Pvt. Thomas J. Grogan

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Mary Elizabeth Lummus Grogan and Thomas Jefferson Grogan

---------------------------------------------------------------Co. B, Milton Guards

Grogan, Thomas J. - (Thomas Jefferson Grogan) Pvt. 5/1/1862. Absent without leave August 1-11/4/1864. No later record.
Bloomburg, Texas Newspaper, 1929

Only Survivor of Stonewall Jackson’s Funeral Escort

Thomas Jefferson Grogan born at Forsythe, GA. On Oct. 1, 1842, the son of John and Lucy Holcomb Grogan was one of the 186 men enrolled in Capt. McClusky’s company of the Second Georgia Regiment and brigade which reached Virginia January 25, 1862. Grogan’s first detail of duty was to help guard Yankee prisoners for 60 days. He was later in the 38th Georgia Regiment and in General John Gordon’s Brigade, Jackson’s Division and saw the hot seven days fight in front of Richmond, also at Fredericksburg.

?? hunting below Richmond to guard a dead Yank with a brand new pair of shoes on his feet. Grogan decided to appropriate them but in untying the shoes, the soldiers foot came off at the ankle, so the shoes were left behind. Earlier, near Gordonville, he and his brother Wash Grogan strayed from their line and spent the night in a graveyard, rejoining their company the next day. General Gordon told his men at Fredricksburg if any were afraid he'’d give them a pass to the rear.

Gordon’'s Brigade was with Jackson’s Army in the famous Shenandoah Valley campaign and at Chancellorsville where Jackson received his death wound. Fired upon by an outpost of the 21st North Carolina, not knowing their own General was out reconnoitering. General Jackson’s wounded arm was amputated and later death ensued. The escort chosen to accompany the body marched with the hearse to Richmond, then to Lynchburg and on to Lexington where the renowned Southern General who had whipped so many Northern Armies by his rapid movements, was laid to rest. As far as he knows, Mr. Grogan is the last survivor of his company, and doubtless the only member of the Stonewall Jackson funeral escort.

Also he is the only survivor of his father’s children, of which there were five brothers and four sisters to reach majority. The elder Grogan died May 14, 1874; Thomas J. Grogan cared for his mother for 10 years and sang her for her as she passed away, “Oh, Come Angel Band.” He and two brothers took her body 150 miles by wagon to Hopewell Church in Milton Co., GA. And tenderly laid her by their father. Mr. Grogan was married to Miss Mary Lummas, of Forsyth County, Georgia, October 12, 1866. He had a long spell of fever six months before Lee’s surrender and was furloughed home.

After the surrender he ??? a fine mule from a bunch of Negroes who were refugeeing, and had to hide out for 24 hours to keep the Yankee soldiers from taking the mule which helped him to make crops later. He and his father-in-law came to Cass county in 1876, locating in the big woods, where Bloomburg now is. Here he raised a family, three sons and seven daughters coming to bless his home in Georgia and Texas. His noble helpmate passed to her reward November 8, 1926.

For long years after the railroad came to Bloomburg, the Grogan’s ran a hotel which enjoyed much business. His good wife was baptized at Old Salem Baptist Church, 1½ miles west of Bloomburg in 1878 by brother Shefield of Linden. The next year, Mr. Grogan was baptized. His youngest daughter is the wife of Pastor Willingham of Pine Hill Baptist Church in Rusk county. Mr. Grogan, since mother Grogan’s death, has made his home with the Willinghams. The old soldier is now past 84. Another daughter, Mrs. James Griffin, lives in Vivian, LA. His only son living at Bloomburg.

Mr. Grogan has nearly lost his hearing. In his prime he was a very active man and enjoyed sacred harp singing as well as other church activities. He patiently awaits his summons to join General Stonewall Jackson, John B. Gordon, Robert E. Lee and all the rest of that host of immortals who have “passed over the river to rest in the shade of the trees.” Mr. Grogan has the old Bible which contains the family record and formerly was the property of his father. The Bible is 100 years old, has nearly fallen to pieces, but is the mute witness of his mother’s constant use through her long life.

His first Capt, McClusky, was killed within 30 minutes after entering their first battle. In the Shenandoah Valley is a famous spring which had a hollow willow stump for a curb and a conduit of hollow logs joined together as a water pipe carried water to the valley below. To hamper the Yanks the Confederates tore up that water main. Mr. Grogan saw General Jackson and his negro cook often. He remembers the General’s famous war horse.

His tribute to General Gordon as a brave, efficient officer who loved his men is very touching. This writer met General Gordon and heard him lecture the year before he died and has since stood with bared head at his grave among 8000 other Confederates at Atlanta, GA.
Since this article was printed nearly 65 years after the war, some parts contain questionable incidents. The 38th Ga. was in Richmond and witnessed Gen. Stonewall Jackson's funeral procession enter the city. The Regiment had just delivered over 2,000 Yankee prisoners to Belle Island Prison Camp. However, I've found no information to suggest any members of the regiment served as the funeral escorts, and this story probably became muddled, or possibly embellished, over the years. If anyone has other information on the incident, please drop me a line. Webmaster

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