Berlin, Connecticut in the Civil War
J.C. Bauer's Personal Experiences of the War of the Rebellion

Henry Sage's Diary 

Index to Berlin Soldiers and Sailors 


Rev. Elias B. Hilliard, minister of the Kensington Congregational Church was about to enter church when he heard the news of the firing upon Fort Sumter.  He threw aside his prepared sermon and then gave a rousing spirited sermon.[1] 


There are over 209 Berlin men who were soldiers in Connecticut regiments, plus Berlin men who served in other state militia and the navy.  Considering the population of Berlin in 1860 population was 2,146, this was nearly 10% of the total population.  Berlin men served in 28 Connecticut regiments.  Nearly half of the men were in three regiments:  1st Heavy Artillery (47men), 14th(20 men), and 16th(32 men).    

The fortunate ones survived the battles and prison and had a unique story to tell.  The Berlin-Peck Memorial Library has a diary kept by Henry Sage, a memoir by Jacob C. Bauer, and a published book of letters from Charles Brandegee complied by his grandson Charles Brandegee Livingstone called Charlie’s Civil War.


At least 70 Berlin men died during the war.  They died of battle wounds at places like Antietam, MD. and Cold Harbor, VA.  They died of diseases such as dysentery, diarrhea, and black vomit.  And perhaps must tragic of all, they died in Andersonville, GA and Florence, SC as prisoners of war.[2]   The first to die was August Brandt of dysentery on Sept. 20, 1861.  The first to die in battle was James L. Bailey at Cedar Mountain, VA. On August 1862. 


There are some 109 men who are buried in town cemeteries.   The last Civil War veteran to die in town was Henry J. Colby on November 21, 1938 at age 81. 


From 6 men  who enlisted April 20, 1861 - just days after the shots fired on Fort Sumter, they all displayed a devotion to duty.   Some were so eager, that they enlisted at the tender age of 17 such as Charles Brandegee. 


The highest rank Captain: 


The only Medal of Honor was earned by Elijah Bacon:  Elijah Bacon .




While the war was still on-going, Kensington erected a monument to honor for the soldiers who left town for the Civil War.  It was the very first war memorial for the Civil War constructed and dedicated in the entire United States.  It was dedicated July 28, 1863, just days after the Battle of Gettysburg.  It  is located on Percival Avenue on the Kensington Congregational Church lawn.  Made in 1863, it was designed by NA Moore, a famous painter and Berlin resident, and is made of brownstone from the Portland quarry and a wrought iron fence made at Moore & Sons Manufacturing Company. 


See Kensington Soldiers Monument for more information. 


After the war, in 1871, a similar monument was built in East Berlin by the Washborn GAR.  


See East Berlin Soldiers Monument  for additional information




































































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