April 6th and 7th of 1862 this area wasn't nearly this peaceful, even though that's what the name Shiloh means, peaceful. For the course of those couple of days, as Grant for the Union and Johnston for the South squared off, it became apparent that the Civil Was wasn't going to be over quickly as everyone had thought up until then. Except for Johnson, he died in the battle. 25,000 other men in round numbers were either killed or wounded that day.
The wounded, North and South, were hauled out on rail cars and left in towns all along the way southward. There they were treated as best they could be and either got well, or were buried.
These are the graves of some of those who had been wounded at Shiloh, evacuated southward, and then buried in Friendship Cemetery in Columbus.
Some lingered a few days after the early April battle, others a few weeks.
The tie to Memorial Day happened in this cemetery in 1866, a year to the day after Robert E. Lee's surrender ending the Civil War. The ladies of Columbus brought flowers to the cemetery and put them on the graves of the Confederate fallen. Then someone suggested they also decorate the graves of the Union soldiers, who were still buried there at the time. And they did so.
The gesture was reported in Horace Greeley's newspaper and pretty soon everybody was having a Decoration Day, honoring the dead of both sides and starting a healing between the north and south.
After more wars, the date of Decoration Day was moved from April until the end of May when flowers would be in bloom everywhere and the name changed to Memorial Day.
Now, in all fairness, there's probably a dozen towns across the country, north and south, that claim to be the birthplace of Memorial Day. Some official status was awarded Columbus, Mississippi by Congress years ago. President Johnson declared Waterloo, New York to be the birthplace. But WHAT happened here isn't in dispute. The dead of a single nation were honored that April morning in1866, and not the dead of two nations. And there is a big difference. That line began to be erased in this cemetery in Columbus, Mississippi.
Wednesday, June 19 2013 12:38 PM EDT2013-06-19 16:38:10 GMT
Ridgeland Police are looking for an unidentified woman who tried to use a stolen credit card at a local business. The woman tried to buy over $900 in gift cards and other merchandise.The woman was wearingMore >>
Ridgeland Police are looking for an unidentified woman who tried to use a stolen credit card at a local business. The woman tried to buy over $900 in gift cards and other merchandise.More >>
Wednesday, June 19 2013 11:35 AM EDT2013-06-19 15:35:34 GMT
The Alabama Department of Public Safety has issued a Missing Child Media Alert after a 2-month-old baby was allegedly taken by a 14-year-old girl early Monday morning from Birmingham. Police say 2-month-oldMore >>
Birmingham Police have confirmed that missing infant De'Anthony Kelly and his abductor, Dor'Sayde Gathright were located in Dallas, Texas Tuesday night, and were taken into custody without incident. More >>
Wednesday, June 19 2013 3:53 PM EDT2013-06-19 19:53:05 GMT
Jury selection for the Casey Mark Burgess trial was scheduled to get underway Monday afternoon in Brandon. Thirty-six year-old Burgess is charged with kidnapping and aggravated assault in the attemptedMore >>
Judge John Emfinger has sentenced Casey Mark Burgess to 20 years for aggravated assault and 10 years for attempted kidnapping. A jury found Casey Mark Burgess guilty of those charges Wednesday, in the attempted abduction of a woman in the Castlewoods area in September of 2011.More >>
Tuesday, June 18 2013 7:14 PM EDT2013-06-18 23:14:24 GMT
There's a Toyota Tacoma pickup truck lodged on the east bank of the Pearl River, just below Interstate 20, in Rankin County. It is not clear how the truck got there, or exactly when.The truck was reportedMore >>
There's a Toyota Tacoma pickup truck lodged on the east bank of the Pearl River, just below Interstate 20, in Rankin County. It is not clear how the truck got there, or exactly when.More >>
Wednesday, June 19 2013 12:24 PM EDT2013-06-19 16:24:37 GMT
The Adams County Sheriff's Office is searching for a fugitive on the run. Deputies say two men stole more than $3,000 worth of merchandise from their employer and one of the culprits is still loose.PublicMore >>
The Adams County Sheriff's Office is searching for a fugitive on the run. Deputies say two men stole more than $3,000 worth of merchandise from their employer and one of the culprits is still loose.More >>
Tuesday, June 18 2013 5:42 PM EDT2013-06-18 21:42:49 GMT
Pearl police say they seized several pounds of marijuana after a Florida man was found smoking the drug in a restaurant parking lot. Matthew Leonard, 31, of Gainesville, FL has been charged with the intentMore >>
Pearl police say they seized several pounds of marijuana after a Florida man was caught smoking the drug in a restaurant parking lot.More >>
Tuesday, June 18 2013 7:31 PM EDT2013-06-18 23:31:40 GMT
Ridgeland police officers and Madison County sheriff's deputies have surrounded a house on Bryceland Drive in Ridgeland. Lt. John Neil with the Ridgeland Police Department says a resident called policeMore >>
Ridgeland Chief of Police Jimmy Houston said the standoff in Ridgeland is resolved.More >>
Wednesday, June 19 2013 7:10 PM EDT2013-06-19 23:10:32 GMT
Some Jackson business owners called 3 On Your Side about an intersection that has had more than it's share of traffic accidents. It's located in an area known as 5-points where Bailey Avenue crosses WoodrowMore >>
Some Jackson business owners called 3 On Your Side about an intersection that has had more than it's share of traffic accidents. It's located in an area known as 5-points where Bailey Avenue crosses Woodrow Wilson near the Jackson Medical Mall.More >>
WLBT 3 - Fox 40
715 South Jefferson Street
Jackson, Mississippi 39201