Last week I wrote about Edward Dwyer in the 8th Kansas Volunteer Infantry Regiment that served in the Union Army during the Civil War: Little Eddy the Drummer. Edward served from 02 Jun 1862 to 04 Jun 1863; he was mustered out in Nashville, Tennessee, having turned sixteen on 22 May. Did he then go home to Saint Louis? I’m not really sure. I’ve been going over the records that I downloaded from footnote.com (now fold3) some time ago. I remember being excited to find Edward Dwyer, but something must have taken me away from his story. Now I don’t have access to those records, and it’s frustrating. But I’m going to try to put together what I have.
First I made a spreadsheet of his service records (I’m a spreadsheet person, if you haven’t guessed. I make spreadsheets of everything, including clothing purchases, especially on sale and with a coupon!).
Here is the Muster and Descriptive Roll for Edward Dwyer, Musician:
I love the physical description given: hazel eyes, dark hair, light complexion, and height 4 feet 8 inches!
Occupation Plumber is an important clue that he is my Edward Dwyer as I have later Saint Louis City Directories where he is listed at the same address as his father Jeremiah and Edward’s occupation is given as plumber.
On the Muster and Descriptive Roll, he is 17 years old, and the remarks state “Joined as a Recruit with consent of Guardian.” I wish that I had these types of records for Edward’s service in the Kansas Regiment when he had just turned 15 years old!
So, looking at the muster rolls, I am immediately faced with a contradiction:
Although both of these cards clearly state that Edward enlisted 29 May 1864 in St. Louis, Mo, the second card states that he appears on Company Muster Roll for Feb 29/64 to June 30, 1864. Would the muster roll for the entire company show him as an additional enlistment during this time period? Or was Edward in the company prior to May?
He continues to be on Muster Roll cards for July & Aug 1864 and Sept & Oct 1864. The next card for Edward Dwyer, Music, Co F, 7 Reg’t Missouri Inf. is a transfer to 11th Mo Infty. Roll Dated Nashville Tenn Dec 14, 1864; it gives the same enlistment and muster in information as previous cards.
The next group of cards is for Edward Dwyer, Musician, Company A, 11th Missouri Infantry. The summary card says “See also 7th Mo Inf.” On the Muster Roll for Nov & Dec 1864: Joined for duty and enrolled May 29, 1864, St. Louis, Mo, period 3 years; absent; Detached as musc. at Gen. Hosp. Nashville Tenn. Transferred from 7th Mo Inf Dec 4/64 S.O. 153, Gen Canby”
Edward is present on Muster Roll cards for Jan & Feb 1865, Mar & Apr 1865, May & Jun 1865, July & Aug 1865. The Sept & Oct 1865 card has remarks: Deserted Sept 30″/65 and lists the supplies missing (I think): one Shelter Tent, one Drum Complete, one Knapsack Haveret [haversack?] one canteen
On the Nov & Dec 1865 Muster Roll card, Edward is again present. Remarks: “Returned from desertion Dec 1″/65. Stop one month pay sentence of a G.C.M.” [General Court Martial]
The last card is a Muster-out Roll, Co A, 11 Reg’t Missouri Infantry, dated Memphis Tenn Jan 15, 1866. Muster-out to date Jan 15, 1866. Last paid to June 30, 1865. Clothing Account: due soldier $11.77. Bounty paid $180; due $120. Remarks: “Age 17. Stop one months pay proper sentence of Court Martial. Stop $5.00 for one drum complete.”
Looking at all of this information, I definitely need to do more research into the Civil War, especially desertion and court martial. I think that it was not an uncommon occurrence. I would love to know more about Edward, Little Eddy: Where did he go? Was he gone from Sep 30 to Dec 1 (2 months) or only the one month that they stopped his pay? Apparently he returned with most of the supplies, but what happened to his drum?
Also, when did Edward enlist in the Missouri Infantry? He was mustered out of the Kansas Regiment 04 Jun 1863 in Nashville. Did he remain in Tennessee until he joined a Missouri unit, or did he return to his family in Saint Louis? The Muster and Descriptive Roll says that he enlisted in St Louis, Mo, May 29, 1864, but was mustered in June 25, 1864, in Memphis. And then, there is the Muster Roll for Feb 29, 1864!
Edward enrolled for a period of 3 years. He was mustered out of the 11 Reg’t Missouri Infantry, Co A, on Jan 15, 1866 so he did not complete his three years. Were enrollment periods adjusted once the War ended?
There is also the question of Patrick Callahan, the other musician from St Louis who was mustered into the Kansas Regiment on the same date as Edward and also discharged at the same time in Nashville. I would like to check the Civil War records to find if Patrick also joined the Missouri Infantry companies that Edward did.
And one final intriguing card, that I must have overlooked the first time:
Who might this be? And is there any connection to my French family?
National Archives Catalog Title: Carded Records Showing Military Service of Soldiers Who Fought in Volunteer Organizations During the American Civil War, compiled 1890-1912, documenting the period 1861-1866
Publication Number: M405
Record Group 94
Roll 0473, Eleventh Infantry, Cr-D
Roll 0441, Military Unit Seventh Infantry, D-Fi
Accessed from footnote.com, date unknown