Friday, August 30, 2013

Friend of Friends Friday: Reuben Hawkins

Alexandria Gazette (Alexandria, VA)
May 8, 1875

DEATH OF A NOTED COLORED MAN. -- Reuben Hawkins, who died in this village on Thursday, the 6th inst., after an illness of a couple of weeks, was one whose demise deserves more than a passing notice.  Belonging to the Thornton family of Prince William, he, at the outbreak of the war, followed the fortunes of his master, Major W. W. Thornton, in the capacity of cook, and relieved the hunger and assuaged the thirst of many a soldier of the 'Lost Cause,' both upon the weary march and in the tented field.  From his unfailing good-humor, his cheerfulness under all discouragements, and his fidelity to the flag he served, he soon became a general favorite not only with the privates, but also with those high in command.  Early, Ewell, Van Dorn and others knew and appreciated him, and his soubriquet of "Major" was given him as a testimonial of his worth, and by it he was been generally known.  Many are the anecdotes and reminiscenses narrated of him, but time and space forbid their introduction here.  At the close of the war he settled in this place, where he resided until his decease.  With him as departed another of those ties which bound the living present to the dead past; a link of the chain has been broken that connected the Virginia that was to the Virginia that is: a land mark swept away by remorseless death, that kept green and living the memories of bygone years.  --Manassas Gazette

Alexandria Gazette - May 8, 1875

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