Monday, September 18, 2023

Monroe's Children
Rose Ada Markham Spencer ~ Child 11


Just the Facts and Pictures

Rose Ada Markham, known as Ada, was born 13 Aug 1892, to Monroe and Mary Byrd Markham in Caseyville, MS. She was their 11th child.

She married Ernest Spencer 23 Feb 1914 in Lincoln County, MS. The couple's children were Ernest, Jr., Othelda, Ivan, Herbert, Percy, Eunice, Mary, Robert, Arthur, and John.

The family farmed in Copiah County near the Mercy Seat Community.

Ada died 27 July 1985 in Buffalo, New York.

Ada and her husband Ernest


All photographs courstey of Ada and Ernest's granddaghter, Anita Smith Christopher.

Monday, September 4, 2023

Monroe's Children
Alice Markham Marshall ~ Child 10

Alice is seated, standing is her sister Mattie

Alice was the 10th child born to her parents Monroe and Mary Byrd Markham. She, like most of Monroe's children, remained home until marriage.

1900 Census - 9 years, living in Caseyville, Lincoln County, MS, with parents and 9 siblings.

1910 Census - 19 years, living in Caseyville with parents and 9 siblings.

1920 Census - 29 years, living in Caseyville with parents and 7 siblings.

1930 Census - 32 years, living near Hazlehurst, MS, with husband Daniel Marshall and their one year old son Jehu. Alice married Dan in Copiah County on 24 Mar 1927.

1940 Census - 42 years, still residing in rural Copiah County with husband Dan and 2 children, Jehu and Vistula. My mother Vistula often said she was born from old people. Alice was just a couple of days shy of her 43rd birthday when my mother mother born in 1933.

1950 Census - 58 years, still in the same house with husband and two children.

My grandfather Dan died 01 Jan 1955, and the children were both in their own households. The 1960 census will likely show Alice living in the same place, alone. She developed Alzheimer's Disease during the early 1960s, and had to leave her home to live with her sister Beatrice in Brookhaven, MS. Beatrice was the caregiver for both my grandmother Alice and another sister Louella who were suffering from the same disease. Alice died 15 Aug 1966.

Alice's son, Jehu Marshall 1928-2002

Alice's daughter and my mother, Vistula Marshall Durr 1933-2014

Here are other posts about my grandmother you may be interested in reading.
Alzheimer's Disease - Generational
Sisters Teachers
Our White House on Washington Street
Monroe Markham and Family, circa 1920
Heir Property, a Tangled Web

Thursday, June 8, 2023

Monroe's Children
Willie Markham ~ Child 9

William "Willie" Louis Markham was the 9th child of Monroe Markham and his wife Mary. He was almost a Christmas baby, born 23 Dec 1887, at home in Caseyville, Lincoln County, MS.

Like many of his siblings, he remained home until marriage when he married Fredonia Culver in an almost Christmas wedding on 30 Dec 1913. He was 26 years old.

The young couple experienced heartache starting their family. They lost 2 boys. Archie Gilchrist born, in 1914, lived almost two months dying of pneumonia. Unnamed male born in 1915 only lived a few days. According to his death certificate, there was "no physican for this child, but think from history was not right when borned."

. The couple had four healthy, thriving children: Joyce Mae born 1918, Willie Mae born 1919, Robert Winfield born 1922, and Arthur Whitfield born 1920. Three of the children moved to California, one remained in Mississippi. All the children are now deceased.

How did Willie provide for his family? In 1920, the census records described his job as a furrier, one who makes, alters, repairs and restyles garments and other articles made of fur. He was working for a wage in 1930, driving a truck for a wholesale grocery. By 1940, he was an operator working his own account, and in 1950 he was a dishwasher at the City Baker. By the time I got to know him, the family described what he did as a gardener.

Willie was a tall, friendly uncle who could read and write. He owned his own home and a few acres of land. He lived next door to his sister Beatrice. My child's mind of Willie's house was that it was a huge wood frame, white washed house with a high roof and steeped steps. The house had a screened in porch where they hung pieces of meat. Uncle Willie owned a piano and from time to time we could hear him playing familiar hymns when we visited his sister Aunt Bea.

Uncle Willie and his family welcome their relatives from rural Mississippi communities who wanted to complete their high school education in the city of Brookhaven. Cousin Allie spoke often about sharing a bed with her two cousins Joyce and Willie Mae.

Willie died in 1971, and his wife Fredonia died in 1977.

Willie's Obituary
Fredonia's Obituary

Sunday, May 14, 2023

Monroe's Children
Lou Ella Markham Howard ~ Child 8

Lou Ella Markham Howard

Lou Ella was the daughter of Monroe Markham and his wife Mary. Louella was born 16 Aug 1885 during the presidential administration of Grover Cleveland. She was seen in the 1900, 1910, and 1920 federal censuses in the household of her parents with a large number of siblings, living in rural Caseyville, Lincoln County, Mississippi. Lou Ella could read and write and worked as a farm laborer during this time.

She married Elijah Howard 14 May 1924 at the age of 38 years, The couple was missed in the 1930 census but reappeared in the 1940 and 1950 census, living in Brookhaven, Lincoln County, Mississippi, with just the two of them in the household. They lived in the same home in both censuses. The 1940 census shows that Lou Ella did not work any in 1939 but in 1950 she is listed as working as a babysitter.

I remember Lou Ella as a tall, lanky woman who wore thick cotton stockings and an apron with her clothing. She was friendly and gave warm hugs. Her husband Elijah wore a dark suit with a tie. His shirt was white and he wore suspenders. I remember he loved ice cream and when we would visit he would go to the store and get ice cream. He would buy each of us children a small cup of Borden's vanilla ice cream that came with a flat wooden spoon. We would sit on the back porch with our legs dangling over the porch enjoying every spoonful.

Elijah died in 1964.

Aunt Lou Ella moved in with her sister Aunt Bee (Beatrice) who was already taking care of another sister, my grandmother Alice. Lou Ella died May 1966 in Brookhaven.

Lou Ella's Obituary

Sunday, May 7, 2023

Monroe's Children
Mary Jane Markham "Polly" ~ Child 7

1910 Census of Monroe Markham Household

Mary Jane Markham, the 7th child of Monroe Markham and his wife Mary was born in 1883, Caseyville, Mississippi, the same year Sojourner Truth died. Mary Jane was known as Polly for most of her life. Polly was the name of a character in a school play which Mary Jane was the actress. Because the name was repeated several times during the play, family and neighbors started cally Mary Jane, Polly. The name stuck and she became known as Polly.

Mary was eight years old on the 1892 educable children lists. The 1900 census indicates she was born in Dec 1883. She is 16, single, can read and write, and is the eldest daughter in the household of 12 people. By 1910, she is 25 years old, and the eldest of 9 siblings. The 1920 household has 10 people and at 36 yrs of age, she still reigns as the eldest sibling. The age of Polly decreases in 1930, she is 40, should be about 45-46. She is the only child in the household of her elderly parents. The parents are deceased in 1940. Polly, 52, is living with a younger sister and her husband, Silas and Beatrice Markham Johnson. She is unemployed from her job as farm laborer.

I never met her, Aunt Polly died before I was born.

She was the first Markham sister who did not marry, nor have children. She died in 1950.

Thursday, April 27, 2023

Monroe's Children
Nellie Markham Coleman - Child 6

I don't think I met Aunt Nellie or any of her's descendants. Through various documents is how I know of them. DNA matching with several of Nellie's descendants has open a door of communication with Nellie's descendants.

Nellie was the 6th child born to Monore and his wife Mary, born 03 Aug 1881, in Caseyville, Lincoln County, Mississippi. The 1892 Educable Children Lists first bears witness to Nellie existence as a 10 year child in the household of her parents. She is next seen in the 1900 census as a 17 year old wife to Clarence Coleman. The young couple married in Feb 1899, and they were living next door to Clarence's parents Richard and Rosalie Coleman in Caseyville. By 1910, the couple had moved to Gallman, a small community in Copiah County, where they would remain in subsquent censuses. Four children were added to the 1910 household. One additional daughter was added in 1920. By 1940, all of Clarence and Nellie's children had left the nest but living with the couple were grandchildren and a great grandson.

Nellie and Clarence's children were:
1) Louella Coleman (1903-1985) who married Green Dock Byrd. The couple had 13 children: Tamzella, Lela Virginia, Eddie Bell, Warren Frank, Eddie Frank, Robert Charles, Ethel Lee, Ella Green, Herbert Charles, Floyd Evans, Esterine, and a set of twin daughters who died shortly after birth.

2) Leola Coleman (1905-1989) married unknown Johnson, no children were born to the union.

3) Samuel David Coleman (1907-2000) married Rosie Belle Louie. Their children were: Hazel, Samuel Jr., Willard Lee, Louie Ellis, Bobby Jean, Charles Ray, Lois Yvonne, Markus, Linda, Larry Ronald, and Vanessa.

4) Jay C Coleman (1908-1973) married Mattie B Wallace and Mae Alice Clay. No known children were born to these unions.

5) May D Coleman (1912-?) married Unknown Williams. No known children were born to this union.

6) Infant Male (1913-1913) stillborn

Nellie's children settled in Indiana, Michigan and Wiscosin.

Nellie died 21 Mar 1869 of natural causes in Hazlehurst, Mississippi.

Nellie's Death Certificate

Monday, November 29, 2021

Monroe's Children
Octavius Augustus Markham ~ Child 5


Octavius August Markham was the fifth child, the fourth son born to Monroe Markham and his wife Mary. Octavius was born in the year 1879, when milk was first sold in glass bottles, on Feb 2. He was known as the sickly son born with allergies and likely asthmatic. Octavius health conditions prevented him from being as prosperous with farming as his siblings. He managed with the help of his children, his faith, and determination.

Mamie Culver married Octavius on 10 Jun 1903, in Lincoln County, Mississippi.

Mamie and Evie Jane

Octavius encouraged his children to acquire as much education that was available. Octavis' children may have been the first of Monroe's grandchildren to obtain college degrees.

Eva Jane

The couple's first child was Evie Jane, known later as Eva Jane, who was born 10 May 1907. She was a public school teacher. She never married nor had children. Eva died 16 Aug 1993 in Jackson, MS.

Larry David, aka LD, was born on 2 Jul 1909. He was a World War II veteran. When lumber companies came to the Brookhaven area seeking men to work in the lumber industry and willing to relocate to northern California, LD was one of the first to go west. He worked for the Mt. Shasta Kimberly-Clark Corporation Plant. He married Leontine Luceil Bearden Gearing. No children were born to the union. LD died 12 Sep 1962, in Siskiyou County, California.

Mamie and son Larry David

Allie Mae was born 29 Sep 1911. She earned her high school dipolma through a program sponser by a Franklin D Roosevelt program. Allie worked as a domestic, public school teacher and insurance agent. Allie married John Moncrieft and no children were born to the union. Allie died 28 Sep 2016, one day shy of her 105th birthday.

John and Allie Markham Moncrief

Twin daughters Louvella and Louvenia were born on 13 Nov 1914. Their father chose rhyming names for his daughters but in 1899 when he named his twin sisters non-rhyming names, Beatrice and Missouri, his community complained. I suppose Octavius decided to conform to community standards when he named his daughters. Louvella graduated from Alexander High School in Brookhaven, MS. After high school, she attended Alcorn and Jackson State University where she received a B. S. degree in elementary education. She taught children in various schools in the Lincoln County area. Louvella never married nor had children. She died in January 1994.


Louvenia graduated from Alexander High School. She received her B. S. degree from Alcorn State University and her master's degree from Tennessee State University in Home Economics. She never married nor had children. She died on 30 May 1996.


Early, a veteran of World War II was born 9 Sep 1917. He followed his brother LD to California to work in the lumber industry. He worked 28 years for the Mt. Shasta Kimberly-Clark Corporation Plant. In 1962, he married Myrtis Smith Hilliard. No children were born to the union. Early died 14 Jul 1998 in Beaverton, Oregon.


The last child of Octavius and Mamie was Marilda Louise who was born on 20 Jun 1920. Marilda was the only child to make Octavius and Mamie grandparents. She married Ely Diggs in 1947. The couple had one son, James. She died 24 Jun 1987 in Jackson, MS.


Octavius died in 1952 of kidney disease. His wife Mamie lived several more years and died in 1971. They both died in Lincoln County, MS.