Sunday, January 31, 2010

Little Louie Yawn's 4th Birthday Party

My father, James Luke Robinson

Fulton News Beacon

September 1, 1938

Little Louie Yawn Celebrates Fourth Birthday Monday

Little Louie Yawn, son of Mr. and Mrs. Howard Yawn, celebrated his fourth birthday Monday afternoon at the Yawn home here. Little friends attending the birthday party for Louie were Jimmie Stringfellow, Tommy Senter, David Mattox, Kelly Wade Prestage, Sammy Perry, James Robinson, Phyllis Gorden, Gene Betts, Marilyn Shaw, Bettye Joe Gilliland, Billie Bonds McElroy, Wm. Ralph Whiteheld, Mary and Martha Nell Corchran and Laura Lee Gillett.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Wylie & Anna Dulaney

Here's another young couple of Itawamba County: Wylie Franklin Dulaney and Anna Elizabeth Moore. Wylie was the son of John T. Dulaney and Fannie Chilcoat, while Anna was the daughter of William Samuel Moore and Rhoda Emeline Jones. Wylie and Anna lived in the Mt. Pleasant community north of Fulton, and are buried in the cemetery at Mt. Pleasant Baptist Church. Their children are John T. Dulaney II, Sammie Lane Dulaney Byram, and Frank Neil Dulaney. Frank shared this photograph of his parents with Don Dulaney recently, and Cousin Rita was kind enough to remove the cracks and lines of the original photograph. Thanks to all!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Bess and Jury

Ellis Jury Pennington

Mary Elizabeth "Bess" Patterson

Uncle Jury and Aunt Bess were beloved residents of Peaceful Valley. They married in December 1919, and as far as I know, lived their entire married life in Itawamba County. Aunt Bess was the daughter of John Lindsey Patterson and Alice Rebecca Bourland. Both of these families were early pioneers of Itawamba County. Greenberry Patterson, John's father, was born about 1820 in Georgia, lived to be 91 years old, and was buried Bourland Cemetery when he died in 1912.

Wasn't Bess a beautiful young woman! I bet Jury had some stiff competition when it came to courting Bess! Of course, he was quite a looker himself. Notice the intricate detail on the dress she is wearing? Bess's mother made the dress.

Uncle Jury was Fessie's uncle, so that makes him my great-great uncle. You may remember reading about Uncle Jury in these earlier posts here and here. He was the son of James J. Pennington and Laura Stewart. Oh, and like most Penningtons, Uncle Jury was Primitive Baptist. He attended church at Enon, just up the road from where he lived and where he is buried, and I remember that he particularly loved the singing portion of the church service.

The last photograph was taken by me last fall. This is the house in Peaceful Valley where Jury and Bess lived for several years before their deaths. The other photos were provided to me by Garry Morris McFerrin, grandson of Jury and Bess. Thanks for sharing!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Tucker and Johnson

Tommy and Ollie Johnson Tucker
with son Lawrence

Funeral rites for Tommy Arlander Tucker were held on August 6, 1954 from the Pine Grove Church of Christ with burial in the cemetery nearby. Senter Funeral Home was in charge. Mr. Tucker had been ill for more than 3 months of cancer when he died at his home on Thursday morning (August 5, 1954). A retired farmer, he had lived all of his life in Itawamba County, and had been one of the leading citizens of the Clay community for a number of years.

He leaves his wife, Mrs. Ollie Tucker, and one son, Lawrence Tucker, and one grandchild, David Tucker. He also leaves two sisters, Mrs. Mittie Digby and Mrs. Becky Guntharp, all of the Clay community. (abstracted obituary from Itawamba genforum website)

* * * * *

Tommy was the son of James F. Tucker and Rhoda Dulaney while his wife, Ollie, was the daughter of Napolian A. Johnson and Mary Elizabeth Lester. Ollie's niece, Mary Williams Dulaney, provided this picture of her cousin. Since Ollie and Tommy's son, Lawrence, was born in 1910, it would appear that was the year this picture was taken.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Charles Overton "Dick" Pennington

Dick Pennington, left, with friend William Murphy

Dick Pennington was the son of Robert Manuel Pennington and his first wife, India Pearl Sloan, who died in 1923, just a couple of months after Dick was born. Left with an infant son following his wife's death, Robert turned to his brother and sister-in-law who had taken him in following the death of his own parents. Hugh and Dee Pennington took in baby Dick and raised him like their own until Robert was able to take care of his son. As a consequence, Hugh and Dee were very much attached to their joint-nephew (Dee's sister was India, Dick's mother).

When World War II came along, Hugh and Dee already had a son, Frelon, enlisted in the service. Then Dick enlisted. Before the war was over, sons Fessie and Gaylord were also fighting in the war.

Below are some news items I found in the 1943 Fulton News Beacon, our county's newspaper at the time.

Fulton News Beacon
June 24, 1943
With Our Boys in Services
Pfc. Charles O. Pennington of Keesler Field spent a few hours with friends here Saturday night returning back to the field that night. This was his first visit back since entering the service.

* * *
Fulton News Beacon
December 16, 1943
Nettleton R[oute] One

Mr. and Mrs. Hugh Pennington gave a dinner Sunday for their nephew, Sgt. Overton Pennington, before his return to Utah. Those at the dinner were Mr. and Mrs. Robert Pennington, Mr. and Mrs. Jerry [Jury] Pennington and family, Miss Jimmie Lou Moore, Mr. and Mrs. Gaylord Pennington and daughter, Mrs. Fessie Pennington and daughters, also Mr. and Mrs. Ottis Reich and Mr. and Mrs. Jesse Pennington.

Sgt. Overton Pennington of the Air Corps of Texas, is spending his furlough with his father, Mr. Robert Pennington.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Fletcher Lowry Evans

Fletcher Lowry Evans

Fulton News Beacon
March 25, 1943

Fletcher L. Evans Services are Held

Funeral services were held Saturday for Fletcher L. Evans of Tremont who died at his home Thursday after a long illness.

Rites were said from his home with Rev. Harris officiating. Interment was in the Tremont Cemetery with Hawkins & Son in charge.

Mr. Evans was a lifelong resident of Itawamba County and will be greatly missed in the community in which he lives. He was a member of the Methodist church.

Mr. Evans is survived by his wife; two daughters, Mrs. Bessie Deaton, Iuka, Miss.; Mrs. Vern Kent, of Tremont, one son, Pfc John Evans of Salt Lake City, Utah, and four sisters, Mrs. G. C. Robinson, Mrs. Dow Stone, Mrs. Curtis Johnson, and Miss Rose Evans of Tremont.

Also in the same issue of the newspaper:

Pfc. John Evans, son of Mr. and Mrs. Lowry Evans of Tremont, who entered the service last July is at home on his first furlough. He was called home on account of the illness and death of his father. John is stationed near Salt Lake City, and is an instructor in the Air Corps at Kearns, Utah.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

August 12, 1926

Itawamba County News

William McFerrin Has Leg Broken at Mantachie

On Monday William McFerrin was the victim of a painful accident which resulted in the fracture of his ankle. He and his brother, Thomas McFerrin, had been to town and had reached Mantachie when the truck they were on stopped and William got out. He came around behind the truck and stepped in front of a car going in the opposite direction. He was struck with considerable force and on examination by his physician, Dr. Boren, of Ratliff, it was found that his ankle was fractured. The doctor sent him to the Tupelo Hospital where an X-ray picture disclosed that the ankle had been badly crushed. Mr. McFerrin will not be able to leave the hospital for some time. -- Tupelo Journal

Picture of Tupelo Hospital in 1926

Friday, January 22, 2010

Rebecca Senter's 77th Birthday Dinner

Fulton News Beacon
October 19, 1933
Aunt Rebecca Senter Enjoys her 77th Birthday Dinner

A host of relatives and friends of Aunt Rebecca (Woodard) Senter met at her daughter's home, Mrs. J. E. Dulaney, to celebrate her 77th birthday, which was Friday, October 13th. She is the wife of Uncle Tom Senter, who has been dead several years.

Aunt Rebecca's life has been an inspiration to all who really know her. It is a true Christian of which I speak. I pray God to give us more people like Aunt Rebecca. We hope for her to enjoy many more days like last Sunday.

The children that are living were all present. They and their wives or husbands are:

Mr. and Mrs. Tommie Senter, Mr. and Mrs. Jim Senter, Mr. and Mrs. Wylie Chilcoat, Mr. and Mrs. Abb Dulaney and Mr. and Mrs. J. E. Dulaney, Sr.

The grandchildren present: Mr. and Mrs. Earnest Wileman, Mr. and Mrs. Cecil Senter, Mr. and Mrs. E. L. Umphres, Junior Bryan, Arnold, Hoyt, Elmo, Etoil, Lyle, Ozell, Estelle, Nevil and Azilee Senter, Buford, Kelly, Louise and Jeannette Chilcoat, Lois Burma, Lavee and Reece Dulaney.

Five great grandchildren were present, a nice and nephew, Mr. and Mrs. J. A. Dulaney.

Uncle Ben Chilcoat, who is near eighty, helped to make the day better with his presence.

Some sixty ate of the good dinner that was set on a long table in the back yard. It was a treat to all that was present.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Memphis Zoo 1970

My brother, Kirk, was not the only one to have his picture taken at the Memphis Zoo. His future wife visited the zoo forty years ago this summer, and has the below picture to prove it. Sherry Ivy Robinson, seated left, is pictured with her older sister Pam in the 1970 photo. Their mother, Wilda, recently shared several old photographs of her Senter and Graham ancestors, and this picture was included in her photo albums. I couldn't resist the side-by-side posting of Kirk and Sherry's zoo pictures.

If you have been reading this post for the past year, you may remember the post from last January that included Kirk's picture at the zoo.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Courting days at Old Piney Grove Church

If you look closely in several of these photographs, you can see the old Pine Grove Church in the background. Napolian A. Johnson, son of Stephen Johnson and Harriet Caroline Pierce, gave the land upon which the church was built. Needless to say, the Johnson family was (and is) closely associated with this church and populate the church's cemetery. Napolian, or "Uncle Poley" as he was known to many in his community, was born on January 29, 1858 and lived all his life in the Pine Grove area. He was married to Mary Lester, daughter of James Isham Lester and Sarah Gaither.

Uncle Poley's daughter, Omie, is pictured below with her beau and future husband, Alton Lee Kuykendall. The second photograph pictures another Johnson daughter, Arvilla, who married Porter Gainsville Dulaney, and the third photograph is of daughter Coster, who married Lynwood Wilemon. Finally, the last photograph is another picture of Omie and Alton Kuykendall, and behind the seated couple can clearly be seen the church with people milling around outside. Note that in the last two photographs, sisters have on the same dress. Their family was a family of eight sisters and one brother so you can imagine there was a lot of clothes-sharing going on.

Thanks must go out to Terry Wilemon for sharing the photographs with Don Dulaney, but most especially to Mary Dulaney who graciously helped Don identify the people in these photographs and others. Mrs. Mary, who is the widow of Clastel Dulaney and is 88 years old, has a remarkable memory and has been very, very helpful.

For more on this family, you can read these previous posts: Sharing Cousins, Funeral of Mary Lester Johnson, and Coster Johnson.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Barrs Ferry Bridge - the rest of the story

The bridge you see above is obviously not the bridge from yesterday's post, yet it IS a bridge over the Tombigbee River at Barrs Ferry. I took the photograph of the above bridge in October 1982.

It was during a particularly bad flood in January 1974 that the previous, 1950s era, wooden bridge washed away. The citizens of Peaceful Valley were once again cut off from their closest source of commerce, the town of Smithville.

Someone had the idea to approach the army for the use of a surplus army bridge. Randall Spradling, supervisor for the third district of Itawamba County and a close friend of Fessie Pennington, along with Jerry Wilburn, who represented Itawamba County in the state legislature, traveled to Atlanta where they met with a general in the office of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

When Randall and the general shook hands, Randall said, "You are the second general's hand I've ever shook." The general replied, that's very interesting, who was the other general? "Mark Clark," replied Randall. "How did you know General Clark," said the general. Randall responded that he had served with General Clark in Italy during World War II. At this point, the general became excited and said, "I'm a student of military history, and I've always wanted to ask a question of someone who served under General Clark. Is it true that he marched you through Italy in ten days?" Randall said, "March, hell! We run through Italy!"

Randall and Jerry suitably impressed the general, and they got their bridge. The metal bridge was a military bridge, pre-fabricated and portable, 200 feet long and 13.5 feet wide. It also had no sides, making travel over the bridge particularly suspenseful - no pun intended! I made countless slow trips over the wavy and dippy metal bridge.

However, the bridge is no longer there. When the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway was built, a new river channel was dug south of the old Tombigbee River. Once again, and permanently, the citizens of Peaceful Valley were cut off from quick trips to Smithville. Last fall we rode four-wheelers down the gravel road to the old Barrs Ferry landing, waiting for daughter Rebekah to paddle down the river in her brother's kayak. Logs and other debris prevented her from reaching Barrs Ferry, but while we were waiting we found the old pilings from the previous wooden bridge. Aunt Tootsie, who was with us, told a fascinating story about a murder that happened in the 1930s at a store/honky tonk that was once was located there. That's a story for another day. Hope you enjoyed this one!

[source for the military bridge specifications: Library of Congress, Historic American Buildings Survey, Bridges in the Upper Tombigbee River Valley, HAER MS-11]

Monday, January 18, 2010

Barrs Ferry Bridge

Barrs Ferry bridge crossed the Tombigbee River in Itawamba County, below Ironwood Bluff, and connected the communities of Smithville and Peaceful Valley. Originally, only a ferry existed at this point of the river. When water levels were low, river boats could only get as far north as Barrs Ferry, thus increasing the importance of this landing in southern Itawamba County for the county's commerce when boats couldn't make it to Ironwood Bluff, Van Buren or Fulton.

The landing at Barrs Ferry served both the town of Smithville as well as the citizens of southern Itawamba County. It was the responsibility of Itawamba County's board of supervisors (then known as the police board) to establish and maintain ferries, and they in turn authorized private citizens to operate the ferries, which were generally flat-bottomed and square-ended boats. Supposedly, it was a Major Barr who established the ferry and operated it until the 1880s, thus the name Barrs Ferry.

In 1919 Congress authorized construction of a bridge which was a wood-decked trestle bridge completed around 1922. This bridge apparently was used until about 1940, and for the following fifteen years, southern Itawamba County was cut off from Smithville, in Monroe County, until a new bridge was built around 1953.

The only way citizens of Peaceful Valley and Cardsville could get to Smithville was by way of the bridge at Ironwood Bluff, then down Highway 25 to Smithville. If the water was out across Ironwood Bluff, and it often was during rainy season, then folks had to go a bit further by crossing the bridge at Beans Ferry near Tilden. Having a bridge at Barrs Ferry reduced travel time on rough, gravel roads (even Highway 25 was gravel) by about twenty minutes or longer for the Pennington and Sloan families living at Peaceful Valley.

According to the newspaper article below, the idea for a new bridge across Barrs Ferry originated with the Smithville Lions Club, and six weeks later the bridge was in place! Supervisors from both counties got on board for the project along with citizens of Peaceful Valley and local lumber companies. Fessie Pennington, my grandfather, and his uncle, Joe Blake, collected money for nails and other incidental expenses. Fessie, Uncle Joe and others also cut logs and hauled them to the lumber mill for use on the bridge.

Following a dedication ceremony, Fessie held a fish fry for all participants and contributors.

You will have to click on the image of the newspaper clipping to get a better look, but these gentlemen are standing on the newly built Barrs Ferry bridge. Fessie is standing third from the right.

In the 1955 picture below, my mother is sprawled across the hood of a car that she and her sister, Jo Ann, shared. The car is parked on the Barrs Ferry bridge. Note the safety rails that are present in both pictures of the bridge.

Tomorrow: the rest of the story.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Pearl Johnson Dulaney

The photo above was clipped out of the Itawamba County Times by Mike's grandmother, Glader Mae Mills, because it pictured Mike's other grandmother, Pearl Dulaney. Glader's daughter, Vera Mae, graciously allowed me to go through some of her mother's papers and possessions, and this newspaper clipping was among them.

Pearl Dulaney was an active member of the New Salem Homemakers Club in Itawamba County, and her sewing and canned fruits and vegetables were always winning prizes in the county competitions. I'm not sure why she joined the New Salem club since she didn't live near New Salem. Pearl and Lawrence lived on Dulaney Road behind East Fulton Baptist Church (which was closer to Salem than to New Salem).

When Mike was in the legislature during the 1980s, he made a courageous vote to cut the budget of the cooperative extension service for which he was rewarded with a phone call from his grandmother Pearl. She informed him that she wouldn't be able to show her prized canned peaches at the next fair if he voted to cut the budget of the extension service, which sponsored the local homemaker clubs around the state. Needless to say, Pearl Dulaney was one constituent that got Mike's attention that day, and his vote was quickly changed!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Wilemon Family Reunion

Wilemon Family Reunion
early 1970s

Wish I had these Wilemon descendants identified, but there was nothing with the photograph which was shared at the Dulaney Family Reunion last summer. It looks as if the photo was taken at the concession area of Nita Lake in Itawamba County.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Minnie Lou Johnson Beam

Minnie Lou Johnson Beam with baby

Minnie Lou Johnson was married to Elbert Edgar Beam on March 20, 1904 by Bro. J. L. Conwill. A record of their marriage is on file in Marriage Book 12, Page 288, at the Itawamba County courthouse.

You may be familiar with the name of Edgar and Minnie's great-grandson, Don Dulaney, chief provider of many of the old photographs that appear on this blog. Samuel Carl, son of Edgar and Minnie, was Don's grandfather. Don, do you know who the baby is in this picture?

Minnie was the daughter of Thomas Jefferson Johnson and Laura Elizabeth Jamerson, and the granddaughter of Henry Ellis Johnson and Sarah Ingle. Her husband, Edgar, was the son of Samuel Thomas Beam and Nancy Jane Cromeans. Below are a couple of census records for Edgar, Minnie and their family.

1920 Census
Itawamba County, Mississippi
Copeland precinct
Edgar E. Beam 39 MS GA MS farmer
Minnie 35 MS MS MS wife
Meardy 14 MS son
Mittie 13 MS daughter
Narcie 9 MS daughter
Irena 7 MS daughter
Carl 4 MS son
Ivy 5 mo MS daughter (listed as daughter, but actually was son!)

1930 Census
Itawamba County, Mississippi
Beat 1
Edgar Beam 50 MS GA MS farmer, married at age 24
Minnie L. 45 MS MS MS, married at age 19
Meardy W. 25 MS son
Narcy M. 19 MS daughter
Irene N. 17 MS daughter
Sally O. 14 MS daughter (listed as daughter, but actually was Samuel C., son)
Thomas 10 MS son
Delta W. 7 MS son
Wilber T. 2 MS son

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Old Bridge

Terry Wilemon had the above photograph in his collection of old pictures that he recently shared with Don Dulaney. I was immediately attracted to the photo - we've tried to identify the young ladies but have had no luck so far.

As far as I know, there were only two iron bridges in Itawamba County: the one that still exists across Ironwood Bluff and the earlier one built across the Tombigbee River at Fulton which was torn down and replaced with a concrete bridge until the waterway came through. Can someone correct me if I am wrong about this? I've compared the bridge in the photo above against photos I have of the iron bridge at Ironwood Bluff, and the bridges do not appear to be a match. Could this picture be of the old iron bridge that crossed the river just west of Fulton?

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Aunt Vivian and Uncle Johnnie

Vivian Irene Pennington was Fessie's older sister, born a couple of years before him, in 1910. As a young girl, she was very mature and responsible for her age, helping her mother Dee around the house and with the younger children. Dee was frequently in ill-health, and Vivian could be depended upon to fill in as needed for her mother. This sense of responsibility and devotion to family continued with Vivian into her adult life as well.

Aunt Vivian finished high school while the family was living at Smithville. According to her sister Tootsie, Vivian worked and saved money to purchase her class ring, which cost all of $6 at the time. Tootsie also tells a story that was related to her years later by Vivian, about how, as an infant, Tootsie crawled over, pulled Vivian's pressed-and-ready graduation dress onto the floor, and peed on it! That was probably the first of Tootsie's trouble-making days!!

After graduation, Vivian began teaching at the one-room schoolhouse at Lick Skillet in Peaceful Valley. Lick Skillet was the name given to the general area where Aunt Zadie Sloan and Uncle Joe Blake lived. Tootsie remembers tagging along with Vivian to the schoolhouse and remembers on occasion when, as a lunchtime treat, someone in the community would donate a big can of beans which would simmer all morning on the stove. See a previous post about a play that took place at Lick Skillet.

It was during the time that Vivian was teaching at Lick Skillet that she met Johnnie Bethay, her future husband. Johnnie was the son of David Walter and Norwood Nichols Bethay of the Carolina community. My fondest memories of Uncle Johnnie are from our Christmas bingo games. You could always count on Uncle Johnnie echoing the bingo number after it was called out. I think of him every year during our Pennington bingo games.

Johnnie owned a T-model Ford, and on his visits to the Pennington family to see Vivian in Peaceful Valley, several families that lived in the Pennington-Sloan community would come over to see his car which was quite a novelty at the time. Vivian married Johnnie in October 1934, but didn't tell her family that she was married for about six months. According to Tootsie, Vivian was worried about who would help out her ailing mother in her absence.

Eventually, news of the marriage was told, and Vivian and Johnnie moved to East Tupelo, just a couple of blocks from where Elvis Presley was born, and there they raised their family of three sons. Aunt Vivian died in 1992, four years after Uncle Johnnie. She was a good woman and loved her family.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Marietta's Mineral Springs

Prior to 1870, the little community of Marietta was in Itawamba County. When Prentiss County was formed out of Old Tishomingo County, a sliver of land was taken along northern Itawamba County and given to the newly formed county, and thus Marietta today is located in Prentiss County.

This area was home to several of my husband's ancestors: Mills, McKay, Thornton, Fowler, and Randolph to name a few. Therefore it was with great interest I read an article which appeared in the Friday, June 16, 1882 issue of The Tupelo Journal which I recently reviewed on microfilm at the Ole Miss Library. Below is a transcription.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again, old newspapers are a valuable source of genealogical information. In the 1882 article, the mineral springs located at the community of Marietta were being praised for their curative value, and I found a reference to my husband's GGGgrandmother of all people! "Mrs. Posey Fowler was cured of epileptic spasms of forty years standing." What a genealogical gem of a find!

These same extolled mineral springs are still active today at the Marietta City Park, site of the 2008 Mills Family Reunion.

Mrs. Posey Fowler was actually Mary Goocher, daughter of Andrew Martin Goocher and Mary "Polly" Barksdale, who married Posey Fowler in 1833 in Perry County, Alabama and moved with her family to the Marietta area around 1842. I've found in the Itawamba County deed books where the Fowlers owned land just east of the Marietta City Park where the mineral springs are located, and Posey and Mary helped organize the Marietta Methodist Church just down the road. Posey and Mary's daughter, Lucinda Rachel Fowler, married Henry Randolph and Henry and Rachel's daughter, Onady, my husband's great grandmother, married Jesse Thomas Mills.

Here is the transcribed article:

The Crops - Bay Springs Water Power - Marietta Mineral Springs
Tupelo, Miss., June 8th, 1882

Mr. Editor- I have just returned from a trip from Booneville to Bay Springs, going by the upper route and returning by Marietta.

The cotton crop prospect is gloomy. The cotton is small, the stands poor and still dying. Such is the condition of the crops generally in the white counties of North Mississippi. The crop will be short without doubt in this territory, but how short it is impossible now to tell. The corn is more promising but small.

The advantages of Bay Springs as a cite for a large factory can hardly be excelled. The banks are of rock and ascend to a height of fifty or seventy-five feet on each side. The volume of water is large, and a fall of thirty feet can easily be obtained. The fall now is only twelve feet. The place will probably be sold next fall. It has the appearance of a deep channel in a high ridge.

We were pleased to note the improved condition and bright prospects of Marietta. Besides several new stores, magnificent hotel is being erected for the accommodation of visitors to the springs there. That, with the neat cottages will accommodate a hundred and fifty or two hundre persons. Many persons have already engaged rooms and cottages for the season. There is no doubt that it will become a place of popular resort for health and pleasure. The curative properties are highly spoken of by competent judges. I will give you one well authenticated case of a cure from the use of these waters. Mrs. Posey Fowler was cured of epileptic spasms of forty years standing. So Dr. Ben Archer, a former resident of Saltillo and now living near Marietta, informed the writer. Below I give you the analysis of one of the springs by Robt. K dzie (sic), Prof. of Chemistry in the A & M College, Starkville, Miss.:

No. 1-Marietta Water -- Grains to U.S. Gallon

Sulphate of Iron..... 15.300 grs.
Sulphate of Alumina..... 10.125 grs.
Sulphate of Potash..... 2.226 grs.
Sulphate of Lime..... 1.289 grs.
Carbonate of Lime..... 3.366 grs.
Carbonate of Magnesia..... 1.133 grs.
Chlorine Trace
Organic Matter..... 1.254 grs.
Loss in Analysis..... .050 grs.
Total number grs. to gallon..... 35.693

We spent a couple of hours with the citizens of Marietta and found them courteous, intelligent, hightoned and enterprising. Those who do not believe our report, let them go and see. The writer will go again, and stay longer next trip.


Sunday, January 10, 2010

Snow in Greenville

We had just a bit more snow than this here in Oxford this past week. Usually our snow, if it sticks at all, leaves as fast as it comes. This time, however, we've had it around a lot longer than usual, and it seems strange to still see snow on the ground a couple of days later. Like most of the South, it hasn't gotten above freezing for several days now. Mike has been worried about his cows, feeding them and breaking up their drinking water at the pond. Yes, he is in the cow business now, didn't mean to be, but that's a story for another day.

The photograph was taken in front of our house at 1188 Cottage Drive in Greenville, Mississippi, probably about 1965. That's me in the middle, holding our beagle (named Snoopy?), and my brother Kirk is by my side. On the other side is Lazette, my friend from down the street.

It sure is cold outside!!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Margaret Johnson Hood

Virble Booth shared this picture of the Hood and Tucker families with Don Dulaney, and it was provided to her courtesy of Sandra Noordhof.

The top image of Margaret Johnson Hood was extracted by me from the second photograph. Margaret is seated on the front row, second from the left. She moved to Itawamba County around 1854 with her husband, Joshua H. Hood, as well as her parents, Simeon and Martha Johnson, from St. Clair County, Alabama. Margaret and Joshua were married in St. Clair County on December 20, 1849, and their first three children were born there.

Margaret and Joshua's daughter, Martha Jane, married Henry Leverett Tucker, and it is their family that is pictured above. All eleven of Martha Jane and Henry's children are included in the photograph, which was taken in 1907 in Itawamba County.

Back row, left to right: Ella Tucker, Monroe Tucker, Lonzo Tucker, Ada Pearl Tucker, Birdie Tucker, Curtis Tucker, Esker Wilce Tucker, James Henry Tucker and Conard Tucker. They are standing in birth order.

Front row, left to right: Unknown Male, Margaret Johnson Hood, Martha Hood Tucker, youngest child Mattie Jane Tucker, Henry Leaverett Tucker, Noonan Tucker with wife Ellie West Tucker and daughter Una.

The unknown male on the front row was identified as being a Hood, but I cannot imagine who it could be. All of Margaret's sons were married and with their own families at that time. Her husband Joshua died in 1885. Margaret Johnson Hood died April 13, 1910 and was buried in Mt. Pleasant Baptist Cemetery.

There are at least three set of Itawamba Johnson families in my husband's ancestry: Simeon Johnson, who was Margaret's father, along with Henry Johnson who lived at Mud Creek, and Steven Johnson who settled the Pine Grove community.

Here is the Tucker family in the 1910 census:

1910 Census
Itawamba County, Mississippi
Clay precinct
Henry Tucker 44 MS AL "don't know" , farmer, married 23 years
Martha 48 MS AL AL, 11 children, 11 living
Monroe 20 MS
Ella 21 MS
Ada 17 MS
Birdie 15 MS
Curtis 14 MS
Escar 13 MS
Henry 11 MS
Conrad 9 MS
Mattie 7 MS
(Noonan and Lonzo were already in their own households)

Friday, January 8, 2010

Elder William Hood

During my trip to Pontotoc County this week, I was interested in finding information related to the Hood family who lived there during the mid to late 1800s. These Hoods were originally from St. Clair County, Alabama and are related to the Itawamba Hoods, although the exact relationship is not yet known. Joshua Hood, my husband's GGGgrandfather was born in St. Clair County in 1831, and his father is not known to us although some researchers have indicated that William and Elizabeth Hood were his parents. See this earlier post for further discussion regarding the unlikelihood of William and Elizabeth being Joshua's parents.

Hiram Hood is often given as being a brother to Joshua Hood, and since Hiram Hood lived in Pontotoc County I hoped to find out more information about him during my visit. I knew that Hiram was the son of William Hood and Cecelia Quinn, although he is sometimes mistakenly noted to be the son of William and Elizabeth Hood, just like Joshua. In addition to Hiram, there was another Hood in Pontotoc County with St. Clair ties. Burrell Hood (sometimes Burwell) was born in 1817 in St. Clair County, and was the son of Robert Hood and Sarah Roland (sometimes Rowland). It is believed that all of these Hoods can be traced back to John Hood and Sarah Austin. The question for researchers is to determine just how they all connect, and specifically for many Itawambians, how does Joshua fit in. It is possible that information found in Pontotoc may provide clues for the Itawamba Hoods' heritage.

While nothing turned up in Pontotoc on this trip that would help with the Joshua puzzle, I did find out more information about Hiram, and more importantly, information about Hiram's father, William Hood. William Hood was a Baptist preacher, and the records I've found indicate that he was actually of the Primitive Baptist faith although "back then" it wasn't called Primitive Baptist. It is also important to note that some of the Itawamba Hoods were preachers, including Joshua's son.

There were two sources of wonderful information that I found in the Pontotoc County Library's genealogy room. One was the minutes of Cherry Creek Baptist Church, which was near today's town of Ecru. The other was the original minutes from the Aberdeen Baptist Association annual meetings from the years 1846-1854. The Cherry Creek minutes included a death notice for Elder William Hood in 1884 that provided new leads for further Hood family research. There was also a death notice in the minutes for William's wife, Cecelia Quinn Hood. Since the minutes indicated that an obituary was to be placed in the Baptist Record for William Hood, next on my list is to track down that publication.

The minutes for the Aberdeen Baptist Association also provided good information. This association was composed of Baptist churches in Monroe, Lee, Itawamba and Chickasaw counties, and each year a meeting was held at a host church, with the meetings attended by elected delegates from each church, much like the association meetings of Primitive Baptist churches today. The Aberdeen Baptist Association minutes indicated that Elder William Hood was pastor of Enon Baptist Church near Camargo in Monroe County from at least 1846 through October 1853. The 1854 minute book showed him as pastor of Liberty Church in Monroe County. That year is the last year for which the library had minutes.

I really enjoyed looking at the minutes of these old churches. Below I have copied some of what I transcribed, for your reading pleasure. Maybe you will enjoy it was much as I did. Although there wasn't any grand discovery, and Joshua's parents still remain a puzzle to be solved, sometimes you take your pleasure where you find it. I've got more if anybody is interested.

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Cherry Creek Baptist Church
Pontotoc County, Mississippi
Minutes Book II, 1875-1900

May meeting, 1884

Bro. W. R. Spencer chairman committee obituarys made the following report:

Elder Wm Hood was received into this church May 1880. Departed this life March 4, 1884 at the venerable age of 87 years 3 months and 21 days. He joined the Hopewell Baptist Church in St. Clair Co, Ala in 1832 began to preach the same year. Was ordained by the Big Creek Baptist Church in 1833 elders Mead White and Jesse Thomas constituting presbytery. Was actively engaged in the ministry about 50 years. Father Hood's opportunities for acquiring an education in early life were quite limited, but being full of energy and zeal by dint of hard study he became a man of considerable attainments and thus fitted for the useful sphere in which he moved. His was a laborous life - and although he had a large family to raise support and educate he went forward in his mistereal (sic) week sometimes as pastor of churches sometimes as mishinary (sic) evangelist, not allowing the claim of his family as any worldly consisteration (sic) to interfere with the great work to which his master and brethern had called him.

His success in his days of his strength was in building up churches, in waist (sic) places and confuting was wherever he found his strict adherance to sound doctrine all attest his worth and usefulness.

But he has finished his work and our loss is his eternal gain, and we can orle (sic) exclaim in the languages of the sainted Servant of God well done.

The battle fought the victory won Enter thy Masters joy.

Respectfully submitted,
W. R. Spencer, Chairman

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Aberdeen Baptist Association
Minutes of Meeting

Salem Church, October 16, 1846

... a committee of three was appointed on ministerial education, to report at this meeting. That committee are brethren Christman, W. Hood, and Compere.

.... on the subject of the moral and religious improvement of the colored population, and said committee to report at this meeting. That committee are brethren Gill, R. Harrison and W. Hood

1st What course should be adopted toward such church members who attend for the first time Theatres, Circussus, Horse Races, Tippling Shops, Billiard Rooms, N'nep'n Alleys, or Balls?
2nd Also what should be done with such members, as persist in attending such places?

Your committee, to whom was referred the Queries from the Aberdeen Church beg leave to report: That we deem all such conduct as mentioned in said Queries, as unchristian, highly reprehensible and tending to be the worst of influences. We would therefore recommend the following answer: 1st clause, They should be reproved by the Pastor 2nd clause, They should be urged to refrain, and in the case of obstinance, continuance in such a course should be dealt with by the church, for refractory and unchristian conduct.
All of which is respectfully submitted,

Wm. Hood, Chairman

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Happy Birthday!!

Betty Jean Pennington

Today is my mother's birthday so let's all wish her a happy one! Seems like we always have some sort of weather situation on her birthday, and this year is no different. One to two inches of snow is being predicted for our part of the world tonight and tomorrow. At least it is not ice!

Happy Birthday, Momma!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Bowen-Reid Marriage Record

Yesterday I made a quick trip to the courthouse in neighboring Pontotoc County. At one time, Itawamba and Pontotoc were two large counties and bordered each other, but in 1866, Lee County was formed by taking land from both Itawamba and Pontotoc.

I knew that my time was scarce so I had to prioritize and limit my research. The primary purpose for the visit was to check out a marriage record between Marion Sampson Purnell and Mary Frances "Mollie" Rayburn who were married in Pontotoc County on January 8, 1877. It has long puzzled me how Marion, brother of my GGgrandmother Charlotte Purnell, came to be married in Pontotoc County. He was enumerated as a little boy in my GGGgrandfather's household in the 1860 census in Lamar County, Alabama. In the 1870 census, the family was living in Hardin County, Tennessee, and by 1880 Marion was head of a household that contained both his parents, back in Lamar County, Alabama. How in the world did he get married in Pontotoc County? What was the connection? Maybe information would surface that would provide clues as to the Purnell ancestry which is presently at a brick wall.

Well, the marriage record was not at the courthouse. Apparently only an index survived a fire or storm that destroyed some of the courthouse records during that period of time. I was told that the local library had the original records on microfilm although I'm not sure if that is so and will be a task for another day. But I did get to check some land records and found some chattel deed of trusts that shed some light on the Purnell puzzle.

Apparently, Marion's uncle, Matthew Robert Purnell, lived on land that bounded both Pontotoc and Calhoun counties. I knew that in the 1880 census Matthew R. Purnell was enumerated in Calhoun County, but I didn't realize he lived adjacent to Pontotoc County. In 1877 and 1878, Matthew and his sons executed a deed of trust for $200 in order to make their crops, and secured the debt with their livestock and proceeds from their corn and cotton crops in "Pontotoc and Calhoun" counties. More research is needed, but I suspect that Marion was visiting his Uncle Matthew, possibly working as a farm hand, when he met Mollie Rayburn. It is also possible that his father, Samuel Morris Purnell, moved to Pontotoc or Calhoun counties to be near his brother, between 1870 and 1880. A trip to the Calhoun County courthouse is called for.

Anyway, that's off track from the image you see above. In Marriage Record Book One, I found the marriage record for William Elisha Bowen and Harriet Amandaville Reid, my husband's GGGgrandparents. William and Harriet moved to Itawamba County, near the Mud Creek community in the northwestern part of the county, sometime between 1860 and 1870. The marriage record indicates that William and Harriet were married on May 1, 1859 by H. P. Berry, Justice of the Peace. Their marriage bond was issued on April 28, 1859 and signed for by W. E. Bowen and J. H. Harden.

Not shown here, but in the sidelines of the record page, is written: "State of Mississippi, Pontotoc Co., Ap 24th 1859, Mr. Clerk, sir it is none [known] by these few lines that it agreed to that you should issue marriage lisens for William E. Bowen. [signed] Joseph Reid. It appears as if Joseph Reid went to the courthouse and gave his pre-approval of the marriage a few days before William applied for the license and bond. The court clerk then wrote down the approval in the margins of record book.

Joseph Reid was father of Harriet. He was born in Spartanburg District, South Carolina in 1818 and was married to Delphia Littlejohn, daughter of Ignatious and Mary Littlejohn, also of Spartanburg. William E. Bowen was the son of James D. "Jimmy Dee" Bowen and Elizabeth Carlisle.

Never know what you might find, just in a quick trip!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Monroe Dulaney - mail carrier

I love the angle of this photograph, taken from in front of the horses and buggy. The subject of the photo is Monroe Dulaney, who was a mail carrier for the Clay post office route in the early 1900s. Here he is pictured with his mail buggy.

Monroe was the son of Alfred "Babe" Dulaney and Lucinda Alabama Chilcoat, and he was married to Bertie Beasley. His daughter, Halovee Dulaney Robinson, and granddaughter, Patti Robinson Ashley, shared this photo with us.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Young Jury Pennington

You never know where you will find a picture of an ancestor or close relative. A history of the Jackson family, compiled by Edith Jackson Hankins, Robert Rice and Florence Jackson Hankins, included this photograph of the Ves Thompson family, and pictured with the Thompson family is a young Ellis Jury Pennington, my grandfather Fessie's uncle. Jury is pictured on the back row, right. Wasn't he a handsome fellow?

Uncle Jury was my great-great uncle, and I remember him as a kind, sweet person. He died in 1979 at the age of 81.

Jury was still a toddler when both of his parents died in the early 1900s, and he was raised primarily by his brother Hugh and Hugh's wife, Dee, my great-grandparents. Sometime in his early teens, Jury ran away from home along with two of his other brothers who were also living with Hugh and Dee. The young brothers had been shamed by another relative into thinking they were a burden on Hugh and Dee, and thus in the middle of the night, they left for Texas, making Hugh and Dee sick with worry until word got back to Itawamba County that the brothers were okay. It was during this time in Texas that Uncle Jury posed for the picture with the Ves Thompson family. Jury came back to Mississippi not long after the picture was made, married Mary Elizabeth "Bess" Patterson, and lived in the Peaceful Valley community the rest of his life.

Ves Thompson was actually Marvel Marion Sylvester "Ves" Thompson who was Jury's first cousin. Ves was married to Susan C. Malloy, another relative of Jury's. Susan was half-sister to Jury's deceased mother, Laura Stewart Pennington.

In the above photograph are: (front) Ves Thompson, son Louie, Susie Malloy Thompson (back) Marion Thompson, Howard Thompson, Eva Thompson, and Jury Pennington.

Ves and Susie, both Lamar County, Alabama natives, died in Tarrant County, Texas.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Beck and her Aunt Hettie

Came across this picture of my grandmother, Beck, and her Aunt Hettie, taken at a Davis Family Reunion sometime in the 1980s. I was struck by how much Aunt Hettie favored Beck's sister, Lizzie Lee. Hettie Anderson Davis was the baby daughter of James William Anderson Davis and Anna Elizabeth Morrow. She was born February 17, 1902 in Itawamba County and married Elva Cleveland Mason in 1925. Aunt Hettie was 96 years old when she died in 1998.

Friday, January 1, 2010

To all of you....

A Glad New Year