Reuben Tower was born in 1834 in Michigan, the son of Joseph (b. 1814) and Philena (b. 1815).
Vermonter Joseph married New York native Philena, probably in New York or perhaps in Michigan. In any case they quickly settled in Michigan and by 1850 Reuben was working as a farmer with his father in Oakfield, Kent County. By 1860 Reuben was working as a school-teacher and living at Cook’s Hotel in Otisco, Ionia County. (His father would find work as a carpenter in Otisco in 1863.)
He was 27 years old and still residing in Ionia County when he enlisted in Company K on May 13, 1861. Reuben was a Sergeant when he was awarded the Kearny Cross for his participation in the battle of Chancellorsville, Virginia on May 3, 1863.
He was a Sergeant when he was shot in the head and killed on July 2, 1863, while the regiment was engaged in the Peach Orchard, during the second day of the battle of Gettysburg. He was buried in the Michigan plot, Gettysburg National Cemetery: section B, grave 19. (He is erroneously listed as “Reuben Power” on his headstone in the Gettysburg National Cemetery.)
In 1870 His mother was living in Michigan when she applied for and received a dependent mother’s pension (no. 486190).