This weekend I received the following from a reader:
I was just playing with Google tonight and missing my Dad at the same time. He died in 1999. He grew up in the Leesburg, VA area, born in 1910, the youngest of 6 children and 5th boy to Dr. Eppa Hunton Heaton, a country doctor.
I typed my Dad’s name: Eppa Hunton Heaton into Google to see what might come up. And for a while I read some articles about Eppa Hunton who I already knew was a Colonel in the Civil War in VA.
Somehow I ended up on your page: “#101a-Col. Philip St. George Cocke” . I was scanning down through the long article and Lieutenant Heaton caught my eye as did Colonel Hunton.
The story in my Dad’s family is that at some point, and I’m assuming that this Lieutenant Heaton is my great-grandfather, he asked Colonel Hunton for leave so he could get married. He promised the Colonel that he would name his first son after him. And my grandfather was the lucky recipient of Eppa Hunton Heaton. Even though my Dad had four older brothers, none of them got this wonderful name until my Dad was born. His real name was Eppa Hunton Heaton, Jr. but he was called Willy as a boy and Bill as an adult.
His oldest sibling, Medora (“Dora”) was 16 years older than he was and the only girl. He called her “Sis” so all of his children called her “Aunt Sis”. She was married and living in Detroit in 1940 and Bill came up north to see her and stayed. He soon was enjoying the party circuit of Detroit’s finest families. My maternal grandfather was a friend of Henry Ford’s and a third generation Detroiter. Anyway, the poor country boy fell in love with the wealthy city girl and the rest is history. He was 30 and she was 19 when they married in January of 1941. He served as a Lieutenant in the Navy during the war.
Anyway, thought I’d pass this family story on to you. I’m assuming you don’t know about it.
Leslie Heaton Evans
Lieutenant Heaton in this case is Henry Heaton, who commanded a section of Capt. Arthur Rogers’ Loudon (Leesburg) Artillery at Bull Run. According to this book, Henry Heaton was born ( also the a son of a doctor) on 3/18/1844 at Woodgrove, the family homestead, and died on 5/17/1890. He was a state senator from Loudon and Fauquier counties. He also had a brother, Capt. N. R. Heaton, a sister, and seven other siblings. Further correspondence with Leslie established that her great-grandfather was in fact Henry’s brother Nathaniel, who was in command of Co. A of Col. Hunton’s 8th Virginia Regiment at Bull Run. Both Nathaniel and Hunton would still have their respective commands two years later as part of Garnett’s brigade of Pickett’s division at Gettysburg. It appears that Nathaniel later became superintendent of the Bates County government nitre works, where he also commanded troops thrown together to oppose Union General David Hunter in the summer of 1864. According to Findagrave, Nathaniel Rounceville Heaton was born 1/11/1824, died 2/3/1893, and is buried in Katoctin Baptist Church Cemetery in Purcellville, Loudon County.