Post by benotforgot on Oct 31, 2004 20:32:36 GMT -6
Mollie = Mary Annie Nettles nee West (1852-1939)
One of my cousins, Ruby Nettles (1910-2003), was born on the 1st day of April in the Cole Springs community near Tanglewood, Texas . . . in a house, the main room of which was of huge hewn logs. Her parents were Joseph Alfred Nettles (1889-1944) and Carrie Belle Yeager (1888-1969).
[Note from admin: Joseph Nettles was the younger brother of my great-grandma, Emma Patience (Nettles) Muston (1882-1964).]
Miss Ruby once stated that,
One afternoon in the summer of 1932 this writer visited her aging grandmother for the purpose of taking notes on some of the Civil War stories she had heard her tell all her life.
The notes from that visit became a newspaper article entitled Memories of My Grandmother Nettles, which was published in the 19 April 1979 edition of The Giddings Times & News. Miss Ruby served as Assistant Editor for Volume I of A History of Lee County, Texas which was published in 1974.
Later in the day during that long ago summer of 1932, Mollie told her granddaughter that --
There were twenty-one families of relatives and friends who finally got together and decided it might be easier to start over in Texas, so we made the long trek from northern Mississippi in 1869. But this I will have to tell you about another time, since this day is about gone.
In later years, Miss Ruby would regret that she and Mollie never did return to that conversation and pick up where they left off that day.
On the 22nd day of February in 1864 ... a skirmish at Ivey's Hill (or Farm) near Okolona, Mississippi and engagement at Okolona ... in which Gen. Nathan Bedford Forrest's Confederate cavalry whips Union Gen. William S. Smith's cavalry force ... is one of the few battles of the war that involved only cavalry units.
Gen. Forrest, angered and saddened by the death of his brother ... Jeffrey Forrest, who is killed with a bullet to the throat ... has two horses killed under him before his famous charger, King Philip, is brought up for Forrest to ride.
King Philip, a large gray gelding, is twelve years old. Sluggish on ordinary occasions, he became superbly excited in battle and was as quick to detect the presence of a bluecoat as any of Old Bedford's riders. And he was as ready for battle. Whenever he saw the enemy, he lay back his ears, threw up his tail and, leaping forward across the field, snapped his teeth at anything blue. [... Forrest & His Critter Company]
Mollie recalled about this time period in Oktibbeha County, Mississippi that ... Closer came the fighting until one day we could hear the cannon booming as a battle was fought over a bridge maybe twelve miles from our home. I remember what they called that bridge, though I don't know how you would spell it ... Sookietoncha, it sounded like.
It made cold chills run over you to hear that cannon. We had already had several wounded soldiers to take care of ... Aunt Mary and Mother were fine nurses ... but now they really poured into the house.
I remember that Col. [Jeffrey] FORREST had come by the day before and asked Aunt Mary for a horse to ride. She had told him to take his pick, only leave her old Tom to ride, since he was real gentle. But he insisted on using Tom, and in anger she told him, "I hope he does you no good, Sir!"
Late the next day, after the battle at the bridge, old Tom came home riderless with blood all over the saddle. Col. FORREST had been killed on him. Aunt Mary wept in remorse and never again rode old Tom. Col. [Jeffrey] FORREST and Gen. [Nathan Bedford] FORREST were brothers, and we saw them often.
As told to Ruby Vance nee Nettles by her grandmother, Mary Annie "Mollie" Nettles nee West, c. 1932
North Mississippi was basically a red-clay country. It was largely a country of the plain people. The plantations were few in comparison with the Delta, for the cultivated land was chiefly the highlands, sufficient for a homestead, but not for a large establishment. The hills were surrounded with low forests and swamps. In wet weather the country was difficult.
The dividing line between the hill and flat country was Okolona, the Indian for Queen of the Prairie. The prairie produced corn in such abundance that it was called Egypt Land. Along the Mobile and Ohio Railroad there were hundreds of bins filled with corn for the armies of the Confederacy. Each bin belonged to a farmer, and it was his duty to keep it filled at fixed times. Besides, the depots were crammed with meal, bacon, white beans, and hundreds of thousands of bushels of corn in the shuck. And in the flat, black soil thousands of acres of corn were standing in the fields, brown and frozen. Two streams, the Tombigbee River and the Sookatoncha Creek, bound together this granary. The "Bigbee River" flowed north from Columbus; the Sookatoncha, northwest. Meeting near Columbus, they formed a perfect cul-de-sac into which any army might be drawn. Forrest knew this....
Bedford Forrest and His Critter Company by Andrew Nelson Lytle