Austin Paustle was born in 1844 in Ohio, the son of New York native Harriet (b. 1805).
In 1850 Austin was living with his mother and older brother William and their young sister Antoinette in Bloom, Seneca County, Ohio. (William would also enlist in the 3rd Michigan infantry.) Austin left Ohio and settled in western Michigan sometime before 1862.
He stood 5’6” with black eyes, dark hair and a dark complexion and was an 18-year-old farmer possibly living in Ionia County when he enlisted in Company H on March 8, 1862, at Saranac, Ionia County for 3 years, and was mustered the same day. Austin was wounded, probably at Fair Oaks, Virginia, on May 31, 1862, and admitted to the hospital at Judiciary Square in Washington, DC, where by mid-July he was reportedly “getting along well.” He remained hospitalized until he was discharged on March 5, 1863, at a general hospital in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, for a gunshot wound of the right (?) foot.
Shortly after he was discharged in 1863 he applied for and received a pension (no. 26175).
Austin listed his mailing address as Odessa, Ionia County on his discharge paper, and indeed he returned to Michigan where he reentered the service as a Corporal in Company K, 27th Michigan Infantry on December 7, 1863, at Ransom, Hillsdale County for 3 years, and was mustered on December 11 at Detroit, giving his residence as Ransom. The regiment had been organized in Port Huron, Ovid and Ypsilanti and all but companies I and K mustered into service on April 10 and which left Michigan for Kentucky on April 12. Company I was mustered into service on January 4, 1864, and presumably shortly afterwards joined the regiment in eastern Tennessee.
In March of 1864 he was left sick at Knoxville, Tennessee from March 6, and, for reasons unknown, was reduced to the ranks on April 15, 1864. Nevertheless, he was probably on duty with the regiment by the time it was transferred to the Army of the Potomac. The regiment arrived in Annapolis, Maryland in early April of 1864 and subsequently participated in the battles of the Wilderness, Spotsylvania and North Anna in May. and at Cold Harbor and the siege of Petersburg in June.
Austin was killed in action on July 30, 1864, near Petersburg, Virginia. He was originally buried in the 9th Corps cemetery at Meade Station, near Petersburg, but reinterred in Poplar Grove National Cemetery: division A, section C, grave no. 55.