Monthly Archives: June 2011

Henry A. Trowbridge & Company C, 14th Infantry New Jersey Volunteers

As per the previous post, Henry Trowbridge entered the war in August 1862, serving in Company C of the Fourteenth Infantry New Jersey Volunteers. Of interest is the regimental history found in Vol. 3 of The Union Army published in 1908 by Federal Publishing Company:

Fourteenth Infantry.–Col., William S. Truex; Lieut.-Cols., Caldwell K. Hall, Jacob J. Janeway; Majs., Peter  Vredenburgh, Jr., John C. Patterson. This regiment was mustered into the service of the United States on Aug. 26, 1862, and left Freehold for the field, 950 strong, on Sept. 2. At Monocacy Junction, Md., the regiment remained inactive for 9 months, but on July 9, 1863, it joined the main army, whose fortunes it shared from that time forward to the close of the war. On Oct. 30, it moved forward with its corps, encamping near Bealeton Station, Va., until Nov. 7, when it advanced to the Rappahannock, along which the enemy was constructing formidable works, and with the other troops engaged effected a crossing, driving the enemy from the river with considerable loss. But the first actual engagement of the regiment was at Locust Grove, where it fought with great steadiness throughout, and suffered a loss of 16 killed and 58 wounded–its first losses in battle. At the Wilderness the 14th was engaged for several hours, fighting gallantly and losing heavily. Upon emerging from the Wilderness, Warren’s corps became actively engaged on May 8 with Longstreet’s veterans, who sought to delay its progress, and the 6th corps going to its relief late in the afternoon, the 14th again went into action, the enemy being driven back with a loss of 1,500 men. During the engagement at Hanover Court House the regiment was on the skirmish line, and lost several in killed and wounded–Orderly Black, of Co. I, being shot through the heart and instantly killed, while Col. Truex was slightly wounded in the hand, but did not leave the field. At Cold Harbor the regiment suffered severely, losing in 2 hours 240 in killed and wounded–Lieuts. Stults of Co. H, and Tingley of Co. E, being among the former. In the operations before Petersburg, on June 23, a large force of the enemy suddenly appeared on the scene and struck the corps a heavy blow on the flank, inflicting considerable loss, the 14th, which became actively engaged, losing some 40 men in killed and prisoners. Being sent with other troops into Maryland to resist Early, it took part in the battle of Monocacy the whole number of casualties in the 14th as returned to the adjutant-general, being 10 killed, 69 wounded and 5 missing. At the battle of the Opequan the 3d division of the 6th corps lost heavily, the 14th alone losing 7 killed, 62 wounded and 1 missing. At Fisher’s hill the casualties in the 14th numbered 10 killed and 30 wounded. In the fight at Cedar creek the regiment, which was commanded by Capt. Janeway, again lost heavily–Adjt. Ross being among the killed. In the final engagement at Petersburg, April 2, 1865, the regiment from first to last fought with the greatest bravery and to it, equally with the most efficient regiment of the corps, belongs the credit of the magnificent success of that glorious day. Sailors’ creek was the last engagement in which the 14th, now reduced to about 100 men, participated. On June 8 the corps was reviewed at Washington and on the 19th the 14th was formally mustered out, proceeding on the following day to Trenton, where, on the 29th, the men who had shared so many perils together, and for nearly three years had “endured hardness like good soldiers” for the Nation’s sake, received their final pay, exchanged farewells and separated into the old familiar paths of peace, wherefrom their feet had been lured only at the call of solemn and imperious duty. The total strength of the regiment was 1,384, and it lost during its term of service, by resignation 20, by promotion 46, by discharge 159, by transfer 303, by death 248, by desertion 97, by dismissal 1, mustered out, 510.

Battles Fought by the Fourteenth Regiment
27 November 1863, Locust Grove, VA
27 November 1863, Jacob’s Ford, VA
6 May 1864, Wilderness, VA
9 May 1864, Spotsylvania Court House, VA
12 May 1864, Spotsylvania Court House, VA
13 May 1864, Spotsylvania Court House, VA

30 May 1864, Hanover Court House, VA
31 May 1864, Hanover Court House, VA

1 June 1864, Cold Harbor, VA
3 June 1864, Cold Harbor, VA
6 June 1864, Cold Harbor, VA

23 June 1864, Rock Point, VA
9 July 1864, Monocacy, MD
19 September 1864, Winchester, VA
22 September 1864, Fisher’s Hill, VA
19 October 1864, Cedar Creek, VA
2 April 1865, Petersburg, VA

Categories: Cedar Creek, VA, Civil War, Cold Harbor, VA, Fisher's Hill, VA, Hanover Court House, VA, Jacob's Ford, VA, Locust Grove, VA, Monacacy, MD, Petersburg, VA, Rock Point, VA, Spotsylvania Court House, VA, Trowbridge, Wilderness, VA, Winchester, VA, Woodruff | Leave a comment

Another Trowbridge Son Enters the War

I can only imagine how devastating it must have been for the Trowbridge family to learn of Uzal’s death at Gaines’s Mill; he was just 20 days shy of his 23rd birthday. Uzal (b. 1839) was the seventh child in a family of 10 children born between 1821 and 1844. Some of his nieces and nephews were not much younger than he was.

Whether to take Uzal’s place out of duty to country, to avenge his death, or to answer Lincoln’s call for more troops, another Trowbridge son entered the war. On 26 August 1862–almost two months to the day from Uzal’s death– Henry Augustine Trowbridge (b. 17 July 1835) was mustered in to New Jersey’s Company C 14th Infantry Regiment at age 27.  Thankfully, although wounded by a gunshot through both thighs, Henry survived his term of service and was mustered out with 509 other men on 18 June 1865. The regiment’s total strength at the onset of their service had been 1,384.

  • Resigned            20
  • Promoted          46
  • Discharged        159
  • Transferred       303
  • Death                   249
  • Desertion             97
  • Dismissal               1

Henry, a carpenter, went on to marry Mary Ellen Metz, and they had seven children, Francis Agustus (married), Nettie (school teacher, unm. as of 1908), Priscilla (d. age 10 months), Henry (d. age 16), Elizabeth (unm. as of 1908), Helen (married), and Alice (d. age 4).  At age 63, Henry Sr. passed away on 20 November 1898, in Elizabeth, NJ.

The following brief biography can be found on p. 390 of the 1908 book History of the Trowbridge Family in America, written by Francis Baker Trowbridge and published in New Haven, CT:

Henry Augustus Trowbridge (John 368, Jabez 199, Shuhael 137, David 114, Joseph 105, William 100, Thomas1), born July 17, 1835, in New Providence, N. J.; died November 20, 1898, in Elizabeth, N. J. ; married May 14, 1868, in Elizabeth.  Mary Ann Metz, daughter of Anton and Elizabeth (Marlow) Metz, born April 3, 1843, in New York City. She resides in Elizabeth.

Henry A. Trowbridge went in 1852 to Elizabeth. N. J., where he served a three-year apprenticeship at carpentry. In 1855 he went to Davenport, Iowa, where he worked at his trade four years, then returning to Elizabeth, where he continued working at his trade until the summer of 1862, when he enlisted in the army during the Civil War. He was enrolled August 16, 1862, for three years’ service in Company C, 14th New Jersey Infantry. He participated in the battles of Locust Grove. Mine Run, Winchester, Cedar Creek and the Wilderness. He was wounded during the battle of Cold Harbor, June 1, 1864, receiving a gunshot wound through both thighs. He was mustered out June 18, 1865.

After his discharge from the army he returned to Elizabeth, where he subsequently married and where he continued to follow his trade the remainder of his life. He was a member of Ulric Dahlgren Post, G. A. E., of Elizabeth.

I have some war-time letters sent by Henry to his nieces and nephews, children of his eldest sister Mary Jane and her husband Francis Woodruff. I will share some of them in future posts.

Categories: Civil War, Trowbridge | Leave a comment

Uzal Trowbridge’s Fate, Part III & The Price of War at Gaines’s Mill

(cont’d. from previous post)

The events of June 27, 1862, were on the largest scale of the entire Peninsula campaign. The day was also the most costly. Altogether nine hours of fighting cost the armies of the North and South 15,223 men.  The North’s casualties were not as great as the South’s. Under General Fitz John Porter’s command, 894 were killed, 2,829 were captured and 3,114 were wounded for a total of 6,837 (roughly 6.5% of McClellan’s army). Lee lost a total of 7,993: 1,483 were killed, 6,402 were wounded, and 108 went missing. Imagine a headline today describing a loss of that magnitude in a single day. It is very difficult if not impossible to fathom. Wrote Stephen Sears in his book, To the Gates of Richmond ( p. 249), “There would be veterans of four years’ fighting in both armies who insisted that the volume of fire at Gaines’s Mill was unmatched in all their wartime experience.”

Uzal Trowbridge was in Company A, First Regiment, New Jersey. The 1st New Jersey fell under the command of Brigadier General George W. Taylor, who presided over the 1st Brigade which included 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th New Jersey. Taylor was under the command of Brig. General Henry W. Slocum (1st Division). Slocum was under the command of Brig. General William B. Franklin (VI Corps).

The History of Union and Middlesex Counties edited by W. Woodford Clayton (Philadelphia: Everts & Peck, 1882) describes the participation in the Civil War by the citizens of those counties. On pages 144-145 of the book we find the text of the official report by General Taylor on the events at Gaines’s Mill involving  New Jersey regiments on the afternoon of June 27, 1862 (Note: the Chickahominy is a river):

It seems likely that Uzal Trowbridge was killed in the woods to which he was dispatched with the other men in his regiment (paragraph 5).

The several pages leading up to Taylor’s description give a history of 1st NJ Company A to that point. Interestingly Company A (of Elizabeth, NJ) was “the first company mustered into the United States Service under the first call for volunteers to serve three years or during the war (p. 143).” Gaines’s Mill was their fourth engagement with the enemy since they were mustered in on May 21, 1861. By far, Gaines’s Mill was the fiercest fighting they had seen.

Company A had 1,397 men when it was mustered in at Camp Olden, Trenton, New Jersey. Roughly three years and one month later, on June 29, 1865, Company A was mustered out at Hall’s Hill, Virginia. Its strength had diminished to 483 men. Over the course of the company’s service:

  • Resigned           24
  • Discharged    332
  • Promoted         62
  • Transferred    113
  • Died                   234
  • Dismissed            4
  • Deserted          124
  • Unaccounted for   21

Categories: Civil War, Gaines's Mill, VA, Trowbridge, Woodruff | Leave a comment

Uzal Trowbridge’s Fate, Part II

Lee’s win was a huge psychological blow to the people of the North. They had gone along for months believing things would work themselves out and the war would end, only to discover that the conflict had suddenly deepened… and drastically so. It must have been gut-wrenching to read the list of troops lost and wounded in the press.

Coming as they did in the week before the 4th of July, the North’s losses dampened all celebrations; people became depressed; an end was no longer in sight, and greater sacrifice would be called for.

Published July 23, 1862 in the New York Times:


The following are full lists of the wounded left in the Gaine’s Mill Hospital after the battle of June 27, and since sent to Richmond:

Sergt. Wooster — ball through right arm, fractured.

Herrick Lufkin — ball through left arm.

T. Brisnahan — ball through left arm.

R.K. Glover — ball in right lung.

Corp. H.A. Harlow — through right leg, flesh.

H. Reynolds — through right leg.

T. Robbins — through left leg, fractured.

E.H. Dum — through left side.

Corp. A.J. Tosur — left hand, finger amputated.

Dr. A.D. Palmer, Assistant Surgeon.

Dr. W. Edgerly, Hospital Steward.

Major Tilden — ball through right shoulder….”

[There are literally hundreds of men listed. If you scroll down far enough, you will come to:]

“Uzal H. Trowbridge, Co. A, 1st New-Jersey — flesh wound of hip”

Categories: Civil War, Gaines's Mill, VA, Trowbridge, Woodruff | Leave a comment

Uzal Trowbridge’s Fate, Part I

When I was researching Uzal Trowbridge, an uncle four generations back whose Civil War correspondence was mentioned in previous posts, I learned the very sad news that he was killed on June 27, 1862, during the Battle of Gaines’s Mill, which took place 149 years ago this month.

When talking about ones ancestors, particularly those of generations past, it seems to me that it is easy to say that “so and so” was killed or injured during the battle of “xyz,” without taking the time to grasp or ponder what that really meant—parents losing children, brothers and sisters losing a sibling, children losing fathers, wives and children left destitute, limbs lost, lives lived out in constant pain or paralysis. Behind each soldier in a list of the killed, missing, captured, or injured is a sea of friends, family, neighbors, and fellow townspeople. So, I wanted to know more about the events surrounding Uzal Trowbridge’s death, and the events of the war in general at that time. Having read his personal correspondence to his niece and nephews, I felt like I owed that to him as strange as that may sound. I’m sure those letters and his loss had an enormous impact on those children.

Some of the materials I read included the below books all of which I can highly recommend.

  • To the Gates of Richmond: The Peninsula Campaign by Stephen W. Sears
  • The Richmond Campaign of 1862: The Peninsula & the Seven Days edited by Gary W Gallagher
  • Extraordinary Circumstances: The Seven Days Battles by Brian K. Burton

In no way can I, a non-historian, speak as well or as exhaustively as these authors do about the events of that period. And I certainly can’t possibly summarize the content of their books in the space of this blog. I’ll do my best just to give a bit of a summary (recognizing it will be very simplistic) and recommend that those interested in further details refer to the appropriate resources.

The battle of Gaines’s Mill was part of the Seven Days Battles, a series of battles that took place at the end of June 1862. Ultimately, these battles marked a major turning point in the war. Up until then, the North had been hoping that the South would come to its senses and give up its ambitions to break with the northern states. The abolition of slavery had not yet been set as a condition of the Confederacy’s surrender.  The goal of the campaign in the peninsula to the south of Richmond, Virginia, was to take the city, the capitol of the Confederacy, and thus force the South to surrender and end the war.

General McClellan and Robert E. Lee were the big players during those engagements of June 1862. It was here that Lee’s heroics made him famous with his fellow southerners. General Fitz John Porter, who was commanding the Union army in the field at Gaines’s Mill on June 27, took the heat for McClellan while the latter executed details (and periodically gave misdirection) from the sidelines. As the Union position, which from the start was far from ideal, quickly unwound, McClellan was forced to withdraw the Union troops to the James River, away from their goal of Richmond.

In the weeks leading up to the Seven Days Battles, McClellan made a number of tactical mistakes. A cautious and vain man, who habitually deflected blame away from himself, McClellan failed to act upon key intelligence that he could have used to his army’s advantage.  His prolonged preparations, as if waiting for all the stars in the heavens to align properly, and his constant complaints to Washington that he did not have enough troops frustrated Washington (note: author Brian Burton estimates that the two armies were very close in effective strength—nearly 90,000 each; see pages 401-403 of his book, Extraordinary Circumstances). All of his delays gave the South time to amass a greater force and make more solid preparations.

In spite of the disastrous events of the Seven Days Battles, McClellan remained well-liked by his troops who believed he’d done his utmost for them. Only the officers and others closest to McClellan knew of some of the awful choices he’d made. The truth appears to be that had someone else been in charge of the Union troops at that time, someone much more decisive, Richmond may well have been taken, and the War might have ended then and there. While the cost in lives might have been even greater that June of 1862, in the long run far more many lives would have been spared—on both sides.

Lee made his mistakes, too, during the seven days but won the overall strategic campaign. Of the battles, Gaines’s Mill was the most successful for Lee. Some days were a draw and some a failure, but overall Lee managed to drive the Union troops away from Richmond and capture many men, supplies, and weapons, including a sizable amount of heavy Union artillery. Most significantly, Lee boosted the morale of the people and the army. Had not Stonewall Jackson made the missteps he made during that week, the Union army would have suffered even more at the hands of Lee’s army.

(continued in next post)

Categories: Civil War, Gaines's Mill, VA, McClellan, Gen. George B., Trowbridge, Woodruff | Leave a comment

The Robert P. Brodhead Bio

One of our great great uncles was Robert Packer Brodhead (b. 1859), one of Andrew J. Brodhead and Ophelia Easton Brodhead’s sons. Here he is in a photo that is part of our family collection.

Robert Packer Brodhead

Robert Packer Brodhead

One of the benefits of researching him is that you’ll easily come across an interesting biography on Robert in the out-of-print Colonial and Revolutionary Families of Pennsylvania by John W. Jordan (published in 1911 by Lewis & Co., pp. 906-911). These pages give extensive information on many Brodhead names, details, and significant dates. I could swear I downloaded it on Google Books for free last year, but now it does not appear to be downloadable. So instead, go to the interesting genealogical website “Diana, Goddess of the Hunt–for Ancestors,” and you can read it there.

Image of William Loveland (father of Fannie V. Loveland) from the book: The Wyoming Valley in the 19th Century. Art Edition, by S. R. Smith, published in 1894.

Image of William Loveland (father of Fannie V. Loveland) from the book: The Wyoming Valley in the 19th Century. Art Edition, by S. R. Smith, published in 1894.

Marriage announcement

I also came across Robert’s May 1889 marriage announcement in another book (published in 1892, hence copyright is expired), History of the Loveland Family in the United States of America (p. 143). Sounds like an absolutely gorgeous ceremony, with the bride decked out a la Kate Middleton. Certainly some lovely gifts as well. Somehow you can’t imagine anyone advertising such things today–burglars would have quite a heyday, especially knowing bride and groom were away for three weeks of honeymoon! Indeed, times have changed!

The John Jordan book gives a good glimpse of where things went post-ceremony: “numerous and exceedingly weighty” business interests in a wide variety of places and six children born between 1890 and 1906, Robert Packer, William Loveland, Lydia Hurlburt, Frances Loveland, James Easton, and Charles Dingman, all likely deceased by now sadly, but no doubt they left behind numerous children and grandchildren. I’d be interested to hear from any descendants who may have details on the family to share, especially about Andrew and Ophelia Brodhead and their predecessors and other children.

Update, 5/2/2013: Those with access to old Pennsylvania newspapers can find a 25th Anniversary celebration article in the Wilkes-Barre Times-Leader, Friday, 22 May 1914. I found it on Genealogy Bank (headline: 25th Anniversary by Mr. and Mrs. R. Broadhead Today; note incorrect spelling of Brodhead), but their terms of use prohibit me from including it here. The event, a lavish luncheon, took place at the couple’s home at 134 South Maples Avenue in Kingston, PA. Forty of their immediate relatives were in attendance. The article describes the decorations and Mrs. Brodhead’s dress and flowers. Oppenheim’s orchestra entertained the group. Among the guests were my great grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. A.D. Brodhead, and my grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Frank M. Brodhead. Many other representatives of the AJ Brodhead family were there.

Caledonia NY Advertiser, Thursday, 18 October 1917 Source:

Caledonia NY Advertiser, Thursday, 18 October 1917

Later in the evening, daughter Lydia made “her social bow” to society during a special evening reception “principally for the younger set.” Coincidentally, I found her wedding announcement, which came out three years later, on the wonderful (they allow snippets of articles to be used, so I am posting it below). I looked up the Kingston address; I found no Google street view or real estate listings for it, but I found a neighboring property listed for sale which looks very much like it could have been of that era.

Update 10/2/13: I’ve come across the below bios of Robert P. Brodhead and William Loveland in the book The Wyoming Valley in the 19th Century. Art Edition, by S. R. Smith, published in 1894.

Bio from The Wyoming Valley in the 19th Century. Art Edition, by S. R. Smith, published in 1894.

Bio from The Wyoming Valley in the 19th Century. Art Edition, by S. R. Smith, published in 1894.

From The Wyoming Valley in the 19th Century. Art Edition, by S. R. Smith, published in 1894.

From The Wyoming Valley in the 19th Century. Art Edition, by S. R. Smith, published in 1894.

Categories: Brodhead, Flemington, Kingston, Luzerne Co., Loveland | Leave a comment

1907 Summer Holiday (continued)

Here are the remainder of Zillah Trewin’s 1907 Dingmans Ferry vacation photos. (For the previous photos, click here.) I wish I could have spent a day with this gang. Looks like they had lots of fun, and I love the outfits. One can only imagine how shocked they would be by today’s everyday attire!

Categories: Dingmans Ferry, Trewin | Leave a comment

1907 Summer Holiday

For a change of pace, a simple post with some summer holiday photos taken in and around Dingmans Ferry, Pennsylvania, in 1907, by my grandmother, Zillah Trewin. She’d have been 25 at the time and still single. There are a number of photos of the waterfalls. Captions provided when possible.

Unfortunately, her photos were largely left unlabelled, so the identity of most folks pictured is unknown. If anyone recognizes any of these faces, please let me know. Note: you will see photos of Ruth Cheney and someone presumed to be Charlie Roberts in some of these photos. The two served as maid-of-honor and best man, respectively, some years later at Zillah’s wedding. More photos in the next post.

Categories: Dingmans Ferry, Nature, Trewin | Leave a comment

1833 Condolence Letter for Baby Joseph Trewin’s Parents

One of the last items I can share about the Trewins–at least for the time being–is the enclosed letter of condolence which was written for “Brother and Sister Trewin” on the sad occasion of their 20-month-old son Joseph’s passing on 9 April 1833. The letter, written by someone named J.J. Featherstone (perhaps their church pastor), is disintegrating, and today’s scan has finally preserved it once and for all, for it will surely not survive another 178 years!

Condolence Letter on the Occasion of Baby Joseph Trewin’s Passing, page 1

Now, who was this baby Joseph Trewin? He would have been born in 1831, which would make it unlikely that this was the son of Thomas J. Trewin (b. 1817) and his wife Mary Anne Phillips (b. 1820).  As you may recall from a previous post, this was the Trewin couple who departed England on the ship Ion in 1857 to relocate to Canada and later settle in NJ.  I can only assume at this point that Joseph was Thomas J. Trewin’s brother and that the letter was written to the two boys’ parents, Thomas and Sarah Trewin who in 1831 were living in England, probably still in the Woolwich area, and probably still parishoners of the same Wesleyan Methodist Church in which Thomas J. Trewin had been christened in 1817.

Condolence Letter on the Occasion of Baby Joseph Trewin’s Passing, page 2

This letter obviously meant a great deal to the family as it was passed down for many years. Was J.J. Featherstone someone of importance? Someone important in the Wesleyan Methodist Church? A writer of hymns? I’ve tried to find out more, but so far have come up empty-handed.

It is my hope to learn more about the Trewin family’s English roots, beginning with Thomas and Sarah Trewin and going as far back as possible, and, of course, to learn more about Mary Ann Phillips’ roots as well. We have other family lines traced back to 1500s/1600s and one or two even farther back than that. So I have my work cut out for me with the Trewins. On some genealogy sites, I’ve noticed quite a few Trewins in Cornwall, England. Perhaps there’s a link there, but I have yet to confirm that. If anyone out there reading this has information to share, please let me know!

Categories: The Ion, Trewin, Wesleyan Methodist, Woolwich, Greater London | Leave a comment

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