I think on Veterans Day it is fitting to remember to say thank you to those who have served their country throughout history. Many sacrifices are made, so we can enjoy our freedom.
Here is an excerpt from a letter written by my great-grandfather James Hitchcock in 1910, detailing the Civil War service of himself and his brothers:
In the spring of 1851 the Hitchcocks moved to Aurora the family consisting of the father, mother, and six sons: Thomas E., Richard, Frederick F., James B., George, and Alfred A., the youngest being two years and the oldest 16 years.
Three of the brothers enlisted and fought on the Union side in the war of the Rebellion. Frederick enlisted in the old 19th NY Vol. Inf. organized in Cayuga County – was with the regiment during its two years of service and “Veteranized” in the 3rd Seward Artillery, also a Cayuga County organization. He was with his regiment at the Battle of Newbern (sp.), NC.
Richard enlisted in the 75th NY Vol. Inf. in 1861. This regiment was organized at Auburn NY and was made up mostly of Cayuga County boys. He was discharged on account of blindness. Soon after the regiment reached the front he reenlisted in the 22nd NY Vol. Cavalry and was with Sheridan at Cedar Creek.
James B. enlisted in the 44th “Peoples Ellsworth” Regiment N.Y. Vol. Infantry, organized at Albany NY in August 1861 and made up of volunteers from all parts of the state. He was with the Army of the Potomac during the whole of his three years and two months service, was with McClellan during the seven days fight in the Revioisan (spelling unclear – possibly Revisionist) Campaign; was wounded by a buckshot in the breast at the Battle of Hanover Courthouse. At the battle of Malvern Hall, VA a minie ball passed through his left thigh and another broke his leg just below the knee upon the field and during the battle. He was promoted for “Gallant and Meritorious Conduct in the face of the enemy.” Was with his regiment at the Battle of Fredericksburg or Maryes Heights on that fateful 13th 14th and 15th day of December 1862. Was at the Battle of Gettysburg. Was all through the Wilderness Campaign and at the siege of Petersburgh VA, receiving his discharge as Quartermaster a short time before the final surrender of Lee’s army at Appomattox.
Four of the brothers are now living. Thomas E Hitchcock, the oldest, is a practicing dentist in the city of Syracuse. Frederick F. is a dealer in furniture etc. and still (1910) living at Aurora. Alfred Albert is a farmer living in the immediate vicinity of Aurora and James Benton is a farmer and justice of the peace living in the adjoining town of Scipio.
N.B. from sg: Further information may be found on these men and and many of our other Cayuga County veterans and their Civil War service in the book “Cayuga In The Field” by the Hall brothers of Cayuga County. Also in Nash, Eugene A.'s History of the Forty-Fourth Regiment, New York Volunteer Infantry, in the Civil War, 1861-1865. Chicago: R.R. Donnelly & Sons, 1911.
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