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Chickamauga in Walker County, Georgia — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

Clark Lee: Chickamauga's Black Confederate Soldier

The Gordon-Lee Mansion

 
 
Clark Lee: Chickamauga's Black Confederate Soldier Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, August 19, 2014
1. Clark Lee: Chickamauga's Black Confederate Soldier Marker
Inscription. Clark was born to a fifteen year old enslaved African woman named Emeline in January, 1848. He was born and grew up in one of the six two-room brick slave houses on the Gordon Plantation in what is now the town of Chickamauga. James Gordon came to this area shortly after Cherokee removal, and built the magnificent house that is still here today. James Gordon had a son named James Clark Gordon. Clark Lee was probably named for the master's son, and may have grown up as the companion and personal slave of the older white boy. The last name "Lee" came from James Lee, who was married to Gordon's daughter and later inherited the slaves.

At the start of the Civil War the first local Confederate unit was organized above Crawfish Spring. James Clark Gordon, the son of James Gordon, was elected Captain of the company that later became the 2nd Company D, 1st Confederate Infantry Regiment. Major James Clark Gordon was in command when the unit came back for the Battle of Chickamauga. Clark Lee joined the regiment for the rest of the war. Clark Lee fought at Chickamauga, September 19, 20, 1863; at Missionary Ridge November 23-25, 1863; the Atlanta Campaign May September 1864; Peachtree Creek July 20, 1864; Atlanta July 22, 1864; Jonesborough August 31 September 1, 1864; Franklin November 30, 1864; Nashville December 15-16, 1864; Bentonville,
Clark Lee: Chickamauga's Black Confederate Soldier Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, August 19, 2014
2. Clark Lee: Chickamauga's Black Confederate Soldier Marker
Close-up view, that is displayed on the marker, of a painting of "Clark Lee," that was done by artist Ken Pennington.
N.C. March 18-21, 1865. Captain James Clark Gordon led 158 men when he left to go to war in 1861. After the surrender in North Carolina in 1865 there were only eight men left for him, as Colonel James Clark Gordon, to bring back to Walker County, and one of these was Clark Lee.

Before the 1890's, Gordon Lee, son of Clark's former owner, James Lee, took a position as secretary for the Chattanooga & Lookout Mountain Railway Company and also helped some of the former slaves to find work in the city of Chattanooga. Clark Lee had a successful career in the iron industry, working at the Chattanooga Roofing and Foundry Company and the U.S. Cast Iron Pipe & and Foundry Company that produced some items used in the construction of the Panama Canal. Clark Lee, in 1889, purchased an entire lot, Lot 60, in Section 5 of the prestigious Forest Hills Cemetery. He buried his mother, a brother and sister and other relatives in this lot.

Clark lived more than 40 years in Chattanooga. In his old age he applied for, and received, a well-deserved Confederate Military Pension from the State of Tennessee (Pension No. 107), enabling him to spend his final years in retirement. Clark had a full life, being a soldier in one of the bloodiest wars the world has ever seen, and then skilled iron worker in a most demanding industrial environment. He died on January 14, 1928, and a few days
Clark Lee: Chickamauga's Black Confederate Soldier Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, August 19, 2014
3. Clark Lee: Chickamauga's Black Confederate Soldier Marker
Close-up view, that is displayed on the marker, of the burial area, in Forest Hills Cemetery, Chattanooga, where Clark Lee, and members of his family, are buried.
later he was buried at Forest Hills Cemetery.
 
Erected by the Georgia Civil War Commission.
 
Location. 34° 52.285′ N, 85° 17.681′ W. Marker is in Chickamauga, Georgia, in Walker County. Marker can be reached from Cove Road (Georgia Route 341) south of Gordon Street. Click for map. This marker is located on the grounds of Gordon Lee Mansion Park, along a driveway that goes back into the property, somewhat before you come to what use to be a slave cabin. Marker is at or near this postal address: 217 Cove Road, Chickamauga GA 30707, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Gordon - Lee Mansion (here, next to this marker); Contributions of Enslaved African to the Area (a few steps from this marker); American Indian Occupation of the Area (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line); Field Headquarters Army of the Cumberland (about 500 feet away); Hospitals, Right Wing, Union Army. (about 500 feet away); Wheeler's Cavalry Corps (about 500 feet away); The Real Rock of Chickamauga (about 500 feet away); Georgia 3d Confederate Cavalry (about 600 feet away). Click for a list of all markers in Chickamauga.
 
Categories. African AmericansWar, US Civil
 
Clark Lee: Chickamauga's Black Confederate Soldier Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, August 19, 2014
4. Clark Lee: Chickamauga's Black Confederate Soldier Marker
Clark Lee: Chickamauga's Black Confederate Soldier Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, August 19, 2014
5. Clark Lee: Chickamauga's Black Confederate Soldier Marker
Featured marker is seen on the left and a marker entitled, "The Gordon - Lee Mansion," is seen on the right.
Clark Lee: Chickamauga's Black Confederate Soldier Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, August 19, 2014
6. Clark Lee: Chickamauga's Black Confederate Soldier Marker
A distant view of the marker, looking west along the driveway, with a view of one of the slave cabins in the background.
Clark Lee: Chickamauga's Black Confederate Soldier Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, August 19, 2014
7. Clark Lee: Chickamauga's Black Confederate Soldier Marker
A distant view of the marker, looking east along the driveway, with the front grounds of the property, that run along Cove Road, seen in the distant background.
Clark Lee: Chickamauga's Black Confederate Soldier Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dale K. Benington, August 19, 2014
8. Clark Lee: Chickamauga's Black Confederate Soldier Marker
A very distant view of the marker, looking west along the property's driveway, from the front of the park grounds, near Cove Road.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Dale K. Benington of Toledo, Ohio. This page has been viewed 275 times since then and 24 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8. submitted on , by Dale K. Benington of Toledo, Ohio. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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