Transmitting Nuggets Of Appalachian Heritage
The Lord's Last Supper

Civil War Data Told By Mrs. Lillie Scroggs Brasstown December 6 1926


Brasstown - Scroggs Store 1926 - Photo from WCU Digital Collection

From the JCCFS Archives - Fred O. Scroggs

Misc. Data. 
Told by Mrs. Lillie Scroggs, Brasstown, N.C. Dec. 6, 1926

"Josh Harshaw kept his slave negroes quartered in two houses that stood where Goldie Crisp's small barn is now (1926). These houses were right on the old Clay and Cherokee Co. line, --just barely in Clay County. Most of his negroes scattered off after the war."

"Aunt Celia Harshaw, one of his slaves, moved to Macon Co. after the war, where she died in a short time. Before she died she requested that her children be given to Mrs. Jane Strange and Mrs. Myra Dickey. They were sent back to Brasstown. Mrs. Strange raised one till grown. Mrs. Dickey raised the others.

"Wm. J. A. Strange was born in '39. When he was a good size boy, Marsh Harshaw, (one of Harshaw's slave negros, now living at Hayesville, N.C. 1926) carried him on his back across Hiawassee River."

"Wm. J.A. Strange's father, Nelson, died when he (W.) was very young. Wm. J.A. entered the Civil War before he was eighteen years old. He joined at Murphy and went to Asheville. He was under Gen. Frances. He was in the Infantry, and was a comrade of Bob Furman and a man by the name of Russell, both of Asheville. Remember hearing him say he fought in Mississippi."

"He was wounded one time and they gave him a furlow. There was to be a battle the next day and he waited and helped fight the battle then came home. He had a black yoke of cattle and a large mare. While he was at home the Yankees came through. They took his mare, killed and eat his steers, stoled his corn, and would have got his other horses but Bent Mason or somebody hid them. Negro Mose, one of the slave negroes, hid the steers but they found them."

"They went on up to the Harshaws. He had 40 head of hogs and lots of everything. They took his hogs, corn, cattle, etc. Then he had a lot of syrup. They took it and poured it in his feather ticks and stired it up with the feathers."

"These Yankees rounded up all the men in the settlement. Lined them up in the lot above where the store and mill is now. Every one that had a soldier's uniform on, or anything about them to show they had been in the army, they took them along as prisoners. I think this was the time they got Bill Waldroup and others here. W. J.A. had left his uniform at Ben Masons. Had on private citizens clothes, so they left him. He went right straight to Bent Masons and got his uniform and went back to the army. After the war was over he came home and married Jane Green."

Fred O. 1926



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The stories told about this awful war and how people lived through It. How could so much hate be between the states and family. Can anyone really tell the story .
Pray it doesn't come again as disorient feeling as we have now.

Doesn't it seem to everyone that the nation ever coming together again must surely have required divine intervention ? Without being too gloom and doom, I wonder if there is that much resilience in the national character now. Or, if need be, do we have enough humility to ask for divine help ?

I love these stories of the past.
It's a shame we had to go thru this
terrible war and I feel for both
sides. But it did happen and I'm
not so sure it solved much of

Mama used to tell us a family story about the yankees coming to the family's farm & taking everything. She said the women fought back trying to hold their quilts while the soldiers were pulling on them. I wish we had a complete account.

No wonder we in the South are conflicted about the Civil War.

Tipper, thanks for this interesting piece of history. I really enjoyed reading it.

This is so very interesting! Any stories about the Civil War so reminds me of the stories of my own ancestors who served. Sentiments were so divided in WV that it was particularly heartbreaking for neighbors and friends in same family to be serving on both sides. As in all wars, horrendous things were done due to the absence of strict law and order in the region. We can't possibly imagine times being so cruel and difficult.

William Jackson Alloway Strange was Mrs. Scroggs' father. This is some fine fodder for amateur genealogist.

What has me puzzled after reading Lillie's recount of the Yankee raid is why, if the sole purpose of the Civil War to free the slaves, did the raiders take most of the provisions, destroy the rest and leave the slaves behind. And the loss of those provisions hurt the slaves as bad(ly) as or worse than their masters. That was their food too. Maybe I don't know how wars work or maybe I do.

These stories from the past are sometimes very troubling. Ms. Lillie seems to have a good sense and way of telling the stories of the past. Thanks!

How fortunate that this first person account of conditions and hardships during the Civil War has been preserved. Thank you for finding and posting this for our information--and yes, our regrets. But war is like that; everyone loses. That was such a dark, near-hopeless time in our country.

I love to read these stories of lives past, especially of, during or after the Civil War. Very interesting.
It reminds me of sitting on the porch when I was a child and listening to all the tales being retold. Stories and related tales of the Civil War or stories of strange accounts that have happened to family or neighbors in the area.
I wouldn't move a muscle for fear of them (aunts/uncles or Mom and Dad) sending me in to bed or out in the yard to play...
Great times, although I wish I had immediately written down all those stories. What a book I would have...It's very hard to remember them all in the exact way they were told!
Thanks Tipper,
PS...This account told by Ms. Lillie Scroggs, sure leaves one wanting to hear more....

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