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Capt. Benjamin Stone Jr.
 Capt. Benjamin Stone, Jr.

Capt. Benjamin Stone, Jr., for whom Post 68 was named, was born in the town of Dorchester December 18, 1817, and was educated in its public schools. He became a prominent and active citizen, was an acknowledged leader at music festivals, and for a period taught music. He resided in the town until he took the field at the head of the First Dorchester Company.

He was for many years connected with the militia and commanded the Dorchester Artillery. He always took a deep interest in military matters and was well versed in tactics. Upon the first call for troops he offered his services to the Governor and at once entered into the work of raising a company for the war, notice of which appeared in the Boston Herald, April 19, 1861, five days after the fall of Fort Sumter. By his personal popularity he soon gathered around him men enough to form a company and early in May had under his command a fine body of well disciplined soldiers. The company bore so good a reputation for military excellence that the commander of the eleventh Massachusetts Infantry selected it to complete his regiment, out of twenty or more companies that were offered.

On the 27th day of May, 1861, Capt. Stone with his command left his native town, and reported at Fort Warren for three years' duty in the field. He was in all the prominent battles on the Peninsula; and in that bloody encounter called the second Bull Run battle, while gallantly leading his men in a desperate charge, he fell, severely wounded. He was left on the field between the lines, where he lay four days without food or help. He was then removed to a field-hospital, where his leg was amputated. From there he was taken to Washington, where he died September 10, 1862. His diary, in which he wrote daily, even while lying wounded on the battlefield, expresses his gratitude for tender care and closes with a half-written sentence when it is apparent that his pencil dropped from his dying grasp. The citizens' committee of Dorchester decided that his remains should be brought to his early home for burial.

On Sunday, September 15, the funeral services were held at the First Parish Church. So deep was the esteem in which he was held that all the other churches in the town were closed and the citizens united in paying deserved tribute to his memory.

In that old North Burial Ground, sacred and hallowed as the last resting place of Dorchester's loved, honored and distinguished dead, rests the remains of Capt. Benjamin Stone, Jr. A simple marble tablet at the head of his grave bears this inscription, "As a citizen beloved and respected through life, Lamented in his early death as a self-devoted patriot soldier."

Source: Historical Souvenir of Benjamin Stone Jr., Post No. 68, Department of Mass., G.A.R. Twenty-sixth National Encampment, held in Washington, D.C. September, 1892. Dorchester: Post No. 68, 1892.

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Created: January 8, 2005   Modified: January 8, 2005