10 February 2019

Daniel and Elizabeth Bullard of Twiggs County, Georgia

It was 10+ plus years ago when I visited Beech Springs Methodist Church and graveyard at the Bullard community in Twiggs County, Georgia. In researching the area, I learned it was first the site of a steamboat landing on the Ocmulgee River. It later became Bullards Station, a depot on the Southern Railway named for Daniel Bullard.

Daniel was born 11 March 1805 at Washington County, Georgia to Wiley and Parthena Bullard. He moved to the Bluff district of Twiggs County when just a boy, and after spending the balance of his life there, Daniel's final resting place would be the Cabiness Ridge section of Rose Hill Cemetery in Macon, Bibb County, Georgia. (Seems a bit odd to me, but I'm sure there were reasons.) Following is an obituary from the 6 September 1894 Macon Weekly Telegraph:

His Long and Useful Life Ended at High Noon Yesterday Surrounded By Loving Friends.


He Was the Oldest and Wealthiest Citizen of Twiggs County and a Man Who Had Accomplished Much Good in His Day.

Yesterday at 12:30 o'clock Mr. Daniel Bullard of Twiggs died at his home in that county.

He was born in Washington county, Georgia, March 11, 1805, and had therefore reached his 90th year. He was the oldest [citizen] of his county. His death was due, not to any specific disease, but to the gradual decay of life in advancing years. When about 10 years of age he moved to Twiggs county, and for eighty years consecutively was a resident of the same district -- "Bluff district" -- of that county. For many years past he was a familiar figure on the streets of Macon and was known personally to nearly all of the business men of the city.

He was married four times. There survive him his last wife, whom he married January 29, 1865, and who was Miss Elizabeth Bardon [sic]; and the children of their marriage, Mrs. Cora Etheridge, Mrs. Victoria Billingsly and Daniel Bullard, Jr. His older surviving children are J. M. Bullard and Monroe Bullard of Cochran, Mrs. Elizabeth [Everett] and Mrs. Dora Harrell of Twiggs.

Mr. Bullard's life furnished another illustration of the opportunities open to energy and frugality under the conditions of life in this country. He started life a poor boy, without a cent, without parental help, earning his first quarter by manual labor. He leaves an estate estimated at from $50,000 to $75,000. He was wont to say in his quaint manner that he worked hard for this money when he was young, and after he was old he let it work for him. He allowed his capital, unlike the rolling stone, to gather the moss of interest, and being of simple tastes and habits his income was comfortably beyond his wants.

He was the first agent of the Macon and Brunswick (now the Southern) railroad at Bullard's station, which was so named after him, a position he held for thirteen years. His public spirit was shown by giving the right of way through an extensive tract of land and by his subscribing $42,000 to the stock of the road. Mr. Bullard was eminently a just man. He believed in the religion of paying debts. He rendered to every man his due, and thought that every man should do likewise by him. If he found a debtor seeking to evade or defeat a just claim he would pursue his rights to their full extent, but in many transactions, where the other party showed a desire to do justice, he would cheerfully remit a part -- sometimes much -- to which he was justly entitled.

Mr. Bullard lived and died a consistent member of the Baptist church. He was universally liked and respected in the community in which he lived. He was an honest, quiet, industrious, kind-hearted, God-fearing man. Such men make valuable citizens and when they die they are a loss. He had many warm friends here.

His remains will reach the city this afternoon at 4:20 by the Southern railway and will be interred at Rose Hill cemetery... The following gentlemen have been requsted [sic] to act as pall bearers: W. A. Davis, J. W. Cabaniss, N. E. Harris, R. H. Plant, C. J. Toole, M. R. Freeman, G. L. Reeves, W. M. Wimberly, Theodore Ellis. They are requested to meet at the store of Lamar Clay at 4 p.m.
It's important to note Daniel was not the only one to work "hard for this money" (his estate at death would equal 1.4 to 2.1 million dollars today). Daniel enslaved people and forced them to also work hard, solely for the benefit of him and his family. According to the 1850 Twiggs County census slave schedule, he owned sixteen individuals -- male and female, ranging in ages from 7 to 45 years.

Following is an obituary for Daniel's "last wife."

Macon Telegraph (Georgia)
Sunday, 20 May 1917 - pg. 8 [via GenealogyBank]


Mrs. Elizabeth Bullard, widow of Daniel Bullard, and one of the oldest and most prominent women of Twiggs county, died Saturday at her home near Bullard's station, Twiggs county, after a brief illness. She was 86 years old and probably the oldest woman in the county.

She is survived by three daughters, Mrs. Dora Harrell, Mrs. Victoria Billingslea and Mrs. Walter T. Holmes, and one son, Daniel Bullard. Twenty-one grandchildren also survive.

The body will be brought to Macon Sunday morning and carried to the home of her daughter, Mrs. Billingslea, 820 New street, where the funeral will be held Sunday afternoon at 2 o'clock. The Rev. T. F. Callaway, pastor of the Tabernacle Baptist church, assisted by the Rev. J. P. Wardlaw, will conduct the service and the interment will be in Rose Hill cemetery.

Daniel Bullard was one of the leading planters and one of the largest land owners in Twiggs county. The family is well known throughout this section of the state.
According to his obituary, Daniel was married four times. In addition to Elizabeth, I have only one other name to offer: Caroline. I believe she was the mother of at least seven of his children. In all, I have found Daniel fathered at least thirteen children:

- Wiley Bullard (b. abt 1829)
- Charles Bullard (b. abt 1832)
- Mary Bullard (b. 1836-1838)
- Elizabeth Bullard Everett (d. 1905)
- Henry H. Bullard (b. abt 1840)
- Ira Bullard (b. 1843-1844)
- J. Madison Bullard (b. 1848-1850)
- Monroe Bullard (d. 1921)
- William Bullard (b. abt 1856)
- Dora Bullard Harrell (1868-1934)
- Cora Bullard Etheridge Holmes (1872-1927)
- Victoria "Vick" Bullard Billingslea (1872-1948) *also buried in Rose Hill
- Daniel Bullard, Jr. (1873-1960)

14 January 2019

3 Wives of Ezekiel Luther Burdick (1838-1918)

100_4076Ezekiel Luther Burdick was born about 1838 in Rhode Island, son of George and Mary Burdick. Around the time of the Civil War, Luther made his way to Bibb County, Georgia and married Mary Ella Clark/e on 12 December 1865.

Mary Ella, born 25 August 1843 in Georgia, was a daughter of Henry and Mary Ann Clark. Though she and and Luther were married 13+ years before her death on 21 February 1879, I have found no children attributed to them as a couple.

Macon Telegraph and Messenger (Georgia)
22 February 1879 - pg. 4 [via Georgia Historic Newspapers]

Death of Mrs. E. L. Burdick.
The friends of Mrs. E. L. Burdick were shocked yesterday morning to learn of her death, which occurred yesterday morning at one o'clock, after a very short illness. The deceased was well known in the city and much loved by her friends. She was taken suddenly ill on Thursday night and expired in about two hours. She had been in ill health for some time. The immediate cause of her death, however was supposed to have been congestion. The funeral services took place from her late residence on Plum street. She was about thirty-five years of age.

The mother of this first Mrs. E. L. Burdick had died less than a year before.


100_4078E. Luther Burdick married again eight months later. This second wife was Mary Ella Riley, born 7 January 1854, and thought by me to be the daughter of David Ferrell Riley and Mary Jane Neal.

For the taking of the 1870 Bibb County, Georgia Federal census, Luther and first wife Ella were listed in the household of his father-in-law (her father) Henry Clark. Also in the household was Ella Riley (age 15, b. GA), "attending school." So it's possible Luther had known his eventual second wife for some time.

I know of three children born to Luther and Ella Riley Burdick before her death on 3 December 1885:

  • Lucille (b. abt 1880)
  • Myrtle (b. & d. 1882)
  • Clarice "Clarissa" (b. abt 1883)

Myrtle was laid to rest near her mother.


erbedwardsLuther's third wife was his second wife's younger sister, Elizabeth "Lizzie" Riley. They were married in Pike County, Georgia on 3 August 1887 and had one daughter, Florine (b. abt 1892).

This marriage, however, would not end the same way as the others. Lizzie and Luther were divorced in 1914, though they possibly were separated years before. The taking of the 1910 U.S. Federal census found the couple in different households. E. Luther Burdick was in the household of his son-in-law and daughter, Frank and Clarice B. Walker, in Louisville, Kentucky. Lizzie could be found at the family home – 140 High Street in Macon, Bibb County, Georgia.

Lizzie remarried before 1918 to James Campbell Edwards. She died 30 March 1931.

Macon Telegraph (Georgia)
Tuesday, 31 March 1931 - pg. 15 [via GenealogyBank]


Mrs. Elizabeth Riley Edwards, wife of J. Campbell Edwards, of 140 High street, died at a private hospital early yesterday morning following an illness of two weeks from influenza and pneumonia.

Mrs. Edwards was a member of Christ Episcopal church and a worker in the D. A. R., the U. D. C., and the Daughters of 1812. She was the daughter of David Ferrell Riley and Mary Jane Neal and was a descendant of pioneer residents of Bibb and Pike counties.

She is survived by her husband, J. Campbell Edwards; a daughter, and son-in-law, Mr. and Mrs. W. H. Davis;…two step-daughters, Mrs. Henry O. Farr, of Brunswick, and Mrs. Clarice B. Walker, of Jacksonville, and two brothers, D. H. and F. L. Riley, of Macon.

Funeral services will be held at 3 o'clock this afternoon from the residence 140 High street, by Rev. Cyril E. Bentley, rector of Christ church. Interment will follow in Rose Hill cemetery…

According to the Historic Rose Hill cemetery directory, E. L. Burdick died 9 December 1918. He (supposedly), both Ellas, and daughter Myrtle were buried in the Eglantine Square section of the cemetery. Elizabeth Burdick Edwards was laid to rest in Cabiness Ridge.

10 January 2019

Robert G. Burgess Killed By the Explosion of an Ammunition Chest in 1864

Robert George Burgess was born about September 1834 at Manchester, Lancashire, England to Robert Burgess and Jessie Miller of Scotland. The family, including young Robert's sister Margaret, immigrated to the United States and were settled in Kings County, New York by about 1838. After the father's death, the rest of the family moved south to settle in Macon, Bibb County, Georgia by about 1856.

100_4063In 1862, Robert G. Burgess joined the Confederate service with Capt. Massenburg's Battery, Jackson Artillery. On 10 March 1864, in Bibb County, Robert married Rebecca A. Artope. She was a daughter of James B. Artope and Susan M. Raine. Five months following the marriage, Lieut. Burgess was dead.

Macon Telegraph (Georgia)
Monday, 15 August 1864 [via GenealogyBank]

West Point, August 12, 1864.
Massenburg & Son: -- Inform Judge Artope that Lieut. Burgess was killed to-day by the explosion of an ammunition chest. Tom will take his remains home to-morrow.  T. L. MASSENBURG.

The funeral of Lieut. Burgess will take place at the house of Mrs. Burgess, corner of 1st and Plumb streets, on Sunday morning at 9 A.M. The friends of Judge Artope and Mrs. Burgess are invited to attend.

Macon Telegraph (Georgia)
Saturday, 27 August 1864 [via GenealogyBank]

Death in any form is sad, but to be suddenly snatched from earth while in the enjoyment of health and usefulness is sad indeed. Lieut. R. G. BURGESS, the subject of this notice, while examining an Ammunition Chest in Massenburg's Battery, was almost instantly killed by the explosion of the chest, on the 12th inst. He lived about four hours after the accident occurred, and death came and relieved him of the intensest agony.

Lt. Burgess was born in England, but lived in New York from his childhood until the year 1856, when he came South and settled in Macon. He enlisted in the Jackson Artillery in May, 1862, and was appointed a Sergeant. By his prompt attention to his duties he received a promotion to Ordnance Sergeant of Palmer's Battalion of Reserve Artillery, when a vacancy having occurred in his company of 2d Lieutenant, he was appointed to fill it, which he did with honor to himself and to his command. Devoted to the country of his adoption, the South has lost an able officer and a good soldier, one who was ever ready to bare his breast to the storm of battle, in her defence. [sic] The writer of this article has often heard him say, "If I could only live to see our independence gained I would willingly die."

But alas, the shaft of death came whilst the longed for haven shone brightly, and snatched him from its view. Whilst we his brothers in arms grieve for him as one we esteemed as an officer, and loved as a man, what must be the feelings of an aged mother, a young and devoted wife, an affectionate brother and sisters. Not one word to the absent ones was he able to utter after the dreadful accident occurred. Let them console themselves, "That the ways of the Lord are inscrutable. He hath given and He taketh away." THE JACKSON ARTILLERY.

Rebecca, widowed at age 24, never married again. She lived with family for the rest of her days, passing away from pneumonia on 5 January 1925. The 94th anniversary of her death was just five days ago.

Macon Telegraph (Georgia)
Tuesday, 6 January 1925 - pg. 12 [via GenealogyBank]


Mrs. Rebecca Artope Burgess
Mrs. Rebecca Artope Burgess, widow of Lieut. Robert G. Burgess, who was killed in battle near Chattanooga in the war between the states, died yesterday afternoon in her 84th year.

Mrs. Burgess had been a life-long resident of Macon. She was the daughter of the late J. B. Artope, one of the pioneer citizens of Macon, who in his day, was well-known in the monumental business.

Mrs. Burgess is survived by six nieces and one nephew: Mrs. LeRoy Fuss, of Macon; Mrs. J. W. Fielder, of Atlanta; Mrs. C. H. Megrath, of Macon; Mrs. M. R. Meadows, of St. Augustine, Fla., and Miss Mary Hodgkins and Miss Leila Artope, of Macon, and T. E. Artope, of Macon…

Robert and Rebecca were buried in the Eglantine Square section of Rose Hill Cemetery at Macon, Bibb County, Georgia.

07 August 2018

Acute Delirium, then Death While on Vacation for J. Flahive

Base of Jeremiah's tombstone. Image by Stephanie Lincecum.Jeremiah Flahive was born in County Kerry, Ireland, one of at least eight children of Patrick and Elizabeth Flahive. When he immigrated to Boston, Massachusetts in May of 1886, Jeremiah P. Flahive provided a birthdate of 6 April 1869. This differs from the one sculpted on his tombstone – 28 April 1870.

Jeremiah became a naturalized citizen of the United States on 5 October 1895 while still at Boston. He also, on 8 September 1897, married Margaret / Margarita C. Devlin there. She was born about 1874 in Ireland.

Jeremiah and Margaret had two sons in Boston before heading south to Macon, Bibb County, Georgia some time between 1900 and 1902. It was also around this time that Jerry's middle initial became J.

Three more sons were added to the family over the next five years or so. All five sons follow:

  • John Patrick (b. 1898)
  • Joseph Jerome (b. 1900)
  • Edward Leroy (b. 1902)
  • Hugh Gregory (b. abt 1905)
  • Jerome J. Jr. (b. 1907)

Tragedy struck the family in January 1909. "Little Jerome" died on the 4th, even though he "had only been sick one week and although everything known to medical science was done to spare his life." The death notice went on to add, "While he was only 18 months old he had succeeded in entwining himself about the hearts of his parents."

Sculpture atop base of tombstone for J. J. Flahive. Image by Stephanie Lincecum.Six months later, while surely still grieving little Jerome, the rest of the Flahives set out on a family vacation. Their entire itinerary is unknown to me, but it seems the journey began with the plan to return to Boston and visit a couple of Jeremiah's brothers. Unfortunately, the "father dear" did not live to see Boston or his brothers again.

Macon Telegraph (Georgia)
Friday, 9 July 1909 - pg. 9 [via GenealogyBank]

Deaths and Funerals

The funeral services of the late Mr. Jerry J. Flahive were held yesterday afternoon at 4 o'clock from St. Joseph's Catholic Church, Rev. Father Madden officiating.

...Interment in St. Joseph's cemetery.

The large following of friends, embracing many of every class of citizens, attested the high esteem in which Mr. Flahive was held. The floral tributes were many and beautiful.

The death of Mr. Flahive was peculiarly sad. With his wife and four boys he had sailed from Savannah on the Nacoochee for a pleasure trip to Boston and eastern resorts, and had anticipated a pleasurable trip with those he held most dear.

He became violently ill on the ship, and while everything that could be done with medical skill and loving hands on board, the ship was stopped at Vineyard Haven, that a physician from the Marine Hospital could be secured. This was done by wireless telegraphy, and the physician had him carried by steam launch to the Davis Sanitarium, reaching there at 5 o'clock Sunday morning. He was given every possible attention, but died at 5:55 on Monday morning.

Mr. Flahive  is survived by his wife and four sons, John P., Joseph A., Edward L., and Hugh Gregory; a mother and five brothers; one sister living in Summerville, Mass., and one sister, Mrs. A. F. Devlin, of Macon.

While other newspaper items published regarding the death of Jerry Flahive cited a cause of "acute delirium," the death register of the town of Tisbury, Dukes County, Massachusetts for the year 1909 stated Jeremiah J. died – at the age of just 39 years – of Alcoholism.

Jeremiah, Margaret (d. 1915), and sons Joseph (d. 1958), Hugh (d. 1942), and Jerome were all buried in a section of Rose Hill Cemetery that was purchased by the Roman Catholic Church in the late 1890s known as St. Joseph's.

27 July 2018

In the Case of Mr. Coffey (d. 1921), Jack is John

I learned something new today: Jack is a nickname of John. (I'm not going to try and explain how it came to be as the theory is a bit convoluted, but will instead happily point you to the Dictionary of Medieval Names from European Sources.)

Regardless of the official name-nickname history, I saw it in practice with Mr. John T. "Jack" Coffey. He was born 21 August 1858 in Americus, Sumter County, Georgia to Irish-born parents, Daniel "Dan" and Mary Coffey (d. 1892). In every census record I've found for John/Jack – 1860, 1870, 1880, and 1910 – the name given is John. Even when he married Mary C. O'Hara (d. 1937) on 26 February 1889 at Macon, Bibb County, Georgia, the name recorded was John T. Coffey. The local Macon Telegraph newspaper, however, put both names in print when describing the happy wedding:

A very quiet but very happy marriage took place yesterday afternoon at 4 o'clock at St. Joseph's Catholic church. It was the marriage of Mr. John T. Coffey and Miss Mary O'Hara, the ceremony being performed by Father Winklereid...

The groom has been for a number of years one of the most popular salesmen at the Empire Store, and no one knows Jack Coffey but to love him…

jcoffeyYet, when Mr. Coffey died 1 February 1921 at his home in Macon, Jack was the name written on his death certificate. And this is the name carved on his ledger marker gravestone in Rose Hill Cemetery. An obituary:

Macon Telegraph (Georgia)
Wednesday, 2 February 1921 - pg. 4 [via GenealogyBank]


Employe [sic] of Burden Smith Co. Dies at Residence After Several Weeks' Illness.
Jack T. Coffey, for forty years a salesman with Burden, Smith and Company, died yesterday morning at 6 o'clock at his residence, No. 771 Oak street. He was 62 years of age and had been critically ill for several weeks.

Mr. Coffey and his brother, Dan, who died a few months ago, came to Macon from Americus when they were boys. Both obtained employment with Burden, Smith and Company and in that position obtained a wide acquaintance in Bibb and surrounding counties. Besides his wife, who was Miss Mary O'Hara, Mr. Coffey is survived by a cousin, James Coffey of Albany.

Mr. Coffey was a devoted member of St. Joseph's Catholic church, where the funeral will be held this afternoon at 4 o'clock, Rev. Father W. A. Wilkinson officiating. Interment will be in Rose Hill Cemetery…

aocoffeyAnother Mr. Coffey Marries Another Miss O'Hara

Daniel "Dan" Coffey, brother of Jack, married Amelia A. O'Hara (1876-1955) about 1902. Both Amelia and Jack's wife Mary were daughters of another Irish-born couple, Patrick and Ann O'Hara.

Dan died of acute Bright's Disease a few years (not months) before Jack. Both couples were buried in block 2, lot 34 of the Pine Ridge section of Rose Hill. This family burial lot was purchased by James Coffey in 1854, possibly the (or related to the) cousin of Albany mentioned in Jack's obituary.

24 July 2018

Confusing Tombstone Placed for Mary Fern (d. 1885)

Standing in the Pine Ridge section (block 2, lot 14) of Rose Hill Cemetery is a cross-topped tombstone placed for Mary Fern, who died 27 February 1885. Here's an image (transcription of inscription on and below):


In Memory of
A Native of
DIED FEB. 27, 1885

[on base]

I should also note another side of the tombstone bears the name Michael Fern (with nothing further). Cemetery records show he was the purchaser of the family burial lot, and was interred there July 1856.

So. Her name was Mary Baley Fern (where "Baley" could be a middle name, maiden name, or previous husband's surname). Right? This funeral notice from page 5 of the 28 February 1885 edition of the Macon Telegraph (Georgia) seems to bolster the notion:

The friends and acquaintances of Dugal, John, and Miss Mary Fern are respectfully invited to attend the funeral of their mother this (Saturday) morning at 10 o'clock from the Catholic Church.

While trying to flesh out the lives of Mary's children, however, I came across something unexpected. On daughter Mary Fern's 1922 death certificate – with noted informant being her brother Dugal – her mother's maiden name was stated to be Mary Thompson (born Scotland).

After conducting more research, I think I found the marriage record that clears things up a bit. Mrs. Mary Fern married James Bailey 10 March 1860 – about 4 years after the death of Michael Fern – at Bibb County, Georgia.


My Latest Working Theory

Mary Thompson/Thomson married Michael Fern before or about 1840, possibly in Scotland, where at least two (and likely a third) of their children were born. The family was in the United States about 1850, where census records suggest at least two of their children – Dugal and Mary – became naturalized citizens about 1860.

Michael Fern died July 1856, was buried in Rose Hill Cemetery, and the widow Mary married James Bailey four years later. It's possible James died before 1880 (burial place unknown to me). Mary died February 1885, and was buried near her first husband. A death notice appeared in the same newspaper and issue referenced above (28 February 1885 Macon Telegraph):

The death of Mrs. Mary Bailey occurred yesterday morning at her home, 319 Fourth street. She had been indisposed for several days with pneumonia. Her funeral will take place to-day from the family residence.

The three known children born to Michael and Mary – Mary (d. 1922), Dugal (1842-1928), and John (d. 1901) – appear to all have died without issue. Each was buried in the lot at Rose Hill Cemetery purchased by their father, and if memory serves, not one has a tombstone.

22 July 2018

George E. Daniel Lived and Died in Alabama, but was Buried in Georgia

Image by James Allen.George Edward Daniel spent almost all of his life in the state of Alabama. He was born there, listed there in every census taken during his lifetime, and died there. So I'm happy to be highlighting this Rose Hill Cemetery burial, as it could possibly be an unexpected one to some.

George was born at Perdue Hill, Monroe County, AL on 15 December 1893. He was one of ten children born to John M. Daniel and Mary C. "Katie" Tolbert.

A few months before his twentieth birthday, George – described as short and stout, with blue eyes and dark hair – enlisted at Montgomery for service during World War I. He was part of the 308 Sanitary Train, 83rd Division, and possibly helped deliver relief and medical supplies to allies in Europe during and immediately following the war. George was discharged 17 February 1919, after about seventeen months of service.

In January 1920, George was back home in Perdue Hill for the taking of that year's federal census. Nine months later, however, George took a trip to Macon, Bibb County, Georgia in order to marry Clara Lillian Smith (1896-1981). She was a daughter of Emanuel Smith (d. 1929) and Swedish-born Annie M. Stroberg (1866-1957). George's older brother Joseph acted as best man.

After the ceremony and "a short wedding trip," George and Clara made their home at Perdue Hill. But by Spring of 1930, the couple and two young sons were living on Yancey Street in Montgomery, where George was occupied as a secretary for a furniture company.

George Edward Daniel died 17 July 1939 at his home in Montgomery. He unexpectedly "suffered a fatal heart attack while at the supper table."

George was buried in the Smith family burial lot (Pine Ridge section, block 2, lot 11) at Rose Hill. It was purchased by his father-in-law in 1929. Clara lived forty-two more years after the death of George, and eventually married a Mr. Strawn in the interim. Upon her death in 1981, Clara was retuned to the Smith family lot and buried near her first husband.


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