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Daniel Avery Langworthy, M. D. (1832-1919)
Born in Westerly, R.I., in merchandise business at Bay City.

1878 Bio. - Added Jul., 2009.

American Biographical History of Eminent and Self-made Men,
F.A. Bernard, 1878


Langworthy, Daniel A., M. D., Bay City, Michigan, was born in Westerly, Rhode Island, January 3, 1832. He is the first son in a family of six children, whose parents were John A. Langworthy and Eliza (Lewis) Langworthy. He is of English descent, belonging to the seventh generation of Langworthys in America; who, as far as their history can be traced, are noted for sobriety and uprightness, not one worthless character having ever disgraced the record. They are also remarkable for longevity; Mr. Langworthy's great-grandfather was a soldier in the Revolutionary War, and lived to be eighty-four years of age. On the material side, his family is intellectual and accomplished, but short-lived. His grand-parents were influential throughout the New England States, and were closely identified with the denomination of Baptists.

When he was six years old, his father's family removed to Allegheny County, New York, where he received a grammar school and academic education, graduating from Alfred Academy in 1854. In 1856 he commenced the study of medicine under the preceptorship of Dr. George H. Taylor, of New York City; and in March, 1860, he graduated from the New York College of Physicians and Surgeons. He immediately began practice with Dr. Taylor, and was soon enable to pay the debt contracted for his education.

In 1861 he entered the army as a private in the 85th New York Regiment, declining all commissions, either in the ranks or upon the medical staff. He accompanied General McClellan's army, and, during that trying peninsula campaign, rendered excellent service on the field and in the hospital. April 3, 1862, he was promoted to First Lieutenant; and, on the 25th of August, was made Captain. When General McClellan “changed base,” the 85th New York Regiment went to Suffolk, Virginia, under the command of General Peck, and remained until December, when they marched into North Carolina, for the purpose of joining an expedition to Goldsborough, under General Foster. In September, 1863, he was sent North, on conscript duty, returning to camp at Plymouth, North Carolina, in April, 1864, where he arrived just in time to be made prisoner, with the entire command at that point. They were taken to Andersonville, but Wirts, the German in command of the prison, refused to take charge of any prisoners who held a commission. The officers were then sent to Macon, Georgia, where many weeks were spent in tunneling for the purpose of making an escape. After digging with their hands and pieces of wood several tunnels, one of which was two feet in diameter and one hundred feet in length, they were exposed by one of their own number, a Missourian. In July, with hundreds of other officers, he was taken to Charleston, South Carolina, and placed in the lower portion of the city to shield it from the Union guns. Here they remained until the latter part of September, when they were sent to Columbia, on account of the yellow fever, which raged in Charleston at that time. Mr. Langworthy's entire time, from the first day he entered prison, was occupied in devising some plan of escape. At Columbia he determined to put his plan into execution, before they were encircled by the Confederate regulation stockade; accordingly, with four of his comrades, he passed the first guard line at night, five sentinels being in sight, and took to the woods. Notwithstanding their cautious movements, a pack of hounds were soon upon their track, but were diverted from the pursuit several times by the use of pepper, garlic, and turpentine, which they had carefully saved for that purpose. Taking a north-easterly course through the tangled swamps along the Saluda River, in South Carolina, and passing over the Allegheny and Blue Ridge Mountains, they endured six weeks of untold hardships before they reached the Union lines, in East Tennessee. During their flight, they avoided every person, even the contrabands, not deeming it safe to be seen; they had no fire-arms whatever, and so could protect themselves from no one; they subsisted upon hard corn and nuts, scarcely daring to make even a smothered fire to cook potatoes. Their escape from the prison, and their many narrow escapes during the six weeks' journey, they regard as truly Providential, and almost miraculous. One day, when in the mountains, they received a volley from a company of Confederate soldiers. Mr. Langworthy's narration is of the greatest interest, and he has often repeated it to large circles of attentive listeners. He reached home on the 20th of November, her term having expired some months previous. He immediately reported for duty, and was returned to North Carolina, where he remained until January, 1865, when he was obliged to retire from the service, on account of disease contracted while in prison. Mr. Langworthy rendered excellent service in the battles of Yorktown, Williamsburg, Savage Station, Fair Oaks, Malvern Hills, Goldsborough, and Plymouth.

After his discharge, he returned to New York City, where he remained only a few months. His health compelling him to seek another climate, he went West in the fall of 1866, with a brother-in-law, A. J. Cooke, in search of a location. They decided to settle in Bay City, Michigan, and entered into a partnership, which was the formation of the mercantile firm of Cooke & Langworthy. The business was carried on under this name until 1874, when Mr. Romer was made a partner, and the name of the firm – now one of the largest and most prosperous in the city – was changed to that of Cooke & Co. Mr. Langworthy is the financial member of the firm; and, by his integrity and promptness, has won the respect and esteem of his fellow-citizens. He is an active member of the Episcopal Church. In politics, he is a Republican, but has no political aspirations. On the 5th of January, 1864, he was married to Miss Sarah Belle Cooke, of Elmira, New York.

Additional Notes.

    1880 - Census: Bay City, Bay, Mich.

  • Langworthy, Daniel A. - b. 1832, Rhode Island.
  • Sarah I., wife - b. 1838, New York.
  • Belle C., daughter - b. 1865, New York.
  • Olin L., son - b. 1868, Mich.

    1900 - Census: Corinne, Courtenay & Nogosek Twps., Stutsman, N. Dakota.

  • Langworthy, Daniel A. - b. Jan., 1832, Rhode Island - widow.
  • Sarah, cousin - b. May, 1858, Rhode Island - single.
  • Jane, cousin - b. Sep., 1863, Rhode Island, - single.

    1919 - Minnesota Deaths: Hennepiin Co.

  • Daniel A. Langsworthy, born Jan. 3, 1832, R.I., died Jan. 14, 1919, burial at Courtenay, N. Dak. Son of John A.Langworthy and Eliza Lewis.

    1944 - Minnesota Deaths: Minneapolis, Hennepin Co.

  • Olin L. Langsworthy, b. 1869, died Sep. 16, 1944, son of Daniel Avery Langworthy and Belle Cook.
Related Pages/Notes

Related Pages:
Langworthy, Olin L. son
Cooke, Aaron J.
Park & Munger Co.
Civil War History
People Referenced
Cooke, A. J.
Cooke, Sarah B. (wife)
Foster, Gen.
Langworthy, Daniel A. (subject)
Langworthy, John A. (father)
Langworthy, Belle C. (dau)
Langworthy, Olin L. (son)
Langworthy, Jane (cousin)
Langworthy, Sarah (cousin)
Lewis, Eliza (mother)
McClellan, Gen.
Peck, Gen.
Taylor George H. Dr.
Wirts, Mr.
Subjects Referenced
85th NY Regiment
Alfred Academy, NY
Allegheny Co., NY
Andersonville prison
Bay City, MI
Charleston, SC
Civil war
Cooke & Co.
Cooke & Langworthy Co.
Corinne, ND
Courtenay, ND
Columbia, SC
Elmira, NY
Episcopal Church
New York, NY
Goldsborough, NC
Macon, GA
Minneapolis, MN
NY Col. Phys./Surgeons
Plymouth, NC
Revolutionary war
Saluda River, SC
Stutsman Co., ND
Suffolk, VA
Westerly, R.I.
WRITINGS: History As It Was Written Then.