(1821 - 1862)
Home State: Wisconsin
Branch of Service: Infantry
Unit: 2nd Wisconsin Infantry
Previously a lawyer in Waukon, Iowa, he was a 40 year old lead miner in Glen Haven when he enlisted as Private, Company C, 2nd Wisconsin Infantry on 20 May 1861.
On the Campaign
He was killed in action at Antietam on 17 September 1862:
Private Robert Stephenson, of Company C, Second Wisconsin, who carried off the regimental flag on the first Bull Run battle-field, and bore it on the 29th and 30th of August, 1862, on the same bloody field, sprang from his bed in the field hospital at Antietam when he heard the skirmishing on the morning of the 17th, and pushed on alone to find his regiment. It was under fire. He reported himself to his Captain, saying, 'Captain, I am with you to the last,' and took the colors, which he held until he was shot down with seven bullets.
The rest of the War
He was reinterred from his original burial on the Antietam battlefield to the National Cemetery in about 1867.
References & notes
Death information from the Antietam Cemetery History.1 Service data from the Roster,2 as R.S. Stephenson. The quote above from Edwin Bentley Quiner's The Military History of Wisconsin (1866). Personal details from family genealogists and the US Census for 1860. His gravesite is on Findagrave, source also of his picture from a photograph contributed by Jesse Crisler. Thanks to John Banks for the pointer to that.
He married Caroline Shattuck (1824-1852) in April 1845 in Dubuque, IA, and they had a son Ralph (1849-1929). He married again, her sister Minerva Shattuck (later Howard, 1834-1912) in May 1856 and they had a daughter Ida Aurelia Caroline (1858-1879).
1821; Washington County, MO
09/17/1862; Sharpsburg, MD; burial in Antietam National Cemetery, Sharpsburg, MD
1 Antietam National Cemetery, Board of Trustees, History of Antietam National Cemetery, Baltimore: John W. Woods, Steam Printer, 1869 [AotW citation 4224]
2 State of Wisconsin, Adjutant General's Office, and Chandler P. Chapman, Adj. Gen., Roster of Wisconsin Volunteers, War of the Rebellion, 1861-1865, 2 volumes, Madison: Democrat Printing Co., State Printers, 1886, Vol. 1, pg. 355 [AotW citation 10145]