THE STORY BEHIND THE "TAPS"
THE FISHER FAMILY IN THE CIVIL WAR
John B. FISHER (1808-1861) my Great-Great Grandfather, who served in the civil war, along with two of his sons; John W. Fisher (1838-1904), and Isaac N. Fisher (1842-1869). My Fisher ancestors migrated from Bourbon County Kentucky to Sangamon County, Illinois about 1840. My father is Carleton R. Fisher(1922- ), a WWII U.S. Coast Guard Veteran, grew up in Loami, as did his father, (my Grandpa) Richard A. Fisher (1888-1987) (WWI Army Signal Corp.),and his father, (my Great-Grandpa) Hamlet Webb (1847-1923), and of course all of their siblings. RE: My FISHER Civil War Veterans... According to the Early Settlers of Sangamon County (page 297): 1. John B. Fisher (1808-1861) "John B. Fisher enlisted August,1861, in Co. B, 30th Ill. Inf... for three years. He was 53 years of age, but believed it to be his duty to enter the army. In the battle of Belmont, MO. he became over-heated, from the effects of which he died at Cairo, Ill., Dec. 14, 1861." The document went on to say "His widow (Nancy D. (Webb) 1809-1899) resides two miles northwest of Loami." 2. John W. Fisher (1838-1904) "born De. 11, 1838 in Bourbon County, KY., enlisted in Sangamon County, Aug. 5, 1862 in Co. I, 73rd Ill. Inf..., for three years, was captured at Cassville, GA, Sept. 24, 1864, was taken to Andersonville prison and remained until he was paroled and exchanged. He had been reported hung, and given up by his friends as dead. He is yet an invalid from the effect of the cruel treatment in prison, and resides (April 1874) with his mother." 3. Isaac N. Fisher 1842-1869) "born Aug. 21, 1842, enlisted Aug. 5, 1862, in Co. I, 73rd Ill. Inf.., for three years, served until he became disabled, and was transferred to the Veterans Reserve Corp., and was honorably discharged June 27, 1865, lingered until July 27, 1869, when he died at home."MORGANPOST GAR, ILLIOPOLIS Left to Right: Dr. J. P. Cowdin, Richard Blanchard, Sr., Unidentified, P. P. Lucas and son, John Kaylor, Unidentified, "Barber" Johnson, Aaron Moore, Ed Burns, Tom Graham, D. W. Peden, Ed Day, Tipton Hampton, Joe Miller, Gideon Leeds, Unidentified, J. S. Demmitt, Basil Wood and David Hart. (Obviously all of these are not identified as there are more in the picture than there are names. I can identify our ancestor John Kaylor who is behind the child on the left. Could use that as a guideline??) GAR stands for the Grand Army of the Republic (Civil War)
Year Photo was taken is not known, but before 1916. Morgan Post was chartered
31 March 1883 and named in honor of Charles MORGAN who died in the Battle of Fort Donelson. He was the grandson of William BRIDGES. On this Memorial Day members of Morgan Post, honored their deceased comrades by marching single file to leave flowers at each grave. The ceremony was followed by a program of band music, recitations, and a memorial speech. Abstracted from the "Centennial History of Illiopolis", 1856 -1956, put together by the Centennial Committee in 1956.
See also Illiopolis Township History
THE STORYBEHIND "TAPS" It all began in 1862 during the Civil War, when Union Army Captain Robert Ellicombe was with his men near Harrison's Landing in Virginia. The Confederate Army was on the other side of the narrow strip of land. During the night, Captain Ellicombe heard the moan of a soldier who lay mortally wounded on the field. Not knowing if it was a Union or Confederate soldier, the captain decided to risk his life and bring the stricken man back for medical attention. Crawling on his stomach through the gunfire, the captain reached the stricken soldier and began pulling him toward his encampment. When the captain finally reached his own lines, he discovered it was actually a Confederate soldier, but the soldier was dead. The captain lit a lantern. Suddenly, he caught his breath and went numb with shock. In the dim light, he saw the face of the soldier. It was his own son. The boy had been studying music in the South when the war broke out. Without telling his father, he enlisted in the Confederate Army. The following morning, heartbroken, the father asked permission of his superiors to give his son a full military burial despite his enemy status. His request was partially granted. The captain had asked if he could have a group of Army band members play a funeral dirge for the son at the funeral. That request was turned down since the soldier was a Confederate. Out of respect for the father, they did say they could give him only one musician. The captain chose a bugler. He asked the bugler to play a series of musical notes he had found on a piece of paper in the pocket of his dead son's uniform. This wish was granted. This music was the haunting melody we now know as "Taps" that is used at all military funerals. ********** These are the words to "TAPS": Day is done, Gone the sun, From the lakes, From the hills, From the sky. All is well. Safely rest. God is nigh.
And yet another version which claims the first version was extracted from Doug Storer's Encyclopedia of Amazing but True Facts, published by Signet. 'Taps' Composed By Major General Daniel Butterfield Army of the Potomac, Civil War "Fading light dims the sight, And a star gems the sky, gleaming bright. From afar drawing nigh -- Falls the night. "Day is done, gone the sun, From the lake, from the hills, from the sky. All is well, safely rest, God is nigh. "Then good night, peaceful night, Till the light of the dawn shineth bright, God is near, do not fear -- Friend, good night." The bugle call was written during the Peninsula Campaign of the Civil War by General Butterfield, with an assist from his bugler, Oliver W. Norton, in 1862. ================ end quote =================