Monday, July 07, 2014

Thomas D. Marbaker, New Jersey.

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Thomas D. Marbaker.

Birth: Between 1846- 1848
Death: 1923, Trenton, Mercer County, New Jersey.

Wife: Elizabeth (Lizzie) Booz Marbaker.
Married on December 24, 1873 Delaware, Hunterdon, New Jersey.

Burial: Riverview Cemetery, Trenton, Mercer County, New Jersey.

Eleventh New Jersey Infantry Regimental History.
Thomas D. Marbaker, the Regimental Historian, was born August 23d, 1846, on the Musconetcong Mountains, Hunterdon county, New Jersey. He left school at eleven years of age, commencing at that date to earn his own living. He entered the service July 19th, 1862, as a private in Company E, before be was sixteen years of age. Marbaker was a type of hundreds of young men whose exceedingly youthful appearance frequently stood in the way of that advancement to which their bravery, efficiency and endurance entitled them.

He was made Corporal August 20th, 1863, and Sergeant November 1st, 1863. Sergeant Marbaker was severely wounded at Chancellorsville, but left the hospital and rejoined the regiment on its march to Gettysburg. The Adjutant, discovering that he was in the ranks marching with a running wound, advised him to at once get in an ambulance, but Marbaker, with a pluck and endurance that was surprising, remained with his company and stood shoulder to shoulder with his comrades in the great conflict at Gettysburg. He was mustered out with the regiment June 6th, 1865.

Marbaker's run for life.

On the evening of the 17th a strong picket detail was sent out from the brigade to relieve those already posted. The picket-line ran northward from the main line until it reached two negro, cabins connected with the Landron estate and within sight of the line of works that we had thrown up near the Brown house. Then it turned eastward. Late in the afternoon of the 17th, Sergeant Marbaker, of Company E, with six men from various companies, relieved a lieutenant and six men at the angle-post, situated at one of the cabins.

Explicit orders were given not to fire unless the enemy made an attack, and not to disturb them if they attempted to form a picket-line. Just before dark it was noticed that they were collecting behind our abandoned works near the Brown house. Thinking they were only forming a few picket-posts no shots were fired at them. Suddenly an attack was made upon our picket-line to the left, which attracted our attention. Upon turning again toward the Brown house a heavy skirmish-line was found advancing from behind the line of works.

The pickets to the left were driven in, and those in the vicinity of the cabins, seeing a strong force advancing, fell back to the main line. Only Marbaker remained, sheltered by the chimney. It was either the risk of being shot or certain capture. To escape he must necessarily run up hill, exposed to the fire of a hundred guns. Several times he stepped out preparatory to a run, but the whizzing bullets would quickly send him to cover again.

At last, when the enemy had advanced to within less than a hundred yards of him, the dread of rebel prisons prevailed and he made a dash for liberty. Immediately the rebel skirmish-line opened upon him, and though the bullets whistled pretty lively, providentially, he escaped injury. I will not say that he out ran the bullets, but I do know that it would have taken a pretty fast horse to have beaten him up the hill. 

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