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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Cape May in Cape May County, New Jersey — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Henry Washington Sawyer

1830 – 1893

 

—Civil War Hero —

 
Henry Washington Sawyer Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, August 27, 2008
1. Henry Washington Sawyer Marker
Inscription. Born in Allentown, Pennsylvania May 16, 1830. Moved to Cape May (then Cape Island) in 1848 as carpenter and builder. In 1861 one of first enlisted from Cape May and assigned as 2nd Lt. of Special Guard at the capitol in Washington. Commissioned 2nd Lt. in N.J. Cavalry in 1862, promoted to 1st Lt. and Captain, and wounded and captured at Brandy Station in 1863. In Libby Prison one of two captains chosen to be executed in retaliation for execution of two Confederate spies. President Lincoln threatened to execute Brig. Gen. William H.F. Lee, son of General Robert E. Lee if Captain Sawyer was shot. Exchanged for Gen. Lee in 1864, returned to active duty and again wounded. Discharged as colonel in 1865. Returned to Cape May and operated The Ocean House. Built Hotel Chalfonte in 1876 and ran it until his death. Served 9 years on Cape May City Council, was Superintendent of the U.S. Life Saving Service for the State of New Jersey Coast and Member of N.J. State Sinking Fund Commission. Died October 16, 1893. Buried in Old Cold Spring Cemetery.
 
Location. 38° 55.918′ N, 74° 55.447′ W. Marker is in Cape May, New Jersey, in Cape May County. Marker can be reached from Washington Street, on the right when traveling east. Click for map. The marker
Marker in Cape May image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, August 27, 2008
2. Marker in Cape May
is near the south end of the Washington Street Mall in Cape May. Marker is in this post office area: Cape May NJ 08204, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Lt. Richard Wickes (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Edgar Arthur Draper (about 700 feet away); Edwin Joseph Hill, CMH (about 800 feet away); S. S. Cape May (approx. 0.2 miles away); Cape May County Fishermans Memorial (approx. 1.4 miles away); What Is It? (approx. 1.7 miles away); The Bunker Story (approx. 1.7 miles away); Bats on the Move (approx. 1.8 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Cape May.
 
Also see . . .  History of the Chalfonte. The Chalfonte website. (Submitted on August 28, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.) 
 
Categories. Notable PersonsWar, US Civil
 
Marker on the Washington Street Mall image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, August 27, 2008
3. Marker on the Washington Street Mall
Marker is located on the walkway on the north side of the Whale's Tail store in Cape May's Washington Street Mall.
Cape May Historic District image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, August 27, 2008
4. Cape May Historic District
The Henry Washington Sawyer Marker is located in the Cape May Historic District, a National Historic Landmark. This plaque is located a block north of the marker.
Hotel Chalfonte image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, August 27, 2008
5. Hotel Chalfonte
Henry Sawyer's Hotel Chalfonte, a National Historic Landmark, is still an active hotel in Cape May. Built in 1876, the Chalfonte is Cape May's oldest hotel, being the only survivor of a major fire in 1878 which destroyed over 30 acres in downtown Cape May.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 1,205 times since then and 5 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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