Saturday, April 23, 2011

Civil War Ancestors - Josie's Brothers

One of my great grandmothers was named Philena Josephine Allen - not surprisingly she shortened her name to Josie.  If Philena had not been written in early census records, probably we would have never known about that part of her name.  Josie was the youngest child in her family, born in 1856.  In 1876, Josie married John Jefferson Hays, son of Elias Hays whose Civil War service can be found here. I have found Civil War records for Josie's three oldest brothers.  They did not join the same armies - the eldest, Augustus, joined the Union Army.  Henry and Nat joined the Confederacy.  Brother against brother.

Augustus A. Allen, born 21 May 1841 in Sevier County, Arkansas, lived most of his married life in Scott County, Arkansas, but fought in a Missouri unit on the Union side during the Civil War - he filed for his Invalid Pension on 20 Mar 1877, his wife Mary Keeton filed for widow's pension [7 Apr 1883 - Augustus died 9 Jan 1882] until she remarried [24 Apr 1884], and a Minor's Pension Application was filed for the two younger daughters on 1 Sep 1887.  Mary refiled some 10 years after the death of her 2nd husband and that application lingered in limbo for about six years before she finally received her payments.  The file is lengthy and contains numerous medical reports and examinations.

During the war, Augustus contracted lung fever [pneumonia] and chronic diarrhea. He was hospitalized at a regimental hospital, sent to a hospital in Little Rock, Arkansas, and eventually sent north to Wisconsin for treatment.   He never really recovered and was considerably debilitated; double pneumonia attributed to his weakened condition and his death in January of 1882.  It is obvious from all the testimony of his neighbors and medical evidence that Augustus was a very sick man for years.
Augustus enlisted 15 Sep 1863 and was mustered in 30 Oct 1863, in Co F of the 8th Regt of the Missouri Cavalry and served under Col. W. F. Geiger; later attached to Co K of the 11th Regt. His description given as 5' 6", light complexion, auburn hair, blue eyes. [a medical exam later says he was 5' 10'] He was discharged 17 Jul 1865 at Little Rock, Arkansas.

When Augustus applied for his pension he had trouble with proof of his service because he didn't know the whereabouts of any of his old Regiment. He had served in Missouri but his home was ever in Arkansas. When he was discharged at Little Rock, his unit was in St. Louis. Augustus was eventually awarded pension of $6 from Jul 18, 1865, ending 9 Jan 1882 when he died. He was deemed to be one-half disabled. I'm not sure any of the pension payment was actually received before his death.

A letter written by Dr. Jennings on 15 May 1883, states that he was personally acquainted with Augustus A. Allen and his father previous to the War and knew full well how both suffered on account of their union principles. He could not provide any additional specific history of his treatment, but thought that might be found in the St. Johns Hospital [in Little Rock] case book.

A letter written by Dr. Elijah Leming on 15 May 1883, stated that he had attended Augustus A. Allen in his last illness, double pneumonia, proving fatal on the third day. "Some two or three weeks before I was called to see him he was attacked with pneumonia while coming from market (some forty miles distant) and was attended by my brother Dr. J. K. Leming. He recovered slowly. I was called to see him on account of the absence of my brother and found the patient much emaciated and his strength gave way rapidly. This was the only time I have treated him but have known him as an acquaintance ...he often complained of pain of the not think he was able to do more than half the amount of manual labor a healthy man should do."
One of the depositions given when Mary applied to reinstate her widow's pension after the death of her second husband [Wiley Snell Robinson] was that of Thomas W. Stone, 20 Oct 1921. Mr. Stone was a real estate dealer and had known all the parties involved. He had been in Scott County for 71 years. He pointed out that he knew of Augustus A. Allen's family from the early days and that he was commonly called "Bud" Allen.

Henry Clay Allen, Josie's second oldest brother, was born 16 Nov 1843.  He married Ann Eliza Hays, daughter of Elias Hays and brother to John Jefferson Hays - but that was after the War, in 1868.  Henry served in the Confederacy.  Annie E. Allen applied to the state of Arkansas for Pension as a Widow of a Confederate Soldier on 9 April 1923 - Henry had died in December of 1912.  She did receive the pension but the Arkansas papers do not give dollar amounts.

Proof of Henry Clay Allen's service came from B. R. Jacobs of Idabel, OK who said he had known Henry C. Allen for about 60 years and that he was a Confederate soldier in Company E Infantry of 19th Arkansas, Hardies Regiment, Churchill Division from about Dec of 1862 to about May 1865, Lee's Surrender. Affidavit was dated 27 Apr 1923. F. M. Cecil, of Vandervoort, Polk County, AR, also testified that he had known Henry C. Allen for sixty years and that he served as stated by Mr. Jacobs; testimony dated 2 May 1923.

Annie was incapacitated for manual labor by reason of old age and had no property exceeding $500 not including the value of her homestead. She had no income in excess of $250 per year.  Annie filled another Questionnaire from the State Auditor's Office in 1932 and was by then living with her daughter Lula Phillips in Van Buren, Arkansas.  Lula was the youngest of their ten children. Annie and Henry are buried in unmarked graves in a small cemetery in Crawford County, Arkansas, near where they lived their entire married life.

A third brother, Nathaniel Orrin "Nat" Allen, born 12 Feb 1844, also served in the Confederacy - in the very same unit with Henry.  They appear to have enlisted together and were discharged at the same time.  Nathaniel was born in Polk Co, Arkansas and died there 29 Sep 1933, age 89.  He did move to Texas after the death of his first wife, Sarah Lebow, in 1878, but was back in Polk County just in time for the 1900 Census.

Nat applied for his pension 1 Apr 1924 when he was 79 years old. Nat stated that he was incapacitated due to old age.  A doctor's examination by T. B. Young concurred that his health was feeble on account of old age.  F. M. Cecil, also of Polk Co, made affidavit on 2 May 1925, that he had known N. O. Allen for sixty years and he had served as stated in Company E, 19th Regiment [Hardies], Churchill Division from December 1862 to May 1865, Lee's surrender.  He stated further that Allen was honorably discharged and had never deserted. 

About three months after the death of Nat, in Dec of 1933, his widow Ella (Rebecca Ella Coker his third wife) applied to continue the pension.  She had married Nat on 10 Jan 1894, Red River County, Texas.  She had to certify that she had lived in Arkansas for at least five years, had no property exceeding $500 [she said her homestead was worth $400] and no income over $250 per year [she had none except the pension].  No amount for the pension is stated.

Nat's funeral home records refer to him as a "Southern Soldier".  Nat and Ella are buried Pleasant Grove Cemetery, near Cove, Polk County, Arkansas - where his parents are also buried.

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