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11th Vermont Infantry
Biography

John Milo
Eleventh & Thirteenth Infantry Regiments

John Mollo aka John Milo was actually named Theophile Malo (Theophile Ayet-Malo/Theophile Maleau). He was born in the approx. year of 1816 in Varennes, Que. Canada. His father's name was Benjamin. John could not read or write. He signed all important documents with an X mark.

John was known as "Theophile" up until the time that he volunteered for and enlisted in Vermont's Volunteers, 13th Infantry Regiment, Co. K (Second Brigade) as a Private. He enlisted on 9/11/1862 in Highgate for a term of 9 months. He was living in Swanton at the time with his wife, Marie Plouffe (Mary Ploof) and 9 of the 10 children he would father. It was at some point during the registering process that Theophile became known as "John." He mustered in on 10/10/1862. John was described as being 5 foot 4 inches tall, with having black hair, black eyes, and a dark complexion. It was recorded he was 47 at the time of his enlistment. (Note: In Nov. of 1863, John reenlisted, not in Highgate as he previously had done but rather the second time in Northfield, into the First Heavy Artillery, 11th Vermont Volunteers, Co. K, (First Brigade) and at that time he was listed as being age 45)

Theophile was a farmer and a laborer. After leaving Canada and arriving in Vermont, he married Marie Plouffe (aka Mary Ploof) in Franklin, VT. on June 10, 1844. His wife Marie was born in Beloeil, Que. Canada on March 28, 1826, but her family was living in Franklin, VT. when she married Theophile. They were married by Elder Peter Chase, V.D. M. and the Clerk in Franklin recorded the grooms name as Thespidd Maloit/as well as Theofield Mora, both in error.

These are the children that Theophile and Marie had:

  • Celina Malo, aka Salina Malo, born in Franklin, VT. on July 2,1845, baptised in Henryville, Que. Canada, on September 28,1845;
  • Theophilus Malo born on September 15, 1847, in Franklin, VT. and baptised on April 18, 1848, in St. Albans, VT. at St. Mary's Parish;
  • Maria Malo born in Franklin, VT. on November 16, 1849, and baptised the same day on November 16, 1849, in St. Albans, VT. at the St. Mary's Parish;
  • Charles Malo born on June 11, 1851, in Franklin, VT. and baptised on June 15 at the Notre Dame des Anges Church of Stanbridge, Que. Canada;
  • Marie Malo born on Dec. 22, 1853 in Swanton, VT. and baptised on Jan. 25, 1864 in Burlington, VT. at the St. Joseph Church;
  • Charles Malo born in March of 1855-1856 in Swanton, VT;
  • Matilda Malo born in 1858-1859;
  • Helena Maleau born in Swanton, VT. on July 4,1860 and baptised on December 3,1860 in Swanton, VT. at the Church of the Nativity;
  • Marie Esther Malo, born on December 6,1862 in Swanton, VT. and baptised on December 7, 1862, in Swanton, VT. at the Church of the Nativity.

Records also show that Theophile's wife, Marie Plouffe, was the Godmother to a child of a good friend of John's named Jeremiah Vincelette. Jeremiah was none other than Jeremiah Vancellett, who also served in the 13th Infantry Regiment, Co. K. with John. After the Civil War, another daughter was born in the approx. year of 1868 to John and Mary, and they named her Celina Malo/Milo. She was born around the area of Bethel, VT. It was this daughter, Celina Milo Vevier, who it turned out would have the one and only original Civil War Discharge paper in her possession that originally belonged to her father, John Milo.

During John's 9 month stint in the 13th Regiment, John fought in was the infamous battle at Gettysburg. After mustering out on 7/21/63, John returned to his family in Swanton, VT. Two months later in September, his eldest child Celina (Salina) was married in Swanton. Again, two months after that on Nov. 14, 1863 in Northfield, VT. the son Theophile Malo, Jr., enlisted under the name of John Milo, Jr., and just 5 days later on Nov. 19, 1863, Theophile Malo, Sr., reenlisted for a term of 3 years, under the name of John Milo. It appears the bounty paid for reenlistment in Northfield was greater at that time than it was in Swanton. John Milo mustered in at Brattleboro, VT. on Dec. 1, 1863 as a Private. Both Father and Son served together in Co. K, 1st Heavy Artillery of the 11th Regiment for the Vermont Volunteers until mustering out on August 25, 1865. (see both John Milo and John Milo, Jr., biography's for the 1st Heavy Artillery, 11th Regiment, Co. K)

On March 2nd, 1864, both John and his son, John, Jr., disappeared from Post Pollux at Fort Totten, DC where they were stationed at the time. They were apprehended on Laurel Street and brought back to Fort Totten two days later on March 4, 1864. John was charged as a deserter and spent May and June at the Old Capital Prison. It was said that he owed the Govt. $30.00 for the charge of desertion. One will never know if the Son deserted first and the Father went after him to retrieve him, or if the desertion by both Father and Son was of a mutual agreement.

On Dec. 12, 1864, John became very ill with what was later described as "Rheumatism from exposure," and was hospitalized at the U.S. A. Depot Field Hospital, 6 Army Corps, at City Point, Virginia. He stayed in the hospital from Dec. 12.1864 to the end of Feb. 1865. John served his remaining time in the Army with his Co. and he mustered out on August 25, 1865, with an honorable discharge.

Later in a sworn affidavit on August 25, 1895, a former Lieutenant who served with John named Alvan G. Fleury, from Charlotte, Michigan, gave his sworn statement as follows: That on Dec. 8th, 1864, while at the battle of Strasburg, VA. he yelled "charge" at the soldiers to signal for them to run towards the enemies batteries, and as they started on their run, John collapsed on the ground, and all the threats and commands from Lt. Fleury could not get John to move any further. John was complaining that his hips and feet were in great pain. The Lieutenant stated that John was always sick after that. (Four days later, on Dec. 12, 1864, John was hospitalized at the U.S. A. Depot Field Hospital, 6 Army Corps, at City Point, Virginia.) Another affidavit by his son, John Milo, Jr., on Nov. 29, 1887, stated that his father became ill during the Battle of Cold Harbor, in Cold Harbor, VA. It was said that he was also treated at a hospital near Cedar Creek, VA. Again, towards the end of his service and while at Ft. Foote, MD. John contracted "fever and ague." Other affidavits from people who knew him before and after the war attested to the fact that John was never the same physically after the war and that his body became "broken down from disease" and that it was of a permanent nature and not from any vicious habits.

John mustered out on August 25, 1865, in Washington, DC (Ft. Foote, MD.) After the War, Theophile kept his name as John Milo, and never used his name "Theophile Malo" ever again. It appears John caught the travel/exploration bug from his time spent in the Army because after his discharge, he and his family began their migration trek that would take them to other towns further southeast in Vermont, such as the areas around Bethel, Barnard, Woodstock, Hartland, Windsor, and then over into New Hampshire to towns and areas such as Lyme, Rummey, and then down into Massachusetts to towns such as Montague, South Hadley, Holyoke, and then down into CT.

John was the true patriarch of the Malo/Milo family. Everywhere that he moved, it seemed that many of his grown children would also pick up with their own growing families and move to the same towns and areas with him, and at times, even living in the same house. John died on September 24, 1895, of "old age." His age at the time of his death was listed as being 87, but this is believed to have been a stretch of the truth. He was probably more likely close to being 80 years old at the time of his death. He was buried in Millers Falls, MA. at the Highland Cemetery.

(Directions: In MA. off of 91 go to RT. 2 east, Boston Exit, going towards Millers Falls go over French King Bridge, continue to 1st exit on the right, which is River Road. Go to the very end of River Road and take a right on to Pratt Street. Go down a slight hill across a bridge and verge off to your left, then go to Bridge Street, a 4 corner stop. Go right at the 4 corner stop and go up a long graded hill. Stay on that road for another mile. Highland Cemetery will be on your left. This is also the road to Turners Falls. There are 3 entrances. Enter in at the first entrance and turn to your left after you are in. Go down a paved road and turn to your right. Park under the pine trees. His grave is to the left, close to the center road, in the Milo-and-Trumble grave site.)

John has a Civil War headstone that is very faded but in fairly good condition considering how old it is. It is in better shape than his son's, John L. Milo, Jr. Buried with John but with no additional headstones, are his daughter Mary Milo Lapine Lenois, who died on December 30, 1899, in Montague, and also his wife, Mary Ploof (Marie Plouffe) who died on January 12.1903 in Rockville, CT. After his wife died, her body was removed and taken to Millers Falls, MA. to be buried with her husband. The last date that Mary received a widows pension from the Govt. for John's service in the Army, was on Jan. 4th, 1903, just 8 days before she died, for the amount of $8.00.

John was quite the character and the glue that held the Malo/Milo family together. After his passing, his children and their families began to spread out more and go their separate ways. Many of the Milo's lived in Stafford Springs, Windsor, Hartford, Enfield, Danbury, Southbury and Bridgeport, all Towns in CT. as well as Springfield, and Northhampton, MA. and Hartland/Four Corners, VT.


Contributed by Carol Milo Morgan, South Bend, Indiana, John Milo's 2nd-great-granddaughter.