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Civil War Monument in Veteran's Park

Plymouth's First Veterans Memorial - The Civil War Monument:

The Civil War Monument, which currently stands in the Riverside Cemetery, carries a dedication date of July 1, 1917. However, it was officially unveiled in Kellogg Park on Sunday, September 9, 1917. The Plymouth Mail reported the event as follows:

"A large crowd of people assembled in Kellogg Park last Sunday afternoon to witness the unveiling of the beautiful soldier's monument, a gift to the village from our former townsman Harry E. Bradner of Lansing. Although the weather was threatening after the noon hour and no doubt kept many away, it is estimated that there were close on to fifteen hundred people in and around the park. A speaker's platform had been erected in the park, and this together with the bandstand was prettily decorated with the national colors. The monument was draped with two large American flags, cleverly arranged to unfurl at the back of the monument at the time of the unveiling. This arrangement and all of the decorations were in charge of Harry J. Green.

The members of the G.A.R. assembled at the village hall, and under the command of 0. P. Showers, commander of the local post, formed in line, and headed by the band, marched to the park, fifty strong. Here they were met by F. D. Schrader, chairman of the reception committee, who escorted them to seats immediately in front of the platform, which had been reserved for them.

The program opened with prayer by Rev. B. F. Farber of Detroit. The Plymouth band rendered a selection of patriotic airs that was greatly appreciated. Following this came the presentation of the monument by the donor, Harry E. Bradner of Lansing. Mr. Bradner paid a splendid tribute to the soldiers of Plymouth in the Civil War, and closed his remarks by presenting to the village the beautiful monument he has caused to be erected in memory of the sons of Plymouth, who offered their lives from 1861 to 1865.

The unveiling of the monument by Mrs. Harry E. Bradner followed and as she pulled the cords that held the flags in place the band played a patriotic air, and as the flags gracefully fell back and revealed the splendid memorial, a great stillness fell over the large assemblage for a moment, and then they voiced their approval and appreciation of the beautiful gift with vigorous clapping of hands. President of the Village Harry C. Robinson then stepped forward and with a few appropriate remarks, in which he expressed to the donor the deepest appreciation of the citizens of Plymouth, accepted the gift as their chief executive.

President Robinson then introduced Hon. George W. Stone of Lansing, Past Department Commander of the Michigan G.A.R., who gave a splendid address on "The Civil War Veteran". The speaker paid a splendid tribute to Michigan soldiers in the Civil War. The address was followed with a song beautifully rendered by a quartet composed of Mrs. R. E. Cooper, Mrs. William Bake, C. H. Rauch and Calvin Whipple. This was followed by an address by Hon. Edmund C. Shields of Lansing. Mr. Shields is a splendid orator and his address was patriotic, inspiring and convincing. After the singing of "America" by the assemblage, taps were sounded and most fittingly brought to a close a day that will live long in the memory of everyone who was present."

The Civil War Monument continued to reside in Kellogg Park for the next 50 years until 1967, when it was moved from the park to Riverside Cemetery.


On Front: A Tribute To Those Sons Of Plymouth Who Offered Their Lives In The War Between The States 1861-1865

On Scroll: In Memoriam

On Back: Gift Of Harry E. Bradner July 1, 1917

Brief History Of The 24th Michigan Volunteer Infantry - Company C:

By the spring of 1862, the Union army had encountered a number of crushing defeats in the eastern theatre; much of which can be attributed to poor leadership qualities. The vear of 1862 was tragic for the North. By this time, the Union had lost the battle of Bull Run, Benjamin Butler was crushed at Big Bethel, the British were angered over the Trent affair, Stonewall Jackson was invincible in the Shenandoah Valley, and the North was facing problems with its attempts at a Peninsular Campaign (hindered by sluggish movement and a difficult geography)

In early July of 1862, President Lincoln called on the northern states to furnish an additional 300,000 men to fill the depleted ranks. Governer Blair of Michigan responded quickly and with great effort. On July 15, 1862, Blair ordered that one regiment of soldiers be created from each of Michigan's six congressional districts. These six new regiments were to be assigned the numbers of eighteen through twenty-three, but because of an embarrasing anti-war rallv in Michigan, the governer allowed for the twenty-fourth Michigan infantry to be created.

The twenty-fourth Michigan was to be assigned to Wavne County, which was part of the first congressional district. This brought the number of outgoing regiments to a total of eight. By July 22nd, patriotic young men were rushing to fill the ranks, and on this day, a huge war meeting was held in the Campus Martius of Detroit. Speeches of patriotism were given bv some of the state's most prominent citizens, including the venerable Lewis Cass who was making one of his last public appearances.

Support was given to the new regiments, and especially to the twentv-fourth, which was being formed by Wavne Countv and Detroit men. Prominent citizens of Detroit soon stepped forward to pledge the payment of bounties to each man from his ward who enlisted in the twenty-fourth Michigan. This was the first time in Detroit, and perhaps in Michigan, that such inducements were given.

The beckoning cry for help quickly spread everywhere, and before the end of the month, plans were being made in Plymouth, Michigan to take an active role. On August 5th, a meeting was held in Plymouth to procure enlistments for a new company of volunteers that would become part of the twenty-fourth regiment. During that afternoon, enlistments were gathered at the Village Green, or what is today known as Kellogg Park. The companv was to have one-hundred volunteers, and they quicklv stepped forward. As it turned out, sixty-nine men out of the one-hundred in the companv were citizens of Plymouth. The others included seven from Canton, nine from Livonia, six from Nankin, eight from Salem, and one from Detroit. Another fifteen Plymouth-Canton residents joined other companies of the twenty-fourth. So it was on August 5, 1862 that Company C of the twentv-fourth Michigan infantry regiment was born.

Shortly after the Battle of Antietam (September, 1862), Company C, along with the rest of th 24th Michigan, joined regiments from Indiana and Wisconsin; thus, becoming part of the famed "Iron Brigade" which assumed that name when General McClellan noted how those men "were like iron" in the battle of South Mountain.

There are no Civil War soldier's names on this memorial. Research in books, "History of 24th Michigan of Iron Brigade" by O. B. Curtis, 1891 and "The Twenty-Fourth Michigan" by Donald L. Smith, 1962 lists the men from Plymouth, Michigan: