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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Hawkinsville in Pulaski County, Georgia — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

A $100,000 Reward

"...a perceptible change..."

 

— Jefferson Davis Heritage Trail —

 
A $100,000 Reward Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, May 8, 2021
1. A $100,000 Reward Marker
Inscription.  After capturing Confederate President Jefferson Davis, his family, staff and escort just north of Irwinville, Georgia near dawn on Wednesday, May 10, 1865, Union Lieutenant Colonel Benjamin D. Pritchard and his 135-man detachment of the 4th Michigan Cavalry Regiment began riding north. Their orders from Union Brigadier General James H. Wilson were to bring their prisoners to Macon, Wilson's headquarters. They camped the night of May 10th at Abbeville, before continuing north on the morning of the 11th with additional members of their regiment who had been searching elsewhere for Davis. They reached Big Creek during the afternoon, approximately four miles south of Hawkinsville. The Michigan men had passed south through Hawkinsville in search of Davis three days earlier and had spent the night of May 8-9 camped at approximately this same location. Here on the 11th Pritchard and his troopers were met by the rest of their brigade, riding south from Macon to join them. From them Pritchard learned of a $100,000 reward for the capture of Davis and other Confederate leaders suspected of being involved in the assassination of U.S. President Abraham Lincoln.
Marker detail: Route of Jefferson Davis through South Carolina and Georgia image. Click for full size.
2. Marker detail: Route of Jefferson Davis through South Carolina and Georgia
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Colonel Pritchard showed a poster advertising the reward to Jefferson Davis, who read it calmly. But to his wife Varina, Davis said, "The miserable scoundrel who issued that proclamation knew better than these men that it was false." Davis was referring to President Lincoln's successor, President Andrew Johnson. Confederate Colonel Burton N. Harrison, Davis's personal secretary, watched his chief read the document "with a composure unruffled by any feeling other than scorn." Davis remembered that news of the reward caused "vociferous demonstrations of exultation" by his captors. Mrs. Davis added, "There was a perceptible change in the manner of the soldiers from this time, and the jibes and insults heaped upon us… were hard to bear."

Despite the arrival of his full brigade and a higher ranking officer, Colonel Pritchard and his regiment retained control of their captives when they continued riding north toward Macon the next day, May 12th. A soldier in the column mounted the reward proclamation on a flagpole and carried it along their route within sight of Varina Davis and her children. Both Davis's also heard Federal troopers singing "We'll Hang Jeff Davis from a Sour Apple Tree." Despite Jefferson Davis's appeal to Pritchard, who attempted to control the behavior of his men, the taunts, jibes and threats continued. Years later Varina Davis

Marker detail: $100,000 REWARD! IN GOLD. image. Click for full size.
3. Marker detail: $100,000 REWARD! IN GOLD.
Reward poster in May 1865 offering $100,000 in gold for the capture of Jefferson Davis.
still found it distressing to recall the "horrors and sufferings of that journey."

[photo caption]
Regimental flag of the Federal 4th Michigan Calvary. (Michigan State Capitol Commission)
 
Erected by Georgia Civil War Heritage Trails.
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil. In addition, it is included in the Georgia Civil War Trails series list. A significant historical date for this entry is May 10, 1865.
 
Location. 32° 13.556′ N, 83° 28.175′ W. Marker is near Hawkinsville, Georgia, in Pulaski County. Marker is on Abbeville Highway (U.S. 129) just north of Pineview Highway (Georgia Route 112), on the right when traveling north. Marker is located in a pull-out on the east side of Abbeville Highway. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Hawkinsville GA 31036, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 13 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. To Our Confederate Soldiers (approx. 4 miles away); Pulaski County (approx. 4 miles away); Slosheye Trail (approx. 4 miles away); Federal Pursuit (approx. 4 miles away); Old Hartford (approx. 4 miles away); De Soto Trail (approx. 4.1 miles away); The 1812 Soldiers (approx. 4.1 miles away); Bleckley County (approx. 13 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Hawkinsville.
 
Also see . . .
1. Capture of Jefferson Davis

Marker detail: Colonel Burton Harrison image. Click for full size.
4. Marker detail: Colonel Burton Harrison
Personal Secretary to
Confederate President Jefferson Davis
. The pursuit of Davis resulted largely from the U.S. War Department's false assumption that he was complicit in the assassination of Lincoln. A $100,000 reward was promised for anyone who could bring in the president and his aides. (Submitted on June 2, 2021, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 

2. Confederate President Jefferson Davis captured by Union forces. A certain amount of controversy surrounds his capture, as Davis was wearing his wife’s black shawl when the Union troops cornered him. The Northern press ridiculed him as a coward, alleging that he had disguised himself as a woman in an ill-fated attempt to escape. However, Davis, and especially his wife, Varina, maintained that he was ill and that Varina had lent him her shawl to keep his health up during their difficult journey. (Submitted on June 2, 2021, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 
 
Marker detail: Jefferson and Varina Davis in 1869 image. Click for full size.
5. Marker detail: Jefferson and Varina Davis in 1869
After his release from prison
A $100,000 Reward Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, May 8, 2021
6. A $100,000 Reward Marker
(looking southwest • U.S. Highway 129 in background)
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 2, 2021. It was originally submitted on June 2, 2021, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 75 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on June 2, 2021, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.

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Jun. 23, 2021