Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Wordless Wednesday
Football Champions 1939

Alexander High School Football Team - Big 8 Champions 1939
Brookhaven, Lincoln County, Mississippi


Left to right - front row - George Evans - trainer, Earl Dickson, J.C. Blackwell, Willie McDaniel, Lamar Lenoir, John Dow, Mack Smith - trainer

2nd row - Leroy Wilson, John Collins, Joseph Levi, Leander Wells, Willie McGee, David Crump, James Crump

3rd row - Robert Wesley, Edward Spencer, Frank Cook, David Smith, Murray Crushon, Roscoe Brown, Jack Evans, Charles Hunter, Robert Green

4th row - Coach Robert Wolf, H.E. Brown - trainer, James Albert Davis, Robert Johnson, Sterling Culver, Gerald Smith, J. May, E.W. Wesley, Woodrow Coleman, Robert Green, Tommy Hill - trainer, and Head Coach C.N. Buchanan, and J.W. McDaniel, J. E. Smith

Photograph Courtesy of Lincoln-Lawrence-Franklin Regional Library
100 South Jackson Street
Brookhaven, MS 39601

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Mrs Willie Spencer Celebrating 102 Years

Cousin Beverly sent me this article she found on one of Ancestry's public family trees, The Powells of Butler County Alabama. I have Spencer folk on both my paternal and maternal lines and both lines are from Copiah County, MS. Beverly is a member of my paternal line and she was curious if Mrs Willie Spencer was connected to our tree. According to the public family trees, Mrs Willie was the daughter of Henry Jeff Fair and Bettie Harrison. I didn't recognize Mrs Willie's name but did recognize her husband's name, Ellis Spencer.

Aunt Ada Markham married Ernest Spencer, Sr., 23 Feb 1914. Ellis and Ernest were brothers. They were the sons of Lewis Spencer and Emaline Smiley. Copiah County is a small world.

Ernest Spencer, Sr.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Anding Family
A Classic 1960s Photograph

Children of Walter McDaniel Anding & Leonteen Coleman
The couple had 13 children.
James, Meredith, Mildred, Thelma, Douglas, Aileen, Donald, Mary, Reginald, Annette, Gregory, Tina, and Walter Jr.

Photograph Courtesy of Lisa Lee
They are 2nd cousins to my mother.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Happy 79th, Mama

Alzheimer's disease continues its destructive path.
Although you don't remember me, I remember you.
You are loved, precious Mama.
Happy 79th birthday.

Photograph taken in 1995 at my brother's wedding.
Canton, Madison County, MS

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Committed to Poor House

Photograph Courtesy of Library of Congress

Too often medical treatment for mental illness requires a middle man, the judicial or court system. I can still remember the rattling of keys, closing and opening of bars, police officers with guns on hips, and going before the judge when we sought treatment for our then 16 year old daughter. Treating severe mental illness requires placement in a facility. The court is to ensure that the individual's personal liberty is not violated and to protect the public.

In June 1913, a hearing before the Chancery Court was held for cousin Lena Mae Durr to determine if she was insane by six citizens of Hazlehurst, Copiah County, MS. It was determined that she was insane and she was to be placed in one of the State Lunatic Asylums but because no beds were available she was to be placed in the local Poor House.

A poorhouse was a government-ran facility for the support and housing of dependent or needy persons, typically ran by a local government entity.

Here is a description of the place Lena Mae was sent.

COPIAH COUNTY-Dirty one-story buildings in which the sick, insane, epileptic, feeble-minded, and diseased live and sleep' together; three generations of the same family live in one room; everything filthy, vermin on beds and persons; no sanitation, no modern conveniences. But two meals a day served, morning and noon; food insufficient.
From The American Poor-farm and Its Inmates, by Harry C. Evans

Lena Mae had a short stay. She was ordered to the Poor House on the 21 day of June 1913. She died 27 Sept 1913 of pellagra which is a vitamin deficiency disease most commonly caused by a chronic lack of niacin in the diet. A few of the symptoms of pellagra are: insomnia, mental confusion, diarrhea, red skin lesions, and eventually dementia. In affluent societies, a majority of patients with clinical pellagra are poor, homeless, alcohol-dependent, or psychiatric patients who refuse food.

Lena Mae was buried on the Poor Farm.

Lena Mae Durr was my father's 2nd cousin. She was the daughter of Emanuel and Mary Durr.

Conditions of Poor Houses in Mississippi

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Wordless Wednesday
Two Brothers - Same Name

This is their first meeting, circa 1980s

Left - Albert Spencer
Born 1917 in Copiah County, MS
Son of Albert B Spencer and Mary Brown

Right - Albert Spencer
Born 1927 in Copiah County, MS
Son of Albert B Spencer and Hannah Jones-Gary

Photograph Courtesy of Albert Spencer, Son of Albert on the Left

My 2nd great granduncle John T Demyers had a relationship with Albert on the left's grandmother Mary Trueheart that produced one child, Petro Demyers.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Amanuensis Monday
John T Demyers' Will

I, J T Demyers, a resident of the county of Copiah, Sate of Mississippi, being of legal and of sound and disposing mind and memory, do make and declare this to be my last will and Testament, revoking any and all others heretofore made by me.

Item 1st. I direct that any and all legal & just debts be paid out of any money that I may have on hand on hand at the time of my death which I want paid as soon after my death as possible without any inconvenience to the executor, which I expect to name in this my last Will.

Item 2. I will and bequeath to my beloved wife Virginia all of my property both real and personal, including all the money if any I should have at the time of my death, after the fulfillment of Item 1st of this my Last Will. It being understood that this property shall only be given to my said wife for her life.

Item 3rd. I will and bequeath that at the death of my said wife Virginia that what property then left of my estate both real and personal shall go to my son, Isah(sp) Demyers, Hillard Williams, who is my nephew, who has been with me many years and served me as a son, and to my two grandchildren Mangold Lee and Meredith Lee, being the sons of my daughter Mandy Lee who is dead who I want to have a one third interest in any and all of my estate after the death of my wife Virginia and the other two-thirds value of my estate shall be divided equally between my son Isah(sp) and my nephew Hillard if they be living and if they or either of them be dead, then their part if any shall go to their legal heirs.

Item 4th. After having fully explained my wishes in the above items of this my last Will and testament as to the disposition of my estate at my death, and that part of any that should be left at the death of my wife Virginia, who is to have the use & management of what estate that I may leave with the full power to mortgage or sell if she should need to do so, or should see fit to so do, by naming and appointing as the Executor of this my last will Mr T. H. Millsaps of Brown Wells who has always proven to be one of my best friends and a man that I have all confidence in as a man.

And it is my wishes that he be allowed to serve without being required to give bond.

Item 5th. After having heard this my last will read, and being the will that I have directed without any influence from any one and being made as to my feeling as the best interest for those who I have made beneficiaries in this my last will I hereto sign my signature.

This the 3rd day of Dec 1909.

J. T. his x mark Demyers

Having been asked by J. T. Demyers to sign this instrument which purports to be his last will and testament & having seen him sign same after hearing it read, we and each of us in the presence of each other & in the presence of J. T. Demyers hereto sign out names as witnesses to the signatures made by him to this instrument.

This the 3rd day of Dec. 1909 A.D.

Frank Glancy
H. E. Kilpatrick
J. C. Dodds

Wills of Copiah County, Mississippi
Book A, Page 257
Microfilm Number: 8351

John T Demyers was my 2nd great grandmother Alice Demyers Overton Usher's brother.

John T Demyers was born about 1839 to Tom and Peggie Demyers in Copiah County, MS. He was husband to Virginia Taylor/Williams; father to Isaiah, John, Jr., Amanda, Dora, Henry and Willie. John T had a relationship with Mary Hart (Trueheart) that produced one son, Petrol/Pedro/Petro. John died between Dec 1909 - 1910.