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Confederate Veteran of the US Civil War – Browns Grove Cemetery, Burdett, Pawnee County, Kansas

On September 18, 1862, Pvt. Clemons Magee enlisted in the Confederate States Army as a member of Co. A 61st TN Infantry. He was taken prisoner at the Battle of Vicksburg on July 4, 1863, and was paroled. Pvt. Magee deserted his regiment on March 25, 1865, was taken prisoner the following month and was discharged on April 28, 1865.

Clemons Magee was born in North Carolina in 1829. At some point, Clemons moved to Tennessee, where he married Rebecca Barham on January 25, 1849. She was born in Tennessee in 1831. Seven of their ten children were born there before Clemons enlisted.

Much of the Civil War was fought in Tennessee as it was a border state with rivers leading to the South. Confederate and Union soldiers fought over forty skirmishes and battles in Tennessee, including the Battle of Shiloh, the deadliest battle in American History.

After four years of the constant presence of soldiers plundering and pillaging, it would take years for the soil to replenish itself. Obtaining seeds for a crop and animals would also be a challenge. One provision of the Homestead Act of 1862, which subtracted years of service from the five-year requirements, did not apply to Confederate soldiers.

Clemons, Rebecca, and seven children came to Pawnee County in 1878. Their homestead was in Grant Township, west of Larned. The family faced all the usual hardships of those who were pioneers in Pawnee County, but they stayed and lived a comfortable life. Rebecca died in 1886, and Clemons passed away on February 7, 1910. They are both buried in Browns Grove Cemetery with three of their children and spouses.

The rest of the story: William Magee, the youngest son of Clemons and Rebecca, tragically died from lockjaw. Two weeks prior, William stepped on a rusty nail that almost went through his foot.

Note: The Battle of Shiloh occurred in Hardin County, Tennessee, on April 6-7,1862. General Ulysses S. Grant led the Union with 65,085 soldiers. General Albert S. Johnston and 44,968 led the Confederacy. The estimated casualties for both sides were 23,746.1

1 Shiloh Battle Facts and Summary | American Battlefield Trust (

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