Eleven Horry County Civil War veterans honored with live oak pairing

The Horry County Patriot Tree Project ceremony on Friday, June 6

Civil War soldiers were honored at a ceremony Friday that paired them with live oak trees and gives members of the community a chance to get to know them.

Oak trees scattered across northern Horry County represent 11 soldiers from the War Between the States.

"It is very important for us to understand these people were here long ago, and they kind of developed Horry County. This is where many of us who can trace our roots back many generations in Horry County. These were our forefathers," said Jamie Thompkins, with the Horry County Board of Architectural Review, one of the groups that hosted the ceremony.

For Alton Webon, the oak tree dedication is a connection to his great- great-grandfather.

"It's amazingly important to me. I've been doing research on my family for the last 15 years. And it's just something that people 20, 30, 50,100 years from now can go back and look and see where their family came from," said Webon.

The trees are in different locations at Nixon's Crossroads, and each tree has a placard next to it with a Q-R code. Viewing that code with a smartphone with a QR code reader unlocks a website with that soldier's life history.

"It tells where they're born, where they died, when they were born, when they died, what company they fought in, what battles they may have fought in. It tells their parents, their wives, their children; as much information as we can find out about each solider," said Horry County senior planner, Adam Emerick.

"It's also a way for us to bring attention to basically veterans who have been forgotten. The Civil War was a terrible time in our country for many, many reasons," said Thompkins.

Webon says for him this means his family's history can live on with these trees.

"It's just something that will always be. For me to always see and for the rest of my family to come down and see. So it was just a thrill to come down and be here," he said.

Honored at the ceremony Friday were:

Flavious J. Bellamy

John D. Bellamy

Lorenzo Dow Bellamy

Seth Bellamy

William A. Bellamy Sr.

William A. Bellamy Jr.

Lucian Bryan

E.T. Ricks

William Dunn

Michael F. Clardy

William C. Gore