A Sad Day in Section 29, Tyrone Township, Le Sueur County

Share your story submitted by: G. Luskey | Shakopee, MN

As night fell on Saturday August 23rd 1862 six of the one hundred and fifty Le Sueur Tigers who came to the aid of the citizens of New Ulm lay dead as a result of the days battle.
Ironically, Le Sueur Tigers, Matthew Ahern, William Luskey, and William Maloney, all Irish Immigrants who settled on land in Le Sueur County were killed in the Indian attack on New Ulm that day.
All three men and their families lived on adjoining farms along Le Sueur Creek in Section 29 of Tyrone Township, Le Sueur County.
When the news of their deaths reached Section 29 on the following morning crying could be heard along the creek as family and friends gathered to console the grief stricken widows, and their young children.
All in all 13 children, the oldest being Catherine Ahern age 7, Thomas Luskey age 8, and Mary Maloney age 7, and their younger brothers and sisters were left without fathers. It was harvest time in the Minnesota River Valley, and the loss of the men were especially felt at that time.
Following the Battle at New Ulm on August 23rd the Tiger's bodies were quickly buried in temporary graves inside the barricades at New Ulm as settlers made ready to evacuate the town for the safety of Mankato, and towns down river as it was believed the Dakota were planning another attack on their town. The attack never occured and the settlers eventually returned to New Ulm.
It was not until three months later in November 1862 that the Tiger's bodies were dug up and sent back to their families for burial. Yet another blow to the Section 29 families was that William Maloney's body had fallen into the Minnesota River during the fighting on August 23rd and was never recovered leaving Catherine Maloney and her 5 children without a grave to visit in the months and years to follow.
William Luskey's body was returned and buried in St. Anne's Catholic Cemetery in Le Sueur, and Matthew Ahern's body was returned and buried in St. Thomas Catholic Cemetery in Derrynane Township, Le Sueur County.
On November 22, 1862 a claim for $7.72 was filed at St. Peter, Minnesota with the State on William Luskey's behalf for his service with the Tiger's, and a gun that was his that was lost in the Battle of New Ulm which claim was vouched for by his Commander, Captain William Delaughter.
According to internment records for St. Anne's Cemetery in Le Sueur, William Luskey was buried in Row 3, Lot 5, and for almost 125 years laid in an unmarked grave until his Great Grandson George P. Luskey applied to the Veteran's Administration and received a military grave marker that was set in place and dedicated by descendants on July 6th. 1986.

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