91st PA: Ralph Boyle Montgomery

Ralph Boyle Montgomery

Before the war

He was born in 1832/33 (6 (28 in 1861), 8 [26 in 1860], 10 [44 at death in 1878], 11 [16 in 1850]). He was born in Milton, Northumberland [?] County, Pennsylvania (6, 8, 11, 12). He was born to [unknown] and June Montgomery (12).

In 1850, he was living in McVeytown Borough, Mifflin County, Pennsylvania (11). He was living with Jane Montgomery (presumably his mother), Harret [?] Montgomery (presumably his brother), and Henry, Martha, and Samuel Bradford (11). He had attended school within the year (11).

In 1856-57, he was a dentist (10 a). He was probably single (10 a).

In 1857, he and John McMutry were charged with assault and battery of Samuel Rhule (10 c). But the prosecutor agreed to drop the charges on 27 November 1859 (10 d).

In 1860, he was living in Milton Borough, Northumberland County, Pennsylvania (8). He was living with his wife Margaret, with Harry and Ralph (presumably their children), and with two other people (8). He was a grocer, and owned $175 in personal property (8).

On 28 November 1860, the Pennsylvania Daily Telegraph published a suicide note from him, dated 9 May 1860, found in a bottle in the Susquehanna River (10 b).

He married Margaret [unknown family name] (12). They had two children (12):

He is no longer found in the Milton tax records by 1861 (10).

When he enlisted, he was a storeboy [?] (6).

Description

When he enlisted, he was 5 feet 9-1/2 inches tall, and had a light complexion, blue eyes, and dark hair (6).

During the war

He enlisted and was mustered into service on 6 November 1861 (1, 6). He was enlisted for three years, at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, by Lieutenant Parsons (6). He was mustered into service as a private, in company F (1, 18-19 (corp)).

He was promoted to corporal on 19 January 1862 (5, 6).

He was reduced to the ranks on 13 May 1862 (5).

He deserted on 11 June 1862, from Alexandria, Virginia (4, 6). He returned to duty on 22 August 1862 (4, 6). (According to Bates (1), he deserted on 11 January 1862, and returned on 22 May 1862 (1). I suspect his compiler misread 'Jun' as 'Jan' (an easy mistake!).)

On 16 May 1863, General Tyler sent him (with Charles Thomson) to Appnia Creek to guard his private Baggage (2). He had not returned to the regiment on 8 September 1863, and was reported as "loafing around town" (2).

He deserted again on 2 September 1863 from Alexandria, Virginia (1, 4, 6).

According to the regimental records, he was at Camp Convalescent, Alexandria, Virginia, on 8 September 1863, when Lieutenant Colonel Sinex asked for his return (2).

He was dropped as a deserter on 12 March 1864 (3). He was a private, in company F (18-19).

After the war

He married (illegally) Julia Vanderhoff (10, 12). They had five children (10, 12, 13; see also 15 [6 children, including her son Charles by her second husband]):

On 14 July 1878, he died, in Camden, New Jersey (10 e, 12). He died of phthisis pulmonalis (10 e). He was a dentist (10 e). He was buried in Strangers Row, Camden, New Jersey, which was used for indigent burials (10 e).

In 1880, records of his enlistment were destroyed by the fire that destroyed most of Milton, Northumberland County, Pennsylvania (7; see 9).

His second wife, Julia, married Charles Brandenburg (10 h, 13). In 1880, she was living with her second husband, Charles Brandenburg, and various other Brandenburg's (17). Since in the 1900 census, she reports having had six children, five of whom are her children with Ralph Montgomery, and is living with her son Charles Brandenburg (born 1882), she seems not to have had any children with Charles Brandenburg yet. Perhaps the George Brandenburg, 4, is her son George Montgomery (born about 1876). But the Louis Brandenburg, 1, seems likely also to be her child.

In 1880, Ralph Montgomery, of Camden New Jersey, was briefly detained as an incorrigible child, to be sent to the State Reform School, but was released when his mother ultimately decided not to make a formal complain (16).

In 1890, his widow, Mrs Margaret Montgomery, was living in the Home for the Friendless, Williamsport, Lycoming County, Pennsylvania (7). She "knows nothing of the fate of her husband, but thinks him dead. Her papers relating to his enlistment etc. were burned at Milton Pa in the great fire of 1880." (7)

In 1892, his second wife, Julia, was living in Flatbush, Kings County, New York (13). She was living with her children Ralph, Jennie, Mary, Lillie, and George, and with Charlie Brandenburg (presumably her child by her second marriage) (13).

In 1900, his first wife, Margaret, may have been living on Fourth Street, ward 1, Milton, Northumberland County, Pennsylvania (14). If so, she was living with her granddaughter Margaret Smith (14). (Why her granddaughter would have the surname 'Smith' isn't obvious, since this Margaret had had two children, presumably the Harry and Ralph in the 1860 census.)

In 1900, his second wife, Julia Brandenburg, was living in ward 10, Brooklyn, Kings County, New York (15). She was living with her son Charles (15).

Sources

1 Bates, Samuel Penniman. History of Pennsylvania volunteers, 1861-5. Harrisburg: B. Singerly, state printer, 1869-71. 5 volumes. 'Ninety-first regiment', volume 3, pages 186-233. (In the roster)

2 letter, Sinex to Marvin, 8 September 1863

3 consolidated morning report, 12 March 1864 (Montgomery)

4 company F, register of deserters, #16, and #26 (Ralph B Montgomery)

5 company F, list of non-commissioned officers (Ralph B Montgomery)

6 company F, descriptive roll, #76 (Ralph B Montgomery)

7 1890 US census, veterans' schedule, Pennsylvania, Lycoming County, Williamsport, supervisor's district 6, enumeration district Home for the Friendless, page 1 (Mrs Montgomery widow of Ralph Boyle Montgomery)

8 1860 US census, Pennsylvania, Northumberland County, Milton Borough, microfilm series M653, film 1149, page 378 = 197 handwritten (R B Montgomery)

9 'Swept away', Philadelphia Inquirer 15 May 1880, page 1

10 'Who do you think you are?', NBC TV series, season 2, 'Steve Buscemi' episode, broadcast 25 March 2011, http://www.nbc.com/who-do-you-think-you-are/, citing (a) 1856-57 Milton, Northumberland County, Pennsylvania tax records, (b) 'Supposed suicide', Pennsylvania Daily Telegraph 28 November 1860, (c) Northumberland County court records, 1857, (d) Northumberland County Court docket, 1859, (e) New Jersey death certificate, (f) 1892 New York census, (g) 1880 US census, New Jersey, Camden, Camden ward 1, supervisor's district 3, enumeration district 40 [?], microfilm series T9, film 773, page 60 = 26 B handwritten (Jane Montgomery), and (h) New York marriage return, Julia to Charles Vandenburg

11 1850 US census, Pennsylvania, Mifflin County, McVeytown Borough, microfilm series M432, film 797, page 368 recto = 735 handwritten (Ralph Montgomery)

12 'Geer family master file', a gedcom, available on RootsWeb WorldConnect (contact Samuel Taylor Geer, updated 23 March 2011, accessed 25 March 2011) (Ralph Boyle Montgomery)

13 1892 New York census, Kings County, Flatbush, election district 8, page 2 (Julia Montgomery)

14 1900 US census, Pennsylvania, Northumberland County, Milton, ward 1, supervisor's district 10, enumeration district 131, microfilm series T623, film 1449, page 261 = 8 A handwritten (Margaret Montgomery)

15 1900 US census, New York, Kings County, Borough of Brooklyn, ward 10, supervisor's district 2, enumeration district 151, microfilm series T623, film 1049, page 219 = 8 B handwritten (Julia Brandenburg)

16 [re Ralph Montgomery Jr]: 'Over the River' (Philadelphia Inquirer 2 December 1880), 'State notes' (Jersey Journal 3 December 1880), and 'Over the River -- Released' (Philadelphia Inquirer 8 December 1880) (Ralph Montgomery)

17 1880 US census, New Jersey, Camden, Camden, ward 2, supervisor's district 3, enumeration district 43, microfilm series T9, film 773, page 116 = 14 B handwritten (Julia Brandenburg)

18 index to compiled service records of volunteer Union soldiers who served in organizations from the state of Pennsylvania (R B Montgamery)

19 index to compiled service records of volunteer Union soldiers who served in organizations from the state of Pennsylvania (Ralph B Montgomery)

Sources checked unsuccessfully

pension index by name
Ancestry index (accessed March 2007)

1850 census

[1850 US census, Pennsylvania, Mifflin County, McVeytown Borough, microfilm series M432, film 797, page 368 recto = 735 handwritten]
[identification is likely; this is the only plausible Ralph Montgomery]
line171819202122
Dwellings visited96     
Families visited101     
NameHenry BradfordMarthaSamuelJane MontgomeryHarret [?]Ralph
Age26233502016
SexMFMFMM
Color      
Occupation of males over 15 yearsnone   nonenone
Real estate owned900     
BirthplacePa""Pa""
Married within year      
Attended school within year     1
Over 20 & can't read/write      
Deaf, dumb, blind, etc.      

1860 census

[1860 US census, Pennsylvania, Northumberland County, Milton Borough, microfilm series M653, film 1149, page 378 = 197 handwritten]
[identification is probable, given his birthplace in the regimental records (6) and the 1890 census (7)]
line111213141516
Dwelling number1385     
Family number1381     
NameR. B. MontgomeryMargaret "Harry "Ralph "Mary MoserWilliam Imbody
Age262311/24 [sic]1512
SexMFMMFM
Color      
OccupationGrocer     
Value of real estate owned      
Value of personal estate175     
Place of birthdo [sc. Pennsylvania]dododododo
Married within year      
Attended school within year    1 
Cannot read & write      
Deaf, dumb, blind, etc.      

1890 census, veterans schedule

[1890 US census, veterans' schedule, Pennsylvania, Lycoming County, Williamsport, supervisor's district 6, enumeration district Home for the Friendless, page 1]
[line] 1
[house] Home for the Friendless
[family]
[name] Mrs Margaret Montgomery widow of Ralph Boyle Montgomery
[rank] [blank]
[company] [blank]
[unit] 91st Penna
[enlistment date] May 1861 [?]
[discharge date] [blank]
[length of service] [blank]
[post office address] Williamsport Lycoming Co Pa
[disability incurred] [blank]
[remarks] Mrs Montgomery knows nothing of the fate of her husband, but thinks him dead. Her papers relating to his enlistment +c were burned at Milton Pa in the great fire of 1880. The report is necessarily very meagre.

'Swept away'

['Swept away', Philadelphia Inquirer 15 May 1880, page 1]
[note: a search on GenealogyBank (10 Jan 2010) found many articles, most about relief efforts; searching for 'Milton fire Montgomery 1880' returned no results]

SWEPT AWAY.
MILTON, PA., UTTERLY DESTROYED BY FIRE.
Six Hundred Families and Three Thousand People Homeless--Manufacturies, Hotels, Churches and Banks Burned.
A NUMBER OF LIVES REPORTED LOST.
One Body Found--Several Women and Children Missing--An Appeal by Governor Hoyt for Aid for the Sufferers.

MILTON, Pa., May 14.--A fire broke out at twelve o'clock to day in the car works, and, a heavy northwest wind prevailing, it was impossible to check the progress of the flames until the entire business portion of the town was destroyed. It is estimated that four hundred buildings were destroyed, including all the churches. The fire burned over a space seven squares in length and two in width. Assistance came from Sunbury, Danville, Williamsport, Lewisburg and Watsontown.

Among the buildings destroyed are Lawrence's machine shops, the armory, Academy of Music, Reformed, Presybterian, Catholic, Lutheran, Baptist and Evangelical Churches, banks, telegraph offices, newspaper offices, the Pennsylvania railroad, depot, gas works, and all the hotels. The only important places saved are the rolling mill, nail works, Wilson's fly net factory, and the planing mills. Several bodies have been recovered, but they are burned beyond recognition.

Two hundred and fifty families have been rendered homeless, and are camping out in the fields. Supplies of provisions and clothing are needed at once. It is impossible to estimate the loss at present.


Particulars of the Conflagration.

SUNBURY, Pa, May 14.--The town of Milton was almost entirely destroyed by fire today. The fire started in the finishing room of the car works in the northern end of the town. An alarm was at once sounded, but before the engines could get on the ground, the entire works were in flames. The wind blew a gale in the direction of the town, and soon the fire was beyond all control. Aid was telegraphed for, and the Sunbury fire department was soon on the ground. The wind veered in different directions, and it was impossible to do any effectual work, and Broadway and Front street, the business part of the town, were soon wrapped in flames, and the fire swept from street to street until it reached the open country at the southern end of the town.

In the meantime the Williamsport, Danville, Watsontown and Lewisburg fire departments had arrived, but the wind continued so high that they could render but little service, and only a few houses here and there along the track of the fire could be saved. All the hotels, churches, two banks, the opera house, telegraph office, the Miltonian and Independent Weekly printing offices, all the business houses, with two exceptions, and the depot were destroyed. The body of one man burned to a crisp was found. Two women and several children are reported missing. About six hundred families are homeless. Aid has been rendered by the citizens of Sunbury, Lewisburg and Watsontown to the destitute people. Large quantities of household goods were loaded on cars and taken up and down the road, and the fields around the town are filled with goods.

During the confusion many articles were stolen and carried away. One lady lost sixty thousand dollars in government bonds. The fire rages so fiercely that in the upper part of the town most of the people barely escaped with their lives. The wife of Dr. Cyrus Brown is badly burned, and several others are known to be severely injured. The scene was one of great confusion, hundreds of people pouring into town from every direction. The fire was gotten under control about six o'clock. The loss is variously estimated from one to two million dollars, but no accurate estimate can be given to night. The mansion of ex-Governor Pollock was destroyed.


An Appeal to the Charitable.

HARRISBURG, Pa, May 11--The following despatch has been sent to the mayors of the cities of this State:

"The town of Milton has this day been almost entirely destroyed by fire. Three thousand people are now houseless, destitute of clothing, provisions, and all the necessities of life. I would suggest that you call a meeting of your citizens at once, to furnish immediate aid to these stricken people.

"HENRY M. HOYT, Governor."

Milton is a town of about three thousand inhabitants, in Northumberland county, on the West Branch of the Susquehanna river, thirteen miles above Sunbury and twenty seven miles below Williamsport. The Philadelphia and Erie railroad and the Catawissa and Williamsport railroad run through the town. It was founded toward the close of the last century by Andrew Staub, a German, and most of the early settlers were of the same nationality.

Mr. J. B. Stoughton, one of the late proprietors of the Milton car works, and an owner of real estate at that place, is a resident of this city and at present engaged in the oil business at No. 116 North Front street. An INQUIRER reporter who called upon him last evening obtained many facts of interest regarding the town which is now reduced to ashes. Mr. Stoughton says the population of Milton proper is about 3000, but with Turbot township, which is about to be annexed, and has always been considered part of Milton, being so called, the population should be reckoned at 6000. The car works in which the fire originated is in both Milton and Turbot township. Adjoining are the machine shops, and close by are oil tanks. Mr. Stoughton recollects two or three fires at this particular point. The wind being from the north swept the flames southward, destroying in turn Bickel & Bailey's car works, Bickel's steam grist mill, Baker's flouring mill and other large establishments, including Lawson's foundry and machine shop, Seydell & Tilden's carriage works and Barr & Workman's car factory. Wilson's fly net establishment, which was saved, employed some seventy five hands, and is one of the largest establishments of its kind in Northern Pennsylvania. Milton was possessed of four hotels--the Broadway, Huff's, the United States and Stecker's Hotel--all of which, according to the despatches, are destroyed. So also are the banks--the First National and the Milton National. Goodlander's block, Mr Stoughton says, could not have been saved. This was one of the prettiest blocks in that part of Pennsylvania. It was once before destroyed by fire, and was rebuilt in 1874. The Masonic Hall was located in this block, which included also three stores, a restaurant, and a number of lawyers' offices. The churches of the town numbered eight, and with these the High School, secondary and primary schools are all in ruins. Mr. Stoughton estimates the number of dwellings destroyed in Milton proper at eighty odd. In the township on the north there are fully that number more, but Mr. S. thinks these are all saved. Among the principal business firms who suffer by the fire are Heiner, Schleyer & Co., Raupt, Savage & Co., B. K. Hagg, William Hagg, J F. Ganger & Son, George W. Evans, C. Krauser, Krauser Bros., Siris Brown, H C. Moore, L Lieberman, Isaac Burman, Spencer L. Finney, L Y. Sallitt, J. Faustnaught and others. Mr. Stoughton also states that Milton was one of the best agricultural districts in Northern Pennsylvania, being enriched by trade from Buffalo, Sugar and Penn's Valleys.--Ed. INQ]

1880 census

[1880 US census, New Jersey, Camden, Camden, ward 2, supervisor's district 3, enumeration district 43, microfilm series T9, film 773, page 116 = 14 B handwritten]
line3334353637383940
street nameCarpenter St
house number1030       
dwelling visit #140       
family visit #140       
nameBrandenburg Charles- Julia- George- Harry- Fred- Lizzie- Mary- Louis
colorWWWWWWWW
sexMFMMMFFM
age523241210961
month born if born in year        
relationship WifeSonSonSonDaughterDaughterSon
single   11111
married11      
widowed/divorced        
married during year        
occupationLithographerKeeping house At schoolAt school   
months unemployed        
currently ill?        
blind        
deaf/dumb        
idiotic        
insane        
disabled        
school this year        
can't read        
can't write        
birthplaceGermanyNew YorkNew JerseyNew YorkNew YorkPennaPennaNew Jersey
father's birthplaceGermanyN.Y.PennaGermanyGermanyGermanyGermanyGermany
mother's birthplaceGermanyN.Y.N.Y.N.Y.N.Y.N.Y.N.Y.N.Y.

Julia Montgomery, 1892 New York census

[1892 New York census, Kings County, Flatbush, election district 8, page 2]
[transcribed 25 March 2011, from FamilySearch]
NAME.Male or Female.AGE.Color.IN WHAT COUNTRY BORN.Citizen or Alien.OCCUPATION.
Julia BrandenburgF43 USC 
Ralph MontgomeryM23 USCContractor
Jennie MontgomeryF21 USC 
Mary MontgomeryF20 USC 
Lillie MontgomeryF18 USC 
George MontgomeryM16 USC 
Charlie BrandenburgM10 USC 

1900 census (first family)

[1900 US census, Pennsylvania, Northumberland County, Milton, ward 1, supervisor's district 10, enumeration district 131, microfilm series T623, film 1449, page 261 = 8 A handwritten]
[identification is uncertain; she has had two children, who would be the Ralph and Harry in the 1860 census above if she is Ralph's first wife, but she is living with a granddaughter Margaret Smith; the difference in surname at least suggests Margaret Smith's mother was Margaret Montgomery's daughter, not son]
line12
streetFourth
house number[illegible] 
dwelling number161 
family number162 
nameMontgomery MargaretSmith Margaret
relationshipHeadG Daughter
colorWW
sexff
birth dateOct 1836Nov 1889
age6310
married?WdS
# years married  
mother of how many children?2 
# of children living2 
birthplacePennsylvaniaPennsylvania
father's birthplacePennsylvaniaPennsylvania
mother's birthplacePennsylvaniaPennsylvania
immigration year  
# years in USA  
naturalized citizen?  
occupation  
# months not employed  
# months in school  
can readyes 
can writeyes 
speaks Englishyes 
owned/rentedO 
free or mortgagedF 
farm/houseH 
# of farm schedule  

1900 census (second family)

[1900 US census, New York, Kings County, Borough of Brooklyn, ward 10, supervisor's district 2, enumeration district 151, microfilm series T623, film 1049, page 219 = 8 B handwritten]
[identification is probable given the 1892 New York census above]
line7576
streetBaltic
house number[568] 
dwelling number[59] 
family number183 
nameBrandenburg JuliaCharles
[note the 'r' above the line, between the 'B' and the 'a']
relationshipHeadSon
colorWW
sexFM
birth dateJan 1848Mch 1882
age5218
married?WS
# years married  
mother of how many children?6 
# of children living6 
birthplaceNew YorkNew York
father's birthplaceNew YorkGermany [sic]
mother's birthplaceNew YorkNew York
immigration year  
# years in USA  
naturalized citizen?  
occupationDress MakerCity Laborer
# months not employed00 [?]
# months in school  
can readyesyes
can writeyesyes
speaks Englishyesyes
owned/rentedR 
free or mortgaged  
farm/houseH 
# of farm schedule  

index to compiled service records

[index to compiled service records of volunteer Union soldiers who served in organizations from the state of Pennsylvania]
[transcribed 28 January 2015, from Fold3]


Montgamery R. B
Co. F, 91 Pennsylvania Inf.
Corp. | Pvt.
REFERENCE CARD.
Original filed under
Montgomery, Ralph B.

GENERAL INDEX CARD.


[card 2, transcribed 29 January 2015]

Montgomery, Ralph B.
Co. F, 91 Pennsylvania Inf.
Corp | Pvt.
See also [blank]

GENERAL INDEX CARD.

Ralph Montgomery (son of 2nd family)

[identification is likely; I have found only one Ralph Montgomery in Camden in the 1880 US census, and none in the 1900 US census]

['Over the River', Philadelphia Inquirer 2 December 1880; transcribed 26 March 2011, from GenealogyBank]

A lad, fourteen years of age, named Ralph Montgomery, was yesterday held by the mayor of Camden on a charge of robbery. His mother informed the mayor that her son had got beyond her control. He has been arrested several times for larceny. The lad was held to await the action of the courts.



['State notes', Jersey Journal 3 December 1880; transcribed 26 March 2011, from GenealogyBank]

--Ralph Montgomery, a lad of 14 years, was yesterday committed by Mayor Bradshaw, of Camden, on complaint of his mother for being an incorrigible boy. She desires that he be sent to the State Reform School.



['Over the River -- Released', Philadelphia Inquirer 8 December 1880; transcribed 26 March 2011, from GenealogyBank]

Released.--Yesterday Ralph Montgomery, the young lad who was detained for several days, on complaint of his mother, for examination to be sent to the Reform School from Camden, was discharged from custody, his mother refusing finally to make formal complaint against him.


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revised 29 Jan 15
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