SUBMITTED BY: Glenn L. Taylor (edited and vetted by Cheri Todd Molter)
Two brothers from Haywood County, William and Lawson Messer, decided to join the Confederate Army together. They served in Co E, 29th Infantry, N.C. Troops. William, or Bill, was thirteen years older than Lawson, and he was also my great-great-grandfather. Lawson was my great-great-uncle.
Both saw action at the Battle of Atlanta. After Atlanta, the 29th was sent down near Mobile, Alabama, and somehow Bill and Lawson got separated. Lawson was captured at Spanish Fort, along with 79 other comrades on April 8, 1865. If you were going to get captured by the Yankees, April 8th was the perfect day for it. Lawson was sent to Ship Island, MS on April 10th and then to Vicksburg, where he was released on May 6th.
Meanwhile, Bill surrendered with the 29th on May 4th at Citronelle, AL. Both men survived the war without a scratch. Bill lived to be 70 years old. Lawson lived to be 93: He died in Haywood County in 1930.