Transcribed by Teresa Kesterke from: Biographical Review of Des Moines County, Iowa: Containing Biographical and Genealogical Sketches of Many of the Prominent Citizens of To-day and Also of the Past, Hobart Publishing Company, Chicago, 1905.


Albert James Roe, who faithfully served his country in the Civil War, and who was for sixteen years a resident of Burlington, was born in Oneida county, N. Y., Oct. 8, 1842. When a young lad he came to Iowa with his parents, Elisha C. and Almira (Merilme) Roe, the family home being established in Delaware county. In the schools of that locality he acquired his education, and in April, 1861, he responded to the first call of the president for troops to aid in crushing out the Rebellion. He was then but nineteen years of age, but the flame of patriotism burned brightly in his breast, and he at once offered his aid in defense of the Union, enlisting as a member of Company F, Twelfth Iowa regiment, which was assigned to the Army of the Potomac.

His first enlistment was for three years, or during the war, and he participated in many important engagements, including the battles of Fort Henry, Fort Donelson, Shiloh, the siege and capture of Vicksburg, etc. He was honorably discharged in January, 1864, but re-enlisted in April of the same year, and served until the close of the war. Because of ill health he was appointed to the position of hospital steward at Sedalia, Mo. Mrs. Roe also went to Sedalia, and became the matron of the hospital there, acting in that capacity for nine months. Mr. Roe was finally ordered back to his regiment in the South, again becoming a member of his old company. He was with Sherman on the celebrated march to the sea, and was also in the grand review in Washington, being honorably discharged in June, 1865, in the capital city, where he was also mustered out of the service.

While home from the war after his first discharge, Mr. Roe was married, April 13, 1864, at Belleview, Iowa, to Miss Sarah Louisa Dunn, a daughter of Peter and Anna (Lenahan) Dunn. They became the parents of six children: Charles E., a machinist of Burlington, living at 816 Orchard St.: Etta K., who became the wife of Dr. C. L. Paisley, a practicing physician of Farmington, died Sept. 2, 1894, leaving a daughter, Etta Roe; F. A., who is engaged in the practice of dentistry, in Burlington: Nellie M., the wife of John R. Ping, an attorney of the State of Washington: and two who died in infancy.

Mr. Roe was a resident of Muscatine, Iowa, until 1874, when he came to Des Moines county and settled in Burlington. Soon afterward he purchased the property now occupied by his widow. He engaged in the wood and coal trade, and had a good business, which enabled him to provide a comfortable living for his family. His energy and earnest labor were leading factors in his business life, and his home, now occupied by Mrs. Roe, stands as visible evidence of his thrift and industry.

He died Sept. 9, 1890, respected by all who knew him. He was a member of the Masonic fraternity, and of the Grand Army post of Burlington. In his political views he was a stanch Republican, but never aspired to office, preferring to concentrate his energies upon his business affairs. He was never remiss in the duties of citizenship, however, but gave stalwart support to each progressive measure, just as he had upheld the integrity of the Union when threatened by the disloyalty of the South.

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