William F. Chaffee was a resident of Mansfield on August 11, 1862 when he enlisted as a Private in Co. D of the 21st Regiment Connecticut Volunteer Infantry. He was discharged for disability February 2, 1863.
The descriptive muster roll for the 21st Regiment Connecticut Volunteer Infantry lists his age as 41 and his occupation as farmer. He is described as 5’8” tall with a fair complexion and light hair and blue eyes. His marital status is single.
He was born May 17, 1822 in Ashford to Frederick and Catherine Spring (Knowlton) Chaffee, Jr. In the 1860 U.S. census in Mansfield, he is a 38 year old farmer in the household of Frederick Chaffee. William married Soviah P. Simonds on August 31, 1862 in Mansfield, just a couple weeks after he enlisted in the army. There are no known children. After his Civil War service, he returned to Mansfield and resumed farming.
On December 20, 1869, he applied for an invalid pension, No. 151,388 that was granted under certificate No. 112,448. According to the list of pensioners on the roll in 1883, he was receiving $8 per month for a wound to his abdomen.
William F. Chaffee died on March 21, 1888 and is buried at the Gurleyville Cemetery in Mansfield.