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Robert Hale Ives, Jr. (1837-1862)

Robert Hale Ives, Jr. went to Brown University in 1857 at the age of twenty. Ives desperately wanted to enlist when the Civil War broke out in the summer of 1861, but family and business obligations prevented him from doing so. However, during the summer of 1862, after a series of Union defeats and with Confederate forces preparing to invade Maryland, Ives volunteered. He first saw action near Frederick, Maryland on September 14, 1862, and "was bringing a regiment into position when a huge shell shrieked past and struck just behind him, in the head of the column killing and wounding some twenty men. He neither quickened his pace, nor turned his head; said a spectator, “I never saw a cooler man.”

Three days later, when the armies clashed at the Battle of Antietam, a cannon ball hit Ives in the right thigh, tearing away flesh and exposing bone, and killing his horse underneath him. Carried from the field by his servant, Ives remained alive long enough for his father to be at his bedside when he expired ten days later. His funeral in Providence occurred exactly one month after his initial departure to the front. Read More...

The Rev. John D. Alexander