LOWELL | A 19-day period in the summer of 1864 marked tragedy for the Lowell family of Stillman and Albert Robbins.
On July 18 of that year, a hemorrhage – following a bout with fever – claimed the life of elder brother Stillman, then 22, while he was serving as a private in the staff offices of the 12th Indiana Cavalry.
A little more than two weeks later, Albert, then 20 and a private in Lake County's Company A of the 99th Indiana Infantry, died Aug. 6, succumbing to wounds suffered at the Battle of Atlanta.
The Robbins brothers, whose graves are side-by-side at Lowell Memorial Cemetery, are among nine region Civil War veterans honored in the new Lowell South Shore Civil War Memorial to be unveiled and dedicated in a public ceremony at 9:30 a.m. Saturday.
The crescent-shaped, cobblestone-style memorial incorporates the old broken and worn marble headstones of the Robbins brothers and seven other Civil War veterans buried at the cemetery. It is the newest feature of the historical tourism trail established by the Calumet Region Civil War Preservation Project and the South Shore Convention and Visitors Authority.
All nine veterans received new government-issued granite headstones at graveside within the past year through the efforts of the preservation project and the South Shore Civil War Memorial Trail. Since Memorial Day 2011, the volunteer group has obtained nearly 80 new granite markers from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to replace worn, broken or missing headstones for Civil War veterans buried in Lake and Porter counties.
Trail organizers funded the Lowell memorial through a historical tourism and preservation grant from the Indianapolis-based Efroymson Family Fund.
It is located between the cemetery and the police and fire stations on Commercial Avenue (Indiana 2) in Lowell, directly behind the existing veterans memorial and flag poles.
The Lowell High School Choir, a Civil War re-enactment group, Town Council President Phil Kuiper and preservation project members are scheduled to participate in the dedication, with a historical tour following the ceremony.