William Allen Croom and wife Ann Maria Jackson Croom
During the Civil War, Ann Maria (pronounced Mariah) and her husband lived at “the Margaret Croom Place” at Moss Hill in Lenoir County.
Once, when the Yankees came through the area, Ann Maria was fixing supper, and one of the Yankees invited himself to eat with them. He sat beside her son Joe and told him, “I have a boy just about your age back home.” Ann Maria begged the Yankees not to steal all her chickens, etc. It is not recorded whether her plea did any good.
Ann Maria was born April 19, 1842 and died March 18, 1919.
Her husband, William Allen “Bill” Croom, was in the Home Guard early in the war but hired a black man to take his place in the army and didn’t serve. He seems to have been a draft dodger later. (He is said to have hidden in the swamp.) Stories are told of patrolers telling his wife they’d shoot him if they caught him.
Bill seems to have been a Union man. He was a Republican after the war, running for county commissioner on the Republican ticket. He was born Oct. 8, 1837 and died Nov. 24, 1899.