top of page

More Stories Behind the Stones – July 2014 Edition of History & Heritage

Updated: Apr 18

More Stories Behind Stones – Ghost Walk 8/9 at 7 p.m.

Welcome to July’s edition of History & Heritage. Our purpose is to acquaint you with our mission to preserve the town’s rich history, highlight the legacy of those who have gone before and show how our past has shaped our present. We are a non-profit with 501(c)(3) status.  Thanks to the Caledonian Record for publishing this story!

Once again, on August 9th at 7 pm, ghosts of Mt. Pleasant Cemetery will reveal their stories of their families and their participation in the Civil War. A couple of summers ago, St. Johnsbury History & Heritage decided to have a Civil War Ghost Walk in honor of the 150th Anniversary of the Civil War. The 150th Anniversary started in 2011 and will continue until 2015. Once we started researching the Civil War ghosts of Mt. Pleasant, we realized we had more than enough to take us through 2015; a rather grim reminder of all the lives the war had interrupted, just in this corner of the country.

Three monuments may be found in St. Johnsbury that relate to the Civil War. The simplest is found by the Comfort Inn on Route 5. It is a boulder with a plaque and (sometimes a flag) marking Camp Baxter, first campsite of the Third Regiment. This was located on the old fairgrounds, now I- 91. The soldiers were housed in the main building on the ground which was extended 340 feet to accommodate one thousand men. The name Camp Baxter was for Adjutant and Inspector General Baxter.

Camp Baxter - Image from

Camp Baxter Dedication

Courthouse Park has the most significant monument; designed by Larkin Mead, Jr., the statue America arrived from Italy in the summer of 1868. The base and pedestal rise twelve feet from the ground with the seven and a half foot statue on top. (For more about America, check out the May 2012 Edition of History & Heritage!)

Civil War Soldiers' Monument

America – Civil War Soldiers’ Monument in Court House Park

Mt. Pleasant Cemetery has the third monument site, depicting in granite, a six foot soldier given by the Chamberlain Post of the GAR. This was made by the Carrick brothers of St. Johnsbury. One of the Carrick brothers, French Forrest Carrick will reveal himself on the Ghost Walk having enlisted as a substitute in 1863, joining the 4th Vermont Infantry. While serving in H Company, his father and he fought together. French and his wife Emma Burbank had four children; one was Sarah, known to many as Sadie and married to Robert T. Ward who in the last years of his life fixed all the lawnmowers of Mt. Pleasant – monuments and lawnmowers both vital to cemeteries!

G.A.R. Monument in Mount Pleasant Cemetery

G.A.R. Monument in Mount Pleasant Cemetery

One soldier’s stone we literally stumbled upon for it was not upright as most but flat and partially covered by grass was that of Charles W. Wilcomb who was born in Bethlehem, N.H. but resided with his father in St. Johnsbury several years before the war. He was wounded in the battle of the Wilderness on May 5, 1864. The musket ball and his wallet have an interesting tale to tell to say nothing of the chicken purchased for $1.00 to relieve their hunger.

Charles W. Lucas’ service did not have a happy ending as he was killed at Winchester, Va. Born in Peacham of February of 1838; he labored on the family farm until he was drafted. His stone resides in Mt. Pleasant – does he?

John Chubb served in the war but his death in 1876 serves as a reminder of what the behavior of the unknown does. Find out why he and his wife Sabina and children were “quarantined” on Spring Street.

Every stone in a cemetery has a story; the common thread in this walk is the Civil War but research by History & Heritage Board Members, Joanne Bertrand, Denise Scavitto and I have helped to give a more rounded picture of the soldier and his family. We hope you will join us at 7:00 p.m. on the 9th of August to reflect back on this period of our history.


We are located in the Summer Street School building while we finalize paperwork for our new permanent home at 421 Summer Street in August. The 250 Club achieved its goal making it possible to buy the property. Thanks goes out to all who helped us achieve this milestone. We encourage your support in making this historic home a wonderful place for exhibiting, preserving and collecting St. Johnsbury’s history. Please check out our web site at and our Facebook page. Our mailing address is P.O. Box 223, St. Johnsbury, Vt., 05819 and phone number is 802 – 424 – 1090.

4 views0 comments
bottom of page