Civil War Blog

A project of PA Historian

Nathaniel Stutzman of Hegins – Buried at Arlington National Cemetery

Posted By on November 10, 2017

Nathaniel Stutzman, also known as Nathan Stutzman, was about 19 years old when he enrolled at Pottsville in the 50th Pennsylvania Infantry, Company A, as a Private.  He was a shoemaker from Schuylkill County, and stood 5 foot 3 inches tall, had a florid complexion, dark hair and hazel eyes.

The Pennsylvania Veterans’ File Card, shown above from the Pennsylvania Archives notes that he died on 19 May 1864, less than 3 months after he entered the service.  The death occurred at Washington, D. C., and he is buried at Arlington National Cemetery.

In 1850, 5 year old Nathan lived with his family In Lower Mahantongo Township, Schuylkill County.  His father, Michael Stutzman was a carpenter.

In 1860, 14 year old Nathan was living in Hegins Township, Schuylkill County.  It is believed that he was living in Hegins Township at the time of his enlistment in 1864.

In the Register of Deaths of Volunteers, line shown above in two parts, Nathaniel Stutzman died at Douglas General Hospital, Washington, D. C., 19 May 1864, of “resection of head, rt. humerus.”  The date of his wound was not given in the register.  These registers are available on Ancestry.com.

According to a history of the 50th Pennsylvania Infantry, the regiment was involved in a battle at Spottsylvania Court House from 12 May to 21 May 1864, so it could be assumed that the wound he received occurred at that battle.

On 19 September 1874, Nathaniel’s mother, Mary Stutzman, applied for a pension based on her son’s service and death. From the Pension Index Card, shown above from Fold3, she received that benefit.

At this time, not much more is known about this veteran or his service.

For a prior post which mentioned Nathaniel Stutzman, see Additions to Veterans List.

For more information, see the Findagrave Memorial.  According to that source, Nathaniel received a severe wound in the right shoulder and that the wound occurred at Spottsylvania Court House.

October 2017 Posts

Posted By on November 8, 2017

A listing of the October 2017 posts on The Civil War Blog with direct links:

Was Sylvester Snyder, Buried at Berrysburg, a Civil War Veteran?

September 2017 Posts

Did Martin Troutman Who Deserted in 1863 Die in the War?

Samuel Snyder of Berrysburg, Mifflin Township & Pillow

Another Martin Troutman Mystery

George H. Troutman – Another Veteran Overlooked by Millersburg?

Philadelphia Memorial to Octavius V. Catto

Jonas Swab – Elizabethville Hometown Hero

Samuel Trump – Boatman and 7th Pennsylvania Cavalry

John S. Trego – Gravely Wounded at South Mountain, 1862

John Townsend – Died from Injuries in Railroad Accident

Grandson of Thomas Umberger Guards Inheritance but is Arrested

Charles Wesley Umholtz – From Tremont to Tennessee


George VanHouten of New Jersey & Orwin – Widows Compete for Pension

Posted By on November 6, 2017

George VanHouten was born on 25 December 1833 in Hunterdon County, New Jersey.  During the Civil War he served with the 31st New Jersey Infantry, Company D, as a Private, from about 17 September 1862 through an honorable discharge on 24 June 1863.  He died on 3 May 1892 in Hopewell, Mercer County, New Jersey, and is buried there in the Highland Cemetery.

However, the same George VanHouten appears in the 1890 Veterans’ Census for Orwin, Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania, naming the 31st New Jersey Infantry as his regiment of service.

Why was George VanHouten in New Jersey in 1890?  An interesting story can be found in a tale of two competing widows for George’s pension.

Although George returned to New Jersey after the 1890 census and died there, he apparently had been living in Pennsylvania for 17 years with what everyone there assumed was his wife, the former Matilda J. Krebs and a number of children he had with her in Pennsylvania.  However, there was a wife in New Jersey, Elizabeth M. [Case] VanHouten.  Supposedly, he returned to the first wife in New Jersey and then died there.

Both “widows” applied for pension benefits, as shown by the Pension Index Cards shown below from Ancestry.com and Fold3:

On 8 March 1894, Matilda J. [Krebs] VanHouten applied from Pennsylvania for pension benefits, which she did not receive.  She could not prove that she had married George and since no divorce record was produced, the first “wife” won out as shown below.  Matilda claimed that she had married George in Pine Grove, Schuylkill County, on 7 April 1872 and at the time, both declared that they had never been married before.

On 10 May 1892, one week after George’s death, Elizabeth M. [Case] VanHouten applied for benefits from New Jersey- which she received, because there was proof of her marriage to George, and even though George had deserted her, there was no divorce record, so she was the legal wife.

The summary card from Fold3, notes that George applied for benefits on 13 October 1890, which he received and collected until his death in 1892.  The widow who received the pension was Elizabeth and the “C. Widow” [competing widow] was Matilda, who received nothing.

Additional information about this case can be found at the Findagrave Memorial.  However, the “full” story will more likely be found in the pension application files at the National Archives, which have not been consulted for the post.  Does any reader have copies of the files and is willing to share them?



Joel Veatch – Right Arm Shot Off at Elbow

Posted By on November 1, 2017

Joel Veatch was living in Williams Township, Dauphin County, Pennsylvania, in 1890 and at that time he reported to the census that he was a Civil War veteran and that he incurred a disability as result of his service – his right arm was shot off at the elbow.

The Pennsylvania Veterans’ File Card, shown above from the Pennsylvania Archives, notes that Joel Veach, age37, enrolled in the 11th Pennsylvania Infantry, Company D, as a Private on 24 September 1861, in Dauphin County.  It also notes that he was discharged on a Surgeon’s Certificate of Disability on 6 June 1863.

The Pension Index Card, above from Fold3, shows that an invalid pension was applied for on 27 July 1863, which was received and collected until his death.  Then his widow applied for pension benefits which she received until her death.

Genealogical records on Ancestry.com give more information about Joel Veatch:

  1. He was born in Fayette County, Indiana, on 24 December 1825, the son of John Veatch (1788-1855). and Sarah [McLoney] Veatch.
  2. By 1860, Joel Veatch moved to West Hanover Township, Dauphin County, where he was working as a day laborer.  He was married to Leah Phillips, who was born about 1823 in Pennsylvania, and the couple had four children in their household.
  3. As previously noted, Joel served in the Civil War, He was wounded at the Battle of Antietam Creek in 1862, was discharged due to disability in 1863 and then applied for a pension.
  4. By 1880, Joel and Leah were still living in West Hanover Township, and he was still working as a day laborer.
  5. In 1890, as previously noted, Joel Veatch had moved to Williams Township.
  6. Joel Veatch died on 15 September 1890 and was buried at Piketown, Dauphin County.  Leah then applied for pension benefits on 23 April 1891.
  7. Leah [Phillips] Veatch died on 27 August 1898 and was buried at Piketown.

Although the 1890 census is the only record that locates Joel Veatch within the geographical area of the Civil War Research Project, he nevertheless must be included.  But, there is a need for more information about him.  Why did he move to Williams Township?  In tracing  the children who are recorded in the 1860 census, they either remained in the West Hanover Township area or moved further south into York County.

There is some information about Joel Veatch, provided by researcher Dennis Brandt, at Findagrave.

The pension application file for veteran and widow has not been consulted yet for this research.  Perhaps a blog reader has seen that file and would be willing to share its contents?


Charles Wesley Umholtz – From Tremont to Tennessee

Posted By on October 30, 2017

Charles Wesley Umholtz was born on 23 November 1845 in Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania, the son of Philip Umholtz (1814-1883) and Susanna [Carl] Umholtz.  He was one of at least seven children of that couple.  At the time of the Civil War, both he and his brother Augustus Umholtz enrolled in the 17th Pennsylvania Infantry (Emergency of 1862) at Tremont, Schuylkill County, on 15 September 1862, and served until the end of the emergency, 26 September 1862.  Again in 1863, both Charles and Augustus enlisted in the 39th Pennsylvania Infantry (Emergency of 1863), Company E, on 1 July 1863 and served until the end of that emergency on 2 August 1863.

After the war Charles W. Umholtz married Caroline Elizabeth “Carrie” Deibler.  They had two known children:  Clarence Franklin Umholtz, born 1870; and Milton Charles Umholtz, born 1872.

At some point, the family moved to Virginia.

In the 1890 Veterans’ Census, Charles W. Umholtz reported his Pennsylvania Civil War militia service as a resident of Bristol, Washington County, Virginia.

Charles Wesley Umholtz died on 5 July 1911 and is buried at the East Hill Cemetery, Bristol, Sullivan County, Tennessee.

Very little is known about this Civil War veteran as he moved from Tremont to Tennessee.  Perhaps a blog reader can fill in the details.


Some information from Findagrave.