30 August 2010

"Close" Only Counts in Horseshoes and Tiddlywinks, not Genealogy

Oh the heartbreak.

As reported here previously, my g-g-grandfather Henry Martin Walker, Sr. (1929-1865) died in a troop train accident during the Civil War.  It was March 2nd, 1865, and he was a member of Company A, in the Thirty-Third Regiment of the Illinois Volunteer Infantry.  Now let's get a bit of perspective.  There were several hundred of regiments fighting in the Civil War.  And most all regiments had several companies.  So what are the odds?

Researching the Thirty-third and the train accident, I found a 1914 publication of the Illinois Historical Society indicating that I might find useful a book written in 1883 by Alfred O. Marshall called Army Life or Recollections of a Private Soldier which I was lucky to find online here.  And I got really excited to begin reading that he was a member of Company A in the Illinois Thirty-Third!  And it is over four hundred pages long!  What are the odds?!!

Jumping to the end of the book, I couldn't have been more crestfallen to read that the book ends when Mr. Marshall was mustered out -- three months before my g-g-grandfather enlisted, and five months before the train accident.  Sigh.  What are the odds?


Copyright © 2010 by Kevin W. Walker

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