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History of the Mohawk Valley: Gateway to the West 1614-1925
William Michael Remmer

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[This information is from Vol. III, pp. 601-602 of History of the Mohawk Valley: Gateway to the West 1614-1925, edited by Nelson Greene (Chicago: The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1925). It is in the Reference collection of the Schenectady County Public Library at R 974.7 G81h. This online edition includes lists of portraits, maps and illustrations. As noted by Paul Keesler in his article, "The Much Maligned Mr. Greene," some information in this book has been superseded by later research or was provided incorrectly by local sources.]

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William Michael Remmer is a World war veteran who since attaining his majority has filled the position of armorer at the Utica armory, with the exception of the periods which he spent in the active military service of the country. His birth occurred in Utica, New York, on the 5th of December, 1865, his parents being Michael and Antoinette Josephine Remmer, both of whom passed away in this city. Following his graduation from the Utica Free Academy he entered a business college of the city and was still a student there when, at the age of twenty-one years, he was requested to take the place of James Leonard, the armorer, who was ill. Mr. Remmer, who as a boy had manifested particular interest in the armory, spending considerable time therein, agreed to take the position temporarily. This was offered him permanently when Mr. Leonard died and since that time he has most acceptably and efficiently discharged the duties devolving upon him. He resigned in 1898 to accept a commission as first lieutenant in the New York Volunteer Infantry for service in the Spanish-American war. The regiment was not sent to Cuba, however, and following his discharge at Greenville, South Carolina, on the 25th of March, 1899, Mr. Remmer returned to Utica and took his old position as armorer. On the 25th of June, 1916, he left Utica for Camp Whitman, New York, as first sergeant with the First New York Infantry and reported for Mexican border service but was not sent to the republic. Returning to Utica, he continued to discharge the duties of armorer here until the 4th of February, 1917, when the First New York Infantry, in which Mr. Remmer held the rank of first sergeant, was ordered out to guard public utilities. When the United States declared war against Germany, the command was ordered back to this city to guard public utilities in Utica and vicinity, being mustered into the United States army on the 15th of July, 1917. On the 18th of August following the regiment left for Cortland Park, New York, and later was sent to Camp Wadsworth, South Carolina, while in July, 1918, the troops sailed for France. Mr. Remmer saw active service on four fronts and participated in numerous engagements, including those of Belleau Wood and Chateau Thierry. Following the signing of the armistice he was assigned to duty with the Army of Occupation in Germany. After being mustered out at Camp Upton, New York, on July 15, 1919, he again returned to Utica, reenlisted in the National Guard in 1920 and once more took up his work as armorer. He has every reason to be proud of his military record, which shows unwavering loyalty and signal service to his country in time of crisis. He belongs to Liscum Wheeler Camp No. 33 of the Twenty-eighth Veterans Association; to Utica Post of the American Legion and is first sergeant of Charles H. Adrean, D. S. C., Post No. 368, of the Veterans of Foreign Wars.

In 1889 Mr. Remmer was united in marriage to Miss Mary E. McCarthy, daughter of James McCarthy of Saratoga Springs. She passed away in 1897, leaving one son, William J., who is a resident of Utica. In 1909 Mr. Remmer was again married, his second union being with Anna C. Gannon, daughter of James Gannon, a well known railroad engineer of Utica. Mr. Remmer is a Roman Catholic in religious faith, attending St. Francis de Sales church, and also has membership connection with the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks. A worthy native son of Utica, he is numbered among the highly esteemed and representative residents of the city.

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