A long lost Civil War grave was discovered in East Texas Saturday afternoon, a burial sight for what historians call a forgotten soldier. Workers unearthed the remains of Confederate Colonel Cullen Redwine Earp, Saturday near FM 49 and FM 1795 in Upshur County. In a steady drizzle, Civil War Historians and members of the Sons of Confederate Veterans found Colonel Earp's grave sight deep in the Upshur County woods.
"We've been working on this for about a dozen years or so, real seriously for the last two years when we found out where he was," said Civil War Historian Bill Starnes. "We thought he was going to be lost to history." Earp led the 10th Texas Cavalry in furious battles in Nashville and Chickamauga. Historians say there is evidence Earp was wounded in action in 1865, then came back to Texas and later died. For the men involved in today's search, it's not just a chance to dig up history, it's a chance to give a veteran an honorable send off. One man had a unique connection to Earp.
"My great-grandfather and his five brothers all served in the 10th Texas Cavalry and Colonel Earp, served as their commander," said Civil War re-enactor Preston Furlow. "They served directly under him." His burial sight was lost for more than 140 years, but these men say his dedication to duty was as important as any generation.
"Every veteran of every war that this country's been involved in, and any person that's born onto this earth for that matter deserves the respect," said Furlow. He had no family left in East Texas, but with his bones, Earp was given an honorary volley by civil war re-enactors.
"He deserves to be somewhere where people can honor him, and show him the respect he needs to have," said Starnes. Earp will be laid to rest with military honors in a special ceremony on April 25th.