(1840 - 1912)
Home State: Connecticut
Branch of Service: Infantry
Unit: 8th Connecticut Infantry
In 1855 he was a 14 year old living with his parents and 2 sisters in Oxford, Chenango County, NY; his father Amariah Nelson Bemis (1814 CT - 1897 IL) had a sawmill and lumber business there. In about 1859, at age 18, Nelson went to Connecticut to train as a molder and was an apprentice in a foundry. He was living in Canterbury, CT in 1860 and he enlisted there on 3 September 1861 and mustered as a Private in Company F, 8th Connecticut Infantry on 23 September 1861.
On the Campaign
He was wounded in both legs in action at Antietam on 17 September 1862.
The rest of the War
He was discharged for disability on 15 January 1864.
After the War
In 1865 he was a farmer living with his parents back in Oxford, NY. He moved to Brimfield in Peoria County, IL in 1868, then to Esmen Township in Livingston County with his father in 1869. He began to receive an invalid veteran's pension in 1876 and was County Clerk from 1870 to 1878. He moved to Odell, IL in 1901, where he was postmaster from 1910 to his death of a cerebral hemorrhage at age 70.
References & notes
Casualty information from Nelson.1 His service from the Record.1 Personal details from family genealogists, the US Census of 1860-1910, the New York State Census of 1855 and 1865, and his obituary in the Oxford Times of 19 January 1912. His gravesite is on Findagrave. His picture from a photograph kindly provided by great-great-grandson Mike LaRoi.
He married Sarah L Sheldon (1844-1937) in February 1869 and they had a daughter and 5 sons, two of whom died young.
09/09/1840; Oxford, NY
01/08/1912; Odell, IL; burial in Camp Cemetery, Pontiac, IL
1 Nelson, John H., As Grain Falls Before the Reaper: The Federal Hospital Sites and Identified Federal Casualties at Antietam, Hagerstown: John H. Nelson, 2004, pg. 129 [AotW citation 16373]
2 State of Connecticut, Adjutant General's Office, and AGs Smith, Camp, and Barbour, and AAG White, Record of Service of Connecticut Men in the Army and Navy of the United States during the War of the Rebellion, Hartford: Press of the Case, Lockwood, and Brainard Company, 1889, pg. 345 [AotW citation 29840]