Captain Eleazer Slocum

Company B, 115th Illinois Volunteer Infantry

ELEAZER SLOCUM, Captain Company B. Captain Slocum was born of New England parents at Norwalk, Ohio, November 5, 1837. He attended the city schools till sixteen years old and then clerked in a dry goods store for a while, and then removed to Shelbyville, Ill. Soon after the firing on Fort Sumter he enlisted in Company B, 14th Illinois Volunteers, under Col. John M. Palmer, fought in southwest Missouri under Fremont and participated in Grant's Tennessee cam paign, including the battles of Fort Donelson and Shiloh. Soon after that he was taken sick and sent to the hospital at Jefferson Barracks, and later discharged. On the call for 600,000 men he assisted Colonel Poteet and others in recruiting Company B of the 115th and on its final organization he was elected captain. Having a natural aptness for military drill and discipline, in his service in the 14th he had become thoroughly familiar with the company and battalion movements, hence he was not long in bringing Company B to a high degree of perfection in all those matters. This was especially noticeable in the skirmish line. On one of those occasions they were put in great peril by a mistake. It was on the night of September 18, i863; Captain Slocum was officer of the guard. In the darkness they nearly ran into General Whitaker and his staff, who supposed them to be Confederates, and the general ordered his men to fire on them, but the officer in charge happened to belong to the 115th and knowing Captain Slocum's voice did not obey the order. On the 20th, as the regiment was on its way to Snodgrass Hill, Captain Slocum with Company B was on the skirmish line shielding the regiment from the attacks of Forrest's cavalry as it moved past Cloud's Spring. In the struggle on Snodgrass Hill Captain Slocum had command of the left wing, after the death of Colonel Kinman. After that, being the senior captain, he was frequently called upon to discharge the duties of major. In the contest for the succession to that office, after the promotion of Major Poteet, Captain Slocum receives a plurality of the votes cast, and was strongly favored by Colonel Moore for the position. Failing of promotion, he continued in the command of his company till it was mustered out. He then returned to Shelbyville, Ill., where he was some time in business. After that he served as railway mail clerk for some years. His health failing, he accepted a place in the National Military Home, first in the branch near Milwaukee, but at present in the home near Dayton, Ohio. His address is prior to 1900 is National Military Home, Ohio.

Source: History of 115th Reg ILL Vol. Infantry
By: Isaac Henry Clay Royse
2nd Lt. Co. E
Published 1900 Windsor & Kenfield Pub. Co. Chicago
Library # 973.7473R892
Terre Haute, IN. July 1900

Submitted by William Baran

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