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John C. Jennings (1844-1933)


Posted By: Dorian Myhre (email)
Date: 6/7/2021 at 20:24:13

From Nevada Evening Journal March 27, 1833 (page 6)

"Taps" Sounded for Civil War Veteran

Taps have sounded. Another veteran of the Civil War has answered the final summons. The death, Wednesday, March 22, of John C. Jennings, leaves Cambridge but one veteran of the Civil War, Andrew Nelson, who passed his ninetieth birthday last November.

On his coat was the bronze button, distinguished emblem of service in the Civil War. Over his casket was the American flag in honor of its patriotic dead. At the grave the military salute was given by members of the American Legion. Taps were sounded. Another comrade had crossed the Great Divide. The funeral services were held in the Methodist Church, Friday afternoon at 2 o'clock, conducted by Rev. Peter Jacobs of Shenandoah, a former pastor. The trio, Miss Doris Hubbard, Mrs. R. J. Palmer, Mr. C. M. Webb, with Mrs. Bayard Nelson at the piano sang three hymns. The casket bearers were Wilford Jennings, Ralph Severson, Edwin McHone, George Zook, Virgil Jennings, and Kenneth Jennings, all grandsons.

Mr. Jennings who has been resident of Cambridge for eighteen years was born Oct. 14, 1844 in Carmichaels, Green county, Pennsylvania. It was from that state that he enlisted in the Union army, Aug. 27, 1862, in Company "D", 22d Regiment of Pennsylvania Cavalry.

He was only a lad of sixteen when the war broke out. He was but seventeen when he enlisted. He was mustered out May 8, 1865 at New Creek, West Virginia, lacking a little more than five months of being of age. He was in the Army of the Potomac all through his service. As a cavalryman he never engaged in any of the big battles, their work was largely in skirmishes, locating the enemy, or encountering smaller forces. During his service he was under fire 129 times. Once he was slightly grazed and on another occasion the horse on which he was riding was shot.

He served under Gen. Phil Sheridan and witnessed the famous ride from Winchester to Cedar Creek. He was near enough the dashing foamy steed to have touched it. He was also under Gen. Custer, who later was killed by the Indians at the Custer Massacre. Mr. Jenning's cavalry was at the edge of the battle of Gettysburg one of the greatest battles of the war, ready to answer any emergency call. He had a brothers James B. Jennings who enlisted with the infantry from the same state. His uncles Benjamin Jennings was a Captain in the Kansas Infantry.

Mr. Jennings was more than eighty-eight at the time of his death. When he was born, John Tyler, the tenth President of the United States was in the chair. This country has had twenty two presidents during his lifetime, one of them serving at another period. But one of the Ex-presidents is living.

Sam Jennings, an ancestor was a Colonial Governor of Delaware. Mr. Jennings had some relatives in the War of 1812-14. When "Jack" as he was familiarly called, was born there were but twenty-six states in the Union. Iowa was a territory at the time and did not become a state until he was more than two. He has been a resident of this state for sixty-five years coming to Des Moines in 1868. It was always interesting to hear him tell of the early history of that city. His first work in Iowa was that of bridge builder. For seven years he was custodian of the Polk County Court House. For a number of years he has farmed in this section of the state.

He was married Sept. 25, 1872 to Anna M. B. Griffith who died March 29, 1877. Of their three children, two died in infancy. Burr G. Jennings, the only one living is a resident of Luther, Iowa. July 1, 1880 Mr. Jennings and Anna L. Richardson were married. She died Aug. 7, 1926. To them six children were born. They are Harvey J. Jennings, Mrs. Frank McHone, Benjamin H. Jennings and George E. Jennings of Cambridge, Mrs. Oscar Severson of Minnesota and Mrs. Harley Zook of Des Moines. Twenty-five grandchildren and fifteen great-grandchildren mourn the death of one greatly beloved.

For years Mr. Jennings was a member of the United Brethren Church of Cambridge. He shared with others the dream of Union Church and gave the movement a most loyal and enthusiastic support.

This community has lost another of its pioneers, another of its veterans of the sixties He was a member of the "Sunset Club" a local organization of all who have passed the "Three-Score-and-Ten." He attended its first meeting and a regular attendant afterward.


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