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Anderson Zouaves Research

History of the Town of Essex, New York. (2006)


The first muster roll from the county at the outbreak of the Rebellion was taken in the town of Essex. Captain William D. Ross, eldest son of General Henry H. Ross, took about forty men from the town early in May, 1861, and had them incorporated with the Anderson Zouaves, under Colonel Riker at New York city. The following is a list of the volunteers as named in said roll, most of whom he commanded as lieutenant and captain. The roll is dated May 2d, 1861: William D. Ross, Belden R. Parkill, James Phillips, Charles Hoffnagle, Edmund Atherton, Albert Green, John Maloy, Joseph Hall, William E. Pratt, Horace A. Pratt, John Gordon, Franklin J. West, Samuel F. West, Henry H. Tucker, Andrew Todd, Napoleon Durant, Joseph Martin, Friend A. Smith, Charles P. Saywood, Henry W. Baldwin, George Tucker, James Stone, John Reed, Peter Lowe, Ira P. Knapp, Nathan W. Lincoln, E. Story, John Damady, Horace Smith, Franklin Flurry, Edwin Clemmons, F. A. Brown, George Chase, Artemas Woodruff, Daniel Cross. With a few exceptions the above names represent the men who left the town in May, 1861, to take an active part in the great struggle. The brave and gallant captain of this company, William D. Ross, did not live to see the cause, for which he was willing to sacrifice his life, victorious. On the 25th day of October, 1861, while in the line of his duty, the railroad track near Washington, he was struck and killed by a passing train. He was buried with military honors at (Washington), where his remains rested until his death was made known to his friends in Essex, when he was brought home and buried in the family vault. At the time of his death he was thirty one years of age, and had been in the practice of law in Essex for about eight years.

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