The Civil War: Treasured Silverware Stolen

Single silver spoon survives the Civil War to become a family's treasured keepsake.

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Among my dearest keepsakes is a small silver spoon bearing the letter "c" engraved on the handle. This was given to me by a dear old auntie who told me the story. Her mother's silverware had the letter "c" engraved on each piece, and it was a treasured possession. One day, during the Civil War, two Union soldiers out foraging, stopped and demanded something to eat. She prepared a meal for them, and the soldiers sat down at the dining table and ate.

Later, as they left, it was observed that their pockets were sagging, and as they swung up on their horses, there was a jangling noise. It was soon discovered that the jangling noise came from my grandmother's silver, which they had taken from the sideboard. Only one lone spoon was overlooked, and it was prized by my grandmother, who often spoke with regret of her lost silver.

When they moved North, Grandmother Lucie Belle never failed to note the silverware in any home where she happened to be, but she never found her long lost silver. The one spoon has been passed down through the generations, and today is displayed in a spoon rack with other cherished pieces.

Estelle Laughlin
Gering, Nebraska


Back in 1955 a call went out from the editors of the then CAPPER’s Weekly asking for readers to send in articles on true pioneers. Hundreds of letters came pouring in from early settlers and their children, many now in their 80s and 90s, and from grandchildren of settlers, all with tales to tell. So many articles were received that a decision was made to create a book, and in 1956, the first My Folks title – My Folks Came in a Covered Wagon – hit the shelves. Nine other books have since been published in the My Folks series, all filled to the brim with true tales from CAPPER’s readers, and we are proud to make those stories available to our growing online community.