John McDaniel

1844 - 1864

Civil War

Their Story

John McDaniel was born into slavery, in Warren County Kentucky in about 1844.  John was given to John E. McDaniel in 1851 as a gift from his father.  John was 7 years old at the time and was hired out to Gideon McDaniel.  In 1867 John E. McDaniel filed a claim for John and was awarded $300 compensation for a slave who joined the Army.

John enlisted at Bowling Green, Kentucky on 6/27/1864.  Pvt McDaniel was assigned to Company K, 108th Infantry Regiment (USCT). 

In the Regimental Description Book it lists John’s occupation as Farmer.  When you look at the records of the men of the 108th Infantry Regiment most list their occupation as farmers.  Since most worked on plantations that is not surprising. The Description Book also shows him as 5-foot 10½ inched tall, with brown complexion, and brown eyes, and black Hair. The record also shows his service is owed to Gideon McDaniel, which means had permission to enlist.

Kentucky was a State that voted to secede from the Union but was immediately occupied by Union troops and never allowed to join the Confederacy.

There were approximately 180,000 Negro Slaves in Kentucky when the war started. This population of Slaves was one of the first major recruiting sites for the United States Colored Troops (USCT) 21 Regiments of Infantry formed in Kentucky.

Pvt McDaniel arrived at Rock Island Prison Barracks with the 108th Infantry Regiment (USCT) on September 24th, 1864.  Almost immediately he came down with measles.  After a short time in hospital, he was returned to duty. The record shows John present for the Pay Muster on October 1st, but shortly after was back in hospital. This time with typhoid fever. Pvt John McDaniel died on October 29th, 1864.  He is buried in Grave Number 233, Rock Island National Cemetery.



Fold3, Compiled Military Service Records of Volunteer Union Soldiers Who Served the United States Colored Troops: 56th-138th USCT Infantry, 1864-1866. 302672651  (Accessed 02/25/2022)

Organization Index to Pension Files of Veterans Who Served Between 1861 and     1900, compiled 1949 – 1949, documenting the period 1861 – 1942 (Accessed 02/25/2022) U.S., Colored Troops Military Service Records, 1863-1865 [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2007. (Accessed 02/25/2022)

Kentucky. Adjutant General, Report of the Adjutant General of the State of Kentucky, Vol. II, 1861-1866,   (Accessed 2/25/2022)