Monday, May 24, 2021

Sgt. Harrison Snead, Co. I, 36th USCI

With Memorial Day approaching, over the next few days, I thought I'd share a few photographs of Civil War soldiers buried in national cemeteries around the Petersburg area. Today's post is about Sgt. Harrison Snead. 

Snead, apparently born enslaved in Baltimore, Maryland, enlisted in Company I, 36th USCI in Portsmouth, Virginia, on September 17, 1863. Lt. James Backup, the subject of my last post, served as Snead's enlisting officer. The 20-year old Snead was a baker prior to enlisting. 

Promoted to sergeant, young Snead assumed some important responsibilities within the company. The enlisted men looked to their non-commissioned officers to learn the basics of soldier life, but it must have been a challenge when everyone was relatively new to army life.

Snead's youthful life was cut short while serving in the trenches of Petersburg on August 20, 1864. No details are provided in his service records about whether he was killed by a sniper's bullet or an exploding shell. Buried originally "near Petersburg," Snead was later reinterred in Poplar Grove Cemetery, where he rests in peace today in grave number 4465. 

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