Monday, May 28, 2018

Military Monday - Roll Call of Veteran Ancestors

For Memorial Day, I am conducting a Roll Call of my direct Ancestors who joined the military.

Some didn't serve very long, some fought in one or more battles, a few were captured, and even gave the ultimate sacrifice.

All were important no matter what their rank or degree of service - they were helping to defend our country.

World War II

1. My Father, Donald E. Ormsby (1918-1988)

            He enlisted on May 12,  1942 at St. Louis, MO in the Army Aviation Corps
            After serving 9 months and 4 days, he was Honorably Discharged as an Aviation Cadet.

World War I

2. My Grandfather, John Steinbrecher (1894-1971)

He joined the U.S. Army on June 24, 1918 and served until Nov. 15, 1918, discharged as a Corporal.

None of my Great-grandfathers served that I know of, but all four of my Great-great-grandfathers on my father's side served in the Civil War. My mother's ancestors were either still in Europe, or were pacifists.

Civil War

3.  My Great-great-grandfather Charles Clark Ormsby (1838-1920)
     He was a Corporal in Company E of the 123rd Illinois Volunteer Infantry.  He enlisted August 14, 1864 and was discharged July 3, 1865.  He received a pension.

4.  My Great-great-grandfather John Johnson Neeley (1841-1908)

     He was a private in Captain Samuel R. Motts Company C of the 57th Regiment in the Ohio Volunteer Infantry.  He enlisted on December 5, 1861 from Allen County, Ohio and was mustered in at Findlay, OH on December 9.  During his service, he participated in the engagements at Shiloh TN, Wolf Creek Hindman AR, Vicksburg and Jackson MS, Lookout Mountain and Missionary Ridge TN, Kenesaw Mountain and the Seige of Atlanta GA, as well as a number of minor engagements and skirmishes.  He received a pension.

Monuments to 57th OVI at Vicksburg

5.  My great-great-grandfather William Dennis Hill (1838-1925)

He enlisted in Company F, 59th Illinois Volunteer Infantry in August 1861. He served over 3 years and participated in the battles of Pea Ridge, Stone River, and others and was discharged at Atlanta.  He received a pension.

6.  My great-great-grandfather George Washington Wiley (1838-1920)

He served as a Private in Company B, 2nd Illinois Light Artillery "Madison Battery" from August 26, 1861 - August 31, 1864.  In a letter her wrote to his granddaughter in 1919 he told her how he had sustained "3 bullet holds in my close 2 just grasing the hide". He received a pension.

7. My 3rd-great-grandfather Joseph Thompson McGowan (1819-1890)

According to family lore, "The McGowen family answered Lincoln's call when he encouraged brave men to go to Kansas to assure it remaining a free state".  They settled on land inherited from his father-in-law Henry Miller (see below).
While in Kansas, J.T. answered another call of Lincoln, that of joining the military.  He joined Company A of the Irregular Kansas Militia in October 1864 and was stationed at Mound City, Lind Co, Kansas.

War of 1812

8. My 4th great-grandfather Henry Miller (1793-1858)

He served as a Private in Captain John Lantz's Co. 118th Regiment of the Virginia Militia from February 20 - March 4, 1815.  He was discharged at the foot of Blue Ridge near Kingwood 34 miles from his residence.  He received $3.35 pay for his service at the time, but in 1859 his heirs were granted 160 acres of Bounty land.  His daughter Melvina Miller McGowan and her family moved there.

9. My 4th great-grandfather John Forester (1775-1857)

He served from August 29, 1812 - September 9, 1812 and again from March 5, 1814 - August 15, 1814 in Captain William Wilson's Company, Collier's Regiment of the Ohio Militia.  He received 80 acres of bounty land.

10. My 4th great-grandfather Samuel Stover (1785-1837)

He served as a Private in Captain James Downings Company Infantry of Ohio Militia from March 30, 1812 until February 28, 1813 when he transferred to Captain Walker's Company.  He was discharged at Fort Sandusky on March 26, 1813.

11. My 4th great-grandfather Henry Critser (1793-1877)

He volunteered at Dayton, OH on May 1, 1812 as a substitute for John Robinson (his future brother-in-law).  He was taken Prisoner of War on August 16, 1812 and released 2 weeks later at Detroit, MI.  He volunteered again on November 1, 1813 and was discharged March 4, 1814.

Revolutionary War

12. My 5th Great-Grandfather Nathaniel Ormsby (1734-1777)

He served in the Continental Army from Norwich CT in Nixon's Regiment.  His pay for service began on May 15, 1777.  He was captured at Albany and died while a prisoner of the British.

13. My 5th Great-Grandfather Abraham Day (1747-1797)

He served as a Sergeant on picket guard under Major Baldwin in 1775.  Received pay for travel to and from Ticonderoga in 1776.

14. My 5th Great-Grandfather Oliver Clark (1756-1824)

He was a Private in Captain Oliver Clap's Co. in October 1777, then in Captain Moses Adam's Company from February 20 to April 3, 1778.

15. My 5th Great-Grandfather Joel Hannum (1745-1814)

He was a Private in Captain Samuel Fairfield's Company Col. Sparhawk's Regiment from Dorchester, MA from September 24 to December 12, 1778.

16. My 5th Great-Grandfather John Ludwig Shuey (1755-1839)

He was a Private in Captain Casper Stoever's 3rd Company, 2nd Battallion of the Lancaster County Pennsylvania Militia in 1782)

17. My 5th Great-Grandfather David Neeley (c1748-1818)

He was a Private in Colonel Moses Hazen's Regiment of the Cumberland Co PA Militia beginning on May 4, 1777.  He was noted missing as a prisoner from September 11, 1777 until July 1778.  Finally discharged on June 20, 1783.

18. My 5th Great-Grandfather William Thompson (c1744-1811)

He served in the 5th Battalion Cumberland Co PA militia from 1777-1779, then in the 8th Battalion from 1780-1782.

19. My 5th Great-Grandfather Peter Miller (1759-1838)

He served as a Private for 5 months beginning in May 1776 in Colonel Drake's Regiement from New Jersey, then for 4 months in Captain Parsons' Company at Orange County NY, finally in the summer of 1777 under Captain Marion at Chester, NJ.

20. My 5th Great-Grandfather James Becket (c1753-1821)

He was a Private in the 1st Batallion PA Rifle Regiment stationed from September 1 - October 1, 1776 at Harlem, NY.  On December 17, 1776 he was camped near Corryell's ferry.

21. My 5th great-grandfather Johann Balser Dieterick (1754-1838)

He served as a Private in the Pennsylvania Line.  He enlisted in June 1776 and spent 6 months at York Co, PA under Captain John Paxton.  Went to Philadelphia, Trenton, Princeton, Amboy, Long Island and Fort Constitution.  Took part in the attack on the Picket guard of Hessians at Long Island. He was discharged in December 1776.

22. My 6th Great-Grandfather Abraham Day Sr (1712-1792)

He was a drummer in Captain Moses Montague's Co of Minutemen and marched in response to the alarm of April 19, 1775.  He served for 22 and 2/3 days starting on April 20, 1775.

23. My 6th Great-Grandfather Ithamar Clark (1716-1802)

He also served as a Minuteman but under Captain Jonathan Allen's Company.  He served from April 19 to May 15, 1775 and again from July 9 to August 12, 1777 on an alarm at Ticonderoga.

24. My 6th Great-Grandfather Noah Parsons (1731-1814)

He was my third Minuteman who marched in Captain Jonathan Allen's Company from April 19, 1775 for 8 days.  He then served in Colonel John Fellows' Regiment from July 9 to August 12, 1777 marching to Ticonderoga.  Finally he served as a Sergeant in Captain Lyman's Company marching from Northampton, MA to East Hoosuck on the alarm of August 17, 1777.

Minuteman statue in Lexington, MA - photo from Wikimedia commons
25. My 6th Great-grandfather Edward Bates (c1734-1804)

Served in the Invalid Regiment of Pennsylvania under Colonel Lewis Nicola.  He was discharged April 1783.

26. My 6th Great-grandfather Robert Taylor (c1720-1790)

He was a Major in the Cumberland County PA Militia from 1776 until September 1777.

I have many more ancestors who engaged in Patriotic activity, as well as several collateral ancestors who served in the Military.  I thank them all for their service.

Saturday, May 05, 2018

Society Saturday - Letters Home from a Confederate Soldier

At our Daughters of the Union meeting today we saw a little from the other side's perspective.

Our program was given by Patricia and Rich Healy who reenacted the story of Confederate Soldier Larkin Moon.

They did they by "reading" letters that he had written home to his wife Malinda Brunetta in Chatham Co NC.

The first letter was written in April 1862.  Larkin was a new recruit fresh from the farm.  He told how they were going to send those Yankees home before the harvest.  He demonstrated how he learned to hold his musket ("shoulder arms") and the nine steps required to load it.

In July 1863 he told of the battle at Gettysburg, how the hill was full of dead and dying boys, in both blue and gray uniforms.  Of the 800 men in Company G 26th North Carolina Infantry, 600 were lost that day.

In February 1865 the spirits of the troops were very low.  They had very little to eat and subsisted mostly on hardtack with weevils in it.  Several of his comrades had deserted.

The last letter was written on April 12, 1865 where he told of taking part in the surrender of the Confederate army at Appomatox.  The troops laid down their weapons and said goodbye to the "Stars and Bars".

It was a very interesting program from a first person perspective.