First, I would like to wish you all a blessed and prosperous new year as we go into 2016!
Now, for an update that many have been asking for …
When I began the Roanoke Minute Men Project in the spring of 2015, I underestimated the response it would create. For years, I had “tinkered” with writing a history of Company A or the 14th North Carolina Troops, but had never felt like I could add to the histories already out there in the public (such as, The Anson Guard). But slowly that changed, as I collected more and more accounts that had previously gone unpublished, or those that took up a mere footnote in some other history text. That gave me the courage to start my journey, and so I began simply with my rough file of notes, a list of soldiers names, and this website to chart my course publicly.
Since that time, I have managed (part-time) to put together a detailed roster of the Company, to include individual service records, which encompasses on its own eighty-five plus pages of text. This does not include the background and family history data that I ultimately intend to add.
Additionally, I have now collected and transcribed over a dozen period letters and accounts, ranging from the early days of the Company’s formation through 1864 (still looking for an 1865 letter!) While a dozen letters may not seem like a lot, I started my journey with only three letters, a diary, and several post-War accounts. Today, I wrap up the year having gone through and transcribed all of those, and have on hand as I type this FIFTEEN (yes, 15!) more letters sitting on my desk to transcribe. To say I am excited about the stories these letters tell is an understatement, and this progress has helped to encourage my efforts into the new year.
I have also been blessed to correspond with and meet numerous Roanoke Minute Men descendants and family historians who have shared their own research with me, and have had the opportunity to do research at some of the South’s foremost academic institutions and historical archives. I can not say enough good things about the staffs at the Rubenstein Library at Duke University, Wilson Library at UNC, State Archives of North Carolina, North Carolina Museum of History, Virginia Historical Society, and countless smaller libraries, local historical societies and courthouses that I have had the pleasure to work with over the past year.
From here, I still have a long way to go before I reach the finished product, but in the meantime please do not forget I am always looking for more letters, diaries, family histories, and images of the soldiers themselves to add to this history and honor the story of those brave veterans of the Roanoke Minute Men.
As always, I thank you all for the assistance, input, and kind words you have provided along the way, and I look forward to “charging on” into the new year!
roanokeminutemen at gmail dot com