Archive:Civil War Pension File, Nathan Franklin Whitney
Civil War Pension File of Nathan Franlin "Frank" Whitney
Widow: Mary F. Whitney
Invalid Applic. # 125329
Widow Applic. # 271263 Cert. # 348529
National Archives Building, Washington, D.C.
Private, Company K, 2nd Maine Infantry Volunteers
Frank Whitney signed an Invalid Soldier's Application for Army Pension from Kennebec Co., Maine on 29 April 1867. He is thirty-two years old and a resident of Augusta, Kennebec Co., Maine. He had enlisted as a private in Company K, 2nd Regiment of Maine Volunteers on 4 July 1861 for a term of three years, and reenlisted in Company B of the 9th Regiment. He was honorably discharged on 10 November 1865 at Washington, D.C. While in the service and in the line of his duty he was disabled at Harrison's Landing the last of July or the first of August 1862 by being sun stroked, and by enlargement of the veins of his left leg. He was sent to the hospital on Bedlow's Island, New York Harbor. He thinks he remained there until the spring of 1863, when he was sent to his regiment. He remained with his regiment for one month, and was then sent to Chestnut Hill Hospital in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was then transferred to Company B, 9th Regiment, Veteran Reserve Corps and sent to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. He remained there one month and was then sent to Philadelphia, where he was on duty for two months. He was then sent to Washington, D.C. and remained there on duty until his discharge. He had been employed as a carpenter before entering the service. He is now unable to labor in the sun, and his leg is very lame from varicose veins. Since his discharge he has resided at Augusta, Maine, where he has been employed as a carpenter when able to labor. The application is witnessed by Charles Booker and Charles F. Smith, both residents of Augusta.
The Adjutant General's Office filed two reports concerning the service of Frank Whitney. They report that Frank was enrolled on 14 July 1861 at Augusta, Maine in Company K of the 2nd Regiment of Maine Volunteers, to serve three years. He is on the muster rolls for September and October of 1862, he is reported absent- sick in hospital New York. He is on the M.O. roll Company K 20th Maine, to which he was transferred. He is reported discharged 4 July 1864, expiration of term of service. They then report that Frank was a private in Company B, 9th Regiment of V.R.C. Volunteers. He is on the Detachment Muster Out Roll of Company B of that regiment dated 10 November 1865. He was mustered out at Washington, D.C. on 10 November 1865. He had reenlisted with the V.R.C. on 31 March 1864 at Washington, D.C. for a period of three years. The Adjutant General's office does not have the record of his disability on file in their office.
Mary F. Whitney first signed a Widow's Application for Army Pension on 22 May 1880 from Kennebec County, Maine. She is fifty-one years old and a resident of Augusta, Kennebec Co., Maine. She is the widow of Frank Whitney, who was a wagoner in Company K commanded by Captain F. C. Foss in the 2nd Regiment of Maine Volunteers. He died at Cornish, Maine from disease received while in the service of the United States and in his line of duty. He died on 9 March 1874. He left her, the widow, and a child named Frank H., born 6 June 1858. She was married to said soldier at South Berwick, Maine on 9 May 1857 by Rev. Mr. Emerson, Minister of the Gospel. She was married under the name Mary F. Copeland. Her husband contracted the disease from which he died, namely sunstroke, at or near Harrison's Landing about the last of July or first of August 1862. He had applied for a pension from that disability and varicose veins during his lifetime, but it was disallowed. L. B. Fowler and L. M. Booker, both residents of Augusta, witnessed Mary's application.
On 9 October 1884, the Surgeon General's Office reported to the Adjutant General, U.S. Army that Pvt. Frank Whitney of Co. K, 2nd Maine Volunteers was admitted to General Hospital, Fort Wood, Bedlow's Island, New York Harbor on 16 July 1862 with Stricture. He was returned to duty 5 March 1863. He was then admitted to hospital, 1st Division, 5th I. C. on 27 April 1863 with chronic rheumatism, disposition not given. He was admitted to Finley General Hospital, Washington, D.C. on 14 June 1863 with chronic gonorrhea, and was transferred 19 June 1863. He was admitted to Mower (Chestnut Hill) General Hospital, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on 20 June 1863 with varicose veins, and was discharged 3 August 1863 by reason of being assigned to the Invalid Corps at Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, cause of transfer not given. Sergt. Whitney, Co. B, 9th V. C. was admitted to P. H. Martindale Barracks, D.C. on 8 December 1863 with typhoid fever and varioloid. He was transferred to Kalorama General Hospital, D.C. 11 December 1863 with variola, and returned to duty 8 February 1864. No records of the Regiment Hospitals are on file. This information was then reported by the Adjutant General's Office to the Commissioner of Pensions.
On 23 March 1885, Dr. John F. Wedgewood provided testimony concerning the medical condition of Frank Whitney. He states that he attended Frank Whitney in the Town of Limington, Maine in the winter of 1873 to 1874. As he remembers, Frank was suffering from a peculiar form of a sickness. When he first examined Frank, he seemed very much broken down, especially his nervous system. During his sickness he was very greatly debilitated. He believes there was more or less trouble with his head, and also with is heart. The greatest problem was with his lungs, indicating that at some time in the past he has suffered sunstroke. In his opinion, Frank died from the effects of sunstroke.
Charles C. Hobbs, Clerk of South Berwick, York Co., Maine provided a certified copy of the marriage record. Mr. Nathan Whitney of Augusta, Maine was married to Miss Mary F. Copeland of Lincoln, Maine on 9 May 1857 by Rev. Alfred Emerson.
Mary again filed for a pension on 21 July 1890. She is sixty-two years old and a resident of Bristol, Lincoln Co., Maine. In an affidavit dated 15 June 1892, she states that she is unable to obtain record proof of the date and cause of Frank's death. Frank died in Cornish, Maine on 9 March 1874. His remains were brought at once to Augusta, Maine for interment. There was no record of his death made at Cornish or Augusta. She is unable to obtain proof of the date and cause of death from the physician who attended him in his last illness. He was attended by Dr. J. F. Wedgewood, who is now deceased. She was not with Frank when he died, as she resided in Augusta, and he was in Cornish at the time, where he had been employed in that vicinity. She does not know of any person now living who was present at Frank's death. His brother Ruel is now somewhere in the western states. Ruel had gone to Cornish and brought Frank's remains to the Soldier's Home at Augusta for burial. She can prove the death of the soldier only by those people in Augusta who knew him well and who attended the funeral services.
Mary provided an affidavit from Joseph N. Wall and Lydia M. Booker, both residents of Augusta. They testify that they know that the death information supplied by Mary is correct, and that they attended the funeral services at the time of his burial.
Mary provided an affidavit dated 6 October 1891 from Samuel Copeland, age 73, and Nancy J. Copeland, age 55, of Dexter, Penobscot Co., Maine. They testify that Mary had never been married prior to her marriage to Nathan F. Whitney.
Mary wrote the following letter to her attorney, Hon. James G. Blaine, dated 4 December 1890 from Worcester, Massachusetts. I believe she was visiting Mrs. L. E. Stone at the time.
- "In your last letter you said it was not stated why my husband went by the name of Frank instead of Nathan. He liked the name best so he was called Frank when away from home so the name worked for when he enlisted. He had his name put down as Frank, not thinking it would ever make any trouble, and I can prove it and take my oath before a justice of the peace that it is the same one, and also that I have never remarried. Frank H., my oldest was sixteen in June after his father died in March. Charlie the youngest was born in 1860 and died in February 1864. Mr. Whitney was never well after he came out of the army. He suffered very much with his head and always thought it was on account of his sun stroke and he had terrible varicose veins and it seemed to end in consumption for he lived and wasted away gradually from diseases contracted in the army for he was perfectly well before he went into it and was strictly temperate and was never well after he came out. I have furnished all the evidence I could get. I need the pension as I have no way of getting my living but by what little I can do or be dependent on my son. I am not well, and cannot work hard and do not like to be entirely dependent in my old age. Mary F. Whitney"
Mary F. Whitney was admitted for a pension on 29 September 1892, to be paid at eight dollars per month. In a note dated 8 November 1913 from Gardiner, Maine and addressed to J. L. Davenport, Ernest M. Peacock writes that Mrs. Mary F. Whitney died this morning at our home. The bureau of Pensions was notified that Mary F. Whitney was last paid at twelve dollars per month to 4 September 1913, and was dropped from the rolls because of her death on 8 November 1913.
The Department of Interior subsequently received the following communication dated 23 December 1913 from Fruitland Park, Florida:
- "Dear Sir, My mother Mary F. Whitney, Pension No. 348529, Act of June 24, 1890 Original, died November 8 and her pension would be due December 1st is not the amount due coming to me. I have supported her for 30 years. I have notified the pension department but can get no answer. If it is not due me all right I just wanted to know. Yours very truly, F. H. Whitney, Fruitland Park, Florida"