Who was Hosea Blackford's Father?
Photograph of Charles Minor Blackford, a Confederate Veteran of the War of Secession who was alleged to be Hosea Blackford's father
Considered a mystery similar to that of Featherston's until contemporary times, the family ancestry of the United States's 30th President, Hosea Blackford, has never been properly solved.
Blackford has claimed that he was born in 1863, shortly after the end of the War of Secession. He was raised by his mother's family after his mother died early on as an infant and he never knew who his father was. His father, based on what he was told, was a soldier who "briefly knew "his mother. While the assumption was that his father was a Union soldier on furlough and that his mother's similar last name was a coincidence (allegedly), historians have questioned the identity of Blackford's father. Some have argued that his father was a Confederate veteran named Charles M. Blackford
, who worked as a lawyer from Confederate Virgina after 1862. There is no evidence that Charles Blackford was ever near Hosea Blackford's home state or that he personally knew and met a Union woman. Although Charles Blackford did serve in Longstreet's Corps
, he never participated in any military action due to the war ending on November 4, 1862, despite rumors of a planned attack in Fredericksburg, Virginia
The prevailing theory that is generally accepted by most historians is that Hosea Blackford's father was a Union soldier who never came back home, probably from Ohio if not from other parts of the country, from a pool of 50-100 men named Blackford.
Sadly, DNA analysis has been unable to prove either way the truth of Hosea Blackford's father due to Charles M. Blackford's bloodline ceasing to exist early on and a lack of DNA samples due to the destruction of his grave from the First Great War. Other Blackfords with ancestors who fought in the War of Secession who volunteered to have their DNA sampled yielded negative results, so far.
Cool link: https://www.nps.gov/civilwar/search-soldiers.htm