Monday, September 29, 2008

John Freeman

John Freeman, also known as "John H.," was born 1836 in Geneseo, Livingston County, New York.

Sometime before the war broke out John left New York and moved west, eventually settling in western Michigan. He may have been the same John Freeman working as a mill hand for the Hubbard mill in Muskegon, Muskegon County in 1860.

He stood 5’11” with blue eyes, light hair and a light complexion, and was a 25-year-old sawyer probably living in Crockery, Ottawa County when he enlisted in Company A on May 13, 1861. He was absent sick from April 28, 1863, through May and in June was a nurse in a general hospital in Washington, DC through November. He remained absent sick until he was discharged for “tuberculosis contracted since enlistment” on May 2, 1864, at Augur hospital in Washington, DC.

Although John was declared “Unfit for the Veteran Reserve Corps,” he was nonetheless transferred to the VRC on May 12, 1864, at Washington, DC. (The VRC was made up of men who while ambulatory were generally incapable of performing regular military tasks due to having suffered debilitating wounds and/or diseases and were assigned to garrison the many supply depots, draft rendezvous, camps, forts, prisons, etc. scattered throughout the northern cities, thus freeing able-bodied men for regular military duty.) He may have been mustered out in June of 1864 at the expiration of his term of service.

In any case, he listed Grand Haven, Ottawa County as his mailing address on his discharge paper, and may in fact have returned to Ottawa County after the war.

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

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