Fort Hamby on the Yadkin, Brushy Mountains
The following data is extracted from Trinity College Historical Society.
Wade started across the Brushy Mountains on. Saturday, May 13th, and reached Mr. Green's that evening about dark. Mr. W. C. Green saw a number of men stop their horses in the road above the house, and he concluded that they were Wade's men. He notified his father, and mustered the Negroes in the dining hall. All the lights were extinguished through the moon was shining brightly. Mr. J. B. Green stationed himself at the front door, with a revolver in one hand and a dirk in the other. Mr. W. C. Green took his position at a window commanding a view of the front gate and porch. The Negroes were stationed in the rear part of the house. Three men with guns approached the house in the front, one of them being Wade who had on a bright Confederate uniform which he always wore on his raids, posing as a Confederate soldier when necessary to gain admission into the houses he wished to plunder. The other members of the company took another route and surrounded the house from the rear, though this was not known at the time. Wade pretended that that they were confederate soldiers; that they had belonged to the cavalry and were now on their way home, having been detained on account of sickness. Mr. J. B. Green told him "he lied, that he knew who he was, and that he could not enter his house except over his dead body."
Some of the men had by this time come up from the rear and were trying to force an entrance. When this fact was made known to Mr. W. C. Green by one of the Negroes, he rushed to the rear, knocked out a pane of glass and opened fire on them, wounding one of the men. This unexpected turn of affairs seemed to frighten them and they all began to retire. Mr. J. B. Green and Mr. W. C. Green rushed into the yard and opened fire on them as they retreated. Wade and his men at the same time returning the fire. They retreated so rapidly that two of the men left their horses.
It was Sunday morning before the news was circulated. Mr. W. C. Green went to York Collegiate Institute and informed several men, and by 10 o'clock twenty-two men, almost all of them Confederate soldiers, had gathered, ready to pursue the robbers. In this party were several officers of the Confederate army and they were dressed in their uniforms. Col. Wash. Sharpe was placed in command of the squad and they started in pursuit. The first news from Wade was when they reached 'Law's Gap. " Here it was found that Wade had camped in the Brushy mountains part of the night after the attack on Mr. Green, and about sunrise the next morning had made a raid on Mr. Laws and forced him to give up his money. He informed the party that two of Wade's men were wounded. The pursuers followed the trail and found that five miles from Wilkesboro Wade's men had left the public road and had taken a shorter route by way of Hix's Mill and Holman's ford to Fort Hamby. The ford was reached in the evening of May 14th, and after crossing the river, and traveling along the public road for about half a mile, the pursuing party left the public road and followed a private road which led to a creek at the base of the hill on which the Hamby house stood. "In the plan of attack, part of the company under Col. G. W. Flowers was to approach from the north while the other part under Capt. Ellis, was to approach from the south, and then surround the house. In the enthusiasm of the moment all seemed to forget the danger. Col. Flowers' men had gotten within 75 yards, and Capt. Ellis' men within 20 yards of the house when its defenders poured a volley of minnie balls through the port holes." (Hon. R. Z. Linney). James K. Linney and Jones Brown were killed. Linney had charged bravely across the field and was killed on the east side of the house; Brown was charging up the hill on the west side when he was wounded. Some of the men were compelled to jump from their houses and throw themselves on the ground in order to escape being shot down. Their horses became frightened and breaking loose from them, ran to where Wade's men had their horses. Two of these horses were the ones captured from Wade at Mr. Green's. These men did not recover their horses at this time.
Under the severe fire the men were compelled to retreat. The force was now divided, part having fallen back across the creek, and part having reached the pines east of the building. There was no chance to re-unite, and after waiting until dark, the men withdrew, some reaching Moravian Falls that night. These m-et the others at ""Squire" Hubbard's the next morning. In retreating under the severe fire from the fort, the men were compelled to leave the bodies of Linney and Brown. Wade's men afterwards buried them near the fort.
These men returned to Alexander County and raised a large company, a strong force having been brought from Iredell County under the command of Wallace Sharpe. On Wednesday the force started towards Fort Hamby. After crossing Cove's Gap, a courier was sent back to Iredell county to request Capt. Cowan to raise a company and come to their assistance; also, another courier was sent to Statesville to an encampment of Federal soldiers to inform them of the condition of things and to ask their assistance. Before reaching Moravian Falls, they received a; message from Wade, saying, I 'Come on; I am looking for you; I can whip a thousand of you." It was dark when Holman's ford was reached. Some one in the woods before the company ordered them to halt. The men thought that the order was from some of Wade's band and was about to fire upon them, when it was found out that this was a company from Caldwell County, under the command of Capt. Isaac Oxford, on the same mission. They had encamped near the ford and had thrown out their sentinels. The two
Source: Trinity College Historical Society