THE CIVIL WAR PENSION OF WILLIAM S. CHURCH

Company "K" 14th W. Va. Infantry

Submitted by Candace Church - Dacey123@attbi.com


William S. CHURCH's Civil War pension file consists of 17 documents. Here are summaries of 15 of those documents and complete transcripts of two of them.

1. - Appears to be the front of a folder: THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES, SOLDIERS CERTIFICATE No. 421560; VETERAN William Church; RANK Private; SERVICE Co K, 14 W.Va.; CAN No 8995; BUNDLE No. 18


2. - 9 Apr 1879. Declaration for Original Invalid Pension. Age 38; resident of Church District, Wetzel Co. Enrolled 16 Sept 1862 in Co. K, 14 Regiment, W.Va. commanded by Capt Alfred L. HOLT.
Description: height - 5' 10"; complexion- (farr?); hair- dark, eyes - gray. On or about the 20th of July, 1864, while in the line of duty near Winchester, Va., "he was stunned by a shell while in battle with the Confederate forces." Was treated at a hospital in "Claryville, MD"; from there to a hospital in "Wheling" which he didn't remember the name of, then sent to "Washington City and placed in the Invalid Case". Resided in Wetzel Co. since leaving the service. Occupation - farmer; is 2/3 disabled. Has not previously received or applied for pension. Appoints T. H. MEIGHEN of Springhill Township, Green Co., Pa. as his attorney to prosecute his claim.
Signed by William CHURCH.
Signatures beside "Attest:: A. McGRIFFEN and E. ROBERTS.

Witness signatures: S.W. FELTON and Daniel WHITE, both of Waynesburg, Green Co., Pa., signed a statement that they witnessed William sign his statement and that "they have every reason to believe ...that he is the identical person he represents himself to be". Sworn to and signed before G. W. ULLOM (?).


3. - 9 Feb 1880 - handwritten statement appears to have been written by J. A. CONNOLLY, Pension Notary. States that William was a Sergeant, Co. K., 14th Regt., WV Infantry. Gives age as 39, residence as Wetzel Co., WV, post office address as Milo, Wetzel Co. Says William resided in Wetzel for five years immediately preceding his enlistment and Milo was his post office address. Resided in the "aforementioned place" since discharge. Occupation - farmer. Disability aries from disease of the lungs while engaged in the battle at Carter's Farm on 20 July 1864; struck by piece of shell in breast which injured left lung. Was taken from battlefield to Claryville Hosp., was there about a week, then to hospital at Wheeling, was there about three weeks, then to the Invalid chare(?) at Washington City. Since discharge unable to perform any labor 1/3 of time; unable to perform hard labor 2/3 of time. Has been able to do light work at his usual occupation. Received medical treatment from Dr. J. K. FRANKS at Burton, WV until 1875, then Dr. R. B. GRIM in 1877, and Dr. J. F. REGIN in 1879. Signed by William CHURCH and by the pension notary.


4. - 7 Mar 1881 - Department of Interior, Pension office requests of the Adjutant General USA a report of service and disability in case of William Church, K, 14 W. Va. Vols., disabled by having been stunned by a shell near Winchester, VA about 20 July 1864. Signed by "acting comissioner" - cannot read signature.


5. - 18 May 1881 - Adjutant General's Office report on William Church. Private, Company K, 14th Regiment, W.Va. Volunteers enrolled 20 Aug 1862 at Littleton, VA. Mustered into service 16 Sept. 1862 at Wheeling, Va, to serve 3 years and is reported on muster roll of said Company. (There's an * here and a note at the bottom says "see new report" but I'm not sure what that note refers to.) To Aug 31/64, Cpr'l. absent without leave since 11 Aug 1864; to Oct 31/64 absent sick in Cumberland Hosp.; to Dec. 31/64 present. Mustered out with Co. as Sergeant 27 June 1865. Return for July 64, the absent enlisted men of Co. K are not accounted for by name. Regiment in action at Carter's Farm near Winchester, VA 20 July 1864. Wounded in action at Winchester, Va., 20 July 1864. Nature and location of wound, not stated. Nature of sickness, not stated. Hospital records, not on file. Signed by "Assistant Adjutant General", signature not readable.


6. - 6 May 1887 - Declaration for original invalid pension. Age 47, resident of Calhoun Co., WV. Was enrolled 20 Aug. 1862, Co. K., 14th Reg., WV Volunteers, commanded by A.S. HOULT. Honorably discharged at Cumberland 27 June 1865, age 27. Description: height 5'9"; completion dark; hair black; eyes black. On duty at Cloyd Mountain, VA, 9 May 1864, incurred disease of heart, kidneys, and liver caused by overheat and hard marching; thinks heart disease the main trouble. Since making application No. 321.848 he is advised he is entitled to pension for above named disease. Was not treated in any hospital nor by regiment surgeons but was treated by Dr. Flether S. RIGER soon after he came home from that service. Also by Dr. George K. FRANK of Wetzel Co., WV. Since leaving serve has resided in Wetzel and Calhoun Co., WV. Occupation farmer. Now about disabled by his injuries. Has never received but has applied for a pension. Post office address is Arnoldsburg, Calhoun Co., WV. Signed by William CHURCH. Signatures by Attest are G. S. SMITH and J.J. SMITH. George S. SMITH and J.J. SMITH also sign as witnesses. Sworn to and signed before George W. TALCOTT, Clerk, Calhoun Co., WV.


7. - 17 Oct 1887 - General Affidavit. William age 48, resident of Sycamore, Calhoun Co., WV. This affidavit was to amend his declaration in Pension Claim No. 321,348. It should read that he received a shell wound of the left (underlined in original) breast which resulted in disease of the left lung "such being the true facts in the case". The shell wound was received at the time and in the manner as alleged in his original declaration. "The allegation in that declaration is all wrong but at this late date he is unable to state how it occurred." He appoints (name unreadable) of Washington, DC, as his attorney to prosecute his claim. Signed by William Church and by Oscar KELLEY and E. F. (?) ROBERTS. Sworn to and singed before George W. TALCOTT, Clerk Calhoun Co., WV.


8. - 26 Dec. 1887 - General Affidavit. William age 48, resident of Sycamore; Post Office address Sycamore. He was wounded in the left breast by a piece of shell "which was shot from the Rebels" while in battle 20 July 1864 at Carters Farm, Va. Was sent from there to Claryville Hosp. in Md., remained there "a few days", then sent to Wheeling, W.Va. Remained there until about 10 Aug 1864. "Then I went home by permission of Doctor in the Hospital at Wheeling." Remained at home until 1 Oct 1864, then reported back to Claryville Hosp., where he remained "a few days", then sent to Washington DC to the Invalid Chiro(?). (Can't make out next few words)..."Fort Bunker's Hill until sometime in the winter, then sent to the Regt. and remained with it until discharge." The liver, kidney and heart disease was contracted at Cloyd Farm 9 May 1864 by overheat and was not treated in any hosp. for this except as a (can't read word) and was treated for this disability as well as shell wound of left breast while in above named hospitals. Signed by William CHURCH and by Henry A. ALTIZEN, Notary Public.


9. - 20 Aug 1888 - Statement of Enoch ROBERTS. Enoch Roberts, age 60, resident of Romeo Run, Calhoun Co., and whose Post Office address is Rockdale, stated that he knew William Church before and since the war. Prior to the war he was a "sound man free from any disease so far as I know." After he returned from service in 1865, he was "very much broken down," complaining of breast, back, and general disability. Enoch states that he lived as a neighbor to William in Wetzel Co. and within five or six miles of him since he moved to Calhoun Co. Says Claimant was unable to do more than a half days work at any time and for past few years was "not able to do anything much in the way of labor." States he knows these facts from personal knowledge by being neighbors and often seeing him try to work. Also says "He lived on my far 2d year after the war and tried to work for me." Signed by Enoch ROBERTS and by Henry A. ALTIZEN, Notary Public


10. - 10 Nov 1888 - Statement of Noah ROBERTS. Noah Roberts, age 40, resident of Pine Creek, Calhoun County, WVa, Post Office address Grantsville, Calhoun Co., WVa. Noah states that he has known William Church "ever since I can remember." When he returned home in 1865 "he was in very bad health" and complained of his breast and pains in his side and back. Noah had known William since 1864 except about two years, 1880 and 1881 - "I moved from Whetzel County WVa to this Calhoun County WVa two years before he did." Has worked with and been acquainted with since his discharge, except the two years mentioned, and during all of that time he "complained of his breast, heart, liver, and kidneys - said he was hit in the breast with a piece of shell." He had been using medicines such as liver pills and other patent medicines during all the time Noah had known him since 1865 "until the present time." Noah had never known William to complain or take any medicine before his enlistment in "the late war." Noah ROBERTS signed with his mark. Witnesses were H.A. ALTIZEN and M.F. ALTIZEN. Sworn to before Henry A. ALTIZEN, Notary Public.


11. - 7 Sept 1897 - Dept. of Interior, Bureau of Pensions questions. William's answers indicated that 1) He is married to Elisebeth J. ROBERTS (her maiden name); 2) They were married Dec. 27, 1861 by James WEST in Green Co., Pa.; 3) The record of the marriage would be in "Wanysburgh Pa." and "There was no license required at that time."; 4) He has been married only once to "Elisebet J. Roberts and now Elisebeth J. Church"; 5) Living children - 8 boys and 1 girl. The children's names and dates of birth: Samuel Nov 23, 1861; Grant June 9, 1865; J.W. March 8, 1867; Anderson January 25, 1870; Eli July 8, 1872; Sarah July 4, 1874; Anthony October 8, 1876; Enoch August 28, 1878; Daniel C. November 21, 1882. Signed by William.


12. (Complete transcript of document follows)

Dec. the 7th 1909
Hur, West Va.

Below you will find a copy of the family record of the age of William Church recorded in the family bible. I could not say when the same was recorded but from the appearance of the writing it has been written for quite a number of years. & This is to certify that the writing below is a true copy of the same.

Given under my hand this the 7th day of Dec. 1909.
W. J. Sturm, N.P.
(My com. expires Dec. 31 - 1909)

William Church Born June 14th 1834
Elizabeth J. Church Born January 13th 1836


13. - 28 Mar 1912 - Declaration for Invalid Pension. William age 76, resident of Hur, Calhoun Co., W.Va. Enrolled 20 Aug. 1862 as a private in Co. K, 14 Reg. of WVa Vol. Honorably discharged at Cumberland, MD, 27 June 1865.

Description: Height 5'9", complexion dark, eyes black, hair black.
Occupation farmer.
Residence since leaving service: Littleton, WVa; Sycamore, W.Va.; Hur, W.Va.
Born in Wetzel Co. June 14, 1834. He suffers from "disability of a permanent character, not the result of his own vicious habits", partially unable to earn support - chest, (can't read next word), heart disease. He is pensioner 421560 and is applying for an increase.

Signed by William Church.

Attest: J. L. STUMP and Gay STALNAKER, who also signed as witnesses.
Sworn to and signed before W. O. EMMENSTEND
(?) Notary Public.


14. - 25 Mar 1915 - Complete transcript follows. This document from 1915 is the one I found most interesting. I have put the handwritten parts, which appear to be written by William, in quote marks and have tried as much as possible, considering the difficulty of reading William's handwriting, to keep the spelling and punctuation exactly as in the original. In a few places where I have absolutely no idea what a word or letter was, I've put a (?). My comments are also in parentheses. For No. 9, I've put each child on a separate line to make it easier to read. His second wife, referred to but not named, was apparently Catherine Cunningham, widow of Steven Cunningham.

3-389
Department of the Interior
Bureau of Pensions
Washington, D.C. January (next part smeared) 915.>BR> Sir: Please answer, at your earliest convenience, the questions enumerated below. The information is requested for future use, and it may be of great value to your widow or children. Use the inclosed envelope, which requires no stamp.

Very respectfully,
(An unreadable signature)
Commissioner.

William Church,
Cremo W VA
421560 ACT MAY
To the right of the above is stamped: U.S. Pension Office L Mar 25 1915

Answer "(?)aten ilant W Va" (I first thought the beginning letter looked like an "L" but it bears no resemblance to his other "L's". It may be an "F" or "P") The name of the organizations in which you served? Answer "Co K 14 W Va"

No. 2. What was your post office at enlistment?
Answer "littleton Wetzel Co W. Va

No. 3. State your wife's full name and her maiden name.
Answer "Elisebeth J RoRoberts"

No. 4. When, where, and by whom were you married?
Answer "married by Presher west in greencounty P A on the on the 29 day of dec 1859"

No. 5. Is there any official or church record of your marriage? "there is non"
If so, where?
Answer "that I know of" (This was immediately below the "there is non" and is apparently a continuation of that answer.)

No. 6. Were you previously married? If so, state the name of your former wife, the date of the marriage, and the date and place of her death or divorce. If there was more than one previous marriage, let your answer include all former wives.
Answer "Elisebeth Church 1859 in green co (then a word that's marked out) pa She died the 29 day of Apirl (two small words, probably numbers, marked out) 10"

No. 7. If your present wife was married before her marriage to you, state the name of her former husband, the date of each marriage, and the date and place of his death or divorce, and state whether he ever rendered any military or naval service, and, if so, give name of the organization in which he served. If she was married more than once before her marriage to you, let your answer include all former husbands.
Answer "she was maried to Steven Cunham maired September the 24 1871 he died December the 4 1910 She was not maried but once Steven Cuningham died in Calhoun Co W. Va"

No. 8. Are you now living with your wife, or has there been a separation?
Answer "i am living with my wife"

No. 9. State the names and dates of birth of all your children, living or dead.
Answer
"Samuel Church Born November the 23 1860
Mary J Church Born march the 30 62
N G Church born June the 9 1865
John W Church Born march the 8 67
Anderson Church Born January the 25 1870
Eli Church Born July the 8 1872
Sarah Church Born July the 4 1874
Wm. A Church Born oct the 8 1876
Enoch Church Born Augtst the 28 1878
Daniel C Church Born November the 21 1882
Mary J Church Born march the 30 63 an was mured march march 1878
Emmelely Born espired (?) the 25 1869 (under the word that may be espired, is another word which may be "And") Date "march the 23 1915"
Signature "William Church"


15. - 8 Aug 1921 - Declaration of Pension - filed in Wirt Co., WV. William age 83, resides Cremo, Lee District, Calhoun Co., WV. Description: height 5'10"; complexion dark, eyes black, hair black. Occupation farmer. Born 14 June 1838 at patens Island, Wetzel Co., WV. Disabilities - rheumatism, catarrah of stomach, and paralysis of right side. Since leaving service has resided at Wetzel Co. and Calhoun Co., WVa. Signed by William Church.

Witnesses were H. T. CLARK, Burning Springs; and George SNYDER, Creston(?) WVa.

Sworn to before J. P. Campbell, Notary Public for Wirt Co., W.Va.
Creston (?) W.Va.


16. - 16 Mar 1922 - Statement (typewritten) of Grant CHURCH. Top says "State of West Virginia, Wood County". Grant states that he is 56 years of age; resides at Creamo, Calhoun Co., WVa. and is the son of William Church. He has been with his father "practically all his life" and "almost constantly since July, 1921." States that his father is in such physical condition that he cannot be left alone for more than short periods; cannot feed himself; and constantly suffers from a cough and rheumatism. "He has been entirely unable to do any kind of physical labor since along in August, 1921." Signed by Grant CHURCH. Sworn to before J. R. COOPER, Notary Public.


17. - 30 Jan 1926 - Drop Report. At top: William Church 421560 Hur, WVa. Finance Division. "The name of the above described pensioner who was last paid at the rate of $7 ( after the 7 is something that may be a "2" or may be a smudge from the stamp) per month to Jan 4 1926, has this day been dropped from the roll because of Death." ("$7 (2?)", "Jan 4 1926" and "Death" are stamped in). On the line below this is handwritten Jan 17 - 1926. Signed O.J. RANDALL, Chief, Finance Division.


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