Thursday, June 12, 2014

The Biggest Yankee In The Civil War

  Captain David Van Buskirk stood six foot eleven inches and weighed 390 pounds at a time when the average soldier stood five foot eight and a quarter inches. He was born in 1826 in Gosport Indiana. He was a farmer by trade and married three times producing eight children. He fought at Antietam, Chancellorsville and Gettysburg. "Big Dave" was captured several times and would bargain to be put on display for extra rations. He was captured in 1862 and was sent to a Richmond Prison where a Confederate entrepreneur put him on exhibit & they split the proceeds. Even Confederate President Jeff Davis came to see this giant & was astounded when Van Buskirk claimed, straight faced, that back home in Bloomington Indiana, "when I was at the train station with my company, my six sisters came to say goodbye. As I was standing there, with my company, they all came up to me, leaned down and kissed me on top of the head." Buskirk resigned from the army because of health reasons in 1864. He would die in 1886.

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