MORRIS COUNTY, NJ – To commemorate the 160th anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg, Morris County has released an online collection of data and photographs memorializing local soldiers known to have participated in the three days of fury from July 1-July 3, 1863.
The project is a collection of names, service narratives, historical information and photographs compiled by the county Office of Planning and Preservation, and it remains a work-in-progress. This list is the latest chapter in the series of online projects known as the Morris County Veterans Compendium being led by the Office of Planning and Preservation that documents the military service of Morris County residents throughout history.
The Battle of Gettysburg is considered the turning point of the Civil War, forever ending Confederate General Robert E. Lee’s plans to invade the north. Victory; however, it came at a high cost: More men were lost at Gettysburg than in any other Civil War battle. As many as 23,000 “Yankees” and 28,000 “Rebels” were killed, wounded, or captured over the course of just three days.
The fiercest combat occurred on July 2, earning the day’s nickname: “The Bloody 2nd.” Some of the casualties died by drowning as a summer storm caused wounded men laying by the Plum Run Creek to drown as the creek overflowed on July 3.
“Battlefields often sound the siren call to veterans to go back and re-visit the places where life and death met in close contact. Morris County veterans have revisited Normandy, Korea and Vietnam, and they have revisited Gettysburg,” stated Jan Williams, Cultural and Historic Resources Specialist for the planning and preservation office.
Heyward Glover “H. G.” Emmell, a stretcher bearer with the 7th NJ, returned to Gettysburg in 1881. Enlisted at age 19, H. G. served as a private in the infantry division before transferring to an ambulance corps for fourteen months. Private Emmell died on May 21, 1917, and is buried in the First Presbyterian Cemetery in Morristown.
Morris County men are also known to have attended “The Great Jubilee” in 1913, the 50th anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg. All honorably discharged soldiers from both the North and South were invited, and an estimated 83,000 old soldiers descended on Gettysburg.
The history shared today of Morris County soldiers known to have participated in the Battle of Gettysburg reflect the fates of many of them: they were killed outright, presumed dead, captured or wounded, or were never seen again and left eternally missing in action. Those who returned home started businesses and families, endeavoring to rebuild a nation.
Some of these local American heroes include:
George S. Beavers of Mendham
Private Beavers survived the battles of Spotsylvania, Cold Harbor and Gettysburg, where he was wounded in the foot. Returning to Mendham, Mr. Beavers was the guest speaker Mendham’s Decoration Day (Memorial Day) events for many years. Mr. Beavers also owned and operated The Black Horse Inn for 37 years. The business still exists, now operating as The Black Horse Tavern.
Ira “Ide” Cory of Morristown
Captain Cory participated in and survived many battles during the war, including Gettysburg. After military service, “Ide” turned his attention to public service and was elected sheriff of Morristown in 1887. He died on March 2, 1904 and is buried in Evergreen Cemetery.
Dorastus B. Logan of Roxbury
Born in 1822 in Roxbury Township, Captain Logan participated in the battles of Fredericksburg and Chancellorsville. He was killed in action at Gettysburg on “The Bloody 2nd,” near the Klingel Farmhouse. The Klingel home remains standing at Gettysburg National Park.
The Office of Planning and Preservation has reached out to the public in the past to build webpages memorializing Morris County residents who served in the nation’s armed forces at other times. An accounting of Civil War Men Of Color who were affiliated with Morris County was initially launched in 2018, as well as an accounting of the more than 3,000 residents who were part of The Greatest Generation – Morris County in WWII.
Just earlier this week, another Veterans Compendium project called “Morris County in the American Revolution,” was launched to honor the local patriots whose sacrifices gave us Independence Day.
Anyone that notices errors, omissions or has additional information, contact Jan Williams at email@example.com.