William Franklin Stanley, 1844-1911  

Contributed by Jesse Vaughan - jlv@hal-pc.org

NOTE: Jesse Vaughan was told by Miss Eugenie Scarborough dec his day of birth was Sept 25th. According to Mr. Vaughan he looked for the gravesite several years ago at Maplewood and could not find it so it is not known if maybe he was moved to some other location.

Following at Heritage Place, LCC DEATH CERTIFICATE Lenoir County Wm Franklin Stanley Date of Birth 25 Sept 1844 Date of Death 17 May 1911 Married Birthplace – Jones Co Father – Wright Stanley b Jones Co, Mother – Sarah Becton Buried – Maplewood

The Free Press – Saturday May 20 1911 Mr. W. F. Stanley Passes Well known and Prominent Citizen of the City Died Wednesday Evening of Chronic LaGrippe

Mr. W. F. Stanley, a well known citizen and former mayor of this city, died at his home on Bright street Wednesday evening at 6:30 o’clock, after a lingering illness of chronic lagrippe. The funeral took place Thursday afternoon at 5 o’clock and interment will be made in Maplewood cemetery. Rev. J. H. Griffith will conduct the service. Mr. Stanley is survived by his wife and one son, Mr. Harold D. Stanley. The following tribute to his memory is from the pen of his lifelong friend, Dr. John A. Pollock:

In Memorian

After an illness of several weeks of chronic lagrippe, ex Mayor Wm F. Stanley has been called away and is now at rest.

Born in Jones County, September 1844, came to Kinston soon after the death of his parents; made Kinston his home, was educated at the old academy and later attended the schools at Hillsboro.

He was of a historic family, and as a citizen and soldier, he met the inevitable events of life, calmly and creditably.

At the call for volunteers for the defense of the south, Stanley, but a stripling, promptly responded. When the fight was on at New Bern, Stanley, in Fort Anderson, was among the last to leave the guns.

In the battles against Sherman in Georgia and at Fort Fisher, Stanley displayed courage and judgment. When the federals landed near the fort, Stanly led the charge and drove them back under the protection of their ironclads. During the murderous bombardment he fought his guns and surrendered after the fort was rent and torn by shot and shell, and when wounded and bleeding, Sergt. Nick Hunter said, “Stanly objected to giving up the fort and begged to not lower the flag – “Boys don’t lower the flag”. When the surrender was made, he broke his sword and threw it into the sea. Coming back from prison, he soon married Miss Nannie Coward, and after her death married Mrs. Elizabeth Aldridge Tilghman.

In manner he was modest and deferential; in disposition constant, aspiring and given to hospitality; in the way of fairness and truth one might say of him “Dare make a sounder man than Surry can be.” He became an extensive merchant, was elected mayor several terms, and the town clock will always be in – rest of line has a mark through it – interest for the convenience of the public in general. In politics a Democrat, in religion a Baptist. The good of Kinston and the community at large was ever dear to his innermost nature.

The charm of the man was his innate fearlesancss (sic) and an earnest sympathy. In the hours of danger and peril in sickness and in death, he was like unto the brace, the chivalrous Frank Cox, ever ready to take time, to give timely advice and stand steadily by his friend in need.

No man that is a man, can repress the cry of the soul, at the loss of a life-long friend.

Good-bye, great heart, dear old comrade, we will meet again, where the morning stars are shinning, dear old schoolmate of the long ago – all hail – farewell until that time cometh where the shadows shall flee away, yea, when the everlasting day-dawn of nevermore appeareth.

NOTE: The copy did not come out well from here to the end.

Lead gently, Father God, as he passes over the bar. Now in the saddened fullness of time, now at the natural ending of a crucible friendship unbroken seven and fifty years. I feel impelled to stand and say – “This cold earth, that bears the dead body of Stanley Dears not alive a stouter gentleman.”
Dr. John A. Pollock

Kinston Free Press – Saturday, May 10, 1911

With the passing of Mr. W. F. Stanley, Kinston loses another member of her “old guard.” The ranks are thinning year by year and even now most of its members have crossed the bar. They have turned over their work to their successors; and the Kinston of today is in the hands of its younger men. Will they build as wisely and as well as did the “old guard?”. The answer remains to be ascertained.

Mr. Stanley has been prominent in Kinston’s affairs. He was mayor of the municipality and active in business circles. One of the touching incidents at the close of his long and active career was the fact that at his death bed as a devoted servant, fanning the flies from that beloved face which was soon to become cold in death, stood his former slave body servant, his boyhood playmate, the faithful servant of his young manhood on the battlefield and around the camp fires of the great struggle between the states, the colored friend of his later years. And during the last sad hours this old colored man was as constant and true to his prostrate master as in the golden days of yere, when both were carefree, or in those stormy times when the here master was undergoing a baptism of shot and shell as the invader was trespassing on southern soil.

The younger men, into whose keeping has been confided the destinies of our future, cannot afford to forget incidents like these – that in the olden days such genuine attachments were formed between master and slave, and that time’s ruthless touch is fast obliterating whatever remains of those chivalrie days. Memories of this kind ought to soften the harsh ephumerial?? Spirit of the age, recall as somewhat from the strenuous life and remind us that the sentimental, the ideal values the noblest things of life, while the dollar is after all, a poor measure of the true meaning of moral existence.

William Franklin Stanly
25 Sep 1844 – 17 May 1911

William Franklin Stanly was born in Jones County, NC, on 25 September 1844, and died in Kinston on 17 May 1911.

His service to the Confederate States of America began with his voluntary enlistment at age 18 in Captain William A. Herring’s Company H of the 36th Regiment, North Carolina Troops, in Lenoir, NC, on 10 January 1862. This company later became Company I, 2nd Regiment North Carolina Artillery (36th State Troops).

He was wounded in action at New Bern on 14 March 1862, but had returned to service for the payroll muster on 30 April. He was promoted to Sergeant on 14 November 1862. On 4 November 1863, his company was transferred to 3rd Company G of the 40th Regiment, North Carolina Troops (3rd Regiment NC Artillery). He reached the rank of First Lieutenant on 1 December 1863. He was present on the muster roll of March/April 1864 as Second Lieutenant.

He was captured at Fort Fisher, NC, on 15 January 1865, and was received as a prisoner on 26 January 1865, at Fort Columbus, New York Harbor. His confinement there continued until he was paroled and transferred to City Point, VA on 25 February 1865. He was exchanged at Boulware’s Wharf, James River, VA, on 5 March 1865.

Sources: Military Service Record File, National Archives. North Carolina Troops 1861-1865 A Roster. Vol. 1 Artillery. Compiled by Louis H. Manarin, Raleigh, NC. State Department of Archives and History, 1966.

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