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Civil War papers John & Narcissa (Rutherford) Jones Civil War papers (Union) pertaining to JOHN & NARCISSA (RUTHERFORD) JONES of Sebastian County, Arkansas

Parents of Eliza Harriet (Jones) East

(Note: Bob Jones of Raytown, MO, also a descendant of John & Narcissa Jones, located the Civil War depositions at the archives in Little Rock, AR) Civil War Depositions:

Oath of Allegiance taken by John Jones to support the Union:
"April 10th,1864-Name:JOHN JONES//Residence: Sebastian Co Ark
Description: Age 51 years///Height 5 ft 10///Eyes Grey/Hair Grey
Complexion Fair///Peculiarities: Stout" (well built)

The following is a first hand account, in Narcissa's own words, of the hardships she & her family suffered during this time. She made a deposition to be presented to the Commissioner of Claims in Washington, D.C. for losses she had incurred during the war. The following is her deposition:
"I was living on my own farm in Sebastian County, Arkansas, consisting of three hundred and twenty acres. About forty acres of which was in cultivation, the remainder was woodland, from the 1st of April 1861 till about the spring of 1864 when I moved to Fort Smith, Ark at the federal post. While at Fort Smith we kept house. My husband was sick and not able to carry on business. I remained at Fort Smith till about the 1st of December, 1864, when it was thought the post would be evacuated and we then moved to Illinois, where we farmed the year of 1865. I returned to my farm in Sebastian County, Ark from Illinois in the fall of 1865. Neither I nor my husband was arrested by the rebels or federals. The rebels took about seven head of horses, about forty head of cattle and some sheep and hogs. I do not know what rebel command took the property. I never got pay for any of the property so taken. Rebel bushwackers frequently threatened to kill my late husband and also threatened my life on one occasion and burned our house. The rebels burned our house with all the household goods, shot one of my sons and hung my brother and my husband was compelled to layout to prevent being killed, by which cause he was exposed and I am satisfied that it caused his death. My husband was a scout for the federal army and I always gave them any and all information I could in regard the whereabouts of the rebels and often furnished Union Soldiers with food.
My brother, C.R. Rutherford (Calvin) was conscripted (drafted) in the rebel army but deserted them and enlisted in the federal army. He is now living in Williamson County, Texas. Two of my sons George W and William C Jones was conscripted in the rebel army but deserted in two or three months and on their way to the federal army, one (George) was killed and the other made his way through to Springfield, Missouri, a distance of about two hundred miles and enlisted in Co E, 1st Ark Inft. William C is now living in Williamson Co, TX. We did not furnish either of them with any money, clothing, or supplies of any kind while they was with the rebels. My sympathies was with the Union cause from the Commencement of the war to the close thereof. I always advocated the Union cause when I dared to do so. My husband, John Jones always advocated the Union cause and as far as he dared to he advocated the union and he always spoke freely to those he knew to be Union people and after the state seceded he still adhered to the Union cause. I was born and have ever since remained a citizen of the United States. I have never passed through bankruptcy. I am widow of John Jones, he died the 5 of June 1864. I have eight children, the names are Pheba J. Carden,thirty four years of age,Eliza H. East,aged thirty two years of age,William C. Jones, thirty years of age. Mary E. Alstatt, aged twenty seven years of age, Robert Jones, aged twenty three years, John Jones, twenty one years of age, Nancy E. Owenby, age nineteen years. Sarah E. Jones, aged seventeen years. None of my sons was in the rebel army that is now living except as before stated."

"The property here claimed was my husband's property. There has been no administration on the estate. The property was left as mine without any orders. My husband was never in the rebel service and he was loyal to the United States government throughout the war. He left the children, above stated. I have had the charge, maintenance, and education of the children and there was but little pesonal property left and I have used it for the use of the family. I have always used and collected the funds and appropriated them for the use of the family. Narcissa Jones. Subscribed and sworn to before me this 30th day of April 1874.
J.M. Doubleday, Special Commissioner" (Note: See below for Narcissa's petition)
"Petition To the Honorable Commissioners of Claims. Act of Congress, March 3, 1871. The Petition of NARCISSA JONES respectfully represents: That she is a citizen of the United States, and resides at present at or near Bloomer P.O. Sebastian County Arkansas and that she resided when this claim accrued at or near Bloomer P.O. Sebastian County Arkansas. That she has a claim against the United States for property taken for the use of the army of the United States during the late rebellion at (or near) Bloomer P.O., in the County of Sebastian, and State of Arkansas. - - - -Quantities and Description/Value: One Iron Gray mare 7
yrs old 15 1/2 or 16 hands high $150.00///300 Bushels of Corn $300.00///20 Head of Hogs $150.00///100 Bushels of Wheat $200.00///1000 lbs of Bacon $100.00"

The following is Narcissa's son Robert M. Jones' deposition dated 30 Apr 1874:
"My name is Robert M. Jones, I am 23 years of age. I am a resident of Sebastian County in the state of Arkansas. I am a son of Claimant and have no direct interest in this claim.
I did not see the mare taken mentioned in item number one but understood that she was in the 14th Kansas Cav by several parties. She was Iorn Grey, about six years old, about fifteen and one half hands high, sound and in good condition and was a fine mare. I do not know what she was worth at that time.
I was present and saw a train of government wagons of, I would say as many as fifteen wagons with an escort of soldiers come to the Claimants farm, some twenty miles from Fort Smith, Arkansas during the fall of 1863 and there was eight or ten wagons that drove to the corn house about twenty or thirty yards from the dwelling and loaded with corn. I think the house was sixteen feet square and the house was full of corn about seven feet up and they took all of the corn except about thirty or forty bushell. I was present and the Wagon Master told me that he would leave about fourty or fifty bushell of the corn. The corn was slip-shucked, I think, and was good sound corn.
I also know they took oats at the same time but do not remember how many loads they did take, and after they took and loaded the corn, the soldiers shot and killed as many as eight or ten hogs that I saw near the house, and put them in the wagons and when they left, they went in the direction for Fort Smith, Ark at their post. They was at Claimants house about six hours and I think they gave my father a receipt for the corn. The Wagon Master said they was out foraging and was looking for corn. The hogs would average one hundred and fifty pounds net. I do not know what corn or pork was worth. Corn was worth one dollar and fifty cents per bushell soon afteerwards.
I was also present and saw the bacon taken mentioned in item number four. About October 1863, a train of wagons came out from Fort Smith, Arkansas. There was some wagons drove up to the house a little after dark and they took bacon out fo the smoke house, but I do not know the amount they took and the next morning, I saw that they had taken wheat from the wheat house some fifty yards from the dwelling. Four hundred bushells of wheat had been put in the bin and there was not over one hundred bushell left and they must have taken about 300 bushell. It was good clean what, but I do not know its value but it was high. The bacon was good and sound but I do not its value. Father always had bacon to sell and he had more that year than usual.
When we moved to Fort Smith we took our cattle there and had them on the range inside the Post. I think we took 20 or 25 head to the Post and afterwards, I saw some four or five of father's cattle in the slaughter pen. My brother, John had seen more on a previous occasion in the pen as he told me. They was cows, steers, and heiffers. I do not remember the numbers of each kind. We lost all the cattle we had but two head. I think the cattle would average about 400 pounds each net. I do not know the value of the cattle, beef I think was worth five or six dollars per hundred.
I do not think Claimant or her husband received receipts or vouchers for any of the property taken except the corn and I am satisfied that any of the property here charged was never padid for. Claimant has charge of a part of the farm and all of the personal property of the estate and would be the proper person to receive pay for this claim from the Government. Signed, Robt. M. Jones"
Excerpt from Deposition by friend & neighbor of the Jones family, Thomas A. Putman. "I know that Claimant's husband was a member of the Union Scouts at Fort Smith and did considerable service and I think he was a scout up to the time of his death."30 Apr 1874"
Commissioners' Summary/Decision on Narcissa's Claim for losses during Civil War. (Excerpts) "Claimant is a widow whose husband died in June 1864. The evidence establishes that they and her family were all loyal. Her husband was a member of an independent Union company of Rangers. Two of their sons were forced into the Rebel Army, but deserted and on the way to join the Union Army, one was killed, the other got through to Springfield, MO and enlisted in the Union Army. The Loyalty of Claimant and her family and of her deceased husband is satisfactorily established. The taking of the property by forage trains from Fort Smith in the fall of 1863. The taking of the Mare is not proved, while there is evidence in regard to other matters not charged in the Claim and which we cannot therefore take into consideration. We allow four hundred and seventy five dollars. Signed by Special Commissioners: A.O. Aldis, I.B. Howell, O. Ferriss"

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