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The Litchfield County University Club



To the members of the Litchfield County University Club it is perhaps a point of interest to take brief notice of those names on the regimental rolls which would probably have been found upon its list of members had the organization been in existence in that earlier time. A number of the officers and men were college graduates when they enlisted, and others gained degrees after the war ended; the list which follows is, however, necessarily incomplete; in fact, an absolutely correct list is no doubt hopelessly impossible.

Major James Q. Rice, who was killed at Winchester, was a member of the class of 1850 at Wesleyan, and received from that institution the degree of Master of Arts in 1855. At the time of the regiment's formation he was conducting an academy in Goshen, and was enlisted as captain of a company which he had been active in recruiting.

Lieutenant-Colonel Nathaniel Smith of Woodbury entered the Yale Law School in the class of 1853, but did not graduate. Ill health forced him to relinquish his commission early in 1864, and until his death in 1877 he was a leading citizen of the county.

Judge Augustus H. Fenn, Major and Brevet-Colonel, came back from the war, having lost an arm at Cedar Creek, to take a course in the Law School at Harvard, and Yale made him a Master of Arts in 1889. His prominence for many years in public life and as judge in the highest courts in the state is well known. At the time of his death in 1897, he was a lecturer in the Yale Law School, and member of the Supreme Court of Errors.

Rev. James Deane, Captain and Brevet-Major, was a graduate of Williams in the class of 1857. He was pastor of the Congregational church at East Canaan when the regiment was organized, and was one of its recruiting officers.

Adjutant Theodore F. Vaill, the historian of the regiment, was a student before the war at Union College, but did not graduate.

Captain George S. Williams, of New Milford, was a member of the class of 1852 at Yale for a time, and received a degree from Trinity in 1855.

Surgeon Henry Plumb, and Assistant-Surgeons Robert G. Hazzard and John W. Lawton were all graduates of the Yale Medical School, in the classes of 1861, 1862, and 1859. Assistant-Surgeon Judson B. Andrews graduated at Yale in 1855. He was captain in a New York regiment in the early part of the war, and became afterward superintendent of the Buffalo State Hospital, and a recognized authority on insanity before his death in 1894.

Chaplain Jonathan A. Wainwright graduated at the University of Vermont in 1846, and after the war was for some years rector of St. John's Church in Salisbury. He was later connected with a church college in Missouri, where he died in 1898.

Captain William H. Lewis, Jr., studied after the war at the Berkeley Divinity School, and has been for many years rector of St. John's Church in Bridgeport.

Lieutenant and Brevet-Captain Lewis W. Munger, graduating at Brown in 1869 and later from the Crozier Theological Seminary, entered the ministry of the Baptist church.

Corporal Francis J. Young entered the Yale Medical School before the war, and returned after its close to take his degree in 1866.

Hospital Steward James J. Averill also graduated at the Yale Medical School after the war.

Sergeant Theodore C. Glazier was a graduate of Trinity in the class of 1860, and was a tutor there when he enlisted. He was later made colonel of a colored regiment, and served with credit in that capacity.

Corporal Edward C. Hopson, a graduate of Trinity in 1864, was killed at Cedar Creek.

Sergeant Garwood R. Merwin, who had been a member of the class of 1864 at Yale, died at Alexandria in 1863.

Sergeant Romulus C. Loveridge, who had been entered in the class of 1865 at Yale, received a commission in a colored regiment.

Colonel Mackenzie graduated at West Point in 1862, but he was never a resident of the county, or of Connecticut, and his only connection with either was through his commission from Governor Buckingham.

There are not a few other names upon the rolls of the regiment which upon more thorough investigation than has been possible in the present case would certainly be added to the list. A complete history of the organization would also give a large place to the association of its veterans formed shortly after the war, whose frequent gatherings have more than a superficial likeness to the reunions of college classes. Memorable among these meetings was the one held on October 21, 1896, the occasion being the dedication of the regiment's monument in the National Cemetery at Arlington, with a pilgrimage also to the scenes of its battles and marches in the Shenandoah Valley near by.

As a whole, the regiment was a body thoroughly representative not only of the army of which it was a fraction, an army as has been often said unlike any other the world has known, but also of the population from which it was drawn. It was made up of men of almost all conditions of life and of widely different ages, though naturally with young men in a large majority; of mechanics from the Housatonic and Naugatuck valleys, and farmers' boys from the hills; of men of education and men of none. Though the large addition to its numbers which the increase in size necessitated made it perhaps somewhat less homogeneous than at first, it did not greatly alter its essential characteristics.

The records kept by the association referred to, furnish suggestive revelations as to the various elements that composed it. The names of men of every sort and kind are found upon the rolls. There were veterans of the Mexican War; there were refugees from the revolutionary uprisings in Europe of 1848; there were some who had served under compulsion in the armies of the South; there were men whose obviously fictitious names concealed stories which could be guessed to be extraordinary; there were names which have been for years among the best known and most honored in this state; and there were those of outcasts and wrecks.

A large part of these men came back after their service ended to resume the peaceful life of citizenship, and every town among us has known some of them ever since among its leading figures, while some in quarters far distant have also attained to honors and responsibilities, as the records show. Connecticut has known for many years no small number of them as foremost in all lines of activity, and knows to-day, in official station and in private life, men of many honors, who count not least among these the fact that they were enrolled among the soldiers of the Second Connecticut Heavy Artillery.

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The County Regiment - Table of Contents
Second Regiment of Connecticut Volunteer Heavy Artillery

Notes About Book:

Source: The County Regiment, by Dudley Landon Vaill. Published 1908, at Litchfield, Connecticut.

Online Publication: The manuscript was scanned and then ocr'd. A thorough editing was completed on the manuscript and it should be free from any ocr errors.

 

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