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Vicksburg History

A brief history of Col. Isham Warren Garrott, his fort and his body



Col. Isham Warren Garrott

Fort Garrott was the best preserved of all the Confederate fortifications when the Vicksburg National Military Park was created in 1899 to commemorate the siege and defense of Vicksburg.

The fort was named after Isham Warren Garrott, a colonel with the 20th Alabama Infantry Regiment, who had formed the unit. Garrott assumed command of General Edward D. Tracy’s brigade (of which the 20th Alabama was a part) when Tracy was killed in the Battle of Port Gibson.

Fort Garrott, early 1900s.

Garrott was promoted to brigadier general, but he died on the firing line before he received word of his promotion, and the promotion was not awarded posthumously. He was firing a borrowed rifle at a Union sharpshooter on June 17, 1863, when the sharpshooter shot and instantly killed him.

He was buried on the Finney plantation, called Lonewood, which was located on the southwest corner of Speed and Drummond Streets. His grave was located under what is now Finney Street, between Drummond and Cherry Streets.

The Finney Plantation house, Lonewood.

The grave was under a window at Lonewood, and his remains were never moved, according to a letter from Garrott’s wife. Many believe that his body was eventually moved to Soldiers Rest where his memorial marker stands.

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