Stedman, Irwin Wisewell
Age: 18, credited to Orwell, VT
Unit(s): 5th VT INF
Service: enl 8/29/61, m/i 9/16/61, Pvt, Co. H, 5th VT INF, wdd, Savage's Station, 6/29/62, pow, Savage's Station, 6/29/62, prld 8/3/62, dis/wds, 9/15/64
See Legend for expansion of abbreviationsVITALS
Birth: abt 1843, Orwell, VT
Burial: Mountain View Cemetery, Orwell, VT
Marker/Plot: Not recorded
Gravestone researcher/photographer: Alan Lathrop
Findagrave Memorial #: 46616406
Alias?: None noted
Portrait?: VHS Collections, USAHEC off-site
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)
(Are you a descendant, but not listed? Register today)
Mountain View Cemetery, Orwell, VT
Check the cemetery for location/directions and other veterans who may be buried there.
Courtesy Vermont Historical Society
This bio is actually the life and times of three men combined into one account. It was appropriate that all three Vermont soldiers be included in one biographical sketch because they were very close in life as well as when they served their country in time of war. They lived together in the same town, in the same county, in the same state. They were mustered into the same company of the same regiment on the same date. They lived under the same roof for much of their lives. They were buried in the same cemetery. Jonathan Stedman was the father. Francis Cullen Stedman was his oldest son. And Irwin W. Stedman was the middle son of the family.NOTES:
Jonathan, the head of the household, was born on November 19, 1816 in Benson, Vermont. He was the son of Orison Steadman, or Stedman, (1784- ?) and Deborah Jones (1787-?). Orison and Deborah had been married in Benson on March 7, 1813. Deborah was from Putnam, New York. Orison lived in Benson. Reuben Nash, Justice of the Peace, performed the ceremony. Jonathan had only one sibling, a brother, named Orison (1814-1885). Orison eventually left Vermont in the later exodus to the American West and ended up dying out in Kansas in 1885.
Not much could be discovered about the first twenty-four years of Jonathan's life. His father had been born in Rutland County and was married in Benson. It was deduced then, since rural Vermont residents usually were born, raised, died and were buried very near the exact spot where they were born in the mid-1800's, that Benson, Vermont was his childhood stomping grounds. According to family histories at Ancestry.com, both Jonathan and Orison (his brother) were born in Orwell. Also assumed, based on the fact that most adult male Vermonters in the mid-1800's were farmers of one type or another, Jonathan probably grew up on a farm in Benson.
At least the 1840's Federal Census confirmed that he was a farmer in Orwell. The census also revealed that he had married before 1840. Exactly when could not be established. In 1840, there was only himself and his wife living in the same household that year. There were no children listed in the house at that time which seemed to indicate that they had not been married long. Only two white persons, a male and a female, between the ages of twenty to twenty-nine were listed as living together in the household. Jonathan was twenty-four and his wife, Mary L. Wisewell, was twenty-one. Since the Federal Censuses were usually taken in the late Spring of the year (April-June), calculating from the date of the birth of their first child (Francis in 1840) backwards would place the date of their marriage sometime in 1838 or 1839.
Mary L. Wisewell was from Orwell, Vermont. Her father was Moses Coolidge Wiswell (1794-1881) and her mother was Nancy Wiswell. Nancy was Moses' first wife, dying at eighty-one in 1866. She was nine years older than Moses. He then remarried five years later, in 1871, to Polly Dow when he was seventy-seven. He outlived Polly too. She passed away in 1880. Moses soon followed in 1881. Jonathan and Mary saw the arrival of their first child, a son, Francis Cullen (Frank) on December 10, 1840. Jonathan was employed in some sort of agricultural enterprise. Before the end of the 1840's, Jonathan and Mary had added two more Stedman's to the family tree. Irwin W. was born March 4, 1844 in Orwell. Another brother joined the family in August of 1849. His name was Moses. He was Jonathan's third son and the last child to be born to the couple.
By 1850, Jonathan had moved his family from Orwell to Rutland, Vermont. He had also abandoned being a farmer and had taken up the trade of shoemaker. Two of his three sons, Francis and Irwin, attended school. Moses was only a year old in 1850. Two other individuals lived in the home as well. One was Charles Selly (or Lilly). He was a laborer and boarded with Jonathan and family. The other person was an apprentice studying under Jonathan to become a shoemaker. His name was Lawrence Revard. On the eve of the Civil War, Jonathan moved his family back to Orwell from Rutland. He was forty-three and Mary was forty-one. Frances S , nineteen, and his brother Irwin W., sixteen, lived at home with their parents. Moses, the youngest Stedman, died on April 5, 1857 of "brain fever" (meningitis). Jonathan continued to work as a shoemaker. His business was modest, only yielding an estate valued at a total of $800. Yet it was prosperous enough for him to have taken on an apprentice in the form of a nineteen year old tradesman named Dennis Lamardie. The family also could afford a domestic. She was fifty year old Sally Reed. In addition to her and the apprentice, Jonathan also had two more shoemakers working with him and boarding under his roof. One was his son, Irwin W. who was sixteen in 1860. The other was John Pelker (Pelkee) who was twenty-two and from Canada. This rather large, extended family must have been very busy with manufacturing shoes and boots in order to support three craftsmen, one apprentice and one domestic servant in addition to a wife and another son in a small, rural area like Orwell.
It must have been a very difficult decision for the men of the Stedman family to all decide to leave this rather secure and promising business and enter into a shooting war with all of its inherent uncertainties. For all the patriotic euphoria floating in the air at the time, the reality was all the males of the Stedman clan were leaving en masse their wife and their mother alone with business partners to run an established and growing enterprise that provided them all with a comfortable and reliable standard of living they could ask, for the most dangerous and unpredictable profession in existence - that of a soldier in time of war. Mary's security, not to mention her peace of mind, could be shattered in a heart beat. For everyone involved, the moment of commitment must have been agonizing.
If you look carefully at the enlistment records for the three Stedman's you will notice that they did not enlist all on the same day. The sequence of their enlistments suggested another level to the story of how all three - father and two sons - ended up in the same blue uniform in the same company of the same regiment in the same army. Irwin, the youngest of the three, enlisted on August 30, 1861 in Brandon, Vermont. Francis, Irwin's older brother, enlisted three days later on September 3, 1861 in Brandon. Jonathan, the father of both boys, enlisted the next day on September 4, 1861 in Brandon. If all of them had signed their enlistment papers on the same day in Brandon, then one might assume that the surge of youthful exuberance to do the patriotic thing that swept over and through many youthful breasts at the time of Fort Sumter would explain their actions. Francis was twenty and Irwin was eighteen (maybe) so the thrill of an adventure might account for their behavior. But their father was forty-four years old; hardly a naive youth. He was the head of the family. Yet, he was the last to stand before the recruiter to pledge his loyalty and obedience. Why? There are many possible answers to that question. One that seemed to make sense was based on the eons old instinct in all of us to look after and protect loved ones. The youngest, and therefore the most vulnerable to emotionalism's sway, was Irwin. He was the first to enlist. He may have even lied about his age in order to do so (born in 1844, he would have been only seventeen in 1861). His desire to become part of the events unfolding in April of 1861 may have been undeniable. Even his father may not have been able to quell his determination to enter into the fight. If so, Francis, his older brother, could have gone along with his younger sibling in order to keep an eye on him and make sure nothing lethal happened to his little brother. Jonathan might not have been able to resist his familial instincts to protect his children from harm and so he too, even at the advanced age of forty-four, may have thrown his fate into the fight in order to be near his boys. They obviously could not stop the unspeakable from happening to one or the other, but at least they would be close at hand to "look after" each other. None of them would be far from home with no loved one at hand to comfort them, which happened to so many hundreds of others in the war.
Whatever their motivation, all three went to St Albans, Vermont on September 16, 1861 to be mustered into Captain Seager's Company (Company H) of the Fifth Regiment Vermont Infantry. Jonathan, being forty-four, was mustered in as a fifer (musician). Francis and Irwin went in as privates. Jonathan and Irwin stood five feet six inches tall. Francis was the shortest standing only five feet three inches. Both Francis and Irwin had blue eyes and brown hair while their father had black eyes and black hair. Jonathan and Irwin claimed they were shoemakers and Francis said he was a farmer.
The Fifth was organized in St. Albans, Vermont. Its companies were raised in various towns throughout the State. Company B, for example, was comprised of only men from Middlebury; Company E was from Manchester; Company H, from Brandon; Company F, from Cornwall; and so on. The Regiment was mustered-in on September 16, 1861 at St. Albans. It was immediately sent to Washington, D.C. and joined the other Vermont troops already at Camp Advance (Griffin) near the Chain Bridge in Virginia where it was assigned to the Vermont Brigade with which it served during the rest of the war. Throughout the fall of 1861, and the first few months of 1862, it was on duty in the defenses surrounding Washington.
March 10, 1862 the Fifth moved to Alexandria, Virginia. Two weeks later, the Regiment boarded transport ships for the Virginia Peninsula landing at Fort Monroe and moving to New Port News on the twenty-third and twenty-fourth of March, 1862. By April 16, 1862, the Regiment was at Lee's Mills with the Vermont Brigade. On June 29, the Fifth brought four hundred men to the action at Savage's Station. In one half hour of fighting, it lost one hundred eighty-eight of them on the field. Company E of Manchester suffered the heaviest losses of any company from Vermont. Company E went into the engagement with fifty-nine muskets. In that one half hour of fierce conflict, it lost forty-four of the fifty-nine; twenty-five were killed and nineteen were wounded. Five Cummings brothers and one cousin from the company were among those killed or wounded. Only one of the six recovered from his wounds. The Regiment as a whole suffered the heaviest loss in killed and wounded at the Battle of Savage's Station, Virginia on June 29, 1862 of any Union regiment in a single action of the entire war. In the following few days, the Fifth along with the rest of the Vermont Brigade, went on to be involved in more fighting at White Oak Swamp and Malvern Hill as the Federals retreated from General Lee towards Harrison's Landing.
On August 16 - 24, 1862, the Regiment returned to Fort Monroe and reached the Bull Run battlefield by August 30, just missing the fighting there. During the Maryland Campaign of 1862, the Fifth took part in Crampton's Gap (South Mountain) and Antietam. It ended 1862 engaged in the Battle of Fredericksburg. In January (23-24) of 1863, it joined Burnside's "Mud March" on its way to Marye's Heights and Salem Church. It celebrated the Fourth of July at Gettysburg. The Fifth took a break August 14 through September 16, 1863 and relaxed in New York during the draft riots there. The Regiment rejoined the Army of the Potomac at Culpeper Court House in Virginia on September 23. It went into winter quarters at Brandy Station where the veterans of the Regiment re-enlisted on December 15, 1863 and was the first Regiment granted a veteran's furlough for a month's duration.
On its return from furlough in Vermont, the Fifth continued as a veteran organization and participated in the bloody month with the Army of the Potomac from the Wilderness to Cold Harbor, and took an active part in the siege of Petersburg. The Regiment began the campaign with five hundred men. In one month, it lost three hundred forty-nine killed, wounded and missing, including thirteen officers. September 15, 1864, the term of service for original members who had not re-enlisted expired. They were mustered-out leaving present for duty one assistant surgeon, a quartermaster, three first lieutenants and three hundred enlisted personnel. After the October 19 Battle of Cedar Creek, the Fifth moved to the Siege of Petersburg again and went into winter camp at Squirrel Level Road in December, 1864.
When Petersburg finally fell in April of 1865, the Fifth Vermont was the first Regiment to plant its colors on the Confederate defensive works. The unit was present at Appomattox Court House for the surrender of Robert E. Lee and his army. June 8, 1865 the Fifth marched in the Corps Review held at Washington, D.C. On June 29, the veterans were mustered-out. At its discharge, there were only twenty-four officers and two hundred eighty-eight men on its rolls - three hundred twelve total out of an original strength of 1,618 . For the last ten months of its service, the highest ranking officer in the Fifth present for duty was a captain; for more than three months of those last ten, the highest ranking officer present for duty was a lieutenant. Every officer present for the Grand Review went out as a private.
Irwin was sick when the Fifth was mustered-in. The other two were present on September 16, 1861. Irwin recovered by the end of 1861. All three of the Stedmans were present through May of 1862. On June 29, 1862, the Fifth, along with other units of the Vermont Brigade, took part in the Battle of Savage's Station. The Regiment went into the fight with four hundred muskets. In one half hour of fighting, it lost 188 of them (47%). Company E lost twenty-five killed (42%) and nineteen wounded (32%). Out of fifty-nine men in the company, only fifteen escaped being a casualty. This was just one small example of the ferocity of the fighting that occurred at the Battle of Savage's Station. Both Francis and Irwin were wounded and taken prisoner by the Confederates in the action of the twenty-ninth. They were captured at James River, Virginia on June 30 and confined at Richmond, Virginia, July 13. Both were paroled at City Point, Virginia on August 3, 1862. Francis reported to Camp Banks, Virginia on November 17, 1862 for duty. His wounds were not as serious as his brothers.
Irwin was wounded severely enough to be sent directly to Hammond General Hospital at Point Lookout, Maryland from City Point. He arrived there August 6, 1862. He had received a gun shot wound to the left hip at the Battle of Savage's Station. The wound left him disabled and unfit for field service. Consequently, he was transferred to the Veterans Reserve Corp where he continued to serve out his term of service doing duty as a nurse in Hammond General until April 27, 1864. At that time, he was transferred to Washington, D.C. The twenty-one year old disabled soldier was mustered-out at the end of his term of service "in the field" on September 15, 1864. He had not been paid since December 31, 1863 and the government owed him $142.00.
In the meantime, Francis had returned to active duty with the Fifth in November of 1862 after being a POW in Richmond for a couple of months. He then was confined in Hammond Hospital along with his brother for a short time until he recovered from his wounds and confinement in prison at Richmond, He resumed his place in Company H of the Fifth Vermont just in time for the Battle of Fredericksburg. He was on detached duty with his father in the ambulance corps since September 25, 1862. He remained there until June 17, 1864. On December 15, 1863, he, along with a majority of the original members of the Fifth, had the opportunity to be discharged and then re-enlist as Veterans at Brandy Station, Virginia. Those like Francis who did re-enlist, were granted a thirty day furlough home. When he returned from his furlough, Francis went back to the ambulance corps for duty.
In May of 1864, while with the ambulance corps on the campaign from the Rapidan to the James River, Private Stedman was again wounded. His injury was not serious enough to put him out of service for long, since he received his third, and final, debilitating wound during the action at Cold Harbor. On June 3, 1864, Private Stedman received a gun shot wound to the lower left leg and a severe bruise to his back caused by a shell fragment. He was admitted to Lincoln General Hospital in Washington, D.C. on June 10, 1864. His disability was acute enough for the hospital surgeon to request he be transferred to the Invalid Corps (Veterans Reserve Corps) . The Provost Marshall General's Office granted the request on June 17, 1864. The Veteran Reserve Corps is where Private Stedman spent the remainder of his tour of duty. He was mustered-out of the service on June 20, 1865 while on duty in the defenses of Washington, D.C. He was twenty-three. At discharge, he was owed back pay to April 30, 1864. He had been paid $110 of his bounty money. The Government still owed him another $290 plus $20.97 for clothing.
As for Jonathan, he spent only a few months with his sons before he was separated from them. Before July of 1862, he was detached from the Fifth and sent to do duty with the ambulance train of the VI Corps at Fort Monroe, Virginia. It was customary in the war for musicians in the Army to be assigned to work as litter bearers and doctors' aides rather than pulling fighting soldiers out of the ranks for that purpose. Besides, Jonathan was an old man by Army standards at the age of forty-four. War then, as now, was a young man's sport. According to his compiled service record, Jonathan remained with the ambulance corps up to December 15, 1863 when he, along with his son, Francis and most of the other original members of the Fifth Vermont, re-enlisted as a Veteran in the same regiment at Brandy Station on December 16, 1863. Technically, each man who wished to enlist as a Veteran first had to be discharged from the service. Then he could re-enlist with the same rank and in the same unit. So Jonathan, and his son, Francis, were discharged on December 15 and then immediately re-enlisted on December 16. The men were paid any back wages owed them when they were discharged. Francis received $1.44 in back pay. From February 1864 to November 14, 1864, Jonathan continued to serve in the ambulance corps. Special Orders N. 383 from the War Department, Adjutant General's Office dated November 4, 1864 stated: "...Private Jonathan Stedman, Company H, 5th Vermont Volunteers, now supposed to be with that regiment, will be discharged the service of the United States, upon receipt of this Order at the place where he may be serving.
By order of the Secretary of War"
The Fifth was stationed at Kernstown, Virginia (present day Winchester) at the time. The order did not reach Private Jonathan Stedman until ten days later, but when it arrived, just like the order stated, he was a civilian once more.
So, all three Stedmans survived the war although two of the three were in somewhat of an altered state. They had not managed to stay together having been separated by being detached for other duty or by virtue of being wounded. Each had been discharged for his own unique reason: disability, expiration of term of service or Special Order of the War Department. Irwin, the first to enlist, was also the first to be discharged and sent home. He became Mr. Stedman on September 15, 1864 released because of his left hip injury. Jonathan, forty-seven when he received his walking papers was next to go home. Francis was the last to be released from the service being discharged from the VRC on July 17, 1865. All three went back to their lives and former occupations in Orwell.
Jonathan returned to his wife, Mary, and his shoe business. He may never have completely left it while in the ambulance corps. His skills at making and fixing footwear might have been very useful in the service. When not playing the fife or carrying a litter with dead and wounded on it, he may have been repairing worn out shoes of fellow Vermonters. Shoes of the marching soldiers quickly broke down under the hundreds of miles of hard use they were subjected to. Anyone with the knowledge of how to repair them would have been worth his weight in gold and highly sought after. The war did not seem to have much of a negative effect on his local business while Jonathan was gone. When the 1870 Federal Census was taken, his assets were considerably more than they were ten years earlier. In 1860, Jonathan's holdings were assessed at just $800. In 1870, his net worth was set at $1,700. He was operating his business without the assistance of any apprentices or partners. He did, however, have an extra family member living with him and his wife. Mary's father, Moses, widowed at seventy-six and a retired carpenter, lived with them.
Irwin W., Jonathan's youngest son, lived next door to his father and mother. He had a wife and a new baby by 1870. He was supporting himself and his new family by working in a carriage shop. Irwin's net worth was estimated to be $400. His wife was Miamma L. Fuller (1847-1919) She was from Granville, New York and was born March 31, 1847. Miammi was the daughter of Juduthan Fuller (1820-1899) and Susan Ann Reed (1821-1907). Her family, which was rather large (she had twelve brothers and sisters), lived in Rutland, Vermont in 1860. Her father was a carpenter. She married Irwin on May 12, 1865 when she was eighteen. Irwin was twenty-one. He was farming at the time rather than making shoes or repairing carriages. The two were married in Rutland by a Congregational minister named H.M. Grout. About 1867, the couple had their first child, a girl named Eva C. She was three in 1870. She might have been Jonathan' s first grand-daughter. However, her life was short. She died August 20, 1872, one month shy of her sixth birthday.
Francis, on the other hand, appeared to be living with his father and mother again. He was working as a farm laborer in Orwell. According to the census records for 1870, he had a wife named Elisa M. He and his wife had a child named Mary O. No information could be found to validate Francis' first marriage to Elisa M. Nothing could be found on any person named Elisa M. Stedman (Steadman, Steedman). As for Mary, a death certificate was found on such a individual in the Vermont Vital Records. According to that document, Mary O. Stedman was born in Orwell about 1867 to Francis Stedman and Elvira Steeds. She died of the fever on March 14, 1873 at six years of age. No corroborating evidence could be found clearly verifying that her father was Jonathan's son, Francis Cullen Stedman.
However, there was adequate proof to support the fact that when Francis married Henrietta A. "Etta" Tabor in 1871, she was his second wife. On the marriage certificate completed by the Orwell Town Clerk, Roswell Bottum, the "No. of Marriage" portion clearly stated "2" for the Groom and "1" for the Bride. So Francis had been married to someone, Elisa M. or somebody else, before his marriage to Henrietta. Etta, as she liked to be called, was born July 20, 1852 either in Granville, New York or Crown Point, New York depending on which source of information you were looking at. Her father was Hiram Tabor (1825-1890) and her mother was Sarah Gibbs (1836-1909). In 1865, she and her family lived in Ticonderoga, New York where her father made his living as a carpenter and joiner. If the interpretation of the 1870 Census data is correct, Henrietta had a step-daughter, Mary O. Stedman, which she inherited from Francis' alleged first marriage. As already stated, Jonathan's grand-daughter died of a fever on March 14, 1873 at six years old. Francis and Henrietta had their first, and only child, the same year. Ida was born November 4, 1873 in West Rutland, Vermont.
Jonathan applied for and began receiving a pension from the government in 1879 although he continued to work at his shoe manufacturing business even when he had turned sixty-three. By 1880, he and Mary lived in Orwell along with their youngest son, Irwin, and his wife, Miammi. The household was kept lively by Jonathan's grandchildren: Cora, age three and Moses A., age two months. Irwin had resumed working with his father at the shoemaker trade. It was a good thing that Irwin had returned to the family business, for Jonathan died on July 22, 1881 of "catarrhal consumption" - another name for tuberculosis.
Soon after her husband's death, Mary applied for a widow's pension which she was granted and received for the rest of her life. She continued to reside in Orwell, probably living with Irwin and Miammi and the grandchildren in the same house she occupied with Jonathan. If not, her son, Francis, lived close by and she could have lived with him and his wife, Henrrietta. Where she lived was settled on April 6, 1898 when Mary was taken ill and died. She succumbed to asthma from chronic rheumatism at the age of eighty years and six months.
Francis, Henrietta and Ida were also living in Orwell in 1880. "Frank" was farming. Henrietta kept the house. Little Ida, their six year old daughter, went to school. Irwin was working alongside of his father making shoes and boots. Miammi had just delivered another child, their first boy named Moses A. in March of 1880. Two years later, they had a second son, Earl A. in January of 1882. Irwin and Miammi now had four children total. There was Mary, age nine; Cora, age five; Moses, age two; and the newborn, Earl. The couple had lost their first born, Eva, in 1872.
Since the 1890 Federal Census was essentially destroyed in a fire, little information was found about the two brothers and their families between 1890 and 1900. The only records found on Francis and Irwin were the Veterans Schedule of 1890. Both were listed on the special schedule as living in Orwell. Irwin was credited with a total of four years, two months and ten days of military service in Company H and Company D of the Fifth Vermont. He was a private in Company H as a volunteer and also a private in Company D of the Veterans Reserve Corps. Francis served for a total of four years, two months and twenty days. Irwin's discharge papers were located in Washingon, D.C. and Francis' discharge papers had been burned accidentally.
The next time Francis surfaced in the Census records was in 1900. He was fifty-nine by then and still worked in agriculture. Only now he was hired help working for his son-in-law on a farm he didn't own in Orwell. In fact, he and Henrietta both lived with their daughter, Ida, and her husband, Eugene Bishop, who was the one who owned the farm. Eugene and Ida had only been married for two years. Francis and Henrietta had been married for twenty-nine.
Irwin and his wife were also getting older. He was fifty-six and Miammi was fifty-three. Moses A. was the only child of theirs still living with them in 1900. He was twenty. Irwin had apparently put aside his shoemaking talents and had gone into the labor force as a wage earning worker. He and Miammi had been married for thirty-five years. She had born Irwin five children in her life time. Only three of those had survived to 1900.
At the beginning of the next decade, 1910, the Stedmans, Francis and Henrietta, found themselves in the middle of a very hustling and bustling existence. Francis (Frank) was pushing seventy and Henrietta was in her late fifties. They still lived with their daughter, Ida, and her husband, Eugene. Between 1900 and 1910, the Bishops had been blessed with two children. In 1910, there was a nine year boy named Glenn and a girl named Dorothy who had just been born by the time the 1910 Federal Census was taken (she was listed as 0 years old but was really two months old). Neither grandparent in the household was employed, other than in helping to care for an infant and toddler. Francis might have done some light farm work now and then just to help out on the farm. There was a hired man present to assist Eugene in operating the family business. The hired help was only a sixteen year old named Miner Chesbro from Massachesetts. In addition to the four Bishops, two Stedmans and the hired help, there was also a forty-four year old female widow with a child of her own living in the Bishop's house on a full-time basis. Her name was Ida Adkins. She was the aunt of someone in the household and was employed in helping with the house work. Her son, Donald, was a school chum of Glenn Bishop and a cousin of either the Bishop's or the Stedman's. Both boys went to the same school in Orwell.
Irwin and his crew were also busy as beavers even in the fall years of their lives. Irwin, at sixty-seven, was still working every day, every month of the year, as a day laborer for wages. He, unlike his older brother Francis, owned his own home free and clear of a mortgage. But, like his brother and sister-in-law, he and his wife were not living out their golden years alone in their home. Their daughter, Cora, had come back to roost bringing three children of her own with her. Moses had never left home. At twenty-nine, he still lived with his parents. Cora had married a Garfield and had been married for thirteen years when, at thirty-two, she found herself under the same roof as her parents. She was the mother of four, but only three had survived to 1910: Leo H., twelve; Ralph, nine; and Paul, six. Cora had no occupation. Where her husband was remained a mystery. The Census did not list her as a widow. The end of the 1910's was not a gleeful time for the Stedman family at large. Henrietta lost her husband, Francis, to "myocarditis arkris sclerosis". In layman's terms, he died of a bad heart on October 8, 1917. He was almost seventy-seven years old. He had been married to Henrietta for nearly forty years. Irwin lost his spouse on March 12, 1919 of pneumonia. He and Miammi had been married for over fifty-four years.
Both surviving spouses continued to live in Orwell after they lost their respective partners. Henrietta remained in the home of her daughter, Ida, and son-in-law, Eugene, in 1920. She enjoyed the company of her three grand-children - Glenn S., nineteen; Dorothy M., nine; and Leda G, the most recent addition, age six. Eugene also housed a boarder and a hired man in his home. Bernice S. Rothlis was a twenty-two year old public school teacher in Orwell. She was, of course, single which traditionally school marms were. Her father had come from Switzerland and her mother was a native Vermonter like herself. The hired man was twenty-one year old John W. Brown. He helped Eugene with the general farm chores. Henrietta's only source of income was her widow's pension which she had been receiving since Francis passed away in 1917. Francis had received a pension from the time he had filed in 1875 until his death in 1917. Henrietta staid with her daughter and son-in-law well into the 1930's.
When the 1930 Federal Census was taken, Eugene persisted in having a house full of tenants. Besides his mother-in-law, Henrietta, Glenn and Leda, his son and daughter, were living at home. Apparently Dorothy had married and moved out of the house by then. Eugene's dairy farm was still a very successful operation which made Eugene and Ida rather comfortable. They had taken in another boarder, a new school teacher to replace the one they use to house. Her name was Thelma Little and she was twenty-one and single. John Valnia, a forty-nine year old New Yorker, was the new hired man on the farm. In 1935, Henrietta observed her last birthday. She died on January 2, 1936 at eighty and one half years old of arteriosclerosis.
Irwin was seventy-five in 1920. He lived on Main Street in the village of Orwell. The widower lived with his son, Moses, and his wife, Nina. He had a grand-daughter, Cora, who was three years old in 1920. Late in life, Moses had finally met a woman, besides his mother, that he could love and wanted to live with. They had been married on July 21, 1917 in Orwell. Also living with Moses and his family was a fifty-seven year old female servant, a widow, named Delia A. Sherwood and her thirteen year old daughter, Gertrude. They turned out to be Moses' mother-in-law and sister-in-law. One thing had not changed - Moses still painted houses for a living. Irwin, in his mid-seventies, had no occupation anymore. He lived off his government pension which he had been granted back in 1875. Unfortunately, Irwin did not have a lot of time to celebrate his sons good fortune in finding a mate. He suffered from chronic nephritis which was an inflammation of the kidneys. Just one month shy of his seventy-ninth birthday, his Bright's disease finally caught up with him. Irwin passed away on February 9, 1923 in Orwell.
1. www.findagrave.com, Memorial #46680636 for Jonathan Stedman.
2. Ancestry.com, Rist Family Tree for Jonathan Steadman.
3. Ibid., Vermont, Vital Records, 1720-1908 for Orison Steadman and Deborah Jones.
4. Ibid., Rist Family Tree for Jonathan Steadman.
5. Ibid., 1840 U.S. Federal Census for Jonathan Steadman.
6. Ibid., Vermont, Vital Records, 1720-1908 for Deborah Jones; Ibid., Rist Family Tree for Jonathan Steadman; Ibid., Jones Family Tree for Moses Coolidge Wiswell.
7. Ibid., Vermont, Vital Records, Death, 1909-2008 for Francis Cullen Stedman.
8. Ibid., 1840 U.S. Federal Census for Jonathan Stedman.
9. Ibid., Ida's Family Tree for Jonathan Stedman.
10. Ibid., 1850 U.S. Federal Census for Jonathan Stedman.
11. Ibid., 1860 U.S. Federal Census for Jonathan Steadman; Ibid., Vermont, Vital Records, 1720-1908 for Moses Stedman.
12. Ibid., Vermont, Vital Records, 1720-1908 for Moses Stedman.
13. Ibid., 1860 U.S. Federal Census for Jonathan Steadman.
14. Fold3.com, Compiled Service Records of Union Soldiers Who Served in Organizations from the State of Vermont, pp. 2 & 3, images 311411663, ...569 and ...617 for Jonathan, Francis and Irwin Stedman. Hereinafter referred to as Compiled Service Record.
15. Ibid.; Compiled Service Record, pp. 39, 3 & 4, images 311411651, ...664, ...570 and ...618 for Jonathan, Francis and Irwin Stedman.
16. Ancestry.com, U.S. American Civil War Regiments, 1861-1866; Vermont in the Civil War/Units/1st Brigade/Fifth Vermont Infantry; http://civilwarintheeast.com/us_regiments_batteries_vermont/5th_vermont.
17. Ibid., Compiled Service Record, pp. 5-8, Company Muster Rolls for October, '61 to May, '62 for Irwin Stedman; Ibid., p. 5, image 311411619.
19. Fold3.com, Compiled Service Record, p. 9, images 311411575 and ...623 for Francis and Irwin Stedman; Ibid., pp 43 and 46, Memorandum From Prisoner of War Records for F.C. Stedman and W.W. Stedman, images 311411609 and ...660.
20. Ibid., Compiled Service Record, pp. 33, 37 and 43, images 311411651, ...647 and ...657 for Jonathan, Francis and Irwin Stedman.
21. Ibid., Compiled Service Record, pp, 12, 19 and 39, images 311411578, ...585 and ...605 for Francis Stedman.
22. Ibid, Compiled Service Record, pp. 35 and 36, images 311411601 and ...602 for Francis Stedman.
23. Ibid., Compiled Service Record, p. 47. image 311411613 for Francis Stedman.
24. Ibid., Compiled Service Record, p. 37, image 311411603 for Francis Stedman.
25. Ibid., Compiled Service Record, p. 9, image 311411670 for Jonathan Stedman.
26. Ibid., Compiled Service Record, p. 19, image 311411680 for Jonathan Stedman.
27. Ibid., Compiled Service Record, p. 38, image 311411699 for Jonathan Stedman.
28. Ancestry.com, 1870 U.S. Federal Census for Jonathan Steedman.
30. www.findagrave.com, Memorial #46616406 for Irwin Wisewell Stedman; Ancestry.com, Vermont, Vital Records, 1720-1908 for Miammi Fuller and Irwin H. Stedman; Ibid., Rist Family Tree for Miamma L. Fuller; Ibid., 1860 U.S. Federal Census for Miamma Fuller.
31. www.findagrave.com, Memorial #30669440 for Eva Stedman.
32. Ancestry.com, 1870 U.S. Federal Census for Jonathan Stedman.
33. Ibid., Vermont, Vital Records, 1720-1908 for Mary O. Stedman.
34. Ibid., 1860 U.S. Federal Census for Henrietta Tabor; Ibid., New York, State Census, 1865 for Henrietta Tabor; Ibid., Vermont, Vital Records, 1720-1908 for Ella A. Tabor and Francis Stedman; Ibid., Taber/Tabor Family Tree for Henrietta Angel Taber.
35. Ibid., Vermont, Death Records, 1909-2008 for Ida Louise Bishop.
36. Fold3.com, Widow's Pension File for Jonathan Steadman.
37. Ancestry.com, 1880 U.S. Federal Census for Jonathan Steadman.
38. Ibid., Vermont, Vital Records, 1720-1908 for Jonathan Stedman.
39. Fold3.com, Widow's Pension Files for Jonathan Stedman.
40. Ancestry.com, Vermont, Vital Records, 1720-1908 for Mary Stedman.
41. Ibid., 1880 U.S. Federal Census for Henrietta Steadman.
42. Ibid., Rist Family Tree for Miamma L. Fuller; Ibid., 1880 U.S. Federal Census for Miammi Steadman.
43. Ibid., Veterans Schedules for Jowin W. and Francis Stedman.
44. Ibid., 1900 U.S. Federal Census for Henrietta A. Stedman.
45. Ibid., 1900 U.S. Federal Census for Irwin W. Stedman.
46. Ibid., 1910 U.S. Federal Census for Henrietta Stedman.
47. Ibid., 1910 U.S. Federal Census for Irvin W. Stedman.
48. Ibid., Vermont, Death Records, 1909-2008 for Francis Cullen Stedman and Miamma Fuller Stedman.
49. Ibid., 1920 U.S. Federal Census for Henrietta Stedman.
50. Fold3.com, Pension Files for Stedman, Francis C., image 26558241.
51. Ancestry.com, 1930 U.S. Federal Census for Henrietta Stedman.
52. Ibid., Death Records, 1909-2008 for Henrietta Angelie Steadman.
53. Ibid., 1920 U.S. Federal Census for Irvin S. Stedman.
54. Ibid., Vermont, Marriage Records, 1909-2008 for Moses A. Stedman and Nina McCabe.
55. Ibid., 1920 U.S. Federal Census for Irvin S. Stedman.
56. Fold3.com, Pension Files for Irwin W. Stedman, image 19542003.
57. Ancestry.com, Vermont, Death Records, 1909-2008 for Irwin Wisewell Stedman.
Courtesy of Bernie Noble.