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    Recently I visited a grade school and high school buddy (Dave) who lives in Fort Atkinson, Iowa. Nearby is Waukon, Iowa, the home and burial place of David Wilson Reed. Also of interest was Clermont, Iowa where a sculpture of David Bremer Henderson, the first Speaker of the House from west of the Mississippi, and who drafted the legislation for the formation of Shiloh National Military Park, was dedicated in front of the Episcopal Church. Reed and Henderson were of the group known as the “University Recruits” from Upper Iowa University (UIU) who joined Company C of the 12th Iowa. Henderson was instrumental in David Reed becoming the historian for Shiloh. UIU is still in existence and is located in Fayette, Iowa, another close-by town. Dave and I spent two days searching cemeteries and visiting UIU and locating several graves of soldiers who were members of Company C, 12th Iowa. I recognized most of the names from the research I have done on the 12th Iowa.
    I prepared this summary of the results of our little excursion with the hope that you enjoy the photographs as much as we enjoyed visiting the sites.

    We started in Waukon, Iowa at the Oakland Cemetery and commenced our search. A helpful grass cutter was more than willing to take a break and help us locate David Reed. The big marker is for the family plot and Reed’s parents are there along with his wife and others of his family. There is a young daughter of Reed’s and maybe another child. The actual markers for Reed and others are very difficult to read. The obelisk that notes Reed’s parents also notes his brother Milton who died of disease in 1863 and is buried in the National Cemetery at Corinth, Mississippi.

    The Reed family plot. The blue flag is Reed’s marker and we realized we could look for this type of blue marker to help us locate other graves of men from Company C of the 12th Iowa. We found no more at this cemetery but would discover others elsewhere.

1. Reed family plot

Reed family plot.jpg

2. Reed family monument. This monument is pictured on findagrave.

Reed family monument.jpg

3. Reed marker. Almost unreadable. Reed died in 1916.

Reed marker.jpg

4. Reed’s wife Ellen. She died in 1926.

Reed's wife Ellen.jpg

5. Reed children. The stone on the right is readable as a daughter of Reed’s who died in 1872. The stone on the left stumped me as it is difficult to read.

Reed Children.jpg

6. Hannah Reed. This side of the obelisk commemorates Reed’s mother. She died in 1877 at age 61.

Hannah Reed - mother.jpg

7. John Reed. This side of the obelisk commemorates Reed’s father. He died in 1894? At age 81.

John Reed - father.jpg

8. Milton Reed. Oldest brother who died in 1863. Reed spent years trying to locate his brother’s resting place and finally found it in the Corinth National Cemetery.

Milton Reed - brother.jpg

9. Helpful mower. View of the family plot with the groundskeeper who was very interested in learning of David Reed.

Helpful mower.jpg

    The groundskeeper was so interested he called his wife who worked at the county courthouse with the result that he wanted us to visit Veterans Affairs and give information about Reed to them. So we did and they were not familiar with Reed and did not know he was the “Father of Shiloh National Military Park.” We suggested that a man of such stature should have a military stone marking his grave. The woman in charge said she would go out and take some pictures of Reed’s gravesite and see what she could do. Hopefully Reed will receive a military stone in the future.

    Our next move was to visit Clermont, Iowa and view the statue of David Bremer Henderson to honor another of the men who helped make the Shiloh National Military Park what it is today.

10. Episcopal Church – Clermont Iowa

Episcopal Church - Clermont Iowa.jpg

11. Henderson Plaque

Henderson Placque.jpg

12-13. Henderson Statue

Henderson Statue 1.jpg

Henderson Statue - 2.jpg

    That ended our first day but got us fired up to visit the college from which the “University Recruits” ventured forth in the summer of 1861 to fight for the Union. Professors Charles B. Clark and Roger B. Bowen wrote University Recruits—Company C published in 1991. In the book is a picture of the Company C field desk used during the war and presented to the University by David Reed. We wanted to see the field desk and find out if any of the buildings from before the civil war were still standing. We were not to be disappointed.
    UIU was not in session so it was easier to make a search (researching on campuses can be very frustrating locating a place to just park). We happened to find a parking spot right next to the library and decided to start there because sometimes institutions have displays of artifacts relevant to the history of the school. Bingo! We walked in and asked the librarian about the field desk and where it might be while all the while the desk was about 20 feet away from us in a display of civil war memorabilia relating to the university and the “University Recruits.” A large part of the exhibit was devoted to Dr. Charles Coleman Parker who served the 12th Iowa as surgeon with no small number of the soldiers crediting him with saving their lives.

14. Henderson statue – On the way to the library we were greeted by David Henderson.

UIU - Henderson Statue.jpg

15, 16, 17 – The coveted field desk.

UIU - Field Desk Display.jpg

UIU - Field Desk Close Up.jpg

UIU - Field Desk Info.jpg

18, 19 – Display case showing Shiloh books.

UIU - Case with Shiloh books 1.jpg

UIU - Case with Shiloh books 2.jpg

20. Captain Warner – died in 1863

UIU - Captain Warner.jpg

21. Information sheet on the flag carried by Company C after Shiloh. I took this picture three times and then forgot to take a picture of the flag.

UIU - Flag Story.jpg

22. Overall exhibit showing a portion of the flag I missed.

UIU - Exhibit.jpg

23. Information sheet about the 12th Iowa and the Hornets’ Nest.

UIU - Info Sheet.jpg

24. Dr. Charles Coleman Parker with display cases relevant to him.

UIU - Dr. Parker.jpg

25. Information sheet about how UIU came to be. A rich man wanted an education for his daughters.

UIU - Info Sheet 2.jpg

26, 27, 28, 29, 30 – The original 1857 building that the “University Recruits” departed from has had several names. We went with “Old Main.” The interior has been redone since Reed’s time. (duh) The statue on top of the building was placed well after the civil war. The building has never suffered fire and the limestone blocks constructing it are massive.

UIU - Old Main 1.jpg

UIU - Old Main 2.jpg

UIU - Old Main 3.jpg

UIU - Old Main 4.jpg

UIU - Old Main 5 - interior.jpg

    After completing our visit to UIU and learning that a cemetery, Grandview, existed outside town and that David Henderson was buried there we decided to resume the ghoulish portion of our day and go find it. We did not find Henderson’s grave but we found some others from Company C.

31. Dr. Charles Coleman Parker

Dr. Parker.jpg

32. R. Z. Latimer

R. Z. Latimer.jpg

33, 34, 35. George Comstock

Comstock Monument.jpg

George Comstock.jpg

George Comstock 2.jpg

36, 37. Henry Grannis – Color Bearer – See Ozzy’s post “Color Bearer” in the “Pop Quiz” category.

Henry Grannis.jpg

Grannis Info.jpg

38. Philo Woods

Philo Woods.jpg

39, 40. Edward Adams

Edward Adams.jpg

Edward Adams 2.jpg

    So what about David Henderson? After a fruitless search I told Dave that helpful locals are not always correct. I still remember the local in Ottawa, Illinois telling me that WHL Wallace was buried in the family plot sitting on top of his horse.
   A return to the library and searching on findagrave revealed a unique monument for David Bremer Henderson but it was located in Linwood Cemetery in Dubuque, Iowa. No problem. I was heading towards the Chicago area and Dubuque was on the way since I also wanted to make my first visit to Galena, Illinois and check out Grant’s House there.
    I arrived at Linwood Cemetery around 12:30 p.m. to find the office closed and a large cemetery with many trees and very hilly facing me. I searched for half an hour and then returned to the office that was supposed to open at 1 p.m. and saw a note that they were out on the grounds working. I had not seen anybody working. I resumed my own search of the grounds being careful not to drive off the road and over someone’s grave. No luck. Hundreds of monuments but none that looked like Henderson’s.
    I was loathe to leave without achieving the objective but I had been searching for over 75 minutes when I decided to give it one more shot and concentrate near the bluff overlooking the Mississippi River assuming Henderson would have been accorded a choice location. Viola!! Out of the corner of my eye, through the trees, I spotted the monument due to its unique design.

41, 42, 43, 44. The first photograph shows my first glance of the monument. The Mississippi River is in the background.

David Henderson 4.jpg

David Henderson 1.jpg

David Henderson 2.jpg

David Henderson 3.jpg

    I then moved on to the quaint river town of Galena, Illinois to visit Grant’s House. I did not know the Grant House was not the house he lived in prior to the start of the war. The house was given to Grant by the town after the war, 1865, completely furnished. Ninety percent of the furnishings are original to Grant. I asked the guide how Grant managed to keep possession of the house during his financial difficulties in the 1880s and she said that the town saw to it that the house remained in Grant’s possession. I then inquired as to whether the house Grant lived in just prior to the war still existed and found out that the house was still there at 121 High Street.
    I had never been to Galena and did not spend enough time there to see other places of interest and plan to return there sometime in the future.

45, 46. The Grant House

Galena - Grant House.jpg

Grant House Interior.jpg

47, 48. The rental at 121 High Street.

121 High St. Grant's Rental.jpg

121 High St. Grant's Rental 1.jpg

    My friend Dave really enjoyed our excursions in search of David Reed and other members of the 12th Iowa. He has lived in the area for over forty years and had only visited the UIU campus once. We had a long talk with the archivist at the UIU library and she was really interested to learn the part David Reed played in the formation of the Shiloh National Military Park. We hope our visit encourages an increased understanding of the local population to the contribution David Reed made to Shiloh.

    With that I close wishing you all well,



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There are places in America where the sensation of stepping back in time... undeniable... overwhelming. It is as if the Interstate Highway of progress ripped past, and cut them off forever from the here-and-now. And so they remain tucked away, wonderfully preserved just as they were, awaiting discovery by anyone interested in taking the time to investigate. For me, those places include Harpers Ferry, Fort Barrancas, Bishop Hill, and Galena. (And I'm told Shiloh National Military Park can work the same magic on visitors.)

Viewing Hank's presentation, I was reminded that the State Historical Museum at Des Moines possesses most of the Battle Flags from the Civil War used by Iowa troops... but the flag for the 12th Iowa is not among their collection. I've been searching via the internet for several years, without success... and there it is, at UIU. (Of course, that's the second flag; the first flag was subject of one of those bizarre tales from the Hornet's Nest/Hell's Hollow.)

Being a retired library worker, the 'obvious error' on display at No.23 "Information Sheet, attributed to The Collegian of March 1st 1963" caught my attention, because the 12th Iowa was not mustered out until January 1866 (would have missed the Mobile Operation and Spanish Fort, otherwise.) And reminds me of a recent YouTube video where the Librarian explains that in preparation for displaying their Civil War artifacts, one dutiful employee took it upon herself to correct a mistake on the signs that had been plaguing her for years: she changed "minie"  to  "minnie"  wherever it occurred...  Took her several weeks.

Anyway, thanks to Hank for making the trip and sharing the photos




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That looks like a fun time indeed, Hank, thank you so much for sharing!

I have searched for D.W. Reed's grave on Findagrave in the past and have viewed others online at Oakland Cemetery, it appears to be a beautiful and well maintained cemetery, which is always good to see. 

I always do the same thing at cemeteries when looking for a particular grave that seems impossible to find, view the landscape in and around the grave itself to see if anything stands out that I am able to notice. I had to do the same down in Holly Springs, MS for CSA Brig. General Daniel Chevilette Govan, and it took me almost and hour and a half in 100 degree weather in the middle of August (no cemetery office or maps are available), ugh...that was fun to say the least. Felt bad for my girlfriend having to put up with me not wanting to end the search in that heat, but I was determined to see it through! :)

The Grant House looks like a neat place to visit if ever able to, lots to see & learn. May I ask if the Rental House on 121 is Private Property, or is it also owned & protected by the State?  Very cool trip, one that'd be a lot of fun to experience, I'm sure!


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Ozzy, StudentofSherman and Mona,

    Thanks for the comments. The trip to find David Wilson Reed had been on my list for a long time and it was all the more better to tie it in with a friend that I started out in first grade with. I played Dave for the 8th grade school ping pong championship and beat him.
    Galena was a wonder when I drove down the main street and it went on for blocks and indeed seemed like a step back in time. I did read that for some reason redevelopment of its main street never occurred and it looks like it did back in the late 1800s. A return trip with enough time to visit Elihu Washburne’s house and the Desoto Hotel are on the list along with a trip to Bishop Hill, Illinois (thanks for the tip). I have been to Harper’s Ferry on a day of heavy rain and I put Fort Barrancas on the list when I finally make it down to Florida.
    Ozzy, I am glad the mystery of the 12th Iowa’s flag has been solved; at least half of it anyway. The archivist at UIU spent a long time with us as we enhanced her understanding as to just who David Wilson Reed was and his accomplishments at Shiloh. I will email her and ask if she would be so kind as to take a full picture of that flag and send it to me to pass along.
    The Oakland Cemetery was indeed well maintained as was the Grandview cemetery at Fayette and the Linwood Cemetery at Dubuque. The Linwood Cemetery on the bluff above the Mississippi River was large and very impressive. The man mowing the grass at the Oakland Cemetery could not have been more helpful and interested in why we were there. He rode over from where we met him, several hundred yards away, to make sure we found the Reed plot.
    The Grant Rental House is private property. While I was there taking pictures a tourist trolley drove by so it is on the tour list. The word I got was the owner was trying to get permission from the town to offer private tours of the house. It did not appear to be occupied. Old pictures showed a front porch on the house in the 1930s but what it looked like at Grant’s residence I do not know. It must be at least a couple hundred feet above the main street of Galena so Grant had to go up and down the hill side to get to the tanning shop. If you google such items as 121 High Street Galena Illinois it should list items of interest on the house.
    As to the tombstone in the corner of the exhibit at the library at UIU I zoomed in on it and it is a replica of the Henry Grannis tombstone that is number 36 on the photos I posted.
    After Fort Donelson there was a clamor in Iowa for a brigade of Iowa troops led by Iowa commanders. Illinois had a prominence of high ranking officers and Illinois newspapers tended to ignore Iowa regiments. At least that was the impression Iowans had.
    The result was Colonel James M. Tuttle’s Iowa brigade of the 2nd, 7th, 12th and 14th Iowa. By the way, at Shiloh the 14th Iowa had only seven companies because three of their companies were off fighting Indians. I think sometime in 1863 they finally reached a full complement of 10 companies.
    By fate it was the 8th Iowa that filled the gap between Tuttle’s brigade and Prentiss’s remnants and that is why we see five regimental Iowa monuments in a row down the Sunken Road. Of those five regiments the 8th Iowa was the least experienced.
            But I digress, thanks again for the comments.


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If you get the chance to visit Pensacola (with well-preserved Fort Pickens (where the Civil War almost started) and Fort Barrancas (still has its 1861 appearance) and the Advanced Redoubt (arguably the scene of first shots of the Civil War); and the National Cemetery there (with Confederate and Union graves, all marked) and the National Naval Aviation Museum...) you will not be disappointed. 

Bishop Hill was a Swedish utopian community established in Henry County, Illinois in 1846. The Union-supporting Swedes established their own militia unit, which became Company D of the 57th Illinois Infantry; and was assigned to Sweeny's Brigade of the 2nd Division at Shiloh. (Visiting Bishop Hill, with its immaculately preserved residences and working buildings, is akin to visiting Sweden... nearly 200 years ago.)

Another place that'll 'take you back in time' that I failed to mention: the Iowa Amana Colonies. About ten miles northwest of Iowa City, the communal society of Germans fleeing religious persecution was established in 1855 on the best farmland in the State. During the Civil War, the Amana Society avoided military participation (due their religious beliefs) but provided fruits, vegetables, meats, woolen goods to the Union war effort (much of it donated.) Each of the seven satellite communities have their own charm, but Main Amana has the best restaurant (the Colony Inn.) Avoid the tourist trap on Interstate 80 and make the 15 minute drive north on Route 151.

One other comment... You mention Colonel Tuttle getting his own brigade due to political influence. Jacob Lauman (from Burlington, Iowa) was given command of the 2nd Division... for a few days, towards the end of March 1862. But for whatever reason he was replaced by WHL Wallace. Lauman performed admirably as Brigade commander; WHL Wallace became the stuff of legends.



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Thanks for reference to James Madison Tuttle. I had not investigated his death and place of burial (until now) and it took me a few attempts to find the correct J.M. Tuttle; this is him:  http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=5895024

On the morning of April 6th 1862  Colonel Tuttle was given assignment of marching the infantry of the 2nd Division forward to assist General Prentiss, while General WHL Wallace sent a messenger north, down the Tennessee River aboard the steamer John Warner, to alert Major General Grant to the general engagement underway at the outer reaches of Pittsburg Landing, appearing to involve Sherman and Prentiss (messengers from both those generals had been dispatched, requesting urgent assistance.) While Wallace and Engineer James McPherson then set about positioning the artillery of the 2nd Division, Tuttle led his marching men down the East Corinth Road, began descending a gentle slope... but only a short distance. Men in butternut were observed en masse, on both sides of the road, five or six hundred yards ahead. Colonel Tuttle countermarched his force left, ascended the slope, and directed it east into a laneway that had just been passed, to quickly establish a defensive line against the enemy horde, now approaching the base of Tuttle's slope. Fourteenth Iowa, 12th Iowa... filed along the laneway; until the 14th Iowa was halted well short of a Federal force observed just ahead... which proved to belong to elements of the 6th Division...

In short order, Will Wallace arrived in person, advanced towards his neighbors to the east and greeted the commander of what-was-left of the 6th Division: his old friend from the Mexican War, Benjamin Prentiss. (Up until this face-to-face meeting, Prentiss, who had only arrived April 1st, had operated under the impression that the 2nd Division was commanded by another man; he'd sent his request for assistance to General CF Smith.)  Together, Prentiss and Wallace closed the gap separating them: Sweeny's 8th Iowa (commanded by Colonel James Geddes) was moved into that position; and Prentiss donated a section of the valuable artillery pieces he'd managed to save (Hickenlooper and Munch)... this section under Lieutenant Pfaender belonged to Munch, and the two canister-firing guns were embedded like giant shotguns between the 14th and 12th Iowa, pointed down slope at the grey menace. The other artillery pieces WHL Wallace had positioned were just back of his line of infantry, and fired south, over the top of that line.

I know this piece goes beyond the story of James Tuttle: but he deserves credit for selecting the road that became the defensive line; and WHL Wallace deserves credit (with McPherson) for wise positioning of his artillery;and Prentiss deserves credit for sharing Munch's artillery (which together with Hickenlooper's pieces was embedded with the line of infantry, and helped make the Hornet's Nest/Sunken Road line, into a very strong position.



References:  A Perfect Picture of Hell, edited by Genoways & Genoways, University of Iowa Press (2001)

find-a-grave entry for James Madison Tuttle





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Speaking of Iowa Officers, rather amusing story regarding then Colonel William Hall of the 11th Iowa Regiment in the spring of 1864.

Ah, those newbies...:lol:

"Considering his ill-health, Colonel Hall was successful as a soldier. He was a good tactician, and brave and resolute. His greatest fault seemed to be in questioning the justness and propriety of the orders of his superiors. He would obey them, but it was not uncommon for him to do so under protest. The following will illustrate how the enlisted men of his command appreciated his temper.

While the Iowa Brigade was encamped at Clifton, Tennessee, just before starting across the country to Huntsville, a squad of raw recruits, from its different regiments, were put on picket. They were in the enemy's country, and, of course, were ordered to load their pieces. Returning to camp in the morning, they inquired of the veterans how they should get the charges, out of their guns, and received the following instructions: "Go out there, behind Colonel Hall's tent, and fire them off: that's the only place—and be sure and all fire at once." They did as directed. What followed, was better appreciated by the veterans, than by those who were learning their first lesson in soldiering. Colonel Hall, who was in bed, sprang out in a rage, and ordered the poor fellows tied from morning till night."


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I am the new Archivist at Upper Iowa University, and if there is anything that I can help with regarding any of the University Recruits or Dr. Parker - please let me know.  I am fairly new to this position and am fascinated by the history of the University and the involvement with the Civil War.  I will also see about fixing the sign quoting the Collegian, which was the student newspaper.  Below is some information about the flag. 

Upper Iowa University Civil War Flag
In 1861, 19 young recruits from Upper Iowa University were among the men mustered into Company C of the 12th Iowa Regiment. Female students at UIU hand-sewed a flag and dedicated it to the troops in a special ceremony.  The flag displayed in the UIU Library was the second flag sewn by the UIU students, as the first was lost at the Battle of Shiloh.

The flag was cleaned by conservators at the State Historical Society of Iowa who volunteered their time (approximately 200-250 hours) "in honor of those who served under the folds of this great flag."  The flag was encased and displayed backwards to show the better side, as the opposite side shows obvious deterioration.

Description from conservator: "The artifact is a representation of a National (non-issued) flag of the United States bearing Thirty-four stars. It is hand sewn and not mass produced. Stitch count varies from 9 to 10 stitches per inch (both seams and stars) and there is visual evidence of several different hands taking part in the work as evidenced by the relative fineness of the stitcher. The material is cloth of both cotton and wool and is constructed of single layers for the canton and stripes. The stars present in the canton are appliqued to both sides of the fabric of the canton. The Field itself consists of thirteen alternating red and white wool stripes (7 red and 6 white) consistent with extant Federal laws of the period of the American Civil War (1861-1865). The stripes are connected to one another by 1/8" side overlapping seams. Top and Bottom edges of the field are hemmed. The fly end hem is rolled over a cotton cording which is secured in place by a single row of hand stitches. Though the fly end has a fair amount of "shatter" some of the cording is yet visible in place. The dark blue canton is inset into the upper hoist corner and secured to the field with the same, previously noted 18th-inch hand seaming. The canton rests on the 8th stripe, and there are seven alternating red and white stripes adjacent. There are thirty-four each, five-pointed stars within the orders of the canton, and these are appliqued to both sides thereof. A partial, non-original, staff and associated cords and tassel pendants are present."

Civil War Flag.jpg

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UIU Archivist

Thanks so much for providing this image of the 12th Iowa Volunteer Infantry Regiment's Flag... with colours so crisp, and in such remarkable condition, it's hard to believe it's over 150 years old.




N.B.  And thanks to Hank for discovering the location of this piece of "living history."


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Many thanks to the UIU archivist for helping me (us) out and providing a great picture of the 12th Iowa flag and the description of it.

Veterans of the 12th Iowa remembered with bitterness the loss and the treatment that their first flag suffered at Shiloh.

It was not expected to find such a display of civil war memorabilia when visiting the home town of David Reed and the university from which the "University Recruits" ventured forth in September 1861. It makes the effort worthwhile when you have a forum (Thanks, Perry) full of interested civil war enthusiasts to share the discovery. UIU deserves recognition for having such civil war artifacts on display so we can all see them.





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