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Weary Clyburn
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Birth: 1841
Lancaster County
South Carolina, USA
Death: Mar. 30, 1930
Union County
North Carolina, USA

Weary (aka "Wary", "Worry", etc.) lists his father as Phillip Blair on a Union County marriage license in December 1867. His bride was Viney Moore, d/o of Edman Horne. They were married Dec. 21, 1867. Her name is enumerated as "Rinah" on the 1870 Union County, NC census in the New Salem Twp. - they are shown with one child, John B., age 2. He would later marry again to Eliza (Liza) Brown per family history (& census records). She was the daughter of George & Kitty McDonald Brown (which is learned later on her marriage record to Ambrose Robinson in Union County, NC on 11-3-1935).

JoAnn Ellis at the Lancaster Co., SC library shared some census research done on Weary: He is found with a wife listed as "Lou" in the 1900 Lancaster Co. census, Flat Creek Twp. One son is listed, age 12, named "At". A cousin, Alice Sowell, age 16, is also shown living with them. By 1910, Ellis finds him as "Weir" in Chesterfield Co., SC, Old Store Twp; his age given as 51; wife Liza (age 27) and children: Mandy (age 11), Paul (age 6), Lee (age 4) and Henry (age 4). On this census Weary answers that he has been married twice and that he and Liza have been married for 3 years. Liza answers that she has given birth to 4 children and that 4 are living. Weary lists his occupation as a 'painter' doing 'odd jobs'. Ellis again finds him in the same state, county & township (twp) for 1920. Listed as "Werry" (age 72) and wife Eliza (40) with the same four children. NOTE: Weary will not appear in the 1930 census as the official date for it was April 1, 1930 and Weary had died a couple of days before.

Weary was known for his fiddle playing and his enthusiastic approach to life. Raised with his master's son, Thomas F. (Frank) Clyburn, Weary went to war with Frank, becoming his bodyguard and servant. Frank was a Captain with the 12th SC, Co. E. Weary applied for a pension for his service in the War Between the States on February 1, 1926. He was one of the first persons of color to receive a Confederate pension in Union County, NC. The oral history he shared with the Union County pension board tells us he was present at the training camp in Columbia [SC] and also with the company at Charleston, Morris Island, Page's Point and Hilton Head "and other places throughout the war; that at Hilton Head, while under fire of the enemy he carried his master out of the field of fire on his shoulder; that he performed personal services for Robert E. Lee; that he has been a resident of this county [Union County, NC] for four years; that he is eighty-five (85) years old; has a wife and foolish boy to support..." (the family shared that the 'foolish boy' was named Lee) Attorney, J. P. Richards of Lancaster, SC submitted an affidavit dated January 22, 1926 for Weary's pension application that verified that "Worry D. Clyburn seved [served] in the Confederate Army from the years 1863- to 1865, along with Capt. Frank Clyburn of the 12th regiment of the South Carolina volunteers;...he is eligible for pension if he lived in this state. However, as he lives in the state of North Carolina, I sincerely recommend him for pension and any other possible aid obtainable in that state."

Weary went on Confederate Reunion trips from Monroe, NC. One such trip written about in the Monroe Enquirer, May 3, 1928, p. 1 shared who was going: "Two coaches--sleeping and special--will be available for the 85 Monroe and Union county citizens who will make the trip to Little Rock [Arkansas]. Twenty-one veterans have given Adjutant [W.C.] Heath their make the trip."
All 21 names are listed in this article, with the last one being "and Weary Clyburn, colored."

Per his notice of death in The Monroe Journal, Tuesday, April 1, 1930 (page 1), Weary was "a fiddle player and by reason of his picturesque appearance and his fiddling around the hotels he always brought back some cash from the reunions. He was a member of Camp Walkup. He was around ninety years of age and died Sunday". The article, a death notice shared with another Confederate Pensioner of Color, Aaron Perry, began with: "Uncle Weary Clyburn, long a figure here and at Confederate reunions, was buried yesterday wrapped in the Confederate uniform of gray."

His grave was marked in the summer of 2008 by the SCV, James Miller Camp 2116.


An article by Martha Waggoner, Associated Press, ran October 17, 2014 before Weary's daughter's ashes were interred at her father's grave on Oct. 18th. Doing a search online should help you find this article.

Some of the same information from the 10-17-2014 article can be found in his daughter's memorial, you may wish to click on her link found below, Mattie Clyburn Rice.

Note: From the 2014 article it is learned about a state auditor's letter to the widow of Weary, denying her benefits. It is not surprising, so few former slaves lived long enough to even see the pensions that they did receive and they were classified as "type B", very similar to the widows of soldiers; so the state probably would not want to extend the pension to a widow of a former slave.

This biography was revised Oct. 30, 2014. -pmp
Family links: 
  Manda Clyburn Alsobrooks (1903 - 1929)*
  Paul Clyburn (1907 - 1984)*
  Mattie Clyburn Rice (1922 - 2014)*
*Calculated relationship
Note: Death Certificate lists "Methodist Cemetery", another name given to the old, original burial grounds which are now part of Hillcrest City Cemetery.
Hillcrest Cemetery
Union County
North Carolina, USA
Maintained by: Genealogy Librarian
Originally Created by: Patricia Poland
Record added: Oct 28, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 60770561
Weary Clyburn
Added by: Patricia Poland
Weary Clyburn
Added by: Josh Myers
Weary Clyburn
Added by: SixDogTeam
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- Patricia
 Added: Dec. 21, 2016

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- Carolyn Graham - Lopez
 Added: Jun. 7, 2015
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