Henry E. Kingsbury

Henry E. Kingsbury was born on December 7, 1835, in Cleveland, Ohio, the son of Henry.

Henry E. left Ohio and moved westward, eventually settling in western Michigan where by 1860 he was a medical student living with the family of Dr. Albert Bomtul (?) in Hastings, Barry County; also living with this family was Cody Reed, who would also enlist in Company K on May 13, 1861. And next door lived James Birdsall who would also enlist in the Third Michigan. (He was possibly related to one Sarah Kingsbury, b. 1817 in Massachusetts and working as a teacher in Hastings in 1860.)

Henry stood 5’5” with blue eyes, red hair and a florid complexion and was 25 years old and living in Barry County when he enlisted in Company K. He was injured in the chest on June 15, 1862, and although alleged to have deserted on September 21, 1862, at Upton’s Hill, Virginia, in fact Henry was in the hospital, where he probably served for a time as a nurse. He was discharged on January 22, 1863, at Third Corps hospital near Fort Lyon, Virginia, for “hypertrophy of the heart accompanied by severe cramps of the whole body, entirely unfitting him for duty, caused by exposure on the [Virginia] peninsula & an injury received on the chest on the 15th of June, 1862; has done no duty since.”

It is not known if Henry returned to Michigan after his discharge, although he reportedly reentered the military in Company K, First New York “Lincoln” cavalry on March 11, 1864, and was discharged or mustered out on June 1, 1865. (Company K was apparently made up largely of Michigan men.)

After the war Henry did return to Barry County.

He was married to New York native Sarah H. (d. 1887) and they had at least three children: Eva C. (b. 1872, possibly Mrs. Frank O’Hara), Charles E. (b. 1874) and Angie (b. 1877, possibly Mrs. Claude Noe).

By 1870 Henry was working as a clerk in a store in Hastings village, Barry County, and living with his wife and probably his younger sister Ida. Henry eventually settled in Muskegon in the mid-1870s and was employed for some time as a clerk on the Goodrich steamer Muskegon on the line between Muskegon and Chicago (he apparently did not pursue the medical education), and lived in Muskegon for many years. Indeed, by 1880 he was working as a clerk on a steamship and living in Muskegon’s Third Ward with his wife and children. Henry was living in Muskegon in December of 1881 when he became a member of the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association, in 1885, in 1887 when he joined Grand Army of the Republic Kearny Post No. 7 in Muskegon, in 1889, and in 1890 at 120 Clay Street.

In 1891 he applied for a pension (application no. 1055544), but the certificate was never granted.

He was Muskegon City Recorder from 1888 to 1891 when he moved to a farm in Norton Township, Muskegon County, where he was living in 1894. By November of 1895 he was living with his daughter Mrs. O’Hara, in Norton.

Henry died a widower of paralysis at 11:00 a.m. on Thursday, September 3, 1896, at Mrs. O’Hara’s home. According to one report, “he had been ill with heart disease for the past three weeks, but had been able to be around most of the time and was coming to this city to see his physician last Saturday. Sunday he had a very severe attack and it was thought he would survive but a short time. He rallied, however, and lingered until yesterday forenoon, when he died of dropsy of the heart.”

Brief funeral services were held at the O’Hara residence at 1:00 p.m. September 5, and he was buried beside his wife in Evergreen cemetery, Muskegon: 4-4-1.