Reunions of the "Twin Regiments"
101st & 103rd
Pennsylvania Veteran Volunteer Infantry
The following information is provided by Edward Boots, President and 101st PA Historian for the
Special thanks to Ruth Fulton & Bob Porter and his ancestor Samuel W. Porter, 101st PA, for providing the majority of this information!
All of the reunions for the 101st & 103rd PA, except for their first reunion, were held jointly. If you have any information or news articles pertaining to any of these reunions, especially for those years that are missing, please contact Edward Boots.
7 Sept 1882 - Beaver Falls, Beaver Co., PA
Beaver Falls Tribune, Sept 12, 1882
101 - 103
Reunion of the Survivors of the One Hundred and First and One Hundred and Third Regiments, P. V., Who Wore the Blue and Kept Step to the Music of the Union.
Beaver Falls in a Blaze of Glory, and a Hearty Welcome Given the Old Veterans of 1861-65.
WHAT WAS DONE AND WHO DID IT.
Thursday, September 7, 1882, will long be remembered by the people of Beaver Falls as the day when the survivors of the old One Hundred and First and One Hundred and Third Regiments Pennsylvania Volunteers, and hundreds of Veterans of various other regiments assembled in our town to renew the friendship formed on the tented field.
Never in the history of Beaver Falls was there such an uprising of the people as was exhibited on Thursday in honoring the Nation's Heroes. For weeks preparations were in progress devising ways and means by which failure would be avoided and success be made doubly sure. Everybody - old and young, male and female - was determined that nothing should be left undone that would add to the success of the reunion.
The members of Beaver Valley Post, No. 164, G.A.R., of Beaver Falls, assumed the supervision of the general arrangements and right nobly did they perform the task. Public meetings were held and the necessary committees were appointed. The ladies, God bless them, held meetings too, and adopted measures that made success certain. After the completion of the arrangements on paper, the several committees went to work to carry out to successful termination the tasks assigned them, and by Wednesday evening everything was in readiness for the reception and entertainment of all the Veterans that would be present.
The hall of the engine house where the dinner and banquet were to be served was beautifully decorated with flags, flowers and evergreens. The tables, five in number, were in readiness to receive the free-will offering of a people who ever hold name of Veteran Soldier in grateful remembrance.
On Thursday morning the firing of cannon announced to the people of the valley that the long looked for day had dawned. The sun arose in all its brilliancy and splendor. By eight o'clock the streets were thronged by a people ready to welcome and entertain the brave men who had upheld the Old Flag on the field of battle.
At 8:45 A.M. the assembly call was sounded from the headquarters of Post No. 164, on Main street, which was the signal for the old boys to "fall-in" and march to the Fort Wayne depot to receive the visiting Veterans. The line was promptly formed - the New Castle Cornet Band leading off, followed by Post No. 164, and Veterans who reside in town, all under the command of Col. Charles W. May. Arriving at the depot a short halt was made to await the arrival of the trains, after which the line was reformed - Post No. 184, of Rochester, and visiting Veterans taking positions in the line. The column was then marched in open order over the following route: Down Mulberry street to Main: up Main to Harmony, thence to Thomas, to Economy, to Tank, to Henry, to Main, to Economy, to Cedar, to Band Stand, where the speaking exercises took place.
Fully five hundred old Veterans were in the line and all kept step to the music as if in regimental drill. The old gray haired Veteran of seventy appeared as light-footed as his comrade of forty.
The houses along the line of march were profusely decorated with flags and evergreens. On Main street, corner of Beach, was erected across the street an arch which was handsomely festooned with flags, flowers and evergreens, and which supported a banner upon which was painted in large letters - "We Welcome the Living - We Mourn the Dead." Stretched across Harmony street was a banner bearing the inscription - "Welcome to Auld Lang Syne." The residence of Col. May, on Cedar street, was the centre of attraction for the profuseness of the decoration. Space prevents us from making personal mention of all, but suffice it to say, the decorations were all of a tasteful and appropriate character.
At the Band Stand, which was tastefully decorated, the Veterans were massed in columns of company, when Rev. J. K. Morehead delivered the following
ADDRESS OF WELCOME:
Here and there in this great crowd I have before me some of the surviving members of the 101st and 103d regiments of our Pennsylvania Volunteers. By the comrades of our local Post No. 164, I have been requested to say to you and to other veterans of the war a word of welcome to-day.
For several weeks past the citizens of Beaver Falls, with feverish expectancy, have been looking forward to the 7th of September, A.D. 1882. In the calendar of this year, we have been saying to ourselves: "Well, this is going to be the day of days. Away ahead even of Christmas or the 4th of July." Reckoning up the list of our many blessings we have found that we, in Beaver Falls, have had about everything but a soldier's reunion, and we have been somewhat impatient for the coming of the time when we would be able to say: "Yes, and we have had a soldier's reunion, too."
Not simply that the whistles, calling our busy people to work, might be plugged and that the trip-hammers might have a rest, and we a holiday. No, but that we might have the opportunity of showing to the soldier of the Republic somewhat of our appreciation of the work done and the trials endured by him in order to the preservation of all that we as a people hold so dear. The work done!
Ah! of the greatness of that work we can never make measurement. The trials can never be understood, save by those who wore the blue where, amidst the hurtling hail of battle, soldiering was anything but play. It doesn't seem so very long since the time when, in the village where dwelt your mother, your sweetheart and yourself, the public meeting was called on the corner to see who would go to war. At length, in your eagerness to grasp the pen, your fingers began to fairly tingle. Never can you forget that moment when, with a dash of that pen, your name was placed upon that paper. Then you hardly realized all that it meant. As the old minister publicly said a few kind farewell words in the old village church, it was hard to keep back the manly tears. Still you hardly realized it yet, nor during the rendezvous in Camp Fremont, nor in the time spent on Meridian Hill. Then for your old "Harper's Ferry muskets" you had given your Austrian rifles; and then to one another, as you filled your pipes afresh, you said: "Well, boys; this looks like business." And even then you hardly realized all that was meant in putting your name to that enrolling paper back there that evening in the old village, where your mother never forgot to pray that God would watch over her boy. By an by an advance was ordered, and you said good-bye to Meridian Hill. The day was one of early spring's brightest and warmest. Into the baggage-train you flung overcoat and blanket. You remember the terrible rain storm of that evening; no overcoats, no blankets, no tents; then the sleet and snow as you spoon-fashioned in the mud to keep from freezing; then, indeed you began to realize more fully what the affixing of your signature to that muster-roll meant. More fully still, however, after the transports landed you at Newport News, and during your stay at Camp Winfield Scott, in front of Yorktown. The long, long siege work and the building of corduroy roads and bridges then began, and rain, rain, day after day, was the order until all the country was one widespread sea of mud and water. Here the poisonous seeds of disease, that ere long ripened into a terrible harvest of death, were planted. Oh! how the muster-rolls of the companies of the 101st and 103d began to be dotted with stars, telling of comrades offered in sacrifice upon the alter of our common country. Then, indeed, more fully than ever before you began to realize what you had done in donning the blue.
Still no regrets. You will never forget the night of the 3d of May, as the word went all through the encampment that the enemy had evacuated Yorktown. Eighty-one years before there Lord Cornwallis had surrendered to Gen. Washington; but this enemy was not Lord Cornwallis, neither was this a surrender. Simply a retreat, and you were ordered in hot pursuit. And the story of the weariness and pain of that march in pursuit no mortal tongue can ever truthfully tell. And yet, upon your part, falling by the way, faint, scarred, pealed and blistered, no regrets. Soon, following this, old Gen. Joe Hooker engaged the enemy, and you were led under the fire of Fort Magruder. There, victims of the cruel war, some of your comrades were parted from you forever, and you sat down and wrote to their loved ones, telling them how bravely they had died. Still not an added word of regret that you had enlisted for three years of war. In good time you reached the south bank of York river, and there malaria, an enemy for whose coming you had not reckoned and could not fight, began his deadly attacks, and, oh! how he thinned out the ranks - slaying some and leading others off as prisoners to army hospitals.
Then, near Roper's Church, upon the 30th of May - a day that will hardly slip your memory - died brave Col. J. H. Wilson, of the 101st. And about the same time, also Gen. Kiem, the commander of your brigade. After that, the man whose orders you were to obey was glorious old Gen. Wessells. With the same faith in him that you had in Gen. Kiem, you, the very day that Wilson died, went into that awful fray that forever in history shall be known as the battle of Fair Oaks. Today you imagine you can almost hear the sound of the long roll as it called the armed hosts of the Republic from their unfinished work in abattis and rifle-pits. In fancy you almost see again "the waving stars and bars and treason's bristling bayonets" as the enemy, in line of battle, marched forth from the sheltering woodland. You, having passed through the firey ordeal that then began, can never forget it. Early in the fight, Col. Morris, being badly wounded, the command of the 101st devolved upon your comrade and our fellow-townsman, Capt. Chas. W. May. So I think hereafter that we, instead of calling him Captain when we want him - and we want him very frequently, especially on occasions like these - will call him Colonel. At Fair Oaks it was that by the grandeur of your bravery and your proofs of magnificent heroism, you put Fair Oaks upon the page of history hard by Marathon and Thermopylae, There it was that the valor of the old Greek and Roman found itself fully equaled by that of the Northern volunteer. Out of that awful field you came leaving behind you, dead or wounded, every third man of the regiments, the remaining representatives of which, we with open homes and grateful hearts welcome into our midst to-day. And, still as with sadly thinned ranks, you waded out of that field of blood, no regrets because of your hurrying to the defense of the honor of the dear old flag. After the battle of Fair Oaks, your twin regiments were marched to near White Oak swamp, south of the Williamsburg road, there to do picket duty until the first of the never-to-be-forgotten seven days' battle.
And what a week of war was that! The two old regiments, coming out of the blistering agonies of those seven days, appearing but the shadow of their former selves. Still, as those remaining came together, and touched shoulder to shoulder in line, no regrets because the long-ago oath of fealty taken to stand by the flag.
Now, as part of the old Potomac army, shattered and broken, you were marched away to Suffolk to do fatigue duty upon the fortifications. Thence to New-Berne, N.C., to reinforce Gen. Foster. In the Egyptian midnight darkness of the night preceding the battle of Kingston, leading the advance of our force, it is believed that you actually posted your pickets within the enemy's line. After the battle of Kingston, across the Neuse river you followed hard after the retreating foe. By and by, with a skirmish here and there, as it were just to keep you in practice, you, wearied and almost utterly fagged out, reached Goldsboro. Then followed, under a hot artillery fire, the burning of the bridge of the Wilmington & Weldon railroad; then the long night marches through the burning forests of pine; then the long winter under the sheltering of Sibley tents at New-Berne; then, at the opening of the spring of `63, on to the regions remote for guerrillas along the waters of Lake Natamuskeet; then to Tar river; then back once more to New-Berne. But then, henceforth to the end, there seems to have been set apart not one single day for rest, unless the long days of that seemingly unending year spent within the fatal dead line at Andersonville might be known as resting days. And still, no regret for the oath with which you stepped across the threshold into the service of your country. The old flag, once bright and new, when placed in your hands by the hands of ladies at the farewell meeting at home. - The old flag, in the front meant more to you than it ever did before; and, looking up to it, the very thought of regret because of all that you had done and suffered for its honor would have been banished as you would have banished the thought of disloyalty itself.
Time fails me to speak of the series of your battles with the enemy between Swift Creek and Plymouth, N.C. That Sabbath morning bearing the date of the 17th of April `64, you will never forget. It seemed as though you were going to have a Sabbath's quiet rest. But no; ere long the picket's musketry called you from the entrenchments. Cavalry, dashing in, said the enemy were advancing in force. Then began the work of death that ceased not for three long days. Inch by inch you contested every foot of ground. Like Rough and Ready's boys at Beuna Vista, the trouble with you was you didn't know when you were whipped. In fact, hardly realized it till you were far on your way toward Tarboro. Some of you hadn't much more than waked up to the fact till you found yourselves within the dead-line at Andersonville.
The 101st and 103d, the twin regiments, never separated. Still together as prisoners of war in the very heart of a southern hell, whose crowned demon, Wirz, one would think would disgrace even the veritable perdition itself. And then, as never before, you began to understand what sacrifice meant for liberty, law and the honor of the flag.
Scurvy eaten, your teeth loosened so that with your fingers you might have picked them from your jaws. In the midnight, cold, freezing; in the noontide side, burning up. Each day dying a thousand deaths, yet living, but praying to God that you might die; and yet wanting to live that you might strike one more good blow in proof of your love to the flag. The gate of the prison open to you any moment that you would don the gray. Yet not a man to accept liberty or life at the price of dishonor.
And why have I gone over this story of your trials to-day? Why, but to show those who were not born, or were children twenty years ago, that we are honored in the privilege accorded us of honoring you to-day.
You have laid us under tribute of everlasting obligation to you, and with us all the world. By your service, every creature of God, hoping for something better for the race, has been blessed. And the strangers from other shores are flocking to our's as never before, and most of all because of the completeness of your work.
Again, we welcome you because of the grand historic truths taught, especially to our youth, by your very presence in our midst. In you they see the living links between the old war for constitutional liberty and the war of twenty years ago for the preservation of our national life. As in our schools they read of Valley Forge and Lexington, they will honor more than ever before the name of Washington, and from that name their thoughts will turn to Lincoln and to Garfield - the three grandest names in all American history.
Your presence, so suggestive of inquiry, will make it necessary for us who are older to tell again, for the satisfaction of our children, the old story filled with deeds of our fathers, and will this story - the one that so lately has been written upon the page of our country's history and written in part by you. Ah! you remember it; how, when our first martyred President took hold of the helm of the ship of State that he might run her into quiet waters, amazed Europe cried, "Stop; you are attempting the impossible." And how, with faith in his cause and you who sprung to his help, he to Europe sent back the answer, "Very well, gentleman; then by God's good help we will accomplish the impossible." And because of the answering loyalty of our soldiery to the call of duty; before the traitor's weapon found his heart, he made that promise good. And you are here to back us in saying to all inquiring, that all that has been won is worth more than it ever cost.
You, whom we so gladly welcome to our midst to-day, are representatives of the staunch material composing the army of the Potomac.
By a summer's work in the interest of your comrades in the West, I am enabled to bear willing testimony to the fact that they to a man unite with you in declaring that all that has been won is worth more than all that it cost.
During the early months of those four years of awful strife the question that worried us most, here at home, was, How can we do more for the boys at the front? How can we better show them our sympathy and love? And verily I believe that question had its truest answer when guided of God - that prince of philanthropist, G. H. Stewart, said, "Gentlemen, let us as dispensers of the bounties of the North stay with the boys in camp, battlefield and hospital."
And thus forthwith sprung into being what was known as the "Christian's Commission," and thus happened it that I, going out with 5,000 others, spent one summer in war-despoiled old Tennessee. As showing the appreciation of your work upon the part of those who remained at home, I want to say just here, as part of the history of war, that through the Commission, besides the long train loads of delicacies sent in, there was given in money to buy more for your comfort - How much? Why, by an appreciative and grateful people, just such as to-day you will find the citizens of Beaver Falls to be, there was in four short months given the magnificent sum of $2,260,000. The yearly average amount given was $6,780,000.
And I believe that among the greatest joys ever brought to human hearts was the fervent, "God bless you!" as we ministered to some sick, wounded or dying soldier. Could these 5,000 delegates (many of them women) make answer here to-day, they with united voice would bear testimony, not only to the greatness of the sacrifice made by the soldier of the Union, but also to the unmurmuring willingness with which that sacrifice was made.
The most of you, I presume, remember what was called a field hospital. A delegate, summoned to the cot of a dying man in one of these, said: "Well, my man; what message for home?" "Only these," he said: "these rings. Give this one to mother, and this one to her - to her. She'll know." Then he gazed long and earnestly at two photographs held in his white chilling hand. The one of his mother and the other of her waiting to become his bride. Then he said: "Tell mother and her to let the thought come to them never that I was sorry that I gave my life to my country. In God's name I did it, and it's all right - all right!" and his eyes were glazed in death.
Another scene: A fair young boy was lying upon the amputation table, and about him stood those who were to perform the painful service. They wanted to administer chloroform. "No, no," he said: "I want to see it all." The operation proceeding, and becoming more and more painful, the dying hero, for solace, with his poor weak voice, began to sing:
"There will be no sorrow there; In Heaven above, where all is love. There'll be no sorrow there."
And the great tears ran from the surgeons' eyes as they wrought at their work, and the singing went on, and the soul of the fair, brave boy, was at home with his God, before the surgeon's task was done.
Another scene. A delegate standing by the side of a wounded soldier hastily brought on a stretcher to the rear. Upon his pale, quivering face, the sweat stands like great white beads, and his bright, black eye is flashing with an unearthly light. His greeting is, "I'm dying - quick. Take my note book and write my last message to my mother." And in all calmness he dictated the following: "July 8th, 1863. John W. _____, Battery H, 1st Ohio Light Artillery, to Mrs. Emel Van _____, Maumee City, Lucas county, Ohio: I am dying; resigned, happy, trusting in Jesus; ready for roll call; ready to meet my God; we will meet - meet - in heaven we will meet." And I question if there is a delegate out of the five thousand, an examination of whose note book would fail of giving us instance after instance of just such blessed examples of heroism as this. Ah, yes, gentleman - you who are our welcome guests to-day - I have seen too many proofs of the cost at which all we enjoy has been secured, to think of undervaluing or belittleing this sacrifice.
The cost in dollars and cents can never be computed. As I looked upon the weary, the wounded, the sick, the dying and the dead far from their happy homes on proud Northern Mountains or fertile valleys; as I remembered that in those homes that there were vacant chairs to be vacant forever; that there were loving mothers, loved wives and fond sisters in fullest anguish of heart for their dear dying or their dead, moaning forth their sad plaint in the ear of God. As from the chilling lips of some dying soldier boy I caught his last whispered words, mother; as I saw a woman dusty and way-worn; as I saw sorrowing fathers, a good-bye - a farewell - a meet me in heaven - a God bless you - dearest loved, a young wife, a bride widowed by war, who had made a weary journey from her cottage home by the peaceful shore of one of our bright Northern lakes. As such an one I saw with trembling steps and anxious, tearful eye searching for the buried bones of her martyred husband among the myriad mound of some southern grave-hillowed battlefield. As, when the war was over, I saw the streets of our cities draped with bright evergreen and heard shouts of "Welcome home" from the lips of a grateful populace, and the steady tramp, tramp and martial tread of freedom's bronzed heroes as in these crowds. I saw here and there silent family groups in deepest mourning, with tear dimmed eye, peering amid the thinned ranks for the familiar form of some darling idol who, they too well knew, would never more return. As all this, and more - much more I saw and heard, I began to comprehend something of the cost of all that we in this fair God given heritage of our's enjoy. And yet, men and women, if you question it that all we enjoy is well worth all that it cost, ask your guests, these veterans of the war, who were at Plymouth, Vicksburg, Fair Oaks, Spotsylvania, Gettysburg - these men who are battle scarred, use crutches and need no sleeves to their coats. Have you ever heard one of them deny it? So then, speaking for the committee whose ambition it has been to make this reunion a success, speaking for our ladies, fully possessed of the power both to prepare a good dinner and banquet the heart even of a Union soldier speaking my word of welcome for the citizens of Beaver Falls, one and all, I say welcome, thrice welcome, and all honor to these men who for four long years breasted the tide of treason with a wall of loyal, living hearts. These men, whose eyes have quailed not as their bullets have failed not in the deadly strife. These men, who to amazed Europe have proved that the American soldier is no hired Hessian, but a man; that back of his bronzed temple there is a thinking brain; that back of his brawny arm there is a principled heart; that while he has made war, he has made government; that standing in the mud of the trenches, shivering in the cold winds of winter, looking back upon the bloody trail from the Rapidan to Richmond, from Chattanooga to Atlanta, and from Atlanta to the sea, the inspiration to his endeavor was loyalty to liberty, love of home, native or adopted land.
Ah, yes, your work has been done faithfully and well, and in welcoming you to all that we for our enjoyment have prepared, we but express the conviction of all who greet you, when we declare that we and the generation to follow after can never hold you and your work in too high esteem.
At the close of Rev. Morehead's address, Rev. Mr. Belfoor, of Pittsburgh, responded in behalf of the 101st and 103d regiment, in an able and eloquent speech. He briefly reviewed the history of the twin regiments, the causes and results of the war, and closed by paying a glowing tribute to the martyred dead.
Rev. Morehead then, on behalf of Mrs. Selby, of Carydon, Iowa, presented a floral badge formed of beautiful flowers, made in a triangular shape, representing on the three sides the red, white and blue badge of the three divisions of the 18th [4th] Corps, to the survivors of the 101st and 103d regiments. Accompanying the floral gift was the following note:
"Presented to the Veterans of the One Hundred and First and One Hundred and Third Regiments by a lady from Iowa as a slight token of her respect and esteem for her brothers' comrades."
Mrs. Selby is a sister of C. W. and James May, of Beaver Falls.
Remarks were also made by Veterans Nutall and Boss, after which the line was reformed and marched to the dining hall where the Veterans were seated at tables that were loaded down with all that man could desire in the shape of delicacies and substantials. The floral decorations on the table were profuse, and pretty young ladies pinned button-hole bouquets on the lapels of the old Veterans coats. To attempt a description of the good things spread out upon the tables would take a column. The "boys" said they never had looked upon the like before. There was no "shortage" in anything - abundance of everything that the appetite would crave for. Every one seemed to enjoy the occasion and the sumptuous repast.
After dinner the "boys" collected in squads along the streets and reviewed old war days in telling camp, march and battle field incidents, etc.
The ladies in the meantime had not been idle in the dining hall. The dinner dishes had all been washed and the tables rearranged for the evening banquet.
At six o'clock the band played a national air which was the preparatory signal for the "boys" to get ready for the tapering off ration of the day. At seven o'clock the banquet call was sounded and the hall was rapidly filled with Veterans and their wives' and sweethearts. The tables were ladened with every delicacy that go towards making up a first-class banquet. Cakes, fruits of all kinds, nuts, ice-cream and sandwiches. After all had been seated, plates filled to overflowing were passed to each by "blushing maidens fair," and after a limited time the ice-cream and cake was served to all. Thus the food went on until over eight hundred mortal souls were duly and fully banqueted.
The speaking part of the programme was cut short by the committee declaring all speeches off.
At a late hour the banquet was closed and the ladies who had worked hard all day and evening in the hall went to their homes with the proud consolation of having done their duty.
It would take columns to tell all that was said and done, and right here we close our report of the first Veteran reunion held in Beaver Falls.
The boys are all beginning to look old.
Over twelve hundred persons ate dinner at the hall on Thursday.
Col. May is not a very graceful horseman, but maybe it was the horse's fault.
The day was hot but the old Vets didn't mind it. Every man kept his place in the ranks.
Business was generally suspended in all the business and manufacturing establishments.
Capt. W. H. Bricker knows how to keep the boys in good humor. He had a good word for all.
Capt. May was by unanimous consent of the boys, promoted to the rank of Colonel. Shake, Colonel.
The old Veterans were all well pleased with the reception they received from the Beaver Falls people.
All old Veterans of the War of 1812 was in the line of march and kept step to the music of "Sweet By and By."
The floral Fourth Corps Badge, the gift of Mrs. Selby, of Iowa, was made by Mr. D. R. Woods, of New Brighton.
W. H. Graham, of Rochester, was the handsomest Vet in the parade. He's over six feet and as straight as a bean pole.
There were one hundred and sixty old Veterans of the 101st and 103d regiments present at roll-call. The boys turned out well.
G. C. Wareham never does things by halves. He closed his mill and devoted the whole day to looking to the comfort of the visiting Veterans.
One of the striking features of the reunion was the good order that prevailed. With thousands of people on the streets all day not a drunken man was anywhere to be seen, and not a disturbance of any kind occurred.
To the ladies of Beaver Falls belong the credit of making the reunion of the 101st and 103d regiments the success that it was, for without their co-operation, their loving smiles and kind words of welcome the reunion would have been a failure.
At a business meeting of the members of the 101st and 103d regiments held in G.A.R. hall Thursday afternoon, the following officers were elected: President, Col. C. W. May; Vice President, G. W. Bowers; Treasurer, C. A. Geisenhanner; Secretary, T. R. Boss. A resolution of thanks to the ladies and citizens generally of Beaver Falls for their kind and hospitable reception of the boys was passed. The next reunion will be held at Appollo, Armstrong county, Sept 7, 1883.
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6 Sept 1883 - Apollo, Armstrong Co., PA
National Tribune, Sept 20th, 1883
The fifth annual Reunion of the 101 and 103 Pa. Vet. Vol. was held at Apollo, in that State on the 6th inst. The day was fine and quite a large crowd of the old veterans collected together to renew old acquaintances and recite past reminiscences. Quite a large delegation of the old survivors of both Regiments left the West Pa. depot, Allegheny, in the morning. By unanimous consent Pittsburg was chosen as the place of next meeting and the time Grand Army day. The town presented quite a holiday appearance. Flags were flying and banners stretched across the streets and arches erected gave it a cheerful and pleasant street. The address of welcome to the veterans was delivered in the hall by Rev. Jathison. Following the address came the banquet. To say that the ladies of Apollo did themselves credit would be saying too little. Their hospitality knew no bounds. The banquet was an affair in every way worthy of the name and the veterans were delighted. At the conclusion of the banquet a parade was made through the principal streets of the city, nothing occurring in any way to interrupt its success. The dress parade was very musing from the fact that many of the old soldiers had almost forgotten the duties and many awkward movements were noticeable. Quite a touching little moment occurred during the Reunion. Miss Maggie Dentzell brought a picture of her brother [Solomon A. Dentzell, Co. C, 103d PA] who was killed at the Battle of White Oak Swamp, to deliver to one of the comrades to be hung in the hall. While looking at the picture and reciting incidents connected with the battle, a soldier coming up recognized the picture at a glance and said: "I knew that boy". I was with him when he was killed, and the last word he uttered was "Mother". The scene was affecting and many tears were dropped in memory of the dead boy.
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Grand Army Day - 6 Oct 1884 - Pittsburgh, Allegheny Co., PA
National Tribune, Oct 16th, 1884
A reunion of Hampton's Battery and the 101st and 103d PA was held at Pittsburg on the 6th. The association of the 101st and 103d elected the following officers: President: Capt. G. W. Bowers of Pittsburg, 1st V. Pres. Capt. J. H. Chambers of Kittanning, 2d V.P. Capt. James Chalfant, Sec. T. R. Boss, Asst. Sec. Thos. Cochran, Treas. Lt. C. A. Geissenhainer.
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17 Sept 1890 - Rock Point, Beaver Co., PA
New Castle News, September 18, 1890
G. A. R. DAY
An Immense Throng and a Big Time at Rock Point
The biggest day Rock Point has seen for many a day, and the most enjoyable day the veterans of the G. A. R. have had for a long time was Wednesday. On that day instead of parading all over Pittsburgh for the benefit of Pittsburgh merchants and to the discomfiture of the veterans, they had a delightful time in that pleasant and picturesque place.
From early morning long trains were arriving heavily laden, and they were still arriving in the afternoon. Those who kept track of their coming estimated that there must have been 10,000 people on the ground. Others were more extravagant in their estimates. When evening arrived the mass of people all trying to get home on the same train justified almost any estimate.
A number of very interesting addresses were made and Comrade Maude delighted the immense crowd with several of her choicest recitations.
The Woman’s Relief Corps and the Ladies of the G. A. R. had large delegations on the grounds, but they were there for business, not pleasure, and worked hard. They had two large dining halls and served meals all day long to crowds that seemed ceaseless, and patiently awaited their turn at the tables. The Woman’s Relief Corps was endeavoring to make money for the Pennsylvania Soldiers’ Memorial Home, established by them at Brookville, and the Ladies of the G. A. R. had for the object raising of funds for the Home of Widows and Mothers of Veterans, recently established by them at Hawkins Station. Both organizations met with flattering success and an immense amount of work.
Nothing occurred during the day to mar the pleasures of the occasion. Those who know say it was the most orderly big crowd that has ever been seen on the ground.
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28 Sept 1893 - New Castle, Lawrence Co., PA
New Castle News September 27, 1893
ALL IS READY
For a Big Reunion of the 101st and 103rd Regiments.
Arrangements are now completed for the big reunion of the 101st and 103rd regiments. The decorations at the Court House are finer than ever seen there before. All old soldiers are invited to fall in line with the members of the 101st and 103rd in the parade. The campfire will be an interesting feature. It will be held at the Court House in the evening.
New Castle News September 28, 1893
Fifteenth Annual Reunion of the 101st and 103d Regiments.
Arrive During the Day and Take Part in the Exercises.
Whose Names Will Appear on the Lawrence County Soldiers’ Monument – Business Blocks and Private Residences Gaily Decorated.
Thursday morning dawned cold and cheerless and for a time it looked as if the day set aside for the reunion of the 101st and 103d Pennsylvania Volunteers in New Castle would prove unfavorable but before long the kindly sun broke through the clouds and dispelled the mist and fog that hung over the town and country and by the middle of the forenoon the day was almost perfect.
Early in the morning citizens of the principal streets were astir and preparing to decorate their homes and places of business in honor of the boys in blue. Soon flags and bunting began to appear on Washington and Pittsburg streets in particular, and from the windows of the upper rooms flag staffs were thrust bearing the stars and stripes. The decorations were very fine, rivaling those displayed on the Fourth of July. Scarcely a business house that did not display flags and bunting in profusion.
The old veterans began to arrive on the earlier trains and kept coming until noon. As they came from the train, a glance was sufficient to show that old time has dealt hardly with the brave men who responded to their country’s call in the sixties. With whitened locks and stooped forms, many of them leaning on canes for support. Many a man traversed New Castle streets today, who, when he went out with his country’s defenders, was in the full flush of youth and strength. Then too, the absence of many a familiar face, calls to the minds of the surviving comrades, that in a few years all must respond to the final call.
Of company C, of the 101st, which was recruited in Wampum, this is especially true. The company’s loss on the field was a fearful one. Yes, time has proved not less destructive than rebel bullets and rebel bayonets. The members of this company now living are so far as known are as follows: William Bowers, Charles Bowers, Samuel Baker, Talbert Swoggers, Nathan Corry, John Catterson, Frank Ford, William Glenn, John Horn, John Kuhn, Wilson Ritchey, Watt Ault and Wesley Leonard.
ADDRESS OF WELCOME.
At 11 a.m. the soldiers led by a brass band and escorted by Oscar L. Jackson Camp, Sons of Veterans, marched to the G. A. R. hall, when the address of welcome was delivered by Mayor Richardson, he said:
“Members of the 101st and 103d Regiments, Pennsylvania Veteran Volunteers, and all visiting soldiers:
I thank your committee for the honor conferred by extending to me an invitation to make the address of “welcome.” True, I cannot call you comrades, because I was not a soldier, but while I was not with you in body, I was in heart, and at each victory my heart echoed your vibrations of joy. From the time you left home until you were mustered out a t Harrisburg, we watched with care your movements, and today, every true American, be he man, woman or child, can point with pride to your record.
As chief executive of this city, I have no hesitancy in placing in your hands the guardianship of the city for this day, and so I bid you and each of you a hearty welcome to our city. In doing so I believe that in your care it will be in the same good hands our country was in those trying years from ’61 to ’65, and that when we muster you out after this reunion is over, we will find our city better by reason of your visit, and that you will be leave with a better opinion of us.
Again, on behalf of the citizens of New Castle, I extend to you a cordial welcome. And further, while my instructions to my police are secret, I will say to you, they are entirely satisfactory to your committee. Once more I say to you, Welcome, and thanking you, I bid you good-by.
The address was responded to by L. L. Truxel, of Dubois, Pa., in a ringing speech, which was greatly appreciated by the comrades. Mr. Truxel was a member of Co. A, of the 101st, and is a most eloquent speaker.
Wm. McBride, Co. I, 103, Jacksville, Pa.
T. J. McKee, Co. C, 103, New Castle Pa.
Wm. Bryant, Co., K, 103, New Castle, Pa.
D. B. Taylor, Co., C, 103, 57 Van Buran street, Pittsuburg, Pa.
John Noble, Co., C, 103, 22d Saline avenue, Pittsurg.
Uriah Sloan, Co., B, 103, Emlenton, Pa.
H. M. Johnston, Co. A, 101, Wilkinsburg, Pa.
Wilson Richey, Co., C, 101, East Palestine, O.
Isaac Shakely, Co., B, 103 P. V., Emlenton, Pa. Venango Co.
S. M. Evans, Co., C, 103 P. V. V., 107 Market street, Pittsburg, Pa.
Capt. W. Fielding, Co., Q, 103, Slippery Rock.
Jackson McCay, Co. I, 103, Harrisville, Pa.
Calvin Waite, Co., K, 103, New Castle, Pa.
John Fielding, Co., I, 103, Slippery Rock.
John Gowdy, Co., C, 103, Allegheny.
J. C. Mates, C., A, 101, Turtle Creek, Pa.
Capt. C. W. May, Co. F, 101, Beaver Falls, Pa.
W. H. Acher, Co, H, 101, Kremis, Mercer county, Pa.
Wm. Smith, Co., F, 101, St. Clair, Columbiana Co., O.
M. W. Elliott, Co., F, 101, East Liverpool, O.
S. W. Hamilton, Co. D, 103, Appolo, Pa.
Samuel Kelly, Co. J, 103.
Winfield S. Birch, Co. C, 103, 118 Lawbest street, Pittsburg.
E. Springer, Co. F, 101 P. V., Beaver Falls, Pa.
Capt. George W. Powers [Bowers], Co. I, 101, Fifth avenue, Pittsburg.
Jonas Walfer, Co. A, 101, Maple avenue, 10th ward, Allegheny City.
Lewis J. Fleming, Co. F, 101, East End, Pittsburg, Pa.
Charles S. Bowers, Co. 101, Chewton, Pa.
John A. Reed, co. 101, 109 Water street, Pittsburg.
Samuel Porter, Co. H, 101, Beaver Falls, Pa.
Henry A. Wagner, Co. I, 106, Sunbury, Pa.
John Horn, Co. E, 101, Wheeling, W. Va.
Lieutenant D. M. Ramsay, Co. F, 101 P. V. New Bedford, Pa.
Wm. Bryant, Co. K, 103, New Castle.
T. R. Ross, Co. A, 101, Pittsburg.
George Fonner, Co. C, 101, Pittsburg.
John Katy, Co. A, 101, Pittsburg.
Samuel Baker, Co. C, 101, New Castle, Pa.
Wm. French, Co. C, 101, Irish Ripple, Pa.
Frank Ford, Co. C, 101, Chewton, Pa.
John A. Duff, Co. A, 101, Wilkinsburg, Pa.
S. W. Porter, Co. H, 101, Beaver Falls, Pa.
W. H. Hunter, Co. H, 101, Allegheny, Pa.
E. Springer, Co. F, 101, Beaver Falls, Pa.
J. B. Cole, Co. H, 101, Allegheny, Pa.
E. R. Boots, Co. H, 101, New Brighton, Pa.
Wm W. Bowers, Co. C, 101, Princeton, Pa.
J. J. Gallagher, Co. C, 103, New Castle.
Col. James Shaffer, of 101, Allegheny, Pa.
Wm. Hunter, Co. H, 101, Allegheny, Pa.
Samuel Long, Co. A, 101, Allegheny, Pa.
John Catterson, Co. C, 101, New Castle, Pa.
John Creese, Co. H, 101, Bayne, Pa.
Graham Coulter, Co. F., 101, Trenton, Ark.
J. W. Fletcher, Co. A, 101, Allegheny, Pa.
D. W. Swick, Co. H, 101, New Brighton, Pa.
The following are the names of members of the 101st Pa. Vol., who died or was killed while in service, and whose names will appear on the soldiers’ monument: J. L. Ault, S. Blair, J. Bruce, D. Black, C. Black, C. Bower, I. Boyd, A. D. Cole, J. Clark, C. Crider, J. Crider, J. Cassidy, W. Dougherty, B. H. Delrimple, DeWitt C. Freeman, J. Freed, H. J. Friday, S. Friday, I. Fisher, W. W. Glenn, P. Hennon, S. Geer, B. Joseph, A. Klink, H. Kirkwood, C. C. Leonard, T. Muchhans, J. A. Morrow, J. Miller, J. M. McClurg, T. J. Plants, J. Piersol, J. Parke, J. Quigley, W. W. Robinson, R. Russell, W. C. Rutter, A. Stewart, J. Stewart, J. Swogger, P. J. Sprinker, M. Thompson, A. VanKirk.
D. Robinson, of the 103d Pa. Vol. was also from this county, and his name will appear on the soldiers’ monument.
The names of the members of the two regiments were secured by a NEWS reporter, who is greatly indebted to J. C. Stevenson for aid in obtaining them. If any are omitted, the omission is entirely unintentional.
Rev. J. A. Danks colonel of the 63 A. Pa. vol. was out from Pittsburg to attend the reunion.
W. H. Brown of Co. E. of the 5th Heavy Artillery now of Allegheny met with the boys Thursday.
The ladies of the U. V. L. will serve supper to the members of the 101st and 103d in their hall.
New Castle’s decoration show that she has not forgotten the honor that is due to the brave boys in blue.
Oscar L. Jackson Camp S. of V. presented a neat appearance while acting as an escort for the old veterans.
One hundred and twelve members of the 101 and 103 were in line today. A small percentage of the gallant hundreds that enlisted.
Comrade Joseph Trax hoisted the silk flag on the New West New Castle School Building for the first time this morning but it could not be seen from the city.
The Sons of Veterans gave each member who failed to turn out three good tosses in the air and a fall in the mud wherever they were discovered on the street.
My how the S. of V. did enjoy that dinner. As they gathered around the table with jokes and laughter, many an old veteran said as he gazed on their caps and uniforms: “How like the old times that looks.”
The ladies of the U. V. L. Auxiliary deserve great credit for the manner in which they served dinner. The task of serving dinner for 250 persons is a large one and the ladies were few in numbers but they proved themselves equal to the task.
The old fashioned army barber was present in the person of a tall member of the 103d regiment. He opened a shop on the veranda in front of the Court House and did a big business. His outfit consisted of a razor fully a foot long, a towel, a cake of yellow soap, an under-sized scrub brush, a small bottle of oil and a large chunk of mutton tallow. The suspecting individual would approach, be seized by several of the boys and thrust into one of the settees. The barber would draw his razor several times across one of the large stone columns, rub the scrub brush across the soap, plaster the unfortunate’s face, then manipulate the razor. It brought tears every time. The victim would then have the oil poured on his head, his hair brushed, and his whiskers, if he had any, filled with the tallow. He was then pronounced ready for dress parade.
New Castle News September 29, 1893
Recounted by the Blazing Campfire Thursday Night.
Meet With the Old Veterans and Listen to Thrilling Stories of the Past – Officers Elected at the Business Meeting.
The business meeting of the Regimental Association of the 101st and 103rd, was called to order by Chairman Samuel Long, in the court house at 2:30 p.m. Thursday. Letters of regret were read from T. F. Laymen, of Washington, D. C.; Gen. Wm. Blakely, of the 14th Pa. Cavalry, and a telegram from F. A. Cochran, of Appolo. After a reading of the minutes of the last meeting had been read and approved, the association proceeded to the election of officers. The following were elected by acclamation:
President – R. A. A. Patterson, 103rd, of Castle Shannon.
First Vice-President – S. M. Hamilton, 103rd, Appolo.
Second Vice-President – John Shaffer, 101st, of New Castle.
Secretaries – T. S. McKee, of 103rd, Grove City; H. M. Johnston, of 101st, of Wilkinsburg.
Treas. – S. M Evans, of 103rd, Pittsburg.
Executive Committee – Capt. G. W. Bowers, 101st, of Pittsburg; C. W. May, 101st, of Beaver Falls; Lieut. James Chambers, of 103rd, Pittsburg; Dr. W. B. Crosen, 1-3rd, of Etna.
A call for the members of each regiment to stand up, showed by count that 40 of the 101st, and 18 of the 103rd, were present.
Thomas B. Wilson, of Battery B, 5th Heavy Artillery, was made an honorary member of the Regimental Association, and was called on far a speech. He responded in a few remarks in which he said he hoped the influence of the G. A. R. would ever be exerted in the behalf of temperance and morality. A comrade took exception to this, and began to express his approval of corn juice, but was promptly voted out of order.
Col. J. A. Danks, of Pittsburg, rendered an original song, which was heartily encored.
A motion was made and passed fixing upon Pittsburg as the place for the meeting of the Association next year. The meeting was adjourned until the campfire at 7:30.
The campfire was held in the beautifully decorated court room in the evening. The decorations of the court room deserve special notice. No finer ones have been seen in New Castle Hiram Woods executed the decorations, and evidently bestowed much time and care on them.
Hon. John Shaffer, also is to be credited with not only the work at the court room, but with the excellent manner in which he carried out the arrangement for the whole reunion. He was practically manger of the whole day’s exercises, and worked hard to make them a success. His efforts will be long remembered by the comrades of the 101st and 103d Pa. Vol., as well as by all old soldiers who participated in the reunion.
The exercise opened at 7:30, but long before that time the court room was crowded to its utmost capacity. A large number of ladies were present.
The meeting was called to order by W. D. Wallace, Esq. After a prayer by Rev. J. A. Danks, of Pittsburg, Captain L. M. Truxell, of Dubois, was introduced as chairman of the meeting. He made a few introductory remarks in which he said: “Ladies and gentlemen of Youngstown” when he was interrupted by cries of “No, no, New Castle.” “Well I get these two towns mixed,” he continued, “but no difference. I said this forenoon that my own town of Dubois was the best in the world for a man can go there and be treated better, and oftener, than in any other town in the country. But now we must bow the knee to this city.” The president then introduced the next speaker in the person of Hon. A. L. Hazen, who he said was the greatest chicken thief in the army. His Honor said “It was a great surprise to me when I was called on to make a speech. I understand that I am to speak of Col. Joseph H. Wilson. In the service I never met with either the 101st or 103d and I know that they were as patriotic a body of men as ever marched to war, and I am proud that they came from the part of Pennsylvania that gave me birth, in which I have passed my life and in which I expect to die. Governor Curtin once said just after the battle of Antetiam ‘Those soldiers who came from Western Pennsylvania have done valiant service.’ I was personally acquainted with James S. Rutan, no braver or better man ever drew a sword. (Applause.) I also knew Capt. Freeman. No more earnest man ever served his country. He was a Christian gentleman But to speak of Col. J. H. Wilson. He was born in Beaver county near the Connoquenessing Creek, in 1820. He was admitted to the bar in 1850 and in 1852 was elected District Attorney, and in 1856 was elected to the Legislature. In these offices he served with credit to himself and with honor to the office. He was commissioned the first Colonel of the 101st in October, 1891, and served his country until death. As an officer, no one tried to discharge his duties more faithfully. He was a scholar and a patriot and a gentleman.”
Miss Maud McIlvenny recited a selection entitled “Why we Wear the Badge.” The young lady delivered the poem in a highly commendable manner, and may an old soldier’s eyes were wet with tears ere she had reached the last lines.
Col. J. A. Danks, of the 63d Vols., was called on for a song. The Colonel is also a minister, and from the hearty, whole-souled song which he rendered, and which is of his own composition, we suspect he is a Methodist. The song, which aroused a tremendous round of applause, is entitled “Live on the Field of Battle.” The Colonel sang a second song, which was no less heartily applauded.
Col. Thomas Sample, Department Commander of the G. A. R., was next introduced by the chairman, who made some very humorous remarks at the expense of the speaker, who retaliated by telling a story of Chairman Truxell’s army life, which made him more than even with the latter gentleman. He said: “I am glad to meet with these regiments. We have had a good time, thanks to the good people of New Castle.” He paid a glowing tribute to Pennsylvania’s war governor, Curtin, and gave the people who cry “Down with the soldiers,” more than a passing notice.
The Glee Club rendered an appropriate piece of music, after which Col. Oscar L Jackson was introduced. He said: “I am given to understand that I am to say a few words in behalf of Co. C, of the 101st. This company was organized in this county, and sad to say, but few of its survivors are left. Perhaps Co. C was no better than the other nine companies of the regiment, perhaps the 101st was no better than the 103d but these men were our friends and neighbors. Their bravery no man questions. In the almost forgotten battle of Fair Oaks, the company lost more than one-third of its men. You may talk of Roman legions being decimated, yet their loss was nothing when compared with the loss of this company in a battle, now almost forgotten. The 101st formed a part of the 2,200 men who for 48 hours held 12,000 rebels at bay at Plymouth. When at last they were swept away by mere force of numbers, into Andersonville, they were still true to their country. Out of 49 men of Company C that went into Andersonville, but 7 ever lived to return to Lawrence county. These men lived 12 months in this prison pen and died, starved literally to death, when they could have obtained food by deserting the old flag and swearing allegiance to the accursed Confederacy. Andersonville was not a prison like our jails. It was a pen. In it 30,000 men were confined in a space not large enough to serve for a camp for a cavalry regiment. Lawrence county gave 426 men that went down to solders’ graves. These we know died for a glorious cause and did not die in vain. We know that you men of the 101st and 103d know what it is to stand where bullets fill the air, and I do not believe the time will ever come when the American people will submit to see the old soldier treated unjustly.”
Treasurer Boss announced that the treasury needed replenishing, and two comrades were appointed to lift a collection.
Mrs. Everts rendered an appropriate vocal solo.
Mrs. Rose, of the U. V. L. Auxiliary, was introduced and said that she was glad to welcome the members of the regiments to the city and hoped that the Auxiliary would increase in numbers.
Comrade Wasson, of the 103d, was called on for a speech. He responded briefly, saying: “I did not come to this city to attend a reunion, but was persuaded to stay. I had comrades in Andersonville who were school mates of mine. We are told that the old soldier that the old soldier is played out, but our reception in this city does not look as if this were true. I have a grandson in New Castle and I am improving patriotism and love of flag and country into him every day. If all would do this our nation would never lack defenders.”
The committee on resolutions was called on for a report, and the following was read:
WHERAS, The 15th annual reunion of the 101st and 103d Regiments, P. V. V., has been held in the city of New Castle, under the most auspicious circumstances, even nature in all its beauty vieing (sic vying) with the noble and patriotic citizens to make it one of the most pleasant and enjoyable reunions it has been our good fortune to attend, and the ex-prisoner of war side by side with his more fortunate comrade has been permitted to enjoy one more happy day in reviewing memories of the late war, some of which were growing dim or even doubtful under the shadows of age, or once more to grasp the had and give heart beat to heart of those who stood side by side where the battle raged fiercely, or the shells burst most rapidly; or lean once more upon the shoulders that supported him in Andersonville, and listen to the voice which in the hour of starvation and supreme exhaustion bade a fainting hope of liberty revive, and this gave him a new lease of life to bear still further trials until the dawning of a bright and happy peace and (blank)
WHEREAS, We have in these days of peace and prosperity been permitted to be observers of the wonderful growth and prosperity of the country we helped to save, and enjoy the blessings of liberty in its fullest sense, we bow in humble acknowledgment to the Great Ruler of us all,
RESOLVED, That to the citizens of New Castle, Post 100 G. A. R., encampment 9 Veteran Legion, Sons of Veterans and Ladies’ Auxiliary U. V. L. No. 10 and Comrade Judge John Shaffer, we tender our sincere thanks for many courties (sic courtesies) extended to us to-day.
Resolved, That each comrade consider himself a special committee of one to urge the comrades of our organization to attend our next reunion at Pittsburg.
T. R. Boss, Chas. W. May, James Shaffer, Committee.
Col. Danks was called upon for another song. In response he declared that he liked the streets, buildings and women of New Castle, and rendered another song of his own composition.
Miss Clara Vogan recited the well-known selection, “Sparticus to the Gladiators,” in a highly commendable manner, and was followed by a male quartette in a vocal selection.
W. D. Wallace, Esq., was then introduced by the chairman. He said: “I can not call you comrades, for I am not old enough. That is the only reason. I am an advocate f these reunions because we get from them unwritten history. Many of us can remember when Fort Sumpter was fired upon. I can remember how the news came to me as a child, from all along the line until the glad tidings came that the battle of Appomatox was won and that the war was over and the flag had not gone down.”
Capt. John Reed, Pittsburg, was called on. He made a short address and closed by saying in reference to the political situation. “We boys in the army were in for three years or until the war was over. You are in it for three years. If you get out as well as we did you will be lucky.”
Capt. Cooper, of Co. B, 5th artillery, was called but failed to respond.
Capt. Clark, of New Wilmington, responded to an invitation for a speech in a short address that kept the audience in a continual roar of laughter. He was by far the most humorous speaker of the evening.
Col. Boss made the closing address in which he extended thanks to the county commissioners and judges of the county for the use of the court house and to all who had assisted in the events of the day, and extended a hearty invitation to all comrades to attend the next reunion in Pittsburg next September, promising them a royal welcome.
The audience then joined in singing “Marching Through Georgia,” after which the campfire was dismissed.
Return to 101st PA Veteran's Reunions main page.
12 Sept 1894 - Pittsburgh, Allegheny Co., PA as part of the 28th National Encampment of the GAR.
(Captain William Stewart & S. M. Evans in charge.)
National Tribune, Sept 27, 1894
The largest Reunion of the 101st and 103d Pa. regiments was the one in the Circuit Courtroom, Federal Building, on Wednesday [9 a.m.] of Encampment week. Addresses were made by Col. Brown, Comrade Bretz, John A. Reed, and others. A collection of $63 was taken up to defray the expenses of the meeting. Officers: Pres., Col. George L. Brown; V.-P., James W. Fletcher; Secs., T. J. McKee, Grove City, and H. M. Johnson, Wilkinsburg; Treas., T. R. Ross; Executive Board, T. H. Scott, S. W. Hamilton, John A. Reed, and G. H. Fetterman.
Return to 101st PA Veteran's Reunions main page.
20 Aug 1896 - Butler, Butler Co., PA
BOYS IN BLUE.
The Veterans of the One Hundred First and One Hundred Third.
Reunion of the "Twin Regiments," Business Meeting and Grand Parade, Followed by Speeches and Music Around the Camp Fire.
The reunion of the "Twin Regiments" the One Hundred First and One Hundred Third Pennsylvania Veteran Volunteers in this place on Tuesday was one of the most pleasant and in every way satisfactory events of its kind in the history of Butler. The visiting members of the two regiments were made the welcome guests of the people and were entertained at their homes or at the hotels. Public buildings, business places and many dwellings were handsomely decorated, especially along the route of the parade.
A business meeting, over which Thomas Hays, of the 103d presided, was held in the court house in the afternoon. The following officers were elected for the ensuing year: President, John A. Reed, of Pittsburg; first vice-president, Jonas Walker, One Hundred First regiment; second vice-president, P. H. Scott, One Hundred Third regiment; secretaries, H. M. Johnson, One Hundred First, and R. A .A. Patterson, One Hundred Third regiment; treasurer, T. B. Boss, of Pittsburg. Executive committee - C. W. May, One Hundred First; T. R. Boss, One Hundred First; J. H. Chambers, One Hundred Third; W. S. Birch, One Hundred Third.
The following message, introduced by John A. Reed, of Pittsburg, was endorsed with a hurrah. Objection was made by one or two who thought the greeting savored of politics but it had gone through:
"To Comrade William McKinley:
"The One Hundred and First and One Hundred and Third regiments, Pennsylvania Veteran volunteers, in annual reunion assembled, send greeting as comrades, and wish you every success and a glorious triumph in the great trust that lies before you."
Freeport was decided upon as the place of next year's reunion.
Following are lists of the members of the two regiments who answered to roll call:
ONE HUNDRED FIRST REGIMENT.
George Armor, Pittsburg, Pa.
T. R. Boss, Pittsburg, Pa.
Samuel Creelman, Pittsburg, Sta D.
James Gilman, Turtle Creek, Pa.
H. M. Johnston, Wilkinsburg, Pa.
Samuel Long, Pittsburg, Sta D.
J. C. Mates, Turtle Creek, Pa.
Duncan McAlister, Sardis, Pa.
J. R. Strathern, Braddock, Pa.
John Taylor, Pittsburg, Sta A.
L. M. Truxal, DuBois, Pa.
Jonas Walker, Allegheny City, Pa.
John Horn, Stubenville, O.
Lewis I. Fleming, Pittsburg, Sta D.
Capt Chas W. May, Beaver Falls, Pa.
E. R. Boots, New Brighton, Pa.
T. W. Graham, Braddock, Pa.
John Ireland, Undine P. O.
S. W. Porter, Beaver Falls, Pa.
John A. Reed, Pittsburg, Pa.
D. W. Swick, New Brighton, Pa.
Alex McWorter, Pittsburg, Pa.
M. J. Sharot, Braddock, Pa. [possibly Co. K, 103d PA]
ONE HUNDRED THIRD REGIMENT.
Daniel Barnacle, Pittsburg, Pa.
T. J. Callen, Sligo, Pa.
J. S. Cooper, Parker's Landing
Joseph Moyer, Leetonia, O.
W. H. Say, Jefferson Center.
A. J. Reese, Piney, Pa.
Isaiah Reese, Piney, Pa.
W. H. Coe, Eau Claire, Pa.
J. M. Hays, Six Points
Thos Hays, Butler, Pa.
Conrad Petsinger, Freeport, Pa.
D. L. Rankin, Butler, Pa.
James Rankin, Maharg, Pa.
B. S. Rankin, Baldwin, Pa.
D. K. Shakeley, Petrolia, Pa.
Isaac Shakeley, Emlenton, Pa.
U. Sloan, Emlenton, Pa.
James Sweet, Queenstown, Pa.
W. S. Birch, Pittsburg, Pa.
T. A. Cochran, Apollo, Pa.
S. M. Evans, Pittsburg, Pa.
W. S. Hays, Independence, Kan
J. J. Gallagher, New Castle, Pa.
John G. Goudy, Allegheny, Pa.
T. J. McKee, Grove City, Pa.
W. G. McKee, St. Clair, O.
B. H. Scott, Shady Plane.
Daniel Bowser, Parker's Landing.
J. A. Humphreys, Fisher, Pa.
Robert P. Black, Magic, Pa.
R. R. Bryson, Tarentum, Pa.
H. J. Burns, Flick, Pa.
Henry C. Croup, Butler, Pa.
John Kennedy, Butler, Pa.
Joseph Mangil, Glade Mills, Pa.
A. Morrison, Butler, Pa.
J. H. Pick, Clintonville, Pa.
W. E. Stevenson, McCandless, Pa.
R. J. Thompson, West Sunbury, Pa.
Henry A. Wagner, Saxonburg, Pa.
John Webb, Branchton, Pa.
V. Whitener, Peachville, Pa.
Lewis Wolford, West Sunbury, Pa.
Jas H. Chambers, Apollo, Pa.
James Dunlap, North Hope, Pa.
A. Shankle, Allegheny, Pa.
Wm. E. Gray, Franklin, Pa.
P. Klinger, Turkey City, Pa.
Samuel McCoy, Shippenville, Pa.
Wm. P. Dunlap, North Hope, Pa.
Samuel Kelly, New Castle, Pa.
A. J. McCoy, Harrisville, Pa.
Jackson McCoy, Grove City, Pa.
H. J. McGill, Kennerdell, Pa.
J. W. Orr, Bruin, Pa.
Charles Prosser, Butler, Pa.
J. D. Taggert, Allegheny, Pa.
J. M. Thompson, Elora, Pa.
O. P. Campbell, West Sunbury, Pa.
Ed Keyser, Albion, Pa.
John McCurdy, Carnegie, Pa.
Henderson Richey, Bellevue, Pa.
C. C. Lang, Hosp'l Steward, Pittsburg.
At 7 o'clock a parade was formed, and marched over a prescribed route, ending at the court house. This was viewed by thousands of men, women and children who lined the streets along the route. The following was the order of parade:
Chief marshal and aids; Merchants' band; Company E, Fifteenth Regiment, N.G.P.; One Hundred and First Regiment; Germania band and Boys' Brigade drum corps; Boys' Brigade; One Hundred and Third Regiment; A. G. Reed Post No. 105; citizens in carriages.
Arrived at the court house, the remainder of the evening was devoted to a camp fire. The court room was filled to its full seating capacity, and many occupied standing room. Ladies formed a large portion of the audience, the veterans being seated at the front.
Judge Greer, who had been designated to act as chairman, called the meeting to order, and prayer was offered by Rev. J. R. Rankin, of the One Hundredth Regiment. "Marching through Georgia" was sung by the veterans and audience, led by A. G. Williams.
Judge Greer opened the speech-making, explaining the nature of a camp fire, copied from the practice of "the boys" in campaign, when after the day's march or fight the rails had been gathered from convenient fences, the coffee made and hard-tack brought out, and the evening was passed with songs and stories. He also gave a brief history of the campaigns the "Twin Regiments," which were organized at the same time and served together through the war. Each of the succeeding speakers was introduced by the chairman in a racy talk, usually including a pointed story illustrative of the coming orator's career.
The address of welcome was by John T. Kelly of the Eleventh Reserves. All honorable men, he said, all good citizens are welcome to this town. And in the highest degree are those welcome who came to the defense of their country in her hour of need. Their motives were patriotic and their purposes unselfish. There is not money enough in Pennsylvania to induce one of them to stand up before shot and shell as they did in the war; but in respect to money they are entitled to fair and honorable treatment from their country.
After a song by the Carson brothers, J. W. Orr responded to the address of welcome on behalf of the 103d. Mr. Orr's address was a striking illustration of the two styles of oratory exhibited by Mr. Bryan at Chicago and New York, respectively. The first part was delivered with fervid eloquence in words aimed straight at his hearers like hot shot, and reinforced by the speaking eye and commanding gesture. The latter part was read from manuscript. He was proud of the military record of Butler county. You look upon us now, said he, as aged men, but when these men took up arms and went to the battle field they were like the boys of Company E who escorted us to-night. These now before you are the boys who in their teens heard the shot fired by traitorous hands at Charleston in April `61 - the shot that echoing and re-echoing went sounding.
National Tribune, Aug 27th, 1896
The Association of the 101st and 103d Pa. held its 18th annual Reunion at Butler last week. The business meeting of the Association was held in the Courthouse and was attended by about 75 survivors of the two regiments. The following officers were elected for the ensuing year: Pres., John A. Reed; First V. P., Jonas Walker; Second V. P., P. H. Scott; Secs., H. M. Johnston and R. A. A. Patterson; Treas., T. B. Boss; Executive Committee, C. W. May, T. R. Boss, J. H. Chambers, W. S. Birch. In the evening the veterans paraded over a short route, escorted by Co. E, 15th Regiment, N. G. P., the G.A.R. Post, the U.V.L., and the Boys' Brigade of the Y.M.C.A. All along the line of march the business houses and private residences were decorated with flags and bunting and thousands of people turned out to witness the parade. After the parade a Campfire was held at the Courthouse, at which Hon. John M. Greer presided. The address of welcome was delivered by ex-Postmaster John T. Kelly. J. W. Orr responded in behalf of the 103d and John A. Reed on the part of the 101st. Addresses were made by Burgess C. E. Anderson, Joseph Criswell, and Reuben McElvain. The Association will reune next year at Freeport.
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September 23, 1899
Reunion of Co. C, 101st PA, Newport School House, Lawrence Co., PA
New Castle News, Wednesday, September 6, 1899
There will be a reunion and picnic of Company C, 101st Pa. Vols., to be held on Saturday, September 23, at the Newport school house at 10 a.m. Comrades, bring your wives and children with you. Come prepared to stay all day. Soldiers of other organizations and farmers in the vicinity are cordially invited to bring well-filled baskets and join with the company in a grand outing. Beaver, Butler, Pittsburg and Youngstown papers please copy, and oblige the committee.
20 June 1900 - Beaver, Beaver Co., PA
Beaver, PA - June 20, 1900
Old Comrades Take Advantage of the Centennial to Hold Their Annual Regimental Meetings,
Four regiments, or parts of regiments from Western Pennsylvania, prominent the Civil War, held meetings today...
THE 101ST AND 103RD.
The 22nd annual reunion of the 101st and 103d Regiments of Penn'a Veteran Volunteers was held here today. About 200 survivors were present. They were accompanied by a veteran drum corps organized in May, 1836, and at that time attached to the old Turtle Creek Guards. One of its original members still survives.
Headquarters were established at the Presbyterian church. When the business meeting was held at 10:30 o'clock, President Geo. W. McKee, of St. Clair, O., presided. Election of officers resulted as follows:
President, Jonas Walker, 101, Allegheny; Senior Vice President. Samuel Creelman, 101, Wilkinsburg; Junior Vice President, W. C. Nobley, 103, Pittsburgh; Secretaries, H. M. Johnston, 101, Wilkinsburg; Thomas J. McKee; 103, Allegheny; Treasurer, S. M. Evans, Avalon; Executive Committee. John A. Reed, 101, Pittsburgh; Thomas R. Boss, 101, Pittsburg; John M. Smith, 103, Pittsburg; J. H. Chambers, 103, Pittsburg.
Butler was decided upon as the place of holding the next reunion, the date to be fixed by the executive committee. Dinner was served in the basement of the church.
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25 Sept 1902 - Tarentum, Allegheny Co., PA
TWO REGIMENTS HOLD REUNION AT TARENTUM
The 101st and 103d Pennsylvania Volunteers Gather in Twenty-Fourth Annual Session.
The twenty-fourth annual reunion of the One Hundred and First and One Hundred and Third Regiments Pennsylvania Volunteers resulted in a big turnout at Tarentum. Many visitors came from Pittsburgh. The comrades began to arrive early and were received by the reception committees, who conducted them to Dunlap Hall, in Seventh street. All comrades registered there.
The opening business session was scheduled to be held at 2:30 p.m. The Ladies' Circle of Eli Hemphill Post, No. 135, G.A.R., served meals to comrades and their friends and visitors. A rousing campfire at 7:30 p.m. in the Y.M.C.A. Hall, will close the reunion. Prominent speakers will be present. By order of James W. Walker, department and national commander of the ex-Prisoners of War Association, the ex-prisoners joined the reunion. Spanish War veterans were specially invited to attend.
The president of the Veterans' Association is Thomas A. Cochran, One Hundred and Third, of Butler; junior vice-president, John Duff, One Hundred and First, of Wilkinsburg; secretaries, One Hundred and First, H. M. Johnston, of Wilkinsburg; One Hundred and Third, Thomas J. McKee, of Allegheny; treasurer, S. M. Evans, of Pittsburgh.
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15 Sept 1903 - Freeport, Armstrong Co., PA
COMRADES IN ARMS WILL MEET AGAIN
Joint Reunion of Two Famous Regiments Is to Be Held at Freeport. A Rousing Reception Is Promised
The twenty-fifth annual reunion of the One Hundred and First and One Hundred and Third regiments, Pennsylvania Volunteers, will be held at Freeport on Tuesday, September 15. The people of Freeport have arranged to give the veterans a cordial reception. The old soldiers will be met at the train by the members of the Grand Army post, citizens and public school children, and will be escorted to the public square, where an address of welcome will be delivered by the burgess. A response will be made by L. M. Truxall, of Dubois. In the afternoon a business meeting will be held in the public hall and at night a campfire will be held.
The veteran drum corps of Wilkinsburg, which is the connecting link between the past and the present, will attend the reunion and participate in the parade. It was organized in 1842 and four of the original members will go with the corps. A drum which was carried in 1842 also will be used.
The officers of the united association for 1903-04 are as follows: President, Samuel Creelman, Wilkinsburg; senior vice president, John A. Reed, Pittsburgh; junior vice president, B. H. Scott, Allegheny; secretaries, H. M. Johnston, Wilkinsburg, and Thomas J. McKee, Allegheny; treasurer, S. M. Evans, Pittsburgh; executive committee, James Shaffer, Pittsburgh; C. W. May, Beaver Falls; John M. Smith, Pyrell Hill, O.; Thomas Hays, Butler.
These two regiments were organized in 1861 at Pittsburgh and served with McClelland in the peninsular campaign, participating in the siege of Yorktown, battles of Williamsburg, Seven Pines and Malvern Hill. On the evacuation of Harrisons Landing and the close of the peninsular campaign these two regiments with others under Gen. Peck were sent to Norfolk [Suffolk] and from there were ordered to join Gen. Foster's command at Newberne, N. C., and were actively engaged in the valleys of the Neuse and Tar rivers, having severe engagements at Kingston, [rest of article missing].
THE SURVIVORS OF TWO REGIMENTS HOLD REUNION
A Hundred Old Soldiers Are Given a Hearty Welcome by the People of Freeport.
About 100 survivors of the One Hundred and First and One Hundred and Third Regiments, Pennsylvania Volunteers, gathered about the camp fire at the twenty-fifth reunion, which was held at Freeport yesterday. Post No. 32, Grand Army of the Republic, met the veterans at the station and, headed by a brass band and 500 school children, they were escorted to the public square, where an address of welcome was delivered by R. B. McKee, of Freeport, and responded to by John A. Reed, of Pittsburgh.
Dinner was served in the opera house and in the afternoon a business meeting was held. The executive committee will [rest of article missing].
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29 Sept 1904 - Pittsburgh, Allegheny Co., PA
CIVIL WAR VETERANS HOLDING REUNIONS
Survivors of Three Famous Regiments Are Meeting in This City This Afternoon.
WILL VISIT THE EXPOSITION
Reunions of the members of three regiments of the Civil War are being held in Pittsburgh this afternoon and a large number of veterans are in attendance.
Survivors of the One Hundred and First and One Hundred and Third Volunteer regiments assembled at the rooms of the Union Veteran Legion, in Fifth avenue. These regiments have formed a joint organization and always hold their reunions together. The regiments were mustered in together at Washington in 1862, and remained together all through the war. They were captured at Plymouth, April 20, 1864, and about 60 percent of their numbers died in prison.
About 70 survivors of the two regiments were in attendance at the reunion today. Of the officers to be elected the following have been agreed on: President, John A. Reed, of the One Hundred and First Regiment; first vice president, James Gilmore, of the same regiment; secretaries, H. M. Johnston of the One Hundred and First and S. M. Evans, of the One Hundred and Third; corresponding secretary, Samuel Creelman, of the One Hundred and First; treasurer, S. M. Evans, of the One Hundred and Third. The second vice president and a corresponding secretary will be elected from the One Hundred and Third Regiment. Capt. Charles May and James Walker are on the executive committee from the One Hundred and First. The members from the One Hundred and Third will be elected later.
Note: the third regiment mentioned above as having a reunion at the same time was the 62nd PA.
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20 Sept 1906 - Butler, Butler Co., PA
Andersonville Terrors to Be Recalled in Reunion of Regiments.
SURVIVORS GATHER IN BUTLER AND ENJOY SOCIAL MEETING
101st and 103rd Among the Commands Which Saw Hard Service in the Civil War.
In reunion today several hundred veterans, survivors of the 101st and 103rd regiments, Pennsylvania Volunteers, are gathered in the city for the purpose of transacting business of the regiments, and exchanging reminiscences attending such a gathering.
At 10:45 a.m. a meeting was held in the court house, and many prominent men of the regiments spoke entertainingly of those perilous times of 40 years ago.
Of the men present today, but a handful of the hundreds which responded to the call at the time the regiments were organized in `61, all are grown old and grey, and those who were not mere youths at the time of their enlistment walk with faltering steps. It was really a glorious sight to see these old men gathered together in the corridors and before the court house clasping the hands of friends not seen in years, friends and companions in the horrors of Andersonville years ago.
The noon dinner at the Nixon, served in the finest style of this elegant hotel, was a delight to the old veterans. Over courses and their coffee they again lived the days of old; they were young again, and battles were fought and won, regiments captured and imprisoned and the awfulness of the rebel dungeons again experienced. Many relics were in evidence. Bits of flags, Andersonville corn bread as ? steel and rebel bullets, all were there to revive old memories of the past in vivid retrospect.
Those present at the reunion today [from the 101st PA] were:
James Sheafer, colonel; Chas. W. May, captain; Samuel Creelman, H. M. Johnston, Jas. Gilman, L. M. Truxell, Duncan McAllister, Jos. F. Lowry, Teddy Padden, Jonas Walker, John A. Reed, W. H. Hunter, S. W. Porter, E. R. Boots, D. W. Swick, Geo. P. Craig, John Ireland.
Of the survivors of the 103rd there were present:
T. A. Cochran, captain Co. C; S. M. Evans, Thos. J. McKee, Andrew Morrison, George Troutman, Wm. E. Thompson, J. M. Webb, Jos. W. Mc?e, Louis Wolford, O. P. Campbell, Peter Klinger, W. D. Sedwick; Cyrus Croup, Martin Staff, J. N. Thompson, J. M. Alexander, S. C. Burkholder, John Ashbaugh, D. K. Shakeley, J. S. Moorehead, Wm. Birch, G. Duffy, John Walter, J. D. Taggart, Samuel Owens, George Pifer, R. J. Thompson, Jas. S. Cooper, Ben Graham, Harry A. Wagner, B. Witmer, R. P. Black, G. M. Gourley, W. C. Mobley, Thos. Hays, H. J. McGill, Daniel Bowser, Edward Keyser, W. A. Fulton, Jeremiah Wyant, Robert Hooks.
The 101st regiment was organized in the early part of the fall of 1861, and saw their first active service on May 4, 1862, in the battle of Yorktown. On the morning of May 4, it was discovered the enemy had fled, abandoning their works, and the Union army was ordered in pursuit. The 101st passed the enemy's deserted fortifications and moved on by way of Burnt Ordinary, bivouacking for the night six miles east of Williamsburg.
Early in the morning Gen. Hooker engaged the enemy in front of that place. The 101st came upon the field at 4:30 in the afternoon and was at once moved to the front where it was held under fire as a reserve until the close of the engagement. Its position fell opposite Fort Magruder, and was constantly exposed to heavy fire and shot and shell.
Following the operations about Suffolk both regiments were taken to Plymouth, N. C., and in the battle that followed both regiments were captured by the enemy, except the members of Company C, 103rd, who were doing duty at another part of the field. The captive companies were taken to Andersonville prison and for eleven months suffered the awful privations ceration.
When General Wessells was assigned to the command of the district of Albemarle, with headquarters at Plymouth, the brigade consisted of the 101st and 103rd Pennsylvania, and the 85th, 92nd and 96th New York, Col. Lehman being assigned to its command. The brigade spent some time fortifying the town. The only avenue of supply was by water. To keep this open one company from each regiment was sent to Roanoke Island, in Albemarle Sound, which was well protected by defensive works captured by General Burnside in 1862. On account of the marshy condition of the ground surrounding Plymouth for many miles, the avenues of approach by land were few and most of them next to impassable.
It was before daylight on the 20th day of April, 1862  that the rebel forces finally forced their way through the swamp below Plymouth and proceeded along the bank of the river, protected by a well equipped steam ram, and threw a large detachment into the town and after a desperate street battle the Union forces were forced to surrender.
The 101st and 103rd were together at the time and were captured and imprisoned together. The officers at the time of capture, were separated from the men, the latter being sent to Andersonville, and the former to Macon, Ga.
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16 Sept 1909 - Foxburg, Clarion Co., PA
28 Sept 1916 - Pittsburgh, Allegheny Co., PA
National Tribune, Oct 19th, 1916
The 101st and 103d PA held its annual reunion at Memorial Hall, 5th Ave. Pittsburgh. Elected Thos. A. Cochran, 103d, Pres.; 1st V. Pres. Benj. Graham, 103d, 2nd V. Pres. Albert Coulter, 101st; Secry. John A. Reed, 101st, of Pittsburg; J. D. Taggart, 103d, of 915 W. North Ave. N. S. Pittsburgh; Treas. S. M. Evans [103d] of 511 Farmers Bank Bld., Pittsburgh.
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