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Dr. Russell McCord had a second family while in Brazil.



Dr. Russell

BIRTH 5 JUNE 1833 • South Carolina, USA

DEATH 8 JANUARY 1885 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA

Married:  19 Oct 1858 • Bibb County, Alabama, USA

Anne Elizabeth Ferguson

BIRTH 4 APR 1834 • Alabama, USA

DEATH 26 JUNE 1930 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA

....Dr. Russell McCord was a migrant from Alabama who settled in the town of Macaé. Saldaña Mariño signed McCord’s Masonic certificates for the years 1872, 1874, 1875, and 1879. These documents comprise the best records of the U.S. Confederate Masonic–Brazilian partnership. Scottish Rite Masons will be particularly attracted to Saldaña Mariño because of his activity in the mid-1860s in the cause of separation of church and state.

.Dr. McCord’s Masonic documents are historic in another way. A second signer was the eminent José Maria da Silva Paraños, best known as the Visconde do Rio Branco. He was Grand Master of the Grande Oriente do Brasil, and he was the author of the first emancipation legislation that led, 17 years later, to the abolition of slavery in his nation.

What was life like for former Southerners in Portuguese-speaking Brazil? In fact, half the Confederate North Americans quit and went home within ten years. But the rest stuck it out nobly and left a heritage that lives today, albeit as a small minority among the 170,000 citizens of Americana.


SOURCE:  Washington Lodge  Freemasons


Former Selma resident,

Dr. Russell McCord his wife and three children resided North of Rio

Mrs. McCord, who died in Selma in June 1930, in her 96th year, widow of Dr. Russell McCord, a physician, was an early settler. The Doctor, his wife, and three children resided North of Rio, some distance in the country. He was employed by a wealthy plantation owner, a widow, and a close relative of the Emperor.

For most of their stay of 18 years, they lived in the family of the Countess and it cannot be said that their experiences were like those of the other families who went down. Dr. McCord was Medical Officer for a large plantation, had a lucrative practice and good income. They returned to America only when his health failed. He passed away in 1885 is buried in Live Oak Cemetery in Dallas County, Alabama.


From Find A Grave

Father: David James Russell
Mother: Emmeline [or Emmiline] Wagner
Stepmother: Louisa Susannah Cheves
1840 - Lived, Columbia, Richland Co., SC
1852-1853 - Attended, University of Pennsylvania Medical Department (from: Columbia, Richland Co., SC; preceptor: Dr. E. Geddings)
1853 - M.D. degree, University of Pennsylvania Medical Department, Philadelphia, PA (from: South Carolina; thesis: "Aneurism")
10/19/1858 - Married, Ann Eliza Ferguson (1834-1930), Bibb Co., AL
1860 - Druggist, Selma, Dallas Co., AL (living with wife, A. E. McCord)
04/29/1862 - Enlisted, Pvt., 42nd AL Infantry, Mobile, AL
05/16/1862 - Mustered in, Columbus, MS
07/00/1862 - Surgeon, 42nd AL Infantry, Columbus, MS
08/00/1862 - Surgeon, 42nd AL Infantry, Columbus, MS
09/12/1862 - Surgeon, 42nd AL Infantry, A.V.C. [Alabama Volunteer Corps]
09/26/1862 - Appointed Asst. Surgeon, Provisional Army of the Confederate States, to rank from 05/12/1862
09/26/1862 - Confirmed as Asst. Surgeon by the Confederate States Senate
10/00/1862 - Surgeon, 42nd AL Infantry, Camp Rogers, MS
10/03-05/1862 - Present, Corinth, MS
02/01/1863 - Surgeon, 42nd AL Infantry, Vicksburg, MS
04/27/1863 - Passed Confederate Army Board of Medical Examination for the position of Surgeon, Vicksburg, MS
07/09/1863 - Appointed Surgeon, Provisional Army of the Confederate States, to rank from 04/27/1863
08/22/1863 - As Surgeon, 42nd AL Infantry, Selma, AL, signed a requisition for a tent and a fly - on the requisition he wrote, "On account of the surrender of Vicksburg [MS], my tent was lost"
10/01/1863 - Surgeon, 42nd AL Infantry, Demopolis, AL
12/15/1863 - Surgeon, 42nd AL Infantry, A. V. C [Alabama Volunteer Corps]
01/30/1864 - Confirmed as Surgeon by the Confederate States Senate
05/31/1864 - Surgeon, 42nd AL Infantry
08/15/1864 - Surgeon, Division Hospital, 42nd AL Infantry, Baker's Brigade, Clayton's Division, Atlanta, GA
08/31/1864 - "Transferred from Dept. with Command"
10/00/1864 - Promoted to Division Surgeon [?Liddell's Division]
10/13/1864 - Surgeon, Blakely Island, near Mobile, AL
10/23/1864 - Assigned to duty as Chief Surgeon, Gen. St. John R. Liddell's Division, District of the Gulf
03/00/1865 - Surgeon, 42nd AL Infantry, Baker's Brigade, Liddell's Division, Army of the Gulf
04/09/1865 - Captured, Ft. Blakely, AL, as a Surgeon, East Division, District of the Gulf, Confederate States Army
04/00/1865 - As Chief Surgeon, E. D. D. Gulf [East Division, District of the Gulf] on a list of [captured] Surgeons sent to Vicksburg, MS, to Gen. Hospital, via New Orleans, LA, from Spanish Fort, AL
04/16/1865 - Received as a prisoner, Ship Island, MS
04/28/1865 - Prisoner, Ship Island, MS
04/30/1865 - Prisoner, New Orleans, LA
05/01/1865 - Exchanged
05/09/1865 - Paroled, Meridian MS
Late 1860's - Emigrated to Brazil and practiced medicine as a Medical Officer for "a very large plantation [north of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil] owned by a close relative of the Emperor of Brazil"
11/22/1867 - Received a visa from the United States Consulate to Brazil
1872,1874,1875,1879 - Lived and was a Mason, northern portion of the Brazilian province of Rio, in the vicinity of the town of Macaé
1880 - Lived, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
1880 - Wife, A. E. McCord, lived in Selma, Dallas Co., AL, with 3 daughters Dr. McCord is not listed as living with them in the 1880 U.S. Census
Early 1880's - Returned from Brazil to Alabama because of failing health
01/08/1885 - Died, Selma, Dallas Co., AL
08/00/1909 - Ann Eliza McCord, widow, received an Alabama state pension

John Coon, Jr. provided input to this biography.

This biographical sketch is from:
Hambrecht, F.T. & Koste, J.L., Biographical
register of physicians who served the
Confederacy in a medical capacity.
09/05/2014. Unpublished database.



A Confluence of Transatlantic Networks

Laura Jarnigan  Pages 219-220



…Russell Paul McCord was an Alabamian who migrated to Brazil with his friends the Gunters. …. McCord and his wife, the former Ann Eliza Ferguson, lived for a while in Macae, a part of the sugar-growing Campos region of northern Rio province where Furquim de Almeida had close ties with the local planters and Laes held properties.  Later, McCord moved to nearby Campos.  Many members of the Ferguson family from South Carolina were among the southerners who were in Brazil, and although no firm connections between them and Ann Eliza have been established, the probability that there seems high. (Webmasters note: Hugh Ferguson was originally from Chester District, South Carolina, where the other Ferguson emigrants also hailed from – very likely these Ferguson families were related).  The fact that Russell McCord was originally from Columbia, South Carolina, further strengthens the possibility of a kinship linkage.  McCord received his M.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1853 and was licensed to practice in Brazil by the Faculdade de Medicina in November 1866.  His first Brazilian Masonic certificate was dated 1872 and his 1879 certificate indicates he had been a member of the Scottish Rite in the United States.  The McCords returned to Alabama in 1884 and lived in Dallas County, where Russell renewed his license to practice medicine not long before his death in 885.

Among the surviving McCord papers is an 1861 invitation from Mr.&Mrs. Edward C. Peronneauof Georgia requesting that the McCords visit them at their home, Dungannon, in April.  The Peroneau’s daughter  Clelia’s father-in-law, Benjamin Edward Stiles (1794-?), was a close associate and friend of Godfrey Barnsley, father of Brazil migrants George and Lucien Barnsley.  The Peronneaus were members and planters of Huguenot descent whose members lived variously in Charleston and Goose Creek, South Caroli.  Located on the Santee River region, the latter community included a knot of other Huguenots families, including the prominent Bonneau family.  Floride Bonneau and John Ewing Colhoun, who married her cousin, the influential southern politician John C. Calhoun.

The Russel McCords counted Joao Jose Carneiro de Silva (another Sao Paulo law school graduate) and his family among their friends in Brazil.  In 1879, Ann McCord wrote a letter of condolence to Joao Jose following his mother’s death.  He replied and thanked her for “this proof of friendship and you believe we also keep an agreeable remembrance of your stay here, of your good and interesting daughters.”  This question is not a translation, Carneiro de Silva’s English was nearly flawless.

The Carneiro de Silvas of the Campos-Macae area was one of the most prominent nineteenth-century sugar-growing clans in Brazil.  They were modernizers in the sugar cultivation and mechanization industries and played a major commercial role in the international sugar market.  In the late 1870s the Carneiro de Silva s and the Costa Pintos (also of Rio province), and a few northeastern sugar producers constructed the first sugar refineries in the country.  Te Carneiro de Silvas was the first to have their engenho central, Quissama, up and running.  They were the innovators in project financing, employing an open corporate system that used family capital to start construction but welcomed external investors.  A corporate arrangement between the clan and the shareholders reduced individual financial risk while increasing investment in technology and labor, thereby minimizing losses to all in the aftermath of abolition.  The family’s pride in its accomplishment is captured in a letter from Joao Jose to Ann McCord: “You must know perhaps we have established a large central Factory for making sugar from the canes of all fazendas belonging to the family.  It was a great impulse for the progress of this facility…..        

The Selma Times,  Fri. Jan 9, 1885  Page 4

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The Selma Times, Tues. Jan 8, 1885  Page 4 

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The Selma Times,  Thu. Jun 26, 1930 . Pages 1 & 3

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Continued below (Left)

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1.  Emma McCord

2.  Caroline "Carrie" McCord

3.  Mary McCord


Emma McCord


BIRTH 16 JAN 1861 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA

DEATH 6 NOV 1949 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama,USA


George Adams Wilkins


BIRTH 21 JAN 1858 • St Mary's Parish, Louisiana, USA

DEATH 31 DEC 1896 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA

Son of Richard Augustine Wilkins and Margaret Adams Minge


Caroline Wilkins


BIRTH 12 NOV 1886 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA

DEATH 14 OCT 1964 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA

Married: 26 Oct 1909 • Dallas, Alabama, USA

Atlas Jones "Martin" Atkins


BIRTH 12 FEB 1884 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA

DEATH 10 SEP 1928 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA

Son of Maj. Victor Boardman Atkins and Mary Bethune Martin



George Wilkins Atkins


BIRTH 9 OCT 1912 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA

DEATH 24 MAR 1938 • New Orleans, Jefferson Parish, Louisiana, USA (Brain tumor)


Bettina Silva


BIRTH 5 SEP 1913 • Thomasville, Thomas, Georgia, USA

DEATH 26 AUG 2015

Daughter of Thomas James Silva and Ethel K Dekle



History, Passenger & Crew Biographies, and Lusitania Facts

Thomas Silva, 26, of Thomasville, Georgia, and Temple, Texas, United States was a cotton broker for the Cotton Exchange in Savannah, Georgia.  He was on his way to Bremen, Germany, by way of the Lusitania on business, and almost did not make the trip because his passport was expired.  He was unable to fix this problem while in New York, so he went to Washington, D.C., personally to resolve this situation.  His passport finally ready, he sailed aboard Lusitania‘s last voyage.  Silva was lost in the disaster, his last moments aboard the ship were reported by Charles Thomas Jeffery of Kenosha, Wisconsin.  Silva’s body may have been recovered (#146) but was never identified.

Bettina would marry 2nd: After 1940, 

Edwin Brown Callaway


BIRTH 28 APR 1910 • Americus, Sumter, Georgia, USA

DEATH MAR 1985 • Arlington, Arlington, Virginia, USA

They would divorce 31 Jan 1973  •  Duval, Florida, USA


Caroline Wilkins Atkins


BIRTH 03 NOV 1919 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA

DEATH 24 APR 1973 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA

Married:  7 Mar 1944 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama

Chambliss Keith Jr


BIRTH 17 NOV 1915 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA

DEATH 24 JUL 1962 • Fort Walton Beach, Okaloosa, Florida, USA



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Julian Parke Keith Sr.


BIRTH 24 MAR 1946 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA

DEATH 17 JUL 2017 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA

Married::  12 Aug 1972 • Suttle, Perry, Alabama, USA

Brenda Gail Cummings


BIRTH 3 NOV 1946 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA

DEATH 18 SEP 2013

Julian Parke Keith Sr. passed away at home, Monday, July 17, 2017, of cancer. Parke was born in Selma, March 24, 1946.

He was predeceased by his parents, Chambliss Keith Jr., and Caroline Atkins Keith.

He is survived by his wife, Brenda Cummings Keith; two children, Parke (Laura) Keith Jr. of Huntsville, and Chambliss Keith Brister (David) of Mobile; sister, Ada Keith Kramer of Olympia, Washington; brother, Chambliss (Chunkie) Keith, III of Olympia, Washington; five grandchildren, Anna Claire Keith, Caroline Keith, Atkins Keith, Parke Brister and Koen Brister.


Ada Hooper Keith


BIRTH 13 MAR 1952 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA

Married:  24 Jul 1981 • Thurston, Washington, USA

Richard Mark Kramer


BIRTH 5 MAR 1953 • Great Falls, New York City, New York, USA


Chambliss Keith III

BIRTH 16 APR 1954 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA

Married:  26 Apr 1980 • Thurston, Washington, USA

Anne Leslie Davidson


BIRTH 29 JAN 1958 • St Paul, Ramsey, Minnesota, USA

Divorce:  1 Oct 1996 • Thurston, Washington, USA

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Caroline “Carrie” McCord


BIRTH 2 DEC 1862 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA

DEATH 30 APR 1939 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA


Julian Barton Parke


BIRTH 01 MAR 1862 • Selma, Dallas County, Alabama, USA

DEATH 17 APR 1955 • Selma, Dallas County, Alabama, USA

Son of Dr. Clifford Daniel McCord and Louisa Swift

No Children

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The Selma Times, Selma, Alabama

25 Nov 1917, Sun  •  Page 7

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The Selma Times-Journal (Selma, Alabama)19 Apr 1955, TuePage 1

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Mary McCord

BIRTH ABT 1878 • Selma, Dallas, Alabama, USA

DEATH 30 JUN 1957 • Tampa, Hillsborough, Florida, USA

Married: Before 1909

William Frank Bailey


BIRTH 13 AUG 1862 • Anderson County, South Carolina, USA

DEATH 10 MAY 1941 • Tampa, Hillsborough County, Florida, USA

William was married first to Ida Catherine Baya, daughter of Florencia Baya and Mary Garcia Reyes.   They were married about 1893 and had one son, Dr. Buel William Bailey, a dentist who relocated, with his widowed mother to Oakland, Alameda, California.  While still in Florida Ida had remarried to Christian Forrest Baldwin who died on February 14, 1919, and is buried in St. Augustine, Florida.  

Ida Catherine Baya


BIRTH 30 NOV 1868 • Saint Augustine, St Johns, Florida, USA

DEATH 31 JAN 1945 • Alameda, Alameda, California, USA


Buel William Bailey


BIRTH 22 MAY 1894 • Saint Augustine, St Johns, Florida, USA

DEATH 8 JUL 1979 • Miami-Dade County, Florida, USA

Married: 13 Jun 1950 • Alameda, Alameda, California, USA

Estelle Demedicis


BIRTH 1 MAY 1895 • St Augustine, St Johns, Florida, USA

DEATH 14 JAN 1974 • Coral Gables, Miami-Dade, Florida, USA

Daughter of Emanuel Euloquis deMedicis and Margaret A Dowd

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The Selma Times-Journal

01 Jul 1957, Mon.,  Page 12


The Selma Times-Journal

16 May 1941, Fri.,  Page 6


Oakland Tribune (Oakland, California) 02 Feb 1945, Fri Page 15

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Col. David James McCord


BIRTH 16 JAN 1797 • Fort Motte, Calhoun, South Carolina, USA

DEATH 12 MAY 1855 • Columbia, Richland, South Carolina, USA

Married 1st:  5 Feb 1818 • Charleston,  South Carolina, USA

Emmeline Wagner


BIRTH ABOUT 1793 • Orangeburg County, South Carolina, USA

DEATH 6 AUG 1839 • Columbia, Richland, South Carolina, USA

Daughter of George Wagner and Ann Hrabowski

Married 2nd:  20 May 1840 • Charleston, South Carolina, USA

Louisa Susannah Dulles Cheves


BIRTH 3 DEC 1810 • Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, USA

DEATH 23 NOV 1879 • Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, USA

Daughter of  Hon. Langdon Cheves and Mary Elizabeth Dulles

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David James McCord was an American editor and agitator.


David James McCord was born on 13 January 1797, in St. Matthew's Parish, South Carolina. He was the son of Russell and Hannah (Turquand) McCord. His grandfather, John McCord, emigrated from Ireland and about 1750 acquired lands and the ferry on the Congaree known afterward by his name.


David McCord left South Carolina College in his senior year (1813 - 14). He studied law and was admitted to the bar in Columbia in 1818.


With his partner, H. J. Nott, he began a series of reports on cases in the state courts, and, after the dissolution of the partnership in 1821, he continued the series. In 1822, he became the partner of W. C. Preston. His editorship of the Columbia Telescope began in 1823, at the time that Dr. Thomas Cooper was leading the agitation of the tariff question in South Carolina. McCord agreed with him; the Telescope became the most violent of all the nullification papers, and the editor himself was one of an influential group of state leaders in Columbia. In 1832, he was elected to the House of Representatives. After their victory in 1833, the nullifiers determined to clinch their doctrine of state sovereignty by forcing the oath of allegiance upon all state officers. This harsh business, from which the chief leaders shrank, he took in hand, and one of his distinguished opponents afterward declared him "about the bitterest politician" with whom he had been acquainted. His service in the legislature continued until 1837 when he was elected president of the Columbia branch of the Bank of the State. He lost his position in 1841, because of his support of the Whig Party in the preceding year. The death of Dr. Cooper in 1839, after he had edited five volumes of the Statutes at Large of South Carolina (1836 - 39), resulted in McCord's assignment to the task, and the remaining five volumes, including an elaborate index, were completed in three years more. At various other times, he served as intendant of Columbia, as trustee for the South Carolina College, and as trustee for the new state hospital for the insane.


  • David James McCord is most commonly known as Mayor of Columbia.



Hot-tempered, impulsive, but frank, cheerful, and a lover of good company, he lacked neither friends nor enemies. He was small but well built and, refusing all challenges, met insults instantly with fist or cane. McCord owned cotton land in Alabama, which he sold before his death. During this period of his life, his unchanged political and economic principles found expression in a number of able articles or reviews in the Southern Quarterly Review.


A year after the death of his first wife, Emmeline Wagner of Charleston, he married May 2, 1840, Louisa Susanna Cheves, the gifted daughter of Langdon Cheves. "Lang Syne, " her plantation in St. Matthew's Parish, became their home, although they later built a house in Columbia, where they resided for a part of each year.


Appletons' Cyclopedia of American Biography,

1600-1889  Page 94

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The Heatley's and Turquands were direct ancesters of David James McCord

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McCord House, also known as the McCord-Oxner House, is a historic home located in Columbia, South Carolina. It was built in 1849, and is a 1½-story clap-board Greek Revival-style cottage, with additions made in the 1850s. It sits on a stuccoed raised basement. The front facade features a one-story portico supported by four stuccoed piers. It was built by David James McCord (1797–1855), a planter, lawyer, and editor, and his wife Louisa Susannah Cheves McCord, a noted author of political and economic essays, poetry, and drama. In 1865, the McCord House became the headquarters of General Oliver O. Howard, who was General William


Tecumseh Sherman’s second in command. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1979. The house is currently owned by Henry McMaster, the incumbent Governor of South Carolina, who purchased the property in May 2016.

Children of David James McCord:

By 1st wife, Emmeline Wagner 

(No further information)

1.  Charlotte Loraine McCord

2.  Turquand McCord (1)  Died as infant

3.  Edward Richardson McCord  Died as infant

4.  Mary Eliza McCord

5.  Turquand McCord (2)  Died as infant

5.  Emma Wagner McCord

6.  Russell Paul McCord  (Our subject)

7.  Henry Junius McCord

8.  Julia Wagner McCord

9.  Turquand McCord (3)  (Died Young?)

By 2nd wife, Louise Cheves

10.  Langdon Cheves McCord

11.  Hannah Cheves McCord

12.  Loisa Rebecca McCord

Louisa Susannah Cheves





















Louisa Susannah Cheves was born December 3, 1810, in Charleston to Langdon Cheves and his wife, Mary Elizabeth Dulles.


























Her paternal grandfather, Alexander Cheves, came from Aberdeen, Scotland, to the U.S. in the latter half of the 18th century. He married Mary Langdon, a daughter of Dr. Thomas Langdon, of Virginia. They settled in the frontier country of South Carolina in what was later Abbeville County. Here, during a Native American raid on September 17, 1776, in a blockhouse where the people had taken refuge from the Native Americans, Langdon Cheves was born, the father of Louisa McCord. Her maternal grandfather, Joseph Dulles, a native of Dublin, came to the U.S.  during the same period in which Alexander Cheves had come. He married Sophia, the daughter of Colonel William Heatley, of St. Matthew's parish, South Carolinaand his wife, Maria Louisa Courtonne, the daughter of a Huguenot pastor. Their daughter, Mary Elizabeth, became the wife of Langdon Cheves. Of this union, Louisa was the firstborn.

The early years of Louisa Cheves' life were closely influenced by her father's interests and surroundings. In October 1810 (the year of her birth), Langdon Cheves was elected from the Charleston Congressional District to Congress, where he took his seat in session with Lowndes, Williams, and Calhoun, forming an integral factor of that group of Southern statesmen whose opinions express a distinct school of political purpose and constitutional interpretation in U.S. history. In 1814, Clay was appointed on the Ghent Commission, and in the vacancy created by his absence, Cheves was made Speaker of the United States House of Representatives. This position he held until 1816. From 1816 to 1819, he was a Judge of the South Carolina Circuit Court. During these years, Louisa was a little child. When she was nine years old, Langdon Cheves was called to adjust the financial difficulties of the United States Bank at Philadelphia.


At this time, his two daughters, Louisa and Sophia, the latter of whom became Mrs. Charles Thompson Haskell, were sent to the school of a Mr. Grimshaw, an Irishman then living in Philadelphia. Later the sisters were placed under the care of Mr. and Mrs. Picot, French refugees, with whom they continued to study for several years, becoming thoroughly conversant with the French language. Subsequently, the girls were introduced to Washington and Philadelphia society. It had not been her father's intention to educate his daughters in any other way than that usually given women in that day—a lighter academic course, with a "finishing school" for French, astronomy, and so forth. The graces of education were stressed rather than fundamentals. But Louisa early developed a passion for mathematics and stated that a girl with such a love of knowledge should have every opportunity to perfect herself not only in mathematics but also in other branches not then usually undertaken by women. She was then given just the same mathematical instruction that her brothers received. In this her education was unusual. In her father's study and at his table she met and heard the discourse of men whose speech has expressed national policies, whose style both in written and in spoken English is classic. Her father's contemporaries were Webster, Calhoun, Clay, and their associates. Political economy was the gospel of their theories. The young girl, hearing them express their theories, learned to think deeply on political issues. The father's secession theory influenced Louisa and largely determined her mature writing. 

During a part of this period, the Cheves family lived in "Abbeville," outside of Lancaster, Pennsylvania. After a residence here of about eight years, the family then retired to South Carolina.

Lang Syne plantation

When still a young woman, she came into the possession of Lang Syne Plantation, formerly belonging to a great-aunt, Mrs. Lovell, a daughter of Colonel William Heatley. "Lang Syne" was in St. Matthew's parish, on the Congaree River near Fort Motte, South Carolina, about 30 miles (48 km) from Columbia. This she administered during her young womanhood with a high degree of skill, executive ability, and a careful attention to details. In May 1840, she married the lawyer, David James McCord (d. 1855), of Columbia, South Carolina. He was a gentleman of consid-erable local distinction as a lawyer, public speaker, writer/editor of the "Statutes at large of South Carolina", and a frequent contributor to the Southern Quarterly Review. He was one of the best writers in the US on Free Trade. They lived happily for 15 years. McCord died in 1855.







My Dreams

In the year 1848, McCord published her first book of poetry. My Dreams, a collection of fugitive poems, from the press of Carey & Hart, Philadelphia.[5][6] A close study of these poems reveals a genuine poetic talent, but there is not the certainty of maturity, not the metrical perfection of first-rate poetry. The lyrist is an honestly doubting lyrist in many passages. There are a number of them that are either of adolescent composition, withheld until 1848 for publication, or at least of adolescent conception, possibly worked over for this volume. Hope is the keynote of a majority of the poems in this collection, but in many instances, the hope is unaccompanied by any certainty of faith which a woman of McCord's full life and wide experience must have developed at the time this collection was published. A few of the poems are narrative myths, a direct reflection of her classic temperament. They suggest early Greek myths, and meet the reader with such titles as "The Daughters of Hope," who are cleverly personified as Fancy and Happiness, and, Happiness being lost in Life's confusion, Fancy assists her mother, Hope, to chase Happiness through all time. Others included "The Falling Star," "Love, Wisdom, Folly," "The Comet," "The Star That Followed Me," "Conduct of the Sources of Good and Evil," "The Home of Hope" and "The Voice of a Star." Then there is a grouping possible among them of simple narratives of the world of concrete things. For example, the pathetic "Poor Nannie" and "The Blood Stained Rose," "The Birth of the Evergreens" and "Pretty Fanny." But it is in the third division of these poems that McCord's maturity expresses her feelings, and in the poems of this group that deals with the eternal riddle of life and death. They suggest the suffering spirit. "My Dream Child," "The Village Churchyard," "The First Beam of Light," "My Dead," "Ye're Born to Die" and others are found here. Probably the best among them is "The Voice of Years."


Caius Gracchus

It was not until three years later, in 1851, that McCord essayed a longer poetic effort in Caius Gracchus, a tragedy in five acts.[7] This showed a maturity and a greater care in preparation. The main source of the plot is the story of the Gracchi, which McCord follows rather closely. The play was probably never intended for the stage; it belongs to that class of classic closet dramas that were in vogue in the first half of the 19th century. The character inter-pretation is probably the strongest and most valuable work. Caius is heroic, and his girl wife is as winsome as a Roman girl could well be; the mob in its vacillations is accurately drawn, and Cornelia is a masterpiece. The probability is that the real Cornelia was a favorite heroine of McGord's. Their lives bear similarities in biography; they were called upon to make supreme sacrifices that were identical, and they endured with similar silent heroism.


From 1849, she was a contributor to The Southern Quarterly Review, The Southern Literary Messenger, and De Bow's Review. These essays were characterized, not only by sharp logic and scintillating wit, but by a spirit of earnest, conservation. Among the most prominent were " Justice and Fraternity," "The Right to Labor," "Diversity of the Races, it's bearing upon Negro Slavery," "Negro and White Slavery," "Enfranchisement of Women," "Uncle Tom's Cabin," " Carey on the Slave-trade," "Negro Mania," "Woman and her Needs," "British Philanthropy and American Slavery," "Charity which does not Begin at Home," and "A Letter to the Duchess of Sutherland from a Lady of South Carolina."[5] Davidson said that McCord was a contributor to the Southern Literary Messenger, to DeBow's Review, and to the Southern Quarterly Review. Examination of the complete files of the Southern Literary Messenger does not show her name; this is no negative proof, however. There are numerous anonymous articles, a few of which suggest McCord's style. A few poems are suspiciously like some selections found in "My Dreams," but because there is no signature her authorship cannot be inferred. In the editorial reminiscences secured and edited by Benjamin Blake Minor, one-time editor of the Messenger, McCord's name is not mentioned. The same problem is faced in a review of De Bow's Review. Her signature cannot be found, nor is her name acknowledged by J. D. B. De Bow in his quarterly Table of Contents. However, the Table of Contents of DeBow's Review lists only the signed articles; there are numerous unsigned ones. So accepting the statements of Duyckinck and Davidson, who agree that McCord contributed to these magazines, the assumption is made that for these magazines, except the Southern Quarterly, she worked anonymously. Though it is regrettable, it is true to type. Women authors often disguised their names under masculine noms de plume. However, most of her contributions to the Southern Quarterly Review were signed and were easily available.

It was as a political essayist, however, that McCord was most known. She published numerous essays in southern papers, normally within political issues. Her views were conservative, Southern, pro-slavery, idealizing Southern society.[8] She was one of the few women who wrote on the subject of political economy. In 1848, George P. Putnam, of New York, published her Translation of Bastiat's Sophisms of the Protective Policy, with an introductory letter by Dr. Francis Lieber, professor of political philosophy and economy in South Carolina College. Her contributions on this subject to the Southern Quarterly Review were characterized by vigour and an enlarged acquaintance with the subject. Among them may be named particularly "Justice and Fraternity," July 1849; "The Right to Labour," Oct. 1849; "Diversity of Races, its Bearing upon Negro Slavery," April 1851.

Literary work

McCord's literary work set forth the political doctrines of lassez faire and self-determination. Her interest in political and sociological questions was broad. She knew past history, was attuned to current events, and she perceived the tendencies of humanity. She was, above all else, the votary of political economy. Her style was polemical, at times satirical, always coherent and clear. She was virile, intense, at once possessing the force of a statesman's thinking together with the versatility of wit. As pure literature, these magazine articles did not have a place. As attainments of what they set out to do, they were successful. In every instance, she was on familiar ground; she knew more of the subject than she expressed. She expressed the convictions and reasonings of then-contemporary thinkers of her section ably. The writers who cut the fresh pages of the Southern Quarterly Review at that time read with relish the convincing and cleverly-arranged arguments in support of their position as expressed by McCord's writings.

Witticisms were found in McCord's writings; not airy wit, as might be expected from her French training, but Horatian satire. This was also her conversational style. McCord was a conservative. She advocated State sovereignty, favoring secession, and a political confederation founded upon a community of interests. Her vision was of a great Southern confederacy in which the culture of classical learning would continue to flourish, in which an economic independence would be maintained through the cotton industry, in which the Afro-American would be most comfortable and happy in a state of slavery, and in which the white master, with his labor question settled, would be furnished the leisure requisite for the pursuit of science and art.


Women's suffrage

Another popular topic of her day on which McCord commented was the question of woman suffrage. The West-minster Review for July 1851, had contained some equal suffrage articles. The third session of the Women's Rights Convention had been held at Worcester, Massachusetts, on October 15, 1851. McCord's essay was based largely on the Westminster Review article and on the proceedings of the convention. She said that public service in affairs of state is by its nature masculine and that the men of the race are naturally and harmoniously at home in the discharge of this service; "That woman is neither man's superior, equal, nor inferior; she is his different". She went on to say, "Woman will reach the greatest height of which she is capable —the greatest, perhaps, of which humanity is capable— not by becoming man, but by becoming more than ever a woman." These phrases were the expression of the conviction of the old South.

In discussing the Woman's Rights movement, she replied to a proposition of an English review, that "a reason must be given why anything should be permitted to one person and interdicted to another." "A reason —a reason why man cannot drink fire and breathe water! A scientific answer about hydrogen and oxygen will not answer the purpose. These are facts, not reasons. Why? Why? Why is anything on God's earth what it is? Can Miss Martineau tell? We cannot. God has made it so, and reason, instinct, and experience teach us its uses. Woman, Nature teaches you yours."

Support for the Confederacy


Early in the summer of 1861, the Soldiers' Relief Association was organized, with McCord as president. In July 1861, she was made president of the Ladies' Clothing Association. The first-named organization made the uniforms for the company of her son, Captain L. Cheves McCord, his mother furnishing the material. She resigned her presidency of the Soldiers' Relief Association in order to give her whole time to the military hospital established within the South Carolina College; this was in 1862, and here she gave her greatest service. In her home, at the northwest corner of Pendleton and Bull streets, across the street from the college property, she received supplies from the women of the city -— supplies available for nourishment for the sick, and hospital comfort. Early every day, there was made in her kitchen a supply of cornbread and broth, heaped into plates and left on a long dresser on her back piazza, served day after day as the nourishment for wounded soldiers who could drag themselves across the street from the convalescent building on the campus.

All her carpets were cut into blankets. All wool mattresses were ripped up and their contents spun into yarn for soldiers' socks. Even the hair of rabbits killed on the plantation was saved, and, when combined with a little wool and the ravelings of old black silk scraps, made a gray yarn, of which officers' gloves were knitted. All of the lead from her houses —even the lead pipes from an elaborate system of waterworks on her plantation— was sent to be melted into bullets. Before the end of the war, all her horses had gone into the army.

In the midst of all this activity there came from second Manassas the news that her son, Cheves McCord, had died. On the morning of February 17, 1865, McCord was warned about the invasion of her city. During the occupation of the city by Sherman, McCord remained in her own home, though the house, such part as was not reserved for her use, was occupied by General Howard and his staff as headquarters. When General Howard left, a guard was set before the premises "to protect it," which guard promptly set work to pillage the house, though a young officer gave some protection. Her two daughters had been sent to the hospital by her previous to Sherman's entrance to the town in the hope of greater protection for them under the hospital's flag during the turmoil. McCord lived long enough to see reconstruction. However, when, in 1869, the suggestion was made that a monument be erected to the Confederate soldier, it was to McCord that the women of the State at once turned for leadership. She was made the first president of the association, and in this capacity, she organized the first efforts of Columbia women to perpetuate the memory of the Confederate soldier.

Later years

After the war, McCord left South Carolina for a time, went to Charlottesville, Virginia, and thence further to Canada —to Coburg and other points. But, finding that she could not remain away from South Carolina, she returned, and, though embittered by it, took the oath of allegiance that she might have the disposal of her own property. The latter years of McCord's life were spent in Charleston, in the home of her son-in-law, Major Augustine T. Smythe, and his wife, her daughter Louisa.


McCord purchased the Rebecca Screven House in 1879.

In the spring of 1879, the unveiling of the Confederate monument took place at Columbia, her little granddaughter, Cheves McCord, actively participating in the ceremony. On November 23, 1879, after a brief illness at her home in Charleston, she died and was buried in Magnolia Cemetery.

Lang Syne Plantation


1824 – Earliest known date of existence

Andrew Heatly, an early owner (he may have been

the original owner), died and left the estate to his

three sisters. One sister, Anne Heatly Reid Lovell,

bought out the other two sisters and joined their

property with hers.

There are two theories on the next transfer of

ownership from Anne Heatly Reid Lovell:

? – Langdon Cheves inherited the plantation from his aunt Anne Heatly Reid Lovell (9).

? – Joseph and Sophia Heatly Dulles may have purchased the property.

? – Langdon Cheves acquired the plantation through his marriage to the Dulles' daughter, Mary Elizabeth Dulles (2, XII: 47).


A 1836 plat shows Cheves as the owner of Lang Syne and Goshen plantations. The combined acreage was 2,703 (2, XII: 47).

It has been said that Langdon Cheves named the plantation Lang Syne because it represented an escape from his arduous duties as Congressman in Washington and President of the United States Bank in Philadelphia and reminded him of his carefree youth (2, XII: 47).


1840 – Langdon Cheves gave Lang Syne to his daughter Louisa Susanna Cheves when she married David McCord. However, the contract and marriage settlement stated Louisa would always be the plantation's owner, and David, nor his children from his first marriage would ever be entitled to any part of the plantation (5, pp. 88, 92).


1860s – Louisa Cheves McCord and her family moved to her house in Columbia and did not stay at Lang Syne during the Civil War (3) (6, p. 179).


1865 – Louisa Cheves McCord's daughter Lou, married Augustine "Gus" Smythe. On their wedding day, Louisa signed the title of Lang Syne Plantation over to Gus. Gus and Lou Smythe immediately moved to Lang Syne (6, pp. 179-180).


1870 – Gus Smythe could not make Lang Syne a profitable plantation and sold it to Daniel Zimmerman but did retain the rights to the family cemetery (6, p. 180).

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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Louisa Susannah Cheves McCord (December 3, 1810 – November 23, 1879) was an American planter and author from South Carolinabest known as a political essayist. McCord, the daughter of Langdon  Cheves, was born in 1810, in South Carolina. She was educated in Philadelphia. In 1840, she married David James McCord, becoming a widow in 1855. She mainly resided in Columbia, South Carolina.

She was active as an author from the 1840s onward, and her produc-tion her production is regarded as an important contribution of Southern Antebellum literature. McCord's writings consisted princi-pally of essays and reviews, and she wrote well on the subject of political economy. Her published volumes included, My Dreams, a volume of poems, published in Philadelphia in 1848; Sophisms of the Protective Policy. A translation from the French of Bastiat, published in New York. 1848; Caius Gracchus. A five-act tragedy, published in New York, 1851. McCord was a contributor to the "Southern Quarterly Review," and the "Southern Literary Messenger," for a number of years from 1849. Her poetry was simple and clearly uttered.  Henry TimrodPaul Hamilton HayneWilliam Gilmore SimmsWilliam Henry Trescot, Requier and James Matthews Legaré were her contemporaries; some of these were among her personal friends. 

Appletons' Cyclopedia of American Biography,

1600-1889  Page 601

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Langdon Cheves

Mary Elizabeth Dulles

About the Portrait of Mary Elizabeth:

"Edward Greene Malbone (American, 1777-1807) Watercolor on ivory A gift of Leonora Cheves Brockington, the portrait of Mrs. Langdon Cheves (Mary Elizabeth Dulles) ca. 1806, is an excellent example of Edward Greene Malbone's skill as America's most outstanding miniature portrait painter, a reputation he garnered during his short lifetime. Leaving his native Newport, RI, in 1794, Malbone initiated a career which took him to the major east coast cities of Providence, Boston, New York, Philadelphia and Charleston. Among his friends and admirers were Washington Allston, with whom he traveled to London, and Charles Fraser (two of the portraits above are by Fraser) who wrote a moving obituary for Malbone when he died prematurely in Savannah."

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The Rebecca Screven House


in Charleston, South Carolina is a Charleston single house built sometime before 1828 at 35 Legare Street.

Rebecca Screven built the house on property she inherited from her mother, Mrs. Elizabeth Williams. In 1879, the house was bought by Louisa J. McCord. Louisa McCord was one of the most prominent women writers in antebellum South Carolina.

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In April 2014, the Historic Charleston Foundation bought the house through its revolving fund, a pool of money the foundation uses to acquire historic properties before reselling them to preser-vation-minded buyers subject to preservation easements. The foundation paid $1.75 million for the house, performed some work on the building, and listed it for resale in May 2014 through a competitive bid process. Both the interior and exterior of the house will be protected by easements, as will a garden designed by Loutrel Briggs.




Columbia Metropolitan

South Carolina's Premier Magazine

Est. 1990

In a letter to Preston Powers in 1878, Louisa McCord lamented that her father, who had been appointed the first president of the Second Bank of the United States (1819 to 1822) by President James Monroe and was Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, was now almost forgotten in the 22 years following his death. She con-tinued, “In such a country as ours now is, that is enough to stamp into oblivion everything worth remembering.”

The interesting life story of Mrs. McCord is largely a tale of two cities: Charleston and Columbia, but most particularly Columbia. In that “oblivion” of things “worth remembering,” Mrs. McCord has become yet another case in point. Her former home at the corner of Bull and Pendleton streets stands in genteel oblivion across from the University of South Carolina campus and a parking garage, backed by a parking lot where her garden once stood. A historical marker, just placed in 2018, identifies the house as the residence of Louisa McCord, “noted author of essays, poetry, and drama.” It was here that this remarkable woman lived the most significant span of her life.

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This little-known portrait of Louisa McCord was painted by William Scar-borough c. 1853 and has been in the McCord family for generations. Courtesy of H. P. McDougal

Mrs. McCord, however, is fully appreciated today by a new generation of scholars worldwide. Cambridge University historian Michael O’Brien places her “among the leading conservatives in American thought.” Her drama, poetry, letters, and political and social essays have been collected in a handsome two-volume edition by the University of Virginia Press with an appreciative introduction by Richard Lounsbury of Brigham Young University. Diarist Mary Boykin Chesnut, well known both in South Carolina and out, knew Mrs. McCord and was impressed, at times to the point of intimidation, by her fierce intellect. She called her the cleverest woman she knew, but Mrs. McCord was far more than clever.

Born Louisa Cheves in 1810 in Charleston to Mary Elizabeth Dulles and Langdon Cheves, Mrs. McCord was the fourth of 14 children. Her grandfather was a Scots-Indian trader, and her father clerked in a store, practiced law, and rose to become state attorney general, then-Speaker of the United States House. Louisa displayed her remarkable character at an early age. Not satisfied with the usual round of instruction in French, needlework, and polite letters, she eavesdropped outside her father’s library door as her brothers were being taught mathematics. There she worked out the math problems on her slate until she was discovered by her father. From then on, she studied the same subjects with her brothers. Langdon always felt his daughter to be closest to him in intellect. When he entertained distinguished men at dinner or over a glass of Madeira, he did not exclude her.

In addition to their Charleston home, Langdon and Mary Elizabeth owned Lang Syne Plantation near Ft. Motte in Calhoun County. When her mother died, Louisa, at the age of 26, took over the role of its mistress, managing it well. Three years later she married widower David McCord of Columbia, born in 1797, and they had three children by 1845. Langdon Cheves gave the plantation to his daughter upon her marriage.

A young doctor from Quebec, Edward Worthington, who visited the McCords at Lang Syne and whom Louisa entertained with horseback “gallops” across the lush countryside, described her in a letter from 1894 as “a tall queenly woman; and a very queen at heart; motherly and kind. She treated me as though I were an overgrown boy.”

The Calhoun County plantation was actually the home of two noted South Carolina writers, both Mrs. McCord and later the 1929 Pulitzer Prize-winner Julia Mood Peterkin, who used the Gullah residents of the plantation as the basis for her fictional characters.

Louisa and her husband shared the same interests in political economy and worked from matching desks. Mr. McCord was for the most part retired owing to fragile health, so he furthered his wife’s intellectual and literary pursuits while also publishing essays of his own. Louisa’s book-length translation and introduction to French economist Frέdέric Bastiat as well as her book of poems both appeared in 1848. She declared in a letter to William Porcher Miles this same year, “An effortless life, is, to a restless mind, a weary fate to be doomed to.” She would keep on writing, “as no other door is open to me.”

In 1849, the McCords built their Columbia house. It was situated in an acre and a half garden with long walks and fountains making use of the city’s newly laid water pipes. There she wrote essays on economics, and her contemporaries noted that she was the only woman in the field. There she also composed essays on women’s roles in society, servitude, the plight of industrial workers, politics, and secession, which she and her father advocated for various reasons, mainly the need for Southern economic independence. She blasted the utilitarian philosophy of John Stuart Mill and the “muddled” thinking of shrill English feminists. In her essay “British Philanthropy,” she wrote to her women feminist readers, “God is God, but ye are not his prophets.” Yet, she maintained that “many a woman of dominant intellect is obliged to submit to the rule of an animal in pantaloons, in every way her inferior.”

In her essay “Justice and Fraternity,” she praised South Carolinians for their principles, which she described as “among the most conservative in the country” because they did not include man’s “tinkerings” with God’s natural order that resulted in such new programs as “the follies of socialism and communism.” She wrote, “God directs and man perverts.” And in “British Philanthropy,” she railed at what she called “the nauseous froth scum of sickly philanthropy.”

Clearly, Mrs. McCord did not mince words, and her command of the language was comparable to Mary Chesnut’s. One can see why many chose not to tangle with her. One of her associates, however, was the South’s leading literary figure, William Gilmore Simms, who published her work in The Southern Quarterly Review and ensured that her books were reviewed there as well.

Mrs. McCord liked Columbia and enjoyed living next to South Carolina College, where her husband had been a trustee, and they participated in its intellectual life. In Columbia’s famously hot summers, however, the city was often nearly deserted. During these months she and her family moved to cooler climates. A highlight of their travels to Europe included a reception in the Court of Napoleon III, a visit to the studio of sculptor Hiram Powers in Florence, and an audience with Pope Pius IX.

In 1851, from her house on Pendleton Street, she published her masterpiece, the closet drama Caius Gracchus. Reviewers from DeBow’s to The Southern Quarterly Review found it “brilliant” and an “anomaly” because it was “a work of tremendous power written by a woman with such a strong wrist.”

The play is set in the Roman Republic in the political turmoil of the late second century B.C. She used Plutarch’s Lives as a source, specifically his account of the most celebrated of Roman women, Cornelia, mother of the Gracchi. The response of Cornelia to the failure and death of her son, which does not appear in Plutarch, is the central focus of Mrs. McCord’s tragedy. The play describes her own complicated situation and that of all women like her. Mrs. McCord’s biographer Richard Lounsbury says that her subject allowed her to speak in roles otherwise denied to the women of her day. This sophisticated literary work is only now being seen as such by modern critics. Her contemporary reviewers, however, recognized her “terseness, vigor, earnestness, and … energy.”

Mary Chesnut was one of the friends who understood that Cornelia was a self-portrait. In visiting Mrs. McCord’s Columbia home during the war, and after hearing how she took command in getting her wounded son back home from Virginia by chartering a special train, Mrs. Chesnut cried out in admiration, “Mother of the Gracchi.” Mrs. McCord was indeed Cornelia, the Roman matron expressing herself through her son. She thus lived a powerful role in the life of her community without disrupting what she considered the natural order of things.

David McCord died in the Columbia house in 1855 at age 58. That same year, Louisa lost her brother Charles, and her father had a stroke that resulted in senile dementia. She cared for him in Columbia until his death in 1857. In her Memoir of Langdon Cheves, she declared, “My feelings towards my Father have through life been almost those of worship, rather than simply of affection.” She faced Fort Sumter’s conflict in April 1861 without a husband or father. It was left to her to provide strength to the family during the war that followed.

The romance of war had no attractions for her, as it often did for her friend Mrs. Chesnut, who delighted in leaving quiet Camden for the intrigues of Richmond, Virginia. Mrs. Chesnut noted in her diary that Mrs. McCord did not approve of her and her friends’ “whispers.” Instead of gossiping, Mrs. McCord went to work. She fitted out a company of soldiers at her own expense, and she became the first president of both Columbia’s Soldiers’ Relief and Soldiers’ Clothing associations. When the college was made a Confederate hospital in 1862, she became the unofficial manager and was praised by her superiors for “enthusiasm” and “common sense.”

Sorrows came thick and fast with the war. Her brother John’s only son was killed. Her beloved sister Sophia Haskell lost two sons in a single month. Her dear brother Langdon was killed defending Charleston. Then her only son, Langdon Cheves McCord, died in January 1863 despite her efforts to save him. Her daughter, Louisa McCord Smythe, wrote in her memoir For Old Lang Syne that in their Columbia home her mother knitted soldiers’ clothing “day and night.” When grief took away her mother’s comfort of sleep, her daughter Louisa reflected that she “used to wake at night and hear the click, click of her [mother’s] needles, and shudder at the groans and sobs when she supposed no one heard her.”

In February 1865 the Columbia house was looted by Gen. William T. Sherman’s troops. A soldier left her a warning on a page torn from her dead son’s notebook: “Ladies, I pity you. Leave this town.” That night Columbia went up in flames. In her memoir The Burning of Columbia, McCord wrote that during the occupation of her house, her father’s watch was taken from her, and she was choked by men who were trying to force their way past her to go upstairs where her daughters were hidden. The soldiers were interrupted by an officer sent to make the house the headquarters of Union Gen. Oliver Otis Howard, who later headed the Freedmen’s Bureau and was the namesake of Howard University. This saved the home from burning, but it was ransacked once again at the troops’ departure. Perhaps the greatest loss to history and literature was the scattering of Mrs. McCord’s personal papers over the house’s yard like a fall of snow. Among these documents were her dead father’s and dead son’s letters.

Following the sack of Columbia, Mrs. McCord set up a soup kitchen in the house yard. She collected scraps of food to make iron pots of soup to feed the starving citizens cup by precious cup. With both her daughters married and no longer able to stand the violence of the Reconstruction era, she moved to Canada in 1871 and refused to take the Oath of Allegiance to the Union to “support, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States.”

In 1876, with the end of Reconstruction, she returned to Charleston to live with her only surviving child, Louisa, who had married Augustine Smythe. She stayed with her daughter and son-in-law until her death three years later in 1879. In her last months, she tried to write her story in what Richard Lounsbury calls “a world which she knew had a short memory, and that memory inaccurate.” She spent her final energies composing her recollections of her beloved father. She died after five days of great suffering from a stomach ailment at the age of 69. In the Charleston newspaper, her obituary amounted only to a few lines. It did not mention her services during the war or give a single word about her writing.

Atlanta may have its Scarlett O’Hara. Give me Columbia’s Louisa McCord.

Dr. Kibler received his doctorate in English at the University of South Carolina. His most recent work is The Classical Origins of Southern Literature.

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Louisa Rebecca (McCord) Smythe (Mrs. A.T:),    Charlotte (Reynolds) McCord (Mrs. L.C.), Hannah Cheves (McCord) Rhett (Mrs. J.T.),   Lillie Dulles (A cousin)

The Children of David James McCord - Not including those that died young.            Siblings of Russell Paul McCord

Children of David James McCord and Emmeline Wagner

Siblings of Russell Paul McCord

Note:  Children that died young are not listed



Charlotte Loraine Mccord


BIRTH 4 NOV 1818 • Columbia, Richland, South Carolina, USA

DEATH 30 JUN 1879 • Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, USA


Capt. Langdon Cheves Jr


BIRTH 17 JUN 1814 • Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA

DEATH 10 JUL 1863 • Battery Wagner, Morris Island, South Carolina, USA

Civil War Confederate Officer. Born into an upper echelon aristocrat family, he was the son of Langdon Cheves, Sr. As an intellectual, he quickly came to the realization that civil war was inescapable in 1861. From his own wealth, he procured arms and equipment for the strengthening and defense of the coastal regions of South Carolina and Georgia. Further, he employed his engineering background to design and supervise the construction of the "Gazelle", a hot-air balloon for observation. Constructed of imported silk, the Gazelle was relocated to Richmond, Virginia and subsequently was used throughout the June, 1862 Battle of Seven Pines for the purposes of the Confederate military. In 1862, General John Clifford Pemberton, commander of the Department of South Carolina and Georgia, arranged the construction of Morris Island Battery on Morris Island, South Carolina (the battery would become known as Battery Wagner after its namesake, Lt. Colonel Thomas M. Wagner, was killed). Cheves was solicited to oversee the choosing of the location, the engineering and construction of Battery Wagner. The garrison would become paramount in the defense of Charleston against the land forces of General Quincy Adams Gillmore and the naval forces of Rear-Admiral John Adolphus Bernard Dahlgren. It was only the evacuation of Confederate forces on September 6, 1863, that the Federals were to become the holders of it. Cheves was one of the many deaths that occurred during the defense and assaults of Battery Wagner. On July 10, 1863, he was "sitting in his quarters overwhelmed with grief at the tidings just brought to him of the death of his nephew, Captain Charles T. Haskell, Jr." Upon hearing the communication of an imminent attack by Union Naval forces, "he roused himself to action" and was killed instantly on the ramparts of Battery Wagner from the first shell hurled from an attacking Union Monitor. After receiving the forbidding news of the death of her husband, his wife lamented; "I know not how I shall live without him".

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Delta Plantation – Hardeeville – Jasper County


Basic Information

  • Location – Seven miles below Hardeeville, along the Savannah River, Jasper County

    2230 Bellinger Hill Road

    Delta Plantation was originally in Beaufort County but now lies inside the limits of Jasper County; county lines were redrawn in the early 1900s.


  • Origin of name – ?


  • Other names – Upper Delta, Lower Delta


  • Current status – Delta Plantation has been subdivided with the Savannah College of Art and Design owning much of Lower Delta. The house built by Hudson is privately owned, and another portion of the land has been developed into a residential housing development called Telfair Plantation (1, p. 140).



  • 1830 – Earliest known date of existence

    Langdon Cheves purchased Inverary Plantation for $52,420. He also purchased neighboring Smithfield Planation and renamed the combined 1,132 acres Delta Plantation (1, p. 140) (4, p. 319).


  • 1852 – Upon Cheves's death, the property was again divided into two, a portion going to each of his sons. Langdon Cheves, Jr. inherited Lower Delta, while Upper Delta went to Dr. Charles Cheves (1, p. 140).


  • 1921 – Upper Delta was owned by the descendants of Dr. Charles Cheves until it was sold to Frederick M. Eslick (1, p. 140).


  • 1924 – Frederick M. Eslick sold Upper Delta to J. Byron Glover (1, p. 140).


  • 1929 – Upper and Lower Delta were once again joined with the purchase of both sections by H. Keirstede Hudson. Total size of the two combined tracts was 2,700 acres (1, p. 140).


Mary Eliza McCord


BIRTH 1829 • Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, USA

DEATH 27 AUG 1903 • Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, USA


Andrew Gordan Magrath


BIRTH 8 FEB 1813 • Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, USA

DEATH 9 APR 1893 • Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, USA

Andrew Gordon Magrath (February 8, 1813 – April 9, 1893) was the last Governor of South Carolina under the Confederate States of America, a United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina, and a Confederate District Judge for the District of South Carolina.

Born on February 8, 1813, in CharlestonSouth Carolina, Magrath received an Artium Bacca-laureus degree in 1831 from South Carolina College (now the University of South Carolina), attended Harvard Law School, and read law with James L. Petigru in 1835. He entered private practice in Charleston from 1835 to 1839, in 1841, and from 1843 to 1856. He was a member of the South Carolina House of Representatives in 1840, and 1842. Magrath was a member of the Democratic Party.

Magrath was nominated by President Franklin Pierce on May 9, 1856, to a seat on the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina vacated by Judge Robert Budd Gilchrist. He was confirmed by the United States Senate on May 12, 1856, and received his commission the same day. His service was terminated on November 7, 1860, due to his resignation.

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Magrath was a member of South Carolina's succession convention in 1860. He was the Secretary of State of South Carolina from 1860 to 1861. He was a Judge of the Confederate District Court for the District of South Carolina from 1861 to 1864. He was elected on December 18, 1864, as the last Governor of South Carolina under the Confederate States of America, serving from December 20, 1864, to May 25, 1865, when he was deposed by the Union Army and imprisoned at Fort Pulaski. Magrath had the distinction of being the final Governor to be elected by a secret ballot of the State Legislature, with gubernatorial selection being changed to popular election.

After his release from prison in December 1865, Magrath resumed private practice in Charleston from 1865 to 1893. He died on April 9, 1893, in Charleston. He was interred at Magnolia Cemetery in Charleston.


Magrath, Andrew Gordon

February 8, 1813–April 9, 1893


A cooperationist earlier in his career, Magrath supported secession by 1860, feeling “an assurance of what will be the action of the State.”

 2 minutes to read

Jurist, governor. Magrath was born in Charleston on February 8, 1813, the son of the Irish merchant John Magrath and Maria Gordon. After his graduation from South Carolina College in 1831, Magrath briefly attended Harvard Law School, but he acquired most of his legal training in Charleston under the tutelage of James L. Petigru. He was admitted to the bar in 1835. From 1838 to 1841 Magrath represented the city parishes of St. Philip’s and St. Michael’s in the state House of Representatives. On March 8, 1843, he married Emma D. Mikell of Charleston. The couple had five children. Around 1865 Magrath has married again, this time to Mary Eliza McCord of Columbia. They had no children.

In 1856 Magrath was appointed a federal judge to the District Court of South Carolina, which brought him national attention and controversy. His tenure coincided with increasingly strident calls from some southern nationalists to reopen the African slave trade. Although opposed to the trade personally, Magrath nevertheless handed slave-trade proponents a signal victory in 1860. In a decision associated with the cases surrounding the Echo and the Wanderer, ships seized for illegally transporting African slaves, Magrath stated that the 1820 federal statute on piracy did not apply to the slave trade. “The African slave trade,” he declared, “is not piracy.” In rejecting the piracy statute, which carried the death penalty, Magrath’s decision took some of the teeth out of federal slave-trade laws and was hailed by proslavery and states’ rights advocates. Immediately following the 1860 election of Abraham Lincoln, Magrath resigned his judgeship. On November 7 he told a crowded Charleston courtroom that the “Department of Government, which I believe has best maintained its integrity and preserved its purity, has been suspended.” Admirers later claimed that Magrath’s resignation was “the first overt act and irrevocable step” toward secession.

A cooperationist earlier in his career, Magrath supported secession by 1860, feeling “an assurance of what will be the action of the State.” He sat in the state’s Secession Convention and briefly served as the South Carolina secretary of state. In 1862 he was appointed as a Confederate district judge. His decisions generally opposed the concentration of authority by the Confederate government in Richmond. In December 1864 Magrath was elected governor of South Carolina, the last one chosen by the state legislature. During his brief tenure, Magrath was affiliated with other southern governors who criticized the administration of President Jefferson Davis. By 1865 Magrath had become disenchanted with the “moral atrophy” of the southern people. “It is not an unwillingness to oppose the enemy, but a chilling apprehension of the futility of doing so, which affects the people,” he wrote at the time. Following the collapse of the Confederacy, Magrath was arrested on May 25, 1865, and imprisoned at Fort Pulaski, Georgia. Released in December, Magrath returned to Charleston and rebuilt his lucrative law practice. He died in Charleston on April 9, 1893, and was buried in Magnolia Cemetery.

Brooks, Ulysses R. South Carolina Bench, and Bar. Columbia, S.C.: State Company, 1908.

Magrath, Andrew G. The Slave Trade Not Declared Piracy by the Act of 1820: The United States versus William C. Corrie; Presentment for Piracy. Colum- bia, S.C.: S. G. Courtenay, 1860.

Obituary. Charleston News and Courier, April 10, 1893, pp. 1, 2. Sinha, Manisha. The Counterrevolution of Slavery: Politics and Ideology in Antebellum South Carolina. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina

Press, 2000.

Resignation address

In the political history of the United States, an event has happened of ominous import to fifteen slaveholding States. The State of which we are citizens has been always understood to have deliberately fixed its purpose whenever that event should happen. Feeling an assurance of what will be the action of the State, I consider it my duty, without delay, to prepare to obey its wishes. That preparation is made by the resignation of the office I have held. For the last time, I have, as a Judge of the United States, administered the laws of the United States, within the limits of the State of South Carolina. While thus acting in obedience to a sense of duty, I cannot be indifferent to the emotions it must produce. That department of Government which. I believe, has best maintained its integrity and preserved its purity, has been suspended. So far as I am concerned, the Temple of Justice, raised under the Constitution of the United States, is now closed. If it shall be never again opened, I thank God that its doors have been closed before its altar has been desecrated with sacrifices to tyranny.


Emma Wagner McCord


BIRTH 09 JUL 1830 • Saint Matthews, Calhoun, South Carolina, USA

DEATH 2 NOV 1851 • Clarkesville, Habersham, Georgia, USA

Married:  05 FEB 1850 • St. Philip's Parish, Charleston, South

Carolina, USA

Died young at age 21 after one year of marriage

Edward Lightwood Parker


BIRTH 2 AUG 1828 • Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, USA

DEATH 16 OCT 1892 • Summerville, Dorchester, South Carolina, USA

Died of tuberculosis

Son of William McKinzie Parker and Anna Smith Coffin

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Russell Paul McCord

Our Subject


Henry Junius McCord


BIRTH 1835 • South Carolina, USA

DEATH JAN 1894 • Greenwood, Sebastian, Arkansas, USA

Married 1st:  1850 • Madisonville, Monroe, Tennessee, USA

Margaret America Emma Hood


BIRTH 1836 • Madisonville, Monroe, Tennessee, USA

DEATH 1870 • Benton, Lowndes, Alabama, USA

They would have four chuldren

Married 2nd: 09 JAN 1873 • Greenwood, Sebastian, Arkansas, USA

Mary Jane Barnes


BIRTH 10 DEC 1851 • Sebastian County, Arkansas, USA

DEATH 20 MAR 1936 • Bates, Scott, Arkansas, USA

They would have five children


Henry J McCord in theU.S., Civil War Soldier Records and Profiles, 1861-1865

Name    Henry J McCord

Enlistment Date1     Jun 1862

Enlistment Rank    Captain

Muster Date    1 Jun 1862

Muster Place    Arkansas

Muster     CompanyA

Muster Regiment    35th Infantry

Muster Regiment Type    Infantry

Muster Information    Commission

Rank Change Rank    Colonel

Side of War    Confederacy

Additional Notes 2

  • Rank Change 2 Rank: Lieutenant Colonel

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Julia Wagner McCord


BIRTH 22 SEP 1837 • South Carolina, USA

DEATH 12 JUN 1920 • Burwash, Rother District, East Sussex, England


Henry Wemyss Feilden


BIRTH 25 SEPTEMBER 1838 • Newbridge, Hampshire, England

DEATH 8 JUNE 1921 • Burwash, Rother District, East Sussex, England

Son of Sir William Henry Feiden and Mary Elizabeth Wemyss

Henry Wemyss Feilden

Colonel Henry Wemyss Feilden, CB (6 October 1838 – 8 June 1921) was a British Army officer, Arctic explorer, and naturalist.

Feilden was the second son of Sir William Henry Feilden (1812−1879), 2nd Baronet of Feniscowles. Feilden was born at Newbridge Barracks in Kildare where his father was then serving in the 17th Lancers. He was educated at Cheltenham College After joining the Black Watch, at the age of nineteen, he fought in the suppression of the Indian Mutiny 1857-58 and at the Taku Forts in China in 1860.

 In 1862 he volunteered for the Confederate States Army during the American Civil War of 1861−1865. He served as assistant adjutant-general with the remnant of the Army of Tennessee under General Joseph E. Johnston and was present at the surrender at Bennett Place.

He then returned to the British Army, where he was made captain in the Royal Artillery in 1874. He served in the First Boer War in 1881 and again in Africa in 1890. After the outbreak of the Second Boer War, he was again appointed Paymaster of Imperial Yeomanry on 3 February 1900. He was decorated for his service in India, China, and South Africa, and was appointed a Companion of the Order of the Bath (CB) for his services to Imperial Yeomanry in 1900.

Feilden also collected information on the geologyflora, and fauna of newly explored areas, and served as naturalist on Sir George NaresBritish Arctic Expedition of 1875-76 onboard Alert. During his service in Pegu, he contri-buted notes on the birds of the region to Allan Octavian Hume. He was a fast friend of the famous writer and poet Rudyard Kipling. The surgeon on HMS Alert, Dr. Edward L. Moss, held a low opinion of Feilden's scientific expertise.

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In 1864, Feilden married Julia, daughter of Judge David James McCord (1797–1855) of South Carolina. In 1880 Feilden settled in Wells-next-the-SeaNorfolk. Feilden joined the Norfolk and Norwich Naturalists' Society in 1880 and became President in 1885. He lived in Norfolk for over 20 years, moving to BurwashSussex in 1902. One of his discoveries in 1888 was a stuffed specimen of the Great Bustard which had been shot in Norfolk. Feilden contri-buted to Transactions of the Norfolk and Norwich Naturalists' Society and submitted scientific papers to The Zoologist and Ibis (the journal of the British Ornithologists' Union, to which he was elected in 1873), amongst others.

In 1895 and 1897, accompanying Henry J. Pearson, Feilden partook in expeditions to Novaya ZemlyaKolguyevSpitsbergenLapland, and the Kara Sea.

As well as being a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, Feilden was nominated as a Fellow of the Royal Society of London but was rejected. The following is from his nomination certificate:

Was naturalist to Sir George Nares' Polar Expedition of 1875−6, when, besides making large and valuable zoological observations and collections, he laid down the geology of 300 miles of the coast of Smith's Sound, and brought home 2000 specimens, carefully localised, illustrating and confirming his surveys. On the same voyage he dis-covered the Miocene Flora of Grinnell's Land, his collection and observations on which from an important contribution to Heer's "Flora Fossilis Arctica." He has made three subsequent voyages to Arctic Europe and Asia, visiting Novaya ZemlyaBarents LandKolguev IslandSpitsbergen, and Russian Lapland, for the purpose of collating the geology, zoology, and botany of Arctic Europe with those of America…

Feilden died at his home in Burwash in 1921, aged 83, about one year after his wife Julia McCord Feilden (1837–1920). He had no children.

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Emerson & Stokes (eds.): "A CONFEDERATE ENGLISHMAN: The Civil War Letters of Henry Wemyss Feilden"

[A Confederate Englishman: The Civil War Letters of Henry Wemyss Feilden edited by W. Eric Emerson and Karen Stokes (University of South Carolina Press, 2013). Hardcover, photos, drawings, notes, bibliography, index. 215 pp. ISBN:978-1-61117-135-8 $29.95]

The second son of a baronet, Henry Wemyss Feilden had to find a way to make a living, so, like many young men of his class, he purchased an army commission, serving in both India and China. In 1860, the 22-year-old Englishman sold his commis-sion and announced his intention to join the Confederacy and aid in its bid for independence. It is his 1863-65 correspondence with fiance then wife Julia McCord of Charleston that comprises the heart of A Confederate Englishman, edited by archivists W. Eric Emerson and Karen Stokes. In addition to the Civil War material (some of which is also of an official nature), a selection of letters through 1920 offers glimpses at the rest of Feilden's remarkable life, one marked by his emergence as a prominent naturalist and explorer.

In the early letters [the compilation begins in March 1863] to his family back home, Feilden does not expressly detail his reasons for risking his life running the blockade in order to ally with the Confederacy, but one surmises it was a mixture of pro-Confederate sympathies, a new sense of adven-ture, and the potential for financial gain. Upon his safe arrival, he traveled to Richmond*, where he secured a captain's commission and a departmental staff position of his choice. He selected the Depart-ment of South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida, where he soon made the acquaintance of the young woman who was to be his frequent correspondent and eventual spouse.

As the Assistant Adjutant General - Department, Feilden was the chief administrative officer on the staffs of Generals P.G.T. Beauregard, Samuel Jones, and William Hardee, and his letters offer some insights into what his AAG duties entailed. Much of his time appears to have been spent handling paperwork and managing an office of four clerks. Typical personal and family concerns comprise much of the Feilden correspondence, but frequent mention is made of military events, mostly around Charleston.  The originals have post-war notations by the captain (reproduced by the editors), admit-ting that much of the expressed confidence in Confederate victory contained in the letters were benevolent untruths meant to buck up home front morale.

The editors also include official AAG reports that should prove useful to historians. Although Feilden appears to have been largely desk-bound, his series of letters detailing an 1864 inspection trip to Florida together comprise a rare and detailed record of the military and economic state of that district in the period following the Battle of Olustee.

Feilden's outsider's perspective is also of some value to readers. While he appears to have adopted wholesale many of the attitudes of Deep South Confederates, including a dim view of Union Army conduct toward southern civilians and the potential of freed blacks to become productive citizens, he does discount local fears of the horrors of occup-ation by armed blacks (citing his own personal experiences in the outposts of the British Empire).

On top of introducing and arranging this letter collection, editors Emerson and Stokes have also contributed a well-researched set of notes, identi-fying persons mentioned in the writings and providing background and context for places and events. Scholarly publications dealing with the Civil War in the South Atlantic theater, especially in the sphere of military operations, still lag far behind those associated with the other major regions of conflict, making A Confederate Englishman a welcome addition to this sporadic literature.

* - While in Virginia, Feilden made the acquaintance of Stonewall Jackson. Readers are most familiar with Jackson's grim professional demeanor in the classroom and on the campaign, but those inter-ested in how Jackson interacted on a personal level would do well to check out Feilden's description of his visit to Jackson's headquarters (pp. 5-7), where he found the general an amiable and solicitous host.

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Children of David James McCord and Louisa Susannah Cheves

Half-Siblings of Russell Paul McCord



Capt. Langdon Cheves McCord

BIRTH 17 APR 1841 • Columbia, Richland, South Carolina, USA

DEATH 23 JAN 1863 • Columbia, Richland, South Carolina, USA


Charlotte Mary Reynolds


BIRTH 3 JAN 1842 • Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, USA

DEATH 16 MAY 1923 • Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, USA

Daughter of Rev. James Lawrence Reynolds and Charlotte Mary Smith

Grandson of Langdon Cheves, Sr. [1776-1857]Died of wounds received at the 2nd Battle of Manassas, leaving widow, Charlotte Mary Reynolds McCord. Their only child, Langdon Cheves McCord, was born 11 days after his death.

Married:  About 1862, Charleston, Charleston South Carolina, USA

Charlotte Mary Reynolds


BIRTH 3 JANUARY 1842 • South Carolina, USA

DEATH 16 MAY 1923 • Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, USA

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Hannah McCord

BIRTH 18 SEP 1843 • Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, USA

DEATH 24 NOV 1872 • Columbia, Richland, South Carolina, USA

Married:  2 Mar 1869, South Carolina, USA

John Taylor Rhett


BIRTH ABT 1834 • Beaufort, Beaufort, South Carolina, USA

DEATH 28 FEB 1892 • Beaufort, Beaufort, South Carolina, USA

Son of Albert Moore Rhett and Sally "Sarah" C. Taylor

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The Smith brothers petitioned the court to legally change their surname in 1838, following the death of their father. Their petition was granted and the name Rhett was once again "introduced" as Thomas Moore Smith became Thomas Moore Rhett (my 3rd great-grandfather), James Hervey Smith became James Smith Rhett, Benjamin Smith became Benjamin Smith Rhett, Robert Barnwell Smith became Robert Barnwell Rhett, Edmund Smith became Edmund Rhett, and Albert Moore Smith became Albert Moore Rhett. (Father of John T. Rhett) The Rhett brothers had several sisters who opted NOT to legally change their names from Smith to Rhett, as it was understood that their names would change once they married.

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Louise Rebecca McCord

BIRTH 10 AUG 1845 • Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, USA

DEATH 7 JAN 1928 • Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, USA

Married:  27 JUN 1865, South Carolina, USA

Augustine "Gus" Thomas Smythe


BIRTH 5 OCT 1842 • Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, USA

DEATH 24 JUN 1914 • Flat Rock, Henderson, North Carolina, USA

Died of Pneumonia

Son of Thomas Smythe and Margaret Milligan Adger


Name    Augustine T Smythe

Age    20

Birth Date    1842

Enlistment Date    4 Apr 1862

Enlistment Place    Charleston

Rank    Private

Military Unit    Twenty-fifth Infantry (Eutaw Regiment) Sm-Z, Twenty-fifth Militia

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Smythe was assigned to the Confederate Signal Corps. He served on the ironclad CSS Palmetto State and then occupied a post high above Charleston in the steeple of St. Michael’s Episcopal Church. From behind a telescope in his lofty perch, he observed the fierce attacks on Fort Sumter, the effects of the unrelenting shelling of the city by enemy guns at Morris Island, and the naval battles and operations in the harbor, including the actions of the Confederate torpedo boats and the H. L. Hunley submarine.

Later Years

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The Greenville News

Greenville, South Carolina

09 Jan 1928, Mon  •  Page 1

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  • Days of Destruction: Augustine Thomas Smythe and the Civil War Siege of Charleston

  • edited by W. Eric Emerson and Karen Stokes

  • 2017

  • Published by: University of South Carolina

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The State, 

Columbia, South Carolina

18 Nov 1928, Sun  •  Page 24

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In Days of Destruction, editors W. Eric Emerson and Karen Stokes chronicle the events of the siege of Charleston, South Carolina, through a collection of letters written by Augustine Thomas Smythe, a well-educated young man from a prominent Charleston family. The vivid, eloquent letters he wrote to his family depict all that he saw and experienced during the long, destructive assault on the Holy City and describe in detail the damage done to Charleston's houses, churches, and other buildings in the desolated shell district, as well as the toll on human life.

Smythe's role in the Civil War was different from that of his many companions serving in Virginia and undoubtedly different from anything he could have imagined when the war began. After a baptism in blood at the Battle of Secessionville, South Carolina, Smythe was assigned to the Confederate Signal Corps. He served on the ironclad CSS Palmetto State and then occupied a post-high above Charleston in the steeple of St. Michael's Episcopal Church. From behind a telescope in his lofty perch, he observed the fierce attacks on Fort Sumter, the effects of the unrelenting shelling of the city by enemy guns at Morris Island, and the naval battles and operations in the harbor, including the actions of the Confederate torpedo boats and the H. L. Hunley submarine.

The Confederate Signal Corps played a vital role in the defense of Charleston and its environs, and Smythe's letters, perhaps more than any other first-person account, detail the daily life and service experiences of signalmen in and around the city during the war. For more than eighteen months, Smythe's neighborhood south of Broad Street, one of the city's oldest and wealthiest communities, was abandoned by the great majority of its residents. His letters provide the reader with an almost post-apocalyptic perspective of the oftentimes quiet, and frequently lawless, street where he lived before and during the siege of Charleston.

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