Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Tombstone Tuesday - Sarah's Chapel

On our recent trip east I was fortunate to finally get to Dade County, Georgia.  Since I first found my Bond family in that county in 1850 I've been curious about the place.  I  had very little information to go on, and not a lot of time.  We landed in Trenton, Georgia and headed up the highway hoping to run across a cemetery.  I quickly checked and noted that John P. Bond was buried at Sarah's Chapel on Sarah's Chapel Road.   As we drove slowly north we fortunately saw the road sign for Sarah's Chapel Road and had no problem locating the cemetery.  

I had several reasons to visit this cemetery in addition to knowing that John P. Bond, a brother of our Gr-Grandfather Charles Bond, was buried here.  His was the only grave listed on findagrave and I wondered why he was seemingly buried there alone when he spent a lot of time visiting Fannin County, Texas where his brother lived.  He also owned a lot of land in Fannin County, and was often selling land there.   He sold two 1/4 interest in a 244 acre piece of property to his two brothers, Charles and William Thomas Bond.  Why would he choose to be buried back in Georgia where there was no one, I wondered.

We found his grave right away.  And next to it, was his wife's headstone, Nannie (Hale) Bond.   There are a lot of Hales buried in this cemetery.  Also there was his son's grave, James D. Bond.   John P. Bond was, as far as I can tell, the oldest half-brother of Charles Bond.  Both were sons of William W. Bond, John by a first wife who is unknown, and Charles by the second wife Janetta Neighbors.  

 On the 1850 census, William W. and wife Janetta (spelled variously as Ganetta, Jennetter, and many other ways) were living in Dade County, with four children from his first wife: John P., Jane, Moses, and Martha.  Children from his marriage to Janetta were: William T., Benjamin, Charles H., George W., and Johnston.  I find it interesting that our grandfather, Benjamin Moses Bond, was named after two of his father's brothers.  I have never been able to find anything on the first family except John P. Bond and his family.  Of the second family, William T. Bond is buried in Hilger Cemetery, as well as his brother Charles and mother Janetta and other Bond and Neighbors/Nabors relatives. 

John B. Bond was a First Lieutenant in the Army for the Confederacy, Company F, 34th Georgia Volunteer Infantry, Army of Tennessee.  He was born 1838 and died 1894.

I was hoping I'd find the family of Charles Bond's mother, Janetta Neighbors, but I found no Neighbors graves.  Benjamin Neighbors, who Charles' brother Benjamin was probably named after, and who I believe to be Janetta's father, lived in Dade County at the same time as the Bonds.  There are a lot of old gravestones, and many of them are broken and in very poor condition.   Some are buried under a lot of brush, and I started wading through to the back of the cemetery, but the heavy undergrowth discouraged me.   Here's a photo of a gravestone that is buried under a tree in a lot of brush.  I couldn't get close enough to read the engraving.   Generally, the cemetery is very well cared for, but it's obvious this area gets a lot of rain and a lot of growth and it would probably be a full-time job keeping these old stones readable.   You can barely see the gravestone in the middle of this photo.

I'll be working to determine if there are other family members buried in Sarah's Chapel Cemetery.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Great Grandmother Susana J. Markham Bond

I’ve spent quite a lot of time working on identifying the family of Susana J. Markham. The 1860 census, the only instance where I find her with a birth family, shows her name as Sus. J. Markham, living with parents Carter Markham and wife Lucinda (Thompson). Both my mother and Aunt Jackie remember her name as Mary Markham, and were quite adamant about that. I don't know where the Mary came from, maybe a nickname. However, Susana Markham Bond died before either was born, so maybe they were remembering someone else.

Scott Markham, who lived either with or next to our Bond family, was a mystery person to me for quite a long time, but helped me pinpoint the family of Carter Markham. Scott is shown on the 1900 census in Fannin County, TX living with Charles Bond and wife Martha, and is listed as nephew, although technically he was neither person’s nephew.   Our Benjamin M. Bond family is there also, with daughter Grace.

It wasn’t until death certificates from Texas became available online that I pinpointed Scott's father as John T. Markham, brother of Susana, and son of Carter Markham and Lucinda Thompson. Interesting, both Scott and Charles Bond married ladies from the Nichols family, which is probably a large part of why they stayed in close contact. In 1910 they are next to each other in Johnston County, Oklahoma, along with other Bond, Timmons and Markham families. By 1920 they were back in Texas, living in Burkburnett County, Texas. His name is sometimes listed as G.S. Markham, and other times J. S. Markham, but his wife’s name, Fenette (?), stays nearly the same, though she gave information for his death certificate as Janette Nichols Markham.  Those census takers weren't exactly fussy about getting spellings, or even names, correct.

Susana’s gravestone in the Bond family plot, Hilger Cemetery, Fannin County, Texas, where her husband and other family members are buried, shows her simply as S.J. Markham. On their son’s death certificate (Marvin Claude Bond) his mother’s name is listed as Susana Markham. She died on February 20, 1892. I’d still love to know what the J stands for. Maybe my mother’s name: Josephine? And maybe, just maybe, there's someone out there with a photograph of Susana Markham.  Wouldn't that be grand?

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Cousins in Burkburnett, Texas

Long ago, at least for us, our Great Grandfather Charles Bond lived in Burkburnett with his first wife's nephew, Scott Markham.   In 1920, they lived at 506 6th Street in Burkburnett where they were renting a  house. Charles Bond's death certificate in 1922 lists his residence as Burkburnett, though he died and is buried in Fannin County, Texas.  Although oil was first discovered in 1912, it wasn't until the 1918 find that Burkburnett became a boom town.  The 1940 move "Boom Town" with Clark Gable and Spencer Tracy was inspired by the Burkburnett story.  Below are some photos to give you an idea of what Burkburnett looked like in 1919.  Click on the images to enlarge.  Next post will go in to some more history about our Gr-Grandfather Bond and Gr-Grandmother Susana Markham families.

Both photos were taken c. 1919 and are from the Library of Congress site which indicates no known restrictions to their use.   Several things struck me about these images:  one was the location of oil rigs right next to the homes, and the second was the large number of rigs.   Couldn't get away with that today, could we? You can also see flares where the distillate is burned off.   Must have been fun keeping house.  Must have smelled lovely, too, or maybe they just thought of it as the fine "smell of money being made."