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     Chatham History Net About the 26th NC
The Jefferson B. Mansfield / Ann Cornelia Gean Letters

Source Credits

Gean Coat of Arms

About the Letters

First, please note the copyright/usage restrictions on the pages.

Also, the image quality has been reduced to the lowest resolution I felt would be usable on the web.


Jefferson Bunyon Mansfield, 26th NC Regiment CSA, was the husband of my great-grandfather's sister, Ann Cornelia Gean. (Jean?, or possibly any number of other phonetic spellings. We're still trying to get through that genealogical brick wall in the Chatham and Orange County areas of North Carolina).

J. B. Mansfield was wounded at Gettysburg, and ended the war in a Federal hospital, as you will discover in the letters we introduce here, and this immortalization by the renowned artist, Ron Lesser: http://ourspecial.net/26nccf/colors2.htm

The collection contains many letters back and forth from Ann and J.B. during the American Civil War, as they dealt with deprivation, loneliness, family trials, gossip... and the war.  Letters from other friends/family appear from time to time.

Lucy Jane Gean Williams was the sister of Ann Cornelia Gean.  Complementary to these Civil War letters of  Ann and J.B. Mansfield, are Lucy's two books here at Our Special Net: The History of the Mount Zion M.E. Church, South written in 1928,  is a valuable adjunct to the Letters. Memories of a Long Life written about 1929, is a vignette of life in North Carolina from about 1840 to 1929. Scans of the photocopies are posted at Our Special Net Images:

 Lucy Jane Gean Williams. Also at that location are some personal letters written by Lucy.

William Polk Gean  ~Ann's brother and our progenitor~  was a member of Company G, 28th NC Infantry until his "capture" at Appomattox, when Lee's surrender ended the American Civil War. Tracking William (Working Timeline) through the Civil War led me to his brother-in-law J.B. and hence to these wonderful letters. At least one letter from Wm. P. Gean is included in the "Company Front" articles.

Dr. David McGee referenced the "Company Front" articles in a paper* presented to the Society of Military Historians in 1998. This led directly to our obtaining these pages.

I wish to express my personal thanks to Col. Skip Smith, Commander of the 26th Regiment North Carolina Troops, for graciously sending reprints of the 1995 and 1996 "Company Front" articles in which these letters were printed. A quote from Col. Smith..."I know how frustrating it can be when working on genealogical items... too many walls... you have our permission to use these as long as you show where they came from... please list our website www.26nc.org."

... welcome to Our Special Net, 26th NCT,... and thank you Skip.

Y'all enjoy your visit with a CSA soldier, and his wife back home in Chatham Co. North Carolina.


The Mansfield Letters, Part 1      The Mansfield Letters, Part 2


Michael Gean Sparks
August 2006


*  " Changing Relationships between Confederate Soldiers and Their Families and CommunitiesDuring the Civil War:
The 26th Regiment North Carolina Troops as a Case Study
Society for Military History, Chicago, April 1998




Some other Family History Research at Our Special Net


Lucy Jane Gean Williams (1840-1934):

Memories of a Long Life

1840- 1929: Lucy's autobiography. Written about 1929, when she was about 89 years old.

The History of the Mount Zion M.E. Church, South

1851-1928: "My father haulded with his wagon and team the first sills and sleepers..."

Lucy Jane Gean Williams

 at Our Special Net Images contains some personal letters written by Lucy.


William Polk Gean

-- a working timeline, originally from a Gean-ealogy.com forum...


Resolving a Date Discrepancy: How February 26 1876 = March 9 1877


Basic Indexes for the Historical Documents above are available: http://ourspecial.net/refindex/




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