Jacob Wages#039; family lived in the Sassers#039; Crossroads Community

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, July 10, 2002

An earlier column presented an introduction to the Wages family, but recent research has unveiled additional genealogy. Today's writing will focus on the family of Jacob Wages who was a grandson of the earlier Jacob Wages.

Pioneers of the Wages family of Covington County settled here in the 1840s. Jacob Wages and his wife, Susannah, were listed on the 1850 Federal Census. They had left Richland District, South Carolina, after 1810 and were enumerated in Washington County, Alabama, in 1830.

Jacob was the son of Dawson Wages, Sr., born ca 1761 in South Carolina and died there in 1821. Dawson was married to Rebecca Boatwright, the widow of Benjamin Boatwright. They reared the following children: Jacob, b. ca 1779, d. after 1850, m. Susannah; Dawson Jr., b. ca 1781, d. 1827; William, b. ca 1784, d. 1845, m. Rebecca Boatwright (his stepsister).

Before Jacob moved here, he had extensive farming operations in Washington County north of Mobile. He owned at least 12 slaves for working the large farm. His home was referred to as "the Big Creek Place," and was a hideout for the Copeland Gang on occasions.

Jacob's son, Gale Wages, became a member of the Copeland Gang, which operated in Southwest Alabama and South Mississippi. On an occasion when he and a partner were trying to collect some money owed to his father-in-law, Gale was killed during the gunfight that ensued. His father, Jacob, offered a $1,000 reward to avenge his son's death. Some of Gale's former gang members agreed to the offer and went to Mississippi. They were successful in killing the man who had shot Gale. When they returned to the Wages' home, Jacob had to surrender his farm to help pay the reward. He ended up moving to Covington County to be near their daughter, Betsy Butler's, family. Gale's widow, Nancy, took her son, Jacob, and moved with the Wages. This occurred during the 1840s.

In the 1850 Federal Census of Covington County, Jacob was 71 years of age, and Susannah was 69. When they settled here, Jacob never purchased any land, but his wife, Susannah, did in 1856. She acquired 165 acres in the Union community. At some point the Wages family lived in a house located at the site of the current Jeff Carter home in Eoda.

Jacob and Susannah reared the following children: Elizabeth "Betsy," b. ca 1807 SC, d. after 1880, m. Lloyd Robert Butler, Sr.; Rebecca, b. 1811 SC, d. after 1880, m. Levi Moody, Sr.; Argelius W. "Gale," b. ca 1814, d. ca 1847, m. Nancy Brown.

Betsy appears to have met and married Lloyd Butler in South Carolina before they migrated to Covington County. Upon settling here, she became a well-known mid-wife and was looked upon as a "lady doctor." She has been remembered as a short, stout lady who rode side saddle on her handsome white or gray horse, named Nell.

Betsy and Lloyd Butler had 17 children, but only the names of the following 15 are known: Gincy, b. 1825, m. John David Cauley; Rice, b. 1827, d. 1912, m. (1) Mary Elizabeth Sasser (2) Tempie Sasser; Lloyd Robert Jr., b. 1828, d. 1910, m. Emily Robbins; Green, b. 1833, d. 1906, m. Annie E. Boyette; Mark, b. 1835, d. 1900, m. Matilda Sasser; Emily, b. 1837, single; Luke, b. 1840, d. 1852; Susannah, b. 1842, d. 1917, m. James Tarlton Drake; Bathsheba, b. 1844, d. ca 1864 (handicapped); Elizabeth, b. 1846; Rebecah, b. 1847, d. 1915, m. Jefferson Sylvanus Thomasson; Ann, b. 1850, m. Charles Irvin Maloy; Coleman, b. 1852, d. 1906, m. Nancy Jane Kilcrease; Matthew; and Holley.

Rebecca and Levi Moody, Sr., son of Asa and Charity (Pippin) Moody, had the following children in the 1850 Census of Covington County: James, 21; Jackson, 18; Jacob W., 16; Sukey, 14; Rebecca, 12; Levi Jr., 9; Betsy, 7; Asa, 5; Gale, 3; and Amanda, 2. In 1844, Levi had been commissioned as a Constable for Covington County, Beat Number Four. It has been reported that the couple reared 11 children and moved during the 1850s to Arkansas probably in pursuit of new timber and farmland.

Gale and his wife, Nancy Brown, daughter of Allen Brown of Mississippi, had at least one child, Jacob Argelius, who was born in 1846 in Mississippi. The few residents of Covington County who wear the Wages name would be descendants of this Jacob. After Gale's death, Nancy was married to James Dannelley, and they had at least three children -- Mary E., Celia M., and Amy E.

Jacob homesteaded 80 acres of land in 1896 in the Sassers' Crossroads community. He was married to Martha Rogers and they had the following three children: Warren W., b. 1865, d. 1913, m. Julie Mitchell; Nancy, b. ca 1865, d. 1955, m. Gus Henderson; and Noah Gale, b. 1877, d. 1946, m. Tempie Atwell. Jacob and Martha were buried in the Mt. Gilead Baptist Church Cemetery along with their son, Warren.

Warren and his wife, Julie, had the following children: William, m. ? Strickland; Omie; Lizzie; Icy; Bessie; and Emma.

Nancy and her husband, Gus Henderson, had the following children: Howell, Byrd, Lee, Cleve, Love, and Macon, m. Clara McDaniel. Macon and Clara had three children: Dallas, m. Peggy Jo Barnett; Martha, m. Rudolph Messick; and Jake, m. Peggy Sorrells.

Noah and his wife, Tempie, reared the following three children: Glenda, b. 1911, m. Malvin Richburg; Lillian, b. 1913, d. 1961, m. (1) J.C. Richburg (2) Willie Joe Stewart; and Elliot, b. 1916, d. 1987, m. Mary Beuford Jones. Noah was a deputy sheriff for the county at one time.

Noah's grandchildren included the following: Children of Glenda Richburg -- Linda Ann, Roger Dale, and Lillian; and children of Elliot -- Norman Gale, b. 1941, d. 1999, m. Elsie Worley; and Leon Elliot, b. 1957, m. Nancy Marie Sumblin.

Some of Noah's greatgrandchildren included the daughter of Leon Elliot, Joni Renee, b. 1976, m. Robert Maxwell Ross; and the four daughters of Normal Gale: Mary Elizabeth, b. 1965, m. Charles David Bobo; Paula Michelle, b. 1967, m. Terry Harrison; Tracey Ann, b. 1970, m. Jason Scott Walker; and Jeannie Sue, b. 1972, m. Bryce Heiching.

With many of the children being females, the Wages name appears less and less often in this area; however, there are numerous descendants and the family has an interesting heritage. Appreciation is expressed to Leon Wages, a great grandson of Jocob Wages, for sharing his family records and photos.

Anyone who might have corrections or additions to the above is requested to contact Curtis Thomasson at Route 9, Box 97, Andalusia, AL or Email: chthom@alaweb.com.