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Model 1861 Bridesburg musket with provenance


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M24 Chaffee

Hello All, I wanted to share this musket and the provenance associated with it. I bought it about 7 years ago. I was mainly collecting WWII at the time but I was reading more history about the ACW and wanted to start adding some artifacts from that period. I bought this Bridesburg musket at a local gun show. I used to live near where the Bridesburg factory was and thought it would be interesting to own one of their weapons. I’ll post a few photos here and then continue my post with the rest of the story and more photos. Some of the inspection marks are worn and a little difficult to see but most are visible. It’s dated 1863 on the lock plate and barrel.

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M24 Chaffee

I was happy to own this as it was but the great surprise came a few months later. I wanted to lightly clean, inspect and oil it. I was very careful not to disturb the patina. The very last thing I did (and I almost didn’t do) was take off the butt plate. Attached with glue on the inside of the plate was a piece of paper. It looks like cartridge paper. It was glued on one end ( almost like a civil war post-it note! )and folded over. I carefully unfolded the paper and discovered the soldier’s name, regiment and company!

Jacob Havens, Co F, 14th NJ Volunteer infantry

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M24 Chaffee

Here is the information that I collected for Jacob Havens. I'll be repeating some of the info that was already provided by helpful members from the Civil War Talk website. I'll give a brief sort of timeline gathered from the NJ archives, compiled military service records and federal military pension records. I'll break it up into 4 posts.

Jacob Havens - Company F, 14th Regiment NJ Infantry volunteers.
5' 3 1/2" tall , light complexion, blue eyes, brown hair
born - July 13, 1839 died - Nov. 9, 1926
rank - Private
enlisted - Aug. 15, 1862
mustered in - Aug. 26, 1862
mustered out - June 18, 1865

From the NJ Archives in Trenton, NJ.
-I have some copies of payroll lists for Co. F of the 14th NJ that include Jacob's name. He forwarded much of his pay to his father and also the father of his then fiancé Sarah Dorsett.
-A list of marriages from May 1865 to May 1866 for the township of Brick NJ. This includes his and Sarah's name. They were married in July of 1865.
-A list of names for Co. F that include Jacob
-His discharge certificate.

Also, I copied 3 letters, one from John C. Patterson, one from Jarvis Wanser and one possibly from William S. Truex. They all were officers in Co. F. The letters were written to each other in 1871 to compare diary notes for the dates of battles of the 14th NJ from July 1863 through April 1865. I'm including a photo of Patterson's letter. I thought it was pretty cool. I hope it's clear enough to read. I'll be adding more posts. Next will be service records from the National Archives.

 

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M24 Chaffee

From the National Archives in Washington, DC I have his Muster Rolls (compiled service records). He was present for every month of his service except the Muster Roll for March, 1863 was missing. There was no mention of him being wounded, sick or on furlough. I guess I can assume that he was involved in all the regiments combat experiences? No other remarks besides some advance pay during his first few months.

I've included photos of 3 of the Muster Rolls - Muster In, Muster Out and a Special Muster Roll.

You can see on the Muster out roll that he chose to pay $6.00 in order to keep his Musket!

I'll add some info from the Military Pension files next.

 

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skypilot6670

WOW ! Frank that is best. A great looking musket and I.D.ed. Have you researched the soldier ? Very few muskets are I.D.ed . In all my collecting I’ve owned one and that was to an officer , it was tagged with his name and unit and that he brought it home from the war. He didn’t carry it but had it as a souvenir. I’ll bet you were glad you pulled that butt plate , thanks for posting.    Mike

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M24 Chaffee

From the Federal Military Pension Records.

He lived in West Point Pleasant, Ocean County NJ. Was married to Sarah Ann Dorsett on July 16th, 1865. They had four children - 2 boys and 2 girls.

Jacob lived a long life but almost half of it was in pain. He applied for and began receiving a pension in 1890 at age 50. He was suffering from Rheumatism at that time. There were many requests for pension increases. As time went on he dealt with lumbago, a hernia, some other ailments and started showing some signs of senility and dementia in his 70's. He started needing assistance for his daily activities (his children provided much of this). His occupation was listed as a farmer and later as a boat builder. Included were some letters written by Jacob and some by his children for pension increases as well as many other official forms. It was/is interesting, strange and sad to be able to read much of this.

Sarah died in December of 1912 and Jacob passed on November 9th, 1926.

 

They are buried not far from me in a graveyard in Point Peasant NJ. My wife and I have visited their grave. 

 

Perhaps he is in the reunion photograph?

 

Thanks for checking out this post!

 

Regards,

Frank

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skypilot6670

I see the research now and  all the veterans items. That was a great unit. They were instrumental in stopping Gen. Early in the Shenandoah at the battle of Monocacy and were heavily engaged at Cold Harbour. Very nice musket.  My compliments. Mike

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M24 Chaffee

Thank you Mike! They were involved in Grant’s Overland Campaign and they are also called the “Monocacy Regiment”. They have a statue dedicated to them on the Monocacy battlefield. I haven’t visited that battlefield yet but hope to in the not to distant future. I always get a jolt of excitement when I look over at that musket! Like I know you do when you look over your fine collection!

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Agree with the others! Great rifle....but the discovery of that little piece of paper takes it over the top! Congrats on an excellent find!

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  • 2 years later...
USCapturephotos

What a fabulous piece of history Frank! So glad that veteran left his name hidden for you to find it all of these years later!

Paul

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Jaw dropping discovery! 

 

Oddly enough, when I bought my 1861 Springfield musket many years ago, I wanted to mark it in case it was ever stolen.  But how? I put my name on a piece of paper and tucked it under the butt plate!    

Mikie

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USCapturephotos

Haha that’s great! When I’ve owned Union cartridge boxes I’ve carefully removed the box plate to check as sometimes they marked their names etc in the softer solder backs. No luck though yet.

Paul

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  • 3 weeks later...
illinigander

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On the bottom of the muster-out roll is a stop for $6.  I think that you will find that that charge allowed the soldier to purchase his "traps" (musket, bayonet, cap & cartage box.) to take home.  I do not have a handy reference for that order, but you ought to run that by the CW Long Arms Forum.

illinigander

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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M24 Chaffee
10 hours ago, illinigander said:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On the bottom of the muster-out roll is a stop for $6.  I think that you will find that that charge allowed the soldier to purchase his "traps" (musket, bayonet, cap & cartage box.) to take home.  I do not have a handy reference for that order, but you ought to run that by the CW Long Arms Forum.

illinigander

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hello, Thanks for your comment. They were allowed to keep their muskets. I did mention that he purchased his musket. His muster roll states “Stop $6.00 price of musket maintained”. 

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illinigander

Indeed- I didn't read your post close enough.  That system helped me ID a musket for my ILL weapon collection.

illinigander

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