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 William Henry Lessig

William Henry Lessig

Birth
Lebanon, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, USA
Death 18 Jul 1910 (aged 78)
Monte Vista, Rio Grande County, Colorado, USA
Burial Pottsville, Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania, USA
Plot Section G, Lot 4
Memorial ID 56843915 · View Source
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Civil War Union Army Officer. A successful mining engineer pre-Civil War, he recruited a company of men intended to be an independent light artillery battery, but was accepted as Company C, 96th Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry. Commissioned it's Captain and commander on September 23, 1861, he led his men during the Spring-Summer 1862 Peninsular Campaign, where the regiment fought at the Battles of Gaines Mill and Malvern Hill. During the September 1862 Antietam Campaign, Major Lewis J. Martin was killed in action at the Battle of Crampton's Gap in Maryland, and William H. Lessig was promoted to Major on September 15, 1862 to fill the vacancy. A few months later, following the discharge of Lieutenant Colonel Peter A. Filbert, he was again promoted, filling the now vacancy Lieutenant Colonelcy on December 23, 1862. When the Spring 1862 Chancellorsville Campaign began, he found himself in command of the regiment, following the resignation of their Colonel in March 1863. During the Chancellorsville battle he and his men partook in the capture of Marye's Heights south of Fredericksburg, and the subsequent Union assault and repulse on Salem Church, sustaining 96 casualties. He led his men through the July 1863 Battle of Gettysburg, where they were held in reserve in front of Little Round Top, and in the 1864 Overland Campaign, fighting in the Battles of the Wilderness, Spottsylvania, Cold Harbor, and at Petersburg. He had been promoted to Colonel with a backdate to March 13, 1863, but due to the small size of his regiment he was never mustered in at that rank, and when his enlistment expired by law on October 21, 1864, he was mustered out as a Lieutenant Colonel. In April 1865 while traveling in western Pennsylvania on a business venture with a comrade and former officer, they were mistaken for Lincoln Assassin John Wilkes Booth, and twice had to escape crowds bent on hanging them. He eventually moved to Colorado, where he ran a hotel, became an successful real estate developer, and served as the Colorado Territory Surveyor General from 1867 to 1874.

Bio by: Russ


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: Russ
  • Added: 9 Aug 2010
  • Find A Grave Memorial 56843915
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for William Henry Lessig (31 Oct 1831–18 Jul 1910), Find A Grave Memorial no. 56843915, citing Charles Baber Cemetery, Pottsville, Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .