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16 December 2013

Amanuensis Monday: Affidavit by John Fearn, 2nd Lieut

Here is another installment of the transcription of images from William James Townsend Civil War Pension File. This affidavit was provided by John Fearn.

Civil War Pension Affidavit regarding William Townsend  provided by John H Fearn.
Civil War Pension Affidavit regarding William Townsend
provided by John H Fearn.
State of Ohio, County of Franklin, ss:

In matter of In Pens Claim No 505.430 of William James Townson, late of Co. “K”, 1333rd Regt of Ohio Vols.

Before me a Notary Public in and for said county and state personally came John H Fearn, aged 52 years, whose residence and Post Office address is No 33 South Seventh Street, Columbus Ohio. Who being by me duly sworn according to law states as follows:

I am the same John H Fearn who was 2nd Lieut. In the above Co “K” 133rd Regt OVI and personally knew the above Wm J Townson in that service. I remember very well that he was with the command and participated in a force march from New Creek to Greenland Gap W.Va. And back, a distance of 50 miles in about 26  hours, in the month of May 1864 resulting in great exhaustion and disability to the force immediately afterwards. I personally know that immediately upon the above Townson's return he went into the Hospital at New Creek, W.Va sick with mumps and erysipelas as I understood. And he was left there when the command moved to City Point Va. He never returned to the command and I never saw him again until after we were discharged the service. He then looked quite feeble and I did not see him again until to-day. I have no interest in this matter.

Signed John H Fearn

Civil War Pension Affidavit regarding William Townsend  provided by John H Fearn.
Civil War Pension Affidavit regarding William Townsend
provided by John H Fearn.

Sworn to and subscribed before me this 30th day of January AD 1886 and I certify that affiant is a respectable and credible person; that the foregoing affidavit was read to him before swearing, and that I have no interest in this matter. The chang of “measles” to erysipelas” read before swearing.
A H Fritchey
Notary Public
Franklin County Ohio.

Pension Office stamped Mar 4 1886

Filed by A.W. Shearer
Same Marion Co Ohio

  • John H Fearn was the 2nd Lieut with Co K, 133rd Regiment of the Ohio Volunteer Infantry during the Civil War.
  • There was a forced march from New Creek to Greenland Gap, West Virginia. It was a 50 mile distance in 26 hours during May 1864. The whole regiment was exhausted after the march. 
  • At some point, William Townsend returned back to New Creek and had erysipelas and mumps. 
  • William stayed in New Creek's hospital while his unit moved to City Point, Virginia.
  • William never returned to service. 
  • Lieut Fearn did not see William until after the they were discharged and then not again until 30 January 1886. He noted that William looked feeble after their discharge.

  • Is it possible to learn more about John H Fearn, and the other officers of this military unit?
  • Why would Mr. Fearn be willing to attest to William's condition 23 years after event took place if they never saw each other again from the time of discharge? How would he have remembered William's state after 23 years? Was their a journal? Was it told to him so he could 'remember'?
  • How common was it for officers to serve as witnesses for various pension cases? If common, they why weren't other officers used for William? And, how many did John Fearn sign?
  • What was the nature of the forced march in May 1864 for Co K, 133rd? What was the weather and the terrain like? How many others were severely affected the way William was? How many moved on to City Point, Virginia?

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