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S.F. Haven

S.F. Haven

Federal (USV)


Samuel Foster Haven, Jr.

(1831 - 1862)

Home State: Massachusetts

Education: Harvard College ('52), Boston Medical College, Class of 1855

Command Billet: Regimental Surgeon

Branch of Service: Medical

Unit: 15th Massachusetts Infantry

Before Antietam

He graduated from Harvard (1852), and the Boston Medical College (1855). He studied for two years in Europe, then practiced briefly in Boston. He was afterward in Worcester, specializing in diseases of the eye.

He was commissioned Assistant Surgeon of the 15th Massachusetts on 5 August 1861. He was promoted to Surgeon 21 July 1862, replacing Dr. Bates, dismissed.

On the Campaign

He was on the field at Antietam tending the wounded of his regiment under fire.

The rest of the War

He was killed in action at Fredericksburg, VA on 13 December 1862. In a letter to Dr. Haven's family, Division Surgeon Sherman wrote:

"Witnessing his self-exposure at the battle of Antietam, I had, as Medical Director of the Second Division, detailed your son, in a written order, in event of battle, to repair to the division hospital, and giver his services there instead of the field with his regiment. When I communicated this order to him, he evidently felt disappointed. He expressed a strong choice to go wherever his regiment went; and when the column to which the Fifteenth Massachusetts was attached was about to pass over the bridge in front of Fredericksburg, he was expostulated with, and reminded of the previous order; but he asked as a special favor to be allowed to go with his regiment, and said that as soon as the fight was done he would return to the hospital and remain there".

References & notes

Basic information from Commonwealth of Massachusetts1, with significant biographical detail and the quote above from Harnwell2. His photograph from one in the MOLLUS Massachusetts Collection3.


05/20/1831; Dedham, MA


12/13/1862 Fredericksburg, VA; burial in Rural Cemetery, Worcester, MA


1   Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Adjutant General, Massachusetts Soldiers, Sailors, and Marines in the Civil War, 8 Vols, Norwood (MA): Norwood Press, 1931-35, Vol. 2, pg. 133  [AotW citation 6934]

2   Harnwell, Susan, The 15th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry in the Civil War 1861 - 1864, Published 1997, first accessed 01 January 1999, <>, Source page: /ma15mvi-p/p166.htm#i1810  [AotW citation 6935]

3   US Army, Military History Institute (USAMHI), Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States (MOLLUS)-Massachusetts Photograph Collection, Published 2009, <>, Source page: pg. 4930  [AotW citation 6936]