Transcript of the above article
The Palm Beach Post Sunday, April 27, 1924 page 1
Confederate Graves Ablaze With Flowers
Blind Veteran of 90 Aids Women in Distributing Blossoms
Rev. Jenkins Points to Lesson in Valor
Dinner to “Thinning Ranks of Gray” at Charles Goodloe home
The Confederate dead in Woodlawn Cemetery today sleep beneath a wilderness of flowers.
Exercises appropriate to the day are held at 3:30 o’clock yesterday afternoon under the auspices of Thomas Benton Ellis Chapter, United daughters of the Confederacy. The exercises were largely tended and members of the U.D.C. could be distinguished by their badges of red, white and red ribbon. Confederate veterans present also wore the badges.
Prayer was offered by Rev. C. H. Summers of the Methodist Church after which Rev. E. B. Jenkins, pastor of the first Baptist Church, gave a talk on the significance and origin of Memorial Day.
After the talk, taps were sounded on a bugle by Ms. Florence M. Clark, who wore the uniform of a Girl Scout leader. The graves of the Confederate dead then were bedecked with fresh flowers which had been contributed by members of the chapter and friends, while a large quantity of the most beautiful blossoms came as a volunteer offering from the Poinsettia Flower Shop. Among those who placed flowers on the graves was Dr. William Marshall Richardson, a veteran more than 90 years old and totally blind.
City Hall Closes
For the first time in the history of the city so far as could be learned from attaches of the City Hall, offices of the official city closed at noon yesterday in commemoration of the Confederate dead. “We thought it would be only patriotic appropriate to revere the day.” was the simple statement of city manager George L. Right, who ordered the observance.
On the door of every office in the building was found yesterday an official notice headed by a stanza from an oft repeated poem which pays tribute to both the blue and gray.
“Under the sod and the dew.
Waiting the judgment day.
Under the one- the blue,
Under the other- the gray. “
Rev. Jenkins in his talk on Memorial day said that it taught us to remember the valorous dead and also taught patriotism and served as an inspiration to youth. And while teaching patriotism, said Rev. Jenkins, it also teaches peace, and the value of peace, and lastly it teaches gratitude and hope for a universal peace which only the Prince of Peace can give.
In speaking of the origin of Memorial Day, Rev. Jenkins said:
“Memorial Day is not limited to services for the heroes of the Civil War alone. Since the time it was legally established in 1866 other crimson pages and roles of honor have been added to our history. Other records and events of sacrifice have been registered in the annals of our past since men went down in the cause of freedom.
“The names of the heroes in the war with Spain have been written in a scroll which can never be changed. Now more recent still are the gallant deeds of those whose lives and suffering meant defeat to Prussian-ism and victory to the nations of the earth. Scarcely are we past the conflict for their graves to be green. Wounds on our hearts are still open and bleeding, because a voice is still, and a form will be seeing no more around the family Hearthstone.
Origin of Memorial
“It is well for us to refresh our minds as to the origin of Memorial Day. In the spring of 1866, three women of Columbus, Mississippi, on April 25 were visiting Friendship Cemetery in that city and cleared off the briars and weeds of the Confederate soldiers, and placed flowers on them. As they were doing this one of the women looked at the graves of the federal soldiers, and not wailing that they should be neglected, went over and decorated these also.”
“This was the beginning of Memorial Day, and later it was adopted by all the states in the nation. Different states observe different days. This is Memorial Day in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Louisiana and Mississippi. North and South Carolina observe May 10, and June 3 is observed in Tennessee. In the northern states May 30 is the day set apart.”
In closing, Rev. Jenkins quoted Lieut. McRae’s ”In Flanders field,” and Edna Posques’ answer to it.
There were three veterans whose graves could not be located and wreaths were placed to honor these also. The graves of the Confederates in the cemetery are marked with iron crosses placed by the U.D.C. These crosses Bea the design of crossed flags,crossed cannon and the date 61 – 65.
Veterans Are Guests
Southern hospitality was beautifully exemplified yesterday when Mr. and Mrs. Charles Goodloe entertained to dinner the Confederate veterans of the county at their home in Prospect Park, Westminster Road and Olive Street, in celebration of Confederate Memorial Day.
Those responding to the invitation were W. C. C. Branning, Sr., Capt. Thomas Hill Dungan, Dr. William Marshall Richardson, and John Jed Holladay.
The dinner featured chicken, salad, vegetables in season, with dessert of ice cream and cake and coconut candy. After dinner Mr. and Mrs. Goodloe motored their guests to the Cemetery, where they attended the Confederate Memorial Day exercises.
Mrs. Goodloe was assisted in entertaining by her daughter Mrs. L. E. Briggs and other guests were Mrs. C. H. Price, daughter of Dr. Richardson, Mrs. Holladay and Miss Anna B. Kennedy.
The Goodloe home was prettily arrayed with potted plants and a profusion of colorful garden flowers. The guests of honor had a most delightful time and many were the remembrances of the strenuous days of ‘64 which were exchanged.
True Son of Florida
Mr. Branning is a true son of Florida having been born in Middleburg, Clay County, Florida, in 1818. He was a son of George Branning who came to Florida from Fayetteville, North Carolina in 1815. Mr. Branding was Courier during the war to General Finnagin, Major Byrd and Col. McCormick. Since the war he has lived in Jacksonville and was one of the earliest pioneers on the east coast. He has been a resident of West Palm Beach for 31 years. During his pioneer period he has had no less than 27 different homes.
Capt. Thomas Hill Dungan was a 16-year-old volunteer in General Forrest’s Calvary. He has lived in West Palm Beach for nine years and takes an especial interest in the members of the U.D.C. who in turn take delight in showing him many courtesies.
Dr. William Marshall Richardson is a graduate of the 1851 class of the University of North Carolina. During the war he lived in the state of Alabama, and volunteered for service in the Confederate ranks. He was first Lieut. of Company B of the 3rd Alabama Regiment commanded by Col. Gracie. He served several months at Fort Morgan, Alabama, and was ordered to Chattanooga. He fought under Gen. Kirby and was with the Regiment which invaded Kentucky. He was engaged in the battle of Richmond, Kentucky.
For 33 years Dr. Richardson has lived in Marion County, Florida, but has lived in West Palm Beach for the last two years.
Blind But Places Flowers
At the ceremony Dr. Richardson, who is over 90 years old and totally blind, expressed a desire to personally decorate one of the graves of his comrades. This wish was gratified, and Dr. Richardson was led to a grave, where he reverently laid flowers, offering a prayer at the same time.
Mr. Holladay has the distinction of being the first one to fire into McClellan’s Vanguard and he is also one of the Confederates who never surrendered. He was born in Spottsylvania, Virginia, July 31, 1843, and with a group of his fellow students at Hampden Sydney College, he volunteered for service on the day that Virginia seceded from the Union. He was among those sent to West Virginia to intercept McClellan, and was stationed at Rich Mountain with the 20th Virginia Regiment. He fired the first shot at McClellan’s Vanguard. He was captured and for nine months was a prisoner, but was exchanged, and then was appointed an ordinance courier to General Lee, in which capacity he served for two years. He then joined The Third Virginia Calvary, and served until the close of the war. He never surrendered, but cut through the lines and made his escape.
Mr. Holladay has lived in Florida for four years. He is 6’2” tall and direct, with a marked, soldierly bearing. On occasions of this sort he may be distinguished by the fact that he wears his Confederate coat and hat with a cross of honor.
Mr. Holladay is a winter resident of West Palm Beach, owning his own home,” Hilltop,” on Jessamine Street. His summer home is in Charlottesville, Virginia.
This the second time that Mr. and Mrs. Goodloe have entertained the veterans on Confederate Memorial Day. Mr. and Mrs. Goodloe were formally from Richmond Virginia and are both of distinguished southern ancestry ”