As a boy, he ran away from home to join the army, but was not permitted to do so, and was taken back to Milwaukee by his father. He would not be dissuaded from joining the army, so his father assisted him to a place as a musician for the Thirteenth regular infantry.
Many have claimed to be the youngest regular soldier during the civil war, but the records of the war department show that Moody held the record.
He had applied for a Civil War pension as an invalid on Aug. 8, 1887. Based on census records, Moody was approximately 49 years old at the time of his death.
The Minneapolis Journal; “Youngest Boy Soldier; Death of Eugene A. Moody, Who Had the War Department’s Record at Caledonia, Minn.”; January 07, 1904; p. 2