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American Alfred S. HARTWELL

born Alfred Stedman HARTWELL

American Civil War soldier

Source :  Tim DOWLING

Born: on June 11, 1836 in South Natick, Massachusetts, USA
Died: on August 30, 1912 in Honolulu, Hawaii


Alfred Stedman Hartwell was born in South Natick, Massachusetts. His father was Stedman Hartwell and mother was Rebecca Dana Perry (1805–1872). He graduated from Harvard University in 1858 where he was elected into the Phi Beta Kappa Society.

He moved to St. Louis, Missouri and worked as an instructor at Washington University. In April 1861, at the outbreak of the American Civil War, he enlisted as Corporal in the Third Missouri Reserve regiment. Missouri was officially neutral but supporters of the Confederacy had captured Liberty Arsenal, and his company was called up to help recapture the weapons. This resulted in the Camp Jackson Affair.

In June he returned to Boston and enrolled in Harvard Law School, but by September 1862 became a First Lieutenant in the 44th Massachusetts regiment. When the United States Colored Troops (USCT) were formed for African-American recruits, he was promoted to Captain on March 31, 1863 of the 54th Massachusetts. However, the number of volunteers was higher than expected, so he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel, and helped organize the 55th Regiment Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry under command of Norwood Penrose Hallowell. The 54th's role in the Second Battle of Fort Wagner was depicted in the film Glory. The 55th moved into their former barracks, and was ordered to embark in July 1863. They served building trenches on Folly Island supporting the siege of Charleston, South Carolina. When Hallowell had to resign for treatment of an old wound, Hartwell was promoted to command the regiment on November 3, 1863.

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