The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports

Mark Simonson

June 29, 2013

Local Civil War veterans held reunion in Gettysburg in 1913

(Continued)

The three-day celebration didn’t go totally without a bad incident. It wasn’t reported if any of the local troops witnessed it, but seven men were stabbed on Wednesday night in the dining room of the Gettysburg Hotel, as a result of a fight that broke out when several men were aroused by an old veteran wearing blue who made insulting remarks about former President Abraham Lincoln. The unnamed veteran managed to escape during the melee.

The 121st New York Infantry Regiment held what was their 27th annual reunion in post rooms in Gettysburg. Many of the area veterans had moved away to 11 other states and this event allowed many to meet again for the first time since the end of the Civil War.

More than likely, the veterans paid a visit to the local monument for the 121st Regiment at Little Round Top. Back in February 1888, the Oneonta Herald reported that the state had appropriated $2,500 for the monument in Gettysburg — $4,500 had been asked for in addition to the state money, $2,500 coming from Otsego County and the remainder from Herkimer County. The plan was to dedicate the monument in July, to mark the 25th anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg.

It stands today with an infantry soldier in bronze at the top.

Those unable to attend the 1913 festivities in Gettysburg were able to see what went on, as “Manager Roberts of the Oneonta theatre has secured at this early day a film of pictures showing the recent reunion.” It was set to play on Monday afternoon and evening, July 14.

The Star reported on Aug. 16 that one veteran had been carrying a rebel bullet in his thigh since June 27, 1862. John Merritt, a D&H machinist at the time, had the bullet removed by Dr. Marshall Latcher of Oneonta. Merritt served as a member of the 27th New York Infantry and got the bullet when in the battle of Gaines Mills.

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Mark Simonson

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