Keith and

Malinda Blalock

LOCAL WOMAN ENLISTS IN CONFEDERATE ARMY

 

Malinda Blalock holding a photo of Keith Keith Blalock
Before Tammy Wynette "stood by her man" Malinda Blalock stood by hers.   Malinda Pritchard met her husband, William McKesson (Keith) Blalock, when they were children together in a one room school house at the base of Grandfather Mountain in present day Avery County.  Keith marched off with the local 26th N.C. with intentions of slipping through the lines and joining up with a Union unit.  One story goes that on the march to the depot he noticed a small young man marching beside him with short hair covered with a forage cap.  It was his wife Malinda.  Another story says Keith did not protest too much when she informed him she was going to enlist.  At the enlistment station in Lenoir, N.C. Malinda signed enlistment papers as twenty year old S. M. (Sammy) Blalock, brother to William McKesson Blalock.  Instead of being sent north where they could join the Federal troops, they were sent south.  Keith was looked up to by the other men and soon was promoted to a brevet sergeant.  His standing order to Sammy was to stay as close to him as possible.  Keith devised a plan to be released from Confederate service by rolling naked in a bedof poison oak.  The doctors feared it was small pox authorized his medical discharge.  Malinda pleaded with Col. Vance to allow her to accompany her "brother" home to care for him.  When her request was denied, she revealed that she was a woman.  Vance had no choice but to dismiss her.  Upon returning to Grandfather Mountain, Keith offered his services to the Union Army and became a recruiting officer for the 10th Michigan.  The Blalocks became the "Bonnie and Clyde" of the western North Carolina mountains terrorizing both Unionists and Confederates.  Murder, robbery and plundering became their calling cards and the entire time Malinda was by her husband's side.  

 

Read More About Keith and Malinda Blalock

 

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http://www.cojoweb.com/malinda_blaylock.html                       

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http://www.geocities.com/Heartland/Prairie/3332/keith1.htm

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http://members.aol.com/sonscv/essay.html

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http://www.ehistory.com/world/PeopleView.cfm?PID=92       

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http://www.wtv-zone.com/civilwar/kmblalock.html                    

 

Buy the book "Grandfather and the Globe"

 A fictionalized account of Keith and Malinda Blalock at the Avery County Museum Store

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