My blog has been changed to make it more appealing for those who have New England ancestors and want to see the area through photos. Things I’ll include are typical white New England churches, libraries showing their genealogical collection, historical societies, cemeteries, war memorials, in general, anything to do with history.

For four years I’ve blogged mostly about my personal genealogy in New England (Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, and New Hampshire), New York, New Jersey, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, and the Eastern Townships of Quebec, Canada. I still will, can’t forget my own roots.

Please check out the labels on the right side for articles. The header tabs at the top are a work in progress.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

The Minutemen of 1861 -- First Soldiers to Die in Civil War Were From Lowell

Ladd and Whitney
Civil War
Recently, Richard "Dick" Howe Jr.*, the Register of Deeds for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, for No. Middlesex County, gave a talk about Lowell's involvement in the Civil War, which included how the first deaths occurred in the war. Two of the first four soldiers who died in the Civil War were mill workers from Lowell, Massachusetts. Luther C. Ladd age 17 and Addison O. Whitney age 22 eagerly signed up with the Massachusetts 6th regiment of Volunteers and traveled south to Baltimore, Maryland to meet their fate. The talk explains the early history of the war, shows a lot of slides and presents a great narrative. If you are interested in the War, you will enjoy this talk, click HERE.

My title, The Minutemen of 1861, was taken from information from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts's webpage. And, some below information from that site is shared below.

"Massachusetts 6th infantry had been organized in January of 1861. They assembled and moved from Lowell to Boston, where they were outfitted; given their charge by Governor John Andrew and set off for Washington, DC on April 17th.
As was customary from the revolutionary war, Massachusetts's Governor presented the sixth regiment with a distinctive flag to carry in battle. The honor of a regiment was bound to its flag.
The regiment passed through New York and Philadelphia by train, reaching Baltimore on April 19th, 1861 -- the 86th anniversary of the "shot heard round the world" in Lexington and Concord. Little did the troops realize that they would fire their own shots heard round the world, and that the first union casualties in the war of rebellion would come from the sixth regiment later that day.
In Baltimore a local ordinance prevented steam engines from operating within city limits. Paul O'Neil, an interpreter for the Baltimore Civil War Museum, explains this ordinance was likely designed to benefit teamsters, who provided horse service through town to connect the city's train stations. So, the sixth regiment rode in train cars drawn by horses from Baltimore's Presidential Station to the Camden Yards station.
Seven of the ten cars carrying the 6th regiment made it before a growing mob blocked the tracks with sand and ship anchors. Once stopped, the soldiers began marching down Pratt Street in formation.
There on Pratt Street, the Civil War began to be fought. The incensed crowd hurled bricks, cobblestones, and any other objects within reach at the troops.
However, the young troops from Massachusetts disported themselves with military discipline. The regimental color was carried by Color Sergeant Timothy A. Crowley of Lowell.
Chaplain Babbidge, who was with the regiment that day wrote, "paving stones flew thick and fast, some just grazing their heads, and some hitting the standard itself." Shots from handguns came from the crowd, the Massachusetts regiment returned fire.
It is believed that 16 people were killed in the melee, including four soldiers - Luther C. Ladd and Addison Otis Whitney of Lowell, a Mr. Needham of Lawrence, and Mr. Taylor, whose history is unknown. These four became the first to serve and die on the 19th of April, 1861."
Photos and write-ups located on FindAGrave.

From Wikipedia, The History of Lowell, Massachusetts provides valuable information.

Another good site.

Finally, from a google search, using the key words: "Ladd Whitney Lowell Civil War" I found a wealth of information on these men, Lowell and the Civil War.
Actual dedication was moved to June 17, 1865, due to
President Lincoln's death.
 * Dick is also a local historian for the city. Last year, he gave a tour of the Lowell Cemetery, and that was a blog post of mine.
Ladd and Whitney Monument and the Lowell City Hall.

Tombstone Tuesday -- Keeping it Together

Betsey E. DeWolfe Nichols
Born: 15 Oct 1839  --  Stafford, Genesee Co., New York
Married to Alonzo Nichols
Died: 29 Aug 1867  --  Stafford, Genesee Co., New York
Buried at Fargo/Temperance/Pioneer/Old Cemetery, Stafford, Genesee Co., NY
Betsey (above photo) and infant son, Albert Alonzo Nichols

(Photos and information from my cousin Claire.)