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Pvt. Jonathan William McAnnally Honored at Hawkins County Memorial Service

Saturday, November 5, 1994

The Bradford/Rose Honor Guard under the command of Mike Beck, carry the wreath of memorial.

Some men of the War-Between-The States lie buried in fields far from home with their family never knowing where they were buried, or how they died. Such was the case of Sarah and Jonathan William McAnnally. Sarah knew little of how her husband died. She only knew that he died in a distant place, giving his life for what he believed in. She only had the letter he had sent her four months before he had died. He was mortally wounded at the battle of Chickamauga, Georgia, on September 19, 1863. He was a Private in Company K, 19th Tennessee Infantry Regiment, Confederate States Army. After his death, Sarah was left to raise their little girls, which she did. She never re-married. Sarah died in 1899 and was buried in Dean Cemetery near Mooresburg, Tennessee.

Jonathan, or William as he preferred to be called, was the oldest child of George and Ann McAnnally. He had 6 sisters and 1 brother. He married Sarah Johnson. From this small family, generations down, a great, great, grand-daughter named Betty Russell would marry Clever Smith, and through this couple a memorial stone would be placed beside Sarah to memorialize her husband who had not returned.

Cleve Smith, of New Market, Tennessee, was master of ceremony. He is a member of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, the Bradford/Rose Camp, Morristown, Tennessee, sponsors of the memorial. Smith told about the life and death of William McAnnally. He told about the daughters, Fanny Dale, and husband Hugh Walker Russell, and Mollie and husband Joe Marion. Over 100 friends and relatives were present for the ceremony. A Confederate flag displayed at the grave was escorted by the 63rd and 19th Tennessee Infantry Regiments, and presented to Betty Russell Smith by Capt. Scott Templeton of the 19th Tennessee Infantry.

The 19th Tennessee Infantry Regiment under the command of Capt. Scott Templeton served as honor guard, and gave a 21 volley salute. The Bradford/Rose Honor Guard in uniform, under the command of Mike Beck, and other members in civilian clothes placed a wreath on the grave.

The National Flags of the Confederacy which were displayed at the graves blew softly in the wind as Reverend Charles W. Davis, Chaplin of Bradford/Rose Camp, delivered the prayer. A part of Reverend Davis prayer contained these words: “We are not able to share the loneliness of his absence with his companion and his young family, but we do remember in this commemorative Memorial Service. Might their spirits be remembered as one, once again. Might all their family dreams be fulfilled in eternity.”

More than a few tears were shed after hearing Rev. Davis’ words, and some felt from this very beautiful ceremony that they had in a way shared the loneliness of his absence, and in a way Betty and Clever Smith had brought home the memory of a husband never to be forgotten by his wife and family by placing a stone and giving William a beautiful memorial service.

Cleve Smith, giving a biography of McAnnally and his life during the Civil War.

The First and Third National flags of the Confedracy were displayed. But, the Second National Flag, under which Pvt. McAnnally fought and died, was missing and it was escorted to the grave and posted by the 63rd Tennessee Infantry Regiment, re-enactment group under the command of Capt. Richard Beeler, shown here presenting the flag to Capt. Scott Templeton.

Taken from THE BLUE AND GRAY From Hawkins County, Trennessee 186-1865 The Confederates by Sheila Weems Johnston

Photos by S.W. Johnston


Copyright © 2000-2001 by Sheila Weems Johnston

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