Charles H. C. Scaddin

Charles H. C. Scaddin was born on December 3, 1837, in Summerfield (?), New York, the son of Charles (b. 1798) and Amy (Sales, b. 1801).

His parents were born in New York and was presumably married there sometime before 1825. The family moved from New York to Michigan sometime between 1842 and 1844, and by 1850 Charles (younger) was living with his family in Grand Rapids where his father worked a a carpenter. Next door lived one Nathan Sines who would also join the Third Michigan.

By 1860 Charles was working as a sawyer living with and/or working for Mr. Driesbach in Alpine, Kent County and working at the same mill as Mortimer Parish (who would enlist in Company D).

Charles (younger) stood 5’8,” with blue eyes, light complexion and brown hair and was 23 years old and probably still residing in Alpine when he enlisted in Company F. He was reported serving with the ambulance corps from October of 1862 through December. In February of 1863 he was a provost guard at Third Corps headquarters, and in March was sick with intermittent fever. He returned to duty and in April was ill with bronchitis. He was sick with diarrhea from May 18-28, and was detached as provost guard at division headquarters from January 8, 1864, until the end of April. He was suffering from miasmatic disease from March 4-12, admitted on March 24, 1864, to Second Division hospital in Alexandria, Virginia, suffering from “debility,” and was reported absent sick from April through May, possibly at one point in the Methodist church hospital in Alexandria. Charles was working as a clerk in a hospital in Washington, DC when he was mustered out on June 20, 1864, at Detroit .

Following his discharge Charles returned to Michigan and lived for a time in Grand Rapids.

He married Michigan native Marian E. Devenport or Davenport (b. 1835) on April 9, 1865, in Alpine, Kent County and they had at least three children, Sylvia (b. 1866), Amy (b. 1872), Daisa (b. 1875).

Charles was living in Alpine with his wife and one child in 1870, and by 1880 he was working as a laborer and living with his wife and three daughters in Sparta, Kent County.

He and Marion separated in March of 1881. According to a statement Mariam made in 1916, they separated “only because of the soldier’s habits and of his non-support of his family.” (However, another witness, Syrina Mapes, Charles’ sister testified that they separated in the “early 90s”; and other other sources claim between 1895 and 1900.) William Davenport, a cousin of Mariam’s, testified in 1916 that Mariam left Charles “sometime in the nineties . . . because of the soldier’s drinking intoxicating liquors to excess, and his abuse of his family,” but that she never divorced him.

Charles was living in Englishville, Kent County when he became a member of the Old Third Michigan Infantry Association in September of 1885, and resided for a time in Mill Creek, Kent County, and for many years worked as a sawyer and farmer. He was admitted to the Michigan Soldiers’ Home (no. 4104) on September 18, 1903 and was subsequently dishonorably discharged from the Home, presumably for drunkenness, on three separate occasions: first on December 11, 1903, readmitted December 16; discharged March 16, 1906, and readmitted March 19; and discharged April 5, 1906. He was readmitted on December 23, 1908, and transferred to the Kalamazoo State Hospital in November of 1912.

One month prior to his transfer to Kalamazoo “His trouble began,” so the hospital admission record notes, “by his mistreating associates and attendants and rebelling against the discipline. He gradually became very abusive and profane and finally became destructive, tearing his clothes and attempting to destroy the furniture, etc.” He was admitted at 4:00 p.m. on November 9, 1912, with a diagnosis of “acute alcoholism.” The admitting physicians further noted that “His ideas of time and place are very poor” and that he was “bothered a good deal by the idea the some one is persecuting him.” Apparently he suffered from loss of memory, and insisted on getting into bed with other inmates of the Michigan Soldiers’ Home. The examination concluded that he was “inclined to be a trifle irritable” and that his will was “diminished.” “The patent’s social relations were seemingly innocent enough: he was not thought ‘aggressive’ nor ‘very talkative’, and when he was questioned closely he ‘rather inclined to be irritable.’”

His emotional state continued to worsen and his abusiveness and hostility to those around him increased, and he began failing physically as well. On April 17, 1915, he was described as “becoming more deteriorated; irritable spells; complains of feeling numb and dizzy; disoriented; nephritis. This patient is gradually becoming more feeble” and “he complains of feeling dizzy. He was also observed to be more “filthy in his habits.” By the end of the year he was observed to be “very confused” and was often observed to be “crawling about the ward.” The treatment of choice was a quarter grain of morphine. (Charles may in fact have suffered from Alzheimer’s disease.)

Charles was a Protestant. In 1896 he applied for and received pension no. 908,433, drawing $6.00 in 1903 and increased to $12.00 by 1908.

Charles died of interstitial nephritis (renal failure) on February 10, 1916, at the Kalamazoo Hospital and his remains were sent to Grand Rapids where they were buried in the Michigan Soldiers’ Home cemetery: section 7 row 6 lot 30.

His widow was residing in Sparta, Kent County in 1916, the same year she applied for and received pension no. 814,292.