Bill Rancic Defends His Wife Giuliana After Fashion Police Controversy: 'I Tried to Get Them to Release the Footage' 41 years, 2,184 covers and 55,435 stories from PEOPLE magazine's history for you to enjoy
- Bristol Palin Holds Shotgun in New Photo Amid Pregnancy Controversy
- The Best Photos from the Week of June 22- June 29, 2015
- Watch Shia LaBeouf Freestyle Rap While Shirtless in Bizarre YouTube Clip
- Naomi Campbell Fronts Lingerie Campaign at 45, Plus More Fall Campaign Updates
- Look Who's Back in Pretty Little Liars' New Episode
On Newsstands Now
- Matthew McConaughey: In His Own Words
- Jessa Duggar's Wedding Album
- Brittany Maynard's Final Days
Pick up your copy on newsstands
Click here for instant access to the Digital Magazine
People Top 5
LAST UPDATE: Tuesday February 10, 2015 01:10PM EST
PEOPLE Top 5 are the most-viewed stories on the site over the past three days, updated every 60 minutes
- August 19, 1996
- Vol. 46
- No. 8
Alberta Martin Stakes Her Claim as the Last Confederate Widow
Marsden isn't the only one to draw the feisty widow's fire. Martin, whose second husband, William, was drafted into the Fourth Alabama Infantry in 1864—a mere 63 years before she met him—is badgering Alabama into reinstating the monthly $50 Confederate widow's pension she has been entitled to since her third husband's death in 1983. (The state, operating on the erroneous assumption that no one was left to collect the checks, stopped funding Confederate pensions 10 years ago.) Back in 1865, William, then 20, was one of only a few hundred men to survive Gen. Ulysses S. Grant's bloody nine-month siege of Petersburg, Va. That Martin exists has enraptured both history buffs and Alabama, which formally proclaimed er the only living Civil War widow last month. "She's living, breathing, touching your hand," says William Rambo, head of the Confederate Memorial Park in Mountain Creek, Ala.
Martin's story comes up a bit short in the romance department, though. There were no thunderclaps when Alberta Farrow, 21, a farmer's daughter from Danley's Crossroads, met William Martin, an 82-year-old storekeeper with 12 children, in 1927. "I married him 'cause I wanted to get out of my house," says Alberta, who had been caring for eight siblings and an infant son since her first husband's death a year earlier in a car crash. But soon after her marriage, when she met William's 17-year-old grandson, Charlie, lightning did strike. "It was love at first sight," Martin says.
When William died in 1932, Alberta and Charlie wed and were together for 50 years. Now, Martin is enjoying her late-dawning celebrity. "My name will probably go down in books," says the Oldest Confederate Widow, "like one of those famous movie stars."
Treat Yourself! 4 Preview Issues
The most buzzed about stars this minute!