G.A.R. Post: John Buford Post #89 Everett, WA
45th WISCONSIN VOLUNTEER INFANTRY
Mustered Out: 7/17/65 Nashville, TN
In the spring of 1864 Federal forces under Union Gen. U.S. Grant started southward through Virginia on the Overland Campaign which, the following year, would lead to the surrender of Confed. Gen. R.E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia at Appomattox Ct. House, VA. Near the same time other Federal forces under Gen. W.T. Sherman moved towards Atlanta, GA and beyond.
To ensure the most seasoned troops for these movements, existing garrison forces were removed from fortifications and other "rear echelon" assignment. To refill this void, a number of short-term, essentially non-combat regiments were raised to garrison forts, guard railroads and perform picket duties. The 45th was one such unit.
A one year, "western theatre" regiment, the 45th was raised during the fall and winter of 1865 and sent southward by companies to the defensive works surrounding Nashville, TN. It remained stationed at Nashville until final muster. Although the 45th never saw action, out of a total of 1001 men its mortality rate was 34 enlisted men dead from disease, accidents, etc.
Residence: Milwaukee, WI Age: 38 years (est.)
Enlisted/Enrolled: 10/26/64 Milwaukee, WI Rank: Pvt.
Mustered In: 10/28/64
Mustered Out: 5/11/65 Madison, WI
Discharged: 5/11/65 Madison, WI
Highest Rank: Pvt.
Anton Kreutzberg was reportedly born in 1826 in Prussia/Germany. Although one source lists his birth month as April, no specific birth date is present in available documents. Also, no information is known pertaining to his parentage, siblings, formative or teenaged years.
Records indicate Anton came to America in 1849. In 1850 the U.S. Census placed him in Lewiston, Mifflin Co., PA with his noted occupation as tanner. He was residing with the family of a Mr. Thomas McKee, also a tanner. Anton was undoubtedly learning the tannery trade.
At some point in the early 1850s Anton married a woman identified only as Johanna/Joanna (no nee, b. 1834 Prussia or WI). By late 1854 the couple resided in Wisconsin. In November of that year or the next, their first child, Henry, was born. The Kreutzbergs would produce three additional children: Hugo, (b. 1855 or '56, WI), Emil (b. 1858 or '59, WI) and Otto (b. 1860, WI). At the time of Otto's birth the Kreutzberg's were residing in the village of Meanitown, Meanitown Co., WI by 1864, when the 5'4", darkly complected, grey eyed tanner/currier joined in the U.S. Army, his residence was listed as Milwaukee, WI.
Private Keurtzberg, approximately 38 years of age, was far above the 26.7 year average age of a Civil War soldier. Although available documents do not reflect the fact, likely he received an enlistment bonus/bounty of at least $100 from the Federal Government; a hefty financial inducement to enlist in an age when the wage of a private soldier was $13 per month. Apart from the enlistment money, as a man with a wife and three children, the sign-up was probably furthered by the fact that his period of service was to be relatively brief and not in a combat zone.
Anton's period of military service proved to be somewhat of a medical disaster. By 3/11/65 he was absent from duty, sick in the hospital with "dropsical disease" Records note his body and limbs were” all swelled up” because of fluid retention. Unable to function as a soldier, private Kreutzberg was given a medical discharge.
With army life behind him Anton and family settled in Green Bay, WI. The 1870 census found him there pursuing his trade as a tanner. He was still there in 1872 when he and Johanna/Joanna divorced.
The 1880 census placed Anton back in Milwaukee characterized as an inmate of the (National Home for Disabled Soldiers. Prior to entering the home he had likely worked as a farmer.
In 1889, still in the Milwaukee soldiers' home, Anton applied for a U.S. Government disability pension on the grounds that he was physically unable to earn a living because of effects of rheumatism he had contracted in March, 1865 while still in the military. Additional claimed ailments included piles, lung and spleen problems, a broken left wrist, and loss of hearing.
1900. The census for Milwaukee, WI showed Anton still in the soldiers' home. However, the Everett, WA census for the same year showed him with son Hugo and family in that city. Because he is shown in two separate censuses, his move westward was likely done fairly quickly around mid year.
On 8/21/06 former Civil War soldier Anton Kreutzberg, circa 80/81 years of age, died at Hugo’s home in Everett, WA. Cause of death was noted as heart failure. His obituary in the Everett Herald newspaper noted he had "been in his usual health"(and) had just returned from a walk when the attack struck him." At death private Kreutzberg was receiving a government pension of $17 per month based on his Civil War soldiering. Internment was in Everett’s Evergreen Cemetery.
Buried at Evergreen Cemetery
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