Joseph L. Payne was born in 1842, in Ohio.
Joseph stood 5’6” with blue eyes, sandy hair and a ruddy complexion and was a 20-year-old farmer living in Ganges, Allegan County, Michigan, when he enlisted in Company I on May 13, 1861. According to one source, he was among the second wave of recruits to come out of Ottawa County and did not in fact enlist until the end of May, along with Albert Hamlin, Calvin Hall, Nelson Davis and David Davis, Albert Gardner, James Rhodes, Perry Goshorn, Sylvester Gay, Joseph Solder (Josiah Schuler), Quincy Lamereaux, William Suret and John Ward.
He was sick in the hospital, possibly in Philadelphia, from August of 1862 until he was mustered out on June 20, 1864, at Detroit.
After the was discharged Joseph returned to Michigan where he reentered the service in Company I, Eighth Michigan cavalry on April 7, 1865, at Kalamazoo, Kalamazoo County for 1 year, and was mustered on April 8, crediting Ganges. Joseph joined the Regiment on May 9 at Pulaski, Tennessee, was sick at Nashville, Tennessee, and was transferred to Company E on July 20 and was mustered out with the regiment on September 22, 1865, at Nashville.
Joseph returned to Michigan after the war, probably to Allegan County.
He married Ohio native Mary K. (b. 1845) and they had at least one child: Barthia (b. 1869).
By 1870 Joseph was back in Ganges working as a farmer and living with his wife and daughter; next door lived the family of John Payne.
Joseph died on May 1, 1874, in Douglas, Allegan County, and was presumably buried there.
By 1880 one Mary Payne, a widow, was living in Ganges with her daughter Edith. In 1916 Joseph’s widow, Mary Kingwell applied for and received a widow’s pension (no. 823979).