Jesse "J.J." Carl
Born: April 27, 1837, Tennessee Died: February 14, 1927
Burial: Gentry Cemetery Place: Gentry, Benton County, Arkansas
This was the one that started it all! In 2001, the book " The William Clarke Quantrill Mens Reunions, 1898-1929" hit the historical research landscape of Kansas City and Independence, Missouri. And listed on the roll call of the 1908 reunion was a "J. J. Carl, Gentry, Ark."Little did we know that this would be the start of something historically big!!
From the "Benton County Herald "2/17/27 "Uncle Jesse also served in the Confederate army during the Civil War. He was wounded in the famous battle of Wilson Creek, near Springfield, Mo."
From the "Gentry Journal-Advance" 2/18/27 "He enlisted in the Confederate army in March 1861 and in August of that year was in camp at Wilson Creek, near Springfield, Mo, where he fought and was seriously wounded in the arm in the battle there."
Jesse would later become an owner of one of the main staples of the Gentry, Arkansas' landscape...the Carl Hardware store. After years of sitting empty and being put through many a thought process, the Carl Hardware store became what is now the Gentry Public Library! But why is Jesse named with Quantrill's men? The answer lies within the enrollment of the Quantrill Men's reunion roll call at Blue Springs, Missouri in August 1908. Jesse appears as "J.J.Carl, Gentry, Ark." on that list! But the real clincher is the family letters and papers of Quantrill guerrilla, Warren Welch that are stored at the Jackson County Historical Society Archives in Independence, Missouri. Within those are original handwritten lists of "Quantrill's old command" by Warren Welch. Jesse Carl appears on THREE of those lists AND he is straight out mentioned in a September 8, 1908 Welch family letter from Decatur, Arkansas that is believed to be written by Warren and Lem's brother, James. It says..."Yes, I know J. J. Carl at gentry he is a fine man." Then comes reference to the 1908 reunion... "I wanted to come to the reunion But it was impossible for me to come. But I want to come some time." The only thing that escapes us is that no fight, battles or raids have been found attached to Jesse's name. We can only guess that he put those days behind him or did not divulge what he did for fear of recourse by people who were Union backers way after the war had ended! He might have used an alias during war time as, per these lists, he is found as "J. J. Carl" and also as "John J. Carl." Whether "John" is an alias or a simple mistake by Warren's memory is unknown.
Educational tip: You can find extensive Carl family history and genealogy in the "Benton County Pioneer, Volume 35, Number 3, Autumn 1990."
In the above family picture, Jesse is sitting in the very front row at farthest left.