The upstairs room known as "The Military Room" and is dedicated to those who have served both in our country's wars, and those who serve on a local level, our police officers.
You see photographs of those who once wore or used the items. As you read about the people, you get a deeper sense of their quiet sacrifices. The uniform is not the story, the specific war is not the story, it is all about the local person who once wore that uniform.
Since the room is dedicated to those who have served, we are proud to house the Gouverneur High School Honor Roll for those who served in World War II. The stars indicate that person was killed in that service.
This NY State Militia uniform was worn during the War of 1812. The man who wore it was a member of the Dragoons, which was mounted Infantry.
The Second Battle of Sacket's Harbor or simply the Battle of Sacket's Harbor, took place on 29 May 1813, during the War of 1812. A British force was transported across Lake Ontario and attempted to capture the town, which was the principal dockyard and base for the American naval squadron on the lake. The British were repulsed by American regulars, militia, marines and sailors.
One of those militia men wore this uniform shirt. Note the buttons on the shirt, could be used as musket balls.
The McClellan Saddle with Stirrups and Straps was used by Calvin Mitchell and donated by Ethel Mitchell through Lois Mitchell, former librarian at the Gouverneur Library.
Calvin and Lewis Mitchell were from Hailesboro. They enlisted in the Army in 1861, entering two different units. Both reenlisted in 1863 until the war's end.
Calvin and Lewis Mitchell are part of local history, the sons of Hiram and Sally Mitchell, and the father of Ethel Mitchell Risley, who, in 1962, donated the saddle, a canteen, cut, sewing kit, eyeglasses, a Bible, a ring made from a Confederate shell, numerous badges and a silk purse. Calvin acquired the purse, supposedly, when he traded a young lady in the south in exchange for his felt hat. Calvin fought in 21 Civil War battles.
What makes this an item of interest? For one thing, the original daguerreotype was found by Albert Kaplan of Gouverneur and it is the earliest known picture of Abraham Lincoln.
Many authorities of 19th Century photography, backed by forensic scientists, are convinced it is truly Abe Lincoln. It is known as the "Kaplan Lincoln" and the original is valued at $11,000,000.00. This, however, is not the original.
Military Room Docent: Joe Weekes