William H. Jacobs: Not “Richard” and Not a Confederate Soldier

So I bought a subscription to Fold3.com and hunted for William R Jacobs who I thought was a Confederate soldier.


His name was William H. Jacobs, the H perhaps for “Harrison” like his father. He enlisted for a second tour of duty at Charleston, now the capital of West Virginia, on October 12, 1864, for the term of one year. He was described as being 24 years old, 5′ 3″ tall, dark hair, and brown eyes. He was born in Kanawha County. He served as a Private in Co. K, 7th Regiment of the WV Cavalry. From what I can gather from the documents, he was mustered out in Charleston in August 1865.

His former wife, Mary E. McGraw was remarried to William J. Duncan or John W. Duncan in November 1864. Since she married using her maiden name, I assume the two had divorced after he returned home from his first stent with the Union Army. He re-enlisted at Charleston, WV the second time on 12 October 1864 for one year and Mary remarried in November. His children, Virginia E. and John William Jacobs, never knew their father. And the story that “he joined the army and was never seen or heard from again” is the story I grew up with.

More about William H. Jacobs.

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