By Joyce W. Sanders
No author ever dreamed, envisioned or recorded a more touchingly beautiful love story than that of Mollie Lloyd and Enoch Henderson Williams Jr. They were married in Attala County on June 7, 1860, on Mollie's 17th birthday. They were blissfully happy for a few short years. Enoch or Nick as Mollie called him, was a dedicated Christian and teacher. Mollie was a contented housewife and mother. Little Willie, William Enoch, was born the first year.
Then came the war! Nick, being the man he was, answered the call of the Confederacy. He saved all the many letters his wife wrote and sent them home by his friends, or brought them when on leave.
"When Mollie wrote private and personal news, she asked hime to destroy the letters so they could not be read by anyone else. This Nick refused to do, as he said they were his dearest treasures and asked her to save them so that after the war they might sit down by the fire and read them together.
Only nine letters remain today. Each letter starts, "'Beloved Husband' and closes 'receive bountiful share (of love) to thyself...I remain as ever your fond , loving and affectionate wife."
Mollie never complained but always filled her letters full of news and affection. She wrote freely of her faith in God. "I am quite anxious to see you, my dear, but I would not have you come home while your country so much needs you. I will wait patiently and trust we may meet again in some future day."
Nick wrote regularly in spite of the difficult circumstances. On July 9, 1864, he receives news of the birth of his daughter and names her Olivia, called Ollie, and Mollie adds Hardwick for her loved sister-in-law, Mary Hardwick Horton Lloyd. Olivia Hardwick had been born June 29.
All love stories do not end "and they lived happily ever after." Nick and Mollie did not get to sit by the fire and reread those love letters. Quoting from Mr. Brown, a member of the "C" Company of the Long
| Creek Rifles, as told to Nick's grandson in 1918 when he visited Sallis: "Nick was hit first and grabbed his brother as he followed over the wall."
Lt. Enoch Williams had led Creek Riflemen, which was repulsed with heavy losses. This was at the Battle of Franklin, Tennessee. Green Williams reorganized the company and led it in a second and final charge. On the next day, Mr. Brown and others went into "No Man's Land" under a Flag of Truce and buried the brothers "wrapped in one blanket, together".
Nick left a sorrowful widow and two lovely children. Green died without issue. His letters, war record and a monument at Mississippi College which bears his name, are all that remain. They are sufficient, for they show him to have been a brave and honorable man.
Though the South lost, these young Williams men did not die in vain. The good they did lives on in these letters and records which are on file in the Attala County Library Genealogy Room.