Civil War Veterans Buried In Washington State - Lanty Brazelton

Lanty Brazelton

Representing: Union


Unit History

  • 2nd California Infantry Co. "D"
  • 4th Wisconsin Cavalry Co. "C"

See full unit history

Lanty Brazelton
Full Unit History

2nd COLORADO VOLUNTEER INFANTRY
Organized: Spring, 1862 Ft. Lyon Colorado Terr.
Mustered In: Inf. Not Avail.
Mustered Out: 10/1/63

4th WISCONSIN VOLUNTEER CAVALRY
Organized: July, 1863 Baton Rouge, LA
Mustered In: 8/22/63 Baton Rouge, LA
Mustered Out: 5/28/66 Texas

Regimental History

REGIMENTAL HISTORY: (2nd)

The 2nd , a truly "western theater" regiment was organized during the spring months of 1862 at Ft. Lyon (formerly Ft. Wise) located in Bent County in the lower southeast corner of Colorado Territory near the confluence of the Kansas/Missouri borders. No history has been found for the organization. The unit's Military activities during its 1862/'63 existence primarily involved small movements, some against Native Americans.

On 10/1/63 the 2nd Infantry was consolidated with the 3rd Colorado Infantry to create the 2nd Colorado Cavalry. After that, regimental actions, including those against American Indians, escalated.

REGIMENAL HISTORY: (4th)

The 4th, a western theatre unit, began its existence in mid-1861 as an infantry regiment. In February, 1862 it departed by steamship from Fortress Monroe, VA as part of the Federal expedition which would take possession of New Orleans, LA.

In mid-1863 orders from Union Gen. Nathaniel Banks mounted the unit and designated it the 4th Wisconsin Cavalry. As a cavalry regiment the 4th's most significant combat engagement came amidst actions around Port Hudson, Mississippi when, on 6/14 during an attack on Ft. Brisland near Brashier City, it lost 140 of the 220 men engaged in the charge.

Returning to Baton Rouge in late July, the 4th passed the next year picketing, foraging, preserving the peace and occasionally engaging with, capturing or disbursing small bands of Confederate cavalry and guerillas.

On 11/27/64 the regiment formed part of a cavalry force assembled to keep Rebel forces stationed around Mobile, AL from moving against the armies of Union Gen. W.T. Sherman as they drove towards Atlanta. Winter quarters then ensued at Baton Rouge.

In April, 1865 the 4th was sent on a 70-day expedition through Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi. Following that, in July, it was ordered to Texas. There it prevented smuggling, guarded against the Indians and preserved the peace. Final muster came in late May. 

Soldier History

SOLDIER: (2nd)
Residence: Inf. Not Avail.   Age: 32.6 yrs.
Enlisted/Enrolled: 9/10/61 Central City, Gilpin Co., Colorado Terr.   Rank: Pvt.
Mustered In: Inf. Not Avail.
Deserted: 4/25/62 Denver City, Denver County, Colorado Terr.
Highest Rank: Pvt.

SOLDIER: (4th)
Residence: Racine, Racine Co., WI   Age: 34.8 yrs.
Enlisted/Enrolled:11/4/63 Milwaukee, WI   Rank: Pvt.
Mustered In: 11/12/63 Madison, WI
Discharged: 6/16/65 Milwaukee, WI
Highest Rank: Pvt.

Family History

PERSONAL/FAMILY HISTORY:

Birth years abound for Lanty Brazelton, ranging everywhere from 1824 to 1830. On 11/11/63 when he enlisted in the U.S. Army he claimed his birth month and year were November, 1829. As this is the only birth year with a month added, it is the one we will use herein.

Lanty Brazelton was born in or near Knoxville, TN. His parents were Samuel (b. ca. 1790 TN) and Jane (no nee. b. ca. 1795) Brazelton. The Braselton’s were a farm family.

As far as is known Lanty was the third of four Brazelton children. His older siblings were: Ross (b. ca. 1814) and Oliver (b. 1824 IL). The one younger than he was sister Dorothy (b. ca. 1829??). As noted by the birth state of Lanty's older brother Oliver, at some point between the birth of Oliver and that of Lanty Samuel moved his family from the state of Illinois to Tennessee.

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After birth Lanty falls off the "where is he/what's he doing" map. He next surfaces in 1847 during the war with Mexico when, with his father's consent, he enlisted in the regular U.S. Army. At enlistment his vital statistics were as follows: Age 19 (Likely he was 18); Height 5'7"; Complexion light; Eyes gray; Hair brown. Occupation laborer. For signing up he received an undocumented enlistment bonus or "bounty", $6 of which he received that day with the undisclosed balance to be received, possibly in increments, later.  Private Brazelton subsequently served sixty days in Mexico with the 15th United States Infantry, Co. "K" before returning to the U.S. for final muster and discharge.

Looking back a bit, one big factor of interest in Lanty's Mexican-American War enlistment is that he and his birth family were no longer in Tennessee. They were residing in Wisconsin - possibly in or near Milwaukee. What had drawn the Braselton’s northward and when they so moved is not documented. As for Lanty, he would never return to live in south.

On 8/26/48, only days after his separation from the U.S. Army, former Private Lanty Brazelton applied to the U.S. Land Office located at Green Bay, Wisconsin to - based on his army veteran status - obtain a 160 acre homestead track of land located in or near Port Washington, Washington Co., WI on the shores of Lake Michigan. At the time Lanty was residing in Saukville, just a short distance inland and west of Port Washington. While available records are somewhat murky on the matter, it seems Lanty was granted the land, perhaps a tract being abandoned by another party. He did not hold it long; however, as on 1/22/49 he sold it to a third party.

1850. The U.S. Census for this new decade found Lanty and older brother Oliver residing in the Scott, Sheboygan Co., Michigan home of one Nathan White and family. Both brothers listed their occupations as "fisherman." Both brothers would later go to war. Only one would return.

Six years later, sometime in 1856, in Sheboygan, Sheboygan Co., WI Lanty wed. His bride was Elizabeth Shivly (b. ca. 1837 OH) Some two years further along, on 6/11/58 when they were residing in Palmo, Doniphan Co., Kansas, the couple's first child, son Samuel was born. Over the years Elizabeth would bear Lanty three more children. More on them, later, however.

In 1859 the discovery of gold in Colorado Territory set off what came to be known as the Pike's Peak Gold Rush. Thousands of men with gold fever poured into the region in search of riches. One such searcher was Lanty Brazelton. Whether, with Elizabeth's blessings or not, he had left his wife and young son to seek his fortune in the gold fields of the west.

At some point after arriving in Colorado, Lanty ended up in Gilpin County's Central City which, during that period, was called "richest square mile" (in the country/world). While there, civil war broke out in America and, apparently not finding riches in the ground, Lanty once again turned to the U.S. Army.

On 9/10/61 Lanty enlisted in Captain Sexton's Independent Company of Cavalry. (This organization would subsequently become company "D" of the 2nd Colorado Infantry/Cavalry.) At enlistment his vital statistics were listed as follows: Age 37.11; Complexion dark; Eyes blue; Hair dark and Occupation "farmer." Interestingly, beyond the age discrepancy, the stats   also reflect this information: Born New York; Not married and no children........The enlistment period was three years.

During the latter months of 1861 and into the early ones of '62 company muster rolls show Private Brazelton as always being present for duty. All that changed in March/April, '62 when the roll note said "Absent left sick in Camp Weld Hospital, Denver City. Awaiting discharge." What had happened? To seemingly make matters worse, on 4/25/62 company rolls listed Private Brazelton as having deserted.

We next hear from Lanty Brazelton in Goshen, IN on 6/3/63. On that date the following letter was penned to the Adjutant General of the U.S. Army:

    "Dear Sir,
       Lanty Brazelton enlisted as a private in Captain Laxton's company of the 2nd (now the 1st) Colorado regiment at
    Camp Wells, Denver City September, 1861. (He) was discharged 4/25/62 at the same place.

       His physician sent him home as he was failing fast, telling him that he would forward his
    discharge paper and descriptive roll to him.

       Brazelton is here, has not received his papers, is not able for duty, has been on list as a deserter, but from
    the facts as above related he was released. We now desire your assistance in obtaining his discharge papers. He has
    received no (discharge) as yet. He has written his (former) captain and also the officer who is now captain, but has
    received no reply."

The letter above must have proved to be influential because, on 11/12/63, Lanty Brazelton was once again mustered into the U.S. Army. On this occasion his regiment was the 4th Wisconsin Cavalry.   His vital stats were once again listed. They were as follows: Age 34.1 yrs; Height 5'9"; Eyes blue; Hair dark; Complexion fair; Occupation cooper. For committing to a three year enlistment Private Brazelton received a $2 "premium" plus a bonus or "bounty". At that point in the War the latter was likely $200, a portion ($60) was paid up front with the balance to be received in later increments. The enlistment was politically credited to the 1st district Racine City, 2nd Ward Racine County, WI.

Company muster rolls for the 4th during the first half of 1864 showed trooper Brazelton as being present for duty. This pattern continued through mid-year. Then, in September, on the 13th of the month, the private stopped a Rebel bullet with his body. Details pertaining to the wounding read as follows: While on duty during a scouting raid undertaken by 60 enlisted men and a captain in the highlands about 9 miles from Baton Rouge (LA) there was a skirmish with the enemy. During this action Private Brazelton received a gunshot wound to the left leg about three inches below the knee joint. Two days later the Private was admitted from camp Baton Rouge to a U.S.A. General Hospital in that city. At that time and location it was determined the wounding was caused by a pistol or carbine ball which had passed through the leg calf fracturing the upper 1/3 of the tibia. Within the grand scheme of American Civil War gunshot wounds, this doesn't sound too serious...........Maybe. Lanty would never return to his field unit.

[Ed. Note: As they were both stationed in Louisiana, by the time the above-noted wounding occurred Lanty likely knew that his older brother Oliver, who, on 2/15/64 had joined the 35th Wisconsin Infantry, had died of diarrhea. Private Oliver Brazelton is buried in Chalmette National Cemetery, Chalmette, LA. Gravesite: 74-5966.]

On January 13, 1865 Private Brazelton's wound earned him a 30 day furlough home; a furlough for which he was assessed $16.84 in transportation costs. That is more than a Union private's monthly salary. Still, it was a furlough away from the battlefield. He was to report back to a designated hospital when the month was over. In this instance that facility was not in Baton Rouge, but Harvey General in Madison, WI.

Here, again, in terms of Private Brazelton's hospital admittance, available documentation is somewhat unclear regarding his referral from Baton Rouge to Madison. Did Lanty enter a brick and mortar building in the latter location? If so, was he then moved to a hospital facility in Milwaukee? Or, was the referral from Louisiana to Madison, but the hospital building entered was in Milwaukee? Whatever the case, by 3/17/65 Lanty was convalescing in Milwaukee. Private Brazelton would remain in the Milwaukee hospital for the remainder of his military service obligation.

6/16/65. The War was over when the following medical notation was entered on Lanty's hospital record: "In hospital (over) past 60 days. Good soldier. Gunshot wound through the tibia inches below left knee. Occurred while on skirmish in highlands about 9 miles from Baton Rouge. (Something at) right angle to thigh. Unfit for VRC. (Veterans Reserve Corps)Totally disabled." After settling his finances with Uncle Sam, Lanty Brazelton returned to civilian life in on this date.

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Departing Milwaukee, Lanty settled with his wife and child in Sheboygan, WI. Within the month he had applied to the U.S. Government for receipt of a disability pension based on his still-unhealed leg wound. He was almost immediately placed on the pension rolls with a stipend of $8 per month. 

The next action Mr. Brazelton took was obtaining a job. Whether it was based on his Civil War service, his debilitating wounding, or both is not known, but as of 8/9/65 he accepted the position of keeper of  Sheboygan's North Point light house on Lake Michigan. The position included residence in the lighthouse building itself.  His salary would be $520 per year.  Lanty would hold the job until resigning 10/19/69. While no explanation for the resignation is documented, perhaps it was difficulties the crutch-bound Lanty faced daily climbing to and from the light platform located 43 feet above the lake.

Another matter which Lanty and Elizabeth focused on upon his return was building their family. In that vein, the couple's second child, son (Charles) Wiley, came into this world on 3/30/66. Two additional Brazelton children would be born: Auvilla/Amelia (b. 1/4/68 WI) and Harvey (b. 12/30/73 Pentwater, MI).

As noted by where the final two Brazelton children were born, after resigning his lighthouse job in Wisconsin Lanty moved his family from Wisconsin to Michigan. In that state, the 1870 U.S. Census found him farming in or near Weare Twp., in Oceana County.

Whether or not the 1873 birth of son Harvey in Pentwater, Michigan indicates an intra-state move by the family between 1870 and 1873 is not known. Pentwater is located not far from Grand Rapids. Grand Rapids is where a Michigan state census found the Brazelton family in 1876. At that time Lanty listed his occupation as "carpenter."

By the late 1870s the Brazeltons were residing in Cadillac, Wexford Co., MI. On 9/4/77 in Wexford Co., Lanty underwent another medical exam so government officials could reevaluate his gunshot wounded leg in relation to the amount of his pension. Here, though, we should drop back a bit and note that by 1874 his, pension had reached $15 per month, but during the following year - for some reason - it was dropped to $12. The Wexford exam concluded that "in the upper 1/3 of the fibula, there was now only cartlidge and a deep sore just below the head of the tibia. The front and inner side of the upper 2/3 of the leg is literally covered with open sores. The lower, middle 1/3 of the tibia is very tender. (The vet) can only work about 1/3 of the time and then suffers severely. He has to keep (the wound) bandaged and dressed twice a day."

Throughout the decade of the 1880s the medical examinations continued to reveal the continuing deterioration of the leg wound. Firstly, though, on November 30, 1880 Lanty, in requesting an increase in his pension stipend, wrote the following to bring his post war life up to date: "I was shot in the leg just below the knee. The first three years after I was discharged I never put my foot to the floor. My leg has always been a running sore. (It) smells very bad. I have to dress it three times a day. I cannot work anymore. My leg is killing me by inches."

On the tail of the above letter nothing apparently happened in Lanty's case. Four years later, on 1/9/84 in Reid, Osceola Co., MI another medical exam revealed the following: (age 55 1829) "There is a sore on outer side of left leg said to be the wound entrance of a musket ball, about 2 inches below the knee. Missile passed through left to right coming out about 3 inches below the head of the tibia. The bones are altered in six (?) and shape and the inner scar is still open and discharging puss. The veins of the leg are varicose quite extensively both above and below the knee while there a number of ulcers on the anterior surface of the leg. Also one or two ulcers on the posterior and face. Varicose is their character. In our opinion the interference of circulation of the leg is caused by the varicose veins and varicose ulcers and (compromises? threatens) the limb with the loss of a foot. Pension should be $15."

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1886. Sometime this year it appears the Braselton’s quitted Michigan and moved to the Puget Sound region of western Washington Territory. What drew them to this far northwest corner of the U.S. is not known. Settlement for the family was near the small, wilderness community of Trafton in Snohomish County north of that county's largest city, Everett. Their post office address was nearby Haller City - today's Arlington.  A county census the following year noted Lanty, Elizabeth and all four of their children in the home. (Note: Interestingly Samuel listed his state of birth as Ohio)

On 2/4/89 Lanty and Elizabeth took an unusual step. They got married to each other. Although the two were residing in Snohomish County, the wedding took place at the home of a friend, Mary Dixon, in Ferndale, Whatcom County, not many miles from their Snohomish County home. According to Elizabeth, she and Lanty remarried because their original wedding license had been destroyed in a court house fire. Both obviously knew that because of his leg, Lanty was not long for this world, and if she had any chance to receive at least a portion of her husband's Civil War pension she had to prove the two were married..........

Four months after Lanty and Elizabeth "married", he was dead. He died on 7/28/89. Cause of death was blood poisoning. A Civil War bullet had claimed another victim – twenty five years after that projectile had been fired. Burial was in the Oso Pioneer Cemetery.

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Not long after her husband's passing, Elizabeth Brazelton began the paperwork chase to receive a widow's pension. Such a stipend was subsequently granted. The onset date of said stipend and the dollar amount is not known.  Also, not documented is the pension payment at the time of her death.

Elizabeth lived out the remainder of her life in Trafton, Snohomish County, WA. Before her death, however, she would live through the death of her youngest son, Harvey. Details of his passing are not available.

Until the end of her days, in an effort to increase her widow's pension, Elizabeth was searching for and collecting documents pertaining to her late husband's Mexican-American War service - a period of his life she  knew nothing about. The fruits of that search, if any, are not known.

Elizabeth Brazelton died 1896. She was buried in Oso Pioneer Cemetery beside Lanty.

Cemetery

Buried at Oso Cemetery

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