Historical Albion Michigan
By Frank Passic

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Any photos not otherwise credited are from the personal collection of Frank Passic, Albion Historian.


Morning Star, May 18, 2008, pg. 14

Each year at this time I like to feature one of Albion’s Civil War veterans. This year it is especially significant that the Grand Army of the Republic lot in Riverside Cemetery will be re-dedicated on Memorial Day (Monday, May 26) as part of the parade and ceremonies. New replacement tombstones have been placed on the graves of those interred in this lot. Our own Mayor William Wheaton helped with the digging and placement of the new tombstones. I encourage our readers to attend this historic event at Riverside Cemetery.

This week we’d like to feature one of the few Albion soldiers who fought in the Battle of Gettysburg. Most of Albion’s Civil War soldiers were in Company D of the 12th Michigan Infantry, which saw action elsewhere. Others however weren’t originally from Albion and joined other units, but came to live here after the War. Such was the case with Jacob Harson Perine (1840-1942).

Perine was Albion’s last Civil War veteran, who passed away in 1942. He was also Michigan’s oldest Civil War veteran at the time of his death at age 102. A native of New York City, Jacob came to Tekonsha with his parents at the age of 5. He enlisted in the Union Army on August 15, 1862 at the age of 22, in Company E of the 4th Michigan Infantry. During his years of service, he saw action in several important battles. Jacob was wounded twice in the Battle of Gettysburg, and spent the following 18 months recovering in two hospitals located along the Hudson River in New York: Fort Schuyler, and Ford David.

Returning to active duty, Jacob then served in Company K of the 1st Michigan Infantry. In an interview conducted shortly before his death, Jacob recalled seeing the surrender of General Robert E. Lee’s troops in 1865. His unit participated in disarming the Confederate troops. Jacob recalled how he and his comrades shared their rations with their Confederate enemies for seven days after that surrender. Jacob was mustered out, on July 5, 1865. His parents had just moved to Albion, and so he joined them here to live. Jacob married Alice Parmalee (1850-1919) in 1871.

Jacob was active in the local E.W. Hollingsworth Chapter Post No. 210 of the Grand Army of the Republic, the Civil War veteran’s organization. He held various offices in that post through the years, including commander.

Jacob served as Albion’s “sprinkler man.” He would drive the horse-drawn city sprinkler wagon for 14 consecutive summers along the streets of Albion to keep the dust down. He was a charter member of the “Three-Quarters Century Club,” and his picture is found on page 13 of that club’s orange-colored book, “Albion’s Milestones and Memories,” which was printed in 1932.

From our Historical Notebook this week we present a photograph of Jacob H. Perine. How many of our readers had an ancestor who served in Civil War?

Jacob Harson Perine (1840-1942)


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