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16th Pennsylvania Cavalry – Pennsylvania Memorial at Gettysburg

Posted By on April 4, 2011

(Part  16 of an ongoing series on the Battle of Gettysburg).  Around the base of the Pennsylvania Memorial at Gettysburg are a series of plaques which, by regiment and company, note the names of every soldier who was present at the Battle of Gettysburg.  This post will present the plaque recognizing the men who served in the 16th Pennsylvania Cavalry.  By clicking on the plaque it should enlarge so the names can be more clearly read.  Following the plaque is a list of the men who have thus far been identified as eligible for inclusion in this Civil War Research Project who, it is believed, served for a time in the 16th Pennsylvania Cavalry.  Not all the names may appear on the Pennsylvania Memorial plaques.  If a name does not appear, it could be that the soldier did serve in the 16th Pennsylvania Cavalry, but was not part of the regiment during its days at Gettysburg – or it could mean that the soldier was erroneous included in the 16th Pennsylvania Cavalry list.  There could also be errors on the plaque.  Readers are invited to submit comments about any names appearing below, or on the plaque, especially if they believe the soldier was from the Lykens Valley area and should be included in this study.

Click on picture to enlarge.

Men from the Lykens Valley area who probably served in the 16th Pennsylvania Cavalry:

John Allman — Riley Bressler — Simon Brown — William Challenger — Edward Delaney — Gabriel B. Derr — Isaac Snowden Finton — Charles Griner — Daniel Hand — James M. Hart — Philip Hawk — Josiah Heckard —John F. Helt — Michael M. Hoffman — Isaac Kebaugh — Hiram Kimmel — George Kissinger — Josiah Kocher — Charles Kreiner — George Krissinger — Henry Lauinger — William Lebo — Josiah Lentz — Gustavius August Martin — Daniel David Messner — John Mucher — George W. Myers — William Owens — Barnhardt Plotzer Sr. — David John Reasoner — Isaac H. Ressler — John Sager – David H. Shaffer — John H. Spangler — Casper Tschopp — Elias B. Tschopp — Benjamin B. Umberger — William W. Wallace — Benevell Welker — Daniel Wert — Nathaniel Woland — Frederick Yentch — John Youndt — Levi Zerbe

Information for this post was taken from the files of the Civil War Research Project.  A separate digital file is kept on each of the above-named men.  Information is sought on any men from the Lykens Valley area who were soldiers or sailors during the Civil War.


Comments

23 Responses to “16th Pennsylvania Cavalry – Pennsylvania Memorial at Gettysburg”

  1. Bill Sheffer says:

    I have a photocopy of my great-great grandfather’s official military records and it states he served with the 16th PA Cavalry at the 3rd day east cavalry battlefield. I recall it said he was slightly wounded, but would have to look at the record again. His name was Oliver Gans Boord and was from western PA. I recall seeing a muster list of the regiment and he was listed as being with company K. Yet I don’t see his name on the monument shown on your site for any company, let alone K. I wonder if this is simply an oversite or the official record of his service is incorrect…

    • Norman Gasbarro Norman Gasbarro says:

      He did serve in the 16th PA Cavalry, Company K, and the 16th PA Cavalry lists an engagement at Gettysburg on 3 July (the 3rd day of the battle). His dates of service indicate that he should have been at Gettysburg… but it’s possible he was on furlough, in the hospital, or just not present at the battle. It’s also possible that when the monument was placed on the battlefield (100+ years ago) his name was inadvertently omitted. Try checking the actual muster rolls (available at the Pennsylvania Archives in Harrisburg) or the index to the muster rolls (available at the National Archives in Washington) and you might be able to find out where he was on 3 July. Also there might be some clue in the pension records (available at the National Archives in Washington).

      • Jon Bell says:

        RE: Pvt. Oliver G. Boord(or Board).
        From “History of the 16th Regiment Penna Cavalry for the Year Ending Oct 31st, 1863″ prepared by 1st Lt. Chas. H. Miller, Adj 16th Pa. Cavalry:

        Under “Enlisted Men Wounded in Action” it is stated that Pvt. Oliver G. Board, Co. K, was wounded 25 Feb 1863 during action at Hartwood Church, VA. He is listed as wounded again 14 Oct 1863 in action at Bristow Station, VA. My guess is that the absence of his name from the monument is because he had not returned to the regiment from his first wounding. His military record from National Archives should indicate this. If not, then evidently his name was omitted due to an oversight.

        The report lists just one man wounded at Gettysburg, Pvt Wm. Brady, Co. L on 3 Jul 1863, and one man killed, Pvt. Francis Osbourn, Co. E on 2 Jul 1863.

        At the very bottom of the 16th Penna Cavalry Memorial listed as “Killed or Mortally Wounded” are Pvt Morris O’Connor of Co. E and Pvt James Stewart of Co. K. The report prepared by Adj. Miller lists Pvt. O’Connor as being wounded in the action at Shepherdstown on 16 Jul 1863.He is not listed as among those killed in action during the year, though he may have died after 31 Oct 1863. If you look at Co E roster on the monument he is not even listed. Hard to believe he was at Shepherdstown but not at Gettysburg. The 16th was continually in the saddle pursuing Lee’s army after Gettysburg until Shepherdstown.

        Pvt. James Stewart of Co K is shown on the monument, however he is nowhere listed among casualties of the 16th by Adj Miller. Miller’s lists include killed, wounded, captured, discharged, deserted during the period of the report. But, Stewart is listed by Miller as part of the “original roll” of Co K. In fact there were 2 Pvts of that name in Co. K. Both evidently made it through the year covered in Miller’s report without incident.

        As Adt Miller’s report is contemporary with the events, I would think it to be pretty accurate. If it is, then it indicates errors and oversights were made when the monument was created.

        Often men received superficial wounds never treated by regimental surgeon. These would not be part of their official military record, but may well have been used as the basis of applying for post-war pension benefits.

  2. Matt Lightner says:

    Was inquiring on My Great Great grandfather Nathaniel K. Lightner listed on the marker in Co. K.
    Anything I’ve ever camer across has said Mustered in September 19, 1862 out october 2, 1862 meaning service was less than a month. However the marker indicates he was in Gettysburg as does Family word of mouth. Also Have a book written by Capt E. Dunn which he inscribed to Nathaniel’s son Lindsey J. Lightner.

    Any Idea on how to clear up the discrepency?
    Also any idea what the 16th was issued in terms of arms? Pistol,sabre, and or rifle?

    • Jon Bell says:

      RE: Pvt. Nathaniel K. Lightner, Co K 16th Penna Cav. If you check the 1890 Special Census of Union Veterans you will discover that Nathaniel K. Lightner of Center Twp., Greene Co., PA enlisted August of 1862 and was discharged 12 Aug 1865 for a total “length of service” described as 3 years. He in formed the census enumerator that as a result of his service he had “lost hearing in one ear”.

      He applied for an invalid pension from the US Govt 9 Jul 1869. His wife, Lucinda, applied for a widow’s pension based on his service 3 Jun 1919.

      Finally, after service in the 16th Penna Cavalry, he enlisted in the 18th Penna Veteran Reserve Corp.

      A wealth of information about his service would be found in the applications made for the above referenced pension benefits.

      As to weapons issued to 16th PA Cav? Only know that originally they were issued the Sharp’s Carbine that was replaced by the Spencer Repeating Carbine late in 1864.

      • Matthew R. Lightner says:

        Thank you so much for the reply. Where would I look for the pension benefits information? Resources etc.

        • Jon Bell says:

          Mathew Lightner;

          Just now returned to this site after leaving info about Nathaniel Lightner(your GG Grndfather).

          Nathaniel applied for Civil War pension 9 Jul 1869. It was granted and his pension certificate was #193849. After his death, Lucinda(wife) applied for widow’s pension 2 Jun 1919. It was granted and her pension certificate was #877693.

          You may order copies of the pension files through the National Archives(NARA) website. I am pretty sure that if you just order Nathaniel’s you will also get all the info regarding Lucinda’s filing. His will be the most interesting. If his file is similar to that of my ancestor (Cpl/Sgt Thomas J.. Penn, Co. K, 16th PA Cav) you will find that he made several applications for increased benefits up until time of his death. Red Tape-wise the Govt was just as screwed up in the 19th century as it is today.

          Nathaniel will also have a “military” record that you can order through the NARA website. No where near as interesting as pension file. So order pension file first.

          Jon Bell(jcbell3@hotmail.com)

  3. Terry Rossell says:

    My great grandfather James Rossell was in Company G, 16th Pennsylvania Cavalry having joined from Fayette county on September 19, 1962. Do you have any information on him? He does not appear on the monument. Later in the war he was joined by his brother Silas who entered the unit in 1864. Bothe were mustered out on June 15, 1865.

    Thanks you,

    Terry

  4. Jack Jonas says:

    Please advise me as to who provided the funds for the 16th Calvary Memorial.
    Thank you

  5. Jack Jonas says:

    Maybe a better question….did the federal government pay for the construction of any of the many Memorials that are now located at Gettysburg?

  6. Chris Saylor says:

    My ancestor was in the 16th Pennsylvania Cavalry and his name is not up there. He joined in 1862 and died of tuberculosis in late 1863. I don’t know why he isn’t up there. I have his muster role and I know he was in Gettysburg. His name is Peter Saylor, M company. There is a book on this regiment check it out.

    • Chris,

      I too have collected the archival paperwork on Peter Saylor, my 3rd Great Grandfather, but there are just enough gaps in the information that one can’t know for sure the sequence of events. We know he joined the 16th 10-23-1862 and was mustered into service 10-25-1862. The book that documents this lists him as being in company G but all other documents list him in company M. We know he died of tuberculosis in Carver hospital, Washington, DC 11-5-1863. Sadly, the documents leave blank the date he was admitted into the hospital. I have sought to find information about how far they might send a sick or wounded soldiers. I have not found any figures but my guess is, they would not send them far. The closest they were to Carver was Nov. 30 – Jan 3 1863 when the regiment was stationed in Camp Casey, near Bladensburg, Md. They left that camp and on Jan. 3, 1863 to join the army of the Potomac at Falmouth, where it was assigned to Averell’s division of the cavalry corps.

      My guess is that he fell ill during that period and never saw any action. That would explain why he is not listed in the 16th PA memorial in Gettysburg. It might also explain why Susanna Saylor’s Widow Pension Folder in the National Archives has affidavits attesting to Peter’s good health at the time of his enlistment. I have more detailed thoughts on this and I can give you copies of my sources if you are interested.

      Maurice

  7. Karen Smith says:

    My 2 X great grandfather James Pelter ( listed on the plaque, Co. M ) later transferred to Co. G. The info. I have found says his expanded rank was “teamster”. Maybe the reason for the transfer? His middle initial is wrong on the monument. It should be I not J .I’ve been told that many of the teamsters were not military, that they were civilians contracted to drive the wagons. However, I found several records to confirm he was military.

    • Jon Bell says:

      James Pelter is listed on the Soldiers and Sailors website of the National Parks Dept as having entered service as a Teamster and having left service with rank of private. He served in both M and G companies of 16th PA Cavalry. If he is listed on Park Service website, he would have served in the Union army and the National Archives will have a record of his service that you can order online.

      He is enumerated in the 1890 Census of Union Veterans for Mifflin Co., PA as having served as a Private in Co M, 16th Penna Cavalry enlisting 19 Oct 1862 and being discharged 11 Aug 1865. Total period of service is shown as being 2y 9m 23d. There is also a notation that he suffered from “Kidney Disease” as a result of his service. By the way, his name is entered with the middle initial “J”. He must have died in 1890 as his wife, Elizabeth, applied for and received a widow’s pension based on his service 22 Aug 1890. (Cert #312292) . There will be a wealth of info regarding his service in her application which you can also order online through the National Archives website.

  8. Jon Bell says:

    RE: Pvt. Oliver G. Boord(or Board).
    From “History of the 16th Regiment Penna Cavalry for the Year Ending Oct 31st, 1863” prepared by 1st Lt. Chas. H. Miller, Adj 16th Pa. Cavalry:

    Under “Enlisted Men Wounded in Action” it is stated that Pvt. Oliver G. Board, Co. K, was wounded 25 Feb 1863 during action at Hartwood Church, VA. He is listed as wounded again 14 Oct 1863 in action at Bristow Station, VA. My guess is that the absence of his name from the monument is because he had not returned to the regiment from his first wounding. His military record from National Archives should indicate this. If not, then evidently his name was omitted due to an oversight.

    The report lists just one man wounded at Gettysburg, Pvt Wm. Brady, Co. L on 3 Jul 1863, and one man killed, Pvt. Francis Osbourn, Co. E on 2 Jul 1863.

    At the very bottom of the 16th Penna Cavalry Memorial listed as “Killed or Mortally Wounded” are Pvt Morris O’Connor of Co. E and Pvt James Stewart of Co. K. The report prepared by Adj. Miller lists Pvt. O’Connor as being wounded in the action at Shepherdstown on 16 Jul 1863.He is not listed as among those killed in action during the year, though he may have died after 31 Oct 1863. If you look at Co E roster on the monument he is not even listed. Hard to believe he was at Shepherdstown but not at Gettysburg. The 16th was continually in the saddle pursuing Lee’s army after Gettysburg until Shepherdstown.

    Pvt. James Stewart of Co K is shown on the monument, however he is nowhere listed among casualties of the 16th by Adj Miller. Miller’s lists include killed, wounded, captured, discharged, deserted during the period of the report. But, Stewart is listed by Miller as part of the “original roll” of Co K. In fact there were 2 Pvts of that name in Co. K. Both evidently made it through the year covered in Miller’s report without incident.

    As Adt Miller’s report is contemporary with the events, I would think it to be pretty accurate. If it is, then it indicates errors and oversights were made when the monument was created.

    Often men received superficial wounds never treated by regimental surgeon. These would not be part of their official military record, but may well have been used as the basis of applying for post-war pension benefits.

  9. GEORGE CORBITT CO. G, 16TH PA. CAV. BURIED AT MT. MORIAH CEM. PHILA PA. INFO

  10. J Moore says:

    Is there anyway to correct the spelling of a man’s name on the 16th Calvary Monument (Co. A). Harry V. Greenly is actually Harley U. Greenlee. Originally his records showed his name as Greenleaf but there is an index card correcting that in NARA.

    Also, when the military record shows he is gone “in hospital” for 4 months or more and there is no notation anywhere (at that time) of a wound or injury what would be the cause. Why would they not just send them home for that length of time?

    Thanks. He’s my Gr Gr Grandfather. Post War he lived, died and buried in Taylor CO, IA

  11. Tim McCombs says:

    My wife’s great, great, great grandfather was August Herrmann, listed on the plague as Asst Surgeon for the 16th PA Calvary. We have a number of old documents and letters from him to his wife and daughter written just after the end of the War. One of the original documents is a large 12 x 19″ declaration signed by William H. Seward (Lincoln’s Sec of State) granting August Herrmann free and safe passage, and to give him “all lawful Aid and Protection”. It is dated July 8, 1865 just after the War.

    We also have a small postcard photo of one of the other surgeons from the 16th, in uniform. The inscription on the back says: “To Dr. Herrmann, Asst. Surgeon 16th Pa Cav from his friend W.H. Gominger, Surgeon 16th Pa Cav”.

    I have found W.H. Gominger on the Roll of the Regiment, but he is not listed on the memorial.

    We also have letters from AF Herrmann’s widow seeking a pension for his service but being denied. I believe you only got a pension if you had been wounded? I believe he was wounded but they could not prove it.

    • Jon Bell says:

      There were a variety of reasons a Union Civil War vet, or widow would be denied a pension. The following website will give you some idea of who was allowed a pension:http://linealarboretum.blogspot.com/2010/02/civil-war-pensions-understanding.html

      Gominger was appointed Surgeon to 16th PA and mustered in 20 Oct 1862, Prior to that he was Surgeon to the 27th PA Infantry from 8 Oct 1861-9 Oct 1862. August Hemann was mustered in as Asst Surg 16th Cav on 18 Oct 1862.

      Page 10 of the “History of 16th Regt. PA Cav, for year ending Oct. 31, 1863” notes that “Dr. Augustus F, Herman, taken prisoner at Kelly’s Ford, May 1st, 1863, and exchanged July 3, 1863”.

      Also, “The Cormany Diaries, A Northern Family in the Civil War” has 12 index references to Dr. Hermann. Samuel E. Cormany enlisted as a Private in Co E, 16th PA Cavalry and rose to be a staff officer. In that position he knew Dr. Herman quite well. Cormany’s diary entry for 15 Feb 1865 among other items, says “I wrote Dr. A.F. Herrmans application for Discharge”. You can probably get copy of this book at Amazon.com.

      Would greatly appreciate copy of picture you mention of Dr. Gominger. As I had two ancestors who died of wounds while serving in 16th PA Cav in 1863, and two others medically discharged in 1863, I am sure they were certainly in the hands of Dr. Gominger, or Dr. Hermann, or Dr. Carey who were the regimental surgeons during that year.

      Best wishes,
      Jon Bell email: jcbell3@hotmail.com

  12. Greg White says:

    Francis Albert Osborn, the only soldier killed at Gettysburg, was 16 at the time of his death.. he lied about his age, apparently inspired by his older brother Samuel. Two weeks prior to Francis joining, Samuel enlisted in the 4th pa. cav.. We don’t know if Samuel knew of his younger brothers death when on july the 5th in pursuit of Lee’s army as a member of the 4th pa. cav he was captured with a number of other 4th pa. cav menbers.. he died in Andersonville on april 5th 1864.. he is grave 414. Francis and Albert’s sister, Elizabeth J Osborn, was married to James B. White who as a member of the 39th infantry, 10th pa. vols, was wounded in action between big & little roundtop.. James B. White would muster out a member of the 191st. pa. vols in 1864.. for some reason he is not listed on the pa monument.. his service record is clear.. The Osborn family.. one remaining brother.. Perry, sister Eliza and their parents relocate to Wayne Co. Ohio in 1863.. Albert and Samuel are listed on the War monument in the town of Franklin Pa.. James died in 1888 and is buried in Moreland Ohio his stone indicating he was a member of the 191st. pa. vols.. Eliza Osborn sells the farm after James death.. She is buried in Kent Ohio having lived until 1929 July 2nd. 3rd. 4th. & the 5th, must have brought back strong memories of 16 year old Francis.. 28 year old Albert and my great, great grandfather James B. White..

  13. Joel George says:

    I have an interesting letter from my great grandfather’s substitute listed on the memorial. In the letter he signs it Orderly Sergeant Samual B Peter, not S B Peters as depicted on the Gettysburg Memorial. The text (as he wrote it) is:

    Camp. 16th Regt Pa Cavalry
    Nere Bealton Station Va
    December 16 1863
    Friend George
    Sir it is with much
    pleasure that I write a few lines
    to fullfill my promise to you
    When I left you fifteen month
    Ago and to let you Know that
    I am still in the land of the
    Living and I am in good helth
    and Sincerely hope when these few
    Lines Reach you the may fiend you
    And your family all well I have
    Seen Some hard times Since I have
    been in the Service I have Seen
    thousands of ded men lying on
    the Battle field for instance the Battle
    field of Gettysburg where men ware
    piled up on piles I Saw men lying
    in Rowes just as the Stood in line
    of Battle so the lay dead
    I sapose you heard of the
    fight we had on the 2nd or 3rd of
    this Month the rebs came up in our
    Rear and we ware compeled fight
    we made a Saber Charge I tell you
    Mr George at that moment I
    thought of a grate . many things
    when I Saw men falling by my
    Side and I was Still Spared
    I have had holes Shot through my
    Clothes But Still my life was spared
    But perhaps the next Battle My
    Be my lot to get Killed But my
    Life is no better then any other
    mans life we have had a very
    Hard time of it this Summer of
    Marching and fighting But I think
    Will soon get in to winter quarters
    now for the wether is geting to
    Cold to ly in the woods and
    fields as I am now siting to
    night Right in the open field
    a Small Shelter over me
    of Canvas which wont Keep
    Cold out we had nothing to
    Eat for three days last weak But
    now we have plenty of hard tack
    and salt junk I must Stop
    Wrighting for this time for my fingers
    are geting very Cold and num
    But if you get this letter and
    Answer it I will give you a full
    history of our Summer Campaign
    Give my Best Respects to all
    Who may inquire about me
    Write as Soon as you get this
    And Direct your litter to
    Company. H,16th Regt.Pa Cavalry
    2nd Brigade 2nd Division in Care
    of Capt. A.Y. Snyder
    Washington, D.C.
    orderly Sergeant Samuel B Peter
    Mr Henry George Esq
    Mr George I must tell
    you that I hold the position
    of orderly sergeant and twenty
    Dollars per month and I
    expect to get a Leiutennency before
    long I have the promise of it

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