Thomas Spurgen - Union Pilot
The following excerpts were taken from
"History of the Rebellion in Bradley County, East Tennessee" by J.S. Hurlburt. 1866
At the commencement of the Civil War, Thomas Spurgen resided in the 8th district of Bradley county, Tennessee, which was comprised primarily of Rebel citizens. Thomas became active in helping people find their way north and eventually was appointed by General James Spears of the Army of Ohio, as a recruiting officer. He selected Bradley county as his field of operations and toiled unceasingly. He completed 15 tours from Bradley to the Northern army, piloting through the forests of Tennessee and Kentucky thirteen companies to the Union lines. The number of men was a little more than eleven hundred and fifty, about a thousand of whom enlisted in the Federal army. The remainder were persons, many of whom were unqualified to enter the service, who passed through with Spurgen simply as refugees. The average distance traveled each tour was about 275 miles. No refugee or recruit was lost who committed himself to Spurgen's guidance , nor did any letter or other valuable fail of its destination that was entrusted to his care.
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