Things I Remember About the War Between the States
By: Richard Barton Myers

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                                     THINGS I REMEMBER ABOUT THE WAR
				                   BETWEEN THE STATES

			                    By:  Richard Barton Myers


This record was written by R. B. Myers when he was eighty-three years old, and sixty years 
after the War Between the States.  This typed copy is exactly as he wrote it without changing 
the spelling or wording.


			Richard Barton            1840-1926
			Laura Ann Michael		1844-1928

	They were married March 27, 1861 by A. Rowan Craver at the bride’s home.

	Children: Mary Esta, Jennie May, Henry Cleveland and Benjamin Oliver

			Lexington, N.C., Davidson County	


And now as I have often bin asked to write a skeck or histry of my trials and trubles during 
the civil war of the Southern States against the Northern States.  I was married in March 
in 1861.  We moved to our selve and lived together till June 1862.  Then the conscript act 
was past taking everybody up to the age of forty years of age.  I was then near twenty two 
years of age.  About twenty five from Davidson County volenteered  in a company that 
John Bergis Fitsgerald was making up.  And the object was to make up a regment at 
Salsbury, which was done, and we had ten or twelve companys which made the regment – 
this regment made up at Salsbury.  These companys numbered about one hunderd each 
and  these companys formed the 57 N.C. Regment.  We was examind by Dr. Hall and 
sworn in to the service as solders for the Confederate States on the fourth day of July 
1862.  We was drilled every day and garded prisoner for about two month.  Then we was 
called off to go to Richmond, Va.  Our colonels name was Godwin.  He was a Virginian.  
Lieutenant Collonels  name was Jones.  He was from Charlet.  Our Captins name was 
Bill Brown from Salesbury.

	We arrived in Richmond and went through the town on about five miles the other 
side of Richmond and established a camp.  Here we drilled for about a month; then we 
moved camp a little near Richmond.  Then we went to Williamsburg as the yanky was 
said to be coming in there; but they did not come.  So we went back.  This was just after 
the seven days fight near Richmond.  It was the batle when Macclelon tride to take 
Richmond.  Now in Macclelon retreate along the wide public rode and on each side of this 
rode about forty to a hundred feete wide, every thing was sent one way, for they was in a 
hurry to get away from Lee and Jackson; dead horses and mules, broken wagons all the way.   
We went back to our camp and stayd there till the 18 of November.  But a while before we 
went this trip to Williamsburg, my wife, Newton Cravers wife, James Cravers wife, Jim 
Kepleys wife and my brother Daniels wife came to see us and stayd about ten days.  
They came with Rowan Craver.  And on the 18 of November we got orders to go to 
Richmond, and there was snow on the ground.  But while we was in this camp Amos 
Snider died with brene fevor.  He was Solamon Sniders youngest son and one of our 
company.  I wrote to his father of his deth.  We was huryed to Richmond and it turned very 
cold that night about nine o’clock got on the trane.  We was put in old box cars.  We 
had no seets.  We rode all night – got to Gordinville about nine o’clock next day.  It was 
a very cold night.

	We went in to camp where there had bin troops camped; and here was the first 
body line we had ever saw, and they was very hungry.  They could turn a fellow or make 
him turn over.  Here we stayed a while.

	Then we started to Fredricksburg.  We was marching nearly three days and it rained 
all the time.  The mud was deep and cold.  This was the hardest and longest march I was on 
during the war.  We was here a few weeks before the battle commenced; but on the morning 
of the eleventh of December before day I was a sleep.  I herd a gun fire; and I thought I was at 
home and thought the dogs had treed a squrel and my Father was shooting at it; but prety 
soon an other one fierd.   This one waked me up.  It was a signal that the yankys was crossing 
the river and the battle comenst prety soon.  We was statoned along the edge of an old pine 
field.  That night we was put out on picket duty along the bolengreene roote; and it was so 
cold we could hardly keep from freezing.  We was not alowd to have but very little fire down in 
cut in the roade.  Next day we was back in line of battle.  That evening we reached around 
over the hills, but came back to our lines in the evening.  

	Now while we was near Richmond camp before we started on this awful hard march 
to Fredricksburg, I had the janders – or jundice.   Now at the sound of the drum for sick call I 
went like many others did that was not well.  Our Regmentte Doctor was Dr. Colwell from 
Salsbury.  He wold say to the sick ones, give him a cathartick full, put him on duty, and so 
he did me that morning.  I went to my Captin.  (His name was Miles Hunter, a very good man.)  
I told him the doctor did not excuse me from duty this morning, but that I was not able to go 
on duty.  He said to me, you go where ever you went to go.  I will see that you are not punished.  
And I went and got me a little brandy in a can, put som wild cherry bark and dogwood bark 
and water all together.  This made all the medicin I used for the jundice.   This doctor was 
no good.  He had no feeling for a sick man.  They called him the vinager barrel for he always 
looked cower.   He got so hateful.  So much so, the cornal send him off, and I never herd tell 
of him any more.  Then we got two good doctors, Dr. Morton and Dr. Binian, and they was 
good doctors.  They stayed with the regment till the war ended.  

	And now back to Fredricksburg.  I remember we was in the woods or old field 
pines; Now, this is all I know about the charge that was made that evening by the 57 regment.  
I don’t remember leveing from that place.  But J. H. Walser and others say we was marching 
round getting redy to start on the charge when a canon ball struck our ranks for then we was 
in four ranks.  The canon ball struck a yong man nocking off his back of his head and that this 
ball struck my gun agans my head is the way I got wonded.  

Mr. Walser and others says that I and this young man (I have forgot his name) both fell forward 
on our faces and that we both kicked like hogs ding after they had bin knocked in the head 
and stuck with a nife.  Now we was the first two persons that ever fell in this regment of a 
bout eight hundred men for this was the first ingagemt this  regment was ever in and that it 
shoked the men and our Colonel seeing it.  Said Study men.  Study, and gave the command 
to make the charge, which they did and run the yankys back but lost about one hundred men 
killed out of the regment.  Mr. Walser says that when they went on in the charge that he never 
expected to see me alive any more.  Mr. James Craver was killed in this charge.  He was the 
son of Rowan Craver Esq.  He was a fine young man.  He had not bin married very long.  His 
wife and her Father and my wife went to Fredricksburg looking for there husband.  Mrs. 
Craver had her husband taken up and brough home and buried at Reeds Church.  My wife 
was looking and inquiring for me but could not find out any thing about me whether I was 
dead or taken off to som hospitle.  Now as I have said I have no nolege of being wounded 
or starting in the grate chare that evening by the 57 Regment.  The first thing I remember 
I was laying in a box car and a man said to me.  You must get out of this car and get in 
that one over yonder.  I remember looking out seeing the car.  I said to him over yonder 
and he said yes.  Now how I got in the car I don’t know.  I believe they call that place 
Hanover Junction.  This I lerned sometime afterwards.  One thing only I remember on the 
way to Lynchburg.  Looking out it seemed like we was going through a deep cut.

	After we got to Lynchburg, I must have got away from those that had charge of 
me for I remember after I got out of car that I crossed a little bridge and went up a little hill 
and went into a house for the door was open and people in the house.  I went in and 
asked them if I could stay all night with them.  They said no.  I told them I was mighty 
sick and wanted to stay mighty bad.  Then somebody taken hold of me and I guess taken 
me to the hospitle anyway when I began to come to my wright mind I was in the hospitle.  
All I could remember was laying in line of battle at Fredricksburg.  Now I don’t know now 
long after I got to hospitle before I got my right mind.  It must have bin from six to ten days 
and I was suffering a grate misry in my head when I got my right mind.  I did not know who 
or how many of my friends and comrads were kild and I did not know whether my wife or 
my fathers and family know any thing about me whether I was living or dead and as soon 
as I could  write I did go and wrote a letter to my wife.  Now this letter was the first that 
my wife or any body had herd from me since the battle in which I was wounded.  Now not 
many days after I wrote this letter to my wife (though it might have bin a weak) one 
morning one of the nurses cam in where I was trying to eate some breakfast and cald 
my name.  Mr. Myers, your wife is in the doctor’s office there and wants you to come in 
there.  Now I was most delightfule surprised but went in and there sure enough was my 
wife and her uncle Philip Michael for he had come with her out there.   Now the presence 
of my wife helped me very much.  Now she could tell me about all of my folks at home 
and about my brother David being dead – about Henderson Walser being did and about 
James Craver being kild at fredricksburg and a grate many other things. 

Now Phillip Michael stayed a few days and then went home.  My wife stayd with me 
and nursed me till I got able to go home.  I believe it was in febuary but I don’t know the 
date of our starting home.  I kow there was snow on the ground and pretty cold whether 
but I got a place to lay down in the cars which was a grate help to me.  Now from my 
wound in my head I suffered a long time then from other diseases – for when my head 
was getting some better I taken the cronick direah and this disease kept me in a very 
weake condition most all summer.  I grieved very much for something sower to eate or 
drink.  Now I was able to walk about some and I knew Mother had some good vinager 
and drank the most of it.  Now this drink of vinager did not hurt me any but helped me, for 
it seemed like my sistern needed something sower and after I drank the vinager I never 
had any more craving appetite or thurst for something sower.

	Now toward fall of the year I began to improve very fast.  I could eate any thing 
any time and very often get up from table before I had enough for I was ashamed to eate 
so hoggish.  I continued to improve very fast and till the first of December 1863 I started 
back to the army and got to my regment on christmus day the 25 of December 1863.  
Now it had bin twelve months and thirteen days from the time I was wonded till I got back 
to the army.  Now as best I can remember we stayd there a while that is virginey, then 
we come though Richmond and into N.C. down at Kinston NC.  I believe this was about 
the last of January 1864.  We went in camp near Kinston.

	Just acros News river from Kinston now our Brigade was made up of the 
following Regments the 21. Regmen the 6 Regment.  The 54 Regment and 57 Regments 
was at this time attached to our Brigade.  

	Sometime in the Spring was faught the battle of Plymouth.  The 57 Regment did 
not go with the Brigade to this fight for in the fall of 1863 most of the 57 and 54 Regments 
was capturd and these two Regments was recruiting up and was left at Kinston to do gard 
duty and c.  But General Hoke and General Ransom with their brigades – with other troops – 
went and whiped the yankies out of Plymoth and taken the town and many prisoners and 
taken the yanky general I believe his name was General Wessol.  Then they returned back 
to camp. 

	We stayed here a wile till sometime in May.  Then we started to new bern, had 
som fighting on the way, capturing som prisoners – and capturd twenty three men who was 
in our army – but they had went to the yankes and was fighting aganst their country and so 
was found when capturd they was tried by court marshel found guilty.  All of them was hung 
and the brigates was formed in a hollow squas around the galos.  The first hanging was 
thirteen: all of them fell at one time it made the gallos crack, at an other time seven-and the 
last time three.  And now we went on toward newbern but we was called back and sent to  
VA where grant and Lees fighting at wildress.  

	We met General Lees army the other side of Richmond just after the Spotselvany 
battle.  Grant was trying to flank around Lee and take Richmond but he could not get to 
Richmond.  We was in line of battle several days fighting and skirmishing.  Then General 
Lee sent general Early with severl Brigads to the vally of Virginia and my Regment was in 
the march to the vally.  We marched part of the way then got on cars and run to Lynchburg.  
Then we was hurried through the town and met the yankys about a mile from the town; then 
the fight commons.  We stoped them that evening but next morning they tryed to advance 
into Lynchburg but we run them back.  General Hunter was the yanky General.  He got 
sceared and left out from Lynchburg.  

New the first night at this pace I was put in front of the pickets – about a hunderd yards and 
a young man or boy by the name of Livingood was with me.  Now it is deth according to miliary 
law to be found aseep on out post but I could not keep him awake and sometime in the night 
my captin com around to our post and found Livegood a sleeps but captin Hunter never 
reported him so he was not punshed or hung.  Now this young man very soon got sick and 
was taken to the hospitle and diede so I was told and so I believe there was som diseas that 
working on him then that caused him to be so slepy headed on the out post.  

	General Early and all his army folod on after General Hunter.  We caught up with 
him had a little fight but Hunter was cohard and would not fight.  Now going up the vally we 
got lots of cherys for they was ripe.  Now we had left General Lees army near Richmond on 
July the 13 1864 and we had a skirmish near Lexington, Va. About 20 of July and when we 
got to Lexington we marched around General Jacksons grave for he was buried there.  We 
continued our march up the valley but we did not overtake General Hunter any more.  About 
the 24 of July I began to feel a little sick and for two days I would fall out of ranks and march 
along as it suited me but evry night I would get to my company.  On the 25 we had got in ten 
miles of Stanton.  On Sunday we rested all day.  Monday we started toward Stanton.  I didn’t 
feele able to walk but I had to walk for the ambulances was all full.  We got to Stanton before 
12 o’clock.  I stoped there and rested and felt very well and I thought in the morning I will go 
on and catch up with my command but a bout an our before sundown I take a chill, the 
hardest chill I had ever had it lasted about one hour then next morning I felt alwright.  Thinking 
as I had the day before that in the morning I will go on and catch u with the army but that evening 
about an our before sundown I had the hardest chill that I ever had in my life.  Then after the 
chill left me I commenst asking all over evry bone in me hurt except my hands and feets.  
This continued for five days then the sick stomach left me then the fever set in.  I broke out 
all over like anybody with the messels.  They moved me three times the last time in the 
second story of a large bilding which had bin built for an assilum.  While I was so very sick 
two boys would  bring me sompthing to ete.  I would very often say I am so sick I cant eate.  
They would say eate it if you don’t we will take it back.   

Now such talk to a person as sick as I was and a long way from home or friends makes one 
feel very bad.  I tride to write a letter to my wife but could not write my hands trimbled so I 
could not write.   So I got a man to write this was 10 days before this time to my wife his 
name was Smith he wrote a letter to her and she come to see me as soon as she could.  
Now I rember very well her taking a cover off of my face and I looked up and saw her.  Now 
her coming to me I was getting a little better.  Now from this time on I improved very fast 
and somtime about the last of august I got a furlow and we come home and stayed till I got 
well.  Started back about the 15 of November and got to my company about the 20 of Nov 
the company was at Leasys Springs in VA but I have missed som that I could have wrote 
before now for I was in the battle at Drurys Bluf about the 10 of May.  Here was a hard fight 
but we run old Butler back.  Now in going in to this fight we came up with their picket lines, 
one man would not surrender so Bill Horry shot him.  We went on and fired at the yanks.  
Now when I tried to lods my gun and tried to draw the ramrod to push the cartrage down I 
could not draw it out so after working and worying with it a while I get down behind a stump 
for the bullets was costing  all around me but I said to myself this will never do to be killed 
back here for all the troops had gone on.  So I got up and made a powerful pull at the ramrod 
and drew it out and pushed the catrage down and now herd something in the top of the pine 
trees that was out down all over the ground and then waked around and saw a man laying on 
his belley flater than ever you saw a lisard lay on the ground.  His arms was stretched out at 
full length and he looked like he wanted to sink in the ground.  I said to him what are you doing 
laying there.  Get up and go and go with me up to the line of battle if you dont I will report you.  
Well he got up but insted of going up to the line of battle he run back and it looked to me like 
he was runing for life.  He may have lived after this run.  I dont know or he may be runing yet 
for all I know.  I went on up the lines of battle, but we soon fell back and went around, come 
up with the yankes at an other place.  

	The sharpe shooters was before us.  One of them got on a fence and he looked and 
looked it seemed till he saw his object then fired and jumped down.  The balls was cuting 
around us thick.  We stoped prety soon and fought till our amunition gave out then the 
Georgia regment charged over us and started the yankes back.  I though our regment was 
going with them in the charge but they dident.  I went with them a little while then went back 
to my command.  I got me a new gun, a new blanket and all the _______ I wanted.  To our 
right the South Carolina had charged and had kiled lots of yankes  we drove old Butler 
back in burmudy hundes stayed here a few days.  Then I believe we stayed around and 
guarded Petersburg a few days and back to Lecys Springs in Virginia we went and stayed 
there till sometime near Christmus.  We then went to William about five miles of Petersburg 
Va and built winter quarters.  We put up cabins out of old field pine logs and done gard 
duty along hatches run and about the last of Febuary there was a battle but our troop run 
them back.  I was not in this battle for my wife was then with me in our camp therefore I 
was excused from service that day.  The reason my wife was there is this.  

She had come with her sister to a hospitle near Petersburg to see her sick husband 
James A. Myers and had come to our camp to see me for I had bin at the hospitle the 
day before and she had come with me to our camp.  We stayed here till the first of 
March 1865 then went a bout a mile nearer Petersburg and built cabins agane.  We 
stayed here about two week and then we was caled to Petersburg to front lines.  Our 
lines was not more than a hunderd yards from the yanks line.  We had brest works to 
stay in and so did the yankes.  We had pickets in front of us and as did the yankes.  
There was shooting going on all the time and sombody kiled evry day. 

	I was detaled to gard our doctors tent which was in a low place about fifty 
yards from our line.  That night I went to my company to get my rations and while I was 
there the yankes made a move toward our lines.  The shooting commenst from both 
sides.  I stood up and shot all night and about midnight it commenst raining but the 
yankes never got to our lines.  The next night the yankes tried it agane and I had went 
to get my ratons just like the night before.  I run back to the doctors tent to get my gun 
but the doctors said no you stay here and guard our tent.  These other two dident go 
last night.  They must go tonight and you stay here.  So I did stay but the canon balls 
come so close to me that it looked like they would cut through the tent but nary one 
struck it.  Just because the tent was a little to low for them to hit.  

	Now we stayed here on duty day and night till about the 24 of March.  On 
that night there was a detail made from the army.  They said the detail must be of the 
best men, anyway we did not know any thing about what the detail was to do.  We 
was taken down in a low place and kept there a while before day.  Then we was 
marched up to the line.  Then crosing our brestworks began our detail crost.  We 
was to suport the pickets in front of us.  So we went on, our men before us capturd 
their picket line before they now we was about.  Now they crosed their brestworks 
and taken their batery before a gun was fired.  Now it getting light the sun was about 
up here goes Yankes runing every way.  I capturd som of them and started back with 
them but could not get over the brest works for comtime for our army was crosing so 
I had to waite perhaps a half our.  Then I crosed with my priseners and take them back 
behind our works where there was hunderds of prisoners taken from our parts of the line.  
So I deliverd them to the officers and started back for now there was powfull fighting 
going on and had bin for sometimes.  I started back and met litters caring out the 
wonded.  One man caled me to him telling me to write to his wife that he was going to 
die.  This man was Ad Richard out of our company.  He was shot in the stomach the ball 
past through him.  He was taken to the doctors tent.  I asked Dr. Morton what he thought 
about Richards wound.  He said he had not examined it yet but it looked like a fatle 
wound.  After the battle I wrote to his wife about his being badly wounded but Ad Richard 
got wel and lived many years after the war. 

And now I went up to the brestworks and was going to cross but at this time General 
Gordon came riding along the brestworks and gave command for nobody to cross the 
brestworks for he said the army was falling back and shure enough they did fall back 
for they would come to our brestworks and fall over to get across the brestworks the 
quickest way they could becaus the Yankes was shooting at them all the time.  So 
they was in a hurry to get across the brestworks.  And now the battle is over, and our 
army got badly whiped back and many have spoke about this battle that after our army 
crossed it seemed that victory was in our hands but by some bad general ship our 
victory cliped from us.  Now many such instances as this during the war where victory 
on our side seemed to be certain but was a failure.  So many writers say the war was 
to come to an end as it did becaus a higher power was controling it and that it must 
end as it did end.  

	Now as soon or a little wile after our men got back across our brestworks a 
white flag or white hankerchef was raised and then the yankys raised a white flag then 
everybody that wanted to do so got on the brestwork and both brestworks was full of 
men standing on top and looking at each other.  Now the works here was not more than 
five yards apart.  Now our officers and the yanky officer met about half way between the 
two brestworks and made arangments for geting our men that was kiled carried back to 
our side.  Now at this time I was holding the white flag and was ordered out half way 
between our works and their work.  Their litter barers would carrie our doctor to this 
place.  Then our litters would carrie them our works and put them across our works.  
Now it taken about an hour and a half to get them across.  Now our litter barers and the 
yanky litter barriers was not alowd to talk to each other but our officers and the yanky 
officers talken very freely and friendly.  Som of them inquired about their old friend and 
relations.  One captin came and he said You are very smat people for you waked me up 
to soon this morning you dident let me get my morning knap out this morning.  Now they 
was very friendly but now the litters have done their work.  Our ded are all carried across 
and now evry body back to their side and they stod on the brestworks and looke at each 
other ten or fifteen minutes.  Then sombody cauld out and said take down your flag and
we will go to exchanging led agane.  Then the flags was taken down and then if a man 
was seen on either side he would be shot at and very often kiled. 

	Now I go across the works see our men that was kiled and put over the brestworks 
and they told me there was a hunderd in our pile.  Some that was shot through their heads
and their brains runing out but was still breething.  Now we stay here about seven or eight 
days or till the second day of April 1865.  That morning or night I dont know which we started 
to falling back and keept on going till we was nearly surrounded by the yankys.  We was in 
four ranks when the coller barrier was calld to go farward toward a cut or low place in the big 
rode.  So he went with the flag and I followed him.  We jumped over a fence in the rode.  
The regment follod us.  Now the yankys surrounded us and capturd us saying to us as the 
cam up throw down your guns jonnys and surrender and we surreded.  

They was very clver to us so we fowled on that day.  Next day they started us back to prison.  
They taken us to James River.  There we got on a steambote and landed at a new prison called 
newport news.  Now there was about three thousand in this prison but only three of my 
company.  These three was about all that was left of my company, when it was made up at 
Salesbury it numbered on hunderd.  These two of our company that was with me and capturd 
when I was there names Wills Houpe and Marton Fifer – both from Iredel County, N.C.  They 
kep us here till the last of June.  I got home the first of July 1865 Sunday after noon.  Now I 
was one of the first men that was wonded at Fredricksburg on the 13 of December, 1862.  
The Regment went in to this grate charge with about eight hunderd men.  This was the first 
battle the Regment was ever in and now I was one of the three capturd left of the company 
of 100 men when the Regment was mad up.  They did not feede us very good in this prison, 
peas, codfish and crackars was our rations.  We would boil the fish till we got them done
enough so we could work them up into little cakes.  Then we would fry them.  This was all the 
way we could fix them fit to eate.  We would cook som peas for dinner then we would get 
around our pan.  Each of us had his spoon and we diped in the pan one after the other.  
One got no more spoonfuls than the other.  I could dip out just as big a spoonful as the 
others and my spoon always come out of the pan full and as I have said I got home on 
Sunday or to my Fathers – nobody home but som of the children.  They was at my wife’s 
fathers.  I sent for them, they all came.  My father and mother, my wife and her father and 
mother, Brother James and his wife.  We have often herd it said no lace like home sweete 
home.  This is tru to a person who has bin away from hom three years more or less under 
a master or many masters – not a free cittisen, but now at home once more a free man not 
in war.  When they say go you must go and when they say come you must come but 
nobody will ever know what being a free man is and being at home once more with his wife 
and Father and Mother, Brothers and Sisters and friends untill they have past through som 
of the hard tryals that a solder has to go through with. 

	Now as I have said the war is over.  The soldiers what is left of them has gone hom 
but we have no money or anything only a solder suite of cloths.  I dident have a copper cent.  
There was nothing much in the country and now the negros is free and all the men that was 
here was those that was to old to go in the war.  So there was nobody to work only the 
solders that got back home from the war but we all went to work and could did work for the 
solders that was fortunate enuff to get back home are the people that started up every thing 
in the southern states.  

	Now as to money I had none.  Nobody had any for our confedrate money died 
when the war closed and now in 1865 and for severel years afterwards there was good crops 
of fruits and evrybody divided fruits and picked blackburys and driede and sold at Lexington 
to a man by the name off Brink.  Brink was a northern man.  He cam to Lexington and put 
up a store and bought dried fruite and dride blackburys.  He paid money or sold goods for the 
fruite and buryes that was brought to his store.  Now this was the first money we had after 
the war.   

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