Josiah Starr was an African American farmer who later became a soldier in the 29th Connecticut Infantry Regiment. Starr was born in the town of Sharon, Connecticut in 1824. His mother’s name was Betsy and she was born in Old Hartford, Connecticut. Josiah’s father’s name was Able and while he was born in Sharon Connecticut, he lived in Danbury with his father Robin Starr until he returned to Sharon as an adult. Robin Starr died in 1832. Josiah Starr enlisted in the army at Bridgeport, Connecticut on December 10th, 1863. He served in Company C of the 29th Connecticut Regiment. He served with both of his brothers, Lewis H. Starr, who enlisted from Sharon, Connecticut on December 10th, 1863 and Charles B. Starr who enlisted from Hartford on December 7th, 1863. Josiah started off as a private and had to serve three years by law. He was mustered into service on March 8th, 1864 in New Haven, Connecticut. He then fought at Kell House on October 29th. Between October 31st, 1864 and August 31st, 1865 his military records report he was present for duty and was in good health. A member of Company G of the 29th, he would have been among the first of the Union soldiers to enter the captured Confederate capital of Richmond on April 3rd, 1865. On October 24th, 1865, he was mustered out of the service in Brownsville, Texas, and was discharged due to paralysis and heart complications.
Prior to the war he had married Eliza Harris who was born in Massachusetts. They had three kids, John H. Starr who was born April 6th 1856, Robert Starr who was born September 11th 1864, and Charles Starr who was born on March 26th, 1870. Josiah was diagnosed with acerebral hemorrhage when he was 74 years old, and was sick for two months before he died on June 7th 1898. Eliza applied to receive his pension and was granted the money at a rate of eight dollars per month.