William Henry Roser

William Henry Roser (1839 – 1910) – William Henry Roser was born on February 14, 1838 in Warren County, Ohio, the son of Evan Roser, he was a Civil War veteran.  Prior to the war, William was a schoolteacher and he farmed during the summer months.  He mustered into service on November 12, 1861, in Company E, 69th Regiment of the Ohio Volunteers under Captain David Putman.  He was appointed Corporal on December 20, 1861.[1]  In his discharge and pension records he is described as 5 feet 8 ˝ inches tall, black hair, gray eyes.  During his service with the 69th Regiment, his regiment was involved in a significant engagement at Gallatin and in action with Morgan.[2]  The 69th was also engaged in the siege of Nashville; during this period, in October 1862, William became ill with typhoid fever and was sent to Hospital No. 13 at Nashville.  In December, during the Battle of Stone Mountain, he was given command of 120 convalescents and sent to the trenches every night to guard Nashville from a Confederate attack.  He caught a cold and contracted pneumonia in the trenches.  Still sick, William was detailed to help set up hospital No. 19 and then he assisted with the wounded until he was no longer able.  He was in Hospital No. 19 until his medical discharge in February 1863.[3]  

He enlisted again for 100 days of service with Company A, 152nd Ohio Volunteers on May 1, 1864 and mustered out with the company on September 2, 1864.  Col. David Putman, formerly Captain of William Roser’s Company E in the 69th Regiment, commanded this Regiment.  They were employed on the skirmish line in Virginia to guard wagon trains and relieve veteran soldiers, who were needed at the front.  In Hunter’s raid down the Shenandoah Valley, the 152nd had charge of a provision train of 214 wagons, and marched from Martinsburg to Lynchburg, on the old Cumberland pike.  It then marched over the Blue Ridge Mountains to White Sulphur Springs, where it had its main engagement.  From this point it marched to Webster, VA, a total distance of about 535 miles entirely on foot.[4] 

At the time of his pension application in 1880, he was a clerk and living in Arcanum, Darke County, Ohio.[5]   He had lung and eye problems for the rest of his life.  William eventually lost his eyesight.  It took six years for his disability pension to be approved.  In a letter he wrote to his Congressman, the Hon. George Steele, to ask for his help there is an interesting PS at the end:  “I have ever been a staunch Republican.  Voted for you, Lincoln, Grant, for Hays, also for Garfield.  I hope I will be able to write the name of another Republican president next fall whom I shall have helped to elect.  Yours fraternally Wm. H. Roser”[6]

He married Rachael Smith on September 22, 1864 in Dayton, Ohio, at the German Reformed Church.[7]  They had three children.  They moved to Illinois for several years and then back to Ohio, before settling finally settling in Indiana.   He died on December 30, 1910, in El Paso, Texas, while wintering there at his daughter and son-in-law’s (H.H. and Jennie Nail).  Rachael died on August 8, 1922 in Indiana.[8]

Special Note: To date I have not been able to determine the identity William Henry Roser's mother or grandparents.  Any help with this would be greatly appreciated.  In examining his Civil War Pension file I discovered a record of employment prior to his military service, he states that he worked as a teacher in the winters and that in the summer of 1858 he farmed for William F. Roser, in the summer of 1860 he farmed for himself and worked for John F. Roser (Darke County, OH), who died of wounds received in the Battle of Cedar Creek, VA, he also worked for Evan Roser (who was living in Jay County, IN in 1883).  He was probably related to all of these men.  If you have any information that would help determine how these people are related please let me know.  Any information on these families will be greatly appreciated!  bob@krepps.net


[1] National Archives, Military and Pension Records of William H. Roser

[2] A Compendium of the War of the Rebellion, Vol. 2,  Frederick H. Dyer

[3] National Archives, Military and Pension Records of William H. Roser

[4] History of Darke County Ohio From its Earliest Settlement to the Present Time, Chapter 12 Frazer E. Wilson,  1914 Hobart Publishing Company

[5] National Archives, Military and Pension Records of William H. Roser

[6] National Archives, Military and Pension Records of William H. Roser

[7] Darke County Ohio marriage records

[8] Indiana, Death Certificate Rachael (Smith) Roser

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Father*                                           Evan Roser  (b. 1814, d. 28 May 1891)

Mother*   

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Birth*               14 Feb 1838                Warren County, OH.

Marriage*        22 Sep 1864                Rachel Smith (b. 10 Nov 1843, d. 08 Aug 1922); Dayton, Waren, OH.

Daughter:     cir __ ___ 1866                Lulu M. Roser (b. circa 1866,          ); OH. married Edward Solon Goodhue on Sept 25, 1889

Daughter:        23 Aug 1867                Jennie Roser (b. 23 Aug 1867, d. 25 Jan 1912 ); IL. married Harry H. Nail (b. Jan 1870) on 27 Feb 1897 in Jay County, IN;  burried Evergreen Alameda Cemetery, El Paso, TX

Son:                05 Dec 1872                Elby Roser (b. 05 Dec 1872, d. 27 Apr 1945); IL.; he married Lena Albertson

Death*             30 Dec 1910                El Paso, El Paso County, TX.  Burrial  Evergreen Alameda Cemetery,  El Paso

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Contact information

Written by Bob Krepps  © 2001 all rights reserved.  Permission granted to copy for personal & non-commercial purposes only.  Please contact me if you are able to provide additional details on William Henry Roser or any of his descendants.   I am also attempting to discover the identity of William Henry Roser's mother and grandparents, please contact me if you have any information.
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