Leon Burson Post 395

Civil War History

From the files of Kendall County Record reported by Kathy Farren May 8, 2014.

(The Kendell County Record was born during the Civil War, published by a veteran of that conflict

Mr. Marshall.)

The toll taken by the Civil War was particularly harsh on Kendall County.  The county had a population of just 13,074 in 1860, and its quota under the draft was 1,374 men, requested in a succession of calls.

“Men of Kendall county, if the government ever wanted soldiers it wants them now!  The county will give $25 bounty to each volunteer for the hundred days.  Fill up the ranks!  Men are wanted to garrison the posts our brave men take as they fight heir way into the enemy’s country.”

And two weeks later, they answered.  “A squad of men, recruited in Kendall County, left Bristol Station last Thursday, under the charge of Lieut. Frank Buys to join the 132d Illinois Vols. Commanded by Col. R.M. Hough.  This makes forty-five men gone from the County.  The regiment will leave Chicago the coming week for Washington.”

As the war went on, in July, the Record reports.  “Colonel Silas Miller, of the 36th Illinois, was badly wounded in the shoulder during one of the fights in the Kennesaw mountains, Georgia.”

And “again we are called upon to chronicle the death of one of our brave soldiers.  One who was a favorite with all who knew him.  An earnest Christian, a good citizen, kind neighbor, and brave officer, Lieutenant William H. Harkness, Co H,89th Illinois Volunteers.  We were personally acquainted with the Lieutenant, and esteemed him highly.  He was shot on the 21st ult. while on duty erecting barricades for the protection of his hem.  He has found a resting place in the baode of the Great Jehovah and is free from all “wars and rumors of war” forever.”

Meanwhile those on the home front were preparing clothing, bedding and food supplies.

As 1865 dawned, there was more sad news.  In January, “Adjutant Charles F. Case of the 36th, who lost his leg at the Franklin battle, died from the effects of the amputation and his remains were brought to Oswego where they were buried.  Lieut. Case was a good officer and was well liked by the regiment.”

In March, Marshall wrote: “A son of R. W. Carnes, Esq., our County Treasure, was taken prisoner by rebels in South Carolina on the 26th of last month.  He was a member of the 104th Illinois, which is with Sherman’s army.  He was paroled and returned home on Tuesday last.”