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"It is not merely for today, but for all time to come that we should perpetuate for our children's children this great and free government, which we have enjoyed all our lives."

April, 2017



In this issue

Secretary's Report
Eagle Scout Court of Honor
The G.A.R. in Michigan
Robert Smith
A Snake in the Grass
Civil War Money
Upcoming events
Back Issues
A photo from the Civil War

In lieu of a Commanders Column Commander Cox as ask that something be put in the Courier about the assassination of Abraham Lincoln

On Good Friday in 1865, Confederate sympathizer John Wilkes Booth shoots President Abraham Lincoln at a play at Ford's Theater in Washington, D.C.

Five days earlier, Confederate General Robert E. Lee had surrendered his army to General Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox Court House, Virginia. The war was nearly over, although there were still Confederate forces yet to surrender. The president had recently visited the captured Rebel capital of Richmond, Virginia, and now Lincoln sought a relaxing evening by attending a production of Our American Cousin starring Laura Keene. Ford's Theater, seven blocks from the White House, was crammed with people trying to catch a glimpse of Grant, who was rumored to be in attendance. In fact, the general and his wife had cancelled abruptly for an out-of-town trip.

Lincoln occupied a booth above the stage with his wife; Henry Rathbone, a young army officer; and his fiancée, Clara Harris, daughter of New York Senator Ira Harris. The Lincolns arrived late for the comedy, but the president was in a fine mood and laughed heartily during the production. At 10:15, Booth slipped into the box and fired his .44-caliber single-shot derringer into the back of Lincoln's head. Rathbone rushed Booth, who stabbed the soldier in the shoulder. Booth then leapt from the president's box to the stage below, breaking his leg as he landed. He shouted, "Sic semper tyrannis!" ("Thus ever to tyrants!"-the Virginia state motto) and ran from the stage. There was a pause, as the crowd initially thought the unfolding drama was part of the production, but a scream from Mrs. Lincoln told them otherwise. The stricken president was carried from the box to a house across the street, where he died the following morning.

Booth was one of the most famous actors of his day, and Lincoln had seen him perform. He was a Maryland native with southern sympathies who hoped to aid the Confederacy by taking out the Union's political leadership in one night. With Confederate president Jefferson Davis still free and General Joseph Johnston's army still alive in the Carolinas, Booth thought the Confederate cause was not yet lost. He sent George Atzerodt to kill Vice President Andrew Johnson and Lewis Paine to assassinate Secretary of State William Seward. Atzerodt could not muster the courage to carry out his assignment, but Paine burst into Seward's home and stabbed him as lay sick in bed. Although seriously wounded, Seward eventually recovered.

In Fraternity, Charity, & Loyalty

Chris Cox

Camp Commander, Austin Blair Camp No. 7

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Department of Michigan Eagle Scout Coordenator Nathan Tingley at the Court of Honor.
Eagle Scout
Court of Honor

On the 9th of April, being ask to attend by members of the Nash-Hodges Camp No. 43, Department of Michigan Eagle Scout Coordinator, Nathan Tingley and DJVC Bob Griggs traveled to Tecumseh to attend the Court of Honor for four new Eagle Scouts from Troop 632.

During the ceremony the Scouts were given reconnection certificates from the Mayor of Tecumseh, and the State of Michigan as well as SUVCW Certificate and Eagle Scout Patch. Brother Gary Naugle PCC, Camp No. 43 spoke of the history of the Grand Army of the Republic and the SUVCW, and Brother Tingley talked about the relationship between the GAR and the Boy Scouts.

Thanks to the Brothers of the Nash-Hodges Camp for asking us to attend, and a hardy Congratulations and HAZZAH to Nathan, Joel, Conor, and David on your achievement.

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Our newest member, Robert Smith

Brothers Hawker and Lloyd receive their service pins.
At our regular meeting held April 10th. the Brothers of Camp No. 7 inducted a new Brother into our fold. Robert Smith comes to us through his great-great grandfather Andrew Denton Grimes who served from August of 1862 until June of 1865, in company G, 17th Michigan Infantry. Rob is a veteran of the United States Marine Corps where he was a forward observer for an artillery unit.

Welcome Brother Smith, we all look forward to working with you
on upcoming projects.

Also at our meeting Brothers Henry Hawker PCC and Howard Lloyd PCC received their 15 and 10 year pins. Congratulations, and thank you Brothers on your dedication in helping all of us Keep the Memory alive.



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Civil War Money

At the time of the Civil War many States, banks, and business printed their own money.
Below is an example of one of those bills..

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A snake in the grass
Submitted by Brother Ron Tyrl

A Union Sharpshotter

"Col Hiram Berdan's 1st U.S. Sharpshooters armed with .52 caliber Sharp's breech loading rifles, four companies from Michigan, because of their green camouflage uniforms and positioned out front as brigade skirmishers were referred to as "Snakes in the Grass", by the Confederates.

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Secretary's Report
Ron Tyrl PPC

The April 10, 2017 meeting of the Austin Blair Camp No.7 Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War was held at the American Legion Post 29, Jackson, Michigan.

Commander Cox welcomed our newest member Robert Smith to the meeting and then requested the Secretary's report which was motioned accepted as published in the Courier by Brother Griggs and seconded by Brother Davis, motion passed.
The February Treasurer's Report was motioned accepted as presented by Brother Kimble and seconded by Griggs, motion passed. The March Report was motioned accepted by Brother Tingley and seconded by Brother Griggs, motion passed.
Treasurer Maillard reported all members have renewed their dues with two discharges: Kyle Hamann and Dan Pardee and two gains Avery Lynch and Robert Smith.

Patriotic Instructor

Brother Davis brought in numerous book and magazines and two newspaper articles on "Michigan's Call to Arms" during World War One and President Lincoln's anniversary of his assassination.

Graves Registration

1. Brother Waters reported on his finding an additional Civil War veteran in his family. Brigadier General Martin Davis Hardin, Pennsylvania Regiments and Brigades.
2. Discussion of the graves registration of Hillsdale County with latest the hope is to contact Brother Ed Conklin to see if he can contact the Carlton House's Historical Society to get permission to work in the county's cemeteries and to research current veteran's database..


1. Brother Griggs has updated the webpages and face book to currency and he reported that he will be giving talks for the Vandercook Lions Club, this week and GAR Memorial Hall and Museum in Eaton Rapids the 23rd of next month and Camp 17's Seminar program in Sunfield the 27th of June.


1. The Camp received confirmation that Veteran's Day program changes of no wreaths will continue and will return to the traditional Veteran's Day events and wreaths will be done on Memorial Day programs.
2. Brother Griggs reported there will be no Paragon School program this year due to the sponsor teacher's retirement.


1. New Member Robert Ernest Smith's application was voted on with his membership derived from his 2x Great Grandfather Andrew Grimes service with Company G, 17th Michigan Infantry Regiment. Motion to accept Robert Smith's application was made by Brother Dave Kimble and seconded by Brother Nate Tingley; motion passed. Brother Smith was initiated per ritual and was given a welcoming to the Camp.

Old Business

1. The "Michigan at Antietam" monument continues awaiting money collection & monument design options & placement will be where the 7th Michigan Regiment was engaged in the battle.
2. Brother Van Hoof up-dated the working of the "Under the Oaks" & "Abolition" park & Museum proposals and he brought in a couple copies of Linda Haas's book on Jackson's Underground Railroad.
3. Brother Van Hoof reviewed the Brooklyn, Michigan "Fallen Soldier" Monument program scheduled for May. More to come as date approaches.
4. The Department Encampment credential cards were given out and Brother Griggs displayed the new polo shirts for sale for fund raising for the National Encampment.
5. The Michigan 2017 August National Encampment planning continues with focus on volunteers & the Banquet dinner.

New Business

1. Brother Tingley present the 15 year membership pin to Brother Henry Hawker and the 10 year pin to Brother Howard Lloyd. Both men were given a hardy applause for their dedication to our order.
2. Brother Griggs reported that this year's calendar mirrors the 1865 calendar with Lincoln's assassination occurring on Good Friday.
3. The Jackson JROTC awards presentation will be held Friday April 28th and we were asked to participate with our JROTC Award. Brother Van Hoof volunteered to present this award.

For the Good of the Order

Items of Interest and Events up-coming:

1. Brother Kimble reported that his wife's co-worker's Civil War veteran relative, Captain Peter Lennon, 5th Michigan Infantry Regiment modeled for the 5th Michigan Monument at Gettysburg. The family also has a Civil War library that Brother Kimble will inquire whether he can obtain for distribution to our order.
2. Brother Kimble has invited number of our members of our Camp to assist with an up-coming program at St Paul's school in Owosso, Michigan.
3. April 15, 2017, Saturday, Lincoln Tomb Ceremony, Springfield, Illinois.
4. May 6, 2017, Saturday, Department of Michigan Encampment, Lansing, Michigan.

Commander Cox closed the meeting at 8:35pm. Our next camp meeting is scheduled for Monday, May 8, 2017 to be held at Post 29 American Legion.

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Upcoming Events

Please click here to see our upcoming events.

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An original photograph shown with a colorized picture of the same view. Acting Master S.B.Gregory USN.

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Encampment badge, Kalamazoo, MI 1909.

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