"Tennessee Trails" through Bedford County

Bedford County TN Biographies

Mead J. Haile
1811 - 1891

Mead J. Haile (Hale, Hail) was the son of Mead Haile and Elizabeth (Betsey) Jackson of Virginia and then Bedford County, Tennessee.

No one knows what the “J.” in Mead J. stands for; all of the available records show his signature this way. One account is …the name Mead is an old family name, both in the Haile and the Jackson families. There was a Mead Jackson who was a cousin to Mead Haile. Neither of these men had a middle name. They talked it over and Mead Haile adopted “J” for his middle initial in honor of the Jackson name and family. Mead Jackson adopted “H” for his middle initial honoring the Haile family name. It makes a good story, anyway, whether it is true or just family fun.

About 1836, Mead J. married Livy Ann Cavin (May 28, 1817 – December 14, 1882), the daughter of Joseph and Polly Keele Cavin. They had the following children:

1. Jackson Overstreet March 12, 1837 – Feb. 13, 1905 m. Sara A. Mallard Aug 5, 1858 Lawrence Co, MO

2. Leeford Hudson July 4, 1838 – August 31, 1903 m. Mary Louisa Nichols Jan. 26, 1869 Collin Co, TX

3. William Carrol abt. 1839 – April 4, 1864 (CSA casualty)

4. Christopher Columbus abt. 1841- August 10, 1861 (CSA casualty)

5. Mary Elizabeth abt. 1842 – April 07, 1873 m. James K. White Sept. 23, 1866 Grayson Co, TX

6. James Thomas Nov. 8, 1843 – Feb. 20, 1916 m. Mary Beaver Hodges Jan. 10, 1867 Grayson Co, TX

7. Eliza Jane May 13, 1846 – Dec. 20, 1925 m. David Sands Brown Feb. 12, 1861 Lawrence Co, MO

8. Milly Ann Dec. 14, 1847 – Dec. 31, 1932 (never married)

9. Virginia Catherine July 28, 1848 – 1927 m. Lorenzo Dowell Young Feb. 28, 1867

10. Sarah Locky abt. 1851 – 1883 m. John C. McDaniel

11. Josephine Pearl Sept. 4, 1853 – Oct. 1, 1929 m. Charles M. Coe Feb. 28, 1873

12. Joel Basket June 17, 1856 – June 5, 1943 m. Nancy Susan Overton Feb. 11, 1883, TX

About 1855, the whole family left Nashville in a steamboat and traveled through floating ice down the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers and up the Arkansas River to Pine Bluff, Arkansas. They had to get off at Pine Bluff because of shallow water. Mead J. hired a team and a wagon to take them on to Little Rock, Arkansas. There, several members of the family came down with measles and had to recover before traveling again. In Little Rock, they bought a team and wagons and finally ended up in Stone County, Missouri, and settled near Livy Ann’s family. This information comes from a letter written by Leeford Hudson to a cousin back in Tennessee. He wrote that both the Ohio and the Mississippi Rivers had huge ice blocks, and at places there was so much ice that a man could walk across the river. The ice stopped their boat many times and they had to back out and find another path through the ice. The steamboat met other boats with boilers that had burst leaving people stranded on the river.

A family story about this trip is they could not leave Nashville on the planned day because one of the children was ill. The ship that they were supposed to take sank and everyone aboard perished.

In 1857, Mead J. got a land patent as a cash sale in Stone County, MO, for 80 acres. On April 19, 1870, after the Civil War and after the family left the state, his land was sold at a Sheriff’s Sale. The family must have lost most of their resources during the Civil War.

Mead J. and Livy Ann had five sons who fought in the Civil War. Four fought for the Confederacy (Leeford Hudson, William Carrol, Christopher Columbus, and James Thomas) and one for the Union (Jackson Overstreet). Christopher Columbus died at Wilson Creek, MO, and William Carrol died at Pleasant Hill, LA. Mead J. is supposed to have made a trip to bring one of these sons home for burial but it is not clear which one...

About 1865, the large group of Hailes once again migrated…this time to Texas. Jackson Overstreet and Eliza Jane had both married by this time, so they stayed in Missouri. The rest of the family migrated in mass to Grayson Co, TX, and then on to Cooke Co, TX. Children began to marry and left home. Mead J. and Livy stayed in Cooke County with Mead J. teaching, preaching in Baptist Churches, and farming.

Livy Ann died of pneumonia on Dec. 14, 1882. She is buried at Hibbitt Cemetery in Cooke Co, TX. Her marker is now broken into two pieces. A group of her ancestors bought a new tombstone for her so that her grave would not be lost.

Mead J. continued to live in Texas until 1889 when he moved back to MO to live with his son Jackson. He died there in late 1891. Daniel Leaford Haile, son of Jackson, wrote that Mead J. died at Jackson’s house and is buried at the old Marionville Cemetery in Christian County, MO. Wherever he is buried, he does not have a marker. A group of ancestors also bought a tombstone for him and placed it among the Haile graves at the old Marionville Cemetery.

Written and Contributed by Patricia Ann Haile Kinsey
Great Great Granddaughter

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