November 1: Charles Kitchell Gardner (1869)

Charles Kitchell Gardner was born June 27, 1787, in Morristown, New Jersey, the son of Thomas and Sarah Kitchell Gardner.  At an early age, the family moved to Newburgh, New York, where they kept an inn.  Charles received his secondary education at a private academy in Morristown before enrolling at Columbia College in 1807, where he studied medicine under Dr. David Hosack.  In 1808 he was commissioned an ensign in the Sixth Regiment of Infantry, U.S. Army, and pursued a career in the military.  By 1812, when hostilities arose between the United States and Great Britain, he had attained the rank of brigade inspector and lieutenant.  During the war he rose in rank to that of colonel of the 25th Infantry which was stationed at various times at Sackett’s Harbor, Fort George and Fort Niagara. At the battle of Niagara, in which General Winfield Scott was severely wounded, Colonel Gardner carried him off the field. Gardner resigned from the army permanently in 1818 at the request of Ann Eliza McLean, whom he married in March 1819.

Gardner and his wife settled in New York City where he became engaged in various literary endeavors. Gardner’s political interest led to a series of appointments to positions in the Post Office Department in Washington, D.C. During both terms of Andrew Jackson’s administration he was first assistant postmaster-general, and he was auditor of the treasury in the post-office department under President Van Buren. During the administration of President Polk he was postmaster of the City of Washington. In 1853 he was appointed surveyor-general of Oregon, and in 1856 he returned to Washington, D.C. to become a clerk in the Treasury Department.  He retired in 1867 and died two years later on November 1, 1869. Gardner’s wife was buried from Epiphany seven years later. Two daughters were buried from the church in 1871 and 1911. They were both married to Navy Admiral John J. Almy. Several grandchildren were baptized and confirmed at Epiphany.

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