Old Family Documents

These pages will be used to display some of the miscellaneous interesting things I've run across in looking into the family history. There are old clippings, letters, stories, and other material that help show that the people in our past were real folks and not just names and dates.


He Was Last Of The County's Confederate Veterans

Special to the Commercial Appeal

     BRUCE, Miss., Jan. 1 [1943]-- Funeral services for Reuben R. Morgan, last Confederate veteran in Calhoun County were held Thursday from the Poplar Springs Baptist Church with the Rev. L. F. Dorroh officiating. Mr. Morgan was 95.
     He died Wednesday at the home of his daughter, Mrs. Emma Murphree, in Vardaman, Miss., of the infirmities of old age.
     A native of Lafayette County, Miss., Mr. Morgan came to the Poplar Springs community 90 years ago with his parents. He spent all his life there except for four years in the confederate Army, during which he took part in the Battles of Shiloh and Corinth.
     He is survived by two sons, Alcie and Hosea Morgan of Reid, Miss., and two daughters, Mrs. Murphree and Mrs. Etta Brown of Vardaman.

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Reuben R. Morgan was the son of John Morgan. John Morgan ran away from home in North Carolina when he was 14 and joined a wagon train which took him to Alabama. He worked there for a ferryboat operator and married the daughter, Adeline Todd. He served in the Second Seminole Indian War and received a land grant for land in Mississippi as a result of that.

Here are two affidavits filed by John Morgan's widow, Adeline Todd Morgan, as part of her application for a pension based on John Morgan's service in the Second Seminole Indian War. After several other affidavits were filed, the pension was approved and she began receiving $8 per month on 27 July 1892. This continued until her death. A final record, dated 31 Mar 1900, stated that the final payment was made on 4 May 1898 and the pensioner had been dropped because of her death.


State of Mississippi
County of Calhoun

In the matter of claim of Adeline Morgan, wid. of John Morgan, Capt. Martin's Co., Ala. Vols.

Personally came before me, a Justice of the Peace in and for aforesaid County and State, Mrs. Adaline Morgan, aged 71 years, residing at and having her Post Office address at Reid, Calhoun Co., Miss, a person of lawful age, who, being duly sworn, declare in relation to the aforesaid case as follows:
Said soldier at time of enlistment was 25 years of age, height 5 ft & 8 inches, complexion fair, Hair black, eyes light blue, birth place Cumberland County, North Carolina, and his occupation was that of a farmer. He received a land warrant but cant tell the number. At time he received land warrant was living in Lafayette Co. but cant now tell who his attorney was but his attorney lived at Oxford, Lafayette Co. Miss. He lived in Lafayette Co. Miss. from 1841 to 1855, but in 1855 he removed to Calhoun Co. Miss. Where he lived to his death, never has served in military or naval service other than the service claimed for and [unintellibible] show his signature to note histo appended date enlistment in Feby 1835 & discharged at Mobile Ala in May 1835.
Signed by Adaline Morgan's mark, witnessed by W. H. Hannaford and C. M. Thomas.

[Note: John Morgan actually served from Feb 1836 to May 1836. The error in dates in the above affadavit delayed Adaline's application until the dates were corrected.]


State of Mississippi
County of Calhoun

In the matter of claim of Adaline Morgan, wid. of John Morgan, Martin's Co., Ala. Vols.

Personally came before me [D.R. Patterson], a Justice of the Peace in and for aforesaid County and State, W.G. Hardin, aged 70 years, and Evaline Potteet, aged 64 years, whose Post office address is Reid, Calhoun Co., Miss., who, being duly sworn, declare in relation to the aforesaid case as follows:
They were present at the marriage of Adaline Morgan (nee Adaline Todd) and John Morgan late a soldier in the Indian War and they were married by Benj. Stribling a Justice of the Peace. They were married in 1837 in Pickens County Ala. Affiants saw them married and heard the ceremony performed and also know of death of John Morgan who died about 26th Nov 1882 we were present at his burial and saw his body interred. Affiants further state that they have lived near Mrs. Adaline Morgtan since the death of her husband and know she has not remarried since her husband's death also know both parties before thieir marriage and know neither of them had previously married. We further declare that we have no interest in said case and are not concerned in its prosecution.
Witnessed by A. Taylor and N.J. Thomas. Signed by W.G. Hardin and a mark by Evaline Pottett.

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Reuben Morgan (North Carolina) Letter to John Morgan (Mississippi), 1860

The following letter was written in 1860 by Reuben Morgan in Harnett Co., NC, to his brother John Morgan in Calhoun Co., MS.

John Morgan ran away from his home in Harnett Co., NC, when he was 14 and followed a wagon train to Alabama. He later moved to Lafayette Co., MS, and finally to Calhoun Co., MS, where he lived until his death in 1882. One of John's sons was named Reuben Reese Morgan after his brothers Reuben and Reese.

Harnett County, Neals Creek

     Dear Brother. I again write you a few lines to let you know we are all living yet and are all [unintelligible] you [unintelligible] may find you all enjoying the same health. I received your letter dated august 25th '60 which pleased me very much to hear from you once more. I'll tell you the disease that was thought to have been the cause of samuel Stepenson death the dispepisy. Family connections are all well as far as I know at present. Crops is sorry in this county [unintelligible]. I'll tell you the price of provisions in this county. Corn is worth from 80 cents to $100 cents per bushel. Wheat is worth $125 cents per bushel. Bacon is worth 15 cents per pound & portk 10 cents per pound. I haven't anything of much interest [unintelligible] to you at present. Neals creek church is building a new church near my house on the road. I'll tell you where I live perhaps you would not know. I am living where Grandfather used to live. It is about two hundred yhards from my house. It is a very large house [unintelligible] feet long and 40 wide. Mother wishes you to remember her love to you and family. I'll wind up my [unintelligible]. Remember my love to you and family for my hand is chily for it is very cold today. When this you read remember me though many miles apart we be {unintelligible]. I want you to give me all the [interes]ting news you can [unintelligible].

your affectionate Brother until death. Write. Write without delay.

          Reubin Morgan
          To John Morgan

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Gilla Hasseltine Hardin Murphree's ("Mama") Murphree) obituary in the Calhoun County weekly newspaper,
the) Monitor-Herald. It was written by Rev. Leslie E. Roane.

The house sits by the side of the road. The same footsteps have been resounding through its walls for more than half a century. In 1886 it was in the making. The sound of the axe, in the hand of the young owner, went ringing through the forest of tall pine trees which was almost unbroken for many miles in every direction. Four years before, he had married Tina Hardin, when he was only 19, she 17. Their home had been elsewhere, but now they had moved into the new house where they were to live for fifty years and more--and--but wait--.

The sighing breeze resounded through the tree-tops. A mother was singing. No lullaby this time, but her child had heard that many a time. "Jesus Lover of My Soul, Let Me to Thy Bosom Fly". The reader is familiar with the song.

The house done, he wends his way down the incline, the traces jingling, the sun rising in purple glory over the eastern hills, to work in the corn fields, for the mother and their babies must be fed. Eleven were born to them, nine living now. Throughout the years he was to continue in this exalted work, her keeping the house. Second Saturdays saw no work after dinner, for the mules hitched to the wagon, carried all the family down the incline and over the sandy road to Meridian Church where "Uncle Jeff" was a deacon--and one of the best. "Aunt Tina", too, had her place at church and would be missed when she failed to go. While very young she had heard the faithful preachers' warning from God's word, "Ye must be born again", and had heeded the invitation to come to Christ. Her future life was to run parallel with the Bible teachings.

The breathing was a struggle. "Aunt Tina" was at the door of death. The aged husband requested that prayer be had beside the bed. The noble son-in-law preacher, Rev. J. H. McGregor requested the writer to lead. The silence, when we knelt, was broken only by the heavier breathing of her who so soon was to pass away. Used to many experiences in several states, the writer had met nothing like this. Could these quiet ones who knelt there have known--but they didn't--they would have not been surprised at his earnest pleadings, almost a whisper. He had spent hours the night before in tearful agonies with the Lord asking Him to bless every home in Calhoun County, where his work is.

The old house sits by the side of the road. The tinkle of the cowbell would be heard on the morning air. "Uncle Jeff" walks through the old hall as in days of yore--but alone. The old place where the romping children used to be a familiar sound, and where visitors were always welcomed and made so pleasant will see "Aunt Tina" on earth no more. The full moon, shining through ethereal realms high up in the heavens sends its velvety beams to earth to light it up in splendor. At one o'clock Saturday morning the angel of the Lord came down, unseen, unbidden, and carried the lovely spirit to the land of the angels. Well done--Aunt Tina--well done. We will all miss you and look through memory's veil at your beautiful life--and follow you soon.

In the old church-yard at Rocky Mount, where so many lie sleeping the last long sleep; the choir sang sweetly Sunday, "Nearer, My God, To Thee" as we lowered her body into the open grave. A mound of fresh earth is there--that is true. many friends and relatives are sorrowing--that is true, too. But a greater truth, and a sweet one, "Aunt Tina" sings 'The grand new song" with the angel band in the heavenly choir.

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