Thursday, December 6, 2012

Collector Carries Sword to Grave of Fallen Hero-- Part 2

Six years later, Allen Wandling got a call from the family, who had found it in a closet after the old man had died.  Then, Wandling traced the sword to William Rowley, of the 58th Illinois Regiment who had cut the sword from Col. Rogers' belt after his death.  Rogers had been wearing an armored suit at the battle but had been shot many times before finally being done in by a direct blast of cannister from a cannon.

His body was taken back to Corinth where Rogers was buried with honors.  Rowley later gave the sword to an officer of the 9th Illinois who took it back to Belleville after the war.

Rogers' great-great-great granddaughter found out about the sword and contacted Wandling, asking if she could buy the sword.  He agreed to meet her at the show in Corinth, but wouldn't sell it.  Wandling had an ancestor at the battle in the 63rd Ohio who was likely shooting at Rogers.  " Here were two descendants of people who had fought each other, shaking hands and holding the sword.  It was a nice moment, " said Wandling.

They plan on returning this fall for the 150th anniversary of the battle and hope to work out a deal to display the sword at the battlefield interpretive center.

I Would Surely Like to Have That Sword There So Everyone Can See It.  --Old Secesh

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