A while back, I heard of an archive of photographs at the Military History Institute in Carlisle, PA. The article said they had photos of a great many Union army officers of the Civil War. So I wrote to them, and sure enough, I was able to order a portrait of great-great Grandpa Henry B. Myers.
I added the text myself. This makes six (out of sixteen) great-great grandparents that I have pictures of. With great-grandparents I am doing better, six for eight.
As you may recall from my posts on his son Stephen, the 33rd Iowa saw combat action in Arkansas and Mississippi, in particular a long bivouac and eventually a major battle at Helena, Ark. Living conditions there were primitive and unsanitary, as documented in this history. Like many of the men stationed at Helena, Henry developed chronic dissentery. He received a medical discharge in March of 1864, while the 33rd was still in the thick of action, and died three months later. Although these old photos can be deceiving, in this one I would say Henry looks a bit hollowed-out.
As for Stephen, no further progress to report. My current thinking is that he was most probably not wounded and left for dead, as his obituary stated, but I am still entertaining the idea that he may have accompanied his father on the military expedition. Stay tuned.
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Nov 21, 2011
You were fortunate to find a picture of your ancestor in uniform. It is sad that he died so young. Have you read the “History of the 33d Iowa Infantry Volunteer Regiment 1863-6” by Andrew Sperry? It is a quite complete account of the 33rd’s activity and easy to find in major bookstores or public libraries. My great-great grandfather, Kryn DeBruyn, was also in the 33rd Iowa Regiment, Company G. He was captured at Jenkins Ferry, Arkansas, and spent 10 months as a prisoner (4 of them in Tyler, Texas), before he was paroled. Though he lived and raised 13 children, he suffered from the effects of sunstroke and scurvy, protracted during his time in the war, the rest of his life. It would be interesting to hear from you.
Nov 21, 2011
Thanks. The big mystery is about his teenage son (my great-grandfather), who was supposed to have gone along with Henry, but that has not yet been verified.