9th IOWA VOLUNTEER INFANTRY
Organized: July & August, 1861
Mustered In: 9/24/1861 Dubuque, IA
Mustered Out: 7/18/1865 Louisville, KY
The 9th Iowa was a three year infantry regiment. Its period of service was in the western theater of the American Civil War (ACW).
At the end of September, 1861, shortly after Federal muster the 9th left the state and moved to Benton Barracks near St. Louis, MO. From there, in mid- October, it was assigned to railroad guard duty between Franklin, TN and Rolla, MO. This assignment lasted until January, 1862.
On 3/6 - 8/1862 the unit met the enemy during the battle of Pea Ridge, AR. There, it lost nearly two hundred killed and wounded. It concluded the year under fire at Chickasaw Bayou, MS (12/26 - 29/1862).
1863 began with the 9th participating in the campaign against Arkansas Post, AR. From there it moved into Mississippi. It took part in the battle for Jackson (5/14) and the initial assaults upon Vicksburg. On 5/19 it lost a number of men during the first Union attack upon the Rebel works. On 5/22 it lost nearly one hundred more during a second assault.
After Vicksburg fell (7/4/1863), the 9th took a steamer to Memphis, TN. From there it marched to Chattanooga. The regiment reached the base of Lookout Mountain on 11/23/1863 and took part in the "battle above the clouds" the following day. The 9th then pursued the retreating enemy forces as far as Ringgold, GA before moving into winter quarters at Woodville, AL.
During the winter of 1863/'64 enough men of the 9th re-enlisted to make the regiment a veteran volunteer unit. Thirty day home furloughs followed.
Returning to the field in March, 1864, the 9th joined Union Gen. W. T. Sherman's advance upon Atlanta, GA. During that campaign the unit was engaged at Resaca (5/13/ -15), Dallas (5/26 - 6/1), New Hope Church (5/25 - 26), KENNESAW MOUNTAIN (6/27), The Chattahoochee River (7/16), Decatur (10/26-29), Atlanta (7/22). Lovejoy's Station (8/20), Jonesboro (8/31 - 9/1) and Big Shanty (10/4). The regiment then marched to Savanah and the sea.
In 1865 the 9th participated in the capture of Columbia, NC and fought various minor affairs before moving to Washington City to participate in the Grand Review. Final muster came at Louisville, KY on 7/18/1865.
Officers Killed Or Mortally Wounded: 12; Officers Died Of Disease, Accidents, Etc.: 2; Enlisted Men Killed Or Mortally Wounded: 142; Enlisted Men Died Of Disease, Accidents, Etc.:230 .
Residence: Volga City Sperry County, IA Age: 28.4 yrs.
Enlisted/Enrolled: 9/24/1861 Rank: Pvt.
Mustered In: 9/24/1861
Discharged For Wounds: 12/8/1864
Highest Rank: Pvt.
Rank At Discharge: Pvt.
NOTE: The birth - to - death biographical profile of Wilder King was created in October, 2021 during the Covid-19 medical pandemic. It contains less depth of detail than many other biographies within this website because military service, pension and other veteran-related files housed in Washington, D.C.'s National Archives were not available. At a later time those documents may be obtained and the data contained therein added to the narrative which follows.
Wilder Benton King was born 5/13/1833. His place of birth was Medina Medina County, OH.
Parents of Wilder were Justus King (b. 6/29/1810 Rodman Jefferson County, NY - d. 1/31/1873 Sperry Clayton County, IA) and Rhoda (nee Vaughn 6/29/1810 Medina, OH - d. 11/23/1873 Clayton Clayton County, IA) King. The Kings were farmers.
Justus and Rhoda produced four children. Wilder was eldest of the four. His younger siblings were: Sophia Lucinda King (b. 10/31/1836 Westfield Center Medina County, OH), Rufus L. King (b. 8/19/1843 Lafayette Medina County, OH **) and Silvia Diana King (b. 4/2/1847 Medina, OH).
On 10/23/1853, in Quincy Adams County, IL Wilder married. His bride was Louisa Lovejoy Hughes. Louisa had been born 10/23/1833 in River Cleveland County, NC. Wilder and Louisa then took up farming next door" to Justus and Rhoda King in Clayton County, IA.
Looking ahead, available documentation shows Wilder and Louisa producing thirteen children. They were: Solomon C. King (b. 11/17/1855 Volga City Clayton County, IA), Lydia Ialla King (b. 12/24/1856 Volga City Clayton County, IA - d. 2/28/1871 Volga City Clayton County, IA), Eva E. King (b. 1/18/1856 Volga City Clayton County, IA - d. 11/9/1859 Volga City Clayton County, IA), Victoria Elvira King (b. 1/17/1860 Volga City Clayton County, IA), Justus W. KIng (b. 7/7/1862 Volga City Clayton County, IA - d. 11?/23/1871 Volga Clayton County, IA), Bertha Wilhelmina King (6/1/1864 Iowa City Wright County, IA), Rhoda E. King (b. 6/12/1866 Iowa City Wright County, IA), Henry Wilder King (b. 1/18/1868 Iowa City Wright County, IA), Francis J. King (b. 9/24/1869 Volga (City) Clayton County, IA - d. 4/13/1872 Unk.), Orion W. King (b. 8/16/1871 Kansas City Jackson County, MO - d. 5/28/1876 Unk.) Justus Eugene King (6/1/1874 Caldwell Sumner County, KS), Judd King (b. 1878 Caldwell Sumner County, KS) and James (b. 1880 Volga City Clayton County, IA).
In contrast to the above thirteen King names, in 1900, Louise told the U.S. Census that she had borne twelve children. At the dawn of the twentieth century, six were living.
Although available documents are unclear on the matter, it appears that not long after marrying, Wilder and Louisa may have moved from Iowa to Nodaway County, MO. There, they took up farming on eighty acres of homestead land. It appears the Kings sufficiently worked the parcel to obtain the patent (deed) to it (10/1/1859). That having been said, this Missouri years do not explain why, during that same period in the mid to late 1850s, Louisa gave birth to her children in Iowa. Further, at the time of the 1860, U.S. Census the Kings were farming in Volga City, IA.
In April, 1861 civil war spread across America. Responding to President Abraham Lincoln's call for volunteers to save the Union, on 9/24/1861 Wilder enlisted in the U.S. Army. Private King's unit was the 9th Iowa Infantry. Having survived his three year enlistment he re-enlisted on 1/23/1864. The second enlistment would prove not so benign.
Mid 1864 found Private King with the forces of Union General William Tecumseh Sherman as they moved to capture Atlanta, GA. Within that movement, during the 6/23/1864 battle of Kennesaw Mountain, Wilder received a severe wound in his left side. The wounding led to a 12/8 medical discharge.
Exiting the military it appears Wilder returned to his wife and children in Volga City, Iowa. As noted above, the family continued to grow.
Here it should be pointed out that Private King's 1864 wounding was of a serious enough nature that, on 2/6/1865 he applied for and was granted a U.S. Government disability pension. He would continue to receive a stipend the remainder of his life. Without accessing his pension files, however, details of those payments remain unknowns.
Unfortunately, for us, Wilder and family's whereabouts are not reflected in the 1870 U.S. Census. Likely, however, they were in Kansas. As such, next we hear from him comes from another source: "W.B. King, or as he is usually called, Buffalo King, came to (Kansas). On 5/25/1871 the Kings moved from Slate Creek to the community of Caldwell. He made his settlement seven miles southwest of Caldwell. During the early part of his western life, he, like quite a number of the early settlers hadn’t the least faith in Kansas as a farming country. For this reason he did not open his farm at once but touched the farming business rather lightly at first; spending much of his time on the plains hunting the buffalo and poisoning wolves in order to secure the hide and meat of the former and the furs of the latter. It is said that as a buffalo hunter Mr. King had no superior and very few equals. He seemed almost unerring in his marksmanship. While he was not inspired, yet it seemed for him to point his gun toward a buffalo meant sure death to the animal. In this manner he lived and supported his family for the first few years with what little land he saw fit to cultivate raising a few vegetables and some grain. Time rolled on, however, and farming was no longer an experiment, and the buffalo were fast receding toward the setting sun. Mr. King could plainly see that there was a good living on his farm for himself and his family, and so gradually gave up his hunting and turned his attention to cultivating and improving his farm."
"In 1872 he (Wilder) was elected constable; but failed to qualify: but....... on a number of occasions he was found as one of the sheriff's or constable’s posse to help chase and capture thieves."
In 1880 the King’s Kansas community of residence was listed as Bluff, located in Sumner County. It seems the family remained there until 1886 when they emigrated to Washington Territory (WT). '86 was likely the same year Wilder's brother, Rufus and family, moved to WT. The lure of the Puget Sound region of the Pacific Northwest was likely the availability of homestead farm land which could be claimed by Civil War veterans.
The two King families may have made the westward trek together. Both subsequently took up farming in or near the eastern King County community of Fall City.
Wilder lived out his remaining years in Fall City. He died there on 1/11/1898 of unknown causes. At his passing the former Civil War soldier and buffalo hunter was 64.7 years of age. Burial was/is in the Fall City Cemetery.
Following Wilder's death, Louisa - with the help of son, Justus - continued to farm in Fall City. She also applied for and was granted a portion of her late husband's Civil War pension. Again, without accessing her pension files, the details of her stipend remain unknown.
Louisa Lovejoy Hughes King died in Fall City King County, WA on 2/22/1907. She was/is buried in the Fall City Cemetery with Wilder. ____________________________________________________________________________________
* American Civil War (ACW) Research Database lists Wilder’s name as Wildu B. King
** During the American Civil War (ACW) Rufus served in the 65th Illinois Infantry and the 6th Iowa Cavalry. He survived the conflict and moved to the Puget Sound region of the Pacific Northwest. He is buried in the Fall City Cemetery located in Fall City King County, WA
Buried at Fall City Cemetery
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