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Death Notices from the Bibb Blade, Bibb County, Alabama in 1884

(This was transcribed for the 1st edition of THE CAHABA JOURNAL and it is included here using the same words from as published in THE CAHABA JOURNAL)


Bibb Blade, January 3, 1884 

Died at his residence near Woodstock, in this county, Ala., Mr. J. M. WOOD, on the 24th. He leaves a wife and one child and many relatives and friends to mourn his loss.

Bibb Blade, January 16, 1884 

DIED- At Randolph, Ala., on the night of the 5th inst., JOSEPH M. DAVIS, after a short and severe illness.

On Monday the 7th inst., at his residence in this county, Mr. JOURDON RISINGER.

From the above annoucement, it will be seen that Bibb County has lost two of its best and most useful citizens. Both of these gentlemen have been residents of this county for many years, perhaps all their lives, and have always been known and recognized as good, moral, industrious and upright citizens. Their death has cast a gloom over the entire community.

Died in Centreville, January 3rd, MRS. CROMWELL CLEVELAND, after a long and painful illness.

In this county, recently, Mrs.ESPY, mother of JOSEPH and JAMES ESPY.

In MEMORIUM A kind and noble, gentle and loving mother, a devoted wife, sister and friend, has been taken from our midst. MRS. DORA COTTINGHAM, after a lingering illness, died December 25th.

Died – On the night of the 30th of December DAVID C. GRIFFIN in the 35th year of his age.

Attacked with that direful disease, pneumonia, in Selma, on the 19th, he repaired, though suffering much to his home, when medical aid was summoned and the ravages of the disease seemed to be stayed, and the fond hope was indulged that in a few days he would be convalescent, but on Saturday morning, the 29th, evident indications of collapse were observed.

Bibb Blade, February 13, 1884 

A few weeks since we were informed by some one that Mrs. ESPY, an aged and highly respected lady of this county, had died, but a few days ago we were informed by M. J. PRATT that Mrs. ESPY is still alive and much improved in health.

It is with extreme sorrow that we are again called upon to record the death of a lovely and intelligent young lady. Miss FANNIE, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. T. M. FANCHER, died at the family residence on Tuesday night last. The fond parents have our heartfelt sympathy in their sad loss.

DIED – Near Harrisburg, Ala., January 15, 1884, Mrs. LUCY YEAGER, aged 92 years 4 months and 2 days. Mrs. YEAGER had been paralyzed for sixteen months, and was kindly and faithfully attended by her affectionate daughter, Mrs. E. DOBBINS.

Bibb Blade, February 20, 1884


Bibb County

In Commissioner’s Court of said county: Hon. John S. Gardner asked leave to read the following resolutions, which were granted.

WHEREAS – J. M. DAVIS, a member of this court, since the last term has been removed from our midst by the hand of Him who doeth all things in His own wisdom and according to His own purposes, therefore.

RESOLVED, 1st – That in the loss of J. M. DAVIS, our brother commissioner, we loose his wise counsel and valuable aid, he was so prepared to give by his long connection – a period of 13 years – with this court, and his clear ideas of the duties devolving upon us, and his high sense of honor and integrity.

RESOLVED, 2nd – That in his death the people of Bibb county have lost a most worthy and estimable citizen, a capable, honest and efficient officer whose place will not be easily filled from their ranks.

RESOLVED, 3rd – That we commend the life, character and business qualifications of this our deceased brother commissioner as worthy of emulation by those of us who are left to mourn his loss.

RESOLVED, 4th – That we tender our sympathies to the family of our deceased brother in their bereavement, and the people at large in this their inestimable loss.

RESOLVED, 5th – That these resolutions be spread upon the minutes of the court, a copy of the same sent to the family of the deceased, and a copy forwarded to the Bibb Blade for publication.

John S. Gardner, Judge of Probate

P. M. Fancer

A. H. James

Geo. Stewart Commissioners

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Bibb Blade, February 27, 1884 

A sad and sudden death occurred here last night. (Vance’s Station) About 12 o’clock Mrs. W. H. PIERSON was found to be dead in bed. She was in good health the day before.

It is with extreme sorrow and grief that we are called upon to record the death of Mrs. M. E. SMITH, wife of Prof. H. K. W. SMITH, of Centreville, who died at her home on Sunday night.

Bibb Blade, March 5, 1884 

DIED – At Randolph, on Tuesday night, the 24th ult., JIM SMITHERMAN, col., better known as Crack. Randolph mourns the loss of this faithful old darky who has served her citizens for so many years. Many has been the laugh caused by his wonderful power of imitation, but they are hushed forever. He was ever humble and polite, always ready to oblige his white friends and faithful to his benefactors to the end.

Bibb Blade, April 9, 1884 

Mrs. WALKER, widow of the late JACOB WALKER, died at her residence in this county a few days since.

J. W. MAHAN, an old and respected citizen, died at his residence in Briarfield, on Sunday evening, and was buried at Cedar Grove on Monday evening. The large crowd at the grave showed the high esteem in which he was held. He said he had long since made preparation for and was not afraid to meet death.

DIED – At home, on Feb. 5, 1884, Miss FANNIE R. FANCHER at the age of 15 years and 6 months

Bibb Blade, April 30, 1884 

DIED – on Friday night last, MRS. E. YEAGER

We were sorry, a few days ago, to hear of the death of Messrs. LEE ROMENGER and ANDREW SMITHERMAN, both of Randolph.

Bibb Blade, May 14, 1884

On Tuesday, the 6th inst., the angel of death visited the house hold of Mrs. Griffin, of River Bend, and bore from time to eternity her daughter Miss MAGGIE GRIFFIN.

Bibb Blade, May 21, 1884

DIED – of a malarial fever, on May the 6th, 1884, in River Bend, Miss MAGGIE GRIFFIN, aged 17 years, 11 months and 6 days.

Bibb Blade, May 28, 1884

DIED – At her home, near Bibb Springs, Mrs. MARY LOWERY. She was born in Talladega County, in the year A.D. 1839, and after she was married went to Talladega town, and lived there several years, and then came to Bibb Co. where she lived about 12 years. She died in her 45th year and left many friends to mourn her loss. She left a husband and seven children; three of them about grown. She was a kind mother, and every body loved her who knew her, for her obedience and kindness. She seemed like a mother to all whom she knew. She joined the Baptist church of Christ in her 18th year, and lived a faithful christian the rest of her life.

Bibb Blade, June 18, 1884

Dr J. G. MCCAULEY, formerly of Selma, and lately of Mobile, died at Bean’s Station, East Tennessee, on the 6th inst. Many of our oldest citizens will remember Dr. MCCAULEY as a traveling dentist.

Bibb Blade, June 25, 1884

DIED – at his home in this county, on Saturday the 21st inst., from injuries received from a burn some time since, MR. JOHN FONDREN

SACRED to the memory of Mrs. OLIVE GARNER, who died at their home in Chilton County, on Tuesday, the 17th inst. She was the daughter of the late NEAL LATHAM, of this county, know to many of our readers, has been for many years a true and faithful member of the Methodist church at Cox’x Chapel, was married in early life to Mr. WILLIAM GARNER, of this county.

Bibb Blade, July 2, 1884

DIED – on the night of 27th inst. Mr. M. HUBBARD, an old and respected citizen of this county.

DIED – Near Scottsville in this county, Friday the 27th of June, 1884, Mr. MINOR MURPHY, an old and worthy citizen.

Near Vance’s Station on Wednesday the 25th inst., Mrs. MOSELY.

DIED – Near Scottsville, Ala., SARAH FRANCES PERRY, wife of WM. B. PERRY, and daughter of N. D. and ARMINTA VERNON. She departed this life on the 27th of June 1884. Born on the 24th day of March 1847, being 37 years, 3 months and 3 days old. Was a member of the Baptist church at Scottsville, joined and was baptised on the 1st Sabbath in September, 1864, by Rev. JACK BROWN, and was baptised on the 1st Sabbath in September, 1864, by Rev. JACK BROWN, and lived and orderly member of the same, and died in the triumph of a living faith.

Bibb Blade, on July 9, 1884

DIED – On the 1st inst., little Martha, infant daughter of Mrs. MARY and ENOS PERRY

On Wednesday last, the passenger train going north ran over a young man by the name of “GENERAL” SEALS, of Brierfield, who was on the track near Mr. EHARKER’s brick yard. He only survived his injuries about twenty four hours. Another victim of intemperance.

Bibb Blade , July 30, 1884

We received information from a reliable source, that on Wednesday afternoon a coal chute trestle, twenty-five feet high, which was being built for the Cahaba Coal Mining Company, about two miles from Woodstock, fell, injuring nine men, one of them fatally, HARRY SNEDECOR, son of G. P. SNEDECOR, register in chancery of Hale County, who died twelve hours later.

There is considerable sickness in the neighborhood (Six Mile). Nothing however, of a very serious nature, except the case of Mrs. MARGARET LOWERY, who is very low.

Since writing the above, we learn that MRS. LOWERY is dead.

Bibb Blade, August 6, 1884

DIED – of diptheria, Aug 3rd after a painful illness of nearly two weeks, in the 10th year of her age, little MARY BATTLE, eldest daughter of DAVID and LIZZIE BATTLE.

Bibb Blade, August 13, 1884

DIED – near Centreville, at the residence of Mr. J. N. C. BROWN, on Tuesday; at 9 o’clock, Miss NETTIE GRIFFIN

DIED – near Briarfield on the 7th inst., at 10 o’clock and 23 minutes p.m. Capt. W. R. GAYLORD, aged 78 years and 10 months. He spent the most of his life on the sea up to 20 years ago. Since that time he has lived at this place. Uncle Billy was a true Christian and was loved by all who knew him.

Bibb Blade, August 20, 1884

In MEMORIAM On the 19th of August, at noon, when all the outside world was enjoying itself, the quiet hush of death settled upon the form of GEN. W. J. GREENE, the oldest and most beloved member of the Blade force, and the beloved brother of a devoted sister. He leaves behind him to mourn his loss a fond and devoted sister, a loving nephew, and two companions who have worked with him here for many a long but pleasant month.

His son, who left his bedside last Saturday, went to his home to be clasped in the strong arms of disease himself, and was consequently unable to be present when the angel of death bore his loved and honored father to his last resting place among the wanderers to eternity.

The sympathy of all our citizens is tendered Mr. And Mrs. N. H. THOMPSON of our town, in the bereavement of their son, MR. THOMAS THOMPSON, of Montevallo, who died on Saturday last at 7 p.m.

DIED – Near New Mars, on the 8th inst. Little JESSE, son of R. L. and JOSEPHINE LITTLE, aged about 18 months.

Bibb Blade, August 27, 1884

DIED – Suddenly of hemorrhage of the lungs on the 13 inst. Mr. WILLIAM WELCH in about the 60th year of his age. His remains were carried to Selma from Randolph for interment.

Bibb Blade, September 3, 1884

DIED – Near Pondville on Monday the 18th ult., KEZIAH, wife of MONROE AULTMAN.

Our village was thrown into a state of sadness last Saturday morning on hearing that Mr. J. G. MURRAY’S wife, baby and sister-in-law – Miss MORTON – had been drowned near Evansville, Indiana. Mr. MURRAY has been a citizen of our county but a short time, but his pleasant manners and extreme kindness and politness that he had shown everyone who has business with the Brierfield company, has won for him the respect and admiration of all. We join this entire community in sympathy with him in his sad bereavement.

Bibb Blade, September 17, 1884

DIED – At Peter Mines, on the 22nd of July, Mrs. WOOD, wife of S. J. WOOD, aged about 62 years.

Mr. ELIHU BABB, an old and quiet citizen of this county, died at his home on Friday last. He seldom left his home, and therefore we know but little about him, but we are able to learn that he was very quiet and to a great extent eccentric, never harmed his fellow man; and perhaps found life a burden before he passed away, for he had battled with it for 84 years.

Bibb Blade, September 24, 1884

We have learned that JOHNNIE O’ROURKE, who accidentally shot himself some time ago, died on Sunday evening, the 14th inst., from the effects of the wound.

Bibb Blade, October 1, 1884

The intelligence reached us last week, of the death of Mr. GEORGE SPINKS, a conductor on Major HOWISON’s lumber train, at Randolph. He died on Wednesday, of conjestion of the brain, living about three hours after he was taken down.

DIED – on the 23rd inst., of conjestion of the brain, GEORGE SPINKS, in the 23rd year of his age. GEORGE was a warm, tender-hearted, true and faithful friend and kind brother – the sole protector and adviser of a widowed mother and three affectionate sisters.

Mr. P. M. – BUD – JAMES died at his residence in this county on Saturday last. Mr. JAMES was well known in the county, has served the people in several places of trust, and always gave satisfaction. His bereaved family has the sympathy of this entire community.

Bibb Blade, October 8, 1884

Miss MOLLIE EHARKER whose illness we noted last week, died last Friday evening, at her home near Day’s Mill.

Little TOMMY CROSS, son of Dr. CROSS, of Centreville, ages two years died on Thursday last.

ED WHITE, col., was shot and killed at Brierfield on the night of the 3rd inst. We have not learned the particulars of the killing, except that it grew out of a difficulty between WHITE and another negro, who escaped and at last accounts had not been heard of.

DIED OF TYPHOID FEVER at her father’s residence, near Day’s Mill, Oct. 3rd, Miss MOLLIE EHARKER, eldest daughter of Mr. JOHN EHARKER. She was born on the 10th of January 1860, and at the time of her death was twenty four years, eight months and twenty-three days old.

She was buried on Saturday at Cedar Grove burial ground the Rev. Mr. Thompson reading the beautiful burial service of the Methodist church.

Randolph, Oct. 6 – A most horrible and as far as we can learn, unprovoked murder was committed here on the night of the 4th inst. Some person set fire to the fence around the house of MOSES GRIFFIN, colored, which on discovery by GRIFFIN, was promptly put out. After which, with a light he endeavored to track the intruder, when, as he says, he was shot by some one secreted in the bushes a short distance from him. The ball took effect in the abdomen, causing death in a few hours.

Beat No. 4. After much suffering and protracted illness, MR. C. F. JAMES departed this life September 27th

Bibb Blade, October 29, 1884

Mr. JOHN OGLESBY breathed his last on the 11th inst. Just one week previous to that time his wife was buried at the grave yard near P. A. HICKMAN’S. Life is uncertain but death is sure.

Bibb Blade November 5, 1884

DIED -Near this place, on Monday evening, the 27th of October, an infant daughter of Hiram Parks, aged 21, months.

In memory of little STELLA GANDY, who departed this life October 17th 1884, aged 5 years, a daughter of W. R. and M. V. GANDY.

Bibb Blade November 12, 1884

Died – At his residence in this county on Saturday last, Rev. ROLLA SPINKS. He was buried on Monday at Antioch church with Masonic honors.

Died – In this neighborhood, on Tuesday last, an infant child of Mr. And Mrs. Wm. H. Mulkey

Bibb Blade November 26, 1884

Mr. R. C. CAFFEE of Vance’s Station committed suicide on yesterday morning and was buried with Masonic honors to-day, Sunday 23rd.

(A short article on the suicide appears in another part of the issue)

GOODMAN LAWRENCE accidently shot his younger brother PET in the Randolph blacksmith shop of Frank Tucker. (An article appears in this issue on the accident.)

Bibb Blade, December 3, 1884

DIED – Near Blockton, on Monday morning, MRS. MORRISON, who was badly burned ten weeks ago.

DIED – Near this place, after an illness of ten days, of typhoid fever, Mrs. PARKS, mother of Mr. HIRAM PARKS

Bibb Blade, December 10, 1884

DIED – Near Blockton, on Nov. 24th, MARY FRANCIS LOWRY, daughter of W. W. and MARY M. LOWRY, after a long suffering from that fatal disease consumption, aged 16 years.

We are sorry to learn that Mrs. SMITH, wife of Uncle KIRBY SMITH, of this place is very sick

Since writing the above we have learned of Mrs. SMITH’S death.

Bibb Blade, December 31, 1884

DIED – At his residence near Scottsville, on the night of the 1st inst., NEHEMIAH D. VERNON who was borne in North Carolina on the 9th of September, 1809, and was 75 years 2 months and 22 days old. He was the father of a large and respected family. He was a faithful and affectionate husband, a kind and indulgent parent, a worthy and respected citizen. He was a member of the Baptist Church for many years and there never was a charge against his Christian walk; and he died in triumph of a loving faith. He told the Rev. S. S. Oglesby, who called to see him only a few hours before he died, that all was well with him and that he had no fears. Thus it is one by one we pass away.


January 30th, 1884


I was born in 1802, and raised in North Carolina, Orange County, on New Hope Creek, on the road leading from Chaphill to Raleigh, and moved to this county in 1826. My health has been very bad going on two years, and I feel so much better that I can’t keep quiet. I professed religion in 1828, and have been at my post going on two years, and I feel the good of it this morning as much as I ever did. I have seven children living the last I heard from them all. I have one hundred and two grand children. For the sake of them and my friends I want them to know I am getting along. I would not take this world for the effect I feel of it. If you can find space in your paper to put this in I would be glad.

Elizabeth A. Rotenberry

(From the Bibb Blade, Feb. 6, 1884)

Tapestry of Love: Three Books In One – a historical fiction novel about the heritage of the Cottingham family who eventually settled in Bibb County, Alabama ca. 1818.


The exhilarating action & subplots keep the reader in constant anticipation. It is almost impossible to put the book down until completion, Dr. Don P. Brandon, Retired Professor, Anderson University, Anderson, Indiana

This is the first book I have read that puts a personal touch to some seemingly real people in factual events. Ladyhawk

Love books with strong women…this has one. Love early American history about ordinary people…even though they were not ‘ordinary’…it took courage to populate our country. This book is well researched and well written. Julia Smith


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