The Grandfathers
Vol.I, The Hall and Overstreet Families
Carrol Carman Hall, Springfield, IL, 1981

Section VI
Chapter 22, Page 240

they were in Lee's Army

They Fought for the Stars and Bars

In this section will be discussed the participation of the members of the Hall - Overstreet families and their kin in the Civil War that lived in the South and were in the armies of the Confederacy.

While the Civil War is often spoken of as a war between brothers, as far as the Hall-Overstreet family is concerned, it is more correctly described as a war between cousins - as the combatants were of later generations. Fortunately, they likely never actually faced each other as the mid-western group were in the western campaigns of the war. The southern family descendants were members of Lee's Army of Northern Virginia and were engaged principally in the state of Virginia, although family members were in the Battle of Gettysburg (Penna.).

The nearest the war came to Bedford county in Virginia was during Hunter's Raid (Union) into that area which occurred in mid-June, 1864 and resulted in a battle around Lynchburg (Campbell county). This was an inclusive type of military action in which both sides claimed the advantage. It was reminiscent of Tarleton's Raid into the area during the American Revolution with about the same kind of results.

The surrender of Lee in April, 1865 at Appomattox was only sixty miles from Bedford county. Those soldiers who had remained with the CSA to the bitter end, walked back to their homes after laying down their arms.

The War which had started out with the bright new uniforms and brilliant flags ended in tatters, broken bodies and shattered homes. Their wealth as represented by slaves was gone forever. They were reduced to poverty and the progress of the area retarded for the next half-century or more.

Because they were defeated, the military records were poorly kept- they wanted to forget. This had made getting some sort of an account together of the family participants in the 'War Between the States' as they called it, difficult and nearly impossible.

"And why should we not accord them equal honor, for they were both Americans, inbued with those qualities which have made this country great."
---Bell Irvin Wiley


Before going into specifics about family participation in the CSA, certain background situations shall be discussed for the Halls. The descendants of William Hall killed by the Indians in 1757 - the 'minor' children, younger brothers and sisters of John, d. 1794. These were the 'orphans' of the Bedford Court. Many of their descendants served in the southern forces but, with the exception of one group of them, impossible to trace.

Second, are the descendants of John Hall, d. 1794, who remained in the South. This group is easier to trace and some information about them will be given in the following pages. Again, the reporting is only partial as complete knowledge of this group is not available.

Third, both groups of Hall descendants migrated westward and southward from Virginia, below the Ohio River into Tennessee, Mississippi, Kentucky and across the Mississippi River into Missouri. A little is known about these descendants and something about their participation in the Civil War.


For the descendants of Hall-Overstreet families, their collateral relatives, etc., the number of participants in the southern cause must have been great. A number of them will be referred in the ensuing discussion.

Many, many Overstreets are to be found in the CSA as surely are the Dabney's and the numerous descendants of the Bedford county Hall families.

The three basic Virginia counties from which Hall-Overstreet family participated were: Bedford, Campbell and Franklin counties. Some may have served from Pittsylvania county.


Just as their cousins in Illinois, the southern members of the family entered the war with enthusiasm. The old militia units sprang to life; new units with fanciful names and colors were created. As the war progressed, they became numbered units in the great whole of the Confederate Army - faceless men in long, weary marchers and confronting death in the numerous skirmishes and battles. They were wounded, made prisoners, killed and died from their hardships.

In 1861 the Bedford Light Artillery must have appeared handsome in their blue pants and coats trimmed in red; but as a chronicler reported: 'the uniforms wore out and they wore all sorts of make-shift outfits.' The Lynchburg Home Guards became Co. B. of the 11th Va. Inf. and no longer wore their blue uniforms with yellow sashes and their gold velvet trimmings. In Franklin county there were the 'Fire Eaters'; 'The Ladies' Guard' and the 'Rangers'.

Toward the end came the draft, when the very young and those once thought too old were now in the 'Virginia Reserves.' By 1865 when the end was near, a once glorious war had lost all its glamour.

Descendants of John Hall, d. 1794.

Since members of this family stayed in Virginia, more information about their participation in the CSA is available.

The family of Mathew and Mary E. (Banks) Hall
This family prior to the Civil War was relatively prosperous; however the War struck this group hard and the family as a whole may have never completely recovered from the War.

In 1830, Mathew's daughter, Melinda married her first cousin, John Hall. The family had four sons in the War - three of them killed! They were their sons: Andrew J., John W., and Thomas B. A fourth son, Mathew V. was drafted in the final days of the War for the Virginia but saw no active service. Andrew J. whose wife died early in the War, left a family of four children as orphans. They were made wards of their grandparents, Melinda and John.

Their grandfather, John, who was a slave owner, was at one time quoted that he would rather lose one of his sons rather than his slaves - fate took all his slaves and three of his sons!

Since Mathew had three other daughters, their sons fought under the names of Carter, Marshall, and Jacobs. Of this group, John M. Marshall, son of John R. and Mary E. (Hall) Marshall was killed. There is no way to estimate how many of Mathew's grandsons were in the various Bedford county units.

The family of Elisha and Sarah (Best) Hall
During the War the family lived in the Rockcastle Creek area of Bedford county. Of this family which had ten children, there are some fragmentary War records. Of the sons, there is no record but of the daughters' families a number is to be found. This is particularly of the Hepstinstall group (Family of Tabitha Hall). Caleb H. was a Captain in the Virginia Reserves. John H. was killed. Of the Shaon family descendants (Mary E. 'Polly' Hall family) there is record of a Wm. Ashwell, Wm. Morgan and a Caleb F. Overstreet! The Burnett descendants as well as the Morgan descendants were surely represented in the forces as the South with its strong family groups make great inroads among them to secure its defenders.

The family of Benjamin B. and Keziah (Hall) Musgrove
This family with its twelve children contributed generously to the Southern cause. They enlisted not only under the Musgrove name, but the various names of the families into which the Musgrove girls married. Thus we find the names of English, Martin, Gill, Anthony, and others among those enlisted in the CSA. There is no way of estimating this families' manpower contribution. Of especial interest is the family of Wm. L. and Keziah S. (Musgrove) Wilkerson. They had three sons in the service: Wm. Owen; John Christopher; and Jas. K.P. John Christopher came home to die of the fever in 1862. There were at least four other Wilkersons that served.

Roll of CSA Soldiers

(an unofficial listing of men thought to be
Hall-Overstreet family members - compiled
by the author from his study of the records)

C.C. Musgrove, Co. B 10th Va. Bat. Heavy Artillery, formed from the Bedford Light Artillery Co.
John H. Heptinstall, Co. B. 11th Regt. Va. Inf., formed from the 'Rifle Grays.' He was wounded at the Battle of Seven Pines, 1862; d. 1863.
D.P. Musgrove, enlisted but not called to service.
Caleb Heptinstall, enlisted 1863, Va. Reserves, Captain
Wm. B. Heptinstall, Co. D. Va. Calvary, Stuart's Div.
From the Civil War Records compiled by Leila J. Parker, 1947, twenty-five Overstreets listed, chiefly from the Bedford area. Relationships, of course, undetermined.
Nine men bearing the name Burnette were in the Bedford 'Rifle Grays.
Benjamin B. Musgrove, Jr., Co. B. 11th Va. Inf.
Wm. A. Ashwell, Co. B. 58th Va. Inf. CSA.
Burwell Brown, Co. E. 57th Va. Inf. CSA
David Hall, grandson Mathew Hall, thought to be killed in the War.
Anthony, Charles L. Bedford Light Artillery. Sgt.
Burnetts, Morgans, Gills and Marshalls, Co. F. Sec. Regt. Va. Cav. Organized several months before the War, call the Bedford 'Southside Dragoons.'
The Lazenbys' of Co. B. 11th Va. Inf., were related to the Musgroves
The DePriests enlisting from Campbell county were related to the Halls descended from William, d. 1757.
Thos. P. Plymale, served, he was related by marriage and descendancy
Many Dabneys participated in the CSA during the Civil War.
Franklin Musgrove, was a member of the 'Jefferson Davis Rifles.'
An Overstreet was killed at the Battle of Gettysburg.

Wilkerson - Musgrove Men

James K.P. Wilkerson, Pvt. Co. E. 34th Va. Vol. Inf
William O. Wilkerson Capt. Co. B, 10th Batt., Heavy Artillery
Joseph B. Wilkerson (as above)
Holcomb C. Wilkerson Co. A. 2nd Va. Calvary.
U.D. Wilkerson
Parson Wilkerson (d. 1862 - measles)
John Christopher Wilkerson Co. H. 34th Va. Regt. (d. 1862 - fever)

Co. H. 34th Va. Inf., in the Battle of Seven Pines, originally an artillery unit, went into that battle with 60 men and came out with 30. Included in the losses was their captain. One-half of the Regiment were made prisoners at the Battle of Five Forks and the remainder surrendered at Appomattox in 1865.

From the South -----

Family Civil War Stories

Father vs Son

(This story involves the descendants of Wm. Hal, son of John Hall, d. 1794, who had migrated to Mississippi prior to the Civil and is concerned with his descendant families.)

Both the Throckmorton and the Wickliffe families were divided during the Civil War, with members of both families serving on both sides of the conflict. Major Chas. B. Throckmorton, then a low ranking officer, was in command of the Fourth U.S. Artillery at the first Battle of Bull Run. In the same battle he opposed his father who was in command of the Sixth Virginia Cavalry. Major Throckmorton's mother intervened after this battle and had her son transferred to the Army of the Cumberland, thus preventing father and son from again facing each other. The Major later participated in the Battles of Shiloh and Stone's River.

Throckmorton's wife was a Wickliffe and two younger members of the family, brothers of Dr. Thomas Hall Wickliffe, were members of the CSA. One of the brothers was a Captain.

Border Warfare

John DePriest Hall, 1800 - 1865, was born in Bedford Co. Va., a son of an Elisha, one of the g-sons of William Hall, d. 1757. By the time of the Civil War, he had migrated to Clay Co., Mo., adjacent to the Kansas line. As told by one of his descendants: "my Grandfather, Thomas Duncan, went off to join the Confederate forces, leaving four children. He returned home to find death had left the children to the care of ex-slaves.

"Although the Kansas Redlegs (Union) had raided and burned the home, the children were well cared for in the slave quarters.

"Naturally, Grandfather felt grateful.

"However, when he visited his father-in-law John DePriest Hall, they quarreled as great-grandfather (JDH) demanded that all 'free-niggers' leave.

"Grandfather (Duncan) felt he could not turn them out in the world to starve.

"Shortly after this, John D. Hall died, and his will excluded the Duncan family. (His daughter Mary Ellen was Duncan's wife.)"

The divisions caused by the Civil War were deep and did not heal easily.

Same in Name - Different in Death

Andrew J. Hall of Bedford County, Virginia, the father of four children was a member of the Army of Northern Virginia. June 1, 1863 he was killed by a minnie ball at the Battle of Seven Pines. He was a descendant of John Hall, d. 1794.

Andrew J. Hall of Menard County, Illinois, bachelor was a Corporal in Co. K. 115th Ill. Vol. Inf. He died January, 1865 in Andersonville Prison. He was a descendant of Hezekiah Hall, d. 1811.

John and Hezekiah were brothers!



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Illinois Ancestors