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The IAGenWeb Project

History of Benton County, Iowa
The Lewis Publishing Company, Chicago, 1910; Luther B. Hill, Ed.

Pages 499-501

SAMUEL M. EDMOND, whose home in Vinton is at the corner of Ellis and Benton streets, is a veteran of the Civil war and a former successful farmer who has lived in retirement for a number of years in this town. He was born in New York city, February 3, 1836. His parents were John and Isabell (Nesbit) Edmond. One of his mother's brothers was a quartermaster in the Mexican war.

John Edmond was born in county Tyrone, Ireland, and with three of his brothers emigrated to America when eighteen years old. In New York city he opened a large grocery store, and was successful until the panic of 1837. Meeting with heavy losses, John Edmond then moved to Pittsburg, and for three years was a salesman for McCauley Brothers. Having previously purchased a farm of two hundred acres near Titusville, on account of his wife's health he moved to this farm and cleared off the heavy timber and was engaged in cultivating the place about seven years. From injuries received in an accident he died in 1848.

At the time of this unfortunate event in the family Samuel M. Edmond was twelve years old, and the oldest of the six children that were thus left dependent on their mother. She retained her health and managed to support her children, and continued to live on her farm for seven years, when she married Benjamin Harrison. She died in 1874. All the children but one are living.

Mr. Edmond remained on the homestead farm with his mother and improved the estate and finally bought out the other heirs. In the meantime, in 1862, he enlisted at Titusville, in Company D, Eighteenth Pennsylvania Cavalry, and saw long and arduous service in the Army of the Potomac. He served under the cavalry leader Kilpatrick during the Gettsyburg campaign, and was behind Sheridan and Custer during the campaign up the Shenandoah valley. In the latter the regiment to which he belonged had been called up and were assisting in holding the center when General Sheridan made his famous return, and later this regiment charged and turned a Confederate regiment and was the first to take up the pursuit of the retreating Confederates. It assisted in the recapture of several Federal cannons and also took some forty Confederate guns. The following winter the regiment spent near Harper's Ferry, and then returned and scouted up and down the Shenandoah valley. Mr. Edmond was in the service until June 15, 1865. On January 3, 1864, he was captured between Bristow and Catlett's station on the Orange & Alexandria Railroad by six of Mosby's guerillas, and after being robbed was taken before Colonel Mosby, talked with that leader, and was then sent to the provost marshal of General Stuart's cavalry camp near Orange court house, Virginia. He was sent on to Richmond and before being confined in Libby he was searched and again robbed. He was turned into a pen called "Scott's prison" in the city of Richmond, and a day or two later was sent to Belle Island in the James river above Richmond, where he remained until the latter part of February, 1864. Becoming ill and being sent to the hospital was the only thing that prevented his being transferred to Andersonville. Finally on May 2, 1864, he was paroled and was with the four hundred prisoners who reached Annapolis, almost dead from starvation, scurvy and other hardships of the rebel prisons. In an engagement with Jeb Stuart's cavalry at Hanover, Pennsylvania, Mr. Edmond was struck by a bullet which passed through the carbine and sabre belts where they crossed and broke his breast bone and finally lodged in a Testament which he carried in his pocket.

After discharge from the army Mr. Edmond returned to the farm in Crawford county, Pennsylvania, but it was a year before he was able to resume active work, and he had poor health for a number of years after that. It was on account of his health that he finally moved out to Benton county in 1876, buying a farm in Jackson township. He was engaged in farming until about twenty years ago, when he moved to Vinton and has since lived practically retired from active labor. He still owns a farm of one hundred and thirty-two acres in Jackson township. He and his wife have spent three winters in California.

Mr. Edmond married, in 1861, before going to war, Miss Rebecca St. Clair, of Crawford county. She died on the farm in Benton county, August 30, 1879, leaving three children: One son, William B., had died in Pennsylvania, February 12, 1873, aged six years and five months; Essabella died in 1886, in her sixteenth year; John A., who was born October 14, 1862, in Pennsylvania, lives at Vinton and is engaged in the U. S. mail service; Albert H., who was born in Benton county, November 28, 1877, conducts a shop for galvanized steel work at Long Beach. Both the sons are married and each has two children. On January 12, 1882, Mr. Edmond married for his second wife Miss Eliza B. Curry, a resident of Venango county, Pennsylvania, near Titusville, being a native of that state and of an old family.

In Pennsylvania Mr. Edmond served two terms of five years each as justice of the peace, being commissioned by Governors Gear and Hartranft. His fellow Republicans elected him to a similar office in this county, but he did not qualify. He is a member and has served as commander and in other offices of P. M. Coder Post, No. 98, G. A. R. Mrs. Edmond has served as president, secretary and treasurer of the Vinton Women's Relief Corps. They are both members of the Presbyterian church of Vinton.

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