W. D. GAULT GRAVESTONE PHOTO
South Kansas Tribune, Wednesday, April 7, 1920, Pg. 1:
D. Gault, 40th Indiana Inf.
The death messenger called Wednesday night at the home of W. D. Gault, a hero of the Civil War, and he entered into eternity. He was an Indianian by birth, a carpenter by occupation, and early in the Civil War, volunteered and was mustered in Co. C, Fortieth Indiana Regiment, a comrade of our former pioneer Peter S. Moore, who years ago paid testimony to Comrade Gault’s courage. Before the taking of Chattanooga, the river was at a flood and it became necessary for the Union army to obtain possession of Lookout mountain, the key to the southeast. It was impossible for a boat to cross the river, and the commander called for a volunteer to go up stream and swim down to the opposite shore. It was W. D. Gault who was accepted for the perilous task, and with a small rope about his waist he swam the river and drew a stronger rope over, and then with that fastened small boats with men in them were drawn over and then a pontoon bridge built and the army crossed, successfully and captured the key position and opened the way for the Confederate surrender. After the war Mr. Gault was united in marriage with Miss Sarah Slavens to whom three daughters were born, but each were claimed as they reached young womanhood and today Mrs. Gault and a niece of her husband are the only survivors. They located in Coffeyville in ’73, later in our city, and both held membership in the First Methodist church. The funeral was held Sunday in the church they loved, and Rev. G. F. Denser of Grace church comforted the sorrowing friends. The Grand Army rendered its ritual service as did the Odd Fellows of which he was long a member, and then the remains were taken to the beautiful Mount Hope cemetery to be beside his daughters to await the resurrection.
Independence Daily Reporter, April 1, 1920, Pg. 1:
Well Known Resident of South Burns Street Passed Away Last Night
W. D. Gault died last night at 11:30 o’clock, at his home 205 Burns street, following an attack of acute indigestion and heart trouble. Mr. Gault was born Sept. 4, 1843 in Montgomery county, Indiana, but has spent the last thirty years of his life in this city. He is survived by his widow, Sarah Gault.
Funeral services will be held at the First Methodist church Sunday afternoon at 2:30 o’clock, in charge of the Odd Fellows lodge.
Contributed by Mrs. Maryann Johnson a Civil war researcher and a volunteer in the Kansas Room of the Independence Public Library, Independence, Kansas.