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Burns, John


Age: 37, credited to Rutland, VT
Unit(s): 7th VT INF
Service: enl 1/20/62, m/i 2/12/62, Pvt, Co. B, 7th VT INF, pow, Choctawotchie Bay, 2/9/64, Andersonville, d/prison 11/28/64 (scorbutus)

See Legend for expansion of abbreviations


Birth: abt 1825, County Kildare, Ireland
Death: 11/28/1864

Burial: Andersonville National Cemetery, Andersonville, GA
Marker/Plot: 12185
Gravestone researcher/photographer: Tom Ledoux
Findagrave Memorial #: 15653151


Alias?: None noted
Pension?: Unknown
Portrait?: Unknown
College?: Not Found
Veterans Home?: Not Found
(If there are state digraphs above, this soldier spent some time in a state or national soldiers' home in that state after the war)

Remarks: See George Ross's letter to his brother published in the Rutland Weekly Herald, March 24, 1864.


2nd Great Grandfather of Mary Ann Faloon, Wilmington, OH

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Andersonville National Cemetery, GA

Check the cemetery for location/directions and other veterans who may be buried there.


John Burns was born in Ireland, possibly County Kildare, in about 1825, the son of John and Esther Carey Burns. His mother died in Ireland by 1843. John Sr. and three sons (John, Patrick and Edward) emigrated to Canada by late 1845.

John married Margaret Martin (Kilmartin) 23 February 1846 in Montreal, Canada. They had seven children: John (1847-1938); Patrick (1948-1868); James (1851-1882); Honora (1853-?); Esther (1854-1862); Mary Ellen (1858-1947) and Thomas (1860-1926).

He enlisted at Brandon, in Company B, 7th Vermont on 20 January 1862 at the age of 37. He was captured February 9, 1864 near Point Washington, Florida.

February 9, 1864 -- Skirmish near Point Washington, Fla.

Report of Lieut. Col. David B. Peck, Seventh Vermont Infantry.

Camp Roberts, Barrancas, Fla., February 17, 1864.

SIR: I have the honor to make the following report respecting the capture of Lieut. George Ross, Company B, Seventh Vermont Volunteers, with a portion of his company, based upon the statements of First Sergt. E. B. Hendry, Company B:

On the 8th instant, an expedition consisting of Captain Galloway, with 14 men, and Lieutenant Ross, Company B, Seventh Vermont Volunteers, with 17 men of his company, left the camp at Point Washington for the purpose of capturing Floyds company (rebel infantry) stationed at Cedar Bluff, about 40 miles up the Choctawhatchee River, on the east bank. A rebel picket of 5 men was surrounded and captured within 6 miles of the rebel camp. Our troops surrounded Floyd's camp at 10 p. m., and demanded the surrender. Two lieutenants and 50 men were in camp, and all surrendered without resistance. A sentinel was placed over the rebel officers but was taken off by Captain Galloway, and both of them made their escape during the night.

Our troops left the camp at 4 a. m., February 9, with the prisoners, arms, ammunition, and four mule teams. When about 15 miles from Floyd's camp on their return, and while stopping for dinner at noon, a force of about 100 rebel cavalry cbarged upon them, and after a little firing on both sides succeeded in capturing Captain Galloway and 5 refugees, and Lieutenant Ross with 11 of his men. First Sergeant Hendry, Corporal Cooley, and Privates Daniels, Porter, and Pitts, of Company B, Seventh Vermont Volunteers, succeeded in making their escape and returned to Point Washington in company with 9 refugees, arriving at 11 o'clock the next day. The remainder of the company, in charge of First Sergeant Hendry, left Point Washington February 11, stopped two days at East Pass, and arrived at Barrancas, Fla., February 16.

The following is a list * of the captured men belonging to the Seventh Vermont Regiment.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

Lientenant-Colonel, Commanding Regiment.

Lieut. E. T. SPRAGUE, Acting Assistant Adjutant- General.

* Nominal list of prisoners omitted.

(The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, Series 1, Vol. 35 (Part I), p. 356.)

The prisoners were transferred to Appalachicola Arsenal in Chattahoochie, Florida.

Rutland Herald, March 23, 1864)

From the Seventh Regiment.
List of men from Co. B recently taken prisoners.

We are permitted to publish the following extract from a letter received by Mr. Thomas Ross, of Brandon:

Appalachicola Arsenal,
Chattahoochie, Fla., Feb. 23.

Dear Brother: -- Do not be surprised to receive a letter from "Dixie." The fortunes of war have changed "my base of operations," and I am a prisoner for the first time during the war. Capt. Galloway, of the 1st Florida Cavalry, myself and eleven enlisted men of Co. B, 7th Vermont, were captured in Washington County, West Florida, near Chockiahatchie Bay, on the 10th of this month. Since then we have been for the greater part of the time confined here.

Below are the names of the men captured with me:

Sergeant E. C. Barnard,
" James McCarry, (sic)

Corporal S. P. Trumbull,
" Harrison Combs,

Private John Blake,
" John Burns,
" Ombro Bolio,
" Philip Lucia,
" Henry Stocker,
" Edward Phalen,
" Wm. Wilkins.

We are receiving the best of treatment, and enjoying good health. How long we may remain here we do not know; but letters may be directed to us at this place, and if we leave we will try and make arrangement to have them forwarded to us.

Your affectionate brother,

George Ross.

They were subsequently transferred to Andersonville Prison Camp in Georgia where John Burns died of scurvy on 28 November 1864. While in Andersonville, John was assigned to detatchment 77-3. Other members of this detatchment were men from 7th New Hampshire and 47th and 115th New York. These men fought and were captured at the battle of Olustee, Florida. John (listed as Byrnes), John Blake and James McGarry were "administered the sacraments of penance and extreme unction" on August 10th 1864 by Father Henry Pierre Clavreul before John was admitted to the prison hospital in early September. (Diary of Rev. H. Clavreul with the names of dying federal soldiers to who he minstered at Andersonville, GA.)

From the regimental history: "On the 27th of January, Lieutenant George Ross of company B, and Lieutenant Galloway of the First Florida (loyal) Cavalry , with a detail of seventeen men from company B, were sent by General Asboth to Point Washington , at the head of Choctawhatchie Bay, to protect and forward refugees wishing to enlist in the Union army. From Point Washington they advanced about twenty-five miles inland, where they surprised a force which had been stationed there to prevent the escape of refugees and deserters to the Union lines, capturing three officers and forty privates. While trying to bring in the prisoners and plunder they were overtaken by a superior force of the enemy's cavalry, and Ross and Galloway were captured with eleven of the men of the Seventh. The remainder made their escape and reached the Union lines."

Footnote: Among the men so captured were Sergeant James McGarry, E. C. Barnard, Ambro Bolio, John Burns, Harrison Combs, Edward Phalon, H. W. Stocker, Stephen P. Trumbull and W. Wilkins, all of company B. Of these Bolio, Burns and Stocker died in the Andersonville prison pen, in October and November following, and Combs and Trumbull are believed to have died in the enemy's hands, at dates not recorded. (George G. Benedict, Vermont in the Civil War, 1861-1865, ii:54)

John carried a crucifix with him during his service and it was with him when he died in Andersonville in November 1864. (see attached picture.) Somehow that crucifix made its way back to Vermont after John died. It was not returned by any of the people captured with him because, those that survived Andersonville, were transported out of the prison camp in early September 1864 and arrived at hospitals on the east coast before the end of the war.

John's brother Patrick, who enlisted as Patrick Byrne in Castleton, was born Ireland in March 1821. He married first Rose Coffey on 8 Feb 1843 in Montreal, Canada. Rose died in the spring of 1876. Patrick married second Maria McAnally 5 Oct 1876 in Castleton, Vermont. Patrick served in Company C of the 11th Vermont. He was severely wounded in the battle of Petersburg and carried a bullet the rest of his life.

"Castleton News," Rutland Herald, June 15, 1894

Patrick Burns, who had been ill for some time and was one of the old residetns, died at his home on Griswold avenue Thursday. He was bornin Ireland 73 years ago last March. He joined the 11th Vermont regiment in 1862, and served as color sergeant until the close of the war. He has always carried in his head a bullet, which he received while before Petersburg. He always carried the flag in all public gatherings in the village. The funeral will be held in the Catholic church Saturday morning at 9 o'clock.

Patrick is buried in Saint Marys Cemetery, Fair Haven. Patrick did not have children from either marriage. Even though he spelled his last name differently, John and Patrick were brothers. The names of the parents are the same in all of the marriages. Also, Patrick signed the pension application for John's wife, Margaret at the close of the war.

Material provided by Mary Ann Faloon, Wilmington, OH, John's 2nd Great Granddaughter.

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