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John Hilyard Family ca. 1909

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

My Family in the Civil War, Part Sixteen: Aftermath

This is the sixteenth in a series on my Civil War ancestors

In these last few posts, I've looked at what effect the Civil War had on just one couple in my family tree. Edward Windsor Moore and Susannah Bryant Moore sent four sons to war. Two died in service, one of disease contracted while serving, and the fourth continued on in the military and moved hundreds of miles away.  The death of their youngest son, Bartlett Cofin Moore, whom they depended on to care for them as they aged, affected the course of the rest of their lives.

Graves of Edward and Susannah Moore from

The Moores had seven sons in total. Two died as children. Bartlett died in the war before having a family of his own. My ancestor, William Bryant Moore, died at age 20 having fathered only one child. This line of Moores comes down to one surviving male, my uncle Bill, who has no children.

Of the other Moore boys, I can trace down to only one other male line. Edward Windsor Moore Jr., who died at the battle of Vicksburg, had a son by the same name. The last record I can find of him is when he received his inheritance from his grandfather Edward Moore's estate in 1890. I have been able to trace no further and do not know if he married and had children.  If he didn't, the Moore line coming down from Edward and Susannah is extinct.

Of course, Edward and Susannah's daughters and granddaughters married and produced many descendants. But the war took its toll on them as well. Six sons-in-law served in the Civil War; one, William Smith Hawhee, died after being wounded at Stone River.  The other five survived: Isaac Newton Breeden, Richard A. Spaulding, Enoch E. Inman, Leonidas Ross Grigsby, and Trusten B. Wilson.

Edward and Susannah lost one grandson that I know of in the war, Edward Windsor Breeden. He contracted measles and died after his return from fighting.

I also traced several nephews of Edward and Susannah Moore affected by the war. Four men died: John A. Moore, Joseph H. Moore, Thomas Tillery, and Thomas Coulter Moore. Two others fought and returned home: Solomon Moore and William Davis Moore.

I'm sure there is more to be uncovered about this family, but I'll end my report on them here. It is reported on the Civil War Trust website that 620,000 men died in the Civil War. Until the Vietnam War, that was more than the number of men lost in all other wars combined. Even now, the total of all other wars stands at about 644,000.  If your family lived in America during the Civil War, it most certainly affected them in some way. Find out how and tell their stories.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

My Family in the Civil War, Part Fifteen: "In view of the great age of the parents, I suggest special action."

This is the fifteenth in a series on my Civil War ancestors

Susannah Moore filed her original claim for a dependent mother's pension in 1880. Nearly four years later, this initial claim was denied on the grounds that her husband owned sufficient property to support her. It was referred for special examination.

On March 9, 1885, special examiner V. H. Whitman began looking into the matter, visiting Orleans, Indiana to meet with all the deponents in the case. By March 25th, Mr. Whitman had collected all he needed and sat down to write his report. And write he did. It took him 20 handwritten pages to summarize the case.  He concluded his report with this paragraph:

Conclusion of Special Examiner in Case of Susannah Moore
"I am of the opinion that the claim is a meritorious one and I recommend its admission. In view of the great age of the parents I suggest special action.
                                                                                       V. H. Whitman
                                                                                       Special Examiner"

Mr. Whitman must have pushed the right buttons.  Less than one month from the writing of this letter,  April 23rd, 1885, a certificate was issued to Susannah Moore, granting her a pension in the amount of $8 per month, commencing March 28th, 1865. 
Pension folder sleeve for Susannah Moore's papers
The file does not specifically state it, but I believe she must have been paid in arrears for the prior 20 years. Eight dollars a month for 12 months, times 20 years, yields $1,920. I certainly hope it was the case that she received a check for this amount. 

Her husband Edward Moore passed away one year later, on August 15th, 1886. Susannah continued to receive the $8 per month until her death nearly six years later, on March 12, 1891.

My final post on this family will discuss the far-reaching web of effects the Civil War had on the Moores.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

My Family in the Civil War, Part Fourteen: "The Infirmity of Age is Upon Him, Yet a Well Preserved Man"

This is the fourteenth in a series on my Civil War ancestors

As part of the requirements to qualify for a mother's pension, Susannah Moore had to show she had no means of support other than what her deceased son Bartlett would have given her. She had already answered questions about her other children, but it had to be shown that her husband was unable to properly provide for her.

To prove this, no less than 13 people testified about Edward Moore's health. The testimonies paint a vivid picture of Edward in his later years, one I would never have gotten otherwise.

The most medically descriptive is, of course, the official surgeon's examination. This was performed by Dr. John A. Ritter. Dr. Ritter had served in the Indiana 49th in Company G, the same unit as Edward's sons, Edward Jr., Christopher, and Bartlett, and two of his daughters' husbands, Isaac Breeden and Richard Spaulding. He was most likely the one who treated these men for illness and wounds while in service.
Dr. John A. Ritter
Photo contributed to the Slices of Orange County Facebook group
by Gerald W. Ritter

Dr. Ritter's examination took place on May 1, 1883. Dr. Ritter was in his early 60s by then. He writes:
"I find chronic inflammation of each leg extending from the feet two thirds to the knee, dark, livid, indurated ulceration with scabs. He says legs become often denuded so he is confined to his room five or six weeks at a time. Occupation farmer. Says he has not been able to plow for 20 years, this inflammation has been on him 35 or 40 years. He is 79 years old. The infirmity of age is upon him, yet a well preserved man of his age. Have known him 30 or 35 years but was not aware of his condition as regards his disability in the legs. He also has palpitations of the heart. A man of good habbits [sic]."
Punctuation added for clarity.

Twelve other people described Edward's physical condition as they saw it.

  • Susannah Moore: "varicose veins"
  • Leonidas R. Grigsby: "sore legs", "swollen, purple"
  • Harrison Morgan: "trouble walking, pain in his neck", "couldn't stoop or plow"
  • Elizabeth Wilson: "something like colic", "trouble with legs"
  • Bennet Grigsby: "frequent attacks of bilious colic", "complained of legs"
  • Mary Grigsby: "legs have troubled him"
  • Peter Newton: "he could knock about and do some light work but couldn't do a hard days work at all"
  • Hance Wilson: "complained of his legs"
  • William D. Moore: "his general health was tolerable good, but he had a bad leg (right one I think), it presented a very dark swollen appearance and he walked lame"
  • Columbus Brown: "sore legs", "heart trouble", "leg swells up, very dark colored and some sores on it"
  • Jeruel Leonard: "some disease in one of his legs"
  • Richard Lingle, M.D. (Edward's physician):  "stomach trouble, heart and kidney disease, and bronchial trouble. Varicose ulcers on one leg, I think the right"
Dr. Richard Lingle stated he had been Edward Moore's doctor since July 1878, and had visited him 75 times (by March of 1885). That works out to almost once a month. He noted that Edward only owed him for one visit and two prescriptions, that he had been treating him this month.

When Bartlett Moore died, his father was 62 and his mother 60. Edward already had the ulcers on his legs and difficulty plowing his farm. They fully expected Bartlett to run the farm and care for them, and by all testimony Bartlett planned on this as well. The Civil War truly broke this family down.


Thanks to modern technology, you can see just what Edward's legs looked like. Do NOT watch this if you are squeamish about medical pictures.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

My Family in the Civil War, Part Thirteen: A Tale of Two Properties

This the the thirteenth in a series on my Civil War ancestors

Signature of Edward W. Moore from pension deposition

On March 24th, 1885, Susannah's husband Edward W. Moore gave his deposition. He stated his age, 82, and past occupations of farming and preaching. I am certain the special examiner already had the answers to every question he posed to Edward before hand. Edward probably knew this as well going into the interview. Some of his answers are a little guarded, a little cagey, but never false I am sure. As with Susannah, I'll let Edward speak for himself.

Q: How much real estate did you own in 1864?
A: I think about 300 acres, 90 of which was cleared; worth about $4.00 an acre. The balance was in lumber and not worth any more per acre.

Q: How much personal property had you in '64?
A: Only about $200 worth.

Q: What was the value of your buildings in 1864?
A: About $250.

Q: What else had you then?
A: Nothing else.

Q: Did you in 1865 purchase any more real estate or acquire any?
A: No sir.

Q: Did you an 1866 acquire any land?
A: I don't remember. I was fool enough to attend delinquent tax sales and buy some at times but lost money at it.

I love that line. And he probably knew full well what he had done but heck, he was 82. Forgive an old man his imperfect memory! "Uncle Neddy" is definitely on my list of ancestors I wish I could meet.

Q: How much real estate had you in 1867-8?
A: About as I had in 1864.

Q: How much personal property had you in 1867?
A: Not over $250 worth.

Q: You were assessed for $640 worth.

I imagine a little pause here, maybe a deep breath. I think getting the pension might ride on the following answers and explanations.

A: Well. I had some money because I had mortgaged my place. I also had been guardian of three grandchildren and had $600 of their money for which I had mortgaged my place. 

Q: How did you happen to be assessed for so much in 1869--70--71--74?
A: Well in 1869 I exchanged my place in French Lick Township for this place here and the purchaser didn't get his deed recorded and didn't pay tax on either property. Both places were in my name and taxed to me. When we traded he was to lift the mortgage of $600 as part of the trade. He failed to pay it and I got the place back by paying it and paying some $600 costs. 

Q: How did you lose money when you still had this Orleans property?
A: Well I about held my own.

Q: Then for a few years you owned both pieces of property.
A: Yes sir.

Q: Then the assessment record is about correct, isn't it?
A: Pretty near.

I could almost hear the examiner's "A-HA!" when he got Edward to admit that.

So, we might wonder why Edward Moore didn't attend more closely to the land transaction? Why didn't he make sure the deed and mortgage were taken care of?  Mostly likely because he wasn't there.

Booklet printed in 1870, available on the Kansas Memory website

In 1869 Edward Moore moved to Kansas, along with the families of his son Columbus Moore and those of his twin girls, Mary Catherine Grigsby and Elizabeth Jane Wilson. Looking at these events in total now, I can see that Edward traded the farm for a small place in town because he knew that he, along with all his children that could be of assistance to him, were moving over 500 miles away. He most likely trusted the buyer's word that all would be done according to their agreement.

While in Kansas, Edward and Susannah's son Christopher Columbus Moore died at the age of 31 on June 12th, 1871, leaving two little girls. He died from consumption which he had contracted during his Civil War service.  An uncited manuscript I have says this: "It is said that his wife Susannah didn't like Kansas and said she wanted to go back to Indiana to die; her husband's reaction was that they would go back to Indiana to live. And live they did, another 15 and 20 years, in Orleans, where they are buried."

After their return, the mortgage holder sued, and the French Lick property was foreclosed. Edward paid the $600 to get the land back, plus he had all the lawyer fees and court costs to pay. It appears from the pension file that the property was then purchased from Edward by Leonidas Grigsby, his son-in-law. The Grigsbys and Wilsons had returned to Indiana as well, but the widow and children of Christopher Columbus Moore remained out west.