Friday, October 23, 2015

Confederate Soldier buried in Lawrence County

Don't forget about our program Monday nite 7:00 pm at the museum....weird wonderful and unexplainable by Donna Wildes. 

The Civil War researchers have been busy finishing the biographies of soldiers from this county who enlisted or who moved here after the war and are buried in our cemeteries. (It was a monumental task, but they are almost completed. Good Job --F Price, J Brunson, D Scherer, M Neal and J King. 

McCARTER, ALEXANDER H.       1834-1935
2nd Texas Confederate Cavalry, Company D, (Private)

            To say that Alexander McCarter lived a full and interesting life is an understatement.  He was born on August 7, 1834 to Jesse C. and Mary D. McCarter on a farm near Russellville in Lawrence County.  According to the 1850 census, the nine children in the family were all born in Illinois, which would infer they came here about 1833 or earlier.  Alexander married Hattie E. Johnson on December 14, 1858 in Crawford County; she was the daughter of James and Mary Johnson of Crawford County.  After the birth of their son Duane in 1859, they moved to a farm in Texas.

            This is where the story starts to get interesting.  As Alexander told the story, according to his obituary, while he was at his farm in Texas he was “drafted” into Company D of the 2nd Texas Confederate Cavalry, which was also called Morgan’s Regiment.  He said he was unable to prevent the conscription or get released from the Confederate Army by claiming he was a northerner.  However, existing records say he enlisted as a Private.  While stationed in New Orleans with Colonel B. Warren Stone, he was captured by union forces and imprisoned on Ship Island about 12 miles off of the Mississippi coast.  He was later taken to a prison in Elmira, NY where he spent the rest of his time during the Civil War.

            After the close of the war, Alexander returned to his home near Russellville where he spent the rest of his life.  The 1870 census listed him as a farmer with a 10 year old son Duane, living next door to his stepmother America McCarter and six of his siblings.  He married Sarah Catherine Moss on April 14, 1878.  They spent their lives together on the farm near Russellville, about one mile from where he was born.  A daughter Mary Catherine was born in 1880, a daughter Rachel in 1886, a son Augustus in 1889, and a son Phillip in 1891.  The 1920 census shows son Phillip living at home with 83 year old Alexander and his wife 73 year old Sarah.  According to family members, Sarah died in 1925.  As Alexander aged, he lived with Phillip and later with a grandson Ralph.  He began to suffer from foot problems which confined him to his bed much of the time, but he remained well otherwise.  He celebrated his 100th birthday in 1934 with a dinner hosted by his daughter Mrs. Sim Philpott who set up large tables in her yard.  A newspaper article reported 350 people attended.  At that time he told of witnessing the hanging of Elizabeth Reed at Lawrenceville on May 23, 1845.  His grandfather Hamilton had lifted him onto his shoulders so the lad could see.

            Alexander died at home on August 1, 1935.  At the time he was said to have been the oldest citizen in Lawrence County.  He was buried in Price Cemetery near Russellville.  The inscription on his stone reads, “Alexander H McCarter, Co C Texas CAV, CSA, 1835-1935.

(written by D Scherer)

                Ladies, have you made your reservations for Lunch and Learn Nov 4?