George Washington Sharp, Grandson of Elijah Mayfield, Son of Mary Mayfield
George W. Sharp, Son of Mary Mayfield, Daughter of Elijah
The state of Tennessee (or some group therein) decided to gather up a lot of interviews of elderly Civil War Veterans from that state in order to preserve some history. This is very lengthy, but it's rare to find a first person account. These veterans were apparently given one of two forms to fill out.
This particular entry comes from Volume Five Confederate Soldiers (Rainey-Young). The form comes from pages xv to xviii and the answers (this entry) are found on pages 1938 and 1939. The form was filled out by George Washington Sharp. Instead of copying them separately, I'm going to retain the exact quotes but place the answer directly after each question.
(FORM NO. 2)
"In case the space following any question is not sufficient for your
answer, you may write your answer on a separate piece of paper.
But when this is done, be sure to put the number of the question
on the paper on which the answer is written, and number the paper
on which you write your answer.
Read all the questions before you answer any of them. After
answering the questions given, if you desire to make additional
statements, I would be glad for you to add just as much as you
"GEORGE WASHINGTON SHARP
FORM NO. 2
(Rec'd. July 30, 1923)
1. State your full name and present post office address:
George Washington Sharp, Aetna, Tenn. R.F.D.#1
2. State your age now:
3. In what State and county were you born?
Hickman Co. Tenn.
4. Were you a Confederate or Federal soldier?
5. Name of your company?
Company D; 48th Tenn.
6. What was the occupation of your father?
7. Give full name of your father:_________; born at _______;
in the County of________; State of_______; He lived at ______;
Give also any particulars concerning him, as official position, war
services, etc.; books written by him, etc.:
Samuel Sharp; do not know; do not know; Ky.; Sunrise,
Hickman Co., Tenn; ------
8. Maiden name in full of your mother:_______; she was the
daughter of: ________; (full name)_________and his wife:
(full name)__________; who lived at:________.
Mary Mayfield; Eliga (sic) Mayfield; do not know; do not know;
they lived in Ky.
9. Remarks on ancestry. Give her any and all facts possible
in reference to your parents, grandparents, great-grandparents,
etc., not included in the foregoing as where they lived, offices
held, Revolutionary or other war service; what country they came
from to America; first settled - county and State: always giving
full names (if possible), and never referring to an ancestor simply
as such without giving the name. It is desirable to include every
fact possible, and to that end the full and exact record from old
Bibles should be appended on separate sheets of this size, thus
preserving the facts from loss.
Nehemia Sharp, an uncle of mine, was under Jackson at New
10. If you owned land or other property at the opening of the war,
state what kind of property you owned, and state the value of
your property as near as you can:
One horse worth $150.00
11. Did you or your parents own slaves: If so, how many?
12. If your parents owned land, state about how many acres:
13. State as near as you can the value of all the property owned
by your parents, including land, when the war opened:
14. What kind of house did your parents occupy? State whether
it was a log house or frame house or built of other material, and
state the number of rooms it had:
Log houses, two rooms.
15. As a boy and young man, state what kind of work you did.
If you worked on a farm, state to what extent you plowed, worked
with a hoe and did other kinds of similar work. (Certain historians
claim that white men would not do work of this sort before the war.)
Plowed, hoed, grubed (sic), and pulled fodder.
16. State clearly what kind of work your father did, and what the
duties of your mother were. State all the kinds of work done in the
house as well as you can remember - that is, cooking, spinning,
Farm work. Cooking, spinning and weaving.
17. Did your parents keep any servants? If so, how many?
18. How was honest toil - as plowing, hauling and other sorts of
honest work of this class - regarded in your community? Was such
work considered respectable and honorable?
19. Did the white men in your community generally engage in such
20. To what extent were there white men in your community leading
lives of idleness and having others do their work for them?
21. Did the men who owned slaves mingle freely with those who did
not own slaves, or did slaveholders in any way show by their actions
that they felt themselves better than respectable, honorable men
who did not own slaves?
No difference as I remember
22. At the churches, at the schools, at public gatherings in general,
did slaveholders and non-slaveholders mingle on a footing of equality?
23. Was there a friendly feeling between slaveholders and non-
slaveholders in your community, or were they antagonistic to each
A friendly feeling
In a political contest, in which one candidate owned slaves and the
other did not, did the fact that one candidate owned slaves help
him any in winning the contest?
Do not think it did.
25. Were the opportunities good in your community for a poor
young man, honest and industrious, to save up enough to buy
a small farm or go in business for himself?
I think they were.
26. Were poor, honest, industrious young men, who were
ambitious to make something of themselves, encouraged or
discouraged by slaveholders?
I do not think they were discouraged.
27. What kind of school or schools did you attend?
28. About how long did you go to school altogether?
29. How far was it to the nearest school?
30. What school or schools were in operation in your neighborhood?
Pine Branch, a public country school
31. Was the school in your community private or public?
32. About how many months in the year did it run?
33. Did the boys and girls in your community attend school pretty regularly?
34. Was the teacher of the school you attended a man or woman?
35. In what year and month and at what place did you enlist in the service
of the Confederacy or of the Federal Government?
In June 1861. Yelville, Ark. Was transferred to Company D, 48th Tenn. at
Port Hudson, La. in 1863
36. After enlistment, where was your Company sent first?
37. How long after enlistment before your Company engaged in battle?
Nine months in March 1862
38. What was the first battle you engaged in?
Pea Ridge, Ark.
39. State in your own way your experience in the War from this time on to
its close. State where you went after the first battle - what you did and
what other battles you engaged in, how long they lasted, what the results
were; state how you lived in camp, how you were clothed, how you slept, what
you had to eat, how you were exposed to cold, hunger and disease. If you
were in the hospital or prison, state your experience there:
My experience in the war from that time on was not pleasant. Went to Miss.
camped and drilled. Jackson, Miss. two days and nights. Iuca, Miss.
Abought (sic) five hours. Corrinth, Miss. three days. Confederates
retreated each time. Had no tents, suffered with hunger and cold.
40. When and where were you discharged?
I was never discharged. When Hood came through Capt. Cantrel and his company
came home and never returned.
41. Tell something of your trip home.
----We were two days coming home.
42. Give a sketch of your life since the close of the Civil War, stating
what kind of business you have engaged in, where you have lived, your church
relations, etc. If you have held any office or offices, state what it was.
You may state here any other facts connected with your life and experience
which has not been brought out by the questions:
43. What kind of work did you take up when you came back home?
Farmed. Lived in Hickman Co. Not a member of any church.
44. On a separate sheet, give the names of some of the great men you have
known or met in your time, and tell some of the circumstances of the meeting
or incidents in their lives. Also add any further personal reminiscences.
(Use all the space you want.)
45. Give the names of all the members of your Company you can remember. (If
you know where the Roster is to be had, please make special note of this.)
Ford George, John Willis, Wash Anderson, Jack Wal-s, Joe Anderson, Lafayet
Whiteside, Bill Short, Will Anderson, M.P. Aydelott, G. G. Sharp, John
Warren, James Prince, Isac Prince, Pleas Hardee, William Baner, Joe Pruet,
Armstrong, Jack Warren. These are all I remember. as well as I remember I
am the only one of my company living. John Willis was the last one I
remember of having the Roster and he died in prison at Rock Island.
46. Give the NAME and POST OFFICE ADDRESS of any living Veterans of the
Civil War, whether members of your Company or not; whether Tennesseans or
from other States.
J. J. Craig Centreville, Tenn.
Ben Arnold " "
W. W. McClannahan Cable, Tenn.
John Banks Centreville, Tenn."