Private David H. Blair, Co. D, 45th Ohio Infantry, USA
April 21: David Humphrey Blair was born in Bellefontaine, Logan County, OH to James and Elizabeth Morrow Blair.
August 31: The U.S. Federal Census enumerated in Rushcreek, Logan County, OH showed 9-year-old David living with his parents and siblings. His father, James, was a farmer.
June 23: The U.S. Federal Census enumerated in Richland, Logan County, OH showed 19-year-old David living with his parents and siblings. His father, James, was a farmer.
August 24: David’s brother Samuel Blair enlisted in the U.S. Army. He mustered into Co. G, 1 OH Infantry. He was 22 years old.
August 11: David enlisted in the U.S. Army in Bellefontaine, OH and was mustered into Co. D, 45 OH Infantry. His muster descriptive roll: Age: 21, Height: 5ft 10in, Complexion: dark, Eyes: gray, Hair: dark, Born In: Logan County, OH, Occupation: Farmer.
August 3: David’s brother Moses, also in Co. D, 45 OH, died of “chronic diarrhea” in the U.S. General Hospital in Jeffersonville, IN (U.S. Registers of Deaths of Volunteers, 1861-1865, pg. 124).
As the 45th OH moved through Tennessee with General Schofield, David jotted short notes in his journal along the way.
“Arrive at Pulaski camp, are ordered to be ready to move at noon. Move out and wait for train to go in front. March most of the night.”
“Move deliberately, black refugees are abundant.”
“Arrive at Columbia late at night and bivouac. Co. D stand picket in cornfield.”
“Move to position on left and build good works. At dark we move off to right on stony ill and build works of stone and logs, etc.”
“Strengthen works and have rain. Attack on left.”
“Remain in works and draw clothing and at dark withdraw from works. Cross river and bivouac in meadow. Co. D swing round like gate to let column pass on rear to camp.”
“Move round to position in sight of fort across in Columbia and remain while artillery plies heavily. At dark move out to rear, are stopped by bridge being gone. Came up on flat to left of road. Lie near wagon train till P.M. then move off to right of road and whole brigade form skirmish line along bank of creek. Remain until away in night then move out and march rapidly towards Spring Hill and have to pass along the pike within a few hundred yards of rebel fires and camp. They having came very near gaining the pike and so cutting us off entirely. We bivouac an hour or two.”
November 30: The 45 OH Infantry was situated on the western flank at the Battle of Franklin.
“The heaviest assaults did not reach to the 45th and so we endured the wailing of comparatively few and well spent missiles…..all came off safely without much trouble and after all were safely over the river the artillery that had taken position to support the withdraw fired then a long, loud, heavy, rolling volley for parting salute and all marched off quietly and briskly enroute for Nashville…then we spent the rest of the night marching towards Nashville and a sleepy march it was. Many dropped over asleep on the march and sleep with fatigue overpowered almost every one
December 17: After the Battle of Nashville, David and his regiment were following the U.S. Cavalry in support on the pursuit of John Bell Hood’s army.
“Our cavalry takes the advance in the pike and we follow up in their support. The pursuit via Columbia and Pulaski thence across woods and to Lexington, Ala as rapidly as possible under very unfavorable circumstances. The weather very cold, wet and disagreeable. The mud deep and almost impassable. Rations scarce and supply trains constantly far behind etc. etc. The roads are strewn with guns, bayonets, cartridges, boxes, clothing, or rather rags and all kinds of equipage and martial accouterments, ammunition, cassions, artillery, etc. and prisoners are constantly being sent back by the cavalry.” (All journal entries from: Civil War Diary and Letters of David Humphrey Blair, compiled by Raymond R. Parker, February 1989)
March 25: David was promoted to Corporal.
June 12: David mustered out of the U.S. Army at Camp Harker, TN with his regiment.
David H. Blair was listed as a freshman in the Monmouth College directory (Monmouth, IL).
July 22: David married Sarah Cecelia Reed in Page County, IA.
August 13: The U.S. Federal Census enumerated in Monmouth, Warren County, IL showed David, a student, living with his bride, Sadie.
The young family lived in Illinois for a few years before moving to Plumville, PA about 1877.
April 11: The Indiana Progress, Indiana, PA.
David and J.H. Stewart open a school in Plumville, PA.
June 5: The U.S. Federal Census enumerated in Plumville, Indiana County, PA showed David, a minister of the gospel, and Sadie living with their children.
***Blair family moved from Pennsylvania to Nebraska.***
April 10: D.H. Blair attended a district U.P. (Presbyterian Church Meeting) in Lincoln, NB. (The Nebraska State Journal, Lincoln, NB)
August 24: The Kingman Daily Courier, Kingman, KS
October 8: David applied for and was granted a pension for his military service. (His application was submitted in Nebraska.)
***By 1891 the Blair family was living in Iowa.***
June 27: David was admitted to the U.S. National Home for Disabled Soldiers in Leavenworth, KS. His rate of pension was $12.00.
August 31: The Leavenworth Times, Leavenworth, KS.
December 31: David appeared on a roll of members of GAR tom Brennan post in Leavenworth, KS. His residence was listed as “Nat. Mil. Home.”
David was listed as “chaplin” of the GAR Tommy Brennan post in Leavenworth, KS.
June 7: The U.S. Federal Census enumerated in Leavenworth County, KS showed David Blair living as an inmate in the soldiers’ hospital.
March 19: David was released from the U.S. National Home for Disabled Soldiers.
May 16: David Blair died in Loveless, CO.
May 19: Page County Democrat, Clarinda, IA. An obituary appeared in the newspaper for David.
“Rev. D. H. Blair died at Loveland, Colo., Tuesday morning. He had been visiting one of his children in California the past winter and on his way home stopped at Loveland to visit a daughter. His son Young Blair of this city took the first train and the remains will be brought here for interment. He leaves a wife and ten children to mourn his death.”
May 26: Sadie applied for and was granted a widows pension for David’s military service. (Application submitted in Iowa)