The following narrative focuses on Bluford Goins, written by Sammy Evans and as published by the Gallatin North Missourian in February, 2017. In addition to the personal memories revealing rural life in Daviess County, MO, this article also points to a gift from Mr. Goins to the Daviess County Historical Society. Goins served in Company H of the First Missouri Cavalry Volunteers during the Civil War. After his death, the family eventually donated Goins’ cavalry sword (an old-fashioned long type with basket hilt) to the Society. It may be that the sword was later misidentified and attributed to Major Samuel P. Cox. The sword still held by the Society and presented for public display today at the 1889 Squirrel Cage Jail.

The Gift of a Civil War Cavalry Sword

Two of my great-uncles fought in the civil war — one for the Union and the other for the Confederacy. One of my great-uncles, Bluford Goins, was interviewed in December, 1933, for the Caldwell County, Missouri, History.

Bluford Goins, center, with family members.

The following is taken from the USGenWeb Archives as researched by Karen Walker of Hamilton, MO:

Bluford Goins of Breckenridge, MO, was born in 1839, hence he is now in his 96th year. He was born at Cumberland Gap, TN, while his father’s family was on the road “west” from their home in Lee County, VA. They were in a covered wagon, of course, with a company of emigrants. Every wagon had its spinning wheel and homemade furniture; most of them had a package of cotton seed to sow at their new home.

Much of the journey was over paths instead of roads and the parents walked by the slow horses or oxen as the case might be, so that the children might ride. They came by easy stages and the Gap was a rest-stage on their road to Kentucky.

In Kentucky, they lived a few months, then to Texas County, MO, and then on to Lexington, MO. From there Mr. Goin’s father came overland to Caldwell County about 1863. He invested in a farm north of Breckenridge and lived there on the farm till 1883. During the 1860s and 1870s, he often cut wood and hauled it to Breckenridge for $1 a cord.

During the Civil War, he served in Company H of the First Missouri Cavalry Volunteers under Colonel Whitman, Lieutenant Colonel Chandler and General Steele. The family still has his Cavalry sword. It is the old-fashioned long type with basket hilt. He served two years, seven months and 19 days.

Once a year, he with his son, makes a trip to Gallatin, Daviess County, to pay his subscription to the Gallatin North Missourian to which he has subscribed 70 years. He was a subscriber when it started in 1864.

Bluford Goins wanted the sword to go back to the family that had given it to him. The present-day relatives got the sword back, but they ended up donating it to the jail museum in Gallatin, where it is today. I passed pictures of Bluford and the historical interview along to the museum.

This composite photograph made by Sam Evans shows Bluford Goins (insert lower left) at the historic Squirrel Cage Jail in Gallatin, MO, where Bluford Goins’ Civil War cavalry sword (upper left) is on display with other Civil War relics.