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  Genealogy: Family Histories

Redford Family Index to Images, Photographs, and Articles

Page 3

which includes Van Vlack family,

see also Thomas Spencer Redford Family and "Redford Pioneers" and

Hodgson / Redford Family Images

and page 1 of Redford Family Index to Images, Photographs, and Articles and page 2

Redford Family Index to Images, Photographs, and Articles -Page 2 and page 4 Redford Family Index to Images, Photographs, and Articles -Page 4

Compiled and Edited by Michael R. Reilly

Last Revised 03/21/2015

Mar 8,2015 via email

Hi Mike and Fred,

I know if has been awhile since I have contacted you both.

Mom has a picture of Thomas Spencer Redford and when she removed it behind it is a picture of Caroline Van Vlack. I enclosed other findings also which gives us more of a insight of what the Redford and Van Vlack Families experienced.

Caroline was the oldest sibling of the the Daniel Van Vlack family. Her brothers signed up during the Civil War. I found letters on the internet of her brothers writing back to the family.

Also Sylvester Thomas Redford wife Esther kept a autograph album which family members signed while visiting them. Esther grand-father Daniel Van Vlack signed it and Esther father-in-law Thomas Spencer Redford and her brother-in-law Adelbert Redford and many more from the the area.

I'm so glad mom kept all these items. Hope it's not to confusing!



My Great-Great Grandfather Thomas Spencer Redford Headstone

1931 Newspaper clipping Abigall (Newell) Redford dies

Caroline Van Vlack Ink Photo.  (Found behind the Thomas Spencer Redford Ink Photo) These photos handed down from Sylvester Thomas and Esther Redford family to me great-great-granddaughter Diane (Baumann) Kleinsteiber.

Writing on the back of Caroline( Van Vlack) Redford Ink Photo.

Thomas Spencer Redford with third wife Abigall (Newell) Redford.

Front page of my Great-Grandmother Esther (Dale) Redford Scenery Autograph Album.

Newspaper clipping of Thomas Spencer Redford death



14515. Caroline VAN VLACK was born on 30 Sep 1825 in NY. She died on 9 Jan 1854 in WI.

She was married to Thomas REDFORD in 1848.

14516. Hall VAN VLACK was born on 19 Jun 1827 in , Dutchess Co., NY. He died in 1915 in IA.

He was married to Lizzie WALTHAM on 3 Feb 1850.

14517. Stephen VAN VLACK was born on 16 Oct 1828 in NY. He died on 1 Mar 1896.

He was married to Amerette MEACHAM.

14518 iv. Daniel VAN VLACK was born on 18 Mar 1830 in NY. He died on 7 Oct 1854 in Ca.

14519. John VAN VLACK was born on 4 Jan 1832 in NY. He died in WY.

He was married to Clarissa BLACKNEY.

14520. Hannah VAN VLACK was born on 14 Feb 1834 in Saugerties, Ulster Co., NY. She died on 5 Mar 1911 in Richland Center, Richland Co., WI.

She was married to Darwin CHANDLER on 3 Mar 1853 in , Cattaraugus Co., NY. Darwin CHANDLER was born on 10 Apr 1829 in Hamburg, Erie Co., NY. He died on 30 Apr 1892 in Richland Center, Richland Co., WI. Hannah VAN VLACK and Darwin CHANDLER had the following children:

child+18537 i. Austin CHANDLER.
child+18538 ii. Ewotas CHANDLER.
child+18539 iii. Alice CHANDLER.
child+18540 iv. Grace CHANDLER.
child+18541 v. Ulysses S. Grant CHANDLER.
child18542 vi. Myra CHANDLER was born on 5 Sep 1868 in Richland Center, Richland Co., WI. She died on 19 Apr 1869.
child+18543 vii. Lola CHANDLER.
child+18544 viii. Henry CHANDLER.


Henry G. Van Vlack

Submitted by Webmaster Ann on Thu, 12/27/2007 - 22:59

Henry G. Van Vlack

Henry G. Van Vlack: Henry, at age 24, enlisted at Versailles to serve 3 years. He was mustered in as a corporal, 64th Reg. Co. A, NY Vol. Inf. He was killed in action on September 17, 1862 at the Battle of Antietam - age 25 years.

Antietam was one of the bloodiest battles of the war. After the battle, brother George went looking for Henry among the survivors and then on the battlefield, found his brother dead in the sunken road. George buried his brother under a tree nearby, and carved Henry's name and hometown on a top from a wooden ammunition box for a grave marker.

Henry was born Sept 2, 1837 in Cattaraugus Co., NY, son of Daniel A. and Jane (Wiley) Van Vlack. Prior to the Civil War, he was a teacher and an accomplished musician. Henry was reburied in Versailles Cemetery, Versailles, Cattaraugus County, NY on Oct. 7, 1862


George W. Van Vlack

George W. Van Vlack: George enlisted at Versailles, NY on October 5, 1861 at the age of 22 years and served 3 years. He was mustered in as a Private, Co. A on October 9, 1861; promoted Corporal, Sergeant, and 1st Sergeant. On August 25, 1864, he was captured in action at Reams Station, VA; paroled on October 8, 1864, and mustered out on December 16, 1864.

On May 12, 1864, George captured two Confederate Generals: Maj. General G.H. Stewart and Brig. Gen. Edward A. Johnson. George later received a brevet commission for these captures. He received a commission as 2nd Lt. (Brevet) on October 10, 1868 for "gallant and meritorious services."

George was born May 2, 1839, in Versailles, Cattaraugus Co., NY, son of Daniel A. and Jane (Wiley) Van Vlack; d. Feb. 21, 1917 at Perrysburg, NY and buried in Rathbun Lawn Cemetery, Town of Hanover, Chautauqua County, NY; married on Nov. 8, 1865, Mariette Amelia Merrill, she b. July 15, 1847 in Dayton, NY and d. May 4, 1920, a dau. of Leonard and Eliza (Judd) Merrill.

He is buried at Rathbun Cemetery, Town of Hanover, Chautauqua County, NY

References: "New York in the War of the Rebellion 1861-1865" by Phisterer, 1909, 3rd edition. "64th Regt. of Infantry, 1st/Cattaraugus Regt. (Veteran)" Volume 3, page 261"Adjutant General's Report, 1909"George's deposition dated June, 1905; letters home during the War from George and brother Henry.

Antietam National Battlefield

A Short Overview of the Battle of Antietam

By Brian Baracz

The Battle of Antietam pitted Union General George McClellan's Army of the Potomac against General Robert E. Lee and his Army of Northern Virginia. The Maryland Campaign was Lee's first attempt to take the war North and it was McClellan who was tasked by President Abraham Lincoln with stopping him. Outnumbered, Lee was able to use the rolling terrain and the experience of his men to make up for the numerical disadvantage he faced at Sharpsburg.

So Many Perished

Photograph of dead soldiers from a Louisiana Regiment

Dead soldiers from a Louisiana Regiment

Library of Congress

Over the course of the first three hours of the fight, the two sides struggled over possession of a twenty four acre cornfield. The Union I Corps, commanded by Maj. Gen. Joseph Hooker, and later the XII Corps, commanded by Maj. Gen. Joseph Mansfield, ran head long into Confederate troops led by Gen. Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson. No fewer than six times did the Cornfield change hands as each side attacked, fell back and rallied, only to attack again. By 8:45 a.m., neither side held a distinct advantage.

At approximately 9:00 a.m, a lull provided both sides an opportunity to catch their breaths, but within a few short minutes, a third major Federal assault was unfolding. Over 5,000 troops of the II Corps, commanded by Maj. Gen. Edwin Sumner, marched towards the West Woods in an attempt to eventually sweep south, driving the Confederates from the field. Shortly after moving into the woods, a Confederate attack struck the flank of the Union soldiers and in twenty minutes, 2,200 out of 5,300 men had fallen killed or wounded.

Following the struggle in the West Woods, by 10:00 a.m., the heavy action on the north end of the field subsided. Close to 10,000 soldiers had been killed or wounded during those first four hours of fighting.


Photograph of the Antietam Bridge on the Sharpsburg-Boonsboro Turnpike

Antietam Bridge on the Sharpsburg-Boonsboro Turnpike

Library of Congress

Due to confusion on the side of the Union and the fact there were no infantry men to push into the battle at this point, the attack sputtered out. By 1:00 p.m., the Federal forces had fallen back through the sunken road, known also as the Bloody Lane, and returned to the fields where their attacks originated from. 5500 more Union and Confederates had been killed or wounded during these three hours of combat in and around the Bloody Lane.

While the fight for the Sunken Road was unfolding, a little over one mile to the south, the Union IX Corps, commanded by Maj. Gen. Ambrose Burnside, was struggling to cross the Antietam Creek. Burnside and his men were tasked with crossing the Antietam and then attacking the right flank of the Confederate line. 500 men from Georgia and a few from South Carolina put up a strong defense and kept Burnside at bay for close to three hours. Around 1:00 p.m., Union forces finally carried the bridge, as the Confederates fell back towards the high ground, just south of Sharpsburg.

Burnside's Attack

Photograph of General Burnside

General Burnside

Library of Congress

At approximately 3:30 p.m., Burnside started his attack on the south end of Lee's line. 8000 men started the assault, 4000 men made it to a half way point, and only 2000 troops pushed up to the end of the Confederate line because of mounting causalities and the difficult terrain.
Just as the Federals reached the end of Lee's line, Confederate infantry, led by Gen. A.P. Hill, arrived on the field. These troops had been involved in the capture of Harpers Ferry, on September 15, and had marched approximately fifteen miles on the day of the battle to arrive on the flank of the Union line. They smashed into the Federals, causing the line to fall back toward Antietam Creek.

After twelve hours of combat, the roar of battle started to fade away. 23,000 men had been killed, wounded, or listed as missing, the single bloodiest day in the history of the United States. R.E. Lee's first invasion of the North ended as he retreated back into Virginia on the night of September 18. Most importantly, Union victory at Antietam provided President Abraham Lincoln the opportunity he had wanted to announce the Emancipation Proclamation, making the Battle of Antietam one of the key turning points of the American Civil War.

Antietam National Cemetery

"I think of the brave men who fell in the fierce struggle of battle, and who sleep silent in their graves. Yes, many of them sleep in silence and peace within this beautiful enclosure after the earnest conflict has ceased."

- President Andrew Johnson, at the dedication of the Antietam National Cemetery

The Battle of Antietam was the tragic culmination of Robert E. Lee's first invasion of the North. That one fateful day in September caused more than 23,110 casualties. Approximately 4,000 were killed, with many more dying of wounds or disease afterward. The peaceful little village of Sharpsburg was transformed into a hospital and burial ground which extended for miles in every direction.

Burial details performed their grisly task with speed, but not great care. Graves ranged from single burials to long, shallow trenches accommodating hundreds of corpses. For example, William Roulette, whose farm still stands behind the Visitor Center today, had over 700 soldiers buried on his property. Grave markings were constructed somewhat haphazardly, from stone piles to rough-hewn crosses and wooden headboards. A few of the dead ended up in area church cemeteries. In other cases, friends or relatives removed bodies from the area for transport home. By March of 1864, no effort had been made to find a suitable final resting place for those buried in the fields surrounding Sharpsburg. Many graves had become exposed; something had to be done.

Establishing A Plan

In 1864, State Senator Lewis P. Firey introduced to the Maryland Senate a plan to establish a state, or national, cemetery for the men who died in the Maryland Campaign of 1862. On March 23, 1865, the State of Maryland established a site for the cemetery by purchasing 11 acres for $1,161.75.

The original Cemetery Commission's plan allowed for interment of soldiers from both sides. However, the rancor and bitterness over the recently completed conflict, and the devastated South's inability to raise funds necessary to join in such a venture, persuaded Maryland to recant. Consequently, only Union dead were laid to rest within this cemetery. Confederate remains were re-interred in Washington Confederate Cemetery in Hagerstown, Maryland; Mt. Olivet Cemetery in Frederick, Maryland; and Elmwood Cemetery in Shepherdstown, West Virginia. Approximately 2,800 Southerners are buried in these three cemeteries, over 60% of which the name of the deceased is unknown.

An Arduous Task

Lithograph of the dedication of the Antietam National Cemetery on September 17, 1867.

Dedication of the Antietam National Cemetery on September 17, 1867.

Frank Leslie's Illustrated

In an effort to locate grave sites and identify the occupants, no one was of more value than two area men: Aaron Good and Joseph Gill. In the days, months, and years following the battle, these men freely gave of their time and gathered a large number of names and burial locations. The valuable service provided by these men cannot be overstated. The remains of the dead were identified by letters, receipts, diaries, photographs, marks on belts or cartridge boxes, and by interviewing relatives and survivors. Contributions totaling over $70,000 were submitted from 18 Northern states to the administrators of the Antietam National Cemetery Board. With a workforce consisting primarily of honorably discharged soldiers, the cemetery was completed by September 1867.

On September 17, 1867, on the fifth anniversary of the battle, the cemetery was ready for the dedication ceremonies. President Andrew Johnson himself attended the dedication proclaiming, "When we look on yon battlefield, I think of the brave men who fell in the fierce struggle of battle, and who sleep silent in their graves. Yes, many of them sleep in silence and peace within this beautiful enclosure after the earnest conflict has ceased."

Private Soldier Monument

One distinct feature of Antietam National Cemetery is the Private Soldier Monument, which stands in the middle of the cemetery, surrounded by the graves of his slain comrades. The colossal structure of granite reaches skyward 44 feet - 7 inches, weighs 250 tons, and is made up of 27 individual pieces. The soldier, made of two pieces joined at the waist, depicts a Union infantryman standing "in place rest" facing homeward to the north. The soldier itself is 21 feet tall and weighs about 30 tons. Designed by James G. Baterson of Hartford, Conn., and sculpted by James Pollette of Westerly, R.I., for a cost of over $32,000, the "Private Soldier" first stood at the gateway of the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia, Pa., in 1876. It was disassembled again for the long journey to Sharpsburg.

On September 17, 1880, the statue was finally in place where it was formally dedicated. The journey of "Old Simon," as he is affectionately known in the local area, had been delayed for several months when the section from the waist up fell into the river at Washington, D.C. Once retrieved, it was transported on the C&O Canal, and dragged by using huge, wooden rollers through the town of Sharpsburg to the cemetery. The inscription on the monument reads, "Not for themselves, but for their country."

The Cemetery Today

Photo of the Private Soldier Monument in Antietam National Cemetery

The Private Soldier Monument as it appears today

National Park Service, Antietam National Battlefield

Antietam National Cemetery is one of the 130 cemeteries of the National Cemetery System, a system that began during the Civil War. There are 4,776 Union remains buried here from the Battles of Antietam, South Mountain, Monocacy, and other actions in Maryland. Of those interred, approximately 1,836, or 38%, are graves of individuals whose names are unknown. All of the unknowns, with a few exceptions, are marked with small square stones. These stones contain the grave number, and a close examination of a few stones reveals a small second number representing how many unknowns are buried in that one grave.

In addition, more than 200 non-Civil War dead are also buried in the cemetery. Veterans and their wives from the Spanish-American War, World War I and II, and Korea were buried until the cemetery closed in 1953. Recently an exception to the closure was made for the burial of Keedysville resident Patrick Howard Roy, United States Navy. Fireman Roy was killed during the attack on the USS Cole and was buried in the cemetery on October 29, 2000.

If you walk to the back of the cemetery you will notice a few separate graves. Ironically, on the battlefield that led directly to Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation, African American graves from World War I were segregated to this out-of-the-way corner.




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