When Samuel W. Weaver was born on 21 January 1862, in Pennsylvania, United States, his father, Jacob Boger Weaver, was 29 and his mother, Catherine Carroll, was 24. Weaver was asked to travel to Richmond to meet with the board, which included such influential members as Robert Bryan, attorney, financier, and newspaper editor; W.E. It would turn out that Biggs had moved his family into the epicenter of the conflict! This letter was written in pencil, and the thickness with which some words were written conveys the extent of her irritation. Despite the money still owed to him, Weaver commenced work again in the spring of 1873, shipping 333 sets of remains on May 17 in time for the Memorial Day celebration on Gettysburg Hill. Explore. The first states to raise money to reinter their Gettysburg dead were Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina, and in the spring and summer of 1871 Weaver exhumed and shipped 137 Confederates to Raleigh, 74 to Charleston, 101 to Savannah, and a few to Maryland, along with a few individual officers who were claimed by family. At the end of the war, tens of thousands of soldiers graves dotted battlefields from Pennsylvania to Louisiana. Weaver eventually succeeded through dint of persuasion and shaming to get Blochers permission to exhume the bodies, but at some point Blocher discovered that the dead man, Winn, had worn a gold dental plate to which were attached his false teeth. The article states that Egerton kept a boarding house in Baltimore after the war, and nearly every distinguished man who came to Baltimore to lecture at the Hopkins [Johns Hopkins University] either stopped with her or visited her house. In the absence of any other explanation for the connection, it is possible that Weaver might at some point have visited the medical community in Baltimore and been a guest at Mrs. Egertons house. He also was a skilled veterinarian, hired to treat animals on farms in Pennsylvania and Maryland. In 1863, Samuel Weaver carefully exhumed thousands of Union bodies from Gettysburg battlefield for burial in the new National Cemetery. As early as 1865, his father had started to get inquiries from Southern families seeking help finding the remains of loved ones killed at Gettysburg. Subscribe to receive our weekly newsletter with top stories from master historians. From there, the escaped slaves would flee to Canadaand freedom. But Samuel Weaver was killed in February 1871, in a fluke railroad mishap. Many of the photographs taken during the cemetery's consecration ceremonies have been attributed to the Weavers. Her thesis A Question of Life or Death: Suicide and Survival in the Union Army examines wartime suicide among Union soldiers, its causes, and the reasons that army saw a relatively low suicide rate. The Biggs were married in 1843. A dead soldier was wrapped in a blanket, if he was lucky. The agreed-upon price was $3.25 for each set of remains. He was eventually paid $5. And regarding each bone important and sacred as an integral part of the skeleton, I removed them so that none might be left or lost.. The man holding the book in the photo is Samuel Weaver, Peter's father. Gettysburg Compiler August 18, 1896. Dr. Rufus Benjamin Weaver was a professor of human anatomy at Hahnemann Medical College and a pioneer in the field of anatomy. Realizing that he was their best hope, Rufus Weaver agreed to help, according to Mitchell. As the U.S. Army advanced over old battlefields during the final year of the war, it discovered that many men had been buried improperly. [The Centinel, (Gettysburg, Pa.), Mar. Editors note:For those who are wondering about the retro title of this black-history series, please take a moment to learn about historianJoel A. Rogers, author of the 1934 book100 Amazing Facts About the Negro With Complete Proof,to whom these amazing facts are an homage. As that information becomes available, this list will be updated to include the new . Uh-oh, overstock: Wayfair put their surplus on sale for up to 50% off. The series focuses on the African American experience in and around Gettysburg, traveling back to the 1780s and expanding to the present time, each article providing descriptions of local African American people and events that shaped Gettysburg and Adams County. Basil Biggs is buried in Lincoln Cemetery alongside his wife, and today a plaque there honors him and the other Sons of Good Will for their good works. I not only superintended the general work on the field, but personally did the most important part myself, viz picking up the bones for, in the absence of boxes, it required one with Anatomical Knowledge, to gather all the bones; (which workmen could not do) and, regarding each bone important and sacred as an integral part of the skeleton, Ive moved them so that none might be left or lost., Had I followed the 8 or 10 hour system for a days work, it would have taken twice as long to have completed the work.My custom was by, and very often before, daybreak to start out on the field with my men and would not reach home, with precious freight, until dark, & after supper I would arrange, in proper place and order, and Label every remain or lot of remains, and then by the time I had written out the record etc. Henry Louis Gates Jr.is the Alphonse Fletcher University Professor and founding director of the Hutchins Center for African and African American Research at Harvard University. National Park Service History Electronic Library & Archive The reburial work moved decorously. To cover that, the ladies wanted to petition the Virginia legislature for the funds, but the advisory board advised against that. HistoryNet.com is brought to you by HistoryNet LLC, the worlds largest publisher of history magazines. Of course, given the absolute secrecy the Underground Railroad had to maintain, we couldnt find documents listing his participation in this or that slave escape. Andrew Curtin, after a visit, to set in motion the establishment of the Soldiers National Cemetery in Gettysburg, 150 years ago this fall. William Samuel Weaver Obituary. During the summer of 1872, at least, he employed what he referred to as a full force of laborers in order to complete the work as quickly as possible, and Weaver was paying the men out of his own pocket. In addition to the $6,356 of unpaid principal, Weaver calculated interest on the unpaid debt of more than $6,000. Without a central government to handle reburying the war dead, the task fell to local citizens. Weaver agreed to forgo the interest if the original principal of $6,356 could be paid. If there was a headboard, he ordered it nailed to the coffin. By 1870 he was a medical doctor. Exhumations of the estimated 2,500-3,000 bodies remaining on the field began on April 19, 1872. Most were the simple items that the average Billy Yank might carry a comb, a pipe, a toothbrush, a knife, a fork and a spoon. Blocher removed the plate and refused to give it up until he was given $10. Most had been buried in hastily dug holes that were easily disturbed by animals, rain or a plough. Shippensburg . Othersparticularly those who had been buried in sandy soilwere nearly gone. Egerton responded by calling upon a number of people in Richmond whom she thought might have some influence in the matter, among them Stiles and Dr. Hunter McGuire, and members of the now-revived HMA. He continued to feel, however, that he had been used poorly by the ladies of the HMA. Rufus Weaver had been born in Gettysburg and by 1869 was finishing his medical studies and was a demonstrator of anatomy at Philadelphias Hahnemann Medical College. As the battles of the Civil War faded, Creighton writes, Gettysburgs black community continued to witness the public segregation of memory. They celebrated Emancipation Day on their own ground and decorated the graves of black and white soldiers, but few outside the race returned the favor. It was dedicated Nov. 19, 1863, and immortalized in a speech given there by President Abraham Lincoln. There were 287 such packages, he reported. A Ladies Memorial Association was established in almost every major city in the South, its purpose being to care for the graves of Confederate dead. He also wrote to Kate Minor, asking what progress had been made in the settlement of the Maury claim. He has been a general assignment reporter at the Philadelphia Bulletin, an urban affairs and state feature writer at the Philadelphia Inquirer, and a Pentagon correspondent at Knight Ridder newspapers. As always, you can find more Amazing Facts About the Negro onThe Root, and check back each week as we count to 100. The first African-American Civil War soldier to be buried there was Henry Gooden, 127th USCT, in 1884 (this was a re-burial, since Gooden had originally been buried at the Adams County Almshouse burying-ground).But, Guelzo was quick to add, no others were buried there until 1936. What this meant, Guelzo suspected, was that a de facto segregation policy was the rule until then. Accordingly, some [t]wenty-nine black Civil War veterans were buried before 1920 in the colored cemeterythe Lincoln Cemetery [or Good-will Cemetery, since it was originally created by a black mutual-aid society, the Sons of Good-will]on Long Lane.. The men picked up coffins at the railway station, brought them to the original burial site, and, under the supervision of a man named Samuel Weaver, took their time to inspect and remove the remains. Southern mothers still had no sons to bury. This page lists soldiers named August Sungrist through Isaac Sweeney who served in Pennsylvania infantry units during the Civil War. It appears that Weaver received no payments from the HMA between July 1873 and December 1878, at which time he must have again asked Egerton for help. It took dock workers 21 / 2 hours to unload them, Mitchell wrote. Even though Biggs didnt live to see that day, he had seen other harrowing days, especially before the Civil War. But Sam Weaver had a son: Rufus Weaver. Union dead went to the new cemetery on Cemetery Hill or to homes in the North. While it is probable that she became acquainted with the ladies of the HMA through her association with the Southern Relief Fair, it is unclear how she became acquainted with Weaver. Or purchase a subscription for unlimited access to real news you can count on. His name was Basil Biggs,and his life and toil in Gettysburg wereand always will beheroically bound to the battle that turned the tide in the war that transformed America from a slave nation into the land of the free. In cases in which a grave was unmarked, I examined all the clothing and everything about the body to find the name, Weaver wrote. New York: Alfred A. Kopf, 2008. After-all, he had known which burial places not to disinter in 1863. Many news organizations assigned reporters to follow the battles and skirmishes, among them prominent New York Times correspondent Samuel Wilkeson, whose nineteen-year-old son was killed on the first day of battle at Gettysburg; Thomas Morris Chester (1834-1892) of the Philadelphia Press, the war's only African American reporter; and Uriah Hunt Painter (1837-1897), a writer for the . This Republic of Suffering: Death and the American Civil War. Phone: Cell/Mobile/Wireless and/or landline telephone numbers for Samuel Weaver in Gettysburg, PA. (717) 424-3797 (717) 778-1156 (717) 259-9806 (727) 841-9229 (727) 843-9341 AKA: Alias, Nicknames, alternate spellings, married and/or maiden names for Samuel Weaver in Gettysburg, PA. They were buried in corn fields, in orchards, under apple trees, along roadsides, in woods and beside creeks. On December 31, 1891, the Board gave the ladies the unwelcome news that Weavers claims were legitimate. Heres what Guelzo wrote in an email to me Oct. 2: Theres no record that segregation was ever an explicit policy in organizing the Soldiers National Cemetery. Gettysburg must have appealed to him as a safe haven for his family, in a state famous for its long history of opposing slavery. Once again, Confederate dead were not welcome in those cemeteries. Between the Confederates and Unions . Weaver was far less sanguine than the ladies about the prospects of recovery from the Maury estate. Each also harbors a less well-known story of burialand reburial. Heres what we learn in a July 20, 2013, posting on the Blog of Gettysburg National Military Park about the artist John Bachelder, who devoted himself to preserving the history and memory of the battle for future generations: If a single monument were selected to represent [John] Bachelder and how he viewed the battle it would be the High Water Mark monument at the Copse of Trees on Cemetery Ridge, along Hancock Avenue. The first shipment of 708 Confederate skeletons arrived in Richmond on June 15, 1872 with five more shipments sent through October 1873 for a total of 2,935 bodies. Weaver billed the HMA $7,385 for these shipments, but by the end of the year had received just $1,300. Mark Samuel (Roanoke) won by decision over Evan Lindner (Dec 8-3) Cons. Gettysburg: Thomas Publications, 1995. (Confederates werent provided for in the cemetery, although according to the National Park Service, a few ended up there anyway.) In the process of examining the bodies, he often found things the men had been carrying. The area around Gettysburg, Pa., was no exception. A white Gettysburg resident, F.W. . @1855), Michael (b. You can inform them, he goes on to say, that my confidence was so implicit in them (Virginians! In recent years, however, Weaver has begun to receive the recognition he deserves. Round 1 - Dylan Weaver (Shenandoah University) 22-8 won by decision over Eli Crum (Lycoming College) 1-2 (Dec 7-3) The building with the cupola in the background is the Hanover Public School Building (1852-1904). (Weaver) Milhimes of Gettysburg, granddaughter Rebecca E. (Milhimes) Peterson and husband James of . Dimmock that you should be the go between them and me, feeling that her involvementone of their own, he called herwould make them more comfortable in their dealings with him, a stranger. Because the Cemetery was set aside for the burial of the Union deadand because no enlisted black soldiers fought at Gettysburgthe issue seems never to have come up, at least explicitly. While the ladies of the HMA primarily were concerned with honoring the dead, the younger members of the UDC were focused on influencing the future by shaping the minds of the young. The FBI sniper, Lon Horiuchi, killed Vicki Weaver on Aug. 22, 1992, as she was standing in the doorway of the family cabin in northern Idaho, holding her baby daughter. It would be later after the war ended that attention would turn to bringing the Southern dead home. It would become one of the busiest Confederate hospital stations during that devastating battle. When notified of the legislatures action, Weaver wrote a heartfelt letter of thanks to Robert Stiles in which he reveals the level of care and compassion he devoted to the task for which they had engaged his services. Pinterest. He had also been assured by Captain Dimmock in early 1872 that the ladies had $4,000 in hand for the Gettysburg dead., Unfortunately for Weaver and the ladies of the HMA, their funds had been deposited with Maury & Co., a Richmond banking house that fell victim to the Panic of 1873. Biggs also discovered that forty-five dead Confederates were buried on the farm, according to the website Pennsylvania Quest for Freedom. History is a guide to navigation in perilous times. He could usually tell by the shoes, undergarments or coat. Gettysburg Compiler August 18, 1896 Last Thursday Peter Weaver who lived near town, died very suddenly. In a December 25, 1878, letter written apparently to Mrs. Brown, Egerton complained that she had written you from time to time for the past three years on this subject without one word of reply and informed her that she had asked Stiles and Judge J.H.C. The procession was headed by a band, along with the mayor and city officials. Historical Person Search Search Search Results Results Samuel Weaver (1781 - 1820) . Later that summer, 100 sets of remains were sent to Savannah, where they were reinterred with ceremonies in August and September. The third result is Samuel A Weaver age 80+ in Pittsburgh, PA in the Upper Lawrenceville neighborhood. To this point, apparently Weaver had been charged only with recovering identified remains (although the North Carolina shipment included 14 sets that were unidentified). It is located just outside Gettysburg Borough to the south, in Adams County, Pennsylvania. But historians have recorded that the smell of the battlefield could be detected from afar. Mystery surrounds the infamous burning of the Reichstag in 1933. And another unknown soldier was found with a handkerchief spread over his face. Biggs June 13, 1906, obituary in he Gettysburg Compiler reveals his most impressive accomplishment of all. Basil Biggs was no exception. Weaver had completed the work promised, and had upheld his fathers legacy, but unfortunately the Hollywood Memorial Association never raised enough funds to pay him for the job. The wagons were draped in white and black and covered with flowers and Confederate banners. The Battle of Gettysburg, which we all remember from school, raged from July 1 to July 3, 1863. Battlefield dead were most often buried haphazardly. Like the dead soldiers her great-great grandfather tended to in the cemeteries there, family stories first had to be unearthed and brought back to the light before they could be properly honored. Instrumental in that process was teamster Samuel Weaver, who was hired as superintendent for the exhuming of bodies from the battlefield. Gettysburg ended Confederate general Robert E. Lee's ambitious second quest to invade the North and bring the Civil War to a . Samuel Hodgman served with the Seventh Michigan Volunteer Infantry Unit of the Union Army at the Battle of Gettysburg. newsletter for the best of the past, delivered every Monday and Thursday. Whether they produced battlefield images of the dead or daguerreotype portraits of common soldiers, . But Blocher demanded to be paid for allowing the remains to rest in the ground as long as they had. Delivering up to one hundred bodies per day, Weaver kept careful notes on each burial he located in order to determine identity, allegiance, and preserve personal effects for the families. Charlotte Catherine Weaver Culp was the niece of Samuel Weaver. Index cards for these men are not in NARA microfilm publication M554, Index to Compiled Service Records of Volunteer Union Soldiers Who Served in Organizations From the State of Pennsylvania (136 rolls) because the cards were never received by NARA. The Borough was incorporated in 1806. Why didnt Weaver sue the HMA for the money he was owed? What most of us werent taught about Gettysburg, though, is that the job of burying those bodies fell to African Americans who, having suffered personally as a result of the battle, formed burial details in aid of its commemoration. He exhumed from the battlefield and shipped south, mainly to Richmond, the bodies of thousands of rebels so many that Richmonds Hollywood Cemetery has a Gettysburg Hill. Weaver was receptive to Southern pleas but was killed himself, ending his reign of compassion here on earth. Lee regiment unknown Weaver found two combs, a diary and the bullet that killed him.. Born 3 Aug 1600 in Cardigan Parish, Shropshire, England. In 1889, Weaver wrote to his friend, Ada Egerton: Over 16 years have now passed away and today over twelve thousand dollars (including interest) is due me without a line from any of those interested in the debtdebt which you have often truly said is one of Sacred honor. Weaver certainly had a right to be aggrieved, for $12,000 in 1889 is the equivalent of more than $350,000 today. He has a large practice and his residence is a magnificent one, surrounded by one hundred and twenty acres of land.. Neither the Northern nor Southern armies were prepared for the Civil Wars scale of death. Biggs secured his family along the Susquehanna River, Creighton writes, and just managed to escape Gettysburg himself on a borrowed horse as the Confederate cavalry was arriving. The moment was captured in February 1864, in a churchyard in Hanover, a town east of Gettysburg, where 19 Union soldiers were killed in a cavalry skirmish the day before the battle. The ladies seemed to feel that the matter was settled, leaving them with no further responsibility. In her bookThe Colors of Courage: Gettysburgs Forgotten History, Margaret Creighton notes that Biggs began working for others at the age of four. 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