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Patrick Monaghan


Posted By: Dave Jackson (email)
Date: 4/23/2011 at 15:06:28

Born in Ireland in 1839, Patrick Monaghan was the son of Michael and Catherine Monaghan. According to the 1860 Federal Census, Patrick, 21, was the oldest son living at home in Fillmore Township, just north of Hinkletown, Foote P.O., and worked as a laborer. Neighbors were Patrick Rock, George W. Henkle, Harmon Henkle, Andrew Rock, Oscar Carter, Thomas Parker and William Wallace.

When young Patrick Monaghan departed Foote for the Civil War, it is said his boots left deep impressions in the mud in front of the Monaghan home. His mother gathered boards and laid them over the depressions to preserve his shoe prints, fearing this would be the last physical memory of her son. He joined the 22nd Iowa Infantry, Company K, on August 22, 1862, leaving his parents, and siblings, John, Charles, Michael and Ellen. At the age of 23, he mustered in at Iowa City, along with many of his friends from Foote. His physical profile described him as 5 feet, 8 1/2 inches tall, dark complexion, black hair, and blue eyes.

The 22nd Iowa Volunteer Infantry was comprised primarily of Johnson County boys, except a company each raised from Poweshiek, Jasper and Wapello counties, and the dozen and a half from Foote (Fillmore and Greene townships) in Iowa County who went to Iowa City and signed up together. By the time the boys from Foote joined up, Camp Pope, at the intersection of Summit and Bowery streets, had replaced the Iowa City Fairgrounds for drilling and preparing men for war. They drilled and performed dress parade there for three weeks. The camp was located by the railroad, and on September 15, 1862, the regiment was ordered into active service.

After leaving Camp Pope at Iowa City, the 22nd Iowa Infantry moved by rail to Davenport, then traveled by steamer to St. Louis, Benton Barracks, then to Rolla, Missouri, where they garrisoned the fort for about four months. In late March 1863, they began marching, moving to West Plains to join the Army of Southeast Missouri, as part of the First Brigade, First Division, commanded at the time by General Stone, and included the 21st, 22nd, and 23rd Iowa Infantry and the 11th Wisconsin, these regiments being braided together for several successful battles. Prior to seeing any battle, the 22nd Iowa endured many hardships, marching many miles in poor conditions, many troops without shoes or in worn out footwear. One such march was from West Plains to Iron Mountain, halting to camp for a few days at each place.

Monaghan fought his first major engagement with the 22nd Iowa Infantry at Port Gibson, before midnight on April 30, 1863. Their first regimental battle was a success for the Union. About 20 troops were killed that night. At the Battle of Champion Hill, the 22nd Iowa acted as reserve forces, but joined toward the culmination to pursue the retreating rebels, and captured many prisoners. The next day came the Battle of Black River Bridge, also known as the “The Big Black.” This was also the day before the great assault at Vicksburg. While the 23rd Iowa Infantry was the most actively engaged in open combat, the 22nd Iowa was shielded by the riverbank, covering the 23rd with fire upon the Rebel Army. Only two men of the 22nd Iowa were wounded that day, those being Patrick Monaghan and George W McCall.
Private Patrick Monaghan was severely injured at the Battle of Black River Bridge, Mississippi. According to the Adjutant General’s report, “On the 17th of May, 1863, while on a charge against the enemy occurred a gun shot wound, which caused him to fall to the ground, the ball entering the neck just above the collar bone on the left side, passing down into the chest through the right lung and lodging near about the second rib on the right side where it still remains inside the rib.” He rejoined his unit after recovering at a hospital in Memphis, Tennessee. According to records his treatment began on June 1, 1863 and continued through July 15, 1863. The bullet stayed in his body and eventually played a part in his death.

As with many who were wounded in battle, Patrick returned to his Company when sufficiently healed, and participated in many more battles before mustering out at Savannah, Georgia in August 1865. He would see action in several states, including Texas, Louisiana, Virginia, Maryland, and fought in the notable battles of Winchester and Fisher’s Hill. After his own battle injuries, Monaghan would see nearly half of his 22nd Iowa comrades from Foote killed, wounded or captured during the remainder of the war.

Patrick married Bridget McCann, daughter of Patrick and Catherine McCann, February 16, 1871, after his return from the Civil War. They set up house in Section 2, Liberty Township, slightly west and approximately ¾ mile south of Hinkletown, Foote Post Office, on land owned by Patrick’s parents, Michael and Catherine Monaghan. This was directly south of where St. Patrick’s Catholic Church at Little Creek would be built in 1875, on land donated by Patrick McCann, Bridget’s father. A Monaghan child was the first child baptized at the new church. Patrick spent much of his life farming by occupation, and raising his family, including seven children.

The injuries he received while serving his country in the Civil War continued to plague Monaghan throughout his life. For the bullet wound in his chest that remained lodged by his lung, Patrick was supposed to have received a disability pension of $4.00 per month beginning on July 26, 1865. Documents show that he reapplied for a pension on November 30, 1870. Of Patrick Monaghan’s case, the Assistant Adjutant General at the office of The Commissioner of Pensions in Washington, D.C. makes the following statement: “On the Muster Roll of Company K of that Regiment (22nd), for the months of May and June 1863, he is reported wounded in battle at Black River, May 17, 1863 in hospital at Memphis, shot in breast. The Muster Out Roll of Company dated July 25, 1865 reports him severely wounded at Black River Bridge, Mississippi, May 17, 1863, a priv. M.O. with Co., as of the date of Muster Out of Co., July 25, 1865.”

It appears likely that Monaghan was caught up in bureaucratic red tape and was not receiving a pension through 1874, as he enlisted the services of attorney W. B. Chapman of Iowa City, claiming “that he has not received a pension.” In this document, a Declaration for Original Invalid Pension, the attorney and witnesses stated, “That prior to his entry into the service above named he was a man of good, sound, physical health, being when enrolled a Private. That he is now wholly disabled from obtaining his subsistence by manual labor by reason of his injuries, above described, received in the service of the United States, and he therefore makes this declaration for the purpose of being placed on the invalid pension roll of the United States.”

It appears the $4.00 a month pension began in late 1874, nearly ten years after his discharge from service. This was increased to $8.00 a month on September 30,1878. On June 9, 1884, Monaghan went before Matt Fischer, Justice of the Peace of Keokuk County, to appeal for a Difference in Pension, witnessed by Solomon Shafer and Samuel Correll, also of Keokuk County. The claim stated, “he thinks he was rated too low at first and claims difference in pension. At some point thereafter Monaghan received a regular pension of $16.00 a month.

In September 1886, Monaghan traveled to Iowa City to participate in two days of festivities of the Reunion of the 22nd Iowa Volunteer Infantry. He was one of approximately 200 living members who attended the grand ceremonies. Patrick joined the group for a formal photograph on the steps of the Old Capitol Building on the University of Iowa campus. He was also photographed with his comrades from Company K at Elite Studios. On the steps of the Old Capitol, he stood under the front entrance doorway, with the name of his beloved adopted State carved in stone above him. The veteran soldiers attended a parade and formal dinner in their honor. Another reunion was held in 1897, but Monaghan was too debilitated to attend.

After a prolonged sickness related to his war injuries, Patrick Monaghan died on November 21, 1897 at the age of 58. As was common at the time, his body was laid out in the home overnight with constant and caring vigil by family and close neighbors through the hours of darkness. He was buried at St. Patrick’s Catholic Cemetery at Little Creek.

The Life of Patrick Monaghan

Iowa Biographies maintained by Steve Williams.
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