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A 14-year-old Wisconsin boy fights in the Civil War

Youngest vet of Civil War tells of meeting "Old Abe" at capital during sixties

William DeSteese of Lamartine in Fond du Lac County enlisted in the Union Army in the spring of 1864, one month shy of his 14th birthday. After basic training he was shipped south and fought in the battles of Cold Harbor, Richmond, and Petersburg. In this short article he recalls being stationed in Washington, D.C., where he had several conversations with President Abraham Lincoln and later helped to guard the president's assassins.

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Related Topics: Wisconsin in the Civil War Era
The Iron Brigade, Old Abe and Military Affairs
Creator: Anonymous.
Pub Data: Fond du Lac Daily Reporter. Feb. 12, 1923.
Citation: "Youngest vet of Civil War tells of meeting "Old Abe" at capital during sixties." Fond du Lac Daily Reporter, Feb. 12, 1923. Online facsimile at:; Visited on: 4/20/2014
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