Calvary Cemetery’s Soldiers’ Lots by Steve Michaels
In 1856, the Right Reverend John Henni, Milwaukee’s first Catholic Bishop, purchased 55 acres at North 55th Street & Bluemound Road. Calvary Cemetery was consecrated on All Souls Day, November 2, 1857.
In 1866, the Catholic Archdiocese of Milwaukee donated a plot of land (Block 5C, Lot 38) for the burial of Catholic Civil War veterans. The first was Pvt. David Tenny (headstone: “Tenney”), a blind veteran from Wautoma, who was the only resident of the downtown Soldiers Home shelter buried there. He died on July 23, 1866, of consumption.
Others were residents of the new Northwestern Branch of the National Home for Disabled American Soldiers:
- Pvt. Patrick Manning, probably Co. B, 1st WI Hvy. Art., died 26 Mar 1867
- Smn. Michael Maloney, USN, died 19 Aug 1867
- Pvt. Thomas O’Rourke, Co. G, 14th MI Inf., died 19 July 1869 (headstone: 19 Apr 1869)
- Pvt. James Bradley, Co. C, 2nd NY Inf., died 30 Sep 1869
- Pvt. Michael O’Regan, co. F, 95th NY Inf., died 19 Dec 1869
- Pvt. Thomas Crannell (headstone: Cranwell), Co. H, 1st IL Cav., died 22 Dec 1869
- Pvt. Michael Harmon (headstone: Hannon), Co. K, 78th NY Inf., died 23 May, 1870
- Sgt. Patrick O’Brien (headstone: O’Brier), 48th NY Inf., died 11 Jul 1870 (headstone: 12 Jul 1870)
- Pvt. Cesar Deregan (headstone: Ceaser Deregen), Co. C, 2nd MN Inf., died 15 Aug 1870
- Pvt. Egnas Schiiling (headstone: Eugene Shilling), Co. E, 5th MO and Co. A, 2nd VRC, died 13 Jan 1871
- 2Lt. Robert Slattery, 2nd RI Hvy Art., died 19 Feb 1871
- Pvt. Thomas Kinney (headstone: Kinny), Co. E, 19th WI Inf., died 21 Feb 1871
- Pvt. Urban Otto, Co. M, 13th PA Cav., died 12 Mar 1871
- Pvt. Dennis McInerney (headstone: Denis McInmary), Co. H, 23rd IL Inf., died 26 Mar 1871
- Pvt. Charles Schribner, Co. E, 1st WI Inf., died 11 Apr 1871
- Pvt. James Gollar (headstone: Gollin), Co. C, 65th NY Inf., died 14 Apr 1871
- Pvt. Eugene Oudin (headstone: Ondin), Co. E, 47th NY Inf., died 27 Apr 1871 (headstone: 26 Apr 1871)
- Pvt. John G. Ring, Co. G, 100th NY Inf., died 3 Aug 1874
- Pvt. John Feeley, Co. B, 51st IN Inf., died 12 Oct 1874
- Pvt. Thomas Connolly (headstone: Connelly), Co. A, 69th NY Inf., died 13 Jan 1875
- Pvt. Michael Hamel, Co. B, 52nd WI Inf., died 9 Oct 1877
- Pvt. Michael O’Leary, Co. I, 3rd WI Inf., died 19 Jul 1878
- Pvt. Hugh Seely, unit and death date unknown.
Calvary’s Soldiers’ Lot allowed for two dozen burials. More than three quarters of the spaces were used before the Soldiers Home cemetery was opened in May 1871. It was apparent that more space was needed. In 1876, a much larger section was donated at the south end of the Cemetery within Block 14. In the south central part of that block are 690 burials.