10th Regiment of Vermont Infantry

Descendants Association

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Corporal Merritt S. Parker

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Merritt S. Parker was born in New Hampshire in 1842. By the 1850 U.S. Census, he was a resident of  Waterford, Vermont. A farmer's son, he was residing in Kirby, Vermont when he enlisted in the Vermont 10th Infantry Company A on June 9th, 1862 and was mustered in as a Corporal on September 1st of that year.  Parker was promoted to Sergeant May 1st 1864.  Parker remained with Company A for the entire war and was mustered out June 22nd 1865.  He returned to Kirby and by the 1880 census he is listed as a farmer and married to Alma Jane Hayward.  He was very active in the GAR. The couple moved to Sonoma, California around 1900 and eventually settled in the town of Petaluma, California.  The 1920 census lists Merritt and Alma Parker at 620 E Street Petaluma, California.

September 26, 2008  update:

A special thanks to Mr. Paul De Nubilo who told me to “follow the officers” in order to identify my unnamed soldier boy. It worked beautifully. Also a special thanks to the kind efforts of Mr. Dean Enderlin and Mr. Vernon Piccinotti who have provided this obituary: “Merritt Solomon Parker, died on a Tuesday evening June 23, 1925 in Peteluma, California. His funeral was held under the auspices of Antietam Post #63 Grand Army of the Republic on Thursday June 25th . On Friday the 26th  his ashes were accompanied by his wife, relations and friends to internment in Cypress Lawn Memorial Park in Colma. Parker, a past Commander of Antietam Post, was one of it's oldest and most respected members.” His wife, Alma, passed in 1927. They are buried in lot 293E and share a headstone with Lewis and Margaret Hayward. At this time it is unsure the connection between the Haywards and the Parkers, but Lewis may have been Alma's younger brother. The research is ongoing.

Merritt was a farm boy who became a brave man under fire during one of our nation's most trying times. He enlisted at the beginning of the Civil War and withstood some of the most nightmarish battles ever suffered on home soil. He survived and returned to a quiet life and would have been lost in time had not Serendipity raided the game and sent his tiny diary into the hands of a curious girl. Let us hope that with the sharing of this transcript Merritt will never be lost again. May he rest in peace, my little lost soldier boy found again.

This information is provided courtesy of Susan Lamby, Researcher and the University of California, Santa Barbara

Merritt's Diary and Letters



Photo of Private Oliver Churchill, Company C, 10th Regiment of Vermont Infantry, taken at the studio of Edgar Raynor,
Photographer, Griffing Avenue, River Neck, Long Island, New York


Daniel J. Keating, Company H, enlisted on August 1, 1862 and was mustered on September 1, 1862. He was wounded on September 19, 1864 at Whites Ford, Virginia during the Battle of the Opequan.

Private Ira Rice, Company G, is buried in a cemetery located in Florence, Wisconsin.

Private Henry P. Burnham, Company G, was killed in the Battle of Cedar Creek in October of 1864. He was sixteen years old.

Corporal Benjamin F. Brow and his brother, Private Charles W. Brow, served in Company F. In 1864, Charles, at the age of 30, died from disease at Cold Harbor, Virginia.

George P. Shedd enlisted as a private on 9 August 1862 at age 25 and mustered in Company D on 1 September 1862. His promotions were as follows: Full Corporal on 17 Jan 1863; Full Sergeant on 1 Jan 1864; and was commissioned 2nd Lieutenant on 15 June 1865. He mustered out on 22 June 1865.

Private Henry Gannon mustered into Company A on September 1, 1862. He received a $25 bounty for enlisting and a $2 premium.

flag Private William S. Moulton, Company K, was taken prisoner at the Battle at Cold Harbor and sent to Camp Sumter in Andersonville, Ga. After a few transfers at different camps he was pardoned at F.E. Ferry, NC on 27 Feb 1865.

Private Albert Rush Keyes, Company D, enlisted on August 16, 1862. He was born in 1837 in Woodstock, Vermont. On September 1, 1863 he was wounded by a gun shot. The ball caused him to lose the use of his left hand when the ball passed through his left wrist and the back of his hand, fracturing bones. He received a disability discharge as a private on February 10, 1865.



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