital four months.

Willard eventually returned to Michigan and was living in Port Huron, St. Clair County in 1888 and in Marine City, St. Clair County in 1890.

In 1883 he applied for and received pension (no. 431190).

Willard died on January 21, 1915, in Vista Grande, Colorado, a suburb of Colorado Springs, and was presumably buried there.

Friday, October 02, 2009

William McIntyre

William McIntyre was born in 1838 in Medina County, Ohio.

William left Ohio and came to western Michigan sometime before the war broke out.

He stood 5’10” with hazel eyes, dark hair and a light complexion and was a 23-year-old farmer probably living in Kent County when he enlisted in Company F on May 13, 1861. He was discharged for consumption on September 22, 1861, at Arlington, Virginia.

After he was discharged from the army, William may have returned to Michigan, although this remains uncertain.

No pension seems to be available.

Thursday, October 01, 2009

Alexander McIntyre

Alexander McIntyre was born on December 7, 1840, in Goodrich, Huron County, Ontario, Canada.

Alexander left Canada sometime in 1859, and immigrated to the United States, eventually settling in Michigan sometime before the war broke out.

He stood 5’7” with blue eyes, brown hair and a florid complexion and was a 21-year-old trapper possibly living in Kent County when he enlisted as Sixth Corporal in Company K on May 13, 1861. He was shot in the left thigh on August 29, 1862, at Second Bull Run, and subsequently sent to Columbian College hospital in Washington, DC, where in early September he was reported dangerously ill. He was then reportedly sent to Fort McHenry, Maryland and remained hospitalized until he was discharged as a Sergeant on January 26, 1863, at Third Corps hospital near Fort Lyon for “scrotal hernia of right side produced by a fall at the chain bridge in July [of 1861] and a gunshot wound through the left thigh.”

After his discharge from the army Alexander returned to Michigan, and apparently settled in Jackson, Jackson County.

He married Michigan native Adelaide Francis Wing (1847-1916) on February 19, 1863, at Rives Township, Jackson County, and they had at least eight children: Fred (b. 1863), Jonathan J. (b. 1866), Alice (b. 1869), Albert D. (b. 1872), Eugene (b. 1874), Lillian (b. 1876), Will (b. 1880), Belle (b. 1882) and Clyde (b. 1884).

Sometime around 1868 Alexander moved to Pinckney, Livingston County and he probably lived the remainder of his life in Livingston County. By 1870 he was working as a brick mason and living with his wife and children in Brighton, Putnam Township, Livingston County. He was living in Pinckney in 1883 when he was drawing $6.00 per month for a wound to the left thigh (pension no. 16,537, originally drawing the rate of $4.00 per month in 1863); and by by 1914 he was drawing $24.00 per month. He was still living in Pinckney in 1890, 1894 and in 1914 when he applied for an increase in his pension allowance.

Alexander was still living in Pinckney when he died on September 13, 1915, and was buried in Pinckney protestant cemetery: section B, lot 75.

In 1915 his widow applied for a pension (no. 1054130), but the certificate was never granted.