The following eyewitness account was written by T. C. McCorvey of Tuscaloosa in April 1865 during the War Between The States.
"A boy of 13 has a distant recollection of some of the incidents of the raid on Monroeville. The first raid naturally created a wild panic in the village. When couriers arrived announcing the approach of the Federal cavalry along the road from Claiborne, women and children crowded terror-stricken to the village hotel. The probate judge of Monroe County at that time, Murdock McCorvey and Mrs. Mary Eastin Spottswood rode out two or three miles on the Claiborne road to meet the advancing raid and ask protection for the homes of the village. They were conducted to Lt. Col Asa L. Gurney, of the 2nd New York detachment. Not a house in the village was pillaged. The commissary stores that had been collected by the Confederate government under the so-
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called "tax-in-kind" and stored in housed on the northern side of the public courthouse square were burned; but private property, except horses and forage were respected. The iron safes in the courthouse offices were broken open and some documents scattered and lost in the search for valuables; but there was not wanton destruction of public records. This was not to be the last of the raiders. Lucas' brigade passed through Monroeville, some seven or eight miles to the northwest, parallel to the route of Smith's army. Accordingly on the 21st of April the advance guard of Luca's command dashed into Monroeville, unannounced this time by courier and by nightfall the whole brigade encamped the village. The 2nd New York cavalry commanded by General Morgan H. Chrysler encamped around the Baptist Church, a half mile or more eat of the courthouse. Guards were placed to prevent the plundering of homes but smokehouses and barns were swept clean."