G.A.R. Post: John Buford Post #89 Everett, WA
51st OHIO VOLUNTEER INFANTRY
Organized: 9/9-10/12/61 Camp Meigs, Canal Dover, OH
Mustered In: Inf. Not Avail.
Mustered Out: 10/3/65 Victoria, TX
194th OHIO VOLUNTEER INFANTRY
Organized: 3/1/65 Camp Chase, Cleveland, OH
Mustered Out: 10/24/65 Washington, D.C.
REGIMENTAL HISTORY: (51st)
The 51st was a three year western theater regiment. Upon leaving the state of Ohio it proceeded to Louisville, KY. During its first year it was engaged with the enemy on various occasions, but participated in its first combat of significance in the fall of 1862 when, at Dobson's Ferry, TN it met and defeated Wheeler's Confederate cavalry. Of the thirteen men of the regiment wounded, three later died. At Stone's River it lost 32 killed, 105 wounded and 46 captured. The unit then lay at Murfreesboro until 6/24 when it embarked on the Tullahoma campaign. At Ringgold, GA the 51st again met and bested Wheeler's cavalry. At Chickamauga it lost 8 killed plus 37 enlisted men and l officer wounded and 30 captured. It participated in the storming of Lookout Mountain, TN and took part in the taking of Rossville Gap through Missionary Ridge.
Re-enlistment and a veteran volunteer furlough preceded entering the Atlanta, GA campaign in 1864. During this period it saw action at Resaca and Kennesaw Mountain. From this time until Atlanta was taken it was engaged with the enemy on an almost daily basis. It then fought at Jonesboro and pursued the enemy to Lovejoy's Station where 10 were wounded. Next followed the battles of Franklin and Nashville, TN after which the regiment was ordered to Texas where it remained until final muster.
REGIMENTAL HISTORY: (194th)
The 194th was a one year, eastern theater regiment. In early 1864 as Union Gen. U.S. Grant began assembling his forces to move southward into Virginia in a campaign that would ultimately bring an end to four years of bloody civil war, he pulled many existing, experienced units from rear echelon positions. In order to fill these gaps, a number of short-term regiments were formed. The 194th was one such unit.
Initial orders for the 194th sent the regiment into West Virginia where it joined a brigade of western troops to form a division under Maj. Gen. Egan. The 4/9/65 surrender of Confed. Gen. R.E. Lee's army at Appomattox Court House, VA caused the division to be broken up. The 194th was then ordered to Washington, D.C. where it remained performing garrison duty until final muster.
Residence: Inf. Not Avail. Age: 19.10 yrs.
Enlisted/Enrolled: 8/24/61 Port Washington, OH Rank: Cpl.
Mustered In: 9/17/61
Discharged: 5/21/62 Nashville, TN
Highest Rank: Cpl.
Residence: Inf. Not Avail. Age: 23.5 yrs.
Enlisted/Enrolled: 3/7/65 Rank: Sgt.
Mustered In: 3/12/65
Mustered Out: 10/24/65 Washington, D.C.
Highest Rank: Sgt.
Robert Wesley Barge was born 10/4/41 in New Philadelphia, Tuscarawas Co., OH to parents Robert (no b. d.) and Ascha (b. 1813 OH nee Forman) Barge. He had at least three older siblings: J.D. (b. d. unk.), Elizabeth (b. 1834 OH) and Mary (b. 1839 OH). He also had at least one younger brother: Levi T.or F. (b. 1846 OH). No information is available pertaining to Robert's childhood, formative or early teenaged years. In fact, prior to his enlistment in the U.S. Army the only things known about Robert are that in 1850 he was residing with his mother and three siblings in Auburn, Tuscarawas Co., OH (his father was deceased by that time) and that in 1860 he was residing in Salem, Tuscarawas Co., OH.
At the time his August, 1861 enlistment - which was at the rank of corporal, not private - we learn that the near twenty year old young man was 5' 9" tall, darkly complected with black eyes and dark hair. We also learn that he must have had at least a basic, if not more substantial education because his occupation at enlistment was noted as "teacher." Interestingly, the enlistment was under his middle name, Wesley.
In January, 1862 while on picket duty corporal Barge suffered from exposure to the elements to such a degree that by early February he was sick in the hospital and by early April had been granted a furlough home in order to recuperate from rheumatism. The furlough did not help mend the young soldier's body, so upon returning to his regiment, the once strong and healthy young man was granted a medical discharge because the rheumatoid afflictions of his limbs made him unfit to perform the duties of a soldier.
Having returned from the service to Tuscarawas Co, OH, on 8/28/62 Robert married Mary Thompson (b. 10/29/41 OH). The couples' first child, son James O. was born the following May. The union would ultimately produce eleven children, with the names of only those that survived being noted. As such the additional Barge children were as follows: Emma A. (b. 1865 OH), Robert V. (b. 5/66 OH), Charles E. (b. 1868 OH), Mary Ally (b. 5/6/69 New Cornerstone, OH), Willy Dell (b. 8/70 OH), Mary H (b. ca. 1873 OH),
Eliza M. (Middle name may have been Marshall b. 1/77 OH) and Lizzie J. (b. ca. 1879 OH).
In March, 1865, apparently having sufficiently recovered from his earlier rheumatism, Robert Wesley, this time under his first name, Robert, reenlisted in the army. Likely one motivation for the re-enrollment was the payment of significant enlistment cash bonuses or "bounties" being offered at the time. Another motivational factor, however, may have been re-entering the service at the rank of Sergeant. Finally, having to commit only to a one year service obligation in a unit that would not likely be sent into combat was a probably consideration.
During this second stint in the army medical issues again plagued the young soldier. Although details are not clear, in June Sgt. Barge had hospital contact and, in late July, was furloughed home for ten days. Whether or not the furlough was health-related is not known. Returning to his regiment in early August, Sergeant Barge served without issue until his final muster in October. This would conclude Robert Wesley's military career. (Note: Brother J.D. survived the war after serving with the 123rd OH Infantry. Brother L.T. or L.F. served with the 57th OH Infantry, but did not survive.)
Census information for the two decades immediately following the war place the Barge family in Salem, Tuscarawas Co, OH. In 1870 Robert's occupation was listed as "farm laborer." A decade later it was simply "farmer." No census information is available for 1890.
By 1900 the Barges had departed Ohio and were residing in Greenwood, Kossuth Co., Iowa where Robert was serving as a justice of the peace. In 1910 they were in Marysville, Snohomish County, WA with Robert listed a having no income. Exactly when and why they had removed from the Midwest to the Puget Sound region of Western Washington State is not known. Perhaps it was to be near one or more of their adult children.
As early as 1886 Robert had begun requesting his military records from the U.S. Government. More than likely this was done as part of the process of requesting a monthly invalid pension stipend based on ailments and injuries tracing back to his days of Civil War soldiering. Although a pension was subsequently granted, the amount of the monthly payment is not documented. The financial support was, however, obviously needed because by 1909 Robert had become invalided to a point where he needed constant care.
Former Civil War soldier Robert Wesley Barge died on November 10, 1910 in Marysville, WA. Cause of death is not known. Burial was in the Marysville Community Cemetery.
That, at his passing, Robert was receiving a pension stipend is acknowledged by the fact that shortly after his death Mary petitioned the U.S. Government to continue receiving at least a portion of that stipend. The last payment to her was made on 6/3/19. Mary died in Marysville on 6/12/19 and was buried beside Robert.
Buried at Marysville Cemetery
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