19th Indiana Infantry Veteran Personal History

Posted on Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010

The 19th Indiana Infantry Regiment was composed of over 1,000 volunteers, each one, and their families have a story to tell.

The 19th Indiana Infantry was composed of over 1,000 volunteers who answered President Lincoln’s call to defend the Union. Each man and his family have a story to tell, however time has done much to silence their voices. It is important to remember their sacrifices, and with that in mind, I will narrate some of their experiences.

Gillett Darragh (Co. ‘D’)

Age 21 in 1861:

His prewar occupation is recorded as ‘Boatman’: He was 5 ft 7 inches tall, had hazel eyes and black hair. Census records show he had $0 in wealth.

Darragh enlisted into Company ‘D’ in July 1861. He was captured at the battle of Brawner Farm (August 28, 1862) and eventually paroled at Falls Church, VA in September. He served with the 19th and was captured at the fight of Shady Grove on June 6, 1864 and sent to Andersonville. Darragh was imprisoned at Andersonville for nine months before being transported to Virginia, and in February 1865 was exchanged. He was placed in Company ‘I’ (20th Indiana) and served until being mustered out in June 1865.

After the war Darragh settled in Lawrenceburg, IN and married Elizabeth (Lizzie) Blair in November 1865. However, Darragh suffered the effects of his stay in Andersonville and was no longer healthy. He had acquired tuberculosis. He suffered for the next couple years before dying in February 1868, aged 28. Darragh’s last words to Lizzie were, “I am going to go home where there will be no more pain or sorrow, can you go with me?” Lizzie is reported to have answered, “No, not now, but I will come after a while. Elizabeth Darragh died in April 1870, also a victim of the war. She died of tuberculosis, acquired from her husband.

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