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No Rest for the Unforgiven

From: WHRV
Series: Our Eastern Shore
Length: 01:25

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The story of Marietta Wise (1862-1928) daughter of Confederate Captain George Wise who was killed at the siege of Petersburg in 1864.

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Perhaps she would remind us of one of the inflexible Southern spinsters in one of William Faulkner’s gothic tales. She was Marietta Wise (1862-1928) daughter of Confederate Captain George Wise who was killed at the siege of Petersburg in 1864

When the Civil War broke out, George Wise, a lawyer, left the Eastern Shore along with his family to serve the Confederacy. This meant his property was subject to seizure for the use of the Union occupiers. Woodbourne, the Wise family home, became a hospital. Apparently, the Yankees dug up the grave of a Wise family child while looking for hidden money. And then there was a drunken brawl during which gunfire erupted. We would assume a hospital would be a place of rest. Or should be.

Some of the Union patients died and were buried in the backyard. After the war, the Wise family returned to the Eastern Shore and Miss Etta, as she grew old, relished an absolute hatred of the Yankees who had despoiled her home. When the barnyard animals died, she had the Yankee graves opened and the animal carcasses stuffed inside.

Piece Description

Perhaps she would remind us of one of the inflexible Southern spinsters in one of William Faulkner’s gothic tales. She was Marietta Wise (1862-1928) daughter of Confederate Captain George Wise who was killed at the siege of Petersburg in 1864

When the Civil War broke out, George Wise, a lawyer, left the Eastern Shore along with his family to serve the Confederacy. This meant his property was subject to seizure for the use of the Union occupiers. Woodbourne, the Wise family home, became a hospital. Apparently, the Yankees dug up the grave of a Wise family child while looking for hidden money. And then there was a drunken brawl during which gunfire erupted. We would assume a hospital would be a place of rest. Or should be.

Some of the Union patients died and were buried in the backyard. After the war, the Wise family returned to the Eastern Shore and Miss Etta, as she grew old, relished an absolute hatred of the Yankees who had despoiled her home. When the barnyard animals died, she had the Yankee graves opened and the animal carcasses stuffed inside.

Broadcast History

airs weekly on WHRV and WHRO FM

Additional Credits

Virginia Foundation for the Humanities
Barrier Islands Center

Related Website

www.whro.org