George W. Frost, – Lt. Col., was an “Agent for Newmarket Manufacturing” who replaced John Webster. He enlisted 2 Oct 1862 at age 38 as a Private in Company S, 15th Infantry. Appointed to Major 7 Oct 1862 in Company S, 15th Infantry. Commissioned to Lieutenant Colonel 18 Oct 1862 when he mustered in. Resigned 14 Feb 1863, due to illness: climatic fever.
George Washington Frost was born in Salem, Mass., September 14, 1824. His father, John Frost, was one of the old fashioned masters of the merchant marine service which made Salem a household word on the other side of the globe. His mother was Lucy Frye. He attended Salem schools, but early in life went to Brooklyn New York where he met and married his wife, and ventured to Newmarket upon his wedding journey. He entered the employ of the Newmarket Manufacturing Company in the capacity of clerk. His employers and associates were not slow to recognize the marked ability which he displayed and his devotion to business, so that when, in 1855, Mr. Webster resigned as agent, Mr. Frost was unanimously chosen as his successor, and in spite of his extreme youth, his administration was remarkably successful.
In the hour of his country’s need, forgetful of self and selfish interests, mindful only of the call for men, he at once sacrificed the lucrative office which he held and was one of the first to enlisted to defend the flag. He joined as a Private in the ranks, October 2, 1862. Here, too, his ability was quickly recognized and five days from his enlistment he was appointed Major of the Fifteenth regiment, but before he was mustered in as such he was promoted to be Lieutenant-Colonel of the regiment, sixteen days after his enlistment.
Colonel Frost was no stranger to the ports of Louisiana. Prior to his enlistment, he travelled on business for the Newmarket Manufacture Cotton Mills to Louisinana, as late as 1862 accompanied by Timothy M. Joy acting as his assistant clerk.
Alanson Haines reported in 1900 in his recollection “A trip from Newmarket to New Orleans in 1862” of his deployment with Col Frost in December 1862:
…“We spent our Thanksgiving there [Union Trotting Park, New York] and about the 1st of December four companies broke camp and were ordered to Brooklyn where we were put on board the James S. Green, a small canal boat with an extra deck built on, the boat being so small that Colonel Frost refused to place but two companies on board. Consequently he was placed under arrest and sent to New York where very soon he was released and ordered back to his command.” …
On February 14, 1863 he resigned his commission on account of medical disability from climatic fever, a medical condition that affected hundreds of Union Troops sent to the southern ports of ethe Mississippi River. He only served a few months; however, his sharp mind and focus on details was instrumental in the initial logistics overseeing the deployment of the Regiment.
As soon as his health permitted he returned to resumed to manage the Newmarket Manufacturing Company’s affairs, which he continued until his sudden death at age fifty-five on 30 Jun 1879 at Coney Island, NY while at a bathing outing. As a result of the Coroner’s inquest held in Brooklyn, the jury rendered a verdict of ”death by acute congestion of brain from effects of the sun.”
He was remembered as always displaying a sunny, genial disposition and a manner peculiarly affable and courteous. he greatly endeared himself, not only to the employees of the mills, to his fellow servicemen, but to the citizens at large. He was buried with both civic and military honors. He is buried with his wife and family at Riverside cemetery.