Sunday, February 3, 2019

A Closer Look at John Almond

I've questioned whether or not John Almond was the son of Rebecca Lambert Almond. He was without doubt, the son of her husband Pleasant Almond.

John was one of the two favored sons of Pleasant Almond and one of only two left anything in his will. The other was Ervin Nelson Almond, the youngest, who in the marriage license to his second wife, revealed his mother was Barbara "Barbary" Pliler (Plyler) Honeycutt, the abandoned wife of Isham Honeycutt. She was living next to Pleasant and Ervin in the 1850 census and also next to her sister and brother-in-law, Frederick and Sophia Pliler Myers. Was the birth of John the catalyst to cause Isham to leave Barbara in Stanly County while he migrated with other Honeycutt family members to Sumner County, Tennessee? Or was John just the only child of the marriage of Pleasant and Rebecca to side with his father when the couple split up, shortly after the birth of Calvin Almond? There's no way to really know. Perhaps some descendants can use dna to compare themselves with descendants of Ervin, the Lamberts and western descendants of Isham Honeycutt by his third wife, Hulda.

One interesting fact about John Almond was that he evidentally rivaled the reknown Duggar family in that he fathered 19 children with one wife, Margaret L Blackwelder Almond.


The Concord Times
(Concord, North Carolina)
19 Jan 1911, Thu  • Page 7

Margaret outlived her husband by about 9 years. G. F. Almond mentioned in the above article was George Franklin Almond.


The Charlotte Observer
(Charlotte, North Carolina)
18 Dec 1902, Thu  • Page 8

Another article, previously, in 1902, in the Charlotte Observer, confirms the fact that there were 19 children.

The question is, who were the 19 children?

To look at John, we have the opportune ability to see his family listed in the 4 most informative census records of the 19th century. Born in 1826, he was too young to have headed a family in 1840, so the 1850 is his first. He was not with his father in 1840 in Cherokee County, so it is unknown where he could have been living. Neither Rebecca Lambert Almond or Barbary Pliler Honeycutt, his two possible mothers, where enumerated in 1840 as heads of their own households.

In 1850, John is 24 and his young bride, Margaret Blackwelder Almond is 17. Their first son, Rufus is a year old. The young family is positioned between Barbary Honeycutt, who was Pleasants' mistress, and at least the mother of his youngest son, Nelson Ervin Almond. Pleasant is listed on the other side of her. Below John's name is the Frederick and Sophia Myers family. Sophia Pliler Myers was the sister of Barbara Pliler Honeycutt. Oddly, Pleasants father-in-law, the Rev. John Lambert, also lives nearby. There must have been tension in that neighborhood. Young Ervin was living with his father.

Name:John Furrs district no 6
[John Almond] 
Birth Year:abt 1826
Birthplace:North Carolina
Home in 1850:Furrs, Stanly, North Carolina, USA
Family Number:524
Household Members:
John Furrs district no 624
Margaret Furrs district no 617
Rufus Furrs district no 61

Rufus Alexander Almond is without arguement, the oldest child of John and Margaret Almond. He is the only child yet born in 1850. Since Margaret is so young, even though no marriage license has been discovered, they were probably married in 1848. Margaret would have only been 14, but as Rufus was born in 1849, that would give them a year for his conception and gestation.

The name Rufus Alexander runs through the Lambert family. I have a direct ancestor, Rufus Alexander Lambert, my second Great Grandfather, in fact. With John's eldest son named Rufus Alexander, this adds creedence to him being a son of Rebecca Lambert Almond. Perhaps he just sided with his father in the dispute that separated his parents and that is why he was one of only two sons left anything in Pleasant's will.

Name:John AlmondAge:33Birth Year:abt 1827Gender:MaleBirth Place:North CarolinaHome in 1860:Stanly, North CarolinaPost Office:AlbemarleDwelling Number:724Family Number:734Occupation:FarmerReal Estate Value:50Personal Estate Value:225Cannot Read, Write:YHousehold Members:
John Almond33
Margaret Almond25
Rufus Almond10
Ranson Almond8
Sarah Almond7
Daniel Almond6
Alfred Almond5
Wilson Almond4
James Almond2
Pleasant Almond1

By 1860, John is farming a modest piece of land. He appears to be living in the same area, as although some of the neighbors being changed, there being more Finks and Blackwelders, German-descended families who originated with the Dutch Creek Settlement near Mount Pleasant in Cabarrus County, as they lived near the Stanly/Cabarrus line, he still lives near Elizabeth Shoe, an 1850 neighbor, and the Lamberts who created their own spreadout community.

The family has increased from one to eight children, mostly boys: Rufus, Ransom, Sarah, Daniel, Alfred, Wilson, James and Pleasant. Alfred may have been named for John's brother. Pleasant was obviously named for his father, and Sarah may have been named for Margaret's mother, Sarah Susanna Misenheimer Blackwelder.

Image result for civil war soldiers from cabarrus county, nc
Willaim and John Howey of Mecklenburg County, NC, Father and son.

Then came war, and John Almond was swept up to serve, along with his brothers, Calvin and Ervin. He served in the 42nd Regiment, Company H. The 42nd Regiment, North Carolina Infantry was organized at Salisbury in April of 1862. It surrendered on April 26, 1865 with the Army of Tennesee and included many men from Stanly County. The Almonds, like the Lamberts, and most other yeoman farmers of their area, did not own slaves. This was not what the war was about for them. We can not know their mindset as we did not live in their era or walk in their shoes.

Enlisted 25 March 1862 in Stanly County, North Carolina.  Deserted 2 August 1863.  Rejoined from desertion on 20 October 1863. Deserted again 17 August 1864.  Rejoined from desertion 29 October 1864.  Captured at Mount Kingston, North Carolina, on 10 March 1865 and transferred to Point Lookout, Maryland, on 16 March.  Released 22 June 1865 after taking the Oath of Allegiance.

-from, an analysis of the Civil War Service of John Almond

Current political and social flow serve to present these men in a negative light as evil men who were fighting to preserve slavery. That issue may have been a concern of the rich, those families with large tracts of land whose profits and prosperity were dependant on slave labor. Many of those families had sons who were able to avoid war by education or by hiring substitures to serve in their place. But the Almonds and Lambert and others of these Western Stanly and Eastern Cabarrus subsistence farmers were not in that elite group. Their motivations were probably more of duty, of protecting their wives and children and what little they had from an invasion from the North, not of protecting the lifestyles and vanities of the upper class or preserving a cruel, evil and inhumane institution of which they had no part in.

Image result for civil war soldiers from cabarrus county, nc
Bost Grist Mill on Rocky River near Georgetown.

John Almond survived when many others of his generation did not. He returned to a land where in the course of the war, fields had gone untended, stores had dwindled and hopes had died. The population was overwhelmingly old men and young boys and a soberingly high percentage of widows and orphans. Although Stanly had been spared the wrath of Sherman once his lackeys realized they had crossed wealthy and plantation-lined Anson and were headed to an area where the populous had voted against sucession, but had been overruled and were relunctant soldiers for the most part, she was not without devastation of her own kind.

There were reports in the Salisbury papers and notations of history that groups of women and chidlren, starving, from the southern and western portions of the county, had stormed the coffers of the town of Albemarle, demanding grain and supplies.

Image result for devastation after the civil war in north carolina
Fayetteville, NC Civil War era.

John Almond's family had increased to 11 children by 1870.

Name:John Almond
Age in 1870:46
Birth Year:abt 1824
Birthplace:North Carolina
Dwelling Number:159
Home in 1870:Furr, Stanly, North Carolina
Cannot Read:Y
Cannot Write:Y
Male Citizen over 21:Y
Personal Estate Value:150
Real Estate Value:150
Inferred Spouse:Mary Almond
Inferred Children:Ransona Almond 
Daniel Almond
Household Members:
John Almond46
Mary Almond37
Ransona Almond19
Daniel Almond17
Sarah Almond18
Alfred Almond15
Franklin Almond13
Wilson Almond11
Martha Almond9
Jane Almond7
James Almond5
Jonas Almond1

Oldest son, Rufus, who was not included with his family, would have been 21. He may have been working somewhere, and escaped enumeration. He may have traveled temporarily to another State or County to try his fortunes. He may have been in school somewhere, but he shows back up. Pleasant Almond II was also missing. He would have been only 11 and should have been with his family. He does not show back up. The natural assumption would be that he passed away before 1870, in his childhood.

Name:John Almond
Birth Date:Abt 1824
Birthplace:North Carolina
Home in 1880:Furrs, Stanly, North Carolina, USA
Dwelling Number:250
Relation to Head of House:Self (Head)
Marital status:Married
Spouse's name:Margaret Almond
Father's Birthplace:North Carolina
Mother's Birthplace:North Carolina
Cannot Read:Yes
Cannot Write:Yes
Household Members:
John Almond56
Margaret Almond48
Wilson Almond20
Sarah Almond25
Alfred Almond23
Franklin Almond22
Mattie Almond19
Oma Almond17
Jonah Almond12
James Almond10
Matilda Almond8
Tena Almond6
Manda Almond4
Pegga Almond3
Laurace Almond20

By 1880, all of the known younger children have been born. John Wilson Almond was married, but still living at home helping his father in the fields. The 20 year old 'Laurace' listed was his wife, Laura Scena Carter Almond. The older sons have started their own families.

Name:John Allmon
Birth Date:Jun 1835
Home in 1900:Furr, Stanly, North Carolina
Sheet Number:18
Number of Dwelling in Order of Visitation:320
Family Number:323
Relation to Head of House:Head
Marital status:Married
Spouse's name:Margaret Allmon
Marriage Year:1860
Months Not Employed:7
Can Read:No
Can Write:No
Can Speak English:Yes
House Owned or Rented:O
Farm or House:H
Household Members:
John Allmon64
Margaret Allmon61
Amanda Allmon23

As there is no 1890 census the next census is a 20 year jump. John Almond is now in his 60's and he and Margaret are living only with their daughter, Amanda.

The date of death for John Almond is given as January 11, 1902. A John Almond family cemetery is located off of Canton Road outside of Albemarle, in Stanly County. I believe this is the cemetery of this John Almond, but I could be incorrect.

Name:Margaret Almond
Age in 1910:79
Birth Year:abt 1831
Birthplace:North Carolina
Home in 1910:Furr, Stanly, North Carolina
Relation to Head of House:Mother-in-law
Marital status:Widowed
Father's Birthplace:North Carolina
Mother's Birthplace:North Carolina
Native Tongue:English
Occupation:Own Income
Able to Read:No
Able to Write:No
Number of Children Born:19
Number of Children Living:14
Household Members:
Ephraine Hatley23
Amanda Hatley31
Gaston Hatley16
Frely Hatley14
Jefferson Hatley12
Charles Hatley9
Lawton Hatley1
Bertha Almond13
Margaret Almond79

Margeret Blackwelder Almond outlived her husband and appears in the 1910 census living with her daughter Amanda, Amanda's daughter, Bertha and Amanda's husband, Ephraim Hatley and his family. She was the mother of 19 children with 14 living.

Margaret L Blackwelder

Picture from Stanly County Heritage North Carolina Volume I Book, Page 155, By Stanly County Hertiage Book Committee and County Heritage, Inc

The known children of John and Margaret Blackwelder Almond were, as far as I can determine:

I) Rufus Alexander Almond born: November 7, 1849  Died: July 14, 1918.
          Married: Martha Jane "Patsy" Whitley. Served as Postmaster of the Community of Mission, Stanly County. 

Name:Rufus A Almond
Post Office Location:Mission, Stanly, North Carolina
Appointment Date:2 Dec 1885
Volume #:49
Volume Year Range:1877-1889

6 children: David Anderson, Adam, Pierson Albert, Lentz Ivy, Eliza Jane and Verdie Henderson Almond.

II) Ransom A. Almond born Born: February 3, 1851 Died: June 7, 1926 
           Married 1st: Roena Serena "Rena" Starnes. 
           5 children: Luther, Mary Almond Lambert, Julia Almond Crayton, George Franklin, William M.
Mary M Allman
Mary M Almond Lambert

           Married 2nd: Melissa Ann "Lissie" Honeycutt.
           1 child: Laura Manora "Nora" Almond Eudy Smith

 III  Sarah Elizabeth Almond Born: February 14, 1853 Died December 28, 1928.
        Relationship with Max Reisburg
         1 child: George Franklin Almond

          Note: Max Reisburg was a German immigrant found working in the 1880 census as age 32
                    working as a farm laborer for Ann Freeman in the Ridenhour Community near George
                    Almond. Sarah's Death Certificate lists her marital status as divorced and her spouse as
                    "Max Riceberg". Her only son, George, was born in 1891 and took Sarah's name.

IV) Daniel J Almond Born: Abt 1854 Died: Likley before 1910. In Rowan County, NC. 
       Married: Amanda C. Digkins (not verified that this is the correct Daniel Almond)
       1 child: William Victor Almond.

 D R Almond

V) Alfred Mathias Almond Born: May 30, 1855 Died: Dec 8, 1945
     Married Eliza Ann Misenheimer
     2 children: Annie Wilhelmina Almond Kalogrides and Mary Agnes Almond (Allman).
     Note: The 1900 and 1910 census records indicate that Eliza had 5 children total, but only these two daughters lived. Names of the other three who died as infants or small chidren are unknown.

Now, the position of Child number 6 in the family procession is a little sketchy. In some trees, I have seen a son named "Nelson" , born in 1856, the year after Alfred, inserted. These folks may be direct-line Almonds who have had access to a family bible, or even family history handed down the line, that indicated there was a Nelson, and the name does make sense, as it is a name that runs in this family. However, there was never a Nelson in the census, nor have I found a grave for him. So, I will leave Nelson as a possible son who died as a child, before census records.

Then there are the jockeying positions of George Franklin and James. In the 1860 census, a two year old James appears, older than Pleasant and younger than Alfred and Wilson, age 4. Yet, despite their death records and other records giving Wilson a birth year of 1860, and James one of 1865. I suppose there is a possibility of there being two Wilson's and two James's, with 1856 Wilson and 1858 James, both dying of some deadly, dreadful childhood disease and then 1860 Wilson and 1865 James being named for their deceased brothers. But it could be as they became older, they also became confused of their ages and gave their families the wrong years of their birth.

One who should have been in the 1860 census, and was not, was George Franklin Almond, who was supposedly born in 1858. Perhaps 2 year old "James" in 1860 was actually George Franklin, and his name entered incorrectly. So, for all practical purposes, I am just going to list George Franklin next, as he could have been the 6th, 7th, or 8th child born.

VI) George Franklin Almond Born: August 25, 1858  Died: Feb 15, 1945
       Married 1st: Lourella Jane Morton 3 children: Lawson McDaniel, Craven Jerome and Ethel Mae Almond Gafney.
       Married 2nd Lesta Ballard 1 son: Coolidge Franklin Almond.

VII) Pleasant Almond Born about 1859 and died before 1870. Appears only in the 1860 census.

The next position in the family line is also controversial. Some family trees have an Elizabeth Almond being born on November 4, 1859, being born, death unknown. This could also be a child that died as an infant listed in a family bible I have not seen.

VIII) John Wilson Almond Born: March 5, 1860 Died: July 19, 1933 (These are the dates given by his Death Certificate and tombstone, note though, that a Wilson shows up as 4 years old in the 1860 census). Married: Fannie Larcena Carter 8 children: Mathew Monroe, Margaret "Maggie" (Almond Leonard Cooper), Titus Deberry, Eben H., Jerome Napolean, Nora S. Almond Sell, Grover Wilson, Scena Olivet Almond Lambert.

IX) Martha J "Mattie" Almond Born: September 2, 1860 Died Feb 7, 1929 (Note: Wilson and Mattie could not have been that close in age and be born to the same mother. As "Wilson" shows up as a 4 year old in the 1860 census, I believe the year of his birth is wrong and that he was born between Alfred in 1855 and G. F. in 1858.
        Married: Rufus "Bud" Herrin in 1892   2 children: (prior to her marriage to Rufus Herrin)
           Fannie Jane Almond (1881-1958) Father unknown and Lillie R. Almond (1881-1989) with
           Calvin Paul Lewis.

X) James Almond Born: May 27, 1865 Died: March 27, 1952 Mt. Pleasant, NC
                                          Married: Martha "Mattie" Jane Herrin 8 children: Polly Eva Ann Almond Cauble, Silas Stephen "Sike" Almond (Allman), Richard Cleveland Almond, John Rufus Almond, Rayvon B Almond, Gathie Marina Almond Eudy, Mary J (died as child), Paul Lee Almond, Bessie Louise Almond Earnhardt.

XI) Naomi Jane "Oma" Almond: Born: May 15, 1866 Died January 25, 1955 Albemarle, NC
       Married 1st: Alphonso Allen Almond Widowed: 5 children: Lillie Jane "Lottie" Almond Tucker, Hester "Hettie" Jane Almond Simpson, Lemuel Ransom Almond, Samuel Burton Almond, and Adam Alphonso Almond.
       Married 2nd Duncan Burris Divorced: 2 children: Carl Gordon Burris and a girl infant that died tragically and cruelly as described in the divorce papers. (Note: I've posted on Oma before, as she holds another place in my family tree, due to her marriage to Duncan Burris and their divorce. Duncan Burris was the brother of my Great Grandmother on my paternal grandfather's side. After he and Oma were divorced, he married my Great Grandmother on my paternal grandmother's side. He raised my grandmother as her father died before her birth. This marriage was also tragic and left scars on my grandmother indefinately. It was through this relationship that my grandparents became acquainted, however, and led to the birth of my father.

XII) Jonas Samuel Almond (Allman) Born: July 22, 1869 Died: July 27, 1934 Hale County, TX
       Married Valeria Elizabeth Jones 9 children: (They spelled their surname "Allman") Roy Conrad, Edmund Dawson, Jonas Alton, Savannah Irene Allman Miles, Corrilee Allman Worsham, James Franklin, Annie Ruth Allman Ferguson, Louis Clyde, Morris Wilson "Potsie" Allman.

Worsham, Corrilee
Corrilee Allman Worsham

XIII) Talitha Matilda "Tillie" Almond Born: June 15, 1871 Died Feb 20, 1966 Hot Springs, Garland County, Arkansas
          Married: Wilson A Eudy in Stanly County, NC Located to Arkansas between 1904 and 1906. 7 children: Elizabeth E "Lizzie" Eudy Ward, Willie William Eudy, Minnie Magdalene Eudy Ashley, Luther James Eudy, Amanda Isabelle Eudy Stembridge, Alphia Alameda Eudy Davis (first child born in Ark), Annie Mae Eudy Estep. (Note: A good number of the Eudy children ended up in California

Telitha Eudy
Tillie Almond Eudy

XIV) Christina Tina "Teenie" Almond Born: July 2, 1873 Died Sept. 16, 1935 Stanly County
          Married: Emsley Beasley Harwood  15 children:  Frances "Francie" M Harwood, Grace Ellen Harwood Almond, John Cleveland Harwood, Effie R H. Coxie, Lotha Jennibel Harwood Blalock, Sarah L Harwood, Cora Alice Harwood, Carrie Lee H. Dennis, Rilla Julia H. Foster, Fannie Mae H. Furr, Theodore Vanburen Harwood, Delilah Louise "Dallie" H. Cauble, Ellis Pearson Harwood, Carl H Harwood, Pearl Harwood, Emsley Britton Harwood.

XV) Amanda Janette "Mandy" Almond Born: Dec 22 1876 Died: Dec 12 1954
        Had a Relationship with Daniel Alexander Graham Hatley: 1 child: Bertha Oma Ann Almond
        Married Adam Ephraim Hatley: 5 children: Lawton Henry Hatley, Palmer Lincoln Hatley, Berry Ervin Hatley, Nealie Gertrude Viola Hatley Almond, Edna Louise Hatley.

XVI) Margaret "Peggy" Lavina Almond (II) Born: June 27, 1876 Died: March 30, 1936
          Married: Charles Monroe Shoe: 3 children: Hurely Deberry Shoe, Dewey R. Shoe, Marvin Leroy Shoe.

That adds up to 16. There were 19. Could some of the missing be Nelson, Elizabeth and either 2 different sons named James or Wilson, having died as children and subsequent sons named for them?

Things to ponder: Why did so many of John Almond's daughters have children out of wedlock? Was John then perhaps illegitimate himself? The son of Pleasant and Barbara Plieler Honeycutt? Did this put the family in a different social class in the community?

Why did so many of the grandchildren of John Almond carry the name Deberry in their name? There was a "Deberry line" consistently mentioned in the land records of this area. Who was this Deberry? Could he have been an ancestor of this family? If so, when and how?

1 comment:

  1. The DeBerry mentioned may have been a godparent. I have a person in my tree that has the middle name of "Pendleberry", for that reason. Also, I came across your blog as I am descended from Daniel Almond and Amanda Carolina Digkins. I am very interested in any information you may have on them. :) Thank you. Laura Springer