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31st Pennsylvania Infantry - Gettysburg Surgeon

Item CDV-7308
Evan Owen Jackson
Price: $485.00

Description

31st Pennsylvania Infantry
Gettysburg Surgeon
Evan Owen Jackson
Assistant Surgeon
Backmark: Brady
Signed in period ink

Evan O. Jackson Jr. was born in Berwick, PA. His father, Evan O. Jackson Sr. (born: 7/1/1801) was an attorney in Berwick, and his mother, Elizabeth Campbell (born: 10/18/1802) was a homemaker. The family moved to Philadelphia in the 1840s where the father continued to practice law.

Evan O. Jr. studied to be a physician at the Philadelphia Medical College, graduating in 1858. He was practicing medicine in Philadelphia when he received an appointment from Pennsylvania Governor Andrew G. Curtin in 1862 as an Assistant Surgeon to serve in the 2nd PA Reserves.
Gov. Curtin was a strong supporter of Lincoln’s policies in the Civil War and committed Pennsylvania to the war effort. Early in the War the Confederates were winning most of the battles, and Curtin, feared that they would attempt to move north and invade his state. He then organized the PA Reserves into combat units.

Dr. Jackson was mustered into the 2nd Regiment, PA Reserve Infantry (31st Volunteers) on 12/17/1862. This was the unit that was commanded by Col. Wm. “Buck” McCandless (See the McCandless bio on this same Mt. Moriah website). Dr. Evans served with this unit only for about eight months when he died. He was there for the “Mud March” (Jan. 20-22, 1863; a mission aborted because of weather and Washington’s lack of confidence in General Burnside’s leadership. He was relieved of command on January 26). Jackson next went with the Regiment to guard the City of Washington, D.C. until June 26 when they were ordered to Gettysburg, joining with the Army of the Potomac. At Gettysburg the unit fought at Plum Run and the Wheat Field.

On July 3 Lee’s forces were defeated at Gettysburg, culminating in the bloody repulse of Pickett’s Charge. On the next day the Union Army, including the 22nd, was ordered by General Meade to pursue the Rebel’s retreat, an 18 mile long wagon train with supplies, wounded, mounted soldiers, walking infantry & armament. Lee finally reached and crossed the Potomac, and relative safety on July 15th.

Dr. Jackson, however was ordered to remain at Gettysburg to care for the sick and wounded. It was here that he contracted typhoid fever. He was shipped by rail to Providence Hospital in Washington, DC for treatment, but he died on August 4, 1863. His body was shipped to his parents’ home at 1938 Coates Street, Philadelphia, where a funeral was held. He was interred at Mt. Moriah on August 10th in Section 8, Lot w ½. His mother and father are also buried there.
[Credited to Friends of Mount Moriah Cemetery website]