Civil War Bible Added to Museum Display
Roaring Twenties Antique Car Museum is pleased to announce the addition of a piece of local Civil War history to its eclectic collection.
This New Testament Bible was published in New York in 1854 by the American Bible Society. The hand-written inscriptions on the pages inside indicate that this Bible was with its owner as he sat out the final days of the Civil War in a Union prison camp.
There is a penciled inscription at the top of the first page. This information is also penciled on the inside of the cover and on the back pages:
"Sgt. Jn. N. Wilhoit's Co
F 13th Infantry
4th Brigade Early's Division
Euelles. Confederate Army from
At the bottom of the page is a second penciled inscription:
"Presented to Jhn. N Wilhoit
as a token of esteem
from his wife Bettie
March 18th 1864"
The bible was a gift from his wife, Lallie Bettie Graves, who had received the book in 1855 from her cousin Rosalia. The earlier presentation is written in the center of the page in ink:
"Presented to Lallie
Bettie Graves as a
Token of esteem
from her cousin.
In the back is written his wife's name:
"Sarah E. Wilhoit
Madison Co. Va."
Wilhoit's military service is well documented in Civil War records:
John Norton Wilhoit was born August 26, 1839 in Orange County. Records show that he was 5' 7 1/4", had a florid complexion, gray eyes, and auburn hair. His occupation is listed as a farmer. Wilhoit enlisted in the Confederate Army on April 23, 1861 at Harper's Ferry.
He was assigned to Company F, 13th Virginia Infantry as a Private. He was promoted to Sargent on April 23, 1862.
Wilhoit was wounded in action at Fredericksburg on December 13, 1862 and returned to duty in early 1863. He was wounded in action again on May 4, 1863 in his right leg and returned to duty on July, 1863.
Wilhoit was wounded a third time at the Spotsylvania Court House on May 18, 1864 and returned to duty on August 12, 1864. He was finally captured at Cedar Creek and taken as a Prisoner of War on October 19, 1864. Wilhoit was taken to Pt. Lookout in Maryland and remained there until he was released on June 19, 1865 after taking the oath of allegiance.
John Wilhoit was married to Sara E. Graves on June 30, 1863. They had three children. After the Civil War he was a member of the Board of Supervisors in Green County. He died on February 22, 1927 in Alvana Mills, Greene County. He is buried in Graham Cemetery in Orange, VA.
Note: some Wilhoits used an "e", Wilhoite, and this spelling appears in Civil War records.
Researched by Historian Harold Woodward