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Elias Swire

Before the war

He was 19 years old when he was enrolled (2, 3 [18 in 1860], 4 [8 in 1850], 6 [24 at death in 1866]). He was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (4, 6).

In 1850, he was living in ward 2, Northern Liberties, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (4). He was living with Elias and Mary Swire (presumably his parents), and with other Swire's (presumably his siblings) (4).

In 1860, he was living in the 1st ward of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, with Elias and Mary Swire (presumably his parents) (3). He was a paperhanger (3).

He was living in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, when he was enrolled (2).

During the war

He was enrolled and mustered into service on 14 October 1861 (1, 2). He was enrolled at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (2). He was mustered in as a private, at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (2). He served as a private in company B (1).

On 28 March 1862, he left Franklin Barracks, Washington, DC, apparently taken by a captain who claimed he had deserted from another regiment (8). He returned about 6 April 1862, apparently having been seen by Major George W Todd (8). He was not placed under arrest, and returned to duty immediately (8).

On 18 April 1862, he left Carrol Barracks, Washington, DC (8). He was then second sergeant of company B (8). At trial, he admitted that he left on a day pass, went to Washington, and got drunk (8). He claimed he remembered nothing more until he found himself in Philadelphia, arrested for being drunk and disorderly, and held in Moyamensing Prison (8). He contacted Lieutenant Gregory, who arranged for his return to the regiment (8). He was returned as a prisoner about 2 May 1862 (8).

On 16 May 1862, he was tried by court martial (5, 8). He was charged, by Captain Bowman, with desertion, on two occasions (28 March and 18 April 1862) (8). He pled not guilty to deserting on 28 March, but guilty to deserting on 18 April, and the Court confirmed his pleas (8). Sergeants William B Elder (B) and Adrian Beaugereau (B) testified at the trial (8). The Court sentenced him "to be put at hard labor for thirty days with a six foot chain and twelve pound ball attached to his leg, and to forfeit five dollars a month from his pay for six months", with the sentence read on parade (8).

He deserted on 14 September 1862 (1, 2).

After the war

On 1 October 1866, he died, at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (6). He was a paper hanger, and was single (6). He died at, or was buried from, 1220 Green Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (6). On 5 October 1866, he was buried at Odd Fellows Cemetery, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (6).

Sources

1 Bates, Samuel Penniman. History of Pennsylvania volunteers, 1861-5. Harrisburg: B. Singerly, state printer, 1869-71. 5 volumes. 'Ninety-first regiment', volume 3, pages 186-233. (In the roster) (Elias Swire)

2 Civil War Veterans' Card File, available at the Pennsylvania State Archives, searched 29 June 2004 (Elias Swire; rolls have Siire)

3 1860 US census, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, 1st ward of Philadelphia, microfilm series M653, film 1163, pages 660-661 = 240-241 handwritten (Elias Swire)

4 1850 US census, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Northern Liberties, ward 2, microfilm series M432, film 810, page 104 = 207 handwritten (Elias Swire)

5 National Archives Archival Research Catalog (accessed 24 July 2010) (Elias Swire)

6 death certificate abstract, Philadelphia death certificate, died 1 October 1866 (Elias Swire)

7 National Archives and Record Adminsitration, Record Group 153, court-martial transcription, 16 May 1862 (Elias Swire)

[I did not find an entry for him Ancestry's index to the pension index by name (searched April 2007)

[I did not find an entry for him in Rootsweb WorldConnect (searched 17 May 2009)]

[I did not find an entry for him in the LDS Pilot site indices to the 1870-80, 1900, or 1920 US censuses (accessed 9 October 2010)]

[I did not find an entry for him in the HeritageQuest index to the 1870-80, or 1900-20 US censuses (accessed 9 October 2010)]

[I did not find an entry for him in Ancestry's index to the 1890 US census, veterans' schedules (accessed 20 October 2011)]

[I did not find an entry for him in the Footnote index to the 1930 US census (accessed 9 October 2010)]

court-martial record

[National Archives and Record Adminsitration, Record Group 153, court-martial transcription, 16 May 1862, Elias Swire]

[page 1]

Entered page 2

33946
Proceedings of
General Court Martial
convened at Washington D.C. under Special Orders No 71

Trial of Sergeant Elias Swire Co. B. 91st Penn. Infantry

Prest. Col. Thos B. Van Buren 102d Regt N.Y. Vols
Judge Advocate Capt. George F. Noyes C. S. Vols.

No. 1.
approved by Genl order No. 10.

[page 2]

Proceedings of a General Court Martial convened at Washington D.C. May 16th 1862 in pursuance of the following order--

Head Quarters Military District Washington D.C.
May 11th 1862

Special Order No 71

1 - A General Court Martial is hereby appointed to meet at No 152 Pa Avenue Washington D.C. on Monday the 12th inst at 10 A M or as soon thereafter as practicable for the trial of such persons as may be properly brought before it.

Detail for the Court
1Lieut Col.J. P. Brinten2 Pa Vol
2MajorHenry A Reed99 Pa Vol.
3"Wm Northedge59 NY Vol.
4Capt.Brinten12 Pa "
5"Wilson2
6"Fisher12
71st LieutDH Leche2
Captain George F. Noyes ACS Judge Advocate

No other officers than the above named can be assembled without manifest injury to the Service.

Officers detailed on the above Court who are unable to attend from sickness or other cause will report the fact immediately at these Head Quarters and to the Judge Advocate of the General Court Martial.


By command
Brig Gen Wadsworth
John P. Shurburne
Capt. + A.A.A.G.

[page 3]

Also the following order

Head Quarters Military District of Washington - Washington D.C.
May 13th 1862

Special Orders No 73

4 - Captain William Sinton is detailed as a member of the General Court Martial now in session by virtue of Special Orders No 71 from these Head Quarters in place of Capt. Brenten 12 Pa Vols mentioned in the order appointing the Court.

5 - Lieut Fisher 12th Pa Vols is hereby detailed as a member of the Genl. Court Martial now in session at No 152 Penna. Avenue Washington convened pursuant to Special Orders No 71 from these Head Quarters

6 - Col. Van Buren 102d N.Y.V. is hereby detailed as a member of the Genl. Court Martial now in session at No 152 Pa Avenue Washington convened pursuant to Special Orders No 71 from these Head Quarters


By command of Brig. Gen. Wadsworth
John P. Sherburne Capt + AAAG

[page 4]

Washington May 16th 1862

The Court met pursuant to the above orders

Present
1ColVan Buren102d N.Y. Vol.
2Lt. Col.Brinton2d Pa. Cav.
3Capt.Wilson2d Pa. Cav.
4Capt.Fisher12th Pa. Cav [?]
5Capt.Linton12th Pa Cav
61st LieutLeche2d Pa Cav
Capt. George F. Noyes A.C.S. Judge Advocate

And proceeded to the trial of Sergeant Elias Swire Co. B. 91st Pennsylvania Infantry, who having been called into Court and having heard read the order convening the Court was asked if he had any objection to any member named therein - to which he replied in the negative.

The Court was then duly sworn in the presence of the accused by the Judge Advocate and the Judge Advocate was duly sworn by the President. The accused was then arraigned and tried on the following charges and specifications.


Charges and Specifications preferred against Sergeant Elias Swire Co B 91st Pennsylvania Infantry

Charge - Desertion
1st Specification. That Sergeant Elias Swire Company B. 91st Pennsylvania Infantry having been duly enlisted into the Service of the United States did desert the

[page 5]

same on or about the 28th March 1862, and upon being detected in Philadelphia by Major Geo. W. Todd was returned to Company on or about the 6th April 1862

2nd Specification. And that on or about the 18th April 1862, said Elias Swire did again desert and was returned to company as a prisoner on or about the 2d May 1862.

This at Franklin + Carrol Barracks Washington D.C. at above dates

Officer preferring charges
A H Bowman
Capt. Com Co B

To which the accused pleaded as follows:

to the 1st specification of charge - Not Guilty
" " 2nd " " " - Guilty
" " Charge - Guilty

Sergt. Wm. B. Elder, a witness for the prosecution being called and duly sworn testifies as follows:

Sergt. Elias Swire left Franklin Barracks Washington D.C. on 28th March. He was 2d Sergt. Co. B. 91st Regt. Pa. Vol. I can say nothing derogatory of his character.

Examined for defence. I believe he left on account of some Captain in Owen's Regt. Pa. Vol. coming and claiming him as a Deserter from another Regt


[page 6]

He got a pass on the 26th for one day, but didn't return and was marked "absent without leave". He returned on the 6th of April or about that time. I believe he came back voluntarily. He was not put under arrest until the 18th of April. He was placed on duty immediately after his return. On the charge of deserting and going to Philadelphia, he was not arrested at all.

On the 17th April he was absent on a day-pass, he didn't return to Camp, + was absent on 18th without leave. He was returned as a deserter on 3d of May.

I was misunderstood in my statement that he was put under arrest on the 18th April.


Sergt. Adrian Beaugureau, witness for the prosecution, being duly sworn, testifies as follows:

Sergt. Swire left the Regt. twice. the first time for a few days only the early part of April. The second time from the latter part of April he was away almost two weeks. I can say nothing derogatory of his character.

Examined for defence. I always knew the accused to attend to his duty well. the first time he came back voluntarily.

The Prosecution here closed. No witnesses were offered by the defence.


[page 7]

The accused was then asked if he had anything to say in his defence.

He stated substantially as follows:

On the 17th April I got a day-pass, went to Washington, got drunk + knew no more until I found myself in Philadelphia arrested by the police for being drunk + disorderly. I sent for Lt. Gregory of the Regt. + told him I was ready + willing to be sent on again. I was kept in Moyamensing Prison until Lieut. Gregory brought me back.

The Court was then cleared and after mature deliberation on the testimony adduced finds the accused Sergeant Elias Swire 91 Pa. Vol. as follows

On 1st Specification of Charge the Court confirms the plea of the accused and find him Not Guilty.

On 2d Specification of Charge the Court confirms the plea of the accused and find him Guilty.

On the Charge, the Court also finds the accused Guilty

And does therefore Sentence him to be put at hard labor for thirty days with a six foot chain and twelve pound ball attached to his leg, and to forfeit five dollars a month from his pay for six months. This sentence to be reason on parade.

Thos B [?] Van Buren Col 102 NY Presiding Officer
George F. Noyes Capt + C.S. Judge Advocate

1850 census

[1850 US census, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Northern Liberties, ward 2, microfilm series M432, film 810, page 104 = 207 handwritten]
line15161718192021
Dwellings visited398      
Families visited508      
NameElias SwireMary "Eliza "Mary "William "Elias "David "
Age403612111085
SexMFFFMMM
Color       
Occupation of males over 15 yearsStationer      
Real estate owned       
BirthplaceEnglandWalesPenn""""
Married within year       
Attended school within year   111 
Over 20 & can't read/write       
Deaf, dumb, blind, etc.       

1860 census

[1860 US census, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, 1st ward of Philadelphia, microfilm series M653, film 1163, pages 660-661 = 240-241 handwritten]
line38394012345678
Dwelling number1635  1635       
Family number1717  1717       
NameElias SwireMary A "E M "Mary A SwireWm H "Elias "D O "John P "Jane T [?] "S CoganJ Jeffries
Age50472221211814943320
SexMFFFMMMMFF [?]M
Color           
OccupationShoe Maker Dress Maker ClerkPaper Hanger   Milliner 
Value of real estate owned           
Value of personal estate350          
Place of birthEnglandWalesPennaPenna""":""ScotlandPenna
Married within year           
Attended school within year       1   
Cannot read & write           
Deaf, dumb, blind, etc.           

death certificate abstract

[death certificate, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Elias Swire, 1 October 1866 (from LDS FamilySearch, accessed 1 August 2010)]
[the only other Elias Swire in the Philadelphia death certificates collection was his apparent father, who died on 18 July 1870 (60 years old, born Yorkshire, England, a shoemaker, 1220 Given [sic; perhaps a misreading of 'Green'] Street)]
[the only entries for Elias Swire in PA in the LDS index (accessed 25 July 2010) were for this Elias and his apparent father; the only other entries on LDS FamilySearch for Elias Swire born 1840's that were at all plausibly this Elias were for an Elias Swires, born ca 1844, NJ, in the 1910 and 1920 censuses]
[note that this is the LDS abstract of the record; FamilySearch does not now have images of the death certificates]

Name Elias Swire
death date 1 October 1866
death place Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
gender male
race white
death age 24 years
estimated birth year 1842
birthplace Philadelphia
marital status single
occupation paper hanger
street address 1220 Green
cemetery Odd Fellows
burial place Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
burial date 5 October 1866

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revised 22 Oct 11
contact Harry Ide at hide1@unl.edu with comments or questions