February 24, 2019

Pages 2536-2538
Whole Number 122


(Editor's Note: For a number of years we have been publishing abstracts of the pension files of Union soldiers who served in the Civil War. Readers are referred to page 2110 of the June 1979 issue of the Quarterly, Whole No. 106, for an explanation of these abstracts. It should be noted that they are not based on an examination of the entire file of papers for each pensioner in the National Archives in Washington, D.C., but on those documents pulled from each file by a searcher at the Archives that he or she believed to have genealogical significance. In each instance, a careful search of the entire file would probably add interesting details.)

DAVID G. SPARKS, was born ca. 1826 in Ohio. He was a son of Joseph and Ann (--?--) Sparks, natives of Maryland and New Jersey, respectively. On July 12, 1849, he married Lucy Ann Holmes in Cincinnati, Ohio. He served in Company H, 153rd Regiment Ohio Infantry. File Designation: Wid. Cert. No. 295,410.

On July 9, 1890, Lucy Ann Sparks, aged 62, a resident of Richmond, Indiana, applied for a Widow's Pension based on her husband's service in the Civil War. She stated that she was the widow of David G. Sparks who had enlisted on May 10, 1864, in Company H, 153rd Regiment Ohio Volunteers, and that he had died at Richmond, Indiana, on August 24, 1883. She stated that she and David G. Sparks had been married on July 12, 1849, at Cincinnati, Ohio, by the Rev. George Maley. It had been the first marriage for both. They had no children under the age of sixteen years at the time of her husband's death in 1890. She appointed M. M. Lacey, Fountain City, Indiana, as her attorney. Richard L. More and Edgar Hurley witnessed her signature.

On November 24, 1890, Warren Shumard, aged 59, a resident of Richmond, Indiana, testified that he had been in the same military company with David G. Sparks and knew his widow. She had not re-married and she was dependent upon her own labor for her support.

A few days later, Millison A. Horton, aged 66, a resident of Seymour, Indiana, testified that she was a sister of David G. Sparks and had been present at his marriage to Lucy A. Holmes on July 12, 1849, at the home of the bride's father in Cincinnati, Ohio. On that same day, Charles B. Shelton, Superintendent in Charge of Restoration of Probate Court Records of Hamilton County, Ohio, stated that the marriage records of 1849 had been partially destroyed and he was unable to find a record of the marriage of David G. Sparks and Lucy Ann Holmes.

War Department records sent to the Bureau of Pensions on February 18, 1891, showed that Sparks had enlisted at Milford, Ohio, on May 2, 1864, in Company H, 153rd Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry and had served until he was mustered out with his company on September 9, 1864.

On December 2, 1890, Dr. J. Henry Davis, Health Officer of Wayne County, Ohio, sent the Bureau of Pensions a copy of the death record of David G. Sparks. He had died on August 24, 1883, of cancer of the liver. He was 57 years of age; a native of Ohio; and a merchant.

Lucy Ann Sparks was issued Widow Certificate No. 295,410 and she was placed upon the pension roll. When she died on or about February 6, 1914, she was receiving a pension of $12.00 per month.

[Editor's note: David G. Sparks was a son of Joseph and Ann (MNU) Sparks, who were listed on the 1830, 1850, 1860, and 1880 censuses of Hamilton County, Ohio. Joseph was born ca. 1798 in Maryland; Ann was born ca. 1800 in New Jersey. Joseph moved to Hamilton County ca. 1829 where he was a well-to-do farmer in Colerain Township. He and Ann had nine children according to the census records: Millison (daughter), David G. (the Civil War soldier noted here), Maria A., Joseph C., Sarah F., and James; also two daughters and a son whom we have been unable to identify.

David G. and Lucy Ann (Holmes) Sparks had two children when the 1870 census was taken of Wayne County, Indiana. They were Laura G. Sparks, aged 18, and Ellie M. Sparks, aged 4. David was a hardware dealer with real estate valued at $10,000 and personal property valued at $5,000. Also living in his household were Eliza M. Leving (?), aged 28, and Warren Shumard, aged 38.]

LORENZO H. SPARKS son of Amasa and Lucy (Higgins) Sparks, was born October 22, 1843, in Trumbull County, Ohio. He married Orissa Mavina Rodgers on October 22, 1866. He served in Company B, 105th Regi ment Ohio Infantry. File Designations: Inv. Cert. No. 394,409; Wid. Cert. No. 939,070.

On June 1, 1887, the Pension Office requested the War Department to furnish the military records of Lorenzo H. Sparks, and on August 30, 1877, the War Department sent the following information: Sparks had enrolled on August 10, 1862, at Greensburg, Ohio, in Company B, 105th Regiment Ohio Volunteers for a period of three years. He was present for duty until October 10, 1862, when he was detailed as a hospital nurse at Perryville, Kentucky. He served on detached hospital duty until February 28, 1863, when he rejoined his unit. On August 15, 1863, he was hospitalized at Cowan, Tennessee, where he remained until May 31, 1864, when he was transferred to Company K, 11th Regiment Veteran Reserve Corps. He was present for duty until October 16, 1864, when he was sent on detached service to Leonardtown, Maryland. He served there until his detachment was mustered out on June 29, 1865, at Albany, New York. His highest rank was 1st Corporal. He was 5 feet, 10 inches in height; he had a light complexion, blue eyes and dark hair; and he was a farmer.

Three undated affidavits were sent to us from the pension file of Lorenzo Sparks which supported his application. One was from H. E. Hillman, aged 45, a resident of Greensburg, Ohio, and a former comrade of Sparks. He said that he and Sparks met at camp at Cleveland, Ohio, and were together until Sparks took sick with pains in his back at Munfordville, Kentucky, and was hospitalized there. He next saw Sparks in the winter camp at Murfreesboro, Tennessee, but when the Chattanooga campaign started under Rosencrans, Sparks was sent back to the hospital by Surgeon Palding as not fit for service.

A second affidavit was made by Hugh Lowry, aged 48, a resident of Cortland, Ohio. He and Sparks were comrades when Sparks took sick on the march from Murfreesboro to Cowan Station, Tennessee, and had to be hospitalized at University Heights. He remained there until the regiment was ordered to march again, and then Sparks was sent to Nashville.

A third affidavit was made by Anton Sefried, a resident of Carmi, Illinois, who said that he and Sparks were comrades in Company K, 11th Regiment Veteran Reserve Corps. He said that Sparks was extremely deaf and told him that his deafness was caused by a cold which settled in his ears while he was in the hospital at Nashville.

Invalid Certificate No. 394,409 was issued to Sparks and he was placed on the pension roll. On March 26, 1915, he responded to a questionnaire from the Bureau of Pensions. He said he had been born on October 22, 1843, in Trumbull County, Ohio. On October 22, 1866, he had been married to Orissa Malvina Rodgers at Warren, Ohio, by Almon D. Webb, a justice of the peace. It was the first marriage for both. They now had a "separation under contract for more than ten years past." Their children were:

Mrs. Carrie L. (Sparks) Mason, born January 4, 1868.
Elmer U. Sparks, born January 31, 1870, died November 18, 1900.
Louis S. Sparks, born December 13, 1871.
Mrs. Lucie M. (Sparks) Clark, born January 18, 1874.
Willie Isabel Sparks, born April 15, 1886, died December 24, 1906.
Delwin H. Sparks, born September 20, 1876.
Herbert G. Sparks, born September 8, 1878
Mrs. Pluma D. (Sparks) Heintzelman, born February 25, 1881.
Hubert L. Sparks, born August 24, 1883.

Lorenzo H. Sparks died on October 5, 1921, at Warren, Ohio. According to the Certificate of Death his age was given as 77 years, 11 months, and 13 days. His father was Amassa Sparks, a native of New York, and his mother was Lucy Higgins, birthplace unknown. His widow was Orissa Sparks. The cause of death was strangulation (suicidal) according to J. C. Henshaw, coroner. Mrs. Pluma Heintzelman of Detroit, Michigan, gave personal information about her father for the Certificate of Death. He was buried at Greene, Ohio.

On December 27, 1921, Orissa M. Sparks, widow of Lorenzo H. Sparks, made application for a widow's pension. She said that she had been born July 25, 1849, in Venango County, Pennsylvania. Her postoffice was Route 12, Box 369, Los Angeles, California. She said that she and Sparks had been married on October 22, 1866, at Warren, Ohio. Fannie E. Goodman of Bell, California, and Delwin H. Sparks, Route 1, Box 369, Los Angeles, California, witnessed the application which was sworn to before Frank E. Goodway, a notary public.

Widow Certificate No. 939,070 was issued to Orissa Sparks and she was placed on the pension roll. She died on June 10, 1939, in the home of her daughter, Mrs. Pluma Heintzelman, at St. Clair Shores, Michigan. According to information given on the Certificate of Death, Orissa Sparks was born July 23, 1849, in Pennsylvania. Her father was John Rogers, and her mother was Malvina Hanks, both natives of Pennsylvania.

[Editor's Note: Lorenzo Sparks was a son of Amasa and Lucy (Higgins) Sparks who were listed on the 1850 census of Trumbull County, Ohio. (See page 656 of the June 1962 issue of the Quarterly, Whole No. 38, Vol. X, No. 2.) According to the 1850 census, Amasa Sparks was born ca. 1815 in New York. He married Lucy Higgins in Trumbull County, Ohio, on January 27, 1837. She was born ca. 1820. When the 1850 census was taken of Trumbull County, Ohio, he and Lucy were living in Gustavus and his occupation was that of "cheese box maker." When the 1870 census was taken 20 years later, Amasa and Lucy Sparks were living in Green Township, Trumbull County, Ohio; his occupation was then "farm laborer." The children of Amasa and Lucy (Higgins) Sparks, as listed on the 1850 and 1870 censuses, were:

(1) Eliza Ann Sparks, born ca. 1837; it is believed that she was the Eliza A. Sparks who was married in Trumbull County to Stewart Sample on January 9, 1858;
(2) Melissa Sparks, born ca. 1841;
(3) Sophronia Sparks, born ca. 1841, probably a twin of Melissa;
(4) Lorenzo Sparks, born October 22, 1843, whose service in the Civil War is recorded above;
(5) Mary E. Sparks, born ca. 1846;
(6) Lucinda Sparks, born ca. 1848;
(7) Alonzo Sparks, born ca. 1854;
(8) Antoinette Sparks, born ca. 1857; and
(9) Frederick Sparks, born ca. 1865.

Amasa Sparks was probably a son of Erastus and Philatha (Higgins) Sparks. (See page 923 of the September 1965 issue of the Quarterly, Whole No. 51, Vol. XIII, No. 3.]