James O. Cushenbury

What’s so special about James. Let me make a short story much longer when I first discovered James. here is a bio below.

James O Cushenbury, Pvt, Co I, 6th Kentucky Mounted Infantry. Enlisted Dec 19, 1861 at Franklin, Ky. Listed on Jan/Feb Co Muster Roll as “fell into enemy’s hand Murphreesboro Hosp Jan 4, 1863.” March/Apr 1863 “paroled prisoner” May/June 1863 Absent “in General Hospital Miss” Present July/Aug 1863 until Mar/April 1864 listed as Absent “Sick in Hospital Cassville Ga since April 12, 1864.” April/Aug 1864 Co Muster Roll “Died May 12, 1864 in Hosp Cassville Ga”

Now lets look at James through the Samuel Hollingsworth Stout Records.


Interesting document which mentions the soldiers who are furloughed and died in Cassville, Georgia May 12, 1864. The surgeons name  A. J. China is mentioned. ‘

**Alfred James China, matches carded records for Asst Surg A J China serving with AoT Hospitals specifically the Newsom Hospital. He was apt Sept 26, 1862 from MS and served until Feb 15, 1865 when he was relieved from Columbus MS. There is a receipt in his file for Commutation of Quarters from Nov 1 to Nov 30 inclusive, 3 rooms @ $15 each per month and fuel (firewood); pmt received at Cassville Nov 30, 1863. Link to FAG memorial https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=37267070

The important thing to note about the image above is while I don’t know about you, I cant read it. So I used a website called Lunapic I stumbled upon and created a negative that looks like this.


How’s that for improvement. Yeah I know, not much in the way of a clear image but I work with what I got. This is why I get by with a little help from my friends who helped me produce a better image.


Much better. I believe this is a more sophisticated Photoshop image. I have to settle for what Windows and Microsoft Office has to offer. You can see the names much more clearly now. But even zooming in its still difficult because although these are medical records they are not as accurate. The doctors are relying on the soldier to give them information and the name spelling can be an issue.

On some of the records when they speak of soldiers who deserted, furloughed, released or died they use the term “disposed of”. This was a cruel term I thought for soldiers who died but consider the hospital treated patients much like a debit account.  I mentioned in a previous post the Kingston hospital started with 100 beds and in less than a month was filled to capacity. So moving, treating and sending soldiers on their way was the goal. So while the soldiers names are a credit to us the hospital could not look at it that way. Surgeon Miles Nash was in charge of the Cassville hospital and started with a budget of $1,000 dollars and to run a tight ship managing money was difficult with soldiers pouring in especially after Chickamauga in September of 1863.

But we were talking about Mr. Cushenbury. We don’t have a lot of specifics about him other than he died at Cassville. This is where having a Fold 3 Account is very handy but there were a lot of records about him because in a sense he was unique.


History of the First Kentucky Brigade By Edwin Porter Thompson

Above we se his name spelled this way. Clearly he fought in many battles. But what makes him stick out more than others.  it seems he was recommended for a medal of honor.


CUSHENBERRY, James “Os” Pvt. Co. I, 6th Ky. Inf. Simpson Co. Murfreesboro

From the Website:” Although the Confederate Government wished to devise a medal for valor, similar to the United States’ Medal of Honor, they were never able to issue a general medal for bravery and good conduct. In lieu of such an award, the Confederate Congress instituted a “Roll of Honor.” This roll was to list the names of soldiers from each company who were singled out for valor or good conduct displayed during victorious battles. The names were to be selected by vote of the company members. A company could also decline to choose a name, and the honor could be awarded posthumously. The completed Roll was to be published and read in each regiment. (See the bottom of this page for the complete wording of the General Orders establishing the Roll of Honor, along with listings of the Kentucky unit awardees by battle and regiment.) 

   The Army of Tennessee selected names for two battles: Murfreesboro and Chickamauga. The following lists are those Kentucky soldiers who were named to the Roll of Honor for these battles (although the 5th Kentucky Infantry later served in the Orphan Brigade, they were not with the Brigade at Chickamauga). Although the Roll is mentioned in General Orders of August 1864, very few selections were made in that year, and none of these were in the Army of Tennessee. ( * denotes posthumous award)”

CONFEDERATE ROLL OF HONOR – KENTUCKY SOLDIERS  compiled by Geoffrey R. Walden http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~orphanhm/rollofhonor.htm

So to make the long story short James of Cushenberry was a medal of honor winner and is located in our little Cassville Cemetery. he is listyed among the unknowns but hopefully when we acquire more names of the soldiers who died we can come close to getting a historical plaque recognizing the soldier who died in area hoptials and who may be buried there.

Laura Elliot shared with me some more details

James Cushenbury, born Circa 1837
James Cushenbury was born circa 1837, at birth place, Kentucky, to Wm Cushenbury and Polly Cushenbury.
James had 8 siblings: Elijah Cushenbury, William Cushenbury and 6 other siblings.
James lived in 1860, at address, Kentucky.

Link to census record:

He was 23 yo in 1860 so 27 when he died

Link to father’s FAG William D Cushenberry https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=24635439

Link to mother’s FAG Mary Cushenberry https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=24635440 (as you know “Polly” was a common nickname for women named Mary)

Both buried in Logan County KY which adjoins Simpson County where Franklin KY is located


Samuel Hollingsworth Stout Records, Briscoe History Center University of Austin Austin, Texas Image 1601

History of the First Kentucky Brigade By Edwin Porter Thompsonhttps://books.google.com/books?id=USkOAAAAQAAJ&printsec=frontcover#v=onepage&q&f=false

CONFEDERATE ROLL OF HONOR – KENTUCKY SOLDIERS  compiled by Geoffrey R. Walden http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~orphanhm/rollofhonor.htm

Laura Elliott Rainbow City, AL 35906. I need to give a lot of credit to Laura because she helped me transcribe and find a lot of this information.



Kingston, Georgia Hospitals

Sorry I have not logged on in a while. I have been working on some exciting records from the Samuel Hollingsworth Stout Collection. Bradley Quinlin, fellow historian, has discovered some great records located at the Briscoe History Center in Austin, Texas. He has managed to retrieve all of the Georgia Records and a lot of other states as well. Its been exciting to go through these records and finding letter like this one.

Kingston July 14, 1863
Surgeon S H Stout
Med Director of Hospitals
I have had turned over to me, at this place, the Hospital and its fixtures. An official report, with invoices etc. giving you a detailed statement of every thing connected with it, will be furnished, as soon as the papers can be made out.
The buildings here are badly suited for Hospital purposes. I find one hundred beds & furniture in good order, but owing to the Compacted condition of the houses, patients, to its full capacity, could not be safely placed in this Hospital. I have Commenced making some changes to improve ventilation, but these must necessarily be quite limited. Fifty patients might be safely treated – more in the present buildings, would, in my judgement, suffer. I find all the houses in the town occupied except the Churches. I doubt the policy of disturbing the Citizens unless the necessity should be urgent. I know of no private residences here, suited for Hospital purposes the Hotels, have small rooms, quite out of order, and badly ventilated. – The Churches are small but would make good Hospitals.
If it should be determined to establish Hospitals here, I would suggest the fine spring one mile from town. This place, I think a desirable one. Suited to tents or the more permanent arrangement of Houses. I suggest the former, for the present, at least, I know of no place better suited for tent Hospitals.
Should you conclude to send me fifty _(?)_ tents, it will be necessary to send nurses with them, as there are only two here, and one cook. The two nurses, include the steward. The other is a hired servant. The cook is also hired. An astute Surgeon will be required. There are no surgical instruments here. Cooking and table furniture, I think too limited for even fifty permanent patients.
Col. Garland has not, as yet, received orders. Has no Quarter Master. A Commissary has reported, but has no supplies on hand. I hope everything will be arranged this week. After which time, I will be finally prepared to receive the sick.
If you should determine on tents I can easily use the beds here one hundred in number. It will afford me much pleasure at all times to Co-operate with you, in what our Course may be determined on. I will make no requisitions, until I learn more definitely, what may be the required.
B W Avent
Surgeon in charge

No sick on hand here. Surgeon Mattingly will make his morning report to Rome until all of the papers are __(?)_ over


General Benjamin Ward Avent, Sr
Confederate General, Surgeon-General of the Army of Tennessee and Medical Doctor
Photo courtesy of www.aventfamily.org

Avent in the letter above, points out the sanitary conditions of the buildings in Kingston. I think if you look at the advice of Stout that having open air tents to allow air flow was more sanitary. not meaning the buildings were dirty just not enough airflow for sick soldiers. In the letter is also mentioned 100 beds available starting out. if you look at the records in less than a month this hospital was filled to capacity. There were two hospitals mentioned in which is first the Kingston hospital and note’s mentioned this was the Ways Side hospital. The second Hospital was called the Erwin hospital and I believe this was the tent hospital Avent mentioned. This was located a mile form Kingston near a spring. one can only speculate exactly where it was.
There were several surgeons listed here. D S Hopping, George Willis McDade and several others. These same doctors would travel to Atlanta from Kingston to stay in front of the encroaching Union army. Its important to not there was a Camp Kingston in Atlanta with some of the same doctors but most of the reports indicate if the hospital was in Kingston or in Atlanta.
But just to mention these records are very exciting and addicting to go through. Some of the records are illegible but I have been having some success with an online software called Lunapic. There is several software applications and I am not selling software. These records may involve a second trip to Texas to enhance these records. Nonetheless the challenge is fun and exciting.
From the Medical Officers of the Army of Tennessee section of
“Southern Historical Papers -Volume XXII”
Note: Great reference by the way. All of the surgeons names are here.
Box 2G394 Samuel Hollingsworth Stout Records.

Dr Benjamin Ward Avent, Sr



Today I am sharing a story from Mark Pollard, a good fiend and historian. I love stories about animals and even cryptids as I have found a few from Georgia.

In the 1790s, militiamen on patrol in the Cumberland Mountains stumbled across a creature that “had only two legs, and stood almost upright, covered with scales, of a black, brown, and light yellow colour, in spots like rings, a white tuft or crown on the top of its head, about four feet high, a head as big as a two pound stone, and large eyes, of a fiery red.” When one of the men attacked the thing with his sword, “it jumped up, at least, eight feet” and then landed, spewing “a red kind of matter out of its mouth resembling blood, and then retreated into a Laurel thicket turning round often, as if it intended to fight. The tracks of it resembled that of a goose, but larger.”

The newspapers that reported this was the Hampshire Gazette on Sept. 24, 1794, the Knoxville Gazette,Aug, 30, 1794 and the Baltimore Daily Intelligencer. so this creature the Cheeklaceella has an almost Cherokee sounding name.

I found a story in Myths of the Cherokee by James Mooney about the Snake Man

“Two hunters, both for some reason under a tabu against the meat of a squirrel or turkey, had gone into the woods together. When evening came they found a good camping place and lighted a fire to prepare their supper. One of them had killed several squirrels during the day, and now got ready to broil them over the fire. His companion warned him that if he broke the tabu and ate squirrel meat he would become a snake, but the other laughed and said that was only a conjurer’s story. He went on with his preparation, and when the squirrels were roasted made his supper of them and then lay down beside the fire to sleep.

“Late that night his companion was aroused b y groaning, and on looking around he found the other lying on the ground rolling and twisting in agony, and with the lower part of his body already changed to the body and tail of a large water snake. The man was still able to speak and called loudly for help, but his companion could do nothing, but only sit by and try to comfort him while he watched the arms sink into the body and the skin take on a scaly change that mounted gradually toward the neck, until at last even the head was a serpent’s head and the great snake crawled away from the fire and down the bank into the river.”

Other books and earlier commentators scoffed at the idea. The stories of this monster did not resurface.



http://www.sacred-texts.com/nam/cher/motc/motc057.htm Page 305 Chapter 57. The Snake Man



Fake News? Nathan Bedford Forrest


I use older newspaper articles as a source for my data. I do enjoy the Digital library of Georgia and Chronicling America. Feel free to Google both and search for information., Elephind is also a good source for newspaper information. Charles Fort based a lot of his research on newspapers. I would love to say I am Fortean but not close enough. One trick I like to do is to place the source of the news article at the bottom of the article image. This way if someone shares the image the article info is there. Lets Begin

Daily Intelligencer, Jul. 15, 1865 -- page 2This is the article that started it all. While scrolling through the Atlanta Newspapers I came across this and posted to a civil war forum with lots of Nathan Bedford Forrest Fans like me. One of the responses I got was that this was fake news. None of Forrest’s biographies and books mentioned this event. This led me to search for more.

Alexandria gazette_, July 15, 1865, Image 2

I found a second article that was pretty cost to the first. Which would lend to the fact that early newspapers share articles in much the same way as the Associated Press does today. I still refused to say this is fake news but this is what the forum argued.

Daily Intelligencer, Jul_ 25, 1865 -- page 2Found another article from the same paper just a little later. Has a little more detail but not much.

The tri-weekly news_, July 20, 1865, Image 1

This article is a little more telling. it mentions more about the accident.


This above may give some idea of what the spider car was. A plank caught the brake of the car and threw it off the track.


The Standard. (Clarksville, Tex.), Vol. 23, No. 43, Ed. 1 Saturday, July 22, 1865

This article offers a little more detail. Still find it hard to believe that fake news would produce different views od the same event.

Evansville Daily Journal, Volume 17,Evansville, Vanderburgh County, 12 July 1865

This article makes the mistake of referring to Nathan Bedford Forrest as T B Forrest. However its still the same news. one important thing to note is it lists two witnesses to the event. First though misspelled is Colonel Luke William Finlay of Memphis of the 4th Tennessee Consolidated Infantry.  It turns out Finlay was a Yale Graduate. finlay

I believe the other passenger was Colonel Josiah Patterson of the 5th Alabama Cavalry and had later moved to Memphis.



US Congressman. With the advent of the Civil War, he was a lawyer in practice when he enlisted in the Confederate Army. Commissioned a 1st Lieutenant in the 1st Regiment, Alabama Cavalry, he rose through the ranks to Colonel in command of the 5th Regiment, Alabama Cavalry. After the war, he moved to Memphis, Tennessee, continued to practice law and was a member of the Tennessee State House of Representatives, (1883-85). In 1891, he was elected as a Democrat to the Fifty-second, Fifty-third and Fifty-fourth Congresses, serving until 1897. An candidate for reelection, he resumed the practice of law until his death at age 66

Josiah was a solicitor for the Tennessee Midland Railroad.

At this point I am convinced the story is not “fake news” as it was repeated by many. The question was then asked why were they on the train together in 1865? One thought may be the ties all had to the railroad and they may have been investors. Forrest and the other two officers could have also been visiting other veterans or under orders. The accident may not have been so serious for men who could dust themselves off and keep on going. U di however make sure I am not spreading fake news.






Alpharetta and The Blue Juniata

Growing up in Alpharetta, Georgia, I went to Midway Elementary which was Midway between Alpharetta and Cumming.  One of the first things I learned was how to spell my address A – L – P – H – A – R – E – T – T – A. It almost became a song and I could recite the letters easily. My earliest memories of Alpharetta was the Alpha Drugs in town and the barber shop. They threatened to cut my ears off I did not sit still. There was a Dixie Café, a drive in theater we never went to along with a few shops and stores. Back then it was Highway 19 but later changed to Highway 9 through the city. I lived in a MHP called Rolling Hill and was known before as Shadowpark NW. We played in the woods and near the large greenhouses located above the park. Grimes Auto Parts was there across the street along with a convenience store. I made the mistake once of venturing into the junkyard there. Two junkyard dogs chased me and I hid in a car. I finally managed to escape and never ventured in there again,.


In Georgia Place Names: Alpharetta  supposedly came from a song The Blue Juniata named for an Indian Alfarata. The song was written by Marion Dix Sullivan in 1844 and became popular with several artists remaking the song.

The Blue Juniata” as first published

Wild roved an Indian girl,
Bright Alfarata,
Where sweep the waters
Of the blue Juniata!
Swift as an antelope
Through the forest going,
Loose were her jetty locks,
In many tresses flowing.
Gay was the mountain song
Of bright Alfarata,
Where sweep the waters
Of the blue Juniata.
“Strong and true my arrows are,
In my painted quiver,
Swift goes my light canoe
Adown the rapid river.
“Bold is my warrior good,
The love of Alfarata,
Proud waves his snowy plume
Along the Juniata.
Soft and low he speaks to me,
And then, his war-cry sounding,
Rings his voice in thunder loud,
From height to height resounding.”
So sang the Indian girl,
Bright Alfarata,
Where sweep the waters
Of the blue Juniata.
Fleeting years have borne away
The voice of Alfarata;
Still sweeps the river on—
Blue Juniata!

You may notice there is an Alfarata, Pennsylvania and also an Altoony, Pa. The early Cherokee Indians could have possibly brought these names to Georgia. Think of some of the Indian Chiefs like Kennesaw, Sawnee, Nickajack and Salagoa. and other Cherokee women like Little Wileo and Trahlyta.

It has been said that, as General Sherman’s men marched across the south they sang the lyrics of “The Blue Juniata” to keep up morale. One night while in his tent, General Sherman heard a band playing the tune from across camp. When they finished he sent a runner to tell them to play it again. A group of men nearer to him began singing the words along with the band and thus began the General’s love for the tune.”


http://www.kenkrakow.com/gpn/georgia_place-names.htm GEORGIA PLACE-NAMES
by Kenneth K. Krakow 3rd Edition