OBITUARY for JOHN AVERY
Former Resident of Boonville Answers Last Roll Call
Mr. John Avery
was a Prominent +G.A.R. Veteran
After an illness of several weeks, John Avery one of the best known G.A.R. men in Rockland, MA and an ex-prisoner of war died at his home on Exchange Street last Tuesday afternoon, aged 74. He was one of the oldest veterans of the Civil War in Rockland, MA. Mr. Avery was a native of Leyden, NY and was born 10/22/1833. He was educated in the public schools and afterwards learned the carpenter's trade.
When the Civil War broke out, he enlisted in the 146th NY regiment and went at once to the front leaving his wife and one child behind him. He was in the service 4 years and served in the Army of the Potomac. He was in many battles and saw hard service. He was taken as prisoner at the battle of Gaines Mill [Bethesda Church-6/2/1864] just as he was leaving the field with a wounded comrade on his back. He was marched to Richmond and confined in Castle thunder and Libby prisons for a few days then was taken to Andersonville, GA for confinement in the rebel stockade.
When he entered Andersonville 6/16/1864 there were over 35,000 prisoners there. During the journey from Libby to Andersonville, the prisoners were subjected to many indignities especially from the women who spat at them as they passed through the streets of Richmond. Mr. Avery remained in Andersonville until the close of the war when he was taken to Vicksburg and sent north. At the time of his entrance at Andersonville he weighed 180 pounds and when he was released after his incarceration of twelve months he weighed only 91 pounds. Mr. Avery was in Andersonville when the raiders were hanged there and one of them was in his regiment.
While at Andersonville, Mr. Avery was part of the time in charge of a squad of prisoners and for this duty he was awarded an extra ration. From this fact arises an incident which changed the whole course of his life. Among the prisoners in Andersonville at this time was Darius Everson of East Abington (now Rockland, MA). Mr. Everson was a young boy and was in poor health. He occupied a dugout near Mr. Avery's tent and was unable to take care of himself. Mr. Avery gave the lad the extra ration which he had drawn for himself. The boy was thus able to keep alive and subsequently got out of prison by answering the name of a prisoner who had been marked for exchange but who had died the night before he was to leave.
As soon as Mr. Everson got back to East Abington, he wrote to Mrs. Avery who was then residing in Boonville, NY and told her where her husband was. As soon as Mr. Avery got back north the correspondence was kept up, and the 2 ex-prisoners visited each other. Later Mr. Avery moved to Rockland and has resided here since 1880. Since that time there have been 3 marriages between the members of the Avery and Everson families.
Mr. Avery married Eliza Palmer of Northville who survives. They were married 3/30/1855 at Boonville, NY and they celebrated their golden wedding in this town 2 years ago. Five children were born to them and three are now living: Mrs. Nettie L. wife of Elbridge Everson; Mrs. Florence B. wife of Ellis Poole and Mrs. Emma E. wife of Chester Valedge.
The funeral services will take place tomorrow afternoon. Prayer will be offered at his home on Exchange Street at 1:30 and services will follow at Grand Army Hall and will be conducted by Rev. William Reid. The members of the G.A.R. will have charge of the services. Internment will be in Mount Pleasant Cemetery.+G.A.R. = Grand Army of the Republic
Search for John Avery's Prison Profile at Andersonville
for the 146th NY Regiment:
above news article was supplied by Janet Palmer Fentress,
Letter from John Avery in Andersonville Prison
Whatever one might say about the treatment of Northern prisoners under Confederate authorities at Andersonville Prison in Georgia, one thing is certain: freedom of speech was surely denied Yankees, if a conclusion can be drawn from 6 letters which tell little except the fact that they were in prison and in good or poor health, as the case might be. Obviously the letters were censored. Even though they revealed nothing of consequence, apparently they were never delivered, because they came into the possession of Louis Manigault, of Charleston, SC. Manigault wrote a note on the margin of his Letter Book which contains these letters in which he said they were given to him by "a paroled Yankee at Andersonville."
An examination of the roster at Andersonville National Cemetery and reports from Adjutants General offices, both state and national, shows 12,000 prisoners died at Andersonville and 1040 of their graves are unidentified.
John Avery, born at Leyden, NY, enlisted at Boonville, in the same state, on 8/30/1862 at age 27. He was mustered in as a private in Co. D, 146th NY Volunteer Infantry on 10/10/1862. He was captured in battle on 6/2/1864 at Bethesda Church, VA. Some time after the date of the letter he was paroled, then mustered out on 6/24/1865 at NY City. His letter is addressed to Mrs. Eliza Avery, Boonville (Oneida Co.) New York.
My Dear Wife, Sunday, 7/24/1864
I again will write you a few lines that you may know that I am in tiptop health and hope and pray that this may find you all enjoying the same great blessing of God. My health is first rate and I get along good. I hope and pray that we may soon meet again. I wrote you while I was in Richmond and this makes 3 from here and hope that you have got them. Direct to me as on the end of the envelope only after GA put on Detachment 62-2. I hope I can soon hear from you but you must keep up good courage until we meet again for I think that time will come Dearest one. What a blessing it is to have good health so far from home which I feel to thank the Lord for. Give my love to all and accept a kiss for yourself and Genett. Pray for me that I may always feel thankful that it is as well with me as it is from your loving Husband, until death.
OBITUARIES FOR OTHER AVERY FAMILY MEMBERS
AVERY-PALMER FAMILY NARRATIVE AVERY FAMILY TREE AVERY JOURNEY FROM NH TO NY
AVERY & OTHER COATS OF ARMS NASH-STONE-KELLOGG-SKINNER FAMILY TREE
WARD-NASH-AMSDEN FAMILY TREE WARD FAMILY TREE (prior to 1800)
LYON-PAYNE-RANSIER FAMILY TREE WARD-SPITTLER FAMILY TREE
ORIGINS OF NASH-STONE-AVERY-SKINNER FAMILIES
NAMES & LOCATIONS IN WARD-LYON-NASH-STONE-AVERY-SKINNER
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