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Federal (USV)


Wiliam J. Leahy

(1840 - 1918)

Home State: Pennsylvania

Branch of Service: Infantry

Unit: 2nd United States Sharpshooters

Before Antietam

He came with his family to America in 1845 and was raised in New York to about 1851, then on a farm in Elk County, PA. He enlisted as a Private in Company C, 2nd US Sharpshooters on 1 October 1861, was promoted to First (Orderly) Sergeant, and commissioned 2nd Lieutenant on 28 July 1862.

On the Campaign

He was wounded by a gunshot to his thigh in action at Antietam on 17 September 1862.

The rest of the War

He was admitted to US Army General Hospital #6 in Frederick, MD on 27 September and was returned to his Company on 29 December. He resigned his commission and was discharged on 8 January 1863.

After the War

He was a building contractor in Clearfield County, PA to about 1875 then farmed in Clinton County. He served a term (1887-90) as Clinton County, PA sheriff and was business agent, real estate investor, and later hotel owner and postmaster, in Falls Creek, PA.

References & notes

Wound and hospital details from the Patient List,1 as William J. Leahey. His service from Stevens.2 Personal details from a bio sketch in Dr. W.J. McKnight's Jefferson County, Pennsylvania: Her Pioneers and People, 1800-1915 (Vol. II, 1917). His gravesite is on Findagrave.

He married schoolteacher Matilda A. Hewitt (1846-1915) in 1866; they had no children

More on the Web

See a picture of him (c. 1887) in a post over on the blog.


07/10/1840; Dublin, IRELAND


08/13/1918; Dilltown, PA; burial in Saint Mary's Cemetery, Lock Haven, PA


1   National Museum of Civil War Medicine, and Terry Reimer, Frederick Patient List, Published 2018, first accessed 17 September 2018, <>, Source page: patient #84, 105  [AotW citation 26443]

2   Stevens, Charles Augustus, Berdan's United States Sharpshooters in the Army of the Potomac, 1861-1865, St. Paul (MN): The Price-McGill Company, 1892  [AotW citation 26444]