This weekend 150 years ago, an event on Washington County's soil changed the course of this town's history.
General William Sherman led 60,000 Union soldiers through Sandersville, Georgia on his way to
Savannah. The march led to the freedom of thousands of slaves here. Those names may have been forgotten had it not been for Mr. Adam Adolphus.
Here is the weekend reenactment of the The North against the South:
Many homes were burned as well as the courthouse.
The Confederate army was out-manned by the Union army.
Mr. Adolphus began to do a little research of his own. He spent hours digging and looking for anything that may lead him to his family. He was almost certain to find that some of his ancestors were slaves. Newspapers recorded 36,000 slaves at that time, many of them being his own ancestors. Mr. Adolphus found that his Great, great grandmother was once used as collateral for the debt of her master. She was seized and put in jail until the debt was paid. "Every so often a little bit of information came forward that was hard to accept, said Mr. Adolphus. My Great, great grandfather, a white man, impregnated one of the slaves. I don't know how to take that."
There were 45 African Americans who joined the Confederate Army to fight the Union soldiers.
The Brown House Museum is the headquarters of the Washington County Historical Society. The house was built in 1850. Its appearance today is the result of a Victorian renovation. General Sherman used the house as his Sandersville headquarters during the Civil War. In 1989, the Historical Society took ownership of the house and restored it to its present condition.
(This is my AC man.
I guess now that the war is over,
he will send the bill for the repairs on my unit.)
and the oldest fought in this war.
This is a realistic scene minus the paved roads!
"If your ancestors had a way of life that provided them with good things and all of a sudden, it's gone, that instills bitterness in you, but it's all worth remembering, studying, and passing history down to the next generation," said Mr. Adolphus.
During the reenactment,
Mr. Adolphus read the names of the
US Colored Troops
from Washington County.
Mr. Simmons is the chairman of
the local chapter of Am-Vets.
Much of the reenactment was performed
on the courthouse square.
This young man was one of my teenagers
back in the day.
The preacher man.
and the children.
This is Sarah.
Her mom is the the girl who got married to the AC man.
Their wedding was the first one I featured
about the Civil War shotgun wedding:)
Washington County housed Confederate and Union
soldiers through out the weekend.
Look at those nails.
Bitten down to the quick before the battle was over.
I live within walking distance to town.
I was painting outside and I heard
"I can't hear. I can't hear. He can't hear. He can't hear."
At first I was like, "What???"
Looking everywhere only to realize that
this is reality TV, reenacted, real live coverage.
Only in small town rural GA will you awaken
to a coon dog baying, a union soldier firing a cannon,
and the sounds of GA football players, band and fans
yelling, "Go Dawgs."
I love the South.
What happened was history.
The community is a divided one in some ways.
The African American's continued to be enslaved though free.
That I am not proud of, however, it is history.
To not acknowledge from where we came,
is to not acknowledge where we are now.
Happy Veteran's Day,