previous next

Grand army of the republic, the.

The order of the Grand Army of the Republic was organized in the State of Illinois, early in the year 1866. To Dr. B. F. Stephenson, of Springfield, Ill., belongs the honor of suggesting the formation of this union of veteran soldiers, and of launching the organization into existence. The object of the combination was to afford assistance to disabled and unemployed soldiers. Dr. Stephenson had been a surgeon in a volunteer regiment during the war, and was firmly convinced that an organization of the returned volunteers, for mutual benefit, was imperatively needed. A ritual was drafted under his supervision, and the first post of the new order was formed at Decatur, Ill. Other posts were soon mustered throughout Illinois and contiguous States, and the first department (State) convention was held at Springfield, Ill., July 12, 1866. Gen. John M. Palmer was there elected department commander. Oct. 31, 1866, Dr. Stephenson, as provisional commander-in-chief, sent out an order to all the posts then formed, calling for the first national convention of the Grand Army of the Republic. This was held in Indianapolis, Ind., on Nov. 20 following, and representatives were present from the States of Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Wisconsin, New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Iowa, Kentucky, Indiana, and the District of Columbia. Gen. S. A. Hurlbut was elected as commander-in-chief. During the year 1867 the order spread rapidly. The various States completed their work of department organization, and posts were formed in all the large cities and in many counties. The second national encampment, meeting in Philadelphia, Pa., Jan. 15, 1868, found the order in a most promising condition. In 1868, the first observance of May 30 as a memorial day by the Grand Army was ordered, and on May 11, 1870, May 30 was fixed upon for the annual observance by an article adopted as part of the rules and regulations of the order. Unfortunately, during the warmly contested political campaign of 1868, the idea that the Army was intended as a political organization gained currency, with the result of injuring the order greatly. A heavy decrease of membership followed, causing almost a total disruption of the order in the West. In May, 1869, a change in the ritual was made, providing for three grades of membership, but this met with little favor, and in 1871 all sections providing for degrees or ranks among members were stricken from the rules. At the same time, a rule was adopted prohibiting the use of the organization for any partisan purpose whatever, a principle which has ever since been strictly adhered to. Following is the record of the national encampments of the Grand Army of the Republic held thus far, with the names of the commanders-in-chief elected:

1. Indianapolis, Ind., 1866; S. A. Hurlbut, Illinois.

2. Philadelphia, Pa., 1868; John A. Logan, Illinois.

3. Cincinnati, O., 1869; John A. Logan, Illinois.

4. Washington, 1870; John A. Logan, Illinois.

5. Boston, Mass., 1871; A. E. Burnside, Rhode Island.

6. Cleveland, O., 1872; A. E. Burnside, Rhode Island.

7. New Haven, Conn., 1873; Charles Devens, Jr., Massachusetts.

8. Harrisburg, Pa., 1874; Charles Devens, Jr., Massachusetts.

9. Chicago, III., 1875; John F. Hartranft, Pennsylvania.

10. Philadelphia, Pa., 1876; John F. Hartranft, Pennsylvania.

11. Providence, R. I., 1877; John C. Robinson, New York.

12. Springfield, Mass., 1878; John C. Robinson, New York.

13. Albany, N. Y., 1879; William Earnshaw, Ohio.

14. Dayton, O., 1880; Louis Wagner, Pennsylvania.

15. Indianapolis, Ind., 1881; George S. Merrill, Massachusetts.

16. Baltimore, Md., 1882; Paul Van Der Voort, Nebraska.

17. Denver, Col., 1883; Robert B. Beatte, Pennsylvania.

18. Minneapolis, Minn., 1884; John S. Kountz, Ohio.

19. Portland, Me., 1885; S. S. Burdett, Washington.

20. San Francisco, Cal., 1886; Lucius Fairchild, Wisconsin.

21. St. Louis, Mo., 1887; John P. Rea, Minnesota.

22. Columbus, O., 1888; William Warner, Missouri.

23. Milwaukee, Wis., 1889; Russell A. Alger, Michigan.

24. Boston, Mass., 1890; Wheelock G. Veasey, Vermont.

25. Detroit, Mich., 1891; John Palmer, New York. [114]

26. Washington, 1892; A. G. Weissert, Wisconsin.

27. Indianapolis, Ind., 1893; John G. B. Adams, Massachusetts.

28. Pittsburg, Pa., 1894; Thomas G. Lawler, Illinois.

29. Louisville, Ky., 1895; Ivan N. Walker, Indiana.

30. St. Paul, Minn., 1896; Thaddeus S. Clarkson, Nebraska.

31. Buffalo, N. Y., 1897; John P. S. Gobin, Pennsylvania.

32. Cincinnati, O., 1898; 1James A. Sexton, Illinois.

33. Cincinnati, O., 1898; W. C. Johnson, Ohio.

34. Philadelphia, Pa., 1899; Albert D. Shaw, New York.

35. Chicago, III., 1900; Leo Rassieur, Missouri.

1 Died Feb. 5, 1899.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Illinois (Illinois, United States) (9)
Pennsylvania (Pennsylvania, United States) (6)
Philadelphia (Pennsylvania, United States) (4)
Ohio (Ohio, United States) (4)
Massachusetts (Massachusetts, United States) (4)
Indianapolis (Indiana, United States) (4)
Wisconsin (Wisconsin, United States) (3)
Missouri (Missouri, United States) (3)
Cincinnati (Ohio, United States) (3)
Springfield (Illinois, United States) (2)
Rhode Island (Rhode Island, United States) (2)
Nebraska (Nebraska, United States) (2)
Indiana (Indiana, United States) (2)
Chicago (Illinois, United States) (2)
Boston (Massachusetts, United States) (2)
Vermont (Vermont, United States) (1)
Venice (Ohio, United States) (1)
St. Paul (Minnesota, United States) (1)
St. Louis (Missouri, United States) (1)
Springfield (Massachusetts, United States) (1)
San Francisco (California, United States) (1)
Providence, R. I. (Rhode Island, United States) (1)
Portland (Maine, United States) (1)
Pittsburgh (Pennsylvania, United States) (1)
New Haven (Connecticut, United States) (1)
Minnesota (Minnesota, United States) (1)
Minneapolis (Minnesota, United States) (1)
Milwaukee (Wisconsin, United States) (1)
Michigan (Michigan, United States) (1)
Louisville (Kentucky, United States) (1)
Kentucky (Kentucky, United States) (1)
Kansas (Kansas, United States) (1)
Iowa (Iowa, United States) (1)
Harrisburg, Pa. (Pennsylvania, United States) (1)
Franklin (Ohio, United States) (1)
Detroit (Michigan, United States) (1)
Denver (Colorado, United States) (1)
Decatur (Illinois, United States) (1)
Cleveland (Ohio, United States) (1)
Buffalo, N. Y. (New York, United States) (1)
Baltimore, Md. (Maryland, United States) (1)
Albany (New York, United States) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide Dates (automatically extracted)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: