Craven County Digital History Exhibit

Benjamin, Epidemic in New Bern,
pages 18 through 22

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We would refer in this connection to the valuable services rendered by Dr. Memminger throughout the whole pernicious season; and the community and the Government may heartily congratulate themselves that a gentleman like Col. Heaton, who has so closely identified himself with their interests, and distinguished himself in the administration of the Sixth Special Agency of the United States Treasury Department, has been spared to continue among us. The accomplished gentleman, valuable citizen, and firm uncompromising patriot.

Dr. Bellangée found his grave at Morehead City; and Dr. Brannigan, Assistant Sugeon of the 99th New York Volunteers, who was on duty in New Berne, perished about the same time. Their names can never be forgotten, although no towering monument emblazons them. Dr. ----------, who came from Fort Monroe to assist, only lived a few days--a speedy victim. They and Dr. Wilson will live in letters of light in New Berne's history. Dr. P.B. Rice was then appointed President of the Board of Health, which consisted of himself, Lieut. Col. Poor, Chief Provost Marshal, and ----------. The city was subjected to the most thorough cleansing, and from the quantity of lime strown about, one might have easily imagined a snow storm. To the indefatigable exertions of the Medical Director, Dr. Hand, and Surgeon P.B. Rice, may we justly ascribe the early abatement of the epidemic in November, and they richly deserve the everlasting gratitude of the community.

In continuing our melancholy duty, we must pay a tribute to the memory of Mr. CHARLES A.S. PERKINS, merchant, with his brother LUCIEN PERKINS, at the corner of Broad and Middle Streets. Mr. Perkins had been home on a visit to his family, and returned with them, to find the yellow fever existing. His brothers, William and Lucien, were

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first in the grasp of the remorseless enemy. Day and night found him at their bedside; and, in all probability, he nobly sacrificed his own life in obedience to the promptings of fraternal affection and solicitude. In an obituary of the death of Lucien and Charles, it is said:

“Few individuals have been more intimately known and beloved throughout the country, for all those genial and social qualities that draw to themselves the spontaneous friendship and good will of all who come within the sphere of their influence. For many years Charles was the publisher and editor of the Plymouth Rock, and, during President Buchanan's Administration, was the able, efficient and popular Postmaster of this town. From a sense of duty he volunteered his services, and went to New Berne, as 1st Lieutenant of Co. B., Standish Guards, in the 3d Massachusetts Regiment. He gave himself entirely to the faithful performance of his duty, and devoted his whole time and energy to the comfort of his men, who idolized him. He might have escaped the pestilence but for his devotion to his brothers. But a mysterious Providence ordered otherwise, and an untimely death has cut him off in the prime of life and usefulness.”

Lucien Perkins was Adjutant of the 3d Massachusetts Infantry, a young man of fine address and superior abilities, whose death darkens the gloom and shrouds the hearts of his parents.

Died in New Berne, N. C.,
October, 1864,
Of Yellow Fever.

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In the Post Office, first Mr. Bryant died, the general delivery clerk, then Robert ----------; and matters in that department were paralyzed to that degree, that the mails could neither be assorted or made up.

Of those who left New Berne, and were placed in Quarantine at Fortress Monroe, the following will be remembered:

C. W. GIDDINGS, firm of S. BLAGGE & CO.


Both of those gentlemen took their departure during the incipient stage of the pestilence, confident of reaching New York in safety; but the seeds of the disease had been too thoroughly implanted in their systems, and the destroyer's work was accomplished but too well and soon.

It was evident that Mr. Elkins was a sufferer; he was buoyant with hope, but the fears of his friends were realized. Messrs. Giddings and Elkins help to swell the number of estimable men who have gone from us in the month of sorrow.

Col. T. J. C. EMORY, Colonel of the 17th Massachusetts Volunteers, and Acting Brigadier General, commanding the Sub-district of Beaufort, was a gentleman of most admirable address, and a perfect soldier. His obituary has been so excellently written in the journals of the Northern States, that all we could add would be but a simple repetition. But there is an incident connected with his death, that we must allude to. On the night previous, in the midst of a black and furious storm, his favorite hounds, as though partaking of the melancholy spirit of the time, had drawn to the spot a legion of confederate dogs, rendering the night terribly hideous by their frantic howling. All effort to disperse them proved entirely futile; and their demoniac rage, as they coursed the street to and fro, resembled the revelling of fiends, closing up the dreadful picture with dismal

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horror, while the Colonel's spirit passed away. His obituary was published in the Army avid Navy Journal, and was a just tribute to the brave soldier and true man.

JOHN M. THOMPSON, Esq., of the firm of Thompson and Hayden, was most active among the sick through the whole epidemic, giving his whole attention to the dying.

Mrs. B. F. WRIGHT, the esteemed wife of Dr. B. F. Wright, was a most exemplary lady. During her illness she was carefully and devotedly attended by Mrs. George Bodine, who watched over her with a sister's devotion. Mrs. Bodine deserves a faithful record, for her sincere and disinterested attention to suffering humanity, for she chose rather to remain with the afflicted than to flee into security.

Who will not remember ARCHIE DUNCAN, the light-hearted Archie. Mr. Duncan, notwithstanding a physical defect which rendered him quite a cripple, was one of the most active members of the Fire Department. His genial nature overflowed with the milk of human kindness. In a long and successful career of business he sustained an irreproachable character, and was known by every one, and respected as a man of true and tried integrity. Peace to his ashes.

No death palsied the public mind more than that of Mrs. Charles Bellois, the lovely and accomplished wife of Lieut. Charles Bellois, Quartermaster of the 132d New York Infantry, stationed at Bachelor's Creek.

Lieut. Bellois had been appointed temporarily the successor of Lieut. Brown, and was in his turn assailed; his devoted and beautiful wife remaining with him, braving all peril for his sake, and subsequent to his recovery succumbed herself, and died.

It is such afflictions as these which crack the very heartstrings, and make life an intolerable burden. Days, weeks, and months of constant devotion, radiant with ardent hope

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for happiness in the future, plans of domestic bliss, schemes and projects for mutual delight--all, all vanished, and the world becomes a terrible blank. Mrs. Bellois was a lady of uncommon beauty, and the idol of her husband, possessing personal attractions and charms of mind, which rendered her the envy of her sex and the undisguised admiration of all. She will never be forgotten by those who had the pleasure of knowing her, and we may never again see her counterpart here. Her fairy form, angelic smile and indescribable beauty, made her too beautiful for this world, and the Almighty took her to himself. In her last moments she was surrounded by a circle of sorrowing friends, among whom were the A.A. General, Capt. J.A. Judson, and Surgeon P.B. Rice. The arrangements for Mrs. Bellois's funeral were entirely directed by Capt. Judson, whose sympathy for her bereaved husband was altogether worthy of his generous disposition and noble heart. Almost simultaneous with the death of Mrs. Bellois, the wife of Lieut. Pearce, Acting Ordnance officer, also departed this life. A lady whose exit from this world following so close upon that of the former lady, added another cloud to the dreadful gloom of the tine. One soul following another to the realms of the unknown world, pulses ceasing and eyes closing, as they enter upon the great threshold of eternity, yielding up this world and disappearing, like dying waves along the shore.

Wife of Lieut. CHAS. BELLOIS, Quartermaster 132d N.Y. Infantry,
Died in New Berne, of Yellow Fever, October, 1864.
“She was too lovely for this world,
And Heaven claimed her.”


Front matter Pages 3 through 7 Pages 8 through 12 Pages 13 through 17
Pages 18 through 22 Pages 23 through 27 Pages 28 through 32 Pages 33 through 39


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Images scanned by John B. Green, III.  Text prepared by John B. Green, III and Victor T. Jones, Jr.
This page last edited on August 21, 2018.

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