Pictures from the Rededication on May 15, 2011
INSCRIPTION AT BOTTOM: “Erected 1906 To Our Confederate Dead, Jesup Chapter U. D. C., 1861-1865.” (Click: Full Size View)

CONFEDERATES BURIED AT WAYNESVILLE

 The life of George Washington (G. W.) Nichols, born in Bulloch County, Georgia, was felt throughout the south. Fighting with the 61st Georgia Regiment, in Northern Virginia under General Robert E. Lee, and wounded twice, he brought back many memories of those battles.  While living out his life in Wayne County near Jesup after the Civil War, he recorded those memories in a book for posterity.

 One of Private G. W. Nichols' contribution involved Waynesville, now Brantley County.  He wrote in 1899 that "about 40 confederate veterans" of the Southern Confederacy were buried at Waynesville, and that their burial place was "not being cared for." 

At that time, pine trees had grown around the cemetery,  and large oaks roots had penetrated the graves.  Brave Confederate soldiers were sleeping  in a neglected and abandoned cemetery.  The festooning moss,  hung low and tangled with underbrush,  surrounded the entire area.  The whole area was one of sad neglect.  Periodically, throughout the years, some civic minded local individual would recognize the sad condition of this cemetery and it would cleaned of brush, weeds, and trees, once again. 

Mr. G. W. Nichols  proposed that a suitable stone be erected for the confederate veterans and that the graves be enclosed "by erecting a neat galvanized fence."  He reported that the burial ground was on the Wiggins estate and that information concerning the location be obtained from W. M. Wiggins and Jasper Highsmith, "both of whom lived in Waynesville during the War of the Confederacy."

 Later it was reported in the Jesup Sentinel that G. W. Nichols and J. R. Roberson had erected a fence around the burial ground of the veterans,  and they had suggested the Wayne Chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy erect grave markers.  It was reported by Mrs. A. J. Gordon of Jesup, who was a native of Waynesville, that the burial ground was near the site of the Waynesville Baptist Church, on the north side of the railway.

In 1906 the Daughters of the Confederacy honored the confederate compatriots of Waynesville erecting a memorial monument.  Reported in the Brantley Enterprise on April 5, 1928 was the following story:  "At Waynesville, about sixteen miles from Nahunta, the County seat of Brantley County is a historic Confederate Cemetery.  Here was fought a fierce battle during the Civil War.  The brave lads in gray that fell that day were buried in the trenches where they fell.  Crude wooden head-markers were placed around the graves.  These markers have crumbled away, and this sacred site is "a cemetery of unknown confederate soldiers."  In the center of the cemetery is a plain marble shaft bearing the simple inscription:

“Erected 1906 To Our Confederate Dead, Jesup Chapter U. D. C., 1861-1865.”