Daniel Merrett Stocking was born in June of 1834, in New York, probably the son of Alvin (1798-1863) and Ann (1805-1878).
In 1840 Alvin was living in Genesee County, New York. In any case New York natives Alvin and Ann moved their family west and settled in sometime between 1841 and 1847. By 1850 “Merrett D.” was working as a farm laborer and attending school with two of his younger siblings and living with his family on a farm in Grattan, Kent County. Daniel was also known as Merrett D. who was
In late 1859 or early 1860 “Merrett” married Michigan-born Lucy A. Howard (b. 1841); and they had at least two children: Alice (b. 1863) and Mary (b. 1868).
By 1860 he was working as a farm laborer and living with his wife Lucy in Grattan, next door to his older brother Palmer and his family. (By 1860 Alvin was living in Grattan, Kent County.) On July 20, 1860, Daniel joined the Grand Rapids Artillery (located on the west side of the Grand River), commanded by Captain Baker Borden. (The GRA would serve as the nucleus of Company B, also commanded by Borden, of the Third Michigan infantry.)
Daniel was 26 years old and probably still living in Kent County when he enlisted as Fifth Sergeant in Company B on May 13, 1861. In July of 1862 Daniel was on detached service as an orderly for General Israel B. Richardson, and then as orderly for General Heintzelman from August of 1862 through November of 1863. He was still on detached service in December of 1863 when he was transferred to Company A, Sixth (?) Veterans’ Reserve Corps on either December 1, 1863, or January 15, 1864. Daniel was eventually discharged.
"Merrett D." was 30 years old when he either enlisted in or was drafted into Company G, Sixteenth Michigan infantry, on March 30, 1865, and was mustered on March 27. He was mustered out on July 8, 1865, at Jeffersonville, Indiana.
After he was discharged from the army Merrett,” now calling himself Daniel returned to western Michigan, probably to his home in Kent County. By 1870 he was working as a farmer (he owned $4000 worth of real estate) and living with his wife Lucy and two daughters in Grattan, Kent County.
No pension seems to be available for his service in the Third Michigan (but see below).
Daniel died on February 1, 1873, probably in Kent County, and was buried in Grattan cemetery where there is a headstone and GAR marker for a Daniel Stocking. There is also a record of his being buried in Wells cemetery, Ottawa County. And in fact his family eventually settled in Ottawa County.
By 1880 Lucy was living as a widow along with her two daughters with her parents in Grattan. In 1890 (?) Lucy applied for and received a pension (no. 474343) for her husband’s service in the Sixteenth Michigan.