Thomas Alfred Dean


Thomas Alfred Dean enlisted in September 1862 at the young age of 17 serving 9 months in the Cadet Regiment (45th Infantry). There are few details about his army life, but it is recorded that he was never off duty for a single day. Dean reported a period in the swamps and sandhills of North Carolina that had little relief, and a long march to Goldsboro in 1863 without sufficient rations, where foraging became necessary. Before reaching Goldsboro where two railroads intersected and supplies were stored (to be destroyed), two battles were fought in Kinston and Whitehall. The 45th arrived too late to fight at Goldsborough and were detailed to Newbern for guard duty. One more reconnoitering expedition and skirmish with the enemy followed at Dover Crossroads before Dean returned home.


Dean enlisted again for a hundred days and was engaged in guard duty in the Alexandria Va and Manasses vicinity without enemy encounter before discharge and return to his Cochituate home where he worked in the shoe industry. The Dean family was well known in that part of town for its industrious work in developing the shoe industry. Smaller shops and fewer workers than the Bents for some time, but they eventually took over the Bent Shoe factory at the end of the century.