Eighteenth Annual Reunion
Survivors of the Seventy-Third Regiment, Illinois Volunteer Infantry
Submitted by Jo Rice
Register of Comrades present at this reunion.
T. J. Underwood, 15 N. Adams St., Springfield, Ill $ 1.00
D. F. Lawler, Green Valley, Ill 1.00
W. H. McNichols, Nokomis, Ill. 1.00
Henry B. Dove, Boadwell, Ill. 1.00
John M. Mull, Springfield, Ill. 1.00
Chas. W. McNichols, Oconee, Ill. 1.00
J. W. Munday, Lincoln, Ill. 1.00
W. H. Vanmeter, Elkhart, Ill. 1.00
John Yelliott, Milton, Ill. 1.00
Lewes Hill, Nokomis, Ill. 1.00
H. W. Butterfield, Griggsville, Ill 1.00
D. R. Gooch, Belflour, Ill. 1.00
John C. Clower, R. F. D. 5, Pawnee, Ill. 1.00
W. M. Kumes, Padcah, Ky. 1.00
L. Langdon, Girard, Kan. 1.00
John S. Kiser, Niantic, Ill. 1.00
D. C. Fletcher, Buffalo, Ill. 1.00
R. J. Alexander, Waynoke, Okla. 1.00
H. M. Cass, 306 Broad St., Warreasburg, Mo. 1.00
C. C. Ray, Siegle, Ill. 1.00
J. W. Sherrick, Camp Point, Ill. 1.00
T. J. Cassidy, Bloomington, Ill. 1.00
Reuben Jack, Danville, Ill. 1.00
R. R. Randall, Lincoln, Neb. 1.00
E. J. Ingersol, Carbondale, Ill. 1.00
Samuel F. Ridgeway, Springfield, Ill. 1.00
A. M. Cassity, Litchfield, Ill. 1.00
W. G. Miller, Loami, Ill. 1.00
Hugh M. McLaughlin, Loami, Ill. 1.00
E. S. Turner, Trumbolt, Neb. 1.00
Anda Phillips, Springfield, Ill. 1.00
Wm. M. Speets, Georgetown, Ill. 1.00
W. H. Newland, Springfield, Ill. 1.00
J. O. Joy, Loami, Ill. 1.00
John L. Hesson, Riverton, Ill. 1.00
N. A. Vanantan, Springfield, Ill. 1.00
J. L. Loyd, Greenville, Ill. 1.00
S. B. Garver, Farmer City, Ill. 1.00
E. Cross, Mechancsburg, Ill. 1.00
E. McAllister, Griggsville, Ill. 1.00
J. W. Jaques, Mt. Carmel, Ill. 1.00
By letter and otherwise.
R. J. Hasty, Newport, Ind. 1.00
- L. J. Place, Newport, Ind. 1.00
W. G. Jaques, Tunica, Miss. 1.00
C. W. Keeley, Carrollton, Ill. 1.00
John T. Drennon, 1758 K. St., Fresno, Cal. 1.00
R. J. Northcutt, Washington, D. C. 1.00
W. H. Wilson, Perry, Ill. 1.00
J. V. McCune, McCune, Kan. 1.00
James W. Davis, Ketesville, Mo. 1.00
Burt Newman, Delavan, Ill. 1.00
John W. Dutton, Washington, D. C. 1.00
Edward Penstone, Pittsfield, Ill. 1.00
Wilson Burrowghs, Fairmount, Ill. 1.00
Henry A. Castle, Washington, D. C. 2.00
W. O. Underwood, Unionville, Mo. 1.00
A. B. Barker, Danville, Ill. 1.00
E. A. Hauptman, Chicago, Ill. 1.00
OCTOBER 4, 1904 -- 2:00 P.M.
The meeting was called to order at 2 o'clock by the Vice President. The calling of the death roll by companies reported by delegates, as follows.
Company A. Henry Taft, Sept. 28, '04.
- Company C.
Company E. John Quinn, Sept. '04, Danville, Ill.
- Company G. Lieut. McGraff, Oct. 24, '03, Dodgeville, Ill.
Company H. James Anthony, April '04.
Company I. John W. Fisher, May '04.
Comrade Kelley, February '04.
The appointment of committee on nomination for the officers to serve for ensuing year was then in order. It was then moved and seconded that the chair be instructed to appoint the committee. Motion carried. The Vice President proceeded to name the following persons to serve on the committee:
Comrade R. R. Randall.
Comrade D. T. Lawless.
Comrade W. H. VanMeter.
The committee was asked to submit their report at the evening session. It was then thought best that a committee should be chosen to decide on the place of meeting for the annual reunion of 1905. But such a committee seemed unnecessary, for a motion was made and seconded that the meeting be held in Springfield, as it was central and convenient for all. Motion carried. As there was no unfinished business to complete, then proceeded with new business. A Motion was made by Comrade Randall that the Reunion of 1905 be called a memorial service to commemorate the deaths of our comrades who have crossed Death's River. Comrade Underwood remarked that he wasn't ready to second the motion of Comrade Randall. He said: "It seemed as though it was drawing a curtain down between the comrades who were dead and those who were still living. He always enjoys life and it would sadden many who attended the Reunions to have a memorial service." A general discussion followed in which several told of their approval of the plan because so many of the facts of importance are forgotten and some are over-looked entirely; only the names are mentioned at the meeting and that is all. Let us all look up the lives of our comrades and be ready to tell it at the annual meeting. It was suggested that we have a memorial address, also the names and the time of death of the comrades who have died within the last five years. Have the history of the regment written and have it read at the annual meeting. Lieut. McGraff was kindly spoken of by Comrade Ingersoll. The Lieutenant was a very heroic man and was a kind man to the soldiers, who were with him during the fighting and the soldiers were very grateful to him for his kindness and in the thickest of the fighting they knew that he was there encouraging them on to victory. Let us speak of the heroic deeds of comrades and strew flowers through the lives of those living and spend the hours cheerfully together. If the heroic deeds of our comrades are mentioned, and they are printed, how pleased the wives and children and relatives of those comrades will be when they see how kindly they are remembered. It is quite appropriate and proper that we have a memorial service for it is a grand thing to have served our glorious country, and those who have died should be mentioned again, for it shows they are not forgotten. After this discussion the motion was seconded and the question called for. Motion carried. It was then moved and seconded that Comrade R. R. Randall be chosen to make the memorial address. Motion carried. Then under the head of miscellaneous matters it was mentioned that the national encampment is to be held in Denver, Colorado, and that all the comrades of the 73rd should be notified and all comrades meet in Denver at the National Encampment. Then Captain Ingersoll made the suggestion that Captain Patton was chosen Junior Vice commander of the Department of the United States and at the encampment at Denver, he should be promoted to the office of Senior Vice Commander and we can do it if enough go and awaken an interest. The position is one of honor and regarded by many as next to the President of the United States. He is a worthy man and we should sustain him by our help. We are all interested in this question. Patriotic love will always burn in the hearts of the people and the veterans will always be honored. Denver is the seat of our encampment for 1905. It is over nice country and a beautiful place, only one thousand miles from Springfield. Comrade Patton must be made Senior Vice Commander. At the last meeting the attention was called to the memorial tablet of Colonel Jacques. It was reported that a letter had been received from Henry A. Castle stating that he had been to Washington and had seen the memorial tablet. He had suggested a few changes in the model of Jacques which made it look more natural. The tablet they find will cost $300.00, a little more than they thought it would, but it will be a nice tablet and subscriptions for the tablet will still be received from anyone. It is made of marble and is six feet long and four feet wide. A picture of the portrait and tablet can be supplied to those desiring one. Letter read by G. H. Penstone. Moved and seconded that letter be placed in the minutes as all would be glad to read it again.
St. Paul, Minn., Oct. 1, 1904.
W. H. NEWLIN,
Dear Comrade:--As you were active in promoting the plan for erecting a memorial tablet to Col. James F. Jaques at Chaddock College, Quincy, Illinois, and as a considerable number of the members of the Regimental Association contributed thereto, I submit to the reunion, through you, this report of progress in that matter. The minimum amount for which a creditable tablet could be obtained was three hundred dollars. After one hundred and fifty dollars had been subscribed, the balance was guaranteed by three survivors of the regiment, in order that the work might proceed. Subscriptions can still be received from those who desire to be repersented in this good enterprise. About June 1 last the design was approved and the tablet ordered, in Washington, D. C., by Mr. B. J. Northcott and myself, who had been delegated to that duty. It is now nearly completed and we hope to have it in place within two months. It is a marble tablet about six feet high and four feet wide with a suitable inscription, giving Col. Jaques' record as a preacher, an educator and a soldier. It has, inserted near the top, his medallion portrait in bronze, life size. Measures will be taken to supply each subscriber with a picture of the tablet, when complete.
HENRY A. CASTLE,
Comrades of 73 are cordially invited to meet at 12 o'clock noon tomorrow at the same place at the State Fair Grounds for dinner. By request of Comrade John M. Mull and lady. At the last meeting a regimental badge was found. If any one knows of a comrade who has lost it, please tell him it was found. An intermission of ten minutes was given for the payment of dues and registration of late members. After the intermission a letter from G. W. Patton, of Chattanoga, Tenn., was read.
Chattanooga, Tenn., Sept. 26, '04
D. F. LAWLER, Esqr.
Green Valley, Ill.,
Dear Comrade:--I received your letter of the 21st while in St. Louis last week, it having been forwarded. Ever since my return from Boston, where I met Comrade Randall and Walgamuth and got a glimpse of Capt. Ingersol, I have been planning to go to Indianapolis to the meeting of the soicety of the Army of the Cumberland on the 20th, then to St. Louis on business and attend the Fair, then to Springfield, supposing our re-union there would be on the last week in Sept. (this week.) Just as I was leaving for Indianapolis I got notice of the re-union being held on the 4th of next month, so that knocked me clean out. I arrived home this morning. As much as I regret it will not be possible for me to be there.
Army of the Cumberland meetings are all right. G.A.R. encampments are all right. Old soldier re-unions and picnics are all right, but over and above them I delight to meet the old boys of the 73rd. God bless their old souls,--its a family re-union, the like of which the world cannot produce, and I am thankful we have been permitted to enjoy as many of them as we have. From the bottom of my heart I wish I could be with you next week. Bless their old lying gizzards, tell them they can tell as many lies as they please and I will believe the whole batch of them. Oh how I wish I could be there. If Randall is there, he will be loaded to the muzzle. He was in Boston, and for a wonder (?) he was sober. I wish I could say as much of Ingersol an Walgamuth; but they had their wives with them and it was well they did. It was all their wives and I could do to keep them straight. Tell the boys I'm fixed financially--"I've got a pension." Applied and got it inside of a month--$10 a month and only sixty-eight years old, either. No Evans business about that. We have a pension commissioner that is right. I hope every one of the 73rd is getting all the law allows him. The Co. "I" boys will be glad to know that "Rem." Is flourishing. Has a nice little home clear of debt, and a wife that is truly a helpmate. He is in much better health than for years. He lives just where he went down into Alpine Valley just before Chickamauga--right in the North Georgia peach belt. The Society of the Army of the Cumberland will hold all its meetings in the future in Chattanooga on about Oct. 15th each year. Why can't the 73rd hold it's re-union here next year? We shall have cheap rates, and it would do my old heart good if they would come. Tell them I will give them a free ride to Alpine Valley, if they will come. Its only 45 miles by rail, and I know they would like to come, and I would be delighted to have them.
With the best of good wishes, I am as ever,
Your faithful comrade,
T. W. PATTON.
- EVENING SESSION.
Meeting was called to order at 7:30 by President.
The next thing on the program was the annual address by Comrade Jack.
To my Comrades of the 73rd. Ills. Vol. Infantry at their eighteenth annual reunion assembled: There has been much written and spoken about the gathering together of the vast army of volunteers for the great struggle for the preservation of the union in the 60s, and the hardships of the march and the battles fought, and of the sudden dissolution of that Grand Army of Patriots and their easy and quiet assumption of the duties of citizenship which, as well as the gathering of such vast numbers, has been the theme of the historian as well as the wonder of the people of all civilized Nations of the Earth. And so I have thought proper to leave that part of the subject in the hands of more competent persons and content myself for a very short time to giving a few thoughts which have presented themselves to my mind, on the subject of transition of the citizen from his life of domestic duties to that of the life of a soldier. When we stop to think of the wonderful change that it requires of one who has been brought up amidst the peaceful and varied surroundings of the farmer, the merchant, the lawyer, the school teacher and the preacher (all of whom responded to the call of our country when its life was threatened by armed enemies) and the vast multitudes of men gathered into Regiments, Brigades and Divisions, whose mighty tread was soon to shake the earth, and cause crowned heads of Europe to tremble, we are yet astonished beyond measure at the great change brought about. In the first place, there was the enlistment of men, into companies, which were fresh from home, and brought into camps, were soon organized into regiments. And such regiments as they were, all eager for the fray, but entirely ignorant of the things they were to perform. We were more like children on their first day of school. I speak now of our own regiment simply because I am more familiar with that Regiment than any other. I am first led to speak of the condition of things as we were massed at Camp Butler. How new the conditions, and how awkward we were--both officers and men--and of the familiarity of the same and with each other? How slow we were to fit ourselves into the groove to which, by the military law we were expected to conform our actions? How well we remember that the Captains and the Lieutenants were to us only Jim and John--because we had been so familiar with them at home--and this condition of things continued far into the months of our service. We were finally mustered into the service of the U.S. and were then, so we thought, full fledged soldiers. But there were many things yet for us to learn and to endure, to fit us to be called Veterans. We finally left Camp Butler for the land of Dixie and after a few hours upon the cars were landed in Kentucky and into camp where the serious work of drill began, and oh, how difficult and arduous the task did seem to us, and how little did we learn because our officers as well as ourselves had to learn. We were kept drilling by squads, company and regiment as the opportunity presented itself until we were finally furnished with arms and shortly after joined by the troops of General Buel. We first began our real campaign--and well we remember when the time came to start, that a considerable number of the men were not considered fit to start--having become sick and enfeebled by the change of diet and the exposure of the camp life. But when we received our marching orders, what commotion it created, as it was specified that we should carry three days rations in our haversacks, each man was to carry his plate, knife and other equipment for taking care of himself, and, as up to this time we had company cooks and had been at no trouble in that line, only to eat when the cook prepared the food, we naturally thought this a great hardship, and many unkind things were said, such as "how does the government expect me to do my own cooking?" and "what am I to use for cooking utensils?" But when the time arrived for us to take up the line of march we were in line and started on what proved to be a very arduous and trying campaign, a campaign in which we lost by reason of the exposure more men than any other one in which we were engaged in all our term of service. And so we marched on, footsore and homesick over the pikes and dirt roads of central Kentucky, and then we came in near proximity to the Confederate army and began to hear the occasional boom of the cannon as our advance came into collision with their out-posts, and until one night after an exceedingly hard day's march we were upon them and lay down and slept on our arms in support of a battery, and the next morning the battle of Perryville began--of which much has been written, and I shall, after refering briefly to the feelings we all experienced that morning when we began to see the first signs of battle, the wounded and dead--(I speak only for myself when I first saw the ambulances bearing men bleeding and dying--I thought to myself, how dreadful war must be, and how thankful I would be if I was only at home with my mother) such awful feelings cannot be expressed in words. Leaving the battlefield, we march on to the South and finally reached Nashville in a very dilapidated condition and very many of the men were so broken down that they were taken to hospitals where many passed over the river of death, and were buried in a strange land where those who were afterward identified were laid to rest in the government cemeteries and their graves marked, but many poor fellows were laid away and their resting places marked unknown. And so the winter coming on, we were moved across the river and a few miles into the country south of the city where we again took up the task of drill, to prepare us for the duties that were awaiting us in order to fulfill our part of the task of crushing the great rebellion and restoring the union. We can never forget those days while