Old South Military Antiques

Two, KIA, Bullet Struck Faith Book
Item #: OS-6758

The 6 by 4-inch pocket book shown here belonged to two Confederate soldiers, both of whom carried it to comfort their souls during horrific times. They both sacrificed their lives for the sacred cause of Constitutional government and one was actually carrying the book in his breast pocket when a Yankee ball passed through the book and continued through his heart. In the book were several envelopes; the ball passed through these also.

The first soldier to carry the scripture book was Christopher C. Layton of Company E, 18th South Carolina Infantry, who enlisted Christmas day, 1861, in Spartanburg, South Carolina. Private Layton served faithfully until he was killed on June 11th, 1863 at Jackson, Mississippi, during operations to provide relief to the Vicksburg troops.

Private Layton’s identification comes from his writings within the book itself.

The second owner was Private Oliver W. Lowe, of Company B, Cavalry Battalion of Phillips Georgia Legion. Oliver enlisted in April, 1862. The June 2nd, 1949 edition of The Weekly Tribune out of Cartersville, Georgia gives an account of the Lowe family during the War, from which I excerpt the following:

"When the war broke, there were three Lowe boys. Judson, Whitfield, and Oliver, ages respectively 20,14, and 18. They joined the Phillips Legion and P.M. B. Young’s fine brigade. Whitfield, the present owner of the Lowe place was only 14. He enlisted later. Judson and Oliver followed the excitement of that war held for a Georgia brigade that made undying fame and glory in many a hard-fought battle. Letters from Oliver, written from time to time, proved that he was a fearless soldier and a good Confederate. Only once did he show any anxiety about what the future held. This was just before the Maryland Campaign in 1862. He wrote from Rapidan Station, Virginia, "Judson and I are reporting to "Stonewall” Jackson. We will be gone for three or four weeks. I hope we meet again” This very letter is included with the bullet struck book, as well as the original newspaper.

The article goes on to say: "Oliver and Judson Lowe fought at Gettysburg, coming out "untouched” though "there must have been thousands of bullets that hit around us” … all three Lowes were (with Phillips Legion) were sent to South Carolina to help stop Sherman on his march north. Judson Lowe was taken prisoner and sent to New York. Oliver and Whitfield fought Sherman in South Carolina-were in Columbia when the Federals came into that city but did not witness the sacking and burning of that fair city. Whitfield was surrendered with Young’s Brigade. Oliver W. Lowe fought at Averysboro, and in a fight near that point he was shot through the heart and died near the famous Bentonville battlefield. An enlarged portion of the book, showing the bullet hole, is being published with this article. The book, "Doctrine of the New Jerusalem Magazine, translated from the Latin of Emanuel Swedenborg, Boston, 1812, and is in itself an interesting book. Oliver Lowe died March 18, 1865 and probably sleeps in one of the many unknown graves in and around Bentonville.”

Comes with display case for $3,500.00