General James Hogan a real American Hero.....
Ever since we started to school, our class has been learning about our military Heroes of the past, but all of this has seemed pretty far off for us. Imagine what a thrill it is to learn of one brave Hero who lived right at our home, almost in town! I suppose all of us have seen the new marker but some of us know little of the man for whom it stands. James Hogan was an Irishman who somehow found his way to North Carolina, Halifax County, and made his home about one mile from here where Mr. Dick House now lives, On October 3, 1751 he married Ruth Norfleet, a girl whose people have long lived near here .James Hogan’s neighbors elected him as delegate to the Provincial Congresses and the Constitutional Convention when they met in Halifax town, and he was enthusiastically in favor of independence.
He lived in this cause so much he was willing to fight for it, and leading North Carolina troops to join General Washington he fought in the bloody battles of Brandywine and Germantown. After these terrible defeats General Washington sent Hogan back home to find more men to fight. With the 600 men who joined him Hogan hurried back to Washington at Valley Forge.
After serving in the North for a couple of years, General Washington recommended Hogan for Brigadier General because he was so brave at Germantown. In 1780 General Hogan with his Brigade was sent South to help General Lincoln at Charlestown, S.C. Lincoln could not hold out against the Red Coats and on May 12, 1780 he surrendered with General Hogan and all 1200 of his brave Halifax County Soldiers. They were imprisoned at Haddrell’s Point near the town of Mount Pleasant, S.C.
It make us sad to read of the sufferings of our own brave men in prison, not enough food and much sickness, We are told that our men were not even allowed to catch a few fish to keep from starving! General Hogan was offered a parole to return home, but when his men were not allowed to go also he angrily refused to go. And it is certain that he stayed in that soul prison until he died from starvation or disease.
Chief Justice Walter Clark has said “History affords no more striking incident of devotion to duty, and North Carolina should erect a tablet to his memory and of those who perished with him.” And so now, today nearly 200 years after, we have come to do him honor, our own General James Hogan.
November 30, 1954 at Hobgood School Auditorium.
Talk given by Betsy Leggett