Monday, June 10, 2013

Carroll County, Mississippi

Carroll County, Mississippi was one of the popular destinations for citizens of Stanly, Montgomery and Anson County, North Carolina who headed west.

Carroll County swamp in winter

During my research, I've discovered members of the Tillman family, Howell family and Wall family who moved there. I am sure there were many others.

The Tillmans would settle in Carrollton after leaving Stanly County while the family of James Wall and his second wife, Nancy Baldwin Davis, oldest daughter of Henry Davis, oldest son of Job, settled near Black Hawk. 

James G Howell migrated there from Stanly County. He was the son of Jordan Howell, who was the brother of Richard Howell, first husband of my ggggreat-grandmother Sarah Elizabeth Winfield Howell Davis. This Jordan, I have determined, married Martha Randle and had 3 sons, John Randle Howell, James G Howell and Richard Howell. Richard died while still a young man in Stanly County in the 1870's, John Randle Howell married a niece of Sarah Winfield Howell Davis, took care of his mother and raised a family in Stanly County, while James G Howell migrated to Carroll County, Mississippi.

Richard Howell and Sarah Winfield had 4 children, Peter Howell, Jordan Howell, John W. Howell and Charlotte. Peter Howell married Elizabeth, or Betsy, Floyd, daughter of Josiah Floyd and Mary Tillman Floyd, a couple who had migrated from Virginia with Sarah's second husband Job Davis in tow. Peter farmed on the opposite side of the Rocky River from his mother and step-father, on the Anson side, just north of present day Ansonville and south of Norwood, in what was known as Cedar Hill. Only daughter, Charlotte (named for grandmother Charlotte Freeman Winfield) married Levi Stancill and returned to his home area of Newton County, Georgia, where he was a minister. Middle sons Jordan and John W. moved to Fayetteville, North Carolina where both married widows and became businessmen, Jordan a merchant and John W. a lumberman and merchant.

Methodist Church in Blackhawk. As the Davis, Howell and related families were all Methodists, it is probably they attended this church. 

What was interesting was the existence of another Jordan Howell, from the Cumberland/Fayetteville area, born approximately the same year as their uncle Jordan Howell, father of John Randle, James G and Richard Howell, sons of Martha Randle Howell, who migrated to Carroll County, Mississippi and lived to be an old man there. Only the wife was different. Could these Jordan's, both born around 1784-1786, have been the same man? Could he have signed lands in Stanly County, NC over to his children, leave his wife (who would later be declared an idiot, perhaps senile) in care of his oldest son, who was barely an adult, and head west, remarry and have more children?

Carroll County, Mississippi Courthouse and Civil War Monument. 

At any rate, many Carroll County, MS citizens have Stanly/Anson/Montgomery county roots and many of these families intertwined.

Some might think they have no use to explore the lives of those who left, if they are descended from those who stayed. But that line of thought is so wrong. Oftentimes, following those wagontrains can lead to discoveries and knockdown brickwalls.

Childless aunts and uncles can leave property in wills to their nieces, nephews and siblings back east, that can establish family ties. Property suits can name ancestry. Sons can go back east to marry a cousin and bring her west in more or less 'arranged' marriages designed to keep property and wealth in a family line.

Marshall Family Cemetery, Carroll County, MS. Several individuals buried here were bon in Stanly or Anson County, NC. 

Repeated naming patterns may not prove anything, but can at least hint at a path of research to follow.

At any rate, Carroll County, Mississippi has become important in my research. Soon, I will be digging there as much as in the red mud on the banks of the Rocky River.

File:Malmaison, Carrollton vicinity (Carroll County, Mississippi).jpg
Malmasion, mansion home of Greedwood Leflore, for whom Leflore County, MS was named. Last and greatest  Chief of the Choctaw Nation.

Carroll County is located in the delta region of Mississippi and was at one time much larger, three times its present size. It was established after the signing of  the Treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek between the US Government and the Choctaw Indians. The last and greatest chief of the Choctaw, Greenwood Leflore, owned a beautiful mansion and plantation in Carroll County that has now burned down. 

Link to story of Greenwood Leflore

Sadly, much of Carroll County, Mississippi's marks left in history books was of racial unrest and intolerance, dirt swept under a broad and discriminatory carpet.

Link to Carroll County Courthouse Massacre of 1886

This marriage announcement for the daughter of James Wall, was the James Wall, son of John of Anson County, NC who had married the oldest daughter of Henry Davis, and granddaughter of Job, Nancy Baldwin Davis. The Wall family migrated from Brunswick County, Virginia, to Anson and then some of the children later migrated west to Carroll County. 

Miss Sue H. Wall and Mr. Samuel O. Harlin, both of Carroll County, were married on November 7th at the residence of the bride's father, Col. James Wall, by Elder B. F. Manire. [The Weekly Clarion, Jackson, Mississippi, Published November 28, 1872 - Submitted by Debora Reese]

Yet to come, perhaps the darkness of Carroll County will shed some light on some genealogical mysteries. 

1 comment:

  1. Hi. I found your blog quite by accident as I was researching information for my family tree. I am a descendant of Job Davis and Sarah Winfield Davis and was trying without much luck to clarify how many children they had between them (both hers from her marriage to Richard Howell and then also to Job.) Thank you so much for the time and effort you put in here. I look forward to coming back to visit your blog again soon.