Photo from Florida Memory
In 1862 at the age of twenty-two, a young medical student named Cyrus Teed enlisted in the Union Army and joined the New York Infantry of the New York volunteers. In 1863, by then a Corporal, Teed was assigned to Brigade Headquarters where he served as special aide to acting General Woodford. Some sources indicate he also worked as an assistant physician and surgeon but he may have embellished his record with this to make him and his military service seem more important.
While on the march near Warrenton Junction, Virginia, in August of 1863, he suffered sunstroke, which led to paralysis of his left arm and leg. According to army records, he was hospitalized in the army hospital in Alexandria, Virginia for almost two months.
During his hospital stay, Teed observed wounded soldiers who had a more positive outlook on life or strong religious faith recovered faster from their injuries—an observation which likely helped shape his own beliefs and contributed to his formation of Koreshanity and the Koreshan Unity.
He received an Honorable (Medical) Discharge from the Army in October of 1863. After his discharge, he returned to New York to complete his medical studies and graduated from the Eclectic Medical College of the City of New York, in February 1868 at the age of 29.
To learn more about Cyrus Teed, Koreshanity and the Koreshan Unity, take a guided tour of the historic settlement or purchase the definitive book on the Koreshans by Lyn Millner, The Allure of Immortality, available online or in the Ranger Station Gift Shop.