|Birth: ||Feb. 5, 1844|
|Death: ||Feb. 14, 1935|
Newspaper article "in his own words"
As you wish a sketch of our lives, I'll do the best I can. I believe that I am a better farmer than a writer. My wife was born in Fort Gaines, GA, November 20, 1843. I saw the light first in Sevier Co, AR 5 Feb 1844. When (I was) 5 years old, my father moved to Walker Co, TX I was raised a farmer's boy and at 17 years, in 1861 I joined the C.S.A. under J.S. Cleveland of Polk County. I enlisted with Company H, Fifth Texas Regiment, Infantry, Hood's Brigade, Fields Division, Longstreet's Corps Army of North Virginia, R. E. Lee General Commander.
Was in several hard battles, slightly wounded in second battle of Manassas, Boonesboro, Maryland, badly wounded at Sharpsburg Maryland. It was then that I returned home on furlough and was married. Returned to my Company in April 1863. Was in the battle of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. Was transferred to Bragg's Army and participated in battle of Chickamanga, PA three days; spent several months on Missonary Ridge. I was detached from Bragg's Army and went up Gunn River where we captured all of Burnside's commissary, driving him back to Knoxville, nearly starving his men to death. We finally had to leave him as Bragg fell back leaving our rear exposed.
We spent the winter at Bulls Gap, but in April went back to Virginiai rejoining Lee at Wilderness May 6, never coming to a halt. Was slightly wounded; unable for duty for two weeks. Returned to command and was wounded the fourth time on August 16, 1864 while fighting Calvary in that engagement. The Fifth Texas Regiment was attached to Wade Hampton's command. I was unable to serve for six months, but was with the company most of the time. This fourth wound was in my neck, breaking my under jaw bone, passing out of the back of the neck. When Lee fell back April 2, I took my place and stayed with it until Lee said "stack arms" at Appomattox and then walked 100 miles toward home.
I will go back a little and tell of an incident that happened as we got into line at the Wilderness fight. The sun was just rising and we had made double quick time six miles without rest. We were traveling the plank road at right face. Finding Genrals Lee and Longstreet and Fields on their horses, standing on the side of the road. The command was given to "right into line". Just as company H got into line, a rabbit ran through our lines. Bill Jones, a 17 year old boy, said 'Here's Lee, Longstreet and the rabbit, go to it cottontail. I would like to go in that direction myself, but can't.'
A young lady from Houston sent five silver stars and four gold ones to be given to the most meritorious soldiers of Hood's Texas Brigade. I received one from the hands of Louis T. Wigfall, then a state senator. From that time on I resolved to be a better citizen, a better soldier and a better Christian.
Mrs. Hemphill and I are in our 70th year, hail and hearty. We have always farmed, but my wife still makes me gather in the stove wood"
Note: The rest of the article is missing as the papers are old and brittle.
In Maarch 2007 this article was sent to me by Joe Burns and I have copied it as written. Thanks Joe!!!
James Byrd Hemphill (1815 - 1879)
Emily Victoria Jernigan Hemphill (1843 - 1921)*
Sanford Walter Hemphill (1866 - 1919)*
Emma A. Steadmunn (1869 - 1961)*
Andrew Guy Hemphill (1878 - 1951)*
William Leonadas Hemphill (1841 - 1929)*
Jacob Hemphill (1844 - 1935)
Nancy Jane Hemphill Tally (1848 - 1927)*
North Belton Cemetery
Plot: #542 Old Section
Created by: Betty Lang Walker
Record added: Aug 19, 2012
Find A Grave Memorial# 95597509