Recently at the Piankatank Ruritan Club building in Mathews, the Civil War came alive. The Lane-Armistead Camp #1772 of the Sons of Confederate Veterans held a two-day educational observance of the war’s sesquicentennial. One of its events showed how hoe cakes were made and cooked.
Walter Scott Hunley was camp cook. Using an aged iron griddle, one most likely the Rebels could have used, with his own mixture (the cornmeal he had ground from the corn he had raised), Walter treated those passing by, on their way to church services or just visiting the camp, delicious, hot hoe cakes.
Now, don’t think it’s exaggeration by calling them delicious; they really were. One was not enough. Walter puts a little sugar in his mixture. To show how the hoe cake possibly got its name, Walter displayed a cake on an old tobacco hoe blade which had once been owned by Miss Sally Billups, a slave in her younger days.