Monday, November 2, 2009

Patience Matilda Clayton

The weekend yielded a great cemetery find. While in East Tupelo on Saturday with my mother, it occurred to me that we were in the neighborhood of Priceville Cemetery where siblings of my great-great grandfather Nathaniel M. Clayton are buried. Some time back, I had looked up the location of the cemetery and made a mental note to check it out if I was ever in that area. After a wrong turn, we finally found the cemetery, and it was larger than expected. Luckily, there were two of us to track down the graves of the Clayton siblings and in short order, they were found. Buried here are siblings Matilda, Hamilton Brooks, and Noah T. Clayton. Noah was pastor at the Priceville Baptist Church, across the road from the cemetery, at the time of his death.

Most of the Claytons of this family are buried at Union Grove Cemetery in southern Itawamba County, including my great-great grandfather Nathaniel M. Clayton, but several of the Claytons that moved to Lee County are buried at Priceville Cemetery.

The surprise? I found the grave of my great-great-great grandmother, Patience Matilda Clayton. I had no idea that she was buried at Priceville Cemetery. The last record of her is the 1880 census in which she is living with her husband and children in Itawamba County, and I just assumed that she and Thompson, her husband, died and were buried in Itawamba County. Imagine my surprise to find a gravemarker for her in this cemetery in Lee County! Now we know her date of death, and although her sons Daniel and Nathaniel apparently stayed in Itawamba County, it appears that the rest of the family moved to the East Tupelo area, including Patience. We still do not know when or where Thompson Clayton died, but it seems likely that he died between 1880 and 1886 and is probably buried in an unmarked grave on the family land in Itawamba County. Next order of business, however, is to search the land deed records of Lee County.

The marker for Patience Clayton only includes her initials, but it references her as "wife of Thompson Clayton" and gives her age as 60 years on her date of death, July 26, 1886. Isn't it odd that three Clayton siblings, her children, were known to be buried at Priceville but her burial place had not been reported until now?

Patience was also the mother of Elijah Clayton, who moved back to Itawamba County where he became the owner of the White Springs Resort in Itawamba County. She was also the great-grandmother of Delmus Harden, owner and editor of the Itawamba County Times. Patience's other children were Eda, Elizabeth, Malissa, Quilla and Evaline.

Below, my mother is pictured at the grave of her great-great grandmother.

No comments: