(Left Side Tablet)
William Rufus Shafter
A Michigan solider whose valorous conduct in the Rebellion, in the Indian Wars and in the Spanish-American War, added glory to the military annals of the United States.
Born in this community on October 16, 1835. He grew to manhood in the pioneer life of Michigan, enlisting as a lieutenant in the Seventh Michigan Infantry on August 22, 1861, he won promotion by gallant and meritorious service, and was mustered out a brigadier-general of volunteers at the close of the Civil War.
As an officer in the Regular Army he served with signal distinction and conducted campaigns against hostile Indians in the southwest with such success that the country was made safe for peaceful and permanent settlement.
As commander of the Expeditionary Army which besieged and captured Santiago de Cuba in 1898, he concluded his services for his country with an imperishable record as a great and daring leader and a generous conqueror. He died on November 12, 1906.
The State of Michigan erected this memorial May 30, 1919.
Bill for appropriation introduced by Hon. Charles A. Weissert.
Committee to erect it appointed by Governor Albert E. Sleeper.
W.W. Potter, Hastings, Chairman.
M.F. Jordan, Middleville.
M.A. Douglass, Galesburg.
(Right Side Tablet)
William Rufus Shafter
1st Lt. 7th Mich. Inf. Aug. 22, 1861 to Aug. 22, 1862; Maj. 19th Mich. Inf. Sept. 5, 1862 Lt. Col. of same June 5, 1863 to Apr. 18, 1864, Col. 17th U.S. Colored Inf. Apr. 19, 1864 until honorably mustered out Nov. 2, 1866, Bvt. Brig. Gen. Vols. Mar. 13, 1865 for gallant and meritorious service during the war.
Appointed Lt. Col. 41st U.S. Inf. July 28, 1866, accepted Jan. 26, 1867; assigned to 24th Inf. Mar. 15, 1869; promoted Col. 1st Inf. Mar. 4, 1879; appointed Brig. Gen. May 3, 1897; retired Oct. 16, 1899; advanced to grade of Maj. Gen. on retired list Feb. 18, 1901.
He also served as Maj. Gen. Vols. May 4, 1898 to June 30, 1901. Bvt. Lt. Col. U.S.A. Mar. 2, 1867 for gallant and meritorious service in the Battle of Fair Oaks, Va. Awarded Medal of Honor June 12, 1895 for most distinguished gallantry in the Battle of Fair Oaks, Va. May 31, 1862, while serving as 1st Lt. 7th Mich. Inf. in command of pioneers, voluntarily taking an active part in that battle and remaining on the field, although wounded, until the close of the engagement.