During the Civil War, Grandfather Warned Neighbor of Bushwhackers' Attack

Forced to guide bushwhackers in his nightclothes and bare feet, man still manages to warn neighbor.

| Good Old Days

This event took place in Civil War days in Jefferson County, Missouri. I have often heard my father tell this story of my grandfather. It was perilous times in those days. One night about 1 a.m., a bunch of bushwhackers came to my grandfather's home. About 18 inches of snow was on the ground, and they called him out in his nightclothes and no shoes. They made him walk more than a mile to show them the road to a neighbor's house so they could rob it. The man had several hundred dollars. Somehow my grandfather got word to him the bushwhackers were going to rob him that night.

Grandfather told the man to take his family and to not let anyone know where they were hiding, and they did. Grandfather saved the man’s money and home. They did not burn the house, but went to another and robbed it. Grandfather finally returned home, almost frozen in his bare feet and no clothes but his nightclothes.

Father and Grandmother sat up and listened, expecting any minute to hear gunfire killing Grandfather. No one ever knew where my grandfather got the information that the robbers were coming.

If they had suspected him he would never have returned home, but he showed them the road, and they let him return home before they went to the other place.

May Davis
Crocker, Missouri

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. 

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