|Birth: ||Mar. 4, 1834|
|Death: ||Feb. 11, 1915|
S/O John Coon & Chloe Cox Coon.
Birth: Mar. 4, 1834
Death: Feb. 11, 1915
Private WILLIAM SPENCER COON, Co. F, 86th Illinois
William Spencer Coon was born on March 4, 1834 at or near Cleveland, Cuyahoga County, Ohio, one of at least seven children known to have been born to John Coon, who was born in 1810 in Canada, and Chloe (Cox) Coon, who was born in 1816 in Canada. By 1834, the Coon family is residing in Cuhahoga County, Ohio near Cleveland. By 1840, the Coon family has moved to Madison County, Ohio and in the 1850's the family has moved on west, where they have settled near Maquon, Illinois in Knox County.
On July 29, 1862, William's younger brother, David John Coon volunteered to serve in a company which was being raised in Maquon, Illinois by a well known local Carpenter, Contractor and Businessman by the name of James L. Burkhalter for service in the Union Army. On August 6, another brother, Isaac J. Coon signed the volunteer rolls for Burkhalter's growing company. On the last day of recruiting, August 11, 1862, William Spencer Coon signed his name to the rolls. At the time they volunteered, David and Isaac state that they are farming for a living, while William states that he is working as a miner.
By the evening of the 11th day of August, 1862, Burkhalter had about 100 volunteers. The following day, Burkhalter led the Maquon company on a long march into Peoria, where they went into camp at Camp Lyon, near present day Glen Oak Park. There on August 27, 1862, Burkhalter was elected by the men of the Maquon company to be their Captain and Captain Burkhalter and 93 of his volunteers were mustered in as Co. F of the 86th Regiment of Illinois Volunteer Infantry.
On September 7, 1862, the men of the 86th Illinois marched of the gates of Camp Lyon, Capt. James L. Burkhalter leading Co. F, through the streets of Peoria, with much fanfare, and boarded a train bound for Camp Joe Holt, Jeffersonville, Indiana, located across the Ohio River from Louisville. Three weeks later, the men of the 86th were in the field in Kentucky as part of Col. Daniel McCook's Brigade, in pursuit of Confederate troops. On Oct. 8, 1862, the men of McCook's Brigade were engaged with those troops in the Battle of Perryville, Kentucky, the 86th Illinois suffering their first casualties. There would be many more in the coming years. After the Union victory at Perryville, the Confederate Army withdrew from Kentucky and McCook's Brigade marched on to Nashville, Tennessee, where they went into winter camp.
During those first few months in the field, the poor diet and living conditions took a great toll on the green troops in the field. Even before the 86th left Camp Joe Holt, many of the troops were ill. Many more became ill before the 86th arrived in Nashville. Many of these troops were left behind in Army Hospitals in Louisville, Kentucky when the 86th left for Perryville or were sent back to the Army Hospitals in Louisville after the Battle of Perryville. One of these troops that was either left behind or sent back to the Army Hospitals before the 86th got too far into Tennessee was Private David John Coon, the first member of the Coon family to volunteer. At the hospital, whatever his ailment, his condition did not improve. Finally on October 31, 1862, the Army Doctors thought it best to let David out of the service and let him return to his family in hopes that with the help of family and home cooking his condition would improve. So on October 31, 1862, Private David John Coon was discharged from the service for disability and he returned to his home and family in Knox County. Whatever his ailment, David continued to struggle with health issues on through the winter and spring of 1862/63 and on June 30, 1863, Private David John Coon died. He is believed to have died at Yates City, Illinois and his earthly remains were laid to rest in the Uniontown Cemetery in Knox County, Illinois, not far from Farmington, Illinois.
During the next two and a half years, Privates William Spencer Coon and Isaac J. Coon and the men of the 86th served in on with the 86th in Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina and North Carolina. During this time, they were witness to and participants in numerous battles and skirmishes, some of the bloodiest fighting in the Western Theatre of the war, including the Battles of Chicakamauga, Georgia; Resaca, Georgia; Rome, Georgia, Kennesaw Mountain, Georgia; Peach Tree Creek, Georgia; Jonesboro, Georgia; to name a few and they marched with Sherman to the Sea. They were still there in May of 1865 in Washington City (now D.C.) on the second day of the Grand Review as Sherman's boys marched down Pennsylvania Avenue. On June 6, 1865, when they were mustered out of the service, Private Isaac J. Coon and Private William S. Coon were among the last 40 men who still remained with Co. F. Shortly afterward they were on a train bound for Chicago and shortly after arriving in Chicago, they were headed for home and family in Knox County.
William Spencer Coon was married to Rachel E Davis on August 1, 1855 in Knox County, Illinois. Rachel was born in 1837 in Illinois and died in 1862 in Illinois. They had three daughters: Amanda F born in 1856; Chloe A born in 1857; and Cynthia J born Dec 25 1857.
William married Esther Lopeman June 27, 1865, in Lewiston, Fulton, Illinois. She was born January 16, 1831, in Pennsylvania and died in 1905 in Seiling, Dewey, Oklahoma. Two children are known to have been born to them. They are;
1. Cora Hazel Coon, born Aug 4, 1869 in Kansas; died January 1937.
2. John Richard Coon, born January 25, 1871 in Kansas; died February 17, 1954 in Colorado; buried in the Brumfield Cemetery.
At the time of the 1880 census, William, Esther and the two children are found residing in Towanda Township, Phillips County, Kansas near Logan, Kansas, where William is farming for a living. In 1____, the Coon family moved on west, where they settled in Dewey County, Oklahoma, where they settled near Seiling, Oklahoma. William and Esther would remain there the remainder of their lives.
Private William Spencer Coon died on February 11, 1915. Their earthly remains were laid to rest in the Brumfield Cemetery in Seiling, Dewey County, Oklahoma.
by Baxter Fite and Fran Denny
(Baxter and Fran would enjoy hearing from anyone, especially descendants, who might be able to add further to the biographies of Private William Spencer Coon and the Coon family. Baxter and Fran would also love to get copies of any pictures of William Spencer Coon which may have survived the years, especially any of him in uniform from his days in the 86th, for his Find A Grave site and for the local Historical Societies.)
John Coon (1810 - ____)
Chloe Cox Coon (1816 - 1886)
Esther Coon (1830 - 1904)
Created by: Fran Denny
Record added: Dec 03, 2008
Find A Grave Memorial# 31917333