The Cortland County Democrat

Decoration Day, 1878

In the 7 June 1878 issue of the Cortland Democrat, in recognition of Decoration Day, were several short sketches of dead Civil War veterans buried in Cortland (almost all in the Cortland Rural Cemetery).

    Here rests the body of Major Andrew J. GROVER, of the 76th Reg't N.Y.Vols. His history need no retelling. It was written in our sight in his own heart's blood. His name stands high among the names of those heroes to whose memory we love to give honor. We are proud to remember that it was among this people that he once made his home. It was here that the war found him zealously engaged in the following of his calling, that of the Christian ministry. From the pulpit where he taught the love of God he put off the sacred robes of the priest and putting on the armor of the warrior went forth to fight the battles of his country. As he had by his merit won for himself a high place in his profession in civil life so did his merit and bravery bring him by rapid promotion to that of major in his regiment. On the 1st day of July, 1862, while bravely leading on his troops, nobly encouraging his men, desperately fighting for his country's cause, the cruel bullet found his faithful heart and his proud plume went down in the dust. Tenderly and lovingly they bore his body back to his home. Here in this quiet, sacred spot peacefully sleeps our hero. His memory is enshrined in the hearts of his people. [Cortland Rural Cemetery]


enlisted in April 1861, joining Company H, 23d Reg't N.Y. Vols., died in Virginia March 31, 1862. He was among the first to enlist, and before one year had passed gave up his life for his country. [Horace Washington Ford, Cortland Rural Cemetery]


Private Company E, 157th Reg't N.Y.S. Vols., was mustered into service September 10, 1862. During the summer of 1864 he was sick; came home on a furlough in the autumn of 1864 to his parents in Cortland, and only lived one week after his arrival. He bore a good record as a soldier. [Also BIXBY, Sect. F20, Cortland Rural Cemetery]


enlisted in Cortland September 1864, in Company F, 185th Reg't N.Y. Vols. Though in full vigor of manhood, and seemingly in perfect health at the time of enlistment, the changes of climate was too much for him. He was taken very sick soon after arriving in Virginia and after nearly two months of severe suffering died December 15, 1864, at the hospital at City Point, Virginia. [As Powell C. PLUM, Cortland Rural Cemetery]

from the Cortland Democrat 7 Jun 1878


Corporal of Company G., 137th Reg't N.Y. Vol., was born in Ireland in 1823. enlisted August 13, 1863, and had the honor of marching with Sherman to the sea, and acted the part of a true soldier and a man. he died in Cortland August 31, 1876, and was buried in the Catholic cemetery. [His body is now in Sect. 4, St. Mary's Cemetery, which was opened after 1878.]


private in Company E, 157th Reg't N.Y.S. Vols. Enlisted August 21, 1862, participated in the battles of Chancellorsville and Gettysburg, in the latter of which he was wounded and died of his wounds. [Francis Eaton, died Jul 9, 1863. Sect. M., Cortland Rural Cemetery]


was born January 26, 1839. He enlisted in Company B, 3d N.Y. Cavalry, and was mustered in the service July 31, 1861, for three years. Assigned to duty as teamster, he was promoted to sergeant, and was discharged from the service July 29, 1864, having served his full three years. His regiment saw much active service. He participated in several engagements, and has the reputation of being a good soldier. After leaving the army he settled in life at Cortland, where he died November 23, 1868, at about the age of 30 years, leaving surviving him his widow and one son.[Cortand Rural Cemetery.]


    We have decorated the grave of Joseph Briggs, a soldier of the 16th Heavy Artillery, Regular Army, who died in Cortland on the 7th day of September 1870, of lung complaint, resulting from exposure in the field with his command.[Cortland Rural Cemetery]


    Here rests the mortal remains of Lieutenant John H. Ballard. Born in Cortland, he had reached his twentieth year at the breaking out of teh rebellion. He enlisted as a private in the 76th Reg't N.Y. Vols. in September 1861. In November following he was commissioned Lieutenant. He was fond of military life, and soon became familiar with the exercises and evolutions. He was known as an excellent drill officer. His noble personal appearance, genial manners, and bright intelligence, won the friendship of every member of the regiment. On application of the Governor, in June 1863, he was commissioned a Lieutenant in the 157th Reg't. Sleepless nights and the perils of the climate were very trying to the northern soldier. While out through the night in inclement weather, he caught a cold which produced hemorrhage of the lungs, requiring him to again leave the service in July 1864, and he then returned home to die.[Sect. KO, Cortland Rural Cemetery]


    Ira E. Dexter was born in Onondaga County, N.Y.; enlisted at Colon, St. Joseph County, Michigan, on the 5th day of September 1862, and was enrolled in the 19th Michigan Vols. to serve three years, or during the war. He was terribly wounded by the accidental discharge of a percussion shell, which tore in pieces a man at his side, and so severely wounding him that he was honorably discharge by order of Major General W.S. ROSENCRANZ, from the United States Hospital at Nashville, Tenn., on the 9th day of July 1863. He returned home, and after suffering terribly from his wounds, submitted to the amputation of on of his limbs, hoping thereby to prolong his life, but after another long period of suffering he passed to his reward dying, March 4, 1867. (Ira Edward Dexter, Lot O/92 Cortland Rural Cemetery.)


    T.F. Brown died in our village at the residence of Mr. N.H. HAYES, of consumption, on the 12th day of march 1869, aged 34 years. He enlisted in the 16th N.Y. Vol. Cavalry, but after one year's service was discharged on account of ill health. He returned home and again enlisted. This time he remained only about eleven months. Not being able to do duty was again discharged. He then located at Wautoma, Wisconsin, where he resided a few years, never having been well after leaving the army. In the fall of 1868 he returned to his native village hoping that a change of climate might arrest the disease that had fastened upon his vitals. His hopes were not to be realized, for he gradually grew weaker until death finally terminated his earthly existence. Comrade Brown was a member of the Masonic fraternity, and frequently met with the brethren of Wautoma Lodge. (Thomas F. Brown, Sect.C-95, Cortland Rural Cemetery.)


    Captain Clark enlisted May 16, 1861, and served gallantly during his two years' service in the rebellion, without injury. His subsequent death, under the circumstances, were peculiarly painful. You all remember, that on the discharge of the 23d Regiment from service, Company H were to receive a grand reception in this village. Messages were sent to the Company while en route to Elmira where the Regiment was formed, informing them of the preparations being made. Captain Clark had been through the cars telling the boys of the welcome news he had received, and was in the act of getting on the top of the cars to inform those there congregated, when his head came in contact with a railroad bridge, causing instant death. A truer man never lived, a braver soldier never faced the enemy. (Section M-76, Cortland Rural Cemetery)


    George F. Winters enlisted with Captain STROWBRIDGE, and was mustered into the United Sttates service with Company F 185th Reg't N.Y.Vols. September 23d, 1864. Within one week of mustering he was in front of the enemy, near Petersburg, Virginia. He acquitted himself nobly as a soldier, participating in the battles of Peoble's Farm, Thatcher's Run, Weldon Roads, 2d Thatcher's Run, and Gravelly Run, and was killed in battle near Five Forks on the 29th day of March, 1865. We delight to honor his memory and speak of his noble qualitites, unflinching bravery, and a generous manhood. (George H. Winters, Sect. E-11 Cortland Rural Cemetery.)


enlisted at Cortland, and was mustered into the United States service September 23, 1864, and was assigned to Company E 185th Reg't N.Y. Vols. Being of a weak constitution, was unable to bear the hardships of army life, and he soon fell a prey to disease, and died at City Point, Virginia, about two months after enlistment. He suffered much during his short service in the army, though his comrades did what they could to relieve him. He gave all - and his life was a sacrifice to the principle of popular Government. And now, in the absence of any other monument, I plant this flag to mark the spot where rests his mortal remains. (Section J-36, Cortland Rural Cemetery.)


enlisted March 1864,and assigned to duty in company D of the 157th Regiment New York Volunteers, where he remained until July, 1865, when he transferred to the 54th regiment New York Volunteers, in which regiment he served until he was discharged, March, 1866, by reason of expiration of terms of service. Died May 2, 1867, in Cortland.(Section K-31 Cortland Rural Cemetery)


enlisted Aug. 20, 1862, in company E, 157th regiment New York Volunteers. June 4th he was made a sergeant. Was engaged in the battles of Chancellorsville and Gettysburg, where so many of his companions fell and the regiment won impersichable reknown. At the latter he was desperately wounded, a ball passing though his lungs, but a robust frame and strong constitution gastened his recovery, and he again filled his place in the ranks and followed his comrades to the close of the war, when they returned but a shattered band of the noble regiment that left our village. Was discharged July 10, 1865, and died in August, 1876, aged 32. He was one of the first to assist in the organization of this Post of the G.A.R. Always an active and zealous worker, he held nearly all the subordinate positions and was elected commander in 1874. His ready hand and willing heart were always with us to strew flowesr on the graves of our comrades. But he has made his last march. (Section M-119 Cortland Rural Cemetery)


enlisted in Sept., 1862, in comapny L., 10th New York Cavalry, as a Sergeant, leaving a pleasant home and loving friends. He went forward with the third battalion of his regiment to Alexandria, where they received their horses, and reached the front just in time to participate in the second battle of Fredericksburg, Dec. 12, 1862, after which the army retired to the north bank of the Rappahannock and went into winter quarters. Here he was promoted to Quartermaster-Sergeant of his company. In January he was found dead in the woods, a short distance from camp, with a ball through his body. No one knows by whom or for what reasons. I had the honor to serve in his company and knew him well; he was a genial and warm companion and a worthy soldier, and served his country faithfully until his death. (Section 24 Cortland Rural Cemetery)


was born in the city of New York, Nov. 12, 1840. Enlisted at Cortland, N.Y., in 1861, in the 76th New York Volunteers. He was Quartermaster-Sergeant in the 76th regiment. After his term of service expired he resided in New York City until Aug. 26, 1862, when he enlisted as private in the second regiment United States Regular Cavalry to serve three years, and served his full term, being mustered out of service at Moravia, Md. He was taken prisoner at a picket station four and one-half miles from Gettysburg, Pa., on July 5, 1863, but escaped the same day. Died at Cortland, N.Y., April 6, 1865. He served faithfully during the whole war. (Section K-46, Cortland Rural Cemetery)


    This grave marks the resting-place of one of our comrades. Enlisted at Cincinnatus, N.Y., Aug. 11, 1862, in Capt. Place's company 157th regiment New York Volunteers. He was looked upon by his comrades and superior officers as a brave and faithful soldier, who was willing to lay down his life for the flag he loved. In the battle at Chancellorsville, Va., he was wounded, and being disabled was transferred to the Veteran Reserve Corps, where he served his term and returned to his home where he died Oct. 16, 1870, aged 28. (Section S-34, Cortland Rural Cemetery.)


    At the breaking out of the rebellion he resided at Athens, Pa. When the news came that Sumter had been fired upon, his young heart was full of patriotism, and he lost no time in putting himself on the side of those who said the Union must be preserved. He enlisted in May,1861, in the 6th Pennsylvania Vols. He was in every battle that the army of the Potomac participated in. He was wounded at Fredericksburg, but did not leave the regiment. His term of service expired on the 6th of May 1864 - the same day that Grant crossed the Rapidan on his famous campaign which ended in the surrender of Lee. Comrade Hicks had received notice that for gallant conducted a bavery he had been commissioned a Lieutenant, and he remained with the army to be mustered as such. On the 10th[?] of May the battle of Spottsylvania was fought. Our boys were being hard pressed; brave men were falling fast; three years of hard service had increased his love for the old flag. Though he was not really in the service, he took a gun and entered the fight. He fell early in the battle and was mustered into the Grand Army above. Although a stranger to many of us, we must cherish and hold sacred his memory, who freely gave his young life for the land he loved. (Section J-16, Cortland Rural Cemetery)


was born in Pompey in 1841, and moved to Cortland and engaged in business. Seeing our country's peril he enlisted Aug. 20, 1862, in Company E, 157th regiment. Was mustered in the service Sept. 19th, and at once went with the regiment to the front, where he was ever ready for duty until he was taken sick with fever, and afer a long sickness died at Washington, D.C., Jan. 17th, 1863, an honor to his friends, his regiment and his country. (Section G-53, Cortland Rural Cemetery)


was born at Dryden, N.Y., March 8, 1839. Enlisted in the service of the United States as a private in Company F, 185th New York State Volunteers, at Cortland, N.Y., Aug. 29, 1864, for the term of one year. Was discharged in the field, near Petersburg, Va., Dec. 12, 1864, by reason of promotion. He was promoted to the rank of Second Lieutenant, with rank from Sept. 1, 1864. He was discharged by reason of disability Dec. 29, 1864. Just previous to his leaving the service he was severely attackd by pleurisy, which he contracted by taking a severe cold while doing duty on picket, and which undoubtedly permanently injured his health. He died at Cortland, N.Y., June 23, 1877, of consumption, leaving his wife surviving him. He was respected by all who knew him. (Section U-27 Cortland Rural Cemetery)


of Company A., 76th Regiment New York State Volunteers, died at Fort Schuyler, N.Y., Dec. 29, 1863. With his soldier life I was very familiar, and I assure you that in everything that was essential in the make-up of a model soldier, comrade Mynard was eminently successful. 'Twas not his to be killed in battle, though he was in five severe engagements. Disease fastened its ruthless hand upon him, and before he realized his great ambition (which was to see the end of the rebellion) he was called away to his reward. (N.J. Mynard, Section F-23, Cortland Rural Cemetery)


    This is the grave of Joseph H. Kinney, the youngest soldier that lies buried in this cemetery. When but seventeen summers had passed over his head he enlisted in Cortland, in September 1864, in the 185th Regiment New York Volunteers, and was rejected on account of age and size. He again enlisted two weeks later in Norwich, N.Y., for the same regiment. He participated in all the battles of his regiment until the [25th?] of March, 1865, when in that short but terrible battle klnown as the battle of Gravelly Run he was instantly killed - shot through the head by a bullet from the enemy's gun. (Section G-4, Cortland Rural Cemetery)


    This comrade was born in Cayuga Co., N.Y. He donned the habiliments of war with Co. E., 75th N.Y. Vols., on the 26th day of Nov., 1861. With his regiment he went to the front and to active service for two years and one month, and with only eleven months more service remaining before him he again enlisted for three years in the 75th N.Y.Vols., at New Iberia, La., far from home and friends. He again renewed his vows to his country and its flag. At the close of the next twelve months we find him promoted to corporal, but instead of being with his regiment he was lying on a cart in the U.S. General Hospital at Rochester, N.Y., disabled, and a great sufferer. He was discharged December 26th, 1864, and four years ago today we placed his worn and weary body in this his last resting place, and strewed his coffin with flowers. (Section C-112 Cortland Rural Cemetery)


entered the service in 1862 and served in the ranks for about two years with marked courage and fidelity. In 1864, at Altoona mountain he received a severe wound and was sent back to the Hospital at Nashville, where he remained until partially recovered, and then preferring active service to the dull, easy routine of hospital life, he started back for the front although still using a crutch and cane. Shortly after joining his regiment he was promoted to the rank of Lieut. for brave and meritorious services and no commission I think was ever more worthily bestowed. He was subsequently made Adutant of the Regiment in which capacity he served until mustered out of the service at the close of the war. He died in June 1874 of consumption. (Section C-149 Cortland Rural Cemetery)


was born January 22, 1767; died December 14, 1830. He was a soldier of the Revolution; served in the infantry of the State of New York and New Jersey. As a man, Joshua Bassett was highly esteemed by all who knew him. He was distinguished for his sterling integrity. He died leaving that precious legacy - a spotless name. He was grandfather to our esteemed fellow townsman, W.R. Randall. (Section M-82 Cortland Rural Cemetery)


was born in Campville, Litchfield county, Conn., was five years of age when Independence was declared. His father served in the war of the REvolution. This boy Jethro was priveleged at the age of 10 to participate in the service of his country. On the breaking out of the war of 1812 the Captain had already served out his time in the militia, but fired with patriotism he raised a company of Exempts, to act as independent reserves. They were accepted by Governor Tompkins and did good service until the end of the war. Capt. Bonney rationed and drilled the company without receiving a penny of compensation from the Government. We were personally acquainted with this old hero towards the close of his life. In the feebleness of his old age the fires of patriotism still burned brightly in his bosom, and we will remember the earnest exhortation of the white haired veteran to the young men during the late war to go forth and battle for the preservation of our glorious Union. He died on the 10th of November 1866, to see the flag floating triumphantley over a still undivided country. While we contribute our meed of praise to the honored dead, it may be well to remember the living. The daughter, who comforted his declining years, who strewed his pathway to the tomb with flowers, whose devotion smoothed his dying pillow, and when the given message at last relieved her of the precious charge, closed his dear eyes forever. The name of Sally Bonney in our community will always be the synonym of filial affection. (Section M-12 Cortland Rural Cemetery)


a soldier of the war of 1812. We have been unable to secure the material from which to make up his military record. He was a man of character and standing in the community. A man of sound judjment and honorable in his dealings with his fellowmen. He died regretted by a large circle of relatives and friends. (Section J-42 Cortland Rural Cemetery)


was born in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., January 28, 1790. At the commencement of the war of 1812, he resided in the city of New York. Shortly after the declaration of war he enlisted in the volunteer service; was stationed at Fort Ontario, Oswego, N.Y., during most of his term of service, where he distinguished himself for his patriotism and devotion to his country. He died at the residence of his daughter in the village of South Cortland, July 16, 1866, honored by all who knew him, an exemplary Christian and an affectionate husband and father. (Section M-81 Cortland Rural Cemetery)


was a soldier of 1812. Very little is preserved of his military record. He was engaged in the battle on Lake Champlain. Died in Cortland at the advanced age of 99 years at the residence of his daughter Mrs. D.M. Clearwood, and grand-daughter Mrs. F. Goodyear. (Section M-100 Cortland Rural Cemetery)


served in the war of 1812, participating in the battle of Stonington. The Government recognized his service by granting him a soldier's claim of 100 acres of public lands. He resided in this town for over fifty years. Always true to the sentiment of patriotism he died respected by everybody as an honesst, good man and citizen.


    Dr. Miles Goodyear, about whose grave we are now gathered, was born in Hamden, Conn., November 14, 1793, and lived to serve his country in two wars, something which cannot be said of any other of the honored dead, who are at rest in our midst. His first service was in the war of 1812, and when 70 years of age he entered the Army of the Union and did his duty nobly to the end. I feel unable, by any words of my own, to do justice to the memory of one who was so widely known and honored in this community. But there is a sentiment which was expressed many hundred years ago in one of the epigrams of the Latin poet Martial, (which warlike name given him by his parents had not the power to silence the poetry that was in him,) which is particularly applicable to Dr. Goodyear, and to which I cannot but refer. Martial says that everything called riches possessed by mankind is subject to accident, or may be taken away. It may perish either by war, by fire, by shipwreck, by fraud, by the faithlessness of agents, or in various other ways; so that nobody's possessions which constitute wealth may be retained but a short time. But there is one possession of which nothing can deprive a man, and that is the benefits he has bestowed. What you have given that you keep. What you keep you may lose, only the benefits you have bestowed remain. If there was ever a man in this community who acted upon this idea it was Dr. Goodyear, and he is today rich in the gratitude of hundreds, who were the recipients of his kindness, as he is honored for the service which he gave to his country. His wealth he placed beyond the reach of chance, for he stored it up in good deeds. At the side of the Doctor rests one, whose grave we will also strew with flowers, and standing reverently by it take [?????] with Mrs. Sygourney when she says:

Statesmen and warriors have their mead of praise,
And what they do and suffer men record,
But the long sacrifice woman's days,
Passes without a thought, wwithout a word.

    Mrs. Goodyear, at three score and ten, encouraged her husband as he prepared to go to the front, and accepted without a murmur the loneliness in which his departurre left her. Her time and energies and means she gave to relieve the wants of families, whose support had been taken from them, and since the war no soldier has been more ready than was she to help a comrade, and her bountiful donation toward the erection of a monument to the absent dead was another proof of her true and noble womanhood. I deem it most fitting, therefore, at this time, to strew flowers on her grave. (Section J-36 Cortland Rural Cemetery)


a veteran of the war of 1812. He was stationed at Sackett's Harbor where he was taken sick, brought back home in Chenango County, where for several months his life was despaired of, although he partially recovered from the attack, he never regained his health. He died in this county, near McGrawville, at the age of 84 years. Mr. Kingman was esteemed by his neighbors as a man of excellent judgment, scrupulous honesty, and a bright exemplar of the Golden Rule. He was the father of our townsman, Mr. Norman Kingman. (Section H-4 Cortland Rural Cemetery)


a veteran of the war of 1812. We have not been able to procure his military record, but had the pleasure of a personal acquaintance with him. As a man and citizen he was an example of honesty and integrity. He was one among the few who unflinchingly stand by what they deem to be right, regardless of consequences. An earnest advocate of universal freedom to man, he lived to see the stars and stripes float over his own dear land without a bondsman within her borders. (I could find no record of his burial. MES)


was born on LOng Island, April, 15, 1794. Died in this village August 20, 1869. He was a soldier of the war of 1812. A man of strong patriotis feelings, of firm integrity, of a genial temper, and discharged his duties as a husband, father, friend,and neighbor, justly and well. (Section J-3 Cortland Rural Cemetery)

14 Jun 1878
    By some oversight the remarks read at the grave of Henry K. Watrous on Decoration Day were not handed in for publication last week. We publish them to-day.


was born in Freetown, July 28, 1843. He was the youngest son of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Watrous and brother of J. L. Watrous and Mrs. Harrison Givens, all of this village. He left the home of which he was the idol, where kind friends and untold blessings surrounded him, and joined himself to his country's defenders. He enlisted in Co. F, 185th Regiment N.Y.State Volunteers, about the 1st of September, 1864, and soon after proceeded to City Point, Va., where they were attached to the army of the Potomac, and army life became a reality. Among the engagements in which he participated were Hatcher's Run, Weldon Raid, Vaughn Road, Quaker Farms near the Boynton Road where one third of the regiment were killed or wounded, Gravelly Run, Oak Road, Five Forks and Appomattox, after which they commenced their march homeward. On the 25th of April we find them encamped at Wilson's Station on the South Side railroad. Here he received an injury which appeared but slight, yet in his worn and fatigued condition disease found him a ready victim. He was soon attacked with fever and removed to the hospital at Washington, this being the first and final separation from his regiment. After remaining six weeks he had so far recovered as to be enabled to leaave the hospital, but was now attacked with diptheria. In his great anxiety to reach his home, he came as far as Binghamton when he was unable to proceed further, and on June 10, 1865, by an order from the Great Captain, he was relieved from duty. It is not too much to say of him that he was a true and faithful soldier and sacrificed all for his country. (Section B-17 Cortland Rural Cemetery)

Transcribed by Merton Sarvay
January - February, 2007
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