Looking for woman disguised as Union soldier; died April 6, 1864 in Georgia or Alabama

Joined
Aug 2, 2019
@lupaglupa and @lelliott19, you both rock! Thanks for the improved graphics! My Georgia connections have suggested Bibb County or Tift County. Both are not too far from Andersonville, and Macon, which was a major hub, is in Bibb County. Can't rule out Polk, either, though, @Bloody7th. And @lupaglupa, thank you for the suggestion of the lady who wrote They Fought Like Demons - she does, indeed, work in the National Archives and I have an email in to her to see if what we know matches anybody that she's come across.

I'll keep you posted....
 
Joined
Aug 2, 2019
Reinterment Records are in Record Group number 92 at the National Archives. So the good news is that there may be a record in there somewhere that says where she was moved from; the bad news is that nobody can access the NARA. (They lady at the NARA who wrote They Fought Like Demons retired last year, but she was able to give me this information and the name of an archivist to address my query to).

My next best hope is that they know what the "See 410 and 411' in the Unknown Lady's register listing refers to down at Andersonville. I have an email in to the guy in charge of the cemetery, but he was at a training all last week.

If this doesn't pan out, i can try writing to the places where the bodies listed before hers came from (Hawkinsville and Fort Gaines) and see if there are any local references on those ends. Fort Gaines looks especially promising - 45 miles from Andersonville, their school was turned into a hospital, and local legend says that casualties from the Battle of Olustee were brought there. So it's the location of a hospital, it's not too far from Andersonville, and we know the hospital was in operation around the time that she's reported to have died. Still a long shot, but that's the only kind of shot we've got.

If neither of these two work out, then I think we are well and truly stumped.
 
Joined
Aug 2, 2019
Probably outside our ability to dig her up - respectfully - and get a DNA sample.
It depends on several factors, starting with whether or not there are any remains left. Chances are that all that's there is a dark smudge left by the body and possibly a couple of teeth. The exception to this MIGHT be if she was given a coffin; most of the reintered remains were placed in burlap sacks and transported - at least, that's what Deb Wallsmith tells me about when the POWs buried at Millen were dug up and moved to Beaumont National Cemetery after the War.

So an intermittent step would be to find someone with high end Ground Penetrating Radar to take a peek and see if there are any usable remains present, then to try and see what it would take to get permission to exhume her. According to Deb - who has some experience with such things - there may be enough DNA to determine gender, but possibly not enough to determine her identity.

I'm also not overly confident that the NPS would allow it. They won't change the name on a grave when they know it's wrong, because it's a "Historic artifact." My take on it is that, if a man died, his name is more important than what Clara Barton put on the marker, but no one asked me. Anyway, I would be surprised if they would allow it.

So the numbers on the register are our next, best shot.
 
Joined
Aug 2, 2019
I didn't want to hijack the thread on Deanne Blanton, so I'll catch things up here.

The NARA won't be answering anything until they reopen after covid, and even when they do, I expect they'll get hit with a tsunami of frustrated researchers.

The retired superintendent of Andersonville doesn't know what the "See 410 and 411" notation refers to, but has referred me to a retired ranger, so I'll write to him today.

And here's a photo of the grave in question, which very clearly says "U. S. Soldier" on it, although it gives no indication as to the person's gender.

Unknown Lady Soldier Grave 13706.jpg
 
Top