Moore receives UDC award
by JOYANNA LOVE Banner Senior Staff Writer
Apr 27, 2014 | 504 views | 0 0 comments | 2 2 recommendations | email to a friend | print
UNITED DAUGHTERS OF THE CONFEDERACY historian Debbie Riggs, far left, stands with local historian Debbie Moore as she receives the UDC Jefferson Davis Historical Gold Medal from Tennessee Division Recording Secretary Rebecca Sardella. Banner photo, JOYANNA LOVE
UNITED DAUGHTERS OF THE CONFEDERACY historian Debbie Riggs, far left, stands with local historian Debbie Moore as she receives the UDC Jefferson Davis Historical Gold Medal from Tennessee Division Recording Secretary Rebecca Sardella. Banner photo, JOYANNA LOVE
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The United Daughters of the Confederacy Jefferson Davis Chapter No. 900 of Cleveland presented the Jefferson Davis Historical Gold Medal national award to local historian Debbie Moore during a meeting Saturday.

“I am very honored and humbled to receive this award,” Moore said. “It was a great surprise.”

The UDC local chapter nominated Moore for her book “Confederate Voices,” which is a collection of local stories and diary entries from the time of the Civil War.

Before being notified of receiving the award, Moore had no idea the book had been nominated.

The award is the organization’s “highest nonlineage award,” chapter president Marilyn Kinne said.

“Debbie has done so much for the preservation of history in Bradley County and the surrounding areas it is past time she was recognized,” Kinne said.

The award is given for “excellence in history, essay writing, declamation and other points of special attainment in keeping with the historic aims and the purposes” of the United Daughters of the Confederacy, Tennessee Division UDC recording secretary Rebecca Sardella said.

The award design was approved in 1941.

Moore thanked the chapter for the work former members did 100 years ago that made the book possible.

“They gathered the stories. Their own stories, the stories that their mothers told, the stories of their fathers, their sisters their brothers, those who had lived through the great war,” Moore said. “And they took the time to write all of that down.”

These documents were kept at a local historian’s home.

“Her mom had been president of the United Daughters of the Confederacy in much earlier times,” Moore said.

The historian made copies of all the documentation and gave it to Moore, commenting she knew Moore would make a book out of it.

“I read it like a love novel because it really does tell the history of the local people. And it’s not about slavery; it’s about survival. We were occupied by both sides during the entire war, and these women were left here alone to provide for their families … it just tells their day-to-day living, and there were some spitfire ladies in there,” Moore said.

She said additional information for the book was found through state archives, the Internet and talking to local residents who were related to those mentioned in the documents.

Moore said the historic preservation the local UDC does often goes unnoticed.

“I am really proud to be honored by a whole set of historians,” Moore said.

The presentation was held in the First Presbyterian Church downtown. The church was built in 1856. During the Civil War, the church sustained damage. According to UDC information, musket balls and bullets can still be seen embedded in the walls and steeples.