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John Burns, 69 year-old War of 1812 veteran, picks up his flintlock and joins the Iron Brigade

John Lawrence Burns, July 1863, detail
07/01/1863
John Lawrence Burns, a Gettysburg constable and a War of 1812 veteran, had been just recently released from the jail the Confederates had put him for protesting their recent occupation of his town.  Frustrated in earlier attempts in the war to enlist, Burns joined in now, in frock coat and tall hat, with the Wisconsin and Michigan regiments of the Iron Brigade as a sharpshooter.  He was wounded, left on the battlefield, and made his way home to recover. He became a national hero and met Abraham Lincoln when the president visited Gettysburg. (By John Osborne)
Source Citation: 
"Address of Rev. E.J. Wolf," in John Page Nicolson (ed.), Pennsylvania at Gettysburg: Ceremonies at the Dedication of the Monuments Erected by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania ... (Harrisburg, PA: William Stanley Ray, 1904), II: 933-938.

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