Olmsted County, Minnesota

 

Battle of Guntown, Civil War

In the battle of Guntown, through the mismanagement of the commander, General Sturgis, many of the regiment were captured. We give the names and adventures of some from Olmsted County.

Lieut. Alfred M. Hall, of Farmington, sent to Andersonville and transferred to Macon, Georgia, and from there to Columbia, South Carolina. He escaped but was recaptured. He was discharged with his regiment.

Francis J. Heller, of Rochester, taken to prison at Florence, Alabama. While in prison he stepped one side to hang up his blanket and was shot dead.

Henry Niles, of Salem, was captured and taken to Andersonville. He was transferred from there to Millen, Georgia. He escaped from there and was caught and sent to Florence. He was later exchanged and rejoined the regiment.

Edwin H. Adams, of Salem, taken to Andersonville and transferred to Florence, where he died.

John Burns, of Rochester, taken to Catawba, Alabama, prison, and afterwards exchanged. He is now living at Rochester.

Syvert Ellefson, of Rock Dell, sent to Catawba, where he died of wounds received at Guntown.

Elisha and Orlando Geer, of Pleasant Grove, both sent to Andersonville. Elisha was transferred to Florence, where he died. Orlando died at Andersonville.

Henry H. Howard, of Elmira, taken to Catawba. Exchanged and returned to the regiment. He is now living in Marion Township.

Andrew C. McCoy, of Salem, sent to Andersonville. Exchanged and returned to the regiment and is now living in Salem.

Alpheus Merritt, of Kalmar, taken to Florence. He escaped by climbing over the stockade, was recaptured and sent to the prison at Salisbury, North Carolina, where he died.

Daniel McArthur, of Farmington, taken to Andersonville and transferred to Charleston. He escaped by jumping from the cars and was discharged with the regiment.

Eli Ruch, of Stewartville, sent to Andersonville. He was transferred to Millen and nothing further is known of him.

Richard R. Radcliff, of Stewartville, sent to Andersonville; transferred to Charleston and from there to Florence, where he died.

George Saville, of Farmington, sent to Andersonville, and from there to Florence. During his imprisonment he borrowed an ax of a Negro and it became mislaid. In punishment the Negro was compelled to inflict thirty lashes on Saville's bare back and Saville to inflict the same on the Negro. Saville was afterwards released from the prison and discharged with the regiment.

William Williams, of Rochester Township, sent to Andersonville and from there to Florence. He was ordered transferred to Florence and when on the way jumped the train. He reached Fort Johnson within the Union lines after a week's cautious progress through the enemy's country. He was discharged with the regiment. He is now living in Rochester.

Oliver C. Whipple, of Haverhill, sent to Andersonville, where he died.

Hiram Brooks and Albert Holt, of Salem, taken to Andersonville, where they died.

Jacob Dieter, of Farmington, sent to Andersonville. He was ordered transferred to Charleston, jumped the train, but was recaptured and taken to Salisbury, where he died.

John Cassidy, of Marion, taken to Andersonville, where he died.

George H. Knapp, of Stewartville, taken to Andersonville, where he died.

William F. Lyon, of Stewartville, sent to Andersonville. He was discharged with the regiment.

John L. Craig, of Stewartville, sent to Catawba. He was discharged with the regiment.

George Atkinson, of Oronoco, taken to Andersonville and died there.

Samuel Chilson, of High Forest, was captured, but there is no record of his imprisonment, and he was discharged with the regiment.

George C. Sherman, James Reynolds and F. Wilbur Warner had an adventurous escape from capture after the battle. They had only five hardtack for provisions. They hid by day and traveled by night and lived on such forage as green apples. They reached Memphis after six days of such toilsome travel and rejoined the regiment. Sherman is now a resident of Osage, Iowa. Capt. Absalom M. Enoch was from Illinois. He was keeping a saloon in Rochester and recruited a number of volunteers for the company. After his retirement from the army he was a farmer in Haverhill, and from there moved to Dakota.

Capt. Milton J. Daniels was a son of Hon. J. V. Daniels. He was born in the State of New York. He came to Rochester in 1857 and in 1860 went to Middlebury, New York, and attended the academy there, returning to Rochester. He became captain of Company F. In 1865 he was commissioned as captain and commissary and was on the staff of General Canby at New Orleans. His health was impaired by the hardships of the Guntown campaign. He returned to Rochester at the close of the war, became cashier and the president of the Union National Bank. He served as a representative in the Legislature two terms and one term as State senator. In 1891 he removed to California, where he was a banker and was elected a representative in Congress. He is still living there. He was an active and successful business man and popular with the people.

Lieut. Alfred M. Hall enlisted from Farmington Township, where he was a farmer. He returned to Farmington after the war and followed the occupation of farming for several years, after which he engaged in the grocery business in Rochester and from there moved to Dakota. He is now a resident of Brookings. Lieut. Alexander McMillan was a farmer in Farmington town ship. He located in Rochester at the close of his service and after wards moved to St. Paul, where he went on the police force, and from there moved to Chicago, where he was engaged in the same service.

  Olmsted County |Minnesota AHGP 

Source: History of Olmsted County Minnesota, by Hon. Joseph A. Leonard, Chicago, Goodspeed Historical Association, 1910.

 

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