Monday, April 20, 2015

Edgar Wylie Potter, Civil War Veteran

I just found this blog site on the Potter ancestry. My wife is Gail Barbara Potter, daughter of Edgar Lamont Potter jr., grand daughter of Edgar Lamont Potter, great grand daughter of Clayton Buell Potter, etc. I am currently developing some research on the Potter brothers, sons of Joseph (Edgar Wylie and Stanley Noble) and their Civil War era activities in Virginia during the Civil War years. We live in Orange County VA and about 80 miles from where Edgar Wylie is buried in Hanover County. He was killed on May 30, 1864 at the Battle of Old Church, We have a very interesting artifact that is connected with his death and have several artifacts from Stanley's service. I am trying to locate Edgar's burial spot against all odds. If anyone is interested I will share here. I know of other relatives not on this blog so I am also interested in informing them to consider joining. I see that the Potter surname is living on through some of you and that is good as this branch has ended with the death of Edgar Lamont Potter III a little over two years ago. More later after I read some of the content here and I'd be happy to answer questions in the meantime.

From Donna, 20 April 2015:  Looking back through some of the posts I've done on this blog, and the comments and replies, I found this from Jim Lloyd stuck in as a comment on a totally unrelated blog entry. Jim, no wonder you got no help!  And please, how about an update and your email????

1 comment:

  1. I had wondered where this comment went as I believe I posted it and when I went back to look it had been removed with no explanation. It will probably remain a mystery...
    I wish I could say I had more to report. We believe we know the general location of the grave site of Edgar Wylie Potter but it is on property that has long since returned to its natural state. The son of Clayton Potter went to the location in the mid 1950's when he was in his later years and talked to the local residents who recalled a plantation house on which the grave site was believed to be. It had long since fallen into disrepair and "disappeared." The locals were as helpful as could be but the ancestor (a nephew of Edgar Wylie Potter) was unable to successfully locate the grave. He wrote a formal report and I have a photocopy of it. The body had been given a battlefield burial by his fellow troops on the day he was shot. The younger brother came a year later after the end of the war to repatriate the body to western New York State where he helped to farm the land (Machias, NY). During the course of the disinterment, Stanley decided that it was better to provide a proper burial nearby in a "better location" and with a proper pine wood coffin that a local citizen helped him build. We have a copy of the letter back to the family as to why he re-interred the body and the beautiful inscription he carved on a wooden head board. The exact location is not known and the headboard, I am sure has returned to the soil. We are now 60 years after the last on-site serious inquiry so I have little faith in doing today what could not be done 60 years ago when memories were fresher. There is much more that I have if interested... like a diary entry by Stanley, who fought in the Army of the James and was riding his horse probably within 40 miles of the location where his brother was killed as he was returning from a raid on a train station south of Richmond the day before Edgar was killed. Edgar was in the Army of the Potomac and heading south as the Union Army was squeezing the Confederates in the final stages of the war The Overland campaign (Edgar was in the cavalry as part of Sheridan's forces and had reenlisted in December 2013 in Culpeper, VA while overwintering with Grant's forces) was considered the beginning of the end even though the fighting and killing went on for almost another 11 months before Lee surrendered. My email is and I live in Locust Grove and within a few hundred yards of where Edgar Wylie Potter started the Overland Campaign in May of 1864. His assignment was to provide protection to the 60 mile supply wagon train that accompanied the Union troops fording the Rapidan River just before the Battle of the Wilderness.