Historic Elmwood Cemetery & Foundation

Historic Elmwood Cemetery & Foundation

Where Detroit's History Endures
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Frederick William Swift

Frederick Swift was born in Mansfield, Connecticut on January 30, 1831. He came to Detroit in September of 1847 and started in the shoe business. Swift and his brother later formed a drug manufacturing business. He was appointed Postmaster of Detroit in 1866 and served in that office for eight years. Swift was twice married and had six children.

Frederick Swift entered military service on June 17, 1862 as a captain in the 17th Michigan Infantry. He was made Lt. Colonel on November 26, 1863. Swift was taken prisoner at Spottsylvania, Virginia on May 12, 1864 and was exchanged on August 3, 1864. He was made colonel on December 4, 1864 and brevetted Brigadier General of U. S. Volunteers on March 13, 1865. During the period of his service, he participated in battles at Antietam, Fredericksburg, Vicksburg and Jackson, Mississippi. Swift mustered out of service on June 3, 1865.

General Frederick Swift was given the Congressional Medal of Honor on February 15, 1897. The citation was for gallantly seizing the colors and rallying the regiment after three color bearers had been shot and the regiment, having become demoralized, was in imminent danger of capture at Lenoire Station, Tennessee on November 16, 1863.

General Swift died on his 85th birthday after a brief illness.

Born: January 30, 1831
Died: January 30, 1916
Buried: Section H, Lot 23