Sunday, November 20, 2011

Wilmington's Bellamy Mansion

From Wikipedia.

Dr. John D. Bellamy (Sept. 18, 1817-Aug. 30, 1896)

Built and owned the Bellamy Mansion in Wilmington, NC, and was a medical doctor.

His son Marsden Bellamy enlisted in the Scotland Neck Cavalry before North Carolina seceded, but later enlisted in the Confederate Navy.

A younger son, William, joined the Wilmington Rifle Guards a few months later.

The Bellamy Mansion's architect, James F. Post, joined the Confederate artillery and helped design and build various structures at Fort Fisher and Fort Anderson.

The mansion's draftsman, Rufus Bunnel, had already returned north before Fort Sumter was fired on and joined a Connecticut regiment.

Enslaved plasterer, William B. Gould, who had worked on the house, escaped Wilmington on the night of Sept. 21, 1862, with eight other slaves by rowing a small boat down the Cape Fear River. They got to a Union ship where he and several others joined the US Navy.

He kept an extensive diary during the war and is thought to be one of the few former slaves to have kept one. After the war, he again took up the plasterer trade in Massachusetts.

During the war, the Bellamy family continued to live at the mansion on Market Street, until a yellow fever epidemic forced them to leave.

Very Involved in the War. --Old B-Runner

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