Company K went into the Battle of Fredericksburg with 28 men, only seven survived
Thomas H. Walker enlisted 25 Apr 1861 for 3 months; he did not mustered in, rather he re-enlisted on May 10th for 3 years, this time mustering in on 1 Jun 1861 in Company D, 2nd Infantry as a Sergeant; he received a Disability Discharge 1 Aug 1861 in Washington, D.C. He again re-enlisted on 11 Sep 1861 at age 23 as a Sergeant in Compana K. 5th NH Regiment mustering in 12 Oct 1861. He received his commission on the field to 2nd Lieutenant 15 Dec 1862; and resigned 11 Jun 1863. At the time of his enlistment, he lived in Durham with other family members living in Newmarket.
Born in Boston to Thomas and Alice Walker (both of whom emmigrated from England). When he was five years old, his family took him to hear Daniel Webster deliver the dedication address on June 17th, 1833 at the new Bunker Hill monument.
After the War of the Rebellion, he moved to Newmarket and married Mary S. Edgerly on 24 Aug 1866. Their son George H. Walker was born in 1871. The 1880 census lists Thomas’ occupation as a stone cutter. In 1883 as he appears on the Newmarket roster of veterans as receiving a pension of $7.50 since 8 Apr 1881 due to “malaria, fever and eczema”. In 1900 he listed his profession as farm laborer and stone cutter. George H. Walker was employed as a freight agent for the railroad; at age 33. George committed suicide in Jan of 1904. Thomas lived another four years until May of 1910 when he died at age 72 with a re-occurring attack of Malaria. During his life in Newmarket he was actively involved in the G.A.R. serving several years as its commander.
(photo: Lt. Thomas H. Walker)
The following article appeared 20 Feb 1892 in the Newmarket Advertiser:
Lieut. Thomas H. Walker of this town had just settled with the government for commanding Company K, 5th NH Volunteers from Dec 13, 1862 to March 2, 1863, together with travel pay and subsistence to Concord, N.H, amounting in all to $164.30. Lieutenant Walker knew this pay was due him all these years, but did not put in any claim for it until a few years ago, when the government at once recognized his claim as above.
As is well known as those conversant with the statistics of The Great Rebellion, Company K went into the Battle of Fredericksburg with 26 men and two commissioned officers, and came out with only six men and one officer. Orderly Sergeant Walker was promoted to 2nd Lieutenant on the field just before the battle, and being the sole surviving officer, was thus in command of the Company for the time above stated.
The Newmarket boys in the battle with Lieutenant Walker were George S. Tebbets, killed in action 30 June 1862; George A. Gay, promoted to 2ndLieutenant, 11 Sep 1862, wounded at the Battle of Antietam 17 Sep 1862 and died of wounds 20 Sep 1862; John M. Davis, wounded at Antietam 17 Sep 1862, discharged 4 Jan 1863 from Baltimore, came home to Newmarket and died in December 1863 of those wounds; Orrin D. Shaw, wounded badly at Fredericksburg, discharged 4 Jan 1863, and now living in Newmarket. All were good soldiers and did honor to the “Fighting Fifth”.
Death Notice published May 27, 1910 –
THOMAS H. WALKER died at his home on Exeter Street early Thursday morning after a long illness. Mr. Walker was born in Boston, Mass., on the old historic Fort Hill, but had resided in Durham and Newmarket most of his life. He was a civil war veteran, having enlisted in Company D., 2nd NH Volunteers. He afterwards enrolled in Company K, 5th NH Volunteers, as a Sergeant, and was appointed Lieutenant Dec 15, 1862. He resigned from the service on account of sickness June 11, 1863. His age was 72 years, 9 months, 25 days and he is survived by a widow and several sisters. His funeral will take place from his late home Saturday afternoon.
Funeral Notice published
The funeral of Thomas H. Walker was held at his late home Saturday afternoon of last week. Services were conducted by Rev. John. C. Prince, pastor of the federated churches. At the request of the deceased, Mrs. F.H. Pinkham sang “Waiting and Watching.” Which was selected by Mr. Walker before his death. The bearers were A.J.Waterson, I.T.George, E.F. Harvey and F.H. Pinkham. Interment was at Riversie cemetery, where the committal service was held by Rev. J.C. Prince.
On the Death of Thomas H. Walker
He has gained the Haven, the Port of rest
The happy homeland of the bless’d;
His pains and sorrows all are o’er,
They can disturb him never more.
He heeded well his country’s call,
And saw his comrades ‘round him fall,
But faltered not within the strife,
If need, to sacrifice his life.
His faith was strong, and hope did cheer,
For glorious visions did appear,
So that he longed each weary day,
That he might pass from earth away.
For Death had lost its terrors all
And he was waiting for the call
That would his fettered spirit free,
And he, his dear Redeemer see.
He trusted in Christ’s power to save,
The victory over death, the grave,
That all earth’s children would receive.
Who in his merits did believe.
And to the dear one that is left,
Who now does deeply feel bereft,
May comfort and support be given,
Until they meet again in Heaven.
(By Mr. A.A. Senter, written by request)