Affidavit of John A. Richardson in the Trial of Thomas Brady, March 4, 1872

Source: Henry Berry Lowrie Papers, 1864-1872 Manuscript Collection #1271

Staff Person: Fred Harrison

Description: Solicitor  John A. Richardson motions to have Thomas Brady’s trial moved out of Robeson County, N.C. owing to strong feeling among the citizens there that Brady’s murder of Stephen Locklier was “considered to have been a good deed.” Brady was connected to a band of outlaws known as the Lowrie (also spelled Lowry) Gang who resisted the Confederate Home Guard in the area of Robeson County during the Civil War as well as their successors in the period running through the early 1870s.

An interesting period account of the Lowrie Gang is available in George Alfred Townsend’s The Swamp Outlaws: or, The North Carolina Bandits : Being a Complete History of the Modern Rob Roys and Robin Hoods (1872). The Langford North Carolina Collection has a recent reprint available for use among its reference holdings under the call number NoCar Ref F262.R6 S93 2015.

Also noteworthy and available for free electronic access through East Carolina University Digital Collections is The Lowrie History: As Acted in Part by Henry Berry Lowrie, The Great North Carolina Bandit, with Biographical Sketch of His Associates (Lumberton, N.C.: Lumbee Pub. Co., c1909) at https://digital.lib.ecu.edu/17019 .

 

St. James Episcopal Church, Kittrell, NC

Source: Augustus Moore Family Papers (ECU Manuscript Collections #1216)

Staff Person: Lynette Lundin

Description:

St. James Episcopal Church was built in a Gothic-Style, the church is located in Kittrell, NC.

A Confederate Hospital was located in Kittrell during the  Civil War and the church saw  to the patients needs and provided Christian burials for the 52 soldiers who died there. PC-1216.13.a.1

Safe Conduct

Source: Robin Brabham Collection, E.C. Manuscript Collection #1175

Staff Person: Nanette Hardison

Description:
This statement dated December 1, 1862 was written by Union officer Major Charles E.  Mears to Thomas Midgett of Croatan, N.C.  to give him and his family safe conduct while traveling around the area. The statement also gave him permission to keep his property. 

Safe Conduct Statement

Fannie Wallace Letter to Mannie & Sissie Tuten 29 July 1863

Source: Arthur Whitford Papers, East Carolina Manuscript Collection, #18.1.a
Staff Person: Jonathan Dembo
Description: Letter from Fannie Wallace to Mannie and Sissie Tuten, 29 July 1863

Fannie Wallace Civil War Letter 29 July 1863

This little letter is from a young woman in Greensboro, North Carolina to her grandparents, Mannie and Sissie Tuten. It offers a glimpse into social life in the South during the crisis of the Civil War. Written less than a month after the Battle of Gettysburg (1-3 July) and the Fall of Vicksburg (4 July 1863) that ended any hope of Confederate victory, Fannie makes no mention of these disasters. Instead, she focuses on her family and social activities, her friends and her parties. She writes that her cousins are visiting and wishes they could be with them too. She passes on Nancie’s request for some snuff. Fannie knows there is a war on and that there are shortages. Indeed, she proclaims her patriotism: she is writing with Confederate ink on a Confederate spelling book and danced with two Confederate officers at a Ball. Either she did not understand the seriousness of the military situation, or, perhaps, more likely, did not wish to think about them or burden her grandparents with her worries.

Missouri State Pension for Ex-Confederate Soldiers

Source: Carl Woodrow Thurman, Jr. Collection #15.1.a
Staff Person: Jonathan Dembo


Description: James T. Thurman, aged 72, and still suffering from a Civil War wound to his thigh, “weak lungs” and a “chronic cough”, submitted this pension application, on 18 June 1913, to the Adjutant General’s Office, in Jefferson City, Missouri. After a long life of physical labor, he could do no more.  His physical condition, he said, made it impossible for him “to do manual labor” any more and he needed financial assistance. Like many Confederate soldiers, Thurman was illiterate and required the assistance of Notary Public Hemmit Dale to complete the application form. His “mark” is visible between the J. and T. of his “signature.” The application is marked “approved & service papers returned” and dated 9 July 1913. Thurman’s pension application is accompanied by two documents: a “Memorandum of Service” and an Adjutant General’s certificate authenticating his Civil War service. The documents indicate that Thurman was a resident of Bloomington, Macon County, Missouri and had enlisted as a private in Company B, 5th Missouri Regiment Infantry Volunteers in Springfield, Missouri, on 11 January 1862. Thurman had previously served in Company F, 4th Regiment, 3rd Division of the Missouri National Guard.

The document may be more significant for what is doesn’t say.  It doesn’t say how Thurman served honorably throughout the war until he was paroled after the surrender in April 1865. The 5th Regiment, under the command of Col. James McCown, Lt. Col. Robert S. Bevier, and Maj. Owen A. Waddell, was involved in nearly continuous combat during the war. It fought at Iuka (19 Sept. 1862) and Corinth, Mississippi (3-4 Oct. 1862), Lexington, Tennessee (18 Dec. 1862) and at Pea Ridge [Elkhorn Tavern] Arkansas (7-8 Mar. 1862), where it was part of Brig. Gen. John S. Bowen’s command. Thurman got his thigh wound from a shell fragment at Pea Ridge. It participated in the  simultaneous battles of Grand Gulf (29 April, 3 May 1863) and Port Gibson, Mississippi (30 April – 1 May 1863) while defending Vicksburg.  A few weeks later the regiment fought at Champion’s Hall, also known as Baker’s Creek (16 May 1863).  The 5th was captured en masse, on 4 July 1863, when Vicksburg fell to Gen. Ulysses S. Grant’s forces and spent several months as prisoners of war.  The harshness of the siege and subsequent captivity can only be guessed.  Gen. Bowen never recovered from the effects and died on 13 July 1863. After an exchange of prisoners, the understrength 5th joined Brig. Gen. Francis M. Cockrell’s Brigade and was consolidated with the 3rd Regiment, and served with General John Bell Hood’s army in Tennessee (Nov. 1864-Jan. 1865) and during the Atlanta Campaign (1 May – 8 Sept. 1864) where it fought at Allatoona (5 Oct. 1864).  Transferred to  to the defense of Mobile (17 Mar. – 12 April 1865) it participated in the Battle of Fort Blakely, Alabama (1-9 April 1865).

The 5th, which mustered 476 men in May 1862, suffered staggering casualties during the war. It lost 6 killed, 62 wounded, and 19 missing at Corinth; 4 killed, 49 wounded and 37 missing at Champion’s Hill;  20 killed and 52 wounded during the siege of Vicksburg; the combined 5th/3rd Regiment lost a total of 128 casualties (killed and wounded) during the Atlanta Campaign (18 May – 5 September 1864) alone. It lost hundreds more by disease and desertion. By the end of the war there were few left to surrender.  The survivors of the bloodbath, including James T. Thurman, then faded from history.

The New Era: Washington, N.C. Occupied March 1862

Source: North Carolina Collection (Uncataloged Rare Materials)

Staff Person:     Fred W. Harrison 

Description:      War officially reached the port town of Washington in March 1862, with the arrival of Federal troops escorted by the gunboat Picket. According to one account, “two companies and a band marched from the wharf to the courthouse playing national aires.” 

As evidenced by this rare edition of a Yankee newspaper dated June 25, 1862, and operating in Washington, Union forces quickly assumed control of business activity and general functions of the town. James H. Turner and A.W. Hahn are listed respectively as editor and printer of the paper.  Found within the four pages are reports of Rhode Island’s presentation of a magnificent sword to Gen. Ambrose Burnside and a speech by  Edward Stanley, Provisional Governor of North Carolina, appointed by President Lincoln.  Stanley delivered an address to the citizens of the state in Washington on June 17, 1862.

Confederate States of America $100 Bond

Source: William Moore Family Papers (Manuscript Collection #596)

Staff Person: Martha Elmore

Description: As often happens in time of war,  the Confederate States of America helped to finance the expenses incurred in the Civil War by issuing bonds.  In this example, a $100 bond is issued on March 2, 1863 (in compliance with the February 20, 1863, Act passed by the Congress of the Confederate States), and is eligible to be paid in full with 7% interest on July 1, 1868.  The certificates at the bottom could be turned in separately to receive increments of the interest payments instead of waiting until July 1, 1868, to receive all of the interest.  The coupons are dated as to when they can be used.  The first coupon would allow the bearer to receive $2.92 for interest due January 1, 1864.  This bond resides with papers related to the William Moore family of Greene and Pitt counties, N.C.

Photograph of Confederate veterans and daughter

Taft Family Papers #784, East Carolina Manuscript Collection

Source:

Staff Person:  Dale Sauter

Description:  

Today’s staff pick features an undated photograph (left to right) of Major Orren Randolph Smith, his daughter Jessica and John T. B. Hoover. Smith and Hoover were both Confederate veterans who fought in the Civil War.  On the back of the photograph a statement is written that Smith created the “Stars and Bars” (the first official flag of the Confederacy), and that his daughter verified this in the 1940s.  However, it is also believed that Nicola Marschall (a Prussian artist), inspired by the Austrian flag, first designed the Confederate flag.  There became much conflict between the descendants of the two individuals regarding who was the first to design the flag.  Nevertheless, Smith’s tombstone in Henderson, North Carolina bears the inscription “designer of the Stars and Bars”.

John L. Porter Naval Architectural Notebook

Source: John Luke Porter Papers (#850)

Staff Person: Lynette Lundin

Description:                                 

John L. Porter (1813-1893) constructed naval ships in Portsmouth, Virginia, prior to the Civil War. After the secession of the Confederate States, he served at the Gosport (Portmouth, Virginia) Naval Yard for the Confederate Navy.  Mr. Porter recorded in this notebook (starting on page 164) the details of the conversion of the USS Merrimac to the CSS Virginia (1861-1862). Further on in the notebook (pg 233) he relates the sad story of his house being confiscated after the Civil War and sold for $700.00. To find out more information, ask for John Luke Porter Papers (#850).

Lightfoot Paper, 1865

Source: Guide to the Lightfoot Paper, 1865, Manuscript Collection #12
Staff Person: Jonathan Dembo
Description:

Page 2 of a Letter (28 May 1865) from an anonymous pro-Union woman in Gainesville, Georgia to her sister in the North.


Page 3 of a Letter (28 May 1865) from an anonymous pro-Union woman in Gainesville, Georgia to her sister in the North.


At left and right are two pages from a 6-page letter (28 May 1865) handwritten by an anonymous Pro-Union woman living in Gainesville, Georgia to her sister in the North shortly after the end of the civil war. In the segment of the letter shown she describes the murder of 12 of 24 Union prisoners of war, captured by Southern Home Guard troops in November 1864, during General William Tecumseh Sherman’s march to Atlanta and then to Savannah; in other portions of the letter she describes the arrival of hordes of starving soldiers demanding food, the wartime suffering of the people in the South due to the blockade; the financial losses of southerners who invested in Confederate bonds; and the efforts of ladies to prepare clothes for soldiers. She also recounts her refusal to support secession or participate in pro-war activities; plans of neighbors to move to Mexico following the defeat of the Confederacy; the lack of new clothes as a result of the war; five years worth of family news; and the fears of her neighbors for the future including whether slaves would actually be freed and Southern land confiscated. Photocopied. 6 p. 2 copies. Loaned for copying my Miss Jean Lightfoot, 9/25/1967. To view the entire letter and a transcript please visit the Special Collections Department of Joyner Library.