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SAMUEL PROCTOR ORAL HISTORY PROGRAM at
the University of Florida
Subject: William Lundy
Int: Michael Hansinger
I: This is January 31st, at Garden Cityjat the home of one of the members
of the Lundy familyiwith members of the family gathered here on the front
porch and with Uncle Bill Lundy. And we have had a discussion for about
half an hour of Uncle Bill's experiences and recollections from the olden
days. And here is Uncle Bill. Uncle Bill, do you want to tell us about
yourself and your family like we have been talking, please sir.
S: Yes, well we were raised as a hardy family, all well and hardy, without
any doctors, using any doctors. Use a little castor oil and turpentine
when one is sort of sick somewhere, throwing up, I use a little salty
water, tili he got his appetite to him. Ten give him something to eat.
u/WI 4w)f 0
Cause that's what we done in my time raising a family didn't use no
doctor. Them that used the doctor seemed like they got along mighty
bad. They didn't, Xeftdaw, his medicine must have made sick someway.
They didn't tell him what they give him and ,_ll_.f4'd sometime some
would have a mighty sore mouth from taking medicine.
I: Uncle Bill, this medicine you are talking bout, that's old medicine
that they have been using in the family al this time, is it not?
I: Where did you learn to use these different home remedies?
Oc(Jl 7'Ivee y 7v- ae- ,0 we i If
S: Well, I just didn't, Ii be sort of sick and we would just take a dose of
oil and turpentine ins-e of taking any other medicine. Just a little
-50 /Y 0- W -0
sick and then soon yea were able to go on ndeat anything after that
dose of oil and turpentine. Soon, your stomach wanted something fresh
to eat. Something like chicken soup or something of that sort, cooked
-dmi good and nice, something cooked good and nice. Why you soon learned
how to 1x you something to eat that would relish your stomach. And then
you would be alright and go on to work.
CONVET 5A CIM Page 2
I: And do you want to tell us about the time that the doctor called you in
-a-andyo-to help with that box and the way you doctored him up
y<"<-, ya"^, /i
S: Well, I don't know as there is any use in my telling. curse, he was
bad off when I went in and I went in.and we went to gathering peach.
tree leaves and rubbing them up and made a pottice and put on him3
nd he is sitting up eating in the course of three hours. He is sitting
up eating in the course of three hours from putting peach-tree pottice
on him. And didn't need no doctors. The doctor had walked out and said
there was no chance going to the box. And so soon as I give him, put
that peach tree pottice on him, it cooled his fever, something to cool
his fever. I don't know how or what got me on putting on peach tree
VA- zt-fu/( s
poltices but somehow I, something looked like it had to be done when
anybody's sick. o I went to putting that poltice on him and then it
done good right then. I got to going to lots of places being sent for
A ltt, n H/ b,.s F. dA f,,
to put on, help doctorwg"Aause he doctor had gone on and left them.
And so, looked like there was no chance for them too. They'd get so
bad off and slow. Get off there. (something must have gotten on him)
I: Uncle Bill, how do you make up a peach tree po0tice?
S. /ou just take some green leaves and just rub them and rub them all to
pieces, til/ you get enough to make a big po twice, n- put on your stomach.
A big police in your hand, a big police is all the way I ever made
&(4- 4,JL s I-.;, ira l, -/,/A r/y
them. It takes time to beat them up and that makes it be better, beat
it up finer and that way and cold water put to them. And put it on the
stomach. it will have you feel cool directly. Yes, I wen to a place
and put them on'bm one day the doctor just walked out and before I got
CONVET 5A CTM Page 3
there and said there was no chance for them. iieldidn't see no chance.
So I went over there and just laid out with fever, he just couldn't
break it. And I broke one of them, all -othem before night.
I: Had the fever broke on them.
S: Yeah, had the fever broke on em. And they didn't need no doctor. In
the course of three hours, they were all well. Soon as that peach tree
pottice set on their stomach, they were soon cool and easy, rested, felt
like eating, soon they were eating.
I: Well, you know, now a'days, the way people do, when they get these
various troubles, the first thing they think about is a doctorand they
think about something which some medicament that has come along in the
last two or three years like a hypodermic shot and you don't think very
often of how people had to do jast-a few years back when there wasn.L
doctors like that and there wasn't these medicaments. fou are able to
tell us just how people did sixty seventy/and eighty years ago.
S: Yeah, they just, bad to take your medicine. Get the doctor 4xer and take
-your medicine and they was soon laid out. They didn't live long. They was
soon laid out. I recn if they tell them what they give them that they
wouldn't last long, just die right then.
I: Well Uncle Bill, this is January the 31st in 1953)and you are the last
member who fought for the South who is with us today in the state of
Florida. The people who keep the records on it say that there are not
but five men left in the United States that fought in the war. Would you
tell us what you remember about the war starting from what you first
remember about it.
S: Well, it was mighty bad. They were carrying off men from their homes and
families and fighting. Some of them coming back and some of them not
CONVET 5A CTM Page 4
coming back. And they just looked like I 'S A tt SIt} ds(r 0'ne man
and his son, a man nameCShields2give a Nigger, two iggers, to keep his ays
4 ^ (ti b oys from going to war. And so they killed, 'of' freed the tigers or they
died op something and they had to hiye, had to go in themselves. The
niggers had to go someways and the boys had to go to war themselves.
And never come back. They were killed the next day after they got into
the war. The next day, when the Shield',boys was killed. And I don't
recollect though whether they wouldn't have the niggers or something.
They got the diggers and they killed the boys, or they got killed the
next day in the war in the army.
I: Their name was Shields. Where were they living? Where was their home?
S: Their home was back up near take Troy. Their home was back up near Troy.
I: And where was your home when the war started?
S: My home was jts this side of Troy. Six miles north west of Troy. And
surrender at the last of the- 7h4 ayx d 0ld Gt//
2 and-they had the guards, carried all the guards there, carried the
guard and everything and can't break it.
I: When did you first get into the Confederate service?
S: It wasalong in the spring, I believe, sometime in the spring, as spring
opens, best I recollect now. Just as spring is opening. I got in.
/ h w 0e//
I: And how old a young man were you then?
S: I was sixteen years old when I went in. They wouldn't take me in any
earlier as a boy. No soldiers were younger than sixteen. And so I come
be A 6
to that old, I went in. I had to go to help .t fight or guard And I
went in as a guard.
I: In what outfit did you go into?
S: Into CAJoy Brown company who controlled a little guard company. Kept
CONVET 5A CTM Page 5
them around the edges of tkf town with guns, around the edge of town.
Close to the bridge and close to the court house to keep them from
burning the court house up and keep them from burning the bridges. Kept
the little guard companies ouat-&await. The Yankes were doing everything
tey could do to whip and outdo us southern people. They didn't give
them no chance a/all, only just they come every way they could control"
anything. They would hem them up w-hr h '- .ny- without
I: This would be the spring of 1865. The surrender came in April of '65
and as you say, this was the early part of the spring. It would be a
month or two months before the end of the war. Does that sound right?
S: Yes, the first of April. It was the first of April of '61 when it com-
menced and it ended in '65. That was when it ended7 in '65.
I: That was ( years ago when it ended. Do you remember when it ended,
S: Well, I don't remember what day or how/i
I: I don't mean, I don't mean the date, I mean how they got the news in your
guard company. How they got the news about the end of the war?
S: No, I don't, don't recollect how they got the news.
I: Did they have a telegraph in Troy then?
S: ot -i I know of. Notx I know of. They just, I don't know how. They
Cou A evc, 6 ,,q
just, coming and going. They send it by horse r A-#Ct and so on.
There was no such thing as cars them days/ Car- wasat known. tt
would go on a horse some way or another, to let things be known. But I
can't recollect just how ws, about everything long thinking and remembering
somebody hereafter. It's-ed+.,,
I: That's a long time back to ask a man to remember, Uncle Bill.
S: It tis. It takes a long time/ a recollection of anything thatshappener
tie! eolcio n n ap
CONVET 5A CTM Page 6
one way or anotherA (t's been a long time. I don't know what to say
about it or how to tell it any better than what I have told about it.
I: What you have told about it was very interesting. If you would just
tell what ever you think about it and the way you remember it. Uncle
Bill, tell us what you remember about the way things in Alabama after
S: Well, it was mighty hard. Things was mighty tough 4We4didn't have
corn to do anything, hadn't make i tO couldn't children,
couldn't work enough to make a 1ving. it was mighty hard and there
wasn't no relief, nothing to-ee- Oh4t' II They were living mighty
hard. They just haPto eat anything they could get to keep from
starving. 1s soon as they could pick green peas, all Qg--4t4 that, lyi
they were making p, anything you could toee from starving. It was
a tough time.
I: How long did those hard times last?
two ears before they C'
S: It was a year) two years before they got to working enough, doing
enough try to make y $ It was hard time.
I: Did your county loose man men in the war? Do you remember many of
the men being lost from your home area?. F
S: I don't recollect about the men/ I just don't recollect.
I: When you all travelled.....
S:,,, j.Ytak g sick fi A $;r.4 p taking cold/ and h lying out
in the coly He wasn't able to go back to it anymore. Just a consumption,
a rotten cough, he coughed and coughed and he would come with a sweat.
And so ftd-otd fellow, the doctors do him no good.4 rere wasn't much
chance for him at lldol him any good. An old fellow Woodham told
him -iht hejt calu fo c o -And it wouldjstop him of that
wf cough Ge Davs, of that rotten cough. And they had bad cold
Wi cough,. Geoge Davis, of that rotten cough. And they had bad cold
A i A
CONVET 5 A CTM Page 7
46~ s Jfl~ t 'S 3cedtwood'd;/
o-_eogh ...i.n thingyust cold or cough, why roaah fe r
r"l U. rC-l- ,} ^" "
Sthe nil -t ,e--,ij oonrmg right then. And so I went and got a quart of
beechwood oil and he went to taking that and then went still one and got
fresh oil and taking th , a spoonful of beechwood oil a day. That cured
I: When you all went to travel in that part of Alabama in the old days)when
you were a boy, how would you travel?
S: 4xwagon. A oxwagon or a carriage, use a cart for to haul or go in, you
take your ox nd a cart with a long tongue to it, and balance the load on
the cart. at was the way we travelled them days, with oxcart or oxwagon.
I: And what were the roads like?
S: They were just old dirt roads along just any sort of road you could iypti n,
get by along on/ They were bad roads to travel.
I: And where would you stop for the night, when night time came?
S: Just anywhere along the road, road side in the woods. Camp and tie oxCS,
or you just tie it and rest until morning. ABmetimes the roads were good
and when it was you travel awhile, maybe he'd wait until midnight. Midnight
4fk cows will get up and walk around and feed and stir iittlea So at
midnight, why we'd lie and rest until then and get up and drive two
1 -flPcd I OM Rf ?
or three hours. Til morning and camp again til day light. 4he we
pe camp til day light, oh until the next morning. i it looked
eefrri 4 jdt^ Of ary/ lA-
awful, tomen off to fight and they get them killed/, hen they
would have to send in more substitutes.
I: That was the Shields family.
S:, hat was the Shields family.
I: What ever happened to Candy Brown after the war?
CONVET 5A CTM Page 8
S: Well, I don't recollect what, he was a big millman, in saw mills., e
run a big grist mill and was big man down at the mill, Candy Brown was
a big grist mill man. He had a big grist mill. And so when I went to
his milI, we caught big catfish, a foot and a half long. Boy they were
"a fidC I had a fine mess of fish.
I: fiver cats make good eating.
A/ Yea ,), b. -hI '
S: Yeah. Igo toSAhfo River down here, below Crestview and stay one
night and fish.
I: When did you first come down into Florida?
S: I can't recollect to tell when I first come down and how about it somehow.ta ou,,
I: About how old a man were you then?
S: I was about, I don't know. I re n about( or o ears old. An old
fellow, Jacobs, was telling about some old widow woman's place, A.- J
wa a powerful ace, /er, couldn't tend it or maybe wanted to sell it
or something. So we wnt to look at it., o, he had told her not to sell. h J
a6 it'to nobody else. e wanted it. And so he bought it and give us, we
o pitwv.1 j y 1b4 &W A A
had to look at another place. Pe wanted to leave his place in Coffee
,/I ,o o icR
County. There was no deer or fish or nothings We wanted to get to where
we could get some Eeor-and -fh and turkey. And so that caused us to
Arm t AC-e f- Cf wanted, there
move out of Coffee County rom Pike into Coffee, e wanted, there
,A rh 1c Atc.
wasn't no deer nor turkey An fish, no place for none. So that caused it, I wa
oao / good streak of land, dCn he?
I: And where did you first come to in Florida? What was the name of the
S: I forgotji now. Adkins. Adkins I believe. Adkins. Twelve miles east
of Andalusia, was Adkins, was the settlement.
I: When you came into Florida this time, when you were a young man ( o
years old, how did you all travel then?
CONVET 5A CTM Page 9
S: We travelled with ox and wagon. Ox, we didn't have no cars. #x and
I: Yid you start farming then?
S: Yeah, we wre farming. i)e had plow oxen. We plowed blinghorses.
A. A 4se r,
I: What was Florida like en, Uncle Bill, when you first came?
S: It was a needing men to help, that were able to work and farm. It
needed men. f'ar s Las/4 w ^ .
I: And what were the towns and settlements like in those days)as far back
as you remember?
S: hey were needing more horsepower or mulepower or something to farm with IU/ r
fertilize. The land was poor and neded s thing to help.
Thenr rf could raise a little lot fertilize and so on) hey could make
corn and bh done well. But them that couldn't, why they wasn't
a&* making They was 5 bad. They wasn't making enough to live on.
I: Uncle Bill, a while back you were telling me about getting together and adtv
killing yearling And having / get-togethers at church and such as that.
Do you want to tell us about that? _
S: Yes, they would get together. They would be having a big meeting, a big
meeting tws going to start over -t t -hc go-,birg Methodist mei!e g,
and so they would-.t a yearling and. ivide that, around-four families.
I guess that many would get a quarter of beef. And they would kill that
beef and they would enjoy that meeting that week. And so next week or
two they would kill another one for the missionary meeting and they would
enjoy that yearling through that meeting. 50,,,
I: And how about singing and dancing at these meetings?
S: Well, they did a heap of good singing but they didn't dance none &A-t
I know of. They didn't dance.
CONVET 5 A CTM Page 10
I: How about at the wedding parties Arid such as that?
S: Well, some of them wuld- ha a go time at the wedding parties and al> j,,
would have a big time of thaW They would gather about and have a big
wedding and then a big dance party that night. And maybe sometimes, t, 4
to bed r -4 Sau hHrHl- -4 jo
somebody would put them to bed laughterj o ofth gt-td-
lg and so on. So one fellow, they tied a bell under his bed)
and he didn't know it until he done laid down. Then when e got outside
d&+1 0 U/
they kept that bell a rattling. And when he laid down it was like thaot
cow was a feeding. A heap of fun, ws fun carrying on in the night.
I: When you were a boy and a young man, when would you have the most fun,
at these parties, at schools or when?
S: Sometimes we would have ot of it at parties, froli cf4tIes
I: How about the dances? ,/ A ,,
S: Dancing, hugging cgiau X,-g one another. -'Swing your partner and kiss
that beauty. (laughter) We'd have a time of it. c ing and kiss,,-y
I: Well, you know, folks haven't changed too much since that time.
s ke. kcrr^W
S: And so, one, a girl put on boy's suit and was dancing around. So, whe
v ,50AeYt sot-(e~o i cn4~ cd, sjh^tc rh e *f^ k ufr
sewet to get a drink of water in the porch/ she throwed her arms around
X-esneck and she would say, "How about a sweet kiss?". And no, and just
flew back into the house. LaL k, -e
I: When they had these parties for dancing and all, who would do the music?
S: Well, different menA4d 4te fiddling, different men, some was, first one Mafi
then another qe play the fiddle. A fellow, Scott Beck, Scott Beck
they called hir done most of the fiddling. He had a brother that couldn't
play a tune at all.
I: Was this at Troy or near Garden City?
S: It was near Garden City, I believe it was.
I: TheseAfolks they had living in Florida when you first came here. Were
CONVET 5 A CTM Page 11
they mostly Alabama people or where were they from?
S: Well, they were from different places, different places. They were from c' r
ah, different places. Some, I don't recollect what state they moved, r-
come in from but somehow I, some come visiting some way and to see wife's
)x I A
uncles. And so we had got me, located a place and I had six of them
come back there then, come to Florida.
I: What was the name of this place?
tf's dI &j f/ir f /4tp e--
S: A wn below Flo-ida. /Lakewood, I believe was the place, Lakewood. I
believe Lakewood was the place as well as I recollect. -No, that was
one place. The fellow wanted, he wanted quite a b1cy ,l- po I sold
out 5r) e Iuu w4A nI aAi 5t w tL C6n)WCkte- Crtixt C
I: You mentioned about wanting to come where the fishing and deer hunting
was good. Did you do alot of deer hunting when you came?
S: Yes. Yes, I done a lots of it. I shel some nice ones. You could kill
anything them days, looked like .yujcould. 'ut they passed that law to
,t-_ V / som it, f
stop ;=, from killing anything but bucks They = killing so many,; qt
killing so many. And turkeys, I killed them anytime I get a chance at them,
_ / l tcfuflCl "itf
AWA I 1e one if anyone else could. If I couldn't call them couldn't nobody
else o -hae call them. It's like you walk around calling ke, wee,
wee, wee. And so, he wouldn't come but he would just lie down once in
t rA/ oV^ Sk'pj, "1Oeecc,w..
a while and answer just like you were the old hen nearly asleep He.
woud come running up b. p hb : iF-n _-o_n. hIT in the bush, (sounds 3/fck
c: b ^ H^e ~ I ^*W^ ^.f rin tv 'AC 'I
S of turkey, I gess). e would run straight to see about the fighting
nd ten I 'd shoot him.
I: That's when you would be in a blind.
S: Yeah, because I'd be in a blind, hiding in the blind. I'd be clucking
like I was fighting. And they would come rig t in, come a flying. It would
CONVET 5A CTM Page 12
take time to slip up They would come inaaCtry to see about w e? tv
: -! r7T O to keep them from killing one another fighting, f
S&T -Jaul pulling on one another. (turkey noises) iin the palmetto branches,
a 9st b they would come I r, o r- c ami iti They would come
running up in a hurry and I'd get them then when they would run up.
There wasn't much time.
I: Uncle Bill, you are a. hndr ndmd fi ycars old with your birthday about
ten days agoaWen you were a boy before the war, course, you were a
small boy then, were there any old men in your neighborhood? Wds your
grandfather there? jt .,Llt.
S: Yes, no, let's see, my grandfather, heidied when my father was small.
y l grandfather died when he was small. e was six years riding and
raised until after the war, the Confederate War, and then he hunted
up his brothers and went to them in the U tSijo ra'pt
I: Do you remember when you were a boy, were there any old men in your
settlement or in your town? Do you remember them?
S: No, I don't, don't know that I do in Troy. The Hendersons, they went
to Troy. They had a little store business and alTlhe3 Henderson
Store pen Troy was established, t railroad come to Troy, why they
moved to Troy and went to running a big business and taking mortgages
and everything and furnishing people and they went rich, went rich.
I: A0 this man Henderson, then, how old a man was he when you remember
S: Why, he was some fifty, forty years oldfi
I: Had any of these other men around where you were raised when you were a
boy, had any of them fought in other wars or battles, the old ones?
S: Not that I know of. Dan Murphy, he was there at Troy. 1 ,,a
CONVET 5A CTM Page 13
I: They had some old wars in Alabama some time before that. I was wonderl-Mg
if there were any old men around that you remembered when you were a boy
that had fought in some of those battles perhaps?
S: I don't know. I don't recollect any of them. Somehow,I just, my recollection
is changed, I studio about, I forgot, you know.
I: That's a long wayto be thinking, quick like. ., r ,S .
S: Eighty-five years ago is a long ways to think back; Now/things happening
7.1 A ow hng h e
..7 passing A t y-five years ago.
I: Well, it's a wonderful thing to be able to think about it at all, Uncle
Bill, when you think that it's hard to remember what we were doing last
week or last month. And then wonder about things eighty-five and ninety
years ago, it's going back. However, you are the only one who can tell
us about it. So, if you can remember, I would just like to hear what you
remember about living when you were a boy.
414 -O 4-, A /,/f
S: t was hard time/, living to make some peas and sme corn. And widow-
womentha to go to plowing and worrying about plowing to make a little
mef -r-J JIfiM tc A r
thing of corn. The niggers. ere all whyjust young. felowsOt# ;
ejue4 4&; wCc fv shed-4olc4 A WV (ir/c 4 v/ib c
anclthey rc -. wiI (c irg. yfihootinv cvrth-r rn, ticm ..ltrc.
I didn't hear it or see it but that is what I was told about how they
cussed and abused to mtwo miles east of Henderson's store.
I: What happened with Wilbuiawd White?
S:Athey freed b niggers. *ey went to work down yonder but they didn't
stay with him, seems like.
I: Who was it that abused them?
S: The old Yankees, the ankee people.
I: Was this during the ar, during the fighting?
CONVET 5A CTM Page 14
S: Right at the close of the war. Right at the close of the war,/the cussing,
dtiftg/l rn WVk N )4e- L,
.h)" ehite ryi to kill him and do so and so. They were trying and
begging not to 50 & kneel down that a way for the dogs, the
hogs .ec0t..... i.t'1
I: Killing his livestock, were they?
S: Yeah, and killing his livestock, just devouring anything he had, chickens
everything. A PKggers walking around behind him begging not to do
Pt a A
that. He had to w4ep them riggers on to work. They had to have something
to eat. And damn him, T old soul, change rions, they cn ge
rations without any of your damned help, plenty of rationswithut any
of your damned help. They would shoot his damned brains out if he didn't
get way from there. The old fellow just had to get out of the way, let
him kill, slaughter.
I: This waslankee cavalry, was it? !c vr/j
S: Yes, yankee cavalry come in, come through freeing the niggers. charging
everything, giving them their freedom / 3 t'l rt P, r t 1k^. ,
I: Were there ever any other Jankee outfits in your part of Alabama? Did they
S: No,A that one company came through.
I: What happened at Elsey?, fe 1 r' /
S: They just had toJguacdiL, to keep people from burning up afd destroy4Qm
ere wasn 't
eveything, just keep them from burning up the bridges. re wasn't
nothing destroyed. The company I was in didn't let nothing get destroyed.
kJ1 h e guards/, afterc-he war got settled and everything, they got through
-- -Ir40c ^O Tr ,. 4, J.c,
going through and/estroying Ahing got alright, get quiet and
peaceable. Everything got alright then.
CONVET 5A CTM Page 15
I: Was that when you came to Florida?
S: Yes, I think it was, when I first came. I just can't recollect I did, I
was living seven miles above whIn I came into Elsey as a guard. o I come
in after the surrender, I come into CrawfiE d County, and then moved. dD.r'.r!
o-. A back (side two of tape)
I: It has been r nkce seeing you today and we certainly appreciate hearing
what you have told us about the old days. And it has been very fine
knowing you, Uncle Bill. Wish you the best, the best of health and
happiness at home. I know you've got it with your family here) and we
are going to remember X a long time. I'm going to bring these pictures
t 'iA A-.
back that we took in a couple weeks. And it has been very nice knowing you.
S: Thank you.A I keep well and hardy. I never had no doctor. / just takSg
my dose of oil and turpntine. Just didn't have one, nothing again doctors,
IJ1 I just didn't have e money to pay a doctor bill. I just had to do the
best I could.
I: And how long have you dne ths?
S: Always, always. My father was sickly and not able to work wasn't
able and it seemed like he'd just ive a little dose of oil of turpentine,
Oilj 0 at X7, q;l V4 10 ae
a dose of caster oil and about five drops of turpentine, as soon as
you could swallow it, and from throwing up, being sick, well that's
what he give me. I didn't have no doctor, only just that oil and
turpentine, is all I had.
I: Well, the fact that you're here a-bhundr@od4-ad f4iv-ye; afterward sure, S ,-4
proves ot. I hope we can hear about your father the next time. And I
hope we can see you soon. G'4, God bless you, Uncle Bill and -\epp
we .en see you soon.
S: Thank you. My father has done passed away. / l ,
I: Well, good-bye Uncle Bill.
S: Thank you. Thank you. Good-bye.
CONVET 5A CTM Page 16
I: This is the account of several interviews with the last survivors to this
day of the men who wore the greypfthe Confederacy. In 1939, the
survivors of 1865 were reported to be about -three h and In 1945,
at the end of the last war, they were estimated at three-hundred, thkree-
hWude d survivors in 1945. That was eighty years after the Armistice/ of
1865. Eighty years is more than the lifetime of most menand veterans
of the war would all have had to be in the neighborhood of oQe-huade'
years at the time. And almost all of the three hundred survivors, would
have been men who served in the latter part of the war or else who were
very young in the war, possibly serving as drummer boys and so on. In
1945, in Hagensville, Missouri, we interviewed Uncle John Hodges.
Uncle John was born in Pike County, Missouri in 1840. He was 21 when the
war broke out in '61. As Uncle John told s, he had joined the Pike County
Guard in 1861, when the war was shaping up. He didn't remember much about/i/
his thinking along the lines of the political problems of 1860 and 18613
'ey were in a somewhat remote rural area and possibly his area was not
too concerned with the political questions. Missouri was a slave state
however 7nd there must have been some military and local defense sentiment
in the area)because they formed this volunteer unit of the Pike County
Guards. As Uncle John put it, he joined the guards, and the guards were
formed, not out of considerationrof large national political problems but
"mainly to get together to keep those Illinois people from across the river
from getting over and stealing our cattle' Uncle John in 1945 was-a-
hu-drCrd and X five years old, Missouri's last surviving veteran, unionn or
confederate. He had served throughout the whole war. His memory was
sharp at certain times of the day. During the rest of the day he was under
medical and nursing care. Also, in the home at Hagensville, the confederate
CONVET 5A CTM Page 17
Veterans and aidows Home, were a number of ladies who were the wives and
daughters of veterans, widows and daughters of veterans, and several of
the ladies were survivors of the evacuation measures ordered by General
Butler along the Missouri border when they evacuated two or three counties
in the neighborhood of Kansas City. These people remembered and told their, l/iC
tales in detail and freshness. Uncle John was the patriarch of the lot,
howeveaqis recollections of the war were very interesting. They were
a number of highlights that'he told but to begin with his own life. His
parents had come to Missouri in 1820 fromaestern Virginia, from the
country near Charlottesville, as it happened and were among that early
group of Virginians that helped colonize Missouri. In 1861, the Pike
County Guards were formed into larger units and saw action from that
year on. As Uncle John told it, they fought all over Missouri and
Arkansas and got sick and tired of the fighting long before the war was
over. One of his strongest recollection was capturing a 4nion soldier.
or sergeant and guarding him along with several other of his fellow
Confederates and they played poker to while away the time. In the game,
he won a twenty dollar bill from the Yankee sergeant and it was the
largest piece of folding money he had ever seen in one piece "-hed
at one time up until then. He was interested in my being in the service
d fired a number of questions about life and conditions in the service
today. He asked me to verify what he had heard/ to the effect that
we were all furnished with warm uniforms and tents and had three meals
served regularly almost without fail. I assured him tat it was the case.
and he was very impressed. He had never in his lifetime travelled as far
as Florida d in e e inf i : f. ; a ,ri cr 'p s
as Florida d was interested in crops And farming conditions there.
He had farmed most of his life. In summing up his recollections, Uncle
John came up with a prize( quotation which probably has been echoed by
CONVET 5A CTM Page 18
all soldiers and veterans of all wars at one time or another. But coming
as he put i 5y)years afterwardwith a twinkle in his eye/, it had particular
piquancy. Uncle John said, "If I had known in 1861, what I was to have
found out later, I never would have joined the Confederate Army2, In
1949, in the spring, we visited Arnold Murray, who lives in a cabin. He
is alive today yet)in 1953 in a cabin near Orangeburg in South Carolina.
Mr. Murray is South Carolina's last surviving veteran. He was born in
1848 near the same cabin in rural, coastal South Carolina. When Arnold
was years old, he was picked up by the South Carolina tate fraft.
And send down to, as a replacement for one of the garrisons, one of the
island garrisons, James IslandI believe/ said on the South Carolina
coast and served for some six or seven months. At the end of that time,
his unit had orders to move up to the front in Virginia,) d while they
were on the march, word came of the surrender. All told, he had fOghtylsf ,
he had participated for some seven or eight months. Mr. Murray's recollections
were also interesting in that he was a man who had spent all of his life-
time in this rural area in South Carolina and had (end of tape)