52 Ancestors #9 Howell Joel “Hobby” Wedgeworth

52ancestors-2015

This challenge is set forth by No Story Too Small, and this week’s theme is “Close to home.”

You can’t get more close to home than this story. I live just south of Franklin, TN and my great aunt’s father was captured in Franklin during the Civil War, nearly in my backyard.

wedgeworth howell joel hobby and martha morrow, par of ora wedgeworth culpepperHowell Joel “Hobby” Wedgeworth was born Nov. 26, 1837 in Greene County, Alabama to Rev. Joel Walker Wedgeworth and Margaret Jane Smith. In 1852, he married Elvira Hughens and had one daughter Margaret Jane in 1858. Sadly, his wife died in 1860. I don’t know the fate of¬†his little girl, as he went off to fight in the Civil War as a bachelor.

During the war, Hobby served with 5th Mississippi Regiment Co K as a musician. He was wounded in December of 1862, but kept serving. On November 30, 1864, he was captured at the Battle of Franklin, TN and sent to Louisville, KY to military prison, then to Camp Douglas in Chicago. After the war ended, he was released on June 18, 1865. You can read more about the Franklin battle HERE.

It was told by his granddaughter that Rev. Joel Wedgeworth went to a designated meeting place to pick up his son after the war and didn’t even recognize him because he was so thin and worn.

When Hobby returned from the war, he immediately married Martha Morrow (pictured with Hobby) in 1865 and had eight children, the youngest being Ora Wedgeworth who married my great grandpa’s brother, Floyd Culpepper.

Hobby died Jan. 5, 1907 in Neshoba County, Mississippi at the age of 69. He is buried with his wife at Hester Cemetery in Neshoba.

IMG_20141115_150317159_HDRI attended the 150th anniversary muster of the Battle of Franklin November 2014 and witnessed the re-enactment as well as a memorial salute performed in the Confederate cemetery located at the site.IMG_20141115_150047367

 

 

On This Day in 1864

carrie mcgavock portrait

Yesterday, November 29, 1864, Carrie McGavock sat on the front porch of her Tennessee home, the Carnton Plantation, enjoying a warm afternoon of Indian summer. Suddenly, she witnessed thousands of Confederate troops marching across her 1400 acres, heading directly toward her home. The troops told her a battle was coming and asked if they could use her house as a hospital, and by nightfall, surgeons and medics had arrived and started moving her furniture against the walls to make way for the injured. They took the doors off her outbuildings to be used as cots and operating tables. I can only imagine how nervous she felt, dreading the unknown that was to come.

 

 

carnton house

 

 

 

 

 

 

On This Day, November 30, 1864

back of Carnton HouseAt 3:30 p.m. the five-hour battle began. Cannon fire shook the house. Bullets drilled holes into the walls of the outbuildings. By the time night fell and the battle was over, hundreds of wounded, bleeding, and dying men had been carried into her home and placed throughout the rooms, in the hallways, on the staircase. Four dead generals lay covered on this back porch. 150 soldiers died in her home that night. The wooden floors are still stained with their blood. The outbuildings still show the bullet holes.

 

The next morning, December 1, 1864

cemetery 1At the first light of dawn, the 750 residents of Franklin, TN began tending the nearly 10,000 Union and Confederate soldiers lying all over McGavock’s property, some dead, some wounded, moaning and crying out for help. Forty-four private homes in Franklin were converted into temporary hospitals.

By 1866, the McGavock’s had seen numerous bodies that had been buried in shallow graves all over the battlefield become unearthed by the elements and the woodland animals. The McGavocks donated two acres of their land to be used as a Confederate Cemetery and properly re-interred the soldiers. Carrie’s husband, John McGavock, and the townspeople cataloged and buried 1500 Confederate soldiers, 500 of whom they could not identify. The Union soldiers were moved to the National Cemetery in Murfreesboro, TN.

 

 

mcgavock confererate cemeteryCarrie McGavock cared for the Confederate cemetery until her death in 1905, at which time it was turned over to the United Daughters of the Confederacy.