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Civil War Blog

A project of PA Historian

Pillow Historical Society Open House Features Civil War Program

Posted By on July 3, 2015


Open House at Pillow Historical Society – 4 July 2015

The Pillow Historical Society will host an Open House at the museum on Saturday, 4 July 2015, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.  The museum will have some new displays including stove pipe making tools used by Earl Bingaman, the council minute books from Pillow Borough beginning in 1864, and an exhibit on “Women and the Civil War” provided by Norman Gasbarro.

At 11 a.m., Gasbarro, the keynote speaker, will share some surprising “finds” of the Civil War Research Project – and include at least ten Civil War connections to Pillow. He will also share information about how easy it is today to conduct Civil War genealogical research with the Internet and show some of the kinds of information that can be found instantly in searches.

Gasbarro is a retired school administrator and history teacher from Atlantic City who now lives in Philadelphia and has a vacation home in the Lykens Valley.  As a child, he spent his summers on his grandparent’s farm on Specktown Road [Lykens Township] and became interested in the history and genealogy of the area.  For the past 7 years, he has focused on the Civil War and the men who fought in it (the Civil War Research Project) – how it affected their lives and the lives of their families. He has identified over 3000 Civil War veterans with some connection to the Lykens Valley area- and collected information on them. He also writes regularly for “The Civil War Blog” – more than 1200 articles since 2010 – and now more than 500,000 site visitors.

Charles Bingaman of Gratz, will be there throughout the day to demonstrate the skill of tin work passed down from his father.  He will be available to discuss the art of stovepipe making, and will be demonstrating the art of tin roofing.  Bingaman’s parents lived and worked in Pillow.

The museum has many interesting displays focused on the history of Pillow and the surrounding areas.  Members of the historical society will be on hand to provide information.  Refreshments will be available.

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The museum is located at 167 Union Street.  It is the home of the Zion Lutheran Church founded in 1885.  The church building was entrusted to the historical society in 2005, and has become the home of the society’s museum.  It is filled with photos and memorabilia from Pillow residents and businesses.  There are displays featuring our veterans, our schools, our fire company, and our businesses. We have original documents from land purchases in town as well as over ten years of the Pillow Gazette, the local newspaper dating back to 1920. Our  focus in the museum is to document the historical events in the town and to tell the story of the people who settled here, raised their families here, and gave the town the character it has today.

Obituary of Philip C. Swab

Posted By on July 1, 2015

Philip C. Swab, or Philip C. Schwab as he is sometimes found in the records, served in the 208th Pennsylvania Infantry, Company A, as a Private, from 30 August 1864 through his muster out on 1 June 1865.  He died in Tennessee on 10 January 1900, but his roots were in the Lykens Valley in and around Elizabethville.  His obituary appeared in the Harrisburg Telegraph on 11 January 1900, but gave an incorrect place of burial.  His grave is actually located at Maple Grove Cemetery, Elizabethville.

 

DEATHS AND FUNERALS

Philip C. Swab

Harrisburg, 10 January 1901 –Unexpected was the death of Philip C. Swab, from 1885 until 1891, Recorder of Dauphin County, at his home in Hartranft, Tennessee, yesterday afternoon.  His son, Daniel C. Swab, who is reading law in the office of District Attorney Millar, received the sad news late yesterday afternoon and the further information that the body would be brought to the old Swab homestead near Elizabethville, this county, Saturday, for interment at St. John’s Church, near Berrysburg, Sunday morning at 10.

Philip C. Swab was born September 10, 1847, in Washington Township, and was the son of the late Eli Swab, who died in January 1899.  His great-great grandfather, John Schwab, was a native of Germany and came to this country about 1735, first settling in Philadelphia, and later removing to Berks County.  John Jacob Schwab, grandfather of Eli Schwab, removed to Washington Township, where he died in 1819.  Jacob Swab, grandfather of the deceased, served in the War of 1812 and died on the Swab homestead in 1866.

The deceased wedded Catherine Koppenheffer, of Washington Township, about thirty years ago, and before coming to this city, was a merchant in Williamstown.  He established a comfortable home at Thirteenth and Market Streets, and shortly after retiring from office as Recorder removed to Hartranft, Tennessee, to assume the presidency of the Reliance Coal and Coke Company and Middlesborough Coal Company, formed by Dauphin County capitalists.  His brother, George Swab, formerly a clerk in the Recorder’s Office, later a common councilman from the Ninth Ward, is now connected with the Tennessee company in an official capacity.

The deceased is survived by three children:  Mrs. G. Walter Whiteman, of Philadelphia; Daniel C. Swab, of this city [Harrisburg]; and Miss Fannie Swab, of Hartranft, Tennessee.  Mrs. Swab died in this city in July 1894.

Mr. Swab served in the Civil War and was a Mason and member of the G.A.R.  He was a man of kindly and generous disposition and strong character.  He inherited the energy, industry, and probity of his forefathers, in a marked degree and always had a good word for his fellow man.  Mr. Swab made a popular official and many friends in Harrisburg will regret his sudden demise.

Mr. Swab stated this after afternoon that he had not learned any particulars regarding the nature of his father’s illness,  He received a letter this morning from his father, mailed yesterday, in which the writer stated stated that he was enjoying his usual good health.

Additional information about Philip C. Swab can be found at his Findagrave Memorial.

 

The Yeager Family in the Civil War (Part 11)

Posted By on June 29, 2015

In 1912, the Hon. James Martin Yeager wrote and published A Brief History of the Yeager, Buffington, Creighton, Jacobs, Lemon, Hoffman and Woodside Families and Their Collateral Kindred of Pennsylvania.  Yeager was formerly the President of Drew Seminary for Young Women of Carmel, New York as well as a former Member of the House of Representatives of Pennsylvania and a Marshal of the Middle District of Pennsylvania.  On pages 82-85, he presented a list of Pennsylvania soldiers he identified with the Yeager surname who had fought in the War of the Rebellion, 1861-1865.  In addition to the names of the soldiers, he named the regiment and company in which they fought.  Sixty-three veterans were thus identified.  A free download of Yeager’s book can be obtained at the Internet Archive.

There is much information still to be discovered about each of the veterans.  Readers of this blog are urged to add information to what is provided below – particularly genealogical information about each of the men, including the names of their parents and their decent from the earliest Yeager’s who arrived in Pennsylvania.  Additional stories about the Civil War service of these veterans is also sought, particularly if readers have access to the pension application files and military records from the National Archives.  Pictures are especially welcome!  Comments can be added to this post or sent by e-mail.

This post continues a multi-part series on these Pennsylvanians with the Yeager surname who served in the Civil War.

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YeagerTheodore-PAVetCardFile-001

Theodore H. Yeager was 19 years old (born about 1842) when he enlisted in the 20th Pennsylvania Infantry, Company F, as a Private, and was mustered into service at Philadelphia on 30 April 1861.  He served until his 3-month duty was completed at the end of July 1861.  His occupation was paperhanger.

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YeagerEdwardG-gravemarker-001

Edward G. Yeager, sometimes referred to as Edwin G. Yeager, was born 28 January 1845 and died 13 September 1897.  He is buried at the Union-West End Cemetery, Allentown, Lehigh County, Pennsylvania.  On 30 September 1864 at Harrisburg, he was mustered into the 9th Pennsylvania Cavalry, Company A, as a Private.  His residence at the time was Harrisburg and he was employed as a teamster.   However, his first service was in a Pennsylvania Emergency Militia, the 27th Pennsylvania Infantry, Company H, as a Private, from 19 June 1863 to 30 July 1863.  After the war he applied for a pension on 7 May 1891, which he received and collected until his death.  For more information about him, see his Findagrave Memorial.

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Christopher Yeager, or Christopher Yaeger, was born about 1837 in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania.  During the Civil War, he served in the 102nd Pennsylvania Infantry, Company M, as a Private, from 3 September 1861 until he was discharged on a Surgeon’s Certificate of Disability on 21 September 1863, as a result of being wounded at Chancellorsville and Salem Heights, Virginia, on the 3 May 1863.  At the time of his enlistment at Pittsburgh, he was a farmer.  Because of his wounds, he was able to apply for a pension on 26 September 1863, which he received and collected until his death on 6 June 1895.  He is buried at Allegheny Cemetery, Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania.

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YeagerWilliamH-MilitaryIndex-001

William H. Yeager enrolled in the 118th Pennsylvania Infantry, Company C, as a Private, at Philadelphia, and was mustered into service there on 6 August 1862.  At some point in that service, he was transferred to the Veteran Reserve Corps (Invalid Corps), but he was discharged before war’s end, because he applied for a pension on 29 June 1864, which he collected until his death.  On 17 February, his widow, Mary A. Yeager, applied for benefits and she collected until her death.  William H. Yeager was about 29 years old and was probably a resident of Philadelphia when joined the 118th Pennsylvania Infantry.

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YeagerHenryE-PAVetCardFile-001a

Henry E. Yeager, born about 1841 and died 26 February 1895, first served in the 7th Pennsylvania Cavalry, Company E, as a Private, from 29 October 1861 through his discharge on a Surgeon’s Certificate of Disability in May 1862.  After two years, on 9 September 1864, he began service in the 199th Pennsylvania Infantry, Company I, as a Private, which he completed to an honorable discharge on 28 June 1865.  During the 2nd service, he was promoted to Corporal on 2 October 1864.  His records show that he was born in Clinton County, Pennsylvania, and for his second service, he enrolled and was mustered in at Williamsport, Lycoming County, Pennsylvania.  By occupation, he was a farmer.  On 24 April 1883, he applied for an invalid pension, which he received and collected until his death.  His widow continued with pension benefits until her death.

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YeagerFranklin-PAVetCardFile-001

Franklin Yeager served in the 2nd Pennsylvania Infantry, Company A, as a Private, from 20 April 1861 through 3 months to 24 July 1861.  At the time, he was a 35-year old resident of Chambersburg, Pennsylvania.  He also was credited with service in Muchler’s Independent Battery of Light Artillery as a Corporal, from 11 October 1861 through 12 October 1865.

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Pension Index Cards are from the Pennsylvania ArchivesMilitary Index Cards are from Fold3.

The Yeager Family in the Civil War (Part 10) – Capt. Frederick M. Yeager

Posted By on June 24, 2015

 

In 1912, the Hon. James Martin Yeager wrote and published A Brief History of the Yeager, Buffington, Creighton, Jacobs, Lemon, Hoffman and Woodside Families and Their Collateral Kindred of Pennsylvania.  Yeager was formerly the President of Drew Seminary for Young Women of Carmel, New York as well as a former Member of the House of Representatives of Pennsylvania and a Marshal of the Middle District of Pennsylvania.  On pages 82-85, he presented a list of Pennsylvania soldiers he identified with the Yeager surname who had fought in the War of the Rebellion, 1861-1865.  In addition to the names of the soldiers, he named the regiment and company in which they fought.  Sixty-three veterans were thus identified.  A free download of Yeager’s book can be obtained at the Internet Archive.

There is much information still to be discovered about each of the veterans.  Readers of this blog are urged to add information to what is provided below – particularly genealogical information about each of the men, including the names of their parents and their decent from the earliest Yeager’s who arrived in Pennsylvania.  Additional stories about the Civil War service of these veterans is also sought, particularly if readers have access to the pension application files and military records from the National Archives.  Pictures are especially welcome!  Comments can be added to this post or sent by e-mail.

This post continues a multi-part series on these Pennsylvanians with the Yeager surname who served in the Civil War.  Today’s post features Capt. Frederick M. Yeager, who was captured and held at Libby Prison during the war.

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YeagerFredrick-portrait-001a

Frederick M. Yeager (1840-1920)

This information from pages 38-39 of the History of the Yeager Family (cited above):

Frederick M. Yeager, son of Amos B. Yeager, Captain of Company C, 128th Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers [128th Pennsylvania Infantry], [was] born 17 June 1840.  Under the proclamation of Abraham Lincoln, 16 April 1861, for seventy-five thousand troops, as a member of the Ringgold Light Artillery, he left Reading, Pennsylvania, 16 April 1861, at 6 a.m., arriving at Harrisburg at 8 a.m. – the first company in the United States to report for duty.  On 18 April 1861, they marched through the mob at Baltimore and were the first troops that entered the capital, for which the State of Pennsylvania gave them medals of honor.  In 1862 he took an active part in recruiting six companies for the 128th Regiment P. V., and was 1st Lieutenant of Company K.  At the Battle of Antietam, his regiment lost in killed and wounded one hundred and thirty-nine officers and men.  He was promoted from 1st Lieutenant of Company K to Captain of Company C, and was at the Battle of Chancellorsville, on the evening of 2 May 1863, when Stonewall Jackson drove the 11th Corps from their position.  His regiment was attached to the 12th Corps and his company was the extreme right of the 12th Corps.  They joined the left of the 11th Corps at the Plank Road, and when the 11th stampeded, they opened a right oblique fire.  Stonewall Jackson was mortally wounded in the fight and his regiment lost two hundred and thirteen, killed, wounded and missing, and Captain Yeager was taken prisoner and confined in the Libby Prison.  He is at present [1912] Commander of McLean Post No. 16, G.A.R., one of the largest posts in the state.

YeagerFrederick-gravemarker-001

Capt. Frederick M. Yeager died on 17 Jul 1920 and is buried at the Charles Evans Cemetery, Reading, Berks County, Pennsylvania.  Further information on him can be seen at his Findagrave Memorial.

Obituaries of Civil War Era Women, 1914

Posted By on June 22, 2015

The following are obituaries of some Civil War era women:

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From the Harrisburg Patriot, 2 March 1914:

OLDEST WOMAN OF COUNTY DIES, 104

Mrs. Elizabeth Sharon, Steelton, Succumbs to Old Age Debilities

HAD REMARKABLE RECORD

Mrs. Elizabeth Sharon, probably the county’s oldest resident, died Saturday evening about 8 o’clock, at the residence of her daughter on Hyers Street.  [On the] hundred and fourth anniversary of her birth, 8 February, and received in person the congratulations of many friends.  Old age was given as the cause of her death.

Mrs. Sharon was well kn own in this vicinity for her remarkable vitality and activity and until about 10 days ago, when she was forced to take her bed, she was in full possession of all her faculties.  During her last years she was alert at all times and her principal occupation was that of making various articles from patches.  Her children are in possession of these articles which are worked out in beautiful designs.

Until about a year ago, when she was injured in a fall, Mrs. Sharon had been confined mostly to one room, but within that time she has taken several trips in a roller chair and in an automobile.  Ten days ago her physical condition began going back and she finally lost her power of speech.  Her death came during a relapse while she was thought to be asleep.

Mrs. Sharon was born in Perry County and was married to Lawrence Sharon, who served as a soldier in the Civil War, and has been dead 31 years.  She took up residence in Steelton 26 years ago.  She is survived by the following children:  Mrs. Sadie Keagle, of the borough; Mrs. Mary Mowery, of Gordon; Ada Sharon, with whom she lived; Mrs. Lizzie Phillips, of Philadelphia; and Mrs. George Rickert of the borough.  She was the mother of one son who died.

Funeral services will be conducted from her residence on Myers Street, Steelton, tomorrow afternoon at 2 o’clock, the Rev. J. M. Waggoned and the Rev. George T. Schools officiating.  Burial will take place in the Baldwin Cemetery.

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From the Harrisburg Patriot, 27 July 1914:

MRS. S. W. POMEROY DIES, WAS LONG ILL

Widow of Presbyterian Preacher Was War-Time Sweetheart of Juniata Valley Resident

Mrs. Euhemia Knox Pomeroy, widow of Rev. Stephen W. Pomeroy, died yesterday morning at her home, 1520 State Street, after a long illness.  Mrs. Pomeroy was 72 years old.  Surviving her are these children: Mrs. Edwin N. Scott, Plymouth, Pennsylvania; Silas S. Pomeroy, Harrisburg; Mrs. Oscar F. Hills, Chefoo, China; and Miss Margaret Mason, Harrisburg. She leaves two grandchildren, E. Pomeroy Scott, Plymouth, and Miriam Freer Hills in Chefoo, also.  The funeral will be held from the home at 3 o’clock tomorrow afternoon and will be followed by private interment in Paxtang Cemetery.

Mrs. Pomeroy was born in Juniata County, 15 December 1841, the daughter of Silas E. Smith and Elizabeth [Weir] Smith.  In 1868, she was married to Stephen W. Pomeroy, to whom she had become engaged during the latter part of the Civil War and she figured in one of the romances of Juniata Valley wartime sweethearts.

Mr. Pomeroy was hastening as fast as relays of horses could carry him with important dispatches from Chambersburg to Governor Curtin here.  On order to avoid parties of Confederate cavalry scouts , he made a detour by way of the Juniata Valley.  Except to change horses he made only one brief stop – that was at the gate of the Smith home where he was met by his bride-to-be.  At that he paused for only a moment – just long enough to lift her to his saddle for a kiss and then he raced along toward Harrisburg.  Incidentally, pursuing Confederate cavalry sighted him and he had to bend low over his saddle to avoid the bullets.

Until the retirement of Mr. Pomeroy from active ministerial duties several years ago, Mrs. Pomeroy was prominent in the work of the Presbyterian Church, her ability and sweetness of character contributing to the success of her husband’s pastorates.  Just after his retirement the family removed to Harrisburg and since them Mrs. Pomeroy had been a member of the Market Square Presbyterian Church.

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From the Harrisburg Patriot, 17 November 1914

“MOTHER OF CIVIL WAR” DIES AT AGE OF 113

Bellaire, Ohio, 16 November 1914 — Mrs. Sarah Brandon, known as “the mother of the Civil War” died at her home in the southern part of Belmont County this evening at the age of 113 years.  Her youngest son, Evan Brandon, with whom she made her home, asserts that she was born 15 April 1801.  The oldest residents of the community in which she lived remember her as a married woman with many children, when they were children.