Haw River in Alamance County, North Carolina — The American South (South Atlantic)
Nathaniel Polk DeShong
The Southern Diaspora
DeShong returned to the Haw River after being paroled at Appomattox Court House in April 1865. Although his father owned six slaves before the war, they lived in the house with his family instead of in separate quarters, as was sometimes the case on small farms. When DeShong remarried in 1865, the former slaves made a rolling pin from a single piece of wood and smoothed with elm bark as a wedding gift.
Like many Southerners during the postwar depression, DeShong and his second wife, Catherine McRae, headed west to Texas, where he put his experience with horses to good use in Paris, in Lamar County. He never forgot, however, the “crystal-clear streams, towering oaks or corn higher than your head” of Alamance County as he reminisced to his children.
Erected by North Carolina Civil War Trails.
Marker series. This marker is included in the North Carolina Civil War Trails marker series.
Location. 36° 5.374′ N, 79° 21.984′ W. Marker is in Haw River, North Carolina, in Alamance County. Marker is on State Highway 49, on the left when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is located at the Haw River Historical Museum. Marker is at or near this postal address: 201 East Main Street, Haw River NC 27258, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Thomas M. Holt (approx. 0.3 miles away); Henry Jerome Stockard (approx. 2.3 miles away); The Harden House (approx. 2.3 miles away); Built to House the Alamance Gleaner (approx. 2.3 miles away); Originally a Wing of the Union Hotel (approx. 2.3 miles away); 1763 Providence (approx. 2.3 miles away); Montwhite Building (approx. 2.3 miles away); Providence Church & Cemetery (approx. 2.3 miles away).
Also see . . .
1. civilwartraveler.com. (Submitted on August 13, 2011, by Dave Twamley of Durham, North Carolina.)
2. Haw River Historical Museum. (Submitted on August 13, 2011, by Dave Twamley of Durham, North Carolina.)
1. My Grandfather
Nathaniel Polk DeShong is my maternal grandfather. He was born in 1844 and I was born in 1944. My mother, May DeShong Crawford and her twin, Mary Sutter were born when he was 63 years old. They were the 14th and 15th of his 16 children.
I was able to visit the museum in Haw River in June of this year where they have his story and some of his belongings, including the rolling pin made by his slaves as a wedding gift. There are not many grandchildren of Civil War soldiers still living today. My grandfather died years before I was born, but I still retell the stories that he told my mother and her siblings of the terrible tragedies he witnessed. He was an ambulance driver (he had a wagon and mule team) and picked up wounded and dead from battlefields in NC, Maryland, Penn, and Virginia. He was a prisoner of war and paroled with the army of Gen. Robert E. Lee at Appomattox Courthouse on April 9th, 1865.
I would be interested in hearing from other descendants of the DeShong family.
— Submitted July 16, 2015, by Clara Wassom of Baxter Springs, Kansas.
Categories. • War, US Civil •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on August 13, 2011, by Dave Twamley of Durham, North Carolina. This page has been viewed 909 times since then and 59 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7. submitted on August 13, 2011, by Dave Twamley of Durham, North Carolina. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.