Family Stories

James Harvey – Buried at Camp Nelson Federal Cemetery – Jessamine County

James Harvey was born December 26, 1844, in New Bern, North Carolina, he died March 26, 1924, in Franklin County, Kentucky.  His mother was Caroline Lee, born about 1830.  Nothing is known of his father.  James Harvey is listed on census records as mulatto, as is his mother, Caroline. 

The reason I chose James Harvey for research came about as I looked at gravestone photographs taken at Camp Nelson Cemetery in Jessamine County.  From his stone we learn that James was a corporal in Company K of the 114th United States Colored Infantry.  This regiment was organized at Camp Nelson July 4, 1864, and attached to the Military District of Kentucky, Department of the Ohio, to January, 1865, 3rd Brigade, 1st Division, 25th Corps, Depart of Virginia, to April, 1865, 2nd Brigade, 1st Division, 25th Corps and Department of Texas, to April 1867.  Their service was at Camp Nelson and Louisa, Kentucky, till January, 1865, then ordered to Department of Virginia on January 3rd of that year.  They were involved in siege operations against Petersburg and Richmond until March of 1865.  They were in the Appomattox Campaign March 28-April 9, Hatcher’s Run March 29-31, fall of Petersburg April 2, pursuit of Lee April 3-9, and at Appomattox Court House April 9.  They were at Lee’s surrender.  They were on duty at Petersburg and City Point until June, when they were moved to Texas, with duty at Brownsville and other points on the Rio Grande until April, 1867.  They mustered out April 2, 1867.  James was a private when he mustered in, a corporal, from July 1, 1865, when he mustered out.

James Harvey, Corporal of Company K, 114 Regiment, U.S. Colored Infantry, mustered out April 2, 1867, at Brazos, Santiago, Texas.  He was due $41.66 for clothing and $300 for his work as a soldier.

James Harvey has 25 pages in his military records on Fold3.  His muster and descriptive roll say he mustered in at Lexington, Kentucky, June 30, 1864.  He was 25 years old, a laborer.  James enlisted June 28th in Lexington for three years.  His description was black eyes and hair, copper complexion, stood 5’8”.  The remarks tell us that the person who was called into service was R. W. Miller of Anderson County, and was to be credited to the 4th district of the county.  As a black man James Harvey was owned by Mr. Miller and took Miller’s place in the Civil War.  The Slave Schedules for 1860 Anderson County show only two men in the county, by the last name of Miller, who owned slaves of the correct age.  Ben R. Miller owned four slaves, one being a male black of the age of 20 years.  Armstead Miller owned a black man aged 19.  The 1860 census reveals that Ben was 49 years old, Armstead, 60.  If either of the two were to be called up I think it would be Ben Miller.  Ben Miller married Harriett Mountjoy December 24, 1833, she being the daughter of William and Sarah Chapman Mountjoy.  According to his death records, Ben was born in Mercer County, died October 22, 1876, of ‘old age’ at 65.  His mother was Sarah Miller, no father listed.  Ben was not listed in the 1850 census record, although he is listed in the manufacturing schedule ending June 1, 1860, as owning a saw and grist mill, powered by a stream, that produced lumber – in Anderson County.  Did James Harvey work at this mill before entering the Civil War?

James’ war records say he was born in Anderson County, and he was 25 years old at the time of enlistment.  However, during later census records, James is always listed as born in North Carolina.  One of my questions was how James came to be in Kentucky in 1864 when he was born in North Carolina in 1845.  The 1870 census is the first we find of James Harvey, in Franklin County.  He was 25, born in North Carolina, a distillery hand.  His wife, Laura, was 24, listed as white, born in Mexico.  Two daughters lived with the couple, Margaret, 2, and Caroline, 3 months.  Caroline Lee, 50, black, born in North Carolina and worked as a laundress – James’ mother! 

The 1875 birth records of Anderson County give the birth of Henry Harvey, October 17, 1875, place of birth Anderson County, father James Harvey, mother Lorincey Faddeions.  The child was a mulatto, father was born in North Carolina, the mother in Mexico, residence of parents, Anderson County.  In 1870 the family lived in Franklin County, as well as in 1880.  What reason could there have been to move back to Anderson County for a few short years? 

In 1880 the census included three sons – James, 6, Henry, 5, and Louis, 2.  Caroline lived with the family, but her age had not increased!  But in this record, she is listed as ‘mother’ to head of household. 

In 1900 the family lived in neighboring Woodford County.  In this record James’ parents are listed as born in North Carolina, as well as himself.  He was a machinist.  He could read but not write.  James and Laura had been married 34 years.  At first I thought they married shortly after his years in the Civil War.  But being married for 34 years in 1900, this gives a wedding date of 1866.  Since James was in Brazos Santiago, Texas, in that year, and served at the Texas/Mexican border, I feel sure James and Laura Farias met and married there.  The reason Brazos Santiago, Texas, was important, it was here that the Confederate States of America received trade from Cuba, Europe and Asia.  I could find nothing about her parents. 

In 1900 sons James, Henry and Louis were firemen at a distillery.  In 1900 only one distillery was operating in Woodford County – Woodford Reserve – I feel that both James and his sons worked here – at least the sons!  Also living with James and Laura was daughter Margaret, at 31 a widow, with three of her four children – William Bryant, James A. Bryant and Laura Bryant.  Daughter Caroline lived with her parents with her two children, Louis and Margaret. 

In 1910 the family was back in Franklin County, living on Clinton Street.  James, 64, was an engineer at a gas house.  Laura was 63.  The couple had been married for 43 years.  It says that of six children only three were living in 1910.  Son Henry was a fireman at a laundry.  Edminia Harvey, daughter-in-law, was 30 with six children – Louis, 12, Maggie, 11, Katie, 9, Calllie, 8, James, 4, Laura, 3.  Son James is not listed and must have been deceased, leaving his wife and children in the care of his parents.  Grandson James A. Bryant, 26, lived with James and Laura.  One child was not listed on any census records.  He or she must have died at a young age.  That leaves daughters Margaret and Caroline.  According to records Margaret Harvey Bryant died January 2, 1915, in Franklin County, of tuberculosis.  Caroline must have died before the 1910 census.

Laura Farias Harvey died December 12, 1912, in Frankfort, Franklin County. 

In 1920 James, 73, lived on Logan Street in Frankfort, with daughter-in-law Edminia, and grandchildren Louis, Callie, Jimmy, Lauretta and Edminia. 

James Harvey died March 25, 1924, in Frankfort and was buried in Camp Nelson National Cemetery in Jessamine County, along with many other veterans. 

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