Letter From George W. Henderson.

Immediately after the Civil War

 

I am a discharged soldier of the 25th Ohio Volunteers. I was mustered out in Ohio and returned to South Carolina about the 10th day of last month. Before I was discharged I was stationed on Mr. Huguenins Plantation by General Ely about the 13th or 14th of February 1866. My duty was to oversee the place and assist in the distribution of rations. Sometime in the mouth of May was ordered by Mr. Anderson to take seven (7) barrels of meal and five orders of pork to his plantation called the Brevard Place. I didn’t see these rations given out but’ am confident they were given only to his field hands, those who worked his place. His orders were to the Colored men in charge to give them out to the able bodied men and to cut down on those who were not able to work. Before the rations were sent up to the place, three or four able bodied men, his working hands, came down to the Hopkins Turn Out  where Mr. Anderson loaded them with as much as they could early of the rations that came from Columbia, that day or the day before. Anderson told them to take them back to the plantation and give them out to the able bodied hands, to keep them going till he could send up some more. Again in the month of May, I seen Mr. Anderson sell rations to Abraham Myers, a Colored man, He sold him three (3) dollars worth of meal. This was for Myers own use.

Since my return to the place I have seen able bodied men who worked on Mr. Anderson’s place have rations. I asked where they got them and they said Mr.

Anderson gave it to them. This is all that I have seen but I have heard from Thomas Stocker (Colored) and a great many others whose names I disremember that Anderson took rations out in the night time to give to his hands.

About the 20th of May, Stocker seen Mr. Anderson load two teams with rations. This was about 2 o’clock in the morning. One team went to O’Hanlon Plantation and the other went to Anderson’s plantation or started out in that direction. The driver made some noise about the mules when Anderson catched him by the shoulders and ordered him to be still. He said that he would by his noise raise all the niggers about the plantation and they would find out what was going on. Stocker said he wanted his friends who were with him to go and seize the team and take it to Columbia and turn it over to the Military Authorities and tell them how they came by it, but his friends would not do so because they were afraid.

Stocker told this to me day before yesterday. Osborn Crockett and Archy Gunn and his wife are cognizant of this transaction. So is Henry Thompson, all Colored.

I am actuated by no personal notion in making die above statement.

 

George W. Henderson

 

Sworn, and subscribed to before me this tenth day of August 1866 at Columbia, S. C.

 

William I. Harkishimer

Bt. Major

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