53d PVI Veterans at Gettysburg 50th Reunion – 1913

This piece comes from the Huntingdon Globe for July 10, 1913. (Submitted by Joel Peterson.)

Incidents of the 50th Reunion at Gettysburg, 1913

Huntingdon County veterans turn out exceptionally well at the reunion of the North and South, commemorative to the battle fifty years ago, which placed Gettysburg on the map as a town of historical importance. The Blues from Huntingdon and vicinity are unanimous in their praise of the treatment they received at the hands of their host, Uncle Sam, and the contrasted meeting with the Grays of the South, brought tears to the eyes of many.

Many and varied are the incident as related by the “vets,” all of which are interesting. While examining curios and relics in the Jennie Wade house near the battlefield last Wednesday, Luden Norris, a member of Company C, 53rd Regiment, Pennsylvania Volunteers, Huntingdon’s well known saddler and harness maker, chanced to pick up a time worn testament lying among the relics.

There was nothing unusual about the book but, as Mr. Norris leafed through the finger marked pages, he was astonished to discover on the flyleaf the autograph of Samuel F. Stains. Turning to fellow veterans and the authorities in charge of the Wade Museum, the Huntingdon veteran inquired where the testament had come from . As near as could be ascertained, it had been found on the battlefield at Gettysburg, and as there was nothing to identify it but the name, the book had been placed in the Jennie Wade house, where it had been guarded ever since.

The name of Samuel Stains was a familiar one to Norris, and after a moments reflection, he remembered a comrade from near Hollidaysburg, Blair County, who had fought side by side with him in the Gettysburg battle, both being members of Company C. 53rd Pennsylvania Volunteers. Stains became mysteriously ill shortly after the battle and he died some time later. Mr. Norris is now endeavoring to locate relatives who can establish their relationship and claim the memento of the dark days of the Civil strife. The authorities at Gettysburg stated to the Huntingdon veteran that the proper parties could have the testament provided they could prove absolutely their right to it.