Derby History Quiz

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Civil War Casualties

The man pictured above was one of the first sons of Derby to volunteer when the Civil War broke out at Fort Sumter - and he was the first Connecticut colonel who volunteered for service. He was born in Litchfield in 1828, but lived in Derby from about 1840. He attended Derby schools and then learned to be a tack maker. At the same time, he enlisted with one of the private military groups popular back then and rose through the ranks to the rank of captain.

When the war broke out, he and his fellow militia men joined the second regiment and he participated in the battle of Bull Run with distinction. Like many others, his 90 day enlistment was soon up and he returned to Derby. However, he returned to service with the Tenth Connecticut with the rank of lieutenant colonel. He and his men served with General Burnside in North Carolina and he was killed on February 8, 1862 while commanding the 10th at the Battle of Roanoke Island. His body was returned to Derby, and he is buried in Oak Cliff Cemetery.

The following is a quote from Beckwith's 1862 Almanac about Russell:

"February 8. Col. Charles L. Russell, 10th Conn. Vol of Derby, killed at the battle of Roanoke. Cnl. Russell with his regiment was first to land on Roanoke Island and fell at the head of his troop. He was a young man 34 years of age and highly esteemed as a citizen and patriot, being one of the first to respond to the President's call for three months volunteers and acted as Adjunct on Colonel Terry's staff."

Russell was married and had three children, two of which died before the age of 4.

Correct answers were received from: Ann Searles, Mary Seuss, mildred fatterusso, Nick from Terryville, Jack Vagnini, Joseph DiRienzo, Walt Mayhew, chris cape coral, Joe Drauszewski, Bonnie Berman, Jim Norris, L. a. Cwanek, bruce sill, Fred Grant, Stephanie Anne D'Onofrio, John Kowarik, Pat Shelton, PauL Comkowycz, Marsha Benno, Beth Colette, Allan Brozek and Tom Batchelor.

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