Tuesday, February 27, 2024

C. (Chester) H. Dillon, 1st New York Artillery - Civil War


Post by Doris McCraw

aka Angela Raines         

Photo (C) Doris McCraw

Next up in this series of Civil War veterans buried in local cemeteries is C. H. Dillon who is buried in Evergreen Cemetery, Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Mr. Dillon was easy to find. He was born in Pennsylvania on May 7, 1828, and died on September 10, 1893. I then moved to his military service. It is in his service records things get interesting. 

At age thirty-five, Chester registered for the draft in 1863 as a class two. Class two was a list of eligible men who would be called up after all class one on the list had been used. This meant that Chester was between thirty-five and forty-five and married at the time.

Photo (C) Doris McCraw

Chester H Dillon was called up in 1864. On September 20 that year, he was assigned to the 144th New York Infantry. By October 27th he was mustered out of the 144th and transferred to Company G of the New York Engineers. He officially mustered out on June 30, 1865. He was also promoted to artificer, a private 1st class. 

Before enlistment, Dillon was a farmer and according to the census he returned to that. When he moved to Colorado he was a carpenter in 1879, the first year of the city directory, then became the janitor at the opera house in Colorado Springs. There was also a brief time in 1883, he was the city marshall. The year of his passing. 1893, he was listed as an expressman. 

It was interesting that while the city marshall, the mayor was a doctor who had been on the other side of the conflict. The city was a mixture of men who had served on both sides and were involved in making the city the best it could be.

The one constant seemed to be his membership in the Masons along with being a husband to Helen and father to his children son John and daughter Elma.

The interesting thing is, that C. H. (Chester) Dillon has two headstones. A regular and a military one.

Photo (C) Doris McCraw

According to the regiment details, the 1st New York engineers engaged in the following during Dillon's enlistment: Siege operations against Petersburg and Richmond from June 1864 to April 1865. The construction of Fort Hell in Sept. and Oct of 1864 and the building of the Dutch Gap Canal from Oct to Dec. The Hatch Expedition up Broad River South Carolina on Nov. 28-30. The Battle of Honey Hill on November 30 and Deveaux's Neck on December 6,1864. The whole regiment mustered out on June 30, 1865. During the whole of the conflict from its formation in 1861 to June 30, 1865, the unit lost two officers and twenty-five enlisted men killed or mortally wounded, and five officers and one hundred and sixteen to disease. 

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  1. Dori, this is some fabulous research you've done! WOW. I'm really enjoying these posts--I admire anyone who can finesse the research like you do--I'm trying to wade through my genealogy and getting discouraged. I need more of a research gene. When I saw who this was about, it reminded me, too, of Gunsmoke. Very interesting post!

    1. Cheryl, I seem to happiest when I'm in research mode, other that writing, of course.
      I"m glad that you are enjoying this series. It makes me happy that I can share what of their stories I can find. Doris