Moweaqua in Shelby County, Illinois — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
Lincoln's Cavalry Guard
—Looking for Lincoln —
In 1863, Ohio Governor David Tod believed that Lincoln needed a cavalry body-guard. Governor Tod requested one volunteer from each county in Ohio to serve on special duty. Guernsey County, in east-central Ohio supplied Ephraim Adamson, a twenty-four-year-old farmer. Recruits were unaware of their duty until mustered into service and transported to Washington, D. C. Officially the 7th Independent Company, Ohio Volunteer Cavalry, they were called the Union Light Guard. With a unit of more than one hundred men, not all cavalrymen stayed with Lincoln. A large contingent guarded important Washington public buildings, including the War and Treasury Departments. President Lincoln spent summers at the Soldier’s Home, and guards escorted him to and from downtown Washington. Private Adamson mainly served at General Daniel Rucker’s headquarters. In April 1865, Adamson was at the Executive Mansion and heard President Lincoln give his final speech on April 11. John Wilkes Booth heard the same speech and, because of it, decided to assassinate the President. Lincoln had no guard on the night of April 14 because he typically refused a detail while attending the theater.
Private Adamson mustered out of service in September 1865 and returned to Ohio, selling goods from a wagon. He
President Lincoln and his family frequently interacted with members of the guard. Once, Tad Lincoln obtained the captain’s whistle, which signaled the sentinels to change position at each half-hour. Tad blew the whistle constantly for a short period of time surprising and confusing the guards. Adamson and others also complained to Lincoln about not fighting on the front line. Lincoln admonished the men, stating that while he preferred not to have a guard, Secretary of War Edwin Stanton insisted upon it. Then he told the story of a farmer who could not “understand why the Lord put the curl in a pig’s tail. It never seemed to be either useful or ornamental, but he reckoned that the Almighty knew what he was doing when he put it there.”
Erected 2009 by Shelby County Historical Society.
Marker series. This marker is included in the Looking for Lincoln marker series.
Location. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Moweaqua IL 62550, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 7 other markers are within 14 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Moweaqua Coal Mine Disaster Memorial (approx. 0.3 miles away); Moweaqua Coal Mine Disaster (approx. 0.3 miles away); Abraham Lincoln - Eighth Judicial District (approx. 12.8 miles away); First Home in Illinois of Abraham Lincoln (approx. 13.1 miles away); Whitley Mill and Dam (approx. 13.1 miles away); First Home of Abraham Lincoln in Illinois (approx. 13.2 miles away); Site of the Lincoln Cabin (approx. 13.2 miles away).
Also see . . .
1. Dedication of Lincoln's Cavalry Guard - Marker::. Courtesy Herald-Review.com:: here is a fine report of the Dedication and review - - by relatives of Ephraim Adamson of the historic marker. (Submitted on May 16, 2010, by Al Wolf of Veedersburg, Indiana.)
2. Travel with Lincoln ::. Climb into Lincoln’s buggy and take a trip with Lincoln and his fellow lawyers on the job traveling Illinois as Circuit Lawyers. See all the Lincoln Circuit Markers (and a surprise or two), in the order of his travels while a member of the Circuit of the Eighth Judicial (Submitted on May 16, 2010, by Al Wolf of Veedersburg, Indiana.)
3. Looking for Lincoln Video - on P. B. S. Follow Henry Louis Gates, Jr. "...from Illinois, to Gettysburg, to Washington, D. C., and face to face with people who live with Lincoln every day..." (Submitted on May 16, 2010, by Al Wolf of Veedersburg, Indiana.)
4. Looking for Lincoln::. Many resources for the Tracking of Lincoln through History and Illinois. Aimed at all ages. (Submitted on May 16, 2010, by Al Wolf of Veedersburg, Indiana.)
Categories. • War, US Civil •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on May 16, 2010, by Al Wolf of Veedersburg, Indiana. This page has been viewed 1,171 times since then and 68 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12. submitted on May 16, 2010, by Al Wolf of Veedersburg, Indiana. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.