Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Colonel John A. Savage, Wisconsin.

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Colonel John A. Savage was born at Ogdensburg, N. Y., in 1 832. Was the son of Rev. John A. Savage, D. D., president of Carroll College, Waukesha, Wisconsin, and who for more than twenty-three years was pastor of the Presbyterian Church of Ogdensburg, N. Y. He died December 13th, 1864.

Colonel Savage's studies were pursued at the Ogdensburg Academy and the Academy at Argyle,  Washington County, N. Y. (the home of his uncle. Dr. James Savage), and he was prepared to enter the sophomore class in Union College, which was his father's Alma ]Mater, when he moved with his father and family to Waukesha, his father taking the presidencv of Carroll College in 1850.

Colonel Savage began the study of law in the office of R. W. Wright, at Waukesha, but within the year he went to Milwaukee and entered the office of Judge H. N. Wells. Soon after he was
admitted to the bar. Colonel Savage was a natural orator and had a remarkably clear voice. His love for and appreciation of genuine eloquence was very prominent. His brother, Rev. Edward Savage, of Windom, Minn., says of him: "I remember his enthusiasm. Taking me in hand when I was a boy at school, he wrote out for me to learn a declamation, the eloquent closing passage of the speech of Hon. Byron Payne on the defense of S. M. Booth on trial for violation of the fugitive slave law. John's instructions were not such as would lead me to the patent bombastic oratory that is so common a product of schools of oratory, but he charged me to read it carefully and get possessed of the impassional earnestness that prompted the various words. * * John had hard work to come down to the common-place court commissioners' office work when those masters in legal argument, such as V. G. Ryan, Jonathan E. Arnold and Byron Payne, were in court. He loved to listen to such speakers, and yielding to his passion for such treats, had much to do with his development as a public speaker."

On August 30th, 1802, John A. Savage was commissioned adjutant of the Twenty-eighth Wisconsin Infantry, mustered as such September 5th, 1802. Mr.Edward Savage, a younger brother, now a prominent minister of Windom, Minn., also was a member of the Twenty-eighth Wisconsin, Company B. Adjutant John A. Savage resigned for disability August 5th, 1863. Recovering his health, he was commissioned lieutenant-colonel of the Thirty-sixth Wisconsin Volunteers, February 9th, 1864, and mustered as such March 18th, 1864. He went with the regiment to the Army of the Potomac, participating with it in all of its battles - North Anna, Totopotomy, Bethesda Church and Cold Harbor.

When at the latter battle. Colonel Frank A. Haskell was killed, Lieutenant Colonel Savage became the regiment's commander. Was commissioned colonel June 11th, 1864. Seven days later at the charge over the "Melon Patch," while leading the regiment in front of the colors he shouted : '"Three cheers for the honor of Wisconsin ! Forward, my brave men !" Within two minutes he fell mortally
wounded. Was taken to Washington, where he died on July 4th; 1864.

The Bar Association of Milwaukee met and passed resolutions of tribute to Colonel Savage. He too, like Colonel Haskell, was out down in the prime of life when there was such a good future for so bright an intellect.

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