Madison, Wisconsin’s Mayor Paul Soglin orders the removal of Confederate monuments at Forest Hill Cemetery . The 140 people buried there as “valiant Confederate soldiers” and “unsung heroes.” The privately funded plaque, which rested on a granite structure, said the soldiers were buried in the Union state after surrendering in a battle and dying at Camp Randall as prisoners of war. Soglin said an “appropriate monument or plaque with the names of the deceased” would be installed, but added that it won’t give “reverence for the Confederate insurrection and treason against the United States.” For years, people were allowed to display Confederate flags in that section of Forest Hill Cemetery. The Confederacy’s “Stars and Bars” would hang on a flagpole at the burial site only on Memorial Day, but the pole was removed last September.

Volunteers had also placed small Confederate battle flags at each headstone for the holiday. A change to cemetery rules in May, however, only allows the flags of the United States, Wisconsin, and Madison, branches of the U.S. Armed Forces and United Nations

Madison receive roughly 1,000 of these southern prisoners. They were held at Camp Randall, then a training grounds and barracks established by Wisconsin Gov. Alexander Randall the year before; one statement of a Union soldier about the Confederate soldier was…
“They die off like rotten sheep. There was 11 die off yesterday and today, and there ain’t a day but what there is from two to nine dies.”


Union Monument. One of thousands across southern towns and land.

Barely a month after their arrival, President Abraham Lincoln’s call for a larger fighting force drew the 19th Wisconsin Regiment back to battle, rendering Camp Randall unsuitable for securely holding prisoners. On May 31, 1862, the majority of the Camp Randall inmates left for Camp Douglas, a larger encampment in Chicago.
By June, the last of the Camp Randall prisoners had left. The only ones who remain in Madison were 140 Confederate soldiers who died during their stay at Camp Randall, now interred at Confederate Rest. Dead Confederate prisoners were buried at Forest Hill Cemetery. Initially grouped into a mass grave, the dead were later given their own headstones and a more formally organized plot, now known as Confederate Rest. The plot is well shaded and removed from the more populated areas of the cemetery, a quiet and somber reminder of an unsung chapter of Madison history.
No one has discussed the grave marker of Belle “Star” Boyd. Belle as she was known to most was a Confederate spy from 1855-1865. Belle died on June 11, 1900 in Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin. Belle went by many names, Cleopatra of the Secession, Siren of the Shenandoah. Belles spying career began by chance. According to her 1866 account, on July 4, 1861, a band of Union army soldiers heard she had Confederate flags in her room, and they came to investigate. They hung a Union flag outside her home. This made herangry enough, but when one of them cursed at her mother, she was enraged. Belle pulled out a pistol and shot and killed the man.
Belle has published a fictionalized narrative of her war experiences in a two-volume book titled Bell Boyd in Camp and Prison. While touring the United States), she died of a heart attack in Kilbourn City (now known as Wisconsin Dells), Wisconsin, on June 11, 1900. She was 56 years old. She was buried in the Spring Grove Cemetery in Wisconsin Dells, with members of the Local GAR as her pallbearers.[15] For years, her grave simply read:

stones stood draped with Yankee blue cloths.One by one, the new gravestones were revea


There are literally thousands. I’m not going to make you a super long list, but take Vicksburg National Military Park for example. Every single state that contributed troops during the Civil War has a monument to their soldiers within the park.
Union Soldiers buried in the South
A Union Army historian named Bruce Frail undertook the research in Washington and turned up more than 300 pages of research on the five dead soldiers, including their names.”This really amounts to a homecoming of sorts for the families who lost their ancestors and for those of us here who looked after these graves for so long,” Cadieu said as he sttching the color guard load their rifles. “In the larger scheme of things, it not a very big thing, I suppose, but to me it’s a powerful commentary on human kindness and brotherhood – how one man ended a war and honored his enemies by giving them a proper resting place, a home.”After to a clearing in the pines, where five new grave
Five soldiers who probably pined for the same thing died anonymously far from home but found peace – an unexpected home – in an enemy’s pasture.

Cpl. Reed Alcorn served in the eighth Indiana Calvary.
Pvt. Matthew Ross was from the same unit. He hailed from Carroll County, Indiana
Pvt. David Woods He came from Cumberland County, Pennsylvania
Pvt. Henry Stennett was from Carlisle, Pennsylvania, and enlisted at Harrisburg
The story goes that Daniel Lassiter returned home to learn of five fresh graves on his property just weeks after the guns fell silent. He learned the bodies in the graves belonged to Union troops who’d been on a foraging mission on horseback and wagon when they evidently encountered remnants of the Richmond Home Guard. Records show that more than 35 Union Army deaths occurred from running skirmishes and scattered house-to-house fighting that took place in Richmond County during the closing days of the war.

After hearing the story, it’s believed Lassiter expressed sympathy for the deaths of his former enemies and their families, citing the need for the nation to heal its wounds. He pledged that the graves of his former enemies would be marked and never disturbed as long as his family owned the farm.
Lassiter’s promise passed through several generations of his family. In 1974, a man named Roy Moss purchased the property, and he agreed to honor the graves of the unknown soldiers by leaving them undisturbed as well.
On Murphree land in Alabama a Union solder is buried, a fence was put around the grave and a slab covered it. The reason, so no one could defile the grave. Flowers were placed there on every holiday. The soldier was unknown, but we cared for the grave as if it was our own.
The “peculiar institution” loomed large over the first few decades of American presidential history. Not only did slave laborers help build the White House all of the earliest presidents (except for John Adams and his son John Quincy Adams) were slave owners. George Washington kept some 300 bondsmen at his Mount Vernon plantation. Thomas Jefferson—despite once calling slavery an “assemblage of horrors”—owned around 175 servants. James Madison, James Monroe and Andrew Jackson each kept several dozen slaves, and Martin Van Buren owned one during his early career.
Even in my home state of Alabama, arguably portrayed as racist, backwards, and forever confederate, we have over 1,000 Northern Monuments that honor the Northern troops. I understand the uprising in wanting to tear down all of the Confederate Monuments, I understand what the flag represented to the north, but it is our history and we honored both North and South.
I have not heard any plans to remove those 1,000 Union Monuments.
The homes of my ancestors was violated, burned, stole horses, mules, chickens, pigs and cows… and all contents placed in a confederate wagon, pull by confederate mules. All of these items were taken North. On the Vest plantation, Union Soldiers raped the women of all color. My great-great grandparents did not own slaves. Their workers were given their freedom years before the “War” begin.
My great-great grandmother walked the Trail of Tears, moved off their land to barren land. Those caught running away by the Union Soldiers were shot, my great-great grandparents ran off during the night making their way back home.
The southerners that march with swastikas, flags, wore hoods is not my people. The removal of monuments is wrong.
I guess my thought tonight is that my Chickasaw heritage was taken from me forcefully as was my plantation home, animals, and such Trump. My ancestors were raped and left with nothing. I am certain after this  State of the Union Address soaks in…we may want that which was stolen from us. We want our land back.

No, all I want is world peace.



Living in the Moment…



Hello everyone, it has been quite a while since I have posted anything on the blog. Health and winter problems, health getting much better, winter in Wisconsin is up and down. No snow, but extreme cold. Wisconsin with ice, snow, rain, cold also comes the flu season, the common cold and a host of other viruses.
Even my four-legged son Mason came down with an ear infection. That may not sound serious; however, he will not let anyone touch his ears. Therefore, he has to be put to sleep to clean them out and put in medicine. Mason will be six years old on January 31. I know that is still young but this breed can have many problems. Time goes quickly and there are times I think about my life without him. He has been an Angel sent to me from “above”.

I have been laughing about the complex that I live in; it is filled to the brim with “old” people. My laughter is obliged as I am the same age of many, but… We have a central community room, which I never go too. The main lobby is another gathering place during “mail time”. I have discussed with some about the decorations; Thanksgiving décor was up the day after Halloween. Christmas décor was up before I had eaten all the Thanksgiving left over’s. Christmas night all of those decorations came down and Valentines went up! Trust me, Easter décor will appear before the Valentine chocolates are eaten.
How do I know all this…I go to the mailbox about midnight when everyone else is in bed, because of winter I walk Mason in the hallways.
I think the focus here or the main words are independent living. It is not a nursing home, but it is a facility that caters to the elderly. It makes my children happy that I am where there are many things that can make my daily life easier and they do not have to worry about me. I have a sign on my main door that reads, “Do not disturb”. I have a reputation I have been told that of a hermit. I do not want to listen to stories about age, aches and pains…I have my own.
They have “Happy Hour” on Fridays, 4 to 5 PM, you have to be there at four O’clock and you are ushered out the door at 5 O’clock. I went once, then took my bottle and went home. A one-hour Happy Hour just does not do it for me. Nevertheless, such is my life, I am happy.
I am currently working on my new book with no titles at this time; it is all printed out waiting for me to do proofing. This is not an easy job, as most of you know. Either, I hope to devote some of the winter months when I cannot get out to my painting. This book will be a work of fiction based on fact, which I have decided to do. There are a few family members living and I want to respect their privacy.
Therefore, the winter months are here. I will wane away the time on self-made projects. Sharing these moments with my readers, my followers is another great joy of mine.

Realm of Peace…



Once again the New Year speeds by and one week of winter weather has our town wrapped in a cluster of snow and cold where going outside is not a thrill.  The Holidays over, many having to return to work, the downside of the season grips us as well, leaving many with a gloominess that is hard to get rid of…


I was thinking about a conversation I overheard during the holidays and from it came the poem below.  I believe that we are the masters of our own universe; that if one has lived allowing others to control their life; then break the bondage and learn to be the master of your own world.  If one had rather let another control their life and the reason is that it removes them from any responsibility; sadly this may cause one to live behind a wall of truth, living a lie.  There is no magic potion to take that will bring back the world of no responsibility, it is clearly dead and at some point everyone has to pay the price that life imposes upon us all, that is to be responsible and find some measure of happiness while there is time.


May all of you be blessed in the coming days of this New Year, remembering that you are important and deserve to be happy.


Realm of Peace…
Life may be that of a pawn, caring for others and boring toil; moments of memory shows no beauty and grace, and chaos is written in the lines upon their face. Chaos is painful as life rewinds, unfolding, sadly to a different time. As weakness causes one to hide behind the veil of truth where they are miserable, lost, waiting for a magical being, an Angel to bring happiness and wealth into one’s life.
Voices speak, penetrating the unhappiness suffered through time; like waves beating upon the shore and passes quickly, as sand returning to the sea. Between the swirls of time one may ask, “Who I am”; defeat the ache of disappointments and this miserable burden will go away. Who in this anguished world possesses your soul? Look pass the ruse of your own life and rise to carry yourself into a peaceful realm of tomorrow.




19.charlotte winter






In the Darkness of Night…


Dedicated to my Grandmothers, Grandfathers and My Daddy…


In the Darkness of Night
I hear the cries of my grandmothers and grandfathers, I feel their fear; I walk with them in my dreams on the Trail of Tears. Their feet bloody as they walked the rutted trail, every scar on their backs another story to tell.
The Grandfathers and their families stood tall, their backs they refused to bend, and the pale strangers herded them like cattle to a far off land, to die in hot barren sand. My people believed the land belonged to no one, given to all by the “Great Mystery”; still they died with broken souls never knowing that their story in time would cover the blood-splattered pages of history.
My people watched as women gave birth and warriors carried the dead, the children went to sleep hungry with the ground as their bed. The day came when these great people were corralled, given musty water and bug-infested cornmeal to eat, in a place with no hope, to the pale man they were bound; a killing field where the blood of my family spilled upon the ground
I hear you my grandmothers and grandfathers, your cries, do not go unheard in the darkness of night; for in my dreams I walk with you, I feel your fear; I wake each morning with the taste of your tears.


Dreaming Life is Fine, Fine as Honeydew Wine…



I walked down the dusty road toward Flint Creek; I sat on the bridge, muddy rushing water twenty feet below the bridge. I was a motherless child, I could not think, I slid with ease off the rough planks into the Creek; I sank.

I broke the muddy water with unrestrained speed, I rose from the dank depths and gasp for air, the second time I emerged I swam to the slippery bank heaved myself onto its clay sides and I cried. The water was cold; I wiped the tears from my eyes, if it had not been for the Angel I would have died.

Yes, there beneath the cold muddy water swam an Angel, she smiled shaking her head; go home she spoke softly in my ear, life is not always fair but you have nothing to fear.

I was at the fork of the road, one road lead home the other up the mountain where the sheer cliffs towered over the land. I stood there, I hollered, I stood there and I cried; I was a motherless child.




Dancing in Sunbeams- A Short-Short Story…


Dancing in Sunbeams

Rose could visualize the little country church, the chorus of Crows flying back and forth over the gabled roof; its white washed siding. Not too far away stood a row of Birch trees beside a shallow creek winding its way through an open field green with Johnson grass. She pictured a group of black feathered Angels following a funeral hearse down the old dirt road. The rocker on the weathered porch unmoving, the sun would be glowing through tattered curtains and dancing in the nearby cracked mirror. Rose felt empty and that childhood was dead as was her beloved Grandmother.






Bits and Pieces of Love…


Bits and Pieces of Love…
The box of Christmas ornaments hidden away spilled onto the floor; memories flooded back, two children taken from their mother. Frozen in time, she picked up the handmade treasures; paper, ribbon, bits and pieces of love formed into special ornaments that her children had made for her.
Tonight she sat a wounded soul and wrote a letter that she had not written since she was a child.


Dear Santa Clause,
There are just a few wishes on my list this year. Leave me a sign that my children know how much they are missed. Leave me a box of magic needles and thread to mend my heart. Maybe a bag of Christmas Spirit filled with love to ease the pain of what I lost. Do you still remember me Santa after all of these years; do you remember how your gifts could wipe away my childhood tears? I know that I have ask for a lot, but can I have a reason to live tied up in a shiny new box; seven years…a long time to grieve, please Santa with all my heart in Heaven I want to believe.
Love, Ann




Books at by Elizabeth Ann Johnson-Murphree



Who Forgot To Shut The Barn Door?

womanwriterblogRecently, I read where President Donald Trump now wants to put his own spin into the America’s welfare system. He spoke of this during his campaign for the Whitehouse. It will be interesting to see where he cuts and to what extent. I have to agree on this one, the Welfare Department needs investigation as soon as possible; and the bad weeded out.

I live in the state of Wisconsin where you can walk into the waiting area of the Welfare Office and you will be “helped” in two ways. One, if you are an out of state individual you are escorted to the head of the line; not the waiting line but the “we will give you anything you may ever need line”. If you are a resident of the state, you may be told that there is a waiting list and it could be up to five-years before you will even be put on the waiting list.
Another common incident that I am aware of…for years a young Wisconsin woman has been on assistance since she was out of high school and started having babies each baby brought more money. The Welfare Department helped her pay for a house she bought via Section 8; she has a high percentage of her food paid for by the system with money being placed on a card resembling a credit card, she has free medical care, no limits just a $20 dollar co-pay.

In addition, she has had three children throughout with Wisconsin taxpayers footing the bill. The states free medical care paid for her to have her stomach stapled she was too fat to conceive and she wanted another baby. In addition, the “boy friend” the father of all of children has lived with her from the beginning. She had to sign an agreement that she lived alone with her children. This individual has reaped the rewards using taxpayer’s money.

In addition to all other infractions in the assistance program, she works and the employer pays her in cash, in paid credit cards, gas cards while paying the minimum that she can make before the system cuts her benefits. She has been working at the same company for years. I believe that it would draw suspicion to park outside the Welfare Office and get out of a $40,000 dollar vehicle, but no one ever confronts her. I have to ask the question…who forgot to shut the barn door, and how many cows got out before they realized it was open.

Now, is this her fault totally, no, she gets increases in funding with no one questioning her. She was overweight and could not have another child, so her free medical insurance signed off on her to have the $10,000 dollar stapling operation. She did have the fourth child and the state increased her assistance income. This is only one case, how many more slips through the cracks that are doing the same thing; when state assistance id denied for elderly individual that needs help.

This posting is about who gets what? I am neither Republican nor Democrat…I am for the best person for the joy. Right now, I believe we as Americans have our accommodating arms around the individuals in charge, while they have their hands in our pockets. My state will lose either way.

America has Donald Trump; Wisconsin has Scott Walker, what more can I say.

Books at by Elizabeth Ann Johnson-Murphree

Happy Thanksgiving America…


Recently in researching information for my own life story, I ran across a term called FPP or Fantasy Prone Personality. A personality trait in which a person experiences a lifelong extensive and deep involvement in fantasy. This disposition is an attempt, at least in part, to better describe “overactive imagination”. Does this apply to those of us who are writers? Yet, I believe that I can tell the difference in the fantasy world and that of reality.

It is believed by some psychologists that these traits can begin in childhood and likely to have laid the basis for fantasy proneness later in life. Yes, I was encouraged by my Aunt Vina to read when I was a child, and on most any subject that I wanted. Yes, I treated my animal friends as if they were human friends…I grew up alone. I was left alone from the time I was about three years old to fend for myself. I roamed the woods surrounding the house we lived in; and climbed the bluffs to check out the caves by the time I was six years old.
I played alone when I begin school, hiding among the tall grasses that grew around the little Priceville School. When the bell rang, I ran to class like all the other students. My childhood was one that no one would have wanted, a mother that was emotionally detached from anything or anyone other than getting ahead in life and her only child my sister. I learn to live alone and I became an expert paracosm. My childhood fantasy was very detailed and became real to me at times. There were places I would go and stay until my mother brought me back to the world of the living, the controlled living.


This life of fantasy when needed served me well; I lived many lives from child to teenager and right into a marriage arranged by my mother, to someone I had only known six weeks; my daddy had no say into anyone’s life including his own. My sister ran and never looked back! I was left to live with the fallout of her actions.
I was never much of a “daydreamer”; I am one who can create allowing me to leave a bad situation to a more calming atmosphere, such as storytelling. In checking further, I am told that I have an Avoidant personality; I suffer from anxiety but not to the extreme. I fear rejection, but I rationalize then avoid them when possible. I would like to live in a social world; nonetheless, I chose to live in my own world alone. I am frequently depressed, but I have a great sense of confidence.

I guess I would fall under all of the negative and the positive things that give me the ability to create a story, a poem; or paint a beautiful landscape. When all is said and done, I am just me, an artist, and a writer, now go enjoy your Holiday and leave me in my own fantasy world.




Books at by Elizabeth Ann Johnson-Murphree