Known CSA Veterans at Cedar Hill
Vicksburg, Mississippi

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Photos by Bryan Skipworth

Theophilus G. Birchett
June 27, 1835 - Jan. 1, 1904

The grave marker of Theo Birchett carries in the center of a cross within a crown, both within a Maltese cross. The surrounding Latin phrase, "In hoc signo vinces," translates to "in this sign you shall conquer." This sign of the cross was shown to Constantine by God in the early 4th century and he made it his military motto. The original Knights Templar used this motto when they founded their order during the Crusades. In the late 1700s, the Freemasons began using the Templar symbols.


On the back of Theo Birchett's grave marker are these words from the Bible.

"I was naked and ye clothed me.
I was sick, and ye visited me.
I was in prison and ye came unto me."

On the larger monument (see photo below), his name is at the top of one side.

Theophilus G. Birchett
Born June 27, 1835
Died Jan 1, 1904


Dr. Theophilus C. Birchett served in Capt. Swett's Co., Warren Lt Arty,
Mississippi Light Artillery

He was an assistant surgeon.

See record at

This obituary appears in the Confederate Veteran, Vol. XII (1904), pg. 87.

Dr. T. G. Birchett

January 1, 1904 was a sad day for Vicksburg, and the usual greeting of Happy New Year was forgotten, for as friend met friend the only words heard were: Dr. Birchett is dead."

Dr. T. G. Birchett was born at Orange C. H., Va., June 27, 1835. He was the son of Dr. George Heith Birchett, who died in Vicksburg many years ago.

Dr. Birchett graduated at the Philadelphia Medical College at twenty-four years of age, and with the exception of a short time spent in Arkansas, Vicksburg had always been his home. He was sixty-eight years of age at the time of his death.

He went into the War between the States as surgeon for the Warren Light Artillery, but soon rose to be surgeon of Hardee's Corps, which position he held through the war. He was ever at the front and true to the Confederate cause to the end of his life. After he returned home, at the close of the war, he renewed the practice of medicine, and no man ever did more to relieve the afflicted than he. His kind heart would never let him refuse a call, regardless of the hour, weather, or remuneration; and the poor of the city, both white and black, have lost their best friend. All city officers were closed out of respect for the dead, and the flag on the city hall lowered to half-mast.

The deceased had held many positions of honor and trust. He was a member of the city council for years, twice Mayor, represented the county one term in the Legislature, was county physician at the time of his death, and surgeon of the U.C.V. Camp here. He was a Mason in high rank, a member of the K. of P. and other benevolent orders. He was also, a number of years ago, in charge of the State hospital.

Dr. Birchett returned at 1 p.m. on December 31 from a several days' hunt at Bear Lake, La., which he expressed himself as having enjoyed exceedingly. He sat and talked that night with his family till eleven o'clock, when he retired and slept well. At six o'clock the next morning, after he and his wife had exchanged several remarks, she went as was her custom, to unlock the door for the servant. As she started back to bed the Doctor made such a peculiar choking noise that his wife called him; but, receiving no reply, she became alarmed, lighted the gas, and hurried to his side, but in a moment the noble heart had ceased to beat.

In May, 1866, Dr. Birchett married Miss Clara Estelle Klein, daughter of the late Mr. John Klein. His bereaved wife and six children survive him; Dr. J. A. K. Birchett, T. G. Birchett, Jr. of Vicksburg; Mr. Clarence Birchett, of New York; Mr. George K. Birchett, with the Y and M. V. R. R., and now at Gramacy, La.; Misses Nora, Estelle, and Mahala.

Never in the history of Vicksburg has there been such an outpouring of the people to pay a last loving tribute to one so dear to all. The deep-toned requiem of Holy Trinity's bell was followed by those on the public buildings. All of the military and other organizations in the city turned out in their different uniforms to do him honor. The flags of the Third Regiment, National Guard, were draped on each side the casket: at the head was the battle flag of the Ninth Mississippi  Infantry, C.S.A.; at the foot the guidon of the First Georgia Regiment; across the breast was laid his Masonic apron; his military saber, Knights Templar sword, belt, and cap crossed at the head. The entire ceremony, at both church and cemetery, was imposing to the last degree. The floral offerings which were many and beautiful, were carried to the grave in a wagon drawn by the Doctor's old favorite horse. The services ended, the guns of the battery fired a parting salute to the lamented dead. Peace to his ashes! and may God comfort and uphold the wife in her loneliness, and the many sad hearts so sorely bereft!


The Birchett lot at Cedar Hill. Theophilus G. Birchett's grave is on the front row in left hand corner.



From Confederate Veteran, Vol. XII (1904), pg. 87

Dr. T. G. Birchett

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