Redford Family Index to
Images, Photographs, and Articles
which includes Van Vlack family,
Spencer Redford Family and
and page 1 of
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.
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
1931 Newspaper clipping Abigall (Newell) Redford
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
Front page of my Great-Grandmother Esther (Dale)
Redford Scenery Autograph Album.
Caroline VAN VLACK
was born on 30 Sep 1825 in NY. She died on 9 Jan 1854 in WI.
married to Thomas REDFORD in 1848.
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.
Stephen VAN VLACK was born on 16 Oct 1828 in NY. He died on 1
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.
John VAN VLACK was born on 4 Jan 1832 in NY. He died in WY.
He was married to Clarissa BLACKNEY.
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:
Ulysses S. Grant CHANDLER.
vi. Myra CHANDLER was born on 5 Sep 1868 in Richland Center, Richland
Co., WI. She died on 19 Apr 1869.
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.
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
Dead soldiers from a
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
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.
Antietam Bridge on the
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.
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
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.
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
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
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 11¼ 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.
Dedication of the Antietam National Cemetery on September 17, 1867.
Frank Leslie's Illustrated
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."
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 21½ 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
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 Private Soldier Monument as it appears today
National Park Service, Antietam National Battlefield
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.