William Merrick Bristoll

William Merrick Bristoll's picture

After Ins escape from Charleston, William Merrick Bristol! resumed his teaching career, first in Illinois, then in Milwaukee. In 1863 he enlisted in the ijth Battery, Wisconsin Light Artillery, rising to the rank of first lieutenant by the end of the war. Most of his time in the Army was spent as an ordnance officer in New Orleans. Following the Civil War he attended Andover Theological Seminary in Massachusetts and then took on a succession of teaching jobs; he was a professor of Latin at Ripon College in Wisconsin, Atlanta University in Georgia, and Yankton College in South Dakota. He retired from teaching in 1886 to work as an accountant in a real-estate and brokerage firm in Minneapolis. Mrs. Hauenstein, who knew him there when she was a child, recalls that he had blue eyes and a clipped beard and looked distinguished—"like Santa Claus, only neater.” Bristoll, she remembers, began each day with a reading from the Bible, then played a hymn on the organ. Before leaving for work he would recite the Lord’s Prayer with his wife. Bristoll died in Minneapolis at the age of seventy in 1910.

Articles by this Contributor

April 1975

Trapped by the outbreak of the Civil War, a young schoolteacher fled the rebel city—and ran into hair-raising adventures