Tag Archives: Thompson

Edmond Thompson James Serves the Confederacy

Edmond Thompson James
Edmond Thompson James, 1835-1920

The Civil War had begun to surround the old Virginia home that James Carter James once occupied at Plainview in Fauquier County before he died in 1842. His progeny occupied the place since.

Avoiding the war for the James family was impossible. On April 15, 1861, President Abraham Lincoln ordered 75,000 troops, authorizing the Union to launch an aggressive attack upon the Confederacy.

A series of assaults throughout January and February of 1862 culminated on February 25th in the capture of Nashville, the first Confederate capital to fall to the Union. Eight days later, Carter James youngest son, George Carter James, enlisted at age twenty in the army of the Confederate States of America. He joined Company A of the 9th Virginia Cavalry. His regiment was called Stafford’s Rangers.

George Carter James 1842-1890, brother of Sgt. Edmond Thompson James
George Carter James 1842-1890, brother of Sgt. Edmond Thompson James

In July of the previous year, the U. S. House of Representatives passed the Crittenden Resolution, declaring that the war’s objective was not to interfere with slavery. The resolution required the Union take no action against the South’s “peculiar institution.” The bill’s sponsor, John Jordan Crittenden of Frankfort, Kentucky wrote, the war’s objective was to “defend and maintain the supremacy of the Constitution and to preserve the Union.”

Two weeks later, Congress passed the First Confiscation Act which emancipated slaves who served the Union during the war. In August, Gen. John C. Fremont ordered the emancipation of slaves in Missouri though Lincoln requested Fremont alter his decree. The following month, black troops were recruited in Kansas. By December, the Secretary of War issued a report authorizing the use of former slaves by the Army. At the same time, bills were introduced to abolish slavery.

The day after George Carter James enlisted, Abraham Lincoln requested Congress to pass a joint resolution urging for compensated emancipation. On March 10, 1862, President Lincoln met with Border State congressmen about the matter.

George Carter James compared with his cousin Jesse Woodson James
George Carter James compared with his cousin Jesse Woodson James

That very day on March 10th, two older brothers of George Carter James enlisted in Stafford’s Rangers, together with their brother-in-law. Edmond Thompson James joined with his brother John W. James. With them enlisted Richard Mortimer Crittenden, the husband of their sister Lucy Ann. Another sister, Sarah, married William T. Crittenden Jr.

Edmond Thompson and John W. James served Quarter Master duty. By December, Edmond was made a Sargent. After serving little more than a year, John W. James died on March 23, 1863, of an “inflammation of the bowels.” Edmond was severely ill the same month, but survived. Shortly afterward, Crittenden was assigned to detached service as a wagon master, a role he fulfilled through the end of the war, when he was paroled on April 15, 1865.

Through their service, Edmond was absent in March and again April of 1864. In July, as Confederate General Jubal Early got within five miles of Washington D. C. but was repelled, and again in August as Sherman began his march on Atlanta, Edmond was absent again. In this time, his brother George had gone AWOL. Edmond may have been sent to return George to duty. Both returned in August. On February 5, 1865, George was paroled, as Sherman scorched Georgia and South Carolina, and Jefferson Davis sued for peace. As Richmond fell, Edmond was paroled on April 18th together with George Mortimer Crittenden.

They all returned to Plainview to rebuild their lives in Fauquier County. George Carter James lived to 1890. Roger Mortimer Crittenden died in 1894. Edmond Thompson James lived well into the 20th century, dying in 1920 in his 85th year. John W. James gave his life to the war and to the Confederacy while on duty with Stafford’s Rangers.

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STAFFORD’S RANGERS

The Ninth Virginia Cavalry – Company A
Stafford Rangers – Stafford County

JAMES, EDMOND THOMPSON: Enl. 3/10/62 in Co. A. Promoted to Sgt., 12/1/62. Absent sick, Dec. 1862. Absent on QM duty, March-April and July-Aug. 1864. Present at 10/6/64 final roll. Paroled at Blacks and Whites, 4/18/65.

JAMES, GEORGE C.: Enl. 3/5/62 in Co. A. AWOL, Nov.-Dec. 1863 and July-Aug. 1864. Present at 10/6/64 final roll. Reported to the Bureau of Conscription on 2/5/65 as being AWOL in Fauquier Co.

JAMES, JOHN W.: Enl. 3/10/62 in Co. A. On extra QM duty, Sept. 1862 thru Feb. 1863. Died of “Inflamation of the bowels,” 3/21/63.

CRITTENDEN, RICHARD MORTIMER: b. 9/30/1825. Enl. 3/10/62 in Co. A. On detached service as wagon master, March 1863 thru Aug. 1864. Present at 10/6/64 final roll. Paroled in Va., 4/15/65. d. 4/2/1894 in Stafford Co. bur. Grove Church, Fauquier Co.
(ed. Brother-in-law, spouse of Lucy James.

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PEDIGREE

John W. James 1824-1863                                                                              Edmond Thompson James 1835-1920                                                                 George Carter James 1842-1890
. James Carter James & Martha Lee Tiller
.. Capt. Joseph James & Clarissa Brown
… George James Sr. & Mary Wheeler
…. Thomas James & Sarah E. Mason
….. John James, the Immigrant & Unknown

Titanic Star Gloria Stuart – a Jesse James Cousin


Actor Gloria Stuart, aka Gloria Frances Stewart 1910-2010

To a modern young audience it seems Gloria Stuart only achieved stardom in her 90s for her portrayal of Old Rose in the hit movie Titanic.

She garnered both Oscar & Golden Globe nominations. The Screen Actors Guild, of which Gloria was a founding member, gave her the SAG Award. On her 100th birthday, the Guild also honored her with a Centennial Celebration. Gloria also received a star on the Hollywood Boulevard Walk of Fame, and other awards, too. Gloria’s career spanned seven decades and included many classic hit films, still viewed and appreciated today.

Surprising to our James family is the discovery that Gloria Stuart is one of our stray leaves. She is related to our James family through her Cole and Nalle ancestries, as shown below.

Crusader

This discovery was brought to the attention of Stray Leaves by Crusader, formerly known as Andrew Exler.  In 1980, Crusader charged Disneyland with violating his civil rights by depriving him his right to dance with a gay friend. The landmark case was heard by the great grandson of Jesse James, Judge James R. Ross. Ruling against Disneyland, Judge Ross upheld the civil rights of Crusader. Today, Crusader is a paralegal with an appreciation for the James family.

Looking at the 100 years of Gloria Stuart’s life, there are numerous crossroads where her life intersected with the James, although most probably unconsciously.

Sculptor Gordon Newell

Like so many among the James family, the lives of Gloria and her family are married to the arts. Gloria not only was an actor, she also was an artist and author of her own autobiography. Her first husband, Blair Gordon Newell, was a sculptor. A fountain he sculpted sits before the White House in Washington.

Gloria’s second husband was the Chicago and New York journalist Arthur Sheekman. Groucho Marx brought Sheekman to Hollywood to work for him as a screenwriter. Sheekman became known as the 4th Marx brother, after Groucho, Chico, and Harpo.

Arthur Sheekman & Gloria Stuart

Gloria and Arthur’s daughter Sylvia Sheekman is an author of cook books. Sylvia married Eugene Allen Thompson, also a screenwriter. Among Gene Thompson’s credits are the successful TV programs Mission Impossible, Columbo, the Lucy Show, Beverly Hillbillies, & Marcus Welby M.D.

Syliva V. Sheekman-Thompson

Among Sylvia & Gene’s children,  Dinah Thomson-Sapia is an attorney who formerly worked in the San Benito and Monterey County District Attorneys’ offices. Today Dinah is in private practice in Santa Cruz, California, but devotes much charitable time to a number of organizations. Before becoming an attorney, Dinah served in the U. S. Coast Guard.

Dinah V. Thompson-Sapia

Gloria Frances Stewart died just recently on September 26, 2010, at her home in the Brentwood community of Los Angeles. She was 100 years old, and her star continues to rise.

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Charlie Rose Interviews Gloria Stuart – Feb 26, 1998

Advance to 17:00 minutes. Play interview thru 39:20 minutes

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Gloria Stuart appears in this 1933 newsreel short among Hollywood’s Stars of Tomorrow. Can you recall the movies careers of any of the other stars featured with Gloria in this clip?

 

LINEAGE

Gloria Frances Stewart, aka Gloria Stuart, 1910-2010

. Frank Stewart & Alice Vaughan

.. Thomas C. Vaughan & Berilla Cole

… Jesse Cole Jr & Angelina Wheeler

…. Jesse Cole Sr. & Nancy Sparks

…… Richard James Cole Sr. & Ann Hubbard (Common Ancestors)

….. Richard Cole Jr. & Sally Yates

…. James Cole & Sarah Lindsay

… Zerelda Elizabeth Cole & Rev. Robert Sallee James

.. Frank & Jesse James

ADDITIONAL LINEAGE

Gloria Frances Stuart also has a connection to John M. James & Clara Nall

Gloria Frances Stewart, aka Gloria Stuart, 1910-2010

. Frank Stewart & Alice Vaughan

.. Thomas C. Vaughan & Berilla Cole

… Jesse Cole Jr & Angelina Wheeler

…. Jesse Cole Sr. & Nancy Sparks

….. Humphrey Sparks Sr & Mildred “Milly” Nalle

…… Capt. Martin Nalle & Isabelle Unknown (Common Ancestors)

….. John M. James & Clarisssa “Clara/Clary” Nall

Jesse Edward Smith Recalls Jesse James, His Namesake & Cousin

Susan Prudence James-Smith 1845-1919

My mother (ed. Susan Prudence James-Smith) and her brother, R. W. James (ed. Robert Woodson James 1838-1922), were first cousins to the James Brothers. The Jesse in my name was taken from Jesse James.

He paid some special attention to me when I was a small boy and made occasional visits to our house until the law was in such hot pursuit they hardly dared to visit among their kin. On one visit to Salt Springs Jesse gave me a one dollar gold piece. I lost it playing in the dusty road. Had plenty voluntary helpers looking for it but it was never found. Jesse told my mother he was going to give me a horse and bridle and saddle when I became of age – his idea about a perfect gift for a boy. He gave my father a fine riding mare with a bullet wound in her neck and a pair of spurs he was wearing and father used them as long as he was riding horses. Then he gave them to me and I am passing them on to my son, Arnold (ed. Edwin Arnold Smith b. 1903), a lover of horses, who wants them as a keepsake.

Zee Mimms-James with her children, Jesse Edwards James & Mary Susan James

Shortly after Jesse’s death in 1882, when he was shot in the back by Bob Ford, one of his men, his wife (ed. Zerelda Amanda “Zee” Mimms-James 1845-1900), who was also a relative of mothers, and Uncle Bob James (ed. R.W. James previously mentioned), came to our farm home at Shackleford, with her small son, Jesse, and daughter, Mary, and spent several days with us. She was a sad and broken-hearted widow and I believe she was dressed in full mourning as was the custom for widows in that day.

Father (ed. John Wesley Smith) sold his blacksmith shop in Salt Springs and moved to the Thompson farm at Shackleford in the spring of 1877 or 1878. Mr. Thompson lived in the East, Boston, I think, and we only saw him once a year. He would come about the time of year to collect the rent and would stay several days or a week. He brought his son whom he wanted to learn something about farming as he was to be the owner of the farm at some future date.

Jesse Edward Smith 1872-1964

The Chicago and Alton Railroad was constructed through the Thompson farm while we lived there. I remember something about the construction work. No tractors, no bulldozers, no hi-loaders. All done with horses, mules, plows, scrapers, picks and shovels. The laborers chewed tobacco and smoked pipes; no cigarettes. We saw the first trains operated on that line.

We moved to Butler, Missouri, in 1888 where father had a Livery, Feed, and Sale Stable. After Frank James had been acquitted of all criminal charges for which he was tried, we saw or heard from him occasionally.

Frank was in Butler one fall and was official starter for the races at the County Fair, a job he had performed at other tracks all over the country. He proved to be about as much attraction as any other feature of the fair. Again he was in Butler with Cole Younger, when they were traveling with a Big Circus as drawing cards. They rode together in a street parade, and, of course, they drew lots of attention.

–  Historical Notes from the Bates County Museum, by Reva Stubblefield; Bates County News, Feb 8, 1973

–  Special thanks to Sandy Kassem, a cousin of Jesse Edward James, for providing this article.