of Independence County Arkansas



Jesse Lassiter, born in North Carolina in 1804, came to Arkansas in 1857, bringing with him his wife, the forner Mary S. Matthews and 11 of their 12 children. The family had formerly resided in McNairy Co.,TN and in Tippah Co. MS and may have moved to northern AR to escape from the growing tension over slavery and secession. But the tragedy of the Civil War was to involve the Lassiters, bringing death and division as it did to so many families in this part of the country. Lasiter settled his family inWashington Township, in the Graham Community, except for his oldest son, William, who was already married with a family of his own. William and his wife, Margaret Robinson are found at Black Oak in Union Township in the 1860 census.

When the Civil War began, all the lassiter men favored loyalty to the Union. They managed to avoid Confederate conscription until the 1st AR Inf, USA, made up of Union loyalist, was orgainized in 1862. Enrolled in Company D at Jacksonport on July 1 were Jesse Lassiter and five of his sons - William, John, Francis Marion, Jesse and Thomas J.

Company D mustered in at Helena on July 20, and there Francis M. Lassiter died a month later of unknown causes. Although it saw no real action in the war, the company was devastated by diseases such as measles and dysentery. In October the men were sent to Benton Barracks in St. Louis "owing to the great amount of sickness" and on Dec 31 the survivors were mustered out. Some of the men joined other Union regiments, but the Lassiters chose to remain in the Rolla, Mo. area until the war was over. Their father, Jesse, stricken with typhoid fever, had died Dec 2 at the New House of Refuge, a hospital in St. Louis, at age 58. He lies buried in the Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery...

The Lassiter's returned to this area about 1868 and settled in Jefferson Township. The mother died soon after and was buried in Blackburn Cemetery near Cushman.

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