James F & Mary Julia (Berthoud) Grimshaw
Married in New York and Settled in New Orleans — With Connections to John James Audubon
James F and Mary Julia (Berthoud) Grimshaw
James F. Grimshaw was born in Manchester, England in about 1800 and emigrated to New York in 1826. James’ father was named Henry Grimshaw, his grandfather was Hugh Grimshaw, and his great-grandfather was James Grimshaw. This line of Grimshaws has apparently not yet been tied back to the Clayton-le-Moors line.
James and Mary Julia Berthoud were married in New York in 1835 and shortly thereafter migrated to New Orleans, where they had nine children and lived out their lives. James was a cotton broker by profession; his place of business was at 93 Canal Street when it was recorded in the New Orleans business directory in 1838. The former location of James’ business is now occupied by Harrah’s of New Orleans.
One of Mary Julia Grimshaw’s uncles was John James Audubon, famed ornithological painter, and there was a relatively close connection of the Grimshaws to the Audubon family. A portrait painting of Mary Julia, quite possibly a gift for her 1835 wedding, was created by her cousin, John Woodhouse Audubon, son of John James Audubon. The final picture of John James Audubon was donated to the Smithsonian by Mary Julia Grimshaw.
At least three sons of James and Mary Julia Grimshaw fought in the American Civil War — on the side of the Confederacy. James Russell Grimshaw was killed in action on April 6, 1862 at the Battle of Shiloh. Augustus Berthoud Grimshaw was wounded in the Battle of Fredericksburg on May 3, 1863. Both Augustus Berthoud and Henry Grimshaw were prisoners of war and were released in 1865.
James died in 1879 and was buried in Girod Street Cemetery in New Orleans. Mary died in 1907 and may also have been buried in that cemetery. The cemetery deteriorated in the early 20th century; it was deconsecrated in 1957 and the graves were moved elsewhere for redevelopment of the area. The New Orleans Superdome is now located nearby. It is not known if family members made arrangements for transfer of the graves of James and Mary in 1957. If not, the remains were transferred to Hope Mausoleum in New Orleans along with unclaimed remains from graves. Records of those transferred to the mausoleum apparently do not exist.
Thanks go to George Gervais for providing much of the information on this webpage. Travis Gamble has also made substantial contributions. Nanci Pressley-Holley made available from her website a great deal of rich detail on Henry Grimshaw (son of James and Mary) and his descendants. Michelle Ladner provided the information on the Civil War records of the sons of James and Mary as well as an excellent photo of their granddaughters, Maud and Meta.
M.W. Talbot has posted a genealogy chart on Brigadier General “Kell” Duncan, a son-in-law of James and Mary Julia Grimshaw, which contains the following images. Unfortunately, no reference information is provided on the source of the images.
The second image was from a painting of Mary Julia by her cousin, John Woodhouse Audubon (see connection to the Audubon family below) between 1832 and 18351. Since she was married in 1835 and the painting references her as “Grimshaw” rather than “Berthoud”, one is led to suspect that it may have been made a wedding present.
As noted above, James and Mary had no fewer than ten children. George Gervais has provided the descendant chart shown in Figure 1 (slightly rearranged to show birth order).
Figure 1. Partial Descendant Chart for James and Mary (Berthoud) Grimshaw. Additions from Bakewell, Presley-Holley, and Michelle Ladner are shown in italics.
|—|—|—James F. Grimshaw (1800 – 13 or 14 Jan 1879, New Orleans, LA) & Mary Julia Berthoud (19 Dec 1816, KY – 2 May 1907). Married 1835, New York, NY.
|—|—|—|—Mary Grimshaw (1837 – ) & Johnson K. Duncan
|—|—|—|—|—Arnott Duncan (29 Nov 1858 – 13 Sep 1859)
|—|—|—|—|—James Grimshaw Duncan (21 May 1861 – ) & Martha Helm
|—|—|—|—|—Mary K. Duncan (1862 – ) & Dr. Fred Parham
|—|—|—|—Elizabeth Berthoud Grimshaw (6 Apr 1839 – 5 Mar 1908) & William Johnson Seymour (27 Oct 1862 – 14 Nov 1886). Married 27 Oct 1862, New Orleans, LA.
|—|—|—|—|—William Gordon Seymour (6 Sep 1863 – 4 Jan 1932)
|—|—|—|—|—Gordon ? Seymour
|—|—|—|—|—Jane ? Seymour
|—|—|—|—|—Edward Ingersoll Seymour (15 Feb 1866 – ? )
|—|—|—|—|—Elizabeth Bertram Seymour (20 Mar 1867 – 4 Mar 1868)
|—|—|—|—|—Isaac G. Seymour (2 Apr 1868 – 12 Feb 1905) & Katie Loretta Archer. Married 8 Jun 1891, New Orleans, La
|—|—|—|—|—James Grimshaw Seymour (11 Nov 1870 – 9 May 1910) & Jeannetta Shorts
|—|—|—|—|—Lee Seymour (2 May 1871 – 3 May 1871)
|—|—|—|—|—Caroline Eulalia Seymour (19 Jun 1875 – 24 Sep 1940) & William Perdue
|—|—|—|—|—Elliott Seymour (17 Sep 1878 – 5 Jan 1951) & Eva Florence Stanley. Married 11 Jul 1902, Jefferson Parish, LA
|—|—|—|—|—|—Elliott Ashton Seymour (12 May 1903 – 8 Aug 1980) & Deette Irma Schmiderer. Married 19 Dec 1941.
|—|—|—|—|—|—Vera Ruth Seymour (6 Aug 1905 – 25 Feb 1992)
|—|—|—|—|—|—Lillian Alma Seymour (7 Apr 1907 – 10 May 2003)
|—|—|—|—|—|—Mildred Alice Seymour (11 Jan 1909 – 21 Feb 1990) & Joseph John Romano. Married 8 Sep 1937
|—|—|—|—|—|—Harold Clifton Seymour (10 Jul 1912 – 29 May 1991)
|—|—|—|—|—|—Edna May Seymour* (19 May 1915 – ?) & George William Gervais. Married 6 Jul 1935.
|—|—|—|—|—|—Edna May Seymour* (19 May 1915 – ?) & Allen Raimer
|—|—|—|—|—|—Ethel Florence Seymour (7 Apr 1918 – 13 Nov 1998) & Jules Lawrence Richard. Married 10 Feb 1936
|—|—|—|—|—|—Byrtie Gladys Seymour (16 Jan 1925 – 5 Feb 1945) & Ralph Brown. Married 3 Jan 1945.
|—|—|—|—Augustus Berthoud Grimshaw (1841 – )
|—|—|—|—James Russell (or Russell Kenyon?) Grimshaw (About 1843 – 6 Apr 1862). Died in Battle of Shiloh in Civil War.
|—|—|—|—Alexander Gordon Grimshaw (1845 – 15 Nov 1931) & Josephine Booth (About 1857 – 3 Apr 1919). Daughter of William Booth and Margaret Conrad of Plaquemines Parish, La.
|—|—|—|—|—Edith Grimshaw (1883 – 2 Nov 1887)
|—|—|—|—|—James Russell Grimshaw (1884 – 1948)
|—|—|—|—|—Maude Grimshaw (7 Jul 1889 – 1984)
|—|—|—|—|—Meta Grimshaw (7 Jul 1889 – 1980)
|—|—|—|—Edith Grimshaw (Feb 1847 – 20 Sep 1847)
|—|—|—|—Newton Mercer Grimshaw (About 1853 – 22 Feb 1861)
|—|—|—|—Henry Grimshaw (ca. 1849, New Orleans, LA- bef 1880, prob Santa Clara Co, CA) & Martha Eliza “Lida” Travis (2 Feb 1847, Sumter Co., AL – 10 Mar 1876, Gilroy, Santa Clara Co, CA). Married 9 Dec 1868, Sumter Co, AL.
|—|—|—|—|—Seaborn Travis Grimshaw (30 Sep 1870, AL – 22 Jan 1954, Jefferson Co, AL) & Ella Coleman (Sep 1876, AL – aft 1930, FL or AL?). Married 16 Nov 1902, Glynn Co, GA
|—|—|—|—|—|—Laura Pollard Grimshaw (7 Apr 1914, Birmingham, Jefferson Co, AL – )
|—|—|—|—|—Harry Babcock Grimshaw (20 Jul 1872, AL – aft 1930) & Ann G. Richards (abt 1879, KY – ). Married about 1929, prob in MD.
|—|—|—|—|—James Reginald Grimshaw (17 Feb 1874, CA – aft 1910)
|—|—|—|—Edward Kenyon Grimshaw & Annie Reade
|—|—|—|—William Grimshaw (1859 – 7 Sep 1901) & Hattie Knight ( – 29 Mar 1930). Married 11 Jul 1886, New Orleans, LA.
|—|—|—|—|—Pierce Knight Grimshaw
|—|—|—|—Meta Grimshaw (1 Apr 1861 – 31 Dec 1935)
John James Audubon was the husband Lucy Bakewell, an older sister of Mary Julia Berthoud’s mother, Eliza (Bakewell) Berthoud. John James and Lucy were married in Kentucky in 1808. John Woodhouse Audubon, son of John James and Lucy Audubon, painted the above portrait of Mary Julia Berthoud between 1832 and 1835, most likely before (or just after) she married John Grimshaw.
James Grimshaw was an agent (with Alexander Gordon) of Audubon in New Orleans. Note that one of James and Mary Grimshaw’s children was named Alexander Gordon Grimshaw. The following information on John James Audubon and his son John Woodhouse Audubon is from Wikipedia:
John James Audubon (April 26, 1785 January 27, 1851) was a French-American ornithologist, naturalist, hunter, and painter. He painted, catalogued, and described the birds of North America in a form far superior to what had gone before. In his outsize personality and achievements, he seemed to represent the new American nation of the United States…
Though their finances were tenuous, the Audubons started a family. They had two sons: Victor Gifford (1809) and John Woodhouse Audubon (1812), and two daughters who died while young: Lucy at two years (1815-1817) and Rose at nine months (1819-1820). Both sons would help publish their father’s works. John W. Audubon became a naturalist and writer in his own right.
Alexander Gordon married Ann Bakewell, youngest sister of Lucy and Eliza Bakewell and so was the uncle of Mary Julia Grimshaw as shown in following extract from one of John James Audubon’s letters2.
Mary Julia Grimshaw came into the possession of a photo (dageurreotype) of John James Adubuon that was apparently taken in 1850, shortly before his death in early 18513. The photo, shown below, was made by photographer T.W. Smillie and was given to Mary Julia by her aunt, Mrs. Alexander Gordon, who was a sister of Audubon’s wife. Mary Julia, in turn, gave the photo to the U.S. National Museum in Washington.
James and Mary relocated from New York to New Orleans after their marriage in 1835. Search of New Orleans city directories for 1835 and 1837 in the New Orleans Public Library (1836 was missing) did not disclose a record of James Grimshaw. However, he was shown in the 1838 Directory4 (p. 90) operating a business (as a “com mt”, probably commission merchant) at 93 Canal Street, as shown in the images below. James would have been about 38 years old at that time.
The location of 93 Canal Street in New Orleans, not far from the French Quarter (Vieux Carre), is shown in the map below.
What’s at 93 Canal Street now? Harrah’s!
James Grimshaw’s place of business in 1838 is now occupied by the Harrah’s of New Orleans. Two views of the location, as indicated by MapQuest (above) are shown below. Canal Street is in front of the casino. The location of 93 Canal Street is approximately where the palm trees start in the upper photo. The second photo is taken back in the other direction from further up Canal Street. The photos were taken in April 2009.
While his business was at 93 Canal Street, James Grimshaw lived in neighborhoods on either side of the business, at 183 Conti Street and at 267 Magazine. Both were within walking distance of the business location. The city directories for New Orleans show James Grimshaw’s locations as shown below, starting in 1842 (note that the place of business was still at 93 Canal Street in 1842):
1842: Grimshaw, James, commission merchant, 93 Canal St., residence 183 Conti St.
1843: Grimshaw James, 183 Conti
1846: Grimshaw, James 267 Magazine St.
1849: Grimshaw James, cotton broker, 267 Magazine
1850: Grimshaw James, cotton broker, 267 Magazine
The home locations at 183 Conti Street and 267 Magazine Street (within walking distance of the business location) are shown below:
What’s at 183 Conti and 267 Magazine today?
There is now a parking lot at the former home of James Grimshaw at 183 Conti, about where the one-way sign is located. The building next door has a Landry’s Seafood Restaurant in it; the address is 400 North Peters. The pictures were taken in May 2009.
Corner of Gravier and Magazine. The address 267 Magazine was apparently approximately at the location of the light pole where the current two building are joined.
James Grimshaw was very active in his church, Christ Church Episcopal, which was the first non-Catholic church in New Orleans. He served as vestryman for some 30 years and was extensively involved in church affairs, as shown below by extracts from So Great a Good by Carter and Carter8:
A happy highlight of the first year in the church was the presentation by James F. Grimshaw, vestryman, of the white statuary marble baptismal font which is still in use today. He had it constructed in the shape of a cross as “a symbol of their faith and to which we are baptized” and is a mark of his faith which would survive him when he was gone.
It was a big step forward. G. B. Duncan, James Grimshaw and James Greenleaf were put on the committee to see every member. A year later they reported that the committee had collected $3463 of which $100 had been given to the Sunday school work, $100 to diocese send missions and $3263 to the City Mission Society and its projects.
During this same spring of 1850 the vestry determined to get a new pulpit. James Grimshaw presented plans by Mr. Wharton, who had drawn the sketch of the church for Dr. Hawk’s. These were then sent to John Gallier of Broadway, New York, for execution. The plans were of a Gothic pulpit reached by an iron staircase, iron for which was cast and shipped from New Orleans to New York. The pulpit, boxed and ready for shipping from New York, cost $1025. The old pulpit, it was decided, would be sent to New York for re-sale. The parish had Pass Christian asked for the old pulpit. It was too big.
Among the rector-hunting committee appointed after Dr. Neville’s decision to leave or Messrs. Fred Rodewald, Grimshaw and G.B. Duncan. They remembered vividly two sermons which they had heard Mr. Leacock preach the summer past in Pass Christian on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. This was the man for Christ Church if they could get him, they agreed. It is probable that even with its high standards the parish would have settled for a lot less than the man of guileless simplicity, great learning and sympathetic heart, who agreed, at the age of 56, to uproot himself again for the Lord’s sake.
Now that he had accomplished his purpose in assuming the office, Rodewald resigned as treasurer on May 10, 1858, receiving a heartfelt thanks of the vestry. He has served the church with the particular talent which was his. He banker in his everyday life, he was willing to give the church the same careful thought and time he gave his own vocation. But he carried into his church were some of the sharpness which he used in his daily life, sometimes untempered by the realization that he was about the Lord’s business.
He was succeeded by James Grimshaw who continued his careful management practices with great success and was offered $500 in remuneration by the vestry in 1861. This Grimshaw turned down, pointing first to the satisfaction he derived from this work into his hope that Christ Church would always be able to get treasurers “to do the work for God’s house free.”
The first board of the Protestant Episcopal Association consisted of the Rev. N.O. Preston of the Church of the Annunciation, the Rev. Dr. Goodrich of St. Paul’s, the Rev. Dr. Leacock of Christ Church, the Rev. Dr. Lewis of Grace, St. Francisville, the Rev. John Freeman Young of Christ Church, Napoleon Hill — later Bishop of Florida, the Rev. A.D. McCauley of St. James, Alexandria, and Messrs. John L. Lobdell, William M. Goodrich, Ambrose Lanfear and James Grimshaw.
The standing committee consisted of Drs. Leacock, C.S. Hedges, and Goodrich and the Hon. George S. Guion, James Grimshaw and Thomas Dix.
At the meeting on April 2, 1866, C.H. Slocum and Richard Nugent of the old group and Thomas Rogers of the new served as a nominating committee. Charles Harrod and Ambrose Lanfear were re-elected wardens, and James Grimshaw, Dr. W.N. Mercer, G.C. Duncan, Robert Mott, Judge J.H. Campbell, W.P. Wright, W. Moult, H.W. Palfrey, Thomas J. Dix, J.P. Sullivan, J.M. Huber, Robert Gaddis and H.K. Carter were elected vestry.
The diocese, too, began like a new. It resumed, first, its relations with the General Convention which had been broken off in 1862. In 1866, the Rev. C.S. Hedges, president pro tem, and James Grimshaw, secretary of the Standing Committee, sent notices to the Louisiana churches to substitute a prayer for the President of the United States for that of the President of the Confederacy.
James Grimshaw suggested a bold and charitable procedure. He recommended that the church rent its valuable site for 30 years, for a possible income of $150,000. With this money, a new church could be built. A man of culture, he envisioned it as a Byzantine architecture, on Custom House (now Iberville) Street with a campanile on Dauphine. The difference between the cost of building the church and the rent would go to build the rectory and Sunday School. At the end of the 30 years, when all was paid for, some $25,000 a year could be used by the Mother Church to help build churches throughout the diocese, wherever they were needed
Had his plan been followed, perhaps with a location farther uptown, rehabilitation might have followed. But it was not accepted. And, to have been successful, would have had to have been executed at once.
James Grimshaw, who was finally elected senior warden in 1871, refused any office in 1872 because of his age. In February, the church tendered him the use of a pew in recognition of his services. He had also served on the Board of Directors of the Protestant Episcopal Association. In accepting the pew he wrote that he had never in his 28 or 30 years of service to the church taken any payment, but that not to appear discourteous he would accept the use of the pew. He also noted, in his letter, that he was the only survivor of the old group. One of his last acts for Christ Church was to present a bronze bust of Dr. Hawks to be put in the vestry room.
Pew Number 54 in the new church was allotted to Mrs. James Grimshaw, as it had been in the old church on Canal Street. Another was reserved for Mrs. Hall, the daughter of the beloved Dr. Leacock. Mr. Drysdale’s family was not forgotten. Memories of the past also were brightened by the large memorial window in the south transept placed by Mrs. Richardson in memory of her mother and her brother Cuthbert Harrison Slocum. It was made to match, in size, the memorial windows to Dr. Hall, Bishop Polk and Bishop Wilmer, moved from the old church to the North transept.
… In 1903, St. Andrew’s built its first church edifice.
Years later, Dean Wells recalled the laying of the cornerstone:
It was a beautiful piece of clear marble which had been a part of the pedestal of the font presented to Christ Church by Mr. James Grimshaw, it was laid on one of the original bricks which came from the old Christ Church on Canal Street…; thus the newest church rested on a foundation of the oldest church, and the two were united together in a beautiful symbolic way.
MEMBERS OF THE STANDING COMMITTEE OF THE DIOCESE OF LOUISIANA
James Grimshaw, 1852-1868, 1871-1874, 1875-1879
WARDENS ELECTED DURING OCCUPATION
James Grimshaw, 1867-1871
James Grimshaw, 1871
WARDENS AND VESTRYMEN OF CHRIST CHURCH AND CHRIST CHURCH CATHEDRAL
James Grimshaw, 1846-1872
The baptismal font is still in use at Christ Church Cathedral. Photos of the font taken in May 2009 are shown below.
Christ Church is well described on Wikipedia as shown below. The description of the third church is shown in bold. It was located on “the lakeside of the corner of Canal and Dauphine streets”.
Christ Church Cathedral, New Orleans
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Christ Church Cathedral, located today at 2919 St. Charles Avenue, in New Orleans, Louisiana, in the United States, was the first non-Roman Catholic church founded in the entire Louisiana Purchase territory. It was founded in 1803 as Christ’s Church by the Protestant inhabitants of New Orleans, and is today the official seat of the Bishop of Louisiana, in the Episcopal Diocese of Louisiana.
In June 1803, 53 Protestants responded to an appeal to form a Protestant congregation in the predominantly Roman Catholic City of New Orleans. After a preliminary meeting, the choice of denomination was put up to a vote. The ballot results were: Episcopal, 45 votes; Presbyterian, 7 votes; Methodist, 1 vote. With the result of the vote, the Episcopal congregation of Christ’s Church was founded. Soon after, a call was sent to various colleges and churches in the east for recommendations for a suitable clergyman. On November 16, 1805, Philander Chase, a young minister from Poughkeepsie arrived with a letter of introduction from Bishop Benjamin Moore of New York. The founders approved of young Chase and at eleven o’clock in the morning of the following day, Philander Chase preached his first sermon at The Cabildo on the Place d’Armes.
Services were held in various public buildings until 1816 when the first Christ church was erected at the riverside corner of Canal and Bourbon streets. No sketch exists of this first Christ Church. Records show it was designed by Henry Boneval Latrobe, son of the distinguished architect, Benjamin Henry Latrobe. The building was octagonal in shape, 60 feet (18 m) in diameter with a domed roof surmounted by a cupola and constructed in brick.
The Second and Third Christ Church
By 1833 the first church building proved to be too small for the growing congregation. By 1855 plans for a new church building on the same site were drawn by the noted architects James Gallier Sr. and James H. Dakin. The new building was in the design of a Greek Temple, fronted by six Ionic columns supporting a pediment. It was consecrated on March 26, 1837.
In 1845 Dr. Francis Lister Hawks became rector of Christ Church and he submitted plans for a third church building. One of the plans had been drawn by Thomas Wharton, drawing teacher and architect. In 1846 the Vestry contracted James Gallier, son of the famous Gallier who designed the second church, to build the new church following Hawks’ and Wharton’s plans, for $56,000. The third building was Gothic in style, with buttresses and a central tower, and was erected on the lakeside corner of Canal and Dauphine streets. At this time the second building was bought by Judah Touro and became a synagogue. The Gothic style church served the Christ’s Church congregation for 40 years. In 1873 Jewell’s Crescent City said of this building, “Christ Church is one of the most elegant church structures in New Orleans.” Neither this nor the earlier buildings still survives.
The Fourth Christ Church
By the late 19th century, New Orleans had grown tremendously. Most of the parishioners of Christ Church lived in uptown New Orleans and it was decided to relocate the church in that area. The corner of Canal and Dauphine was valuable commercial property. The present property on the corner of St. Charles Avenue and Sixth Street was purchased. The cornerstone for the present Christ Church was laid on June 10, 1886. This fourth building, also Gothic in style, was designed by architect Lawrence B. Valk of New York. Through a devoted benefactor, the chapel of matching design was added in 1889. Since it was debt free, it was consecrated prior to the Cathedral.
In 1959 the latest expansion program was begun-providing space for administrative offices, the church school, library, assembly hall, and service areas. The architects were Freret and Wolf. The Gothic design of the Cathedral and chapel were followed.
Christ Church has been fortunate in having a procession of distinguished and dedicated rectors and deans. James F. Hull followed Philander Chase, who went on to become the first Bishop of Ohio in 1819 (where he founded Kenyon College), the first Bishop of Illinois in 1835, and in 1852 he became Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church; Nathaniel Wheaton; Francis L. Hawkes (who was chosen the first president of the University of Louisiana, which later became Tulane University); Edmund Neville; William Thomas Leacock, who served Christ Church for 30 years; Alexander I. Drysdale and David Sessums, who left to become the 4th Bishop of Louisiana, an office he held for 38 years.
Christ Church Becomes a Cathedral
Under Bishop Sessums’ sponsorship, Christ Church became a cathedral in 1891 and young Quincy Ewing served briefly as its first dean. He was followed by F. J. Paradise, Charles L. Wells, William A. Barr, J.D. Cummins, William H. Nes, Albert R. Stuart, who was elected Bishop of Georgia in 1954, William E. Craig, Leonard E. Nelson, Richard Rowland, David Lowry, Dr. John Senette, and the present Dean, David A. duPlantier.
Christ Church served not only its parishioners, but the community as a whole. It was instrumental in founding the chapel for French Protestants, started St. Peter’s Mission(1846) which later became St. Anna’s Episcopal Church; founded a children’s home in 1860, aided in founding Trinity, Calvary, and St. Andrew’s Episcopal churches. In a broader context, Christ Church has a special interest in the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee, the founding of which was led by the first Bishop of Louisiana, the Right Reverend Leonidas Polk.
The Catherdral Today
The Cathedral continues to direct its efforts toward the spiritual and physical needs of its parishioners, the neighboring community and the world at large.
The Cathedrals identity is as complex as that of New Orleans itself. One of the Garden Districts popular tourist attractions, the church structure is a venerable landmark. But Christ Church Cathedral is not a museum. It is a vital, energetic Episcopal parish, drawing its membership of approximately 800 from all of the nearby communities. The Cathedral is also one of New Orleans’ more active, and perhaps oldest, philanthropic organizations, funding projects throughout the city, diocese and beyond. Its outreach to city residents today include a feeding ministry (with The Restoration Embassy located on St. Thomas Street), Advent House, a spiritual direction and retreat center, a nationally recognized concert series which offers our community the gift of soul-feeding music and support of many local cooperative initiatives.
Worship includes four Sunday services, as well as the daily offices and weekday celebrations of the Holy Eucharist, offering a rich variety of Anglican worship.
In November 2004, the Cathedral began a year long observance of its bicentennial, which continued until November 2005.
The Cathedral became the first Episcopal church to commission a jazz composition when it commissioned one by New Orleans jazz legend Irvin Mayfield to commemorate Hurricane Katrina. Mayfield’s composition, entitled “All the Saints,” was premiered on Nov. 17, 2005 at the Cathedral in conjunction with the bicentennial of Episcopal ministry in New Orleans.
The Cathedral is headed by its current Dean and Rector, the Very Reverend David Allard duPlantier and is the seat of the Tenth Bishop of Louisiana, the Right Reverend Charles Jenkins.
Christ Church Cathedral is shown below in photos taken in May 2009. The doorways in the center of the photo lead into the main worship area where the donated baptismal font is located (at about where the stained glass window is located near the right edge of the photo (lower floor).
James Grimshaw was an active agent as vestryman when plans were drawn up for the third church, as described below from Wharton’s notes:
A descendant chart for James and Mary Julia Grimshaw was provided in a family history book published on John Bakewell, Page, and Campbell (Bakewell5, 1896, p 41) (Figure 2). Additional detail on the descendants beyond that in Figure 1 is included. Note that Mary Berthoud’s grandmother was “dame d’honneur to Queen Marie Antoinette”.
Figure 2. Page from family history book showing James and Julia Grimshaw and their descendants
George Gervais has provided the photo of Elizabeth, daughter of James and Mary Grimshaw, shown in Figure 3. As shown in the descendant chart in Figure 1, Elizabeth married William Johnson Seymour.
Figure 3. Elizabeth Berthoud (Grimshaw) Seymour. Date of photo unknown.
Information on Elizabeth’s husband and father-in-law, Isaac Seymour, is available on the following website (for the University of Michigan Civil War Collection) and is provided below with the most relevant portions shown in bold.
William L. Clements Library The University of Michigan Schoff Civil War Collection William and Isaac Seymour Papers
Seymour, Isaac Gurdon, 1804-1862 and Seymour, William Johnson, 1832-1886
Journals and Papers, 1825 September 14-1869 July 7 2 journals, 20 letters and documents, scrapbook, and 4 photographs
|Seymour, William J.,|
|Rank:||Capt. (Asst. Adj. General)|
|Regiment:||C.S.A. Army. Louisiana|
Infantry Brigade, 1st (1861-1865)
|Service:||1862 March 13-1865|
|Regiment:||C.S.A. Louisiana Infantry|
Regiment, 6th (1861-1865)
|Service:||1861 May 21-1862 June 27|
Isaac Gurdon Seymour was born in Savannah, Ga., in 1804, to a family with roots in Connecticut. Graduating from Yale with the class of 1825, Seymour moved to Macon, Ga., and opened a law office, but soon found himself drawn into publishing, and in 1832, he became an editor for the Georgia Messenger. Seymour’s life in Georgia was marked by personal and financial accomplishment. A committed Whig, he took a deep interest in local politics, serving on the city council and as first mayor of Macon, and when the occasion arose, he also distinguished himself militarily, serving under Winfield Scott in both the Seminole and the Mexican Wars. Scott thought so highly of Seymour that he appointed him military governor of the Castle of Perote, Santa Anna’s home, and allowed him to escort the defeated general to exile in Jamaica. The only real reversals of fortune to beset Seymour came in his family life. He and his wife, Caroline E. Whitlock, whom he married in 1829, lost three children in infancy and a fourth, their daughter Caroline, at the age of 19. Only one of their five children, William Johnson Seymour (b. May 12th, 1832) survived into adulthood.
After returning from his service in the Mexican War, Seymour moved to New Orleans and became an editor and partner in the New Orleans Commercial Bulletin, the most important financial paper in the city. By the outbreak of the Civil War, Seymour was an established and well respected citizen of the community and was quick to offer his military skills in the defence of his adopted state. After turning over responsibility for the Commercial Bulletin to his son, Seymour enlisted in the mostly Irish 6th Louisiana Infantry, and was elected Colonel on May 21st, 1861. To Seymour’s chagrin, the 6th Regiment and its officers soon earned a reputation as a hard brawling, hard drinking set of reprobates, but to his credit, they soon, too, proved their mettle as soldiers.
The 6th Louisiana Infantry was attached to the Army of Northern Virginia and sent to Centreville, Va. Having missed the Battle of Bull Run while assigned to guard baggage trains in the rear, the regiment spent an uneventful winter on the Peninsula , but with the Spring campaigns of 1862, they were soon drawn into action. In April, the regiment was withdrawn and sent to the Shenandoah Valley under the command of Richard Stoddert Ewell, a man whom Seymour found personally repulsive and incompetent. But it was in the Shenandoah Campaign that the Irishmen of the 6th proved their worth as soldiers, playing important parts in the Battles of Front Royal, Winchester, Cross Keys and Port Republic . After returning to the Peninsula in June to help counter McClellan’s advance, the 6th Louisiana was devastated at the Battle of Gaines Mills, emerging with fewer than 50 effectives. Col. Seymour was killed in the battle, leading his Tigers into Boatswain’s Swamp and was buried on the battlefield.
Col. Seymour’s son, William, appears to have had more than a little of his father’s spirit. Having accepted the editorship of the Commercial Bulletin only reluctantly, William obeyed his father’s wishes and refrained from joining in the war only until the spring of 1862, when he received an appointment as aide to Brig. Gen. Johnson Kelly Duncan, and went into the unsuccessful defences of Forts Jackson and St. Philip. On April 28th, having endured the heavy shelling of Union gunboats and the mutiny of their own men, Seymour and his fellow officers surrendered Fort Jackson to David D. Porter, and were granted release on parole, only to return to New Orleans just before it, too, capitulated.
Seymour remained in New Orleans through the fall, witness to what he considered the brutal and immoral administration of Ben Butler. Having been informed by Butler that if closed, the Commerical Bulletin would be reopened as a Union newspaper, Seymour stubbornly kept it going, however Butler seized the paper anyway after a laudatory obituary to Col. Seymour appeared, and placed William in confinement at Fort Jackson. William was released from Fort Jackson in October and married Elizabeth Berthoud Grimshaw. Butler allowed the young couple to leave New Orleans in December.
After leaving his new wife in Macon, Seymour reentered the service, this time as aide de camp under the new commander of the 1st Louisiana Brigade, Harry T. Hays (Ewell’s Division, Stonewall Jackson’s 2nd Corps, A.N.V.). With the luck of the Seymours, William arrived just as the spring offensive of 1863 was beginning, and survived Chancellorsville, 2nd Winchester and Gettysburg (Cemetery Hill), and later in the fall, Bristoe Station and Mine Run. Despite suffering heavily in these engagements, the Louisiana Brigade continued in their effective service through the campaigns of 1864, and the battles of the Wilderness, Spotsylvania Campaign (the Bloody Angle), North Anna River and, for a second time, the Shenandoah Valley. Exhausted and ill, Seymour was ordered to report to the Brigade Surgeon on June 4th, 1864, who placed his on disability for 50 days, later extended to 70.
When Seymour returned to duty, the tide of the war had clearly changed, and while he still considered the southerner troops to be superior to the northern, it was clear to Seymour that they were now badly outnumbered and outgunned. At Winchester, Seymour witnessed the loss of yet another Confederate general, Robert Emmet Rodes, and was present at Fisher’s Hill and ensuing engagements as Confederate resistance buckled under the pressure of Sheridan’s forces. In the middle of October Seymour’s health failed, and he was placed on sick leave for at least five months. While convalescing, he appears to have attempted to secure a transfer to a post in the deep south, but with what success is hard to judge. After the war, Seymour returned to his publishing business in New Orleans, but was troubled with ill health for much of the remainder of his life. He died of heart failure in 1886, leaving his wife and five surviving children.
Scope and Contents:
The Seymour Papers contain materials relating primarily to the Civil War service of Col. Isaac G. Seymour (6th Louisiana Infantry) and his son, William J., both residents of New Orleans. The most important items in the collection are the two journals kept by William Seymour describing his experiences in the defence of New Orleans, 1862, and as Assistant Adjutant General in the 1st Louisiana Brigade, Army of Northern Virginia. The first of these “journals” was begun by Col. Isaac Seymour as a manuscript drill manual for his regiment (55 pp.), but it appears to have been taken up by William following Isaac’s death. This volume is arranged in four section (see below), and includes a record of William Seymour’s experiences from March, 1862 through May, 1864. The second volume is organized in a similar manner, but covers the period from April, 1863 through October, 1864, terminating in the middle of a description of the Battle of Cedar Creek. Both of William’s “journals” are post-war memoirs drawn extensively from original diaries and notes, with some polishing and embellishment.
William Seymour’s “journals” contain oustanding descriptions of life in the Confederate Army and are one of the premier sources for the Confederate side of the Battle of Forts Jackson and St. Philip. His journals also contain very important accounts for Chancellorsville , 2nd Winchester, Gettysburg (Cemetery Hill), Mine Run, the Wilderness and Spotsylvania (the Bloody Angle), but almost as important are the descriptions of camp life, and the morale and emotions of the troops. Seymour is an observant, critical, and knowledgeable writer who was placed in a position where he had access to information on fairly high level command decisions. Yet while his journal is focussed on the “more important” military aspects of the war, he includes a number of brief personal sketches of officers and soldiers, and vignettes of life in the army, ranging from accounts of Union soldiers bolstered in their courage by whiskey, to the courage of an officer’s wife stopping a deserter and the Knights of the Golden Circle surfacing in Pennsylvania during the Confederate invasion.
The remainder of the collection includes three Civil War-date letters relating to Isaac Seymour, one written from Camp Bienville near Manassas, Va. (1861 September 2), one from the Shenandoah River (1862 May 2), and the third a letter relaying news of Seymour ‘s death at Gaines Mills. The letter of May, 1862, is a powerful, despairing one, and includes Isaac Seymour’s thoughts on the Confederate loss of New Orleans and severe criticism for Jefferson Davis, a “man of small caliber, with mind perhaps enough, but without those qualities which go to make up the great and good man.” At this moment, Seymour reported that he was disappointed in the quality of his officers, and regretted that he had not resigned his commission upon his son’s enlistment, and further, he felt that the Confederacy was being held together only tenuously, due solely to the “the righteousness of our cause, and the innate, deep rooted mendicable hatred to the Yankee race.” The remainder of the correspondence consists primarily of documents, but includes an interesting Seminole War letter of Isaac to Eulalia Whitlock and a letter from “Sister Régis” to Isaac, as editor of the New Orleans Bulletin, begging the aid of the press on behalf of the Female Orphan Asylum.
Jones, Terry L. The Civil
War memoirs of Capt. William J. Seymour (Baton Rouge, La., 1991)
Jones, Terry L. Lee’s Tigers: the Louisiana infantry in the Army of Northern
Virginia (Baton Rouge, 1987)
James Russell Grimshaw was killed in action at the Battle of Shiloh on April 6, 1862. The announcement appeared in the New Orleans Daily Picayune on April 12, 1862 (page 2, column 6) and is shown below.
Michelle Ladner has provided Civil War records for three of James and Mary Grimshaw’s sons who served for the Confederacy. James Russell Grimshaw was killed in action on April 6, 1862 at the Battle of Shiloh. Augustus Berthoud Grimshaw was wounded in the Battle of Fredericksburg on May 3, 1863. Both Augustus Berthoud and Henry Grimshaw were prisoners of war and were released in 1865. Michelle has provided the following excerpts from the “Confederate Research Sources”:
Confederate Research Sources
Grimshaw, J.R., Pvt. Co. B. Crescent Regt. La. Inf. Return for Dec. 31, 1862. Fort Burton Butte a la Rose, Feb. 14, 1863. Died April 6, at Shiloh Tenn. Killed in battle.
Confederate Research Sources
Grimshaw, Henry, Jr. 2nd Lt. Co. H, 7th La Inf. En June 7, 1861, Camp Moore, La. Present or absent not stated on Rolls to Feb., 1862. Roster dated May 12, 1862, Recd. Commission Sept. 6, 1861, Jr. 2nd Lt. Rolls from Jan., 1863 to Oct., 1863, Present. Roll for Nov. and Dec., 1863, Absent. Prisoner of War, Nov. 7, 1863. Federal Rolls of Prisoners of War, Captured Rappahannock, Va., Nov 7. 1863. Sent to Old Capitol Prison, Washington, D.C., Nov. 8, 1863. Forwd. to Johnson’s Island, Ohio. Nov. 14, 1863. Released on Oath of Allegiance, June 13 1865. Age 27 years, complexion light, hair dark, eyes hazel, height 5ft. 9in., Res. New Orleans, La., occupation clerk, single.
Confederate Research Sources
Grimshaw, Augustus B.,Pvt.Co II, 7th La. En. June 7, 1861, Camp Moore, La, Present or absent not stated on Roll to Aug., 1861. Roll for Sept. and Oct., 1861, Present or absent not stated. Promoted 2ns Corpl., Sep. 24, 1861. Rolls from Nov., 1861 to Feb., 1862, Present or absent not stated. Roll for Jan. and Feb. 1863, Present. Rolls from March, 1863, to Aug., 1863 Absent, wounded, Battle of Fredericksburg, May 3, 1863. Rolls from Sept., 1863. to Feb., 1864, Present. Rolls from May 1864 to Aug. 31, 1864, Absent. Prisoner May 12, 1864. Federal Rolls of Prisoners of War, Captured Spottsylvania C.H., May 12, 1863. Sent from Belle Plains Va., to Pt. Lookout, Md., May 13, 1864. Paroled at Pt, Lookout, Md,1864 Exchanged at James River, Va, Feb 14 to 15, 1865. Paroled at Greensboro, N.C., May 5, 1865. Born New Orleans, La., occupation clerk, Res. New Orleans, La., single.
Henry and Augustus Grimshaw
Henry and Augustus enlisted on June 7, 1861 and were members of Company H of the 7th Louisiana Volunteer Infantry, known as the “Crescent City Rifles”. Henry was captured at the Second Battle of the Rappahannock on November 7, 1863. Augustus was captured at Spottsylvania on May 12, 1864 (Erroneously shown as 1863 above). Their records are noted below, followed by Wikipedia descriptions of the battles where they were captured.
7th Louisiana Volunteer Infantry, Company H – Crescent City Rifles Co. C of Orleans Parish
Captain G. T. Jett commanding
The roster was derived from information supplied at the Civil War Soldiers & Sailors System. Names may be duplicated with slight spelling discrepancies due to errors in the original records transcriptions. Additional detail is available about soldiers with names underlined derived from Records of Louisiana Confederate Soldiers and Louisiana Confederate Commands compiled by Andrew B. Booth.
|Last Name||First Name||Rank at enlistment||Rank at discharge|
|Grimshaw||Henry||Junior Second Lieutenant||Second Lieutenant|
Battle of Rappahannock Station II
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The Second Battle of Rappahannock Station took place on November 7, 1863, near the village of Rappahannock Station (now Remington, Virginia), on the Orange and Alexandria Railroad, between Confederate forces under Maj. Gen. Jubal Early and Union forces under Maj. Gen. John Sedgwick as part of the Bristoe Campaign of the American Civil War. The battle resulted in a victory for the Union.
After the Battle of Gettysburg in July 1863, the Union and Confederate armies drifted south and for three months sparred with one another on the rolling plains of northern Virginia. Little was accomplished, however, and in late October General Robert E. Lee withdrew his Confederate army behind the Rappahannock River, a line he hoped to maintain throughout the winter.
A single pontoon bridge at the town of Rappahannock Station was the only connection Lee retained with the northern bank of the river. The bridge was protected by a bridgehead on the north bank consisting on two redoubts and connecting trenches. Confederate batteries posted on hills south of the river gave additional strength to the position.
The bridgehead was an integral part of Lee’s strategy to defend the Rappahannock River line. As he later explained, by holding the bridgehead he could “threaten any flank movement the enemy might make above or below, and thus compel him to divide his forces, when it was hoped that an opportunity would be presented to concentrate on one or the other part.” The Union Army of the Potomac’s commander, Maj. Gen. George G. Meade, divided his forces just as Lee expected. He ordered Maj. Gen. John Sedgwick to attack the Confederate position at Rappahannock Station while Maj. Gen. William H. French forced a crossing five miles downstream at Kelly’s Ford. Once both Sedgwick and French were safely across the river, the reunited army would proceed to Brandy Station.
The operation went according to plan. Shortly after noon on November 7, French drove back Confederate defenders at Kelly’s Ford and crossed the river. As he did so, Sedgwick advanced toward Rappahannock Station. Lee learned of these developments sometime after noon and immediately put his troops in motion to meet the enemy. His plan was to resist Sedgwick with a small force at Rappahannock Station while attacking French at Kelly’s Ford with the larger part of his army. The success of the plan depended on his ability to maintain the Rappahannock Station bridgehead until French was defeated.
Sedgwick first engaged the Confederates at 3 p.m. when Maj. Gen. Albion P. Howe’s division of the VI Corps drove in Confederate skirmishers and seized a range of high ground three-quarters of a mile from the river. Howe placed Union batteries on these hills that pounded the enemy earthworks with a “rapid and vigorous” fire. Confederate guns across the river returned the fire, but with little effect.
Maj. Gen. Jubal Early’s division occupied the bridgehead defenses that day. Early posted Brig. Gen. Harry T. Hays’s Louisiana brigade and Captain Charles A. Green’s four gun Louisiana Guard Artillery in the works and at 4:30 p.m. reinforced them with three North Carolina regiments led by Colonel Archibald Godwin. The addition of Godwin’s troops increased the number of Confederate defenders at the bridgehead to nearly 2,000.
Sedgwick continued shelling the Confederates throughout the late afternoon, but otherwise he showed no disposition to attack. As the day drew to a close, Lee became convinced that the movement against the bridgehead was merely a feint to cover French’s crossing farther downstream. He was mistaken. At dusk the shelling stopped, and Sedgwick’s infantry rushed suddenly upon the works. Col. Peter Ellmaker’s brigade advanced adjacent to the railroad, preceded by skirmishers of the 6th Maine Volunteers. No Union regiment gained more laurels that day nor suffered higher casualties. At the command “Forward, double-quick!” they surged over the Confederate works and engaged Hays’s men in hand-to-hand combat. Without assistance, the 6th Maine breached the Confederate line and planted its flags on the parapet of the easternmost redoubt. Moments later the 5th Wisconsin swarmed over the walls of the western redoubt, likewise wresting it from Confederate control.
On the right, Union forces achieved comparable success. Just minutes after Ellmaker’s brigade penetrated Hays’s line, Col. Emory Upton’s brigade overran Godwin’s position. Upton reformed his lines inside the Confederate works and sent a portion of the 121st New York to seize the pontoon bridge, while the rest of his command wheeled right to attack the confused Confederate horde now massed at the lower end of the bridgehead.
Confederate resistance dissolved as hundreds of soldiers threw down their arms and surrendered. Others sought to gain the opposite shore by swimming the icy river or by running the gauntlet of Union rifle fire at the bridge. Confederate troops south of the Rappahannock looked on hopelessly as Union soldiers herded their comrades to the rear as prisoners of war.
In all, 1,670 Confederates were killed, wounded, or captured in the brief struggle, more than eighty percent of those engaged. Union casualty figures, by contrast, were small: 419 in all.
For the North the battle had been “a complete and glorious victory,” an engagement “as short as it was decisive,” reflecting “infinite credit upon all concerned.” Maj. Gen. Horatio G. Wright noted that it was the first instance in which Union troops had carried a strongly entrenched Confederate position in the first assault. Brig. Gen. Harry Hays claimed to have been attacked by no less than 20,000 to 25,000 Union soldiers
a figure ten times the actual number.
The battle had been as humiliating for the South as it had been glorious for the North. Two of the Confederacy’s finest brigades, sheltered behind entrenchments and well supported by artillery, had been routed and captured by an enemy force of equal size. Col. Walter H. Taylor of Lee’s staff called it, “the saddest chapter in the history of this army,” the result of “miserable, miserable management.” An enlisted soldier put it more plainly. “I don’t know much about it,” he said, “but it seems to be that our army was surprised.”
Lee would later call on subordinates to submit reports on the battle in an effort to determine what had gone wrong, but on the night of November 7 more pressing matters demanded his attention. Loss of the bridgehead destroyed his plans for an offensive and left his army dangerously extended on a now indefensible front. Meade, acting quickly, might pin Lee’s army against the Rapidan River just as Lee had tried to pin Maj. Gen. John Pope’s army against the Rappahannock River one year earlier in the Second Battle of Bull Run. Lee immediately canceled his plans for an attack on French and within hours had his army marching south.
Battle of Spotsylvania Court House
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The Battle of Spotsylvania Court House, sometimes simply referred to as the Battle of Spotsylvania, was the second major battle in Lt. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant’s 1864 Overland Campaign of the American Civil War. It was fought in the Rapidan-Rappahannock river area of central Virginia, a region where more than 100,000 men on both sides fell between 1862 and 1864.
The battle was fought May 8 21, 1864, along a trench line some four miles (6.5 km) long, with the Army of Northern Virginia under Gen. Robert E. Lee making its second attempt to halt the spring offensive of the Union Army of the Potomac under the command of Lt. Gen. Grant and Maj. Gen. George G. Meade. Taking place less than a week after the bloody, inconclusive Battle of the Wilderness, it pitted 52,000 Confederate soldiers against a Union army numbering 100,000.
After the Battle of the Wilderness, in which Lee delayed the Union advance, Grant decided to take advantage of the position he held, which allowed him to slip his army around Lee’s right flank and continue to move south toward the Confederate capital of Richmond, Virginia. He already had troops on the move by the night of May 7, just one day after the Wilderness fighting ended, and on May 8, he sent Maj. Gen. Gouverneur K. Warren and his V Corps to take Spotsylvania, 10 miles (16 km) to the southeast. Lee anticipated Grant’s move and sent forces to intercept him: cavalry under Maj. Gen. J.E.B. Stuart and the First Corps, commanded by Maj. Gen. Richard H. Anderson (its usual leader, Lt. Gen. James Longstreet, had been wounded in the Wilderness).
“The Battle of Spottsylvania” by Thure de ThulstrupThe Confederates won the race to Spotsylvania, and on May 9, each army began to take up new positions north of the small town. As Union forces probed Confederate skirmish lines on May 9 to determine the placement of defending forces, Union VI Corps commander Maj. Gen. John Sedgwick was killed by a sharpshooter; he was succeeded by Maj. Gen. Horatio G. Wright. Lee deployed his men in a trench line stretching more than four miles (6.5 km), with artillery placed that would allow enfilade fire on any attacking force. There was only one major weakness in Lee’s linean exposed salient known as the “Mule Shoe” extending more than a mile (1.6 km) in front of the main trench line. Lee recognized this weakness during the fighting of May 10, when twelve Union regiments under the command of Col. Emory Upton followed up a concentrated, intense artillery attack by slamming into the toe of the Mule Shoe along a narrow front. They actually broke the Confederate line, and the Second Corps had a hard time driving them out. Upton’s attack won him a promotion on the spot to brigadier general, and it became a staple of military textbooks on how to break an enemy trench line. Similar tactics were used by Germany in Operation Michael, its successful March 1918 offensive during World War I. Other Federal assaults on May 10 were less successful, and the day was generally characterized by uncoordinated frontal assaults that Grant ordered impulsively. Repeated attacks were particularly futile along the Confederate left, where Union General Warren failed many times to storm a position called Laurel Hill.
Actions at Spotsylvania Court House, May 10, 1864.
Actions at Spotsylvania Court House, May 12, 1864.On May 11, Grant began the planning for a new major assault aimed at the Mule Shoe salient, with the intent of employing Upton’s tactics on the level of an entire corps. Lee took Grant’s inactivity as a sign that the Federal Army was getting ready to pull back, either for a retreat, or for another sidle to the East, and as a result, he weakened the critical sector of the Mule Shoe by withdrawing its artillery support. Grant’s pre-dawn assault on the Mule Shoe on May 12 was initially a complete success. The well-fought II Corps of 20,000 men, commanded by Maj. Gen. Winfield S. Hancock, led the attack against the Mule Shoe in the same manner that Upton had attacked on May 10. This time, the breach in the Confederate line was complete, thanks in part to the absence of Confederate artillery support, but also because many of the Confederates suffered from wet powder in their rifled muskets due to rainfall the night before, and thus found that their guns would not fire. Hancock’s II Corps took close to 4,000 prisoners, destroying Edward “Allegheny” Johnson’s division of the Confederate Second Corps. Both the divisional commander and one of his brigadier generals were captured. Then the fighting bogged down, in part because Grant had not properly prepared a second wave to take advantage of the success. Anxious to sustain momentum, Grant ordered supporting attacks from Wright’s VI Corps, and from the IX Corps of (Maj. Gen. Ambrose E. Burnside), but the attacks were not well coordinated, and failed to recapture the momentum of the attack. Lee was also able to shift thousands of his men to seal the breach, most notably launching a counterattack with Brig. Gen. John Brown Gordon’s division, and also securing much help from the able leadership of Brig. Gen. Stephen D. Ramseur.
Because of the severity of the crisis, Lee felt compelled to personally lead soldiers in the counterattack. His men realized the danger this would pose to him, however, and refused to advance until Lee removed himself to a safer position in the rear. The several “Lee to the rear” episodes later became famous, and were an intense example of the personal bond that Lee’s soldiers felt for him. The battle in the Mule Shoe lasted for an entire day and night, as the Confederates slowly won back most of the ground they had lost, inflicting heavy losses on the II Corps and on the reinforcing VI Corps in the process. The fighting was characterized by an intensity of firepower never previously seen in Civil War battles, as the entire landscape was flattened, all the foliage destroyed. Both sides, fighting from back and forth over the same corpse-strewn trenches, engaged in hand-to-hand fighting somewhat reminiscent of battles fought during ancient times, and there were many descriptions of the field as a morass of corpses, piled so high that wounded men buried underneath them were pressed down into the mud, where they drowned. The angle between the Union II and VI Corps became known as the “Bloody Angle of Spotsylvania”, where perhaps some of the most savage fighting of the whole Civil War took place.
By 3 a.m. on May 13, the ruined remnants of Lee’s Second Corps had finished construction on a fallback line at the base of the Mule Shoe salient, and Lee had his battered men retire behind it. More than 10,000 men fell in the Mule Shoe, which passed to the Union forces without a fight. On May 18, Grant sent two of his corps to attack the new line, but they were met with a bloody repulse. That convinced Grant, who had vowed to “fight it out on this line if it takes all summer,” that Lee’s men could not be dislodged from their Spotsylvania line.
Confederate killed in Ewell’s attack May 19, 1864Grant, checked by Lee for a second time, responded as he had two weeks earlier. He shifted the weight of his army to his left flank and again moved to the southeast along roads Lee was unable to block. By May 2021, the two armies were on their way to take positions along the North Anna River, another dozen miles closer to Richmond.
The pattern for the Overland Campaign was set by its first two weeks, and the battles of the Wilderness, Todd’s Tavern and Spotsylvania Courthouse. This was a slow but steady series of arcing shifts to the left by Grant, progressing to the southeast and ever closer to Richmond, with the mortal bleeding of the Army of Northern Virginia in the process. While Grant could not move decisively upon Richmond due to Lee’s possession of the advantage of interior lines, it was the irrecoverable losses suffered by the Confederate forces that would prove decisive.
Once again, Lee’s tactics had inflicted severe casualties on Grant’s army. This time, the toll was over 18,000 men, of which close to 3,000 were killed. In two weeks of fighting, Grant had lost 35,000 men, and another 20,000 went home when their enlistments ended. In fact, Grant at one point on the North Anna had fewer than 65,000 effectives. But Lee did not come out of these battles unscathed, either. At Spotsylvania, he lost another 1013,000 men, and the Confederates had to pull men away from other fronts to reinforce him. Making matters worse, the army was taking heavy losses among its veteran units and its best officers. This may have saved Grant from a disaster on the North Anna, when his decimated army was positioned badly and was ripe to be attacked. Lee never did, because the Army of Northern Virginia was unable to do so. In fact, Lee’s army would never regain the initiative it lost in those two weeks of May 1864.
James Russell Grimshaw
A brief account of the intense action in the Battle of Shiloh, where James Russell Grimshaw was killed on April 6, is available on the following webpage and is provided below. General Johnston, commander of the Confederate forces, was killed on the same day as James Russell.
Timeline of the Battle of Shiloh (Pittsburg Landing)
March 1 – April 5: Grant transports his Army of west Tennessee (over 58,000 men) into southwest Tennessee. Establishes it at Pittsburg Landing, and awaits Buell’s army.
March 1: Johnston transports 55,000 Confederates to Corinith to defend the Memphis and Charleston Railroad.
April 3: Johnston advances toward Pittsburg Landing, Rain and bad roads delay his advance.
April 6: Johnston launches surprise attack on Federals.
April 6, 1862
4:55-6:30 am: Federal patrol discovers Confederates in Fraley Field. Federal Skirmish, then fall back.
6:30-9:00 am: Johnston maneuvers eight brigades to overrun Prentiss’s camps, routing the Union division.
7:00-10:00 am: Sherman’s division repulses Confederates, inflicting heavy casualties. Johnston sends five brigades to attack Sherman’s left flank. Sherman falls back on McClernand’s division.
10:00-11:30 am: Confederates assault Sherman and McClernand on the Hamburg – Purdey Road, driving back Union right flank.
8:00-9:30 am: Wallace’s and Hurlbut’s divisions march to the front.
9:00-10:30 am: Johnston, hearing that his right flank is threatened, orders Chalmers’ and Jackson’s brigades to assault Federal left, with Breckinridge in support.
11:00-Noon: Confederates make contact with Federals across Eastern Corinth Road. Federals repulse attacks.
11:00am-1:00pm: Chalmers and Jackson assault Stuart, but Confederate stalls. Federal left holds against all attacks.
Noon-2:30pm: Sherman and McClernand Counterattack Driving Confederates south, but weakened by losses, Federals with draw across Tilghman Branch.
Noon-3:30pm: Gibson’s Confederates assault Federal center three times and are repulsed. Confederates come under murderous fire in impenetrable oak thicket.
1:00-4:00 pm: Johnston orders attack against Federal left, forcing them back. Johnston killed; succeeded by Beauregard. Hurlbut’s division again stalls Confederates, but then retires toward Pittsburg landing.
3:00-5:30 pm: Sherman and McClernand prevent Confederates from crossing Tilghman Branch, but retire to defend Hamburg-Savannah road so that Wallace’s division can come up.
7:00 pm: Wallace, with 5,800 men, moves to support Sherman at Shiloh Church.
Night: Buell’s troop file in on Union left. Crittenden deploys in center, with McCook in support.
Night: Nelson ferried across river. Federal gunboats fire into captured Federal camps.
April 7, 1862
7:00-9:00 am: Wallace drives Confederates from Jones’ field.
7:00-900 am: Grant and Buell advance. Skirmishing light as majority of Confederates retired south of Hamburg/Purdy road during night.
9:00-11:00 am: Nelson advances through Wicker’s and Sarah Bell’s fields, Crittenden advances in center, but stalled in “hornet’s nest.” [Webpage Author’s note: the Hornet’s Nest action was principally on the day before, on April 6, as shown below.]
9:00-11:00 am: Breckinridge and Hardee counterattack Nelson’s right flank and force Federal left back into Wicker’s field.
9:00-11:00 am: McCook crosses Tilghman Branch and engages Breckinridge’s left.
10:30-Noon: Sherman, McClernand and Hurlbut cross Tilghman Branch and join Wallace in fighting against Polk and Bragg on Confederate left.
10:30-Noon: Confederates flanked by Wallace and forced to retire to Hamburg/Purdy road.
Noon-2:00 pm: Reinforced, Nelson and Crittenden advance, forcing Beauregard’s right flank to retreat south to Hamburg/Purdy road.
Noon-2:00 pm: McCook slams into Bragg at Water Oak Pond. Beauregard counterattack, halting McCook. With his left under pressure Beauregard is forced to retire.
2:00-4:00 pm: Breckinridge, supported by massed artillery south of Shiloh Branch ravine, checks Union advance and Confederates retire from field. Federals reclaim possession of the field and bivouac.
2:00-4:00 pm: Breckinridge, supported by massed artillery south of Shiloh Branch ravine, checks Union advance and Confederates retire from field. Federals reclaim possession of the field and bivouac.
Source: “The Atlas of the Civil War” by James M. McPherson6
Was James Russell Grimshaw killed in the Hornet’s Nest on April 6?
“The Hornet’s Nest”
Near Pittsburg Landing, Tennessee
Sunday, April, 6, 1862
by Dale Gallon
Elements of the 8th Iowa Infantry Regiment engage Louisiana soldiers in the Hornets Nest at the Battle of Shiloh. Commissioned by the U.S. Army War College Distance Education Class of 2004, Carlisle Barracks, PA
Copyright Dale Gallon Historical Art
On April 3rd, General Johnston and his Army of the Mississippi began the march from Corinth to Pittsburgh Landing. Although slowed by rain and bad roads, Johnston arrived within a few miles of Pittsburgh Landing on April 6th. In the early hours of that morning, while most of the Union soldiers were asleep in their tents, the main Confederate force attacked the Union line. Completely surprised, most of the terrified soldiers quickly retreated towards Pittsburgh Landing. The few Union soldiers who stood their ground were quickly overwhelmed by the Confederate onslaught. Although the first Confederate wave of attack was extremely successful, Union General William Sherman savagely repulsed an attack at Shiloh Church, but was later forced to retreat with the other Union divisions.
Early in the afternoon, the Federals finally established a strong line at the Sunken Road which stopped the Southern advance. For four hours, Confederate divisions attacked the position- named the Hornets Nest by the Southerners- but the Union soldiers refused to budge. Around 4 PM, Confederate General Daniel Ruggles brought 62 cannon up against the Hornets Nest (the largest artillery concentration seen up to that time in North America) and hammered the Nest into submission. While small pockets of Union and Federal troops fought for the western portion of the battlefield, General Grant managed to form one last line of defense, less than a mile from Pittsburg Landing. But at the end of the days fighting, tragedy befell the Confederate army. While attempting to lead his men towards Grants Last Line, General Johnston was mortally wounded by a stray bullet. After his death, General P.G.T. Beauregard took command of the Confederate forces, but the attacks soon came to an end, with the weary Southerners retreating back to their camps.
During the night, while the Confederates rested, Union gunboats battered their positions and US General Don Carlos Buells Army of the Ohio arrived from across the Tennessee River to re-enforce the Union lines. By dawn of April 7th, it was Grant who was organizing a counter-attack against the Confederates. Although General Beauregard marched north to again engage the Northerners, he soon encountered a much greater Union army on the move. Realizing he couldnt win this battle, Beauregard rightly decided to preserve as much of his army as possible and ordered a full retreat. As the weary and disheartened Southerners began the long march home, the equally exhausted Union forces decided not to pursue. The first truly great battle of the Civil War was over, and had cost the Confederates over 10,000 men, and the Federals at least 13,000. More men died in this one battle than in all the previous wars the United States had fought in. A sickened nation would soon come to the realization that this war would not end any time soon, and hundreds of thousands of lives would be lost before the conflict would come to an end exactly three years and a day after this place of peace was forever stained with the blood of some of the greatest heroes in American history.
Michelle Ladner has provided the following excellent photo of Alexander Gordon Grimshaw, fifth child of James and Mary Grimshaw, which she obtained from a family collection of old photos. According to Michelle, the following is written on the back of the photo: “A.G. Grimshaw. Father of Maud, Meta and Russel Grimshaw, husband of Josephine Booth”.
Eariler, Michelle provided the following photo of Maude and Meta, twin girls of Alexander Gordon and Josephine (Booth) Grimshaw, and granddaughters of James and Mary Grimshaw.
Maud and Meta were living at St Anna’s Home in New Orleans at the time of their deaths in 1984 and 1980. Thanks go to Michelle for providing these priceless family photos.
Michelle Ladner has also provided the following image of the service record of William Grimshaw, youngest son of James and Mary Grimshaw.
One of James and Mary’s children, Henry Grimshaw, apparently moved to Mobile, Alabama, where he married Lida Travis in 1867. They had three boys — Seaborn Travis Grimshaw, Henry Babcock (“Harry”) Grimshaw, and James Reginold Grimshaw. The family migrated to California in about 1873, as the two older boys were born in Alabama and the youngest in California.
Harry Grimshaw subsequently returned to Alabama and entered the railroad business. He apparently spent just two years out of his long railroad career working for the Savannah & Statesboro Railroad — but long enough to gain a measure of immortality by having a railroad station (and subsequent community) named after him! “Grimshaw” is a now-extinct community in Bulloch County located southeast of Statesboro, Georgia. Harry, and Grimshaw, Georgia, are the subject of a companion webpage. The following biography of Harry Grimshaw is given in a Hardens History of Savannah7 (v. II, p. 678-679):
Harry B. Grimshaw, superintendent of the Seaboard Air Line Railway, Savannah, Georgia, is prominent and popular alike in both business and social circles of this city. A brief review of his life gives the following facts:
Harry B. Grimshaw was born in Choctaw county, Alabama, in 1872. When he was a child, his parents removed to southern California, where he spent twelve years of his boyhood. Returning to Alabama, he began railroad service in 1890, at the age of eighteen, as a fireman, running out of Troy, on the old Alabama Midland Railway. He worked on that road till 1892, when he became an employe of the operating department of the old Savannah, Americus & Montgomery Railroad (now the Seaboard Air Line), and has remained with this system, under its different changes, ever since that time, with the exception of two years when he was superintendent of the Savannah & Statesboro Railroad. Mr. Grimshaw has lived in Savannah since 1898.
On September 1, 1905, Mr. Grimshaw became superintendent of the Savannah division of the Seaboard Air Line, his jurisdiction then extending over the Savannah terminals and the lines west of Savannah extending to Montgomery, Alabama. On November 1, 1910, his jurisdiction as superintendent was expanded to include, in addition to the territory just mentioned, the main north and south line of the Seaboard extending from Columbia, South Carolina, to Jacksonville, Florida. This consolidated territory embraces 740 miles of railway, and is perhaps one of the largest divisions under one division superintendent. Mr. Grimshaw has rendered notably efficient and skillful services in railroad operation and is of high standing in railroad official circles.
While not a politician in any sense of the word, Mr. Grimshaw can be depended upon to support the best men and measures, and is recognized as an all-around representative citizen. In 1910 he was honored by being elected a member of the Savannah board of aldermen. Fraternally, he is an Elk and a Mason. He belongs to Ancient Landmark Lodge, No. 231, F. & A.M., and Richard Nunn Consistory, No. 1, in which he received the thirty-second degree, Scottish Rite; and he has membership in Savannah Lodge of Elks, No. 183.
Nanci has developed a great deal of information on James and Mary, and one of their sons, Henry Grimshaw, and his descendants. Her website address is as follows:
The following excerpts are from Nanci’s website and include the following 12 individuals:
- James F. Grimshaw
- Mary Julia Berthoud, Wife of James F. Grimshaw
- Henry Grimshaw, Son of James F. and Mary Julia (Berthoud) Grimshaw
- Martha Eliza (Travis) Grimshaw, Spouse of Henry Grimshaw
- Seaborn Travis Grimshaw, First Son of Henry and Martha Eliza (Travis) Grimshaw
- Ella Coleman, Wife of Seaborn T. Grimshaw
- Laura Pollard Grimshaw, Daughter of Seaborn T. and Ella (Coleman) Grimshaw
- Henry Babcock “Harry” Grimshaw, Second Son of Henry and Martha Eliza “Lida” (Travis) Grimshaw
- Ann Richards, Spouse of Henry Babcock “Harry” Grimshaw
- James Reginald Grimshaw, Third Son of Henry and Martha Eliza (Travis) Grimshaw
- Amos Travis, Father of Lida Travis (Wife of Henry Grimshaw, Son of James F. Grimshaw)
- Eliza Ann Coleman, Mother of Lida Travis (Wife of Henry Grimshaw, Son of James F. Grimshaw)
Thanks are again expressed to Nanci for giving permission to use this information on the “Grimshaw Origins” website.
PRESSLEY-PRICE FAMILY OF TEXAS
Entries: 17627 Updated: 2004-05-07 21:11:10 UTC (Fri) Contact: Nanci
1. James F. Grimshaw
Name: James F. Grimshaw
Birth: 1800 in England
Death: 14 JAN 1879 in New Orleans, Orleans Parish, LA
Married: 1835 in New York
2. Mary Julia Berthoud, Wife of James F. Grimshaw
Name: Mary Julia Berthoud
Birth: 19 DEC 1816 in Kentucky
Death: 2 MAY 1907
Father: Augustus Berthoud
Marriage 1 James F. Grimshaw b: 1800 in England
Henry Grimshaw b: ABT 1849 in New Orleans, Orleans Parish, La
3. Henry Grimshaw, Son of James F. and Mary Julia (Berthoud) Grimshaw
Name: Henry Grimshaw
Birth: ABT 1849 in New Orleans, Orleans Parish, La
Death: BEF 1880 in Prob Santa Clara Co, CA
Father: James F. Grimshaw b: 1800 in England
Marriage 1 Martha Eliza “Lida” Travis b: 2 FEB 1847 in Sumter Co, AL
Married: 9 DEC 1868 in Sumter Co, AL
4. Martha Eliza (Travis) Grimshaw, Spouse of Henry Grimshaw
Name: Martha Eliza “Lida” Travis
Birth: 2 FEB 1847 in Sumter Co, AL
Death: 10 MAR 1876 in Gilroy, Santa Clara Co, CA
Note: Some information from Brian Brimer’s webpage: http://www.brimer.net/cgi-bin/genes/family.cgi?id=0657&pass=
Father: Amos J. Travis , Jr b: 28 MAY 1805 in Georgia
Marriage 1 Henry Grimshaw b: ABT 1849 in New Orleans, Orleans Parish, La
Married: 9 DEC 1868 in Sumter Co, AL
5. Seaborn Travis Grimshaw, First Son of Henry and Martha Eliza (Travis) Grimshaw
Name: Seaborn Travis Grimshaw
Birth: 30 SEP 1870 in Alabama
Death: 22 JAN 1954 in Jefferson Co, AL
Father: Henry Grimshaw b: ABT 1849 in New Orleans, Orleans Parish, La
Marriage 1 Ella Coleman b: SEP 1876 in Alabama
Married: 16 NOV 1902 in Brunswick, Glynn Co, GA
6. Ella Coleman, Wife of Seaborn T. Grimshaw
Name: Ella Coleman
Birth: SEP 1876 in Alabama
Death: AFT 1930 in Poss Florida or Alabama
Father: Charles Coleman b: ABT 1847 in Alabama
Marriage 1 Seaborn Travis Grimshaw b: 30 SEP 1870 in Alabama
Married: 16 NOV 1902 in Brunswick, Glynn Co, GA
7. Laura Pollard Grimshaw, Daughter of Seaborn T. and Ella (Coleman) Grimshaw
Name: Laura Pollard Grimshaw
Birth: 7 APR 1914 in Birmingham, Jefferson Co, AL
Death: 31 JUL 1990 in Alabama
Note: From SSA: LAURA P GAMBLE 14 Apr 1914 31 Jul 1990 (not specified) (none specified) 416-03-6501 Alabama
Father: Seaborn Travis Grimshaw b: 30 SEP 1870 in Alabama
Marriage 1 Living Gamble
- Living Gamble
- Living Gamble
- Living Gamble
- Living Gamble
8. Henry Babcock “Harry” Grimshaw, Second Son of Henry and Martha Eliza “Lida” (Travis) Grimshaw
Name: Henry Babcock “Harry” Grimshaw
Birth: 20 JUL 1872 in Alabama
Death: AFT 1930
Father: Henry Grimshaw b: ABT 1849 in New Orleans, Orleans Parish, La
Marriage 1 Ann G. Richards b: ABT 1879 in Kentucky
Married: ABT 1929 in Prob Maryland
9. Ann Richards, Spouse of Henry Babcock “Harry” Grimshaw
Name: Ann G. Richards
Birth: ABT 1879 in Kentucky
Death: AFT 1930
Marriage 1 Henry Babcock “Harry” Grimshaw b: 20 JUL 1872 in Alabama
Married: ABT 1929 in Prob Maryland
10. James Reginald Grimshaw, Third Son of Henry and Martha Eliza (Travis) Grimshaw
Name: James Reginald Grimshaw
Birth: 17 FEB 1874 in California
Death: AFT 1910
Father: Henry Grimshaw b: ABT 1849 in New Orleans, Orleans Parish, La
11. Amos Travis, Father of Lida Travis (Wife of Henry Grimshaw, Son of James F. Grimshaw)
Name: Amos J. Travis , Jr
Birth: 28 MAY 1805 in Georgia
Death: 2 AUG 1886 in Sumter Co, AL
Father: Amos Travis , Sr b: 9 NOV 1758 in North Carolina
Marriage 1 Mary Ann Coleman b: in Prob North Carolina
Married: 27 DEC 1832 in Greene Co, AL
Marriage 2 Eliza Ann Coleman b: 3 APR 1817 in North Carolina
Married: 28 MAY 1835 in Greene Co, AL
12. Eliza Ann Coleman, Mother of Lida Travis (Wife of Henry Grimshaw, Son of James F. Grimshaw)
Name: Eliza Ann Coleman
Birth: 3 APR 1817 in North Carolina
Death: 26 APR 1896 in Sumter Co, AL
Father: John Coleman
Marriage 1 Amos J. Travis , Jr b: 28 MAY 1805 in Georgia
Married: 28 MAY 1835 in Greene Co, AL
1840 Census Record
In preparation – images from NOPL online.
1850 Census Record
In preparation – images from NOPL online.
1860 Census Record
In preparation – images from NOPL online.
The 1880 Census found a widowed Mary Julia Grimshaw living with her widowed daughter, Mary (Grimshaw) Duncan, two Duncan grandchildren, and two other children, Augustus and Meta Grimshaw, both single.
New Orleans, Orleans, Louisiana
FHL Film 1254458 National Archives Film T9-0458 Page 100A
Mary J. GRIMSHAW
James G. DUNCAN
Clk. In Office
Mary K. DUNCAN
Alexander Gordon Grimshaw was living elsewhere, apparently as a boarder.
8th Ward, Plaquemines, Louisiana
FHL Film 1254465 National Archives Film T9-0465 Page 260B
Continued from CHUNGQUNN/
F. H. ALLON
W. A. RUTLEDGE
J. E. JOHNSON
A. G. GRIMSHAW
William Grimshaw, child of James and Mary Julia, was living with his uncles William and James Berthoud, brothers of Mary Julia.
Barataria, Jefferson, Louisiana
FHL Film 1254455 National Archives Film T9-0455 Page 333A
James was apparently in business with two other gentlemen in New Orleans, as evidenced by a lawsuit9 involving payment of insurance taken out on a shipload of cotton that burned in a warehouse. The case was decided by the Louisiana Supreme Court in March 1835. Click here to see the record of the case. The first page is shown below (lower half).
James was involved in a lawsuit10 over a letter of credit in the amount of 10,000 pound sterling issued to him by Charles Tayleur, Son & Co. of Liverpool on December 17, 1838. Click here to see the pages on the case, Carrollton Bank vs Tayleur et al. The case was decided in the Louisiana Supreme Court in December 1840, apparently in James Grimshaw’s favor, by upholding the finding of a lower court. A copy of the first page of the record is shown below. It is not known if there is any connection between the Tayleur in this case and the one mentioned above.
The death of James on January 14, 1879 was announced in the New Orleans Daily Picayune on January 14, 1879 (p.4, col 4) and is shown below. It shows that James was born in about 1800 and arrived in New Orleans in about 1835.
The death announcement for Mary Julia Grimshaw apparently appeared in the Daily Picayune on May 4, 1907 (page 10, column 5), but it was not immediately found on the microfilm in the New Orleans Public Library. Other deaths reported in the library’s obituary index are as follows:
A. Gordon Grimshaw
Francis Hammond Grimshaw
Mrs Hattie (Grimshaw) Knight
James Russell Grimshaw
James R Grimshaw
Mrs Josephine (Booth) Grimshaw
Mrs Mae E (Cooney) Grimshaw
Newton Mercer Grimshaw
According to cemetery records for Girod Street Cemetery at the New Orleans Public Library, James Grimshaw and several other family members were buried at the cemetery. The index card from the microfilm at the library for James’ burial there is shown below.
Similar cards were also found for the following eight children, not all of which appear in the descendant chart above.
unnamed Grimshaw, child of Mrs. Grimshaw, died January 10, 1842, native of N.O., tomb of Mrs. M. Lean
Edith Grimshaw, died September 19, 1847, age 7 mos, native of N.O.
Edith Grimshaw, died February 6, 1849, age 5 months, native of N.O., tomb of J Grimshaw
unnamed Grinshaw (sic), child of P., died July 22, 1850, age 6 mos, native of N.O.
Wm Grimshaw, died September 10, 1853, aged 2 yrs, 7 mos, native of New Orleans
Frank Grimshan (sic), died February 13, 1861, aged 4 yrs, 10 mos, native of N.O., tomb 3 – 4 Alley R.H.S., E.F.
Newton Mercier Grimshaw, died February 21, 1861, aged 8 yrs, native of N.O., tomb of J Grimshaw
Norton M. Grinshaw (sic), died February 22, 1861, aged 8 yrs, tomb of James Grimshaw
It is not known what event in February 1861 took the lives of three of the children.
Information on Girod Street Cemetery is available on three websites, which are presented below. The cemetery was closed in early 1957, and the remains were either moved by family members to another cemetery or were transferred to Hope Mausoleum. The mausoleum was contacted for this webpage, and apparently no records were kept (or at least survive) of those transferred there from the Girod Street Cemetery. The fate of the remains of James (and possibly Mary) Grimshaw is not known.
Girod Cemetery, from an Civil-War era photo by McPherson and Olivier, New Orleans
New Orleans was founded as a French crown colony. As such, the official religion of the colony was Roman Catholicism. Being a port city, Protestants also moved to New Orleans over time, particularly after the Louisiana Territory was sold by France to the United States.
The original cemeteries in the city were owned and administered by the Catholic Diocese of New Orleans. Since Catholics didn’t want their loved ones being buried alongside Protestants, a section of St. Louis Cemetery Number One on Basin Street was given to the Episcopal parish, Christ Church, then located on Canal and Dauphine Streets. This area of St. Louis Number One is known to this day as the “Protestant Section.”
As the Episcopal parish grew in size, the chapter decided to acquire land for a cemetery of their own. In 1822, they purchased a parcel at Girod and Liberty Streets, at the rear of the Faubourg Ste. Marie (St. Mary) neighborhood. Faubourg St. Mary was the original “American” section of the city, on the uptown side of Canal Street. It’s now known as the city’s Central Business District, or CBD.
The cemetery flourished throughout the rest of the 19th century, but a critical management error on part of the Christ Church chapter led to problems in the 20th. The chapter did not allocate funds for “perpetual care” of tombs and graves, instead relying on current-year income to maintain existing structures. A number of non-sectarian cemeteries opened in the mid-1800s, most notably Cypress Grove and Greenwood, both at the north end of Canal Street. By the 1920s, the Girod Street cemetery’s new internments dropped off to the point where Christ Church did not have sufficient funds to properly maintain the property. By the 1930s, many sections of the cemetery had fallen into serious disrepair. Many families began to remove remains from their tombs and re-inter them in other cemeteries.
The City of New Orleans officially condemned Girod Street Cemetery in 1955. On January 4, 1957, the cemetery was deconsecrated by the Rt. Rev. Girault M. Jones, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Louisiana. In the two months following the deconsecration, a mass removal and re-internment of remains took place. Christ Church Cathedral (the parish had moved from Canal Street to St. Charles Avenue in 1886, and the church became the seat of the Bishop of Louisiana in 1891) purchased a crypt in Hope Mausoleum to house these remains. The remains of blacks were re-interred in a mass grave in Providence Memorial Park.
After the cemetery was deconsecrated, the land then reverted back to city ownership. That parcel of land eventually became what is now the parking garage for the New Orleans Center shopping mall, located next to the Louisiana Superdome.
Old Girod Street Cemetery
The old Girod Street Cemetery was established in New Orleans in 1822 for Protestant residents of the Faubourg St. Mary community. In 1957, it was deconsecrated and the remains of most of those who hadn’t been removed by their families by that time were moved to the Hope Mausoleum, to a crypt Christ Church Cathedral provided without charge.
Christ Church had purchased the land in 1822, at a cost of a little over $3,000, to use as a cemetery. It was named for one of the streets which formed its boundary. Until that time, Protestants had been buried in a special section of Catholic St. Louis Cemetery Number 1. After the deconsecration, a mass removal of remains took place between January and March, 1957.
By the time it was deconsecrated, the old cemetery had fallen into serious disrepair from neglect. It had been used for 134 years and many of the people buried there no longer had family members to care for the crypts. In 1957, the city was planning a new civic center, with city, state and local facilities, at the location of the cemetery, so it was destroyed to make room for these buildings.
Additionally, in 1970, the Louisiana Superdome was constructed and it now sits over a portion of the old Girod Street Cemetery. Over the years, haunting by the restless spirits of the folks whose graves were disturbed has sometimes been blamed for the Saints football team’s poor performances…but, it was only said in jest, of course.
Or maybe not? Nancy
Above, an aerial view of the Girod Street Cemetery not long before it was destroyed. Some of the photos below are, also, from that time, but a few are from the 1920’s.
Above, one of the entrances to the cemetery
Thirteen of the most outstanding vault slabs were preserved and attached to the back wall of the Canal Street wing of Hope Mausoleum in adjacent St. John Cemetery.
Girod Street Cemetery
Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Girod_Street_Cemetery
The Girod Street Cemetery was a large above-ground cemetery established in 1822 for Protestant residents of the Faubourg St. Mary in predominantly Catholic New Orleans, Louisiana. It consisted of 2,319 wall vaults and approximately 1,100 tombs. Notables interred there included congressman Henry Adams Bullard, Zulu Social Club King Joseph J. Smith, and California governor John B. Weller.
Girod was laid out along a central artery with side aisles, and was noted for its so-called “society tombs,” which could rise seven or eight tiers above ground. Societies of slaves owned their own tombs: the First African Baptist Association, the Home Missionary Benevolent Society, and the Male and Female Lutheran Benevolent Society. The New Lusitanos Benevolent Association owned the largest society tomb in Girod Cemetery, which was designed by J.N.B. de Pouilly in 1859.
The cemetery fell into disrepair in the 20th century and it was deconsecrated on January 4, 1957. According to local historian Leonard Huber, between January and March 1957, the human remains were moved elsewhere: the interred whites to Hope Mausoleum; and African Americans to Providence Memorial Park.
The Louisiana Superdome, the Dominion Tower, the Entergy Center, and the Energy Center were eventually constructed near,but not on the site. A superstition repeated by some alleges the poor record of the New Orleans Saints football team is somehow supernaturally tied to the ground on which the dome is constructed. However, several sources state that the Louisiana Superdome was not built on the former cemetery location, but the former location of the Illinois Central Railroad engine terminal and roundhouse. The former Girod Street Cemetery location is the current resting place of the parking garage for the New Orleans Centre shopping mall.
As of July 2008, New Orleans development plans for the area include the construction of an entertainment district of sports bars and other attractions.
Photos were taken of the former location of the Girod Street Cemetery at the corner of Girod and South Liberty Streets in April 2009. The street sign is shown below.
The photo below shows a vacant lot (behind the tree and with the truck on it) that was at least a portion of the former cemetery location. The parking garage on the right is for the New Orleans Center shopping mall. Note the street sign, shown in the above photo, on the right side of this photo.
1Bruns, Mrs Thomas Nelson Carter, 1975, Louisiana Portraits: The National Society of the Colonial Dames of America in the State of Louisiana, p. 126.
2Lownes, Albert, 1935, Ten Audubon Letters: The Auk, v. 52, no. 2, (April 1935) p. 154-168. Online. Available: http://elibrary.unm.edu/sora/Auk/v052n02/p0154-p0168.pdf. Accessed April 2009.
3Shufeldt, R.W., and M.R. Audubon, 1894, The Last Portrait of Audubon, Together with a Letter to His Son: The Auk, v. 11, no. 2 (October 1894), p. 309-313. Online. Available: http://elibrary.unm.edu/sora/Auk/v011n04/p0309-p0313.pdf. Accessed April 2009.
41838 Gibson’s City Directory
5Blakewell, H.G., 1896, The family book of Bakewell, Page, Campbell: being some account of the descendants of John Bakewell, of Castle Donington, Leicestershire, England, born in 1638: Benjamin Page, born in 1765, at Norwich, England: William Campbell, born July 1, 1766, at Mauchline, Ayrshire, Scotland: John Harding, of Leicester: Pittsburgh: W.G. Johnston & Co., Printers and Stationers, 112 p.
6Woodworth Steven E. and Kenneth J. Winkle, 2004, Atlas of the Civil War: New York, Oxford Univ Press, 400 p.
7Harden, William, 1913, A History of Savannah and South Georgia: Chicago and New York, The Lewis Publishing Company, v. I (529 p.) and v. II (1087 p.)
8Carter, Hodding, and Betty W Carter, 1955, So Great a Good – a History of the Episcopal Church in Louisiana and of Christ Church Cathedral, 1805-1955: Sewanee, TN, The University Press.
9Bennett, Edmund, 1872, Fire Insurance Cases: Being a Collection of all the Reported Cases on Fire Insurance, in England, Ireland, Scotland, and America, from the Earliest Period to the Present Time, Chronologically Arranged, vol 1, Covering from 1729 to 1839: New York, Hurd & Houghton (Cambridge, Riverside Press), p. 471-480.
10Curry, Thomas. Reports of Cases Argued and Determined in the Supreme Court of the State of Louisiana. v. 16, 1841, p. 490-500.
Webpage posted February 2003 with info from Travis Gamble. Updated October 2003 with info from George Gervais. Updated May 2004 with info from Nanci Presley-Holly. Updated October 2004 with family info from Blakewell. Updated March 2005 with 1880 census information. Updated June 2005 with additions from Michelle Ladner – Civil War Records, Maud and Meta photo, William Grimshaw service record. Updated April 2009 with addition of city directory, death notice (in The Daily Picayune), Girod Street Cemetery information from the New Orleans Public Library, pictures of former place of business of James Grimshaw, and image of Mary Julia Grimshaw. Updated May 2009 with addition of photos of former home locations of James and Mary Julia Grimshaw and with photo of baptismal font, which is still in use today at Christ Church. Updated June 2009 with addition of lawsuit information for James Grimshaw. Updated June 2011 with addition of photo of Alexander Gordon Grimshaw from Michelle Ladner. Updated February 2014 with addition of photos of James and Mary Grimshaw from website by M.W. Talbot.