Update: Andy Hall of Dead Confederates has added some very insightful comments about Thomas Tobe, Please see the comments.
Today we have the pension files of Thomas Tobe. Thomas enlisted in Company G of Holcombe’s Legion in August, 1861 and remained with the armies until the surrender at Appomattox in April of 1865. On the second page of his pension application the pension board states he was a bona fide Soldier and a free negro who volunteered for this company an served until the end of the war. A quick rundown of the men in Company G according to this website does not list a Thomas Tobe with Company G. The website does list (although spelt wrong) Tobe’s apparent Captain, Capt. Heller. Also, according to the same website…
“The South Carolina 7th Cavalry Regiment was organized by the increase in the Calvary Battaltion of the Holcombe Legion to a regiment on March 18, 1864, per S.O. #65, Adjutant and Inspector’s General’s Office. The unit surrendered at Appomattox Court House, Virginia on April 9, 1865….”
You can also read the following history of Holcombe’s Legion in this book on Google Books.
To this point I have yet to find a muster roll or roster of Company G that includes Thomas Tobe either in Holcombe’s Legion or the 7th SC Cavalry. What does this mean? I cannot say at this time. But, it does say that he served until the surrender at Appomattox so maybe he was paroled there. According to the NPS/Appomattox website the following slave and free negroes were paroled after the surrender.
Blacks paroled at Appomattox Court House include thirty-nine slaves and free blacks
Quartermaster’s Department of the Third Corps Ordinance : 16 Slaves (unnamed) in public service
Eighteenth Georgia Battalion enlisted for the War: Joe Parkman Co. A; Henry Williams Co. B, George Waddell Co. A; Louis Gardeen Co. C– all musicians.
James Polk Co. B, William Read Co. C; Scipio Africanus Co. B; John Lery Co. A, Quartermaster Department– all cooks
Gary’s Calvary Brigade: James Barabsha; Guard Bob (slave of David Bridges); Thomas Bowen, teamster; Burress Bowen, teamster; Jim (slave of T.M. Dettrick),teamster; John Bowen, teamster; Jack Caldwell, teamster; Solomon Wright, blacksmith
Donaldson Artillery, Company B: H. Blum, cook; Jno. Mamply, servant; L. Leport, servant; Jno. Semple, servant
Detached Naval Brigade privates attached to Naval Brigade: Charles Cleoper, Joseph Johnson, James Hicks
If you have any information that might help clear up the story of Thomas Tobe, please feel free to contact me here through the blog or on Facebook.