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Federal (USV)


Franklin George Butterfield

(1842 - 1916)

Home State: Vermont

Command Billet: Company Officer

Branch of Service: Infantry

Unit: 6th Vermont Infantry

Before Antietam

He entered Middlebury (Vt) College in 1859. Entering the army in the fall of his junior year he did not graduate with his class: 4 October 1861, he enlisted at Middlebury as a Private in Co. A, 6th Vermont Vols.

The rest of the War

During 1863, including the Chancellorsville, Gettysburg and Mine Run campaigns, he served as an aid-de-camp on the staff of Maj.-Gen. Lewis A. Grant, commanding the Vermont Brigade. He was awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions at the battle at Salem Heights, 4 May 1863. He was promoted to Captain, and, on 21 October 1864 he was promoted to Lieutenant-Colonel, commanding the regiment, at the age of twenty-two years.

After the War

"From 1865 to 1877 he was engaged in mercantile pursuits at Saxtons River. In August, 1877, he commanded a brigade of veterans at the celebration of the 100th anniversary of the battle of Bennington. In that year he returned to his original intention, broken up by his army service, the study of law. In 1880 he was appointed by President Hayes supervisor of census, and had charge of the state of Vermont in the taking of the tenth census. On completion of this work he was selected by the President, the Secretary of the Interior, and Gen. Francis A. Walker, superintendent of the tenth census, to take charge of the investigation of the alleged census frauds in the state of South Carolina. Leaving Vermont early in November he remained in South Carolina till Feb. 1, 1881, when he returned to Washington and made his report. A previous investigation had been made which had proved unsatisfactory. General Butterfield's report settled this vexed question to the entire satisfaction of all parties. He was urged by General Walker to remain in Washington to assist in completing the work of the tenth census, and consented. In 1882 he was transferred to the Bureau of Pensions, where he served through all the various grades and became a principal examiner in July, 1884. In 1890 he was made chief of the special examination division and during that year had three hundred and fifty special agents in the field and an office force of upwards of one hundred. Finding the work much in arrears, he brought it up to date and in a period of three years had reduced the expenditure of that division in the handsome sum of $426, 000. In 1888 he formed business connections in Vermont and in July, 1892, after great reluctance on the part of the Secretary of the Interior and Commissioner of Pensions, his resignation was accepted, and he returned to Vermont to devote his entire time to private business. He is associated with his brother, Col. F. D. Butterfield, under the firm name of Butterfield & Co., in the manufacture of taps and dies and other thread cutting tools at Derby Line."
(from Ullery)

References & notes

Source: Jacob G. Ullery, compiler, Men of Vermont: An Illustrated Biographical History of Vermonters and Sons of Vermont, Transcript Publishing Company, Brattleboro, VT, 1894, Part II, pp. 55 - transcribed online at Vermont in the Civil War.


5/11/1842; Rockingham, VT


1/6/1916; burial in Saxtons River (MH), Saxtons River, VT