At the request of my daughters, I have jotted down a few memories of my life and more mature years. I have had much happiness in my life and much heartrending sorrow. In the death of by brothers, sisters and parents, I suffered much distress. But the crowning and most enduring sorrow of my life was the loss of my dear husband and the manner of his death. After having thousands of bullets showered around him for four years and leading such a noble life, to think that a wretch so base as to assassinate him could be found to deprive a wife and nine little children of their husband and father, and this wretch to go unpunished by law. The oldest child was fourteen and a half years old, the youngest little girl only two months and a half of age. I could never forget it if I lived to be a hundred years old. He was the best, the dearest husband to me. This is for the use of my children that they may have an accurate idea of what my life has been. With much love, Your devoted Mother, Charlotte E. Grimes I was born in Raleigh, January 27th, 1840. My parents, Hon. John H. Bryan and Mary W. Sheperd, his wife having moved from New Bern, N.C. in the winter of 1837 and '38. My father bought from Hon. George E. Badger a house surrounded by a large grove of Oak, Hickory and Walnut trees, facing on Blount Street, Person Street at the back, Lane Street on the South and North Street on the North. To this house, he made a large addition, making a very roomy and commodious dwelling, the large grove being an ideal play-ground for the children. Lovejoy's Academy and grave, now the Governor's Mansion and grounds being just south of this place. We seldom went from home, our old Mammy, Harriet, with her assistant nurse, used to take us for long walks to the Big Branch and Mordecai's Woods, where she gathered black-berries and wild flowers for us, and we were very happy in doing so. This Branch was at the foot of what is now Oakwood Avenue, next to the Confederate and Oakdale Cemetery, which are a part of the Mordecai Woods. I have been told that I was a very small baby, so delicate looking, that on the occasion of a dinner party at my father's when the baby was brought in, Mr. Badger exclaimed, "Why Bryan, this looks like a giving-out." I have been told though that I was quite a pretty baby. When seven years of age, I went in the country to spend a week with Hattie Hubbard, whose father, the Rev. F. M. Hubbard had charge of Trinity Episcopal School for boys. I then began to fatten up and continued to do so until my flesh was a source of great annoyance to me, my brothers and sisters teasing me about my size. Hattie was very stout and they said I got it from sleeping with her. When I was about eight years of age, my brother Frank returned from Mexico, where he had greatly distinguished himself by his gallantry and bravery at the battle of Buena Vista. The City of Raleigh had presented him with a gold sword. I don't remember much except seeing him in his uniform in the House of Commons with the sword in his hand and people standing around. On the 4th day of July, they sent up fire-works with his name, General Taylor's, General Scott's, and others, who had distinguished themselves in the War. I was thought too small to go out at night, but the other children told me about them. I also remember when the house was illuminated. I think it was when General Taylor was elected President, nearly all the windows in the house had a candle in each pane. I used to be, and we all were intensely proud of brother Frank, thinking him the hero of the War. About this time, my brother George, (who was just younger than myself,) was sent with me to Mrs. Taylor's School. She was an excellent teacher, but such a strict and severe disciplinarian that after going about eighteen months, we begged our parents to send us elsewhere. George went to Mr. Lovejoy, and I was sent to St. Marys, where I remained, except at intervals, until I was sixteen years of age. George was a very bright boy and was prepared to enter College at Chapel Hill very early, graduating with high honors at eighteen years of age. He was appointed Tutor of Latin, and remained there until the beginning of the War in the Spring of 1861, when he resigned to enter the Service. He was appointed by Governor Ellis, a Lieutenant in the Second N.C. Calvary under Col. Spruill. At the battle of New Bern, he was acting as Aide de Camp to Col. Campbell of the Seventh Regiment, State Troops, who complimented him very highly for his coolness and courage, saying he acted like a veteran. This was his first experience under fire. His horse was killed at this battle. After this, he returned to his Regiment, which was sent to Virginia. In a fight at Upperville, he was wounded in the head and left for dead on the field. Our troops left him, and on regaining consciousness, he was taken by the Yankees and carried first to Washington City and Baltimore, and then to Johnson's Island in Lake Erie, where he suffered intensely from his wound, cold and starvation. In the Spring of 1864, he was exchanged and almost immediately returned to the field. At a fight on Charles City Road, his men were dismounted to act as Infantry; in making a charge he was shot as he mounted the breast-works. The bullet entered about the heart, probably a sharp-shooter picked him off. He was a tall, handsome man, and no doubt the enemy recognized him as an Officer. He lived only long enough to cheer his men on, and they took the works. He was carried to a house nearby, where he breathed only a few times. They wrapped him in his blanket and buried him there. After we received the news of his death, my brother Henry, (now Judge H. R. Bryan of New Bern), took one of my fathers' negroes, went to Virginia and assisted by Rev. George Patterson, procured a coffin, and brought the remains home. Thus perished as noble and gallant a spirit as ever lived. He was a sincere Christian and expected to study for the ministry when the war was over. George's commission to Lieutenant-Colonel of the regiment was received at Headquarters the very day he was killed. I was sent in September, 1857 to Miss Carpentier's School in Philadelphia. I remained there about ten months devoting my time principally to music and the languages. I took piano lessons from Carl Wolfsohn, and singing lessons from Parelli, the two foremost teachers of the day. Parelli always tried the voices of his pupils and would not take any girls unless their voices justified the expense and trouble of cultivating them. He was an Italian and rather a unique character. Parelli used to say, "Now, you go to the Opera and hear 'Gay Gazzaniza' sing and you sing like her." Gay Gazzaniza was the prima donna for the season. We also went frequently to hear the celebrated prima donna, La Grange. We enjoyed the privilege of attending the operas and concerts of celebrated musicians, also of visiting friends and relations in the city. My friend and relative, Major Charles J. Biddle and his wife were very kind to me and I had a standing invitation to dine with them every Saturday, when I felt so inclined. They often took me out to entertainments. Major Biddle was an officer in the Mexican War, and a son of the celebrated Nicholas Biddle, President of the Unites States Bank in President Jackson's term and a noted financier. His, (Nicholas Biddle's) Mother was a Miss Shepard of North Carolina, sister of my grandfather, William Shepard of New Bern. I spent the Christmas Holidays with my friend, Mary McIntosh, (afterwards Mrs. Kilgore,) at Trenton, NJ. We enjoyed ourselves extremely, and had something on hand every evening. Mary's beau, Pete Vroom and my friend, Mr. Hunt, were our constant attendants. We saw much of the Dayton's and others. Pete Vroom had just returned from Europe, where his father had been Minister at one of the European Courts; he brought Mary a very pretty garnet pin. The Easter Holidays I spent at Bordentown with my Mother's cousin, Mrs. Francis Hopkinson. It was a very quaint looking place, there being a great many old stone houses. Among other places, I saw the house where Madame Murat used to teach school. I was told that Louis Napoleon, (afterwards Emperor) while living in Bordentown, had been arrested for shooting a pig. The town was very quiet while I was there, it being too early for the usual summer residents. Mrs. Hopkinson had a home in Philadelphia also. They were very kind to me. In June, I returned to Raleigh and spent the summer there. The winter I left school was "Legislature Winter" as it was called when I made my debut, and we enjoyed the usual number of parties and entertainments. The following June, 1859, I attended my first Commencement at the University of North Carolina; in these days attending Commencement at Chapel Hill was an event in the lives of the girls of the State. President Buchanan and Jacob Thompson of his Cabinet attended this Commencement. On his staff was Lieutenant Stuart, afterwards the famous Confederate General J.E.B. Stuart. My sister Isabel and cousin Annie Washington and I were introduced to them. Lt. J.E.B. Stuart, though a married man, made himself most charming and did everything he could to make our time pass pleasantly. After going home to Raleigh, the President and his party called at my father's house. I met my husband for the first time at Chapel Hill. My mother sent with us as maid, a settled woman named Kitty, as she thought one of the younger ones would lose her head in the excitement. We had very poor lights in our room, only short pieces of tallow candles. We used to send Kitty out in the day and she would tell the hotel people we must have more candles. Our evening dresses were made with pointed waists, laced in the back and between the poor lights and Kitty's eyes, it was a hard matter to get into them as she had to feel for every little eyelet hole. I remember the night of the big ball, my feet pained so from dancing and standing, I had to discard my new slippers and use an old pair. I was the first one dressed and by the time Kitty was through lacing my dress I was almost exhausted. Then Isabel and Annie Washington became so out of patience with her, they begged me to lace their dresses, which I did. I enjoyed the ball after I reached there, and Lt. Stuart was very kind procuring seats for us, whenever there was a cessation of dancing. After driving 12 miles over a dreadful road in a carriage and going all during the day and dancing for three nights, I was pretty well worn out. My Tuesday night dress was a white Tarlatan with red ribbons; Wednesday night I wore yellow silk with gold colored Tarlatan over it and a wreath of holly berries and green leaves. My dress for the big ball was a white silk with tulle overdress and white feathers in my hair. I spent the remainder of the summer at home. My brother Frank, of St. Louis, and his family were at the Virginia Springs and after the season there was over, they made a visit to my father and mother. They asked them to allow me to go back with them and make a visit in St. Louis, to which they consented. On our way to St. Louis, we stopped for a visit in Baltimore to see my brother. Afterwards, Judge William Shepard Bryan of the Maryland Court of Appeals. From there we went to New York where my brother's wife, Sister Edwina and I enjoyed ourselves shopping, and seeing all the beautiful goods in the stores, attending the opera and etc. We saw the famous Adelina Patti at the opera; she had then not made her debut. My sister, Mrs. John C. Winder was then living in New York, and we had the pleasure of seeing her, her husband and her little daughter, Mary. From there, we went to Buffalo, Cincinnati, and other cities to St. Louis, where I made a long visit. Mrs. Taylor, my brother's mother-in-law would not let me come home; she and every one else were as kind as possible. The city was very gay and something always going on. There were a great many young men in society. I had beautiful clothes and jewelry, among them a set of pearls and etc. I met many people, Col. Churchill his wife and daughter being my very good friends. At one time I thought I would adopt St. Louis as my future residence, but could not make up my mind to go so far from home unless I had been more in love than I was. Among others, I met a Mr. Dent, a brother-in-law of Gen. Grant. The latter at that time was rather obscure with no thought, I suppose, of being restored to a command in the United States Army and of attaining such distinction. I returned home, June 1860, coming as far as Baltimore with Col. Churchill who was delegate to the Democratic convention in Baltimore that nominated Breckenridge and Lane. There were four tickets in the field that year. Bell and Everett by Whigs, Douglas and _________, Lincoln and Hanslien, Republicans. From Baltimore, I returned home with Mr. George Mordecai, Mr., now Gen. Cox, and quite a number of pleasant Gentlemen whose names I have forgotten. The Legislature met the following winter and the times were quite exciting with much talk of secession and many parties. Most of our friends among the Gentlemen were secessionists, though some were for the Union. The secession convention met in Raleigh, May 1861, and passed the ordinance of secession on the 20th. There was a large crowd of ladies and gentlemen in the House of Commons (now called the House of Representatives) and great enthusiasm. Ramseur's Battery was on the West side of the Capitol and they fired a salute; everybody who could get a place repaired to the West porch of the Capitol. Gen. Grimes was a member of the Convention from Pitt County. He was a secessionist and kept and treasured the pen with which he signed the ordinance. My father was a Union man as long as we remained there in honor, but after Lincoln's proclamation calling for troops to subdue the South, he became one of the strongest and most earnest supporters of the Confederacy, paying his tithes and taxes cheerfully, and giving every aid possible to the Confederate Government. We lived through the trying days of the war and did not suffer any great privations, thanks to our father's care and forethought. Of course, our wardrobes were rather slim, but that was a small matter, compared with the trouble and anxiety which we all suffered on account of the daily dangers to which those we loved were exposed to in the army. At home the ladies had sewing societies, where they made sheets and all garments necessary for the soldiers. My mother and eleven of us knit many socks and gloves for the soldiers. I remember knitting a nice pair of gloves for Col. Grimes, afterwards my husband; he was calling one evening and saw me knitting gloves for the soldiers and asked me to knit him a pair; I told him I did not know whether I could or not, as they would be troublesome to knit with all the fingers, those we knit for the soldiers had only thumb and fore-finger so they could load their guns, the other fingers were all in one. I decided however, that it was my duty as well as a pleasure to knit the gloves and sent them to him. He said they were a great comfort and kept them until after the War and packed them in camphor to prevent the moths eating them. This was in the winter of '62 and '63. Col. Grimes was in Raleigh again in April, called home by the death of his little boy Bryan, who died of scarlet fever at the home of his great aunt, Mrs. Alston in Warren County.(believe this to be Martha Davis and her husband Edward Alston. Martha was the sister of Eliz. Hilliard Davisís father). He always said that I was engaged to him from that time tho' I did not so consider it. After that came the dreadful battle of Chancellorsville, when he was wounded in the foot; he kept on until the works were captured, then fainted from pain, and it was reported that he was killed. My grand-mother was sick and I went up to stay up all night with her; when I returned the next afternoon, I went into the sitting room to speak with my mother and father; Mr. Winder was in there and was telling the news from the battle; he said, among others, Col. Grimes was killed, he said I turned as white as a sheet. I was standing in the door, so went out into the dining-room. My mother came in saying there was a letter for me. It was from a gentleman who had courted me from my first season, saying he would come to Raleigh soon and visit me. I remember thinking, why was it he was alive and Col. Grimes killed. I threw the letter in the fire, realizing then that I cared more for Col. Grimes than any one else. Next day we heard that the news of his death was a mistake. He did not come home again until September 1863 (though I heard from him between times and he sent me music and other things), when he urged me so strongly to marry him at once, I did not have the heart to refuse. His daughter, Bettie, now Mrs. S. F. Mordecai was living with his brother, Mr. William Grimes in Raleigh, and I have always found her a very noble and unselfish woman, she has eight children, all doing well. My trousseau was very limited. I had laid by a few things from time to time, thinking I might need them, and all the family added something. My sister, Mrs. Speight was in Alabama (she had married a widower, whose only son was killed in the war), but my sister, Mrs. Lewis and Mrs. Winder, Isabel and Annie, all contributed something, so I did quite well after all. We were married at Christ Church, Raleigh, Sept. 15th, 1863 at nine o'clock in the morning and took the train for Warrenton immediately. The night before we were married, my husband gave me the loveliest watch and chain I ever saw. I was overcome with surprise, as I had not expected a wedding gift during such hard times. It was a blue enameled heart set with diamonds. The chain was long and of beautiful workmanship. He had seen it in Paris and bought it, thinking he might sometime have a use for it. Col. Grimes took me to Warren County to visit his friends there, the Alstons. We were there about a week, when we returned to Raleigh. We had a reception at my father's, then we went to Mr. William Grimes' for a while. My husband soon returned to the Army as his furlough had expired. Things being quiet along the line, he procured another furlough as he had business in connection with his nomination for Congress to attend to. He withdrew his name and returned to the Army, preferring to remain there until peace was restored. He wrote that as soon as he was settled for the winter he would send for me. About the middle of December, my dear little brother, Freddie, died. He had been a sufferer for a long time from diabetes. He bore his suffering with so much patience and tried so hard to keep up that we hardly realized this illness. He had a most brilliant mind and one of the brightest, sweetest dispositions I ever knew. He had been to a Military Academy. Col. Tow's at Hillsboro, and although only about fifteen or sixteen years of age used to take great pleasure in drilling the soldiers in camp around us; he was certainly a bright, lovable boy, and he was an ardent Confederate. Just before Christmas, I had a letter from Col. Grimes saying he had procured a comfortable boarding house near camp, so I went as far as Richmond with my sister, Mrs. Winder, her husband and children. From there I went to Orange Court House; reaching there the night before Christmas, 1863. Mr. Winder went to the train with me in Richmond and introduced Cashmeyer, the celebrated detective, who went with me as far as Orange Court House. Gen. Ramseur and wife boarded at the same place with us and we found them very pleasant and agreeable. Shortly after reaching the Army, the band of the Fourth Regiment gave a serenade. I did not enjoy it much as it made me think of my little brother and I could hardly refrain from tears. The snow was on the ground and it was bitter cold. Col. Grimes called the band in and Mr. Davis gave them a good supper to warm them up. Gov. Vance made a visit to the Army that winter, made speeches and reviewed the NC Troops. We, Mrs. Ramseur, Mrs. Davis with whom we boarded and I, went to the Review. There was a small fight on the Rapidan River while we were there. The Yankees attempted to cross and of course, our husbands had to go and left very miserable wives. They were called off again that winter and were away several days. In April, I returned home under the care of Rev. Mr. Anderson, Chaplain of the Fourth Regiment and passed many long days consumed with misery and anxiety as my husband was in a battle almost every day. First were those terrible fights at Spotsylvania, and the Wilderness, then they went to the Valley. Col. Grimes was appointed to a Brigadier-Generalship in May, 1864. My cousin, Annie Blount Pettigrew, who, with her sister, Mary, was raised by my Mother, (their mother, Mrs. Ebeneezer Pettigrew having died at the birth of the former,) refuged at Haywood, Harnett County with her brother, William S. Pettigrew. He had taken his most valuable negro men for safety there. While there, Annie married in the Spring of 1863, Rev. Neil McKay. She died in the Spring of '64. Her twin babies being buried in the same coffin. After the war ended Dr. McKay passed through Raleigh with the remains, also taking Gen. Pettigrew's (who had been buried in the City Cemetery in Raleigh) with him to Lake Scuppernong, their birth-place, burying them in the churchyard at St. David's Chapel.** William S. Pettigrew afterwards became an Episcopal Minister, and lived in Ridgeway where he ended his days in 1900 and is buried there. In August, 1864, my brother George was killed. I remember, my brother Henry coming in with the telegram. On the 19th of September was fought the battle of Fisher's Hill, in which at first was successful. Gen. Rodes was killed. On the 19th of October, the Battle of Cedar Creek was fought and Gen. Ramseur was killed. ________ ** Transcriber's Note: Lake Scuppernong is currently Lake Phelps. Gen. Pettigrew is actually buried in a plot that was once on his plantation, "Bonarva", which is very close to "Somerset Place", a large, restored plantation house, near Pettigrew State Park in Washington County, NC. Ridgeway, NC is near Norlina, NC in Warren County. ______ My first baby was born on the 12th day of October he lived only two days. Dr. Mason, the rector of Christ Church was sent for and baptized him, Bryan. His heart never acted right. Dr. Johnson said it was caused by anxiety and trouble. In December, I again went to the Army. My husband was then commanding the Division, Gen. Ramseur having been killed in the fight of October 19th in the Valley. Just before going into battle he received news of the birth of his child, but was killed and never knew its sex. The division was in Camp about two miles from Petersburg on Swift Creek and my husband wrote for me to come. I went over to see Mrs. Cox and told her I was going to the Army and asked if she would like to go at the same time. She said that she was anxious to do so and would be delighted to go with me. She took her nurse and little boy and driver to look after the baggage. We left Raleigh in the afternoon and reached Greensboro before dark. It was very doubtful whether we would be able to get through or not as the trains were filled with furloughed soldiers returning to their commands. My father had put me under the care of Gen. J.G. Martin, who was going to Richmond. About dark, Major Edmundson and several other officers said we should not be disappointed, and they would see that we got on the train. They procured a wagon that had no body and put us in it and we drove some distance beyond the depot where the train had stopped for a few minutes. They laid a plank from the embankment to the car which we walked and scrambled into the freight car. I sat all night on a bag of corn. We travelled all that night until the next afternoon. During the night, a heavy snow had fallen and it was very cold and the engine had broken down. Capt. Richard Henderson, U.S.A. and his wife from Washington City were along with us. We did not suffer for food as we carried lunches with us. We remained there all night and until the next afternoon, when an engine came along and took us to Petersburg. On this journey, I met Capt. William L. London and his brother Henry of Pittsboro, who were on their way to the Army. We travelled all that night and the next day with frequent stoppages and rumors of Yankees blocking the road, but finally reached Petersburg safe and well, but very weary. Gen. Grimes and Gen. Cox met us at the station. Mrs. Cox stopped at Petersburg to spend the night, but my husband and I drove four miles farther in an ambulance to headquarters. I was so exhausted that night that I slept the whole night and until three o'clock the next day without waking. Gen. Grimes had been to Camp and returned for dinner when I roused and inquired if it was time to get up, thinking it was early morning when he said it was three o'clock and dinner time. It was a cold night, but I slept very comfortably under army blankets, a bear skin and a buffalo robe. I had carried sheets from home with me. My stay near Petersburg was twice interrupted by movements of the Yankees. One night we were sitting very cozily by our fire, Gen. Grimes sorting and signing his papers; suddenly he stopped, listened and said "That's small arms and I most go." I said, "Must you go in all this sleet and rain?" He laughed and said that made no difference and made preparations to go. He had orders in case of need to go to the assistance of a force stationed on the river. He immediately called out the Division and in a short time had gone. Next morning, I thought I heard someone say Gen. Grimes was killed. I jumped out of bed and sent my servant to inquire, when Dr. Mitchell who was in the house sent me word that it was Gen. Pegram who was killed; he had only been married a week. Next day the troops returned. Many of them were barefooted and the icicles hanging on hair and beards. One Sunday afternoon, Gen. Grimes and I were on our way to church, when we were met by a courier ordering the Division off somewhere. I went back to the house where we were staying, hurriedly tossed my things in my trunk and was off in a few minutes to a house a few miles distant where Mrs. Cox was staying. Next day, we see the wagons passing, loaded with wounded men. After some hours, Gen. Grimes, to my great joy appeared in sight. I was soon ready, and we went back to our house, walking, he leading "Old Warren," his horse. The mess, Major Green Peyton, A.A.G., Dr. Mitchell, and others lived in a four room house with us that belonged to a Dr. Bragg. Major Peyton kept house. At night we could see the shells burst about a hundred or a hundred and fifty yards away. When the officers left, I had to go too, as I could not stay there alone and would go to a neighboring house where Mrs. Cox boarded. I had a negro maid that I took with me from Raleigh to wait on me. I remained there until February, when Gen. Lee advised to send their families away as active operations might begin at any time. Gen. Grimes sent his aide, Capt. Barnes to take me home, also his body servant, Polk, to help us, as there were no porters at the stations to move baggage. He told Capt. Barnes he could see his wife before returning, so he went to Wilson from Raleigh. There I met my father's carriage and went home. The roads were so bad that it was sometime before active operations began. Forty-five men deserted the night I left. Forty-five men deserted the night I left. . It was said that Capt. Tom Settle, who was a great secessionist in the beginning, told their wives if they wished the war to stop, to make their husbands desert and come home. When my husband told me goodby, I did not know if I should ever see him alive again. He told me to take the next train for Richmond, as the railroad might be cut at any time by the Yankees. We reached Richmond about dark in a pouring rain and had to walk to the Spottswood Hotel, there being no carriage at the station. We stayed there that night and 'til about dark the next day. My cousin, or sister as we called her, Miss Mary Pettigrew who was at Chimboraza Hospital nursing the soldiers came and dined with me. She was the sister of the talented and distinguished Gen. Pettigrew who was killed at Falling Waters on the retreat from Gettysburg where he added to his laurels. A week or two ago (August 1918), my daughter, Mrs. Hackett met an old soldier of Wilkes County, Buck Welch of the Twenty-Sixth Regiment in Wilkesboro, who said that he was with Gen. Pettigrew when he was shot, and was also nursed by Miss Mary Pettigrew in the hospital. He was shot by a Union Officer, Major West. Col. Hall, formerly of Wilkesboro, was also present at his death. Shortly after my return to Raleigh, the siege of Petersburg began, when Gen. Grimes displayed his general great courage and skill in handling his troops. He commanded the rear guard. In crossing the bridge at Sailor's (sic) Creek, in his anxiety to get all of his men safely across before crossing himself, he was cut off by the Yankees, he put spurs to his horse, swam the creek and Old Warren scrambled up the bank like a cat. My husband always had a great affection for this horse, he used to say he has as much sense as a human being. He was a blooded horse and cherished for past services, living many years after the War. He was twenty-seven or twenty-eight years old when he died, and was buried on the hillside below the family burying ground at Grimesland. In the beginning of the year 1865, the old men between sixty and seventy of age organized a Company for home protection called "The Law Preserving Guards." This company was organized for the protection of the houses, as all able-bodied men were in the Army and in case the negroes should give trouble. But the negroes behaved very well indeed in our section, continuing obedient and respectful to their owners. My father, who was about sixty-six years of age, belonged to this company and used to require assistance in putting on his accoutrements and would get "Ras", the house servant to help him. She was very smart and had seen the soldiers around so much that she knew exactly how they should be worn. After Petersburg, followed the Battle of Appomattox, which fight was planned and directed successfully by Gen. Grimes. The Confederates drove the Yankees back and opened the way to Lynchburg. Then came the news of the surrender. When the soldiers heard of it the bronzed veterans wept like children. After this there was a week of crushing anxiety as we could hear nothing definite as to the terms of the surrender or what was to be done with the soldiers. Gov. Graham, Gov. Swain and some soldiers went to meet Sherman to surrender the City of Raleigh. Though the town was surrendered, a good many depredations were committed. The first we knew of the Yankees reaching town, we saw our father's carriage horses passing, a Yankee mounted on one and a negro boy of my father's on the other. Later in the day, father was going down to get a guard when a Yankee stopped him and asked the time of day. Father took out his watch, which was an old silver one, he having sent his own and my mother's to Gov. Swain's at Chapel Hill for safe keeping, which the soldier looked at and handed back saying, "I don't want that." Then a Yankee rode up to the side porch and demanded the smoke house key which my mother had put in her pocket. She told him she did not have any meat to spare, but he insisted, when my sister said "Call the guard". We rushed to the front window and called, when the Yankee turned and left. Later still a servant rushed in saying, "Missus, the Yankees are taking the cows." A Gen. Greene of the Federal Army, a friend of my sister, Mrs. Winder was calling on her and heard the servant, he got up and said, "I'll put a stop to that." So he went out and made them carry the cows back and threatened to punish any one of them who troubled our property. For several days, before Joe Johnston's Army passed, some of the Confederate Officers took meals at my father's house and they gave very vivid descriptions of the depredations committed by Yankees, stealing jewelry and silver and destroying furniture. My sister, Mrs. Winder decided to bury her jewelry and smaller pieces of silver in the City Cemetery. The Officers said that everything must be so deep that the Yankees could not reach it with a bayonet that they prodded every suspicious looking place with them and if they encountered any hard substance immediately began to dig. She asked me to go with her; we were afraid to take a servant for fear they would inform against us. She provided herself with two large table knives and took a tin can and a tin box, each filled with valuables. We selected a corner in father's lot under a small bush and dug for hours. I thought we would never dig the hole deep enough. Finally, we put the boxes in and covered them up and left. There was more talk at dinner about those depredations until finally Octavia became so uneasy that she left the table, and although it was raining, wrapped up and went back to the Cemetery and brought her things back. In a little while, her husband, Major Winder rode up (he was passing through with Johnston's men) and was very much shocked at her imprudence and did not think the jewelry worth saving at such a cost of health and strength. The night before the Yankees came, a friend, who belonged to Wheeler's Cavalry called and my mother gave him supper. While he was there, the servants came in and said the soldiers were tearing down the garden fence and putting their horses in, so he went out and sent them off. These men were of Wheeler's Cavalry and were a wild lot. This officer remarked to me, "You look more matronly than when I saw you in St. Louis." There was a good reason for it, as I had $200.00 in gold quilted in a belt under my corsets, a stout bag filled with forks and spoons around my waist, and the front of my corsets filled with jewelry and I looked quite stout. I also had a dagger, though I don't think I would have had the nerve to stick a Yankee. This dagger my husband bought in Milan when traveling in Europe just before the War. I had a pistol also but all arms were sent away as it was said the Yankees would behave worse if they found any arms in the houses. When Gen. Grimes came home, he made me take the belt off, saying he could not have by back injured for $200.00. I was keeping it for his brother, who said he would have the use of it, if he needed it, and he certainly did need it as he did not have a cent in the world, except a few gold pieces he had carried all through the war. I was so sick the morning the Yankees came I could hardly hold my head up, but was determined they should not find me in bed. I would dress a little and then lie down awhile, get up and dress a little more until finally I finished and went down stairs with the rest of the family. All of us stayed together for protection, but they did not search the house. All the day before I was on the street trying to get news of my husband so I was worn out with grief and anxiety. Brother Williams Grimes had been over that morning to find out if I had any news of my husband. Both he and my father had heard that he was killed, but they said nothing about that to me. Gen. Schofield and staff took up their quarters at brother Williams Grimes. The Yankees would walk in and ask how many you had in the family and if there were any vacant rooms, would take possession. My father's house was filled with his children and grand-children and my sister, Miss Pettigrew came from the hospital in Richmond and had fever. A Miss Wright in the neighborhood died of typhoid at this time. The many camps of the Yankees polluted the whole atmosphere and many of our friends died. On Sunday afternoon, a week after the surrender, Gen. Grimes came into Raleigh with his wagon, servant and horse. I must say I was delighted to see him under any conditions, tho' he would reproach me for want of patriotism when I said so, he was so miserable over the surrender himself, but I had suffered so much dread and terrible anxiety, I think there was an excuse for it. Shortly after, came the news of Lincoln's assassination. That afternoon an Officer came and warned everyone to be careful how they behaved, he said he would double the guard (there was one guard for every two or three houses), that the soldiers were so infuriated at Lincoln's assassination that he feared they would murder the citizens and burn the town. Of course there was no rest under those conditions and we passed a miserable night. After a few days, things seemed more quiet. The week following, Sherman's troops, numbering 20,000 marched through the town, bands playing, flags flying and making a splendid appearance. Their uniforms were new. Their arms and accouterments burnished and glittering in the sun. Such a contrast to our poor, ragged, half starved, but brave and gallant men. The Yankees issued orders forbidding our soldiers to wear the Confederate uniform, they had nothing else and no money to buy any clothes, so I covered my husband's brass buttons with black, in mourning for the Confederacy, he said. He wished to go to his farm at Grimesland. It was necessary to have citizens clothes and there was no money to buy them. I had several colored silk dresses that I did not wear, as I was in mourning, and sold enough of these to raise $100.00. I insisted upon his taking this to buy a suit of clothes. It seemed to hurt him to use this money, but I would take no denial. Several other gentlemen wished to visit their farms in the East. Mr. Battle, Mr. Mordecai, and others, so they all went together. Gen. Grimes rode Warren all the way. His brothers, Capt J.B. Grimes had already gone to his home in Pitt county across the river from Grimesland. My husband went over to spend the day, on his return he could not find a boat; after calling for some time and getting no boatman, he stripped, swam the river, took a boat and paddled back for his cloths. This imprudence, together with the grief of the surrender gave him a severe spell of fever, which with chills lasted all summer. Then he went to Warren County, where he stayed a week and returned much improved. There were constant rumors as to what the Yankees would do. Of course the Confederates all being disenfranchised, could do nothing. There was a report that they would hang all officers above the rank of a Captain, and all their property would be confiscated. We were living in a perfect "Reign of Terror." I could not bear to see my husband leave the house even to go as far as his brother's, a short distance off, and would stand in the window and watch until he went in the gate. There was a Yankee camp just across the street from my father's front gate by which he (my husband), had to pass, and I would see them watch him and hear them say "There goes the Rebel, Gen. Grimes." My father, nearly seventy-five years of age was summoned before the Freedman's Bureau by one of his slaves, because he demanded rent for a house and a blacksmith shop that the negro was still occupying after he was freed by the Yankees and which belonged to my father. For a wonder, the Yankee General, who was a lawyer, reprimanded the negro and told him, father had a right to his own property. We stayed with our father in Raleigh until the Fall, when my husband bought wagons and horses and prepared to go to the country. I was to go with him, but owing to a state of my health, my parents urged that I stay in Raleigh. My father's health was very much broken by the trials through which he had passed and the death of his two fine boys, so he was very feeble. Gen. Grimes went to his home, but being in New Bern shortly afterwards met a Yankee named Smith who wished to raise cotton and he rented the farm to him for $11,000, then returned to Raleigh, where he bought a large place on New Bern Avenue. My husband bought me a pair of bay horses from the Yankees and as they were gentle, my mother, (whose horses had been taken by the Yankees) was anxious to buy them, but he very kindly insisted upon presenting them to her and she used them a good many years. On Feb, 25th, my son, Alston was born and as soon as I was able, we moved to the place on New Bern Avenue and lived there until the next winter, when the time for which the Yankee had rented the farm expired. He moved down to Grimesland on January 1867. My husband's friend, Col. W.L. Saunders, afterwards, Secretary of the State, was anxious to try farming, so he went in with Gen. Grimes and lived with us two years; his brother Col. Joe Saunders also lived with us and took part in the business. He was married while living there and brought his bride to our house; this was the beginning of a friendship with Mrs. Saunders that has lasted ever since. At first we boarded in Washington, my husband thinking the times too unsettled to take me to the country and he also said I would be too lonely there, having always lived in town, so I boarded at Mrs. Grist's for two months. Forty years later in the Winter of 1906-07, I spent three months in Washington, with my daughter, Mrs. W.C. Rodman and by strange coincidence, occupied the same bedroom in the same house. I had a long and serious illness, the only one in my life. The summer of 1867 was spent in Raleigh at the Seawell place and the following winter at Grimesland. During the fall of 1867, my husband's portrait and mine were painted by William Carl Brown. I went to Raleigh in the Spring of 1868 and my son John Bryan was born on June 3rd at my father's. After I was well, I moved to my own house where we spent the summer very happily and pleasantly. We had an abundance of fruit and vegetables. We returned to Grimesland in October and stayed until June, passing the following summer in Raleigh, where on October 26th, my daughter, Charlotte Bryan was born. In December we went to Grimesland and remained all summer. My family was growing fast and it was such an undertaking to move twice a year. I was glad to give up the Raleigh home, which my husband sold. In those days we drove forty miles to Kinston to take the train for Raleigh. In May 1870, my father died, worn out with grief for the death of his two youngest sons and anxiety for the condition of the country. He had been in feeble health for years. On February 15th, 1871, my daughter, Mary Bryan was born and we continued to live very happily at Grimesland. My daughter Susan was born Sept. 9th, 1872. After that my health was not good for several years and but for the unfailing care and kindness of my dear husband, I would not have recovered. He surrounded me with every comfort and assistance that could be procured, as I had a kind and experienced lady as house-keeper and eight servants. My sister, Annie Shepard was married to Mr. Andrew Syme in 1873. She had four sons, the youngest, William Anderson, who was a remarkably bright and promising young man, died Dec. 1909. He was a fine character, religious, upright and with all, a splendid, highly gifted young man. In November, 1875, my husband's daughter, Bettie was married to S.F. Mordecai of Raleigh. He was considered a bright young lawyer, and is now Dean of the Law School at Trinity College at Durham. They have eight children, all bright and doing well. After a while I grew better. On Feb. 12th, 1876, my son William Demsie was born; he was named for his great-grand-father Grimes and his great-great-grandfather Grimes. We continued to live quietly at home. On June 27th, 1877, my son George Frederick was born; we named him for my two dear brothers who died during the war. October 31st, 1878, my son Junius Daniel was born and named for Gen. Junius Daniel, who was a great friend of my husband, and whose dying request was that Gen. Grimes should have his Brigade. May 23rd, 1880, my daughter, Theodora Bryan was born. "Bydie", Theodora was named for my brother Francis Theodore Bryan, who was Captain of Engineers in the old U.S. Army. (note: F.T. Bryan, USMA Class of 1846, 6th in his class. Classmates: Geo. B. McClellan; "Stonewall" Jackson; Dabney Maury, MG, CSA; George Pickett.) My home was very happy and my dear husband was as well as possible. My husband had the most soothing touch of any one I ever knew. I have seen him take the children and quiet them when no one else could. He was very fond and proud of his children; he used to stand them in a row, the oldest at the back, coming down in graduation to the youngest, saying, "Look, Mother, did anyone ever have a finer lot of children?" But Alas: the Lord saw fit to send us a crushing blow. When my baby was a little over two months old, on the evening of August 14th, 1880, he was brought home a corpse, foully murdered on his way home to his loved ones. When he got up that morning, he said to me, "Don't you get up, turn over and take a good nap." The baby had been restless and had kept me awake. He dressed and ate breakfast. After a while, I got up and dressed, while I was eating my breakfast he came in and said that he was going into town and asked if I wanted anything; he kissed me good-bye as usual, then went to his buggy. He was looking so sweet and well, no idea of trouble entered my mind. All the children except the baby followed him and he took them and carried them to the gate in the buggy, the youngest in his arms. Miss Lou Gilliam, our Governess was standing at the window, and she remarked, "I never saw any one like General Grimes, he is so indulgent to his children." That was the last time I ever saw him alive and how I ever lived through it, I don't know. I thought I would die and prayed to the Lord to take all of us. For the sake of the children, I tried to take up my life again. My brother, Mr. James Bryan, and my brother Henry, and my husband's brother came to help me, but nothing could soothe the anguish of my heart, for I loved my husband above everything in heaven or earth, the only thing that could soothe me was when I pressed my baby to my heart and had my other little ones around me. Poor little baby, it seemed strange that she should have any life or spirit when her baby face was so often bathed in my tears. On the 27th of September, my little son, George died after an illness with diphtheria, of two weeks. It seemed that the gates had been opened for the entrance of all evils. Added to this was the fear of the other children taking it. We moved them to the other side of the house and used all precautions against it. My sister-in-law, Helen Grimes came from her home from across the river, and assisted me in nursing my little boy. She was kindness itself. My neighbors, Mrs. Neal and Mrs. Stickney and our Governess, Miss Lou Gilliam (afterwards Mrs. Samuel Grist) also assisted me and were most kind. We had tar burned all around the house and every time I went to my baby, I changed every garment and stood in the smoke from the tar. Junius who slept in the bed with little George showed no signs of the disease and the others had only ordinary sore throats. After George's death, my sister, Isabel came and stayed several months helping me in every way she could, and taking Bryan, Jack as he was then called, to my mother in Raleigh where he attended school at Fray and Morsons. Mr. Warren, my husband's superintendent was very kind and attentive to the business and lived with us a good many years after my husband's death, and until my two oldest boys had finished their education. Then he married and moved away. We were very sorry to see him off for he lived with us for nineteen years and always shown the greatest loyalty and consideration during the trying years that followed my husband's death. Our housekeeper, Miss Louisa Carraway (note: Jan 27, 1811- Jan 27 1890 - Buried at Trinity Church, Chocowinity, NC) remained with us during the rest of her life. At the time of her death in 1890, she had been with us twenty years, she was a skillful housekeeper and her assistance was of great value to me. I have lived at Grimesland for many years trying to bring my children up the best I could and as their father would have wished. All of the children are now married except Alston and Susan, who live at Grimesland with me. In August, 1881, my mother died. She was eighty years of age and a remarkably bright woman and an excellent mother. John Bryan, now Secretary of State married, first, Mary Octavia Laughinghouse. After her death, he married Elizabeth Forrest Laughinghouse, the younger sister. Mary Bryan married Elmer E. Smith, of Chattanooga, Feb 20th, 1895. He died of pneumonia, Dec. 19th, 1896. Afterwards, in 1906, she married J. Gordon Hackett of North Wilkesboro, N.C. Charlotte Bryan married Alfred Williams in 1897 and lives in Raleigh. Theodora Bryan married W. Croom Rodman in 1902 and lives in Washington, N.C. William Demsie married Willie Skinner of Oxford in 1903 and lives in Washington, N.C. Junius D. Grimes married Ida Wharton of Forsyth County and lives in Washington, N.C. My brother, James Pettigrew Bryan, died in August, 1882. He left two daughters, now Mrs. William Griswold and Mrs. Williamson. My sister Isabel was married to Mr. A.P. Bryan in November, 1882. He died and she still lives in Raleigh. My sister Mrs. Speight, died in February, 1895. She was found dead early in the morning by the servant who went to her room to make the fire. She died of apoplexy in the night. She left $10,000.00 dollars to the University of N.C. for a scholarship in memory of her father, Hon. John H. Bryan. Major John C. Winder died in the Spring of 1896. He was a splendid gentleman, chivalrous and courteous to his death. He was lamented by all who knew him. He married my sister, Octavia, Dec. 1856. He was a civil engineer. My brother, John Heritage Bryan Jr., died in Brazil where he had gone after the War in 1868. His family returned to the United States and still live in Raleigh. He married Margaret E.W. Outlaw of Raleigh. My brother, Charles S. Bryan died in Missouri, where he moved before the war. He left two children, William and Sallie. My brother, William Shepard Bryan, Judge of the Maryland Court of Appeals, died in Dec. 1906. He left one daughter, Mrs. Dennis Claud of Annapolis, William Shepard Jr., George and Carroll. North Wilkesboro, September 6th, 1918, my sister Elizabeth Heritage married Mr. K.H. Lewis of Edgecombe County in April 1857. Their marriage was followed by a foreign tour. On their return they went to live at his ancestral home near Rocky Mount, Edgecombe County, where Mrs. Lewis still lives. Mary Shepard, my oldest sister married Edwin G. Speight, State Senator from Greene and Lenoir in 1850 and went to Alabama where they lived until his death in 1864. Sister then came to Raleigh, where she spent the remainder of her life. Henry Ravenscroft married Mary Norcutt of New Bern, where they still live, having a large family of children. For sixteen years he was judge of the Superior Court of N.C. Brother Frank (Francis Theodore Bryan) married Edmonia, daughter of Mr. A.P. Taylor of St. Louis, a relative of Gen. Zachary Taylor of Mexican fame and afterwards, President. His wife died several years ago, but brother Frank still lives in St. Louis at the advanced age of eighty-eight years. Col. Joseph B. Stickney who was a near neighbor and cousin of my husband accepted the guardianship of my children, he said as the account of the love he had for their father. He proved himself to be an upright and kind and considerate friend. He now lives in Wilson, N.C. where he moved after my husband's death. 1. Bryan died in infancy 2. John Bryan Grimes (aka Jack) / Mary Octavia Laughinghouse / Elizabeth Forrest Laughinghouse 3. Alston Grimes b. 25 Feb 1866 4. William Demsie Grimes / Willie Skinner b. 12 Feb 1877 d. 5. Junius Daniel Grimes / Ida Wharton b. 31 Oct 1878 d. 6. Charlotte Emily Grimes / Alfred Williams b. 7. Mary Bryan Grimes / Elmer W. Smith / J. Gordon Hackett b. 15 Feb 1871 8. Theordora "Bydie" Bryan Grimes / W. Croom Rodman b. 23 May 1880 9. Susan b. 9 Sep 1872 10. George Frederick Grimes, b. 27 Jun 1877 d. 27 Sept 1983, diphtheria. Note: John Wesley Bryan, owner of the ________ house in New Bern was apparently the brother of John Heritage Bryan (1797-1886?) who owned the law office next to the Tryon Palace and later moved to Raleigh. (John B. Grimes (b.1940) great grandmother's father). When Ramseur fired the salute in Raleigh in May 1861 he had just recently graduated from West Point. This document was transcribed from a carbon, typed copy that is believed to have been prepared from the original by Elizabeth Forest Laughinghouse Grimes, the wife of John Bryan Grimes, a son of Charlotte Emily and Bryan Grimes. The orginal text was prepared in August 1918. This rendering of the text was prepared on a word processor using WordPerfect 5.1 by John B. Grimes in 1989. Minor changeso to the carbon, typed text were incorporated where it was believed the changes were correcting typographical errors. No other changes were made to maintain the text in as close to original style and format as possible. The location of the original is unknown. If the original could be obtained a more accurate rendering of the style could be made. John B. Grimes 5256 Signal Hill Drive Burke, Virginia 22015 (773) 978-4416 o Notes: o Annie and Mary Pettigrew were raised by Charlotte Emily Bryan's Mother and is the basis for the close relationship between Bryan Grimes and Gen. Pettigrew. o Mary Pettigrew was very active as a nurse at Chimboraza Hospital in Richmond for much of the war. o Frederick (Freddie) Bryan died of diabetes as a teenager. o George Bryan was a prisoner or war, was repatriated and then died in battle in Aug 1864. o Francis Theodore Bryan - USMA class of 1846, 6th in his class, married Edmonia Taylor, daughter of A.P. Taylor, a relative of President Zachary Taylor and lived in St. Louis. Frank was active in the Mexican American War. o John Heritage Bryan - went to Brazil after the war in 1868 where he later died. His wife E.W. Outlaw returned to Raleigh with the rest of the family.
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