Georgia Genealogy Trails
"Where your Journey Begins"
G., lawyer and member of Congress, was born in Franklin
county, N. C., March 20, 1839. After the usual preparatory training he entered
the University of Virginia, but the death of his father in 1857 made it
necessary for him to leave the institution before completing his course. The
following year he came to Georgia, where he taught school until the commencement
of the war, when he enlisted in the Confederate service. He served through the
entire war, being mustered out as captain, and in 1865 was admitted to the bar.
In 1872 he was one of the presidential electors on the Democratic ticket. Later
he served three terms in the legislature; was elected to represent his district
in the lower branch of Congress in 1880, and reflected at each succeeding
election until 1894. Upon retiring from Congress he resumed the practice of law
at Quitman; was appointed one of the justices of the supreme court, but after a
short service he resigned, and died at Quitman in 1905.
family appears to have been a very old Georgia family, living here apparently
before the Revolutionary War, but originally from South Carolina. John
Allbritton, a Revolutionary soldier, of Effingham County, and George Allbritton
of Burke County and Richard Allbritton of Screven and Bulloch counties, were
Matthew Allbritton was
a native of Effingham County, and was born in 1788, a son of John Allbritton, R.
S. He grew up in Bulloch County which was created out of Effingham, and was
married about 1808 to Ann Bulloch, a daughter of James and Dinah Bulloch of
Effingham County. She was born in that county in 1792 and died in 1871 in Brooks
Matthew Allbritton had
one known brother and one known sister, viz: Thomas Allbritton, born 1776, of
Ware County (cut into Pierce County by the creation of that county 1858), and
Jane, born 1795, created he was cut off into it and became one of its first
Inferior Court justices, serving 1826-27. In 1830 he lived (according to the
1830 tax digest) on lot of land 446, 12th district of Lowndes, now Brooks
County, which he owned.
Elder Allbritton died
in the midst of a very busy ministry, and was greatly in demand as a preacher of
the Gospel. His passing brought much sadness to a wide circle of brethren
throughout this section. He was buried at Bethany Church. His grave was marked
by a brick wall about it, though no tombstone was ever put there. His widow
lived twenty-one years longer and died in 1871 and was buried on the old John W.
Allen place one mile east of Dixie. She spent her last years with Mr. and Mrs.
Allen. The children of
Elder and Mrs.
Allbritton were: 1. Abigall b. 1805, m. Cornelius English. Died at
Plant City, Fla. 2. Jesse J. b. 1810, m. Catherine Holloway. 3. James B. b.
1813, m. Mariah Lastinger. 4. George W. b. 1815, m. Jane Allen 5. William T. b.
1823, m. Adeline Griffin. 6. Matthew Henry b.
1826, m. Mary Amanda Turner. 7. Martha
Ellen b. 1832, m. (1)______Woods; (2)
John W. Allen. 8. Sophronia b. 1834, m. Willet F. N. Kirkland from
M. H. and J. J.
Allbritton were administrators of the estate.
Rev. Allbritton and
his wife were married in Bryan County and lived in Laurens County a few years,
about 1809-15, and also lived a short time in Bryan County, and are found in the
1820 Census in Bulloch County. As already indicated, they moved to Lowndes (or
Irwin at the time) about 1823-24, when only a few people lived here.
Mrs. Allbritton had a
sister Abigail who married Silas Hilliard in Bryan County, and they moved later
to Ware County where their son Thomas (1804-1866) became a very prominent
citizen and large landowner in his day, and served a number of terms in the
state senate, also filling other offices. married John Dean in Laurens County in
1812. There were apparently other brothers and sisters. John and Jane Dean moved
from Laurens to Lowndes County about 1830 and settled in present Brooks where
they lived until they died, leaving several children whose descendants live here
now. Most of the descendants of Thomas Allbritton became citizens of
Matthew Allbritton was
a well-known Baptist minister of his day. Just when and where he was ordained is
not now known but it appears to have been before he moved to this section. He
was one of the presbytery which constituted the first Baptist Church in all this
section—Union Church on the banks of the Alapaha River near the present town of
Lakeland, in October, 1825. He was then an ordained minister and was called as
the first pastor and held the pastorate until his death in January, 1850. His
wife became a charter member of Union Church by letter and was dismissed by
letter August 12, 1826 and he and his wife became charter members of Bethel
Baptist Church in Brooks County when it was formed in September, 1826. On
September 6, 1833, he transferred his membership to Union Church and continued a
member until his death. It is thought that Rev. Allbritton and his wife were
originally members of a Baptist Church in Bulloch County and that he was
ordained there. When division developed in the ranks of Baptists in the 1830s
and 1840s Rev. Allbritton cast his lot with the Primitives. He served a number
of churches all over old Lowndes County and also in Thomas County and over in
Florida. He was pastor of Columbia Church in present Brooks County, 1841-1847,
and it is probable, was its pastor for the preceding eight years, 1833-41, the
minutes for that period being lost Was also pastor of Bethel Church for some
Elder Allbritton was
one of the first settlers of this section, and lived here when it was Irwin
County. In 1825 when Lowndes was created lie was cut off into it and became one
of its first Inferior Court justices, serving 1826-27. In 1830 he lived
(according to the 1830 tax digest) on lot of land 446, 12th district of Lowndes,
now Brooks County, which he owned.
Elder Allbritton died
in the midst of a very busy ministry, and was greatly in demand as a preacher of
the Gospel. His passing brought much sadness to a wide circle of brethren
throughout this section. He was buried at Bethany Church. His grave was marked
by a brick wall about it, though no tombstone was ever put there. His widow
lived twenty-one years longer and died in 1871 and was buried on the old John W.
Alien place one mile east of Dixie. She spent her last years with Mr. and Mrs.
Allen. The children of
Elder and Mrs.
Allbritton were: 1. Abigail b. 1805, m. Cornelius English. Died at
Plant City, Fla. 2. Jesse J. b. 1810, m. Catherine Holloway. 3. James B. b.
1813, m. Marian Lastinger. 4. George W. b. 1815, m. Jane Allen 5. William T. b.
1823, m. Adeline Griffin. 6. Matthew Henry b. 1826, m.
Mary Amanda Turner. 7. Martha EUen b. 1832, m. (1)______Woods; (2) John W.
Allen. 8. Sophronia b. 1834, m. Willet F. N. Kirkland from Florida.
M. H. and J. J.
Allbritton were administrators of the estate. Rev. Allbritton and his wife were
married in Bryan County and lived in Laurens County a few years, about 1809-15,
and also lived a short time in Bryan County, and are found in the 1820 Census in
Bulloch County. As already indicated, they moved to Lowndes (or Irwin at the
time) about 1823-24, when only a few people lived here.
Mrs. Allbritton had a
sister Abigail who married Silas Hilliard in Bryan County, and they moved later
to Ware County where their son Thomas (1804-1866) became a very prominent
citizen and large landowner in his day, and served a number of terms in the
state senate, also filling other offices.
George W. Allbritton,
third son of Elder Allbritton and wife, was born in 1815 in Laurens County, and
came as a boy with his parents to present Brooks County. He married Jane Allen,
a daughter of Isaac and Easter Allen, who were among the first settlers of
Thomas County. She was born September 19, 1818, and died November 9, 1892. Her
husband enlisted in the Brooks County militia in the last year of the Civil "War
and was captured in the battles about Atlanta, and confined in Federal prison on
Hilton Head Island, S. ft, where he died January, 1865. He served in the Indian
War as a first lieutenant in the Florida Volunteers, 1836. When Brooks County
was formed Mr. Allbritton and family were cut out of Thomas County into the new
county and continued to live here afterwards.
Isaac Allen was a
brother of James Allen, first Sheriff of Irwin County, also a brother of Dennis
Alien, William Allen, and John Allen and Henry Allen, all of whom were
originally from North Carolina and came to Georgia about 1800-1810 and settled
first in Telfair County, then in Irwin, being cut off into Lowndes and Thomas
counties later. Their father was Charles Allen, a Revolutionary soldier in North
Carolina, later of South Carolina.
The children of George
W. and Jane Allbritton were:
1. Martha b. 1834f probably died in girlhood.
2. Easter b. 1838, m._Woods. Died Nov. 12, 1860.
3. Laura b. 1840, m. S.
4. Mary b. 1842, m.
(2) _Lee. Died 1932.
5. Lurania b. 1844, m. Henry
6. Isaac Allen b. 1849, m. Willie Sinclair.
7. Susan b. 1852, m.
8. Rachel b. 1854, m. Augustus B. Jones. Died 1889.
George W„ Jr. b. 1856, died Dec. 16, 1859.
I. b. 1860, m. George P. Smith. Died 1900.
Matthew J. b. 1862, died single, age 21.
Mrs. Jane Allen
Allbritton is buried in the town cemetery at Dixie in Brooks County. Her husband
was buried at Hilton Head, S. C.
Isaac A. Allbritton
Isaac Allen Allbritton was born in present Brooks County in 1849 and was
admitted to the bar in Brooks Superior Court, December 21st, 1874, after a
creditable examination. He was married in 1877 to Miss "Willie Sinclair,
daughter of Hon. B. W. Sinclair and wife of Brooks County; to them were born two
daughters, Alma and Willie. The former married Dr. E. L. Jelks of Quitman, and
her sister who was never married, lives with her and Dr. Jelks in Quitman. Mr.
Allbritton died a premature death July 21, 1881, in his thirty-second year, and
was at his death enjoying a large and growing practice of law. Mrs. Allbritton
having died the year before, their two little daughters were taken in hand by
their grandmother, Mrs. Sinclair, and reared by her. Mr. and Mrs. Isaac A.
Allbritton were buried in West End Cemetery, Quitman.
Randolph Avera was the son of David and
Elizabeth (Hood) Avera; both were born in Washington County and reared twelve
children. David was a member of the Legislature from Crawford County and later
moved to Houston County where he died in 1876. Randolph Avera and his brother
Thomas moved to Quitman and built the first brick store and set out the first
shade trees in the new town of Quitman in 1859. On July 21, 1861, Mr. Avera
married Mrs. Mary Jane (Young) McElveen who represented one of the oldest
families in South Georgia. She was born in Thomas County September 29, 1830, the
daughter of Michael Young and Mrs. Sarah Everett Young; the grand-daughter of
William and Mary Henderson Young. William Young, in 1775, was a member of the
Council of Safety at Savannah and on July 4th of that year represented the town
and district of Savannah in the first assemblage of the Provincial Congress. He
was afterwards a planter in Screven County.
Michael Young, son of William and Mary
Henderson Young and father of Mrs. Avera, was born in Screven County January 16,
1797. He married Miss Sarah Everett who was born in Bulloch County. In 1828,
Michael with his family and slaves, moved to the new county of Thomas and
settled three miles from Thomasville, subsequently developing a yery large
plantation there which he farmed profitably until his death. He was a member of
the legislature from Thomas County; as there were no railroads he had to make
the journey to Milledgeville on horseback. He died on his farm August 24, 1856.
His wife died in 1876. They reared nine children.
Mary Jane Avera first married William
Henry McElveen of Decatur County in 1850; they bought land and lived on their
farm until his death at the age of 35. She was left with three small children.
After her husband's death she bought a tract of land in 1857 in what is now
Brooks County, to be near her brother, James Everett Young. There was no Quitman
and her land was a pine forest. With her slaves she cleared the land and built a
home; first, a log house and later a colonial-style residence set far back among
fruit and shade trees. Here she and Mr. Avera lived for over fifty years and
reared four children.
Mrs. Avera was untiring in her service to
the county and to the welfare of the community. She was one of the founders of
the Ladies' Memorial Association and an active member of the Methodist
Mary Jane Young was born September 29,
1830 in Thomas County; married William Henry McElveen of Decatur County,
December 17, 1850. Their children were William Henry McElveen, Jr., Sarah
America McElveen and Susan Tallulah McElveen.
Sarah America McElveen married Dr. Daniel
Luther Ricks. Their children were: Mary Tallulah, William Luther, Clara Ethel,
Cora Lee, Lelia Viola, Josie Alberta and Hugh Brandon Ricks. Cora Lee married
Matt Armstrong Fleming and their children are William McElveen Fleming, Hugh
Armstrong Fleming, Frank Lamar Flem-ing. William McElveen Fleming married Louise
Jefferson and their child was Stacy Jefferson Fleming. Hugh Armstrong Fleming
mar-ried Nell Legwin and they have one son Hugh Armstrong Fleming, Jr. Frank
Lamar Fleming married Eva Clark. Lelia Viola Ricks married Preston Castleberry
and they have one child: Mary Mec Castleberry who married William Lawson
Bobbitt. William Luther Ricks married Estelle Benedict and their children are:
Charles Luther and William Benedict Ricks. Hugh Brandon Ricks married La Verne
Susan Tallulah McElveen married Joseph
King Hodges. Their children: Mary Effie, Mec, Tallulah, Joseph King Hodges, Jr.
Mary Effie Hodges married Joseph Walker and their children were Mary Beler,
Emma, Tallulah, Joseph. Emma Walker married William Stevens Porter and their son
is William S. Jr. Tallulah Walker married James A. Anderson and their children
are James A. Jr., and Mary Emily Anderson. Mec Hodges married Bealer Walker,
Tallulah Hodges married Tom Fox. Joseph King Hodges married Marie
William Henry McElveen died in Thomas
County, in 1857, and his widow married Randolph Avera July 21, 1861, in Brooks
County. He was born May 21, 1826, at Fort Valley, Ga. Their children: Clara
Lavinia, James Walter, John Randolph and Charles Young Avera.
James Walter Avera married Margaret
McMullen and their chil-dren : Mary Mec, Walter McMullen, Sallie Lee and James
West Avera. Mary Mec married Walter Thomas Home and they have: Walter T., Jr.,
and Margaret who married Eddy N. Ekdahl. Walter McMullen Avera married Allie
Thomas and James West Avera married Mamie Smith.
John Randolph Avera married Beulah
Whittington and their children: Kathleen, Mary Jane, Virginia McDonald, Ruth,
John Randolph Jr., Beulah Whittington, Benjamin Whittington and Dougal McDonald
Avera. Kathleen Avera married Paul C. Smith, later Ralph L. Slate; Mary Jane
married George Robert Whitfield; Virginia MacDonald Avera married Lee Howard
McFarlane; Beulah Whittington Avera married Allen Wyche Groover; Benjamin W.
Avera married Theresa Kirstead and their children are: Benj. W. Jr., and John
Randolph Avera II.
Charles Young Avera married Florrie
McMullen and their children are Daisy and Charlie Jr., and Clara Lee. Daisy
married Herman James Lambert and their children are Herman J. Jr., and Robert
Young Lambert. Charles Young Avera also married Bertice Smith and they have:
Henry Randolph, Ruth and Eloise Avera.
Herman J. Lambert mentioned above, has
served in the U. S. Army for 28 years in a professional capacity. He at present
is chief of the Dental Service at the Tripler General Hospital, Oahu, Territory
of Hawaii, where he lives with his wife and two sons. The elder son, Herman Jr.,
is a physician at the Queen Hospital in Honolulu, and the other son is attending
the University of Hawaii.
Data Compiled by J. B. Baum of
The first member of the Baum family known
in South Georgia was Jacob Baum who was born in Germany, June 8, 1825, and died
in Quitman, Ga., April 10, 1891. He and his brothers who came with him to
America about 1847, were of High German descent and were born in or near Sahern,
near Berlin. At least two of his brothers originally settled at Irwinton, Ga.,
they being Alexander Baum and Michael Baum. The latter, according to the family
tra-dition, was a younger brother and he served in the Confederate Army and was
in the battles around Atlanta. He was buried at Irwinton.
Six or seven Baum brothers departed from
Germany about 100 years ago when there was a revolution for civil and religious
liberty, and sailed for Baltimore, three of them uthnately settling in Georgia
and two of these marrying and having large families.
When he first settled in this country
Jacob Baum was an immigrant without funds and unable to speak English. He went
into the mercantile business in Quitman and gradually accumulated capital
whereby his business expanded.
Jacob Baum was wounded in the civil war
in Germany and ultimately lost his eye-sight from this wound. He was not
physically qualified for military service when the Civil War of 1861 came on and
therefore could not serve in the Confederate Army but did serve as a Confederate
nurse. He always said that he loved the country of his adoption more than his
native country, as he knew what freedom meant. He could not understand why he
had to forage at night for chickens, eggs, porkers, and other food for the
wounded soldiers quartered in this section. He often stated to his children that
his acts of stealing food for diseased and dying soldiers were the only acts of
theft he had ever committed.
He married twice, first to Miss Hester A.
R. Taylor of Thomas County, the sister of John Taylor of Boston, a Confederate
veteran. They were married May 20, 1860. She died April 27, 1865, leaving three
small children, viz: Leopold B. Baum, born November 24, 1861, died September 16,
1867; Bartola C. Baum, born October 22, 1863, died September, 1906, at Waycross;
and Hester Ann Baum, born April 27, 1865, died September, 1904, married Bart
Brooks. The latter's only child, Honora Brooks, born September 6, 1896 at
Boston, Ga., married Charles St. Clair Harby of Greenville, Fla, at Boston, on
March 25, 1919, who died November 23, 1934. There were two children of Honora
and Charles, viz: James St. Clair Harby, born September 20, 1923, who served
overseas in the late World War; and Louise Marie Harby, born August 31, 1929,
living in Boston, Ga.
During the Civil War, Jacoh Baum carried
on a mercantile business in Quitman, having bought one of the first lots in the
business section of the town when the first auction of town lots took place in
1859. He built the usual type of country store across from the Court House on
the lot where the present three-story building stands that was built by the
Rountrees. The Civil War came on, and as time went on he had many trials. With a
war on and much suffering everywhere, nursing sick soldiers, currency inflated
and later with three motherless children on his hands he did not have much
prospect for a bright future.
While thus traveling about he met the
family of John Dugger, Sr., of the Grooverville section of Brooks County, and
became acquainted with Miss Ann Pharaba Dugger, one of John Dugger's daughters.
After a brief courtship they were married September 14, 1865. The present Baum
home on West Screven Street was built in the 1860s (though of course it has been
remodelled and changed in many respects since those days) and it was to that
home with its three motherless children that he brought his bride. She took them
into her love and care, and became a good mother to them.
To Jacob and Ann Pharaba Dugger Baum were
born eight children, as follows: (1) Michael Baum, named for his uncle, born
January 5, 1867; died in Miami, Fla., June 18, 1934. (2) Jacob Alexander Baum,
born December 28, 1868, died January 8, 1895. Married January 8, 1890, Miss
Mattie B. Perry of Lowndes County. She was born September 13, 1872, died
September 18,1903. Issue Sallie (Mrs. C. M. Hunt) and Thelma (Mrs. Earl Doty).
(3) John Henry Baum, born January 21, 1871, died January 8, 1934. Never married.
(4) Ettie Baum, born October 9, 1872, married John G. Dean of Monticello, Fla.,
February 6, 1901, later resided in Panama City, Fla. Died July 6, 1944, leaving
three sons, Charlie, John G. Jr., and Martine Dean. (5) Mamie Baum, born
November 5, 1875, died January 28, 1887. (6) Tillie Baum, born December 2, 1877,
died August 29, 1878. (7) Annie Baum, born January 12, 1882; taught school
several years at Evergreen School in this county; married April 24, 1901 to Wm.
A. Taylor, a nephew of her father's first wife. Died January 21, 1920, survived
by her husband and four children, W. A. Jr., Walter, Annie Lois and Jacob Baum
Taylor. (8) Mabel Baum, born September 12, 1883, lives in Miami, Fla., address
1865 N.W. 21st Terrace. Married October 12, 1904 to Olin P. Stewart. They have
one son, Ben Stewart. Olin P. Stewart was a son of Rev. W. W. Stewart, Methodist
minister in the South Georgia Conference, so well remembered by many older
people as the Methodist pastor in Quitman for several years.
Mrs. Ann Pharaba Baum was born January
24, 1842, and died March 30, 1897. She and her husband are buried in the
Clipping from "The Waycross Headlight,"
Waycross, Ga., issue of November 18, 1885:
"Mr. Jacob Baum, an old respected
merchant of Quitman, is almost blind. "We knew him during the dark days twenty
years ago when he kept a dry goods store and carried on the manufacture of
cigars in that town. Mr. Baum is a German, honest to a fault, has a most
excellent wife, and we regret to hear of the sad affliction that has come upon
him. In his declining days he is still true to business principles and
advertises in his county paper."
Michael Baum, the oldest of the Baum
children by the second marriage of Jacob Baum, was born as stated above, January
5, 1867, and married Miss Ruth Hastings Brantley of Boston, 6a., April 20, 1898.
Their honeymoon consisted of a train ride from Boston to Quitman, where she came
to her husband's home to mother the two youngest Baum girls, Annie and Mabel,
who had been left orphans by the deaths of their parents. Mrs. Ruth Baum, like
her namesake in the Bible story, became a sister to all the Jacob Baum children
and was greatly loved by them. Her father was William R. Brantley, born February
12, 1834, died February 7, 1925, a native of North Carolina. She too lost a
bright young sister in her girlhood—Sallie Brantley (August 25, 1873-October 2,
1892), but her brother William Zachariah Brantley (October 31, 1867 - July 10,
1931) lived in Boston all of his life. Ruth was also a sister to Zach's wife,
Ruby Stone Brantley (August 5, 1867-September 23, 1935). The latter for many
years ran the Hotel Ruby of Boston, so well known to the traveling public as the
place where they had turn-tables and plenty of fried chicken! Grandmother
Brantley was formerly Martha Watson (June 28, 1832-December 3, 1912) with
relatives in Albany and in Worth County and Floral City, Fla. Zaek Brantley and
wife Ruby left two children, Martha (Mrs. W. C. Ball of Thomasville) and
Roderick Stone Brantley, very talented with paints, colors and an architect by
profession, now located in Thomasvill, Ga. Grandfather Brantley was a
Confederate veteran and was detailed to apprehend deserters toward the close of
the war, also was assigned to get salt at St. Marks, Fla., and was in the
Confederate secret service awhile. His oath of allegiance to the Union, after
the War, is recorded in the Court House at Albany.
Mrs. Ruth Brantley Baum was born July 24,
1871, and died in Greenwood, S.C, September 9, 1935, and is buried in West End
Cemetery, Quitman, in the Baum burial lot. Her husband, Michael Baum, was a
resident of Quitman until 1925 when he moved with all the family to Miami, Fla.,
with the exception of his brother, John Henry Baum, and his son J. Brantley
Baum, the latter being the only living member of the Baum family left in Brooks
County at present.
Michael Baum first started to practicing
law as the secretary for Judge W. B. Bennet of the County Court of Quitman, then
was elected Justice of the Peace, and from 1919 to 1924 was Judge of the City
Court of Quitman, and practiced law here for many years prior to his removal to
J. Brantley Baum was born June 17, 1899;
graduated from Quit-man High School in 1917; subsequently was in World "War No.
1; received his academic training at the U. S. Naval Academy 1918-1920. He then
attended the Lamar School of Law, Emory University, 1920-1923, and since his
admission to the bar has practiced law in Quitman. He was married to Miss Marian
Alene Akin, April 29, 1928. She was of an old Georgia family that moved to South
Florida when Miami was a small village. They have the following children: Martha
Patricia Baum, born March 17, 1929, Clifford Brantley Baum, born May 12, 1935,
and Marion Ruth Baum, born October 8, 1936.
Michael Earl Baum, the second child of
Michael and Ruth Baum, was born November 26, 1901, attended Quitman High School
as well as Sparks Collegiate Institute at Sparks, Ga., and took his law course
at Miami University, Miami, Fla. He married Emmalene V. Willett of Owensboro,
Ky., a daughter of a prominent Baptist min-ister of that city. They were married
August 30, 1928, and have a daughter Barbara Brantley Baum, born June 12, 1929.
Michael Earl Baum is a successful and prominent Miami attorney. He prac-ticed
law with his father in Miami until the latter ?s death.
The third child of the family was
Mildred, born November 6, 1903 and died May 23, 1905.
Christine Ann Baum, the oldest living
daughter, was born April 18, 1906, graduated from Quitman High School as well as
from Wesleyan College, Macon; taught school for a year or so in Miami, Fla. and
on July 21, 1928, was married to Joe E. Adams at Miami. They moved to Greenwood,
S. C, about 1933, where Mr. Adams is prominently connected in the hardware and
mill supply business. They have two sons, Joe Jr., born November 17, 1933 and
Brantley Michael Adams, born August 26, 1940.
The youngest child of Michael and Ruth
Baum, is Ruth, named for her mother. She was born January 20, 1909, attended
Quitman High School and Andrew College, Cuthbert, and graduated from Southern
College, Lakeland, Fla., in 1929. She then taught school in Dade County, Fla.,
and later married Tech. Sgt. Alden J. Wright, 7th Heavy Bombardment Air Force,
TJ. S. Army. After World War II she returned to Miami where she is teaching in
the public schools there.
Bartola C. Baum, son of Jacob by his
first marriage, was born October 22, 1863, and died at Waycross in September,
1906. His wife was Miss Nellie Garrison of Brooks County. They were married
January 7, 1890.
He was survived by five children: (1)
Joseph I. Baum, born August 22, 1892, in Waycross. Served in World War No. 1,
veteran of overseas service, serving in the Army of Occupation in Germany.
Married January 11, 1920, Leila V. Wells in Savannah. She was born December 12,
1901, in Savan-nah. They have one son Joseph I. Jr., born April 21, 1922, at
Sa-vannah, served as an M.P. in World War No. 2; Joseph I. Jr., mar-ried October
2, 1943, in Miami, Fla., Miss Helen H. Hosack, and they have a son John D. Baum,
born August 21, 1944, in Jacksonville, Fla.
(2) Conrad F. Baum, born in Waycross,
about 1895; has lived in Savannah, Ga, Birmingham, Ala., Miami, Panama City, and
St. Andrews, Fla. He is married and has a son Conrad Jr., who served in the U.
S. Navy in World War No. 2.
(3) Mary Ellen Baum, born about 1897, in
Waycross, married June 18, 1931, Russell F. Benatie in Jacksonville, Fla.
Address: 1451 Pinegrove Avenue, Jacksonville, Fla. For several years she lived
in Boston, Ga., with an uncle and aunt, Mr. and Mrs. W. A. Taylor, and after
Mrs. Taylor's death she lived with another uncle and aunt, Mr. and Mrs. J. G.
Deen Sr., in Panama City, Fla.
(4) Bartola Baum, born December 8, 1898,
in Waycross. He served in World War No. 1, and was in France. He is active in
the American Legion and in the Forty-and-Eight; and is a Mason. He has lived
most of his life in Savannah, where he has a successful plumbing business. He
married Miss Lucile M. Bishop October 15, 1922. They have one child, Bessie
Helen Baum, born August 4, 1923, married Irwin Paul Brown, a staff sergeant in
the U. S. Army.
(5) Percy Baum, born December 4, 1903, in
Waycross In young manhood he joined the U. S. Army and was in the service
seventeen years, receiving an Honorable Discharge account of disabilities, with
the rank of sergeant, after Pearl Harbor. He was in defense work during World
War No. 2, in shipbuilding yards at Savannah. He is active in American Legion
work also. He lives with his brother Bartola in Savannah, and is
As already stated, Jacob Alexander Baum
and wife had two children. These were:
(1) Annie Sallie Baum, born November 13,
1890. She was mar-ried to Marshall Joseph Hopps January 14, 1910. He died July
4, 1932, in Brunswick, 6a. To them was born one daughter, Evelyn Baum Hopps,
born December 1, 1910. Mrs. Annie Sallie Hopps later married Charles Marvin
Hunt, formerly of Valdosta, 6a., November 13, 1933, then lived seven years in
Savannah and six years in St. Matthews, S. C, and St. Ceorge, S. C, where Mr.
Hunt is a druggist. The daughter, Evelyn, married James Cale Leybourne May 19,
1929. He is Trust Officer and Vice-President of the American National Bank,
Miami, Fla. Residence: 6001 N.W. 30th St., Coral Cables 34, Fla. They have three
daughters: Martha Joe Leybourne, born December 5, 1930; Sylvia Owens Leybourne,
October 25, 1937; and Sallie Amanda Leybourne, born January 7, 1940.
(2) Thelma Baum, born March 25, 1895, in
Quitman. Married Lemuel Purdom March 15, 1916, in Waycross, Ga. He was born
December 27, 1891, and died June 8, 1930. She then married Earl Doty November 2,
1935. He was born in Brookfield, Mo., November 15, 1885, and was a Supervisor at
Army Air Field. By the first marriage a son, Lemuel A. Purdom, was born August
10, 1917, in Waycross; he married Dorothy May McQuaig in Jacksonville, Fla., May
19, 1939; they have two daughters, Sandra Evelyn born February 10, 1941, and
Judy Kathryn born Sept. 17, 1943, both born in Waycross. Lemuel served in World
War No. 2, overseas in Germany. Home address of Earl and Thelma Doty: 815 S.W.
66th Ave., Route 1, Miami 35, Fla.
(Written by W. T. Gaulden)
Wililam Baker Bennet was born in Liberty
County, Ga., in 1827. Graduated from Mercer University in 1848. Married Miss
Martha J. Campbell, daughter of Rev. Jesse H. Campbell in 1851. He read law
under Charles Screven Gaulden at Lumpkin, Stewart County, and was admitted to
the bar in 1850. Soon after, he located at Troupville where he practiced law
until he moved to Quitman when it was founded in 1859.
When the War Between the States came on
he enlisted as a volunteer Confederate soldier. He was later disehargd on
account of disabilities, and returning to Quitman, he resumed the practice of
law. He was elected to the legislature in 1865 and took part in the memorable
legislative sessions of 1865-67. In 1868 he was appointed Solicitor-General of
the Southern Circuit and held this office six years; in those days it was a
large circuit embracing the territory between (and including) Pulaski and Thomas
In 1880 Mr. Bennet was elected County
School Commissioner and served four years. In 1884 he was appointed Judge of the
County Court and served until it was changed into the City Court in 1904. He
continued four more years as Judge of the City Court. In both judicial positions
he served twenty-four years. During his long service on the bench he never had a
decision reversed by a higher court. He resigned January 15, 1908, due to ill
health, and his death soon followed, May 3, 1908.
Judge Bennet was possessed of a deep,
religious nature, which was reflected in his conversion at the age of 30, his
affiliation with the Troupville Baptist Church and his subsequent call to the
ministry. More than any other he was largely instrumental in the selection of a
site and the erection thereon of the first meeting-house, of the First Baptist
Church of Quitman. He remained active in its affairs and in Baptist
Associational work until his death. In 1874 he was ordained to the Baptist
ministry and the next year accepted the call of the First Baptist Church in
Thomasville as its pastor. He moved there with his family and continued in the
pastorate there three years. In 1878 he returned to Quitman and continued for a
number of years to serve churches in this county and section. In 1881-84 he was
pastor of the Baptist Church at Homerville, and it was under his leadership that
the church there built and dedicated its first house of worship.
Judge Bennet's early life was spent in
the county of his birth and he was reared amidst wealth, culture and refinement
for which Liberty County was noted. He was a man of great intellect, with a
mathematical and analytical mind. He was a successful lawyer. It was in criminal
cases whether in the defense or prosecution, that his legal abilities were best
reflected. "While Solicitor-General it was often that he secured a conviction in
every case during a term of court, with all the local bar against him. His great
powers of wit and humor, pathos as well as logic, coupled with a deep
discernment of law made him a masterful pleader at the bar. He had a passion for
humor and few could tell a tale as well as he could. He was a delightful
Judge Bennet was highly regarded
everywhere he was known. He was honest and truthful and courageous. In all the
public offices he held and in the various relations of life he was faithful to
every trust, and as a judge he administered conscientiously and impartially
exact justice to all.
Judge Bennet was married twice. After his
first wife's death he was married in 1887 to Miss Lizzie Spence of Camilla. Six
children survived by the first marriage, and four by the second.
Of Judge Bennet's six sons who lived to
reach maturity, all be-came lawyers, achieving an enviable place in their
profession and in the public esteem. Most of them held various offices of trust
and honor. Three of Judge Bennet's daughters became teachers in schools and
colleges and were outstanding in their profession. The other daughter married
and reared a family of three children.
Joseph W. Bennet, the oldest son, studied
law under his father and was admitted to the bar here in 1889; he soon after
located in Brunswick and in a short time had a lucrative law practice. In 1898
he was appointed Judge of the Superior Courts of the Brunswick Circuit, and
after serving one term, resigned and resumed the practice of law. Later,
Governor Terrell tendered him an appointment as a Justice of the Supreme Court,
but after some consideration he declined. He served many years as Division
Counsel for both the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad and the Southern Railway. He
had important business connections and interests, among these as president of
The National Bank of Brunswick, also of the Brunswick Bank & Trust
Stanley S. Bennet, the next son, was a
prominent Quitman attorney and citizen. See further for sketch of his
Samuel Stevens Bennet, the next son, was
admitted to the bar at the age of 17, and was taken into partnership at Camilla
by Judge W. N. Spence, and practiced law there several years. Lated he moved to
Albany where his practice rapidly extended over a large portion of Southwest
Georgia. He served as President of the Georgia Bar Association and was a member
of the American Bar Association. During World War I he was called to Washington
and served awhile as Major in the office of the Judge Advocate-GeneraL He served
two terms from Mitchell County in the legislature, and one term from Dougherty
County. He died in November, 1945, age 71 years.
Matt. C. Bennet, the next son, began the
practice of law in Camilla also. He later became secretary to Senator Hoke Smith
in Washington after which he became connected with the office of Secretary of
State in Atlanta, where he has for many years served as head of the Securities
Commission. He is a veteran of the Spanish-American War.
Hilliard G. Bennet, the next son, after
practicing law in Alaska located in Texas where he is now so engagei He married
Mrs. Jewell Kolb of Texas.
William B. Bennet II, served in World War
I overseas, then took up the practice of law in Tifton. He was Judge of the City
Court there when he died at the early age of 31.
Misses Lee and Helen Bennet taught school
for many years in Georgia, and their sister Elizabeth taught first in Georgia,
then in Alaska and now in Washington state. Miss Hattie Bennet, the other
daughter, married Allie McDonald and to them were born three children: Allie
McDonald II, of Charleston, S.C, Mrs. Ferrell Jolly of Tifton, and D. Bennet
McDonald of Quitman. The latter is at present (1948) Chairman of the Quitman
City Commission and is active in civic affairs. He married Marie Storey and has
two daughters, Jean and Lala.
Stanley S. Bennet, a distinguished member
of a most distinguished legal family in Georgia, was born in Quitman, Navember
7, 1867, and was a son of Judge Wm. B. Bennet and wife. He attended Mercer
University from which he graduated in 1888; he then returned home and studied
law under his illustrious father. Proving himself an untiring and quick student
he soon was admitted to the bar, and the partnership of Bennet & Bennet that
immediately followed, became one of the finest and best in this
Mr. Bennet became the dean of the bar in
Southwest Georgia and was connected with the official life in Quitman since
early man-hood. He was Mayor of Quitman continuously from 1892 through 1903;
attorney for Brooks County, serving in that capacity almost continuously since
1892, a period of fifty years; served 1892-1904 as County School Superintendent,
represented Brooks County in hoth branches of the General Assembly. He was a
member of the first State Highway Board and served until 1929. He was Division
Counsel for the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad for years; was a director of the
Bank of Quitman and bank attorney up to the time of his death; served as
Worshipful Master of Sholto Masonic Lodge for four years; was a Rotarian and a
member of the Baptist Church where he led the Men's Bible Class each Sunday for
There was widespread sorrow at the
passing of Mr. Bennet, for many people, who although they did not see him often,
had so many delightful recollections of him and had felt in so many ways his
warmth and courage and the genius of his fellowship. He occupied a leading place
in the Georgia bar and no man had more firmly won esteem and admiration than had
he both for personal qualities of ability and strength and the fine ethical
stability of his legal activities. He played the game squarely and firmly in the
best interest of his client but he held severely and unswervingly to his high
concept of law and its ethics.
The memory of Stanley S. Bennet will live
for he was among those very few who "have added a little to the sweetness of the
world and a little to the light of it"
There was deep grief over the loss of
this exemplary man. Death came September 15,1942, in the lovely, spacious,
two-story home right in the shadow of the Baptist Church he had so faithfully
served, and the law-office—a quaint little white frame building in the quiet of
his trees and flower garden. Mr. Bennet gave to his town and state honor,
dignity and distinction. He was a devoted husband and father and it can also be
said he was a gentleman of the old school.
Surviving him are his widow the former
Miss Minnie Hightower whom he married in 1892, and children: Miss Louise Bennet,
dean of women at Shorter College; Stanley Spencer Bennet Jr., Quitman; Paul
Bennet, Chairman O.I'.A. Board, farmer and business man; Miss Mildred Bennet, a
teacher in the Quitman schools. —Mrs. Otis Bell.
(Note: The following sketch Is taken from
Vol. II, Savannah and South Georgia," by Harden, and to it has been added more
data as shown below, following the sketch. Mr. Bower died some years after the
sketch was written.)
A prominent farmer and merchant of Dixie,
Brooks County, Robert Edward Lee Bower takes an intelligent interest in
everything tending to promote the welfare and progress of the town and county,
being a public-spirited and useful member of his community. A son of George
Mcintosh Bower he was born July 14, 1862, in Newton County, Ga., of honored New
England ancestry, being a direct descendant in the fourth generation of the
noted sculptor, John Bower, and his wife Honora Bower nee Jacobs.
Ebenezer Bower, the subject's
grandfather, was born, bred and educated in Providence, R. I. Foreseeing the
future development of the South he came as a young man to Georgia and lived
awhile in Savannah where he met and married an heiress, Miss Margaret McConkey.
Removing with his bride to Jones County, Ga., he became an extensive and
prosperous planter and merchant, in the management of his land having plenty of
help, owning as many as 250 slaves. About 1830 he moved with his family to
Florida, becoming a pioneer of Marianna, and there erected the first brick house
built in that locality. He operated large tracts of land and leased many slaves
to vessel owners doing shipping business between Apalaehicola and Mobile. When
he came South there were no railroads in Georgia, the country being largely in
its pristine wildness ... Both Ebenezer Bower and his wife spent their last
years on their large estate in Western Florida. They reared six children, five
sons and one daughter.
George Mcintosh Troup Bower was born in
1825 in Jones County, Ga., and as a lad of five years accompanied his parents to
Florida. The facilities for obtaining an education in that state being then very
limited he was sent North and in the public schools of Providence, R.I.,
acquired his early book knowledge which was subsequently supplemented by a
course of study at Emory College in Oxford, Ga. When ready to establish himself
in business he settled in Newton County, Ga., and was there an honored and
esteemed resident until his death in 1897. He became prominent in public
affairs, holding many offices of trust and responsibility, including those of
county judge and sheriff. He was a great reader and a constant student,
remarkably well-informed on all topics, and was very frequently called upon as
an adviser and counsellor. During his life he saw wonderful changes in the face
of the country roundabout, witnessing with just pride and gratification the
growth of Georgia from a wilderness to a rich and prosperous state. . .
The maiden name of the wife of George
Mcintosh Troup Bower was Eliza Turner. She was born in Henry County, Ga., and
was brought up and educated in her native state. Her father, Rev. Allen W.
Turner, a native of South Carolina, was educated for the ministry and became a
pioneer preacher of the Methodist Episcopal Church in Georgia. He held
pastorates in different places in Georgia, and as there were then no railways
nor even good carriage roads he used to make his long trips on horseback, and
did most of his preaching in log houses. He was offered the position of bishop
in his church but declined the honor, saying he could do more real good as a
pastor. He spent his last days in Palmetto, Ga., and his wife whose maiden name
was Mary Dousing, died in 1878. Mr. and Mrs. George Mcintosh Troup Bower reared
the following children: Augustus Rudolphus, Eugenia, Mary Fletcher, Chalmers
Hendrick, Allen Ebenezer, Robert Edward Lee, Stonewall Jackson, Annie, George
and Bennie Simms Bower.
Obtaining his academical education at the
seminary in Covington, Ga., Robert E. L. Bower completed the course of study at
Oxford, at Emory. Going then to Coweta County he spent three years as clerk in a
fancy grocery store and the following two years was employed as a truck farmer
in Lake County, Fla. Lured to Orange County, Fla., Mr. Bower embarked in
mercantile pursuits in Orlando, where he conducted a grocery for a time, carying
a large stock of fancy goods. Returning to Georgia, he was for a year engaged in
business as a merchant at Quitman, Brooks County, and was afterwards employed in
farming in the Dixie district until 1901 when he resumed his former occupation
in Dixie where he is conducting an extensve and remunerative business as a
general merchant carrying a large stock of goods. Mr. Bower has been very
fortunate in his agricultural operations and is the owner of various farms,
aggregating in all 500 acres, the farms which are located in the Dixie, Dry
Lake, and Grooverville districts, being operated by tenants.
Mr. Bower married in 1889, in Orlando,
Fla., Miss Catherine Puckett, who was born in Gumming, Forsyth County, where her
father, Rev. Miles Puckett, who preached during his life in various places in
Georgia, was then located. Neither he nor his wife whose maiden name was Carrie
Scott, are now living. Mr. and Mrs. Bower have six children, viz: Kittie Lee,
Marie, R. E., Sybelle, Emory Scott and Jack. Mr. Bower is a Democrat in
politics, but has ever been too much engrossed with his private affairs to
indulge in office-holding, although he has for five years served as Chairman of
the Dixie School Board. Both he and Mrs. Bower are consistent members of the
Methodist Episcopal Church. (End of sketch).
Robert Edward Lee Bower lived in Dixie
the remainder of his life, dying at the age of 79. He was twice married. His
first wife died December 14, 1918, and on December 17, 1919, he married Miss
Katherine Beasley of Union Point. She preceded him in death about a year and
nine months, she dying June 6, 1939, and he dying February 3, 1941. There were
no children by the second marriage. She was a loving stepmother and a devoted
wife. "Miss Katherine" as everybody knew her, was a faithful member of the
The following paragraphs give data about
the Bower children:
(1) Kittie Lee Bower, eldest of the six
children, received her early education in the Dixie public school, and her
higher education at Wesleyan College, majoring in music. She married Joseph
Brewer Crane, born June 29, 1889, son of Ephriam Joseph and Zoe Elizabeth
(Wilkerson) Crane. At the time of his marriage, Joseph Brewer Crane was
postmaster at Dixie, serving from March 1912, to April, 1936, when he was
transferred to the Rural Route service served by the Dixie postoffice, which he
has served since. Their three children: Katherine Elizabeth, born April 11,
1918, graduate of Andrew College, taught school at Homerville one year; married
October 9, 1937, to Oren Edgar Tally, a successful Homerville business man and
owner of the Tally Ice and Cold Storage Company; they have one daughter, Sandra
Katherine, born January 14, 1942. Joseph Bower Crane, second child of Joseph
Brewer and Kittie Lee Crane, was born June 14, 1921, took a veterinary medical
course at Auburn Polytechnic Institute, and after his graduation located in
Valdosta, where he follows his profession; he married Miss Flora Ann Groover,
May 9, 1943, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Claude Groover of Dixie, and they have one
son, J. B. Crane II, born July 12, 1947. Frances Marie Crane, third child of
Joseph Brewer and Kittie Lee Crane, was born July 9, 1924, attended G.S.C.W. in
Valdosta; married Dr. Herbert Spencer Tally, December 8, 1943 (brother to Oren
Edgar Tally); Dr. Tally is a prominent veterinarian of Blackshear, where he and
his family live. He and his wife have one daughter, Cheryl Ann, born October 3,
(2) Lydia Marie Bower, after receiving
her high school education in Dixie, attended Wesleyan College majoring in music
and voice. She taught school in different towns in Georgia and South Carolina,
later marrying Dr. W. D. McCord of Americus, January, 1921. Possessed of a
friendly nature she was loved and admired by all who knew her. She died May 28,
1936, leaving a loving husband and a devoted stepson to mourn her
(3) R. E. Bower was born January 6, 1897,
and died in Savannah, May, 1925. He attended the Quitman High School and
attended Emory College. He then was connected with his father in the mercantile
business at Dixie for several years, when he became connected with the Georgia
Ice Company in Savannah and remained with them until his death. He married Miss
Marie Harrington of Ludowici, January, 1920, and she and one daughter Gerald
A"", survive. The widow lives in Tallahassee, Fla., and the daughter who married
Richard Cross of Boston, Mass., in September, 1944, lives in Boston, and has a
son, Richard Jr.
(4) Augusta Sybelle Bower, born March 2,
1900, received her education in Quitman High School, marrying very young to
Lewis Thomas Beverly, a returned World War I veteran, on July 19, 1919. Lewis
opened up a grocery store in his home town, Ocklocknee, 6a., but sold out a few
years later and entered the produce business and is now a produce broker in West
Palm Beach, Fla. Mr. and Mrs. Beverly have two sons: L. T. Jr., a World War II
veteran, married Miss Lorene Davis of Delray Beach, Fla., and has two
Nannette and Corine; Lewis Jr., and
family live in Savannah, where he is connected with the government training work
in college for returned veterans. The second child of Mr. and Mrs. Beverly was
Norman Emory who served in "World War II, and is now attending Mercer
University, majoring in Social Science.
(5) Emory Scott Bower, born June 26,
1902, educated in Quitman High School; attended Sparks College; married Miss
Lucile Crovatt of Thomasville, September 24, 1923. After several years in
construction work he became connected with West End Ice & Storage Company in
Quitman, which position he still holds. They have two daughters: Geraldine, born
September 2, 1924, educated in Dixie High School, graduated from G.S.C.W. in
Milledgeville with a B.S. degree; married Leon L. Blair September 24, 1945, he
is A.C.L.R.R. agent, and they have one son, Gary Wayne Blair, born March, 1947;
he owns the old R. E. L. Bower farm and operates a modern stock farm. The second
daughter of Emory S. Bower is Jackie, born August, 1932, attending Dixie High
(6) Jack Bower, born April 6, 1906,
attended Dixie High School. Married Miss Florrie Burke, daughter of Mr. and Mrs.
Rufus Burke of Hickory Head, October 8, 1926. He was with the Railway Express
Company in Orlando, Fla., until his father's death when he came back to Dixie,
subsequently entering the farming and cattle business with his brother Emory. He
and his wife have two sons: (a) Robert Burke, born August 19, 1927, served in
navy in World War II, and now attending Emory Junior College, Valdosta; (b)
Glynn, born July 12, 1934, attending Dixie High School.
Lee Whiting Branch, prominent Quitman
attorney, was born in Macon, Ga., April 18, 1871, the son of Dr. James Orson
Brand and his wife, Mrs. Caroline Hentz Branch, and grandson of Caroline Lee
Whiting-Hentz, noted Southern writer of the 1860s.
His father, Dr. J. 0. Branch, was a
distinguished Methodist minister serving in the South Georgia Conference as
pastor and Presiding Elder for many years.
L. W. Branch was in the honor group
graduating from old Emory College at Oxford, in June, 1891, and was a member of
Phi Delta Theta fraternity. He was admitted to the bar in Macon in 1893, and
there practiced law for awhile, later coming to Quitman where he pursued his
profession until his death December 17, 1937. He was married on September 27,
1899, to Miss Jamie Scotia Snow of Quitman, a daughter of Dr. J. S. N. Snow and
Mrs. Scotia Livingston Snow; Mrs. Branch's death occurred simultaneously with
her husband, bringing much sorrow to all Quitman. Surviving was one daughter,
Lalla, wife of Commander Charles Kirkpatrick of the U. S. Navy.
Early in life Mr. Branch united with the
Methodist Church and was active in the affairs of Quitman church for many years
prior to his death, serving in the various capacities of Steward, member of the
Board of Trustees, and teacher of the Men's Bible Class. He was generous towards
his church, giving liberally of his time, talent and money.
In the Spanish-American War he served in
the Third Georgia Volunteer Infantry, being stationed in Cuba and was given an
honorable discharge as First Lieutenant. He was a trustee of Emory University,
Representative from Brooks County 1904-1905, President of the Georgia Bar
Association 1925-1926. Together with Stanley S. Bennet of Quitman, he was
Division Counsel for the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad from 1908 until his death.
He was at the time of his death a member of the State Board of Education from
the Second Congressional District and also a member of the Governor's Staff,
both appointments having been made by Governor Rivers.
Mr. Branch was endowed with a fine and
discriminating mind. He was clear-headed, an indefatigable worker, a close
reasoner, resourceful, courteous and ethical. He was an excellent lawyer, and
was counsel in many important cases during his career. Always taking an active
part in the life of his community and his state, his sudden passing in the
meridian of his life was a heavy loss to his home town and county.
(Note: The above adapted from a Memorial
to Mr. Branch published in the Georgia Bar Association Proceedings for
The Branch family in Georgia traces back
to Peter Branch of High Holden, County Kent, England, who was the emigrant
ancestor to come over in 1638 when Charles I was King of England. He came in the
ship "Castle" bound for Boston, but died enroute, on ship-board, in June,
Peter Branch was born in 1601, married
Elizabeth Gillame January 13, 1623, and they had one son John, born 1628. The
wife died prior to the family emigrating to America, survived by her husband and
one son. Enroute the husband died, leaving the son John, then ten years old. The
father left a will dated June 16, 1638, which was probated and recorded in
Boston, Mass., leaving all his property to his son John, naming Thomas "Weyburn
John Branch lived eight miles from
Plymouth Rock until he was 21 where on December 6, 1652, he married Mary Sneed
of Marsh-field, Mass. He died at Marshfield May 17, 1711. Six children sur-vived
John and his wife, among whom was Peter Branch.
Peter Branch, son of John, married Hannah
Lincoln and they moved to Norwich, Conn., where he bought what is known as "the
Branch Property" from Oraneco, sachem of the Mohegan Indians. Copy of original
deed in possession of R. Branch Pollette of Hartford, Conn. Peter and Hannah had
ten children, youngest of whom was Joseph, born September 10, 1704.
Joseph, born September 10, 1704, married
Zerviah Tracy who was born September 12, 1714, at Preston, Conn. To them were
born several children among whom was Rufus, the fourth child. There were six
sons in this family.
Rufus Branch was born February 5, 1740,
on Branch Hill, Preston, Conn. He married Abigail Mason, born 1744. Both died at
Castleton, Vt., in 1835. She was a great-granddaughter of Major John Mason, the
conqueror of the Pequots and Governor of the colony for many years. Rufus Branch
was a Minute-man during the War in 1776 and as such fought at the battles of
Hubbardton and White Hall. When the signal was given that the British were
approaching Bennington (Vermont) he joined Stark's forces and fought through the
battle and helped drive the "red-coats" to Stillwater.
Rufus and Abigail had ten children, the
eighth of whom was named Waite Branch, born 1779 in Castleton, Vt., married Lucy
Hide July 13, 1800, in Orwell, Vt. Waite and Lucy had three children, viz: Waite
Jr., Franklin and Orson. Waite Branch Sr. was a Colonel in the War of 1812-14
and led his regiment at the battle of Plattsburg. The sword he then carried is
in possession of Major C. F. Branch, his grandson.
Franklin Branch, second son of Waite and
Lucy, was born 1802 in Orwell, Vt., died in Tampa, Fla., August 24, 1882. He was
a graduate of Castleton (Vermont) Medical College. He practiced his profession
in Abbeville, S. C, for many years, then went to Tampa, Fla. Married December
19, 1828, to Lavonia Nichols of Whiting, Vt. She with an infant son died October
2, 1829. Dr. Franklin Branch was married the second time, December 16, 1830, to
Miss Matilda Vashti Wilson of Abbeville, S. C, born August 11, 1809, died in
Tampa, Fla., August 29, 1857. There were six children by this marriage: Darwin
Austin, Franklin Addison, Frances Lizonia, James Orson, Helen Mary, Lucy Hyde
Branch. Dr. Branch married the third time Miss Martha A. Turnbull of Monticello,
Fla., and they had one child, Henry Lee Branch of Tampico, Fla., born November
James Orson Branch, fourth child of Dr.
Franklin Branch, was born June 20, 1838, at Tampa, Fla., and died January 24,
1904, in Moultrie, Ga., where he had gone to attend a meeting of his church. For
many years he had been one of the leading members of the South Georgia
Conference. When time for his retirement came he bought a home at Dixie, Ga.,
and spent his declining years in this cultured and pleasant community. He was
Rev. J. O. Branch was married to Miss
Caroline Lee Hentz in Marianna, Fla., January 20, 1858. She was the daughter of
Caroline Lett Whiting-Hentz, the noted Southern novelist of ante-bellum days.
They had six children viz:
1. Emma, married James S. Comer in
Savannah, Ga. Two children : Lucile and Callie.
2. Charles Hentz Branch, married Zella
Johnson. Issue: Hentz and Garnett.
3. Frank married (1) Julia Keys, issue:
Theresa and Julia; and (2) Agnes Owens, issue one child, Frank Branch Jr.
Married Jane Worthington, July 9, 1943, issue: Franklin Taylor Branch, January
4. Orson married Belle Johnson of
Cordele. Died in the prime of life. Both he and his wife are buried at
5. Caroline Lee born in Tallahassee,
Fla., January 20, 1867, married William P. Fleming at Dixie, Brooks County,
January 29, 1892. Issue: James Branch Fleming born December 6,1894, at Dixie,
married Evelyn Roebuck of Cordele, issue one son James Branch Felming Jr.;
William Gladstone Fleming, born August 6, 1897, in Johnsonville, Monroe County,
married Annie Belle Moye, daughter of Dr. and Mrs. Ralph Moye, November 7, 1900,
issue one son William Gladstone Fleming Jr., born February 24, 1926. Three other
children of Mr. and Mrs. William P. Fleming died in infancy.
Bibliography: "History of Crisp County"
by W. P. Fleming, page 149; ''Branch of Abingdon", by James Branch CabeU of
Dumbarton, Va., also see "Branch History of 1638-1914 by A. E. Branch Paulson,
Joseph Brice and his wife, formely Martha
Folsom, emigrated from Pennsylvania to Duplin County, N. C, and were said to
have been natives of England. Among their children was Francis Brice, born March
17, 1804, in Duplin County, N. C, died at the family home at Tallokas, Brooks
County, Ga., January 26, 1878.
Francis Brice married Elizabeth Murphy,
daughter of James and Mary Hall Murphy of Duplin County, N.C. She was born March
7, 1805, and died at the family home at Tallokas, November 8, 1880. She and her
husband and others of the family are buried at old Bethel Primitive Baptist
Church a few miles from their old home.
Francis Brice and wife emigrated to
Georgia in the fall of 1833, making the long overland trip in a covered wagon
loaded with the few personal effects that they could afford to bring on the long
tedious trip. It is said that they saw the celebrated falling of the stars as
they were enroute; this incident occurred November 18, 1833. On arriving in
Georgia they proceeded to what was then Thomas but now Brooks County, at
Tallokas, and there he acquired land. Later the farm became a large plantation,
the owner becoming an extensive planter and an influential citizen. Since those
pioneer days the Brice family has been prominent in life and affairs of Brooks
The children of Francis and Elizabeth
1. Joseph b. 1826, N. C, never
2. William Francis b. 1830, N. C, m.
3. Mary W. b. 1833, N. C, m. Thomas R.
4. David James b. 1837, Ga., killed at
Gettysburg; never m.
5. Timothy W. b. 1838, Ga., m. Mary
6. Mitchell b. 1840, Ga., m.
(1) Keziah Walker;
7. Martha b. 1844, Ga., m. Dr. G. B.
8. Amanda b. 1850, Ga., m. H. Dobbin
Mitchell Brice, son of Francis and
Elizabeth, was born in present Brooks County, December 14, 1840, and inherited
Tallokas Planta-tion at his father's death. To these lands he added other lands
and operated a large sawmill and general store in addition to his farms. He
became interested in fine horses, many of which he bred and raised on his
plantation. These horses he entered in various horse races after they were
trained on his own race track. They were raced successfully in New Orleans,
Jacksonville, St. Louis, Atlanta, New York, and at county fairs in Thomasville,
Valdosta and other towns in South Georgia and Florida. He became a large
stockholder in some of the first banks chartered in Quitman, and served as
director; also became a member of the Board of County Commissioners and was
Chairman at the time the court house was remodelled in 1892-93. Mr. Brice died
at his home in Quitman, March 7, 1903.
The first wife of Mitchell Brice was
Keziah Walker, daughter of Isham A. Walker of Quitman, a native of Pierce
County. She was born February 4, 1855, and died January 26, 1882, survived by
her husband and one child David James Brice, born February 13, 1872; the latter
died June 24, 1894, single.
The second wife was Miss Martha Elizabeth
Edmonson, daughter of Simpson D. Edmondson. To this marriage were born two
children, viz: Mitchell who died in childhood, and Henry Turner Brice, born May
2, 1898, and who is now and has been for many years Chairman of the Brooks
County Commissioners and is the present Chairman of the State Board of
Corrections. H. T. Brice is the owner of Tallokas Plantation with its varied
interests. He is a veteran of World War I. Mrs. Martha Elizabeth Brice resides
at her home in Quitman.
Henry Turner Brice was married August 3,
1919, to Miss Sadie Tillman, daughter of Henry Young Tillman and his wife Marie
McKey Tillman, of Valdosta. To them have been born three children: (1) Mitchell
Brice, born September 23, 1920, who is a physician and served as captain in the
U. S. Army in the Pacific area; (2) Marie, born December 10, 1923, married John
Alston Bracey of Thomasville, served as Captain in the U. S. Army Air Force; (3)
Henry Turner Jr., born November 12, 1925, served as Staff Sergeant in the U. S.
Army, having seen service in Burma, India and China.
Timothy W. Brice, son of Francis and
Elizabeth, was born October 4, 1838, at Tallokas. He died at Pavo, April 11,
1910. He was married December 15, 1866, to Miss Mary Susan Fall, of Senoia,
daughter of Dr. Calvin Jones Fall and Mrs. Sarah Stroud Fall. She was born in
Henry County November 12, 1847, and died at the family home in Pavo, April 11,
1910. To them were born ten children, viz: (1) Sallie Elizabeth who married J.
D. Butler January 5, 1899. She died July 24, 1906.
(2) Lucy, born at Pavo, November 16,
1869, married November 15, 1888, J. M. Burnett of Tampa, Fla. Four children:
Brice M., Lucille (who married Fred J. Bazemore of Orlando, Fla), Symms and
(3) Jennie Evelyn, born at Pavo September
10, 1871, married January 9, 1901, Dr. Joseph Monroe Brannon. One child: Mary
Claire who was born at Pavo, December 5, 1909, married John Parnell
(4) Willie Mae, born at Pavo May 18,
1873, married at Pavo July 18, 1901, Dr. Reuben Jackson Clower, son of John
Thomas and Anne Brogdon Clower, Their children: (a) Mary Thomas Clower,
Homestead, Fla., born Morven, Ga., July 5, 1903, married at Miami, Fla., May 29,
1925, Frederick Theodore Suber, three children; (b) Emil Jackson Clower, lawyer,
born at Morven September 1, 1905, graduated 1923 Emory Academy; BJh. degree
1927, and LL.B. 1929, Emory University; president student body in 1928;
practiced law in Quitman and Rome, Ga.; appointed Assistant Attorney-General of
Georgia and served under three governors; he was in U. S. Navy during World War
II and was Lieut. Commander when mustered out: now practicing law at Rome;
married Frances Stinson of Banner Elk, N. C, June 19, 1935, one son Daniel Bowie
Clower born 1946; (c) Timothy Brice Clower, born Morven, Ga., May 21, 1909,
graduated from University of Georgia in veterinary medicine. He has held the
office of State Veterinarian several years and lives in Atlanta. He married
LaForest Robertson and has two young sons viz: Tim Brice Jr., born August 2,
1936, and Crawford Jackson Clower, born July 26, 1946 (called Jack); (d)
Margaret Clower, born Morven, Ga., April 22, 1915; graduated from University of
Georgia in Domestic Science; successful teacher.
(5) Jessie Eliza Brice, born Pavo,
January 5, 1875, died at Whigham, March 26, 1904; married, 1900, George Latham
Bunch, born at Meigs; one child George Laford Bunch, Wilmington, N. C, married
Hazel Guthrie, March, 1926.
(6) Frank Calvin Brice, born at Pavo,
November 3, 1876; married June 3, 1908, Florine Faith, born at Floyd, La.,
January 26, 1882. Children: Frank Calvin Jr., born at McLane, Miss., February 8,
1912, Mary Faith Brice born Epley, Miss., August 30, 1913; and Charles Brice,
born Epley, Miss., May 25, 1915.
(7) John Thomas Brice, Taft, Calif.; born
at Pavo, August 30, 1882; married December 28, 1912, to Malta Matthews in
Oklahoma. Children: John Thomas Jr., James and Mary Evelyn.
(8) James Samuel Brice, born Pavo,
October 16, 1889, educated at Georgia Tech, Atlanta, and Mississippi A&M,
Starkville, Miss. Married March 25, 1913 at Clay Center, Kans., Miss Amy
Peterson, born Osceola, Neb., August 25, 1895. Their children: Corine Brice,
born Morenci, Ariz., January 2, 1914; Donald, born Morenci, Ariz., August 2,
1917; Roger Brice, born Clay Center, Kans., December 15, 1919.
(9) Milton Fall Brice, born July 28,
1884, at Pavo. Died at Morven, Ga., November 1, 1943, at the home of his sister,
Mrs. R. J. Clower; single.
(10) Mary Louette Brice, Tampa, Fla.,
born at Pavo, October 27, 1890; married June 8, 1926, Benjamin J. Spear, born at
Tazewell, Ga., December 24, 1888, son of J. W. and Alice Spear.
Martha Brice, daughter of Francis and
Elizabeth, was born at old Tallokas, in 1844, and was married to Dr. Green B.
Williams November 6, 1870. She resided at Quitman until her death. The children
of Dr. and Mrs. Williams:
(1) Mitchell Williams, married Alma
Booker, and their chil-dren were Clarence and Irma. Clarence married Ernestine
Baker and has three children. Irma married Morris Crane and lives at Dixie, and
has four children.
(2) A. B. ("Ade") Williams, married
Luella Griffin, and lives in Orlando, Fla. Children: Clyde, Frank, Blenus and
(3) Wilburn W. Williams, married first,
Lollie Rogers and had one son Joe who married Hattie Landers. Joe and his wife
and one child live in Atlanta. W. W. Williams' present wife is Miss Ida Fluker
from Greene County.
(4) Arthur E. Williams who married Nellie
Pidcock of Moultrie. She died in Quitman May 21, 1947. A. E. Williams and wife
had three daughters: Miss Martha Williams of Quitman, Mrs. Frances (Aubrey)
Smith of MonticeUo, Fla., Mrs. Nellie (M. L.) Willis of Bainbridge.
(5) Luther Williams who married Lena Goff
of Tifton. They have three sons and two daughters and live in Tifton.
(6) Frank Brice Williams married-and they
have several children.
(7) Joseph Brice Williams, died
(8) Claude Williams married Lucy Morse of
Tallokas. They live in Tampa, Fla.
William Francis Brice, born 1830 in North
Carolina, married Phoebe Alderman, born 1834, daughter of George and Nancy
(Carlton) Alderman and granddaughter of Daniel Alderman of Duplin County, N. C.
Their children: Timothy, Presley, Marcus, Eliza, Charles, Robert and Betty, the
latter married John Beaty of Pavo. Mary Brice, born 1833 in North Carolina,
married Thomas R. Hester. To them were born seven children:
(1) Cullen B. Hester married Julia
Simmons of Tampa. Their children: Mamie, Cora and Bertha.
(2) Theo married Pauline Greene from
North Carolina. No issue.
(3) Lilla married James Burgess of Pavo.
Children: Grady and West.
(4) J. M., married America Murphy of
Moultrie, Ga. Children: Stella who married Walter Waters of Pavo; Bessie married
Lloyd McWilliams, of Tampa Fla.; Mattie, Bertha and Effie, who married Dewey
Worth of Perry, Fla.
J. M. Hester's second wife was Bessie
Harper. To them were born James who married Ruby Odum and their children are
Mildred Shirley, James Edward, Paul and Myra Lee Hester; John, Myra Lee and
(5) Francis Bartow Hester married Miss
Molsie Lee Odum, born at Newton, Georgia, October, 1891, daughter of Rev. J. M.
Odum. They had seven children as follows:
a. Ethel Pearl m. John Weyman Coley of Dodge Co. July 20, 1913.
1. John W. Coley Jr., b. June 26, 1914,
at SmithviUe, Ga., m. first Devara Lane of St. Augustine, Fla., Nov. 12, 1938,
and to them was born John Richard Coley, Aug. 26, 1941; married secondly, Louise
Gatt at Greenville, Tenn., Apr. 1, 1944, and they have a daughter, Carla Jean,
Mar. 12, 1945.
2. Horace William Coley, b. Dec. 26,
1916, at Jacksonville, Fla., m. Dora Knipp, Sept. 27, 1947.
b. Verna, m. Robert
Steele of Baltimore, Md.
1. Robert, Jr., born Feb. 14,
Willie Jackson, m. Allene WUliams of Pulaski County. They have four daughters:
Jacqueline Grace, Molsie Frances, Ha Juanita, Ernestine Anne.
d. Francis married
EsteUe Giles of Tennessee, in 1929.
e. Bobbie Mae, m.
Wilbur James, of JacksonviUe, Fla., Mar. 22, 1947.
f. Tiny Jewell, m.
Burton Barringer of St. Augustine, Fla., Feb. 14, 1931. One son: Robert, b.
Sept. 9, 1935.
g. Ernest Bartow, m.
Alma Morgan at Asheville, N. C. Dec. 27, 1934.
1. Barbara, b. April 12, 1938.
2. Anne, b. Oct. 26, 1939.
The second marriage of Francis Bartow
Hester was in March, 1917, to Miss Ola Fitzgerald of Pulaski County, Ga. ( 6)
Mattie Hester married John Suber of Coolidge, Ga. To them were born: Bertha who
married Garnett Dekle of Coolidge, Lula who married Charlie Carter of Coolidge;
Lottie married D. M. Baker of Coolidge; J. D. married first to a Murphy, and
secondly, a Chastain.
(7) Ida Dove, married Luther Adams of
Madison County, Ga. They have three children: Hyman, Grady and Mary.
The Clowers of Morven have been prominent
citizens of Brooks County since 1887. They trace their lineage back to Daniel
Clower who was born in Germany July 17, 1762. He came to America as a youth and
fought with the Colonists in their struggle for independ-ence. Daniel married
and had a son Daniel P. Clower born May 13, 1805, and died about 1840 in
Gwinnett County, Ga. He married Parthene Brandon, daughter of William Brandon.
Daniel P. Clower and his wife both died in the prime of life, leaving four
children, John Thomas, William P., Mary Elizabeth and Nancy J. These were
brought up by an uncle, Joseph Brandon.
Dr. John Thomas Clower, the eldest of the
four children of Daniel P. and Parthene, was born in Gwinnett County, Ga., May
13, 1830. He obtained such education as was available at that time and later
entered the Atlanta Medical College from which he graduated just as the War
Between the States was declared. He immediately enlisted and was made 2nd
Lieutenant of his company which was attached to Major Leyden's Battalion in the
9th Georgia Regiment, which became a part of the Western Army. Later Dr. Clower
was appointed Regimental Surgeon and was with the army in its many campaigns and
battles until the last of the conflict in 1865.
When Dr. Clower returned to Georgia he
went back to Gwinnett County and engaged in the practice of his profession until
1870 when he moved to Ray's Mill, Berrien County, where he practiced medicine
the next seventeen years, moving from there to Morven district, Brooks County,
1887. On moving here he bought a farm and carried on farming in connection with
his professional work and became noted as an agriculturist and as a physician of
skill and ability, until his death March 12, 1893.
Dr. Clower married Delusky Ann Brogdon in
1869. She was born March 7, 1849, in Gwinnett County, daughter of Hope J. and
Emily Brogdon. To them were born three sons, John P. Clower, Reuben Jackson
Clower and W. L. Pierce Clower, all born in Berrien County.
John P. Clower was twice married. First
wife was Frances Louise Edmondson, daughter of S. D. Edmondson of Brooks County.
She died in early womanhood, leaving two children, Bamma and Warren Candler
Clower. The second wife was Miss Mamie Pruitt, and to them were born three
children viz: Young, Lovie and Elizabeth. John P. Clower died in Moultrie, May
W. L. Pierce Clower, born 1880, lived at
the old homestead with his aged mother until her death, and now lives in
Reuben Jackson Clower
When Dr. R. J. Clower died at Morven,
January 10, 1942, Brooks County lost one of its leading citizens and finest
characters. His passing at the age of sixty-eight left many with a sense of
personal loss, thankful that they had known this beloved physician. He gave the
last full measure of his failing strength in devoted efforts to relieve
Dr. Clower, affectionately known as "Dr.
Jack," was born October 11, 1873, at Ray's Mill, now Ray City, in Berrien
County, son of Dr. John T. and Deluscia Ann Clower. He followed his father in
his professional footsteps, taking over his extensive practice at his death, and
his father having in turn taken over the extensive practice of Dr. R. M. Hitch
at his death. Both, father and son, received their medical education at the old
Atlanta Medical College, now a branch of Emory University.
Surviving Dr. Clower is his widow who was
Willie Mae Brice, daughter of Timothy Brice, of the pioneer Brice family of this
county; also two sons, E. J. ("Sandy") Clower, and Dr. Tim Brice Clower. The
former, "Sandy" Clower, studied law, was admitted to the bar, served as
Assistant Attorney-General of Georgia and is now Solicitor-General of his
circuit (Rome). Dr. T. B. Clower of Atlanta, is State Veterinarian. Also
surviving Dr. R. J. Clower are two daughters, Mrs. Mary Suber of Homestead,
Fla., and Miss Margaret Clower, formerly a teacher in the LaGrange schools but
now in government employ at Spartanburg, S. C.
Dr. "Jack" Clower was one of the last
old-time country doctors who have played such a remarkable part in Georgia life
in their day. He had practiced medicine at Morven forty-six years and had
patients in all parts of this section. In the course of his practice he had
delivered more than 5000 babies, which is one indication of the great extent of
his service in the county.
His was a well-rounded life, active in
church, fraternal and all civic affairs. He served for many years as
Superintendent of the Methodist Sunday school at Morven; was Chairman of the
Board of Stewards of that church; was a member and Chairman of the County Board
of Education for some years, and had served as Mayor of Morven. He was active in
the Masonic fraternity and the Morven lodge conducted the Masonic funeral rites
at the grave. For some time before the funeral a procession of people passed the
casket, people in all walks of life who had been his close friends, and who had
been his patients. In the throng were a great many colored people whom the
Doctor had waited on and treated and befriended. To a great many of these people
he was the greatest, most dependable friend.
(This account of Dr. Clower condensed
from a sketch of his life appearing In "History of Savannah and South Georgia",
and from a news item in "The Quitman Free-Press."
Hon. David R. Creech was one of the
earliest and best known Quitman citizens and had a large part in the early
building up of Quitman and Brooks County. The following news item from the files
of the Quitman Free Press, issue of Saturday, August 14, 1897, tells not only of
his passing but also of his life and character:
"Judge D. R. Creech, one of Quitman's
oldest merchants and best known citizens, died at his home on Court Street
Monday morning at 10 o'clock after an illness that confined him to his bed for
four days. He had been a sufferer from Bright's disease of the kidneys for a
year or more, and for the past few months he realized that the end was fast
approaching. The funeral was preached at the home by Father Schleake of the
Catholic Church of Columbus, Tuesday at 11 o'clock, A.M. after which the remains
were interred in their last resting place in the new cemetery.
*'David Robinson Creech was born in
Laurens County, Ga., on the 4th day of November, 1830, where his boyhood was
spent, moving with his parents to Thomas County in 1849 in his 19th year of age.
In 1851 he moved to Lowndes County, accepting a position in his uncle's store at
Clyattville; here he remained until 1857 when he moved to Troupville and entered
the mercantile business for himself.
"When this county was cut off from
Lowndes and Thomas in 1859 and Troupville was broken up, part going to Valdosta
and part coming to Quitman, he cast his lot with the latter and opened up the
first business house that was started here. It was in the building now occupied
by Jim Buckner and known as the Witt shop. He afterwards built the brick store
in which he did business until his death.
"Judge Creech was a man of strong
intellect, a forceful reasoner and a natural leader of men, and his life has
been one that leaves its impress on the memory of man. He never took a position
until he had reason on his side and then his stand was firm. His title of Judge
was acquired by his having been Justice of the Inferior Court of this county,
which was the only public office he ever held or would hold. In politics he was
a strong believer in Democracy and a life-long defender of its principles. He
was for a number of years Chairman of the Democratic Executive Committee and one
of the strongest leaders in the county.
"In business and his dealings with his
fellow-man we can unhesitatingly say of him that which we conceive to be the
greatest encomium that can be applied to the life of man; in all things he was
strictly honest, doing unto his fellow man as he would have them do unto him . .
. . "
Judge and Mrs. Creech had only one son,
Lewis Thomas Creech, born October 26, 1861, in Quitman; married September 14,
1893, to Mary Araminta Young. Died July 16, 1940. To them were born the
following children: Roberson Young Creech, November 10, 1894; Lewis Thomas
Creech Jr., October 27, 1896; Mary Emily Creech, February 2, 1899; Lavinia
Araminta Creech, July 9, 1901; Silas Morton Creech, March 14, 1904; William
Briggs Creech, July 8, 1907; Frances Rachel Creech, June 28, 1910; Sara Lee
Johnson Creech, May 2, 1916.
Roberson Young Creech married Ida L.
Stump of Valdosta, July 17,1917, and now lives in Belle Glade, Fla. Three
children: R. Y. Jr., Marcelyn Wingfield Creech and Barnes G. Creech.
Lewis Thomas Creech Jr., married Maude L.
Booker, February 11, 1917. He died May 9, 1938. Two children: L. T. Creech III,
October 30, 1919, and Ivy Lavinia Creech, May 2, 1918.
Mary Emily Creech married July 26, 1920
to George Burnett Moore, and they live in Sparta, Ga. Children: George B. Jr.,
born October 18, 1923, and Mary Lucy Moore, born October 4, 1929. Lavinia
Araminta Creech married George Edward Durham of Alexandria, La. They now reside
in Jacksonville, Fla. No issue.
Silas Morton Creech married September 15,
1934 to Elizabeth Ann Marston of Baltimore, Md., and they now live in Bethesda,
Md. Three children: Imogene Creech, S. M. Creech Jr., and Jay Gardner
William Briggs Creech married November 2,
1930, to Miss Hannah Mary Ashe of Columbia, S. C, and they reside in Atlanta.
One son, Wm. B. Creech Jr.
Frances Rachel Creech married November
24, 1939 to Laurence Winton Boon of Wilmington, N. C. They have one child, L. W.
Sarah Lee Johnson Creech and her mother
now live in Belle Glade, Fla., where she has built a home and is established in
Mrs. Grace Gillam Davidson, the daughter
of William Andrew Gillam and Marie Wilson Trout, was born April 7, 1873, near
Kingston, Ga. It is an interesting sidelight that the wedding ceremony of the
mother and father was performed in Atlanta by Rev. Arminius Wright, the father
of Prof. Homer Wright who later served as head of the Quitman Public
Mrs. Davidson finished the course of
study at the Kingston public school and later graduated from Martin Institute at
Jefferson, Ga. Later she taught school in a number of places including Buford
In September, 1893, she married at
Kingston, Ga., John Lee Davidson and shortly thereafter the young couple moved
to South Georgia where Mr. Davidson became connected with the lumber
manufacturing interests of the Oglesby family. The sawmill was located at a
place known as Heartpine, some three miles south of the village of Adel (in
present Cook County) and was served by what was then known as the Georgia,
Southern & Florida Railroad.
The family moved to Quitman in 1901,
followed about two years later by the sawmill which continued in operation for
some twenty years thereafter.
Mrs. Davidson was interested in matters
pertaining to local com-munity history and family history for a great many
years. She was one of the charter members of the Hannah Clarke Chapter of the
Daughters of the American Revolution which was organized by Mrs. L. C. Chapman
in April of 1908. Mrs. Davidson served as chapter regent from time to time and
later was elected as honorary regent for life in recognition of her outstanding
She began her genealogical research more
or less as a hobby but it became so interesting to her that she developed it
into practically a nation-wide business. In carrying on this work she perhaps
had the largest volume of correspondence of any woman in this section. This
correspondence was not confined to Georgia, but extended over the South and the
nation. She also had a number of clients in Europe and even in China. For
several years after her death, letters on genealogical matters were still being
received from many people who did not know of her death.
Mrs. Davidson served as D.A.R. State
Historian from 1926 to 1928 and as State Chairman of Genealogical Research from
1928 to 1932. She compiled and indexed seven volumes of county records during
this period. Her historical collection of Georgia Society of D.A.R. records of
Richmond County, Elbert County and of "Wilkes County constitute valuable
reference works in many public and private libraries. Her books are considered
particularly valuable by librarians and professional genealogists, because the
subject matter is so well indexed.
Each summer for a number of years she
toured various counties throughout the state which were rich in historical lore,
and spent many hours copying in longhand old marriage records, birth records,
records of deeds, wills and other public records which might shed some light on
local history or on history of the families who settled and lived in the
respective communities. When she was asked by the local chapter of the D.A.R. to
undertake writing a history of Brooks County Mrs. Davidson agreed to do so
despite the handicap of deafness. Unfortunately, her eyesight began to fail in
1937 along with her general health, and it was a source of deepest
disappointment to her that she was unable to proceed further with the work of
compiling this History. It was no less grieving to her to give up her beloved
genealogical work. With her husband's assistance in writing down notes and in
doing her typing and writing her letters she tried to carry on after her
eyesight began to fail, but when health too, failed, she at last had to lay down
life's work and like many others before her who were engaged in some great work,
had to leave it uncompleted and let somebody else take up when she had left
Mrs. Davidson passed away November 3,
1940, survived by her husband and two children. Mr. Davidson has since departed
this life. The two children were born while the family was living at Heartpine
but were actually born at Mrs. Davidson's old home, Kingston. Miss Marie
Davidson, the daughter, graduated from Brenau College and later married John
Kimble and has a son James C. Kimble who served in "World War II, in the North
African and Italian campaigns: she is now Secretary of the Brooks County Board
of Health. John L. Davidson Jr., the son, graduated from the Georgia School of
Technology in Mechanical Engineering, and served in World War I, and is now
Vice-President of the Valve Pilot Corpora-tion, New York City. He lives in a
suburb, Scarsdale, N. Y.
Among Mrs. Davidson's friends and the
surviving members of the family there remains a dominant impression of her
concept of history so aptly expressed by the ancient Roman scholar, Cicero, "To
be ignorant of what happened before you were born is to be ever a child. For
what is man's lifetime unless the memory of past events is woven with those of
(The foregoing is inserted to the memory
of Mrs. Davidson by the Committee in charge, and is complimentary to her family
out of a sense of appre-ciation of her faithful labors.)
By Mrs. Donald M. Davis Dr. Jesse
Thomas Davis was born in 1824 in Georgia, and was one of the first citizens to
locate in the new town of Quitman when it was laid out. He was a young
physician, and in the small-pox epidemic in 1860 he was appointed by the
Inferior Court as Chairman of the Citizens' Committee to combat the spread of
the dread disease. He became the first Justice of Peace in the newly-formed
Quitman District and served 1859-1871. In October, 1866, he was appointed local
agent for the Atlantic & Gulf Railroad at Quitman, and continued in this
capacity until January 1, 1892, when he had to resign on account of his health
which had been steadily declining. On the 27th of the same month he died. The
railroad company never had a more popular or efficient representative. Dr. Davis
and his wife also operated "The Railroad House" adjoining the depot, for several
years; it was a very popular place with the travelling public and railroad men.
Dr. Davis was a town councilman 1873-74 and was Mayor of Quitman in
Dr. Davis was twice married. By the first
marriage there was a daughter, Miss Lalah Davis. The second marriage was on
March 10, 1869, to Miss Lucy L. Russell, daughter of James Russell of Quitman
and Thomasville. By this marriage there were four sons born: James Russell,
Fred, Thomas and Dudley, all of whom are now deceased. Fred and Dudley never
married. Tom is survived by his wife, the former Mary Lee Felder of Elmyra, N.
Y., and their children, Thomas and Caroline.
Dr. Davis was a devoted parent and
husband and, with his wife, took a lively interest and pleasure in the rearing
and recreation of their children. Their home on South Lee Street was the scene
of many happy hours for the boys as well as for the children of the neighbors
and often for the children of the town at large.
James Russell Davis, son of Dr. Jesse T.
Davis, was born in Quitman, August 29, 1871, and died here April 1st, 1925. He
was educated in the old Quitman Academy and at Mercer University. On the death
of his father he was appointed railroad agent here and was later transferred to
Naylor. In August, 1893, he was appointed Assistant Cashier of the Merchants
& Farmers Bank, and in February, 1896, was promoted to cashier, which
position he held until the bank was succeeded by The Citizens Bank, holding this
position several years. He later became vice-president of the First National
Bank in Quitman.
Mr. Davis was a member of the city
council 1903-1914 and was Mayor for eight years, 1914-1922. He was the third
president of the Quitman Rotary Club, and was Superintendent of the Baptist
Sunday school for years. A more genial and sociable man Quitman never had, and
his death was mourned by countless friends and citizens.
Mr. Davis married his one and only
sweetheart, the lovely Con-stance McCall, on June 14,1892. She was born in
Quitman, November 30, 1872, a daughter of Dr. and Mrs. James H. McCall; and died
April 30, 1943. Of their four children, three survive: Donald McCall Davis of
Quitman, Mrs. E. H. Graves of Eufaula, Ala., and James Russell Davis Jr., of
Jacksonville, Fla. The fourth child was Tillie Mae, born June 25, 1893, died
December 16, 1945, married Septem-ber, 1916, to Joseph W. Pate of Monticello,
Fla. Mr. and Mrs. Pate had two daughters: Emmala Pate, born November, 1927, and
Josephine, married Feb. 14, 1945, John Anderson.
Lillian Russell Davis, born May 30, 1897,
married December 1, 1922, to Eugene H. Graves. Two children: E. H. Jr., born
September 3, 1924, and Constance, born June 23, 1926, married Ralph Garrison of
Eufaula, Ala., September 18, 1946.
James Russell Davis Jr., was born August
9, 1905, and was married July 19, 1941, to Miss Mildred Lockerman of Montezuma,
Donald McCall Davis was born in Quitman,
October 8, 1895, and attended Quitman public schools, later G.M.A., from which
he graduated in 1911. He then attended Auburn where he was a member of Phi Delta
Theta fraternity. He served in World War I in the Aviation Cadet Corps for about
18 months. He entered the automobile business here as Ford dealer, in 1916 and
was in this business until 1941. He is now in the insurance and gasoline
business. He is active in the social, civic and religious life of Quitman. He is
very active in the First Baptist Church in which he has served a number of years
as Sunday school teacher and deacon, and is now Superintendent of the Sunday
school. He is one of the only two active charter members of the Quitman Rotary
Club in which he is much interested and of which he has served as President. He
was married October 20, 1926, to Miss Sarah Maddux of Culloden, Ga., and they
have two children, Evelyn Towns Davis, born August 26, 1928, and Donald McCall
Davis, Jr., born May 19, 1931.
The Denmarks of Brooks County are
descended from William Denmark, a Revolutionary soldier, who lived in Hyde
County, N. C, until his removal to Screven County, Ga., sometime during the
1770s. Record is found of his residence and plantation known as "Denmark's
Point" on one of the numerous coastal bays in Hyde County. After living in
Screven County a short while he moved to Effingham County, where his stock-mark
is found of record, registered December 19, 1791. In his last years, he moved to
Warren County, Ga., where he died at the age of 102 years.
William Denmark was married twice, to
Misses Moye, sisters. The first wife, Mourning, died in North Carolina. Born by
the first wife:
1. Stephen m.
Mrs. Elizabeth Bird-McCaU, dau. of Frederick Rester.
James m. Susan, dau. of William Wise, Oct.
4, 1S02. Moved to Miss.
m. William Travis in N. C. Moved to Georgia also. By the second wife, Anna, were
born the following:
4. Redden b. 1770, m. Lavina Wise, dau.
5. Levisa m. Frederick Rester,
6. Malachi m. Jane Wise, dau. of
7. Martha m. Thomas Jones, Apr. 17,
8. Susannah m. _Jones.
9. Clarisa m. John Lucas, Aug. 20,
10. Jemima probably never
The Effingham County deed records show a
deed of gift dated January 21,1795, by William Denmark to his wife Anna and
children Stephen, Susanna Jones, Jemima, Clarissa and Martha, Mrs. Lavinia
Rester, and Redden Denmark. See deed book "CD" page 279, of Effingham
Redden Denmark, named above, was married
August 17, 1802, to Miss Winnie Wise, daughter of William Wise, a Revolutionary
soldier. She was born 1787 and died 1857. Redden Denmark died in Bulloch County
in 1813 in the prime of life, leaving a wife and five small children.
1. Elizabeth b. 1803, m. James Groover;
moved to Brooks Co.
2. Clarisa b. 1804, m. John William
Gibson, Jan. 29, 1818.
3. Sarah b. 1805, m. Wm. Lastinger, Jan.
4. Thomas I. b. 1809, m. Amanda Groover,
Dec. 1, 1831. Moved to Brooks.
5. John b. 1811, m. Mourning Hagan July
Thomas Irving Denmark
Thomas Irving Denmark was born September
30, 1809, in Bulloch County, son of Redden, and his father dying when he was
four years of age the child was taken to the home of his uncle Malachi Denmark,
where he grew to manhood. Six years after his marriage he moved to Lowndes
County (territory now in Brooks County) and lived there until he died in
Mr. Denmark was married in Bulloch County
December 1, 1831, to Miss Amanda Groover daughter of Charles Groover of that
county. She was born in Bulloch County May 12, 1816, and died August 15, 1890,
at the family home in Brooks County. Thirteen children were born to Mr. and Mrs.
1. Sarah b. 1832, m. James Lee of Bullocn
2. Agnes A. b. 1834, m. A W. L.
Irving b. 1836, m. Josephine
4. Mary Jane b. 1838, m. Wade P. Hodges
of Decatur Co.
5. Clayton R. b. 1841, m. Nannie
6. Frances R. b. 1843, m. Thomas N.
7. Daniel Jones b. 1845, died at the age
of 11 years.
8. Ann Victoria b. 1848, died at the age
of 16 years.
9. Brantley A. b. 1850, m. Ann Rebecca
Stark of Savannah,
10. Florence V. b. 1852, m. J. N.
1L Elisha Peck Smith b. 1855,
m. Mary Lane.
Clinton b. 1860, died single May
13. Nora Jndson b. 1862, died in
Mr. Denmark enlisted in the Seminole
Indian War in Florida and served a short while. When the Civil War came on he
was overage but later when the call went out for volunteers from 16 to 60, he
volunteered though he was 55 years old at the time. He saw hard service in the
battles around Atlanta and was there when that city felL His sons Redden and
Clayton enlisted in the early part of the war, in the Confederate Army and were
in it until the close. Mr. Denmark was a farmer all his life and was industrious
and successful in business. He was very religious and believed firmly in
education and gave his children the very best education he could possibly
afford. He believed that boys and girls should be taught early to take care of
themselves and that idleness was the cause of much evil in life. He was a member
of the Baptist Church and a deacon also, from young manhood until his death, and
was a deacon in Hickory Head Baptist Church for many years prior to his death.
All his large family with one exception, were members of the Baptist faith. It
was said of him that he was of the high type of Christian who loved his neighbor
as himself and this trait of character in life made him the friend of everybody
and everybody to be his friend.
In his latter years he was affectionately
known as "Uncle Tommy, the grand old man of Brooks County."
Mrs. Denmark was descended through both
of her parents from the Salzburgers who as well known, left Austria on account
of their religious beliefs and settled at Ebenezer in Effingham County. She was
very strong intellectually and was deeply religious. She was one of the
organizers of Liberty Baptist Church at Grooverville in what was then Thomas
County but now Brooks County.
Clayton R. Denmark
Clayton Rhey Denmark, son of Thomas I.
and Amanda Groover, was born October 27,1840, in Lowndes, now Brooks County, and
died December 10, 1886, at Hickory Head within a few miles of where he was
On July 21, 1861, he volunteered in the
Confederate Army, joining the newly-formed Piscola Volunteers which afterwards
became a part of the 26th Georgia Regiment. He served through the war and was in
Virginia under Generals Lawton, Gordon and Stonewall Jackson. He was wounded
three times but as soon as he was well enough he went to the front again each
time. After the war was over he returned home and by industry and thrift and
good judgment became in due time an extensive planter.
On October 25, 1865, Mr. Denmark was
married to Miss Nannie McMullen, daughter of John and Nancy McMullen of Brooks
To them were born six children,
1. Thomas Jackson b. 18 , died at the age
of 16 years.
2. Charles Groover b. 18 , m. Cora
3. Dewitt Clinton b. 18 , m. Ella Young
of Eatonton, Ga.
4. Jennie Lee b. 18 , never
5. Carrie Amanda b. 18 , m. Joseph Bruce
Tillman of Quitman.
6. Clayton Rhey, Jr. b. 18 , m. Effie
Galloway of Baltimore, Md.
"While a soldier in the Confederate Army
Mr. Denmark united with the Baptist Church. He was a faithful member and deacon
of Hickory Head Baptist Church to the day of his death.
Clayton R. Denmark may be said to have
been one of the builders of Brooks County. He had an unflagging interest in the
welfare of his county and rendered a most worthwhile service in his capacity as
Chairman of the Board of County Commissioners. He was appointed as a member of
the Board when it was created by legislative act approved August 11, 1881, and
became its chairman on the board assuming office, and continued as such until
his death five years later. The County Commissioners in session, at their first
session after his death, adopted resolutions of respect to the memory of Mr.
Denmark, and in these resolutions said:
" Resolved that in the death of Mr. C. R.
Denmark the Board has lost not only its presiding officer but also one of the
safest, most liberal and prudent of its members, one whose enlarged views, good
judgment and faithfulness to the discharge of his duty, ever made his advice
entitled to the careful consideration of this Board;
"Resolved that the County of Brooks has
lost one of its best citizens, one whose energy and success did much to
recommend our County Board, and one whose liberality, both public and private,
rendered him a benefactor to our people."
Redden Irving Denmark
Redden Irving Denmark, son of Thomas
Irving and Amanda Denmark, was born July 30, 1836, and married October 12, 1858,
Miss Josephine McMullen, daughter of James and Harriet (Rountree)
He was a planter and spent his life on
his farm near Quitman in Brooks County where he died March 12, 1902. His home
was "open house" to a host of friends and he and Mrs. Denmark were noted and
loved for their abundant hospitality.
Mr. Denmark was a man who had a vision of
what could be developed along agricultural lines. He was one of the founders of
the Hickory Head Agricultural Club which was a strong factor in community life
in that section. This club was the first of its kind to be organized.
Mr. Denmark was largely responsible for
the establishment of the Rural Mail route in Brooks County, which was the first
in the South. He was vitally interested in education and assumed a large
responsibility for the maintenance of the community school, and this school
stood so well that pupils leaving it could enter any college in the
As a young man, Mr. Denmark served two
years in the Confederate Army and was Adjutant of his Regiment. He was an active
member of the Hickory Head Baptist Church and a man of outstanding activities in
the life of his community and county.
Children of Mr. and Mrs. Denmark
1. Charles died in infancy.
*2. Harriet Amanda m. W. Hewell Britt of
3. Daniel Arlington m. (1) Josie Jelks,
(2) Parthenia Staten.
4. Emma Cotton never married.
5. Frances Reiser never
6. Edgar never married.
7. Arthur m. Bertha Twiss.
8. Augusta Reppard m. Henry
L. Covington of Pensacola, Fla.
9. Cobb m. Rebecca Moss of Paducah,
10. R. I. Jr. m. (1) Eva McArthur, (2)
Fannie Mae Duke.
11. Josephine m. Oreon Burnett.
*Mr. and Mrs. Britt had only one
daughter, Emma Jo, who was reared as one of her grandparents* family. She
married Golden Stevens.
Elisha Peck Smith Denmark,
Elisha Peck Smith Denmark achieved much
prominence as a successful lawyer and business leader first in Quitman and then
in Valdosta. He was born December 4, 1854, in present Brooks, a son of Thomas I.
and Amanda Denmark; and died January 6, 1929, in Valdosta. He was the last of a
family group widely known in this part of the South.
E. P. S. Denmark's early life was spent
on his father's planta-tion in the Hickory Head community where he received his
early schooling. He later attended the University of Georgia law school and
graduated, and then took up the practice of law in Quitman in 1878. In 1879 he
was appointed Solicitor of the County Court, and the next year was elected to
the State Senate from the 7th District, serving 1880-81.
In February, 1893, Mr. Denmark moved to
Valdosta and there formed a law partnership with the late D. C. Ashley, which
continued for many years. He was one of the organizers or charter stock-holders
of the Bank of Quitman, and was President of the bank until his removal to
Valdosta. In Valdosta, he was one of the organizers of The Merchants Bank which
for many years was a very strong financial institution and in more recent years
was merged with the Citizens & Southern National Bank. Mr. Denmark also
helped to organize the Strickland Cotton Mills in Valdosta, and was the attorney
for the corporation.
Mr. Denmark was a member of the First
Baptist Church, first in Quitman, then in Valdosta. He served on the Valdosta
City Board of Education for nearly thirty years as its Chairman. He married Miss
Mary E. Lane, of Lowndes County, on January 6, 1881. To them were born five
children: Remer Lane Denmark, E. P. S. Denmark Jr., Augustus H. Denmark, Thomas
Irving Denmark married Lucille Graham and Mary E. who married C. C. Bell of
Edward Taylor Dukes, Quitman merchant,
was born in Thomas (now Brooks) County, December 12, 1846, fourth son of Edward
Clinton Dukes and Mrs. Nancy Hodges Dukes. He served in Company "B," 1st Georgia
Reserves in the Confederate Army, from May, 1864, to the close of the war. He
went to Homerville in 1867 and engaged in the mercantile business. His brother
Henry C. Dukes was associated with him. In 1873 he was elected Clerk of the
Superior Court of Clinch County, serving two years. Just before the close of his
term he appointed a deputy clerk and returned to Brooks County where he and his
brother went into business in Quitman. The Quitman Reporter on September 10,
"It is our pleasure this week to record a
pleasant accession to the young men of our community and a substantial addition
to the business men of Quitman. We allude to Messrs. E. T. and Henry C. Dukes,
formerly of Homerville, who have just moved to our town and opened the store
next door to Mr. Nathan Gazan on Screven Street, under the firm name of E. T.
Dukes & Bro. The senior of the firm went to New York this season and
purchased a large and tasty assortment of goods which are now being opened and
prepared for sale. "We welcome these worthy young gentlemen to our town and
trust that their busi-ness undertaking may meet with their most sanguine
In a few years Mr. Henry C. Dukes sold
his interest to his brother and went first to Atlanta then to Valdosta where he
was in business until his death. E. T. Dukes continued in the mercantile
business in Quitman until his death in 1920.
Mr. Dukes was first married in 1870 to
Miss Lucy E. Wade, daughter of Hon. Elijah Wade and his wife Mrs. Elizabeth
Reddick Wade. She died the next year at Homerville, leaving an infant son Edward
Scott Dukes (1871-1902). On February 10, 1876, Mr. Dukes married Miss Avie Bryan
who died in 1881, leaving one daughter, Nellie Leland Dukes. In 1891 Mr. Dukes
was married the third time, to Miss Mattie Eliza Rountree, daughter of Mr. and
Mrs. A. J. Rountree of Quitman, and to them was born one daughter, Frances
Rountree Dukes, now Mrs. Paul McDonald Wynne, of Miami, Fla.
Mr. and Mrs. Wynne have two children,
Pauline Dukes and Frank Cody Wynne. Nellie Leland Dukes married June 15, 1898,
E. Peck Smith (1873-1915) and they had one daughter, Theodosia Livingstone,
married W. H. White Jr., and is now living in St. Augustine, Fla. Edward Scott
Dukes married Miss Mattie Irvine of Madison, Fla., June 15, 1893, and had a son
Mr. Dukes was a Mason, first becoming one
at Homerville in March, 1874, and after removal to Quitman was a member of
Sholto Lodge until his death. He and his last wife were active in the social,
business and church life in Quitman during their entire married lives.
Edward Clinton Dukes (father of E. T.
Dukes) was born in Liberty County January 6, 1810, and died at his home in
present Brooks County July 17, 1855. His wife, Nancy, was born in Tattnall
County (on the Tattnall-Liberty line) February 6, 1813, and was a daughter of
"William Hodges, a pioneer citizen of Tatnall and Liberty counties. William
Hodges lived near Taylor's Creek Church in Liberty County and was buried there.
Edward C. Dukes was Justice of Peace 790th district of Lowndes (now Brooks)
County 1840-1853 and was a charter member and the first Secretary of Okapilco
Lodge No. 172, F.&A.M., located at old Tallokas. He served 1852-1853-1854 as
secretary. On moving from Liberty County Mr. Dukes first settled not long after
marriage, in the Grooverville district of Thomas County (now Brooks), where he
was Justice of Peace of the 754th district 1841-45 and captain of the militia
1836-37. He later sold out and moved to the Tallokas district of what was then
Lowndes, now Brooks. He and his wife had twelve children. Edward C. Dukes was a
son of John Taylor Dukes, a Revolutionary soldier, who drew land in 1784 in
Washington County (now Tattnall) as a Revolutionary
Original data: Huxford, Folks,. The history of Brooks
County, Georgia. Quitman, Ga.: Hannah Clarke Chapter, D.A.R., 1948, c1949.
MRS. ELLA KEMP (MRS. W. T.). Probation Officer,
Thomas Co. Daughter of Bryant A. Kemp (December 1, 1822-November 15, 1876) and
Emily A. (Fulwood) Kemp October 4, 1844-June 2, 1870). Born in Brooks Co., Ga.,
December 6, 1860. Educated in schools of Brooks Co. and Thomas Co. Married March
16, 1881, in Thomasville, Ga., William Thomas Wilson. Children: Three Daughters
and two sons. Baptist. Democrat. Member, Eastern Star, W. C. T. U. and Business
and Professional Women's Club. Probation Officer, Thomas Co., November 11,
1919-date; Attendance Officer, Thomas Co.,
1920-date. Address: Thomasville, Ga.
['Georgia Women of 1926', Compiled by Ruth Blair]
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