American Clan Gregor Society.

Year book of the American clan Gregor Society, containing the proceedings of the [1st/2d]- annual gathering[s] (Volume yr.1909-1910) online

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"Be constant as thy pine —
Emblem of Loyalty!
Spare not the mean and false!
Stand for the brave, the free!

"So shalt thou come again
Unto thine olden place,
Once more thy name is known,
And Royal is thy Race."



JDr. Jesse Ewell, Ruckersville, Va., with whom originated the idea
of organizing the Clan in America.

[36]



THE MACGREGORS IN SCOTLAND AND AMERICA.

By John Read Magruder.

MORE than eleven centuries ago, the MacGregor first appears
in the history of Scotland, with its descent from King Alpin.
From that day to this it has been a prominent factor in the
affairs of that people. We today are in fellowship with it, and recog-
nize its worthy and distinguished Chief as the head of the Clan from
which we claim descent.

Its career is full of incidents of romantic and thrilling interest.
It furnished the "Wizard of the North" with much that has made
his name distinguished. He defends the Clan, and its acts with
the frankness, vigor, enthusiasm and energy which have made his
pen famous; he describes many deeds of heroism, bravery and mag-
nanimity in glowing words, does not attempt to conceal its faults;
but attributes them mostly and very justly to the turbulent times,
the strong provocations and the persecutions and cruelties it en-
dured, which would have annihilated a less determined and courageous
race. As evidence of the wrongs and outrages they endured, let
me quote from Sir Walter Scott, and others:

"The Sept of the MacGregors was famous for misfortunes and
the indomitable courage with which they maintained themselves as
a Clan — the most oppressed for generations and which claims de-
scent from Gregor, third son of King Alpin — born in 787; they had
at one time extensive possessions in Argyleshire and Perthshire. The
Earls of Argyle and Breadalbane gradually found the means to
usurp their lands under the pretext of "Royal Grants." The Mac-
Gregors strove to retain their lands by the cold steel and this
though natural was represented at the Capitol as arising from an
untamable and innate ferocity, which nothing could remedy, save
cutting off the MacGregor root and branch. They were styled
Lawless Limmers in Parliament; their name was suppressed and
at baptism no clergyman could give the name MacGregor under
deprivation and banishment."

This is a moderate statement of what they suffered in the Seven-
teenth Century and at other times. Their enemies practiced upon
them the crimes of which they accused the MacGregors. It is the
adroit, contemptible and criminal habit of liars and other evildoers
to charge upon their victims the very things they themselves have
done. Of this we have notable examples in our day, which will
readily occur to us.

In 1654, nearly nine centuries later, a little more than two and a
half centuries ago, and one hundred and sixty-two years after the
discovery by Columbus, we find a branch of this Clan settled in
Maryland on the Chesapeake Bay, and the Potomac and Patuxent

[37]



Rivers; how it has grown and prospered this meeting affords strik-
ing evidence.

A census of the Clan would surprise some and would be instructive
and interesting; some day such a numbering may be made.

The objects of our organization are stated in our rules and regula-
tions: "To gather kindred together in Clanship, to inspirit cordiality
among its members, to foster home ties, to collect genealogical and
historical records for the compilation of a complete and authentic
history of it and its members."

These are worthy objects; there are others not expressed but im-
plied and growing out of them.

Perhaps in the future, there may be a Scott or a Prescott who
will faithfully portray the virtues and foibles of our nation, and
as an integral part of it, those of the Clan Gregor in America.
Our times are marked by luxury, extravagance, corruption in high
places and low, by lawlessness and crime and a fearful increase of
divorce, by a feeling of unrest and dissatisfaction with existing con-
ditions, accompanied by much loud and cheap talk about honesty
and integrity, rather than the practice of these virtues.

All this is recognized and deplored; it is for each one for him-
self to determine what his duty is under such conditions and to the
Tjest of his ability to aid in remedying these evils.

In what I have said do not understand me as denying good in
our day and generation. On the contrary there never has been
a period of more kindly feeling among the various religious bodies
of our land, more done for the poor and sick, more for the uplifting,
education and improvement of our common humanity than at pres-
ent. It is our duty and should be our pleasure as citizens and
Clansmen to co-operate in all this as far as we are able. No mat-
ter how small and unimportant we may seem to be, we have our
influence; it tells in the aggregate.

A disheartened farmer looked out upon his dried grounds and
withering crops. A drop of rain saw him and said: "I have pity
for the poor man, I will go and help him." Another said, "I will
go. too," and another, and another, and another, until bountiful and
refreshing showers fell upon the parched fields and the farmer lifted
his heart and voice in gratitude to God who sent the rain drops.

There must be events and incidents known to many of you, which
would be of interest to us all and ought to be preserved. It is sug-
gested that such be written out and sent to our Historian for that
purpose; indeed, this is one of the objects of our organization.
One occurs to me as illustrating what I mean. It was told me
"by one of several for whose acquaintanceship I am indebted to the
formation of our Society. He said that during the Civil War one
of the military forces was surrounded by the enemy, and it was a
•question of surrender, when a young ofificer* of our name iaid; "Be-



*Capt. John Hillery Magruder of Va., 7th Reg. Va. Cav., C. S. A.
One of "The Frescati Magruder Boys." Mortally Wounded.
[38]



fore this is done, let me and my command cut our way out?" His
request was granted and they did cut their way out. If our friend
will write it in the graphic way in which he described it to me, with
the particulars, it will be an interesting addition to our records.

I have not imposed this paper on you of my own notion. It has
been done at the instance of our Chieftain, which in such matters
is almost a command, and he must share the blame that far only;
but for what I have said, and the opinions expressed, neither he nor
the Clan are responsible.

If I have said anything offensive or inappropriate to the occasion,
forget it, or let the broad mantle of your charity cover it.



THE Magruder Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution,
was organized February 15, 1911, with the following Charter
Members: Roberta Julia (Magruder) Bukey, Regent; Eliza-
beth Rice (Nalle) Magruder, Mary Blanche Magruder, Vice-Regent;
Mattie Beall Magruder, Kittie Colma (Magruder) Trescott, Mary
Magruder (Tarr) Willard, Historian; Caroline (Hill) Marshall,
Secretary; Mary Eleanor (Hill) Steele, Mary Edelweis (Marshall)
Griffin, Maria Forrest Bailey, Treasurer; Agnes Woods (MacGregor)
Bowie, Chaplain; Evelyn (Bowie) Mackall, Helen Swan Bowie, Helen
Woods (MacGregor) Gantt, Registrar; Jesse Waring Gantt, Helen
Woods MacGregor Gantt, Laura Cook (Muncaster) Higgins, Helen
Wolfe, Adalina (Magruder) Davis, Lula Barnes (Magruder) Ma-
gruder, Eleanor Magruder Gallaher.



[39]



COLONEL JOHN BOWIE MAGRUDER.

By Colonel William Henry Stewart.

I AM not of the American Clan Gregor, but with the Clan full-
hearted, and proud of the privilege of associate membership.
If there is anything in a name, I am of another Clan of that
dear old land beyond the seas.

Scotland, as I picture it in my imagination, with its grand and
picturesque scenery, every mountain, crag, and glen, associated with
some daring deed or heroic act, is full of interest, and my heart
turns to her as the mother country. The proud leaders with their
fearless followers have made the world-wide fame of the Clans of
Scotland and as they of old, who fought for the name of MacGregor
are held dear in your memories, so you honor your brothers of today
in the distant home-land, where rugged mountains guard the cen-
tury covered graves of its renowned warriors.

The pride of the "Royal Race" will live in the hearts of the Clan
forever !

You are far away, but you turn to those over the seas with loving
regard as the true exponents of the noble people from whom you
sprung. As they uphold the high standard of manhood so the red
blood runs through your veins thrilling with love and pride of name.

Do the children who have wandered in these distant parts show
that the pride of MacGregor holds fast to their hearts, as the stars
shine in steady glory from age to age?

Yes ! This American Clan speaks through its great men of today
and those who have passed to the boundless beyond — soldiers, states-
men, citizens not outclassed in the chain which has made the British
Empire the greatest in the world!

The story of the high men of America, who boast of the blood of
MacGregor, as they have travelled along the lines of time, since the
first descendant landed on its shores, will tell the Clan of the old
land of the worthiness of Clansmen over the seas.

I have today a message of courage and devotion for you which
will give the measure of a man of your blood, born in Virginia, in
America — a young soldier of faith and nerve, who fought and fell —
fought and fell for the rights and name of his country as heroically
as the MacGregors on the hills of Scotland.

John Bowie Magruder, descendant of "The MacGregors," brother
of your chieftain, was born in Scottsville in Albemarle County, Vir-
ginia, on the 24th day of November, 1839.

He was the oldest son of Benjamin Henry Magruder and Maria
Louisa Minor, daughter of Dr. James Minor, and great-grandson of

[40]




^f^




Vt^u-L^^^ /^T.^



<>C-^



Colonel, 37th Reoiment Virginia Infantry, C. S. A.
MoRTAEEv WoLiNDEn AT Gettysi!Urg, Juey 3, 180:]. Ar.ED 23.



Garrett Minor, member of the "Committee of Safety" in 1775 for
Louisa County, and its representative in the Legislature in 1793.

The family moved to "Glenmore," near Monticello, the home of
Jefiferson, when John was five years old. He was educated at pri-
vate schools and matriculated at the University of Virginia in 1856,
receiving the degree of Master of Arts in June, 1860. His plan was
to teach one year and after that to take a course at the University
of Heidelberg, Germany, preparatory to studying law.

When the tocsin of war sounded in the spring of 1861, he was
teaching at E. B. Smith's Academy in Culpeper County. He at once
gave up the position, and his cherished plans for still higher educa-
tion and a profession, to take a course in military tactics at the
Virginia Military Institute.

After a short term there he organized a military company called
the "Rivanna Guards" and was commissioned its captain July 22d,
1861. This company was first assigned to the 32d Virginia Infantry
Regiment, and on September 23d, 1861, transferred to the 57th Regi-
ment and designated as Company "H."

The regiment was commanded by Col. E. F. Kean, who was after-
ward succeeded by Col. Lewis A. Armistead, the celebrated brigadier,
who led the magnificent charge on Cemetery Heights at Gettysburg
and lost his life there at high water mark.

Captain Magruder's first field service was on the south side of
the James River, but he was moved to the north side in time for
the great struggle around Richmond with McClellan's grand army,
and in that bloody charge at Malvern Hill lost twenty-seven men of
his company, half the members present, in about forty minutes.

The soldierly bearing and superb courage of Magruder attracted
the attention of his superiors and he soon rose from the line to a
field officer. He won his spurs as Lieutenant-Colonel and then, on
the 12th of January, 1863, was promoted to Colonel of the famous
57th Virginia Infantry.

Colonel Clement R. Fontaine, the last colonel of this glorious
regiment, said of him: "Colonel Magruder by a system of strict
discipline, drills, etc., soon brought the regiment to a degree of effi-
ciency never before attained. Not even under General Armistead
was the regiment in so good trim for efifective service as Magruder
had it."

Colonel Fontaine, who knew him intimately, said: "He was a man
of rare excellence both in point of education and natural ability,
he promised to make his mark in any sphere he might be called to
occupy. Had he survived the battle of Gettysburg, he would have
been made a Brigadier. That was the sentiment of the whole bri-
gade."

Like the great Napoleon he was much younger than the officers
he commanded, which caused him to be reserved in his associations
with them, but he was always courteous and kind. He was ever

[41]



thoughtful of his private soldiers and saw that they received whatever
should come to them, and lent a sympathetic ear to their troubles.

In April, 1863, when he was twenty-three years old, he was given
an independent command, made up of the 11th, 17th, and 57th Vir-
ginia Infantry Regiments, Macon's Battery of four pieces of artil-
lery, and one company of cavalry. This force was posted on the
highway leading to Edenton, N. C, about four miles from Sufifolk,
which place Longstreet was besieging in order to allow his quarter-
masters and commissaries to gather supplies for the army of North-
ern Virginia from the tidewater section. Pickett with the rest of
his division was holding the Sommerton road.

The enemy made an attack upon Magruder's line on the 21st of
March, 1863, which was summarily repulsed, and on the 24th the
enemy came again with large reinforcements and they were more
disastrously defeated.

This force was under command of General Michael Corcoran of
the celebrated Irish brigade. The I'cderal reports say it consisted
of about five thousand infantry, witli five hundred cavalry and ten
pieces of artillery.

Colonel Francis Buel, of the IfilUh Xew York Infantry, was severely
wounded, and his Lieutenant-Colonel reported that his regiment was
placed far in advance of all others in support of Battery "D," Fourth
U. S. Artillery, and unflinchingly faced a continuous and unabat-
ing shower of shell, grape and cannister, from the well-directed
fire of the enemy until orders were received to retire.

This is a high compliment to Colonel Magruder, coming as it did
from the enemy, whose loss in men and equipment was greater than
they were willing to admit. In this engagement the enemy out-
numbered him four to one. There had been almost daily skirmishes,
for weeks, but after this the Federals kept at a respectful distance.

My hero was a follower of the incomparable leader of the South
whose efifigy stands in yon capitol as the heart of Virginia — Lee, the
greatest of all the children whom she has given to the world.

It did not take long to find out that John Bowie Magruder was
terribly in earnest in all work assigned to him, and it was known
throughout the division that he was a man of ability and bravery
far beyond the average. He was held in highest esteem by his
superiors as well as by the men under him. His splendid manage-
ment in this campaign and the gallant conduct of his troops were
duly appreciated and acknowledged in the following general order:

Headquarters Pickett's Division,
April 25th, 1863

Colonel :

The Major-General commanding diiects me to say that it
affords him great pleasure to acknowledge the important services of
yourself and command during the time that you held the important

[42]



position on the White Marsh Road. All the dispositions you made
to receive the enemy, and especially the manner in which you re-
ceived them, and notwithstanding their greatly superior numbers, re-
pulsed them, meets with special approval.

He desires you to express his approval in orders to Macon's Bat-
tery, the 11th Virginia Infantry, Kemper's Brigade, the 17th Vir-
ginia Infantry, Corse's Brigade, and your own gallant regiment,
the 57th.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

Ro. Johnson, A. A. A. G.

Upon receiving this order Colonel Magruder issued congratula-
tions to his troops therein mentioned.

General James Longstreet ordered his troops to withdraw from
the siege of Suffolk on the night of the 4th of May, and the 57th
Regiment marched from its location to Richmond, where it re-
mained about a week; thence it moved to an encampment within
two miles of Hanover Junction, where preparations were made for
the advance into Pennsylvania.

On June 24th, Pickett's Division crossed the Potomac River at
Williamsport and bivouacked on the Maryland shore. It entered
Chambersburg on the 27th of June, marched directly through the
town, and encamped on the York Road about four miles out. The
division was detained here three or four days, destroying railroad
depots, workshops and public machinery. On the morning of the
second day of July, 1863, at 2 o'clock, it took up the march to
Gettysburg, marching twenty-three miles, and within three miles
of that place, before it was halted to rest. Early next morning it
moved toward the line of battle, and in the afternoon made the
great charge which shattered and immortalized Pickett's splendid
division.

Colonel John Bowie Magruder fell mortally wounded within
twenty steps of the enemy's cannon, shouting to his men, "They
are ours." He was struck by two shots — one in the left breast
and the other under the right arm, which crossed the wound in his
breast.

Colonel Magruder was made prisoner on the spot where he thus
gloriously fell mortally wounded and carried to the Federal Hos-
pital in Gettysburg. There he languished until July 5th, 1863, when
his noble spirit took its flight.

He was a member of the Epsilon Alpha Fraternity, and a frater
caused his remains to be encased in a metallic coffin, and, with all
his personal efifects, sent to his father by flag of truce to Richmond,
in October, 1863. He was buried at "Glenmore," his home in Albe-
marle County.

His cousin, James Watson Magruder, himself afterward killed

[43]



on the battlefield at Meadow Bridge, May 11th, 1864, writing from
camp near Fredericksburg, August 8th, 1863, said:

"From last information, John now sleeps among the gallant spirits
who that day bore our banner so nobly against the ramparts of
the enemy on the battlefield in a foreign land. If so, he died with
his laurels thick around him. I saw him in Loudoun (county) a
short while before the army left Virginia, looking better and in
better spirits than I ever knew him. It almost disposes me to
quarrel with the decrees of heaven when he, the noblest of us all,
in the flower of his youth, is thus untimely cut off. Why could
not other men, who might be better spared, be taken in his
stead? But our country demands the noblest for her altars. Our
grief is increased l)y the fact that our country cannot afford to
lose such men."

The spirit of this letter exhibits in every line the unselfish patriot-
ism of the Southern youth. Their sacrifices made glorious the his-
tory of the Confederate States.

The proud record is so close to us that we should see it at every
mental glance, feel it at every move, and touch it at every step. It
is a fadeless essence, beautiful and brilliant. Its stars, like diamonds
in the tomb of royalty, will rest undimmed by the dust and lapse
of ages — virtue gleaming in the glory of chivalry.

Yes! John Bowie Magruder in the bud of his manhood, in the
twenty-fourth year of his age, fell for the glory of his country in
the great battle which turned the destiny of the South. His name
is enrolled amongst the heroes of his Alma Mater, the University
of Virginia, and listed with the dead on the field of battle, whose
courage and chivalry made the immortal fame of the Army of North-
ern Virginia.

Colonel John Bowie Magruder was exalted in patriotism — rich in
chivalry — pure in heart — eminent in all of the adornments which
make a true man and a noble warrior.

He was the son of Benjamin Henry Magruder and Maria Louisa
Minor; grandson of John Bowie Magruder and Sarah B. Jones; great-
grandson of James Magruder, Junior, and Mary Bowie; great-great-
grandson of Ninian Magruder and Elizabeth Brewer; great-great-
great-grandson of Samuel Magruder and Sarah Beall; great-great-
great-great-grandson of Alexander Magruder, (MacGruder, Mac-
Gruther), the Maryland immigrant.



[44]




Enoch Louis Lowe.

Governor of i\L\RYEAND, l85l-'54.

From an oil painting in the State House, Annapolis, Maryland.



ENOCH LOUIS LOWE.

By Caleb Clarke Magruder.

ENOCH Louis Lowe was the only child of Bradley Samuel Adams
Lowe and Adelaide Bellumeau de la Vincendiere. His birth oc-
curred in the manor-house of The Hermitage, an estate of one
thousand acres lying on the Monocacy River, Frederick County,
Maryland, August 10th, 1820,

He descended paternally from the Lowes of Derbyshire, England,
his immigrant ancestor having settled in Talbot County, Maryland,
in 1675, and maternally from an aristocratic Parisian family, of
strong royalist sentiments, who fled from France to escape the hor-
rors of the Reign of Terror.

Bradley Samuel Adams Lowe was graduated from the Military
Academy at West Point in 1814, with the rank of Third Lieutenant,
at the age of eighteen. He saw service during the last year of
the War with Great Britain, 1815, and served on the Florida fron-
tier under General Jackson during the Seminole War of 1817-18.

Young Lowe's early schooling was under the guidance of the
Jesuit Fathers at St. John's School, Frederick City. Impressed by
his premature mental brilliancy the faculty induced his parents to
send him abroad to complete his studies.

At thirteen he entered Clongowas Wood College, Ireland, where
his instruction was thorough and his advance rapid. Among his
friends and schoolmates was Francis Meagher, the Irish Patriot,
whose influence was apparent in Lowe's after life. Three years
later he matriculated at Stonyhurst, England. Here he was the
intimate of Francis Mahony — "Father Prout" of Literature — and
Miles Gerald Kean, the novelist.

Stonyhurst was proud of her pupil, and he was admittedly her
most promising student. Graduated first in his class in 1839, he
merited medals for philosophy and distinction for poetry. A year
followed in travel through Continental Europe, and upon his return
home he gave like time to the American states and territories.

Early in his collegiate years he evinced a decided talent and strong
desire for the study of jurisprudence. Prepared for his profession
by Judge John A. Lynch, of Frederick, he was admitted to the bar of
his native county in 1842.

Forming a partnership with John W. Baughman, the firm quickly
commanded a remunerative clientile, Lowe gaining an almost in-
stantaneous popularity and an enviable prominence.

The political arena proved attractive and he was elected a member
of the Legislature in 1845. Governors William Grason, Francis
Thomas and Thomas George Pratt used their best efforts against
repudiation by Maryland for interest owed on moneys raised for

[45]



internal improvements. The fruit of their efforts was realized dur-
ing the administration of Governor Philip Francis Thomas. This
executive thereupon determined to secure a new Constitution.

Maryland M^as living under the provisions of an instrument com-
pleted in convention November 11th, 1776, and never submitted to
the people. On twelve occasions it had been changed and it was
thought too heavy with amendments, and too antiquated for the
requirements of a progressive state. Lowe ardently advocated the
policy of Governor Philip Francis Thomas, and by his fluency of
language and strength of argument won many friends to his cause
and to himself.

With the growth of sentiment for a new Constitution there arose
a pronounced demand to make its ablest champion the chief executive
of the state. Responding to this demand the Democratic Conven-
tion of 1850 nominated him for Governor.

The Whigs were still strong in Maryland, and Lowe had a popu-
lar opponent in William B. Clark, of Washington County. Occa-
sionally the gubernatorial candidates met in joint debate, and the
contest grew in interest and excitement.

At this time Lowe was described as "strikingly handsome, with classic
features of the most perfect Grecian type, a forehead that spoke command
and a chin that meant determination ; lips free enough to denote feeling,
firm enough to prevent its riotous overflow; eyes that sparkled with keen


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Online LibraryAmerican Clan Gregor SocietyYear book of the American clan Gregor Society, containing the proceedings of the [1st/2d]- annual gathering[s] (Volume yr.1909-1910) → online text (page 4 of 7)