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The 19th Regiment, Virginia Calvary, Co. A, Moccasin Rangers will participate in the relocation of the grave of Captain Philip James Thurmond as part of the Living History Weekend at Winfield on Saturday, Oct. 30.

Thurmond, along with six of his brothers, enlisted for service in September, 1862. He was founder and leader of Thurmond’s Partisan Rangers of Monroe County. The group was formed to protect their homes and families, but soon found it could contribute more to the cause by collaborating with various established Rebel units.

In October, 1864, Union Captain John M. Reynolds, commanding the 7th W.Va. Calvary, was ordered to establish a fortified position overlooking Red House Shoals and stop all Confederate river traffic through the shoals.

About 400 rangers launched an early morning attack through the streets of the town. An early morning fire fight tried to dislodge the Yankees from their strong position. Thurmond was mortally wounded in front of the courthouse. It was apparent to the Confederates that the attack was a failure and they began to withdraw.

Thurmond could not be moved. His younger brother allowed himself to be captured in order to stay with his brother until death. Later that morning, members of the Rangers asked permission to come through the Union lines to claim the body.

He was buried in an unmarked grave on the Judge Hoge property, with the understanding that the Captain’s family would return for his body once the war was over. His family did not return and he has lain in an unmarked grave at that site for 146 years.

His body was exhumed on Mar. 20 and will be permanently laid to rest behind the relocated Hoge House. He will have full military honors, with re-enactment units from several states taking part in the ceremony.

He will be carried in a buckboard wagon pulled by two mules in keeping with the time period of his death. He will be buried in a pine coffin draped with the flag of the Confederacy in 1864. The service will start at noon, with the procession of dignitaries, Civil War units, and ladies following him to his final home.

 Calhoun County’s Moccasin Rangers will participate as pallbearers and carry the casket to the grave, and do the honors of lowering the casket, folding the flag, and standing guard.

 

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