Walter X. Broome
Contributed by Jymie Carol Ford Inmon January 24, 2006
The Hazlehurst Courier, May 4, 1933
A boy spy of the Confederacy once hanged by Federal Captors in this very city until he was nearly dead, slept in his native Hinds County Earth today after a life of 82 years filled with daring and patriotic service.
W.X. Broome, one of the last of the famed Montgomery Scouts, a daring band too young for the regular Confederate Army, received the last tribute of those who knew him best in the small Methodist Church here Monday morning. Mr. Broome passed away Sunday afternoon at his country home near here after a long and trying illness. The Rev. H.C. Castle, pastor of the church where Mr. Broome had worshipped for years, said the service, after which the body of the aged soldier was laid away in the city cemetery.
Mr. Broome was the last surviving member of a large family whose sons were distinguished for their war service and their heroic deeds during Mississippi's dark period of Reconstruction. Mr. Broome's father was one of Utica's pioneers and the family had an important share in developing this part of Hinds County. When the War Between the States broke out, young Broome, only 12 years old, determined to serve his country under arms. The Montgomery Scouts commanded by the distinguished Captain W.A. Montgomery of Edwards, gave him his opportunity and he shared the laurels of many heroic forays by this band, eternal gadflies which stung the invaders.
Mr. Broome was a 13-year-old youngster when he fell into enemy hands. Condemned as a spy and identified as a member of the dreaded "Scouts" the courageous youth was strung up by a rope in a wooded area now included in Utica's corporate limits.
"You can kill me but I shan't tell!"
Defiant in the face of death, the youngster dangled at the rope's end, steadfastly guarding his secret whose violation would have exposed the camp of the Montgomery Scouts. A Federal officer finally cut him down, apparently won by his show of bravery.
This is all I have of the article. There was an article in Our Confederate Heritage, April 1991-5 that states:
"Walter X. Broome was the eleventh child of eight sons and five daughters born to the family of Matthew Broome and his wife, Elizabeth (Brown). Being Confederates of the first degree, the Broome brothers: Henry Alonzo*, Cyrus Lafayette, and John Matthew joined Company C 16th Mississippi Infantry. Henry was killed at Petersburg, VA in defense of Battery Gregg. William [Billy] was in Company K, 1st Mississippi Light Artillery and was captured at Vicksburg. Walter X. Broome was born February 18, 1851 and had just turned ten years old when the War Between the States started. When only twelve or thirteen he became a member of the Montgomery Scouts, commanded by the distinguished Captain W.A. Montgomery of Edwards. This group was made up of young boys who acted as advance scouts for Stubbs Battalion of State Cavalry. They were so young they were mostly ignored by the Yankees" . . . Walter and his brothers never took the "Oath of Allegiance" and some of the brothers moved to Texas seeking to escape the new government. Walter came to Warren County to find a bride in the Folkes family. He married Anna Folkes and they had three children. After Anna died, Walter married Tammie Clifford McCoy and fathered six more children.
*Henry Alonzo was not a brother to the boys, but one of their slaves, although he must have been a comrade as well since he fought beside the Broome boys. JCFI
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