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of trust and public usefulness. From 1884 to 1887 he served as a
director of the State asylum at Williamsburg; is one of the board
of visitors of William and Mary college; was elected a presidential
elector on the Democratic ticket in 1888; and in 1891 was elected
to the Virginia senate by his district. The faithful and intelligent
service which he rendered the people in these positions, led to his
nomination for Congress in the Second district in 1892. He was
elected and worthily represented his district and the interests of
Virginia in the Fifty-third Congress and in the Fifty-fourth, being
re-elected by a decisive majority in 1894. Since the expiration of
his second term in Congress he has been engaged in his profes-
sion and in the management of his plantation.

John J. Tyler, a well-known business man of Lynchburg, was
born in Amherst county, in 1844. He was reared and educated
in his native county, and there at the age of eighteen years,
entered the service of the Confederate States as a private in the
Thirteenth Virginia infantry. He served as a private throughout
the remainder of the war, until he surrendered and was paroled
with the army at Appomattox. He fought with Jackson at Port
Republic, Winchester, Cross Keys and Kernstown, and in the
Seven Days' battles on the peninsula, participated in the move-
ment against Washington under Early, and took part in the battle
of Monocacy, again in the valley met the enemy at Winchester
and Cedar Creek, and shared the fighting at Spottsylvania Court
House, Kelly's Ford and before Lynchburg. After the surrender
he returned to his home in Amherst county, and thence in the
fall of 1866 removed to Lynchburg, where he has since that date
been engaged in business.

Walker Wilson Tyler, of Lynchburg, was born in Amherst
county, in 1840, and was reared and educated in that county. In
the summer of 1862 he entered the Confederate service in Com-
pany B of the Twentieth battery heavy artillery, as a private, but
was at once detailed as secretary to Col. T. S. Rhett, chief of the
ordnance bureau under Gen. Josiah Gorgas. Mr. Tyler served in
this capacity until Colonel Rhett was sent to Europe on ordnance
duty, when he was detailed at Richmond in the quartermaster's
department, in which duty he continued until the evacuation of
the Confederate capital. In the spring of 1865 he was paroled at
Lynchburg, ending a period of nearly three years' faithful and
efficient service for the Confederate government. After the close
■of hostilities he embarked in business at Lynchburg, and during
the quarter century and more which has elapsed, he has conducted
with much success one of the leading dry goods establishments of
the city. He is regarded by his community as a business man of
integrity and an enterprising and valuable citizen. In 1868 he was
married to Ella, daughter of John Rucker, of Lynchburg, and
they have one son, John Duvall, and a daughter, Elizabeth Walker.
Mr. Tyler is descended from a Virginia family long associated



CONFEDERATE MILITARY HISTORY. Vl'iS>

with the history of the State. His grandfather, a native of the Old
Commonwealth, served as a captain in the Revolutionary war, and
his maternal grandfather, Richard Wilson, took part in the same
patriotic struggle with the rank of captain.

Captain George C. Vanderslice, a Confederate soldier who was
afterward conspicuous in the ministry of the Methodist church in
Virginia, was born at Richmond July 30, 1836. He was educated
at the Washington and Lee university and the Virginia military
institute, and then prepared himself for the ministry, becoming
a member of the Virginia conference of the Methodist church in
1859. After he had performed pastoral duties for two years on
the Amherst circuit, he determined to offer his services as a sol-
dier, being specially qualified by his studies at the military insti-
tute, in the great emergency of 1861. In the spring of 1861 he
became captain of Company D, Forty-ninth Virginia infantry, and
served in this rank during the Peninsular campaign, taking part
in the defense of Yorktown, and the great battles before Rich-
mond, including Seven Pines and Malvern Hill. Upon the re-
organization of the army in 1862, he resigned his captaincy and
applied for a position as chaplain, but there being a great pres-
sure for appointments to that service, he resumed his work as a
minister. He continued in this calling with marked success and,
while pastor of the Union station, at Richmond, Va., died March
17, 1898. His wife, Susan A. Pettit, born in Amherst county July
4, 1840, the daughter of Samuel Pettit, a farmer, had four brothers
in the Confederate service: Alfred G., William, who was killed
at Sharpsburg; Edward and James C, who was twice captured
and at the close of the war was a prisoner at Point Lookout.
Mrs. Vanderslice remained at her home in Amherst county during
the war, and was a witness of the active military operations in that
vicinity, and was frequently in peril, being compelled on one oc-
casion to gather up two of her younger children and flee to a
place of safety, it becoming a necessity for the Confederate bat-
teries to shell an important Federal position near her home. Dj:.
George Keesee Vanderslice, one .of the sons of Dr. Vanderslice
and wife, was born in Henrico county, on the Malvern Hill battle-
field, November 12, 1870. He received his literary education at
McCabe's university school at Petersburg, and his medical train-
ing in the university of Virginia, graduating in 1892. After spend-
ing one year at St. Vincent's hospital, Norfolk, as resident
physician, he began practice at Phoebus, Va., his present home.
He is prominent among the younger physicians of southeastern
Virginia, was elected a fellow of the State medical society in 1893;
is a member of the clinical society of the staff of Dixie hospital;
and of the local branch of the State board of health; and is exam-
ining surgeon for several life insurance companies.

Townsend Heaton Vandevanter, of Leesburg, a gallant soldier
of White's battalion, was born in Loudoun county May i, 1844.
After receiving his preparatory education in his native county he-
entered the Virginia military institute, where he was a student
when the State was invaded by the Federal troops, and the war
of the Confederacy was begun. When he was a little over eighteen
years of age he enlisted in the fall of 1862 in Company A of the
Thirty-fifth Virginia battalion of cavalry, under command of Col.
E. V. White. He served as a private in this command until de-



1226 CONFEDERATE MILITARY HISTORY.

tailed as a courier for his brigade commander, General Rosser, in
May, 1864, and continued in the latter capacity until the last three
months of the war, when he was attached to the command of
Colonel Mosby, with whom he served to the end and surrendered.
Before his detail as courier for the brigade commander he served
in the same capacity at the famous battles of Antietam, Fredericks-
burg, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg and the Wilderness campaign,
with Gen. R. E. Lee's headquarters. With Rosser he participated
in the operations in West Virginia in 1864. He was also with
Rosser as courier in the famous cattle raid of Wade Hampton in
the rear of Grant's lines south of James river. Notwithstanding
his active service he was captured by the enemy but once, and
then managed to escape after about an hour's captivity. After
the end of the struggle he returned to Loudoun county, and
found occupation as a clerk in the establishment of Col. E. V.
White, his old commander. When the latter was elected sheriff
of the county, in 1868, Mr. Vandevanter was enabled to continue
his intimate relations with the gallant colonel by appointment to
the office of deputy sheriflF. Subsequently he was appointed rail-
road agent at Hamilton, but after three years' service he retired
from that position to engage in farming, in which he was occupied
until 189s, when his standing and influence as a citizen of Loudoun
county were appropriately recognized by his election to the office
of county treasurer. He is a valued member of Clinton-Hatcher
camp, and of the Masonic order. Dr. Joseph Vandevanter, brother
of the foregoing, was born in Loudoun county February 6, 1847.
In the fall of i8i54 he enlisted in Company D of the cavalry com-
mand of Colonel Mosby, and served with credit during the re-
mainder of the war. Subsequently he engaged in the study of
medicine at the university of Virginia and the university of Mary-
land, and after receiving his professional degree practiced the pro-
fession for three years in Loudoun county. Since then he has been
engaged in a successful practice at Ishpeming, Mich., where he
is attached to mining companies as surgeon.

James Vass, of Danville, who had an interesting career in the
army of Northern Virginia, was born in Culpeper county October
IS, 1841. His father, S M. Vass, who married Susan, daughter of
George and Sallie Battaile (Dade) Fitzhugh, was the son of James
Vass, a native of Scotland and son of a daughter of the Gum-
ming clan, who came to America during the Revolutionary war,
and married a daughter of Col. Abram Maury, first cousin of
Matthew F. Maury. On April 17, 1861, young Vass enlisted as a
private in the Culpeper Minute Men, a company which was as-
•signed to Col. A. P. Hill's regiment, the Thirteenth Virginia in-
fantry. He served with this command in the valley and at Ma-
nassas, and in March, 1862, was transferred to the famous Black
Horse cavalry troop. After being with this troop one year as a
private, he was detached as a scout and courier in which capacity
he was for two years closely associated with Generals Lee, Jack-
son and Stuart. While on cavalry duty and attached to head-
quarters he participated in the battles of Williamsburg, Seven
Pines, the Seven Days' campaign, Second Manassas, Chancellors-
ville, Brandy Station, Gettysburg, the Wilderness, Spottsylvania,
Yellow Tavern, Five Forks and Sailor's Creek and many smaller
affairs. On the eve of the second battle of Manassas he was de-



CONFEDERATE MILITARY HISTORY. 1227

tailed by Captain Payne, on General Jackson's call for the best
mounted man in the Black Horse troop, and was given a mes-
sage to carry to Gen. R. E. Lee. Delivering this safely he was
warned by General Lee not to allow the answer under any cir-
cumstances to fall into the hands of "those people," as he dem-
onstrated the enemy. He brought the answer to General Jack-
son that night, finding the general sleeping in his blanket under a
tree. After reading it Jackson turned over to sleep again and
Vass sought rest in the nearest fence corner, to be awakened next
morning by the first guns of the battle of Second Manassas. At
the battle of Chantilly he was alone with Jackson when a courier
came up from General Branch with the information that the lat-
ter's guns were so wet with the rain that they could not be used,
and asking what he should do if attacked. Jackson rose in his
stirrups and pointing his finger at the courier, answered: "You
tell General Branch that the rain is falling as hard on the enemy
as upon us. If they advance, and the guns cannot be discharged,
use the bayonets and hold the position." Just before the battle
of Fredericksburg, when General Stuart was urging upon General
Lee that the Federals were advancing on Fredericksburg, and that
the position should at once be secured, General Lee's doubts were
removed by the testimony of Vass, who had been close to the
enemjr's campfires, and was introduced to General Lee by Stuart
in these words: "General, here is a young man who has been with
me a long time, and you can place full reliance in what he says."
The gallant scout was once wounded, that being at Poolesville,
Md., during the Sharpsburg campaign, receiving a bullet on the
ribs from a Federal cavalryman, but not preventing him from drop-
ping his antagonist. On the last day at Appomattox he carried
the message which withdrew from action the last Confederate bat-
tery. Two brothers of this faithful soldier were in the service
and both were killed in battle. He is now a highly respected citi-
zen of Danville, and has three children living.

Benjamin Boisseau Vaughan, now president of the National
bank of Petersburg, Va., and one of the leading citizens of that
historic town, honorably sustained the record of his family which
has long been distinguished in Virginia, by patriotic service in
the Confederate cause. Sixteen years of age and a student at the
Virginia military academy at the beginning of the war, he went
out with the cadet corps in 1862 to participate in the battle of Mc-
Dowell, with Jackson's troops, and then enlisted in Company G
of the First Virginia cavalry, the old regiment of the gallant Gen-
eral Stuart. During the remainder of the war he served with this
brave regiment of troopers, under the leadership of Fitzhugh
Lee, J. E. B. Stuart and Wade Hampton, throughout the cam-
paigns in Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania, until finally taking
part in the disastrous fight at Sailor's Creek, during the retreat
of the army from Petersburg, he was among the many brave
men who were surrounded and captured by the hosts of the
enemy. He was held as a prisoner of war at Point Lookout until
June, 1865. Mr. Vaughan was born in Dinwiddie county in 1844,
the son of Benjamin B. Vaughan, who was graduated at Prince-
ton college in 1838, and in a distinguished law class at Harvard,
and was subsequently prominent as a lawyer and political leader
in his county, which he represented in the Virginia legislature.



1228 CONFEDERATE MILITARY HISTORY.

The latter was the son of Lemuel Holt Vaughan, he of Peter
Vaughan and he of Salathiel Vaughan, the ancestry running back
in Virginia to the middle of the seventeenth century. The wife
of Lemuel Holt Vaughan was Thyrza, daughter of Benjamin
Boisseau and his wife, Mary Epes, the latter being the daughter
of Col. Francis Epes, of the Revolutionary army, who in reward
for his services received large grants of land in Kentucky. The
mother of President Vaughan was Sarah E., daughter of James
Vaughan, of an unrelated family, of Amelia county, Va., which
is also of long standing and importance in Virginia. On his re-
turn from the Northern prison camp to Petersburg, Mr. Vaughan
soon found employment, and in 1869 embarked in business as a
tobacco dealer, the present firm name of Vaughan, Hill & Co.
being adopted in 1885. He is also a member of the firm of Jones,
Vaughan & Co., bark and sumac manufacturers. Both houses do
a large export business. He is a member of A. P. Hill camp.
Confederate Veterans, and for many years- has served the com-
rnunity as a member of the school board. In 1871 he was mar-
ried to Martha Dunn Stevenson, daughter of John and Jane Mc-
Ilwaine Stevenson, of Petersburg, Va.

R. Frank Vaughan, a Confederate soldier distinguished for
bravery, was one of the nine sons of William P. Vaughan who
served in the army of the Confederate States. The father, born in
January, 1806, died January 10, 1879, was a prosperous farmer and
a descendant of one of the oldest Virginia families. R. Frank
Vaughan married Mary E., daughter of William Hilary Hallett,
who was distinguished in the business circles of Norfolk as a
wholesale grocer. The wife of the latter was a daughter of Thomas
C. Dixon, also a prominent business man of the city, and of a
family noted in the history of Norfolk and of the State. Both Mr.
Hallett and Mr. Dixon died in the yellow fever epidemic of iBss.
F. Wade Vaughan, son of the veteran mentioned above, was born
in Norfolk, July 30, 1870, and was educated in the Norfolk academy
until the age of fifteen, when he embarked in his business career
as a clerk. He served in this capacity with a bank and commer-
cial establishments, and as a traveling salesman, until 1891, when
he engaged in the wholesale fish and oyster trade on his own ac-
count. After a year of this occupation and another as traveling
salesman in the same line, he entered the insurance business. Soon
afterward he was taken in partnership with his father, which con-
tinued until May 9, 1895, the date of his father's death. Subse-
quently he has continued the business with great success under
his own name, and in representation of the National fire insurance
company of Baltimore is noted as one of the youngest special
agents in the field. He is also one of the proprietors of the Vir-
ginia typewriter exchange. He was married April 8, 1896, to
Nannie Bridges Portlock, daughter of the late Col. Edward S.
Portlock, who received a commission as brigadier-general at the
close of the war, and was subsequently auditor of the Norfolk
& Western railroad company. Mr. Vaughan and his wife are
active members of the First Presbyterian church of Norfolk, and
he is superintendent of the Lambert's Point Sunday school. He
was a member of the stafif of the Fourth Virginia regiment, with
the rank of ordnance-sergeant.



CONFEDERATE MILITARY HISTORY. 1229

Spencer Vaughan, of Petersburg, who was connected with the
Confederate service throughout the war period, was born in
Dinwiddie county in 1835, the son of Claiborne and Eliza (Smith)
Vaughan. His father, a farmer of that county, was the son of
William Vaughan of Welsh descent. At the age of seventeen years
Mr. Vaughan came to Petersburg, and finding employment in
mercantile pursuits, became a member of the firm of Dickman &
Vaughan. In that capacity he was engaged in business at the
outbreak of the war. In 1862 he enlisted in Company A of the
Ninth Virginia infantry regiment, Armistead's brigade, and was
soon detailed on special duty. He was on guard about Peters-
burg about six months, and subsequently was on duty as a guard
of paroled prisoners at Camp Lee. Then being detailed in the
quartermaster's department he continued in that capacity until the
evacuation of Richmond, when he joined the retreat in charge of
a train of one hundred and fifty wagons. He reached Danville with
his train and after camping about ten miles beyond that place,
returned with three companions, met the Federal forces at Burke-
ville and surrendered and was paroled. Since the war he has been
continuously engaged in business at Petersburg, except two years
spent at Christiansburg, and of recent years he has given his at-
tention wholly to the lumber trade. He is a member of A. P. Hill
camp, and highly regarded by his comrades. In 1868 he was mar-
ried to Miss Iwanona A. Simmonds, daughter of Dr. James Sim-
monds, of Lancaster county, Va. They have six children: Rosa,
Daisy, Carrie, Inez, Nellie and James Claiborne.

M. J. Vellines, of the city police force of Norfolk, is a native of
Isle of Wight county, born February 6, 1845. He is the son
of Abraham Vellines, whose father was a native of France,
and his wife, Martha Edwards. He was reared upon the home
farm in Isle of Wight county until he had reached the age of
sixteen when he enlisted, in the early days of the war, as a
private in Company E of the Ninth Virginia infantry. The regi-
ment was assigned to support the heavy artillery at Fort Boykin
on the James river, until the evacuation of Norfolk, when it was
in camp a few days at Dunn's Hill and then moved to Richmond
and on to meet McClellan in the Peninsular campaign. About
this time Captain Vellines was confined to the hospital about three
weeks with sickness, but was able to rejoin his command just
before the second battle of Manassas, in which he participated, as
well as at Warrenton Springs, and in all the skirmishes of the
campaign followed by the fights at Winchester, Fredericksburg
and the march into Pennsylvania. On the third day of the his-
toric encounter at Gettysburg, he shared in the famous charge
of Pickett's division, of which his regiment formed a part, and fell
wounded. He had the misfortune to be taken by the enemy and
imprisoned at David's island, but by exchange in the following
November, he was permitted to rejoin his regiment, then in North
Carolina. Subsequently he participated in the campaign against
Butler, and fought at Drewry's Bluflf, where a ball wrecked his
cartridge box, but fortunately did him no other damage. After
this he participated in the battles of Spottsylvania and Cold Har-
bor, and after a short time in hospital, engaged in a number of
skirmishes at Bermuda Hundred, until his command was relieved



1230 CONFEDERATE MILITARY HISTORY.

by General Mahone. Then sent out on cavalry service he met
the enemy at Five Forks, and was again captured, and was not
released u-ntil July, 1865: At the close of his service he held the
rank of orderly-sergeant. Returning to his home he resumed
farming, a retired veteran at the age of twenty. In 1878 he re-
moved to Norfolk, and a year later became a member of the police
force, and with the exception of four years, two of which were
«pent in the service of the city as street inspector, he has remained
upon the force ever since. For his efficiency in this service he
has been gradually promoted until he reached the rank of cap-
tain about four years ago. In 1869 Captain Vellines was married
to Mary F., daughter of B. F. Wamble, a sea captain. He main-
tains a membership in the Pickett-Buchanan camp. United Con-
federate Veterans.

Major Andrew Reid Venable, one of the most gallant soldiers
of the army of Northern Virginia, since the war engaged in the
quiet vocation of a farmer in the vicinity of Richmond, was born
in Prince Edward county, December 2, 1832. At the age of nine-
teen years he was graduated at Hampden-Sidney - college, and
then entered upon a mercantile career, going in 1856 to St. Louis
to carry on a commission business. This was his occupation until
the call for troops by President Lincoln in 1861, when he deter-
mined to return and ofifer his services to his native State. Reach-
ing Richmond in June, he enlisted in the Third Howitzers at
Yorktown, and served with that command as a private until just
before the battle of Williamsburg, when the knowledge of his
civil occupation and training led to his being called upon to serve
as commissary for the Howitzer battalion. With this command,
afterward enrolled as the First regiment Virginia artillery, he con-
tinued to hold the position of commissary, with the rank of cap-
tain, until the battle of Chancellorsville, when he was promoted
and called upon for staflf duty with some of the most brilliant
cavalry commanders of the Confederacy. With Gen. J. E. B. Stuart
he served as inspector-general, with the rank of major, until the
commander was killed at Yellow Tavern, then assuming the same
position on the stafiE of Gen. W. H. F. Lee for several months.
Subsequently he was attached to the stafi of Gen. Wade Hampton,
until during the desperate attack upon the flank and rear of Han-
cock's division at Hatcher's Run, he fell into the hands of the
enemy. As a prisoner of war he was sent to City Point and thence
to the Old Capitol prison. While being transferred to Fort Del-
aware he made a daring escape by jumping from a car window
while the train was approaching Philadelphia. Having some
friends in the city he went to them on foot, and was secreted in
the city and vicinity for a month, until it was thought to be safe
for him to take the "underground railway" provided for such
emergencies by warm friends of the South. Successfully passing
the Federal lines he rode through Petersburg and reported to Gen-
eral Lee, who detailed him for service in southwest Virginia, in
the reorganization of a demoralized cavalry command which had
been reported as marauders. In this rough service he was en-
gaged until about the first of March, 1865. After the surrender of
the armies of Lee and Johnston, he capitulated at Charlotte, N. C.
A partial list of the battles in which Major Venable participated
shows the famous names of Williamsburg, Seven Pines, Fred-



CONFEDERATE MILITARY HISTORY. 1231

tiricksburg, Frayser's Farm, Second Manassas, Sharpsburg, Wil-
liamsport, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, the Wilderness, Madison
Run, Brandy Station, Yellow Tavern, Spottsylvania Court House,
Bristoe Station, Buckland Races, Jack's Shop, Charlottesville, Va.,
and Second Bristoe Station.

William M. Wade, of Ettricks, Chesterfield county, was born
in Henrietta county, February 15, 1835, the son of Wyatt M.
Wade, who died when his son was a little over one year of
age. He was educated in private schools and in youth was ap-
prenticed to the craft of a blacksmith. He was working at his
trade when the war broke out, and promptly enlisted in the serv-



Online LibraryClement Anselm EvansConfederate military history; a library of Confederate States history → online text (page 144 of 153)