Monday, December 31, 2018

Slumdog Millionaired Myself to Some Answers

Last Saturday, December 22, the McHenry County Civil War Round Table discussion group had a trivia meeting.

I answered two hard ones, because of Slumdog Millionaire.  They asked questions that I had just recently come across or just knew.

One was, "What was the name of Abraham Lincoln's sister?"  I had just recently finished reading Carl Sandburg's "Abraham Lincoln Grows Up" taken from his "Abraham Lincoln:  The Prairie Years."  Otherwise there would be no way I would have known.  The answer is "Sarah."

Then, when I was asking about the USRC Harriet Lane, someone wanted to know for whom it was named.  Well, since I have just recently been researching it because of an article in Naval History magazine, I knew that one as well.  It was named for President Buchanan's niece who played hostess at the White House during his administration.

I Ain't As Smart As I Am Lucky.  --Old Luck

Saturday, December 29, 2018

The American Battlefield Trust-- Part 2: From APCWS to CWT to AMT

A second non-profit battlefield presentation group, the Civil War Trust, was created in 1991.  This group was able to acquire and preserve 6,700 acres of land in the eight years of its existence.

On November  19, 1999, the APCWS and Civil War Trust merged to form a single organization, the Civil War Preservation streamline and  strengthen efforts.  On January 11, 2011, the name was shortened to just the Civil War Trust (CWT)

On Veterans Day, November 11, 2014, the CWT partnered with the Society of Cincinnati (hereditary group of officers of the Continental Army) to save endangered American Revolution and War of 1812 battlefields.

So, Now You Know.  --Old Secesh

The American Battlefield Trust-- Part 1: Originally the APCWS and CWT

From Wikipedia.

The Civil War Trust (CWT) is now the American Battlefield Trust, a charitable organization whose primary focus is the preservation of American battlefields.  The reason for the change of name is that in 2014, the CWT expanded is goal to save American Revolution and War of 1812 battlefields.

The American Battlefield Trust is now the umbrella organization for the CWT and the Revolutionary War Trust.

But, the history of this new organization goes back farther than this.

With the creation of the founding organization, the Association for the Preservation of Civil War Sites (APCWS) in July 1987, the modern Civil War preservation movement began.  The APCWS acquired thousands of acres of battlefield land.

More to Come.  --Old Secesh

The Civil War Trust Is Now the American Battlefield Trust

As alluded to in the last post, the Civil War Trust has expanded its scope to saving battlefields from the American Revolution and the War of 1812.  As such, it has changed its name to the American Battlefield Trust.

All battlefields are sacred and worthy of saving as much as possible.

So, Welcome ABT.  --Old SeceshTrust

War of 1812 and American Revolution Battlefields Saved By the Civil War Trust

Theses are War of 1812 and Revolution battlefields saved by the Civil War Trust, or American battlefield Trust as it is now known.  These are in the Civil War Trust 2018 Calendar.

From December 14, 2018.

June:   SACKETS HARBOR   War of 1812    24 acres saved.  The successful acquisition of Horse Island near Sackets Harbor, M.Y., in 2017 marks a significant achievement for the Civil War Trust's Campaign 1776 initiative, as the 24 acre island was the first War of 1812 battlefield land to be preserved by the Trust.

Sackets Harbor is the site of the 1813 American victory that prevented a British invasion via Canada.  Not to mention its being a major American naval base.

Of course, I have a whole blog devoted to the War of 1812, so I am kind of interested in it.

September WAXHAES, South Carolina   American Revolution

December  BRANDYWINE, Pa.    American Revolution

Glad They Are Saving All American Battlefields Now.  --Old Sec1812Rev

Friday, December 28, 2018

MCCWRT Discussion Group Dec. Meeting-- Part 1: Trivia, Too Easy, Too Hard

This past  Saturday, the McHenry County Civil War Round Table met at Panera Bread in Crystal Lake, Illinois, with the topic being Civil War Trivia.  We all took turns asking questions.  I mostly asked naval questions that were fairly easily answered.

(My questions are in my Civil War Navy blog, Running the Blockade.)

The only three that they couldn't answer was the name of the man who surrendered three forts during the war.  One was Fort Johnston which he surrendered twice to Confederate while he was still a U.S. ordnance sergeant and the other, Fort Fisher, he surrendered to Union forces as a Confederate major.  This man was James Reilly.

Another was which battle took place Christmas Eve and Day 1864.  And that was the First Battle of Fort Fisher.

The third one was the Union admiral who made $109,689 for his cut on captured blockade runners, S.P. Lee, a distant relative of Robert E. Lee.

Of course, like with so many Civil War buffs, there is not a lot of knowledge about the Navy part of the war.

--Old Secesh

William P. Black-- Part 6: His Role In the Haymarket Square Riot Case

In 1886, William Black agreed to lead a defense team for the Haymarket Square Riot conspirators.  His co-counselors included William Foster, Moses Salomon, and the radical attorney Sigmund Zeisler.  In 1887, Black led an unsuccessful appeal to the Illinois Supreme Court and the U.S. Supreme Court.

Former Major General Benjamin Butler and former Confederates John Randolph Tucker and Brigadier General Roger Atkinson Pryor were co-counsels.

On November 13, 1887, Black delivered a compassionate eulogy at the funeral of the executed defendants.

Zeisler said of Black's association with the case as "nothing short of an act of heroism" which had a negative impact on Black's career.  Black was inspired by a desire to  uphold the ideals of legal principle of due process rather than sympathy for the anarchist politics of the defendants.

His role in the case brought about the dissolution of his partnership with Dent.  Afterwards, he established the law firm of Black and Fitzgerald and also practiced separately.

Originally a Republican, he switched parties in 1872 to support the candidacy of Horace Greely.  He ran unsuccessfully for the U.S. Congress on the 1882 Democratic ticket.

He was a longtime member of the Grand Army of the Republic.

--Old Secesh

William P. Black-- Part 5: Arkansas Post, Vicksburg, Red River

William Black also was at the capture of Arkansas Post, the Vicksburg Campaign and the Red River Expedition.  He received an honorable discharge on September 29, 1864, and returned to Danville, Illinois.

After the war, he moved to Chicago and studied law at the firm of Arrington and Dent.  He passed the Illinois bar exam in 1867 and established a successful law practice with Thomas Dent, with clientele that included the Chicago Board of Trade.

He married Hortensia Mary MacGreal of Galveston, Texas, on May 28, 1869, and they had one son.

--Old Secesh

Thursday, December 27, 2018

William P. Black-- Part 4: Medal of Honor for Battle of Pea Ridge

Continued from December 20.

William Black earned a Medal of Honor at the Battle of Pea Ridge on March 7, 1862, when he single-handedly checked the Confederate advance against his company's position and prevented the capture of  Battery A of the Second Illinois Light Artillery.  Black was severely wounded on his left side during this action.

As with many of the Medals of Honor awarded for action in the Civil War, he did not receive his until more than thirty years later, on October 2, 1893.  His brother John received his October 31, 1893, making them the first of five pairs of brothers to both receive the medal for Civil War service.

I was unable to find out the other four pairs of brothers.

--Old Secesh

William and John Black-- Part 3: On to the 37th Illinois

The 11th Indiana, of which the Black brothers were members, was a 90-day regiment and after their enlistments expired, they were discharged.  Most of the regiment reenlisted retaining the number, but this time for three years.  At this time the brothers left Indiana and returned to their home in Danville, Illinois, where they organized what became Company K in the 37th Illinois Infantry, comprised of men from Danville and Vermilion County.

With the experience they gained in the 11th, the brothers became officers in the new unit.  William became its captain.  John became the major of the 37th.

--Old Secesh

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

William and John Black In the 11th Indiana Under Lew Wallace-- Part 2

From Wikipedia.

The 11th Indiana Infantry Regiment was a three-month unit, enlisting at Indianapolis, Indiana, to serve for 90 days.  Its commander was Colonel Lew Wallace. and George McGinnis was its lieutenant colonel.

It was sent to Western Virginia (now West Virginia) and saw only minimal action on the raid into the town of Romney.  It then returned to Indianapolis where it was mustered out, having served its three months.

It was then reorganized as the 11th Indiana with Wallace and McGinnis again commanding.  This time the service was for three years.

So, William and John Black did serve under Lew Wallace.   It was on their return to Indianapolis that the Black brothers left the unit.  They went back to Danville and organized what became Company K of the 37th Illinois Infantry.

--Old Secesh

Monday, December 24, 2018

William and John Black-- Part 1: Were They In a Regiment Commanded by Lew Wallace?

OK, so both William and John Black were enrolled at Wabash College in Crawfordsville, Indiana.  I have been through the town many times, well, by  it on I-74, and usually stop southeast of town at the Pilot station for gas, usually one of the lower prices around.

There is a sign by the exit for a Civil War general's house, Lew Wallace (also famous for writing "Ben Hur").  This was his home

Both of the Black brothers enlisted in the 11th Indiana for three months.  Perhaps that regiment has something to do with Lew Wallace?

I'll have to do some further research.

--Old Secesh

Saturday, December 22, 2018

154rd Anniversary of First Battle of Fort Fisher Fast Approaching.

One hundred and fifty-four years ago, Union naval and army forces were underway for the attack on the huge sand fort protecting Wilmington, North Carolina, the last major Confederate port still open.

--Old Secesh

Here's a Trivia Question for You: It's A Family Affair

Since the McHenry County Civil War Round Table is having a trivia contest today at Panera Bread in Crystal Lake, Illinois, here is one of my questions for you:

Jonathan Mayhew Wainwright commanded the USRC Harriet Lane and was killed in action January 1, 1863, when the ship was captured.  He had two sons who served in the military.  I was thinking that his name sounded very familiar from another war, so I had to look it up.

One of his sons, Jonathan Mayhew Wainwright III was killed battling pirates off Mexico as an ensign in the Navy in 1870.  Another son, Robert Powell Page Wainwright, was in the Army and served in the Indian Wars and the Spanish-American War, eventually reaching the rank of major.

His son, Jonathan Mayhew Wainwright, rose to the rank of general.  With what World War II event is he associated?

Answer below.

A Very Military Family.  --Old Secesh

General Jonathan Mayhew Wainwright surrendered the Philippines after General MacArthur was ordered away.

Friday, December 21, 2018

MCCWRT Discussion Group Meets Saturday: Topic: Civil War Trivia

The McHenry County Civil War Round Table will meet Saturday, December 22, 2018, at Panera Bread in Crystal Lake, Illinois, from 1- a.m. to noon.

This month's topic is Civil War Trivia.  Since I am a big Navy buff, U'll be asking questions about that aspect of the war and will be posting some of my questions in my Running the Blockade: Civil War Navy blog (at right).

Panera Bread is located in US-14 (Northwest Highway) by Main Street.

All are welcome.  You don't have to be a member to attend.

--Old QuizMaster

Thursday, December 20, 2018

Illinois' William P. Black-- Part 3: Born in Kentucky, Moved to Danville, Illinois

The following information is from The Encyclopedia of Arkansas History and Culture.


Born in November 11, 1842, in Woodford County, Kentucky.  After his father, the Reverend John Black died, his mother, Josephine Culbertson Black,  moved the family to Danville, Illinois, to be near her brother.  James Culbertson.  Soon thereafter, she married Dr. William Fithian.

Fithian served in the Illinois legislature in 1834 with Abraham Lincoln and Lincoln successfully represented Fithian in a lawsuit in 1850.  During the 1858 campaign for U.S. Senate, Lincoln stayed at the Fithian home in Danville and spoke  briefly to a crowd of well-wishers.  This was not the site of a Lincoln-Douglas Debate, however.

At the outbreak of the Civil War, William Black was enrolled as a ministry student at Wabash College in Crawfordsville, Indiana.  Along with his brother, John C. Black, he enlisted in the 11th Indiana Infantry Regiment and fought at the Battle of Romney, Virginia (now West Virginia) on June 11, 1861.

--Old Secesh

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Illinois' William P. Black-- Part 2: Received MoH 2 October 1893

As a lawyer, William Black was best known for being defense counsel to the people charged with the Haymarket Square Riot of 1886.


Captain, Company K, 37th Illinois Infantry.

At Pea Ridge, Arkansas,  7 March 1862.

Entered service at Danville, Illinois.

Born 11 November 1842, Woodford, Kentucky.

Date of Issue:  2 October 1883.

"Single-handedly confronted the enemy, firing a rifle at them and thus checking their advance within one hundred yards of the lines."

--Old Secesh

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

William P. Black, Medal of Honor Recipient and Brother of John C. Black-- Part 1

From Wikipedia.


(November 11, 1841-January 3, 1916)

Lawyer and recipient of America's highest military honor, the Congressional Medal of Honor for his actions at the Battle of Pea Ridge, Arkansas, in 1862.  He gained national prominence as the lead counsel of the defense of the accused bombers of Haymarket Square Riot.

He was the brother of John C. Black, Commander of the Grand Army of the Republic and also a recipient of the Medal of Honor.  They are one of only five pairs of brothers to receive the award.

Born in Woodward County, Kentucky.  His family moved to Danville, Illinois.

In 1867, he formed the law firm of Dent & Black with Thomas Dent.

--Old Secesh

Monday, December 17, 2018

Illinois' John C. Black-- Part 8: A Very Busy Postwar Life

In 1867, he passed Illinois' bar exam and set up a thriving practice in his hometown, Danville, Illinois. Throughout his life, John C. Black held a variety of positions in governmental and veterans organizations.  He ran unsuccessfully for lieutenant governor in 1872 and declined nomination for governor in 1884.

In 1884, he declined being vice president of the U.S. on the ticket of Grover Cleveland. he then held the position of Commissioner of Pensions from 1885 to 1889.  He was defeated in bids for Congress and Senate four times,  but then won for one term in Congress 1893-1895.

In 1895, he was appointed U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois where he served until 1899.

He was an active member of the Military Order of the Loyal Legion and Grand Army of the Republic and served as the national commander of the latter group 1903-1904.

From 1904 to 1913, he was president of the U.S. Civil Service Commission and also a frequent speaker on the extremely popular Chautauqua Circuit.

John Charles Black died on August 17, 1915, and is buried in Spring Hill cemetery in Danville.

--Old Secesh

Friday, December 14, 2018

Battle of Brandywine, American Revolution

From the December Civil War Trust 2018 calendar.

The Civil War Trust, long preserving Civil War battlefields, has expanded its mission to preserve all American battle fields.  They now strive to save battlefields of the American Revolution and the War of 1812.


10.4 acres saved.

On September 11, 1777, the rolling hills of the Pennsylvania countryside along Brandywine Creek became the scene of the largest battle of the American Revolution in terms of men engaged.

To date, the Trust's Campaign 1776 initiative has preserved 10.4 acres at the Brandywine battlefield, marking our first Revolutionary battlefield land saved in Pennsylvania.

--Old secesh

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Illinois' John C. Black-- Part 7: First of Five Pairs of Brothers Receiving Medals of Honor in the War

As with many Medals of Honor earned during the war, he did not receive it until more than 30 years later, October 21, 1893.  His brother was also a Medal of Honor recipient, also receiving his much later, October 2, 1893.

This made them the first pair of five pairs of brothers to receive the Medals for Civil War service.

John Black, or Charlie as he was called, was promoted to colonel on December 31, 1862, and participated in the capture of Arkansas Post, the Vicksburg Campaign and the capture of Fort Blakely, Alabama, near the end of the war.

He also frequently held command of various brigades in the department of the Gulf.  At the end of the war, he resigned hos commission and received an honorable discharge on August 15, 1865.  In recognition of his years of meritorious service, particularly at Fort Blakely, Black received a brevet promotion to the rank of Brigadier General of Volunteers in March 1866, with rank dating to April 9, 1865.

--Old Secesh

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

John Charles Black-- Part 6: In the 11th Indiana and 37th Illinois

At the outbreak of the Civil war, he was enrolled at Wabash College in Crawfordsville, Indiana,   Along with his brother William Black, Charlie initially served three months with the 11th Indiana Infantry, a three month regiment.  They fought at the Battle of Romney, Virginia (now West Virginia) on June 11, 1861.

In August 1861, he mustered out as a sergeant major and along with his brother, joined Company K of the 37th Illinois Infantry and was made captain.  He quickly earned promotion to major during regimental elections for officers on September 5, 1861.

Severely wounded in the right arm during the Battle of Pea Ridge, Arkansas, on March 7, 1862, he earned promotion to lieutenant colonel.  He never regained the use of his right arm.

Black received the Medal of Honor at the Battle of Prairie Grove in Arkansas on December 7, 1862, when he led his regiment in a charge uphill  against the Confederate position at the Borden House.  He was wounded in the left arm this time, but he and his regiment captured an enemy artillery battery.

--Old Secesh

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

John C. Black-- Part 5: Lincoln Slept There

From the Encyclopedia of Arkansas History & Culture.

A Medal of Honor recipient for valor at the Battle of Prairie Grove, Arkansas, and brevet major general of volunteers.  John Charles (Charlie) Black later served as U.S. Congressman and national commander-in-chief of the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR).

He was born January 27, 1839, in Lexington, Mississippi, to the Reverend John Black and Josephine Culbertson Black.  He was the eldest of four children.  After the Reverend Black died in 1847, his widow  moved her family to Danville, Illinois, to be near her brother James Culbertson.

Soon afterwards, she married Dr. William Fithian who served in the Illinois General Assembly with Abraham Lincoln in 1834.  Lincoln successfully represented Fithian in a lawsuit in 1850.  During the 1858 campaign for U.S. senator, Lincoln stayed at the Danville home of John's parents during his travels for the Lincoln-Douglas Debates and spoke briefly to a crowd of well-wishers on September 21.

--Old Secesh

Monday, December 10, 2018

Illinois Bicentennial: John C. Black, MoH Recipient-- Part 4: Post War

He was a member of the Illinois Commandery of the Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States.

He set up a law practice and became U.S. District Attorney in Chicago.  Between 1885 and 1889, he was U.S. Commissioner of Pensions.  Running as a Democrat, he was elected to the 53rd U.S. Congress, serving between 1893 and 1895.

In 1903 he became Commander-In-Chief of the Grand Army of the Republic and served 1903-1904.  Lastly, he was president of the U.S. Civil Service Commission. 1904-1913.

He died August 14, 1915, in Chicago, Illinois, and is buried in Spring Hill Cemetery in Danville, Illinois.

--Old Secesh

Saturday, December 8, 2018

Illinois Medal of Honor Recipient John C. Black-- Part 3: Received It in 1996

Am 1896 review of numerous actions of the war resulted in his being awarded the medal of Honor for his actions at the Battle of Prairie Grove.  Black's brother William also received one, making them the first of five pairs of brothers to both receive the Medal as of 2005.

The citation read:  "Gallantly  charged the position of the enemy at the head of his regiment, after two other regiments had been repulsed and drive down the hill, and captured a battery, was severely wounded."

--Old Secesh

Friday, December 7, 2018

Not Forgetting, Pearl Harbor: Survivor Hiram "Pete" Carter Turns 95

I put my United States flags out today (well, actually I had them out since Wednesday because of the funeral of George H.K. Bush).

From the Augusta (Ga.) Chronicle  "Pearl Harbor vet celebrates his 95th birthday in Arizona."

Hiram "Pete" Carter celebrated his 18th birthday in Pearl Harbor back in 1941, seven weeks before the attack.

He was a native of Metter, Georgia, and enlisted in the Navy in Orlando, Florida, as his friends were being drafted.

Pete is one of Augusta's last Pearl Harbor survivors

The brother of his future wife was on the USS Arizona.

In 1945, he was on the USS Stembel (DD-644)

--Old Secesh

Thursday, December 6, 2018

President George H.W. Bush

From Wikipedia.


(June 12, 1924 - November 30, 2018)

American statesman and Republican Party politician.  Served as the 41st President of the United States from 1989 to 1993.  Prior to becoming president, he served as the 43rd Vice President from 1981 to 1989.  He also had previously been  a U.S. Congressman, ambassador and Director of the Central Intelligence Agency.

He will be buried today at College Station, Texas, where his Presidential Library and Museum is located.

Illinois Medal of Honor Recipient John C. Black-- Part 2: Battle of Prairie Grove

Now we know that the two Blacks in the 37th Illinois, John C. and William P., were brothers.

After three months in the 11th Indiana, the two brothers were mustered out (it was a three-month regiment) and joined what became Company K in the 37th Illinois.  The 11th had been commanded by Lew Wallace.

John became a major in the unit and was wounded in the right arm at the Battle of Pea Ridge, Arkansas, on March 7, 1862.  On July 12, 1862, he was promoted to lieutenant colonel and became the commander of the 37th Illinois.  He led his regiment against fortified Confederate positions at the Battle of Prairie Grove, Arkansas, on December 7, 1862.

The 37th suffered heavy casualties and was forced to retreat.  John C. Black was seriously wounded.

--Old Secesh

Illinois Medal of Honor Recipient John C. Black-- Part 1

From Wikipedia.


(January 28, 1839 - August 17, 1915

Democratic U.S. Congressman and received Medal of Honor as Union Army lieutenant colonel and regimental commander at the Battle of Prairie Grove December 7, 1862.

Born Lexington, Mississippi and moved to Danville, Illinois, in 1847.  His father was a minister in the Presbyterian Church.  He attended Wabash College in Crawfordsville, Indiana, and became a lawyer.

Entered Union Army on April 14, 1861, along with his brother, William P. Black.  They mustered into the 11th Indiana Infantry Regiment.  He enlisted as a private  but was made sergeant major in April 25, 1861.

Well, that answers that question.

The Black Brothers from Danville.  --Old Secesh

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

More Illinois Medals of Honor: Two Men Named Black, Four In the 37th

The second and third men on the list of 91 men from Illinois who received Medals of Honor made me look twice.  Both men had Black as a last name and both served in the 37th Illinois Volunteer Infantry.  They were John C. Black and William P. Black.

The next man on the list, Welis H. Blodget also was in the 37th.  There was also a Thomas H.L. Payne in the 37th.  That is four Medal of Honor recipients from the same regiment and two with the same last name.

Might the two with the same last name be brothers?  Very often, during the Civil War, companies were made up of men from the same area.  Regiments were that way as well.

Thanks to Wikipedia, I found out that the two Black boys were brothers.

Must Have Been A Very Proud Family.  --Old Secesh

Monday, December 3, 2018

Illinois Bicentennial: Medal of Honor Winner: Richard H. Wood

Born 15 November 1833  Died 8 March 1903  Buried Woodburn Cemetery, Woodburn, Illinois.

U.S. Army, captain

Company A, 97th Illinois

Born Canton, New Jersey.  Entered service at Woodburn, Macoupin County, Illinois.

Received Medal of Honor  for action at Battle of Vicksburg May 22, 1863.

Led a volunteer storming party which made a gallant attack upon the enemy's works.

--Old Secesh

Illinois Bicentennial: 91 Medal of Honor Winners From Illinois

From the Illinois Civil War site.

Illinois Civil War Medal of Honor Recipients.

Alphabetically from Abner P. Allen to Richard H. Wood.

ABNER P. ALLEN  (Oct. 9, 1839 to August 22, 1905)

Allen was color bearer of the 39th Illinois and got his at the Battle of Petersburg during the assault on Fort Greg on April 2, 1965.  He also had the honor of carrying the Illinois flag at the Appomattox surrender a week later.  He also traveled to Washington, D.C. with General Gibbon with 76 captured Confederate colors.  He received his Medal of Honor there from Secretary of War Edwin Stanton.

He died in 1905 and is buried in Centerburg Cemetery in Centerburg, Ohio.

--Old Secesh

Saturday, December 1, 2018

Fort Wood, N.Y. Harbor-- Part 2: Its Troops Used to Quell New York Draft Riots

In January 1861, the fort was regarrisoned as war loomed.  It continued to serve as an ordnance depot but took on added duty as a recruit center.  Fort Wood itself never fired a shot during the war, but troops stationed there were called upon to quell the New York City draft riots in 1863.

Following the war, Fort Wood was placed under caretaker status and in the 1880s was chosen as the site of the Statue of Liberty.

Several people who wrote to the Civil war Talk Forum said they had visited the Statue of Liberty but had no knowledge of the base having been a fort.

One person said Robert Anderson and Henry Halleck served there.

--Old Secesh

Friday, November 30, 2018

Fort Wood in NY Harbor During the Civil War-- Part 1: Dating From the War of 1812

I have been writing a lot about this fort and its connection to the War of 1812 in my Not So Forgotten: War of 1812 blog.  Today, I also posted about it in my Tattooed On Your Soul:  World War II and Cooter's History Thing blogs.  You can see what I wrote by clicking on My Blogs to the right of this.

Now Fort Wood serves as the base of the Statue of Liberty.

From Civil War Talk  Forgotten Forts.

Fort Wood was used intermittently from the War of 1812 to the Civil War.  And it wasn't always as a fort.  At times it was an ordnance depot for the harbor's defenses as well as an immigration station.

The fort was also updated to add more cannons.

--Old Secesh

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Camp Hobson, Kentucky-- Part 1: Union Recruiting and Training Camp

I have been writing about Colonel Ethelbert Ludlow Dudley of the 21st Kentucky Infantry Regiment (U.S.) who died of disease two months after his regiment was mustered in, Feb. 20, 1862.  Since the regiment did its initial training at Camp Hobson in Kentucky, he would have been on command then.

One source said Camp Hobson was located near Greensburg, Ky., along the Green River.  Another source had it listed  by Glasgow in Green County.

The Historical Marker Project has the camp bu Campbellsville in Taylor County.  This is probably the more correct location.

The site goes on to say that the camp operated December 1861 to February 1862 and that it was a Union recruiting and training camp named for Edward H. Hobson and on the farm of James Allen Sublett.  Between December 1861 and February 1862, U.S. Mustering Officer  Captain S.M. Kellogg mustered nearly 2,000 recruits into service there.  They became the  13th and 21st Kentucky Infantry regiments.

--Old Secesh

21st Kentucky Infantry (Union)-- Part 1: "The Old Infantry"

From Wikipedia.

The 21st was organized at Camp Hobson, near Greensburg, Kentucky, and Camp Ward, Kentucky, and mustered in for a three-year enlistment on December 31, 1861, and January 2, 1862, at Green River Bridge, Kentucky, under the command of Colonel Ethelbery Ludlow Dudley.

Before the war, most of the regiment's men were members of "The Old Infantry," a state guard unit commanded by Captain Samuel Woodson Price, who would later command the regiment.

The regiment mustered out of service December 9, 1865.

All of its duty was in the Western Theater.

--Old Secesh

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

MCCWRT: The Chesapeake & Ohio Canal-- Part 3: Capture of Generals Kelley and Crook

One way of disabling the canal was to breach it.  This meant putting a hole in a side of it and letting the water out.

After it was determined that Maryland was not going to join the Confederacy, frequent raids were made on it.

Union Brigadier General Benjamin Franklin Kelley and Major General George Crook were captured along the canal by a small group of Confederate partisans near the end of the war, on February 21, 1865.  They were taken to Richmond but were released by a special exchange on March 20.

His Army career didn't last long after that as he resigned on June 1.

--Old Secesh

4th Kentucky Cavalry: Col. Green Clay Smith's Short Command

Continued from November 13, 2018 blog entry.

Green Clay Smith was the commander of this regiment for a short time in 1862.  Its first commander was Colonel Jesse Bayles.

While in Tennessee, Colonel Green Clay Smith took command in May 1862.    While he commanded the regiment, they were involved in several engagements with with Confederate cavalry in Tennessee.

Lebanon, Tennessee, was an especially hard fought engagement with the Confederates under John Hunt Morgan.  For gallant service, Smith was made a brigadier general the same month he took command.

--Old Secesh

Monday, November 26, 2018

MCCWRT: The Chesapeake & Ohio Canal-- Part 2: Severely Damaged in Antietam and Gettysburg Campaigns

The C&O Canal was the only direct route in Washington, D.C., for coal.

The Confederates, despite the strategic importance of the canal, did not attack it early in the war because of hopes that Maryland would join the Confederacy. but did develop plans of attack in case that didn't happen.  Prime spots to attack would be aqueducts and culverts where the canal crossed water.

Jackson destroyed the C&O Railroad Bridge

While the CSS Virginia was still a threat to Washington, canal boats were taken and sunk downstream on the Potomac River to prevent its approach.

During the Confederate incursions northward ending in the Battles of Antietam and Gettysburg, the C& O Canal was heavily damaged.

--Old Secesh

Friday, November 23, 2018

MCCWRT October Meeting: Charlie Banks on the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal-- Part 1

This important canal was located along the Potomac River and was a major target of Confederate raids during the war.  Let's just say, parts of the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal (C&O Canal) were destroyed at times.

It was built and ran alongside the Baltimore & Ohio Rail Road.

As important as this canal was, it is surprising that the North did not do more to protect it.  It was a major supply route to Washington, D.C..   Nor did they do much to defend the Northern Railway from Baltimore to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

The C&O Canal dates to the American revolution.  The Point of Rocks section of it was a particularly narrow spot along the Potomac River.

Charlie Banks used a slide presentation to make his points.  They included source photos and ones he had taken himself.

--Old Secesh

McHenry County Civil War Round Table October Meeting

The McHenry County Civil War Round Table meeting was held Tuesday October 9 at the Woodstock Library in Woodstock, Illinois,   We meet here every second Tuesday of every month except January and February.

Elections to be held at next month's meeting.

Again we will be offering a $1,000 scholarship to students from McHenry County   They will be writing an essay on a Civil War-related theme.  Volunteers needed for a committee which will have two meetings.

The discussion group topic for October will be "Divided Loyalties" about families who sent soldiers to both sides.  I have been doing research on the Clay family in Kentucky which is one of those families.

Our Christmas party will be held December 2 at the Pinecrest Golf Club in Huntley.  It will be a buffet which a special appearance by Mr. and Mrs. Lincoln.

Charlie Banks gave a presentation on the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal during the war.

--Old Secesh

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

MCCWRT Discussion Group Meets This Saturday: Civil War Special Forces

The discussion group of the McHenry County Civil War Round Table will meet this Saturday at Panera Bread at 6000 Northwest Highway in Crystal Lake, Illinois.  We'll meet at 10 a.m. to noon.

The topic this month is Civil War Special Forces like scouts, spies and sharpshooters.

I plan on talking about John Yates Beall and James Duke as I have written a lot about the first one in this blog and my Civil War Navy blog.

Everyone is welcome, even non-members.  All you need is an interest in history.  (We do not always stay on topic and often get side-tracked.)

Come On Down!!  --Old Secesh

Col. Ethelbert Ludlow Dudley-- Part 2: Medical Profession

From Find-A-Grave.

Born 1818 in Fayette County, Kentucky.

Died 22 February 1862

Buried in Lexington Cemetery, Lexington, Kentucky.

Educated at Harvard  and the Transylvania Medical School.  He served as professor of Anatomy at Transylvania and at the time of his death had also joined the new Kentucky Medical School in Louisville.

The GAR Post in Lexington, Ky. is named for him.

From the  Feb. 26, 1862, Observer and Reporter:

Remains of Col. Ethelbert Dudley arrived 24th and funeral held today..  Big parade and burial in Lexington Cemetery.

--Old Secesh

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Colonel Ethelbert Ludlow Dudley-- Part 1: Died of Typhoid Fever

I have been writing about a Col. William Dudley in my Not So Forgotten Blog:  War of 1812 blog.  His command was involved in what is now called Dudley's Massacre when it came to the relief of Fort Meigs in Ohio in 1813.  I came across some other Dudleys in my research.

Theses are some Civil War Dudleys.  I am not sure if any are related to him.


1818 to February 20, 1862

Prominent Kentucky physician.  Educated at Harvard and Transylvania (Kentucky) colleges.  Graduated in 1842.

In 1862, at the age of 45, he died of typhoid fever in Columbia, Kentucky,   At the time of his death, he was commander of the 21st Kentucky Infantry.  He was interned at Lexington Cemetery.

--Old Secesh

Monday, November 19, 2018

Dr. Ezra Read-- Part 5: Some More About the 21st and 11th

From Civil War Index, 21st Indiana officers.


Ezra Read of Terre Haute, Indiana.      Commissioned July 23, 1861.  Mustered in July 24, 1861.  Resigned December 15, 1862;  Re-entered service  as Surgeon 11th Cavalry.

The 21st Indiana Infantry became the 1st Indiana Heavy Artillery in February 1863.

Ezra Read of Terre Haute  Commissioned March 1, 1864.  Mustered March 1, 1864.  Resigned April 26, 1865.

The 11th Indiana Cavalry was formerly the 126th Indiana Infantry.

--Old Secesh

Dr. Ezra Read-- Part 4: Service With the 21st Indiana Infantry and 11th Indiana Cavalry

In 1837, he married Lovilla Young and three years later founded a medical practice in Paris, Illinois (by the central Illinois-Indiana line).  In 1847, he moved his practice to nearby Terre Haute, Indiana.

For eighteen months in the Civil War, he was surgeon of the 21st Indiana Infantry and later of the 11th Indiana Cavalry.

Initially during the war, he was  an anti-Lincoln Democrat, but afterwards made impassioned pleas to support the Union cause.

--Old Secesh

Sunday, November 18, 2018

Dr. Ezra Read-- Part 3: The Texas Revolution

When the Texas Revolution started in 1836, he quit his Cincinnati medical practice and  volunteered his services to an Ohio  military company heading for Texas.

At the Battle of San Jacinto, he treated Mexican leader and general  Antonio  Lopez de Santa Anna.  In 1837, he was attending physician at an infamous duel  between Gen. Felix Huston, for whom he was staff surgeon, and  future Confederate general Albert Sidney Johnson.

Ezra Read was named "acting surgeon-in-chief" of the Texas army and navy, and afterwards commissioned Surgeon General of the Texas Navy, the only person to ever serve in that capacity.

--Old Secesh

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Dr. Ezra Read-- Part 2: In U.S. Navy, Became a Doctor

Surgeon General of the Texas Navy (Texas Revolution).  Treated the captured  prisoner of war  General  Antonio Lopes Santa Ana (of Alamo infamy) and doctor in Terre Haute, Indiana.  Also in U.S. Navy and surgeon in Union Army.

Well liked and admired in Terre Haute and many attended the funeral.  Friend of the poor and often gave free treatment to them.

Born in Marietta, Ohio.  Attended  college in Athens, Ohio, now University of Ohio, for three years before accepting appointment as midshipman in the U.S. Navy and helped escort controversial John Randolph to posting as U.S.  Minister to Russia in 1830.

Resigned from the Navy and studied medicine, graduating with high honors in 1836.

--Old Secesh

Dr. Ezra Read Union Army (Brother of Abner Read, USN)

I have been writing a lot about Abner Read, a Union Navy officer killed in action in 1863 in my Running the Blockade: Civil War Navy blog.  I got with him while doing my Tattooed On Your Soul: World War II blog.  A destroyer named after him had its stern blown off by a Japanese mine while operating in the Aleutian Islands.  It did not sink, was repaired, but later sank after being hit by a kamikaze plane.

From Find-A-Grave.

Click on my Running the Blockade: Civil War Navy blog on My Blog List section to find out more about Abner Read.  I wrote about him last month and this month.

Abner Read had one brother in the Union Army and three half brothers who also served the United States.

Dr. Ezra Read was his older brother.born 2 August 1810 in Marietta, Ohio.  Died  10 May 1877 in Terre Haute, Indiana.  Buried in Woodlawn Cemetery in that city.

He Led Quite An Interesting Life.  --Old Secesh

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Clays of Ky.-- Part 9: Col. Green Clay, U.S. Army

From Find-A Grave

Attended Transylvania University then transferred as a sophomore to Yale where he graduated.  Graduated from Harvard Law School in 1861.  Married Janie Rhodes.

Served  a year abroad as secretary to the United States minister to Russia, who was his uncle, Cassius Marcellus Clay.

Served as colonel of the 3rd Kentucky Cavalry Regiment 1862-1865.  I can not find any source where he is listed as colonel of this regiment.  I did find one roster of the regiment that listed Green Clay Smith as a major in the unit.  Perhaps there is a mix up here.

His father, Brutus Junius Clay and uncle were sons of Green Clay of Kentucky, his namesake.

There is more to wrote about the Clay family in the Civil War, but I am going to take a break from that and write about the Read family.

--Old Seclay

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

The Clays of Kentucky--Part 8: Col. Green Clay U.S. Army

From Find-A-Grave

He was the grandson of Green Clay of Kentucky.  His father was Brutus Julius Clay.

Born 11 February 1839 in Bourbon County, Ky.

Died 31 October 1912  in Mexico, Missouri.

Buried Paris Cemetery in Bourbon County, Kentucky.

--Old Secesh

The Clays of Ky-- Part 7: Green Clay Smith: Buried at Arlington National Cemetery

From Find-A-Grave.


Born 4 July 1826 in Richmond, Kentucky

Death 29 June 1895 in Washington, D.C.

Buried at Arlington National Cemetery  Section 1 Site 667.

Grave has him listed as Brevet Major General U.S. Volunteers.

"Wise in State Craft; Brave in War;  Zealous in Church."

His daughter Eliza Clay Smith Hawkins  (1857-1891) married James B. Hawkins 1846-1901.  He was Co. E 9th Regt. Ky. Cav. Confederate States Army.  You have to wonder what Green Clay Smoth felt about this wedding.

Kentucky a divided state.

--Old secesh

Monday, November 12, 2018

MCCWRT Meeting Nov. 13, 2018: Fort Pulaski

This Tuesday, the McHenry County Civil War Round Table will be meeting at the Woodstock Public Library in Woodstock, Illinois, at 414 Judd Street (just off the historic Woodstock Square (1840s).  The meeting and talk goes from 7 to 9 PM.

Gloria Swift will give a talk about Fort Pulaski.

Of course, with me being such a buff on any naval or coastal action, this is right up my alley so am greatly anticipating it.

Some of us will be gathering at the Three Brothers Restaurant on Illinois Highway 47 from 5:30 to 6:30 for friendly banter and not just the Civil War either.

See You There.  --Old Secesh

Sunday, November 11, 2018

The Armistice Ends World War I Today, 100 Years Ago

NOVEMBER 11, 1918

Armistice Ends World War I

2,171,569 Americans serve in Europe (1.39 million see active service on the front).

U.S. casualties:

53,513 combat deaths

63,195 other deaths (mostly due to pneumonia and influenza)

204,022 wounded in action

58,000 gas casualties (2,000 fatal)

Horrible losses for a little over a year's action.

Today, we honor all veterans on this day.

Saturday, November 10, 2018

USMC 243rd Birthday: "Come On, You Sons Of..."

Today marks the 243rd birthday of America's U.S. Marine Corps.

Here's a World War I quote about them.

"Come on, you sons of botches!   Do you want to live forever?"

Gunny Sgt.  Daniel J. "Dan"  Daly, USMC.
Near Lucy-'le-Bocage as he led the 5th Marines' attack into Belleau Wood, 6 June 1918, during World War I.

And, tomorrow marks the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I and, of course, Veterans Day.

To the Corps!!  --Old SeceshMarine

Friday, November 9, 2018

Civil War Trust Nov. 2018 Calendar: Battle of Chicamauga

Civil War Trust 2018 Calendar.

Picture of two cannons somewhere out on the battlefield.


141 acres saved

Site of the second bloodiest battle of the Civil War, the Chickamauga battlefield today encompasses more than 5,300 acres.

Here, Union General George Thomas earned his sobriquet "The Rock of Chickamauga."

The Trust has preserved 141 acres at this landmark place, including land at the site of Reed's Bridge -- one of the battle's opening actions.

--Old Secesh

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Clays of Ky., Green Clay Smith, Congressman and Montana Territorial Governor Ky.-- Part 6: An Unconditional Unionist, C

In 1862, he was elected as an Unconditional Unionist to the 38th Congress and resigned his military  post on December 1, 1863.  In Congress, he served on the Committee of Militia.  He was brevetted to major general of volunteers in 1865.

He resigned from Congress in 1866 after President Johnson appointed him to be Territorial Governor  of Montana.  During his tenure, he helped moderate tensions between the white settlers and Indians.

After he resigned from that, he returned to D.C. and became  an ordained Baptist minister and got involved in the temperance movement.

In 1876, the National Prohibition Party nominated him for president but he didn't receive but a little more than 9,000 votes.

He is buried in Arlington National Cemetery.

--Old Secesh

Clays of Ky.-- Part 5: Green Clay Smith Became Union General

His maternal grandfather was Green Clay.  His uncles on his mother's side were also politicians and had involvement in the Civil War, Brutus J. Clay and Cassius M. Clay.   I'll be writing about them next.

As a young man he was a second lieutenant in the First Regiment of Kentucky Volunteer Infantry in the Mexican War.

Was a member of the Kentucky House of Representatives from 1861 to 1863.    On April 4, 1862, he was commissioned colonel of the Fourth Regiment Kentucky Volunteer Cavalry and then was appointed brigadier general of volunteers on June 12, 1862.

Like his uncles, Brutus and Cassius Clay, he joined Kentucky's Unionist Party.

--Old Secesh

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

The Clays of Kentucky-- Part 4: Green Clay Smith

From Wikipedia.


July 4, 1826 to June 29, 1895

Politician and soldier from Kentucky.  Elected to Kentucky statehouse before the Civil War.  Commissioned a Union officer and rose to rank of major general before he resigned to go to the U.S. Congress in 1862 as a leading member of the Unionist Party.

Served as territorial governor of Montana 1866 to 1869

Returned to Washington, D.C. and became a Baptist minister and active in the temperance movement.

--Old Secesh

Monday, November 5, 2018

Kentucky's Clay Family-- Part 3: Henry Clay "The Great Compromiser"

Henry Clay and Illinois Senator Jesse  B. Thomas were authors of the Missouri Compromise, averting a slavery-non-slavery showdown in 1820.  He proposed that Maine and Missouri enter the Union at the same time with Maine a free state and Missouri  a lave one.  But slavery would be prohibited north of the  36 degrees 30 parallel.  This temporarily, at least, solved tensions over the issue.

Clay also played a big role in what is known as the Compromise of 1850 which helped soothe tensions between the North and South over the increasingly tense slavery issue.  This helped delay secession and the Civil War until the 1860s

--Old Secesh

Saturday, November 3, 2018

Kentucky's Clay Family: Henry Clay

Henry Clay was dead by the time the Civil War started, but he had a lot to do with the events leading up to it.  Green Clay was a cousin of his.

From Wikipedia.

April 12, 1777 to June 29, 1852

Was an American lawyer, planter and statesman who represented Kentucky in both the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate.  Also served three terms as Speaker of the House.  Ran for presidency three times  He was one of the few politicians involved with the years from 1811 to 1850 where he defined issues,  proposed national solutions and created the Whig Party.

He was born in Virginia and moved to Kentucky.  In 1810, he was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives and became Speaker of the House.  As a leading War Hawk, he helped guide the United States into the War of 1812.

--Old Secesh

Kentucky's Clay Family in the Civil War

I have been writing about Green Clay in my Not So Forgotten:  The War of 1812 blog last month and this month.  He was a veteran of the American Revolution and a Kentucky militia general during the War of 1812 as well as one of the richest men in the state.  He owned thousands of acres of land, many slaves and several distilleries.

In addition to other Clays, including the famous Henry Clay, who were involved in both the American Revolution and War of 1812, there were Clays playing roles in the Civil War.

I'll be writing about the Clays with a Civil War connection here in the next several posts.

--Old Secesh

Thursday, November 1, 2018

John Beall's Hangman's Noose-- Part 4: Gordon Found Guilty, Sentenced to Hang

Of the 897 slaves,  172 were grown men and 162 were women.  The rest were children, preferred by Gordon because they were too young to rise up against him for his cruelties.

The Erie was captured by the USS Mohican on August 8, 1860.  The slaves were taken to Liberia, the American colony established in West Africa by the American Colonization Society.  It was a settlement of free Blacks from the United States.

Nathaniel Gordon was taken to New York City to stand trial for slave trading and piracy.  After one hung jury, he was found guilty November 9, 1861, and  sentenced to death by hanging on February 7, 1962.

After his sentence was announced, his supporters appealed to President Lincoln for a pardon.  Lincoln was known for his compassion and issued many pardons during his presidency, he refused to grant one to Gordon, even refusing to meet with his supporters.

What Lincoln Said Next.  --Old Secesh

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

John Beall's Hangman's Noose-- Part 3: Nathaniel Gordon

From Wikipedia.


One of the four people hanged using the noose that ended John Yates Beall's life.

February 6, 1826 to February 21, 1862

Was the only slave trader in the United States to be tried, convicted and executed "for being engaged in the Slave Trade," under the Piracy Law of 1820.

Gordon was born in Portland, Maine, and went into shipping and eventually owned his own ship, the Erie.

On August 7, 1860, he loaded 897 slaves aboard his ship, the Erie,  at Shark's Point, Congo River, West Africa.

--Old Secesh

Monday, October 29, 2018

John Beall's Hanging Noose-- Part 2: The Others

The other three men hanged with the same noose as used for John Yates Beall's execution:'

Nathaniel Gordon  referred to as a pirate and slave trader.

Albert W. Hicks referred to as the last person executed for piracy in the United States.

William Henry Hawkins for the murder on the high seas as Captain Adams.

I found articles in Wikipedia for the first two men.

--Old Secesh

Friday, October 26, 2018

About Beall's Noose-- Part 1: It Was Used to Hang Three Others

On October 22 I wrote about the noose used in John Yates Beall's hanging was the same one used to hang the slave trader GORDON, HICKS and the Negro HAWKINS for murder on the high seas.

Who were these people?

I had to look into it further.

See What I Found.  --Old Secesh

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Beall Was First Spy Execution in Area Since Major Andre in the Revolution

From the February 25, 1865, New York Times.

On the execution of John Yates Beall.

"As far as we recall, this is the first execution of a spy in this department since the hanging of Maj. ANDRE, of the British Army, by order of GEORGE WASHINGTON."

Major Andre of the British Army was involved with the Benedict Arnold traitor situation.

John Andre was not hanged at Fort Columbus, though, but in Tappan, New York.

--Old Secesh

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

The Charges Against Beall

From the February 25, 1865, New York Times.


Specification 1:  Seizure of steamboat Philo Parsons near Kelley's Island, Lake Erie. September 19, 1854.

Spec. 2--  Seized and sank  steamboat Ocean Queen near Middle Bass Island, Sep. 19, 1864.

Spec. 3--  Found acting as a spy near Kelley's Island, Sep. 19, 1863.

Spec. 4--  Found acting as a spy near Middle Bass Island, Sep. 19, 1863.

Spec. 5--  Found acting as a spy near the Suspension Bridge, New York, Dec. 10, 1864.

Spec. 6--  Undertook "to carry on irregular and unlawful warfare, as a guerrilla, and in the execution of said undertaking, attempted to destroy the lives and property of peaceable  and unoffending inhabitants of said State and of persons therein traveling, by throwing a train of cars and passengers in said cars from the railroad track, on the railroad between Dunkirk and Buffalo, by placing obstructions across said track" on December 15, 1864.

--Old Secesh

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

The Bodies of John Yates Beall and W.H.C. Whiting

John Yates Beall's body was taken from Fort Columbus and originally interred in New York's Green-Wood Cemetery.

On March 22, 1870, the body was reinterred at Zion Episcopal Cemetery in Charles Town, West Virginia.

After the death of Confederate General W,H.C. Whiting, also at Fort Columbus, his body was also buried at New York's Green-Wood Cemetery.  His widow Kate Whiting had his body exhumed in 1900 and moved to Wilmington, North Carolina's Oakdale Cemetery.

Whiting is the highest ranking Confederate prisoner to die while in northern prison.  Of course, he was also a big player at Fort Fisher.

--Old Secesh

Monday, October 22, 2018

The Gallows At Fort Columbus Where Beall Was Hanged

From the February 25, 1865, New York Times.

"The gallows, the same used at the execution of GORDON, the slave trader, is not built with a drop, but furnished with weights and pulleys, by means of which the condemned man is jerked into the air with a sudden motion which instantly dislocates the vertebrae of the neck.

"Around one of the uprights, an inclosure of rough boards is erected, and the weights and pulleys, as well as the executioner, are thus concealed from view.  The noose is separate from the main end, and is provided with an iron ring, which hooks on to the gallow's rope.

"This horrible instrument of death was erected on the southerly slope of the island, facing southeast."

"The noose is the same one used to hang HICKS, the pirate GORDON, the slave trader, and the negro HAWKINS, who was executed for murder on the high seas."

Confederate Major General W.H.C. Whiting of Fort Fisher was at this fort at this time. I have to wonder what he thought of all this.

A More Humane Gallows?  --Old Secesh

Friday, October 19, 2018

The N.Y. Times Reports Beall's Death-- Part 2: The Gallows


Beall's Personal Appearance.

The Death March.

 Under the Gallows.

The Executions.

His Last Words.


--Old Secesh

The New York Times Reports Beall's Execution-- Part 1

From the February 25, 1865, New York Times.

""MILITARY EXECUTION:  Execution of John Y. Beall, the Lake Erie  Pirate and Rebel Spy.

Details of the Crime, the Trial, and the Punishment of the Culprit.

His Conduct During His Last Hours.

The Antecedents of Beall.

His Arrest and Trial.  His Trial.  A Temporary Respite.


His Last Hours.    The Morning of the Execution.  The Gallows.

--Old Secesh

Thursday, October 18, 2018

John Beall's Last Letter to His Brother-- Part 2: "I Die For My Country"

Remember me kindly to my friends.  Say to them I am not aware of committing any crime against society.  I die for my country.  No thirst for blood or lucre animated me in my course.  For I had refused when solicited to engage in enterprises which I deemed destructive but illegitimate, and but a few months ago I had but to have spoken, and I would have been red with blood, and rich with the plunder of the foe.

But my hands are clear of blood, unless it be spilt in conflict and not a cent enriches my pocket.

Should you be spared through this strife, stay with mother, and be a comfort in her old age.   Endure the hardships of the campaign as a man.  In my trunk and box you can get  plenty of clothes.

Give my love to mother, the girls, too.  May God bless you all now and evermore, is my prayer and wish for you.

John Y. Beall

--Old Secesh

John Y. Beall's Final Letter to Brother William: "But Only Crime Can Make Dishonor"

From "Lincoln, Beall & the Gallows" by Jim Surkamp.

Written from his cell while awaiting his execution.

Fort Lafayette, Fen. 14, 1865
 Dear Will:

Ere this reaches you, you will most likely have heard of my death through the newspapers, that I was tried by a military commission, and hung by the enemy, and hung,  I assert, unjustly.  It is both useless and wrong to repine over the past.

Hanging, it was asserted, was ignominious, but crime only can make dishonor.  'Vengeance is mine, saith the Lord, and I shall repay,' therefore do not show unkindness to the prisoners -- they are helpless."

More.  --Old Secesh

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

John George Nicolay-- Part 2: After Lincoln's Death

Shortly before his death, Lincoln appointed Nicolay to to a diplomatic post in France.  After Lincoln's death, Nicolay became  became U.S. Consul in Paris (1865-1869).    After his return, he became editor of the Chicago Republican and later was Marshal of the United States Supreme Court (1872-1887).

In 1881, he wrote "Outbreak of the Rebellion."

Nicolay and John Hay, who was Lincoln's  assistant secretary collaborated on the official biography of Lincoln which appeared in the Century Magazine from 1886 to 1890 and then was issued in 10-volume book form.

Poor health forced him to resign from his job as marshal of the U.S. Supreme Court and he suffered from many ailments in his final years.  He lived with his daughter in Washington, D.C.,  until his death of unspecified cause on September 26, 1901, and was buried at  Oak Hill Cemetery in that city.

--Old Secesh

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

John George Nicolay-- Part 1: Good Friends With Lincoln

The last several posts I have written this man's thoughts on the John Yates Beall case.  What insight might he have on it?

From Wikipedia.

(February 26, 1832 to September 26, 1901)

German-born American who served as private secretary to President Abraham Lincoln and later co-authored a biography on the 16th president.Born Johann Georg Nicolai  in Bavaria.  In 1838 immigrated to the U.S. with his father and later moved to Illinois.  Edited a newspaper and later became assistant Illinois  secretary of state.  While in this position, he met Abraham Lincoln and they became friends.

In 1861, with his first act as president, Lincoln appointed Nicolay as his private secretary where he served until Lincoln's death on 1865.

--Old Secesh

Monday, October 15, 2018

John Nicolay's Thoughts on the Beall Case-- Part 3: Lincoln Would Not Yield

"Loath as Mr. Lincoln was at all times to approve a capital sentence, he felt in this case he would not permit himself to yield  to the promptings of his kindly heart.

"He sent a private message to General Dix, saying he would be glad if he would allow Beall  a respite of a few days to prepare himself for death, but positively declines to interfere with the sentence, and Beall was hung in the latter part of February."

Nicolay Diary.

--Old Secesh

John Nicolay's Thoughts on the Case of John Y. Beall-- Part 2: "Spy, Guerrillero, Outlaw and Would-Be Murderer"

"Mr. Jefferson Davis took the same view of the talismanic  character of the Confederate commission upon which Beall had relied, and issued a manifesto assuming responsibility of the act and declaring that it was done by his authority.  There was great clamor in regards to the case, and many people of all parties pleaded with Mr. Lincoln to commute the sentence of Beall.

"A petition in the cause was signed by most of the Democratic members of the House of Representatives and by many Republicans.

"But the Judge Advocate General reported that Beall, convicted upon indubitable  proof as a spy, guerrillero, outlaw and would-be murderer of hundreds of innocent persons traveling in supposed security upon one of our great thoroughfares, fully deserved to die the felon's death, and summary enforcement of  that  penalty was a duty the government owed society."

Summing It Up.  --Old Secesh

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Illinois' O.H. Browning-- Part 2: A Life-Long Friend of Lincoln

His political and military careers overlapped that of Lincoln and they became life-long friends.

He served the rest of Douglas' term until 1863 and did not run again.  After Lincoln's death, he became a supporter of Andrew Johnson and in 1866 was named Secretary of the Interior where he served until the end of Johnson's presidency in 1869.

After that he was a lobbyist and practiced law in Washington, D.C., and Illinois.

Browning died in Quincy, Illinois, on August 10, 1881 and was buried at Woodland Cemetery in Quincy.

--Ols Secesh

Friday, October 12, 2018

Illinois' Orville Hickman Browning-- Part 1: A Man of Strong Connections

Earlier this week I wrote about this man pleaing to Lincoln to commute the death sentence of John Yates Beall.  I'd never heard of him, but it seemed as if he was on a friendly relationship with the president so went to good ol. Wikipedia for a background on him.


An attorney in Illinois and a politician active in the Whig and Republican parties.  Also a U.S. senator during the Civil War and Secretary of the  Interior after the war.

Born in Kentucky and trained as a lawyer  Settled in Illinois, served in the militia during the Black Hawk War.  Successful attorney and active in politics as a Whig.  Served in the Illinois General Assembly.  Joined the Republican Party after the Whigs broke up and helped organize the new party in Illinois.

In 1861, he was appointed to  fill the Senate seat of Stephen A. Douglas after his death.

No Wonder He Had Access to Lincoln.  --Old Secesh

Thursday, October 11, 2018

John George Nicolay's Thoughts On the Beall Case-- Part 1

From the "Lincoln, Beall & the Gallows" By Jim Surkamp in Civil War Scholar site.

John Nicolay was one of Lincoln's two private secretaries.

John Y. Beall was captured: "in the state of New York near the Suspension Bridge in an attempt to throw a passenger train from the West off the track for the purpose of robbing the express company.  This was the third attempt which he had made to accomplish this purpose.

"He was in citizen's dress, engaged in an act of simple murder and robbery., yet he imagined that the fact that he had a Confederate commission in his pocket would secure him against punishment in case of capture.

He was tried by court martial and sentenced to death."

--Old Secesh

Pleaing for John Yates Beall's Clemency-- Part 2: Change Death Sentence To Imprisonment

"This is brief time for preparation for so solemn and appalling an event.  The friends of Capt. Beall desire to appeal to your clemency for a commutation of the sentence from death to imprisonment and that they might have the opportunity to prepare and present to your consideration the reasons which they hope may induce to a commutation.

"They now beseech you to grant the unhappy man such respite as you may deem reasonable  and just under circumstances.  As a short respite is all that is asked for now and as that can in no event harm, I forebear at present to make  any other suggestion.  Most respectfully your friend.

O.H. Browning"

--Old Secesh

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Pleaing for Clemency of John Yates Beall-- Part 1: O.H. Browning

From "Lincoln, Beall and the Gallows" by Jim Surkamp.

O.H. Browning, a powerful member of the Republican party and from Illinois appealed to Lincoln to save Beall.

"Washington, D.C., Feb. 17, 1865.
The President:

Captain  John Y. Beall has been tried by court martial in New York, found guilty and sentenced to be hung as a spy and guerrilla.

The sentence was approved by Major General Dix on the 14th Feb'y,  and directed to be carried  into execution tomorrow the 18th."

--Old Secesh

Monday, October 8, 2018

MCCWRT Meeting Tuesday Oct. 9: Chesapeake and Ohio Canal in the Civil War

This Tuesday, October 8, 2018, the McHenry County (Illinois) Civil War Round Table will hold its monthly meeting at the Woodstock, Illinois, Public Library located at 414 West Judd Street, just off the historic Woodstock Square.

This month's presentation will be by Charlie Banks and will be about the "Chesapeake and Ohio canal in the Civil War."

All are welcome to attend.

See You There.  --Old Secesh

Civil War Trust October 2018 Calendar: Port Hudson, Louisiana


256 acres saved

The Civil War Trust has partnered with The Conservation Fund to ave 256 acres of land at Port Hudson, Louisiana, the site of the last Confederate stronghold on the Mississippi River after Vicksburg fell.

The acreage saved by the trust includes the site of the first black assault in the Civil War, made by the 1st and 3rd Louisiana Native Guard regiments on May 27, 1863.

Hallowed Ground.  --Old Secesh

Civil War Trust September 2018 Calendar: Waxhaws, South Carolina


51 Acres Saved

The Civil War Trust has expanded its vision of preservation to all battlefields in the United States, which now includes the American Revolution and the War of 1812.

In 1780, the infamous Banistre Tarleton and his British Legion massacred Continental troops at the Battle of Waxhaws.

In the subsequent battles of the American revolution's Southern Campaign, "Remember Waxhaws" became a rallying cry for Patriot forces.  In 2016, the Trust, in partnership with the South Carolina Battleground Trust, preserved the first property at Waxhaws Battlefield.

--Old Secesh

Friday, October 5, 2018

The Trial of John Yates Beall

Same source as last two posts.

**  Major Bolles, Judge Advocate of the Military Commission.

"There was nothing of Christian civilization and nothing of regular warfare in Beall's operations."

**  From General John A. Dix."The Proceedings, finding and sentence are approved and the accused John Y. Beall will be hanged by the neck till he is dead, on Governors Island, on Friday the 24th day of February, 1865.  --  General Orders No. 17, February 21, 1865.  Case of J.Y. Beall."

--Old Secesh

Pleas To Lincoln For John Yates Beall's Life

Same source as previous post.

I have already mentioned the large number of Members of Congress who appealed for Beall's life.

Here are some more:

Abraham Lincoln at the White House, February 23, 1865.

President Lincoln's log of visitors the day before Beall was hanged reflect the heavy volume of pleas  that Lincoln  spare Beall's life, leniency having been Lincoln's tendency with scheduled death sentences.

**  President receives J.W. Forney and W. McLean regarding pardon for J.Y. Beall.

**  Informs Montgomery Blair and friends, who call at the White House,  that if their visit concerns Beall they will not be granted an audience.

**  In evening, O.H. Browning sees Lincoln about Beall.

**  President undecided.    Looks badly and feels badly.

From the Browning Diary.

--Old Secesh

Thursday, October 4, 2018

John Yates Beall's Last Words: "I Die in the Service and Defense of My Country"

From Civil War  "Lincoln, Beall and the Gallows" by Jim Surkanp.

A reporter for the New York World witnessed the execution Feb. 24, 1865:

"As some author has said, we may be as near to God on the scaffold as elsewhere...  I protest against the execution of this sentence.  It is murder.

"I die in the service and defense of my country.

"I have nothing more to say."

--Old Service

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

William Beall-- Part 6: S.O. Means Special Order

From Civil War  2nd Virginia Infantry Regiment.

This was essentially what the Find-A-Grave had, but some other items which I will relate.


Student  Enlisted Camp Jackson at Bolivar Heights,

Detailed by Special Order 253 from the Secretary of War to report to his brother, John Y.Beall then became a prisoner 11/16/1863.  Exchanged 3/16/1864.  The Find-A-Grave article just said S,O. for the Special Order.  That clears up what S.O, means.

Surrendered at Appomattox.

William Beall-- Part 5: Served In the Stonewall Brigade

Baltimore Sun June 18, 1907, obituary.

WILLIAM BEALL [Special Dispatch to the Baltimore Sun].

Charlestown, West Virginia.

William Beall, 63 years old, a well-known retired farmer, residing near Flowing Springs, died yesterday after an illness of some months, aged 63 years.

He served in the Confederate Army and was in the Stonewall Brigade.

Mr. Beall had for some years one of the vestrymen in Zion Episcopal Church.

He is survived by three sisters.

--Old secesh

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

William Beall-- Part 4: His Obituary in the Confederate Veteran, 1907

William Beall's Obituary in the Confederate Veteran Vol. XVI, page 288

"After a protracted illness, William Beall  entered into rest June 16, 1907. aged sixty-three.

"He served n Company G, 2nd Virginia Regiment, Stonewall Brigade.  For awhile he was in the Confederate Navy with his brother, Captain John G. Beall, who was executed  on Governor's Island, N.Y..

"He was a prisoner at Fortress Monroe, both brothers being in irons.  He surrendered at Appomattox.

"He returned to his native county, (Jefferson) and was a successful farmer, a good soldier, an honored citizen.  He was also a useful member of the Episcopal Church.

"Many miss and mourn him."

--Old Secesh

William Beall-- Part 3: Sick A Lot, On Brother's Operation

Present on January and February rolls.

Hospitalized 4/18/63

Hospitalized for "Diarrhoea" 5/2-7/21 in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Detailed 10/4/1863 by S.O. 253 to report to John Y. Beall;  POW 10/4/1863 Accomack Co. Virginia

Confined  11/16/1863 Fort McHenry, MD.

Confined Fort Monroe, Va.  Exchanged 3/16/1864.

Kind of interesting that he was detailed the same day he was captured and must have been operating on one of his brother's expeditions.

--Old Secesh

Monday, October 1, 2018

William Beall-- Part 2: Captured At 2nd Manassas

Co. G, 2nd Virginia Infantry, Stonewall Brigade, Johnson's Division, 2nd Corps, Army of Northern Virginia, CSA.

Enlisted 6/8/1861 at Bolivar Heights, Virginia.  On 9/8/1861 he mustered in as a private in Co. G., 2nd Virginia.

Absent sick 10/3/1861.

POW 8/27/1862 in 2nd Battle of Manassas, Va.;  Exchanged 11/20/1862; granted Medical Furlough.

--Old Secesh

William Beall, John's Brother-- Part 1: Also Buried at Zion Episcopal Cemetery

From Find-A Grave.


Born  26 March 1844,   Jefferson Co. W. Va.

Dies 16 June 1907, (Age 63)  Ranson, Jefferson Co.  W. Va.

Burial:  Zion Episcopal Cemetery, Charles Town, W. Va.

--Old Secesh

John Yates Beall-- Part 6: Did Beall's Execution Lead to the Lincoln Assassination?

There is a legend discussed by Lloyd Lewis that Lincoln was approached by John Wilkes Booth, who was a friend of Beall's, to save his life.

The president agreed to save Beall, but changed his mind when he was approached by Secretary of State William H. Seward who insisted that Beall's activities had been dangerous to citizens of the New York  (Seward's home state).

Supposedly, as the legend goes, an enraged John Wilkes Booth then determined to kill Lincoln and Seward for this betrayal after Beall was executed.

An Interesting Story, But Doubtful.  --Old Secesh

Friday, September 28, 2018

John Yates Beall-- Part 5: Lincoln Refuses to Get Involved and His Execution

Beall was then transported to Fort Columbus on Governors Island  in New York Harbor to await execution.

Then, the story of Beall's arrest and trial had reached the newspapers and efforts were made in his behalf to save him.  Appeals were made to President Abraham Lincoln by many prominent people, including six U.S. senators and 91  members of Congress.

But Lincoln refused to intervene. He usually would issue a pardon with that many requests.

Beall was executed February 24, 1865.

--Old Secesh

Thursday, September 27, 2018

John Yates Beall-- Part 4: The Last Mission, Arrest and Trial

From Wikipedia.

John Yates Beall decided to attempt to free some Confederate officers who were prisoners by derailing a passenger train in New York in December 1864.  But he and a companion by  the name of George S. Anderson were arrested in Niagara, New York, on December 16.

They were imprisoned at Fort Lafayette, New York, and here Anderson agreed to testify against Beall in return for leniency.

General John Adams Dix ordered a military commission for Beall's trial, which began on January 16, 1865,   Beall was represented by noted New York lawyer James T. Brady.    The arrest of Beall had not been reported in any newspaper and Confederate authorities were unaware of the trial.  Had they become aware of the trial there might have been a reprisal.

The commission found him guilty on all charges and sentenced him to death.

--Old Secesh

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

John Yates Beall-- Part 3: His Burial

Evidently, his body was returned to his family as he was buried at Charles Town, West Va..

Born 1 January 1835,  Charles Town, Virginia (now West Virginia)

Death Governor's Island, New York City  February 24, 1865  (The write up on him had his death on December 24, 1864.)  I believe the February date to be more accurate.

Burial:  Zion Episcopal Churchyard, Charles Town, West Virginia.

--Old Secesh

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

John Yates Beall-- Part 2: Privateering, Johnson's Island, Hanged

In the meantime, he began a series of privateering missions along the Potomac River and Chesapeake Bay.  he was captured in November 1863, and imprisoned at Fort McHenry in Baltimore.  This led to reprisals by the Confederate government.

On May 5, 1864, he was formally exchanged.

With Beall's own initiative and without government support, he returned to Canada with his original aim of liberating the prisoners held at Johnson's Island.

On September 18, 1864, Beall and a small group of men captured the steamers Philo Parsons and Island Queen.  However, he was unable to get to Johnson's Island because of a mutiny in his followers.

Wearing civilian clothing, he was captured in civilian clothing at Niagara, New York, on December 16, 1864,   Tried a a guerrilla, he was found guilty and hanged at Governor's Island, New York, on December 24, 1864.

--Old Secesh

John Yates Beall, Confederate Guerrilla-- Part 1: Plan to Liberate Confederates Held on Johnson's Island

From  Find-A-Grave

JOHN YATES BEALL  (1835-1865)  Buried in Zion Episcopal Cemetery in Charles Town, West Virginia.

Even though I have written a lot about him in my Civil War Navy blog, I will write what Find-A-Grave had to say about him.

Civil War Confederate guerrilla.

After receiving a law degree from the University of Virginia, he existed as a farmer in Jefferson County, Virginia (now West Virginia)  until the outbreak of the Civil War.  He enlisted in Company G, 2nd Virginia Infantry after the fall of Fort Sumter and was wounded at the First Battle of Manassas (Bull Run).

Upon recovery, he went west and later moved to Canada.  While in Canada, he developed a plan to liberate the Confederate prisoners (officers) held at Johnson's Island in Lake Erie.

He returned South and tried to obtain approval from Confederate authorities.  Commissioned  as an acting master in the Confederate Navy, he was never assigned a ship.

And He Was Just Beginning.  --Old Secesh

Other Burials in Zion Episcopal Church Cemetery, Charles Town, W.Va.

From Find-A Grave.

Lewis William Washington was buried in this cemetery.

Other notable burials:

John Yates Beall (1835-1865)  I have written a lot about him in my Civil War Navy blog.  A very interesting character hanged by the Union as a spy.

Roger Preston Chew  (1843-1921)  Confederate Lt.Col.

William Price Craighill  (1833-1909)  Union officer

Andrea King  (1919-2003)  American movie and TV actress.

William Lucas (1800-1877)  Lawyer, Congress, delegate, horticulturalist.

--Old Secesh

Monday, September 24, 2018

While On the Subject: Some Other George Washington Artifacts In the New York State Library

**  George Washington's Farewell Address written in his own handwriting when he decided not to run for a third term as president.

**  Washington's first career was as a surveyor and the library has  some of his drawing instruments as well as a compass made by David Rittenhouse, a celebrated Philadelphia instrument-maker.

**  An exceedingly rare copy of "Representation of the Clothing of His Majesty's Household and  of all the Forces upon the Establishments of Great Britain and Ireland."  A book of British military uniforms received by Washington in 1847.

**  A bronze bust of Washington

**  A statement of household expenses from 1789.

**   A manuscript "Opinion of  the Surviving Generals of the Revolution" penned by Washington.

The items in this collection were purchased  by the State of New York from Mrs. Lewis  W. Washington in  1871.  Mrs. Washington was the widow of Col. Lewis W. Washington, who was the grandson of Willaim Augustine Washington, who was a nephew of George Washington.

--Old Secesh

George Washington's Pistols

They have a picture of a pistol, with   these words:

"A horseman's  pistol given to George Washington by the Marquis de Lafayette.

"The pistol was one of a pair of heavy horseman's pistols which general Lafayette used during the  the Revolutionary War."

No mention as to what happened to the other pistols.  Perhaps the library never received the second one.

--Old Secesh

Saturday, September 22, 2018

George Washington's Sword

From the NYSED site

The George Washing Collection at the New York State Library.

In an earlier post I mentioned Lewis Washington's George Washington's Frederick the Great's sword and the pistols given him by Lafayette having been given by Lewis' widow to the New York State Library.  I decided to see if they still have them.

They do.

There is a picture of the sword and these words:  This is one of George Washington's swords, alleged to have been given to him by Frederick the Great of Germany.  It was frequently worn by Washington on dress occasions and is represented in the portrait painted in 1834 by Vanderlyn for the United States House of Representatives.

The Pistol (S) Next.  --Old Secesh

Friday, September 21, 2018

Lewis Washington-- Part 4: Buried in Charles Town, West Virginia

From Find-A-Grave.

Major Lewis William Washington

It said he was a major in the Confederate Army.  I could find no mention of his service.

Born 30 November 1812 in Georgetown, District of Columbia.
Died 1 October 1871 (age 58) in Jefferson County, West Virginia

Buried Zion Episcopal Churchyard in Charles Town, West Virginia.

--Old Secesh

Lewis Washington-- Part 3: What Happened At the Trial and the George Washington Artifacts

During John Brown's trial for treason against the State of Virginia, Lewis Washington testified as a witness for the prosecution.  During the cross-examination, Washington testified that Brown had treated his hostages well and gave orders not to harm civilians.

When the Civil War began, Lewis sided with the Confederacy.  On July 17, 1865, he was pardoned by President Andrew Johnson.

Many pieces of the Washington family, including the sword given George Washington by Frederick the Great and the pistols from Lafayette, were donated to the New York State Library by his widow in 1871.

Lewis Washington married twice, and one of his sons was James Barroll Washington, the friend of Custer.  James had one son, William Lanier Washington, who died in 1933, but had sold the rest of the Washington of the family collection of George Washington heirlooms at public auction in 1917.

--Old Secesh

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Lewis William Washington-- Part 2: The Harpers Ferry Raid

Lewis Washington inherited several George Washington relics, including a sword allegedly given by Frederick the Great of Prussia and a pair of pistols given by Lafayette.

John Cook, who served in John Brown's advance party before the attack befriended Lewis Washington  and noted these relics as well as the slaves at Beall-Air Mansion.  John Brown was fascinated with George Washington relics. (Kind of surprising since Brown hated slave owners so much.)

During Brown's October 16, 1859, raid on Harpers Ferry, a detachment of his force led by Cook seized the relics along with Lewis Washington and three slaves.  The hostages were taken to Harpers Ferry by way of Allstadt House and Ordinary where more hostages and slaves were taken.

They all went to John Brown's base at the fire engine house of the Harpers Ferry Federal Arsenal.  All survived their captivity and Washington identified Brown to the Marine rescue party.  During the assault on John Brown's Fort, a saber thrust by Marine Lieutenant Green at John Brown was allegedly  deflected by the belt buckle of George Washington's sword.

--Old Secesh

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Lewis William Washington-- Part 1: Grand-Nephew of George Washington

From Wikipedia.

November 30, 1812- October 1, 1871

Great grand-nephew of President George Washington and father of Custer's classmate at the USMA, James Barroll Washington.

He is principally known  for being a hostage of abolitionist John Brown during his raid on Harpers Ferry and as a prosecution witness during Brown's trial.

Son of George Corbin Washington, the grandson of William Augustine Washington, half brother of George Washington.

Lewis Washington inherited Beall-Air plantation near Halltown, Virginia (now West Virginia) from his mother and lived there from 1840 to his death in 1871.

--Old Secesh

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Confederate Lt. James Washington-- Part 4: People Associated With Him

From FrontierNet.Net

People associated with James Barroll Washington.  All are accompanied by photographs.


Lewis was the great grandnephew of George Washington and father of James Barroll Washington.    He added the front half  of the Beallair Manor house in 1850-1855.  He was captured by John Cook during the John Brown Raid.  He later testified at John Brown's trial and other trials and hearings.


John Cook led John Brown's Raiders in their capture of Lewis Washington.  Several months before the raid, he had scouted the area and visited Beallair.

Beallair Mansion still stands in eastern West Virginia.

--Old Secesh

Monday, September 17, 2018

Confederate Lt. James Washington-- Part 3: Friendship With Custer Continued

From Frontier Net.  James Barroll Washington.

Was a graduate of  West Point where he became friends with George Armstrong Custer.  They maintained their friendship during the war and on several occasions, Custer assisted him and his family.

A photograph accompanies this showing him as being a major in the Confederate Army and at some point after the war.

This site also has people associated with James Barroll Washington.

--Old Secesh

Confederate Lt. James Washington-- Part 2: After Exchange Was Ordnance Officer in Montgomery

It was while he was on Gen. Johnston's staff that he was captured on May 31, 1862, at the Battle of Seven Pines, Virginia.

During this captivity he happened to meet with George Custer, an acquaintance of his from his days at the USMA at West Point.  The two former plebes, and now adversaries later sat together for a series of photographs.

Washington remained a prisoner until exchanged on September 21, 1862, at Aiken's Landing, Virginia.

Afterwards, he was assigned as an Ordnance Officer in Montgomery, Alabama.

After the war, he became an executive with the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad.  he died in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, 6 March 1900 and was buried at Green Mount Cemetery in Baltimore, Ohio.

--Old Secesh

Saturday, September 15, 2018

Confederate Lt. James Barroll Washington-- Part 1: Native of Baltimore and Friend of Custer

From GENi

Born August 26, 1839 in Baltimore, Maryland.  Died March 6, 1900 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Father Lewis William Washington.  Mother Mary Ann Washington.

From Find-A-Grave

Buried Green Mount Cemetery in Baltimore, Maryland.

Civil War Confederate officer  Descendant of President George Washington was a native of Baltimore, Maryland and attended the USMA at West Point.

He resigned from the Army when the Civil War began and became an officer in the Provisional Army of Virginia (PAVA).  Then became a lieutenant in the Confederate Army  and assigned to the staff of General Joseph Eggleston Johnston as an aide de camp.

--Old Secesh

Friday, September 14, 2018

George Custer and Friend Confederate Lt. Washington-- Part 2

"A camp photographer, seeing the two seated on a log, chatting, was preparing to photograph them, when young Washington called out to a small darkey standing near, and placed the child between them, saying the picture ought to be called 'Both sides, the cause.'

The "darkey" was a young slave boy who did not appear to be too happy to be there.

"And so it appeared in Harper's Weekly."

Photograph of Custer and Confederate Lt. James Barroll Washington (prisoner) and 2nd Lt. Custer with a young slave sitting between them.

The two men had been friends at the USMA before the war, now on different sides.

An Interesting Photo.  --Old Secesh

Thursday, September 13, 2018

George Custer and Friend Confederate Lt. James Washington-- Part 1

From the book "Custer in Photographs" by D. Mark Katz.

I picked up this book on Tuesday at the Friends of Woodstock (Illinois) Library book sale.  It is of every known photograph taken of George Armstrong Custer.  The captions tell you about the people in the photograph and when it was taken and other information.

From page 6 and 7.

Lt. James Barroll Washington (Confederate prisoner, Custer's friend and classmate), a member of General Joseph E. Johnston's staff, captured at the Battle of Fair Oaks, Virginia, May 31, 1862, seated by 2nd Lieutenant George A. Custer, may 31, 1862, by James F. Gibson.

Two Friends Meeting Under Less Than Wonderful Circumstances, Especially for Lt. Washington.  --Old Secesh

UNC and 'Silent Sam'-- Part 4: What To Do With the Statue Now?

But the symbolism of an adolescent soldier became all the more polarizing after documents in the university's archives revealed the white supremacist language used at its 1913 dedication, including a gleeful account of the whipping of a young black woman.

Some members of this very liberal community (Chapel Hill, N.C. and UNC) now envision another, more painful battle if the UNC's governing body, whose members were chosen by the state's Republican-held General Assembly, decrees that the statue should be reinstalled.

The North Carolina  statewide Board of Governors met Tuesday and set a November 15 deadline for UNC-Chapel Hill's chancellor and Board of Trustees to present a plan to preserve the sculpture which has been hauled away to a secret location.

The chancellor, Carol Folt was against the way the statue was pulled down, but is leaving options open, including a "location on campus to display the monument in a place of prominence, honor, visibility, availability and access, where we can ensure the monument's preservation and place in the history of UNC and the nation."

My Thoughts On This Sad Situation Coming Up Eventually.   --Old Secesh

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

UNC and 'Silent Sam'-- Part 3: Faced Defiantly North

Some visitors to where the statue was continue to lament the sacrifices made by the young men who gave up their studies here to fight and die for a cause they believed in.

"Their bodies are who knows where.  What do they have?"  said Sandra Aldridge, who spat in disgust as she circled the railings after coming to campus for an appointment.  "If you don't like something, you don't just tear it down."

Decades of debate about the statue and its prominence on the campus have escalated into a politicized public drama, one heightened by the similarities to the controversy in Charlottesville a year ago.

Silent Sam has long been a flash point, facing defiantly north, overseeing a main entryway to UNC's historic campus.

--Old Secesh

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

9/11/01: Such A Beautiful Day Until...

Here is one blogger who isn't forgetting.

On just a little while, I am going outside to put up my United States flags.  Hope you will be doing so as well.

And, it was an absolutely beautiful day both here and in New York City, Washington D.C. and Pennsylvania.  How could something so horrible happen on such a beautiful day?

Not Forgetting.

Monday, September 10, 2018

UNC and 'Silent Sam'-- Part 2: 'Died On the Field Of Honor'

UNC Chancellor Carol Folt is hoping that people will be able to see that there is a difference between people who see the statue as a memorial to fallen ancestors and those who push white supremacy.

The pedestal from which "Silent Sam" stood for over a century is empty and surrounded by metal crowd control fences.  You can see where it fell headfirst to the ground and crashed through the barrier.

For awhile, a bouquet of flowers sat inside the barriers with a card inscribed to "James J. Cherry," one of the Confederate Roanoke Minute Men and a member of the University of North Carolina Class of 1862 who "died on the field of honor."  This is what a Confederate statue means to me.

The Statue Honored UNC Graduates, Students and Professors.  --Old Secesh

Saturday, September 8, 2018

UNC Ponders What To Do With Toppled 'Silent Sam'-- Part 1

From the September 5, 2018, Chicago Tribune by Frances Stead Sellers and Susan Svrluga, Washington Post.


Two weeks ago a group of protesters (actually thugs guilty of a horrendous hate crime) illegally desecrated the statue of a Confederate soldier at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill.  You can probably guess where I stand on this.

Now, there is uncertainty about what to do with the statue.

Many argue that it is a relic of racism and want it gone forever, school officials are thinking about putting it up again, but somewhere less prominent.

This from UNC Chancellor Carol Folt who thinks it doesn't belong at the school's "front door", where it was originally, but that the statue means different things to different people.  Many see it as a memorial to fallen Confederate soldiers, some of them ancestors, and that it "has a place in our history and on our campus where its history could be taught."

She seems to have changed her tune since the incident.  At first she seemed to be on the side of the desecrators.  Now, not so much.

This Monument Was Put Up To Honor the Students, Alumni and Faculty of UNC Who Gave Their Lives For the Confederacy.  --Old Secesh

Getting Ready to Go To the Lincoln Funeral Car in Antioch

I have to thank my buddy Glenn who last night at the American Legion mentioned that he and Barb had gone to the Lincoln Funeral Car in Antioch, Illinois, on Thursday.  I had forgotten entirely about it being there.

It has been there for two weeks.  On August 25, out McHenry County Civil War Round Table discussion group had visited it.  Of course, I would have been with them, but that happened to be Liz and my 45th wedding anniversary and we were in Galena, another place with a fair bit of Civil War history.

There were also other Civil-related things going on in Antioch while it was here, but again, I forgot about it all together.

Well, Thanks Glenn.  --Old Secesh

Robert E. Lee's 'Gregorie's Line' in S.C.-- Part 2: Forts and a Traveller Connection

These were specifically designed to stop the constant threat of Union invasion from nearby Beaufort which had been captured shortly after the war began.

General Lee laid out a series of half moon fortifications extending from the Cumbahee River to Pocotaligo.  Numerous local properties still have these forts and other earthworks on them.  Other earthworks were thrown up to stop Sherman's March through the Carolinas in 1865.

I have not been able to find out anything else about this "Gregorie's Line."

General Lee's famous war horse, Traveller, was shipped to him via the railroad while he was at  his headquarters at Coosawhatchie during Christmas 1861.

Nice Christmas Present.  --Old Secesh

Friday, September 7, 2018

Robert E. Lee's 'Gregorie's Line' in South Carolina-- Part 1

From That Genealogy "Yamassee's History."

Yamassee, South Carolina, is a town near where the Battle of Tuliffiny was fought,

Once South Carolina seceded and war began, this area near the Savannah River on the S.C. side became important from a military standpoint with the rice grown in the area, the Charleston and Savannah Railroad and telegraph lines.

Confederate General Robert E, Lee, an engineer by training, designed a line of fortifications in the area between the Stono, Edisto and Combahee rivers.  (This was before he became the commander of the Army of Northern Virginia.  These were built to protect both the Charleston and Savannah Railroad's main line running through the towns of Pocotaligo and Yamassee and the numerous rice plantations.

--Old Secesh

Thursday, September 6, 2018

Battle of Tuliffiny-- Part 7: Union Ships

Union Naval vessels that participated in the amphibious landing at Tuliffiny

Note, I am of the belief these were ships of the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron probably based at the Union base at Hilton Head, S.C.. (Port Royal)

USS St, Louis  (The only Civil War ship by this name I could find was one of the Mississippi River ironclads.)

USS Pawnee
USS Canandaigua

USS Flag
USS New Hampshire  (this was a former ship-of-the-line and storehouse based at Port Royal).

USS Sonoma  This one was definitely at the battle.
USS Mingoe

USS Pontiac
USS Saratoga

USS James Adger
USS Camarron

USS Donegal

These ships were under command of Rear Admiral James Dahlgren (Dahlgren guns) of the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron.

The Naval Support Brigade ashore was commanded by Commander George Henry Preble.

--Old Secesh

Battle of Tuliffiny-- Part 6: Union Forces

The Battle of Tuliffiny was fought by soldiers from the U.S. Army, a large number of U.S. Marines and ships of the U.S. Navy.  It was an army-navy operation out of the major Union base at Hilton Head, South Carolina.  It did not involve units from Sherman's Army, but men from the Military department of the South.

Total forces of the Union are estimated at 5,000.


Major General John G. Foster, commanding.

Brigadier General John Porter Hatch (Medal of Honor recipient)

Brigadier General Edward E. Potter


56th New York
127th New York
144th New York
157th New York
25th Ohio
3rd New York Light Artillery  Battery F
3rd Rhode Island Heavy Artillery
32nd  U.S. Colored Troops
33rd U.S. Colored Troops

USMC   First Lieutenant (Acting Lieutenant Colonel) George G. Stoddard, commanding.

--Old Secesh

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Battle of Tuliffiny-- Part 5: The "Swamp Fox: Hideout

The Tuliffiny Creek is located in Jaspar County, the South Carolina county located across the Savannak River from Savannah.

The amphibious landing on the Tuliffiny River was conducted primarily by the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps and was also successful in moving 5,000 troops to Gregorie Point, which is a peninsula bounded by the Tuliffinay and Coosawatchie  rivers located near the town of Yemassee and some 45 miles north of Savannah.

Much of this area is covered by swamps and thick foliage and large trees.    General Francis Marion, "The Swamp Fox" of the American Revolution  fought the British and encamped near this area  on several occasions.

The Union objective was to cut the Charleston-Savannah  Railroad by destroying a railroad trestle bridge that crossed the Tuliffiny River.

--Old Secesh

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

The Battle of Tuliffiny-- Part 4: Sherman Aproacheth


In early December 1864 Major general William T. Sherman and his 62,000-man army  was approaching the South Carolina border on his March to the Sea with Savannah as an objective.  Sherman had ordered his men to adopt a "scorched earth" policy against the Confederates.  That meant burning and destroying crops, homes, confiscation  and killing of livestock and the consumption of any supplies needed by his army.

This early example of total war  was meant to cause mass desertion in the enemy ranks and break the South's will to fight.

Tuliffiny was one of eight engagements during the war in which cadets from the South Carolina Military Academy (SCMA) (also known as the Battalion of State Cadets) participated.

Old Secesh

Monday, September 3, 2018

Battle of Tulifinny-- Part 3: The Only Time In History An Entire Student Body of a U.S. College Engaged in Combat

From Wikipedia

Fought December 6-9, 1863, in South Carolina during Sherman's March to the Sea, also known as the Savannah Campaign.

Outnumbered 5 to 1, a Confederate force successfully defensed a critical section of the Charleston-Savannah Railroad allowing troops and supplies from Savannah to be evacuated.

The battle was historically significant because it was one of the rare occasions when the United States Marine Corps fought in combat during he Civil War.  (I don't know about that.)  In addition, the Confederate force also included the  entire Corps of Cadets from the South Carolina Military Academy in Charleston, now the Citadel.

More than a third of the Confederate force was comprised of the Citadel Corps of Cadets and it was the only time when the entire student body of a U.S. college fought in combat.

In a Nutshell.  --Old Secesh

Saturday, September 1, 2018

Citadel Cadets and VMI Cadets

You always hear a lot about the role the cadets from the Virginia Military Institute played in the Battle of New Market, but not so much about the Citadel Cadets at the Battle of Tuliffiny.

Like I said, I'd never even heard of this battle until I saw it listed as one in which the German Light Artillery took part.

You Learn Something New All the Time.  --Old SecDidn'tKnow

Battle of Tuliffiny-- Part 2: The Battalion of State Cadets From the Citadel and Arsenal Took Part

From the Battle of Tuliffiny blog.

This battle is of particular interest because it involved the use of  entire Battalion of State Cadets from the Citadel and Arsenal Academies as an independent military unit.  They were commanded by Major General Samuel Jones, Commanding General of the South Carolina and Georgia Departments.

In December 1864, the governor of South Carolina ordered them to deploy at Tuliffiny Creek, south of Charleston, to reinforce Confederate troops guarding a key railroad bridge against larger advancing Union forces.

On December 7, 1864, the Battalion, along with Georgia, North and South Carolina militia engaged the Union forces and forced the enemy back.  On December 9, the Battalion successfully repulsed a Union counter attack.

The Battalion suffered eight casualties, including one dead.  They were commended for their action at the battle by General Jones.

A depiction of the Dec. 9 engagement at the Tuliffiny Creek railroad bridge  is on display at the Daniel Library at the Citadel.

--Old Secesh