The letters and diaries of Lieutenant Philip R. Woodcock
121st Regiment, New York State Infantry
"Upton's Regulars"
September 4, 1862-November 9, 1865

Thursday, July 24, 2014

A Little Diversion

Today will be a bit different and you are quite welcome to just skip on through today's post--but I wouldn't!

I've had some readers ask me if Philip and George make it home and what may have happened to them and their descendants?  (If you don't want to know the answer to that--I'd advise you to stop reading right now!)  I'm going to skip ahead to the future, just for today's post and for good reason--I spent a few days with my cousins in upstate NY gathering information about Philip and his descendants.  I stayed in a cottage
on Keuka Lake, NY that is in my grandmothers family.  (It is currently owned by my cousins, Charles and Kathy Woodcock. Charlie is a direct descendant of Philip). I also met another cousin who bears Philips name--Philip Woodcock Newton. He does a bang up job of keeping the genealogy of the Woodcocks sorted out.  I picked their brains on this trip and here are some decidedly interesting tidbits I learned--hope you enjoy them and some pictures!

Philip and his brother George did indeed return from the war intact.  I won't give too much away about their injuries (I'd like to keep you reading!) but they were both wounded at several points in their careers.  After the war, Philip went to work in Rochester, NY for Siddons & Gommenginger, sheet metal and heating contractors.  After leaving there, he finished his career traveling for
Philip Rufus Woodcock
Phillips & Clark Store Co.  His "baby boy" Georgie became a wealthy businessman in Rochester, NY.  He became a Vice President of the Sherwood Shoe Company.  My cousin Charlie regaled his story of visiting him ("Georgie" or Uncle George) when a child and sitting on the porch of his grand mansion.  George never had children of his own and invested heavily in the early days of Eastman Kodak stock which he passed on down through the generations.  Philip also had two other children after returning from the war--another son, Charles Duell Woodcock (cousin Charlie and my mom, Jane Carroll Abercrombie Jones' grandfather, my great-grandfather) and a daughter, Mary Louise Woodcock Newton (Philip Woodcock Newton's grandmother). Confused yet? 

I got to sit on the lakefront of Keuka Lake, same place that Philip's son Charles sat with his grandkids.  My kids got to sit and kayak there too.  I heard stories exchanged of Philip's yearly visits to Upton's
Phil Newton & Son at Upton's Grave
gravesite each year after the war and looked through books of genealogy.   My brother, Don was visiting also and he filled me in on the war and battle aspect of the letters and diaries.  As I continue to gather information on this lineage, I will post some of it for anyone who might be interested.

As for Philip--he lived to the age of 73 (b. 1840-d. 1913).  His beloved Roby died 10 years prior in 1903--same year my grandmother Roby was born
Roby A. Woodcock Abercrombie
and named after her. He then left his letters and diaries to her. Other artifacts were equally spread to other family members.

As for names and so forth, Philip W. Newton named his daughter Roby also.  My mom was named after Philip's wife also (Roby Jane Pierce), using her middle name, Jane.  My daughter now bears the Jane as her middle name...and so on through the ages it goes...

We carry on our family lineage and work hard to keep those stories going, whether verbal or written.  I urge you to do the same as surely as we all live, we are creating history.  Please continue to join me on Philip's journey through the American Civil War.

Tomorrow--some cool envelopes and stamps and onto 1863!

Hope to see you then!
My son, Joshua on Keuka Lake, 2014

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