Josiah Wilson Rainwater

Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War

Photos from the Past

Josiah Wilson Rainwater

Josiah Wilson Rainwater was the youngest son of Barthomomew and Nancy McLaughlin Rainwater. Born March 16, 1843 in Pulaski County, Kentucky, he was the 12th of 13 children and was named for a prominent local Baptist preacher.

He enlisted in Company D of the 3rd Kentucky Volunteer Infantry in November 1861 at Camp Wolford. He was promoted to Corporal in January 1863, promoted to Sergeant in July 1863, and appointed Ordinance Sergeant on April 23, 1864. He was wounded in the Battle of Stone River, Tennessee (Murfreesboro) December 31, 1862 - shot in the hand - serving under General Rosecrans. He was wounded at Marietta, Georgia on June 27, 1864, apparently during Sherman's march on Atlanta - shot in the hip and thorax. He was finally mustered out in January 1865. Based on his service and pension papers, there is no truth to the family myth that he served as a Captain under General Grant.

Josiah returned to Pulaski County and married Elizabeth Jane Weddle on January 11, 1866. Josiah and Elizabeth Jane took up farming in Pulaski County and were the parents of nine children. Josiah also served for a term as Deputy Sheriff. In 1890, the couple moved to Waterloo, Williamson County, Texas, where Josiah was a farmer, as well as the Postmaster and owner of the local general store. Two of his daughters married the sons of a neighbor, Emanuel Aderholt, though Josiah and Emanuel are said to have never spoken to each other because one was a Union man and the other a devout Confederate.

The Rainwaters moved again in 1907 to Oklaunion, Wilbarger County, Texas, where Josiah continued to farm, served on the school board and was the enumerator for his district in the 1910 census. From 1914-1927, he was one of the directors of the 1st State Bank. He was also an active Mason.

Josiah and Elizabeth Jane Rainwater retired to Vernon, Wilbarger County, Texas. He died on March 16, 1934, at the age of 89, and was buried in East View Cemetery, Vernon. Photograph and information submitted by Susan Chance-Rainwater and R. Steven Rainwater.

Josiah Wilson Rainwater
Photograph believed to have been
taken of around the time of his marriage (1866)