Cavalryman's grave finally marked
By By Adam Prestridge
Descendants of T.R. Barlow, a Confederate cavalryman, who died 105 years ago, finally have a place to pay their respects.
Saturday, great grandchildren and great-great grandchildren of Theodore Rolan Barlow, known as T.R., met at Williams Station Cemetery to place a headstone on the unmarked grave believed to be that of Barlow's.
"It feels really good to finally have a place to go and recognize Theodore Barlow and the legacy he left us," Barlow's great-great grandson Brian Bruley of Atmore said.
Genealogy is a hobby of Bruley's. Throughout the years, he has come across a lot of information about his great-great grandfather.
According to Bruley's research, Barlow enlisted in the Confederate Army as a private in Company D of the 7th Alabama Cavalry on June 20, 1863, in Conecuh County. Capt. D. Ledyard enlisted him for a term of service until the war's end. During this time he was stationed at Dog River Factory in Mobile, Bayou LaBatre and at Camp Cauley.
On March 22, 1865, Barlow was hospitalized in Way Hospital in Meridian, Miss. for a serious illness. From the hospital he was furloughed.
When the war was over, the U.S. Army paroled Barlow, like all other confederate soldiers on active duty at the war's end. He was paroled from Montgomery on June 19, 1865. The parole described T.R. Barlow as a man five feet tall with dark hair, dark eyes, and light complexion.
On Feb. 20, 1867, Barlow married Mary Ann Etheridge, in Conecuh County. Mary Ann was the daughter of farming parents, William and Hannah Etheridge of Conecuh County.
Saturday, during the small gathering to mark Barlow's grave, several members of Barlow's extensive family tree, those who have never met, paid tribute to his or her loved one.
"It's been a long time," Cantonment's Hubert Howard, who is Barlow's grandson, said. "Don't know what kind of funeral he had back in those days, but probably not any recognition for his Civil War service. It's going to bring some closure."
Walnut Hill resident Ray Hall, who is also a great grandson of Barlow's, agrees.
"It feels good," he said. "It's something that's been a long time needed. It makes me proud."
Everyone said it was very interesting to meet new family members.
"It was good to see people that I had never seen before and realize that we are all apart of the same family," Bruley said. "It felt good to be a part of setting the stone in place.
Hubert said there would be a funeral service held on Nov. 11 to honor Barlow conducted by the Daughters and Sons of the Confederacy. He said the 10 a.m. service would feature a rifle salute and flag ceremony by members of the group dressed in Civil War attire.
"It should be pretty impressive," Howard said.
Tony Ging, Barlow's great grandson, is responsible for getting the headstone that was placed Saturday from the Department of Veteran's Affairs.
"I really appreciate Tony's work in making this happen," Bruley said.
Even though the exact location of Barlow's grave is unknown, it doesn't bother family members on hand Saturday.
"To me personally, that is immaterial," Hall said. "There is no way to find exactly where the grave is located. It could have been moved. There is no way to find out exactly to where he's at. Just some kind of recognition is what I'm thankful for and glad to see."