The Confederate Veteran, Volume XVIII,
Tribute to John McIntosh Kell
(from a letter of a comrade to Mrs. Kell)
"Raymond, Miss. December 28, 1909
My Dear Friend:
It is hard for me to write, owing to the condition of my eyes, but I could
not let the time pass without "exchanging signals." It is an almost
interminable vista when one looks back from his seventy-eighth year. What
shifting scenes, what faces come and are gone forever! That of dear old Kell
stands out clear-cut. I knew him before he met you.
We were a mess of six on board the sloop of war "Albany," of the "Home
Squadron," including the West Indies and the Gulf of Mexico. Kell was the
senior passed midshipman. There were three others of that rank. The captain,
clerk (old Van), and myself, a midshipman, made up the six members of the
mess. That was when I got the name of "Youngster."
At that time Kell was a man of splendid physique, well formed in every
respect, his face the mirror of his character, filled with benevolence and
goodness, but stern to all that was mean or unprincipled. Of the many people
with whom I have been associated in the course of a long life, for what may
be good in me I owe more to Kell than anybody else. All loved him. I hope you
spent a pleasant Christmas surrounded by your descendants and his.
Let us "exchange signals" again from time to time before we enter port, which
now is in full view.
Your old friend and sincere friend,
J. R. Eggleston ("The Youngster")
P.S. - She (the Youngstress) is attending her U. D. C. Chapter meeting, of
which she is President: also Honorary President of the Mississippi Division,
and one of the Honorary President of the whole order. So you see I live in
reflected glory (probably because of my cataracts). J. R. E."
"The cheerfulness with which the venerable Eggleston refers to his affliction
of failing sight is touchingly pathetic. In the "War Records," Volume IX,
page 11, published by the United States government, Flag Officer Franklin
Buchanan in reporting the fight of the Virginia to the Secretary of the Navy,
S. R. Mallory, March 27, 1862, in regard to that famous ironclad, the
Merrimac, in its fight with the Minnesota, says: "Lieutenant Eggleston served
his hot shot and shell with judgment and effect; his bearing was deliberate
and exerted a happy influence upon his men."
The Confederate Veteran, Volume XXV, August, 1917
Mrs. John McIntosh Kell
Julia Blanche Kell, daughter of the late Nathan Campbell Monroe and wife of
the late John McIntosh Kell, executive officer of the famous Confederate
steamers "Sumter" and "Alabama," was born in Vineville, Ga., January 31,
1836, and died at Sunnyside, Ga., June 14, 1917.
The closing of a perfect life was the allotment of this sainted soul which
has entered Paradise. Born in the cultured surroundings of the Old South and
possessing grace and womanly charm, she won and held a hero's heart for many
years of happy married life. This union was blessed with sons and daughters,
to whom she gave lavishly of her rich intelligence, womanly poise, and loyal
devotion to principle. Gentle yet unafraid, there was a melody in her heart
and sympathy on her lips which had its warmest welcome and will make its
longest stay in the hearts of those to whom her life will ever remain a
St. George's Episcopal Church, of Griffin, Ga., which she helped to build and
whose faith she cherished, the home in which she lived, the love of friends,
and the devotion to her family will ever remain a blessing to those who
follow after and leave the warm imprint of her lofty soul on the uplift of
Possessing literary attainments of a high order, her soul would speak at
times in a language exquisitely wrought and full of intellectual strength;
but the fulfillment of duty as Christian, wife, mother, friend will be
measured by the far-reaching results of her life work which "has found its
anchorage above the stars."
Mrs. Kell was Honorary President General U.D. C. and valued this
well-deserved compliment. Her interest in the dear Daughters and in their
efforts to preserve the history and memories so dear to Southern hearts was
keen and unwavering."