Edward Clayton Kenyon



Edward Clayton Kenyon came to America in 1848 at the age of 8, sailing with his mother, Ellen, and his father, John C. Kenyon, and two younger sisters, Louiza and Ellen.  His mother died in route, and was buried at sea.  The family then settled in Cocke Co., and are first listed in the 1850 census for Cocke Co.  John remarried and had several children with his second wife.  John and his second wife along with several other members of the family are buried at Forest Hill Baptist Church in Cocke Co.

Edward enlisted in Co. C. of the 26th Regiment of Tennessee on June 27, 1861.  Company C was formed of men from Cocke Co.   Soon after the Regiment was organized, the unit was sent to Ft. Donnelson.  According to the Regimental history, the unit was surrendered, and many of the men were sent to a POW Camp -- Camp Morton, IN.  However, Edward, and many other men escaped from the train.  The flag of the 26th is on display at the Tennessee State Museum in Nashville, and can be viewed at www.state.tn.us/sos/statelib/pubsvs/flags.htm

On May 28, 1862, Edward re-enlisted with the 63rd Reg of Tennessee.  The unit was in various parts of East Tennessee before being moved to Bridgeport, AL, where they were under the command of General Nathan Bedford Forrest.  In November and December of 1862, many of the men were without shoes or winter clothing during the marches. 

On September 20, 1863, Edward was wounded in the left thigh at the battle of Chickamauga.  According to the surgeon of the 63rd, J.S. McDonough, M.D., the bullet produced a large lacerated wound made much worse by hospital gangrene.  Of the 404 men of the 63rd sent into battle on September 20,  202 were killed or wounded.

After recovering from the wound, Edward returned to service with the 63rd, as part of the Army of Northern Virginia.  The unit helped in the defense of Petersburg and Richmond.  The colors were captured on June 17, 1864.  Ultimately, Edward, and the 28 men left of the 63rd, were surrendered at Appomattox Courthouse on April 9, 1865.  In his pension application, Edward describes that he "remained in Richmond, till we fell back from Petersburg and Richmond and then surrendered with my company at Appomattox Courthouse."  Some time during the war, Edward also lost three fingers on his left hand which included about half of his little finger.  He was described by Dr. McDonough as a "good and faithful soldier."

After the war, Edward returned to Cocke Co., and married Tempy Louesa Russell in Haywood Co, NC on Sept. 24, 1869.  Edward and his wife moved to Macon Co, TN, not too may years later.  They had nine children. (Jesse Henry Kenyon, Lizzie JonEllen Kenyon, John David Kenyon, James Thomas Kenyon, Marietta Ester Kenyon, Joseph Lafayette Kenyon, Jennie Magdale Kenyon, Ida May Kenyon, and Eva Alice Kenyon.   Jesse  was my Great-grandfather. 

Edward and his wife and few of the children are buried at Mt. Pleasant Cemetery in Macon Co., TN.  A picture of Edward and Tempy can be viewed at http://www.tngenweb.org/civilwar/vetphotos/k-p/kenyon001.html

Lawrence Kenyon