Uriah is related on my Grandma Mae Davenport Virtue side, for those in my family who are following. This story was generated from census records and his Civil War Pension files
Uriah was the third child of Alfred and Lucinda (Tolley) Davenport. who at the age of 18 enlisted in the Union Army. He was assigned to the Mississippi Marine Brigade. No it is not the state of Mississippi, but the river. This group of solders patrolled the Mississippi River with gunboats. Based on the dates of service, Uriah was likely involved in no great battles. He mustered out September 18, 1865.
Uriah was by 1890 at the age of 45 applying for invalid pension for general disability and hemorrhoids. His pension of $10 a month started in November 1890 and continued until his death in 1901. In the pension file there is a record of a doctor’s exam who explains them as “…worst kind of piles… as large as quails eggs” The doctor goes on to say this would greatly disable him from manual labor. His disability was rated a 10 on a scale of 18.
Uriah and his wife,Mary, had 12 children, three who were still minors when Uriah passed away. The bulk the pension file is Mary asking for the pension to continue for her and the 3 children. Because so few records were kept at the time she had to get affidavits from people regarding her marriage and her children. Not just one but several for each fact, marriage, birth of each child, and relationship status. The board of pensions looked at the reputation of not only Mary, but the people who completed affidavits. These affidavits are sometimes difficult to read but full of information on the family. Co-habitation was asked about for Mary. The children except for one were born at home without a doctor or midwife. In one case a daughter provides a statement about her mother’s delivery of a sister. They question her economic means. Her address was given as a house near the coal mine shaft; I doubt anyone with even meager means would choose to live there.
Mary went through all of these trials to only die two years later. There were still minor children. Again the documentation trail started as the guardian of the children asked for their pension to be continued.
This file is over 100 pages long and full of information. I may come back to Uriah later, but this is the first part of his story