Sunday, February 27, 2011

Orin Dwight Wade

Orin Dwight Wade was born in 1839, possibly in Ohio, the son of Jonathan C. (1813-1895) and Margaret (Stevens or Stivers, 1811-1883).

Orin’s father was born in New York and his mother in Pennsylvania and they were probably married sometime before 1839. His family eventually settled in Ohio by possibly 1839 and certainly by 1845. His father probably brought the family onto Michigan sometime afterwards. By 1860 Jonathan and Margaret were probably living in North Shade, Gratiot County. It is possible that Orren was the same Oren Wade who was working as a farm laborer for the David Abot family in Villanova, Chautauqua County, New York in 1860. (Curiously, William Wade’s family was living in Chautauqua County, New York in 1850.)

Orin was 22 years old and probably living in Ionia County, Michigan, when he enlisted in Company D on May 13, 1861. (Company D was composed in large part of men who came from western Ionia County and Eaton County.) In April of 1863 Orren was reported as a bugler and on furlough -- although the reasons are unknown.

In any case, Orin eventually returned to the Regiment and was wounded severely in the right shoulder and chest on July 2, 1863, at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, where the Regiment was engaged at the Peach Orchard, and died the following morning in the First Division, Third Corps hospital.

Charles Price of Company G described Wade’s death in a letter home.”Early in the forenoon,” wrote Price on July 30, “our Regt was then near the front supporting the skirmishers; he was Corp[oral] and one of the color guard. Our company was next to the colors [and] he was struck by a piece of shell near the right shoulder blade; it cut his back and lodged in his lungs. He said that he could not live; he spoke of his folks [and] said that it would kill his mother. He seemed to worry more about his folks than he did [about] himself. He said that he was willing to die if that was to be his fate. He wanted me to write to his folks and send his memoranda home. I helped put him on to a stretcher but did not take his book. He was carried to the rear and died the next morning. I did not see him after he was put on the stretcher.”

Orinn was originally buried on Lewis A. Bushman’s farm, in the field near the barn but subsequently reinterred in the Michigan plot, Gettysburg National Cemetery.

In 1884 his father remarried one Mary Thayer Chapman (b. 1817) in Oceana County, and by 1889 was living in Michigan when he applied for and received a pension (no. 274830).

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