Colonel Hugh Lewis
May 1, 1830 – Aug 11, 1919
Served in the Iron Brigade
The second battle of Bull Run, on the second day of fighting, he was shot just below the elbow. The next day his arm was amputated below the elbow and was buried on the field. Gangrene set in and a second operation was necessary to amputate the arm near the shoulder. The amputated arm was sent by the surgeons to an Army museum in DC where for years it remained in a bottle.
For many years after, Lewis’s arm had aches and pains, as if it was still there. One day his daughter was at the museum with and she came upon the arm. Remembering her father’s complaints and the superstitions concerning amputated members she urged that the arm be laid down on its side instead of being kept standing on end in the bottle. The museum authorities complied with her request. Mr. Lewis’s arm seemed to be better after this.
Years later he decided he wanted to have the arm back to be buried with him but the Smithsonian Institution had sent the arm to McGill University in Montreal to replace others that had been destroyed by fire. He eventually got the arm back and it was buried with him.