The Jackson Purchase region of Kentucky is comprised of the eight westernmost counties - Ballard, Calloway, Carlisle, Fulton, Graves, Hickman, Marshall and McCracken. It is bordered on the west by the Mississippi River, on the north by the Ohio River, on the east by the Tennessee River and the state of Tennessee to the south. By Kentuckians it is generally referred to simply as "the Purchase".

Andrew Jackson and Isaac Shelby purchased the land lying west of the Tennessee River from the Chickasaw tribe and opened the area for settlement around 1820. Within the next few years, my grandfather's ancestors came there from Virginia, North Carolina and Tennessee - the Beadles, Clapps, Pryors and Wingos settled in Graves County with the Reeves and Halls in neighboring Ballard County.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Reunion of Co. D, 2nd Kentucky

Richard Pryor
  Richard Pryor, son of
 Jonathan Pryor,Jr.
Richard T. Pryor was the son of Jonathan Pryor, Jr. and Frances Rozzell of Pryorsburg, Graves County, Kentucky. At the age of 21 on the 28th of July, 1861, Richard was enlisted by Capt. Lewis S. Slayden in the Second Kentucky Infantry, CSA, at Camp Boone, Tennessee. The 2nd Kentucky was part of the First Kentucky Brigade which in time came to be known as the "Orphan Brigade".

On December 2, 1862 he was taken prisoner at Hartsville, Tennessee. It is unclear how long he was a Union prisoner, but on the 30th of June, 1863, in Jackson, Mississippi, he received a medical discharge because of a gunshot through his right elbow which occurred during the battle in Hartsville. CSA records at the time of his discharge state that he was 5 feet 8 inches tall, with fair complexion, blue eyes and light hair.

Twenty-seven years later a reunion was held at the home of Richard Pryor. On October 1, 1890 the Mayfield Monitor published the following article:

Reunion of Company D, Second Kentucky

A reunion of the above company at the residence of Mr. Richard Pryor, four miles southwest of here, on last Wednesday, notwithstanding the disagreeableness of the weather, was largely attended and proved a great success.

The following members of the company for which the meeting was arranged were present and took part in the exercises. Their ages, post office addresses and Christian names are also given:

Henry T. Wilkerson, age 49, Mayfield; T. F. (Dock) Mason, age 51, Pritchard, Graves County; Jas. D. Watson, age 46, Mayfield; Amos West, age 53, Mayfield; R. L. Usrey, age 57, Mayfield; W. W. (Wint) Potts, age 53, Pottsville; H. L. (Los) Jones, age 49, West Plains; J. V. (Jake) Canaday, age 59, Mayfield; Thos. F. Boaz, age 53, Kansas, Ky.; A. B. (Arch) Pullen, age 47, Lynnville; R. T. (Dick) Pryor, age 50, Mayfield; D. P. (De) Coulter, age 51, Mayfield.

As far as is known the following are the names of surviving members who were not present:

Newt. Anderson, Bushnell, Fla.; Wit. Boaz, Martin, Tenn.; Jack Pryor, East Prairie, Mo.; Bill Burton, Wingo; John Bourne, Pryorsburg; Charlie Haskell, Moscow; F. M. Handley, Melbourne, Ark.; Thos. Hopkins; New Mexico; A. T. Pullen, Pryorsburg; Wm. Bridges, Arkansas; Tup. Ryburn, Viola; Marshall Sullivan, Boaz; John Williams, West Plains; Tip. Myers, Wingo; Jim Touhey, Pryorsburg; Thomas Floyd, Wingo.

The company was organized with 110 men at Camp Boone, near Clarksville, Tenn., July 13, 1861. L. S. Slayden was chosen captain; H. B. Rodgers, first lieutenant; A. J. Pryor, second lieutenant; R. L. Usrey, third lieutenant. At the end of the war 36 of the company were paroled at Washington, Ga. The officers of the company at the time of the surrender were A. J. Pryor, captain; R. L. Usrey, first lieutenant; Amos West, second lieutenant; C. A. Haskell, third lieutenant.

Capt. T. M. Curtis, Company K, 50th Tenn.; Capt. R. T. Albritton, Company C, 8th Ky.; J. L. Rickman, Company K, 47th Tenn.; L. W. Bostic, Company A, 12th Ky., were also present, together with a number of Mr. Pryor’s friends.

A magnificent dinner was spread, to which it is needless to say all did justice; in fact it is said that one gentleman not only filled his stomach, but also his pockets, with the good things that were spread so lavishly before him. For any information on this point inquire of Bob Albritton, Amos West, Bill Bostic or Dock Mason.

All who went enjoyed themselves and returned home with nothing but good words for the hospitable manner in which they were treated by Mr. & Mrs. Pryor and their popular daughter, Miss Fannie Pryor.

(Photo courtesy of West Kentucky Genealogy from the Pryor-Hogue Album)


  1. Many have done Y-DNA to join different Pryor lines. Has this line done a 67-marker test? I have paper records on this line and other contacts. Please contact:

  2. Laurie,
    The Pryor DNA Projects' results are no published online so I have no way of knowing if any of the descendants of Richard Pryor have tested. There are numerous Pryor descendants participating in the various autosomal DNA tests - Family Finder, Ancestry and 23 and Me. Our family has no males with the Pryor surname to do a Y chromosome DNA test.

    My first cousin and I have both done an autosomal DNA test and matched most of the children of Richard and Mourning Thomson Pryor in addition to many other earlier Pryors where any connection currently lacks documentation.

  3. Please email me as someone new matches your autosomal and their Pryor line has old roots. - Laurie