Boys In Blue: Col. Daniel Brown Bush, 2nd Illinois Cavalry Regiment
Before Colonel Daniel Brown Bush, Jr. enlisted in the Union Army, he was the owner and editor of the “Pike County Journal” in Pittsfield, IL and was one of the first newspaper editors to endorse Abraham Lincoln as a candidate for President. On February 9, 1860 Daniel Bush published an editorial written by John Nicolay, who would go on to become one of Abraham Lincoln’s private secretaries. A section of the editorial read:
Give us Lincoln as the candidate and we can promise the electoral vote of Illinois for the Republicans as a sure result…He maintains the faith of the Fathers of the Republic, he believes in the Declaration of Independence, he yields obedience to the Constitution and laws of his country. He has the radicalism of Jefferson and of Clay and the conservatism of Washington and Jackson. In his hands the Union would be safe.
Certainly Daniel Bush believed in the cause of the Union because a year and a half later he enlisted as a Major in the Second Illinois Cavalry Regiment, taking part in the battles at Forts Henry and Donelson as well as Shiloh. As a Lieutenant Colonel, Bush commanded the Second Illinois at the Battle of Vicksburg. He was discharged as Colonel of the Second Cavalry on July 24, 1865 and would eventually find his way to Portland, OR where we would live until his death in 1913. Upon his death, the “Sunday Oregonian” wrote in his obituary:
For the past three months he has been almost helpless and, like our old friend, Colonel Newcomb, he has been living over again the stirring scenes of his early manhood, frequently imagining himself at the head of his loved regiment, and when the time came for him to answer the last roll call he answered is as placidly as did our old English Colonel, and slipped away from the troublous things of this lower life. He had fought the good fight, like the brave true soldier he was, and could well afford to go where alarums are never heard and conflicts never come.
©2012 Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum