Steward 12th Michigan Vols. (Infantry), February 7, 1862; Assistant Surgeon February I, 1863; died at Detroit, Mich., January 31, 1864, of disease contracted in the service.
Samuel Henry Eells was the son of Rev. James Henry and Maria Antoinette (Fletcher) Eells, and was born in Oberlin, Ohio, August 19, 1836. A few months after his birth, his father was drowned in attempting to cross the Maumee River. Ten years later the family removed to Boston, and young Eells was placed at the Brimmer Public School. Thence he was transferred to the Quincy School, where he received a Franklin medal; and thence entered the public Latin School, where he was fitted for college. In 1854 his mother died, and he came under the guardianship of his uncle, George N. Fletcher, Esq., of Detroit, Michigan. His college life was quiet and uneventful, and most of his classmates knew him very little. Yet he always looked back with warm affection upon this period and its associations; as was shown by a very cordial letter which he wrote from Arkansas to the Class Secretary, three months before his death, in which was enclosed a liberal contribution to the Class fund. He wrote in the ‘Class Book,’ just before graduating:—
My plans for the future are yet somewhat undecided. I think, however, of studying medicine. There has been a great number of clergymen in the Eells family; and my relations on my father's side have been anxious that I should follow the example of my father, grandfather, great-great-grandfather, and greatgreat-great-grandfather, besides a number of others not in the direct line. But for myself, I have been uniformly opposed to the idea, and am still of the same opinion.Accordingly, after graduation, he went to Detroit, Michigan, and began at once the study of medicine with Dr. C. H. Barrett of that city, residing meanwhile in the family of his guardian.