Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Michigan Men, Part I

Most histories of the 6th United States Cavalry note that the regiment was raised in Pennsylvania, New York and Ohio. What these histories don't mention is the portion of Company E that was recruited in Adrian, Michigan during an eleven day period in September 1861.

Second Lieutenant Stephen S. Balk, newly commissioned from the ranks, arrived in Adrian on September 8, 1861. By the time he left town on the 19th, he had enlisted 35 men into the 6th US Cavalry. Over the next few days, we'll conduct a micro-historical case study of these 35 men and their experiences before, during and in some cases after the war.

They are a fairly typical sampling of Union soldiers raised in the fall of 1861. Their median age was 22. The oldest was 35 at the time of enlistment, the youngest three were 18. They were predominantly (21) farmers, with 4 clerks, 3 carpenters, 2 blacksmiths, a mason, an engineer, a tinner, a painter and a medical doctor listed as their occupations. Atypically, only five were immigrants, two each from England and Ireland and one from Canada. Twelve were born in New York, ten in Michigan, six in Ohio, one in Pennsylvania and one in Massachusetts. The group included three sets of brothers or cousins. Their median height was 5'8", with the shortest 5'4 1/2" and the tallest 6'2".

The names of the 35 are listed below. Their Civil War experiences will be related in the next post.

Allen, Wilber A.
Beach, Edward
Beavington, John G.
Benson, Nelson
Blossom, Charles
Bradish, Warner C.
Campbell, James P.
Cory, James H.
Craig, Charles
Craig, Robert
Dierdorff, Jonas
Dunmore, John
Ellis, Elisha J.
Finch, Philemon
Fox, Theodore
Haight, George W.
Hamilton, Samuel M.
Heckman, John
Irish, Abel A.
Kasson, William O.
Kennedy, Beach B.
Knapp, Edgar R.
Knapp, Randolph R.
Ladd, Frederick
Miller, Charles H.
Palmer, William M.
Parker, John
Robinson, William
Rounds, Ruel V.
Spence, Joseph J.
Sweet, Benjamin F.
Ten Eyck, Miles L.
Ten Eyck, William
Waggoner, Albert C.
Walker, William B.

1 comment:

Robert said...

Don, my name is Robert. Private William Robinson was my great great great great grandfather. I am trying to write a small book about him can you tell me where you found your information? My email is badincubus71@gmail.com. Thank you!