Civil War Researcher Returns Soldier to Family

One hundred and forty seven years ago, during the Civil War, a soldier from Allegany County passed away.  Not unusual considering men were dying every day.

Henry Harrison McGibney was with Company H of the 1st New York Dragoons.  He passed away in Hampton, Virginia in 1864 after being transferred to the Veterans Relief Corps in 1863.

Back then a hand shake or a promise was as good as gold.  For reasons unknown to anyone, Henry Harrison McGibney’s body was brought back to his family by a soldier of the 107th New York Infantry, who was from the town of Howard, New York.  This soldier’s name was Adin Ormsby and whether he was a friend or not, no one knows.

While researching Henry H. McGibney and looking through family albums, one picture seemed like it didn’t fit with the names of the friends and relatives.

Upon removing the two soldier’s photos that were next to each other, the story came to light; years ago a family member had written on the back of Adin Ormsby’s photo that this soldier brought Henry Harrison McGibney home to his family. Apparently Adin Ormsby was to make sure the body arrived safely for burial at the McGibney home.

The McGibney’s thought so much of the gesture that they placed a CDV photo of Adin Ormsby next to Henry H. McGibney in their family album.

Then I got to wondering if the Ormsby family descendents knew of this kind gesture, or if they had ever seen a picture of Adin Ormsby.

So I spent some time making phone calls and emailing different descendents to see if maybe I could return a good faith gesture for a soldier of Allegany County, 147 years later.

After contacting the Ormsby family, I found out they knew nothing of the story and better yet, they didn’t have a photo of their relative Adin Ormsby.  I sent a copy of both photos to them.  They were elated!  It was nice to know that in a way, I had a small part,  in returning their soldier to them…………..


   Left - Henry Harrison McGibney, Right - Adin Ormsby

The above was supplied to the website by Tom Warner of Angelica NY, a Civil War Researcher.  The photo beneath the article is also supplied by Tom.