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This biography is from HEROES OF ALBANY, by Rufus W. Clark, D. D.

William M. Briggs

William M. Briggs was born in Albany, Nov. 27, 1842, and was the son of John G. and Harriet Briggs.

He was educated in the Wilberforce school, and was a youth of good talents and excellent morals.

He was an ardent patriot, and in March, 1863, he enlisted in the Fifty-fourth Massachusetts Regiment, and performed all the duties of a soldier with faithfulness and bravery. In the following letter we have an account of his character and death:

Sunday, December 13, 1863.
Colonel—According to your wish that I, as commander of Co. E, would furnish whatever information I possessed in relation to Private William M. Briggs, late of my company, I cheerfully collected the following:

From a comrade, who was by him in the assault of July 18th, I learn that he was wounded through the bowels, when about one hundred yards from the fort. He exclaimed, "I'm shot," and attempted to press forward, but was not equal to the task, and fell. He was placed, after being taken from the field, on the steamer "Cosmopolitan," with many others, and carried to Hilton Head. The nature of his wound was such as to cause him intense pain, and he expired within an hour of the time the wounded were placed in No. 10 Hospital, at Beaufort. I was pleased to find that his body received a proper soldier's burial, in the Beaufort Cemetery, escorted by a detachment of the First S. C. Vols.

As his Captain, I cheerfully render a merited tribute to his memory, as a man ever a favorite among his comrades, and as a soldier, prompt, diligent and eager in the performance of his whole duty. I have the honor to be, Colonel,

Your obedient servant,
Capt. Co. E, 54th Mass.
Col. E. N. HALLOWELL, Com'd'g 54th Mass. Infantry.

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