Friday, August 28, 2015

Teachers in Russell County, New Garden District, 1878-1883

Chancery Court Case 1886-17 was a case against John G. Hurt, then Treasurer of Russell County. The case had to do with funds received and paid out to teachers in the county. The case contains a detailed listing of teachers in each school district and the amount paid to each. Here is the list for New Garden District, along with which years each teacher received payments. There were approximately 1,600 students in this district each year.
New Garden District 1878 1879 1880 1881 1882 1883
Artrip, Jas. H. x
Ball, Beverly F. xx
Ball, Jas. F. xx
Ball, Virginia F. (Miss)xxx
Boyd, E. A. xxx
Cate, Susan (colored)xx
Clark, C. W.x
Clark, Floydx
Clark, Mary F. (Miss)x
Clark, Montraville xxx
Clark, William F.xx
Combs, Simeon F. xx
Counts, S [L?]. B. xx
Ferrell, Samuel R.x
Fletcher, Silas H. xxxx
Gillespie, Wm L. xxxxx
Griffith, John F. xxxx
Horne, A. F. (Prof.)xx
Hurt, James C. xx
Hutton, Alson xx
Jackson, C. W. xxx
Jackson, M. P.x
Johnson, Charles W. x
Kindrick, E. A.x
Kendrick, Joseph B. (Rev.)xxxxx
Kindrick, John Thad xxxx
Kindrick, Tobias J. xx
Lee, Robert R. xxxxxx
Mason, H. B. (Rev.)xx
Musick, Elexious K.x
Musick, Granville G. xxx
Musick, Joseph K xxxxxx
Musick, Kernan xxx
Musick, Major A. xxx
Musick, Ransom x
Perkins, Marshal xxx
Shoemaker, A. D. xxxx
Smith, Floydxx
Starnes, Martha J. [Josie] (Miss)xxx
Starns, Mary E. xx
Thompson, Major xxxx
Thompson, Sparell H. xxx
Trent, Fannie (Mrs.)x
Trent, William (Colored)xx
Whitt, Angie (Miss)xx
Wysor, Beverly J. xxxxx
Wysor, John W.x
The listing for the other districts will appear in future posts.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

The World War II Letters of Billy J. Campbell, Letter 2

[Letter from Ethel Campbell to her son, Billy. Circa April 5, 1945.]

Susie is looking for you to come.


Dear Billy:

Here the week is all most gone and I haven't written you. I have been so busy. The children go to school one hour earlier so I dont have time to write morning before they leave. Anderson has been here the last two days for dinner, he has been plowing, and I cant do very much when I have dinner to get. Dad is here to-day turning out the cattle. He and the children when to the show last night - "Wing and a Prayer".

I hear Marvin is at home. Dad said he passed him the other day and hollered to him, but he had never to to talk to him.

We are looking for you home in a few days. Hope we get a letter to-day telling us when you can come.

Guess I better stop now I am trying to paint the bedroom down stairs to day.

Lots of love,

Ham said to tell you not to forget Friday the 13th. He is 6 yr. old.

Friday, August 7, 2015

A Boston Boy Fights for the Confederacy

Luther Hart Clapp was born in Easthampton, Massachusetts on Christmas Eve, 1839. His father, Luther Clapp, was at various times a traveling agent, livery worker, agent for a textile mill, and thread dealer.

According to his grand daughter Naoma Dickenson, who wrote an essay about Luther Hart Clapp in 1925, Luther had an older sister who would visit Virginia and return with "wonderful stories." He had heard speakers exhorting the Union cause, but had doubts. He thought long and hard about the issues. Eventually Luther's convictions grew, and, in 1861, he headed south to Dixie.

His grand daughter writes:
"He had not gone far beyond the border when he was spotted and arrested for a Northern spy and roughly handled, but before long made his escape, only to be rearrested for the same offense. Then he again escaped, only to be arrested the third time and ordered court-martialed. A skirmish released him upon this occasion By this time he was getting farther into the South, where his identity as a Northerner became more and more acute, and for the first year he did nothing but scout around and try to make the boys in gray understand he was one of them. He found this a tedious task, for he was constantly being arrested as a spy, but again and again Providence intervened. Finally, the time came when he was accepted into the ranks of our army and allowed the privilege of helping to defend the cause he believed to be right."
Reaching Russell County by 1861, he enlisted in the first unit recruited in the area, Company C of the 37th Virginia Infantry. He spent early 1862 in the hospital with rheumatism, most likely acute rheumatic fever related to the strep throat virus. Recovering, he rejoined his unit and, in September of 1862, requested a transfer to the 10th Kentucky Cavalry. The transfer was approved, but apparently he never joined the 10th Kentucky. Instead, he joined the 16th Virginia Cavalry, another unit with Russell County men. He was with this unit when it was one of the first Southern regiments to cross into the North during the Gettysburg Campaign. He participated in the cavalry battle on the third day of the Gettysburg battle.

He was still with the unit when it was one of the last regiments to cross back into the South two weeks later. He participated in a skirmish at Jones Cross Roads, Maryland on July 10, 1863. In a letter to the editor of the Abingdon Virginian, Lieutenant Bernard H. Reynolds wrote:
"During the fight at Jones' X Roads, Md., on the 10th of this month, Lieut. H. S. Fickle and privates L. H. Clapp, William Campbell and James M. Dills, of Co. A, and Jack Myers of Co. F, flanked a stone fence, behind which lay 60 men belonging to the 16th Maine infantry, and after about five minutes hard fighting, hand to hand, but not until they had captured about 40 of the Yankees and killed and wounded the balance. Just as they were taking off the prisoners, a Regt. came out of the woods, and they were obliged to let most of the Yankees loose. They brought out six prisoners and only had one man wounded, viz: William Campbell shot through the body, but is getting well. Clapp knocked one Yankee down with his gun, and while he, Clapp, had his knees on his breast, fired five shots, four with his pistol and one with his gun. James Dills shot a Lieut. as also did Clapp. By a Baltimore paper received this morning by a flag of truce, the Yankees reported a loss of 23 killed and wounded, and six prisoners."
In September of 1863 he was paid by the Confederate government for carrying the mail from Staunton, VA to Crab Bottom, in Highland County, Virginia. He again rejoined his unit and on November 12, 1864 he was wounded in a skirmish near Cedarville, VA. This ends his official Compiled Service Record. According to his 1880 Disability Pension Application:
"...on the 12th day of November 1864 he received a wound from the enemy in a battle near Cederville, Va. Said would was inflicted by a pistol ball shot by the enemy, said ball entered the front part of the right shoulder passing through the shoulder and lodging under the right shoulder blade. [He states t]hat the collar bone on the right side was broken and several pieces of bone came from said wound."
His friend and comrade George W. Seacatt helped to carry him off the field of battle.

His disability application was approved and he was awarded $60.

While recuperating at home from his wound, he married Elizabeth Sykes, the daughter of Levi and Catherine Sykes. They immediate had a child, Willie T. In 1870 they were living in Lawrence County, Kentucky, where Luther was working as a "nurseryman." By 1878 he was back in Russell County, working as a druggist, with four additional children.

Eventually Clapp moved to Lee County, where he pursued the same occupation. His wife Elizabeth died in 1894, and he remarried a decade later to Bertha Cox.

Luther Hart Clapp died on April 19, 1919 in Lee County, Virginia.

As an 8-year-old girl, Naoma Dickenson rode in the funeral procession for Luther Hart Clapp. She reported:
"A goodly number of old veterans in the funeral cortege were talking about happenings of the War between the States, as is their custom when together, and from them I heard this expression about my hero, which ran like this: 'There were many plucky soldiers among our boys. One fellow in our regiment was badly shot while bearing the flag, but he held on calling for help. Don't let the flag fall! Don't let it fall boys! It swayed to and fro, but did not fall. He held on with death-like grip until a soldier released it, then he himself went down.'"
She added:
"We found inclosed with his will a little paper, neatly folded, that bore these lines: 'To my children: No land in all the world is half so dear to me as where I found your mother, wooed and won her, and there buil[t] our nest.'"