We recently found the following article in a Monmouth, IL paper from 1914. He had been missing almost 50 years when this inquiry went out:
"Missing Since 1865, Sought
Du Quoin, Feb. 7 - An effort was started here by relatives to find Moses Branum, a Civil War veteran who disappeared from his family at Cairo in the fall of 1865, after he was discharged from the Army. Before the war, Branum owned a farm of 120 acres at Holly Springs, Ark. He was drafted into the Confederate army, but deserted and joined the Union forces. In 1865, he took his family to Cairo, making the journey overland with an ox team. He disappeared a few days later. John Branum of this city, a son, held the deed to the tract of land for many years."
Many things could have happened. Assuming no one in his family knew what happened to him, it seems reasonable to think they may have tried to report the disappearance to local authorities, run an ad in the local paper, etc. Are any of you up on what resources were available for this just after the Civil War had ended? Were they still under military rule, so that reports might have been made to the army? Do you know if papers from the Fall of 1865 can be found in the local library. of course, I can call the library. I'm really looking for someone who has a better than average understanding of Cairo just after the war who might be able to give me some insight into the situation there at the time.
Cathey Smith Hargrove