Sunday, September 27, 2015

Rehobeth Methodist Church
circa 1839

This church is located in an area where once wealthy slave owners were not timid in displaying their wealth. Church attire was a concern among members. Wealthier women wore their New York fashions and silks in contrast to their poor sisters who dressed in their long black calico dresses and bonnets. Should they had hid their wealth?

The church is located in rural Copiah County on Barlow Road in the Barlow Community.

"Rehoboth was Methodist church about four miles northeast of Somerset. The Taliaferros, Browns and Hawkins, and we went there on Sundays to church, and a good many other people...I think she (Cousin Melissa Taliaferro) always wore those "party dresses" to church for Bertha remembers her at Rehoboth in a light green silk with bare neck and arms."
Edwina Burnley Memoirs

Melissa Ann Brown Taliaferro

How does this church connect to my family?
The Taliaferro and Brown families, who were members of this church, were slave owners of members of my family.

Melissa Brown Taliaferro's husband, Richard H Taliaferro, owned 44 slaves; father Edwin Rice Brown owned 190 slaves, per the 1860 Copiah Slave Schedule.

Melissa's picture is courtsey of Suzanne Brown.
Religion in Mississippi

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Sunday Obituary
Maggie Lean Smith

Maggie Lean Scott was born on December 26, 1927, in Caseyville, Lincoln County, Mississippi. She was the first born child of Rev Perlie Scott and Fannie Thomas Scott. Zion Chapel AME Church was where the family worshiped. The church also served as one of the elementary schools of the community. As a rural farming area, Caseyville children could only go so far educationally. In her early years, the family joined the Triumph Holiness Church where her father became a minster and later the pastor.

At the age of 16, she married her childhood friend and neighbor, Robert Lee Smith. She recounted that as they played together as little children, Robert would pull her hair and say to her, "When we get grown, I'm gonna marry you." After marriage, they moved 40 miles away to Natchez, Mississippi, where they lived, worked and purchased a home. Maggie worked as a domestic housekeeper and cooked at a local restaurant while Robert worked at a mill. No children were born to this union, but many sisters, nieces and nephews "married out of their house." They were a couple who totally loved, honored and took care of each other. They ere friends from childhood to the end.

In 1953, Robert and Maggie moved from Natchez to Racine, Wisconsin, where they lived and worked until moving to Chicago. In the Windy City, Maggie worked at various jobs in the shoe and garment industries. Later she worked at Allied Radio and then at the Mason Elementary School (Chicago Public Schools) from which she retired.

In 1954, Maggie joined Holy Temple Church of God in Christ under the pastorate of Bishop E Lenox. She served the congregation in many capacities including kitchen coordinator and chairperson of the beautifying committee. Sister Maggie, as she was called, was also instrumental in the establishment of a fund to assist and aid assistant pastor, Elder Ardail Allen, who was gravely ill, and his family. This support continued several years after his death.

Sister Smith remained active and loyal to the church throughout the ministries of Pastor James E Lenox and Pastor Lamont Lenox. While unable to regularly attend church services due to illness in the last few years of her life, she continued to faithfully pay her tithes and fervently pray for her pastor and the entire congregation.

One of her greatest passion was working in her community on Chicago's west side. She served as the President of the 4200 West Cullerton Block Club Council. As a dedicated community activist, she initiated and participated in countless activities ti improve her neighborhood and beyond. Maggie Smith worked diligently for the campaign to elect her godson, the later Alderman Jessie Miller to the Chicago City Council. Her heartfelt love and concern for family, church, and community was evident in her words, thoughts and deeds. Her loving presence will bee missed.

Maggie was preceded in death by her loving husband, Robert Lee Smith; parents, Rev Perlie Scott and Fannie Thomas Scott; her sister, Pearlean Williams; grandson, James E Scott, Jr, and her brother, Jimmy Scott. She was called home to be with the Lord on Sunday, August 30, 2015 around 6pm leaving to cherish and carry her legacy: loving son, Elder James E Scott, Sr (Loretta); two granddaughters, Caretta and Ashley Scott; great granddaughter, Ruth Scott; three sisters, Gladys Fulton (Chicago), Margie R Alston (Chicago), and Fanny Mae Bracey (Brookhaven, Mississippi); one brother, Cent Elmer Scott (Kansas City, Kansas); godchildren, Jure Mae Blakley (California), Cyrus Mitchell (Natchez, Mississippi), Martin Luther McNair (Indiana), Yvette Wilson (Savannah, Georgia), Ruth Rice (Chicago); The Greater Holy Temple Love Family and a host of other relatives and friends.

How does Maggie connect to my family tree?
Maggie was my maternal 2nd cousin 1x removed.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Wordless Wednesday
Hannah and Granddaughters

Hannah Jane Wilcher Kelly
Front Row: Jessie Mae and Jocy
Back Row: Annie Ruth and Mickey

Picture Courtesy of Deborah Wright

How does Hannah connect to my family?
Hannah married Lewis Durr Kelly.
Lewis brother, Pearly Kelly, married my second cousin 1x removed Arnetta Byrd.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Three Brothers Married Three Sisters

Archie Hilliard
Born about 1874
Three brothers married three sisters. The brothers were the sons of Alexander Hilliard and Leitha Culver. The sisters were the daughters of James Coleman and Mary Ann Markham. They were born and raised in Lincoln County, Mississippi.

The three couples produced 25 double first cousins.

Archie Hilliard, Sr., (1874-1960), married Lucy Coleman (1874-1942), 13 Dec 1895, in Lincoln County, MS. Their children were: Archie, Jr., Lamar, Edward, Grover, Bessie, Lessie, Deforest, Jessie Mae, and Beasley.

John Hilliard (1870 - ?), married Levanna Coleman (1876 - ?), 12 Dec 1895, in Lincoln County, MS. Their children were: Ontee, Anna/Amizone, James, Gertrude, Mary, and Artimessia.

Versie Hilliard (1879 - ?), married Mary Coleman (1884 - ?), 13 Dec 1900, in Lincoln County, MS. Their children were: Estelle, Lucille, Luther, Versie, Jr., Garvey, Alma, Clifton, Marion, Mildred, and Mary.

Photograph Courtesy of Cherri Herring
How do the couples connect to my family tree?
The sisters' mother, Mary Ann Markham Coleman, and my great grandfather Monroe Markham were siblings.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Wordless Wednesday
Addie Markham Lenoir

Daughter of Grant Markham and Mary Lyons
Wife of Oscar Lenoir
Mother of Archie Johnson and Lamar Lenoir

How is Addie connected to my family tree?
Addie's father, Grant Markham, and my great grandfather Monroe Markham were brothers.

Photograph Courtesy of
Lincoln-Lawrence-Franklin Regional Library
100 S. Jackson St
Brookhaven, MS 39601