Wolcott Historical Society News - January 2018
By Florence Goodman
This month I will continue to share WWI histories about four more of our Wolcott veterans. I feel that it is important to share the stories of these men and women who risked their lives in the WWI to keep us free.
Harold C. Hurlbut was born on January 13, 1893 in Beekman, New York. His parents were Reverend Benjamin Franklin and Caroline Wright Hurlbut. He had a younger brother, Dwight. In 1910 his family was living in Southington, Connecticut, but at the time of his enlistment he listed Wolcott as his home. Harold Hurlbut was inducted into the National Army on April 28, 1918 in Watertown, NY at the age of 25. He served as a private in Company 3 Training Battalion 153 Dep Brigade through May 12, 1918. From September 12th -16th of that year he served in the infantry in Company F 311 in St. Mihiel, France and then in Meuse-Argonne, France from September 16th through October 4th. He was slightly wounded in action on October 27, 1918 in Meuse-Argonne, France, but went on to serve with the Allied Expeditionary Forces from May 19, 1918 to May 22, 1919. Harold was honorably discharged on May 30, 1919. Harold married Florence Ora Munger in 1922. They had a son, Harold Jr. who was born in 1925. Harold died on April 4, 1984 in Cheshire, Connecticut.
Chester Kellogg Judd was born in Wolcott on February 6, 1894 and lived in the northern section of our town until he enlisted. His parents were George Talmage Judd and Augusta May Kellogg Judd. He had one sister Alice Iva Judd Chase. Chester enlisted on May 29, 1917 at the age of 23 at Governor's Island, New York. In September he was assigned to Company D Resident Supply Technician at Fort Jay, New York. He served with various supply companies while stationed there and was promoted to the rank of Sergeant. From November 14, 1917 to July 11, 1919 he served overseas while assigned to the Allied Expeditionary Forces. He was honorably discharged on July 17, 1919. Several years after his discharge, Chester married Lina Elizabeth Herold and they had five children: Betty (1922), Chester G. (1923), Margaret (1927), Robert (1932) and Richard (1934). They lived in Bristol where Chester worked for L. B. Tuttle Company. Chester died on October 1, 1995 and is buried West Cemetery in Bristol.
Louis Fremance Reigner was born in Waterbury on August 14, 1893. His parents were Louis and Calenience Reignier; they had two other children; Gilbert and Flora. Prior to enlistment into WWI Louis married Mabel Lord and they lived with his parents in Wolcott on Woodtick Road. They had one child, Louis, Jr. who was born in 1937. Prior to serving, he worked as a painter and mason. Louis entered the Army on December 17, 1917 and was assigned to the Coastal Artillery Corp. He was promoted to mechanic in August 1918. He was assigned overseas in March to the Allied Expeditionary Forces and served there for 10 months. He left France on January 18, 1919 and was honorably discharged upon his return to the states 10 days later. After his discharge he worked for several years in Chelsea, Massachusetts in a clockworks factory. He returned to Wolcott and lived on Finch Road with his wife and family. He worked as a clock mechanic at the Clock manufacturing Company in Waterbury. Louis died on August 26, 1972 and is buried in Woodtick Cemetery in Wolcott.
Victor Joseph Parent was born on May 28, 1896 in Richmond, Vermont. His parents were Theodore and Rose Parent. Sometime after the 1910 census the family came to Wolcott. Victor had several brothers and sisters. Victor married Ruby Cole whose family lived and farmed in Wolcott. They had two children: Arthur Victor (1924-1926) and Rubyrae Rose (1929-1977).
When Victor enlisted in the war on February 24, 1917 he was living on Pierpont Road in Waterbury, but he listed Wolcott on his registration card as his home address. At that time Victor was working as farmer on a farm owned by Arthur Cole, which was probably located on County Road near Woodtick Road. The George Cole farm, which was located on the corner of Woodtick Road and Center Street was probably across the road from Arthur Cole's farm. His wife's family owned these farms.
Although Victor enlisted on July 25, 1917 there is no record that he ever served. Victor died in May of 1971 and is buried in Richmond, VT.
I hope you enjoyed this glimpse into our past with these four new stories. We have now heard about the lives of twenty of the twenty-eight veterans from Wolcott who made a difference.
(Information for this article was taken from an "Honor Roll of WWI veterans" that hangs in the Historical Society museum; Ancestry.com research by Deb DuBois, CT Military Questionnaires, 1919-1920, US Federal Census 1910, 1`920,1930, 1940.)
George Cole Farm located on the corner of Center Street and Woodtick Road.
This old WWI cannon was given to the Wolcott American Flag Association by the War Department in 1933 and was located in our town. In October 1942, residents voted to donate this relic to the scrap metal campaign to help in World War II.
To view past installments of the Historical Society News, click here.