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Mini Biographies of Scots and Scots Descendants (P)
Powrie, Robert Hutchison


Robert Powrie and family

Robert Powrie aged 20Robert Hutchison Powrie was born in Kinnoull, Perth in 1842 and emigrated with his family to Waukesha County, Wisconsin when he was 12. He enlisted in the Wisconsin 5th Regiment when the Civil War began, and 50 of his letters home, include comments to cousins still in Scotland, are a mixture of the horror and humanity of war. He was a fifer in the regimental band, but learned the bugle and fiddle while serving. He also carried stretchers and fought. He carved bone and wood, and drew his fellow officers, including Gen. Grant, with pencil and charcoal. The bone he got from the cook, and even made a fiddle with glue made by himself but later wrote home for some "real glue"! His art, like his music, was self taught as he formal education ended when he left Scotland. At war's end he began a monument business in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. His monument for Gen. John Gibbon of "Iron Brigade" fame resides at Arlington National Cemetery. Among his art is an oil painting of President Lincoln, whom he had met twice during the war. He embraced the new art of photography, and his son John would work one day with Thomas Edison in the West Orange, New Jersey Facility on the early color photography process. His hand carved pipe, his monuments, and his glass slides of his native and adopted land are a legacy along with the artistic touch, as his first cousin, four times removed Jane Frees-Kluth is now a sculptor of beautiful public art.

Powrie, Robert Hutchison

Thanks to Mary Powrie Schacht  for sending this in.


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