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Major Edmund L. Joy, U.S.V., Judge-Advocate

Major Edmund L. Joy was born in Albany, New York, October 1, 1835. He was a descendant of Thomas joy, who emigrated with Winthrop and his company to this country from Hingham, England, and settled in Boston in 1630. On his mother's side he was descended from Anthony Stoddard, who also emigrated from England, and settled in Boston in 1639. His grandfather, Nathaniel Joy, fought in the Revolutionary War. His father, Charles Joy, went to Newark, New Jersey, and in 1855 established himself there in business, which he conducted until his death, in 1873.

Edmund L. Joy, after receiving a preparatory education at the Albany Academy, entered the University of Rochester, from which he was graduated in 1856. He was admitted to the bar of New York in 1857, and afterwards removed to Iowa, where he practiced his profession with success.

At the outbreak of the Civil War he espoused the Union cause and took an active part in raising troops. He was mustered into the United States service as captain Company B, Thirty-sixth Regiment Iowa Volunteer Infantry, October 4, 1862, and served in the Department of Tennessee at Fort Pickering, Memphis, in the autumn of that year. During the Vicksburg campaign he was with the Yazoo Pass Expedition, and participated in the engagement at Fort Pemberton, Mississippi. He commanded the left wing of the regiment at the battle of Helena, and took part in the movements resulting in the capture of Little Rock. At one time he was in command of the provost guard at Helena, Arkansas.

In 1864 President Lincoln appointed him major and judge-advocate U. S. Volunteers. He was assigned to the Seventh Army Corps, which was under the command of Major-General Frederick Steele, a graduate of West Point in the class of 1843, a distinguished officer in the Mexican War, and subsequently, and until his death in 1868, commander of the Department of the Columbia. Edmund L. Joy, besides being on the staff of General Steele, was also made judge-advocate of the Department of the Arkansas, with head-quarters at Little Rock, Arkansas. He had much to do in this capacity with the organization of a judicial System for Arkansas and the Indian Territory, and aided in the organization of a State government under a new constitution for the State of Arkansas. He resigned his commission and was honorably discharged May 7, 1865. At the close of the war he returned to Newark, but with health so impaired by his military service, that it was impossible for him to resume the practice of his profession. He therefore entered into partnership with his father, and after his father's death succeeded to the business, becoming a member of the New York Produce Exchange.

Edmund L. Joy was eminently a public-spirited man, and deeply interested in all that pertained to the welfare of the city of Newark and of the State in which he lived.

He was an ardent Republican, and in 1871 and 1872 was a member of the New Jersey House of Assembly, and in the latter year was chairman of the judiciary Committee.

He was a member of the Board of Education of the city of Newark from 1877 to 1889, and for three years was honored with the presidency of that body. He was a member of the Newark Board of Trade, was its president in 1875 and 1876, and from that time till his death served as treasurer of the board. He was a director of the Manufacturers' National Bank of Newark, and was identified with other institutions, both financial and charitable.

In 1880 he was a delegate from New Jersey to the National Republican Convention which met in Chicago and nominated James A. Garfield for the Presidency. In 1884 he was appointed by President Arthur a government director of the Union Pacific Railroad Company.

He was conspicuously a racy and genial companion, and his ability as a speaker was unquestioned. He was " a zealous patriot, a gallant soldier, a scholar, and a Christian gentleman of many accomplishments."

In 1862 he married Miss Theresa R. Thrall, a daughter of the late Homer L. Thrall, M.D., who was a Professor of Chemistry in Kenyon College, and subsequently of Materia Medica and General Pathology in Starling Medical College, Columbus, Ohio.

He died February 14, 1892, and, besides his widow, left two sons-Edmund Frederick Steele Joy and Homer Thrall Joy-and one daughter, Mrs. R. Delos Martyn, of Chicago.

Source: Officers of the Volunteer Army and Navy who served in the Civil War, published by L.R. Hamersly & Co., 1893, 419 pgs.

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