'All veterans should be honored, regardless of which side they were on'
Written by Brice Stump
GEORGETOWN — With the passing of almost 150 years since the end of the Civil War, there has been only one Confederate memorial in Delaware. A granite memorial, almost 14 feet tall, was placed on the grounds of the Nutter B. Marvel Museum in Georgetown in 2007.
The Sons of Confederate Veterans “Delaware Grays” Camp No. 2068 in Seaford, the United Daughters of the Confederacy “Caleb Ross” Chapter No. 2635 and the Georgetown Historical Society sponsored the construction of the monument. The cost of the memorial was underwritten by private organizations and donations, with no public or governmental sponsorship.
“Up until the Delaware Confederate Monument was placed here, there was not a single Confederate memorial in Delaware,” said camp adjutant John Zoch. “The only mention of a Confederate serving from Delaware is on a monument in Gettysburg.”
“We did this to honor the brave Delaware Confederates that left their homes and state to serve and fight for the South,” said Jeff Plummer, camp commander. “We have researched names of individuals from Delaware who served, and their names are inscribed on the monument.
“Though Delaware was a border state historically, New Castle County was pro-North and Kent and Sussex counties were pro-South. Obviously there were split loyalties within the state. Delaware was a slave state, and the majority of slaves were in Sussex County, a county tied to the economy of the rural South.”
North and South share cemeteries
The Seaford-based camp had initially requested the monument be placed on the grounds of the Gov. William H. Ross Mansion and Plantation in Seaford. The historical group there said the monument was not in keeping with the rural character of the site. Ross, whose name is among the 140 names presently cut into the stone, aided the Confederacy, and his son, Caleb, died while in Confederate service.
As for the granite, it was mandated that it come from a quarry in the South. Samuel “S.J.” Disharoon of Salisbury Monument said he personally made the 1,320-mile round trip to the quarry in Georgia to get the gray stone. According to Disharoon, the custom-cut stone memorial weighs about 28,000 pounds.