Wrightsville Civil War Soldier Remembered Confederates at Mt. Pisgah.
A 1917 newspaper account captured some reminiscences of David Sloat, who at 90 was one of the last three Civil War veterans in Wrightsville.
After the war Sloat had moved to Ohio and lived there for fifty years, but he retired back to Wrightsville. There he shared his vivid memories, as a boy of 16, of the Confederate invasion of York County. The account states:
“He described the scene of the highway between York and Wrightsville during the Confederate army invasion of this section as being one of the greatest demonstrations of panic he ever witnessed in actual combat during the war. The highway was jammed with terror-stricken and panicky refugees fleeing with their property before the advancing rebels. Mr. Sloat, with his father, took their invalid grandmother to an uncle’s home at Canadochly during the rebel invasion and talked to eleven mounted confederate soldiers at Mt. Pisgah, which experience he described as being quite thrilling. He witnessed the burning of the bridge across the Susquehanna River….”
The next August, when he was 17, Sloat enlisted in the Union Army. He told of a harrowing experience at the Battle of Richmond, Va. “…after a picket line on which he was doing duty was surrounded and most of his comrades were killed or taken prisoner. Mr. Sloat stated that while he was ‘playing dead,’ several rebel soldiers looked him over and he heard them plainly say ‘just another dead Yankee.'” He then “…swam and crawled across a vast swamp and when nearly exhausted, he saw a camp light directly ahead.” Luckily for him, it turned out to be the camp of a New York company.
Sloat’s adventures continued after 25 members of his regiment were injured at Petersburg, Va., including his brother. While visiting his injured brother, he met and shook hands with President Lincoln, who much impressed him by praying for a badly wounded soldier.
At 90 Sloat was in good health and able to do his daily house and garden chores in a Wrightsville that was much more peaceful than it had been in June 1863.
Click here to read about the bridge that replaced the one burnt to stop the Confederate invasion.
Click on the links below to read about Civil War in Hanover.
Civil War panic in Hanover.
Captain Jenifer, who caused the Hanover Civil War panic.
New York Civil War veteran wants Hanover wife.
Confederate sword found in Hanover.