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Thomas Kesiah/Cajiais
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Birth: Aug. 12, 1843
Death: Feb. 5, 1919

Thomas Kesiah/Cajiais
2nd New York Veteran's Cavalry - Company K

b. 12-Aug-1843

Thomas Kesiah served in the Union Army during the Civil War. His enlistment was with Captain Christopher Dolan's Company K of the 2nd New York Veteran's Cavalry. William H. Arlin was the enlistment officer on September 14, 1863 at Glen Falls, New York when Thomas Kesiah enlisted.

Between his enlistment and when the Regiment mustered in, he was arrested as a deserter. He, apparently deserted October 22, 1863 at Saratoga Springs and was arrested the same day, October 22, 1863, at Wilton, New York.

The records show that he mustered in as a private with the 2nd Regiment New York Veteran Cavalry, Company K at Saratoga, New York on November 10, 1863 for a three-year enlistment.

The Company's Descriptive Book describes him as 20 years old, dark complexion, black eyes and black hair. It states that he was born Queensbury, New York and his occupation was a laborer.

The records further list the battles he was engaged in:

Compti, Louisiana on April 4, 1864;
Pleasant Hill on April 9, 1864;
Cane River Crossing Marksville in April 1864;
Yellow Bayou in May 1864;
several skirmishes in Parish Cupee, Louisiana;
Bluff Springs Alabama in March 1865
and (Fort) Blakley (Alabama) in April 1865.

The pension affidavits he submitted shed light on his travels after his military enlistment. Family oral history says that the family traveled with a circus and made baskets.

Thomas Kesiah's 1919 death certificate (Monroe, New York) lists his place of birth as St. Francis, Canada. It also lists his father as Anthony Kesiah and mother as Sarah Kesiah nee Newlet. Thomas married an Abenaki named Margaret Cherbott in Plattsburg, New York on August 29, 1863. Thomas and Margaret Kesiah had one child, Anne, who died in infancy.

Thomas Kesiah died on February 5, 1919.

Mr. Thomas Kesiah, the Indian survivor of his generation, of Benekee [sic Abenaki -NL] tribe of Canada, has passed to his long home. A soldier and pensioner of the war of the rebellion, his Grand Army badge and flag draped casket bore testimony to his faithful Americanism.

This wonderful biography was Written & Contributed by: Kevin M. Wolfe, Nov-2001

Thomas Kesiah died at the home of his niece, Mrs. J.C. Coddington on Prospect Street at 12:35 o'clock Wednesday morning, February 5, of general disability, aged seventy-five years, five months and two days.

Mr. Kesiah belonged to the Grand Army of the Republic, having fought in the war of 1863. Deceased was born at St. Frances, Canada, and for many years conducted a store in Paterson, N.J. His health failing, he retired from business and went west, but the climate there not agreeing with him, he returned to the East and made his home with his niece, Mrs. Coddington.

The Funeral services will be held at two o'clock on Friday afternoon, Rev. George Dumbell of Grace Episcopal Church, officiating. The internment will be in Monroe Cemetery, under the direction of Mr. Merritt, funeral director.
Mr. Thomas Kesiah, the Indian survivor of his generation, of Benekee [sic Abenaki] tribe of Canada, has passed to his long home.

A soldier and pensioner of the war of the rebellion, his Grand Army badge and flag draped casket bore testimony to his faithful Americanism. His romantic life in camp at many places in this state; as a traveler on the Mississippi River, an expert weaver of Indian baskets at many summer resorts (Saranac Lake, Saratoga Springs, Glen falls, Catskill Mountains and Greenwood Lake and other places) made for him a life rich in remembrances.

Perhaps the climax of romance was reached when his wife, Margaret Kesiah, dressed in mens clothes, stealthfully accompanied him to the front, in the war of the rebellion, where, after discovery of the ruse, she remained and assisted in nursing sick and wounded soldiers.

He understood and used the Indian dialect fluently when conversing with Mrs. Kesiah. He was fond of music, a good singer, most kindly and sympathetic and gentle in his home. He will be long remembered and cherished by those so fortunate as to have known him intimately.

He made his home for some time past with Joseph Coddington of Monroe, N.Y., whose wife was a grand niece and a daughter of his niece, Mrs. David Ball of Greenwood Lake, N.Y., who with her children Thomas, Fred, George, Harold, Minnetta and Emmett are his surviving relatives.

Community Cemetery
Orange County
New York, USA
Maintained by: Ancestral Sleuth
Originally Created by: Bev
Record added: Jan 08, 2007
Find A Grave Memorial# 17360734
Thomas Kesiah/Cajiais
Cemetery Photo
Added by: widow
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- Bev
 Added: Jan. 25, 2012

- D McK S
 Added: Sep. 12, 2011

 Added: Apr. 20, 2011
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