Monday, September 1, 2008

Thomas Alexander Trent

Sergeant, Company D, 39th Iowa Infantry
1st Lieutenant, Co. A., 110th U.S. Colored Infantry

Son of William M. & Susannah H. G. (Dyer) Trent. He was born in Owens County, Indiana in October 6,1834. At the age of 17 he moved to Iowa.

Many friends were present on at the home of his bride’s parents, Micajah & Hannah M. Parrish, 6 miles northwest of Osceola, Clarke County, Iowa on June 28, 1857 when, in a ceremony performed by Rev. B. C. Johnson of Osceola, he married Mary Elizabeth Parrish. She was born in Indiana on December 12, 1839.

When the Civl War broke out he, at the age of 28, he joined the Union forces and enlisted on August 9, 1862 as 5th Sergeant in Company D of the 39th Iowa Infantry under Capt. L. D. Bennett. C. W. Neal and Aaron Lewis of Osceola were also members of the same regiment. He was mustered in on November 20, 1862 and was discharged November 22, 1863 for promotion as First Lieutenant of Company A, 2nd Alabama Colored Infantry which later became the 110th U.S. Colored Infantry. "he is a brave and meritorious soldier," wrote Capt. L. D. Bennett of the 39th Iowa, "and will make and excellent officer." T. R. Oldham wrote, “This appointment is an excellent one and his many friends at home will rejoice to hear of his promotion. His company is now in the Division Pioneer corps, and is at work repairing the Railroad.” Thomas A. Trent’s name is listed on plaque D-108 on The African American Civil War Memorial in Washington, D.C.

At the close of the war he returned to Osceola and became a member of Post 173, Department of Iowa, Grand Army of the Republic. Mr. Trent remained a member of the G. A. R. to the time of his death. He was also at one time a member of the Blue Lodge of the Masonic order

He died April 16, 1926 at his home on South Main Street in Osceola, after having caught a cold ten days earlier. He had been able to sit up and read his newspaper the day before he passed away. A large number of friends and relatives attended the funeral services conducted at his home by Rev. C. S. Burnette after which he was interred in Osceola’s Maple Hill Cemetery. The ball bearers were: Chas. Edwards, Harry Talbott, Verne Hicks, Will Temple, Loyd Simmons and L. W. London. Those who sang at the funeral, Mrs. Ed. Banta, Miss Tot Scott, Dr. E. W. Paul and William Beard.Mary, his bride of 68 years, deid in 1929 and is buried beside her husband in Maple Hill Cemetery. To their union were born seven children: Emily H.; Jessie F.; Thomas A., Jr., who died about 1920; Charles W., of Custer, SD; Mary E.; James L., of San Jose, CA & William W. Trent, of Denver, CO.

Mary E. Parrish was the sister of Addison A. Parrish of Co. B, 18th Iowa Infantry

Sources: Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System; Clarke County Iowa Cemeteries, Volume 1: Maple Hill, p. 27; Obituary of Thomas Trent, Osceola Tribune, Osceola, Iowa, 22 APR 1936 Clarke County, Iowa Early Marriages 1852-1873, p. 24; 1856 Iowa State Census for Washington Township, Clarke County, Iowa; 1880 Federal Census for Osceola, Clarke County, Iowa; Roster and Record of Iowa Soldiers in the War of the Rebellion, Vol. 5, p. 1032; Gedcom file of Marsha R. Pearson; "Letter from Capt. L. D. Bennett of the 39th," The Union Sentinel, Osceola, Iowa, January 2, 1864; “A Letter From The 39th Regiment”, The Union Sentinel, Osceola, Iowa, 5 DEC 1863

Revised: Originally Posted 29 JAN 2008

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