The past is the present for future generations who do not know their history


An empty chair…

is the only visual memory of one brother. The sons of  William J “Billy” Norwood posed for a photograph in 1903. There were six of them, but one had died during the War Between the States. The seventh son was born and died in 1829.

William Mitchell “Billy” Norwood and wife Lucinda Larwood Norwood had seven sons and three daughters. Billy was born in South Carolina; by 1820 his family were residing in Giles County, Tennessee. He and Lucinda married 10 October 1825 in Lawrence County, Alabama. Their children were:  Nancy Ann Norwood 1827 – 1899, Son Norwood 1829 – 1829, William Mitchell Norwood 1831 – 1907, Charles Neil S. “Big Jobe” Norwood 1833 – 1862,  George Washington Norwood 1835 – 1923, Elizabeth Sarah Norwood 1838 – 1934,  Edmond Thomas “Tom” “Bud” Norwood 1840 – 1932, Mary Frances Tabitha “Tabby” Norwood 1843 – 1925, James Ambrose Wesley Norwood 1845 – 1931,  and Josiah Harris “Sye” Norwood 1850 – 1926.

It was “Big Jobe” who was missing from the photo with a lonely chair a symbol that he had not been forgotten. He was born 16 November 1834 and died 5 November 1862 in Murfreesboro, Rutherford County, Tennessee. He left a wife, Selena “Lena” Mason Garner Norwood 1840-1912,  and several children behind. Big Jobe’s children were: Jobe Garner Norwood 1856 – 1925, William R Norwood 1859 – 1908, Elmira J Norwood 1860 – 1866, and Lussey Lucy Norwood 1862 –  .

Gravemaker for Big Jobe Norwood photo by C NormanCharles N. S. “Big Jobe” Norwood served in the War Between the States  on the Confederates side as a  Private in Company C, 32nd Tennessee Infantry. He enlisted 1 December 1861 at Bridgeport, Alabama and was captured at Fort Donelson 16 February 1862, was exchanged and sent to Murfreesboro, Tennessee and died there 5 November 1862. This can be found on Roll #252 CSA at Tennessee State Archives. He asked a friend to see that he was brought back to Giles County, Tennessee to be buried. He is interred at Old Shores Cemetery in Pulaski, Giles County, Tennessee.

He was known as “Big Jobe”. He died near Murfreesboro, Tennessee while serving with the Confederate Army shortly before the Battle of Stones River. Cause of death is not known but most likely due to disease which was not uncommon for soldiers at the time.

The photo at left is of his gravemarker in Old Shores Cemetery in Pulaski, Tennessee

The photo made in 1903 is of the five remaining brothers. The Norwood Brothers Front row: William Norwood, age 72; the vacant chair is for Charles “Big Jobe” Norwood who died during the War Between the States, and George Norwood, age 67.  Back row: Thomas “Bud” Norwood age, 63; James “Jim” Norwood, age 58; and Josiah “Sye”Norwood, age 53.

William Mitchell Norwood, front row left,  and his wife Mary Morning Brown had a large family of children. Their children are: George Washington   – 1931, Nancy Ann Norwood 1857 –  , William Gable Norwood  1858 –  ,  Mary Lucinda Norwood 1860 –  ,  J S Norwood 1861 –  ,  J T Norwood 1863 –  ,  Jefferson Franklin Norwood 1865 – 1923,  Jessie F Norwood 1865 –  , Sarah Syrena Norwood 1867 – 1932, Rueben Rellard Norwood 1868 – 1914, Josiah Silas Norwood 1872 – 1961, Jasper Harris Norwood 1876 – 1958,  and Ann A Norwood 1881 – 1900.

William Mitchell “Billy” Norwood’s parents were William Mitchell who was born  1771 in Abbeville, Abbeville, South Carolina and died 08 November 1850 in Moulton, Lawrence, Alabama and Susannah Smith Norwood who was born 1773 in Brunswick, Virginia and died  1850 in Moulton, Lawrence County, Alabama. Susannah Norwood was buried in  Bankhead, Lawrence County, Alabama without a marker on her grave. The Cemetery is known as both Arbor and Doss Cemetery. William Mitchell Norwood is buried at Old Town Creek in Lawrence County, Alabama. It is through William Mitchell and Susannah Smith Norwood’s sixth son, a brother to Billy Norwood in the photo on our post just prior, that my family descends from the Norwood and Brown families.

George Washington Norwood was born 31 May 1811 in Giles County, Tennessee. His wife was Priscilla McDaniel 1813 – 1880. They had the following children:  William J Norwood 1832 – 1900, Jonathan Harrison Norwood 1836 – 1910, Hiram Norwood 1839 –  , Matilda Norwood 1840 –  ,  George Washington Norwood 1843 – 1902,  Nancy M Norwood 1844 – 1926,and  Sarah Ann Norwood 1844 – 1912.

Their second son Jonathan Harrison Norwood married Martha Jane “Mattie” Brown,1843 – 1893, on 20 December 1863 in Lawrence County, Alabama. They had the following children:  Mary Mollie Norwood 1865 – 1916, William Hiram Norwood 1868 – 1927, George Washington Norwood 1875 – 1957, John Miller Norwood 1878 – 1928, Sarah Norwood 1880 – 1880, Arrie Ary J Norwood 1881 –  , and James W Norwood 1885 – 1885.

Mary Mollie Norwood is my paternal great-great grandmother. She married William Thomas Sparks, 1853 – 1938, on 4 December 1879 apparently at the age of fourteen. They were married in Lawrence County, Alabama. They had the following children:  William Sparks 1881 –   , Lelia Sparks 1885 –   , Henry H Sparks 1886 –   , Alice Sparks 1889 – 1952, Virgil L Sparks 1892 – 1952, Alvin Owens Alvie Sparks 1894 – 1927, and Lula Mae Sparks 1900 – 1909. They lived their married life in Colbert County, Alabama. Both are buried at Morning Star Cemetery, with many relatives,  in Tuscumbia, Alabama. There are at least four generations of my ancestors buried at Morning Star Cemetery.

Norwwod Brothers 1903 Lawrence County AL

Written by: Carolyn Murray Greer

Remembering the Shoals

Norwoods are plentiful…

in Lawrence County, Alabama especially in the Moulton area, but there are not as many as there were in the mid 1800s. William Mitchell Norwood’s father by the same name died in Lawrence County in 1850. He left a large number of descendants behind. Many of them wound up in Colbert County, Alabama. Actually, since the county lines shifted, they may not have moved at all.

William Mitchell “Billy” Norwood in this photo is important to many Shoals area and northern Alabama people. He is important because he is of the Norwood clan that came from the Carolinas to settle in the southern Tennessee and northern Alabama areas. Many will know, or will discover, they are kin to him and his descendants. A photo of his sons will follow in the next post.

William Mitchell "Billy" Norwood

William Mitchell "Billy" Norwood