Wells, Charles James Stuart
Age: 0, credited to Burlington, VT
Service: ASURG, USN, 11/61; Mississippi Squadron, 62-63; steam frigate Niagara, special service, 63-64; Mississippi Squadron, 64-65; passed ASURG, 66 Shamrock, South Atlantic Squadron, 67-68; steam frigate Colorado, flag-ship Asiatic Fleet, 69-73; SURG, 7/6/72.
See Legend for expansion of abbreviationsVITALS
Birth: 05/10/1836, Burlington, VT
Burial: Oak Hill Cemetery, Washington, DC
Marker/Plot: Van Ness, Lot 159 East.
Gravestone researcher/photographer: Loretta Castaldi
Findagrave Memorial #: 39824714
Alias?: None noted
Pension?: Not Found
College?: Not Found
Veterans Home?: Not Found
(If there are state digraphs above, this soldier spent some time in a state or national soldiers' home in that state after the war)
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Oak Hill Cemetery, Washington, DC
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Charles James Stuart Wells
Charles James Stuart Wells was born on 10 May 1836, in Burlington. He fitted for college at Burlington High School, and received A.B. and M.D. degrees from the UVM Medical School in 1857 and 1861, respectively. He was a classmate of fellow surgeons Egbert Allis, Henry Pitkin, and George Van Deusen (q.v.).
Wells was appointed Assistant Surgeon on 24 January 1862. On 12 March, he reported to the receiving ship Princeton, at Philadelphia. He detached 11 July 1862 and sent to the Mississippi Squadron, at least part of the time on USS Brooklyn. On 29 May 1863, Wells participated in a landing party from Brooklyn, at Brazos Santiago, Texas, which captured a battery and four ships that were transporting arms.
Wells detached from Brooklyn on 16 September 1863, and assigned to USS Niagara, which was recommissioned at Boston Navy Yard on 14 October. He was detached 26 January 1864, before Niagara sailed for Europe, awaiting orders. On 5 February, he returned to the Mississippi Squadron, served on USS Benton during part of that time, and detached 22 May 1865, awaiting orders.
Wells was promoted to Passed Assistant Surgeon on 30 October 1865, and was assigned to the Naval Asylum in Philadelphia, the next day.
Wells detached on 6 April 1866, and reported to USS Shamrock, South Atlantic Squadron, detaching from her on 7 July 1868, awaiting orders. On 2 November, he was ordered to the New York Navy Yard, detached 26 January 1870, and reported to USS Colorado. , he participated in an expedition to Korea, as the ship carried the U.S. Minister to China on a diplomatic mission, in early June 1871. From 14 to 18 June 1872, he was treated for a gunshot wound he received during an engagement on 10 June off the island of Kang-Hoa, Korea, as a landing party from the squadron retaliated for a Korean attack on a survey party. Master Jesse Smith (q.v.) was attached to another ship in the squadron, Alaska, during the Korean Expedition.
Wells was promoted to Surgeon on 6 July 1872, detached from Colorado on 17 March 1873, and was assigned to New York Navy Yard on 24 May. He detached 13 Marcy 1875, and served on USS Roanoke and the training ship Minnesota until 2 September 1876, when he reported to USS Ossipee, North Atlantic Fleet.
Wells detached from Ossipee on 11 May 1878, awaiting orders, which he received 30 October 1878, assigning him to the Washington Navy Yard.
Surgeon Wells was on the binnacle list from 1 to 8 December 1880, for intermittent fever as a result of "climatic influences" He was subsequently admitted for treatment on 25 December for acute rheumatism in his knee; by 30 December, he was suffering from pneumonia in his right lung, and congestion of the brain. He died 1 January 1881; interment in Oak Hill Cemetery, Washington (Lot 159 East).
Wells married Sarah Frances (Fannie) Neilson, of Richmond, Virginia, on 16 September 1868, at St. Stephen's Church, Philadelphia, Pa.. She received a widows' pension of $30 from February 1881 to 4 March 1886, when she failed to claim her check.
Extract from "Green Mountain Mariners in the Civil War," to be published Fall 2011, by Tom Ledoux.