Loyal Legion Vignettes
Douglas Niermeyer, Commander-in-Chief
Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States
Dr. Horace Wardner has passed from among us to the life beyond. To those of us who knew him in the early years of our civil strife and have kept the touch of heart and hand in all these years, his passing away has left a deep impress of sorrow.
Between us, his early associates, there has been a depth of friendship which is difficult to express. He seemed more than a Companion, a member of a family united by brotherly love.
In his own home there is everywhere expressed a grief at his taking away the loss of a comrade whose genial kindness and courteous consideration for others, endeared him to all hearts.
He was one of the workers who tirelessly take up the duties of every day and patiently, earnestly and conscien-tiously seek to bring them to a happy conclusion. He was a pure man in his daily life, and we his Companions in the Loyal Legion pay tribute to his many virtues and sterling qualities.
Horace Wardner was born in Wyoming County, New York, August 25, 1829. He was reared on the home farm and attended the public schools until sixteen years old, later he became a student in Alfred (New York) Academy. He was also a pupil and teacher in Cayuga Academy, and altogether spent ten years as a student and teacher in Western New York. The Spring of 1853 found him in Milwaukee, assistant teacher in the Milwaukee Academy. In 1854 he entered Rush Medical College, graduating in 1856. In 1859 and 1860 he was Demonstrator of Anatomy in the Chicago Medical College.
In April, 1861, Dr. Wardner was commissioned surgeon of the 12th Illinois Infantry. His unremitting attention to the wants of the "boys" endeared him to all. After about a year he was made a staff or brigade surgeon, and served in the Second Division, Army of the Tennessee. After the battle of Corinth in October, 1862, Dr. Wardner was ordered to take charge of the hospital at Mound City, Illinois. In February 1863, he was ordered to Vicksburg by General Grant. His health sent him north again. After a brief stay and at the expiration of his leave of absence he was again ordered to take charge of the hospital at Mound City. He remained in charge of this hospital until the close of the war when he was sent to Cairo, Illinois, to look after the sick soldiers returning from the front. He was brevetted Lieutenant-Colonel for meritorious services, October 6, 1865, and honorably mustered out October 7, 1865. In November following he founded St. Mary's Infirmary at Cairo, remaining with the institution ten years. Here he became a member of the Illinois Board of Health, and for two years its president. During the next twelve years he was Superintendent of the Southern Illinois Hospital for the Insane, at Anna, Illinois. In 1891 he took up his residence in La Porte, Indiana, where he established a sanitarium now known as the Home Health Club and Hospital.
Dr. Wardner was for some time president of the La Porte County Medical Society; was a member of the American Medical Association and the Indiana State Medical Society; was president of the Board of U.S. Pension Examiners. He was a life member of the Army of the Tennessee, and of the Knight Templar Masons. He became a member of the MOLLUS through the Illinois Commandery, Insignia #6938, and as a Companion he later wrote a MOLLUS War Paper on the experience entitled REMINISCENCES OF A SURGEON.
Dr. Wardner was married February 16, 1858, to Miss Louise Rockwood, of Sheboygan, Wisconsin. Mrs. Wardner was with her husband during much of his war service, and was among the noble and patriotic women who sacrificed comforts of home to aid the suffering. To her, his loving companion through all these years, we tender our heartfelt sympathy.
Our friends and loved ones pass from life, and the rest is silence, except as we hear in that still small voice within us, "Well Done, Thou Good and Faithful Servant."
1)Illinois Commandery, MOLLUS. 1912. Memorials Of Deceased Companions of the Commandery of the State of Illinois, Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States, from July 1, 1901, to December 31, 1911. Illinois Commandery, Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States. The Dial Press, Chicago, Illinois. Volume 7, pp.236-268.
2) Illinois Commandery, MOLLUS. 1899. Military Essays and Recollections. 1899 Papers Read before the Commandery of the State of Illinois, Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States. The Dial Press, Chicago, Illinois. Volume 3, pp.173-191.
3) Illinois Commandery, MOLLUS. 1912. (Photograph of Dr. Horace Wardner) Memorials Of Deceased Companions of the Commandery of the State of Illinois, Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States, from July 1, 1901, to December 31, 1911. Illinois Commandery, Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States. The Dial Press, Chicago, Illinois. Volume 7.
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