Monday, November 28, 2016

Surname Connections Between the Smith and Brainerd Families in Middlesex County, Connecticut

Sarah [Brainerd] Smith (1762-1828)

Lieutenant David Smith (d.1756, Haddam, CT) and his wife Dorothy [Brainerd] Smith (d.1754, Haddam, CT) are our 7th Great Grandparents, and the parents of Revolutionary War Veteran Captain James Smith (d.1831, Harpersfield, NY). Captain James Smith married Mary Hubbard (d.1832, Harpersfield, NY) in 1759 Haddam, Middlesex County, Connecticut, their eldest child being our 5th Great Grandfather and Revolutionary War Veteran Frederick Smith (d.1852, Harpersfield, NY). Our Fall 2016 Haddam-area cemetery and library visits focused on Brainerd and Smith family research. Findings confirm the interesting fact where 5th Great Grandfather Frederick Smith and his first wife our 5th Great Grandmother Sarah Brainerd (d.1828, Harpersfield, NY), share the same 2nd Great Grandparents.  These common ancestors are Brainerd Family colonial progenitors Deacon Daniel Brainerd (d.1715, Haddam, CT) and Hannah Lynn (Spencer) Brainerd (d.1691, Haddam, CT). Frederick and Sarah [Brainerd] Smith are thus 3rd cousins, their fourth child is Hannah [Smith] Odell (d.1840, Jefferson, Schoharie County, NY). Hannah (Smith) Odell is our generation's 4th Great Grandmother, and our last known surname direct-link to this Haddam, Connecticut colonial Smith Family.

Such inter-family and intra-family marriages in 17th century British Colonial ancestry are not typical, but actually not unusual.  In our Sheldon Family ancestry, 5th Great Grandmother Esther [Sheldon] Odell's maternal great grandfather and her paternal great great grandfather are the same man (Mr. John Sheldon [S0023], d.1705).  In our Stanton lineage, 7th Great Grandparents William Stanton (d.1718, Stonington, CT) and Anne Stanton (d.1724, Stonington, CT) are first cousins (respective fathers are the sons of Stonington founder Thomas Stanton [d.1677]).

Genealogy pursuit is fun, where the variety and breath of ancestral anomalies found are simply striking.  Several generations back on our paternal-side we find two convicted murderers, one of these somehow arranged an early release from a life-sentence in a Vermont prison, then removed to the mid-west where he became a significant landowner and local politician of some note.  A 7th Great Grandfather Thomas Sheldon (d.1758) was mortally-wounded-in-action serving as a militia soldier during the French and Indian War, Battle of Carillion, 8 Jul 1758 (a/k/a Battle of Ticonderoga). Our ancestry includes more than three dozen Revolutionary War Veterans (at least two died as POWs aboard British prison ships in New York Harbor), over a dozen American Civil War Union Veterans -- two of these infantry soldiers are 2nd great grandfathers, and one distant cousin who died as a POW in rebel hands in that Andersonville hell-hole.  Additionally, our lineage holds a few senior British colonial military colonels, several company commanders, and a couple early New England militia generals. No murderers are known on our maternal-side, but 75% of mom's ancestors are French, hailing from New France (now Quebec, Canada).  From what I know of "canucks" -- well, it seems unlikely these French ancestors were all pure as the driven Canadian snows. Finally, we also know mom's French ancestry likely holds some small percentage DNA sourced in First Millennium Viking sailors.


Sunday, November 20, 2016

A Message To The Brilliant Lefties Among Us

In the late 1970's, I was a student in a computing course taught by Dr. Roger Rockefeller, professor at Utica College of Syracuse University (now Professor-Emeritus of Physics at Utica College). Something this very fine technical professor then proclaimed and strongly emphasized – his factual statement has stuck with me over the years: “Never put anything in electronic messages that you would not yell to your mother across a crowded room.”

Those simple, intelligent words from the sage Professor Rockefeller would well serve those many center-left educated folks who seem to lack common sense when it comes to electronic communication (i.e., email, Facebook, Twitter tweets, etc.). Perhaps second only to Anthony Weiner, Mrs. H.R. Clinton comes to mind as a leading candidate for the dubious title – 

“The New-Millennium's Least Intelligent
E-Mail User.” 

Note: The unaccredited image displayed at the top of this post found by simple Internet search and posted here for educational free-use purposes only.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

The Liberal Bigot Andrew Cuomo

Suck It Up Buttercup

We support President-Elect Donald Trump and most of the sound policies he cites, "Make America Great Again." The crap cited in your latest communication cited below is nothing short of liberal bigotry, we reject outright your unlimited "progressive" rants. Get a life Mr. Cuomo, staff, et al. Just who are the whiners and unsafe bigots in Albany and New York City?  Take a look in the nearest mirror.  

An important matter left off your bullet list -- New York State exceeds the national average of state and local taxes by over 3%, certain to grow considerably more high due to the claimed "liberalized benefits" you listed in your illogical communication. These liberal "benefits" are certain to cause more small business to flee New York State.  Seems obvious you and staff speak well for New York City liberals -- not for the growing majority of Central New York State residents.

David J. Paul
Member, Conservative Party of New York
German Flatts, NY

Cuomo Email Message:

Dear David,

The state of New York has a proud legacy as the progressive capital of the nation, and that is more important today than ever before.

As New Yorkers, we have fundamentally different philosophies than what Donald Trump laid out in his campaign.

So let me be absolutely clear: If anyone feels that they are under attack, I want them to know that the state of New York – the state that has the Statue of Liberty in its harbor – is their refuge.

Whether you are gay or straight, Muslim or Christian, rich or poor, black or white or brown, we respect all people in the state of New York.

It's the very core of what we believe and who we are. But it's not just what we say, we passed laws that reflect it, and we will continue to do so, no matter what happens nationally. We won’t allow a federal government that attacks immigrants to do so in our state.

We are a state of immigrants.

We are the state that raised the minimum wage to $15.

We are the state that passed Paid Family Leave.

We are the state that passed marriage equality.

We are New York, and we will stand up for you. And on that, I will never compromise.

Count on it.

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

See Conservative Party of New York State reply -- Click Here 

Note: The caricature at the top of this post is an unaccredited image found by simple Internet search, and posted here for free-use educational purposes only. 

Thursday, October 13, 2016

A Branch In Captain George Denison's Family Tree

A Typical 1645 English Cavalry Trooper 

Lineage: Denison Family of German Flatts and Dennison Corners, NY
Researched by genealogist DJ Paul of German Flatts, Herkimer County, NY

This report relates to a finding made in an early April 2016 trip to Mohawk Cemetery, Mohawk, German Flatts, Herkimer County, NY, USA. Visitation purpose was to locate and photo about fifteen+ outstanding requests for monument images from several other Find-A-Grave contributors. The older cemetery section was walked at least three times reading each monument. Imagine the surprise when finding Eveline “Eve” Klock's monument situated about center on the right-side plateau, in the older upper cemetery grounds bordering on Columbia Street (a/k/a: NYS Rt 28). Eve's husband is one Stanton Denison (d.1861). Our family descends from two original early British Colonial America southeast Connecticut settlers Mr. Thomas Stanton Sr. and Captain George Denison. Mr. Stanton Denison (d.1861) bears these two colonial surnames... seems he has got to be a previously unknown distant cousin. So a new family genealogy research project commenced... the draft results as cited in this report, page 2 are what I believe to be the correct lineage of this new found Denison Family branch who lived and died in the community of German Flatts, Herkimer County, NY, USA.

The small unincorporated hamlet of Dennison Corners is located less than 4 miles south from the village of Mohawk, German Flatts, Herkimer County, NY, on New York State Route 28  – don't blink, the hamlet will be missed. Presently unknown is where the second “N” in Dennison Corners originated, since my research shows each member in this all-male branch used the conventional Denison surname spelling. Might seem sexist to some, but personal experience has shown such name variations are sometimes sourced to the non-blood related spouse of a deceased male lineage member – perhaps done under a more stylish rationale. The signage at Dennison Corners Cemetery and on NYS Route 28 both use the “double N” surname version, this is probably why our family connection went unknown for these two years past that we have known about our Denison Family ancestors. Dennison Corners Cemetery is located on the left side of Robinson Road about 1500 feet from the junction with NYS Rt 28, south from Mohawk, NY. It appears the first Denison resident of Dennison Corners lands is George Denison Jr. (1746 – 1831), the son of George Denison Sr. (d.1777, New London County, CT, USA). This George Jr. (d.1831) appears to be my immediate family's 2nd cousin-8xRemoved, he a pioneer who likely removed his family from New London County, Connecticut to German Flatts Township, Herkimer County, NY in about 1795. See Find A Grave at the following link: Click George Jr. HERE

The draft lineage cited here is a work-in-progress on subject Denison Family branch showing lineage from Samuel B. Denison (d.1984) to distant bold grandfather Captain George Denison (d.1694, Hartford, Hartford County, Connecticut, British Colonial America). Per Samuel's obituary published in The Observer-Dispatch, Utica, NY, January 11, 1984, "...He is survived by a son, John, Pittsford, N.Y.; three daughters, Mrs. James (Renee) Baker, Delphi Falls, Mrs. Robert (Nancy) Brothers, Herkimer, Mrs. Cynthia Krowicki, Mohawk." Not known if any children in this lineage presently survive, but more research will be done to identify this possibility. This all-male lineage may be interesting to some family DNA research genealogists. Of further interest to family genealogists is the additional common ancestry to Hartford, CT and Stonington, CT founder Mr. Thomas Stanton Sr. (d.1677) via his granddaughter Dorothy Stanton (d.1737), she the wife of Captain Robert Denison (d.1737).  Captain Robert Denison (d.1737) is the fond grandson of our good distant grandfather Captain George Denison (d.1694).

For more on the gallant Captain George Denison (d.1694), click Captain George

Dave “DJ” Paul
German Flatts, NY
12 Oct 2016

The Denison Family of German Flatts...
Page 2

Captain George Denison (1620 – 1694),
and his wife Ms. Ann Borodell (1615 – 1712)
son of Deacon William Denison (d.1653) and Margaret Chandler (d.1645)
parents of Captain John Borodell Denison (d.1698)

Captain John Borodell Denison (1646 – 1698) and Phebe Lay (1650 - 1699)
eldest son of Captain George Denison (d.1694)
parents of Captain Robert Denison (d.1737)

Captain Robert Denison (1673 – 1737) and Dorothy Stanton (1681 - 1737)
son of Captain John Borodell Denison (d.1698)
parents of George Denison Sr. (d.1777)

George Denison Sr. (1717 – 1777) and Hannah Dodge (1722 - 1766)
son of Captain Robert Denison (d.1737)
father of George Denison Jr. (d.1849/50)
George Sr.'s death reported by Internet research at New London County, CT, USA; internment site not known, likely at New London County, CT, USA.

George Denison Jr. (1749/50 – 1831) and Margaret Denison [unknown maiden name] (1745 – 1808)
son of George Denison Sr. (d.1777)
father of Stanton Denison Sr. (d.1849-50)
Margaret (d.1808) is the presumed first wife of George Jr. (d.1831); m. presumed in New London County, CT about 1767; her internment is at Dennison Corners Cemetery, Dennison Corners, German Flatts, Herkimer County, NY.
See Find A Grave at the following link: Click:  HERE

Stanton Denison Sr. (1774 – 1846) and Sarah “Sally” Brown (1783 - 1854)
son of George Denison Jr. (d.1777)
father of Stanton Denison Jr. (d.1861)
See Find A Grave at the following link: Click HERE 

Stanton Denison Jr. (1809 – 1861) and Eveline “Eve” Klock (1810 - 1879)
son of Stanton Denison Sr. (d.1846)
father of Samuel Denison (d.1926)
See Find A Grave at the following link: Click HERE

Samuel Denison (1847 – 1926) and Alvira Doxtater (1849 – 1918)
son of Stanton Denison Jr. (d.1861)
father of Burton A. Denison (d.1944)
See Find A Grave at the following link: Click HERE

Burton A. Denison (1878 – 1944) and Grace C. Arthur (1876 – 1956)
son of Samuel Denison (d.1926)
father of Samuel B. Denison (d.1984)
See Find A Grave at the following link: Click HERE

Samuel B. Denison (1908 – 1984) and Margaret F. Shields (1909 – 1982)
son of Burton A. Denison (d.1944)
See Find A Grave at the following link: Click HERE

It's becoming increasingly clear there is another George Denison whose lifespan basically mirrors George Denison Jr. (1749/50 - 1831) cited in above chart, this different man... a second Mr. George Denison was born in Stonington, New London County, CT about 1746, and who removed to Madison County, NY State sometime after 1800. The new George Denison married Ms. Bethia Crandall (1748-1821), they have at least 7 kids, and he (a Rev War Vet) died in Jun 1833, interred at Brookfield Rural Cemetery, Brookfield, Madison County, NY with his wife (et al). See Find A Grave Memorial# 21029966: Click link: Another George Denison

Limited research subscribers at -- “the clickers” have partially or fully merged the two George Denison men in various Family Trees. I've attempted to work with these “Ancestry clickers” in the past, but researchers typically would have better results communicating with a blank wall. Won't waste more time on "clicker" corrective endeavors.

Research shows this newfound George Denison (d.1833) is the son of Joseph and Lucy (Chesebrough) Denison of New London County, CT. Here are some details relating to our 3rd cousin 8xRemoved George Denison (d.1833), hereafter addressed as George Denison I.

George Denison I is a great-great grandson of Mystic, CT founder, the gallant Captain George Denison, this good Captain is the original owner of the property at 120 Pequotsepos Road, Mystic, CT 06355.
The following article was compiled and arranged by Daniel Spencer Denison of Albany, NY. Daniel Spencer is main author, using several notes from microfilm of three handwritten volumes donated by Charles B. Moore of Glens Falls, NY.
Subject: Denison, George, 1746-1833:
Chiefly, a history and record of descendants of George Denison I, who was born on May 17, 1746 at Stonington, New London County, Connecticut. George is the son of Joseph Denison and Lucy (Chesebrough) Denison. On January 1, 1766, George married Bethiah Crandall. Bethiah is daughter of Joseph and Edith (Hiscox) Crandall of Westerly, Washington County, Rhode Island. George and Bethiah had ten children. George was a Connecticut Continential soldier who was drafted out of Captain Ichabode Brown's Company in the town of Stonington, Connecticut for nine months, and was mustered, with about seventy men, at New London, North Parish. Then they were marched to the Highlands in New York, under Captain Chapman, and arriving at West Point, they received arms, and then mustered into Captain William Richard's Company, and was put under drill for a month, when they joined Colonel Sherman's Regiment. This regiment was then sent to Verplaucks Point, where he was taken sick and sent to the New Windsor Hospital, where he remained about three months. George was then sent back to West Point, and joined his regiment. He was detached with others, and served one month, from West Point to Robinson's Farm to guard General McDougall, who was placed under arrest. He was detached to get cord wood for the Officer's Winter Quarters, that in the month of December, having served his full term of nine months, he was given a discharge signed by General Huntington. He was in no battles. George Denison died June 3, 1833 at the age of 87. Descendants lived in New York, Rhode Island, Minnesota, Iowa and elsewhere.

Lineage from Captain George Denison (d.1694) to George Denison I (d.1833).

Captain George Denison (1620 – 1694)
son of William Denison (d.1654)
father of George Denison Jr. (d.1711)

George Denison Jr. (1653 – 1711)
son of Captain George Denison (d.1694)
father of George Denison III (d.1736)

George Denison III (1699 – 1736)
son of George Denison Jr. (d.1711)
father of Joseph Denison (d.1760)

Joseph Denison (1723 - 1760)
son of George Denison III (d.1736)
father of George Denison I (d.1833)

George Denison I (1746 – 1833)
son of Joseph Denison (d.1760)
the great-great grandson of Captain George Denison (d.1694) 

P.S.  This post is a request for added primary source information relating to individuals cited in this lineage chart.  Your fine assistance is respectfully requested.  Thank you.   djp

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Battle of Antietam

On the 155th Anniversary of the Bloodiest Single Day in American military history -- September 17, 1862 -- please take a few moments to view this interesting web site:

Click -- Antietam Battlefield--by Civil War Trust

Saturday, September 3, 2016

A Strange Finding At The Cemetery

Yesterday, took a short trip to Armory Hill Cemetery, Ilion, NY, to look for the grave-site of our First Cousin-1xRemoved “Bub” Hyde (my Grandma Edna Seney Ouellet and Bub's mom Lillian Seney Hyde are full-sisters). Not too hard to find Bub and his wife Marie, they are interred perhaps 80 feet from my parents Steve and Lillian Ouellet Paul. Find-A-Grave profiles have been created to honor Bub and Marie (click: "Hyde" ).

Then a strange thing happened when visiting my parents grave-site, a fact that has not been noted in my many past parental visits–strange this was not noted previously. Facing mom and dad's monument, to the left side maybe twenty feet away is the Ludden Family Plot, and in this plot along with her parents is the monument of Linda L. Ludden (died 2000). And then to the right side about another twenty feet away is the Cormia Family Plot, with grave-site of H. Thomas Cormia (died 1990), interred there with his parents and brother Jim.

Some might say what's the big deal here, there are so many thousands of souls interred at Armory Hill Cemetery. This is true, but just twenty feet to the left and twenty feet to the right of my parent's grave-site, rest two of my fellow graduates--Class of 1961--Ilion Senior High School, Ms. Linda Ludden and Mr. Tom Cormia. Find-A-Grave profiles are created to honor the lives of Linda (click: "Lyn" ) and Tom (click: "Tom" ) and profiles for their respective families.  Rather unsettling indeed for me, a finding that tends to put all things in a previously unknown and weird prospective.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Confusing To Be RED

Reading from his handy teleprompter, Obie says it's all good.  Take it away Hillary...

Some edited thoughts received recently from a good friend and former associate:

It seems that lately my life has been getting more complicated, and I want to thank those of you who are brave enough to still associate with me regardless of what I have become. The following is a recap of my current identity:

  • I was born a white male, that makes me a racist.
  • I am a fiscal and moral conservative, that makes me a fascist.
  • I am heterosexual, thus making me homophobic.
  • I am non-union – except for the final dozen years of working life where I was given no known choice, and that makes me a traitor to the working class and an ally of big business.
  • I am a Christian, that makes me an infidel.
  • I am older than 65 and retired, that makes me a useless old man.
  • I think and I reason; therefore I doubt much that the main stream media tells me, that makes me a reactionary.
  • I am proud of my heritage and our inclusive American culture, that makes me a xenophobe.
  • I value my safety and that of my family and associates; therefore, I appreciate the police and the legal system, and that makes me a right-wing extremist.
  • I believe in hard work, fair play, and fair compensation according to each individual's merits, that makes me anti-socialist.
  • I acquired a good education without student loans and no debt at graduation, although going to night school while working full-time takes several years longer, and this makes me some kind of odd underachiever.
  • I believe in the defense and protection of the homeland by all citizens, that makes me a militarist.
  • I believe in the U.S. Constitution Amendment II and the human right to own and bear Arms, and this makes me a RED-neck (RED = Retired Extremely Dangerous).

Please help me come to terms with this, because I‘m not sure who I am anymore! And the most recent problem – I'm not sure which bathroom I should use.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Civil War Veteran Private Edwin H. Sheldon

Edwin H. Sheldon is a distant second or third cousin. His parents are most likely our first cousin Ephraim Sheldon (1783-1868) and his second wife Lydia Mills Sheldon (d. 1871). Alternatively, Edwin's parents are our second cousin Joseph D. Sheldon and his wife Harriet Jane Draper Sheldon (Joseph D. Sheldon is son of the aforementioned Ephraim Sheldon). In any case, Edwin H. Sheldon, who died at age 26 years in August 1867, is either the son or grandson of our first cousin Ephraim Sheldon (1783-1868). Regardless of the truth in this matter, it is a fact that nearly forty-percent of Edwin's young adult life was spent in wartime military uniformed service to his county. Our two year investigation thus far yields insufficient primary documents found to certify Edwin H. Sheldon's lineage.

Edwin H. Sheldon is the same Edwin H. Sheldon cited in National Park Service records as the Civil War Veteran of Company I, 2nd Regiment, U.S. Cavalry (Regular Army), who served three years as an enlisted cavalry trooper and private soldier in the many American Civil War union campaigns in and around Virginia and under the aggressive and gallant cavalry leader General Philip H. Sheridan. One-hundred percent confirmation is now unlikely since the U.S. Army did not create Compiled Military Service Records (CMSR) for Civil War Regular Army soldiers, as created for Civil War State Volunteers.  This fact discovered in a letter dated July 14, 2016 from National Archives Records Administration (NARA) in Washington, D.C.  Attempts to secure Edwin's military records from the NARA now seems impossible, since U.S. Army service records on Regular Soldiers were apparently and rather unbelievably never created. From official records “Register of Enlistments – U.S. Army – 1798-1914” – Private Edwin H. Sheldon enlisted for a three year stint on 5 September 1861 in the regular Army Cavalry and was Honorably Discharged at termination of enlistment 5 September 1864 at Summit Point, Virginia. In less than three years from military discharge Edwin was dead, aged 26 years. Unknown is if Edwin's untimely death was related to military service wounds or sickness.  He is interred in the Sheldon Family Plot at the presently inactive Betty Brook Road Cemetery, Town of Kortright, Delaware County, New York. Edwin's federal-furnished Military Veteran gravestone is inscribed as follows:

Served 3 years in the late war
under Gen. Sheridan,
DIED AUG., 22, 1867
26 YEARS.”

Last year Edwin's monument was discovered dislodged from its base as indicated in the photo below:

It was resolved to reset the monument, but events prevented doing this work last year.  Necessary research proved there is an easement in the deed of the local surrounding landowner that sets aside the cemetery as public lands, and that the outer section of the property driveway is declared a public right-of-way for visitor access to the small cemetery.  Earlier this year verbal permission was granted by Kortright Town Supervisor Mr. George Haynes to do monument repairs. The reset task was completed in May 2016.  

Repair materials include: 2 bags of Quikrete ready cement, two new anchor bolts, a tube of construction adhesive, 2 landscape tiles, and a half cu. ft. bag of white marble landscape chips.  A new Grand Army of the Republic (GAR Veteran) grave marker and flag holder was added. A quantity of form and shoring lumber is also necessary providing sufficient monument stability for about 10 days concrete set and cure period.  

A final photo of the monument reset project appears below:

Thank you Private Edwin H. Sheldon for those gallant and courageous U.S. Army Cavalry services rendered in support of that great wartime effort to preserve the union. 


Thursday, April 21, 2016

Our Gallant American Civil War Veterans,
A "Decoration Day" Salute

Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) Service Medal

The first Union "Decoration Day" (now called Memorial Day) was held in May 1866 by the caring residents of the tiny Finger Lakes village Waterloo, New York.  This remembrance movement aimed to decorate graves with flower arrangements, those the grave-sites of many local military veteran causalities of the late War to Preserve the Union.  Any revisionist claim otherwise by residents of Georgia are false, since Georgia was not readmitted to the Union until 1868... and then tossed out again when Georgia failed to recognize blacks as citizens... and then again readmitted to the Union in 1870 only after finally endorsing the U.S. Constitution 14th Amendment.

The two grandfathers of our paternal Grandmother Elizabeth Rosella (Moegling) Paul were deceased when Elizabeth was born 13 April 1896. These two men are our generation's Great-Great-Grandfathers Private Albert G. Odell and Corporal William Moegling. Both men are military veterans of the American Civil War, gallantly serving to preserve the union with the U.S. Army Infantry.

Private Albert G. Odell (about 1839 - 10 Mar 1892) was born in Schoharie County, New York. His occupation as a young man was farm labor and work as a barrel-maker (a cooper) at his uncle Isaac L. Odell's local cooperage in Summit, Schoharie County, NY. In 1864, Albert enlisted as a U.S. Army private soldier with Schoharie County Company B, 91st Infantry Regiment of New York State Volunteers. His Civil War service with the 91st New York include engagements against rebel forces during the Petersburg Campaign and the Appomattox Campaign. Private Albert Odell's ancestry includes many cousins who are military veterans of the Civil War and over three-dozen Revolutionary War Veteran ancestors.  Grandpa Albert is interred at Bath National Cemetery, Bath, Steuben County, NY. From the official roster of the 91st New York Infantry Regiment:
“ODELL, ALBERT.— Age, 25 years. Enlisted at Albany, [NY] to serve one year, and mustered in as private, Co. B, September 5, 1864; mustered out with detachment; June 10, 1865, near Washington, D.C.”

Corporal William Moegling (about 1812 - 23 Nov 1869) was born in Stuttgart, Germany. William emigrated from Germany to the USA in June 1847, and was almost immediately recruited as an armed service private soldier with the U.S. Army during the Mexican War. His lifelong occupation was as a scourer and dyer, the period process for cleaning garments in what we today call professional dry-cleaning. In 1861, William enlisted in the U.S. Army as a Corporal with Oneida County Company H, 97th Infantry Regiment of New York State Volunteers. His Civil War service include engagements against rebel forces at the Battle of Cedar Mountain, General Pope's Northern Virginia Campaign, Second Battle of Bull Run, Battle of South Mountain, and the Battle of Antietam. Although injured, William remained with his regiment, but likely not directly involved in the mid-December 1862 fighting at the Battle of First Fredericksburg, this due to his documented wounds suffered in previous battles. He received an honorable Disability Discharge from the U.S. Army in early 1863 and was later released from a military hospital near Belle Plain, Virginia. William is interred in a mass-grave at Forest Hill Cemetery, Utica, NY, where in 1916 the remains of nearly all exhumed skeletons were placed following the total removal of Utica's former municipal burial grounds at Potter Street Cemetery. From the official roster of the 97th New York Infantry Regiment:
“MOEGLIN, WILLIAM—Age, 43 years. Enlisted, November 30, 1861, at Utica, [NY] to serve three years; mustered in as corporal, Co. H, December 11, 1861; returned to ranks, no date; discharged for disability, June 11, 1863, at hospital, as Moegling.”

P.S. New York State Department of Military and Naval Affairs official Civil War record errors are often noted.  Surname spelling, age at enlistment, and discharge dates are frequently wrongly recorded.  Such is the case with Corporal William Moegling.  William's birth year is variously recorded in several non-military official documents between 1808-1815. Seems likely that William may have intentionally under stated his physical age at enlistment,  his age likely being about 49 or 50 in 1861. Furthermore, it is likely that no official birth certificates were recorded for the vast majority of Civil War enlisted men.          

Monday, April 4, 2016

A Soldier and Sailor of the Revolutionary War

Frederick Smith grave site, with Revolutionary War Veteran marker and American Flag holder.  

In Haddam, Connecticut, when our 5th Great Grandpa Frederick Smith was born on March First 1760, his father Captain James Smith was aged 21, and his mother the former Miss Mary Hubbard was aged 19. Mary Hubbard Smith and husband Captain James Smith are one pair of our 6th Great Grandparents. As a teenage soldier, their eldest son Frederick Smith served as an enlisted private soldier during the Revolutionary War, part of the fighting Connecticut Militia, with likely service as a soldier in the Revolutionary War Militia Company his dad commanded. Then in 1778, young Frederick served a five-month stint as an able-bodied seaman and privateer aboard the American Brig New Broom, an armed-for-war brig outfitted with 16-guns, then commanded by Captain Israel Bishop sailing from New London, Connecticut. Unfortunately, on October 22, 1778 this good ship and crew of New Broom were captured off Nantucket Shoals by the gallant sailors of two British warships HMS Ariel and HMS Savage. The captured New Broom was redirected by escort to New York City Harbor. Frederick was held as a POW for one month at New York City. Then he and other enlisted sailors were presumably paroled by British authority (naval officers were typically held by the British as POW on one of those dreadful prison ships). Frederick's Revolutionary War military service was then likely over, as a honor-bound condition of his POW parole.

Basic sail configuration of a late 18th century brig

In the summer of 1780, Frederick married the local beauty Miss Sarah Brainerd in ceremony at their mutual hometown Haddam, Connecticut. At some point prior to 1790, his parents Captain James and Mary Hubbard Smith removed their entire family from Haddam, Connecticut to Harpersfield, Delaware County, New York, where they had earlier purchased a couple large lots from the original Colonel John Harper Land Patent. One of these Harpersfield lots was sub-divided by Captain James and Mary Smith to thus give equal farming acreage to each of his four adult sons. One contemporary account states that Captain Smith removed his entire family from Haddam to Delaware County, NY because he did not want his sons to become sailors, a area vocation not then unusual for male residents of Haddam, Connecticut -- then a busy inland port less than twenty miles from Long Island Sound on the navigable Connecticut River.  

The Frederick and Sarah Brainerd Smith marriage produced four children, the eldest a daughter Hannah – she being our 4th Great Grandmother. Following Sarah's untimely death in February 1828, Frederick re-married Ms. Isabella Norton in a local New York State ceremony. He out-lived his second wife Isabella, she passing in 1841. Frederick did not marry a third time, he died a widower on July 17, 1852, in the Hamlet of Jefferson, Schoharie County, NY, USA, passing at the impressive age of 92. Frederick was interred at North Harpersfield Cemetery, North Harpersfield, Delaware County, New York, where his beloved two wives are also interred by his side.

Frederick Smith Family Plot, North Harpersfield Cemetery, Town of Harpersfield, Delaware County, New York, USA.  Second wife Isabella lower left, first wife Sarah is lower center, and Frederick center right (with Memorial American Flag). 

The reconstructed War of 1812 U.S. Brig Niagara,
perhaps 25% larger than a typical Revolutionary War brig
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