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 Catharine (Kate) Mary Hewitt

Catharine (Kate) Mary Hewitt

Birth
Stillwater, Saratoga County, New York, USA
Death 5 May 1902 (aged 65–66)
Stillwater, Saratoga County, New York, USA
Burial Stillwater, Saratoga County, New York, USA
Memorial ID 11784763 · View Source
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Born in Stillwater, Saratoga County, NY. There is some dispute about the
year of her birth but 1836, despite the date on her grave marker, appears
to be the most consistent and logical year.
Her life from the beginning was tragic and tumultuous as she lost her
mother and brother at a young age.She left for San Francisco, CA in 1856 to serve as a governess
in the household of relatives but soon began working in a Catholic girls' school run by the Daughters of Charity, where she began her conversion to that religion. In 1860 she returned East by sea voyage and met then Major John Fulton Reynolds on the ship back to NY where he was going to take the position of commandant at West Point and she was going to Philadelphia to finalize her conversion. They fell in love and ultimately became engaged to be married but kept it a secret because of his position with the army during the Civil War and her new found faith, which was unpopular in some social circles.
She pledged to enter religious life if he did not survive the war. On July 1, 1863, early in the first day of the Battle of Gettysburg, he was shot leading his First Corps and the Left Wing of the Army of the Potomac into Battle and instantly killed.
Kate appeared at his wake at his sister's house in Philadelphia making her existence known to his family who embraced
her as a sister. Shortly after his untimely death, Kate made good on that pledge by entering the religious community of the Daughters of Charity in Emmitsburg, MD, now more commonly known as the Seton Shrine. Five years later, she left the order in Albany, NY without taking final vows. She remained in Albany working as a teacher for several years and in fact,
living for some time with another sister who left the order. She lived out her life in her old hometown of Stillwater, NY and died of "bloody lungs." She never married. She is buried in the Stillwater Union Cemetery, not far from the Saratoga Battlefield. Her stone is an octagon and symbolic of rebirth and resurrection. The word "Mizpah" is carved on the stone and is a Hebrew benediction meaning, "May God watch over you until we are together again." Kate Hewitt is emblematic of the generations lost forever because of Americans fighting Americans.


  • Created by: GettysBern
  • Added: 20 Sep 2005
  • Find A Grave Memorial 11784763
  • LaDene
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Catharine (Kate) Mary Hewitt (1836–5 May 1902), Find A Grave Memorial no. 11784763, citing Stillwater Union Cemetery, Stillwater, Saratoga County, New York, USA ; Maintained by GettysBern (contributor 1478862) .