30 April 2016

Z is for Zilphy and Zollie (A to Z Challenge Complete!)

It's not often I find "Z" names in the cemetery.  Just in time for the challenge, I find two!

100_1343Zilpha (aka Zilphy) was born about the year 1819, and joined the Missionary Baptist Church in 1840.  Zilphy married Jerry Myre (Jeremiah?) Broxton and had several children.  When she died in 1881, Zilphy left "one son, 5 daughters, 12 grand children and her dear husband."

Zilphy and Jerry share a stone obelisk in Harmony – Smyrna Cemetery at Dooly County, Georgia.  He was born 20 August 1819, and died 8 November 1888.  The inscription to both Zilphy and Jerry from their children:

Died as they had lived
in full assurance of a
blessed immortality.
Our loved ones is Gone.
Good by dear father
and mother.  We hope to
meet you in that better
land.

And then there was Zollie.  Born 20 April 1882 in Georgia, he was one of eight children born to Charlie and Ella Peavy.  Zollie spent his younger years and early adulthood farming.  He then married Julia Belle Ransom 26 February 1922 in Dooly County.  She was about twenty years his junior, but I think the marriage was the first for them both.  Zollie and Julia had at least four children before nephritis (inflammation of the kidneys) caused Zollie's death in the summer of 1930.

The handwritten inscription on Zollie's simple gravestone, especially with the endearing moniker of Daddy, tugs at the heart a bit.

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And that's a wrap! This completes the A to Z Blog Challenge.  A sincere "Thank-you!" to all that followed along.  I am especially grateful to all that took the time to comment.  I have discovered a few more blogs to follow through this challenge, so I plan to be talking with you again soon!

Did you miss a post or two over the last month? You can see all my A to Z Challenge posts here (in reverse order). I hope this is not the end of our relationship, and that you'll continue to follow this Southern Graves blog!

29 April 2016

Y is for Yet, Yes, and Yaarab (A to Z Challenge)

This is technically the last post I'll be writing for the challenge because Z is already in the queue.  I could not find a single Y idea to satisfy me, so today is a hodgepodge.

100_1359The first two Ys are from epitaphs.  Both come from tombstones placed in Harmony – Smyrna Cemetery at Dooly County, Georgia.  As far as I can tell, however, there is no relation between the two individuals.  First up is a dear mother whose name is Lucy Taylor.

Our Dear Mother
Lucy Taylor
Born June 24, 1867
Died Feb 21, 1909
Dearest mother thou has left us
And our loss we deeply feel
But tis God that has bereft us
He can all our sorrows heal
Yet again we hope to meet thee
When the day of life is fled
Where in heaven with joy to greet thee
Where no farewell tears is shed

Next is little "Boby" ~

100_1386

 

 

 

 

 

 

In Memory Of
Our Little Son
Robert W. Floyd
Son of J. M. & Sarah E. Floyd
Born Feb 20, 1866
Died Oct 7, 1870
Yes Our Boby Is An Angel
But He Seems Not Far Away
He Is With God In Heaven
And We Hope To Meet Him There One Day

And finally, down below, is G. W. Sparrow.  Mr. Sparrow was an engineer who died 8 December 1914 at just 46 years of age.  A portion of his epitaph is the simple, yet profound, Thy will be done.  What I really want to share, however, is a symbol on his stone.  It indicates that Engineer Sparrow was a member of the Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine.  More simply put, he was a Shriner.  I've written about the symbol before here.  G. W. Sparrow's stone also has an addition.  Yaarab is etched above the usual Shriner symbol.  From what I can gather, this indicates the temple of which Sparrow belonged.  YaarabShrine.net has more information.  G. W. Sparrow rests at Harmony Baptist Church Cemetery in Blue Ridge, Fannin County, Georgia.

Harmony Baptist Church Cemetery

[If you're wondering what's up with all the "letter" posts:  I am attempting to follow the Blogging from A to Z Challenge (links to official page). This challenge lasts through the month of April, with Sundays off. Click here to see all my letter posts on one page (in reverse order). Only one more day!]

28 April 2016

X is for Xenophanes, Greek Philosopher (A to Z Challenge)

I had to dig deep for this one! Hardest letter by far, for me.

Xenophanes was a Greek philosopher, theologian, poet, and social and religious critic…He satirized traditional religious views of his time (c. 570 – c. 475 BC) as human projections.

Xenophanes espoused a belief that "God is one, supreme among gods and men, and not like mortals in body or in mind." Some say this shows Xenophanes was one of the first monotheists in the Western philosophy of religion.  Detractors point to the addition of other gods in that statement.  [Wikipedia]

Another quote that is attributed to him is one I'd like to point out.  I thought it fit well with a photo I took a little over four years ago at Trinity United Methodist Church Cemetery in Gwinnett County, Georgia:

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the whole sees, the whole perceives, the whole hears


It is believed Xenophanes was referring to God.  Whether or not the G should be capitalized for his purpose is debatable.  For my purpose, there is no debate.

[If you're wondering what's up with all the "letter" posts:  I am attempting to follow the Blogging from A to Z Challenge (links to official page). This challenge lasts through the month of April, with Sundays off. Click here to see all my letter posts on one page. Just a couple days left!]



27 April 2016

W is for Willow Carell Musselwhite and Wordless Wednesday (Mostly)


[If you're wondering what's up with all the "letter" posts:  I am attempting to follow the Blogging from A to Z Challenge (links to official page). This challenge lasts through the month of April, with Sundays off. Click here to see all my letter posts on one page. Oh, and wish me luck!]



26 April 2016

V is for the Vigilance Committee Hanging at Versailles, Indiana

1897 in Ripley County, Indiana saw a community fed up.  It seems there was a gang going 'round committing acts of marauding and thievery.  And this had been going on, day and night, for years.  It ended, for at least some gang members, September 15th.

Headlines were ablaze in newspapers across the country:

Judge Lynch Settles Five: Mob at Versailles, Ind., Deal Out Justice to Robbers.  [Duluth, MN]

Outraged Citizens Take Quick Vengeance: Five Men Strung Up by the Neck at Versailles, Indiana.  [Wheeling, WV]

Indiana Robbers Lynched.  Five Disposed of at Versailles at Once.  [Emporia, KS]

Five Men Lynched Because They Stole: Mob at Versailles, Ind, Strings Up a Quintette of Burglars.  [Boise, ID]

And here's the story as told by Georgia's Vienna Progress (23 September 1897):

INDIANIANS LYNCH ROBBERS

MOB OVERPOWERS JAILER AND SWING UP SIX MEN.

DEPREDATIONS INCENSED PEOPLE.

Taken By Force From the Authorities and Death Meted Out To Them By the "Hempen Route."

A special of Wednesday from Osgood, Ind., says:  "Incensed by numerous depredations, repeated burglaries and daylight robberies, the people of Ripley county, Indiana, have taken the law into their hands and meted out to the perpetrators a punishment greater than provided for by the law.  A mob took from the authorities and lynched Lyle Levi, Bert Andrews, Clifford Gordon, William Jenkins and Hiney Schuler.

Stout ropes, not over six feet in length, had served to send each to his eternity and their feet were but a few inches from the ground.

The mob was composed of citizens from Milam, Sunman and other towns.

The mob on horseback entered the town an hour after midnight and called out Jailer Kenan, who, upon refusal to give up the keys, was overpowered.

The mob soon pushed its way into the cell rooms and in their impatience fired on the five prisoners and then dragged them to a tree a square from the jail door and hung them up.

Andrews and Gordon had already been wounded, having been shot several times while attempting to rob a store at Correct several days ago.  Schuler was in school for attempting burglary and Levi and Jenkins had been indicted by the grand jury for robbery.  They had failed to give bond and were put in jail.

It was thought that Levi and Schuler were both dead from the shots fired by the mob when they were taken from jail.

The bandages on the wounded men were found later in the day on the streets through which them men were dragged along.

Lyle Levi was an old soldier and bore on his face wounds received during the civil war while fighting for the Union.

None of the lynchers are known.  They all came from a distance.

Versailles is a town of 800 people.  It is one of the oldest in the state, and although it is five miles from a railroad station and has no telegraphic communication with the outside world, it is still the county seat.

For four or five years, and even longer, the farmers of the county have been the victims of a lawless gang.  Farmers would come into town with a bunch of cattle, or load of farming products, and next morning they would be found along the roadside suffering from a wound and minus the proceeds of their sale.

I really was surprised to find a couple of gravestone images for the alleged criminals / victims online.  The "old soldier's" FindAGrave memorial is here.  Bert Andrews' stone from Otter Village Cemetery in Ripley County is pictured below.  [Photo by Barbara Hill via FindAGrave.  Used with permission.]

bandrews-fag

Notice this part? "In The Vigilance Committee Hanging At Versailles." This appears to be a relatively new stone, and I don't know if it is a replacement or if Bert's gravesite was ever marked before.  It does seem that the community rallied around the vigilante mob, though.  This from the 16 September 1897 Columbus Enquirer (Georgia, pg. 6):

SENTIMENT WITH LYNCHERS.
Versailles, Ind., Sept. 15. – Governor Mount sent the deputy attorney general here tonight to secure the names of the members of the mob, but public sentiment is wholly with the lynchers, and the deputy attorney general is unable to make any headway.  No jury could be found in this county that would convict any member of the mob, and it is thought the coroner's jury action this afternoon, declaring the five men were hanged by "persons unknown" will end the matter.  Governor Mount's telegram to the sheriff only creates derision.

[If you're wondering what's up with all the "letter" posts:  I am attempting to follow the Blogging from A to Z Challenge (links to official page). This challenge lasts through the month of April, with Sundays off. Click here to see all my letter posts on one page (in reverse order). Oh, and wish me luck!]

25 April 2016

U is for Uncle Mike Peavy (a Personal A to Z Challenge Post)

I have a lot of Peavys in my family tree.  A lot.  There's a direct line, and there are collateral line/s that married into other collateral line/s.  It's quite convoluted, actually.  In many instances, if my genealogy software didn't tell me the connection, I'd be pretty clueless.  Basically, it seems that if the surname is Peavy (with or without an e before the y) and it's found in middle Georgia, we're related – or at least "connected."

100_1282So here's one for the Peavy researchers – all about Uncle Mike.  [I have nine Michael Peavys in the family tree, btw.  Some with sources, some without.  (Honesty rules!)]

Vienna News (Georgia)
18 August 1911 – pg. 1

UNCLE MIKE PEAVY DEAD.

"Uncle Mike" Peavy, one of the old citizens and landmarks of Dooly county, died late Tuesday night at the home of a son, Mr. Richard Peavy, near this city.  He had suffered a slight attack of malaria and chills but was believed to be recovering when his case developed pneumonia a few days ago.  Several children survive him and hundreds of friends unite in mourning his demise.  The funeral took place yesterday afternoon, interment at Harmony.  -- Unadilla Leader.

If I'm correct, this Michael Peav(e)y was born in 1825 to Mary Youngblood and Eli Peavy.  Various sources give Uncle Mike and his wife Mary Ann Hudson five children:  Francis M., Richard, Margaret Elizabeth, Jesse James (also the name of one of Mike's brothers), and Anna C.  I can find Mike in the "easy" census records (where everybody white is named) of 1910, 1900, 1880, 1870, 1860, and 1850.

So, if you're researching this Peavy line, there's an obit and a tombstone for ya!

Here's the zany connection per genealogy software:  "Brother-in-law of 1st great grand aunt of husband of 2nd cousin 2x removed" of me! I can add this:  the 1st great grand aunt is Martha Ann Vinson (1819-1893), wife of Green B. Peavey.  Please don't ask me to figure out the rest.  Smile with tongue out

[If you're wondering what's up with all the "letter" posts:  I am attempting to follow the Blogging from A to Z Challenge(links to official page). This challenge lasts through the month of April, with Sundays off. Click here to see all my letter posts on one page. They will be in reverse order. Oh, and wish me luck!]

24 April 2016

Estelle Harvard Clements: Methodist Missionary to Cuba

Sliding this in among the A to Z Challenge posts. Hope you're enjoying it, whether participating directly or following along.


Harmony - Smyrna Cemetery-001Estelle Harvard was born 8 October 1877 to Julia Paul and Dave Harvard.  At the age of 23 years, Estelle married Rev. Euston Edgar Clements.  [Image at right from Ancestry's Passport Applications.]

HARVARD --- CLEMENTS

The marriage of Miss Estelle Harvard and Rev. Euston E. Clements was solemnized Wednesday morning, October the tenth, at ten o'clock at the home of the bride's parents, Hon. and Mrs. D. W. Harvard, near Unadilla.

…Rev. and Mrs. Clements waited only to receive the congratulations of those present, before leaving for Unadilla to board the train for Key West which will be their future home.

The bride is the only daughter of Hon. D. W. Harvard, one of Dooly county's oldest settlers and most highly respected citizens, who is representing the county in the legislature for a second term.  She is a graduate of LaGrange Female College and has made an enviable reputation as one of the finest instructors in this and other counties.  Wherever she has gone her earnest Christian character, sweet and lovely disposition, splendid intellect and many accomplishments have made her a power for good and won her hosts of friends who extend best wishes for her future happiness.  She will be greatly missed here where she was always active in every good work; but all unite in saying she has entered a sphere for which she is perfectly fitted.

Rev. Clements has been one of the strongest and most earnest young preachers in the South Georgia conference during the past two years and is popular not only with his congregation but with all who know him…He goes to take charge of the Methodist mission at Key West…  [The Vienna Progress (Georgia), 18 October 1900, pg. 5, col. 3.]

100_1278True Christian, Devoted Wife, Loving Mother
Rev. Euston Clements was a Methodist missionary to Cuba, and at  least from time to time, Estelle joined him.  A tablet placed at her grave in Harmony-Smyrna Cemetery (Dooly County) reads, in part:

She loved and lived and served in a most perfect manner, the work of Christ among the Cuban people.  To her memory [from the] Methodist Church, Havana, Cuba.

Estelle died 23 April 1918 in Atlanta, Georgia:

MRS. E. E. CLEMENTS BURIED AT HARMONY

DIED AFTER AN OPERATION IN ATLANTA.  LIVED IN HAVANA, CUBA.

Just before going to press news was received of te [sic] death of Mrs. Euston Clements, of Havana, Cuba, which occurred at a sanatorium in Atlanta Tuesday.  Mrs. Clements' death followed and operation performed there several days ago.  She will be remembered at Miss Estelle Harvard, daughter of Mr. Dave Harvard, of Unadilla.  She enjoyed the love and admiration of a wide circle of friends and relatives in this county.  Since her marriage to Rev. Euston E. Clements who with several children survives her, she has lived in Havana where they have been engaged in mission work for the Methodist Episcopal church.  The funeral occurred yesterday afternoon at Harmony.  The services were attended by a large concourse of sorrowing relatives and friends.  [Vienna News (Georgia), 25 April 1918, pg. 1.]

100_1277

23 April 2016

T is for Two Wives and Four Children in Six Years

The newspaper confirmed what I saw at the cemetery.

Mr. Moore has lost two wives and four children within six years.

100_1173This sad commentary was added to the Vienna Progress (Dooly County, Georgia) when J. C. Moore lost his eight-year-old daughter Maggie in June 1902.  Less than two years before, in September 1900, J's daughter Zola died just before reaching the age of ten.  The mother of Zola and Maggie had died in 1896.  A tribute to Effie Folds Moore was printed in the same newspaper that would later carry the death notice for her daughter:

IN MEMORY

Of a Dear Sister

Mrs. Effie Moore, wife of J. C. Moore died at her home Jan. 10th 1896.  She was the daughter of E. J. and M. J. Folds.  Five times within six months the angel of death has visited our midst and snatched from us a loved one.  It seems that the brightest flower is often plucked.

She had been confined to her bed about five weeks with malarial fever and pneumonia, but died very suddenly.  She was a consistent member of the Methodist church from childhood.

Sad, oh sad, to give up those we love so dear.  She was a quiet, kind, good wife and mother and a loving sister and friend.  Oh! may the Heavenly Father guide and direct her lonely husband and three little children through their troubles and lead them safely over their rough path of life.  May their sorrows prove a blessing in the end.

We say farewell for a while dear Effie.  Oh! may we meet again in that bright world of pleasure, to live together where we can sing praises to Him who died for all…HER BROTHERS AND SISTERS

After the passing of Effie, J. C. Moore married again.  Lenna gave birth to William W. in September 1900.  He lived five months.  A year later, Evelin was born.  This wee one lived less than three months.  Lenna died 28 May 1902, just seventeen days after Evelin, possibly due to complications of childbirth.

100_1179

[If you're wondering what's up with all the "letter" posts:  I am attempting to follow the Blogging from A to Z Challenge (links to official page). This challenge lasts through the month of April, with Sundays off. Click here to see all my letter posts on one page. Oh, and wish me luck!]


22 April 2016

S is for Susie and Sudden Heart Failure

100_1180

Susie Jane Carroll Musselwhite lived to be just 35 years of age.  Sudden heart failure was the primary cause of her demise listed on the standard certificate of death filed with the state of Georgia.

sjcmusselwhite-dc"Georgia Deaths, 1914-1927," database with images, FamilySearch
(https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-266-11112-144551-24?cc=1320969 : accessed 1 April 2016),
004178806 > image 1223 of 1534; Department of Archives and History, Atlanta.

Susie's death certificate also states she "had malaria & female troubles." About the fall of 1923, Susie was married to W. A. Musselwhite and residing in Byromville, GA.  She was the daughter of M. S. and Emma J. (Folds) Carroll.

Susie and her parents were all laid to rest at Mount Olive Cemetery in the Pinehurst area of Dooly County, Georgia.  Emma preceded her daughter in death by just a couple of years.

100_1182

[If you're wondering what's up with all the "letter" posts:  I am attempting to follow the Blogging from A to Z Challenge (links to official page). This challenge lasts through the month of April, with Sundays off. Click here to see all my letter posts on one page. Oh, and wish me luck!]


21 April 2016

R is for Resolutions on the Death of Little Clyde Harvard

100_1281Resolutions.

Resolutions on the death of little Clyde Harvard.

Whereas our Heavenly Father in all his wise providence, sent his messenger into our midst on August 21, 1900, and bore away the spirit of little Clyde Harvard, who joined the church when eight years old, and has ever since proven that he had given himself to the Lord, by carrying sunshine and happiness into the hearts of others and showing his willingness to do anything for the cause of Christ, be it

Resolved, 1st.  That we the Sunday school of Smyrna church, Snow circuit, have lost one of our most faithful members and sweetest little Christians.

Resolved, 2nd.  That we extend to the bereaved brothers and sister our deepest sympathy and love.

Resolved, 3rd.  That a copy of these resolutions be place upon our minutes, a copy be furnished the Vienna Progress for publication, and a copy sent to the family.

HUGH HARVARD,
W. J. VINSON,
WINNIE DAVIES,
Committee.

[Vienna Progress (Georgia). 18 October 1900, pg. 3, col. 1]

According to FindAGrave.com, Clyde's parents were Mary J. and Joseph J. P. Harvard.  Joseph married Mary J. Paul 8 December 1870 at Dooly County, Georgia.  Mary and Joseph are side by side, to the left of Clyde (who was an orphan for the five months before his death) at Harmony-Smyrna Cemetery.

Harmony - Smyrna Cemetery

Furthermore, I found Joseph's Civil War Service Record at Fold3.  He enlisted early in 1861 and served with Company I of the 18th Georgia Infantry.  Joseph's time in the Confederate States Army had to have been miserable.  In December 1862 at Fredericksburg, Virginia, he was "wounded seriously." Pvt. Harvard was also in and out of Virginia hospitals for much of the war, but it appears he always returned to his duty.  "Chron. Hepatitis," bronchitis, chronic pneumonia, enlargement of the liver, diarrhea, and "tendency to consumption" were some of the diagnoses.  And finally, Pvt. Joseph P. Harvard was taken Prisoner of War 19 October 1864 and was sent to Point Lookout, Maryland.  He was released 28 June 1865.

I have to wonder if those very rough four years shortened Joseph's life.  He died 5 March 1900 at the fairly young age of 55 years.

[If you're wondering what's up with all the "letter" posts:  I am attempting to follow the Blogging from A to Z Challenge(links to official page). This challenge lasts through the month of April, with Sundays off. Click here to see all my letter posts on one page (in reverse order). Oh, and wish me luck!]

20 April 2016

Q is for Quintine Lindsey & the Family, in Stone (Wordless Wednesday & A to Z)

100_1251

Mother
Quintine E. Lindsey
Born Dec 1, 1854
Died Feb 28, 1910

100_1252

Peter [G?] Lindsey
Oct 17, 1859
Sept 24, 1908

100_1253

quintine-cinema


[If you're wondering what's up with all the "letter" posts:  I am attempting to follow the Blogging from A to Z Challenge (links to official page). This challenge lasts through the month of April, with Sundays off. Click here to see all my letter posts on one page (in reverse order). Oh, and wish me luck!]

19 April 2016

P is for the Prayer of a Heart Broken Wife (Tombstone Tuesday & A to Z)

100_1195John H. Folds was born 17 December 1861 in Georgia, the son of Edmund J. and Matilda J. Coleman Folds.  About the year 1887, John married Laura (b. 1863).  She was a daughter of  L. B. Bray.

John died 4 November 1909 in Dooly County, Georgia.  Notice of his demise was printed in the 5 November 1909 edition of The Vienna News:

J. H. FOLDS DIED NEAR PINEHURST

Stricken With Second Stroke of Paralysis Which Caused His Death Thursday Morning.

Judge J. H. Folds, Justice of the Peace of the Pinehurst district passed away at his home a few miles west of Pinehurst Thursday morning about 2 o'clock.  He received a second stroke of paralysis Wednesday night and rapidly grew worse until death relieved him.

He was a member of the Primitive Baptist church and was a man much beloved by all who knew him.  His death is deeply deplored.

He leaves a wife and a large number of relatives to mourn his death.

The interment took place this morning at Mt. Olive cemetery.

A week later, 12 November 1909, in the same newspaper was printed a note of gratitude from John's wife:

Card of Thanks

I wish to thank the kind friends for their faithfulness to me and my devoted husband during his last illness especially the physicians Dr. Williams and Dr. Lee.  May heaven's richest blessings rest on each one of them is the prayer of a heart broken wife.  Mrs. John H. Folds.

Some time later, Laura (Bray) Folds married again to Mr. Wyatt Hall.  But upon her death in 1923, Laura returned to the side of John H. Folds to rest for all eternity.

100_1194

Click here for an article on the urn as funerary art and what it might symbolize.

[If you're wondering what's up with all the "letter" posts:  I am attempting to follow the Blogging from A to Z Challenge (links to official page). This challenge lasts through the month of April, with Sundays off. Click here to see all my letter posts on one page (in reverse order). Oh, and wish me luck!]

18 April 2016

O is for One Dead in Christmas Eve Crash (A to Z Challenge)

100_1291TRAIN AND AUTO CRASH; ONE DEAD

John Register, Unadilla Man, Is Killed; Another Dying.

ROAD CROSSING ACCIDENT

William Register is Reported in Dying Condition.

UNADILLA, Ga. Dec 24. – One man was instantly killed, one is dying and another given a bad shaking up is the result of a fast passenger train crashing into an automobile at a crossing this afternoon in the heart of the business district of this city.

The dead:
John Register of Unadilla, and well known throughout this section.

The dying:
William Register of Unadilla, cousin of the dead man.

Laidler Brennen, who resides in the country near Unadilla, receiving minor injuries, but somewhat shocked from the accident.

Attempts to Cross Tracks
The three were in the automobile of John Register's and an attempt was made to cross the main line tracks of Georgia, Southern and Florida railroad, it is said, in front of the rapidly approaching passenger train.

The engine struck the automobile a solid blow and lifted it up on its pilot and carried it a distance of more than two hundred yards, according to witness, before the train was brought to a standstill.

The men were pinned in the automobile by the crash and when they were reached, John Register, who was at the steering wheel, was mangled and dead, while William Register is now barely [alive].  Mr. Brennen's escape was miraculous.  [Macon Telegraph (Georgia), 25 December 1920, pg. 1.  Via GenealogyBank.]

Johnny's death certificate is available for viewing online at FamilySearch.org.  He was a son of Sarah Vaughn and William E. Register.

[If you're wondering what's up with all the "letter" posts:  I am attempting to follow the Blogging from A to Z Challenge(links to official page). This challenge lasts through the month of April, with Sundays off. Click here to see all my letter posts on one page. They will be in reverse order. Oh, and wish me luck!]

17 April 2016

In Memory of the Departed, Sallie Virginia Whitehead

Sliding this in among the A to Z Challenge posts. Hope you're enjoying it, whether participating directly or following along.


100_1262Sallie Virginia was a daughter of Reason and Mollie D. Whitehead.  She was born 24 April 1881, and died 7 May 1881 – living only twelve days.  The epitaph on her tombstone reads, in part, "Too pure for Earth, its little spirit winged its flight to Heaven."

I found a poem today that seemed apropos to the passing of little Sallie.  "Departed" is from a book entitled, Select Poems by Harvey Rice (c. 1878).

DEPARTED.

Too pure for earth, too pure for earth,
Thy home the spirit-land,
Where earth-born flowers unfading smile,
Transferred by angel hand !

Yes, on thy brow the calm, bright skies
Of heaven their radiance shed :
The gift is thine, an angel's harp.
How blest the early dead !

From sorrow's vale uncheered and dark,
From tears and vain desires,
While young and sinless thou art freed,
The soul to heaven aspires.

But still thy name remains intwined
With memories ever dear,
And they who on thee oft have smiled
Now smile but through a tear.

16 April 2016

N is for the Negro Lynched Near Columbus (A to Z Challenge)

Today's letter brings a story of a man whose southern grave is very likely the Chattahoochee River.

nypldigitalcollections-south
From the New York Public Library
Some time ago, I'd say about nine years, I decided to document (or at least make note of) every instance of lynching I come across while researching.  I never made a solid attempt to seek out lynchings, specifically, but would make note when one was found.  I even started a database of sorts.  I haven't really kept the page up as far as housekeeping goes – there might be some broken links and such – but I still add to it from time to time with more than 170 entries thus far.  I've also written on the subject a couple of times in this space before (here and here).

Since this blog is taking part in the A to Z Challenge, there are some people visiting that might never have otherwise (I'm having a blast, btw).  So I feel a little like I should try to explain why I would give the horrible acts – those committed by the criminal, as well as those committed on the criminal – voice on this blog.  There are no (at least to my knowledge) statistics showing the accuracy of the lynchers.  How many times was an innocent person hung, riddled with bullets, and mutilated in the name of "justice?" I mean, we probably agree there are innocent people sitting in jail right now – with supposed checks and balances in place.  Imagine when there were none.  Shouldn't those innocent people be remembered?

Now, make no mistake, sometimes the lynching party "punished" the right person.  As in, sometimes the true perpetrator was indeed apprehended – and then disposed of, often in a barbaric fashion.  Even if you take the literal "eye for an eye" death penalty approach, I would not be surprised if that would have been an applicable punishment in only an infinitesimal number of cases.  People were lynched for stealing, people were lynched for "insubordination," people were lynched for literally being in the wrong place at the wrong time.  And let us not be cowards and leave out the racism debacle that lingers to this day.  So another reason for giving voice to these past atrocities is in the same vein of "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it."

On to Simon Adams.

The first article to catch my attention was this one from the 14 June 1900 Vienna Progress (Georgia, pg. 1, col. 2):
LYNCHING OF SIMON ADAMS

Was Thrown Into the River and Told to Swim.
COLUMBUS, Ga.  June 13. – It is learned that Simon Adams, the negro lynched near here, was thrown into the river and ordered to swim for his life.

Before throwing him into the river, the mob put a heavy chain around his neck, but notwithstanding this handicap and the swift current, the negro made a heroic struggle for life, and thinking he would escape, the crowd opened fire on him from the bank, severely wounding him.  He continued to struggle, however, diving as he went.  His last dive is said to have been some 10 feet, and as he came up a Winchester bullet lodged in his head, killing him.
Disgusted, yet? I actually think this version of events is a bit sensationalized, as if the truth wasn't horrific enough.  Another article relays that the father of the two girls who awoke not long after midnight to find Simon Adams in their room is the one who bound him with a chain and sent him to Columbus.  I think the following blurb from the 10 June 1900 Springfield Republican of Massachusetts is probably pretty accurate.

simonadamsblurb
Via GenealogyBank

Based only on the news articles I read, it appears Simon Adams never touched either one of the girls.  I'm not saying Simon Adams did not have a nefarious reason for being in the room.  I'm just saying it appears he never touched either one of the girls.  Yet it was stated in some news articles that he assaulted the girls.  One article called him a "would-be rapist."

I also want to note:  articles were found in newspapers nationwide.  In addition to the two cities and states represented above, there was Birmingham, AL; Denver, CO; Philadelphia, PA; Cleveland, OH; Omaha, NE; San Francisco, CA; Boise, ID; Riverside, CA; Minneapolis, MN; Kansas City, KS; Charleston, SC – take a breath – Grand Forks, ND; Baltimore, MD; and Prescott, AZ.  And here are a few headlines:
RETRIBUTION CAME QUICKLY: Simon Adams Climbed Into the Sleeping Room of Judge Almond's Daughters.  SCREAMS BROUGHT FATHER.

LYNCHING IN MUSCOGEE: WOULD-BE RAPIST IS SUMMARILY DEALT WITH.

NEGRO LYNCHED AT COLUMBUS, GA: Heavy Trace Chain Used Instead of Regulation Rope.
Chattahoochee
Chattahoochee
By Mike Gonzalez via Wikimedia
Commons
So what (else) happened to the body of Simon Adams?  What does his gravesite look like? I'll let the final news article from the 22 June 1900 Macon Telegraph (Georgia, pg. 1) speak to that.  And please don't miss that last sentence.
BODY TORN BY SHOT

Corpse of Simon Adams Found in the Chattahoochee River.
COLUMBUS, Ga., June 21. – The body of a negro man, supposed to be that of Simon Adams, lynched north of the city a few days ago, was found in the river just below the North Highlands dam this morning by Mr. Charles Allen.

There was not a stitch of clothing on the body, the head was gone, the tongue adhering to the esophagus, the right arm practically fleshless and the bone broken, the skin slipping.  The body was practically shot to pieces.  A piece of paper six inches square could not have been laid on his body anywhere without covering a shot wound…The jury's verdict was that the deceased was an unknown negro man who came to his death by unknown causes…  [Emphasis mine.]

[If you're wondering what's up with all the "letter" posts:  I am attempting to follow the Blogging from A to Z Challenge(links to official page). This challenge lasts through the month of April, with Sundays off. Click here to see all my letter posts on one page. They will be in reverse order. Oh, and wish me luck!]



15 April 2016

M is for the Musician, Alva B. Spencer (A to Z Challenge)

musI learned several years ago the MUS found on military tombstones for Civil War soldiers, like the one pictured at right for William Worth Beall, stood for Musician.  But there was no such stone for Alva B. Spencer at his burial site in Harmony-Smyrna Cemetery at Dooly County, Georgia.  Alva's tombstone, in fact, had no mention of his service at all.  At the base, from which the tablet has somehow been separated, is an information card placed by (my guess) a relative of Mr. Spencer's.  This adds that Alva was married to Margaret Lucinda Cone, as well as that he was a member of Company C, 3rd Regiment Georgia Volunteer Infantry.

100_1270

Alva, born 6 September 1840 in Greene County, Georgia, was a son of Benjamin E. and Charlotte G. Spencer.  Prior to his service in the Confederate States Army, Alva attended Mercer College at Penfield.  He was a sophomore in 1856.  By the 1860 U.S. Federal census, Alva was a school teacher in Greene County.

Fold3_ABSpencer_Confederate_Soldier_GeorgiaWhen I finally looked at Alva's Confederate service record at Fold3, I discovered he was a musician.  While noted with the rank of Private on 1861 and mid-1864 muster rolls, the file also shows Alva "detached" or "detailed" in Brigade Band at these times.  Later in 1864 and through to February 1865, he was noted as MUSC, MUSCN, and Musician.  Alva surrendered at Appomattox Court House, Virginia 9 April 1865 (noted as Pvt).

Alva B. Spencer died at the young age of 40 years in Dooly County, Georgia 20 May 1881.

abspencer-close

[If you're wondering what's up with all the "letter" posts:  I am attempting to follow the Blogging from A to Z Challenge (links to official page). This challenge lasts through the month of April, with Sundays off. Click here to see all my letter posts on one page (in reverse order). Oh, and wish me luck!]

14 April 2016

L is for Little Mary Coleman Folds. She was a Twin!

In Memoriam.

Little Mary Coleman Folds daughter of J. B. and Henrietta Folds, was born March 13th 1889 and departed this life September 10th 1895 Little Coleman was a sweet and loving child.  She was the twin sister of Warren Pate Folds whom she left behind.  As God in His goodness, has seen fit to take her, we will say to her grief stricken parents two little brothers and one lonely sister, be of good cheer.  For whlie [sic] it seems hard to give her up we know that the Father doeth all things well, Farewell dear Coleman we know you will be sadly missed by a host of little relatives and playmates, but you have passed through this vale of tears and rest with the angels above.

Her Aunt, Kate Causey.  Pinehurst Ga 9-27-95

[The Vienna Progress (Georgia), 1 October 1895, pg. 3, column 1]

Little Mary Folds and both parents rest at Mount Olive Cemetery in the Pinehurst area of Dooly County, Georgia.  Each of them have ledger markers over their graves.  The inscriptions appear to be at least somewhat handmade, or stamped.  A couple even handwritten.  I sometimes get mixed feelings when I gaze upon a handwritten inscription.  I admire the care it took to make sure a loved one was remembered and not later labeled as "unknown." On the other hand, if money was an issue, that makes me a bit sad.

It may be hard to see, but here are inscriptions from the three markers of Henrietta (1861-1930), J. B. (1859-1918), and little Mary (1889-1895).

hjbmfolds

[If you're wondering what's up with all the "letter" posts:  I am attempting to follow the Blogging from A to Z Challenge (links to official page). This challenge lasts through the month of April, with Sundays off. Click here to see all my letter posts on one page. They will be in reverse order. Oh, and wish me luck!]

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