George Theodore Verdery
The Courant American Newspaper
September 7, 1893
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George Theodore Verdery.
“When falls the soldier brave,
Dead at the feet of wrong,
The poet sings and guards his grave,
With sentinels of song.
“Songs March! He gives command,
Keep faithful watch and true,
The living and dead of the conquered land,
Have now no guards save you.”
“Halt! Where there is no name!
Songs! Stay where there is no stone!
And wait till you hear the feet of Fame”
Coming to where ye moan.
--Sentinel Songs of Father Ryan.
A hero and a martyr without knowing that he was one; as modest as he was brave, Lieut. George L. Verdery, of the 21 st Alabama infantry, died in Richmond county, Georgia on the 17 th of July, and sleeps his last sleep, resting his head upon the lap of earth, in the cemetery of old Abilene church, near the spot where his life began to beat fifty years ago.
After twenty-nine years of intense suffering borne with heroic fortitude his worn and weary body yielded up his spirit; for he died from the after affects of a terrific wound received on the last day of the battle of Gettysburg.
Lieut. Verdery had been wounded with his face to the foe, in three of the twenty-one battles in which the confederates and his regiment were engaged with the federals on the soil of Virginia, before he received a saber cut in the face on the field of Gettysburg, early in the same day on which at the close of the battle, and just as he sheathed his sword at the command for retreat, a spent cannon ball struck and shattered the blade and scabbard, giving him the wound in his hip which made him a cripple for life, and finally caused his death.
No braver soldier ever faced a foe or periled life in defense of the lost cause. No man was ever more loyal to any cause he espoused or any friend in need, even if that cause or that friend’s need involved the risking of his own safety, his fortune or his sacred honor.
He did not die unwept, nor will his memory be unhonored and unsung. From the low mound that covers his remains will stretch a shadow long enough to rest upon the hearts of those who knew and loved him best wherever they may go—even to the uttermost parts of the earth.
E. V. B.
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