Armstrong descendants settle first in Montgomery area

Published 12:00am Saturday, November 19, 2011

Today’s column is a continuation of the Armstrong family, which was introduced as last week’s story. At least three brothers who were the sons of Martin and Mary (Kuykendall) Armstrong moved to the Montgomery area of Alabama in 1818. The families of two of these, James W. Armstrong and Maximillian Armstrong Sr., will be the subjects of this writing.

James W. was quite prosperous in Hancock County, Ga., before moving to Alabama. After settling in the Montgomery area, he was one of the two men elected to represent Montgomery County at the Constitution Convention. He and his wife, Dollie (Tucker), reared at least the following children: William, b. 1814, d. 1887, m. Margaret Elizabeth Francis; Permelia Ann, b. ca 1815, m. John Judkins; Gabriel M., b. ca 1817, m. 1842 Mary Ann (Moseley) Gause; Joseph Tucker, b. 1820, d. 1844, single; and James Francis, b. ca 1825, m. Frances McDade. William rendered service from Texas in the Mexican War, and James Frances served in the Confederate Army.

Maximillian appears to have been born in Spartanburg, S.C., where his parents resided until 1790 when they moved to Hancock County, Ga. He was then married there in 1806 when he was about 26 years of age. His wife, Elizabeth Veasey (1790-1861), was the daughter of Jessie and Sara (Peek) Veasey. Maximillian Sr. rendered service in the War of 1812, and during that period, he moved his young family to Jones County, Ga., where they resided until moving to Alabama in 1818.

The family settled a little south of Montgomery, and Maximillian Sr. was soon appointed as the first Postmaster of the Monacks Post Office in 1818. He helped establish the Primitive Baptist Church and was one of the founders of the Sweetwater Church at Hornorville. The family later moved into Butler County where Maximillian helped begin the Friendship Primitive Baptist Church in his home.

Maximillian Sr. and Elizabeth reared the following children: Jessie M., b. 1808, m. Mary ?; Mitchell, b. 1810, d. 1878, m. 1833 Susan Perdue; Mary Ann, m. 1822 Melvin Jeter; Francis, m. 1842 Mary A. Dean; John C.; James W., b. 1818, d. 1880, m. 1837 Mary Ann Cleghorn; William G., b. 1819, m. 1839 Lowndes County Sara Pouncey; and Maximillian Jr., b. 1819, m. (1) Mary Ann ?; (2) Elizabeth McCormack (3) Frances Hall.

The son Jessie M. Armstrong, and his wife, Mary, reared the following children: Eliekis, b. 1835; Mack, b. 1836; Martha, b. 1840; Mary, b. 1845; Julia L., b. 1847, m. 1875 Tom Strops; John J., b. 1849; N., b. 1853; and A.P., b. 1857.

The son James W. Armstrong was married in 1837 in the Alabama Territory to Mary Ann Cleghorn, daughter of George (1801-ca 1856) and Martha Elizabeth Cleghorn. They reared at least the following children: Melvin or Melville Jeter, b. 1838, d. 1912, m. 1857 Margaret Rodgers (1835-1919); Jessie M., b. 1848, m. (1) 1867 Frances Hall (2) Mary ?.; James F. “Jim,” b. 1851, d. 1926, m. (1) Patsy Elizabeth Henderson (1852-1917) (2) 1918 Emma Langley Peaden; Sara “Sally” E., b. 1852, d. 1919, m. 1887 John Whittington; William “Billie,” b. 1858, m. Arrila “Rillie” ? (1855-1919); and Daniel D., b. 1860, d. ca 1932, m. Nancy L. Tucker; and Maximillian John A.M., b. 1863.

James W.’s son, Melvin/Melville Jeter Armstrong, and his wife, Margaret Rodgers, reared the following children: William, b. 1858; Mary E., b. 1860; John Thomas, b. 1867, d. 1940, m. 1890 Lonie Dunkin; Susan, b. 1861; Sarah E., b. 1869; and David E., b. 1875. Melvin was known as a wheelwright, and he and Margaret were married in Greenville. He enlisted in April 1861 for service in the Confederate Army as a private in Company B, 1st Alabama Regiment. Melvin and Margaret were buried in the Harmony Cemetery in Covington County where there is a grave marker designating his military service.

James W.’s son, James F. “Jim” Armstrong, was first married in 1871 in Crenshaw County to Patsy Elizabeth Henderson, daughter of James Henderson, b. 1803 in S.C., and Celia Jeffcoat, b. 1800 in Georgia. There is a family story of the Sheriff of Crenshaw County coming after Jim for making whiskey. Jim took the sheriff and hung him in a tree by his overall straps and left him. Twelve hours passed before the sheriff was found, and then Jim was arrested and sentenced to serve five days in the county jail.

James F. and Patsy Armstrong reared the following 12 children: James F. Jr., b.&d. 1872; Albert B. b. 1873, d. 1923, m. Tish Ann Whitehead (1876-1937); Mary E. “Molly,” b. 1875, d. 1946, m. (1) Wallis S. Jackson (1878-1948) (2) Hiram Finney; William F. b.&d. 1877; Margarette E. “Gennie,” b. 1878, d. 1968, m. (1) Thomas R. “Jack” Chesser (1872-1903) (2) Jim Hart (1869-1948); Simon L. “Dock,” b. 1880, d. 1954, m. (1) Polly Elmira Odom (1888-ca1910) (2) Emma ?; Samuel O. “Sam,” b. 1882, d. 1951, m. Mourning Henderson (1889-1970); John Daniel, b. 1884, d. 1966, m. (10 Lula Odom (2) Bula Odom; Jessie M., b. 1886, d. 1964, m. Mary Thompson (1893-1942); Louisa “Lizer,” b. 1888, d. 1918, m. George Williams, Jr. (1886-1949); Mellie G., b. 1891, d. 1955, m. (1) John Rigdon (1888-1927) (2) Allen Ingram Adkinson; and James Wood “Jim,” b. 1893, d. 1967, m. Arrie Elizabeth Hall (1899-1973). After Patsy’s death in 1917, Jim was married in 1918 to Emma Langley Peaden.

James W.’s daughter, Sara “Sally” E. Armstrong, and her husband, John Whittington, b. 1851 in Georgia, had the following children: William, b. 1882; Henry, b. 1884, m. Lula Blalock; Joseph J. “Joe,” b. 1889, m. Minnie Burgins; John, b. 1892, d. 1926; Mary, b. 1893; Levi “Eli,” b. 1895, m. Nina Guther; and Manning, b. 1889, m. Molly Peterson.

James W.’s son, William “Billie” Armstrong, and his wife Arrila “Rillie,” had the following three children: Jack, b. 1879; James Elisha, b. 1884, d. 1947, m. Elifare Raybon (1879-1971); and Frank, b. 1881, m. Ida Mae ?.

James W.’s son, Daniel D. Armstrong, and his wife, Nancy L. Tucker, had the following children: Ezra Alex, b. 1893, m. Effie Mae Calvin; James D., b. 1897; Mary I., b. 1898; Nancy E., b. 1902; Jerry M., b. 1904; and Laura Mae, b. 1907.

James W.’s son, Jessie M. Armstrong, and his first wife, Frances Wall, had the following children: Lois P., b. 1878; Emmitt J., b. 1881; Kate C., b. 1885; Nancy I., b. 1888; and Eva E., b. 1892. He and his second wife, Mary, had one daughter, Lillian E., b. 1897.

The son Maximillian Armstrong Jr. and his first wife, Mary Ann, had the following six children: Mary, b. 1834; Ann, b. 1839; Stephen, b. 1842, m. Nancy ?; Joseph, b. 1843; James, b. 1845; and John, b. 1847. He and his second wife, Elizabeth McCormick, had two sons, Thomas, b. 1877; and Richard, b. 1862, m. Frances H. It is not known if he had any children by his third wife, Frances Hall.

There will be one additional column dedicated to this family. In it many members of the next generation will be outlined.

Again, the source for this writing were the records of Betty LeMarchand, which includes a book on the Armstrong family heritage compiled by Demoval “Bobbie” (Armstrong) Biggs.

Anyone who might have a correction to the above or additional information on the Armstrong family is requested to contact this writer, Curtis Thomasson, at 20357 Blake Pruitt Road, Andalusia, AL 36420; 334-222-6467; or email: cthomasson@centurytel.net.

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