prune picker

This is the blog of a prune picker. (Native born Californian) Retired oilfield. I am an old man. (91) I blog a lot about my body and getting old. As I approach death life gets more interesting. More interesting is not good. I still drive. I attend sports, music, and civic events. I am writing my memoirs. I attend swim class three times a week. Some of my blogs might be interesting. A lot of my blogs are silly and trivial. None are very long.

Monday, June 12, 2017

The day the war stopped.

The Civil War was raging in 1863. Union gunboats were shelling the idyllic town of St
Francisville from the Mississippi River. Then on June 12, 1863 the firing stopped and a shore boat under a white flag came ashore. The captain of a gunboat had committed suicide under the influence  of a fever. Commanders of both the Union and Confederate forces were Masons. The dead officer had expressed the desire for a Mason funeral. It was agreed to cease fire until the Union officer could be brought ashore and given a Mason funeral. Six Marines carried the casket up the hill to the church. June 12 is remembered as "the day the war stopped". Every year the funeral is reenacted. I attended the reenactment last Saturday.

Grace Episcopal Church is where the funeral service was held. A day or so earlier the Union gunboats had used the church for target practice. Also the courthouse across the street.

The Marines take a break before their duty. 

A work party brings the coffin.

This a picture of the Masonic Building located across the street from the courthouse. This year is the 200th Anniversary of the founding of the Lodge. I am sure that this fact added to the crowd present.

The church building and grounds of the Grace Episcopal Church and Cemetery is one of the loveliest that I have seen. I am an aficionado of cemeteries. The church building is the original building present during the war. The courthouse has been rebuilt.


The coffin was carried from a block away to this spot in front of the church. Where a service was held.

The coffin was then carried to the gravesite of the Union officer.

Here is a 20 second video.


  1. Chuck, I have been to that church and cemetery. It is lovely and so rich with history. Thanks for sharing this back story.

  2. Thanks for commenting. I thought about you when I watched the SB World Series from OC.


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