Also known as George J. Smith
John Latham was 20 years old when he enlisted from Utica, New York on August 28, 1862 as a Private in Co. A of the 146th New York Volunteer Infantry. This regiment was better known as Garrard’s Tigers and became a Zouave unit after initially wearing regulation uniforms. He was captured on May 1, 1863 at Chancellorsville, Virginia and was paroled, no date given. John Latham was a resident of Mansfield on February 22, 1864 when he enlisted as a Private in Co. A of the 7th Regiment Connecticut Volunteer Infantry under the name of George J. Smith. He was captured June 17, 1864, Bermuda Hundred, Virginia and was a POW at Andersonville, Georgia. Union prisoners were transferred from Andersonville to other prison camps as General Sherman’s army entered Georgia. George J. Smith a/k/a John Latham escaped from the prison camp at Salisbury, North Carolina, April 12, 1865 and was discharged August 28, 1865.
He was born about 1842, probably in New York and he was not living in Mansfield in the 1860 U.S. census. There is a John Latham in Utica, New York in that census living in the household of Charles and Lauryn A. Latham. He was an 18 year old laborer and may be the George J. Smith a/k/a John Latham that served in the regiments listed above. John Latham was married to Margaret ______ according to pension records; no children are known.
On January 17, 1885, he applied for an invalid pension, No. 530,294 that was granted under certificate No. 452,734. The pension lists his correct name, his Civil War service in both regiments and his wife’s first name. His widow applied for a pension on August 14, 1902? from New York.
John Latham died between January 17, 1885 and August 14, 1902?; his burial place is not known.