John Henderson Bowen was the oldest son of William and Martha Bowen, born May 5, 1822 in Virginia; he died November 25, 1881 in Itawamba County, Mississippi.
The Bible record of John's brother, W.D.S. Bowen, indicates that John married M.Z.E. Putman on August 29, 1847, while a Bible belonging to John's son shows that John married Zinnie E., daughter of Elias C. Putnam and Nancy, on the same date, in Shelby, North Carolina.
John and Zinnie were enumerated in the 1850 census in Cleveland County, North Carolina, but by 1860 the couple were in Itawamba County. Zinnie died on November 30, 1866, and John remarried, to Mary Susan Tarver on February 21, 1868.
The graves of John and Zinnie are lost to us although we know the approximate location; they were buried on family property located west of Mt. Pisgah Baptist Church. Unfortunately, the family cemetery was bulldozed - apparently by accident - after the property was sold. John Henderson Bowen's broken tombstone was later found where it had been pushed down a hill. I was able to photograph John's grave marker which is in the possession of a Bowen descendant who still lives in Itawamba County. Maybe one day other markers will turn up.
John and Zinnie had the following children:
William H. M. Bowen, married Mary Jane Tucker, died Itawamba County
Elias Alexander Bowen, married Rachel J. Hurst, moved to Arkansas and later Oklahoma
Emily J. Bowen, married Ephraim Johnson
John M. L. Bowen, died as infant in Cleveland County, North Carolina
Martha A. Bowen (my GG grandmother), married Nathaniel M. Clayton
Henderson** Roberts Bowen, married first Susan "Sallie" Lawson, second Mary Susan Elizabeth Fikes, died Itawamba County
Nancy Victoria Dulaney, married Alfred Elias Dulaney, died Sevier County, Arkansas
James Y. Bowen, married Sallie W. Rogers, died Itawamba County
Sarah E. Bowen, married Robert Franklin Smith
C. E. Bowen, gender unknown, died as small child
Apparently, John and his second wife did not have any children, or if so, they are not known to me.
Some descendants indicate that John was a minister, and that appears to be true. Records show that John H. Bowen registered as a member of the clergy, Missionary Baptist faith, on January 23, 1866. John may have served as minister for Mt. Pisgah Baptist Church, or its predecessor church. The minute books for Mt. Pisgah are full of Bowen names, including those of John's children and brother W.D.S. Bowen during the late 1800s and early 1900s. On my to-do list is to find 1987 copies of Itawamba Settlers magazines that contain transcriptions of the earliest minutes of Mt. Pisgah (back to the 1870s) to see what references there may be to my GGG grandfather.
I also need to determine whether or not John H. Bowen served in the Civil War. Records show a J. H. Bowen serving in the Company H, 2nd Regiment, Miss. but I don't know if this is the same as my John Henderson Bowen. John would have been close to 40 years old when the war started. His brother, W.D.S.Bowen, was an officer in the Miss. Cavalry.
** The name of Henderson Roberts Bowen is intriguing. In the 1850 census, a Henderson Roberts is enumerated a few households away from John Henderson Bowen and his family. What is the connection?