Ltn. Leonard C. Alden – Compiled Military Service Record

Individual Muster-in Roll

2 Lt. Leonard C. Alden
Co. D, 55 Reg’t Mass. Inf. (Col’d).
Age 23 years.
Roll dated: Boston, Mass, May 14, 1863.
Muster-in to date May 14, 1863.
Joined for duty and enrolled:
When: May 12, 1863
Where: Boston
Period: 3 years

Company Descriptive Book

Age: 23
Height: 5 feet, 8 inches
Complexion: light
Eyes: Brown
Hair: Brown
Where born: Boston, Mass.
Remarks: Died at Hilton Head, SC, Oct 6th 1863.

Special Order No. 235

Commonwealth of Massachusetts
Head Quarters
Boston, May 15, 1863.
Leonard C. Alden of Cambridge having been commissioned 2nd Lieut in the 55th Regt Mass Volunteers under date of May 12, 1863, in accordance with provisions of General Order No. 75, War Department, series 1862, Capt. Collins U.S. Mustering and Disbursing Officer for Massachusetts will muster him in to the service of the United States.
By order of the Commander in Chief
W. Schouler
Adj General
Must’d by R.McK

1 October 1863

Head Quarters 55th Regt. Mass Vols.
Folly Island Oct 1, 1863
General, I enclose the Statement of Doctor Morrison in regard to Lieut. L. C. Alden of my Regt. and respectfully request that he may be allowed to proceed immediately home while his strength may allow the removal, and that he may leave the island by tomorrow morning [ ] boat to go by the Fulton. the Lieutenant himself is too feeble even to sign an application for sick leave, he would like to take his warrant with him.
I am respectfully
Your Obedient Servant
Alphes S. Hartwell, Ltn. Col
Com’d. 55th Regt MA Vols.
To Major General Gillman
Commanding Department of the South.

1 October 1863

Office of the Chief Medical Officer of
Folly Island SC. Oct 1, 1863
General, Lieutenant Leonard C. Alden of Comp. D, 55th Mass Vols, offered his resignation a short time ago, in consequence of sickness disqualifying him for further service, but, owing to the fact that two of the members of the Examining Board have lately been relieved from further duty, and there not having been as yet, any others appointed in their place, he has been unable to obtain an examination and there is no certainty as the when the Board will be in session again. In consequence of rapidly failing I was sent for this afternoon to see him in reference to his removal to the North. I have carefully examined said Officer, and I find him suffering from Typho-Malarial Fever, and find that he is rapidly failing, and I further state that in my opinion immediate removal to the North is necessary to save life, – delay in order that his papers may go through the usual channel, I believe, would be certainly fatal.
I am Sir, Your Obedient Servant
J. B. Morrison Surg.
Chief Med. Off. of Folly Island
To Maj. Gen. Gillmore.

Record of Death and Interment

Name and number of person interred: Leonard C. Alden
Number and locality of grave: No 222 Hilton Head Military Cemetery
Hospital number of the deceased: 3190
Regiment, rank, and company: 55 Mass. Vols., 2nd Lieutenant Co. “D”
Residence before enlistment: Cambridge, Massachusetts
Conjugal condition: Single
Cause of death: Diarrhea Chron.
Age of the deceased: unknown
Nativity: unknown
Date of death and burial: Oct 5th, buried Oct 6th
[A duplicate of this Record has been forwarded to the Sexton, and another remains at this Hospital]
To. 1st Lieut Geo. A. Gorton & R. J. Arty
Post Adjutant, Hilton Head, SC.
Sir: It becomes my duty to inform you that the person above described died at this Hospital as herein stated; and that it is desired his remains should be interred with the usual military honors.
Surgeon U.S. Army
Military Hospital Hilton Head, S.C.
October 6th, 1863
This copy of Record is to be transmitted to the Adjutant General at Washington immediately after the place of burial and the number of the grave have been ascertained and registered. The above notification is to remain attached.

Inventory of Effects

Inventory of the effects of Leonard C. Alden late 2nd Lieutenant of Captain… Company D of the 55th Regiment of Massachusetts Volunteers, who was enrolled as a… at… in the State of… on the… day of… 186…, at… in Company…, …Regiment of… Volunteers, to serve …years or during the war; he was born in… in the State of…; he was …years of age, …feet …inches high, …complexion, …eyes, …hair, and by occupation, when enrolled, a…; he died in U.S. general Hospital, at Hilton Head S.C. on the 5th day of October 1863, by reason of Diarrhea Chronica.

Articles No. Articles No. Articles No.
Hats 1 Pairs trowsers 2 Knapsacks 1
Forage caps   Pairs drawers 1 Rubber Blankets 1
Great coats 1 Flannel shirts   Quilt 1
Uniform coats   shirts 2 Canteen 1
Uniform jackets   Pairs boots   Trunk & contents 1
Flannel sack coats 1 Pairs shoes 3 Sword 1
Blouses   Pairs socks 1

Money Specie


Stable frocks   Woollen blankets 1
Fatigue overalls   Haversacks 1

I certify on honor, that the above inventory comprises all the effects of 2nd Lieut Leonard C. Alden, deceased, and that the effects are in the hands of… at… to be disposed of by a Council of Administration
U.S. Gen’l Hospital
Hilton Head S.C.
October 21st 1865>

US General Hospital

Sir, in reply to your note concerning the effects of Lt. C. Alden, I have to say, that he left $47.00 in money, which, by some inadvertency was not put on the inventory. This money, with his effects, I will forward to the address you desire in Boston.
Please enter the $47.00 on the Inventory you have.
Very Respectfully
Your Obdt. Servt.
J. E. Semple
asst. Surgeon USA
to Ltn. Col A. S. Hartmell
55 Mass Vols.

Leonard C. Alden, 2nd Lieutenant, Company D, 55 Regiment Massachusetts Volunteers, Compiled Military Service Records of Volunteer Union Soldiers who served with the United States Colored Troops: 55th Massachusetts Infantry (Colored), (National Archives Microfilm Publication M1801, roll 1); Muster Rolls; Records of the Adjutant General’s Office, 1780s-1917, Record Group 94; National Archives, Washington, DC.

More information about African American Regiments and Soldiers in the Civil War can be found in:

A Brave Black Regiment: The History of the Fifty-Fourth Regiment of Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry 1863-1865


Record of the Service of the Fifty-Fifth Regiment of Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry


A Voice of Thunder: A Black Soldier’s Civil War


Microsoft Encarta Africana


Black Valor: Buffalo Soldiers and the Medal of Honor, 1870-1898


The Black Civil War Soldiers of Illinois


A Grand Army of Black Men: Letters from African-American Soldiers in the Union Army

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