Benjamin McCulloch was one of twelve children. He was born November 11, 1811 in Rutherford County, Tennessee to Alexander and Frances Fisher Lenoir McCulloch. His father was a graduate of Yale College and served in the United States Army in Indian campaigns and also the War of 1812. The family migrated west from the eastern coastal states. Ben is thought to have first pursued some other businesses and moved around a lot until he came to Texas in 1835 with another brother and Davy Crockett, a neighbor, in Tennessee. Ben planned to meet up with Crockett and then head from Nacogdoches to San Antonio but was held up as he recuperated from a case of the measles, not arriving in San Antonio until after the Battle of the Alamo. He joined Sam Houston and the Texas Army in time for the Runaway Scrape, Houston’s retreat from Santa Anna.
Category Archives: civil war
William Clarke Quantrill was known as a leader of a pro Confederate band of guerrillas during the Civil War. He was born in Ohio in 1837. By the age of sixteen, he had become employed as a school teacher in Ohio. He was from a large family the father of which was reportedly abusive, but who died when Quantrill was still a young adult. Quantrill left home when he was still under twenty and moved to Illinois where he was working in a rail yard. He was involved in an altercation in which a man was killed, with Quantrill claiming self defense, but Quantrill was not charged with the killing due to a lack of evidence. During the rest of the 1850s, Quantrill drifted between jobs and locations winding up in the state of Kansas by the end of the decade. One of his jobs was to capture runaway slaves for bounties, which he was likely doing at the outset of the Civil War. He formed a pro Confederate band of raiders having learned guerrilla tactics in other outfits. His band included Frank and Jesse James, brothers Jim, Bob and Cole Younger, Archie Clement, William T. “Bloody Bill” Anderson and other individuals.
Benajah Harvey Carroll was born in Mississippi to Benajah and Mary Eliza Mallard Carroll in 1843. The family was of Irish descent with B. H.’s great grandfather having been born in Ireland. The Carrolls moved first to Arkansas before settling in Burleson County, Texas near Caldwell in the late 1850s. He was known in his family as a reader and his brother Dr. J. M. Carroll recalled that on the trip to Texas, Benajah would ride a mule while reading a book. He often would get ahead of the wagons and come to a place to stop for the night. When his family arrived, Carroll would have built a large fire and would be sitting beside it, reading.
John Camden West, Jr. was a lawyer, a judge, an educator and an author in Waco, Texas. He was born on April 12, 1834 in Camden, South Carolina from which he and his father got their names. He was 20 years old when he graduated from the University of South Carolina. He had a brother, Charles S. West, who by that time was already practicing law in Austin, Texas, and John joined him there in 1855.
In Houston, Texas on the I-45 access road and North Main outside Historic Hollywood Cemetery is a roadside marker dedicated to Mollie Arline Kirkland Bailey who has to be one of the most colorful Texas women who ever lived.
Governor Coke, 15th Governor of Texas, serving from January 15, 1874 to December 21, 1876. Coke was the husband of Mary Evans Horne of the pioneer McLennan County Horne family in 1852 and was the brother-in-law of Ophelia Jenkins Horne. Coke was born in Virginia and after graduating from William and Mary, he moved to Waco, Texas in 1850 to practice law.
A Soldier’s Prayer
“Taps” have sounded and all is still,
Deep silence reigns, no light no sound
Disturbs the stillness of the camp;
The watchful sentries make their round.
Though night moves on, no sleep for me,
My thoughts are winged, they fly they roam,
Far, far away to those I love,
My wife, my children, and my home.
And here beneath my soldier’s tent,
Though midnight’s solemn hour it be,
There is an eye that sees us all—
My prayer ascends, O God, to Thee;
God of the faithful, of the strong,
God of the weak, God of the brave,
My native land, O God protect
My home, my wife, my children save.
At Thy behest do nations rise;
Let Thy right arm our cause defend,
The right secure, our country bless,
For this, O God, our prayers ascend;
Extend the shadow of thy wing,
Thou who seeist the sparrow’s fall,
And those for whom I live,
My wife, my children, country—all.
And where the din of battle comes,
Be thou, O God, a shield and friend,
Oh, nerve my arm; be Thou our strength
Our homes, our altars to defend,
And swiftly speed the day, O Lord,
When war shall cease and peace shall reign,
When with our loved ones far away,
We’ll all unite at home again.
Joseph Warren Speight (1825-1888)
This poem appeared in the Waco Morning News on 31 Oct 1911. The article said that the poem was written on the back of a piece of discarded wallpaper and had been recently picked up in a Confederate camp.
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