A Civil War Soldier’s storyIf you caught yesterday’s post, you read about my success in finding the grave of a local Civil War veteran, Elisha J Maguire. I was really pleased when I found where he was buried but I couldn’t help wondering. Who was Elisha and what was his story?
With just a little research I found Elisha was born in Ohio, September 25, 1842. By 1860 his father ran a boarding house in Lima, Ohio and Elisha was lugging mail around.
Once the Civil War broke out, Elisha at 19 years old, was in the first wave of young men who responded to President Lincoln’s call for troops. He enlisted October 4, 1861 and soon joined Co. F 4th Ohio Volunteer Cavalry.
One of Elisha’s job during the war was as a Teamster. He drove a wagon hauling supplies, or maybe even cannons to the troops. He completed his three years service and was discharged as a private on October 20, 1864.
The war took its toll on Elisha. He was discharged with paralysis of the lower extremities. Yet he did find love and married Sarah J Barber on March 31, 1870.
The Maguire’s had two daughters, Mary and Lelia, but Elisha’s physical problems continued. In 1880, Elisha was admitted to the U. S. National Home for Disabled Volunteer Soldiers in Dayton, Ohio. Incredibly he was there until 1895 – 15 years! and was treated for a hernia and paralysis in his lower limbs and both knees.
Sadly during that time, Elisha’s wife, Sarah J (Jennie) died August 13, 1882 at the tender age of 37 years old.
Elisha signed himself out of the U. S. National Home for Disabled Volunteer Soldiers on June 24, 1895 and was receiving a $12 a month pension for his Civil War service.
Elisha died June 21 or 23, 1902 and was laid to rest next to his wife, Jennie in Woodlawn Cemetery in Lima, Ohio.
I hope Elisha somehow knows his place in history is not lost and that nearly 150 years after his Civil War service we’re reading about him today.