Monday, February 16, 2009

Levi Heth

Levi Heth was born on December 12, 1839, in Oakland County, Michigan.

By 1860 Levi was a farm laborer working for and/or living with Thomas McKenzie, a farmer in Ionia, Ionia County.

Levi stood 6’1” with blue eyes, light hair and a light complexion and was 21 years old and still residing in Ionia County when he enlisted in Company E on May 13, 1861. He was admitted to the hospital at Yorktown, Virginia, on April 10 or 18, 1862, presumably suffering from a varicocele, and he remained hospitalized in Yorktown from July of 1862 through January of 1863. In fact, Levi never rejoined the Regiment and was discharged for a varicocele on January 3, 1863, at Providence, Rhode Island.

After his discharge Levi returned to western Michigan where he reentered the service in Company K, Tenth Michigan cavalry on November 6, 1863, at Georgetown, Ottawa County, crediting Georgetown, and was mustered on December 1 at Grand Rapids where the regiment was organized between September 18 and November 18, 1863, when it was mustered into service. It left Michigan for Lexington, Kentucky on December 1, 1863, and participated in numerous operations, mostly in Kentucky and Tennessee throughout the winter of 1863-64. Most of its primary area of operations would eventually be in the vicinity of Strawberry Plains, Tennessee.

In November of 1864 he was on detached service in Kentucky, was a teamster in December of 1864 and January of 1865, on detached in the Quartermaster department through February, on detached service at Knoxville, Tennessee in March, and in April was at the dismounted camp (presumably in Knoxville) where he remained through May. He was discharged, probably for disability, on June 22, 1865, at Lenoir, Tennessee.

After the war Levi eventually returned to Michigan.

He was married to Ohio native Adaline Gilmore (1850-1910), on September 22, 1865, in Greenville, Montcalm County, and they had at least three children: Ida M. (b. 1868), Mary Griselda (b. 1871, Mrs. Race) and Dora (b. 1873, Mrs. Race as well).

By 1870 he was working as a farmer and living with his wife and daughter in Woods Corners, Orleans Township, Ionia County. (He may have been the same Levi Heath who was charged with “bastardy” in Grand Rapids, by one Ellen White, in 1871.) In any case, by 1880 he had settled in Shiloh, Ionia County. He was living in Shiloh in 1883 and in September of 1885 when he became a member of the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association. He probably lived in Shiloh the rest of his life.

In 1875 he applied for and received a pension (no. 174,790), drawing $4.00 per month in 1883 for an injury to his abdomen.

Levi died a widower of consumption on March 19 or June 3, 1917, and was buried in Hurd cemetery, Orleans, Ionia County: lot 157.

Adaline also received a pension (no. 851285), drawing $25 per month by 1919. She was living at the Women’s Annex, Michigan Soldier’s Home in Grand Rapids when she died in 1919.

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