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George Bryant FORD and his wife, Martha Cora (Mattie) BROOME
Contributed by  Jymie Carol Ford Inmon  December 3, 2006

George Bryant FORD was born on 3 July 1843 in Utica, Hinds Co, MS to John FORD and his first wife, Rebecca Rachel FUNCHESS. He was the second child and second son of the two.
George enlisted in the state militia at age 17 in March of 1861 by joining the Crystal Springs Southern Rights of Copiah County, MS (a state militia). After their organization, they met occasionally at Crystal Springs for drill and to accept new members. On May 23, 1861, the ladies of the area presented a flag to Company C. It was a festive occasion attended by many and followed by a dinner and a ball. Governor PETTUS had that day ordered the company to rendezvous at Corinth, Mississippi. The troops departed from Crystal Springs two days later on the New Orleans and Jackson Railroad amid much hand shaking, cheering, and a final prayer. They reached Corinth (Camp Clark) at 11:00 am on the 26th of May.

George Bryant FORD passed his 18th birthday in camp at Corinth on July 3rd, 1861.

On Monday, July 22, 1861, the camp got word of BEAUREGARD's victory at Manassas, Virginia (First Manassas/aka/First Bull Run). On Friday, July 26, 1861, the troops left on the Memphis and Charleston Railroad, going through Iuka, MS; Tuscumbia, AL; and Chattanooga, TN. Arriving in Chattanooga on the morning of the 27th, they changed trains and headed to Knoxville, TN, where they had a 28-hour layover. They arrived in Cleveland, TN at 10:00 am Sunday morning, July 28, 1861. Wednesday, July 31 was the arrival date of the troops into Lynchburg, VA, where they remained for 10 days. On August 10, 1861, they camped near the Manassas battlefield, receiving their first issued cartridges on Monday, August 12, 1861. August 26th found the troops moving their camp to Page's Land, 8 miles north of Manassas in Prince William County (Camp Beauregard).

In May of 1862, the militia was mustered into service of the Confederate States of America as part of LEE's Army of Northern Virginia. Serving with distinction, George enlisted as a private and held the rank of 5th Sergeant at the end of the war. The 16th Regiment was involved in most of the well-known campaigns: Shenandoah Valley Campaign with Stonewall Jackson, Seven Days Battles, Malvern Hill, 2nd Bull Run, Antietam (Sharpsburg), Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, The Wilderness Campaign, Spotsylvania Court House, Cold Harbor, Petersburg, and finally Appomattox Court House. George Bryant FORD was not with LEE at Appomattox because in January of 1865 he was sent to Way Hospital in Meridian, Mississippi. His Civil War records indicate that he was wounded. There is no record of him rejoining his regiment after his hospital stay. From letters we do know that he was captured by the Yankees on 27 June 1864 in Virginia while on a scout near the Weldon railroad [I believe this was near Petersburg]. He was taken to a prison camp at or near Chester, Pennsylvania. He escaped from the prison camp and made his way back to his regiment where he served until he was sent to the hospital in 1865 . . . George attended Dolbear Commercial College of New Orleans, LA after the war, graduating 16 Aug 1867. His diploma reads: Be it known by these presents that this diploma is awarded to G.B. Ford of Mississippi conferring on him the Honorary Degree Master of Accounts, and certifies that he has pursued a thorough course of Commercial Studies at this college including Bookkeeping, Commercial Calculations, Commercial Law, Scientific Penmanship and is qualified to conduct on Scientific principles all kinds of Bookkeeping whether in wholesale, retail, individual, partnership, compound partnership, manufacturing, commission stock, banking, railroad, steam boat, importing, exporting, professional farming, planting, jobbing, mining or any other business. He is hereby recommended to the Mercantile Community as a Gentleman of Moral and Intellectual Worth.

He married his sweetheart of many years, Martha (Mattie) Cora BROOME, daughter of Matthew BROOME and and his second wife, Martha Elizabeth (Betsy) BROWN. Mattie was born 2 Oct 1848 in Utica, Hinds Co, MS. [A family member, Billy HAYNES, still has the book of love poems by Elizabeth Barrett Browning that George gave to Mattie before they married.] They married 9 Apr 1868 in Utica, Hinds Co, MS. Eight children were born to this union; six of them living to maturity. All the children were born in Utica, Hinds Co, MS. After the deaths of their parents and the devastation of the South, George and Mattie decided to make a fresh start in the West. According to oral family history, there was tuberculosis in Mattie's family and her health began to fail as well. It was thought that the dry Texas air might be good for her. In 1886 George, Mattie and all six of the children moved to Texas, arriving in Brownwood, Brown Co, TX on the first train to come all the way into Brownwood. The train was part freight, part passenger. At one point, the family had to wait three days for the tracks to be completed before continuing their journey. However, this helped them avoid making the trip by stage coach.

In Texas George ran a store, moving along with the extension of the railroad. He began this at Santa Anna, Texas (Coleman Co.) and stopped at Ballinger, Texas (Runnels Co.) At one time, he ran the Post Office at Democrat, Texas. He taught school at various locations. He was also a good carpenter. He ran a private school at Trickham, Coleman Co, TX, and then taught in the public schools there later on. He was noted as a public speaker and humorist; it was he who gave the Mukewater School at Trickham the name 'Polecat Ridge' for reasons only to be imagined. George and Mattie settled in the Trickham, Texas area where they lived out the remainder of their lives. At the end of their lives, they had a small truck farm at Bangs, Brown Co, Texas, and sold berries and vegetables.

Mattie died 3 June 1910; George died 24 Sept 1911. Both are buried at Trickham Cemetery, Trickham, Texas.


Page Created January 4, 2006
Copyright 2006  Jane Combs  All Rights Reserved
Submission Remains the Property of Jymie Carol Ford Inmon