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Lieut Timothy J. Sheehan

Lieut Timothy J. Sheehan

Death 14 Jul 1913 (aged 76)
Burial Saint Paul, Ramsey County, Minnesota, USA
Memorial ID 41155495 · View Source
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Civil War Union Army Officer, US-Dakota War Army Officer, Sheriff, and Deputy US Marshall. Born in Ireland, his parents died when he was only two years of age. He was educated in the national schools of Ireland. When he was only 14 years of age, he came to the US. He was a mechanic at Glens Falls, New York until 1855, then went to Dixon, Illinois for one season to work in a sawmill. By the fall of 1856, he had settled in Albert Lea, Minn. He farmed there until the Civil War broke out. At age 25, he enlisted as a Corporal on Oct. 11, 1861 in Company F, 4th Minnesota Infantry. He was promoted and left the regiment to accept a commission from Governor Ramsey as First Lieutenant of Company C in the 5th Minnesota Infantry on March 9, 1862.

Company C began its active service with garrison duty at Fort Ripley. Lt. Sheehan was then assigned to Fort Ridgely, along with a detachment of 50 men. They reported in to Captain Marsh, commander of the post, on June 28, 1862. The next day, the detachment was sent to the upper Yellow Medicine Agency to maintain order during the anticipated annuity payment from the US government to the Dakota. [Dakota War]

He was promoted to Full Captain on Aug. 31, 1862. Their service at Fort Ripley completed, Company C joined the rest of the 5th Minnesota on Dec. 12, 1862 near Oxford, Mississippi. Under the leadership of Capt. Sheehan, they participated in numerous battles and engagements including the Siege of Vicksburg, Miss. (May 18-July 4), the Battle of Nashville, Tenn. (December 15-16, 1864), and the Siege of Spanish Fort and Fort Blakely near Mobile, Ala. (March 26-April 8). At Nashville, he had commanded the color company and received the following commendation in Colonel William B. Gere's report: "Captain T. J. Sheehan, commanding Company C color company, gallantly stood by the colors, and in the last charge on the 16th inst. (December) two color-bearers having been shot, he placed the colors in the hands of the third, a non-commissioned officer of his company, who planted them on the rebel entrenchments."

In early 1864, Capt. Sheehan assumed command of all of the 5th Minnesota soldiers who did not re-enlist. On July 14, they participated in the battle of Tupelo, Missouri. He was promoted to Lieutenant-Colonel on Sep. 1, 1865.

He mustered out of the service with the rest of the 5th Minnesota regiment on Sep. 6, 1865 at Fort Snelling, Minn. When he returned to Albert Lea, Minn., he was appointed Deputy US Marshall by US Marshal Augustus Armstrong. He married Jennie Judge, a native of Ireland, in November, 1866. They had three sons, Jeremiah (b. 1867), George (b. 1871), and Edward (b. 1875). In 1871, he was elected to the office of Sheriff and served as Sheriff of Freeborn County for over 10 years. Before the Civil War, he was a Douglas democrat; after the war, he was active in the Republican party. By 1891, he was a Deputy US Marshall. In October of that year, he participated in the historic final engagement between Native Americans and US troops. During the conflict that took place near Leech Lake, Minn., several soldiers and civilians were killed and Sheehan and others were wounded.

By 1900, he and his family had moved to St. Paul, Minn., where they lived at 831 Ashland Avenue. He was still serving as Deputy US Marshall in 1895 and 1900. He retired in 1910.


Bode, Tim, 5th Minnesota Infantry researcher. Civil War service of Timothy J. Sheehan, 5th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry Regiment web site.

History of Freeborn County, 1882.

Minnesota Territorial Censuses for 1885, 1895

U. S. Federal Censuses, 1880, 1900, 1910 Minnesota




  • Created by: Cindy K. Coffin
  • Added: 25 Aug 2009
  • Find A Grave Memorial 41155495
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Lieut Timothy J. Sheehan (21 Dec 1836–14 Jul 1913), Find A Grave Memorial no. 41155495, citing Calvary Cemetery, Saint Paul, Ramsey County, Minnesota, USA ; Maintained by Cindy K. Coffin (contributor 47084179) .