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Strange that…

two  young women from two different lines of a family could be classmates at college in 1913.

Miss Eulalia Kerby and Miss  Sarah LUTIE Murray were both in the Freshman class at State Normal College in Florence in 1913.

Here is part of the list of freshmen for that class:

Photo of freshman class in year 1913

There is a list of students in the Freshman class of 1913 at State Normal School and this photo. There were no names attached to identify what names match which person.

List of some of the freshman class 1913

Small world.

Sometimes you find family history in unexpected places…

and this is one case.  The photograph below represents the third grade class at Brandon School in 1911. Miss Coplan was the teacher. The students in the photograph are named as follows:

First row:Hamer Gamble, Theo Wilks, Oscar Hardiman, Paul Trammel, John Smith,
Clyde Cole, Paul Faulkner

Second row: Daisy Kirby, Teresa Johnson, Ethel Kirby,
Gertrude Trammel, Mae Rickard, Alma Nichols, Gertrude Cole, Audrey McKinnley,
Ethel Ray, Elsie Ray, Colina Bevis

Third row: Alvin Landrum, Charlie Freeman, unknown, Ray Harris, Hoarse Kirby, Ann Laura Hale, Miss Coplan, Maud Tucker, Leslie Patterson, unknown, Susie Adams

Three of the Kerby children are shown in this photo: Daisy Kerby, Ethel Kerby and Horace Kerby, but of course the names were spelled incorrectly.

Photo of 1911 third grade Brandon School students

Life becomes a little confusing, however, because the first photo is named the 3rd Grade Class, but the second photo, below, is named the 5th Grade Class. Horace Kerby is pictured in both. He looks to be an age more closely aligned with 5th than 3rd grade. As with his ancestors, he became a painter by trade.

Photo of 1911 5th grade class at Brandon School

The names stated for the students in Miss Mary Milner’s fifth grade class were:

First row: Kilburn Faulkner, Edward N James, Audrey McKinney, Clayton White, May Anderton,  Annie Phillips, Katie Hewitt

Second row: Salone White, Louie Cole, Odie Ramsey, Theo Wilkes, Jesse F  Eastep,
Pink Gamble, Albert Douglass and Horace Kirby. Miss Mary Milner, teacher, is
not pictured.

The Acqueduct on the Muscle Shoals canal…

is the subject of this 1913 photograph.

acqueduct 1913


Are there any photos of the old Hotel…

near Margerum? At one time Riverton was a thriving little community and there was more to the neighboring communities like Margerum than exists today. This is a photo of what used to be the old Post Office but at the time of this photo it was used as an asphalt and limestone company.
Old Margerum Post Office Building

An old photograph…

do you recognize anyone in this photo from 1976?

UNA 1976

A 1976 photo of the Sociology Club at UNA in the Diorama. Pictured:

Row 1 or two at bottom of photo are:  Joe Priester, Mark Sherer

Row 2:  Keith Bramlett, Anita Creekmore, Ann Matthews

Row 3: Dr Hassan Abul-Hadi, Debbie Brust, Dr Jerry Miley, Pat Moore, Billy T Lindsey, Gregg Sutherland, Denise Watts, and ME.

I am sure that Hadi had his doctorate because we always referred to him as Dr Hadi. Dr Hadi’s wife was my daughter’s fifth grade teacher; she was a lovely lady and an excellent teacher.  Dr Hadi stated to the class that he had to go back to Palestine to arrange his sister’s wedding (I presume his Dad was deceased). I asked him did his sister get to arrange his wedding. He evaded the question.

Dr. Miley was a soft-spoken guy and my thoughts of him was that he was a very nice man. Billy T Lindsey’s wife taught at Colbert Heights Elementary. He earned a doctorate after this class. I was shocked to see him as part of gospel quartet when I attended a 4th of July or Labor Day event at Spring Park. He was the lead singer and his voice rivaled Pavarotti, in my humble opinion. His group reminded me of the gospel groups that my grandmother loved so much when I was a child. Could someone post the name of his gospel group?

Dr Lindsey was a really nice man and good Professor. There were a small group of prima donnas in one class that chose to come in late and sit in the far corner away from the rest of the class. Dr Lindsey asked them to move into the class group, but they just sat there and looked stupid. He suggested it several times and one of the girls asked WHY? And Dr Lindsey said because I am the teacher and I am telling you to, that is why. That was the first time I had ever seen students rude to someone who was the keeper of their grades.  Smart girls.


1976 University of North Alabama Social Work Club

Social Work Club 1976 UNA

Elmo Tolbert World War II enlistment record…

U.S. World War II Army Enlistment Records, 1938-1946 about Elmo Tolbert

Name: Elmo Tolbert
Birth Year: 1924
Race: White, citizen (White)
Nativity State or Country: Alabama
State of Residence: Alabama
County or City: Lawrence
Enlistment Date: 21 Feb 1945
Enlistment State: Alabama
Enlistment City: Fort McClellan
Branch: No branch assignment
Branch Code: No branch assignment
Grade: Private
Grade Code: Private
Term of Enlistment: Enlistment for the duration of the War or other emergency, plus six months, subject to the discretion of the President or otherwise according to law
Component: Selectees (Enlisted Men)
Source: Civil Life
Education: Grammar school
Civil Occupation: General farmers
Marital Status: Married [to Georgie Marie Peebles]
Height: 00
Weight: 100

Roy Peebles World War II enlistment record…

Roy was a son of James Walter Peebles and May Belle Owens Peebles. James Walter Peebles was a brother to George Washington Peebles (Mage). His brothers who also enlisted were Ell and Grant Peebles.

U.S. World War II Army Enlistment Records, 1938-1946 about Roy Peebles

Name: Roy Peebles
Birth Year: 1916
Race: White, citizen (White)
Nativity State or Country: Alabama
State of Residence: Alabama
County or City: Lawrence
Enlistment Date: 27 Feb 1941
Enlistment State: Alabama
Enlistment City: Fort McClellan
Branch: Branch Immaterial – Warrant Officers, USA
Branch Code: Branch Immaterial – Warrant Officers, USA
Grade: Private
Grade Code: Private
Component: Selectees (Enlisted Men)
Source: Civil Life
Education: Grammar school
Civil Occupation: Farm hands, general farms
Marital Status: Single, without dependents
Height: 68
Weight: 156
Related articles

Ell Peebles World War II enlistment record…

Ell was a son of James Walter Peebles who was a son of George Henry Peebles (Grandpa Dick) and brother to George Washington Peebles (Mage).

U.S. World War II Army Enlistment Records, 1938-1946 about Ell Peebles

Name: Ell Peebles
Birth Year: 1924
Race: White, citizen (White)
Nativity State or Country: Alabama
State of Residence: Alabama
County or City: Lawrence
Enlistment Date: 9 Jan 1943
Enlistment State: Alabama
Enlistment City: Fort McClellan
Branch: Branch Immaterial – Warrant Officers, USA
Branch Code: Branch Immaterial – Warrant Officers, USA
Grade: Private
Grade Code: Private
Term of Enlistment: Enlistment for the duration of the War or other emergency, plus six months, subject to the discretion of the President or otherwise according to law
Component: Selectees (Enlisted Men)
Source: Civil Life
Education: 1 year of high school
Civil Occupation: Semiskilled occupations in production of industrial chemicals
Marital Status: Single, with dependents
Height: 71
Weight: 164
Related articles

Sidney GRANT Peebles’ World War II enlistment record…

U.S. World War II Army Enlistment Records, 1938-1946 about Sidney G Peebles

Name: Sidney G Peebles
Birth Year: 1911
Race: White, citizen (White)
Nativity State or Country: Alabama
State of Residence: Alabama
County or City: Lawrence
Enlistment Date: 31 Mar 1944
Enlistment State: Georgia
Enlistment City: Fort Mcpherson Atlanta
Branch: No branch assignment
Branch Code: No branch assignment
Grade: Private
Grade Code: Private
Term of Enlistment: Enlistment for the duration of the War or other emergency, plus six months, subject to the discretion of the President or otherwise according to law
Component: Selectees (Enlisted Men)
Source: Civil Life
Education: 1 year of high school
Civil Occupation: Skilled warehousing, storekeeping, handling, loading, unloading, and related occupations, n.e.c.
Marital Status: Married
Height: 66
Weight: 166

Luke Willis Peebles World War II enlistment record…

Name: Luke W Peebles
Birth Year: 1922
Race: White, citizen (White)
Nativity State or Country: Alabama
State of Residence: Alabama
County or City: Lawrence
Enlistment Date: 6 Dec 1945
Branch: Air Corps
Branch Code: Air Corps
Grade: Private First Class
Grade Code: Private First Class
Term of Enlistment: Enlistment for Hawaiian Department
Component: Regular Army (including Officers, Nurses, Warrant Officers, and Enlisted Men)
Source: Enlisted Man, Philippine Scout or recall to AD of an enlisted man who had been transferred to the ERC
Education: Grammar school
Civil Occupation: Barn bosses
Marital Status: Married
Height: 07
Weight: 636

Luther Coleman Peebles World War II Enlistment Record…

Name: Luther C Peebles
Birth Year: 1912
Race: White, citizen (White)
Nativity State or Country: Alabama
State of Residence: Alabama
County or City: Colbert
Enlistment Date: 14 Mar 1942
Enlistment State: Georgia
Enlistment City: Fort Mcpherson Atlanta
Branch: Branch Immaterial – Warrant Officers, USA
Branch Code: Branch Immaterial – Warrant Officers, USA
Grade: Private
Grade Code: Private
Term of Enlistment: Enlistment for the duration of the War or other emergency, plus six months, subject to the discretion of the President or otherwise according to law
Component: Selectees (Enlisted Men)
Source: Civil Life
Education: Grammar school
Civil Occupation: Farm hands, general farms
Marital Status: Married
Height: 69
Weight: 140

Elmer Louis Peebles World War II Enlistment record…

but I do not think his height was 99″ or his weight was 996 lbs. There is some serious transcription error here.

U.S. World War II Army Enlistment Records, 1938-1946 about Elmer L Peebles

Name: Elmer L Peebles
Birth Year: 1909
Race: White, citizen (White)
Nativity State or Country: Alabama
State of Residence: Alabama
County or City: Lawrence
Enlistment Date: 10 Jun 1943
Enlistment State: Alabama
Enlistment City: Fort McClellan
Branch: No branch assignment
Branch Code: No branch assignment
Grade: Private
Grade Code: Private
Term of Enlistment: Enlistment for the duration of the War or other emergency, plus six months, subject to the discretion of the President or otherwise according to law
Component: Selectees (Enlisted Men)
Source: Civil Life
Education: Grammar school
Civil Occupation: Farm hands, general farms
Marital Status: Married
Height: 99
Weight: 996

World War II enlistment record for James Arlander Murray…

U.S. World War II Army Enlistment Records, 1938-1946 about James A Murray

Name: James A Murray
Birth Year: 1923 [he was born in 1924]
Race: White, citizen (White)
Nativity State or Country: Alabama
State of Residence: Alabama
County or City: Colbert
Enlistment Date: 12 Feb 1942
Enlistment State: Georgia
Enlistment City: Fort Oglethorpe
Branch: Branch Immaterial – Warrant Officers, USA
Branch Code: Branch Immaterial – Warrant Officers, USA
Grade: Private
Grade Code: Private
Term of Enlistment: Enlistment for the duration of the War or other emergency, plus six months, subject to the discretion of the President or otherwise according to law
Component: Army of the United States – includes the following: Voluntary enlistments effective December 8, 1941 and thereafter; One year enlistments of National Guardsman whose State enlistment expires while in the Federal Service; Officers appointed in the Army of
Source: Civil Life
Education: 1 year of high school
Civil Occupation: Semiskilled welders and flame cutters
Marital Status: Single, without dependents
Height: 67
Weight: 140

The obituary for Armour Pritchett Barron’s brother…

James (Jim) Pritchett

Funeral services for Jim Pritchett, 24, who died with pneumonia Saturday, April 4, 1931, at a naval hospital at Hampton Roads, Va., where he was an Aviation Machinist Mate 3rd Class, U.S. Navy.

The young man was stricken with pneumonia and succumbed before his father, M.E. Pritchett, reached his bedside. Mr. Pritchett accompanied the body to Linden Wednesday, where burial services were conducted at the Old Linden Cemetery by the Rev. J.C. Phares.

The deceased was a member of the Linden Baptist Church. Active pall bearers were three brothers-in-law, Messrs. Eugene Wynne, John Perkins, Thurston Barron and three boyhood friends, Kimbrough Baty, John Love Wade and Jack Barley.

Surviving besides his father, M.E. Pritchett, and a step-mother, Mrs M. E. Pritchett are two brothers, “Toby” Pritchett of Hampton Roads, Va. and Ev Pritchett of Linden; five sisters, Mrs John Perkins of Anniston, Mrs. Eugene Wynne of Theodore, Ala., Mrs. Thurston Barron of Gadsden, Ala. and Misses Toinette and Tolitha Pritchett of Linden; a half sister, Mary Elizabeth Pritchett,and three half brothers, William Clarence, Henry McDaniel, and Wallace Pritchett of Linden; a grandfather, Mr. James Pritchett of Boligee.

Source: Mrs. G.W.Cuninghame’s (Miss Evie’s) old scrapbookfrom the early 1900s.

Hood Cemetery, where are you?

Looking down Union Avenue. Memphis, TN

English: Looking down Union Avenue. Memphis, Tennessee. Lange, Dorothea, photographer. CREATED/PUBLISHED 1937 June. NOTES Title and other information from caption card.

This was the question on my mind for a number of decades. I knew some of my Vandiver family had been buried in Hood Cemetery and had spent considerable time researching for it. I had the information that included Hood Cemetery, near Warren. It was quite the goose chase.

I finally found it when I asked Aunt Gene Murray Slaton where her grandparents were buried. She was a little over ninety years of age at the time. She was alert and sassy. She still drove and she liked speed. I admired her. Aunt Gene died in April of 2008 at the age of 98.

Alrighty then, it was Hood Cemetery also known as Feathers Chapel Cemetery, near Warren. But this Warren was in Tennessee.

Tyree Glass and Mary Vandiver Glass moved to Somerville, Tennessee as he was a railroad man and he went there to work at the railway station or on the railroad trains. He had worked at the Tuscumbia railway station and then at the Decatur railway station before moving to Somerville to work on the railway station in Memphis. You just must read the article about Tyree Glass and his first wife; a link to this article is at the end of this writing. It is a fascinating read. Mary Vandiver was his second wife.

They took my great-great-grandparents on my father’s side with them. The family had lived at Stouts and Saints Crossroads in what was Franklin County but is now Colbert County for almost forever. Ryland O’Bannon Vandiver was known as Riley Vandiver and his name is sometimes given as Ryland Bannon Vandiver.  Matilda Clementine Allen Vandiver was called Clemmie. Along with the Glasses came Riley and Clemmie Vandiver’s  youngest daughter Walker Vandiver. They resided in Somerville, Fayette County, Tennessee, not far from Memphis where the railroad was located.

I had always felt a lonley twinge in my heart about Miss Walker Vandiver and Miss Evaline Casey. Walker Vandiver was on my paternal side of the family and Evaline Casey was on my maternal side. Neither ever married, and that would seem to make for a very lonely life. Neither have a marked grave. Neither have much to document that they ever lived and breathed the air God provides to everyone.

There were three daughters born to Riley and Clemmie Vandiver. There was daughter Mary E Vandiver who married Robert TYREE Glass as his second wife. There was daughter Minnie E Vandiver who married Sidney NEWT Hunter.  [Newt Hunter's father Ambrose D Hunter served in Co K of the 35th Alabama Regiment during the War Between the States] And there was Lou Ella Vandiver, beautiful Lou Ella Vandiver who married Levi Murray. They were my paternal great-grandparents.

There is one photo of Evaline Casey and mother gave me a good description of her before she left us in 2007. But no one ever shared any information about Miss Walker Vandiver. Walker Riley Vandiver, the youngest daughter of Riley and Clemmie Vandiver lived with her parents all her life and removed to Somerville, Tennessee with them and her sister and brother-in-law. There she lived. There she died. It was just this day that I discovered a tidbit of information about her.

That information came in the form of her death certificate. A copy will follow below. It gave her whole name as Walker Riley Vandiver. It could be supposed that they gave her the Riley name after her father and that there were no sons, but there is no way to know where the Walker name originated. There was a mistake on the death certificate as it states that her mother was Matilda Hurst. Well, it is just a little mistaken since that was not her maiden name. Her maiden name was Matilda Clementine Allen. Her first marriage was to a Hurst. It has not been ascertained what his first name may have been as there are several who could fit in that spot as far as the little information goes to date. It is believed that he was killed during the War Between the States or died shortly after. She had two sons by the Hurst husband, John H Hurst and Arthur Hurst. Matilda or Clemmie as family called her, secondly married to Riley Vandiver.

Rest in peace Miss Walker Riley Vandiver. She died in Somerville, Tennessee and lies at rest at the head of the gravemarker for her parents at the Feathers Chapel Cemetery near Warren in Fayette County, Tennessee. The cemetery is just a pleasant drive from the Shoals area. There is not even a bump now where her body was placed. It is like she never existed.  No pictures. No stories. No memories except for those like me who are willing to turn over heaven and earth to know their family. But, wait, the saddest part will come at the end with the photos of Riley and Clemmie Vandiver’s gravemarkers that are the only thing that would indicate where Miss Walker Riley Vandiver is buried.

Miss Walker Riley Vandiver's death record.

Miss Walker Riley Vandiver’s death record.

Walker Vandiver was born in Franklin, now Colbert County, Alabama in the Saints Crossroads community in January of 1880. She moved with her parents and sister’s family to Somerville, Fayette County, Tennessee after 1910. She never married. She died 9 April 1946 in the community of Warren in Fayette County, Tennessee. She is buried on the ‘Vandiver” side of her parents’ gravemarker in Hood Cemetery in the Feathers Chapel community of Fayette County, Tennessee. She lies in an unmarked grave.The following photos are of the gravemarkers for Riley and Clemmie Vandiver at Feathers Chapel aka Hood Cemetery near Warren, Tennessee. The first time I visited there was with my aunt Alice Murray Thompson and Sue Murray Burden. The markers were in very bad shape at that time. The material they were made from was  not granite as it may have been sold as, and was crumbling from the bottom in the elements. The second time I visited there and took these photos, the deterioration was even more concerning. Chunks of the gravemarkers were gone. And all those who would have cared and taken care of repair or replacement are gone now. Sad. Sigh.

Photo of gravemarker for Riley and Clemmie Vandiver 76799175_131649593514

Miss Walker Riley Vandiver who died 9 April 1946 is buried on this side of her parents’ gravemarker in an unmarked grave.

Related articles: A tragedy, a tragedy…

This pdf file of Samuel Pleasant Box’s Revolutionary War…

documents goes with the previous writing about the two Samuel Pleasant Boxes entitled “It is a small world…”.

Petition file of Samuel Box

It is a small world after all…

and who in the world would have thought that the Peebles and Box connected families would both have had at least one relative to venture to Siloam Springs, Benton County, Arkansas?

Below is a Family Group Chart for the family of Samuel Pleasant Box, Jr. He was the son of Samuel Pleasant Box, Sr (and Mary “Polly” Pannell) who was a son of John Hatters M Box.

Husband: Samuel Pleasant BOX

   Born: 18 AUG 1789      at: ,Anson Co.,NC  
Married:  9 JUN 1814      at: ,Grainger Co.,TN  
   Died: 19 FEB 1873      at: ,Polk Co.,MO  
        Other Spouses:

   Wife: Jemima MURPHY

   Born: ABT    1797      at: TN,or,NC  
   Died: 12 JUL 1869      at: ,Polk Co.,MO  
 Father:William MURPHY
 Mother:Nancy HORNBECK
        Other Spouses:


   Name: Pleasant Miles BOX
   Born: ABT    1818      at: ,Grainger Co.,TN  
Married:                  at:   
   Died: 30 JUN 1896      at: ,Christian Co.,MO  
Spouses: Rebecca NORTHERN

   Name: Elizabeth Ann BOX
   Born: 16 APR 1820      at: ,,TN  
Married: 28 MAR 1841      at: ,Polk Co.,MO  
   Died:  2 AUG 1888      at: ,Polk Co.,MO  
Spouses: David BROCKUS

   Name: Daniel Renfro BOX
   Born:  9 OCT 1821      at: ,Jefferson Co.,TN  
Married: 11 SEP 1838      at:   
   Died: 14 JAN 1909      at: Eudora,Polk Co.,MO  
Spouses: Parthena MCGEE

   Name: William Pinckney BOX
   Born:  1 AUG 1825      at: ,,TN  
Married: 24 MAR 1844      at: ,Polk Co.,MO  
   Died:  2 JAN 1905      at: Siloam Springs,Benton Co.,AR  
Spouses: Hannah CANTWELL

   Name: Nancy BOX
   Born: ABT    1831      at: ,,IN  
Married:  2 JUN 1850      at: ,Polk Co.,MO  
   Died:                  at:   
Spouses: Caswell BOX

   Name: Jane BOX
   Born: 19 JUN 1833      at: ,,TN  
Married: BEF    1860      at: ,Polk Co.,MO  
   Died:  5 DEC 1915      at: ,Polk Co.,MO  
Spouses: James Van WAGNOR

Name: Margaret Adeline BOX Born: ABT 1838 at: ,,TN Married: at: Died: 1 JUL 1862 at: Polk Co.,MO Spouses: __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Samuel Pleasant Box, Sr served in some of the most important battles, and it would seem served under the “Swamp Fox”: Gen. Francis Marion, during the Revolutionary War. His service was noted in the South Carolina roster on page 89. The entry documenting his service reads as follows:

Box, Samuel          S3015
B. 1745, Orange District, S. C. While residing in Orange District, he was drafted during 1776 under Capt. Sanders and Col. Moultrie and was in the battle at Fort Moultrie. In 1779, he was drafted under Col. Moultrie and Gen. Lincoln. He was taken prisoner in the fall of Charleston and held twenty-two days. Afterwards, he was drafted under Col. Maitland and was in the battle at Stono. Thereafter, he was under Capt. Elliott and Gen. Marion and was in several skirmishes. (Moved to N. C. and Tenn.)

Fort Moultrie

Fort Moultrie in South Carolina, the sight of the Battle of Fort Moultrie that Samuel P Box, Sr. fought in during the Revolutionary War.

Battle of Fort Moultrie

Depiction of the Battle of Fort Moultrie that Samuel Pleasant Box, Sr fought in during the Revolutionary War.

Samuel Pleaseant Box, Jr’s father-in-law has a storied past in service to his country as well. William Murphy (DANIEL RICHARD2, WILLIAM1) was born March 31, 1760 in Warsborough, North Carolina, and died August 15, 1850 in Polk County, Missouri.   He married Nancy Ann Hornbeak, daughter of John and Jane Hornbeak. She was born February 28, 1765 in Anson County, North Carolina, and died March 10, 1833 in Jefferson County, Tennessee.William Murphy has a Commemorative Plaque placed by the DAR at his grave in the Enon Cemetery southwest of Bolivar, Missouri. He was the son of Daniel Murphy and nephew of the famous “Murphy Boys of Virginia.” The famed Murphy Boys were  Joseph and William Murphy who were jailed in Virginia for preaching the Gospel without the sanction of the Church of England. William Murphy served in the Revolutionary War, He resided in East Tennessee in 1782 with wife’s parents and in 1841 In lived in Missouri with Samuel Box (Jr). William received a Pension for his service in the Revolutionary War. He can be found on the TN Pension Roll of 1835. His pension was transferred from Tennessee and he can be found on the Missouri Agency Rolls 27 October 1841.

Samuel Pleasant, Jr’s father served with with great valor during the Revolutionary War. Samuel Pleasant Box, Sr  was like most plantation owners in South Carolina. They fought in the Revolutionary War when needed and went back home to work their farms, until needed again.

Samuel Box was first drafted in June 28, 1776 to serve under Captain Sanders and Colonel William Moultrie. Colonel Moultrie had built a fort on Sullivan Island in front on the harbor at Charleston, South Carolina. British Commodore Sir Peter Parker’s flagship led the attack with nine other warships. Under heavy attack from the South Carolina troops the British finally gave up and left the action. General William Moultrie later became a governor of the state of South Carolina.

Samuel Pleasant Box, Sr’s next enlistment was in early 1779, again under Colonel Moultrie and General Lincoln. This battle was a raid by the British troops to test the defenses for the City of Charleston. The British troops retreated but Samuel Box was captured and held as a prisoner of war for 22 days.

Samuel’s next battle took place during a British retreat from an abortive raid on Charleston. Samuel was under the command of Lieutenant Colonel John Maitland and their orders were to cover the rear guard at Stono Ferry. General Benjamin Lincoln lead the main attack and Colonel Moultrie led a smaller secondary attack to stop British troops coming in from Johns Island.

The British troops also included Scottish Highlanders and German Hessian troops, but the battle began well for the Americans. The Scottish Highlander’s two companies resisted until only 11 men were left standing. A German Hessian battalion finally broke and fled. Maitland shifted his forces in an attempt to counter a larger British threat, when the Hessians rallied and returned to the fight. The British then sent up more reserves and General Lincoln chose at this time to withdraw. The American loss was 146 men killed and wounded with 150 men captured. Among the dead was Hugh Jackson, brother of Andrew Jackson.

The balance of the war Samuel served mostly under Captain Elliott who was under General Francis Marion ” The Swamp Fox “. General Marion’s lighting fast raids drove the British Army crazy. Marion’s men were the most feared and the most hunted by the British in South Carolina.

1814 marriage bond for Samuel Pleasant Box, Jr and Jemima Murphy

1814 Marriage Bond

Samuel Pleasant Box, Jr. was born 18 August 1789 in Orange County, North Carolina. In 1814 he married Jemima Murphy as the first marriage bond in the photo above indicates. The 1818 marriage bond is to Catherine   , but Jemima Box did not die until 1869, so it is uncertain who the Samuel Box may have been on that bond. He died 19 February 1873 in Polk County, Missouri. Samuel Pleasant Box, Jr. is buried at Mount Gilead Cemetery, Bolivar, Polk County, Missouri. His wife, Jemima Murphy Box and a number of his close relatives are also laid to rest there.

Chepultepec was where there were Boxes…

but they do not seem to be but few of them there now.

Chepultepec, located less than forty-five miles northeast of Birmingham, was in Blount, County, Alabama. The name has long since been changed to Allgood and is less than five miles from Oneonta, Alabama.

This story article will give a little information on one of the sons of John Hatter M Box. This son, Milton Asbury Box, was born on 9 Mar 1841 and died 11 Feb 1918 in Chepultepec, Blount, Alabama.  His obituary reads:

Photo of Milton Asbury Box's grave marker

Co I 49 AL Inf, CSA Milton Asbury Box first entered the service as a private 22 Aug 1862 at Chepultepec, Alabama. Continued until 15 May 1865. Milton Box, one of Blount’s oldest citizens, died at his home near Allgood, Monday. Mr. Box was 76 years of age and was a member of the Methodist Church. He spent nearly all his life in the community where he died. The deceased is survived by one son L. W. Box. The funeral was held Monday and was conducted by Rev. W. L. Hendrix. [Southern Democrat, Thursday, February 14, 1918]   Burial: Shiloh Cemetery Chepultepec, Blount County, Alabama, USA

Milton did not marry until age 44. He married a Mary Margaret whose maiden name is not yet known. He was a widower at the time of his death.  He was a farmer by trade. His father, John Hatters Box was born in South Carolina and his mother Jennie Stovall Box was born in Virginia. The son mentioned in his obituary was Luther Worth Box.

Luther Worth Box

Luther Worth Box lived to be 89 years old. He was born 18 Sep 1886 and died  30 July 1976 in Oneonta, Blount County, Alabama. Luther W Box married Nancy C Vaughan 1886 – 1976, and they had the following children: Leonard Leroy Box 1915 – 1952, Clarence Milton Box 1919-1981 , Clyde E Box 1920 – 1997 and Gordon Luther Box 1922

Luther and Nancy Box’s youngest son, Gordon Luther Box, entered service in the Army during World War II at age 20 on 3 October 1942 at Fort McClellan, Alabama. By age twenty-two he was killed in action. His death occurred 18 Nov 1944. He had only completed grammar school at the time of enlistment. He was single without dependents. He was 5’6″ tall and weighed 115 pounds. He served in the European Effort and was ranked as Private First Class at the time of his death. His gravemarker at Oak Hill Cemetery, in Oneonta has an inscription: “Killed in Service”.

Luther and Nancy Box’s son Clyde Earcy Box, Sr. served as a S2 in the U S Navy during World War II.  He is also buried at Oak Hill Cemetery.

Son Clarence Milton Box died 17 December 1981 in Maylene, Jefferson County, Alabama. He, too, served in the Army during World War II having enlisted 12 Feb 1942. His release date was 20 September 1945.

Their son Leonard Leroy Box’s obituary was in the Birmingham News 29. 1952 on page 35.  He had lived in Fairfield, Jefferson County, Alabama. When he died he was but 38 years old.

So far away but so near in function…

were the kitchens of the plantations in our area of northern Alabama. Or at least the Pond Springs Plantation and the Cunningham Plantation seemed very far from each other in the horse and buggy days. One commonalty of the two plantation homes were their kitchens.

Pond Springs Plantation,  also known as the Joseph Wheeler Home, Hillsboro, Lawrence County, Alabama

The three houses now on the property include a dogtrot or double log cabin possibly built before 1818, a somewhat later two-story Federal-style house (1830’s), and the main wing built around 1872.

This photograph by Alex Bush, 1935 shows the kitchen at Pond Springs located in Lawrence County, Alabama in the Wheeler Basin community was typical of the kitchens of many plantations. Pond Springs originally was owned by the Hickmans who apparently sold their interest in the plantation, known as Pond Spring, to Colonel Benjamin Sherrod, partner in the initial kitchen at pond springspurchase of the property.

Colonel Sherrod was born in Halifax County, NC, migrated first to Georgia, then about 1818 settled in Alabama where he established several cotton plantations throughout the Tennessee River Valley. Sherrod’s own home, Cotton Garden, was located north of the nearby town of Courtland, and it appears that his eldest son, Felix, and his family lived at the Pond Spring place.

The owner of more than 300 slaves, Benjamin Sherrod was an early Alabama tycoon, with extensive and varied business interests. He also served as chief promoter and stockholder of the Tuscumbia, Courtland, and Decatur Railroad, one of the earliest west of the Appalachians.

The Pond Spring plantation passed from Sherrod’s son, Felix, to a grandson, also named Benjamin Sherrod. In 1859, Benjamin married Daniella Jones of nearby Caledonia plantation, and at the time of his premature death in 1861, the plantation became Daniella’s. Daniella (known as Ella) Jones Sherrod, born in 1841,  was the daughter of Richard Harrison Jones and his wife, Lucy Early, who was the daughter of Georgia Governor Peter Early. The Jones family had moved from Georgia to Alabama in 1822.

After Benjamin Sherrod’s death, Daniella returned to her parents’ home. Caledonia, where in the fall of 1863, she met General Joseph Wheeler while he and his troops camped near the Jones home. They were married following the War in 1866. Wheeler moved his family to New Orleans after the War Between the States for four years, then relocated back at Pond Springs where they raised their family of children.

Cunningham Plantation, now known as Barton Hall, located near Cherokee in Colbert County, Alabama

This reproduction of a drawing by Harry J. Frahn, 1937 of the plan of the kitchen at the Cunningham Plantation in Colbert County, Alabama seems typical of plantation kitchens of that day.

Drawing of the kitchen of Cunningham Plantation.These kitchens both, at Pond Springs and at the Cunningham Plantation, include a bedroom, presumably for the cook and her family. Thus confined, the cook was never relieved from work as she faced constant demands from the main house. John White, a former slave from Texas who lived in a kitchen- quarter, remembered that his proximity to the Big House made him a frequent target of his owner’s temper.

English: Cunningham Plantation (Barton Hall), ...

Elvis has left…

the building in Sheffield, Alabama. The Sheffield Jaycees put on a show that featured Elvis Presley, Jim Ed and Maxine Brown and a two hour Louisiana Hayride Show at 8:00 pm on 19 January 1959. The Sheffield Community Center was the venue. Advance admission was a seventy-five cents for adults at the door, and fifty cents for children. Add a quarter to those admission prices for tickets at the door. Tickets went on sale at Palace Drugs in Tuscumbia, Smoke Shop Drugs in Sheffield, and Anderson News Stand in Florence.


Newspaper ad for Elvis concert in Sheffield AL in 1959

Memory lane is a sweet lane to travel down…

O'Neal Bridge - The Shoals, AL (Southern Bluff...

and sometimes pictures say it best. There is a group that is trying to restore the neon signs that were atop the Coca-Cola Bottling Company during my generations youth, before, and beyond. The Coca-Cola Bottling Company was as the crest of the hill just past O’Neal Bridge on Court Street in Florence for decades. It was across the street from the Holiday Inn. The Coca-Cola Bottling Company had a pair of neon signs that were the colors of their logo, red and white. The red bars on the neon signs would go up and down. The sequence of the lights caught the eye of those stopped at the nearby red light. They were memorable. Fragments of the memories of childhood, both the signs and the WOWL-TV owl sign across the street on the corner of the embankment at the Holiday Inn.

The neon signs were taken down and stored in 2004; as late as last year there were hopes that they could be restored and placed again on the streets of Florence, Alabama.  It is not known when the WOWL owl sign was taken down. One eye was a red light that signaled caution as there had been a fatality in the area; while the green light meant all was safe for the present. Both building have been torn down now. They were both iconic. Florence just is not the same.

Below are some of the photos of the signs and buildings:

Reproduction of WOWL sign Coca-Cola Bottling Company 1950s CocaCola Bottling Company in Florence Sign comes down in 2004 CocaCola Bottling Company view from Holiday Inn Coca Cola bottling plant 1975

After all these years…

this good buddy and fellow in combat is not forgotten.

His name was  William Roy Porter. Make that Sergeant William Roy Porter. He was born 13 July 1949 in New York state, likely in the city of Oneida in the county of Madison. His parents were Stanley H and Rosemary Porter. His siblings were: Sharon, Scott, and Kyle D Porter. Sharon L Porter married James H Wylie. They live in Penfield, Monroe County, New York. Their children are Mark and Susan.  Kyle D Porter, the younger sister, married Michael Richard Comstedt. They lived in Colorado in 2011.

Photo of Scott Stanley PorterThe last of the two brothers, Scott Stanley Porter was born 11 November 1951 in New York. Likely he was born in Oneida, New York. His death occurred 17 May 2011. He died in Sacramento, California but is buried in the same cemetery as his brother, Saint Helenas Cemetery in Oneida, Madison County, New York. The bulk of the text of his obituary published in The Oneida Daily Dispatch on 15  June  2011 reads:

Scott Stanley Porter, age 59, died peacefully on Tuesday, May 17, 2011 in Sacramento, Calif. after a long illness.
Scott graduated from V.V.S. Central School in 1969 and from Cobleskill Community College in 1971 where he received an associate’s degree.
He worked for Pan Am and United Airlines his entire life and retired in 2008.
Scott enjoyed traveling, cooking and drawing.
Surviving are his parents, Stanley and Rosemary Porter of Oneida; sisters, Sharon (James) Wylie, of Penfield, Kyle (Michael) Comstedt of Louisville, Colo.; nephews, Mark (Jen) Wylie, Christopher Wood and Chad Porter; nieces, Susan (Bryan) Gardner and Stacy Wood; one great-niece, Kailey Gardner and one great-nephew, Andrew Gardner; several uncles, aunts and many cousins.
Scott was predeceased by his brother, Sergeant William (Bill) Porter.
Family and friends are invited to attend a Mass of Christian burial to be held on Saturday, June 18, 2011 at 10 a.m. in St. Helena’s Church, Primo Ave., Sherrill. Burial will follow in St. Helena’s Cemetery, Middle Road, Oneida, N Y.

There is no further information on the eldest child, Sharon Wylie. The youngest sister, Kyle D Porter married Michael Richard Comstedt. Michael is a rather talented and renown chef.

An online search gave this review of Chef Michael: Michael Comstedt, C.E.C, C.C.E., Executive Chef & Board Member Now retired, Executive Chef Michael Comstedt brings more than 30 years of experience in hotels, restaurants, culinary competition and culinary education to Cook Street. After beginning his career with the Westin hotel chain, Chef Michael moved to Boulder in 1981, where he owned and operated the prestigious Greenbriar Inn for 15 years. Under his direction, the Greenbriar received the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence and the Mobil Travel Guide Four Star rating among other awards. A Certified Culinary Educator, Chef Michael was instrumental in the development and launch of the Professional Food & Wine Career Program at Cook Street. Chef Michael is a member of the American Culinary Federation (ACF) Accreditation Team which oversees educational accreditation at culinary schools across the country. He is also a Certified Executive Chef and a Sommelier.
Another online review dating back to 29 April 2001 was on – A Comprehensive Website for the Bison The text of the article reads:


Michael Comstedt is executive chef and school director of the Cook Street School of Fine Cooking , located in Denver’s charming lower downtown area.

At an early age , Comstedt was inspired to focus on the culinary arts by his grandfather , publisher of Restaurant News.He supplemented his high school experience with food service courses while working part time in the William Penn Hotel in Whittier, California. Comstedt studied food and beverage management , business , French , and art at Rio Hondo Junior College and Los Angeles City College.In addition to his college studies, Comstedt mastered his culinary skills at Café Figaro’s in West Hollywood.Through the American Culinary Federation, Comstedt was awarded a formal apprenticeship at the Westin Hotel’s flagship property ( The Century Plaza Hotel in Century City , California ) studying under Executive Chef Walter Roth.

As a team , Comstedt and Reynolds founded the Professional Culinary Arts Program at The Cooking School of the Rockies, which includes local schooling as well as international study in France.

So what does all this family information have to do with the price of eggs in Cambodia? It has a lot to do with one hero from my hometown, my own neighborhood, in Sheffield, Alabama, Bill Presley. You will find the interview I wrote about Harold Hovater and Bill Presley on this site; they were both soldiers in the conflict that America seems to have all but forgotten – the Vietnam Conflict. It was named that because the President never declared it a war, but war it was.  While serving in the conflict, Bill Presley made a new friend in the person of SGT William Roy Porter. Porter’s family called him Bill. They met during the war and became steadfast friends, but only for a brief span of time. The following is what I know about SGT William Roy “Bill” Porter.
Sgt Porter was born 13 July 1949 in New York, likely in Oneida in Madison County. Recently his father, Stanley H Porter, was listed as living in New York and being the age of 92 years-old. His mother was Rosemary; it is believed that her maiden name may have been Boyd. Young Porter’s tour start date in the military was 4 September 1969. He served in the Army of the United States as an Infantryman. His ID Number was 134401554. He ranked as Sergeant and his Grade at loss was E5.

William Roy Porter’s Unit was 3RD PLT,  A CO,  5TH BN,  60TH INFANTRY,  9TH INF DIV,  USARV. His life was cut short on the Incident and Casualty Date of 2 June 1970. His Age at Loss was a mere 20 years. The Incident  Location was in Cambodia, Province not reported. His death was considered a ground casualty under gun or small arms fire. He died outright in a Hostile environment. His body recovered.

Source: URL:  Data accessed:5/30/2013 

He was just a young boy when he met his demise. He and Bill Presley knew each other only a few short weeks, but Bill has not forgotten his friend yet. The online rubbing of his name on the Virtual Wall is to the left.

Sgt Porter’s final resting place would also become the same cemetery that his brother Scott would be laid to rest at in Oneida, Madison County, New York. The cemetery name is Saint Helenas.

Photo of the gravemarker for Sgt Wiliam Roy Porter

KIA in Vietnam Conflict in Cambodia.

Bill and Nelda Holloway Presley have made attempts to find Sgt Porter’s family. They thought they had come across the family in Georgia, but that was another Porter boy. This my friend, Bill, is the family of that young boy that died so needlessly so long ago. Enjoy.

And this is as close to a photo of Sgt Porter as I could get. It is a photo of the marker for his grave. But for the brave, we would not be free.


A little remembrance of the Korean War service men…

would be  nice this Memorial Day weekend. The men listed below are just some of the brave men from the Shoals area and surrounding areas that gave so that we and others might be free. They are among the many of:






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