This post is part of the Donohoo Descendancy Project. Marsh B. Taylor was the husband of Sudie Bishop, the daughter of Sarah Ann (Donohoo) Bishop, and the granddaughter of Patrick and Sarah (Thornbury) Donohoo.


 

Introduction:

Marsh B. Taylor’s life story lies somewhere between truth and legend. In his short 44 years of life, he participated in more perilous events than any one man should, but this was by his choice. While not all of these adventures can be verified, several have been, and the others are plausible. Most certainly, Marsh was a man of great charisma; able to recruit great numbers of men to a cause, and engender fierce loyalty from his family and those he served with. His vices: bravery to recklessness, yearning for the next adventure, a poor manager of his financial affairs. However, it appears all those who knew him could easily overlook his shortcomings due to his friendship and leadership with them. His story is best told as a composite from the several events that are recounted in newspapers and a published book on the history of his Civil War regiment.


 Shaw, James Birney. History of the Tenth Regiment Indiana Volunteer Infantry: Three Months and Three Years Organizations. Lafayette, Indiana: 1912. Accessed on 25 November 2015 at ­https­://­archive­.­org­/­stream­/­historyoftenthre00inshaw­. Also accessed on 25 November 2015 at ­https­://­books­.­google­.­com­/­books­?­id­=­7K1xAAAAMAAJ­&­num­=­9­. Page 123.

Marsh B Taylor entered this world on 13 March 1835, in Lafayette, Indiana, as the eldest son born to John Taylor and his second wife Mary Ann (Brown) Taylor. [1] His siblings included half-sister Susannah Brown Taylor (b. 1831, her mother was John’s first wife, Susannah Brown, who died when she was an infant), William C L Taylor (b. 1836), Ellen Taylor (b. 1837), Mary Taylor (b. 1838), John Taylor Jr. (b. 1841), Rosa Taylor (b. 1842), R J Taylor (b. 1843), Charles Brown Taylor (b. 1845). Marsh’s mother died in 1847, after which his father married for a third time to Emma L. Shaw. Half-siblings were born to the family: Henry S. Taylor (b. 1849), Fredrick D. Taylor (b. 1852), and Grace J. Taylor (b. 1855). [2] John Taylor’s financial value was 5-10 times that of his neighbors in the 1850 and 1860 censuses, suggesting the family enjoyed an ample lifestyle [3, 4]. Marsh gained his education at the State University at Bloomington, Indiana. [1, page 321]

 


During his teen years, Marsh first displayed his roving disposition, as he set out on his own to seek his fortune in the California Gold Rush as a merchant. The 1850 U.S. Census shows M.B. Taylor in Calaveras County, California, as a 17 year old merchant. [5] (Although many other records from Marsh’s life suggest he was closer to 15 years old at this time.) He resided with several other single, male merchants and miners from many states of the Union.


Reports recount Marsh then joining William Walker’s Nicaragua filibuster:
“…He joined the Walker expedition to Nicaragua and with most

of the command, was made a prisoner. He was tried and convicted

as a fillibuster and the death sentence pronounced. The day of

execution was near at hand and his head had been shaved as a part

of the preparation for death, but young Taylor had no notion of

remaining to witness the affair, and by dint of strategy he

managed to escape from prison, and after great hardships he

reached the States and finally returned home” [1, page 322]


After returning to the States, he then joined Kit Carson in Colorado. When news of the Civil War reached him, he headed home on a stagecoach:
”At this time he was in Colorado with Kit Carson and took an

overland stage for home. On the way the stage was held up

by “Road Agents,” and at the muzzle of revolvers and guns

the passengers were ordered to hold up their hands. Marsh

being tall and slim was somewhat cramped, and told the rob-

bers to give a man a chance to straighten out. He drew his

hands from his trousers pockets and with them two revolvers

and at once opened fire. Four fell dead, the others mounting

their ponies started to run. Marsh said. “Give me another

gun, d— it, they will get away.” The road being clear the

stage proceeded on its way.” [1, page 321]

Upon his arrival back at home in Indiana, Marsh recruited a company for the Civil War during August 1861. His company was assigned as Company H, 10th Indiana Volunteer Infantry. The men elected Marsh as their Captain, and were assigned as left Color Company. The ninety men of Company H were mustered into service 18 September 1861. [1, page 103; 6, 7, 8]

His regiment spent October and November 1861 in Bardstown, Kentucky, where “… a romance began and continued under the exacting and uncertain conditions of the first three years of the war” with a young lady, Sudie Bishop. [1, page 321]


Images in this post :

Portrait of Lieut. Marsh B. Taylor.  Shaw, James Birney. History of the Tenth Regiment Indiana Volunteer Infantry: Three Months and Three Years Organizations. Lafayette, Indiana: 1912. Accessed on 25 November 2015 at ­https­://­archive­.­org­/­stream­/­historyoftenthre00inshaw­. Also accessed on 25 November 2015 at ­https­://­books­.­google­.­com­/­books­?­id­=­7K1xAAAAMAAJ­&­num­=­9­. Page 123.

Life in the gold mines, California ; / Lithographed from a photograph by Fishbourne & Gow, San Francisco. Fishbourne & Gow, lithographer; Britton, Joseph, 1825-1901, artist. [San Francisco] : Published by Marvin & Hitchcock ; [185-]. Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA. Catalog Number 2011661698. Accessed at loc.gov on 1 January 2016.

Gen. Wm. Walker’s Exp. in Nicaragua] Scene in the Battle of Rivas, from a sketch made on the spot by our artist correspondent. Illus. in: Frank Leslie’s illustrated newspaper, vol. 2, no. 32 (1856 July 19), p. 89. Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA. Catalog Number 99614038. Accessed at loc.gov on 1 January 2016.

William Walker, 1824-1860, bust portrait, facing left. 1860. Wood engraving from Harper’s Weekly, Oct. 13, 1860, p. 645. Also published in issue for May 23, 1857, p. 33, credited as an engraving after a photo by Meade Brothers. Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA. Catalog Number 2005688175. Accessed at loc.gov on 1 January 2016.

Stage coach crossing the desert to Goldfield, Nevada. Oct. 1, 1906. Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA. Catalog Number 2013646139. Accessed at loc.gov on 2 January 2016.

Sources and Research Notes:

[1] Shaw, James Birney. History of the Tenth Regiment Indiana Volunteer Infantry: Three Months and Three Years Organizations. Lafayette, Indiana: 1912. Accessed on 25 November 2015 at ­https­://­archive­.­org­/­stream­/­historyoftenthre00inshaw­. Also accessed on 25 November 2015 at ­https­://­books­.­google­.­com­/­books­?­id­=­7K1xAAAAMAAJ­&­num­=­9­. Page 104, 123, 153, 156, 176, 177, 186-187, 202, 229-235, 263-264, 275, 276, 298-299, 321-323.
[2] For more information and documentation on the Taylor family, please see my public Ancestry.com tree at http://person.ancestry.com/tree/42516833/person/28884429415/facts.

[3] John Taylor household. US Census Year: 1850; Census Place: Lafayette Ward 5, Tippecanoe, Indiana; Roll: M432_175; Page: 102B; Image: 209. Ancestry.com. 1850 United States Federal Census ‎[database on-line]‎. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2009. Images reproduced by FamilySearch. Original data: Seventh Census of the United States, 1850; ‎(National Archives Microfilm Publication M432, 1009 rolls)‎; Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29; National Archives, Washington, D.C.

[4] John Taylor household. US Census Year: 1860; Census Place: Lafayette, Tippecanoe, Indiana; Roll: M653_300; Page: 901; Image: 573; Family History Library Film: 803300. Ancestry.com. 1860 United States Federal Census ‎[database on-line]‎. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2009. Images reproduced by FamilySearch. Original data: 1860 U.S. census, population schedule. NARA microfilm publication M653, 1,438 rolls. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.

[5] MB Taylor in the household of Geo H Hoy. US Census Year: 1850; Census Place: Calaveras District, Calaveras, California; Roll: M432_33; Page: 162B; Image: 328. Ancestry.com. 1850 United States Federal Census ‎[database on-line]‎. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2009. Images reproduced by FamilySearch. Original data: Seventh Census of the United States, 1850; ‎(National Archives Microfilm Publication M432, 1009 rolls)‎; Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29; National Archives, Washington, D.C.

[6] Marsh B. Taylor. National Park Service. U.S. Civil War Soldiers, 1861-1865 ‎[database on-line]‎. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2007. Original data: National Park Service, Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System, online <http://www.itd.nps.gov/cwss/>, acquired 2007.

[7] Marsh B. Taylor. Historical Data Systems, comp. U.S., Civil War Soldier Records and Profiles, 1861-1865 ‎[database on-line]‎. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2009. Original data: Data compiled by Historical Data Systems of Kingston, MA from the following list of works. Copyright 1997-2009 Historical Data Systems, Inc. PO Box 35 Duxbury, MA 02331.

[8] Marsh B. Taylor. Ancestry.com. Web: Indiana, Civil War Soldier Database Index, 1861-1865 ‎[database on-line]‎. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2015. Original data: Civil War. Indiana State Digital Archives. https://secure.in.gov/apps/iara/search/: accessed 2 February 2015.