On 22 Apr. 1861, at the beginning of the Civil War, six sons of Benjamin Mills Roberts and Mary Ann Wright Roberts enlisted in Co. D (Isle of Wight Rifle Grays), 16th Va. Inf. Regt. They were Mills W., John W., Sylvester J., Benjamin C., Francis C., and Nathaniel C. Roberts, who received a medical discharge. 1st Lt. Stephen W. Roberts, the seventh son, already had enlisted in the 11th N.C. Inf. All of the brothers were wounded while in service, and three surrendered at Appomattox Court House. Remarkably, all survived the war to return to the Windsor area.