Skip to comments.When Rucker called the roll—A Soldier’s Story
Posted on 08/10/2011 5:25:04 PM PDT by BigReb555
On August 10, 1905, Amos Rucker, an ex-Confederate soldier and proud member of the United Confederate Veterans, died in Atlanta, Georgia.
(Excerpt) Read more at huntingtonnews.net ...
Mrs. Daisy Anderson was the last widow of a Black Union soldier whose husband Private Robert Ball Anderson served in the 125th United States Colored Troops. She and Mrs. Alberta Martin, the last widow of a Confederate soldier, met in Gettysburg, Pa. in 1997. Both of these grand ladies have sadly passed over the river to rest in the shade of the trees.
The Confederate flag, which continues to come under attack, was the proud banner of Black, White, Hispanic, Jewish and Native American sons and daughters of Dixie who stood nobly in defense of their homeland and way of life during the War Between the States. Once upon a time neither the Confederate nor the Union Veterans or their blood stained battle flag needed any defense.
The following is one of over 50,000 stories of the Black Confederate Soldier, slave and free, who stood honorably and proudly for Southern Independence, 1861-1865. After the war many of these men attended the reunions of Confederate soldiers including that at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.
On August 10, 1905, Amos Rucker, an ex-Confederate soldier and proud member of the United Confederate Veterans, died in Atlanta, Georgia. His friends of the UCV had previously bought a grave site and marker for him and his wife Martha who had a limited income.
Amos was a servant and best friend to Sandy Rucker. Both men joined the 33rd Georgia Regiment when the South was invaded. Amos fought as a regular soldier and sustained wounds to his breast and one of his legs that left him permanently crippled.
Amos Rucker joined the W.H.T. Walker Camp of the United Confederates after the war in Atlanta, Georgia. He faithfully attended the meetings that were held on the second Monday of each month at 102 Forsyth Street. He was able to remember the name of every man of his old 33th Regiment and would name them and add whether they were living or dead.
Amos Rucker and wife Martha felt that the men of the United Confederate Veterans were like family. Rucker said that, "My folks gave me everything I want." The UCV men helped Amos and wife Martha with a house on the west side of Atlanta and John M. Slaton helped with his will and care for his wife. Slaton was a member of Atlanta's John B. Gordon Camp 46 Sons of Confederate Veterans and was governor of Georgia when he commuted the death sentence of Leo Frank.
A funeral service for Amos Rucker was conducted by former Confederate General and Reverend Clement A. Evans. An article about the funeral related that Rucker was clothed in a gray Confederate uniform and a Confederate flag covered his casket. It is written that both white and black friends of Rucker came to pay their last respects. There was not a dry eye in the church when Captain William Harrison read a poem, entitled, "When Rucker called the roll."
A grave marker was placed in 1909 by the United Confederate Veterans that for many years marked the graves of Amos and Martha Rucker but some say it was taken many years ago. A few years ago the Sons of Confederate Veterans remarked Ruckers grave.
The Georgia Division Sons of Confederate Veterans joins our nation in remembering the 150th Anniversary Sesquicentennial of the American War Between the States. See additional information at: htttp://www.150wbts.org/
Information for this story came from the book "Forgotten Confederates- A Anthology about Black Confederates" compiled by Kelly Barrow, J.H. Segars and R.B. Rosenburg."
Good post. The way things are going we may be doing it all over again.
I just did a search trying to find the poem mentioned but can’t find it, just references to this article. If you find it could you ping me?
Another Civil War? the last one wasn’t civil and the next one will be brutal. The riots we see going on in England are only a sample of what’s to come.
It’s not about a cause,it’s about power,greed,drugs and rebellion against the hand that feeds it
Praise the Lord and pass the ammo.
Amos was born a slave in Elbert County, Georgia. He was a servant in the Joseph Rucker household around the Athens, Georgia area. Joseph Rucker was the first millionaire in Georgia. He assigned Amos to his son Alexander Rucker, known as Sandy. When the South was invaded Sandy was commissioned as an officer in a Georgia infantry unit.
Amos never questioned going to war and cared for Sandy as his cook and body servant. At one of the early battles Amos was standing next to Sandy near the enemy line. A shot was fired from the Yankees that struck one of the Confederate soldiers speaking to Sandy. The soldier fell to his death. Amos picked up the dead soldiers gun and started firing back at the Yankees. From that moment on he fought shoulder to shoulder with Alexander. The respect he earned while doing a soldier’s duty would last more than his life time.
Being a man of character and a good Confederate soldier he joined the Confederate Veterans in Atlanta. Amos had a special place at each veterans meeting. He called roll from memory including every member by name and qualified each person with the word “here” or “dead”. He kept track of every member in his camp and was known for his wonderful memory.
Amos in his later years was interview by a Yankee journalist who questioned him about being a slave in his younger days and about the Rucker family who owned him. He responded in his usual pleasant manner, “The Rucker family is my family. My grandchildren play with their grandchildren. The Ruckers will give me anything I ask for.” Clearly it was not the answer and story the journalist was looking to tell.
Amos Rucker never missed a Confederate Veterans meeting. He felt duty bound to attend, call roll and fellowship. Amos felt ill one meeting night and sent his son to the meeting with these words, “Send my love to the boys”. Amos died that night.....but not before he sent those affectionate words to his fellow compatriots with whom he fought shoulder to shoulder during the War.
Amos Rucker is not forgotten by his Confederate compatriots and is buried in Atlanta’s Southview Cemetery; the same cemetery where members of the Martin Luther King family are buried, with his wife Martha.
His funeral and his pallbearers read like the Who’s Who list in Atlanta. Funeral services were conducted by Clement A. Evans of Atlanta, Confederate General. Amos pallbearers were:
Gov. Allen D. Chandler
Judge William Lowndes Calhoun Jr.
Ex Postmaster. Amos Fox
Frank A. Hilburn, Commander of Camp Walker
Amos Rucker’s estate was administered by Confederate veteran, John M. Slaton the future governor of Georgia who was known for commuting the death sentence of Leo Frank.