Monday, March 29, 2010

Jacob S. Pickle

Jacob S. Pickle was born in 1835 in New York.

Jacob left New York and had settled in western Michigan by the time the war had broken out, and possibly even earlier.

(By 1860 there was one John Pickle, age 25, born in New York, married to Elizabeth and with one child living in Rutland, Barry County. There there was also a Jacob Pickle, age 32, born in New York, and married to Martha and with three children living in Monroe County. Both men were born in New York, and were possibly related to one J. M. Pickle, age 50, from New York, and Robert Pickle, both living in Hastings in 1860.)

Jacob was probably working as a farmer in Hastings, Barry County when he enlisted in the Hastings Rifle Company in April of 1861. The company was disbanded shortly after it arrived in Grand Rapids and its members distributed to other companies of the Third Michigan infantry then forming at Cantonment Anderson just south of the city, and Jacob eventually enlisted at the age of 26 in Company K on May 13, 1861.

Jacob died of typhoid fever on September 8, 9 or 17, 1861, at Seminary hospital, Georgetown, DC, and was buried in the Military Asylum cemetery (Soldier's Home National cemetery), section B, grave no. 1451.

No pension seems to be available.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Samuel L. Phillips

Samuel L. Phillips was born sometime around 1829.

Samuel was 32 years old and probably living in Tallmadge, Ottawa County, Michigan, when he enlisted in Company I on May 13, 1861. (Company I was made up largely of men from Ottawa County, particularly from the eastern side of the County.)

He died on September 5, 7, 13 or 25, 1861, of “congestive fever” in either Georgetown or Union Hotel hospital, Washington, DC, and was buried in the Military Asylum cemetery (Soldier's Home National cemetery).

No pension seems to be available.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

James Phillips

James Phillips was born in 1823 in Ohio.

James left Ohio and eventually settled in western Michigan. By 1850 he was working as a barber in his own shop in Grand Rapids, Kent County, along with another barber, and living with his wife New York native Charlotte (b. 1810) in the city.

James quickly became well-known to the citizens of Grand Rapids. On June 13, 1856, the Grand Rapids Eagle reported that “‘Jim’ the barber has fitted up rooms and fixtures for baths of any required temperature, in the rear of his shop, . . . on Monroe Street. Drop in and try them Cleanliness is essential to the enjoyment of good health.”

During the formation and organization of the Third Michigan infantry in the spring of 1861 James became quite popular with the soldiers encamped at the old Kent County fairgrounds south of the city, which became Cantonment Anderson, the first staging camp for the newly-formed regiments.

Although Jim never enlisted in the Third Michigan infantry, he played a small role in their early history. According to the Grand Rapids Enquirer on July 3, 1861, under the headline “Gone to the Wars,” a “considerable anxiety has been manifested as to the whereabouts of Jim Phillips, the barber, one of our oldest residents. We learn that he accompanied the 3d Regiment to the war, and will exercise his vocation for the benefit of the officers and men generally. He is a valuable acquisition.”

James eventually returned safely to Grand Rapids and by 1865-66 he was working and living at 13 LaGrave Street.

By 1870 James owned some $5,000 of real estate and was still working as a barber and living with his wife in Grand Rapids’ Third Ward.

By 1890 his widow was boarding at 219 E. Bridge Street in Grand Rapids.

Friday, March 26, 2010

George W. Phillips (younger)

George W. Phillips was born in 1840, in New York.

George was 21 years old and probably living in Gratiot County, Michigan, when he enlisted, possibly with George W. Phillips (elder), in Company D on May 13, 1861. His name was “stricken from the rolls” on January 1, 1862. It was claimed that he was left sick at Grand Rapids when the Regiment departed from Washington, DC, on June 13, 1861, and according to regimental records “has since died.”

In fact George did not die but returned home, or at least to Ionia County, and was living in Pewamo, Ionia County when he reentered the service as a Private, age 22, on August 11, 1862, in Company D, Twenty-first Michigan infantry, while the regiment was being formed and was mustered in on September 3. He stood 5’10’, with light complexion, blue eyes and light hair. (Interestingly, Colonel Ambrose Stevens who commanded the Twenty-first Michigan had served as Lieutenant Colonel of the Third Michigan and was also from Ionia County.)

The Twenty-first was organized at Ionia and Grand Rapids and mustered into service on September 9, and left Michigan for Louisville, Kentucky, on September 12.

According to a Detroit newspaper,

The Twenty-first regiment arrived in town about half-past three o’clock on Friday afternoon, en route to Cincinnati. On alighting from the cars they formed in line, and, headed by the Germania Band, marched through some of the principal streets. Their passage through the city attracted large crowds, and their fine, soldierly appearance, and the order with which they marched was the subject of universal commendation. The crowds upon the sidewalks cheered them lustily as they passed, and ladies waved their handkerchiefs from windows and balconies. They bore with them the magnificent flag whjch was presented by the ladies of Ionia, and also the regimental colors.

After marching through the city, they returned to the Milwaukee dock, where, through the liberality of our citizens, an ample collation had been spread for them. Sandwiches, cakes, coffee and fruit, in generous abundance, constituted the bill of fare. After fully supplying the wants of the inner man, and resting an hour, they marched on board the steamer Morning Star which was to convey them to Cleveland.

The regiment certainly made a fine appearance, and is deserving of all that may be said in its favor. It is well-equipped and its rank and file is composed of the sturdy yeomanry of central and Western Michigan, who will give a good account of themselves wherever they may be. The reputation of the old Michigan Third regiment is sufficient proof of what kind of men Ionia, Kent, Barry and the northern counties produce. We have no fears that this reputation will suffer at the hands of the Twenty-first.

It is believed that the appointment of the officers has been made on the score of merit alone. Col. Stevens was Lieutenant Colonel of the old Third, and a more brave and efficient officer does not exist. His appointment to the command of this regiment was well deserved, as is shown by his already valuable services in the field. In the recent battles in Virginia he distinguished himself as a brave soldier and skillful officer, having command of the regiment for a time, the colonel [Stephen Champlin] being severely wounded and carried from the field. He was highly esteemed by both officers and men, who bear testimony to his sterling qualities as a gentleman and soldier. Under his leadership there can be no doubt that the Twenty-first will do credit to themselves and the State, when an opportunity shall occur for a display of their fighting qualities.

Shortly after arriving in Kentucky the Twenty-first was engaged in the pursuit of General Bragg to Crab Orchard, Kentucky from October 1-16, and participated in battle for Perryville on October 8. Stevens was wounded slightly on October 5, 1862, (reportedly at Perryville).

George was mustered out on June 8, 1865, in Washington, DC.

He eventually returned to Michigan, probably to Pewamo where by 1870 he was working as a laborer for and/or living with the Bissell family. By 1880 working as a servant for and living with the Lafayette Trask family in Pewamo, or he may have been working as a carpenter and living with the William Matthews family in Odessa, Ionia County. He eventually moved north to Benzie County and for some years worked as a farmer in the vicinity of Frankfort, Crystal Lake Township. He was living in Crystal Lake in 1890 and in Frankfort when he was admitted as a married man to the Michigan soldier’s Home in Grand Rapids, Kent County, on December 21, 1906 (no. 4898).

He was married to a woman named Mary L.

He was still living in Michigan in 1891 when he applied for and received a pension (no. 886431), for his service in both the Third and Twenty-first regiments. George was a Protestant.

George was living at the Home when he died of uremic poisoning at 8:00 pm, on June 4, 1910, and the funeral was held at 2:30 pm on June 7, in the Home chapel; they were reportedly no relatives in attendance. He was buried on June 8 in the Home cemetery: section 5, row 7, grave 5.

Although his death certificate listed him as a widower, in fact immediately aftere his death George’s widow, Mary L. Phillips, who was residing in Michigan, applied for and received a pension (no. 734578).

Thursday, March 25, 2010

George W. Phillips (older)

George W. Phillips was born on April 27, 1821, in New York, probably the son of Westcot (b. 1792) and Hannah (b. 1795).

George married Pennsylvania native Margaret (b. 1827) and they had at least four children: Susan M. (b. 1845), John W. (b. 1849), William (b. 1864) and Dollie (b. 1866).

George and Margaret were living in Pennsylvania in 1845 when their daughter was born, but by 1849 had settled in Michigan. By 1850 George was working as a shoemaker living in Berlin (Saranac), Ionia County, with his wife and two children; next door lived another shoemaker, Westcot Phillips and his wife Hannah. By 1860 George was working as a farmer and shoemaker living in Berlin (Saranac), Ionia County.

At some point George was elected or appointed Second Lieutenant of the Boston Light Guards, the prewar militia company in Ionia County whose members formed the nucleus of Company D (commanded by Captain Ambrose Stevens, also from Ionia County and who would become Lieutenant Colonel of the Third Michigan infantry).

George was 40 years old when he enlisted as Second Lieutenant in Company D on May 13, 1861. (Company D was composed in large part of men who came from western Ionia County and Eaton County.) There was also another George W. Phillips, age 20 from Gratiot or Ionia County who also enlisted in Company D. (He would eventually transfer to or reenter the service in the Twenty-first Michigan infantry, commanded by Colonel Ambrose Stevens. Stevens had been Lieutenant Colonel of the Third Michigan infantry and before the war had served as commander of the local militia from Ionia County.)

Lieutenant George Phillips resigned on account of chronic diarrhea on July 29, 1861.

Upon his return to Ionia County George apparently caused some antagonism between himself and at least one of his former comrades in Company D. On August 11, 1861, Hiel P. Clark of Company D, and also from Ionia County, wrote home and alluded in his letter to something he had been told by a family member in a previous letter regarding Phillips. At the end of his letter Clark says “that story of George Phillips is a lie; he has told some of the biggest lies since he got back that ever any man told, and not one truth.”

It appears that George reentered the service as a Sergeant in Company B, Third Reorganized Michigan infantry on September 1, 1864, for 3 years, and was mustered the same day, crediting Muskegon, Muskegon County.

He eventually returned to Michigan. By 1870 he and Margaret and their two younger children, William and Dollie were living on a farm in New Haven, Gratiot County in 1870. By 1880 George and Margaret were divorced; he was working as a shoemaker and living in Saranac, Ionia County in 1880; also living with George were his parents Hannah and Westcot as well as two children: William and Dollie, while Margaret was also listed as living in Saranac in 1880. George W. eventually settled in Gratiot County – possibly to be near his son William – and was living in Sumner, Gratiot County in 1890 and 1894. In 1920 George was working as a “cobbler” and living as a widower (?) and listed as the head of the household, in Sumner, Gratiot County; next door is his son (?) William and his family.

George was living in Michigan in 1889 when he applied for and received a pension (no. 844758), for service in both organizations of the Third Michigan infantry.

George died in Sumner on September 22, 1905, and was reportedly buried in Sumner cemetery. (Also buried there is one Emma Phillips, 1866-1922, listed as “Mother.”)

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Esquire Chase Phillips

Esquire Chase Phillips was born on September 21, 1833, in Newfane, Niagara County, New York, the son of Abram or Abraham (1796-1866) and Betsey (Swarthout, 1796-1846).

According to one Grand Rapids historian, Esquire or “Chase” came “from a warlike family, his grandfather having fought in the Revolution, and his father in the war of 1812.” In any case, both of his parents were born in New York and were married around 1820, probably in New York. They eventually settled in Newfane, Niagara County, New York (where Abram died in 1866).

By 1850 “Chase” was working as a farmer and living with his family in Newfane, New York where his father, who had apparently remarried a New York woman named Sarah (b. 1810) owned and operated a very large farm in Newfane.

According to one source, that same year “Chase” went to Fort Wayne, Indiana and worked on the Wabash, St. Louis & Pacific railroad in the run between Fort Wayne and Toledo. After working on the railroad for some three years, he returned home to Newfane in 1853 where he spent one year, and in about 1854 he moved to Grand Rapids where he took up the carpenter’s trade. “After working a reasonable time as a journeyman,” Kent County historian Bowen wrote, “he was employed 1 year as foreman at Saddlebag Swamp by the D & M. Railroad company, and afterward returned to work in the city, where his ability and industry had previously been so generously recognized.”

Esquire married Michigan native Mary Hall (1839-1911) on November 14, 1858, in Grand Rapids, and they had at least six children: Susan M. (b. 1859), George B. (1861-1943), Frank (b. 1867), Ella M. (b. 1871), Cora Dell (1874-1895) and (possibly) Edwin (1882).

In early 1859 Esquire went to Denver, Colorado, but soon returned to Grand Rapids. In October of 1859 he became a member of the Grand Rapids Light Artillery, under the command of Captain Baker Borden. (Many of men who were active in the GRLA would enlist in Company B, which was also under the command of Baker Borden.)

By 1860 he was apparently living on the north side of Fourth Street between West Division (possibly present-day Fulton) and Stocking Streets on the west side of the Grand River in Grand Rapids.

Chase stood 5’6” with blue eyes, dark hair and a dark complexion and was 27 years old and probably working as a carpenter in Grand Rapids when he enlisted in Company B on May 13, 1861. He was apparently a sufferer of asthma, which, according to Captain Fred Shriver of Company B, had “troubled” him for some eights years. Shriver wrote in Chase’s discharge paper on October 23, 1861, that “during which time he has done but little work at his trade. He is unable to lie down at night to sleep [and] he is obliged to sleep in a sitting posture.” Phillips was discharged for asthma on November 6, 1861, at Fort Lyon, Virginia.

He returned to Grand Rapids where he soon reentered the service in Company B, First Michigan Engineers and Mechanics (also under the command of Captain Baker Borden who had left the Third Michigan) on December 12, 1861, at Grand Rapids for 3 years, and was mustered December 23 at Louisville, Kentucky, listing Grand Rapids as his residence. The regiment was organized at Marshall, Calhoun County on September 12, 1861 and left Michigan for Louisville, Kentucky on December 17 and was broken into at least three detachments almost immediately. Company B was probably on duty at Green River, Kentucky, building storehouses, fortifications, etc., until February of 1862 when it and the regiment advanced to Bowling Green, Kentucky and then advanced on to Nashville, Tennesse February 14-28. The regiment was Engaged in building railroad bridges at Franklin, Columbia, Murfreesboro, etc., till April. The regiment then Companies moved to Shiloh, Tennessee, April 3-15, and was engaged in building bridges and repairing roads. Regiment engaged in advance on and siege of Corinth, Miss., April 29-May 30. Skirmish near Corinth May 9. Buell’s Campaign on line of the Memphis & Charleston Railroad in Northern Alabama and Middle Tennessee June to August, building bridges, repairing railroad, etc. At Huntsville, Ala., and building bridges, repairing track and running trains on the Tennessee & Alabama Railroad and the Memphis & Charleston Railroad till August.

Companies “A,” “B,” “D,” “G” and “H” moved to Nashville, Tenn., August 20-22, and building bridges on the Louisville & Nashville Railroad till September 16. March in advance of the Army to Louisville, KY., September 16-26. Pursuit of Bragg into Kentucky October 1-22. Battle of Perryville October 8 (Cos. “A,” “C” and “H). March to Nashville, Tenn., October 22-November 7, and tg Mill, Creek, near Nashville, November 22. Duty there till December 31. BattIe Of Stone River December 31, 1862, and January 1-3, 1863. Lavergne January I, 1863. Repulse of Forest’s attack. Duty at Lavergne, Murfreesboro, etc., till June 29 building bridges, magazines, repairing railroad and other engineering work. Repairing line of the Nashville & Chattanooga Railroad from Murfreesboro to Bridgeport, Ala., till September of 1863. The regiment was on engineering duty in the vicinity of Chattanooga through the winte rof 1863-64.

Esquire was a Sergeant, possibly Orderly Sergeant for the company, and discharged for disability (possibly asthma) on February 9, 1864, at Chattanooga, Tennessee.

After his discharge Phillips remained for some time in Nashville, Tennessee working for the federal government, but soon returned to Grand Rapids and from 1865 to 1866 he was working as a carpenter for Wheeler, Borden & Co., in a sash, door and blind factory, and living at 104 Fourth Street on the west side of the Grand River. (The company was co-owned by Baker Borden.)

In 1867 to 1868 he was a mechanic for Wheeler, Borden & Co., and living on Broadway between Fourth and Fifth Streets on the west side. Sometime around 1869 he bought 56 acres in Walker Township and engaged in fruit growing. In 1870 Esquire was working as a carpenter and living with his wife and three children (and Mary’s younger brother) in Grand Rapids’ Fourth Ward.

(Next door lived another carpenter who worked for Borden and who had also served in Company B, Third Michigan and with Borden in the First E & M, John Lindsey and his family.) By 1880 Chase was working as a farmer and living with his wife and children in Walker, Kent County.

Chase apparently took his fruit trees seriously. In fact, according one story, it was said that not only had “He furnished much of the Michigan fruit display displayed at the Pan-American exposition,” in 1898, but “at the time of his death had placed fruit for exhibition at St. Louis [“Louisiana Purchase”] in cold storage.”

He was also actively involved with the Grand River Valley Horticultural Society, serving as treasurer for some 15 years, and also active in local educational affairs, serving as “moderator” of school district no. 7, on West Bridge Street. Chase was Justice of the Peace for four years and also a vice-president of the Durfee Embalming fluid company on the west side. He became a member of the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association in 1885, was a member as well of the Grand Army of the Republic Champlin post no. 29 in Grand Rapids and also a Freemason, a Granger, a member of the Old Settlers Society. In 1889 he applied for and received a pension (no. 834034).

In 1890 Chase was living at 183 Stocking in Walker where he was suffering from inflammation of the lungs, and, according to Bowen, “His residence [in Walker] is on a commanding site at the west end of the city, and for this ‘West Side’ he has done more than any one else, in spite of strenuous antagonism toward its improvement -- such as securing the extension of street sewers and the extension of grading, etc., and the consequent enhancement of the value of the property.”

He lived his entire postwar life in the Grand Rapids area.

He died at his home in Grand Rapids, 690 Fourth Street (west side), at 2:15 p.m. on Sunday January 3, 1904, and the funeral was held at Durfee’s chapel. He was buried in Fulton cemetery: section 5 lot 7.

In February of 1904 his widow applied for and received a pension (no. 592460).

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Alfred Pew

Alfred Pew, also known as “Pugh,” was born on April 6, 1839 in New York City, New York, the son of George (b. 1798) and Mary (Aldrich or Aldridge, b. 1805).

George and Mary were married in 1825 in Cheltenham, Gloucester, England, where they resided for some years. In August of 1832 George, a carpenter by trade and his wife and several children arrived in New York City on board the brig John and Margaret, which they had taken from London, England. They eventually settled in New York City. Alfred’s family left New York City sometime after 1840 and by 1850 were reportedly living in Rochester, New York. The family eventually pushed on to Michigan settling in Grand Rapids, Kent County.

Alfred was living in Grand Rapids by September of 1855 when he became a member of the Grand Rapids Light Artillery, first under the command of Captain Lucius Patterson and then Captain Baker Borden. (Many of the men who were active in the GRLA would enlist in Company B, which was also under the command of Baker Borden.)

By 1859-60 Alfred was living on the east side of Turner between First and Second Streets on the west side of the Grand River in Grand Rapids, and in 1860 he was listed as a painter and furniture finisher living with his older brother George H. and his wife in Grand Rapids’ Fourth Ward.

On May 22, 1861 Alfred married New York native Lucy Amelia Foote (1837-1920) in Grand Rapids (she was the sister of Allen Foote who would also enlist in Company B), and they had at least three children: Lillie (b. 1865, Mrs. Alvin Dings?),Della Antinetta (b. 1867, Mrs. Harlow Rice). And Frederick W. (b. 1871).

Alfred was 22 years old, stood 5’5” with gray eyes, light hair and a light complexion and residing in Grand Rapids when he enlisted as Third Sergeant in Company B on May 13, 1861. He was promoted to Second Lieutenant in July of 1862, commissioned May 21, replacing Lieutenant John Lindsey, was reported “present in his quarters” in July, and promoted to First Lieutenant on October 27, commissioned October 20, 1862, re-mustered on May 27, 1863, at camp near Falmouth, Virginia, to date October 27, 1862, replacing Lieutenant Fred Stow. From Edward’s Ferry, Maryland, Alfred wrote to “Friend Reuben” Randall, formerly of Company B, on October 14, 1862.

I received your letter Sunday morning before daylight between here and Washington. I am glad you arrived safe home and I presume before this time you have seen my wife. I rec’d one from her with yours. She said she had not seen you yet. Well, Rub, we have left the sacred soil of Virginia to try our luck in Maryland. We left camp Saturday morning at 4 o’clock, it rained like buzz all night and the roads were muddy. We crossed the Chain Bridge and took the road up the river over hills and valleys. We had a pretty hard march that day. The men had to carry their knapsacks, which they did not fancy much. We marched until after dark, then camped for the night. Resumed our march the next morning [at] 6 a.m. and arrived here about 8 p.m. It was raining too and did all night. We camped here. There is a new regt here. There is also a new regt added to our brigade – the 17th Maine so we have 7 regiments now. Ball’s Bluff is about 3 miles form here and Leesburg is 2 miles from the river.

Opposite us on the other side, there they say the rebels are in force. We may have a job one of these days of cleaning them out over there, that is if we are able, but they need not get up every night on my account, but if they do, I suppose I shall have to have a hand in. Lieut. [Fred Stow] is sick. He went to Washington so I am all alone with the Company, but I get along about as well and sometimes I think better than if either of the other two were here. It is a splendid country around here, you can look for miles around on cleared fields, a grand place for a cavalry charge. We expected to have a fight with Stuart’s cavalry that crossed a few days ago and went into Pennsylvania and stole horses and cattle. They crossed between here and Harper’s Ferry. Poolville is about 1 1/2 miles from here back from the river. Well I believe I have told you all the news now so will close. The boys are all well, as usual and send their respects, hoping this will find you well. I now bid you good day, and remain your friend as ever. Lieut. A. Pew.

I shall be glad at anytime to receive a letter from you and will endeavor to reply . . . if you will write.

Alfred was a witness at the court martial of Lieutenant James Bennett, also of Company B, in May of 1863.

Alfred was reported absent sick in Philadelphia from June 11, 1863, through August – in fact he was admitted on June 14 to Prince Street General Hospital in Alexandria, Virginia, suffering from an abscess of the axilla, and transferred on June 15 to the Seminary hospital in Georgetown, and on June 26 was transferred to admitted to the Officers’ General Hospital, Department of Pennsulvania, in Philadelphia. The abscess was openedand by July 21 had healed, but he was suffering from eczema on his elbows and other joints. He was returned to duty on September 3, 1863. Alfred was on detached service in Michigan from December 23, probably recruiting for the Regiment, and was promoted to Captain on January 15, 1864, commissioned November 1, 1863. Alfred was wounded in the head on or about May 5, 1864, at the Battle of the Wilderness. (This was substantiated by Col. Byron Pierce.) He claimed later that he was treated in a field hospital by regimental surgeon Dr. James Grove. He was mustered out on June 20, 1864, at Detroit.

After the war Alfred returned to Grand Rapids where he was possibly worked for W. T. Powers as a finisher in 1865-66, but eventually wen to work for Nelson Mather (?) & Co., furniture manufacturers in Grand Rapids. By 1870 he was working as a furniture refinisher (he owned some $3500 worth of real estate) and living in Grand Rapids’ Fourth Ward with his wife and two daughters; also living with them were two of his wife’s family members as well.

Around 1876 or 1877 Alfred moved to Goshen, Indiana and went to work with the Hawks furniture Co. as supervisor of their finishing works. In about 1883 he moved to Grand Island, Hall County, Nebraska, where he was living in 1885 in the house, sign and paper hanging business. He was apparently living in Milwaukee, Wisconsin in 1889 and again in 1891 but listed as “temporarily” residing at Takoma Park, DC. By 1892 he was living at 223 D Street NW in Washington. He was still living in Washington in 1893 and in August of 1895 he was working as a “watchman” at the Bureau of Pensions in Washington and living at 1369 F Street NE; by June of 1898 he was probably residing at 1315 F Street NE in Washington.

By April of 1909 he was living at 738 Cedar Avenue in Long Beach, California. According to his wife, Alfred suffered a “stroke of paralysis” on April 21, 1909. and he was unable to read or write.

In 1888 Alfred applied for and received a pension (no. 322100), drawing $15.00 per month by 1909.

Alfred died on December 12, 1909, in Grand Island, Hall County, Nebraska and was buried on Grand Island cemetery. According to his wife, he died on Sunday morning at about 10:00 am, “sitting in his chair, closed his eyes and just went to sleep, without moving a muscle. His ‘Father’ called him & he went home.”

Lucy also received a pension (no. 703652). In 1916 she was living in Wayne, Michigan, and in 1919 she was living in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, but by 1920 she was living with her daughter Lillie and her husband in Centralia, Lewis County, Washington.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Louis Petit

Louis Petit was born in 1839 in New York, the son of Reuben (b. 1807-1892) and Sally (b. 1805) or Sarah.

New Yorker Reuben married Vermont-born Sally and they settled in New York. Reuben was living in Farmington, Ontario County, New York in 1820 and in Yates, Orleans County, New York in 1840. By 1850 Reuben had settled his family in Somerset, Niagara County, New York, where Reuben worked as a cradlemaker. Reuben moved his family on to Michigan and by 1860 Lewis (or Loius) was a farmer living with his family in Saranac, Ionia County.

Louis was 22 years old and probably still living in Ionia County when he enlisted in Company D on May 13, 1861. He was taken sick in the fall of 1861 and admitted to the hospital at Annapolis, Maryland, on November 3, 1861. He eventually recovered, was returned to duty and wounded on May 31, 1862, at Fair Oaks, Virginia. He was hospitalized through September, returned to the Regiment and had been promoted to Corporal by the time he was again wounded, this time in both hips, on May 3, 1863, at Chancellorsville, Virginia; he received the Kearny Cross for his participation in that battle. Lewis was hospitalized through September when he was sent home on furlough to Michigan, and he remained absent wounded until he was was transferred to the Veterans’ Reserve Corps on December 6, 1863, February 10 or 15, 1864, or May 4, 1864, at Washington, DC.

After he was discharged from the army Louis returned to Michigan, probably back to his parents home in Ionia County.

He married Ohio native Louisa (b. 1849) and they had at least three children: Wilber (b. 1871), Eddie (b. 1874) and Frank (b. 1878).

By 1870 Louis was working as a farm laborer and living with his wife and son in Berlin (Saranac), Ionia County, next door to his parents’ farm (his father owned some $2200 worth of real estate). Louis eventually moved his family to Kent County, settling in Grand Rapids where he worked for some years as a farmer. He was living in Grand Rapids in 1879 and by 1880 Louis was working as a carpenter and living with his wife and three sons in Grand Rapids’ Seventh Ward. He was living in Grand Rapids in 1883, 1885, in 1890.

Louis became a member of the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association in 1879. In 1867 he applied for and received pension no. is 87,111, drawing $4.00 per month in 1883 for a wound in both buttocks. He may at one time have been a member of Grand Army of the Republic Sanborn post no. 98 in Port Huron, St. Clair County.

On July 3, 1893, Louis was admitted to the Michigan Soldiers’ Home (no. 1937), where he died of chronic bronchitis on November 14, 1900, and was buried in Greenwood cemetery: section F, lot 35. His wife was living at 260 Seventh Street in Grand Rapids when he died.

In 1901 an application for minor child pension was filed and granted on behalf of at least one of Lewis’ children (no. 514334).

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Theodore F. Peterson - update 8/29/2016

Theodore F. Peterson was born in 1844 in Michigan, the son of John G. (1807-1863) and Jane Ann (b. 1809)

John left his home in New York and moved west, eventually settling in Michigan where he married Jane sometime before 1834. By 1850 Theodore was attending school with his two older brothers and living in Ann Arbor, Washtenaw County where his father worked as a carpenter. By 1860 Theodore was a farm laborer living with his family in Ada, Kent County, where his father worked as a carpenter.

Theodore was 17 years old and probably still living in Ada when he enlisted with his parents’ consent in Company A on May 13, 1861. Theodore was described by George Miller of Company A, a tentmate in the winter of 1861-62, as “a very wild boy, but good hearted.” He was wounded in the shoulder on August 29, 1862, at Second Bull Run, and hospitalized soon afterwards. He was eventually transferred to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and by late July of 1863 was in the Christian Street hospital in Philadelphia, “wounded in the shoulder severely, but doing pretty well.”

However he died of pneumonia on August 22, 1863, at West Philadelphia hospital, Philadelphia, and was buried in Philadelphia National Cemetery: section B, grave 10.

His family’s suffering did not stop with Theodore’s death, however. In late October of 1863, the Grand Rapids Eagle reported the death of his father John on October 10; the funeral to be held in Ada on October 17.

Our readers will remember [wrote the Eagle on November 11] that a article appeared in our columns a few weeks since, announcing the death, in this city, of John G. Peterson, Esq. of Ada. Mr. Peterson was a highly esteemed citizen -- a most affectionate father, and a true and loyal man who had contributed one son, Theodore F. to company A, of the Third Regiment of Michigan Infantry, and who was severely wounded in one of the battles in the Peninsular campaign, and died in hospital in Philadelphia, some months afterward. Lately, another son, Albert C. of company L, Eighth Michigan Cavalry, also died at Bowling Green, Kentucky. While Albert lay very ill, his father made a trip to Kentucky to see him, and, if possible, to try and bring him home, but alas! when he arrived, Albert had been dead two days. This bereavement, added to his former one, so wrought upon the father, mentally and bodily, that on his return home, he was prostrated with congestive fever, and for prompt medical treatment was removed to the residence of a relative, Mr. Edwin Cox, in this city, where every attention that kindly care and competent physicians could give were bestowed upon him, but without effect, and he departed this life, his last words being those of hope and encouragement for his country.

The following testimonial to his son Albert, was sent with him to the hospital, and we publish it as an honorable record to a noble soldier [dated at the headquarters of the Eighth Michigan cavalry, Camp Sterling, Kentucky, August 15, 1863]: “We, the officers of company L, do certify, that Corporal Albert C. Peterson, has been compelled through disability, and against his wishes to go into the Army Hospital. Ever since he entered the service, he has been afflicted with hemorrhage of the lungs, and at times, it seemed almost impossible for him to attend to his duties. He has shown a determination to remain in service, worthy of a true soldier. He has performed his duty, when others, had they been in his situation, would have been placed on the sick list. He had marched until he had almost fell from his horse, when attacked with disease. He has at all times exhibited true bravery, and pure patriotism; was always in the front when there was a prospect of a skirmish. A truer, braver soldier never enlisted in his country's cause. It is with deep regret that we part with him. Let every true lover of our brave soldiers, respect and honor him.”

The foregoing was signed by Charles C. Lamb, Captain; Nate S. Boynton, 1st Lieutenant; Aaron L. Abbey, 2nd Lieutenant; to which Major Mix, commanding 3rd Battery and G. S. Warner, Lieutenant Colonel commanding Regiment, add: “We cheerfully endorse the statement of his officers, and we have known him ever since he joined the Regiment, and we are confident his officers cannot speak too highly of him.”

Another brother is in the service, in a Texan or Missouri Regiment.

Mrs. Peterson has had a treble loss -- two favorite sons, and a husband within the year, laid upon the altar of our country.

In 1871 his widowed mother Jane applied for and received a pension (no. 156004).


Saturday, March 20, 2010

Silas S. Perry

Silas S. Perry was born in 1840.

Silas stood 5’11” with blue eyes, light hair and a light complexion and was a 21-year-old mechanic probably living in Shiawassee County or Ovid, Clinton County, Michigan, when he enlisted in Company G on May 26, 1861. (He is not found in the 1905 Third Michigan Regimental history, but he is found in the Regimental history for the First Michigan Cavalry.)

He was left sick in Grand Rapids when the Regiment departed for Washington on June 13, 1861, and was subsequently “discharged” on August 21, 1861.

He was transferred from the Third Michigan infantry by authority of Lieutenant Colonel E. Backus, the United States Army mustering officer, as a Private to Company D, First Michigan Cavalry (“Broadhead’s” cavalry) on August 21, 1861 at Ovid, Clinton County, and was mustered on September 7 while the regiment was being organized at Detroit.The regiment left Michigan for Washington on September 29 and was subsequently attached to the Cavalry Brigade, Army of the Potomac to December of 1861.

Silas reenlisted on January 27, 1864, at Washington, DC, crediting and listing Ovid as his place of residence, was presumably absent on veteran’s furlough, possibly in Michigan, in February of 1864 and probably returned to the Regiment on or about the first of March. The regiment participated in the actions around Appomattox Court House and in the surrender of Lee in April of 1865, and in the Grand Review in Washington on May 23. The regiment was then moved to Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, where it participated in the Powder River expedition and operations against the Indians in the District of the Plains and Dakota through the fall of 1865. Silas, however, was listed as absent sick at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, from June 24, 1865, to September, and possibly still absent sick when he was transferred to Company G on November 17, 1865.

It appears that he may have returned to Michigan to recover his health. In any case, he was listed absent sick through February of 1866, and honorably discharged on March 10, 1866, at Detroit.

By 1881 Silas had moved to Texas where he applied for and received a pension (no. 355946).

Silas died on December 21, 1929 at Fort Worth, Texas, and was presumably buried there.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Oliver H. Perry

Oliver H. Perry.

In 1860 there was one Oliver H. Perry, age 38, born in New York, working as a farmer and living with his wife Mary (?) and one child in Plainfield, Kent County.

Oliver may have been living in Chester, Ottawa County or in Kent County, Michigan, when he enlisted in Company K on May 13, 1861. He reportedly deserted on July 23, 1861, at Arlington, Virginia.

There is no further record.

The only other “Oliver H. Perry” found in the Michigan Regimental History Index for the official histories are: Company L, Fifth Michigan Cavalry, age 18, enlisted at Kalamazoo in August of 1862; and Company C, Seventh Michigan Cavalry, age 19, enlisted at East Saginaw in September of 1862. It seems fairly certain that these were definitely two different men as both received separate pensions.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Lewis F. Perkins

Lewis F. Perkins was born on March 27, 1840, in Onondaga County, New York, the son of Erastus (b. 1795) and Sally (b. 1804).

Lewis’s parents were married before 1827, presumably in New York where they lived for many years. By 1850 Erastus was working as a farmer and Lewis was living with his family and attending school with his two younger siblings in Syracuse’s First Ward, Onondaga County, New York. By 1860 Lewis was working as a mechanic and apprentice carpenter living with his older brother Horace and his family in Lyons, Ionia County, Michigan.

Lewis stood 5’5” with black eyes, brown hair and a dark complexion and was 21 years old and probably still living in Ionia County when he enlisted in Company E on May 13, 1861. (During the war his brother Horace would serve as Second Lieutenant in Company D, Twenty-First Michigan infantry and another brother William, would serve as First Lieutenant of Company E, First Michigan Engineers and Mechanics. He was probably related to both E. B. Perkins who served in Co. F, Sixth Michigan H.A. and William H. Perkins who served in Co. D, First Michigan infantry.)

He was wounded in the hand, probably at Fair Oaks, Virginia, on May 31, 1862, and subsequently hospitalized in Judiciary Square in Washington, DC. In early July he was listed as in good health and serving as a nurse. Nevertheless, he remained listed as sick and wounded until he was discharged for consumption on March 12, 1863, at Camp Convalescent, Virginia.

Lewis gave Lyons as his mailing address on his discharge paper, but by 1888 he was living in McBride, Montcalm County. He was still livng in McBride in 1894 and probably lived in McBride for most of his postwar life.

He was married to Eliza (1843-1906).

Lewis was a member of the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association, as well as Grand Army of the Republic McCook post no. 434 in McBride.

In 1888 he applied for and received a pension (no. 547032).

Lewis died a widower of angina pectoris in Richland Township, Montcalm on December 2, 1916, and was buried in McBride cemetery.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Edgar James Perkins - update 8/30/2016

Edgar James Perkins was born March 3, 1846 in Michigan, the son of Noah (1823-1862) and Elizabeth (1825-1846).

Noah moved his family from New York to Michigan sometime before 1846, and by 1850 had settled on a farm in Adrian, Lenawee County. In April of 1850 Noah remarried to New York native Ellen Turner (1827-1897) in Adrian, Michigan. By 1860 Edgar James was living with his family in Spring Lake, Ottawa County, where his father was a merchant.

Edgar was 15 years old and probably residing in Spring Lake when he enlisted in Company A on May 13, 1861. George Miller of Company A and a tentmate in the winter of 1861-61, called him “Ed,” and described Edgar as “a boy of 16 years, large of his age, intelligent and good natured, a first rate fellow.” (In September of 1861 Edgar’s father Noah was living in Mill Point, Ottawa County, when he enlisted as a sergeant in Company D, First Michigan Engineers & mechanics.)

He was killed in action on May 3, 1863, at Chancellorsville, Virginia, and presumably among the unknown soldiers buried at Chancellorsville.

His father had died of disease in March of 1862 at Louisville, Kentucky, and in August of 1863 his stepmother applied for and recieved a dependent widow’s pension (no. 33013). She eventually remarried George Lovell (father of Dan Lovell, formerly of the 3rd Michigan) and in 1867 applied for and received a minor child’s pension (no. 92597).

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

George Howland Pennoyer - update 8/23/2016

George Howland Pennoyer was born in 1821, probably in Groton, Tompkins County, New York, the son of Justus Powers (b. 1796 and d. 1875 in New York) and Elizabeth Howland (b. 1797 and d. 1871 in New York).

In 1820 Justus was living in Groton, Tompkins County, New York.

George left New York and came to western Michigan sometime before the war broke out.

George stood 5’4” with grey eyes and hair and a ruddy complexion and was a 40-year-old farm laborer possibly living in Kent County when he enlisted in Company B on May 13, 1861. (Company B was made up largely of men from Grand Rapids, and many of whom had served in various local militia units before the war, in particular the Grand Rapids Artillery, under Captain Baker Borden, who would also command Company B.) Some years after the war, George claimed that on July 21, 1861, while the Regiment was retreating from the “Bull Run battle he lay upon the ground getting severely wet and taking a severe cold & thereby contracting rheumatism from which he has never recovered, and which disease troubled him more or less during the whole time he was in the [3rd Michigan] Regiment and also during the whole time that he was a member of the First Regiment U.S. Artillery.”

From August 17-27, 1861, George was treated for lumbago, probably in the Regimental hospital, and was sick in his quarters in September and October of 1861. He returned to the regiment in November and was present for duty through June of 1862, except when he was in the Regimental hospital from March 25 to April 3 suffering from tonsillitis.

George was reported missing in action at White Oak Swamp or Malvern Hill, Virginia on July 1, 1862, and in fact had been taken prisoner. He was confined at Richmond, Virginia, paroled at City Point, Virginia, on August 3, and was at Camp Parole, Maryland on October 23 and sent to Alexandria, Virginia in November. He reportedly suffered from scorbutus from August 6 until October 8, and from chronic diarrhea in late November. He returned to the Regiment on December 20, 1862, at Camp Pitcher, Virginia, and was suffering from intermittent fever from January 4 to 8, 1863.

George was sufficiently recovered from the fever to be transferred on February 13, 1863 to Battery H, 1st U.S. Artillery at Camp Pitcher (near Falmouth, Virginia), and was probably absent sick from April until May suffering from diarrhea. He returned to duty and “while a member of” this Regiment “while in the line of duty at camp near Fairfax Courthouse” sometime in May of 1863 “he strained himself in attempting to mount a horse” thus causing “a hernia breech, swelled testicle (or whatever it may be called) upon the left side causing great enlargement and in such shape that it almost entirely hinders [him] from doing any manual labor.” George was sent to a general hospital sometime in mid-May and was mustered out on June 11, 1864, reportedly “in the field,” but probably in Washington, DC.

After his discharge from the army George returned to Tompkins County, New York and eventually settled in Groveton where he was living when he applied for additional army bounty in 1867.

By 1870 he was living in Cortland, Cortland County, New York when he applied for a pension (no. 266540) but the certificate was never granted. By 1880 George was living in the Cortland County Poor House (or insane asylum). In June of 1883 was admitted to the county insane asylum.

George was married twice. First to Electa Cole, whom he divorced in Pennsylvania sometime before 1868, and second to Lydia (or Libbie) McNish (d. 1924) on August 8, 1868 at Waverly, New York, and they had at least one child.

George commited suicide on January 15, 1884 in “Cortlandville,” New York. According to his obituary:

George Pennoyer of South Cortland, who has been an inmate of the county Insane Asylum since June 1st, committed suicide by hanging last Saturday night. When Warden Hillsinger made his usual rounds on Saturday night, everything was quiet and Pennoyer occupied his usual quarters. On Sunday morning he was found hanging in his cell. He had tied one end of some bed clothing to the grating over the transom by his cell, and fastening the other end about his neck and so accomplished his purpose. He was sixty-four years of age and leaves a wife and one child. 

He was buried at Groton on Wednesday. He had been an inmate of the institution for a few months in the summer of 1880. George was buried with his parents in Groton Rural Cemetery, Groton: Section E, lots 7 and 10.

His widow remarried in 1885 to Alfred Seamen, but was either divorced or widowed again by 1905 when she applied for and received a pension (no. 890,995).

Monday, March 15, 2010

Timothy Pendergast

Timothy Pendergast was born in 1838 in London, Ontario, Canada.

Timothy left Canada and had settled in western Michigan by the time war had broken out.

He stood 5’10” with blue eyes, light hair and a light complexion and was 23 years old and probably working as a bricklayer in Barry County when he enlisted in Company F on May 13, 1861. He was eventually detached as a teamster and was serving in the Brigade trains in October of 1862, and driving an ammunition train from November through January of 1863. On May 2, 1863, during the early action at Chancellorsville, Virginia, Timothy was shot in the right side of his head

by a round ball which struck him on the right side of the OS frontis, about an inch and a half anterior to the coronal structure, fracturing both tables of the bone. Patient states that he was insensible for a long time, but finally recovered himself so far s to be able to walk to the field hospital where the surgeon extracted the ball. He entered this hospital [St. Mary’s in Detroit] Aug. 3d, wound in a bad condition -- the probe revealing necrosed bone, an operation was deemed necessary. The patient was accordingly placed under the influence of chloroform, and the wounded surface of the cranium exposed by making two incisions at right angles, and dissecting away the flaps, a necrosed ring of bone was then removed completely encircling the original wound, 1/4 inch in width . . . so that the dura-mater was exposed for a space as large as a half dollar. The wound was properly dressed, gave the patient but little trouble, and is now nearly well.

He returned to the Regiment on October 26, 1863, was detached in November to bring conscripts from Michigan and discharged on November 12 at Detroit, by reason of the gunshot wound to the frontal bone on the right side of the head and neuralgia.

On November 28, 1863, Timothy applied for and received a pension (no. 23692).

Timothy gave his mailing address on his discharge paper as Grand Rapids. He may have been the same Timothy "Pender" who was living in Detroit’s Fourth Ward in 1870. In any case by 1888 he was living in Detroit, and two years later he was residing at 181 Aubin Street in Detroit. He was residing in Detroit’s Ninth ward by 1894.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Albert C., Alfred, Andrew Jackson, Samuel and Silas M. Pelton

Albert C. Pelton was born on May 30, 1843, in Grand Rapids, Michigan or Canada, the son of Silas (1819-1899) and Elizabeth (1823-1904).

Silas left Canada and moved to Michigan along with several of his other family members. He was married to Canada native Elizabeth Anderson (1823-1904) on January 14, 1840, in Grand Rapids. In 1850 Albert was living in Grand Rapids with his family, and by 1860 he was working as a lumberman and living with his father and living with his family in Grand Rapids’ Fourth Ward.

Albert stood 5’0” with hazel eyes, brown hair and a light complexion and was 17 years old and probably still living in Grand Rapids when he enlisted with his parents’ consent in Company A on May 13, 1861. (His father Silas enlisted in Company B. Albert was probably the nephew of Alfred and the cousin of Samuel and may have been related to Andrew Pelton.)

He was shot accidentally in the foot while cleaning his rifle in August of 1861, but the wound was not serious and he eventually returned to duty. He was an ambulance driver and Corporal in July of 1862, and discharged on December 26, 1862, at Camp Pitcher, Virginia, for a varicocele of four months’ standing.

After his discharge from the army Albert returned to Grand Rapids, and from 1867 to 1868 was working as a laborer and boarding at his father’s home on the southwest corner of Lincoln and Third Streets.

He was apparently working as a painter and Living in Hopkins, Allegan County, when he married Michigan native Mary W. Brewer (1857-1931) on December 31, 1875, in Hopkins, and they had one child: a daughter Edna (b. 1876).

Albert was possibly working as a farmer when he died in Hopkins on April 21, 1876, and was originally buried in Allegan County.

His parents had the body disinterred several days later and brought back to Grand Rapids where it was interred in Fulton cemetery: block 3 lot 21 grave 3.

Mary received a widow’s pension no. 887,963.

Although Albert apparently never joined the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association, his widow eventually became an honorary member. Mary remarried one Roderick Phillips, in 1878, and by 1880 they were living in Hopkins, Allegan County. They divorced in 1902. By 1917 she was living in Rolette, North Dakota.

Alfred Pelton was born on April or May 24, 1841, in Blenheim, Oxford County, Ontario, Canada, the son (or grandson) of James (1791-1851) and Anna (Doyle, b. 1790).

James left his home in Grand Isle County, Vermont and moved to Canada where in 1813 he married Anna at her home in Buford, Oxford County, Ontario. They lived in Buford for several years before moving to Batavia, New York residing there briefly before returning to Canada and settling in Blenheim, Oxford County, Ontario where they resided for many years.

Alfred eventually left Canada and moved to Michigan, eventually settling in Grand Rapids, Kent County along with at least two of his siblings (or uncles), Aldrich and Silas.

Alfred stood 5’5” with black eyes, dark hair and a dark complexion and was a 20-year-old farmer probably living in Grand Rapids when he enlisted with the consent of the Justice of the Peace in Company K on May 13, 1861. (He was the uncle or cousin to Andrew Pelton who also enlisted in Company K, brother or nephew of Silas Pelton who enlisted in Company B and uncle or cousin to Albert Silas’ boy as well as the uncle of Samuel Pelton who would enlist in Company I in 1864.)

Alfred was probably wounded slightly in the head on August 29, 1862, at Second Bull Run, and by the second week of September he was in Wolf Street hospital in Alexandria, Virginia. (He claimed in 1887 that he had been Sergeant of the company in late 1862.) Alfred eventually returned to duty and reenlisted on December 24, 1863, at Brandy Station, Virginia, crediting Cannon, Kent County. He was absent on veteran’s furlough in January of 1864 and probably returned to the Regiment on or about the first of February.

Alfred was reported absent sick in the hospital in March Or probably just late April) of 1864, suffering from Intermittent fever. He eventually returned to duty and was shot in the right arm on May 12, 1864, at Spotsylvania, Virginia. He was hospitalized soon afterwards and was still absent sick when he was transferred as a Sergeant to Company I, Fifth Michigan infantry upon consolidation of the Third and Fifth Michigan Regiments on June 10, 1864. He remained absent wounded through October and probably until he was discharged on January 15, 1865, in the field near Petersburg, Virginia, for a gunshot wound of the right arm causing a loss of “motion of the limb and he is unable to use a musket.”

After his discharge from the army Alfred returned to Grand Rapids and was working as a farmer in Gaines, Kent County when he married Grand Rapids native Eliza J. Dennis (1843-1927) on August 28, 1868, at Grand Rapids. They had at least five children: Viola (1869-1956), Mabel (1871-1956), Aldrich “Aud” (1875-1904), Agnes (b. 1878), Clarence (1882-1901) and Leota. (Andrew pelton was also from Gaines Township.)

By 1880 Alfred was working as a farmer and living with his wife and children in Byron Township, Kent County. He was residing in Ross, Byron Township, by December of 1883 when he became a member of the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association, as did his son Aldrich (named for Alfred’s brother), and in fact, he probably lived in Ross for the rest of his life. In 1883 Alfred was drawing $12.00 per month for a wounded right arm (pension no. 51,891). He attended the excursion to Gettysburg for the dedication of the Michigan monuments in 1889, and he was living in Ross in 1890 suffering, he claimed, from the effects of a gunshot wound to his left arm, left hip and back of the head (although he had been reportedly been wounded in the right side). He was possibly living in Dorr, Allegan County, in the early 1890s.

His health gradually declined and he was seriously injured in the spring of 1893. According to Alonzo Green of Byron Center, on or about April 11, 1893, Alfred came to Green’s warehouse to pick up some flour “and while loading” his goods “the team attached to the wagon started forward then backed up as’ Alfred “was standing in the wagon back of the high backed seat” and “the movement threw [him] upon the seat causing severe injury to his injured right arm causing him to fall dow[n] fainting upon the bottom of the wagon box.”

Alfred never recovered from his fall. He died of myocarditis, noted by his attending physician as a result of “wounds received in the war,” in Ross on April 20, 1893. He was buried in Jones cemetery, Dorr, but subsequently removed to Oak Hill cemetery: section A lot 87.

During the business meeting at the 26th annual reunion of the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association in December of 1897, the case of the widow of Alfred Pelton was discussed.

She claimed to have been “beaten” out of her pension by a “foolish petition of physician and judge,” and the association strongly recommended that someone assist her. It is unknown if anyone in the Association did in fact help her, although eventually she did apply for and receive a pension (no. 577050), drawing $30 per month by 1927. Subsequently, there was also a pension application (no. 678,195,) submitted on behalf of a minor child but the certificate was never granted. By late 1927 Eliza was living in Byron Center, Kent County.

Andrew Jackson Pelton was born on May 18, 1842, in Leighton, Allegan County, Michigan, the son of James (1814-1891) and Elizabeth (Hurling, 1814-1878).

James was born in Canada and Elizabeth in New York and by 1839 they had settled in Michigan. By 1850 James was working as a laborer and Andrew (listed as “Jackson” in the census for that year) was attending school with his younger siblings sin Byron, Kent County.

Andrew was 19 years old and living in either Grand Rapids or Plainfield, Kent County when he enlisted in Company K on November 26, 1861, at Grand Rapids for 3 years, and was mustered on December 23 at Detroit. (He was possibly the nephew of Alfred Pelton who also enlisted in Company K and of Silas Pelton who enlisted in Company B; and he was the cousin of Albert and Samuel both of whom would also serve in the Old Third.)

Andrew was reported sick in August of 1862. He eventually returned to duty, however, and reenlisted on December 24, 1863, at Brandy Station, Virginia, crediting Plainfield. He was presumably absent on veteran’s furlough in January of 1864, and probably returned to the Regiment on or about the first of February. “Jack” was wounded in the head on May 6, 1864, at the Wilderness, Virginia, subsequently hospitalized and transferred to Company A, Fifth Michigan infantry upon consolidation of the Third and Fifth Michigan Regiments on June 10, 1864.

On November 1, 1864, the Grand Rapids Eagle wrote that “A letter, full of loyalty to our country and love of the old flag, has just been shown us from A. J. Patton [Pelton], one of the gallant boys of the old Third -- now of the Fifth Mich. Inf., before Petersburg -- in which the writer says, that the soldiers, though hitherto friends of McClellan, will not, standing as he does on the Chicago platform, and being surrounded by the political managers of the so-called Democratic party, support him for president; that all the soldiers who vote at all, will cast their ballots for President Lincoln. We learn, also, from this letter that Truman Gilbert [Freeman Gilbert], a member of the old Third, from Byron Township, died in the rebel prison at Andersonville, Georgia, on the Second day of July last; and that William Prindle, also of the same command, and from the same place, was, when last heard from, lying very low and not expected to recover, a victim to rebel meanness and cruelty, in their treatment of Union prisoners.” “Jack” was reported as a Sergeant on April 1, 1865, and was mustered out on July 5, 1865, at Jeffersonville, Indiana.

“Jack” returned to Michigan after the war and settled in Gaines Township, Kent County.

He married his cousin Canadian native Elizabeth A. Pelton (1846-1935) on June 8, 1867, in Gaines, and they had at least nine children: Marilla J. (b. 1869), Liberty M. (b. 1872), Edith E. (b. 1873), Elrod or Jackson (b. 1876), a son Statie F. (b. 1878), Ruth L. (b. 1880), Charles E. (b. 1882), Emily Lucinda (b. 1886) and James I. (b. 1889). (Elizabeth may very well have been the daughter of Silas Pelton, who had also served in the Old Third.)

By 1870 Andrew who was working as a farmer was living with his wife and child and they were all living with Andrew’s parents James and Elizabeth in Gaines, Kent County. Andrew was working as a farmer and living with his wife and children in Gaines in 1880; also living with them was his father James aas well as an old widower farm laborer named William Herrick who may have also served in the Old Third. He was living in West Carlisle, Gaines Township, in 1890 and 1895, and indeed he may have lived in West Carlisle for most of his postwar life -- although at one point he may have lived briefly in Allegan County.

He was a member of the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association, and his widow would become an honorary member of the Association. He applied for and received a pension (no. 419041).

Andrew joined Grand Army of the Republic Watson post no. 395 in Grand Rapids in 1891, but was suspended in June of 1898.

Andrew died of apoplexy on January 27, 1901, probably at his home in West Carlisle, and was buried in Blain cemetery, Gaines.

His widow subsequently applied for and received a pension (no. 522570). She was residing in Grand Rapids at 2047 Gardner Avenue, in 1916, probably the home of her daughter Marilla Horton.

Samuel E. Pelton was born on July 5, 1848, in Grand Rapids, Kent County, Michigan, the son of Aldrich M. (1822-1895) and Amanda (Gray, 1828-1873).

Canadian born Aldrich married New York native Amanda sometime before 1846 by which time they had settled in Michigan. By 1850 Aldrich had and his family were still living in Grand Rapids where he worked as a carpenter. In 1860 Samuel was attending school with his siblings and living with his family in Walker, Kent County, where his father worked as a carpenter.

Samuel stood 5’6” with black eyes, dark hair and a light complexion and was a 15-year-old farm laborer probably living in Walker, Kent County when he enlisted in Company I on January 23, 1864, at Grand Rapids for 3 years, crediting Walker, and was mustered the same day. (He was the nephew of Silas and Alfred Pelton and the cousin of Albert and was probably related to Andrew.) Samuel joined the Regiment on February 17 at Camp Bullock, Virginia, and was transferred to Company I, Fifth Michigan infantry upon consolidation of the Third and Fifth Michigan Regiments on June 10, 1864.

Samuel was absent sick in July, returned to the Regiment and reportedly wounded severely and captured on October 27, 1864, at Boydton Plank road, near Petersburg, Virginia. In fact, according to Franz Muhlberg, who was then commanding Company I, Samuel “was killed at Hatcher’s Run [near Petersburg, Virginia, on] Oct. 13, 1864, by being shot in [the] right side, and was left on the field. I saw him when he was shot and fell being near him at the time.” He was presumably among the unknown soldiers buried near Petersburg and was possibly reinterred as such in Petersburg National Cemetery.

His father was working as a carpenter (he owned some $9000 worth of real estate) and living in Grand Rapids’ Fifth Ward, Kent County in 1870. He applied for and received a dependent father’s pension (no. 388,348), drawing $10 per month in 1890.

Silas M. Pelton was born on December 28, 1819, in Blenheim, Oxford County, Ontario, Canada, the son of James (1791-1851) and Anna (Doyle, b. 1790).

James left his home in Grand Isle County, Vermont and moved to Canada where in 1813 he married Anna at her home in Buford, Oxford County, Ontario. They lived in Buford for several years before moving to Batavia, New York residing there briefly before returning to Canada and settling in Blenheim, Oxford County, Ontario where they resided for many years.

Silas left Canada and moved to Michigan along with several of his other family members.

He was married to Canada native Elizabeth Anderson (1823-1904) on January 14, 1840, in Grand Rapids, and they had at least ten children: Albert (b. 1843), two daughters, S. A. (b. 1843) and E. E. (b. 1845) -- both of whom may have died young; Sylvia (b. 1846), Francis (b. 1847), William H. (b. 1850), Alice (b. 1852), Cora or Nora (b. 1854), Kitty (b. 1855), Amy W. and Silas H. (b. 1859), Carrie May (b. 1861), Frederick H. 9b. 1869).

Silas and his wife moved to Michigan, probably from Canada, sometime before 1843, and by 1850 (?) he and his family were living in Grand Rapids where he was working as a carpenter, a trade he followed for many years before the war.

He also worked as an architect, and in 1858 he designed the plans for the new engine house for Wolverine fire company no. 3. “Mr. Silas Pelton, architect,” wrote the Grand Rapids Enquirer on May 26, “has shown us a drawing and plan made by him, for an engine house for Wolverine Company No. 3, and, as we believe, accepted by the Company. The plan, it appears to us, could not be improved; and, if constructed according to design, the building will be an ornament to the city. It is to be of brick, with four tasteful plaster columns in front. The estimated cost of the building is $2,500, and the Common Council is asked to appropriate $1,200 of the amount -- the Company and other citizens of the West Side pledging themselves to make up the balance. The Company have a fine lot, and it is to be hoped that their present laudable design may be carried into effect.”

Silas was elected foreman of the Wolverine fire company in May of 1859, superintending some 47 men. In 1859-60 he was working as a carpenter and living on the north side of Bridge Street between Turner and Broadway Streets on the west side of the Grand River, and in 1860 he was listed as a carpenter and builder living with his family in Grand Rapids, Fourth Ward.

In September of 1859 he was elected constable for the Fourth Ward. As Constable, Pelton found himself working frequently with another local officer, George Dodge, who would enlist in Company B. On February 17, 1860, the two officers “arrested four persons who are supposed to be guilty of firing the dwelling house of J. Irwin. The ones arrested are now in jail awaiting examination.”

And on March 24, “Officers Dodge and Pelton brought into town . . . a number of the citizens of Courtland Centre, who are charged with assault and battery on one Chase, of that village. It appears that there is a dispute between said Chase and George W. Bush, in regard to a piece of land. Bush got possession last Fall, and kept it until a few days since, when, being absent for a short time, Chase entered the house, put Bush's furniture out doors, and took possession. The night thereafter, Bush, with three men, returned and broke the door open with an ax and put Mr. Chase and family out.”

In early November Silas suffered a riding accident, but was not seriously hurt. He was out riding on horseback in the country, “some six miles from this city. In crossing a bridge his horse broke through, thus precipitating him to the ground, and fracturing his shoulder to some extent. Dr. Bliss was called, and the fracture dressed. It was not so severe but that Mr. P. was out the next day, with his arm in a sling. He will probably lose the use of his arm for a couple of weeks.”

In 1860 Silas was working as a carpenter and living with his wife and children in Grand Rapids’ Fourth Ward.

Silas was 41 years old and living in Grand Rapids when he enlisted (possibly as Sergeant Major) in Company B on May 13, 1861.

(His son Albert enlisted at the same time in Company A; he was a brother or uncle to Alfred and may also have been related to Andrew --also born in Canada and both of whom enlisted in Company K. Moreover, it seems quite likely that Andrew married his cousin Elizabeth, who was probably the daughter of Silas. Andrew was probably also the uncle of Samuel who would enlist in Company I.)

He was promoted to Sergeant Major on October 30, 1861, and on January 1, 1862, he was promoted to First Lieutenant of Company C, commissioned January 2, replacing Lieutenant Felix Zoll who had resigned. Silas was wounded in the right side of his chest on May 31, 1862, at Fair Oaks, Virginia, the ball “lodging near the lower part of the right shoulder blade. . . .” Although he was reported absent on 30 days’ leave from July 5, in fact he was back home in Grand Rapids by the middle of June, probably recovering from his wounds.

Silas eventually recovered his health and returned to the Regiment. Although he was at first reported missing in action in December of 1862, in fact he was taken prisoner at Fredericksburg, Virginia, on December 13-14, 1862, and by December 20 he was confined in Libby prison in Richmond, Virginia.

It was first believed by his family that Silas died in prison. One of his comrades in Company A, Charles Wright, wrote home on February 11, 1863, that “Lieutenant Pelton, who was missing at the battle of Fredericksburg, is dead; he died at the Libby prison, Richmond.” And the day before, the Eagle wrote that Pelton’s wife had received a letter from their son Albert, “dated at Alexandria, Virginia, in which she is informed that her husband, Lieutenant S. M. Pelton, of the glorious 3rd, who was taken prisoner during the battle of Fredericksburg, is dead; that he died a few days since, in the Libby prison, at Richmond. Although this news comes from a source which cannot well be questioned, still we hope that there may be some mistake, and that it may prove untrue.”

In fact, Pelton was paroled on January 12 (or February 20), 1863, at City Point, Virginia, reported to Camp Parole, Maryland, on February 21 and hospitalized at Annapolis, Maryland along with other paroled prisoners-of-war. On February 27, the Eagle reported that “Mrs. Pelton has just received a letter from her husband that he still lives and that he has arrived among paroled prisoners at Annapolis.”

Silas was put under arrest on April 3, 1863, for disobeying orders, but released on April 8. He returned to the Regiment on May 20, 1863, and was wounded in the back and shoulder on July 2 at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. He was shot, he claimed, “betwen the left shoulder blade and backbone lodging on the right side near the collarbone and neck.” He was subsequently hospitalized at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and was furloughed from the hospital in August.

From the thinned ranks of the battle-regt. Third [wrote the Eagle on August 7] Pelton “has returned to his home in this city, covered with scars, pale and feeble from the loss of blood and the severity of the wound received in the second days battle of Gettysburg. The Lt. received a terrible wound in the battle of Fair Oaks, from the effects of which it was supposed, for a time, that he could not recover, but contrary to the expectations of his friends, he regained his health and again returned to his command. At the battle of Fredericksburg he was taken prisoner and carried with other brave soldiers to the rebel capital, where he remained for a time and until exchanged; when he again took his command and was in the terribly bloody struggle at Gettysburg, where, in the 2nd day's contest, he received a ball in the soldier which was thought at the time and for some time thereafter to be a fatal wound, but, thanks to God, the Lt. is still alive with a fair prospect for recovery.

Less than four weeks later, the Eagle reported “We were pleased to meet Lt. S. M. Pelton, of the glorious ‘Third’, on the street this morning. The Lieutenant, it will be remembered, has twice been dangerously wounded in battle. The last time, in the terrible conflict at Gettysburg, he was so severely injured by a ball, which is yet in his body, that it was, for a considerable time after the battle, supposed he could not recover. He was, however, enabled to reach home, and through the best of medical care and nursing, he has now so far recovered as to be able to walk a short distance at a time; and the prospects are fair that he will, with due care and time, wholly recover and be himself again.”

Silas may have recovered from his ordeal but he nevertheless resigned on October 22, 1863, for disability -- although according to the Eagle, on December 24, Pelton, having “recovered sufficiently from his wounds, as he thinks,” left Grand Rapids “to rejoin his old command. Good for Lieutenant Pelton. He doubtless thinks himself bullet proof by this time, as most any man who has been shot so many times would.” It is not clear as to what transpired here. Pelton may have returned to Detroit where he was officially discharged from the army on account of his disability, or, less likely, he returned to the Regiment in Virginia, was discharged there and returned to Michigan.

In any event, Silas returned to Grand Rapids and on March 29, 1864, his four-year-old son died. That same year he applied for and received a pension (no. 39592).

By 1865 and 1866 he was working as a lumberman and living in 51 Bridge Street on the west side of the Grand River in Grand Rapids, and in 1867-68 he was still engaged in the lumber business and living on the southwest corner of Lincoln and Third Streets. He was a Deputy Marshal in 1871, and on July 24, 1871, the Democrat wrote

We owe Captain Pelton, our efficient Deputy Marshal, an apology for allowing the communication signed ‘Observer’ to appear in our columns on Sunday morning [July 23]. The communication written by an irresponsible person, and inserted in the absence of the managing editor, does the Captain great injustice, whose official career has been satisfactory to our citizens. The author complains that part of Monroe Street is obstructed with building materials, which is true, but then Messers Godfrey & Tracey obtained permission to make such obstruction, and the Marshal or his deputy have no power to remove said obstructions. The Captain has full power to arrest disorderly persons, and should he fail to do so, he would not discharge his duty. Let ‘Observer’, who is a Radical, bear in mind that Captain Pelton's nomination as Deputy Marshal was strongly endorsed by the oldest Republican Councilman on the Board, and that he was confirmed by a vote of 13 to 3, four Republicans voting for him. He has discharged his duties with fidelity, and no one has ever found fault with him except ‘Observer’, who probably has an axe to grind.

Silas was living in Grand Rapids in 1874, and was involved in the building of a large saw mill on Penoyer Creek near Newaygo, Newaygo County in 1876. By 1880 Silas was working as a millwright and living with his wife and two of their children on Scribner Street in Grand Rapids’ Seventh Ward; also living with them was another millwright, a nephew named Charles Pelton, his wife and infant daughter.

He was a member of the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association and an active Democrat.

Sometime in the late 1880s (probably 1888) Silas had moved to Duluth, St. Louis County, Minnesota. He was chronically ill through much of the early 1890s, and, according to one source, he was frequently confined to his home and often to his bed during this period.

Silas was residing at 813 W. Fourth Street when he died on February 4, 1899, in Duluth. His remains were brought back to Grand Rapids and interred in Fulton cemetery: section 3 lot 21.

His widow applied for and received pension no. 478757.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Peter E. Peiffer

Peter E. Peiffer was born in 1843 in Crawford County, Pennsylvania, probably the son of Peter (b. 1810) and Jane (b. 1815).

Peter (elder) was born in Pennsylvania and married New York native Jane sometime before 1839 and probably first settled in New York before moving to Pennsylvania. In any case, Peter’s family left Pennsylvania and eventually settled in western Michigan by 1860 when Peter (elder) and his wife were living in Martin, Allegan County.

Peter (younger) was married to Maria M.

Peter stood 5’7” with hazel eyes, brown hair and a light complexion and was an 18-year-old farmer living in Crockery, Ottawa County when he enlisted in Company I on May 13, 1861. He reenlisted as a Corporal on December 24, 1863, at Brandy Station, Virginia, crediting Sparta, Kent County, was presumably absent on veteran’s furlough, possibly at his family home in Allegan County, in January of 1864 and he rejoined the Regiment on or about the first of February.

Peter was transferred as a Corporal to Company I, Fifth Michigan infantry upon consolidation of the Third and Fifth Michigan Regiments on June 10, 1864, and was a Sergeant when he was wounded while on picket duty on September 16 near Petersburg, Virginia. He died from his wounds and typhoid fever, in a field hospital on September 22, and was buried either at the Fair Grounds hospital, near Petersburg, Virginia, or one mile east of Avery’s house near a grove, outside of Petersburg. In any event, he was reinterred in Poplar Grove National Cemetery: original division D, section C, grave no. 21.

In April of 1865 his widow applied for and received a pension (no. 70681).

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Robert H. Peck

Robert H. Peck was born on September 24, 1844, in Wayne County, New York, the son of Dr. Arvine (1819-1881) and Betsey Jane (Loucks)

Robert’s parents were married in February of 1842 in Victory, New York. His father practiced medicine in Clyde, Wayne County, New York from about 1847 until 1854 at which time he moved his family to Lowell, Kent County, Michigan, becoming one of the first settlers of that place. According to one source:

one of the earliest settlers in Lowell, Kent County, and now a prominent physician in that town, was born in Butler, Wayne County, New York, December 15, 1819. The first of the Peck family in this country emigrated from Wales about the middle of the last century. Dr. Arvine Peck's father, Horace Peck, was a native of Connecticut, and his mother, Anna (Burch) Peck, was born in New York State. His early educational advantages were confined to what could be obtained by attending the common schools, in the intervals of work on his father's farm. At the age of seventeen he entered Victory Academy, where he remained one year. The next three years he spent at Red Creek Academy, paying his expenses by teaching school. After leaving Red Creek, he spent some time in the study of dentistry; and, at last, was enabled to carry out his long-cherished resolution of preparing himself for the medical profession. He first pursued his medical studies under the tuition of Dr. Robert Treat Payne, and afterwards with Dr. A. T. Hendricks, under whose instruction he remained until his graduation. He attended a course of Jectures at Geneva, New York; and, subsequently, at the Eclectic Medical Institute of Cincinnati, from which he graduated in 1846 with the highest honors. Dr. Peck has not confined himself, however, to the eclectic school of medicine. Being an ardent devotee of his profession, he has studied earnestly to familiarize himself with every known method of treatment, and few physicians have met with more unvarying success. He practiced first at Clyde, Wayne County, New York, where he remained seven years. In 1854 he went to Michigan, and settled at Lowell, which then consisted of four or five cabins in the woods. Since that time he has continued the practice of his profession in the same place. His business has increased rapidly with the growth of the country, and his name has been intimately identified with every enterprise which has brought Lowell to its present flourlshing condition. He served during the late war, with the rank of Captain, in the 2d Michigan Cavalry, at Madrid, Island No. 10, etc.; until, after eight months of service, his health failed, and he was obliged to return home. He was a Democrat until the Republican party was organized, to which he gave his support until 1875. He then identified himself with the National Greenback party, of which he is now an enthusiastic and intelligent member. He is outspoken in his convictions, and untiring in his advocacy of his political principles. He has been Supervisor of Lowell one year, and President of the village four years. He was married, February 19, 1842, at Victory, New York, to B. Jane Loucks. Their family consists of two sons and a daughter, only one of whom, a son, is unmarried. Dr. Peck is the oldest physician in Lowell, and commands the most extensive practice in that section of the country. His identification with the town since its infancy, and the skill and judgment which he combines with great ardor, have gained for him a high position in the community, as well as among the members of the medical profession. His face is well known, and his name almost a household word in the town of Lowell.

By 1860 Robert was a clerk and student living with his family in Lowell where his father worked as a physician and local businessman.

Robert stood 5’5” with blue eyes, light hair and a light complexion and was 16 years old and residing in Kent County, probably in Lowell, when he enlisted in Company D on May 13, 1861. (Company D was composed in large part of men who came from western Ionia County and Eaton County.)

Around the first of September, 1861, Robert was stricken with typhoid fever. On October 17, 1861, Captain Houghton of Company D wrote that Peck had “been sick the past six weeks with typhoid fever and now is troubled with a catarrh and has never been able to carry a musket.” He was discharged on November 9, 1861, at Fort Lyon, Virginia, according to the Regimental surgeon Dr. Zenas Bliss, for “general debility partially the result of typhoid fever, but has since been [un]able to perform the duties of a soldier in consequence of his delicate physical conformation.”

Following his discharge Robert returned to Lowell where he reentered the service in Company C, First Michigan Engineers and Mechanics on December 21, 1863, for 3 years, crediting Grand Rapids’ First Ward, and was mustered in on January 5, 1864, at Grand Rapids. (See George Post’s bio; he too had served in Company D, was from either Ionia County or Lowell and he also reentered the service in Company C First E & M at the very same time.)

Robert 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. where it rmeained on duty until it was mustered out on September 22. The regiment was subsequently discharged at Jackson, Jackson County, Michigan on October 1.

Robert was mustered out as an Artificer, reportedly on July 5, 1865, at Jeffersonville, Indiana.

Robert again returned to Michigan and lived most of his postwar life in Lowell where he married Marion L. Baker on September 11, 1866. (His father was still living in Lowell and practicing medicine in 1870.)

Robert was a member of both the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association and of Grand Army of the Republic Wilson post no. 87 in Lowell.

In 1867 he applied for and received a pension (no. 750050).

He died on November 19, 1878, and was buried in Oakwood cemetery, Lowell: 0-29-5.

His widow applied for a pension (no. 790634) but the certificate was never granted. By 1880 his widow “Marion” was living with her father-in-law and his family in Lowell.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Dayton Samuel Peck - update 8/23/2016

Dayton S. Peck was born on June 26, 1842, in Sweden, Monroe County, New York, the son of William R. (1807-1876) and Lucy (Bathrick, 1808-1848).

William and Massachusetts native Lucy were married about 1830, and eventually settled in Monroe County, New York. In 1846, when Dayton was 4 years old, his family left New York City and

took the canal boat from Brockport and rode as far as Buffalo. There was a short railroad ride in between Buffalo and where we left the canal, and the train ran so slow that we could get off and pick blackberries while the train was going. We took the lake boat to Detroit and took another boat around the lakes, through the straits of Mackinac and down the west coast, stopping at Cheboygan, Racine, Milwaukee and finally Chicago. My brother Freling nearly fell overboard but one of the sailors caught him. Claude tells me that my brother Manser had told him that when the boat stopped at Cheboygan my father went on shore and hurriedly called on a relative of his there by the name of Winship. We took another boat from Chicago to Grand Haven, there we took a river boat, the Algomah, to Grand Rapids, where we arrived in September, 1848. My father went to work for Butterworth in the foundry and later for W. T. Powers. My sister was married in 1849 in a house we lived in on Ionia Avenue, to Oceanus Van Burch. My father purchased a farm in Paris Township and I went to school there. Afterwards I lived with my sister and her husband on their farm.

By 1850 Dayton’s family was living in Paris, Kent County, Michigan, where his father, who had apparently remarried a Canadian woman named Julia (b. in Canada in 1824) was working as a carpenter and Dayton and his siblings, including his younger brother Freling who would also join the Third Michigan, were attending school.

On July 2, 1860, Dayton joined the Grand Rapids Light Artillery, one of the local militia companies under the command of Captain Baker Borden, who would eventually command Company B in the Third Michigan. That same year Dayton was a laborer working for and/or living in Walker, Kent County with the family of Samuel White, who would also enlist Company B.

Dayton stood 5’8” with blue eyes, dark hair and a dark complexion and was 18 years old and living in Grand Rapids when he enlisted in Company B on May 13, 1861. (His younger brother Freling would join Company B in late 1861.) The Regiment left for Washington, DC, on June 13, 1861, and it was shortly after setting up camp at the Chain Bridge that Dayton got to shake hands with President Lincoln. On July 4, the President, Peck claimed many years afterwards, “drove down there [Chain Bridge] along with his colored driver, and took his hat off to us boys there who were manning that battery [at the Bridge] and shook hands with all of us. I remember the words he said to me when he shook my hand, ‘I sleep sounder nights than I would if you were not here.’” He added in 1925 that he believed he was “last one left who shook hands with President Lincoln the fourth of July, 1861 at that place.”

Dayton was wounded slightly in the right arm on May 31, 1862, at Fair Oaks, Virginia, and by the end of the year was on duty at Brigade headquarters. He was employed as a Brigade butcher in January of 1863, was working at Brigade headquarters in April, in the Brigade commissary department (probably as butcher) from May through July and a Brigade butcher from November through May of 1864. He was mustered out on June 20, 1864, at Detroit.
After he was discharged Dayton returned to Grand Rapids where he reentered the service in Battery G, First Michigan Light Artillery on November 29, 1864, for 1 year, crediting Assyria, Barry County, and was mustered the same day. He joined the battery on February 17, 1865, probably at Fort Morgan, Mobile Bay, Alabama, where it was on garrison and outpost duty until April 10. The battery participated in the capture of Mobile on April 12 and garrisoned the defenses of Mobile until July 19 when it was sent home to Jackson, Jackson County, Michigan, arriving there on August 2.

Dayton was mustered out with the battery on August 6, 1865, at Jackson.

Following the war Dayton returned to the Grand Rapids area and from 1867 to 1868 he was working as a butcher for Hill & Tuxbury, and boarding at the Bronson House in Grand Rapids. He married his first wife Delilah Ellen Hoyt on March 18, 1868, and from 1868 to 1869 was working for John Ryle and living on the northwest corner of Turner and Pearl Streets, on the west side of the Grand River in Grand Rapids.

He was still living in Grand Rapids in 1874, and was still working as a butcher when he married his second wife New York native Jennifer Dunphy (1845-1906) on January 21, 1875 (it is not known what became of his first wife), and they had at least two children: a son O. D. (b. 1878) and Fred (b. 1880).

In 1875 one newspaper described Peck as the “proprietor of the meat market on Lyon Street in the Leppig building, one of the best in the city.” The paper added that this was “Peck’s old stand, and his old friends will find him out there.” By 1880 Dayton was working as a butcher and living with his wife and two sons on Lyon Street in Grand Rapids’ 4th Ward.

Dayton lived in Grand Rapids through at least 1888, was residing in Walker, Kent County in 1890, back in Grand Rapids in 1892 and living in the 8th Ward in 1894. By 1895 he had moved to Sand Lake, Kent County where he worked a farm for some years. In 1900 he was living with his wife Jennie and two sons in Nelson, Kent County. but by 1903 he had returned to Grand Rapids. He was back in Sand Lake and possibly in Tustin, Osceola County in 1906.

He was a widower when he married his third wife, New York native Isabelle McBride (1851-1918) and in 1910 they were both living in Byron, Kent County; Dayton probably lived in Byron from 1910 to 1913. In 1915 Dayton was living at 222 Ridge Road in Grand Rapids.

Dayton was again a widower when he married his 4th wife, Ida (b. 1875) and by 1920 they were living in St. Petersburg, Florida. Dayton was still living in St. Petersburg, in 1922.

He was a member of the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association, and Grand Army of the Republic Custer post no. 5 in Grand Rapids. In 1890 he applied for and received a pension (no. 595084).

In 1925 Dayton was living at 173 Central Avenue in St. Petersburg where he died on April 2, 1926. He was presumably buried in St. Petersburg. He was buried in Royal Palm South cemetery, St. Petersburg: block 147-3.

Saturday, March 06, 2010

William C. Pealsch

William C. Pealsch was born in 1831.

William was 30 years old and probably living in Muskegon County, Michigan, when he enlisted in Company C. (Company C was made up largely of German and Dutch immigrants, many of whom lived on the west side of the Grand River in Grand Rapids. This company was the descendant of the old Grand Rapids Rifles, also known as the “German Rifles,” a prewar local militia company composed solely of German troopers.)

He was admitted on December 31, 1862, to Carver hospital, Washington, DC, where he died of chronic diarrhea in ward 36 on January 28, 1863. William was buried at 9:00 a.m. the following day in the Military Asylum cemetery (Soldier's Home National cemetery), section G no. 4961 listed as “William Peulsh.”

No pension seems to be available.

Friday, March 05, 2010

William Payne - updated 1/19/2016

William Payne, also known as “Paine,” was born in 1836.

William was 35 years old, and possibly living in Muskegon County, Michigan, when he enlisted as Corporal 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.)

William deserted near Washington, DC on September 10, 1861. He was tried by a regimental court martial sometime in late 1861 (probably November) and fined $5.00 for the month of December. At some point he was reduced to the ranks and was reported as a Private and deserter on January 23, 1862, at Camp Michigan, Virginia.

There is no further record, and no pension seems to be available.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Lorenzo Wheeler Payne

Lorenzo Wheeler Payne was born on December 7, 1826, in St. Lawrence County, New York, the son of Pardon (1789-1867) and Betsey K. (Boutwell, b. 1803).

Pardon was born in Rhode Island and Betsey in Vermont and they were married, possibly in New York or Vermont sometime before 1826, and Lorenzo was the oldest of 12 children. By 1850 his family was living in Antwerp, Jefferson County, New York.

Lorenzo was married to New York native Harriet A. Walworth (b. 1831), probably in New York, and they had at least four children: Josephine (b. 1852), Matta (b. 1859), Charles (b. 1864) and a daughter Jessie (b. 1868).

The family moved from New York to Michigan sometime between 1852 and 1859, and by 1860 Lorenzo was a master carpenter living with his wife Harriet and their children in Thornapple, Barry County.

He stood 6’0” with black eyes and a light complexion and was 34 years old when he enlisted in Company K on May 13, 1861. He was left at Grand Rapids, presumably sick, when the Regiment departed on June 13, 1861, for Washington, DC, but eventually rejoined the Regiment and was reported as a bugler and absent sick in the hospital from October of 1862 through December. He was discharged on January 11, 1863, at Third Corps hospital, for varicose veins.

Lorenzo eventually returned to Barry County. By 1870 he was working as a carpenter and living with his wife and children in Middleville. By 1880 he was working as a sewing machine agent and living with his wife next door to a dry goods merchant named William Brightrial (?) in Middleville. He was still living in Middleville in 1888, 1890 and 1894; indeed he probably lived the rest of his life in Middleville.

He was a member of G.A.R. Hill post no. 159 in Middleville. In 1884 he applied for and received a pension (no. 388997).

Lorenzo died on October 23, 1899, presumably in Middleville, and was buried in Mt. Hope cemetery, Middleville.

In November of 1899 his widow applied for and received a pension (no. 492111).

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Joseph L. Payne

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).