Thursday, December 06, 2007

Louis Brandis

Louis Brandis, also known as "Lewis" or “Brandeis”, born April 7, 1837, in Hanover, Germany, the son of Anna (1811-1893).

Sometime before the war Louis immigrated to the United States along with his mother (and possibly stepfather), eventually settling in western Michigan. He lived with his mother and stepfather, William (or Friedrich) Koch, in Nunica, Ottawa County before moving to Muskegon, Muskegon County to work in the sawmills. By 1860 he was working as a mill hand in Muskegon and living at the Thomas Wing boarding house. (In 1860 Anna and John F. Rock or Koch were living in Crockery Township, Ottawa County.)

Louis stood 5’11” with gray eyes, light hair and a fair complexion and was 24 years old and probably still residing in Muskegon when he enlisted on May 13, 1861, in Company H, which was made up largely of “Muskegon Rangers”, although it is unclear whether Lewis was a member of the Rangers before they left Muskegon. (The “Rangers” were a local militia company formed in Muskegon soon after the fall of Fort Sumter in April of 1861, and were reorganized into Company H of the Third Michigan infantry then forming at Cantonment Anderson in Grand Rapids.)

Louis was sick (or wounded) in the hospital in August of 1862, and supposedly deserted on September 21, 1862, at Upton’s Hill, Virginia (and consequently dropped from the company rolls). He was returned from “Dropped from the Rolls” on November 23, 1863, at Brandy Station, Virginia, and subsequently under arrest at Third Corps headquarters, presumably as a consequence of the desertion charge. The charge appears to have been dropped, and Louis was back with the Regiment by late December when he reenlisted on December 23, 1863 at Brandy Station, Virginia, crediting Muskegon (although he gave his residence as Nunica). He was presumably absent on 30-day’s veterans’ furlough in January of 1864, probably at his family home in western Michigan, and probably returned to the Regiment on or about the first of February.

He was transferred to Company A, Fifth Michigan infantry upon consolidation of the Third and Fifth Michigan Regiments on June 10, 1864.

Louis was killed in action on June 22, 1864, near Petersburg, Virginia, and was presumably buried among the unknown soldiers at Petersburg.

In 1890 his mother applied for and received a dependent’s pension (no. 340,070), drawing $12.00 per month by 1892. Her husband died in 1880 and by 1890 she was residing in Benton County, Kansas. She was still living in Kansas when she died in 1893.

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