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Jack Sherrod/Sherwood 135th USCT

Happy Holidays!

I just found more info on one of my ancestors
including his slave owner and I wanted to share with
you what I did to find him. This little information
might can assist others so they don’t make some of the
mistakes that I made. I’ll try not to make this a
long story.

This past summer, the DC Genealogical Society had a
female speaker (the name escapes me) who gave a
presentation on names and why her ancestor chose his
particular surname. Most of the presentation was
based on her ancestor’s military records. Well I
decided to search the United States Colored Infantry
(U.S.C.T.) records for soldiers in North Carolina.
Mind you, that no one has ever said that any of my
ancestors participated in the Civil War. My first
mistake occurred when I decided to skip these records
because I should have looked at the records anyway.

135th U.S.C.T. were enlisted on March 27, 1865 in
Goldsboro, NC (10 miles from my home town and the
county seat for my county: Wayne). My ancestor name
is listed as Jack Sherrod and that’s the name that
everyone knows him by but his pension record listed
him as Jack Sherwood. I printed out this index about
2 years ago but concluded that it couldn’t be my
ancestor because his name was Sherrod - that was my
second mistake. Were was my curiosity antennas at?

I decided to go to the National Archives this week
because I’m on vacation and because there’s no crowd.
I filled out the request form (third mistake – include
all numbers that appear on the index especially the
“XCT” number.) and because I made that crucial mistake
of not including the XCT No., I had to wait an
additional 2 hours which I refused to do. So I had to
return to the Archives today. But it was all worth
the wait!!!!

My great-great grandfather, Jack Sherrod, had a very
fat folder and it was all because of the name “Jack
Sherwood,” and because he was applying for an invalid
pension. To make a long story short, they put old
Jack through a lot to prove that he was Jack Sherrod
and that he didn’t die back in the war as Jack

His neighbors, (who were his in laws, the Exums), his
siblings which I didn’t know he had any, former army
mates and the white people in the community all were
asked to testify on his behalf. Jack’s parents were
Temphy Davis (no other info on her) and Dennis Barnes
who he said was sold away when he was small. Okay, can
someone tell me why he didn’t go in the name of Barnes
or Davis? He had a half brother name Stephen Davis
who lived in Greenville, NC. And he had two sisters:
Jennie Cox who lived on the land of James Flora (a
slave owner possibly), and Ann Mitchell who was living
in Wilson, NC on Green street.

Jack said that his “one and only owner” was John
Sherrod a solicitor who and I quote “lived 12 miles of
Goldsboro.” (Now, I don’t know what the heck that
means.) Did the man live in Goldsboro or not? Old
John must had been a decent man for Jack to keep his

In one of his depositions, Jack named all his children
and gave their birthdays. Incidentally and you might
want to make a note of this that on most of the
depositions a name of an “attendant” is included which
was probably the name of the person who came with the
person who was being deposed. Jack’s daughter, Ida,
was listed as the attendant at his depositions.

Sadly and finally, Jack did receive his invalid
pension. What to me is sad is the fact that this man
went through sooo much just to receive a couple of
extra dollars! I’m glad he did it. (I will do a time
line later on to analyze this agonizing process.) But
the real reason that I’m sad is because before I was
half way through his folder I came across an envelope
that read “picture of soldier.” Now I know you are
thinking that I must be stupid because who wouldn’t
want to see a picture of their ancestor. Well for
some “D@X/X/*” reason, they took a naked picture of
him!!! He had a tumor the size of a granny smith
apple on his right hip and a growth which may be the
largest that I’ve ever seen under his neck. They
called the growth a “gaiter.” They could have at least
let him wear his underwear or put his hand over his
private part. I made a Xerox copy of the picture but
it is not a good copy. By the way, I did cover his
private area so I can show the picture to other
relatives. I didn’t copy the entire folder because I
was tired and running out of money. I will return to
the archives next year and have a color copy made of
the photo. Color photos are $5.75 each.

Happy holidays and thanks for reading this. I
hope that I didn’t bore you, Minnie Becton

originally posted 22 Dec 2004 to

18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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