Joseph Palmer.

Necrology of alumni of Harvard college, 1851-52 to 1862-63 online

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itself, he attended the meetings in connection with the death of
John Brown, held in December, 1860, where he remained
through the day, despite the insults of a vulgar and excited mob,
and showed then, and on subsequent occasions, his determina
tion, at all personal risks, to protect freedom of discussion, and,
as he said, " to give fair play." With these characteristics, it
need hardly be said that he responded to the first call of his
country for defenders in the field with a deep and earnest en
thusiasm. Already, in anticipation of such a call, he had been
devoting himself to the practice and study of military tactics as
a member of a drill-club, and had shown his superior fitness for
the duties of a soldier. With his friends Dwight and Curtis,
he worked zealously in organizing the Second Regiment of
Massachusetts Volunteers, since so distinguished for its disci
pline, valor, and sacrifices ; and, with his friend and lieutenant,
Henry Higginson, recruited the company placed under his com
mand. His regiment left Boston on the 8th of July, 1861.
Its subsequent career is part of the history of the country. In
all its fortunes, whether successful or adverse, Capt. Savage
bore a distinguished part. During fourteen months of his la
borious service, he never asked a furlough ; nor was he ever
absent from his post, except when suffering from a fever con
tracted on picket-duty on the Potomac. The men under his
command were noted for their orderly conduct, as well as for
their endurance and unflinching courage in all the trials of camp
and march and battle-field. With a heart as tender as it was
brave, his profession served to bring out more distinctly the gentle


and generous qualities, which, in times of peace, had made him so
dear to his kindred and friends. This union of gentleness with
the sterner traits of character is illustrated by the incident, that
in the Shenandoah campaign, while pursuing a squad of rebel
cavalry who had fired on our pickets, he snatched from the
ground the first flower of spring, a humble hepatica, as it
attracted his attention in the dry oak-leaves, not relaxing for an
instant his eager chase. Of his tender thoughtfulness , what
more touching evidence could be given than his offering of roses
to the dying German bugler of the New- York Eighth, at Win
chester, accompanied by kind words in the language that
recalled his fatherland?

The following tribute to Col. Savage s worth as a patriot and
soldier is copied from the "Boston Daily Advertiser," to which
it was contributed by Col. Samuel M. Quincy, soon after the
news of Col. Savage s death :

" Of Col. Savage s life previous to the war, of the services of the
regiment to which he belonged, and the manner of his death, others
have written. It is my desire simply to bear witness to the estima
tion in which his character was held, and the appreciation which it
received among his fellow-officers. He was universally acknowledged
to have entered the service simply and entirely from his sense of duty,
and conviction of right. With others, although patriotism was,
beyond doubt, the underlying motive, still each man was conscious of
a variety of inducements and reasons which influenced his final deci
sion. Not so with Savage : the cause of freedom and right was to
be fought for ; and, beyond that, he never thought of looking. For
his character, as it was developed and brought to our notice by the
varied duties and experiences of the campaign, the feeling of admira
tion was universal. To an almost feminine gentleness and amiability
he joined the indomitable energy and resolution which became the
man. When, before the regiment had yet been in action, officers
around their camp- or picket- fires at night would discuss its probable
behavior, there was one universal sentiment ; viz., that Jim Savage,
at least, would fight, as it was once expressed, like Mr. Valiant-for-
Truth, until his sword clove to his hand : and this prediction he well
fulfilled at Newtown, Winchester, and Cedar Mountain ; on which
last disastrous field he fell, struck by two bullets. As he lay on the

1862-63.] OF HARVARD COLLEGE. 503

field, he was found by Capt. Russell, whom he earnestly requested not
to remain, but to save himself; which request, it is needless to say,
that officer disregarded, though at the expense of his own safety.
Col. Savage was taken to Chariottesville, where it is gratifying to
think that he found friends, and where, on the 22d of October, 1862,
his mortal frame had no longer strength to retain the soul of one of
the bravest Christian gentlemen that ever drew sword for the right
since the world began. He was the only man ever known to the
writer who seemed fully to observe the title given to the model of
French knighthood, Chevalier sans pcur et sans reproche"

1856. Lieut. STEPHEN GEORGE PERKINS was killed in
the battle at Cedar Mountain, Ya. , 9 August, 1862, at the age
of 26 years. He was son of Stephen H. and Sarah S. (Sullivan)
Perkins, and was born in Boston, 18 September, 1835. He
was fitted for college partly by Thomas Gamaliel Bradford
(H.C. 1822), and partly by William Parsons Atkinson (H.C.
1838). After graduation he travelled in Europe, and returned
in October, 1857. He joined the Law School in Cambridge at
the March term in 1858 ; and joined the Scientific School in
September, 1859, as a student in mathematics ; where he re
mained until he resolved to devote his services to aid in the
preservation of the Union. He received a commission as
second-lieutenant in Company H, of the Second Regiment,
under Col. George H. Gordon ; where he remained, discharging
his duty with great ardor, until his life was sacrificed in defend
ing the flag which was so dear to him.

1857. Capt. HOWARD DWIGHT was killed by guerillas
7 May, 1863, at Courtableau, on the Mississippi River, while
bearing despatches from his brother, Gen. Dwight, to whose
staff he was attached, to Gen. Banks. He was son of Wil
liam (H.C. 1825) and Elizabeth Amelia (White) Dwight,
and was born in Springfield, Mass., 29 October, 1837. He
was fitted for college at Phillips Academy, Exeter, N.H. After
graduating, he went to the West, where he was engaged in
business when the war broke out. He immediately enlisted,
and devoted what proved to be the remainder of his life to the
service of his country. The manner of his death is thus de-


scribed in a New-Orleans paper : " He left the headquarters of
his brother on the morning of the 4th ; and, proceeding rapidly
along the road from Alexandria to Franklin, on reaching
Courtableau, he was hailed by three rebel guerillas. He stopped,
and asked them who they were ; when they presented their
revolvers, and asked him to dismount. As there were three to
one, and the captain was unarmed, he was forced to comply ;
remarking, I cannot help myself, and therefore surrender.
But the heartless representatives of the chivalry retorted, We
don t want a prisoner : and they immediately fired two shots at
him, one of which took effect in his leg ; but the other, which
proved mortal, passed through his head. The guerillas then
left him lying on the road ; but the body was watched over by a
small boy who had witnessed the cold-blooded transaction,
and who afterwards related the circumstances to some of Gen.
Dwight s cavalry which happened to pass that way soon after,
and found the body."

His genial social qualities, his unflinching bravery, and his
sterling character, had endeared him to his fellow-officers ; and
his death and the manner of it will not be quickly forgotten.

A meeting of the members of his class in college was held on


the 20th of May, and a series of resolutions passed expressive
of their sense of his merits as a genial companion, a beloved
classmate ; and " that the atrocious circumstances of his death
make it peculiarly a martyrdom ; and that his cherished memory
shall give a new earnestness to our loyalty to the great cause
in the defence of which he fell."

1857. SAMUEL BKECK PARKMAN was killed in the battle
of Antietam, Md., 17 September, 1862, aged 26 years. He
was born in Savannah, Ga., 1 November, 1836. He was
in the rebel army, first-lieutenant of Reed s Battery, from
Georgia ; and was major upon Gen. Longstreet s staff when he
was killed. He was left an orphan at an early age, by the loss
of both parents in the steamer " Pulaski," which was destroyed
by fire, when off the coast of North Carolina, on her passage
from Charleston for Baltimore, 14 June, 1838. Among the
names of those lost were Mr. S. B. Parkman, Master Park-

1862-63.] OF HARVARD COLLEGE. 505

man, Miss A. Parkman, Miss C. Parkman, Miss T. Parkman.
In a paragraph in the account of the burning of the steamer,
it is stated that "the persons by the name of Parkman
were the family of S. B. Parkman, of Savannah, and formerly
of Westborough, Mass." They were probably descendants of
Rev. Ebenezer Parkman (H. C. 1721), who was born in
Boston, 5 September, 1703 ; was ordained pastor of the church
of \Vestborough, 28 October, 1724; and died 9 December,
1782, aged 80 years. The subject of this notice was cared
for by an aunt, who supplied the place of a mother to him. He
had two sisters. He passed some time at the military-school
in Sing-Sing, N.Y., before entering college. After gradu
ating, he read law in Savannah, and was admitted to practice in
due time ; became a member of the Georgia Historical Society ;
and fin-ally joined the Savannah troop of cavalry. In the sum
mer of 1860, he travelled in Europe ; returned in the fall, and
visited Boston.

He married, in December, 1860, Nannie Bierne, of Virginia,
a very wealthy lady.

1857. GEORGE AVHITTEMORE was killed in the battle of
Antietam, Md., 17 September, 1862, at the age of 25 years.
He was the son of George and Anna (Mansfield) Whittemore,
and was born in Boston, 19 December, 1836. He was educated
at the public schools in Boston ; and was prepared for admis
sion to college at the public Latin School, where a Franklin
medal was awarded to him in 1853. His parents removed
from Boston to Gloucester, Mass., during his last year at the
Latin school ; and this town was his home during his college-
course. Soon after entering upon his college-course, he attained
a high rank among the best scholars in his class, and grad
uated with honors. During three of the winters while in college,
he taught school in Gloucester and Northampton. After grad
uating, he was for a time an assistant in the private latin-school
of Mr. Epes Sargent Dixwell (H.C. 1827) in Boston. He
then studied law in the office of John Jones Clark (H.C.
1823) and Lemuel Shaw (H.C. 1849) in Boston. He was
of an amiable disposition, modest and unassuming in his man-



ners. His tastes were naturally quiet and scholarly ; yet he
had a spirit of adventure and a fondness for manly sports,
which led him, after three years, teaching, and reading law, to
join a party for travel and exploration to the South-west. His
arrangements, however, were not carried out, and he returned
after a brief absence. In August, 1861, he enlisted for three
years in Capt. Saunders s company of sharpshooters, determined
to devote himself to the service of his country. On the morning
of his departure for the seat of war, he, after an examination,
was admitted to the Suffolk bar. He was an excellent marks
man ; and, from his first fight in a skirmish at Edwards s Creek
to the day of his last battle, he did his duty with his corps as a
true soldier of the flag.

1858. PAUL MITCHELL ELIOT died in the city of New
York, 26 November, 1862, aged 25 years. He was son of
Hon. Thomas Dawes and Frances Lincoln (Brock) Eliot,
and was born in New Bedford, Mass., 13 September, 1837.
His father was son of William Greenleaf Eliot, and was born
in Boston, 20 March 1808. He graduated at Columbian Col
lege, Washington, D.C., in 1825, his parents having resided
many years in Washington ; is a lawyer in New Bedford, and
is now a representative in Congress from the First Congres
sional District of Massachusetts. The mother of young Eliot
was a native of Nantucket. He was a student at the Friends
Academy in New Bedford, under the instruction of Mr. Abner
Jones Phipps (D.C. 1838) , from 1847 to 1850, when he entered
the Bristol Academy in Taunton, Mass., under Mr. Henry
Blatchford Wheelwright (H.C. 1844), where he completed his
preparatory studies for entering college. After graduating, he
determined to engage in mercantile business. In October, 1858,
he went to St. Louis, and, 1 January, 1859, entered the count
ing-room of the Atlantic-Mills Co. in that city, where he
remained one year, and, 1 January, 1860, entered the store of
F. B. Chamberlain and Co. ; and while there, having been en
gaged one very hot day in marking goods in the sun, he was
affected by a sun-stroke, from which he never recovered.
In November of that year, he left St. Louis on account of ill

1862-6,-).] OF HARVARD COLLEGE. 507

healtli, and spent the winter in Washington, where his father
was attending Congress ; and in March, 1861, returned to New
Bedford. His brain having been affected, the disease produced
mental imbecility. His father took him to New York, and
placed him in a private hospital under the charge of a dis
tinguished physician, but without any benefit. He remained
there more than a year, when death ended the scene.

sumption, in Cambridge, 1 July, 1863, aged 26 years. He
was born in Boston, 25 November, 1836, the son of George
C. and Susan Gore (Moore) Richardson. His father, now a
merchant in Boston, was the son of a physician in Royalston,
from whom Henry probably derived a fondness for the study of
medicine, and a power of accurate observation, that led him to
the same profession. When he was very young, his family
removed to their present residence in Cambridge, where he pre
pared for college at the Hopkins Classical School, and at the
High School. In 18534, he completed his studies at Exeter
Academy, entering the freshman class in 1854.

He early developed a taste for chemistry ; and, in college, he
added a keen interest in anatomy and other branches of medical
science, and, with a set of congenial minds, turned his attention
to personal investigations. For six months before graduation,
he attended lectures at the Harvard Medical School, and in
October, 1858, became a pupil of Dr. C. A. Davis, at the
Marine Hospital in Chelsea, where he remained three years.
During this period, he followed certain courses at the school ; in
1860-1, attended regularly all the lectures; and received his
degree in July, 1861. His classmates, Drs. Francis and Cobb,
were associated with him at the hospital in the latter part of his
residence. In May, 1861, he became assistant-physician in the
hospital. In August, he passed examination in Boston ; Avas
commissioned acting assistant-surgeon, and appointed to the
steamer " Cambridge," Capt. Parker, of the North-Atlantic block
ading squadron. In this duty he remained nearly a year; the
steamer being constantly employed in the blockade of Beaufort
and Wilmington, N.C. In his exposure to cold and wet, and


restraint from exercise, while upon this service, the development
of the disease commenced, which had been fatal to his mother
and older brother.

In July, 1862, he was forced by his ill health to resign his
commission ; and spent the following months, till November, in
the southern part of New Hampshire. As a last expedient, to
stay the disease by residence in a dryer climate, he went to Min
nesota, and spent the winter and spring at St. Paul. But the
winter was extraordinarily open ; and the melting snow filled the
air with moisture, so that he derived no benefit from the change.
In March, he was joined by his brother, and seemed to gain
strength till his return home in the last of May. From this
time he rapidly failed, but remained constantly cheerful and
social, though perfectly aware of the nature of his decline. On
class-day, being unable to witness the festivities on the college-
grounds, he invited several classmates to a quiet party in his
own room. One of his last acts was to send for the photographs
of his class, that he might recall their memories, and enjoy the
pleasure of their silent society.

Dr. Eichardson lacked the brilliant gifts that have made
others distinguished. He was not ready of speech, or skilful in
gathering the learning of books, but was conscious that his pe
culiar talent would be discovered in studies requiring a power of
exact and complete observation. In this he remarkably excelled,
and he wisely guided himself by it in the choice of a profession.
He was sincere, courteous, and frank, though reserved, gener
ous, and devoted in his friendships to a remarkable degree ;
signally free from vanity ; devoid of envy or malice ; sympathiz
ing, cheerful, full of animal spirit and the zest for nature, and
gifted with a quick sense of humor. His firmness and self-reli
ance fitted him peculiarly for his profession, while his personal
traits made him a favorite in every professional and social rela

1858. Lieut. THOMAS JEFFERSON SPURR died in Hagers-
town, Md., 27 September, 1862, of wounds received in the
battle of Antietam, on the 17th of the same month, at the age of
twenty-four years. He was son of Samuel D. and Mary A.

1862-63.] OF HARVARD COLLEGE. 509

(Lamb) Spurr, and was born in Worcester, Mass., 2 February,
1838. He was fitted for college at the Worcester High School,
under the instruction of Mr. George Capron (B.U. 1847). At
the outset of his college career, he took rank with the foremost ;
but, in the second term of his junior year, an affection of the
eyes came upon him, compelling him to withdraw from his stud
ies for a while. He made a voyage to Fayal, returned with
improved health, and resumed his connection with his class ; but
was compelled to employ the aid of a " reader." He was
honored by his classmates with an election to the Phi-Beta-
Kappa Society, as a token of the rank which he would have held
but for his affliction. After graduating, he studied law in the
office of his brother-in-law, George Frisbie Hoar (H.C. 1846) ;
and in September, 1859, he entered the Law School at Cam
bridge, and continued his studies until the first of April, 1861,
when he sailed for Russia, in the bark "Ethan Allen," for a plea
sure-trip, to return through England in the autumn. Hearing of
the rebellion, he hastened home to offer his services to his coun
try. He was commissioned as first-lieutenant in Company G, in
the Fifteenth Regiment of Massachusetts Volunteers, and held
his commission until his death. At the battle of Antietam, he
fell while forming his company in line. He was removed by a
rebel officer to the shade of a haystack, where he lay four days.
On the 21st, he was found by his friends, and removed to a
better shelter; and, on the 22d, was moved to Hagerstown, eight
miles, where his mother, his family-physician, and other friends,
met him on the 24th; and on Saturday, the 27th, he tran
quilly passed away. He expressed no regret at his fate, saying
that he knew that many must fall, and he would claim no exemp
tion. His character exhibited a combination of womanly gentle
ness with manly strength : he was "pure in heart," and a true

The following letter from Lieut. -Col. Kimball, of the Fif
teenth Regiment, is indicative of the estimation in which he was
held by his associates in arms :


" WAERENTON, VA., Nov. 18, 1862.

" The death of Lieut. Spun* was a sad blow to the regiment. His
place cannot be filled. He came among us a stranger to us all ; but
by his manly traits of character, his kind, noble, and generous nature,
he won the esteem of all, officers and men. He was ever faithful
to his trust ; and his courage and bearing were undoubted. His
memory will be most dearly cherished by his comrades ; and they will
always point with pride to his private virtues and his military career,
which were such as it would be alike honorable and manly to follow.
His noble bearing on the battle-field of Antietam, where he refused to
be carried to the rear when mortally wounded, was worthy of the
man, the hero, he was ; and Avon the praise of all his companions."

killed in the battle of Antietam, 17 September, 1862, aged 23
years. He was son of Jacob (D.C. 1830) and Mary W.
(Wellington) Batchelder, and was born in Lynn, Mass., 20 De
cember. 1838. His mother was daughter of the late Eev.
Charles Wellington, D.D., of Templeton, Mass. (H.C. 1802).
He was fitted for college at the Lynn High School under the
instruction of his father. He held a respectable rank of scholar
ship in his class, and graduated with honors. After leaving
college, he studied law about a year and a half in the office of
Perry and Endicott, of Salem. At his country s call in April,
1861, he was one of the first to enlist in the ranks ; and, two
days after his return with the three-months troops, he enlisted
for three years. He was commissioned as first lieutenant in
Company C of the Nineteenth Regiment, and was afterwards
promoted to the captaincy of the same company. On the even
ing previous to the eventful 17th of September, he gave to his
lieutenant, the late lamented Newcomb, special directions to be
followed if it should be his lot to fall on the next day ; and, in
the hottest of the battle of the 17th, called him again to his side,
repeated his injunctions, and informed him where he would find
a record of his wishes. Among these occurs the following
sentence, written with a pencil, though unsigned by him: "I
wish my books to go to my father and mother, and, after
their decease, to be given to Harvard College." His sisters,


who alone are interested in the final disposition of his books,
will be ready at the appointed time to execute the sacred

A letter from Lieut. Hill, of the Nineteenth Regiment, says,
"While rallying his company, George received two wounds,
one from a fragment of a shell, and one from a bullet. His
health impaired by disease from which he had not recovered,
and the loss of blood, rendered the wound fatal. He died in
the afternoon of the same day, passing from sleep to death
quietly and without a struggle, his last words, f Mother, O
my mother!" Lieut. Hill continues: "We all feel, that, in
losing him, we have met with an irreparable loss. HOAV can we
feel otherwise, when, by his kind and cheerful disposition, his
upright and honorable dealings with all, his brave and unflinch
ing courage, he has bound himself so closely to us all?" He
well deserved the compliment I once heard paid him by a fellow-
officer, who said of him, " He was the most honorable man I ever
knew." With a well-stored mind, and a communicative dis
position, it was impossible to be long in his society without
learning something. As an officer, he had no superior. Firm,
yet gentle, he secured the love and respect, as well as the cheer
ful and ready obedience, of his inferiors. Sharing with his
men, without complaint, the dangers and hardships of the cam
paign, he secured their confidence, and, in battle, urged them
on to deeds of valor by his own noble example. He died in a
noble and just cause, the cause he espoused, and for which
he endured so many hardships and privations to sacrifice his life
for his country. Another fellow-officer says, with impressive
beauty of expression, "We had pictured for him a glorious
future : shall it be less bright because not wrought out in our
presence?." Another, a clergyman and a classmate, after a
visit to the old college-rooms, writes, " I could not restrain a
sharp pain at his early death ; but there followed a soothing
satisfaction at the thought of his generous self-sacrifice for his
country s sake, and I felt the stimulus of his brave example.
The spirit that hath such power to quicken and strengthen our
spirits cannot die."


1859. HENRY WELD FULLER died in Roxbury, Mass.,
3 May, 1863, aged 23 years. He was son of Henry Weld
(Bowd. C. 1828) and Mary Storer (Goddard) Fuller, and wa^
born in Augusta, Me., 7 December, 1839. His father was son
of Henry Weld Fuller (D.C. 1801), of Augusta. His mother
was daughter of Nathaniel and Lucretia (Dana) Goddard, of
Boston. He was fitted for college at the Roxbury Latin School

Online LibraryJoseph PalmerNecrology of alumni of Harvard college, 1851-52 to 1862-63 → online text (page 46 of 49)