Andrew P Felton d 10 January 1891

Andrew P Felton was born about 1820 although that date varies by about eight years, as his life’s events were recorded.  Most Felton researchers list his father as Samuel Felton born 1772 (son of Samuel Felton and Mary Smith.)  His mother is usually listed as Sarah Arabella Holt.  However, some Ipswich town records list her as Eliza Pastor, and perhaps her last name is the source of his middle initial. 

In 1850, Andrew Felton was a shoemaker living in Winchester, MA.  His age was listed as 30 (so born about 1820.)

Andrew married Lydia Ann Lord on 10 July 1856 in Haverill MA. The 1857 directory of Haverhill MA, lists Felton, Andrew P, shoemaker, boards at 25 Pecker street. In 1857, Haverhill had about ninety shoe manufactories, eighteen inner sole and stiffening manufactories and two boot and shoe factories.

Andrew and Lydia had a daughter, Josephine, born in 1857.  Eighteen months later, Lydia died.  The 1859 directory of Haverhill lists Felton, Andrew P., shoemaker, Essex.  I have not been able to locate Andrew or Josephine in the 1860 census. 

During the Civil War, Andrew enlisted as a Private on 26 September 1861 at the age of 39 (so born about 1822), in Company B, 22nd   Infantry Regiment Massachusetts.  He was wounded on 27 June 1862 at Gaines’ Mill, VA and discharged because of wounds 09 April 1863 in David’s Island, NY Harbor.           

On my last trip to Washington DC, I visited the National Archives, and obtained a photocopy of Andrew’s civil war pension record:

1861 – 1863 Civil War service record

  • Andrew P Felton, age 39, enlisted 26 Sept 1861 in Boston, and was listed on the Lynnfield MA roll 5 Oct 1861. 
  • 31 Oct 1861 listed on the company muster roll, but location not stated
  • November and December 1861 – present
  • January and February 1862 – present
  • March and April 1862 – present
  • May and June 1862 – present
  • 18 August 1862 – absent – sick.
  • July and August 1862 – absent, wounded at battle of Chickahominy June 27/62 in right leg below knee.
  • July and August 1862, USA General Hospital, David’s Island New York Harbor – 16 August 1862, patient, present
  • September and October 1862 – Supposed discharged, dropped from Co. rolls Oct 2/62 by order Lt. Col. Tilton, no official notice rec’d.  (Rol for Mar and April on which name appears).
  • September and October 1862 – patient, last paid June 30, 1862, pavilion third. 
  • November and December 1862 – patient, present, Pavilion #3
  • January and February 1863 – patient, present, 3 Pavilion
  • March and April 1863 – (Company Roll) Discharged April 9, 1863 at Davids Island NY by order of J. Simond on Surgeon’s certificate of disability. 
  • March and April 1863 – (Hospital Muster Roll) Discharge and final statement given April 13, 1863.
  • Summary – In February and March 1862, Felton was company cook.  In June 1862 he was slightly wounded in the leg in actions of June 26 or 27/62.  August and September he was absent, sick, or wounded. Oct 1862 – Deserted.  Reported in accordance with G.O. No. 162 HdQrs Army of Potomac.  Supposed to discharge.  April 1863 April 9/63 Gain from desertion.  April 9/63, Davids Island.  Disch’d for Disab.
  • Muster Out Roll – Boston, October 17, 1864.  Wounded at Gains Mill June 27 1862, leg and set to US Genl Hospital.  Discharged at Davids Island NY April 9, ’63 on surgeons certificate of disability by order of not known.
  • Certificate of Disability:  Private Andrew P Felton of Captain DK Wardwell’s Company B of the Twenty Second Regiment of Infantry Massachusetts Volunteers was enlisted by Capt. DK Wardwell of the Twenty Second Regiment of Mass Vol at Boston Mass on the twenty-sixty day of September 1861, to serve three years.  He was born in Danvers in the State of Massachusetts, is thirty-nine years of age, five feet six inches high, light complexion, blue eyes, dark brown hair, and by occupation when enlisted a shoe maker.  During the last two months said soldier has been unfit for duty 60 days.  The certification finds him incapable of performing the duties of a soldier because of injury of back resulting in spinal curvature produced as he asserts by being thrown out of a wagon on fatigue duty, and gun shot wound of right leg received at Gains Mill.  Present disability is “one third”.  Andrew’s pension, effective April 9, 1863, was $2.66 2/3 per month, based on his 1/3 disability.   

The 22nd was formed by Senator (later Vice-president) Henry Wilson and became known throughout the Union as “Henry Wilson’s Regiment”. Republican Senator Wilson had been a Major General in the Massachusetts State Militia and had turned down a commission from President Lincoln to become a Brigadier General. He did, however, accept a commission from Governor John Andrew to become the regiment’s first Colonel. Wilson held that position from September 2 until October 26, 1861. Once he was confident that the regiment was fully trained, he resigned his commission to enable him to return to the Senate.

Originally, Senator Wilson had set out to form an entire brigade but, due to the urgent need for regiments in the Union army, shipped out a regiment instead. This is why the Twenty-second Regiment had attached to it a sharpshooter company (the Second Andrew Sharpshooters) and an artillery unit (the Third Light Artillery). It was extremely unusual for a regiment to have companies as these attached to it.

Company B, Wardwell’s Company, was formed in Boston with its core from Company F of the 5th M.V.M. They fielded 137 men and officers.

Company A reported to Camp Schouler in Lynnfield, Mass. on September 2, 1861 with the rest of the companies reporting during that month. On October 1, the Company Officers were mustered into service followed by the Band on October 5.  October 8, basic training completed, the 22nd left for Boston and then to their wartime assignments. They reached Washington D.C. on October 11. By order on October 15, the Army of the Potomac was formed by division. The 22nd was attached to General Fitz John Porter’s division. The division consisted of three brigades with the 22nd being in General Martindale’s. General Porter’s division was assigned to the Third Corps under the command of General S. P.  Heintzelman. Colonel Wilson resigned on October 29, 1861 and was replaced by Colonel Jesse A. Grove.

Around Christmas of 1861, the 22nd received sort of a “present” from the government. As it is written in the 22nd’s history by John L. Parker and Robert G. Carter and published in 1887: “The Enfield rifles with which the regiment was armed never gave full satisfaction, and it was good news to the rank and file when Springfield rifles appeared in camp, and the order was given to box up the Enfields. The order was obeyed with alacrity, and every enlisted man soon had the rifle of his choice, which he took pride in keeping in good shape, ready for the active service for which he was preparing.”

Gaines’ Mill Battle took place on June 27, 1862. The United States Army of the Potomac under command of General George B. McClellan had advanced within 7 miles of Richmond, the capital of the Confederate States. For six weeks, the US Army sat along the banks of the Chickahominy River. Finally at the end of June fighting broke out when General McClellan attacked the Confederates on June 25. Confederate General Robert E. Lee then opened an attack on the Union Army at Mechanicsville and pushed the Union Army back through Mechanicsville to Cold Harbor.

When Lee and his army began pushing the Federals back, they made it to Boatswain Creek and through a multiple series of events a fierce battle took place here on June 27. The Confederates eventually achieved a victory here at Gaines’ Mill and sent McClellan and Army back towards the James River.

Andrew Felton had suffered a back injury after being thrown from a wagon.  During the battle of Gaines Mill, he was shot in the lower leg, and eventually was shipped to DeCamp General Hospital on Davids Island, in the Long Island sound near New Rochelle, New York.   The island was rented by the U.S. Government in April, 1862, and was used for hospital purposes. Wooden structures were immediately erected which housed thousands of wounded prisoners from the battlefields of the Civil War.   The Federal Government’s use of Davids Island began with its lease of the island for the construction of a hospital to treat injured Union soldiers at the beginning of the Civil

War. In 1863, after the Battle of Gettysburg, the facilities on the island were expanded to accommodate a prison hospital for wounded Confederate soldiers. A ferry connection was established from Neptune Island, under the control of Simeon Leland. At the end of the war, Congress authorized its purchase for military purposes and it was conveyed to the United States in 1867.

It appears that Andrew Felton may have been in the Army soon enough to participate in the Peninsula Campaign/Seven Days Battle (1862), the Battle of Antietam (1862), and the Battle of Fredricksburg,(1862).  He was discharged just weeks before Chancellorville, and two months before Gettysburg. Listed in the “wounded” roster of the 22nd is Pvt. Andrew Felton, res. Ipswich; Gaines’ Mill, Virginia, June 27, 1862; discharged April 9, 1863.  Of the over 1300 men who started with the regiment, only 124 returned with it when the 22nd was retired from service.

In 1870 listed in the Ipswich census, Andrew P. Felton, age 52 (so born about 1818), farm laborer, is living with Hannah D. Lord, 68.  Hannah is the second wife of Andrew’s father-in-law.  

On 21 March, 1871, Andrew married Lucy Sarah Rutherford.  This marriage record lists his mother’s name as Eliza Pastor.  His age was 48 (so born about 1823), occupation laborer.  Lucy and Andrew had three children.  A daughter lived only three days, and the first son lived just a day.  Their third child, Albert Austin Felton (the second of that name) lived to the age of 65, dying in Oregon.

Because of his military service, and injuries, Andrew filed for a pension.  In 1873, Andrew had a follow-up examination on which the pensioner draws his pension.  The description of the leg injury, as written by an examining surgeon says:  G.S wound right leg from outer to posterior surface 7 inches above ankle.  Gangrene followed.  Leg weak.  Suffers pain in stormy weather and after standing or walking.  Is able to do but a limited amount of work.  The surgeon recommended continuing the pension at 1/3 degree of disability.  The report described Andrew as 5’7 ½”, 155 pounds, dark complexion, age 50, respiration 17, pulse 100.

In 1875 Andrew’s follow-up surgeon’s examination was similar.  The bullet wound scar was described as large and skin discolored about it.  Leg slightly atrophied.  Complains of pain especially during storm weather and at night.  Leg weak and becomes fatigued in standing or walking.  The surgeon recommended continuing the disability payments at 2 2/3 dollars per month. 

In 1877 – Andrew’s surgeon’s report states that the gunshot wound probably fractured the fibular.  There was loss of tissue from gangrene.  Suffers paint at site of wound.  Flexar muscles contract.  Troubles him in walking or standing.  The disability was changed to 3/8, or $3 per month. 

In 1880, Andrew, Lucy and son Albert lived in Ipswich.  He was a laborer.

1884, Andrew applied for an increase of pension.  The examining surgeons’ report says:  We find an old man bent & crooked, lame in r. leg with legs & lower parts of body covered with scales and efflorescense of eczema in various stages.  Says that this had its origin in army life and started in vicinity of G.S.W.   Nervate eczema Total GSW r leg and on outer aspect r leg junction of mid and lower thirds a circular depressed cicatrix 1 inch in diam; he alleges pains and cramps starting from this; the leg is however enormously swollen from the exzemations process – ½ total.  We note a right bubonocele which he alleges to be of army origin, if so proven, ½ total.  We find extensive curvature and and frylosis involving nearly all dorsal vertebrae below the 4th – this he calls rheumatism and states that it has wholly developed since his discharge and was caused by exposure in Chickahominy Swamp.  If so proven we rate at 2nd grade as disabling for all manual labor – 30.  From our exam, his appearance and statements given without any attempts or exaggeration we are of the opinion that his disability results from army service and warrants the above rating.  The increase pension was to $4 per month. 

Andrew’s granddaughter Josie (Smith) Hodges, inquired in a letter of 12 Sep 1932 to the War Department, and learned that that Andrew P. Felton joined GAR (Grand Army of the Republic, a veteran’s group)  August 17, 1887.  He was the 128th member to join Post 128 GAR. 

Also in 1887, Andrew applied for another increase of invalid pension claiming wound of right leg, bad rupture, rheumatism, dyspepsis.  The surgeon’s report described his injures, including the curvature of the spine, and the leg injury. 

The 1888-9 Ipswich city directory listed Felton, Andrew P, pensioner, living at 17 Pleasant.  The 1890 Civil War Surviving Soldiers List names Andrew P. Felton, and said he had gunshot wounds.

In 1890, Andrew applied for full disability by reason of the bullet injury in right leg, hernia, results of injury to back, and rheumatism.  Timothy Ross, a newspaper correspondent, who claimed to know Andrew since 1856, gave an affidavit of Andrew’s disabilities.  Ephraim Goodhue, a blacksmith, also testified that Andrew was disabled, that he walked with a cane, and continued to suffer from his disabilities.  An affidavit from Leander Blaisedell also described Andrew’s illness and injuries.  The medical statement from the doctor says that at the end, Andrew had experienced a great deal of trouble with his kidneys and bladder.  For some months before his death he was in failing health and would fall in the street and have to be assisted home.  The cause of death was from an apoplectic shock which he survived about two weeks – his death occurring 10 January 1891.  The town record gave his age as 65 at the time of death, which would have meant born 1826.  (Back in 1850, the census indicated that his age was 20.  I consider that a more accurate indication of his birth year than his death record as a six year difference would have been more noticeable as a teenager than as an old man.

After Andrew died in 1891, Lucy applied for a widow’s pension.  As part of that, she provided a copy of her marriage record from Haverhill, listing the marriage as March 21, 1871.  The application lists her maiden name (Lucy S Rutherford), and states that it was her first marriage, and his second, his first being dissolved by the death of his first wife.  The application states that their only child is Albert Austin Felton, born in Ipswich 29 Dec 1875.  Her claim states that she has no income other than her daily labor, but that they have a small cottage house with its lot, about 1/8 of an acre. The property produced no income but it saved her from having to pay rent elsewhere.  The soldier left but one child who is now under the age of sixteen years.  [The soldier also had a daughter from the first marriage, Josephine, but she died before her father.]  The death record provided with Lucy’s claim listed Andrew’s father as Samuel, and his mother as Eliza Pastor.  The application included Albert’s birth record.  The record included Lucy’s marriage record, but this form says that they were married in Ipswich.  The application includes the record of Andrew’s first wife’s death – Lydia, died Feb 25th, 1859.  It appears that Lucy had a pension of $12 per month.  In 1913, a woman was appointed to be conservator, as Lucy was adjudged incompetent.  She died 30 September, 1914. 

In 1935, the final entry in Andrew’s pension file is an attempt from Allan Chaimas, attorney from New York city, to get names and addresses of the relatives of Lucy, in connection with a distribution of property.  The pension office said the only person named in the file was Albert Austin Felton, but the address for him was not in the file. 

Andrew, his first wife Lydia, second wife Sarah, and infants are buried at Highland (Old North Cemetery) in Ipwsich.  His daughter Josephine is also buried there in her husband’s family plot.  Andrew has a GAR marker. As of July, 2005, the stones were slightly below the end of the row, lots of orange lilies growing around the stones.

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