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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Cahaba in Dallas County, Alabama — The American South (East South Central)
 

Yankees in Cahawba

 
 
Yankees in Cahawba Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, January 6, 2018
1. Yankees in Cahawba Marker
Inscription. A New York merchant, Richard Conner Crocheron, built a magnificant mansion on this spot. The adjacent photograph captured the decayed splendor of this home before it burned. Look closely at the photograph. Try to identify the columns that survived the fire.

Mr:. Crocheron arrived in town about 1837 to help run a family business. He traveled North for his Philadelphia bride in 1843 after building this brick home. The front porch had a grand view of two rivers. The back wall adjoined a brick store that his uncles had built twenty years earlier.

The Crocherons also invested in a line of ocean-going steamships. So Richard's family was able to escape the Southern heat by returning North each summer to "take the waters" at Saratoga, New York.

When his wife died in 1850, Richard was heart-broken. He sold his Cahawba property, freed his slaves, and returned to New York with his three little children.

In the Midst of War, Opposing Generals Share a Bountiful Dinner
During the Civil War, shortly after the Battle of Selma, Union General James Harrison Wilson traveled to Cahawba under a flag of truce to discuss a prisoner exchange with his opponent Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest. Thomas W. Matthews lived in the Crocheron mansion at the
Yankees in Cahawba Marker with the Crocheron columns on right. image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, January 6, 2018
2. Yankees in Cahawba Marker with the Crocheron columns on right.
time, and he offered his home to the generals. Matthews, although a slaveholder and a rich planter, had never given up his allegiance to the Union.

On April 8th, 1865, Wilson arrived at 11 am. Forrest appeared at 1 pm. The two generals shared a "bountiful Southern dinner" with their host, then they withdrew to the parlor for a long but guarded conversation. After sizing up one another, the two congenial dinner companions parted ways. They rode away from Cahawba ready to resume the bloody war that pitted them against one another. The following day, General Robert E. Lee surrendered at Appomattox.

"Penciling"
If you are a persistent explorer you will find some authentic "penciling" on one of the columns. In the 19th century, brick masons would often paint a thick white line over their mortar joints to make handmade bricks look more uniform. This is a clue that machine made bricks were not yet available in Cahawba.
 
Erected 2015 by the Alabama Historical Commission.
 
Location. 32° 19.152′ N, 87° 5.7′ W. Marker is in Cahaba, Alabama, in Dallas County. Marker can be reached from Second Street North east of Vine Street. Touch for map. Located within the Cahawba Archaeological Park (nominal fee required). Marker is at or near this postal address: Second Street North, Orrville AL 36767, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers.
Closeup of the Crocheron columns mentioned on the marker. image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, January 6, 2018
3. Closeup of the Crocheron columns mentioned on the marker.
At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Crocheron Columns (within shouting distance of this marker); The Hole That Was Once a Row (within shouting distance of this marker); Cahaba Drug Store (within shouting distance of this marker); Crocheron's Row (within shouting distance of this marker); The Old Brick Store (within shouting distance of this marker); Death in the Street (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); A Courthouse Reduced to Rubble (about 600 feet away); Saltmarsh Hall (about 600 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Cahaba.
 
Categories. Notable BuildingsWar, US CivilWaterways & Vessels
 
Entrance sign to the Cahawba Archaeological Park. image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, January 6, 2018
4. Entrance sign to the Cahawba Archaeological Park.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on January 13, 2018. This page originally submitted on January 13, 2018, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama. This page has been viewed 90 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on January 13, 2018, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama.
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