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Covington, Georgia Civil War History- The Simms Brothers


Screen Shot 2014-07-28 at 2.01.57 PMDuring the Civil War many of the young men in Covington, Georgia left to fight for the Confederate army. One family, The Simms, sent three of their sons off to war. Some of the history of the Simms family has been saved and passed down to become Covington, Georgia Civil War history.

The three Simms brothers who went off to the Civil War were Richard Lee Simms, James Phillip Simms, and Arthur Benjamin Simms.

James Phillip Simms was the eldest brother; he was born in 1837. He started as a Major in the Confederate army. He was quickly promoted to Colonel in 1862.  James led the men of the 53rd Georgia in the Battle of Fredericksburg in Virginia and at Gettysburg in Maryland. This prompted him to be promoted to Brigadier General in December 1864. This led to the nickname General Simms back in Covington, Georgia. He proudly led his brigade until he was captured at Sailors Creek, Virginia on April 6, 1865.  The war ended three days later and he was released.

Richard Lee Simms was born two years after James Phillip Simms. Sadly, Richard Lee was killed in Maryland in 1862 at the Battle of South Mountain.

Arthur Benjamin Simms was the youngest brother of the Simms. He was affectionately called Bennie. During the Civil War he was captured in Maryland. Luckily, he was later released and he returned to Covington.

After the Civil War, James and Arthur returned to Covington, Georgia. Together they opened a law firm and lived the rest of their lives happily. James was laid to rest in May of 1887 and 22 days later Arthur followed him.

Covington, Georgia has a rich Civil War history. Many of the men who went off to war were buried in the City of Covington Cemetery.  We love to learn more about our history through the voices from the past.

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