Family Stories

Isaac Sevier Durham – Confederate Soldier – Boyle County

Isaac Sevier Durham was born October 8, 1844, in Boyle County, the son of Addison and Jane E. Sevier Durham.  From the census records for the county I find the Addison Durham family living there in 1850.  In addition to the parents are the following children:  Martha A., born 1835, Elizabeth E., 1841, Isaac S., born 1844.

As the tension mounted between the north and south, and war began, as a young lad of 17 Isaac had to wait until his 18th birthday to join the Confederate forces.  He enlisted at Perryville on September 12, 1862, for service from November 1, 1862, to February 28, 1863.  He was a private in Capt. Robert D. Logan’s Company, Grigsby’s Reg’t, Buford’s Brigade (which became Company A, 6th Regiment Kentucky Cavalry).  Isaac was captured by Union forces near Cheshire, Ohio, on July 20, 1863, and was taken to Camp Douglas, Illinois, where he took the oath of allegiance December 15, 1863.  His paperwork says he ‘Enlisted through fear of conscription.  Desired to take the oath.’

On March 2, 1865, Isaac was transferred to Pt. Lookout, Maryland, another prison, and is listed on the roll of ‘Received, Boulware’s & Cox’s wharves, James River, Virginia, March 10th, 11th and 12th, 1865, from John E. Mulford, Col. & U. S. Asst, Agt, Exch., Three Thousand, four hundred and ninety-nine (3499) Paroled Confederate Prisoners of War, including One Hundred and Forty-three Officers, on the within Rolls.’  It sounds as if Isaac Durham was lucky to make it back home to Boyle County.

If you will notice the date of Isaac’s capture, July 20, 1863, and his regiment, it is the same regiment under Major John Hunt Morgan as the young soldier from Mercer County I wrote about a week ago.  The two young men were part of the wild ride Morgan did through Kentucky and into Ohio.  The only difference was John Calhoun Singleton lost his life in Ohio; Isaac Sevier Durham was taken prisoner of war.

Isaac Durham came back to Boyle County, married Permelia J. Mahan, and in 1870 was living with his father.  At that date three daughters had been born to the couple.  Jennie and Anna are listed as 2 years of age – were they twins?  Elizabeth was listed as six months.

Addison Durham died June 13, 1876, at the age of 72.

Addison Durham, born March 24, 1808, died June 13, 1876.  Perryville Cemetery, Boyle County, Kentucky.

In the 1880 census Isaac and Permelia have eight children listed.  In addition to the three previously mentioned were William E., 8; Addison, 6; Mary, 3; Martha, 3 (another set of twins?); and Margaret P., ten months.  In 1900 three more children were listed in the census – Thomas, 18; George, 16; and Granville, 10.

  1. Jennie Durham, 1867-1938, married John William Scott
  2. Anna Durham, 1868-1927, married Charlie Parks
  3. Elizabeth Durham, 1870-1960, single
  4. William E. Durham, 1871-1940, married Mary Priscilla Lucas
  5. Addison Durham, 1873-1954, married Lottie B. Collings
  6. Mary Durham, 1877-1940, married William W. Wright
  7. Martha Durham, 1877-?, married J. H. Brown
  8. Margaret P. Durham, 1879-1940, married Frank E. Westerfield
  9. Thomas Durham, 1882-?, ?
  10. George Durham, 1883-1959, ?
  11. Granville, Durham, 1886-?, married Maggie Overstreet

Permelia Durham died February 8, 1887, at the age of forty.

Amelia J., wife of Isaac Durham, born Octuber 20, 1847, died February 8, 1887.

Little bits in the area newspapers about Isaac Durham, starting in 1902, include, ‘Isaac Durham, of the Atoka section of Boyle, lost his barn by fire.  Incendiary work is suspected.’

‘Two weeks ago, Mr. Isaac Durham found one of his best work mules very lame, and yesterday morning it died.  Upon examination the animal’s body was found to be full of buck shot.  Mr. Durham does not think that the shooting was done by hunters as there evidently were several shots fired.  He has an eye on the scoundrel and the indications are that he will be landed in the county jail almost before he is aware of the fact.’

In the Monday, January 2, 1905, edition of the Kentucky Advocate, ‘A happy reunion was held yesterday at the home of Mr. Isaac Durham, near the city, of his children and grandchildren, to the number of twenty-eight.  An elaborate dinner was served, and the occasion was one of much enjoyment.  Mr. Durham is the father of eleven children, seven of whom are married and nearly all reside in Boyle County.  Mr. Durham was born and reared in the West End, and no man in the county is better known.  He moved to his present home from the West End about a month ago.’

At the age of 71 Isaac Durham passed away on April 19, 1915.

Isaac S. Durham, born October 8, 1844, died April 19, 1915.  A Confederate Soldier.

The Advocate Messenger, Danville, Boyle County, Kentucky

Tuesday, April 20, 1915

Col. Isaac Durham is dead.  This announcement was sent out late yesterday afternoon, the end having come at 6:22 o’clock, following a brief illness.

That Colonel Durham is no more can scarcely be realized.  He was on the streets of this city last Saturday afternoon, leaving for his home at the residence of his son, W. E. Durham.  On his arrival there, he told Mrs. Durham he was not feeling very well, and did not come down from his room to the evening meal.  Though complaining for several months, he continued to lead an active life, being a man of wonderful energy.  His condition grew worse, and at 1 o’clock Sunday morning Mr. and Mrs. W. E. Durham were aroused and found the Colonel very ill.  He protested against the calling of a physician, but as he continued to grow much worse, medical aid was summoned.  The children were called to the bedside, and all were present when the end came with the exception of two.

Colonel Durham was born in this county September 8, 1844 and was in his seventy-first year.  His entire life, excepting two years spent in the Confederate army as one of Morgan’s men, was passed in this county.  He was a companionable man, generous to a fault, and an indulgent father.

Colonel Durham’s wife, who was Miss Mary Mahan, died February 8, 1887, leaving him with eleven children, some of them very young.  How well he succeeded in rearing this family is shown by their standing in the communities where they reside.  The children are:  Mrs. J. W. Scott, of Jessamine County; Mrs. Annie Parks, of Midway; Miss Lizzie Durham, of Lebanon, Ind.; George Durham, of Lebanon Junction; Thomas Durham, of Bardstown; Mrs. W. W. Wright, of Earlington; G. C. Durham, of Akron, Ohio; W. E. and Add Durham, Mrs. J. H. Brown and Mrs. Frank E. Westerfield, of this county.  Thomas F. Durham, of this city, is a half-brother.

Dr. E. M. Greene, of this city, will conduct a brief funeral service at the residence of W. E. Durham at 10 o’clock Wednesday morning, fulfilling the Colonel’s dying request.  Interment will be made in the Perryville Cemetery.

Lizzie C. Durham, November 20, 1869 – October 5, 1960.

Daughter Elizabeth Durham was the last of the brothers and sisters to pass away, leaving only nieces and nephews to mourn her.

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