Corporal Hiram Warner of Company C of the 2nd United States Sharpshooters was killed in action at Antietam on 17 September 1862.

His older brother Horace Warner was later First Lieutenant of his Company, and was with him at his death.

A somewhat fanciful tale came down in the family afterward:

Mr. [Horace] Warner was one of the best sharpshooters in the Union Army. He was with his brother Hiram Warner, after whom the Wilcox G.A.R. first was named, when the latter was killed in Antietam and he carried his dead body with him for three days in the hope of sending his brother’s body home. Being surrounded by rebels, he was at last compelled to bury the remains and dug his grave on the southern soil with a bayonet.

Hiram and Horace were two of the 4 Warner brothers who served during the War. Here they are together in mid-1862 in Washington, DC.

From left to right: Lt. Robert Warner, Lt. and Quartermaster Horace Warner and Pvt. Hiram Warner of Berdan’s 2nd U.S. Sharpshooters, and Pvt. William Warner of the 42nd Pennsylvania Infantry “Bucktails.”


The quote above is from Horace’s obituary in the Ridgway (PA) Advocate of 18 January 1893.

Hiram’s magnificent photograph, a sixth-plate hand colored tintype, is from the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, and was published in curator Jeff L. Rosenheim’s Photography in the Civil War (2013).

The photo of the Warner brothers is or was in the collection of Harry Roach, founder of Military Images Magazine, and it graced the cover of his first issue in 1979; his caption used here.

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