06 May 2015

Faith in the Cross (Wordless Wednesday)

Original Photo © 2008-2015 S. Platt

05 May 2015

Gov. Stephen Heard's Grave (Tombstone Tuesday)

Gov. Heard's Grave
Stephen Heard, Governor of Georgia in 1781, lawyer, planter, surveyor and soldier of the Revolution, lies buried in this
family cemetery.  With a price on his head he was captured by the British at the Battle of Kettle Creek, and
condemned to die.  On the eve of his execution he was rescued by his servant "Mammy Kate" with the aid of her
husband "Daddy Jack," both of whom lie buried near him.  Heard's home "Heardmont" once stood nearby in the 10 acre
park established by the Stephen Heard Chapter, D.A.R.  Coming to Georgia from Virginia, Heard, an Irishman,
established Heard's Fort, now Washington, Ga., in 1773.

Sacred to the memory of Colonel Stephen Heard. He was a soldier of the American Revolution,
and fought with the great Washington for the liberties of his country. He died on the 15th of
November, 1815, in the 75th year of his age, beloved and lamented by all who knew him. "An
honest man is the noblest work of God."

Programming Note: Mammy Kate was profiled yesterday on this Southern Graves blog.

04 May 2015

Mammy Kate and Daddy Jack

Not far from Georgia Governor Stephen Heard's grave (in the Elbert County cemetery named for him and his family) are two additional graves that one might be surprised to see. Two of his slaves, Mammy Kate and her husband Daddy Jack, lie near the governor. Inscribed on Mammy Kate's ledger marker is the following: "Mammy Kate who Rescued Her Master, Stephen Heard, in Feb. 1779 on Eve of His Execution by the British."

A good rendition of the rescue of Stephen Heard by Mammy Kate can be read here. The story, in brief, goes that she carried Master Heard out of his jail in a laundry basket. Governor Heard, in his profound gratitude, granted Mammy Kate, her husband and nine children their freedom. He also gave them a tract of land, on which Mammy Kate stayed (continuing service to the family) until her death. What struck me as, well, rather shocking, was that Mammy Kate in her will gave her children back to the Heard family.

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