Biography of Joshua E. Lahman

Joshua E. Lahman, born June 16, 1839, in Washington County, Maryland, was a distinguished Civil War veteran and successful farmer in Franklin Grove, Illinois. His parents, Christian and Elizabeth Lahman, were early pioneers in Illinois. At the outbreak of the Civil War, Lahman enlisted in September 1861 with Company C, Thirty-fourth Illinois Infantry, and rose to the rank of Sergeant. He was severely wounded at the Battle of Murfreesboro and also fought at Shiloh. Post-war, Lahman learned harness-making and operated a business in Iowa before returning to farming in Illinois. Married to Hannah M. Batschlett in 1867, they had five children, four of whom survived to adulthood. Lahman expanded his farm to 240 acres and was an active Republican and member of the Grand Army of the Republic.

Joshua E. Lahman, who is prosperously engaged in agricultural pursuits on section 12, just south of Franklin Grove, where he has a good farm, was a soldier in the late war whose bravery and efficiency raised him from the ranks to an official position, and it gives us pleasure to place the record of the life of this representative of the Grand Army of the Republic on these pages.

Mr. Lahman is a native of Washington County, Md., born June 16, 1839, to Christian and Elizabeth Lahman, who were pioneers of Illinois. Our subject was a child of five years when the family came to this State, and here he was reared on a farm. He was in the full prime and vigor of manhood when the war broke out, and as soon as he could he went to the front to help fight his country’s battles. He enlisted in September 1861, and was mustered into the service as a member of Company C, Thirty-fourth Illinois Infantry. For two years he was with his regiment in various battles and skirmishes, and at the end of that time, he was honorably discharged on account of disability caused by a gunshot wound received while he was in the heat of that fearful battle at Murfreesboro. He was also present at the battle of Shiloh and did some hard fighting there. He retired from the army with a fine military record and with the well-earned title of Sergeant. He had displayed coolness and daring in the face of the enemy, promptness and readiness of resource in emergencies, and his superior officers felt that they could rely upon him whether in camp or on the field.

The suffering that he endured from the wounds received for his country’s sake incapacitated our subject for active work in his calling as a farmer and, fearing that he would be permanently crippled and not liking to be idle, he learned the trade of harness-maker as soon as he was able to do anything. And in 1865 he went to Guthrie County, Iowa, where he was engaged in business as a harness manufacturer the ensuing three years. While there it was his good fortune to secure the hand of Miss Hannah M. Batschlett in marriage, the ceremony that made them one being performed December 20, 1867. Of the five children born to them four are living, namely: Edgar R., a resident of Rockford, Ill.; Clifford, who died when twelve years of age; Elizabeth, Clara, and George W. Mrs. Lahman is a daughter of Peter and Eliza Katschlett and she is a native of this State, born in Knox County.

In 1868 Mr. Lahman returned to Franklin Grove and having recovered from the wounds in his arm and leg received in battle, he resumed his old occupation, buying at that time eighty acres of his present farm. He made excellent improvements, including a good class of buildings, stocked his farm with good breeds of cattle, horses, and hogs, and has done well in his enterprise. He has accumulated a goodly amount of property, and has increased his landed estate to two hundred and forty acres of choice land. He is energetic and enterprising, has strength of mind enough to carry out his plans under difficulties, as we have seen, always maintains good credit in regard to money matters, and the value of his citizenship has been proved not only when his country was in need of good soldiers, but in less trying times as a member of a law-abiding community. In politics, he is loyal to the Republican party, and socially he is a member of the Grand Army of the Republic.


Biographical Publishing Company, Portrait and biographical record of Lee County, Illinois, containing biographical sketches of prominent and representative citizens, together with biographies of all the governors of the state, and of the presidents of the United States, Chicago: Biographical Publishing Co., 1892.

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