Welcome to Barkjuice and Camp Jawings! Time to take you back to 1862, in a time of strife, turmoil, and heartache to a war which divides a nation in two, on a side fighting for a multitude of different reasons to a multitude of different ways & walks of life. A region of Mississippi, in poor farming communities where most men did not own plantations or subscribe to slavery. Where they only strive to support their families with what they had, working their own families farm with their own labor and that of their wives and children, some working as farm hands for others. The men from towns like Sardis, Pontotoc, Holly Springs, Senatobia, Hernando, and new sleepy little college town named Oxford, fought to protect their homes, farms, and a way of life they felt was threatened by the aggression of the Union Federal North. These men made up the 42nd Mississippi Infantry Regiment, a unit of volunteers, who cut their teeth at Gettysburg in some of the most storied fighting the war had seen. A Regiment who took untold casualties there and in places like The Wilderness, Spotsylvania Court House, Cold Harbor, Richmond, Petersburg, and Hatcher’s Run and many in between!
Here, through this website, I will attempt to tell the story of their lives, bring you the facts about their heroics and their “to date” untold accounts of life as a soldier, their battles, and those who lead them to it. I hope that you will come to the site often to learn with me through my writing, and constant research into an unveiled, untold, and thus far obscured and forgotten part of American Civil War history. I am also in the process of writing a historic fiction novel about three Mississippi brothers (The Pratt’s)and the War that was thrust upon them, in particular Owen Pratt who joins with the newly formed 42nd Miss. to defend his family and find resolve to his upturned life. Also a companion book filled with the factual information and accounts of the Regiment. I will update the progress of and provide a synopsis of both books regularly in the “Private Owen”.
Please enjoy the blog posts, articles, and stories about these men, many of which their descendants have generously provided information to contribute to my research in an effort to honor those fallen. ~ Todd C.Wiley