Jacob Timanus, 1st. Lt., Patapsco Guard

He must have been a great character!  Here is a letter I sent to a Timanus relative who wanted to know why some details of the lieutenant's enlistment were left out of our cable TV production.

> Subject: Jacob Timanus 1st. Lt.
> I would like to know why the enlistment of Lt. Timanus
> ended on Dec. 22, 1862, well before some of the other officers.
[name removed - a Timanus]

Interesting question.

He did not face charges for deserting on 26 Jun 1862 although this comment was noted in his record:  "Deserted June 26 in march from Harpers Ferry to Winchester with entire company." The enlisted men received a group court martial, but there is no record of one for him.

He did face the following three charges at York, PA for drunkenness while on duty:

1. 1 Oct 1862 being in charge of the company while Capt. McGowan was on business in Baltimore, drunk.

2. 3 Dec 1862 while on duty as officer of the guard at the hospital in York, PA, drunk and totally unfit to attend to his duty

3. 13 Dec 1862 while on duty as officer of the guard on duty at York, PA, drunk and totally unfit to attend to his duties

Signed by Capt. McGowan, L. Bewley, A. McCrone, J. McCauley, Wm. Johnson

Before being discharged, he was able to obtain a medical discharge from Dr. Palmer at the military hospital in York, PA, by telling the doctor that he had lied about his age to join the army and that he was really a veteran of the War of 1812 and too old to serve.  The doctor arranged the discharge for him.

As to his actual age, there was a limit of 45 for joining the army, and I assume that it was the same for this volunteer guard in October, 1861.

In the 1850 Census he had given his age as 44, born about 1806 by subtraction.  (AA Co., Howard District, 664/671)

In the 1860 census he gave his age as 54, again born about 1806.  (Howard County, Ellicott Mills, 354/354)

That would make him approximately 55 in October, 1861, and 7 or 8 during the years when the War of 1812 affected Howard County.  I believe that other Timanuses did serve in local militias for the War of 1812, but I do not have any records for those names here at home.

Jacob Timanus is a very interesting character to research, but he probably was not well suited for military life. According to his census records, he gave his regular occupation as "master stone mason."  This military information was obtained by searching his name in the regimental record of the Patapsco Guard on microfilm at the National Archives in Washington, D.C.

A. Wolf

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