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Garrison Life

1848-1854

St. Louis Dent Home Where Grant Married

On August 22, 1848 Ulysses and Julia were married in a modest ceremony in the Dent Home in the city of St. Louis, MO. The newlyweds traveled to Bethel, OH to visit the Grant family.   

Madison Barracks, NY

Grant's Detroit Home

In the fall of 1848 Grant was ordered to the garrison in Detroit, MI only to be re-assigned to Madison Barracks in Sackett's Harbor, NY instead. The Grant's spent the winter in the barracks before being re-assigned to Fort Brady in Detroit, MI in the spring of 1849. The young couple moved into a home on East Front Street. Grant was not enthralled with his desk duties as Regimental Quartermaster but thoroughly enjoyed racing horses in his free time.  

White Haven

Julia returned to White Haven in the spring of 1850 and gave birth to the Grant's first child Frederick Dent Grant on May 30. Grant, who had stayed behind in Detroit, took up residence with fellow officer John H. Gore and his wife. When Julia returned she and baby Fred joined the Gore household.   

Madison Barracks, NY

In the spring of 1851 the Regimental headquarters were moved back to Madison Barracks and so the Grant family moved back. In the spring of 1852 Grant was re-assigned to the West Coast but it was decided that Julia, pregnant at the time, would not attempt the voyage. 

The voyage to the west coast via the isthmus of Panama would prove to be a disastrous one. A cholera epidemic in Panama claimed the lives of many soldiers and their families. Grant did what he could to care for the sick, but the disease was mostly fatal. During his journey Julia would give birth to their second child Ulysses S. Grant Jr. at his parents home in Bethel, OH. Since he was born in Ohio "The Buckeye State" the boy was nicknamed "Buck". 

Grant's home at Columbia Barracks

Grant was briefly stationed in San Francisco before being assigned to Columbia Barracks in the Oregon Territory. Grant attempted selling ice, raising crops, selling livestock and other ventures to finance bringing his family west, but all ended in failure. Grant grew lonely and despondent and like many other bored officers was known to drink alcohol. Military rumors of drunkenness would start during this period that would haunt Grant the rest of his career.

Fort Humboldt, CA

In January 1854 Grant was re-assigned to Fort Humboldt in northern California. He found himself once again under the command of Col. Robert Buchanan whom Grant had a hard time getting along with. Desperate to be reunited with his family and with little hope of further advancement, Grant accepted promotion to Captain and resigned from the army in April 1854. He traveled back to White Haven and a civilian life with his family. 

Individuals and places relating to

U.S. Grant's Garrison Life....

Madison Barracks

(Grant was stationed here with his wife in 1848-49 & 1851-52.)

Detroit Home

(The Grant's first home in Detroit from 1849-50.)

Fort Wayne

(Grant's military post in Detroit.)

Columbia Barracks

(Grant's military post from 1852-53. Now part of Fort Vancouver NHS.)

Fort Humboldt

(Grant's military post from 1853-54, Now Fort Humboldt SHP.)

Groomsmen at Grant's wedding that were later Confederate Officers in the Civil War:

James Longstreet, Cadmus Wilcox, Bernard Pratt.