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Scrimmage Near Lancaster, S.C.

As printed in Confederate Veteran Magazine, Vol. XX, 1912.

    S. E. Belk, of Monroe, N.C., write of a little scrimmage that took place at his old home, seven miles north of Lancaster, S. C., and near the North Carolina line, during Sherman's raid. It was late February or early in March that about fifteen members of Kilpatrick's Cavalry went one morning to his humble log cabin home and immediately proceeded to rifle the smokehouse, tying the meat to their horses.  Some of Wheeler's Cavalry came in on them, so the meat was cut loose and the robbers tried to escape, with Wheeler's men close after them. During the chase one of the Federals, named Leroy Vanconey, was killed. He had letters from Ohio in his pockets. Two others, Smith and Williams, were wounded and captured. Wheeler's men went back by the house and told Mrs. Belk to get some help and have the wounded men brought there. She and her daughter went out and brought back Smith in a sheet; the other could walk. Mr. Belk's mother and sister dressed their wounds and kept them until the next evening, when an ambulance was sent for them from their camp under flag of truce. As the creek near the house was very high, the ambulance could not be brought across; so the Federals took their wounded comrades in sheets across a foot log to the ambulance. It was learned that Smith died that night.

Mr. Belk says: Vanconey was buried near where I was born and lived until twenty-one years old. I was out with the sixteen-year-old boys from Lancaster when this engagement too place.

Web masters's notes:

Article was written by Samuel E. Belk, who was in Company I, 3rd Regiment South Carolina State Troops, Lancaster Home Guard, in the company known as the "Company of 16 year old Boys."

Leroy Van Coney enlisted May 2, 1864 at age 21 in Company G, 138th Regiment Ohio Infantry. Later enlisted in Company E, 10th Ohio Cavalry Regiment. He was killed at Lancaster, SC on Feb 28, 1865. His father, William Van Coney (who was married to Elizabeth Bump) applied for his son's pension in 1896 from Ohio. His grandparents were Samuel and Jane (Thurston) VanConey, who lived in Virginia, Ohio, then Indiana.

See another article written by S. E. Belk about this skirmish.

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This page created Jan 5, 2001 - Updated Mar 15, 2014
By Julie A. Hampton