Biography of Henry Waldron
Monroe County, MI Biographies

Henry Waldron was born in Albany, New York, October 11, 1819. His father, Henry Waldron, was a merchant in that city.

He pursued his preparatory studies at the Albany Academy. He entered Rutger's College, New Jersey, in 1834, and was graduated in the class of 1836. Among his distinguished classmates were ex-Secretary of State Freling huysen, Chief Justice Bradley Governor Newell and Hon. Cortland Parker.

In 1837 he came to Monroe, Michigan, as a civil engineer, and was engaged in the construction of the Michigan Southern Railroad from Monroe to Hillsdale. In 1839 he became a resident of Hilisdale, where he lived until his death, September 23, 1880.

In 1842 he was elected a member of the Michigan Legislature. He served six terms in Congress, 1854 to 1860 and 1870-76.

In the War of the Rebellion he took an earnest and active part, contributing liberally of his means and by his influence for the preservation of the Union.

He was instrumental in organizing the Eighteenth Regiment of Michigan Infantry, which did such good service in the Union army. At the reunion of this regiment at Monroe, August 25th, 1873, he delivered the oration. In this oration he gave a brief sketch of the honorable record the regiment made, which we quote, as it may be of interest to the surviving veterans who are with us, and which will call up to them the memories of nearly a quarter of a century ago:

"We watched with anxious eyes the movements of the regiment, following it from post to post - from Nashville to Decatur - from Decatur to Pond Springs, where you surprised and captured a corps of rebel cavalry, routing another detachment a few days later at Cortland. Then leaving to re-enforce the garrison at Athens, arriving there just in time to prevent the rebel general Rodney from capturing and pillaging the town, afterwards pursuing Wheeler to Shoal Creek. Then the pursuit being abandoncd you returned to Decatur, and the same month a detachment of your regiment numbering about 250 is sent to re enforce the garrison at Athens. It arrived within two miles of the fort, finds it in the hands of the enemy, is met by a rebel force of thousands uuder General Forrest, and after five hours of desperate fighting, during which its ammunition is all exhausted, the detachment with but few exceptions are all killed, wounded or captured.

"In October of the same year the regiment participated in the successful defense of Decatur against the rebel army under General Hood, and during that siege a detachment of fifty men dislodged the enemy's sharpshooters from a line of rifle pits, driving them from their cover, taking one hundred and fifteen prisoners, with the loss to the detachment of only two men wounded."

Among this group of biographies, we feel that not one will call back more kindly or affectionate memories than the one at the head of this sketch, Hon. Henry Waldron, always one of Hillsdale's most honored aud respected citizens. He died September 13, 1880, and his remains are at rest in beautiful Oak Grove Cemetery, but he will ever live in the hearts of those who knew him well.

History of Monroe County, Michigan
Talcott E. Wing, Editor
Munsell & Company, Publishers
New York 1890.

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