It was obedience even unto death. From the Richmond, Va., Times, October 29, 1899.
Grave in Hollywood recalls a story of devotion to duty. Came South to fight with us.James H. Beers, of Connecticut, who fell at Chancellorsville—Ran the gauntlet when he left Home—Services for the Confederacy.
Within the last few days there has been placed over a low mound in my family lot in Hollywood, a simple granite marker bearing this inscription:
James H. Beers, of Connectcut, who fell at Chancellorsville fighting for Virginia and the South, May 3, 1863.The erection of this modest stone not only marks the discharge of an obligation, richly merited and long deferred, but it also epitomizes a life not unworthy of record and of remembrance. In the brief recital which follows, we shall endeavor to keep in mind that—while the peace of death has, years agone, passed upon the chief actor in this strange story and probably also upon most of his relatives living when he died—yet there may be others now living to whom the record of his life and death must needs be somewhat painful; therefore, we will tell the story simply and quietly, as far as possible, without the exaggeration of passion or prejudice. When I first knew Mr. Beers he was an intelligent young mechanic—originally, I think, from Bridgeport, but at the time living in New Haven, Conn., where I was a college student, we both being members of a Bible class connected with a church of which my father, Rev. Joseph C. Stiles, was then pastor, and Mr. Gerard Hallock, of the New York Journal of Commerce, the most prominent member. Shortly after my first acquaintance with Beers, Mr. Hallock became interested in him, being attracted by his regular attendance upon the services of the church and Bible class and his modest yet  self-respectful and intelligent bearing, and he soon took him to New York in some subordinate capacity connected with his paper. This was, perhaps, a year or so before the breaking out of the war, but Beers continued to visit New Haven from time to time—possibly every Saturday with Mr. Hallock—and we learned that he had exhibited rather unusual facility, not to say talent, for journalism, and had been rapidly advanced, until he had come to be an assistant to the night editor of Mr. Hallock's great paper. It was probably through his connection with this leading Democratic daily, that he imbibed the views he subsequently held as to the proper construction of the Federal Constitution and the relations between the Federal Government and the States; views which he followed to their logical conclusion, and in defense of which he ultimately laid down his life. As the sectional exitement increased and Civil War became more and more imminent, Beers became more and more restless and unhappy, until actual hostilities began with the bombardment of Fort Sumter, when he informed Mr Hallock that it would be impossible for him to continue to discharge his duties upon the paper. I do not remember how long it was after this that he came up to New Haven to consult my father, I think, with the approval of Mr. Hallock. Meanwhile, under the influence of like feelings, I had left New York, where for some months I had been studying law, and had gone up to New Haven, preparatory to going South. My father had asked from General Scott passports to Virginia for himself and three sons, and the General had replied, giving the desired permit for my father, but refusing it for his boys, and we had thereupon determined to run down the coast in an open boat, which we were preparing for the purpose, being actually at work upon the sails when Beers was announced. He came directly up to the attic, which was our workshop, and, upon learning our purpose, expressed greatest interest and went to work with a sail needle, declaring that he would make the voyage with us. I rather discouraged him, calling attention to the fact that he was a Northern man and had a wife and two children to support, mentioning, in this connection, his fine position and prospects, all of which would necessarily be sacrificed. He replied that he had some money which he would leave with our mother; trusting her to expend it for his wife and children and to bring them South when she came, adding that God never gave a man a wife and children to stand in the way of the discharge  of his plain duty, and that it was plainly his duty to go with us and aid the South in the defense of her clear and clearly violated rights.