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Memorial Day Tribute: Remembering William

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My search for any civil war relatives started over three months ago. I wanted to become a member of the UDC (United Daughters of the Confederacy) because I am a Southern woman by birth and because of the fact I write about and photograph civil war reenactments. The journey started out like any other, finding those facts that would associate me with a family member who served as a Confederate soldier. After speaking with my uncle Gary Calvert, I visited the Mississippi Department of Archives and History.

The Mississippi Department of Archives and History is the “Winters” building located in downtown Jackson, Mississippi. I spent six hours the first day, pouring over the old micro-films, turning the handle by hand and slowly going through the Kemper County, Mississippi 1910 U.S. Census. Gradually, I found several family connections through the 1910 and 1860 U. S. Census. I first found my paternal grandfather, who in the 1910 census was a five-year-old child. I later connected the dots back to my great-great-great grandfather: Adam Calvert. Adam had several children, one was named “William Calvert” born in 1841. Adam Calvert was originally from Ireland.

William Calvert enlisted as a Private with the CSA in Fulton, Mississippi with the “Company B, 6th Mississippi Cavalry.” He served in one of the battles near Shiloh. His pay rate for three years of service was about $250.00. William later died from a fever November 16, 1864. He is now buried in the Zion Cemetery in Kemper County, Mississippi. This location is about twelve miles North East of Collinsville, Mississippi.

This past Wednesday May 20, I drove up to the Zion Cemetery and with my father, placed a Confederate flag to mark William Calvert’s grave. My father took a piece of chalk and rubbed it over the head stone so I could read the writing inscribed there. My father told me that I was the “first Calvert” to put a Confederate Memorial Flag down for William, it made me proud doing it. I reckon it was my way of honoring all veterans from the past to the present. Putting down that flag to remember William, made me wonder what sort of boy he must have been growing up in rural Kemper County, Mississippi.

As a soldier in the Civil War, William must been frightened like any other young man, wondering what the future had in store for him. So, this blog is my tribute to “Remembering William.” A “thank you” to all of the service men past and present, I salute you. God Bless America.

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