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George Henry Russ
George Henry Russ was born August 19, 1847, in Perth Amboy, New Jersey, the son of George Henry Russ and Sarah Martin (Crowell)Russ. When the younger George was three and one-half years old, his father died of typhus fever. The family remained in Perth Amboy.
In September of 1862, when New Jersey was raising regiments for a nine month period service, George, who was just two weeks past his 15th birthday, enlisted by claiming to be 18 years old. He joined Company I of the 28th Regiment New Jersey Volunteer Infantry on September 2, 1862, and was mustered in at Freehold, New Jersey. As luck would have it, shortly after young George enlisted, his uncle, Joseph L. Crowell, joined the same unit as First Lieutenant. When the company commander was promoted to Regiment Major, Joseph Crowell was promoted to Captain as company commander, and young George was sent off to the regimental headquarters as Major Wilson's orderly. He served with the regiment, seeing combat at both Fredericksburg and Chancellorsville. The regiment mustered out at Freehold, New Jersey on July 6, 1863. George was still only 15.
After the war, George moved to Brooklyn with his mother, where he worked as a clerk. In 1875, he was married to Eliza Armstrong Camp. Henry Ward Beecher officiated at the ceremony. By 1889, George Russ and his family had moved to Scranton, Pennsylvania, where he was the manager of the Scranton Packing Company. George Henry Russ was a member of the Lieutenant Ezra Griffin Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) Post #139, Scranton, Pennsylvania until his death on December 23, 1910.
The photograph of 15 year old George Henry Russ is courtesy of the GAR Post #139 Collection, US Army Military History Institute, Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania. Biographical information was submitted by George Henry Russ' great-grandson, Alan L. Russ, Old Abe Camp #16, Department of Kansas, Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War, Topeka, Kansas.
Private George Henry Russ