Tuesday, August 31, 2010

A Man and his Car

This is a photo of my Dad's first car, parked in the yard of his parents near Hazlehurst, MS. He loved cars. He would pay a car note before he paid the rent. The photo was taken in June 1955.


Here he is sitting in another car eating a doughnut with a carton of milk. The doughnut had to be fresh as he is parked in front of the bakery.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Wordless Wednesday - The Couple



This is another unidentified picture from my great grandmother Mary Jane Byrd Markham's collection.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday - Sarah Jane Buie



In Memory of Sarah Jane Buie
Wife of Joe Buie
Died April 04 1904
Age 40 years
Zion Chapel A. M. E. Church Cemetery
Caseyville, Lincoln County, MS


Sarah was born about 1862 in Caseyville, then Copiah County, MS. She was the daughter of Henry Israel and Martha Ann Henderson. Her husband Joseph Buie was one of the former slaves who was interviewed by the WPA during the 1930s.

Joseph Buie's Slave Narrative

Monday, August 23, 2010

Madness Monday - Killed His Sister - Part Three

Part One
Part Two

My primary research goal for this family was to find the names of the family in the 1918 newspaper article. Once the true surname was found, finding the family’s documents became easier and the goal of learning their names was accomplished. Finding the documents still leaves me wanting more, the whys, the what ifs, and the wheres. I would like to know why Luther is not found in the 1920 and 1930 census. Did he move, did he avoid the enumerator, did he die? Why the family is not seen as an intact family in the census records? Were things falling apart before the daughter's death? Did the family reunite after the grandmother’s death? Did healing occur within the family?

Hopefully, I will meet with descendants of this family and we can talk of our common ancestry.

Timeline for the Family
Luther Coleman married Eddie Roberts 24 Dec 1905 in Lincoln County, MS.

First child Lula Mae Coleman born 08 Nov 1906
Second child T. C. “Boommie” Coleman born 1908

A 1910 census record for the family was not found.

Third child George Coleman born 01 Jan 1911
Fourth child S. A. Coleman b. 1913
Fifth child Amy V. Coleman b. 20 Sep 1915
Sixth child Willie Coleman b. 18 Jan 1918

The family lost two children in 1918.
Willie Coleman died 19 Jan 1918, premature birth.
S. A. Coleman murdered by brother 21 July 1918.

Luther Coleman, father of the children, registered for WW1, 12 Sep 1918. He named his mother Amie Coleman as his nearest relative, not his wife.

1920 Census – Eddie Coleman, mother of the children, is living with her mother Sallie Smith, and their father Luther was not found. Children, T. C., Lula and George were living with their paternal grandmother Amie Markham Coleman.

The 1920 census was recorded 04 February 1920. Amy Coleman, the children’s grandmother died one month later on 04 Mar 1920.

1930 Census - Eddie Roberts is living in Lincoln County with two of her daughters, Lula, 19, and Amy, 13.

Per their obituaries, all the children with the exception of George who moved to Texas remained in Lincoln County, MS.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Monday, August 9, 2010

Monday Madness - Killed His Sister - Part 2

In a previous post, Monday Madness – Killed His Sister I shared a newspaper article about an incident in my family where a brother killed his sister. The newspaper article did not list the names of the children involved, only the father Luther Markham. Based on that article, I had previously searched for information about the family and asked questions of cousins. Nothing new was produced to add to the family tree.

Since I had so little information on this family, I decided to go back and re look over this family to see if I could learn something new. Well, the first task was to see if a death certificate could be found at the Mississippi Archives. I went back to the death index to see if I could find a Markham child who died close to the date of the newspaper article, 25 Jul 1918. Like my previous search, the death certificate for a Markham child was not found.

Knowing that the Markham surname has various spellings and in case I missed one, I decided to look at the index for the month of July 1918, in Lincoln County, Mississippi. Carefully scrolling through the microfiche, I found a death certificate of a five year old girl, dated 21 Jul 1918, who had died from gunshot wound to the chest. To my surprise, her surname was not Markham, it was Coleman.


The murdered sister’s name was S. A. Coleman. Now ain’t that a big help with her name. The death certificate named her parents as Luther and Eddie Roberts Coleman. If Luther is who I think he is, Luther is the son of my great aunt Amy Markham and her husband Anthony Coleman.

My need to document this family will keep me on the research road for awhile. Lets see where it leads.

More to come...

Part Three

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Alice Usher's Letter


Alice Demyers Overton Usher
Born About 1845 - Died 1933

Various records date my second great grandmother Alice Demyers Overton Usher's birth somewhere between 1830 and 1845. I believe she was born about 1845. The oral tradition is that she had a relationship with Dave Overton when she was about 14-15 years of age. This relationship produced her only child, a son, Richmond Overton. Dave Brown Overton left the plantation during the Civil War when his son was to young to remember him, following the Yankee soldiers.

Alice wrote several letters to the Pension Board in Washington, D.C., requesting the pension of the husband she believed served with the Union Troops. Alice could not provide any evidence of Dave's military service. He may have followed the troops and served in a non military capacity or became contraband of the War. If she could have proved Dave Brown's service, Alice would not have qualified as Dave's widow because she was married to Elijah Usher.

Alice started her writing campaign in 1923 and would continue to write through 1931. Here is one of her many letters.

November 21, 1923
Barlow, Miss

Dear Mr Gardner I received your message ok and answering the same my husband Dave Overton or Brown went to the Yankee army and never return enymore I dont no wheater he got kill I never did heare from him eny mo I have one son by him I maried the man by the name of Elijah Usher I have been married about 49 or 50 years as near as I can think I am old and cant rember.

My witeness is Bettie Toliver and Virginier Demyse

From Alice Usher



Tuesday, August 3, 2010