Isom Glover was known as the torch-tender and had charge of the firewood for the estate. According to Mrs. Oliphant, “It was he who, as a young man, at great personal risk saved the [Benjamin] West portrait of Simms when the house was burned [by Sherman’s troops] in 1865.” He does not appear in Beecher’s list of freedmen at Woodlands in June of 1865. However, he is listed as having a sharecropper’s account at Woodlands in January of 1868. An Isom Glover shows up in the 1870s census in Midway, at age 24, living with wife Sarah, 20, and son Robert, 2. There is an Isham Glover, age 35, in the 1880 Midway census with wife Martha, and children Mariah, Paul, Laura and Gabriel.

An Isham Glover from Bamberg is also recorded in the 1890s Special Schedule of Surviving Soldiers, Sailors, Marines and Widows of the US during the War of the Rebellion. Although not identified in federal military records as having enlisted or served in the US Army, he apparently provided some service or support to federal troops during the Civil War, despite saving the West portrait of his master, perhaps when Sherman’s troops as they passed through Midway. He was the only African American listed in the Special Schedule from the Bamberg area.

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The Curry Family

Mrs. Oliphant identifies Cynthia Curry as the head cook at Woodlands. Cynthia, Albert, and Billy Curry are listed in the group of 47 freedmen identified by James Beecher as remaining at Woodlands after Sherman’s destruction of Midway. Beecher named Billy Curry foreman of the group who had planted a corn crop on the property, presumably after the Simms family moved to Columbia.

Cinthia and Albert are listed in the section of the Woodlands Plantation Book entitled “Births of Negroes” as being the parents of Sam, born 1862, Eugene, born 1856, and Alice, born 1859. Martha, born 1861, is listed as a “child of Cinthia.” Apparently, Albert Curry, the father or brother of Billy, stayed at Woodlands at least until 1868.