James Quigley Anderson

Buried in the Beaver Cemetery and Mausoleum, Beaver, Beaver County, Pennsylvania.  Picture of headstone by LAURIE DEVINE on find-a-grave

James Quigley Anderson was born July 5, 1837, in Brighton township, Beaver county, Pennsylvania, near the county seat. His father, Hugh B. Anderson, was a farmer. There were two children in the family, a son and daughter. James was the oldest. His father and mother were Presbyterians, Mr. Anderson being an elder in the Beaver Presbyterian Church for many years. His son received his early education in the district school. The school term consisted of six months each year, and during the summer and fall months James worked on his father s farm. Some time in the early fifties his parents left their farm and took up their residence in Beaver, where his father engaged in the mercantile business.

Soon after locating in Beaver, James entered the Beaver Academy, and remained there during his early manhood days. He was a close student, not only in the day school, but equally so in the Sabbath-school. He had the reputation of being candid, courageous and independent; a man of regular and temperate habits, who laid deep and strong the foundation of an unblemished character, carrying himself with dignity, and yet with grace and courtesy.

After his graduation in the Beaver Academy, his parents placed him at school in one of the eastern colleges, where he took a course of civil engineering. He returned from school in 1859, soon after accepted a position under the government, and was sent to the State of Missouri, where he followed his chosen profession, civil engineering. Later he was transferred to the State of Kansas and assisted in the survey of the territory on which now stands Kansas City.

He remained there until the summer of 1862, when President Lincoln issued his call for three hundred thousand volunteers to serve three years, or during the war. It was at this time that young Anderson s spirit, having been caught up by the flaming enthusiasm which swept like a prairie fire throughout the North, hastened to his native county of Beaver to offer his services to his country.

Mr. Anderson was instrumental in obtaining authority from the governor of Pennsylvania to recruit a company of volunteer cavalry, which later became Company A of the Seventeenth Pennsylvania Cavalry. This regiment was organized at Harrisburg on the i8th day of October, 1862.

James Quigley Anderson was commissioned first lieutenant of Company A, September 6, 1862; promoted to captain December 13, 1862; to major, June 13, 1863; to lieutenant colonel, April 30, 1864; to colonel, January 23, 1865; discharged, by General Order, June 20, 1865.

Colonel Anderson for some months previous to the close of the war had been in poor health. Notwithstanding his enfeebled health, he was in the saddle early and late, ever prompt and efficient, and especially so during an engagement with the enemy. During the last year of his service his faithful orderly, Mr. McBrier, of Company A, was ever at his side to assist him to mount his horse.

When in battle, though weak and scarcely able to ride, his voice, in giving commands, was strong, clear and distinct, so that it could be heard all along the line. A short time before the close of the war, Colonel Anderson became very much reduced by disease, which caused him to retire from service. When in command of his regiment he took a personal interest in every detail of camp and march. His earnest solicitude for the comfort and safety of his men endeared him to every one of his command. He was always with the boys in the thickest of the fight, had received several slight wounds, and had several horses killed from under him. He was highly esteemed by both the officers and rank and file of his regiment.

He was a man of recognized ability, and of the most exalted character, with a classic face and superb form. Tall, erect and commanding, he would have been selected among thousands of men as the ideal soldier. His very presence commanded respect and inspired confidence. None who saw Colonel Anderson doubted his certain promotion to still higher command, if his life had been spared.

Shortly after his return to his native town of Beaver, the chivalrous soldier, the noble-hearted gentleman was furloughed, forever furloughed from earth, battles and care.

He died at his father's home in Beaver, October 16, 1865, and was laid to rest in the Beaver cemetery near the home of his birth, where he will sleep until the roll call sounds on the other shore.

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Source: History of the Seventeenth Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteer Cavalry OR One Hundred and Sixty-Second in the Line of Pennsylvania Volunteer Regiments. War to Suppress the Rebellion, 1861-1865. Compiled from Records of the Rebellion, Official Reports, Recollections, Reminiscences, Incidents, Diaries and Company Rosters, with an Appendix by H. P. Mover, Formerly Bugler, Co. E, 17th Regt., Pa. Vol. Cavalry. SOWERS PRINTING COMPANY, LEBANON, PA.