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AUTHORS:  Sid Stroupe and Mike Stroupe

Jonas and Rebecca Cloninger Stroup lived in Gaston County, N.C. and had five sons—William Maxwell, Wesley, Cephas C, Johanna, and Rufus—all of whom served in the Confederate Army. The family paid a steep price—three of their sons died during the Civil War.

William Maxwell Stroup 1828-1863

According to the 1860 Census, William Maxwell Stroup was in his early thirties, married to Margaret Emeline “Emily” Hoffman Stroup, and had two children: Julia and Martin. The family lived in Gaston County, North Carolina. On August 15, 1862, he was conscripted at Dallas, NC, and served as a private in Company C of the 37th Infantry Regiment, North Carolina. In his military records, Mr. Stroup was described as having a “dark complexion, brown hair, grey eyes and 5’9” tall.” Maxwell was present and accounted for with his regiment for the period through November 1862. On the 13th or 14th (Musters disagree) of December 1862, Maxwell was captured by Union forces at Fredericksburg, Virginia. He was “paroled for [prisoner] exchange” on December 17th.

He returned for duty on January 1, 1863. On February 5th, it was noted that Stroup was still “due his bounty” ($50.00) from conscription.

In May 1863, Maxwell Stroup was killed during the Battle of Chancellorsville in Virginia. He was survived by his wife Emily and their three small children. One of his sons, Martin Luther Stroup, lived to adulthood and raised a large family in the Southpoint area of Gaston County.

Wesley W. Stroup 1830-1916

Wesley W. Stroup, the second son of Jonas and Rebecca, was born in 1830. He married Mary Roxanna Rhyne on April 28, 1859 and resided in Gaston Co., North Carolina. The 1860 Census reveals that Wesley and Mary had a daughter named Mary, and they lived on a farm.

On May 10, 1862, the thirty-two-year-old “W. W. Stroup” enlisted as a private in Company H, 49th Infantry Regiment, North Carolina. Wesley mustered with his Company from May 1862 to August 1864. He may have been wounded in Virginia, sometime between May and October 1864; however, he survived. After the war, Wesley Stroup and his family lived in the Southpoint Township of Gaston County. He and Mary had eight children. Wesley Stroup died in 1916 and is buried at Lutheran Chapel Cemetery, Gaston County.

Cephas C. Stroup 1832-1916

According to the 1860 Federal Census, Cephas Stroup was a farmer who lived near “Erasmus Post Office,” [Southpoint], in Gaston County with his wife, Josephine Hanks Stroup, and their two-year-old daughter, Laura. Listed as “Cephus” in the military record, he was conscripted into the Confederate Army for a three-year term on August 15, 1862. He was twenty-nine when he became a private in Company C, 37th Infantry Regiment, North Carolina. Cephas was described as “5’8” tall, [with] brown hair, gray eyes and [a] dark complexion.” Four months after his enlistment, on December 13th, Cephas Stroup was captured by the Union during the Battle of Fredericksburg in Virginia. He was paroled the next day near Falmouth, Virginia and returned to duty. On April 5, 1863, he was admitted to a hospital. On June 12, 1863, Cephas was hospitalized again at Farmville, Virginia, for a period of 3 months, suffering from Scorbutic (Scurvy) due to poor diet. In October 1863, he was present with his Company and paid at that time. During January and February of 1864, Cephas was at home on furlough—returning to duty in March.

On February 26, 1865, Cephas deserted the Confederate Army. On March 1, 1865, he was transferred by the Union Army to Washington D.C. where he pledged the “Oath of Allegiance” to the United States of America. He was immediately transferred to Oil City, Pennsylvania.

After the war, Cephas Stroup returned home to Josephine and their three small children, residing in the Southpoint Township in Gaston County. One of Cephas’ children, Abel Cephas Stroup, became a well-known and respected citizen of Gaston County, serving as Representative to the North Carolina State General Assembly in 1911.

Johanna “Johncie” Stroup 1836-1862

Before he volunteered for a three-year term in the Confederate army, Johanna Stroup was a husband, father, and carpenter, living in Gaston County, NC. He was married to Mary Elizabeth Rhyne Stroup, and the couple had three young children (ages 4, 2, and 2 months). At the age of twenty-six, he enlisted as a private in Company H, 49th Infantry Regiment, North Carolina. In his military records, Johanna was described as 5’6” tall and his occupation was listed as “carpenter.” He stated that he was born in Lincoln (now Gaston) County. Johanna was first mustered with his Company on April 21, 1862. He died of disease on July 10, 1862.

Johanna was survived by Mary Elizabeth their three children. Mary Elizabeth Rhyne Stroup filed a “Claim of Deceased Soldiers from North Carolina” two years later on Nov 19, 1864.

Rufus Stroup 1836-1863

On March 20, 1863, at the age of twenty-eight, Rufus Stroup was conscripted into the Confederate Army for service of one year. Rufus, a Private in Company D, 38th Infantry Regiment, North Carolina, was mustered with his Company from March 1863 until June 1863.

Beginning on May 4, 1863, he was in a Confederate hospital for a short stay. On July 1st of the same year, he was wounded and captured at the Battle of Gettysburg and received at Fort Delaware Prison on July 12th. On July 31, 1863, Rufus died in the hospital and was buried at Finn’s Point National Cemetery, Fort Mott, Salem, New Jersey.

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