from The Fitchburg Sentinel, Saturday, 29 June 1901,
| Reunion of Veteran Fusiliers.
Interesting Meeting on the 40th Anniversary of their Departure from Fitchburg.
Company B, Association 15th Massachusetts Volunteers, celebrated the 40th anniversary of their departure from Fitchburg for Camp Scott, Worcester, and held their 33d annual reunion at Whalom park, Friday. Though the surviving members of the company have scattered to every quarter of the Union, enough assembled with lady friends to more than fill one of the largest cars of the F. & L. street railway. The heat was intense, but they found a very comfortable spot at the stand shaded by pines, not far from the lake.
The roll of acrive and honorary members and of widows of deceased members was read by Sergt. Walter A. Eames, and the following responded to their names:
Active members John W. Kimball
Honorary members: R. J. Parker, F. A Monroe of Gardner, E. F. Kimball, F. Fosdick, G. W. Barnes of Worcester, S. C. Spooner.
Widows of deceased members: Mrs. H. A. Spooner,
Secretary Walter A. Eames read the record of the 32d reunion held at Wachusetts lake one year ago and it was approved.
The treasurer's report, showing a balance of $28.38, was approved.
Samuel C. Spooner is a brother of the late Sergeant Henry A. Spooner and he was made an honorary member of the association this morning.
On motion of Thomas P. Taylor, last year's officers were re-elected, as follows:
The subject of selecting a place of meeting for next year's meeting was left with the three highest officers, who are constituted a committee of arrangements therefore.
Sergeant Eames read a memorial of the members who have passed away during the year. He remarked that for several years three members had died each year, but it was hoped that the last year there would be a break in the rule, but it proved otherwise. The memorial which was accepted and placed on file, follows:
"Each returning year finds us with dimished ranks. With unrelenting hand the Great Reaper is busy among those whom he spared in the day of battle. Our numbers are dwindling and the responses at roll call are fewer and fainter. Those of us who are left as we close up the ranks and touch elbows to the right are sadly conscious that the line is growing shorter and that soon the time will come when the last comrade will have been mustered out on earth and will have joined the far larger company who have received the reward of their labors and sacrifices, and exchange the marches and battles of life for the eternal laurels of the victors.
For many years it has been our sorrowful duty as we have come together at these reunions to call the names of comrades who have answered here for the last time and whose voices will never more be heard by mortal ears. And this year and this meeting are no exceptions. Death has found our comrades since our last reunion and we are called upon to mourn three of our best and bravest.
On Jan. 23, 1901, there passed away in Decatur, Ill., loved and respected by the whole city in which he had made his home and where he had become one of the leading men of business, an honor to himself and to us who had been so fortunate as to know and associate with him, Kilburn Harwood, the mention of whose name causes the tenderest emotions in the breasts of us all.
George G. Taylor died at Winchendon in January, 1901, and we shall see his pleasant face no more among us at our reunions.
On April 29, of this year, in Los Angeles, Cal., died another comrade no less regretted -- William T. Griswold. He had not filled so large a place in the public eye as the comrade first named but in all the relations of life was a true man and a true soldier.
It is many years since our eyes have been gladdened by the sight of these dear comrades or our hearts thrilled by their warm hand clasp, but never have they been forgotten and while life lasts for any of us, they will always be to us the same dear loyal, generous, brave, soldierly comrades and as time goes on we will hold them and the dear ones who have gone before us closely to our hearts as though they had been brothers in the flesh as they certainly were in spirit and thought."
Lines on the death of Comrade Polley of Co. A, 15th Mass. regiment, written y the wife of Comrade Hildreth, were read by Sergeant Eames.
Gen. Kimball spoke of Comrade Polley's virtues and said all could say amen to the sentiments of the poem.
Sergt. Eames read letters from the following members of the association:
Gen. Kimball said he could hardly believe it ws 40 years since the company left Fitchburg for Camp Scott. It was a credit to Fitchburg that the old company, organized in 1816, was among the first to tender its services to Gov. Andrew when the war cloud was arising. Gen. Kimball read various documents bearing upon the history of the company, including a list of officers of the company from its organization in 1816 till after the Civil War.
The first officers and subsequent captains of the Fusiliers from its organization till after the close of the Civil war, with the date of election, are given below:
Of the above list three -- Alfred R. Ordway, John W. Kimball and Charles H. Eager are living.
During the Civil war two men who had been trained in the Fusiliers -- John W. Kimball and George P. Hawkes -- were brevetted brigadier-generals. Joseph Wood was colonel of a California regiment, Edwin Upton of the 25th Mass. regiment, Thaddeus L. Barker of the 36th Mass. regiment and James A. Cunningham became colonel in the war and major-general in the militia after the waqr, being adjutant-general of the commonwealth.
Honorary Comrade Spooner, who had three brothers in the Civil war and enlisted himself, related that his grandfather, Philip Spooner, served in the revolutionar war under Gen. Nathaniel Green of Rhode Island, and his father suffered at the hands of the Shay's men. The soldiers manifested a truly Christian spirit toward their enemies. "Don't cheer, boys, they are dying," was said by Federal troops in battle.
Ex-Mayor Fosdick spoke of the pang he felt at seeing the young men start for the Spanish war, but they were the same class of men who went to the front in the Civil war, though he regarded the Spanish war as little more than a skirmish as compared with the Civil war. The lessons of self-control learned in the war were specially commended.
Comrade William B. Andrews of Co. D bore greetings from Worcester to his comrades.
A fine dinner was served at Whalom Park Inn. The menu included clam chowder and sliced cucumbers; baked blue fish, Italienne; lyonnaise potatoes; road ribs of beef, au jus; fruit fritters, lemon sauce; mashed and boiled potatoes; string beans; tapioca pudding, apple and custard pie, straberry ice cream.
After dinner, Theodore Lyman Sanderson was introduced by Gen. Kimball as an old Fusilier "who fought, bled and died with us before the Civil War." Mr. Sanderson's services to the Fitchburg railroad were so valuable that he could not be spared to go to the front. He has worked for the Fitchburg railroad and its successor, the B. & M., for 57 years.
A group picture of the members was ?xxx? served in Co. D, 15th Massachusetts regiment, in the Civil war.
The afternoon was made a delightful occasion under the pines, notwithstanding the height that the mercury attained.