Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Michael McGrath

Michael McGrath was born in 1825 in Ireland.

Michael was probably residing in Toledo, Ohio, when he married Irish-born Margaret Egan or Doolan (1825-1873), who was unable to read or write, in January of 1851 in Toledo. They were still living in Toledo in 1854 when their first child (John Patrick) was born, but by 1857, when his second child (Margaret) was born, Michael and his family were living in Grand Rapids. By 1860 Michael (listed as “McGraw”) was probably working as a railroad laborer and living with his wife and two children in Plainfield, Kent County.

He was 36 years old, probably a Catholic, when he enlisted in Company F on May 13, 1861, and was transferred to Company D sometime before the Regiment left Grand Rapids on June 13, 1861. Michael was shot in both arms on August 29, 1862, at Second Bull Run, and he died soon afterwards. He was presumably buried among the unknown soldiers whose remains were taken from the Second Bull Run battlefield and reinterred in Arlington National Cemetery.

In 1862 his widow applied for and received a pension (no. 4968). By 1870 Margaret was living in Grand Rapids’ Second Ward; also living with her were her two children. After she died (?) in 1873 a pension was filed and received under the name of John Daly, guardian, for a minor child (no. 164,850).

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