Tennessee Civil War Veterans Questionnaire of CONSTANTINE PERKINS NANCE

Introduction -- Among the "Questionnaires" administered to Tennessee Civil War veterans in the early part of this century was one by Constantine Perkins Nance. It represents a unique source of information about this particular Nance line. However, readers should be aware that it cannot be considered to be as "pure" a source of information as some earlier records. The first major Nance Genealogy, "The Nance Memorial", had been published almost 20 years before this "Questionnaire" was given, and there are certain responses that persuade me that it is likely that Constantine P. Nance may have seen that book (in particular, the answer to question 9 is very close to what appears in the "Nance Memorial"). I believe that the "Nance Memorial" was in error in some significant areas respecting the line of David Nance, from whom Constantine was descended, and I believe that these errors may be perpetuated here. For example, there is still no confirmation that David Nance served in the Revolutionary War, and the matter of French ancestry is also doubtful to some extent. This having been said, the "Questionnaire" still remains a wonderful piece of genealogical information.

Constantine Perkins Nance's brother James W. Nance moved to Milam Co. TX with  Constantine prior to the Civil War.  He remained there, while Constantine returned to Tennessee, where he lived out his life.

1. State your full name and present post office address:

Constantine Perkins Nance, Rural Route 1, Antioch, Davidson County, Tennessee.

2. State your age now:

I am today April 22, 1922 85 years 6 mo. 10 days of age.

3. In what state and county were you born?

State of Tennessee, Davidson County.

4. Were you a Confederate or Federal soldier?

I was a Confederate soldier.

5. Name of your company:

Company "G", 5th Texas Infantry. Hood's Texas Brigade, Army of Northern Virginia. I removed to Texas from Tennessee in summer of 1860.

6. What was the occupation of your father?

Farmer also minister of Primitive Baptist Church.

7. Give full name of your father: Elder Josiah Crenshaw Nance born at: in the county of: Prince Edward state of: Virginia, Feb. 19, 1804. He lived at: In Davidson Co., Tenn. having emigrated to Tenn. in 1808. He was a captain in Tenn. State Militia. Give also particulars concerning him, as official position, war services, etc.; books written by him, etc

8. Maiden name in full of your mother: Bethenia Hardin Sneed She was the daughter of: (give full name) James Pleasant Sneed and his wife: (give full name) Bethenia Hardin Perkins who lived at: Williamson County, Tenn.

9. Remarks on ancestry. Give here any and all facts possible in reference to your parents, grandparents, great grandparents, etc., not included in the foregoing as where they lived, offices held, Revolutionary or other war service; what country they came from to America; first settled--county and state: always giving full names (if possible), and never referring to an ancestor simply as such without giving the name. It is desirable to include every fact possible, and to that end the full and exact record from old Bibles should be appended on separate sheets of this size, thus preserving the facts from loss.

David Nance, my Great Grandfather was a soldier in the Army of Revolution under Washignton, until his health failed. His nephew Zachariah Nance, I took his place and served till the close of the war. They lived in Amelia Co., Va. My grandfather Wm Horne Nance removed from Pittsylvania Co. Va to Davidson Co. Tenn. 1808 and was for many years a member of the Davidson Co. Court. The Nances are of French descent. The head of the family being a Huguenot exiled from France, other ancestors were English.

10. If you owned land or property at the opening of the war, state what kind of property you owned, and state the value of your property as near as you can.

I bought 500 acres of land in Milam Co., Texas. Land there sold for $5 and $10 an acre.

11. Did you or your parents own slaves? If so, how many?

My parents owned slaves, had always owned slaves. In 1861 they owned nine.

12. If your parents owned land, state about how many acres.

My parents owned 150 acres of land.

13. State as near as you can the value of all the property owned by your parents, including land when the war opened.


14. What kind of house did your parents occupy? State whether it was a log house or frame house or built of other material, and state the number of rooms it had.

A two story frame and log house. Eight rooms.

15. As a boy and young man, state the kind of work you did. If you worked on a farm, state to what extent you ploweed, worked with a hoe and did other kinds of similar work. (Certain historians claim that white men did not do work of this sort before the war.)

Regular farm work of various kinds making full work hours each and every suitable day.

16. State clearly what kind of work your father did, and what the duties of your mother were. State all the kinds of work done in the house as well as you can remember -- that is, cooking, spinning and weaving, etc.

My father did the work of an energetic industrious farmer who reared a family of 12 children according to the injunction,"Owe no man anything". Yes, the cooking was sufficient, done mostly by a negro woman, and much cloth was manufactured from wool, cotton and flax produced on the farm.

17. Did your parents keep any servants? If so, how many?


18. How was honest toil -- as plowing, hauling and other sorts of honest work of this class -- regarded in your community? Was such work considered respectable and honorable?

Honest toil was generally considered most honorable and respectable.

19. Did the white men in your community generally engage in such work?

Yes, they did.

20. To what extent were there white men in your community leading lives of idleness and having others do their work for them?

To a very limited extent.

21. Did the men who owned slaves mingle freely with those who did not own slaves, or did slaveholders in any way show by their actions that they felt themselves better than respectable honest men who did not own slaves?

People associated with those who were congenial regardless of slave holding.

22. At the churches, at the schools, at public gatherings in general, did slaveholders and non-slaveholders mingle on a footing of equality?

They did.

23. Was there a friendly feeling between slaveholders and non-slaveholders in your community, or were they antagonistic to each other?

There was a friendly feeling between slave holders and non slave holders.

24. In a political contest, in which one candidate owned slaves and the other did not, did the fact that one candidate owned slaves help him in winning the contest?


25. Were the opportunities good in your community for a poor young man, honest and industrious, to save up enough money to buy a small farm or go into busines for himself?


26. Were poor, honest, industrious young men, who were ambitious to make something of themselves, encouraged or discouraged by slaveholders?

They were encouraged.

27. What kind of school or schools did you attend?

First: Private Pay school near home. Then an academy under Andrew Campbell and College under Peeples.

28. About how long did you got to school altogether?

At Franklin, Tenn. untuil I was about 20 yrs of age.

29. How far was it to the nearest school?


30. What school or schools were in operation in your neighborhood?


31. Was the school in your community private or public?

All schools in our neighborhood were Private Schools.

32. About how many months did it run?

A reasonable length of time.

33. Did the boys and girls in your community attend school pretty regularly?


34. Was the teacher of the school you attended a man or a woman?

Sometimes a man and sometimes a woman.

35. In what year and month and at what place did you enlist in the service of the Confederacy or of the Federal Government?

I Constantine Perkins Nance, enlisted in the service of the Confederacy, at Cameron, Milam County, Texas, in April 1861.

36. After enlistment, where was your company sent?

My company was first sent to Houston, Texas, then to Richmond, Va. arriving early 1862.

37. How long after your enlistment before your company engaged in battle?

Our first battle, Eltham's Landing, May 7, 1862 in Virginia. Then on to "Seven Pines" and Gaines Farm.

38. What was the first battle you engaged in?

Where I was wounded, both bones below my knees, shattered. I was then confined in hospital in Richmond Va. for 5 mos.

39. State in your own way your experience in the War from this time until its close. State where you went after the first battle -- what you did and what other battles you engaged in, how long they lasted, what the results were; state how you lived in camp. how you were clothede, how you slept, what you had to eat, how you were exposed to cold, hunger and disease. If you were in the hospital or prison, state your exeprience there.

After sufficient recovery I rejoined my regiment and continued in service in Lee's Army until the surrender at Appomatox Court House Va., April 9, 1865, being thought to be mortally wounded in an assault on Ft. Harrison. I had received a wound in my left arm a few days before. While on furlough bu order of Gen. N. A. Forrest, Hood's retreat rejoined Lee's Army.

40. When and where were you discharged?

Surrendered with Gen. R. E. Lee at Appomatox Court House Va. April 9 1865 and received my parole then and there.

41. Tell something of your trip home.

Mr. William A. Nabors another member of Co. G 5th Texas Regiment, and I agreed to stay together. We, surrounded by many dangers. walked from Appomatix to Knoxvile. Had railway transportation from Knoxville to Murfreesboro, Tenn. We found friends and afterwards reached Texas safe.

42. Give a sketch of your life since the close of the Civil War,, stating what kind of business you engaged in, where you have lived, your church relations, etc. If you have held any office or offices, state what it was. You may state here any other facts connected with your life experience which have not been brought out by the questions.

My parents died in Nov '65 and I returned to Tennessee to care for my six younger sisters, and have lived here ever since on a farm and have done farm work.

43. What kind of work did you take up when you came back home.


44. Same as #9

45. Give names of all members of your Company you can remember. (If you know where the roster is to be had, please make special note of this.)

I have no roster. Mr. Wa. A. Nabors, (if living) formerly of Cameron, Texas may have the roster.

46. Give here the NAME and POST OFFICE ADDRESSES of living veterans of the Civil War, whether members of your company or not.

Mr. John Barnes Antioch, Tenn
Mr. D. C. Scales Nashville, Tenn.
Mr. M. B. Toney Nashville, Tenn.
Mr. Dan Crisman Nolensville, Tenn.
Serg. Sadler Nashville, Tenn.
Mr. Gus Alston Woodbine Station, Tenn.

Respectfully, C. P. Nance Route 1, Antioch, Tenn.

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