L. C. Bartlett, A Remarkable Pioneer And Civil War Veteran, Celebrating 88th Anniversary
L. C. Bartlett, great-grandson of Josiah Bartlett, a signer of the Declaration of Independence from New Hampshire, grandson of Joseph Bartlett, who served under General Stark at Bennington and Saratoga in the Revolutionary war, son of Ira Bartlett, who served in the War of 1812 with Great Britain under Generals Brown and Scott, himself a veteran of the Civil war, is celebrating his eighty-eighth birthday anniversary today with a party of his friends, at the home of his granddaughter, Mrs. C. F. Somers, 1119 Superior avenue.
Mr. Bartlett was born in Jefferson county, N. Y., on April 10, 1833, his mother dying when he was still an infant. He was adopted by a French family which came to America to escape the Bourbon persecution upon the downfall of Napoleon, and his first language was French. He knew none other until he was 5 years old.
He was reared a strict Catholic until he became eleven years of age. He knew nothing of his ancestry or nationality until the family which adopted him was broken up, when he found himself an orphan and alone in the world.
Having no friends he was knocked about "from pillar to post," and he found it very difficult, especially as he had no school training. He worked on various farms and as he was diligent he was never without a home. He was studious and became a good scholar for those days.
When seventeen years of age he went sailing on the Great Lakes. He was wrecked in a storm on Lake Erie, when the vessel, captain, mate, and five of the crew were lost, but two surviving.
Following a brief sailing career he went back to his books, teaching school during the winter months and attending an academy in the spring and fall, working his way through.
He was married to Miss Francis E. Reed on April 10, 1856, and came directly to Sheboygan county, settling in the village of Cascade. Here he acquired some property that he subsequently traded for a farm, devoting his energies to its cultivation during the summer months while he engaged in teaching during the winter.
He continued on his farm for thirteen years when he engaged in the druggist business at Sheboygan Falls in 1872. Two years later he disposed of this to E. P. Bryant, and settled in Cascade where he opened a drug, book, and grocery store, which he continued up to November, 1919, when failing health and loss of sight compelled him to retire. He was one of the veteran druggists of the county, having engaged in this profession for over forty years.
Having inherited the patriotic fervor that distinguished his forefathers Mr. Bartlett enlisted in the Union army on May 26, 1861, and went to the front as a private in Company C, 4th Col. Wisconsin Infantry, the first company to leave Sheboygan. Her served in this company for five years and two days, participating in some of the most notable conflicts of the war.
He held positions of corporal, sergeant, quartermaster sergeant, orderly sergeant, second and first lieutenant, and has a total record of seventeen major battles and a number of skirmishes.
He was placed on the honor roll twice for meritorious conduct by orders from General Banks and Bailey.
Mr. Bartlett was twice married. His first union was with Miss Frances Reed, of Jefferson county, New York, to which union four children were born, all now being deceased. She passed away in 1867 and the following year Mr. Bartlett married Miss Melissa Thomas, a native of this state.
The public record of Mr. Bartlett is remarkable, He served as justice of the peace in the town of Lyndon for 40 years, as a notary public for 38 years, postmaster at Cascade for 12 years, town clerk five years, supervisor 3 years, and then refused all public office.
He was a lifelong member of the republican party and he has always taken an active interest in all municipal affairs. He has been a member of the Grand Army of the Republic for 53 years.
Mr. Bartlett is in full possession of all his faculties and possesses a remarkable memory, while he has the energy and ambition that keeps the spark of life burning strongly. About a year ago he underwent an operation for removal of a cataract from his right eye, and he can now write and read with ease.
He is celebrating his birthday with all the zest of youth.
Copyright 1997 - 2005 by Debie Blindauer
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