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Alexander Goodman Harrison Wickham Withers

Obituary of Robert Thomas Goodman, Hollins, Virginia.

Robert T. Goodman, who died at his home, East View, near Hollins, Va., on February, 1836, at the home of his maternal grandparents, in Goodland County, Va. His father was a great believer in higher education, and it was his purpose to have the son finish at the University of Virginia and then go with him to the Holy Land; but the boy had other ideas and fascinations. In April, 1857, he married Miss Frances Alexander in Powhaten County and took his bride first to Fawnhill, on the James, a gift from his father, and then to Auburn, a large plantation in Cumberland County. He joined the Masons when just twenty-two and took the degrees of Master, Royal Arch, and Knight Templar. On going to war he placed a Maltese cross around his young wife's neck, for he knew that no Mason would ever harm one wearing that cross.

On the 21st of April, 1861, he offered his services to his State, joining the Black Eagle Riflemen, of Fork and Willis, and marched to Richmond, where they were mustered into Company E, 18th Virginia Infantry, Carter Harrison captain, Col. R. E. Withers. Two of his brothers and a cousin went with him; another brother ran away from the Virginia Military Institute and joined the cavalry with William E. Wickham and was afterwards courier to Fitzhugh Lee. Robert Goodman was wounded in the battle of Manassas and returned to his command, but had to be discharged for disablity from the wound.

In 1867, realizing to the full the devastaion of war and the changing conditions, the family removed to East View, in Roanoke County, in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley, between the Blue Ridge and Alleghany Mountains, near Hollins Institute. And in the "garden spot" valley, under the inspiration of this great and noble institution, the Goodmans have since lived. The heritage of their love, their unfailing faith, their indomitable courage and cheerfulness, their beautiful spirit of unselfishness and self-sacrifice, their pure, simple Christian lives will ever be an inspiration. A son and five daughters are left of the family, living in different States, only two making their homes in Virgina.

SOURCE: Confederate Veteran Magazine, June, 1916.

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