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James Michael Barr
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Birth: Dec. 10, 1829
Death: Aug. 29, 1864

Civil War Confederate Soldier. James Michael was the son of Michael Barr and his wife, the former Mary Ann Minnick. He grew to manhood near pastoral Leesville, Lexington County, South Carolina, a community just west of the state capital of Columbia. Farming, as it was for his parents, was his primary livelihood, with supplement income generating from his own store and mill. With fortitude and resilience, the South Carolinian became a prosperous and well respected resident of his district. His standing undoubtedly aided his commission as a major in the "Upper Battalion, 15th Regiment of Infantry", a South Carolina militia command. In 1861, his flourishing life was negated by the outbreak of The War Between the States. With two years of bitter war already part of history, Barr enlisted into the service of his native state on January 17, 1863. As a newly private, he entered the ranks of Company I, 5th Regiment South Carolina Cavalry (his company was formerly Company D, 14th Battalion South Carolina Cavalry). Despite his lowly rank, his comrades continually addressed him as "Major" (from his militia service). The bulk of his initial service was along coastal South Carolina - Pocotaligo, Mount Pleasant, McClellanville and James Island being among the locations. In March of 1864, orders were received for his regiment to move to the warfront in Virginia where the grim visage of war awaited. "I do not want to go to Virginia", he wrote home, "I would rather stay in South Carolina, but if I have to go, I intend to try and go cheerfully." By May of 1864, the 5th South Carolina Cavalry was in Virginia where it's members were in immediate and constant action. Maneuvering, skirmishing and engaging against the enemy became the standard for the South Carolinians. Battle grounds known as Chester Station, Swift Creek, Drewry's Bluff, Charles City Courthouse, Bethesda's Church, Hanover Junction, Haw's Shop and Trevilian Station became part of the regiment's war record. At the latter, on June 11, 1864, "Major" Barr was felled by a gunshot in the region of his right knee. Escaping capture, he was successfully removed to the care of the General Hospital in Charlottesville, Virginia. Although severely wounded, his early attitude was positive. To his wife, he wrote, "I hope to be able to go home soon... I am doing tolerably well." On July 1, 1864, he somberly wrote, "Tomorrow will be three weeks since I have been wounded and I am not much if any better off." Fatefully, his condition gradually worsened until amputation of his injured leg became required. His wife Rebecca, pregnant with their child, made the arduous trip to the death bed of her husband. She found him in a deteriorating and hopeless state. Despite the attention of surgeons and care of his loving wife, thirty-four year old James Michael Barr "died with the bright hope of Heaven" on August 29, 1864. Rebecca brought her husband's remains home for burial in the family cemetery. She gave birth to their daughter on December 6, 1864. Tragically, the newborn died the next day and was buried near her father. 
 
Family links: 
 Spouse:
  Rebecca Ann Dowling Warren (1840 - 1921)*
 
 Children:
  John W Barr (1861 - 1922)*
  Charlie Decania Barr (1863 - 1951)*
  Infant Daughter Barr (1864 - 1864)*
 
*Calculated relationship
 
Note: His wartime letters has been published: Let Us Meet In Heaven: The Civil War Letters of James Michael Barr, 5th South Carolina Cavalry
 
Burial:
Barr Cemetery
Leesville
Lexington County
South Carolina, USA
GPS (lat/lon): 33.94142, -81.52663
 
Created by: Stonewall
Record added: Dec 29, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 63481233
James Michael Barr
Added by: Stonewall
 
James Michael Barr
Added by: Stonewall
 
James Michael Barr
Cemetery Photo
Added by: Stonewall
 
 
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- JJ Coppinger
 Added: Jan. 5, 2011

- Duffie and Kathy
 Added: Jan. 2, 2011

- Justin M
 Added: Jan. 1, 2011
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