|Birth: ||Jan. 29, 1838|
|Death: ||Oct. 23, 1923|
The day was April 6, 1862, and the 8th Iowa Vol. Infantry was in serious trouble. The Confederate Army of the Mississippi was on the verge of driving Major General Ulysses S. Grant into the Tennessee River at Pittsburg Landing, Tn. The only thing keeping the Rebels from accomplishing their goal was a compact cluster of Union Infantry and artillery that was sending out such swarms of bullets and shells that the Confederates dubbed it the "Hornets Nest". From its position in the "Hornets Nest," the 8th Iowa helped push back one Confederate assault after another, its men fully aware that their efforts could make the difference between the defeat or survival of their army.
With the 8th Iowa at Pittsburg Landing was Sergeant James K. Syurdevant, an Ohio born farmer who had enlisted in the regiment's Company F in August 1861. When the Rebels finally outflanked and surrounded the "Hornets Nest" around 6:00 PM, he was one of 379 men of his regiment who were captured.
Sturdevant and his fellow prisoners were held at various locations in the South. While at Macon, Ga., Sturdevant developed chronic diarrhea from exposure and indigestible food. This condition would plague him for the rest of his life.
Paroled at Aiken's Landing, Virginia, on October 17, 1862, Sturdevant headed home to Iowa. There, he lived out his parole period with the vigor of a man who had been given a fresh chance at life. On Christmas Eve, he married lovely Susan Walter, with whom he sat for this photograph.
It must have been difficult to leave home again, but in January 1863 Sturdevant rejoined the 8th Iowa. That year,he participated in Ulysses S. Grants Vicksburg Campaign. By the year's end, however, his chronic illness prevented him from remaining in the field. Transferred to the Invalid Corps, he was honorably discharged on September 21 1864, at Pittsburg, Pa., three years to day after mustering in.
With the money he had earned in the army, Sturdevant bought a farm in Keokuk County, Iowa. He died on October 30, 1923, survived by his wife, two daughters, 13 grandchildren, and countless great-grandchildren.
Susannah Walter Sturdevant (1845 - 1930)*
Edward S Sturdevant (1865 - 1908)*
Created by: JFJN
Record added: Aug 27, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 57796190