Carnton Plantation and the Widow of the South – True Story:


When Civil War historian and conservative Robert Hicks released his book: South Widow In 2005, he coined the story of Kerry McGawock, who turned his family and # 39 home, Carnton Plantation, into a tomb for converts after the Second Battle of Tennessee Franklin. Best seller: Hicks & # 39; The novel brought a long-forgotten chapter of the Civil War story to a new generation of readers. Hicks & # 39; The novel is a work of fiction, but just as fascinating is the real story of Carton Plantation, Kerry McGawock and the cemetery hidden by him.

Carnton Plantation, located in Franklin, Tennessee, was built between 1815 and 1826 by former Nashville Mayor Randall McGawock. Presidents James James Pollock and Andrew Acks Erson were both visiting Carton, where MacGavock built the planting on the site of his father's Revolutionary War plot. Carnton originally consisted of about 1,420 acres.

After the death of Randal McGavock in 1843 and the 39th death, Carnton was transferred to Randall McGavock and his 39th son John. In 1848 John married his first cousin, Carrie Elizabeth Wilder. The couple had five children, but three of them had lost their childhoods, leaving only two, Uter and Haiti, to live to adulthood.

Carnton was the very essence of a prosperous antebellum plantation; Prior to the Civil War, the net value of the McGavock family was $ 339,000, adjusted for inflation, today and at # 39 would be several million dollars. This plantation produced wheat, oats, maize, grass, potatoes, but was primarily a livestock plantation with large cattle, pigs and thoroughbred horses.

When the Civil War broke out, McNaugh McGawock, like many other plantations, was discharged from the Confederate army. She, Kerry, their two remaining children, and a few slaves. The remaining 30 slaves sent to family plantations in southern Louisiana and Alabama remained in Carton. John was given the honorary title of "Colonel."

The war reached Franklin, and near Carton twice; First in 1863, and then in 1864, during the Second Battle of Franklin, the battle that immortalized MacGavoks and Carton as a tomb for the betrayed dead.

The second Battle of Franklin was fought right at Macgavock & 39th, just a mile from home, on November 30, 1864. Confederate General Bell on Bell Hood and the 39th Troops met with Union General Macleist Schofield. bloody battle that struck the Allies hard; The Confederate Army of Judah and Tennessee claimed the lives of 7,000 men, including 1,700 dead, and Schofield counted 2,300, leaving only 200 dead.

Like many homes in the area, Carton was used as a hospital after the battle. However, Carnton & 39's size meant that the plantation hosted more victims than any other home in the area. Hundreds of wounded were brought to Carton as the battle ended.

It is assumed that at least 300 men were cared for inside the Carton house, and that countless more were cared for outside the home, in tents or slave districts, and in many cases on cold soil.

It was a scary sight to witness and become a part of. MacGawock and his children helped take care of the men brought to their home, a home today stained with the blood of the men who were brought there, the blood blowing on the lush carpets, just to cover the bottom of the wood. . Carey McGavok and 39th Ward were reported to have been hemorrhaged in subsequent days, and the nursery has become an operating room with amputated limbs removed from the window to prepare a high story against the house.

About 150 men died that first night in Carnton, for months, the McGavock family cared for others who remained in their home. Kerry McGawock self-healed the men by changing bandages, overthrowing aspirations, and writing letters home.