Co. D of the 12th Kansas Volunteer Infantry – Civil War

The only company formed exclusively of Franklin Countians

Reunion of Co. D of the 12th Kansas Volunteer Infantry at Forest Park, Ottawa, c. 1890

Co. D, 12th Kansas Infantry reunion in Forest Park, Ottawa Kansas, probably sometime in the late 1880s.  It is the only Civil War unit recruited exclusively in Franklin County.  Kansas sent more soldiers per capita than any other state to the Union Army during the Civil War.  The local company served in the battle of Wilson’s Creek and guarded the eastern range of Kansas counties against the threatened invasion of Confederates under Gen. Sterling Price. They were mustered in September 1862 at various sites throughout the county–Peoria, Centropolis, the Sac and Fox Indian Agency, Ohio City and Stanton, just over the Miami County line.  A few of the volunteers were mustered in at Ottawa, which is interesting, considering that the town wasn’t born for another two years.  There are stories that the men swore their oaths under a tree on the north bank of the Marais des Cygnes near the ford that once was at Hickory Street.  Back row: James Swank who came to Franklin County in 1859; Columbus Burney; Alford Copple; Columbus Kirkham; Arsen Gordon.  Fourth row: James B. Frame; unknown; Lilburn White; Judge Daniel M. Valentine who previously served the county as a state senator and a member of the state house of representatives; Thomas Lindsay; Daniel C. Marland who was also a state representative; W.E. Kibbe who built the first frame house in the county; Gregory Geoffrey who was born in France; William F. Ivey whose father was a pioneer of Ohio Township; Andrew Dial, born in Virginia; John Yerkes; Sgt. W.H. Ambrose, a member of the original Lane town company.  Third row: William L. Service, born in South Carolina, who wore Union blue; Lt. Alfred Johnson, recruiting officer for Company D, who rose to Captain;  Capt. G.W. Ashby; Lt. Henry Shively from Stanton, who served in the Kansas house of representatives before statehood; James F. Kelsey; Joseph N. Baker; Thomas Boston Kelsey of Berea and brother of James F.; John T. Baker, a son of Pottawatomie township pioneer Joshua Baker and brother of Joseph; William Aiken, first school teacher at Berea 1857-58.  Second Row:  James A. Taylor, born in Tennessee; James Davis of Lane, born in Pennsylvania; Albert or Alfred Wasson, born in Indiana in 1820; unknown but probably Hannibal Reed; Thomas M. Mannen; W.B. Thornburgh of Peoria.  Front row: William Hackett; John Powell; William Copple; Walter M. Clark; William Pyle; Sgt. Asdrubal Reed; and Joshua Hodges.

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