THEIR GOLDEN WEDDING
HOLYOKE VETERAN AND WIFE
Mr. and Mrs. Philander A. Streeter remembered on Anniversary
- A Civil War Record
Mr. and Mrs. Philander A. Streeter celebrated their golden wedding anniversary yesterday at their home, 2183 Northampton Street, Holyoke. Four generations of the family was represented in the celebration and the occasion was a joyous one. The couple kept open house from 2 to 5 in the afternoon and also received their friends from 7 to 10 last evening. The home was very appropriately decorated for the occasion, the national colors being prominently displayed in the various rooms.
Mr. and Mrs. Streeter have resided in Holyoke for the past 45 years coming here in 1871. They were married in Titusville, Duchess County, New York, December 5, 1866, by Rev William A. Cornell, pastor of the Reformed Protestant Dutch Church. It was a double ring wedding of sisters, Mrs. Streeter's sister, Clara Tracy, being wedded at the same time to Charles H. Wilson, who resides in Holyoke. Mrs. Wilson died some years ago. Mrs. Streeter's maiden name was Nettie M. Tracy.
Mrs. Streeter was born in Delhi, Delaware County, N.Y., February 2, 1845, and will be 72 on her next birthday. She comes of true American ancestry, her great great-grandfather, on her mother's side, Benjamin Rush, being one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. Mrs. Streeter has three sisters, Mrs. C. C. Hastings, Mrs. J. A. Dakin and Miss Marie Tracy all of Holyoke, and four brothers, Clarence H. Tracy of Hartford, and C. C. Tracy, DeWitt Tracy and William W. Tracy, all of Brooklyn, New York.
Mr. Streeter was born in Vernon, Vt., September 15, 1840 and is now over 76 years of age. His life has been interesting in many ways and principally in that he holds the distinction of being the first "Yankee" to enter Libby prison as a prisoner of war. He served through the civil war and participated in some of the great battles, first at Bull Run, in the Wilderness and again before Richmond. He was employed for more than 30 years as master mechanic at the old Mount Tom paper mill, now the Parsons division of the American Writing Paper Company. Mr. Streeter's grandfather, Uriah B. Green, served as a colonel in the war of 1812.
Three children, all sons, were born to them, but only two are living, Herbert E. and Austin T. Streeter, both of Springfield. Oscar A. Streeter, the third son, an engineer on the Boston and Albany Railroad, was killed in 1905. Austin T. is at present an engineer on the Boston and Maine Raolroad. Mr. and Mrs. Streeter have been in the affairs of the local patriotic societies for years. Mrs. Streeter has been the moving spirit in the woman's relief corps and has been honored with every office within the gift of the association. She also has held several state offices. Mr. Streeter is past commander of the [Kilpatrick] post [#71] of the Grand Army [of the Republic].
The couple received many beautiful gifts during the day, including a number of gold pieces. The gifts of gold were from relatives, the George E. McClellan Camp, Sons of Veterans, and also Mrs. Alice M. Goddard, past department commander of the Woman's Relief Corps.
When the civil war broke out Mr. Streeter was working at the carriage business in Brattleboro, Vt. His employer vainly endeavored to dissuade him from enlisting. In June of 1861 he was mustered in, joining Co. C of the 2nd Vermont volunteers. His was the first Union regiment to pass through the streets of Baltimore after the bloody passage of the 6th Massachusetts through that city. Mr. Streeter was captured at the first battle of Bull Run with four other troopers who had stopped to carry a wounded comrade off the field. [Ed note: probably Charles B. Rice of Brattleboro. They were then taken to Manassas Junction and shipped in freight cars to Richmond. They were then taken to Libby prison. The first consignment of the hated "Yanks" were addressed rather scornfully and the women were even worse that the men in abusive language. The men were lined up and Mr Streeter at the head of the procession marched into the grim old prison. He was in the prison five months and 14 days, being then exchanged and sent North along with a lot of others. In that time he dropped in weight from 165 pounds to less than 100 pounds.
While in the prison Mr. Streeter carved from the bones that accompanied their rations various little rings and other knickknacks which he still keeps along with the last ration of hard tack which was served out at the prison. He also has a large collection of personal relics --- the coat, cartridge box, blouse, cap cover, etc., that he wore while in the war. These priceless treasures were exhibited to the guests yesterday.
After a furlough in which he recovered his health in some measure, Mr. Streeter again went to the front and with his company saw hard service in the second battle of Bull Run in the battles of the Wilderness and before Richmond. A spent bullet grazed his cheek; he had a bullet pass through his blouse, but otherwise escaped injury. His canteen, still coated with Virginia mud, is another relic. The last drink that was taken out of it was given to a badly-wounded rebel.
Source: Springfield Republican Newspaper Dec 6, 1916.
Research indicates that Charles B. Rice was severely wounded in the legs and was a Sgt in Co. C. He, along with Philander Streeter, was captured near a field hospital in the vicinity of Sudley Springs Church at Bull Run Creek, July 23, 1861. There were 31 2nd Vermonters captured by units of Col. J.E.B. Stuart's 1st VA Cavalry Regiment.
Article contributed by Don Streeter, Hamstead, NH, Philander Streeter's great-grandson, and grandson of Austin T. Streeter.