May 26, 1914
Soldiers, Some of Whom Have Passed Away – Part 4
W. SIMPSON—Began service Oct. 10, 1862, joining Co. E, Fourth South Carolina
Cavalry, Butler’s brigade, Hampton’s division. Mr. Simpson was but a boy of 16 years of age,
only a boy in years, but after serving till the close he had experience that
few men have at an advanced age. He was
seriously wounded at the battle of ____ Station, next at the battle of Burgess
Mill, where Preston Hampton lost his life.
He and Mr. Simpson were near each other when young Hampton was
dangerously wounded, living only thirty minutes after the fatal shot. His father, Gen. Wade Hampton, was on the
right of the line at the time. A courier
dashed to him with the news “your son is dying.” The father hurried to the scene where he
found his son gasping for breath, raised him up in his arms, and with tears streaming
down his face, repeated again and again “Farewell my darling boy.” The old general pressed his son to his bosom
till he saw that life was extinct, then he gently laid him down and ordered the
litter bearers to carry the body back to the rear at the same time Mr. Simpson
was also taken to the rear. After
recovering from his wounds Mr. Simpson went to Danville, Va., from there home
where he was placed in command of the provost guard on Tugaloo
river where he relieved Dr. Russell who was needed so badly at Townville. Mr. Simpson remained with this guard until
the close of the war.
M. W. HALL—Entered the service in the first of 1862 with Co. C, Sixth South
Carolina Cavalry. Fought in many
battles. Was at Greensboro when
surrendered, but like the other old heroes says in a commanding tone, “don’t
you put it down that I surrendered. I
came home because Mr. Davis went home.”
Mr. Hall’s narrative of a skirmish early one morning with a negro
brigade is both exciting and laughable.
Then of another skirmish where he had to flee for his life and in his
race he lost both shoes and on the same evening a heavy snow came on and he
marched miles without foot covering.
Then the old soldier told of his home-coming: how his appearance was so
pitiful that his mother fainted when he entered the home.
F. McCLESKY of Iva—At the
age of 16 joined Co. B, First South Carolina Rifles, with Capt. Bramlett in command.
Most of the time was on picket duty between Charleston and
Savannah. Mr. McClesky
has a descriptive list which is very instructive in regard to the details of
war. Were you to read this descriptive
list you would think soldiering was a profitable occupation for it gives
minutely the salary with all the demands of a soldier in regular duty. “But,” said Mr. McClesky,
“there is nothing to that piece of paper.
I worked for nothing because of the duty that I felt in my heart I owed
to my country.” Yet that descriptive
list described the man and told him he would be paid for his service, but today
that debt is still unpaid.
F. BURDETT of Iva—Began service in 1862 joining Co.
F, 24th Regiment with Capt. Hill in command. Says there is nothing to say of his fighting
only he was with others. Was paroled at
Greensboro. Many of his company stole a
march on the Yankees, made their escape without a parole. At the time he and two or three others were
guarding a carload of corn and before they knew it their company had left for
home. One of his friends rode his horse
home which he delivered to him on his return.
Mr. Burdett walked most of the way from Greensboro and says his feet were
so sore he could hardly stand it. When
asked if he had been wounded in the war, he gave a hearty laugh and replied
“nothing but scratches. I was always in
a run one way or the other, after a Yankee or running from one.” His three years of service were full of a
great experience and it is a great treat to his friends to hear him talk of it.
T. McCOULLOUGH of Iva—Entered
with the South Carolina regulars, Co. A.
Had a wonderful experience with the soldiers doing duty with the
ambulances and hospitals. His talk on
the sufferings of the wounded and dying should be given for the benefit of the
young American who has a hankering for war.
Mr. McCoullough’s description of the Palmetto
floating battery off Charleston means a great deal. This battery was made of the trunks of
Palmettos locked together making a great flat which was loaded with guns. This floating battery did fine service in
protecting the forts. Mr. McCoullough gives some facts that made war appear still
more hideous. One incident, on
Sullivan’s Island where four men were shot for deserting. Three of the number were brothers, but the
worst came two days later. The wives of
two of the men came with boxes of provisions and were told their husbands had
been shot for deserting. Mr. McCoullough says the grandest sight he witnessed during the
war was the firing of salutes commemorating the battle of Secessionville
when thousands of 12 pound balls were playing upon the waters at one time.
A. F. HANKS of Iva—Volunteered at the age of 15, joining the First S. C.
Militia with D.R.Duncan, captain and Roberts,
colonel. Later with Co. H, First S. C.
troops. Mr. Hanks says that he spent
more time marching than anything else.
Says war means no rest and no pay, only the reward coming from duty. He feels that war is both a bad place and a
sad place, nothing to be learned from it and less to be gained.
[Transcribed by Sharon Strout]