31 July 2010

The Bond Monument

This memorial is for the BOND family. It was originally erected to the memory of Joseph Bond (1815-1859). The monument was cut in Italy and shipped to the United States about the time of "the break between the States." It was housed in a warehouse in New York until the end of the Civil War. Then it was shipped to Macon. It is located in the Holly Ridge section of Rose Hill, and beside it are steps leading down to what once were the banks of the Ocmulgee River. Now it's railroad tracks.

Joseph Bond
Born January 11, 1815
Died March 12, 1859

Henrietta Bond Nelson
Born February 21, 1828
Died January 20, 1896

Joseph Bond, Jr.
Born March 12, 1858
Died August 3, 1901

25 July 2010

"Little Mary Marsh" of the Marsh Juvenile Comedians Troupe

Little Mary Marsh was a member of the Marsh Juvenile Comedians troupe from 1855 until her death in 1859. These travelling performers were famous in their day. "Mary Marsh," daughter of the troupe organizer, was actually a stage name. Her real name was Mary Eliza Guerineau. She was born 4 March 1847 in Troy, New York to Robert and Jane C. Guerineau. Little Mary was their only daughter. Her brother George was also a famed member of the juvenile comedians.

Mary's life was cut short at the age of eleven on 27 January 1859 in Macon, Georgia. Her death was reported in newspapers across the United States. Here is one such report from the 8 February 1859 Plain Dealer in Ohio:
The Death of Little Mary Marsh.
Full Particulars by one of the Troupe.

MACON, Geo. Jan. 31.
FRIEND GRAY: Knowing how much interest you have always taken in our little children and especially in the pet of the company, "Little Mary," I thought I would let you know about the horrible accident which caused her death. On Wednesday night last, after the first act of the "Naiad Queen," Mary, in her blightsome glee ran tripping across the stage so near a candle that the flare of it caught the bottom of her fairy dress, and in a moment she was a mass of flame. Her mother and Georgiana were instantly by her side, but she was literally a ball of fire, and in their efforts to smother the flame were themselves badly burned. Poor little Mary screamed terrifically and the house was in frightful commotion. It was soon all over with her. She died the next afternoon.

Her poor father and mother are almost distracted, but we are all comforted with the hope that she is where suffering and death are known no more.

She died with the name of "Mother" on her lips, and with the prayers of all her little companions in her behalf.
Yours, as ever, ____ .

Mr. MARSH, the father of MARY, in an obituary notice of her, truly remarks:
"Mary was a model for the whole Troupe, both on and off the stage; she was the ground work on which our Troupe was founded. Her modest deportment towards and affection for her friends and enemies, won all hearts."
An article in the same paper one year later describes the monument erected for Little Mary: "A handsome upright monument, ordered by Mr. MARSH, has just been completed at Charleston, S.C. It is an elegantly polished piece of Italian marble, with its edges chamfered, and enriched with an ivy vine with berries cut thereon, and surmounted by an urn enwreathed in immortelles. The stone springs from a marble base, which is set in a ground stone of brown freestone. The obverse of the monument bears an appropriate inscription."

Here is that monument today, minus the urn. There is a hole on top where it once sat.


The "appropriate inscription" includes her name, the name of her parents, as well as birth and death dates with locations. All of which were mentioned at the beginning of the article. The epitaph further includes a poem. It begins on the front side of the monument, and continues on the back:

Winds Of The Winter As Ye Wildly Sweep
Across The Grave Where Perished Beauty Lies,
Pause For A Moment There Are Eyes That Weep
The Lost To Earth, But Blessed In Paradise;
Pause Ye And Mourn; Not For The Freed From Pain
But, That The Sighs Of Love Could Wish Her Back Again.

Pause Ye And Mourn; That Spirit Is Now Breathing
An Atmosphere Of Love Divinely Pure;
Oh: Why Should Kindred Hearts On Earth Be Grieving,
Since God Hath Sent His Angels To Secure
This Pearl Made Bright Through Suffering; No Decay,
Nor Time, Nor Change, Can Steal Her Youth Away,
Mourn Then Ye Winds; Not For The Freed From Pain
But, That The Sighs Of Love Could Wish Her Back Again.

"Naiad Queen" playbill.  Little
Mary performed the part of Idex.
I found mention of the Marsh Troupe in history books about the American Stage and Burlesque. It was organized by Robert Guerineau 1 June 1855, and featured mostly girls with some boys, ages 6 to 16. The children performed legitimate plays in a comedic or satirical fashion. A History of Burlesque (by the San Francisco Works Project Administration, 1940) describes them by the following: "The repertoire was made up of farces, fairy extravaganzas, sensation plays, and burlesques. Daring exposure of limb for an adult became sweet exposition; riotous farce became cute fancy; sex appeal of Greek myth became tinseled daintiness; crime page sensation plots became intellectual exercises..." About George Marsh, Mary's brother, it was said he "proved to be a comedian of almost mature ability..." And of Mary -- "...she was an uncommonly attractive child, bright eyed, graceful, fresh, and fair..."

Another interesting note from the history books is that Georgianna Mosely (described as a sister of Mary, but I am not sure that is true), after her stint in the troupe "married William Henry, a property man, in 1862, and died in New York from the effects of burns received in trying to save Mary Guerineau..."

I have another tidbit for you, if you'll remember from the 1917 Seeing-Macon Car article I posted -- "Here is the grave of little Mary Marsh, the stage name of Mary Eliza Guerineau,... She was a mere child, and was performing with the Marsh Family in the old Ralston Hall, the theater building that stood where the Fourth National Bank now stands."

Old maps show the bank referred to as being on the corner of Cherry Street and 3rd Street, in the 500 block. That space is now occupied by the Market City Cafe.

View Larger Map

The article goes on to say -- "For many years the wreath of artificial flowers worn by the child on that night, enclosed in a circular metal case, remained on the top of the marble slab until some ghoul removed it. For fifty years, in fact up to a few years ago, a lady in black visited the grave and covered it with flowers... It was supposed that she was the mother, and made this annual pilgrimage to Macon until death caused her to cease them."

17 July 2010

Mrs. Sarah A. Licette and Family

Macon Telegraph
9 September 1909


Mrs. Sarah A. Licette died yesterday morning at 11:30 o'clock at the residence of her daughter, Mrs. A. L. Moore, on Third street.

Mrs. Licette had been feeble for several weeks, but at the time of her death she was thought to be improved. Her death came as a great shock to her many friends.

She leaves two daughters, Mrs. A. L. Moore and Mrs. W. H. Cherry; two sons, Messrs. P. and G. L. Licette.

The funeral services will take place at 3:30 today at their residence. Revs. J. B. Philips and Lamar Jones will officiate, and the interment will be made in Rose Hill cemetery. Mrs. Licette was born in Marion county, Georgia, and came to Macon about thirty years ago. She is also survived by one brother and four sisters." [end transcription]

Mrs. Licette was laid to rest in the Cabiness Ridge section of Rose Hill Cemetery. I found four other markers in the same plot:

Gilbert L. Licette (1872-1909),
Son of Sarah.

Capt. A. L. Moore (1849-1940),
Son-in-law of Sarah.

Ida L. Moore (1859-1928),
Daughter of Sarah.

Mattie Parnell (1841-1913),
Sister of Sarah.

RoseHillCemetery.org lists an additional burial in the plot -- Pink Licette (d. 1922), but I noticed no gravestone. However, I did find an obituary.

Macon Telegraph
22 April 1922


Pink Licette, 66, died in Birmingham at 7:20 o'clock last night after a long illness. He is survived by two sisters, Mrs. A. L. Moore, of Macon, and Mrs. W. H. Cherry, of Pope's Ferry. The body will be brought to Macon tonight for funeral and interment, arrangements for which will be announced later." [end]

13 July 2010

William Zeigler: the Man, His Vault, and His Woman Slave Mary (Tombstone Tuesday)

William Zeigler was born 18 November 1799 in South Carolina to Nicholas Zeigler. William came to Georgia in 1827 and spent his life farming. He amassed quite a fortune and died 11 June 1855 in Crawford County.

Records surrounding the death of William Zeigler are most fascinating. His obituary and will were transcribed and put online for easy access. I also found him in census records and newspaper items. The 1830 Crawford County, GA Federal census lists Wm. Zeigler with another male and 22-25 slaves. In 1840, Wm. had 66 slaves of which 26 were under the age of ten (thirteen boys and thirteen girls). 35 of the teenagers and adults were "employed in agriculture." I presume the other five were house servants. Mr. Zeigler was the only free white person counted in the household.

By 1850, William Zeigler had to be near or at the height of his fortune. He was listed as a planter from South Carolina living alone in Division 20 of Crawford County, GA. His real estate was valued at $40,000 to $60,000 (I can't quite make out the figure). William owned 90 slaves, ranging in age from 1 to 48 years.

After William's death in 1855, an upcoming executor's sale was noted in the Macon Weekly Telegraph (Georgia) regarding his lands. Most were in Crawford County, "containing in all about eight thousand acres." Zeigler had the lands divided into nine plantations: Home Place, the Simonton, Colbert, Boon, Dugger, Atkinson, Hatcher, Worsham, and Miller. He also owned land in Bibb County, and was part of The Macon Manufacturing Company co-op, producers of cotton and wool.

William Zeigler's obituary, transcribed by Cheryl Aultman and contributed to the USGenWeb Archives, was recorded in the Georgia Journal & Messanger on 27 May 1855:
Died at his residence in Crawford county, on the 11th instant, in the 56th year of his age, William Zeigler. He was born in Edgefield District, S.C., whence he removed to Crawford co. GA, in 1827, where he remained engaged in agriculture to the time of his death.

In his business habits he was very attentive and economical, whereby he was enabled in twenty-eight years to increase his capitol from ten thousand to three hundred thousand dollars; thus furnishing indubitable evidence that a farmer may become rich.

In his dealings he was strictly honest. In times of scarcity he would bid the rich and monied, who wished to buy provisions of him, to go to a distance and buy; that they had money and credit and could buy anywhere, and submit to the inconveniences and expense of transporting or carriage; that many of his neighbors had neither money nor credit, and that they must have corn and meat; thus he was a benefactor to the less fortunate. He never attached himself to any Church, but his faith was right. Over a year ago he remarked to the writer of this notice,
that he relied upon the mercy of his Maker, and hoped for salvation through the merit's of the Redeemer's blood.

For the information of distant relatives and friends, it is proper to remark, that his remains now rest in a temporary vault in Rose Hill Cemetery, in Macon, Ga., where they will remain until a permanent vault shall be completed according to his directions. He selected this place himself, while in life, from its peculiar fitness for the purpose intended. There let him rest in peace.

Since William Zeigler's will was also transcribed and donated to USGenWeb, we are able to read what the directions were for the vault in which his bones would repose: "My Body I direct my Executor hereafter to be appointed to dispose of in the following manner to wit -- To procure a patent Coffin (Fetche, Metalic or some other Patent Coffin of like nature). Let it be placed therein in a neat Christian Manner in a shroud of the neatest and best material. Let it there remain until the following preparations are made. Obtain a plat of ground in Rose Hill Cemetery Macon Ga -- sixteen feet square, as near the plat upon which is Erected the Monument to the late Oliver H. Prince & Lady as may be practicable. And erect thereon a vault of sufficient thickness to Guarantee its durability above the ground Plat, the ground having been first leveled -- to be supplied with a suitable Iron Door & proper & secure fastenings -- and arched roof made of the best brick and the best Workmanship. The whole of the said vault to be cemented with the best Hydraulic cement and the whole Plat to be surrounded with Iron paleings & proper Gates of Iron with security fastenings. The vault to be of sufficient size to admit the Coffin and persons to arrange it.

Then let my Coffin be placed therein with a proper Monument in front of my vault -- suitable to my condition in Life and the Expenses I direct to be paid by my Executor out of my Estate for which a sufficient sum is hereby appropriated and bequeathed to my Executor for the use & Purpose aforesaid."

Here is how that vault looks today, more than 150 years after it was first built.

The interesting finds in William Zeigler's last will and testament do not end there. The fourth request begins like this: "Is my desire, and so I direct, that the colored children of my Woman Slave Mary, be taken to a state where the laws thereof will tolerate their Manumission, or freedom & that they be there put under Competent and proper Teachers Keeping them together if possible where they may be properly educated according to the Means hereinafter set forth. That they be provided with good & suitable board and lodging having an Eye in this as with selection of Teachers, to Strict Morality, also that they be properly Clothed."

These children of Mary were later named -- Malinda Ann, William Henry, and Octavia. In addition to Mary and her three children being given their freedom and taken to an appropriate state, they each were bequeathed money. $10,000 for Mary, and $30,000 to each of her three children due upon their reaching the age of twenty-one. The interest accrued from the monies was to sustain them until they reached the majority age. Mary's $10,000 was to be put in a trust and she was to be given a sum of the interest paid annually. While the will initially stated the monies were to be given to the children directly, it was later amended to state they instead should be put into a trust and given at the discretion of the trustee. William's two brothers, Henry and Lewis, and his nephew John W. Dent were listed as the trustees.

While William Zeigler does not name these children as his own, it is likely they are. It clearly was his intent that they be educated and financially comfortable for life. But were they?

In 1860, Mary Zeigler (mulatto, age 30, b. VA) and her three children -- Malinda (mulatto, age 12, b. GA), William (mulatto, age 11, b. GA), Octavia (mulatto, age 9, b. GA) -- were living in Batavia, Clermont County, Ohio with a servant and a personal estate of $100,500. In 1870, all were still in Batavia, but the financial situation may not have been quite the same. Forty-one year old Mary then had a personal estate of $100, and there was no longer a servant. Twenty year old William is listed as a "hostler," or stableman. I do not know what happened to Mary Zeigler after 1870.

In 1880, Malinda and Octavia were back in Georgia. They were living at 86 Spring Street, Macon, Bibb County -- not far from where their supposed benefactor and probable father William Zeigler was buried. Octavia was a seamstress.

View Larger Map

Their brother William returned as well to Bibb county. I believe I found him in the census records with a wife, Jane, and later a son, William, Jr. I lost track of him after 1910 when he was working in the railroad yards.

There is evidence that Malinda and Octavia had children, but never married. Newspaper items also indicate they were at least small property owners in the Vineville District of Macon, Bibb County.

In June of 1869, the same year Malinda turned twenty-one, Mary brought her daughter to Macon and demanded what was rightfully theirs according to William Zeigler's will. A couple of months later a lawsuit had to be filed against the trustees of the time, since the original trustees renounced their positions. I do not know the outcome of the suit.

The institution of slavery is an atrocity that cannot be undone and should never be forgotten, yet learned from if possible. Out of the horrible situation arose some interesting relationships -- some forced upon unwilling parties, and some entered into willingly. The case of William Zeigler and his woman slave Mary is one such situation. While I certainly was not a witness to the thoughts and feelings of William or Mary, the relationship they shared seems somewhat like a business. But maybe William was in love, and Mary had no choice. Or maybe there was a mutual attraction. Even with the amount of research conducted, who am I to say?

08 July 2010

All Aboard for the Seeing-Macon Car

I recently found this and couldn't resist getting it on the blog quickly, even without any enhancements. Stay tuned for elaborations and photos!

[Update! The articles I have written to go along with several of the paragraphs in this 1917 news article are now linked from within.]

Macon Telegraph
16 December 1917
(Viewable online at GenealogyBank.)


ALL aboard for the Seeing-Macon Car.

We will now leave the car and take a walk. This is Rose Hill Cemetery, taking its name from one of Macon's earliest public-spirited citizens, through whose efforts and by whose plans it was laid out and established in 1840. The first cemetery for the west side of the river is between Cherry and Poplar, below Seventh, and in it the pioneers of the city were buried. For many years it was neglected, but is now enclosed.

On this stroll we will point out a few of the graves of interest, leaving a more elaborate description of the many beautiful monuments and graves for a second visit.

The Ocmulgee river flows alongside, and before the Southern railroad was allowed to run through on the river bank there were a series of cliffs and bluffs, one of which was the usual Lover's Leap, with its usual tradition of the Indian maiden leaping from it to her death because her dusky lover had fallen a victim to an arrow of the enemy. The railroad cut out all the romance.

This is the Zeigler vault, and holds the bones of William Zeigler, who came here from South Carolina and died in 1855. Formerly there was a heavy plate glass window in the door, through which the hermetically sealed casket, with its elaborate silver handles and ornaments could be plainly seen. Shortly after General Wilson's army came to Macon in 1865, some vandal soldiers broke the glass and entered the vault. They had evidently heard a story in circulation that all Zeigler's gold had been buried with him, but not being able to get into the casket they stripped it of its silver ornaments and handles. It was then that this marble slab was put in place of the glass, thus shutting off a view of the interior.

Here is the grave of little Mary Marsh, the stage name of Mary Eliza Guerineau, whose fluffy dress caught fire from the footlights on the night of January 27, 1859, while dancing, and was burned to death before she could be rescued. She was a mere child, and was performing with the Marsh Family in the old Ralston Hall, the theater building that stood where the Fourth National Bank now stands. Her tragic death caused gloom all over the city. For many years the wreath of artificial flowers worn by the child on that night, enclosed in a circular metal case, remained on the top of the marble slab until some ghoul removed it.

For fifty years, in fact up to a few years ago, a lady in black visited the grave and covered it with flowers. No one knew from whence she came. She was never known to speak to any one, and all her actions were mysterious. It was supposed that she was the mother, and made this annual pilgrimage to Macon until death caused her to cease them.

Here is the Bond monument. Joseph Bond was one of the wealthy planters of antebellum days. Like many others of his day, he owned enough slaves to have made up a regiment, and land in Southwest Georgia sufficient for a site for two or more cities the size of Macon. He loved his slaves, and on one occasion, in the year 1859, when his overseer, from all accounts a man as brutal as the overseer in Uncle Tom's Cabin, was found by him beating a slave unmercifully, Mr. Bond interfered and was killed by the overseer. The imposing monument which you see before you was cut in Italy, and reached New York about the time of the break between the States. It was placed in a bonded warehouse in that city, where it remained until after the war and was then shipped here and placed in position.

Here is the grave of a man who did as much for Macon as any man, Elam Alexander, a contractor. He built Wesleyan College and other prominent buildings. He brought the magnetic telegraph to Macon, expended money in boring artesian wells, which proved failures, however, because of Macon being built upon solid rock, contributed to railroads and every public enterprise, and at his death left a fund, which by wise and careful management on the part of the trustees of the fund gave the city the three handsome public school buildings that bear his name. He died in 1863.

There is something as uncanny as it is unusual for a cemetery. On this lot are the graves of nine victims of a kinsman who slew with an axe almost his entire family. This was Thomas Woolfolk, and the extraordinary crime was committed one night in August, 1897. He paid the penalty of his deed on the gallows.

This grave is that of a man, who had he lived in these days would have received recognition from Carnegie. The inscription on the tombstone will tell you why. It reads:

"Erected by the Mayor and Council of Macon in honor of the public spirit which lost a valuable life in saving the property of his fellow-citizens from the ravage of fire."

This hero of Macon's village days was James Willingham, a printer. He died in 1844. His widow was the mother of Ben, William, Al and John Goodyear, well-known citizens now living.

This plot of ground is consecrated to the memory of Confederate soldiers. Nearly all the bones in these graves were removed from the old cemetery in the lower part of the city through the efforts of the good women of Macon, where the Confederate soldiers dying in the hospitals, and the remains of many dying elsewhere, were at first buried. On the 26th of April of each year memorial exercises are held here, and all these graves are strewn with flowers by both girls and veterans. No city in the South observes Memorial Day more than does Macon.

Adjoining Rose Hill is the Riverside Cemetery, which is one of the several forts or redoubts thrown up around Macon in 1864 to protect the city from the attacks of the enemy. They were thrown up to form a semi-circle, beginning on the east side of the river, where North Highlands is now, and extending to the Columbus road on the west side. That in Riverside is probably the best preserved, the others have been partially or fully destroyed to make room for improvements.

In former days Rose Hill was visited much more than now. Every fair Sunday afternoon it was filled with the younger people. In those days there was a number of springs of cold, clear water, all flowing into the little brook that is still here. One of the springs was the Crystal Spring within a cave, under the hill. It was walled up with crystallized rocks with an iron railing around it, and this was a favorite place to visit.

On the bank of the river, at the foot of Central avenue, was the "Lover's Leap," to be found in nearly all cemeteries that are situated on a river. It was here that the young people gathered and told of the legend of the Indian maid. That the legend was believed by many is evidenced by the fact that when these young people were on it, they preserved the utmost silence, hushing their talking to whispers. It was on this rock that Henry Watterson, during his residence in Macon, spent many a Sunday afternoon."

05 July 2010

Aged Odd Fellow Died in Brunswick

While doing some research about Henry Bass Treadwell, who's final resting place is in the Central Avenue District of Rose Hill Cemetery, I found a short biography in a 1999 edition of the United Daughters of the Confederacy Patriot Ancestor Album. The following excerpt was submitted by Jane Joyner Hampton (GGD):
HENRY BASS TREADWELL...was born on Aug 2, 1830, in Richmond County, GA...Henry's brick mason skills must have been taught by his father, who was also a brick mason of some report. Henry became a lay minister in the Methodist Church and actively participated in this avocation throughout his life.

Henry married Martha Ann Holmes (May 29, 1830 - Sept 6, 1915), daughter of Joshua and Nancy Angle Holmes on Aug 5, 1849, in Muscogee County, GA. They left Eufaula [Alabama] and then moved to Bibb County, GA, where Henry joined the Franklin Lodge of the IOOF on March 3, 1854, in Macon, GA, and in 1850, Henry is listed as a member and trustee of the newly formed Methodist mission at First Street in Macon...

Children were: Mary E. b. 1851, d. Feb 8, 1860; Benjamin Franklin b. Oct 28, 1853, d. Feb 14, 1909; William Thomas b. Sept 7, 1854, d. unknown; James Henry b. Aug 1, 1858, d. May 24, 1860; Charles W. b. May 1860, d. Sept 27, 1865; Ella b. February 1863, d. March 6, 1866; Joseph W. b. 1864, d. Feb 2, 1866; Willie (female) b. March 13, 1866, d. Dec 9, 1925; Lee (female) b. March 13, 1866, d. Aug 28, 1908; John Jefferson b. Jan 18, 1872, d. July 13, 1948...

...On March 4, 1862, Henry re-enlisted at Macon, GA, as a private of Co D (Whittle Guard, 10 Batt GA Inf) and was paid a bounty of $50.00. On March 27, 1862, he was appointed chaplain...On Feb 19, 1864, he resigned as chaplain and was assigned the duty as superintendent of the Macon Armory and worked on government buildings...

...By 1870, the Treadwells had moved to Brunswick, GA, and living at 1901 F. Street.

Henry Bass Treadwell died on May 28, 1902, and was buried in Rose Hill Cemetery on May 29 with the funeral service conducted by the members of the IOOF Franklin Lodge of Macon. Martha continued to live in Brunswick until approximately 1908 when she came to Macon. She died Sept 6, 1915, while living at the Kings Daughter's Old Ladies Home in Vineville area of Macon and was buried beside her husband.
Here is an article from the 29 May 1902 edition of The Macon Telegraph announcing Henry's funeral:


Mr. H. B. Treadwell Will Be Buried Here Today

The remains of Mr. H. B. Treadwell arrived in the city yesterday afternoon at 1:30 o'clock from Brunswick, and will be interred in Rose Hill cemetery this morning at 10 o'clock. The funeral will occur from the First street Methodist church.

Mr. Treadwell was 72 years of age, and resided in Macon for a number of years. In 1876 he moved to Brunswick, where he has resided since.

Mr. Treadwell has been an Odd Fellow for the past forty-eight years. He joined the Franklin lodge of Macon on March 3, 1854, but on his removal to Brunswick he had his membership changed to the Seaport Lodge No. 68 of Brunswick. At the request of the Brunswick lodge and of Mr. Treadwell's family, the Franklin lodge will conduct the funeral services at the grave."

01 July 2010

How Did Rose Hill Cemetery Get Its Name?

Macon Telegraph
24 August 1919
(Viewed online at GenealogyBank.)


THE question has often been asked: "How did Rose Hill Cemetery get its name?" Judge E. E. Brown, in his interesting reminiscences, answers the question. "In 1840 I was one of the committee appointed by the city council to select a suitable place for a cemetery, and with Simri Rose settled upon the spot now used for the purpose. The majority of the committee was opposed to this location.

They thought it was too far away from the city, and favored the grounds now occupied by the railroad shops. (The Central Shops below Seventh street.) We visited both sites and finally agreed upon the upper site, naming it Rose Hill, in honor of Simri Rose, who always took a great interest in it, even up to the time of his death. I attended the first burial in this cemetery, that of David F. Wilson."
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