Whittemore, Daniel Jr.
Age: 26, credited to Bristol, VT
Unit(s): 14th VT INF
Service: enl 9/8/62, m/i 10/21/62, Pvt, Co. G, 14th VT INF, m/o 7/30/63
See Legend for expansion of abbreviationsVITALS
Birth: 1826, New Haven, VT
Burial: Riverside Cemetery, New Haven, VT
Marker/Plot: Not recorded
Gravestone researcher/photographer: Alan Lathrop
Findagrave Memorial #: 22034840
Alias?: None noted
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)
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Riverside Cemetery, New Haven, VT
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Trying to trace the life and times of Daniel Whittemore Jr. was like trying to catch hold of a loose greased pig in a muddy pen. Not much there to grab ahold of. Just when you thought you had the bugger cornered and you latched on to him, he slipped through your grasp and was off again squealing in delight. For example, here's what happened when an attempt to nail down his date of birth was made: The web site, Vermont in the Civil War gave his DOB as 1826 in New Haven, Vermont; most family trees on ancestry.com said it was about 1830 in Massachusetts or 1832 in New Haven; the 1850 Federal Census said he was born about 1830 in Massachusetts; the 1860 Federal Census stated it was about 1835 in New Haven, Vermont; his marriage certificate to his first wife, Delia, said he was born about 1832 or 1836 in New Haven, Vermont; his death certificate stated his birthday was about 1832 in Vermont; according to his father's family trees in ancestry, his DOB was 1835 in New Haven, Vermont; and according to himself on his compiled service record, he was born about 1836 in New Haven, Vermont. With such a variety of choices to pick from, boiling it down to even a reasonable range of years was a challenge. And this was just the tip of the iceberg. You wouldn't believe how many Daniel Whittemores there are in just the New England area. There were at least three in the Middlebury-New Haven-Bristol area with the same name and two of those had similar birthdates. Usually, middle names help separate candidates from each other. None was ever found for either Daniel, Sr. or Daniel, Jr. Normally, certain public records will provide keys to identifying individuals. Many of these were missing for Daniel, Jr. and his immediate family. It couldn't even be determined with certainty how many wives Daniel, Jr.'s father had, let alone who they were and which children were fathered by Daniel, Sr. Other researchers of Daniel Whittemore showed a similar degree of frustration. Since they could not separate fact from fiction either, they threw every scrap of information they had found on Daniel Whittemore into one pot without concern for authenticity or accuracy of their placement of the data, thereby creating a greater level of bewilderment.
For example, all family trees examined for Daniel Whittemore born 1787 and living to 1872 in Spencer, Massachusetts (presumably Daniel Jr.'s father) was credited with having three wives: Fannie Prouty (1789-1843); Elizabeth B. Rowland (1800-1865); and Rachel Kellogg (1797-1882). A Fannie and Daniel Whittemore were married in 1815 in Spencer, Massachusetts. Together they had ten children between 1816 and 1833. Their marriage and all of the children were verified by primary source material. Fannie died of consumption in 1843 in Spencer, Massachusetts. Some family trees claimed that Daniel remarried in 1849 in Leicester, Massachusetts to one Elizabeth B. Rowland. Daniel was twenty-eight when he first married Fannie. He was listed as sixty-two when he married Elizabeth. No independent sources could be found to verify this second marriage in 1849. As for the third wife, Rachel Kellogg, no verification of that marriage could be found either. However, she did appear on the 1850 Federal Census as a fifty-two year old wife to a sixty-three year old day laborer named Daniel Whittemore. Her age matched someone who was born about 1798. This Daniel came from Massachusetts and his age placed his birth year as about 1787, the same year Daniel, Jr.'s father was supposed to have been born. This Daniel and Rachel had a passle of children, many of them matching the names of Daniel, Jr's siblings. In fact, the list of children on the 1850 census included another Daniel, age twenty which meant he was born circa 1830, one of the dates offered for the Daniel Whittemore, Jr. who served as a private in Company G of the Fourteenth Vermont Regiment. Unfortunately, the same list of household members in the 1850 Federal Census also included two suspicious names: one never seen before in connection the Whittemore family focused on in this study. There was a five year old Mary Ann Whittemore listed who was a complete unknown. And then there was Lucy Ann Whittemore. Daniel, Sr. had a sister by that name and she would have been the same age (28) having been born around 1822. Again, the connection, if there was any, between Lucy Ann, Daniel, Sr. and Jr. could not be verified from other primary documents. Mary Ann was someone completely new and unexpected and never appeared on any tentative list of siblings for Daniel, Jr. that was compiled.
Then there was one more fly in the soup that further called into question the reliability of any sibling information collected on Daniel, Jr. of the Fourteenth Vermont and just how many wives his father actually had. Remember that Senior's first wife supposedly died in 1843. So, if true, there could not have been any more of her children born after that date. The record showed that Senior's marriage to Elizabeth occurred in 1849 and all the family trees indicated that they had no children of their own making. Elizabeth was supposed to have died in 1865, so that would have ended any chances for children from that marriage. And, if we looked at the dates of birth suggested for Rachel's children in the public records, it was soon obvious that many of them were born before the death date of Fannie Prouty, Daniel, Sr.'s supposed first wife. Not a single proposed date of birth for Junior out of the many mentioned in the beginning of this article, was post-1843. If Junior's father had two wives before Rachel, they had to be married after 1865 when Elizabeth died. There are only two indisputable facts about Daniel, Jr.'s family background that can not be contested: one, his father's name was Daniel Whittemore for there was no other way for him to be a "Junior"; two, his biological mother was Rachel Kellogg because it said so on three marriage certificates and one death certificate. All the other information collected on the Whittemore family history had to be considered unreliable due to the fact that other primary source material could not be found to collaborate the information as accurate.
So, we will have to content ourselves, at least for now, with the facts we have accumulated on Daniel Whittemore, Jr.'s life that were capable of verification. His story began in August, 1861. The American Civil War had erupted in April of the same year. In July, 1861, the first major clash of the Titans had occurred along a lazy, little stream in Maryland called by the North as Bull Run. This initial full scale battle had been a disastrous experience for the Union Army. Soundly beaten by a far more determined adversary, the panicked and demoralized Yankees blindly fleeing to the safety of the Washington defenses, were a clear indicator that this conflict was going to be a long, drawn out and very bloody affair; not the picnic that the over-confidant Northerners expected it to be.
And in the middle of all this turmoil, Daniel, Jr. decided to get married. Life really did just go on. The long time resident of New Haven, Vermont had met a newly arrived Canadian immigrant named Delia Bushey and had fallen in love. She had been born about 1843 (1843-1929) in Canada, East the daughter of Moses Bushey (1806-1866) and Delia Johnson (1832-?). She was about eighteen at the time of her marriage to Daniel who was about twenty-nine. In 1860, Daniel had been living with a New Haven family named Austin (Eli and Charlotte) and had been employed as a farm laborer on Eli's prosperous $5,500 enterprise. Exactly one year later, still able to be called a newly wed, Daniel determined to become part of the great adventure going on in the South. On his enlistment papers, he claimed to be a twenty-six year old farmer from New Haven. He stood an average five feet seven and one quarter inches tall. His complexion was dark as you would expect from a farm hand working outside all the time. He had black hair and blue eyes. He claimed to have been born in Vermont. With the help of N.F. Ormsbee in Bristol on September 1, 1862 civilian Whittemore became Private Whittemore of Company G, Fourteenth Vermont Infantry. He reported to Brattleboro, Vermont on October 21, 1862 to be dutifully mustered-in the United States Army for nine months.
The Fourteenth Vermont only existed for a short time (they were "Nine Months" men), but they saw hard service during their term of enlistment. At first, the Regiment was attached to those units making up the defenses around Washington, D.C. After December 11, 1862, the Fourteenth was placed on guard duty in and around Fairfax Court House where it was engaged in the repulse of Jeb Stuart's cavalry raid. From March to June, 1863, the Vermonters were stationed at Wolf Run Shoals along with other Vermont troops to guard the vital river ford on the Occoquan River. On the 25th of June, the Fourteenth was attached to the Third Division of the First Corps and began its march northward towards Gettysburg. It was a grueling march sometimes covering twenty miles a day for consecutive days at a time. Over two hundred of the Regiment were forced to drop out before ever reaching Gettysburg because they could not keep up the pace. The Fourteenth arrived at Gettysburg too late to take part in the first day's action. It bivouacked in a wheat field to the left of Cemetery Ridge. Late on the second day, the Regiment was called into action to help the Thirteenth Vermont repel an attack by General A.P. Hill on the left center of the Union line. After the tremendous opening cannonade of July 3, during which several men of the Fourteenth were killed by an explosion of a battery caisson, the left flank of Pickett's long grey line could be seen advancing towards the concealed Vermonters. At less than one hundred yards distance from the enemy, the men of the Fourteenth rose at command and delivered a devastating volley into the Confederate columns. The Thirteenth and Sixteenth changed fronts and added their fire to that of the Fourteenth. The result was that Pickett's right wing was caught and crushed. After the main charge was halted and Pickett's divisions were streaming back towards Seminary Ridge, four companies of the Fourteenth, A, F, D, and I, captured most of Confederate General Wilcox's Brigade as prisoners. This independent action taken by the Vermont troops, including Charles W. Spaulding, was credited by the Union high command as being crucial to the turning of Pickett's Charge. The Fourteenth was also part of the Union's pursuit of Lee's forces following the three day battle. It was during this pursuit that, on July 18, 1863, the Fourteenth was released and sent home. The Fourteenth was mustered-out on July 30, 1863.
For the rest of 1862, Private Whittemore, Jr. was fit and present for duty as the Fourteenth learned the arts of being a soldier while doing garrison duty in the ring of defensive forts installed to protect the nation's capitol. Private Whittemore, Jr. even got to participate in the futile attempt by the Confederate cavalryman, J.E.B. Stuart to attack the city of Washington. Halfway through April of 1863, Private Whittemore, Jr. took sick and was sent to the General Hospital on Wolfe Street in Alexandria, Virginia. He was admitted around April 15, 1863. He was confined to the hospital for the rest of April and the next two months. Prior to the Fourteenth's discharge from the service July 30, 1863, Private Whittemore, Jr. was "rejected on medical examination" while still a patient at the General Hospital on Wolfe Street in Alexandria. As soon as everything was squared away with the Government, Mr. Whittemore was shipped off for Vermont with the rest of the "Nine Months" men. He must have carried with him some amount of regret for he had missed his greatest opportunity for fame and glory at Gettysburg that forever made the men of the Fourteenth heroes for the ages. While Daniel was recuperating in the Virginia hospital, his tent mates were facing the right flank of the famous Pickett's Charge on the field of battle at a little Pennsylvania town. This one and only chance to go home a hero, covered with glory and fame may be why Daniel came home such an angry, depressed man. Daniel, Jr.'s post-war years were filled with more disappointments and bitterness. He was a disturbed man citizen.
Delia had patiently waited for her husband to return to New Haven so they could resume their married life together. Daniel went back to working on other people's farms as a hired man. By early 1864, Delia was pregnant with her first child. She delivered a son on November 25, 1864 in Bristol. Once the children started coming, they came with frequent regularity. Unfortunately, not all the births were occasions for celebration. On September 26, 1866, a still born male child was delivered to the Whittemores in Bristol. No cause for the child's death was listed on the death certificate. Two years later, on November 28, 1868 a third child - this time a girl - was born to Delia and Daniel, Jr. Her name was Wilma Ardella and she, too, was born in Bristol.
The 1870 U.S. Federal Census painted a bleak picture of the Whittemore's financial status. There were five of them living in a household whose total worth was listed at $100. Daniel, Jr. was about thirty-five and was head of household; Delia, his wife, was twenty-four; Frank, their only surviving son, was five; Wilma, their only daughter, was one; and then there was Rachel, seventy-four who was Daniel, Jr.'s mother. Daniel was trying to support them all on whatever he could earn being a hired hand on someone's farm in the New Haven-Bristol area. Delia "kept house" and cared for little Wilma with Rachel's help. Five year old Frank attended school when in session. They were a typical, cozy small town family in a rural village community. And they were dirt poor. How happy they were as a family was unknown. But if other families in similar circumstances then and now can shed any light on the subject, their abject poverty could only have led to a miserable existence. Family members, young and old, must have been very distressed and very depressed considering their entire estate's value was a measly $100. As the decade of the 1870s deepened,
hints as to how bad the situation in the home of the Whittemore family began to emerge into the public light. According to Addison County District Court records, in mid-June of 1876, Delia filed for divorce from Daniel Whittemore. The Middlebury Register reported June 17 that Delia Bushey was granted a divorce from Daniel Whittemore for "intolerable severity". Intolerable severity can mean a lot of things. At the minimum, it implied some sort of abuse, either verbal, physical or both. More than likely, Daniel's anger was not only directed at his wife. It probably was directed at the children as well since the court also awarded custody of the "girl" to the plaintiff. It was interesting to note that the court decision made no mention of the twelve year old son that Delia and Daniel, Jr. shared. They only seemed concerned about the welfare of the eight year old Wilma. Delia remained divorced only a month before she remarried. On the third of July in New Haven, she married for the second time. Her new husband was a blacksmith from Bristol named Charles Clapper (1841-1928). Delia was his wife for the rest of her lifetime. As for Frank and Wilma, they went with their mother and became, at least for the 1880 Federal Census, newly appointed Clappers. Charles brought children of his own to his second marriage. The Clappers were a blended family made up of Clappers and Whittemores.
Daniel, Jr., now around fifty, was single and boarding with a widow woman named Maria Barnard in New Haven. He was still making a living being a hired hand on local farms. However, the 1880 Federal Census stated that he was working only six months in the last year. The reason appeared to stem from the fact that he had applied for an invalid pension around September 19, 1879 which he had been granted by the Pension Department Early in 1889, news articles in the local papers began to mention Daniel Whittemore more and more frequently and in less and less flattering terms. The first public mention of Daniel, Jr. appeared in January of 1889. "Daniel Whittemore was fined $5 and costs, amounting to nearly $20 last week for selling cider." Bristol was becoming a dry town, so the selling of spirits was illegal there. This incident sparked a flurry of notations citing how Daniel Whittemore, Jr. was gradually slipping deeper and deeper into a darker and darker frame of mind. The only positive news reported in connection with Daniel, Jr. in all of 1890 was mention of him about to receive about $1,700 in back pay from the Federal Government for his military service. Even that stroke of good fortune was a double-edged sword in his future.
That was a lot of money in 1890 - nearly six years worth of annual salary for a farm worker like Daniel. It could have set him up financially very well for a long time if he spent it wisely. But in Daniel's case, the money seemed to be the root of more evil in his life than good. By the fall of 1890, the local newspapers were again carrying negative reports about Daniel, Jr. In September, The Burlington Free Press was printing "The attempt to have a guardian appointed for Daniel Whittemore proved a failure, Judge J.D. Smith holding that Whittemore was all right." Who was the concerned party that petitioned the court to declare Daniel incompetent to manage his own affairs without supervision was never disclosed. Nor did the article even hint at the reasons for concern. But the article did mention that he had recently received nearly $1,800 in back pay for wearing the blue implying that the large payment was somehow responsible for the court petition for guardianship. A month later, another article in the papers suggested some reasons as to the third parties' concern. The Bristol court log reported that "Daniel Whittemore, Frank Buttler and Solon Prince were prominent actors in the drama that took place before Justice Dunshee Monday. Liquor caused all the trouble." By the end of the same month, the police were busy again dealing with Daniel's public intoxication: "Daniel Whittemore, Abe Shepherd, Solon Prince and Frank Buttler were fined the usual amounts for getting drunk. The two latter paid an additional fines for abusing a horse. The Commercial House and Eli Hall were fined for furnishing." It seemed that Solon Prince and Frank Butler had forged a close relationship with Daniel - they had become drinking buddies apparently. More than likely, these two were way too willing to help Daniel drink up his back pay.
While Daniel, Jr. was getting all this news coverage for being in an alcoholic stupor in public places, he was making advances on the domestic front as well. On September 8, 1890, Daniel remarried. His second wife was a widow woman named Maria Barnard (Moulton) with whom he had been living for the past ten years. She was sixty and Daniel was sixty-two. The newly weds lived in New Haven. In 1890, the Government conducted a special survey of all military personnel in addition to the regular Federal Census. It was done mostly to verify enlistments and disabilities for pension purposes. Of course, Daniel made it onto this schedule. His one year term of service was documented as a Private in Company G of the Fourteenth Vermont Infantry and his residence was noted as New Haven Mills. Something else was revealed on the form. He had suffered from sunstroke while in the military which may be what put him in the hospital in April, 1863 and caused him to miss out on the action at Gettysburg on the third day of the battle when Pickett conducted his suicidal charge on the Union's center at Cemetery Ridge. This action and the Fourteenth's part in smashing the famous charge of the Confederacy's Highwater Mark of the war made instant heroes of every jack man present on the field and engaged in the action that day. Private Whittemore was in a bed in a hospital ward that day in Alexandria, Virginia. At the very least, it may have been the reason he used for applying for a pension. Not being able to work in the sun would have been a serious drawback to a farmer trying to earn a living by working outdoors all day.
As the 1900s approached, an old problem resurfaced for Daniel. In the gossip column of the local newspaper, The Enterprise and Vermonter, it was reported that "L.D. Barnard appeared before Justice H.P. Sherwin Friday to answer to the charge of assaulting Daniel Whittemore. After hearing the evidence the court decided that the State had failed to prove their case." It was believed that L.D. Barnard was related to Maria Barnard whom Daniel Whittemore married in 1890 and lost to pneumonia on June 30, 1900. This alleged physical confrontation occurred just five months previous to her death and may have had something to do with it. The newspapers did not elaborate on the details of the supposed assault. But it did conjure up memories of another time when Daniel, Jr. was involved in accusations of committing violence against others.
Six years later, Daniel, Jr. got his name in the papers for the last time. He passed away from "heart dilatation" on October 9, 1906. He was widowed and reported to be seventy-four years of age. The papers said he was at the home of Edward O'Bryan and wife, Betsey (Whittemore, Daniel, Jr.'s aunt) in South Bristol. They reported him to be seventy years old. The funeral services were also held at the home of the O'Bryans the following Thursday. Daniel, Jr. was put to rest in New Haven Mills.
NOTESCourtesy of Bernie Noble.
1. www.ancestry.com, Shepherd, Gallipo/Crowe, Evans/Fawcett Family Trees for Daniel Whittemore.
2. Ibid., 1850 U.S. Federal Census for Daniel Whittemore.
3. Ibid., Clapper Family Tree for Delia Bushey.
4. Ibid., Vermont, Vital Records, 1720-1908, Marriage for Bushee, Delia.
5. Ibid., 1860 U.S. Federal Census for Daniel Whittemore.
6. www.fold3.com, Compiled Service Records of Union Soldiers Who Served in Organizations From the State of Vermont, p. 3, image 312310109. Hereinafter referred to as Compiled Service Record.
7. Ibid., Compiled Service Record, p. 4, image 312310110.
8. www.ancestry.com, U.S., American Civil War Regiments, 1861-1866, 14th Infantry Regiment Vermont.
9. www.fold3.com, Compiled Service Record, pp. 9 & 10, images 312310120 & ...122.
10. Ibid., Compiled Service Record, pp. 11, 13 and 4, images 312310124. ...127 and ...110.
11. www.ancestry.com, Birth, Vermont, Vital Records, 1720-1908 for Whittemore, Franklin Daniel.
12. www.familysearch.org, Vermont, Vital Records, 1760-1954 for Whittemore.
13. www.ancestry.com, Vermont, Vital Records, 1909-2008, Death for Mrs. Wilma Ardella Quimby.
14. Ibid., 1870 U.S. Federal Census for Daniel Whittemore.
15. www.newspapers.com, Middlebury Register, Sat., Jun. 17, 1876.
16. www.ancestry.com, Vermont, Vital Records, Marriage for Whittemore, Delia.
17. Ibid., 1880 U.S. Federal Census for Franklin Clapper.
18. Ibid., for Dan Whittemore.
19. www.familsearch.org, United States General Index To Pension Files, 1861-1954 for Whittemore, Daniel.
20. www.newspapers.com, The Burlington Free Press, Fri., Jan. 18, 1889.
21. Ibid., Bristol Herald, Thu., May 22, 1890.
22. Ibid., The Burlington Free Press, Tue., Sep. 2, 1890.
23. Ibid., The Burlington Free Press, Wed., Oct. 29, 1890.
24. Ibid., Middlebury Register, Fri., Oct. 31, 1890.
25. www.ancestry.com, Vermont, Vital Records, 1720-1908, Marriage for Whittemore, Daniel and Ibid., for Barnard, Maria (Moulton).
26. Ibid., 1890 Veterans' Special Schedules for Daniel Whittemore.
27. www.newspapers.com, The Enterprise and Vermonter, Fri., Nov. 9, 1900.
28. www.ancestry.com, Vermont, Vital Records, 1720-1908 for Maria A. Whittemore.
29. Ibid., Vermont Vital Records, 1720-1908, Death for Whittemore, Daniel.
30. www.newspapers.com, Bristol Herald, Thu., Oct. 16, 1906.
31. Ibid., The Burlington Free Press, Fri., Oct. 12, 1906.