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April 24, 2013 / Joanne Yeck

Battle of Rich Mountain: Part II

Rich Mountain_2Interestingly, on Sunday, July 21, 1861, when The Times-Picayune reported “THE BATTLE OF RICH MOUNTAIN,” the Louisiana newspaper erroneously printed that Capt. Carter Harrison Irving had died in battle:

The Buckingham Lee Guard suffered most severely, having thirty men, together with Capt. Irving and Lieut. Boyd killed. Capt. Curry, of the Rockbridge Guard, and Capt. Anderson, of the Lynchburg Artillery, were also among the killed. Four hundred of the enemy found a merited doom in death.

On the contrary, the newspaper was correct in their report that Lt. J. G. S. Boyd, graduate of Randolph-Macon College, Class of 1845 (A.B.) and 1848 (A.M.), had died at the Battle of Rich Mountain on July 11, 1861. John Granville Sharpe Boyd, a teacher in Buckingham County, Virginia, joined Buckingham’s Lee Guard (Co. E of the 20th VA Infantry) on May 20, 1861 as a 2nd Lieutenant.  He was buried in Mount Iser Cemetery, Randolph County, West Virginia.

On November 11, 1861, his “tragical and untimely end” coupled with his “dauntless courage and self-sacrificing heroism” was noted in the Buckingham County court records. One year earlier, Boyd, who also may have practiced law, was living at Buckingham Court House.  He left a widow, Mary S. Boyd, and at least one child, J.G.S. Boyd, Jr.  Seven of Boyd’s pupils died that day at Rich Mountain, including Charles Henry Hickok of Buckingham Court House.

To be continued….

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