Franklin family research reveals numerous descendants in county

Published 11:59 pm Friday, March 13, 2009

At the beginning of this writing, a few corrections to the coverage of the Franklin family in last’s week’s column should be made. Thomas Franklin died circa 1829 in Covington County. His wife’s name was Nancy and not Sarah. She had one slave in the 1830 census only, and she died between 1830 and 1840. Their daughter-in-law, Temperance, was a sister to Fielding Straughn, and they were early settlers in Conecuh County circa 1816. Their son Moses’ children, born before 1828, were named in his father’s gift deed in 1828. Their daughter, Elizabeth, was born in Georgia, but it is uncertain if it was in Pulaski County.

Today’s column is a continuation of the review of the Thomas and Nancy Franklin family. Since their son, Willson Franklin, and wife, Tempy, lived and reared their family in Covington County, their descendants will now be outlined.

Their oldest son, William H. Franklin, was married to Elizabeth Jane “Eliza” Williams, daughter of John L. and Cintha Williams. William H., born circa 1823, rendered service in the Confederate Army. He resided in the Loango community where he and Eliza reared a family of eight children. In 1867, he was a registered voter in Beat Number Six. In 1890, he was appointed justice of the peace for Precinct Six, which included the Loango area. The next year in 1891, he was appointed constable for the same area.

William and Eliza reared the following children: Saphronia Abigail, b. ca 1858, d. 1897, m. James Austin Prestwood; Julie Ann, b. 1859, d. 1884, single; Eliza Jane, b. 1861, d. 1925, m. William R. “Bill” Hart; Ara Ellen, b. 1866, d. 1907, m. William E. “Bill” Hitson; Salonia Frances, b. 1868, d. 1915, m. Alvin Tatum McLelland; Mary F. “Mollie,” b. 1871, d. 1903, single; George Willis, b. 1874, d. 1939, m. Mary Irene Mock; and Florence, b. 1879, d. 1923, m. Dock C. McLelland.

The second son, James Wilson Franklin, was married to Jemima Priscilla “Prissy” Williams, daughter of John L. and Cintha Williams. James was also a Confederate veteran. In 1885, he homesteaded circa 150 acres of land in the Merrill community. He died during the early 1900s and was buried in the Bethesda Cemetery. He and Prissy reared the following eight children: Eliza J., b. 1855; Amanda “Mandy,” b. 1856, d. 1931, single; James Wilson Jr., b. 1857, d. 1944; Temperance P. “Temp,” b. 1861, d. 1930, m. James A. “Jim” McCormack; John Thomas, b. 1865, d. 1923, m. Theodocia Acree; Margarete E., b. 1870, d. 1902, single; William Taylor, b. 1871, d. 1952, m. Narcissa Clementine Dauphin; and Martha J. “Mattie,” b. 1872, d. 1936, m. Crum Gunter.

The third son, John A. Franklin, was married to Mahaley Celia Findley, daughter of Magilbry C. and Dolly Findley. John was also a Confederate veteran. He purchased land in the county in 1852, 1854 and 1880 and homesteaded two 80-acre tracts in 1880 and 1889. He was a registered voter in 1867 and was appointed constable for Precinct Six in the Fairfield community. In 1893, he was appointed constable in the same precinct for the town of Andalusia. He died in 1909 in Red Level and was buried in the Fairmount Cemetery. He and Celia reared at the following five children: William Jefferson “Bill,” b. 1855, d. 1932, m. Lora B. Feaster; Martha Susan, b. 1858, d. 1918, m. Andrew Jackson “Jack” Smith; and Mary A., b. 1859, d. 1914, m. William H. “Bud” Hogg.

The first daughter, Serena T. “Rene” Franklin, appears to have never married. She was born in 1830 and died sometime after 1910. She homesteaded 160 acres of land in the Loango community that had been reserved for a railroad. She reared two children: Green T. Franklin, b. 1857; Mary E. Georgiann “Sis” Franklin, m. 1882 Warren Washington Adams.

The youngest son, Green T. Franklin, also resided in the Loango community. He had purchased land and established a home by the mid-1800s. Like his three older brothers, he served in the confederate Army. Also like them, he was a registered voter in the county in 1867. In 1868, he was elected sheriff of the county, but he resigned in 1871 and was appointed constable for Beat Two. He died in 1901 while residing in the Loango community. He and his wife, Nancy, reared at least three children: Wilson T., b. 1856; Sarah E., b. 1858; and Benjamin, b. ca 1863.

For the next generation, Saphronia Franklin, and her husband, James Austin Prestwood, son of William Terry and Gilley (Shiver) Prestwood, had the following children: William Terry, b. 1879; Thomas Austin, b. 1880; Eliza Missouri Catherine, b. ca 1881; Marcus, b. 1882; Texanna, b. 1884, d. 1899; Curtis Maiden, b. 1886, d. 1906; Lou Phelia Hestell, b. ca 1889; Harrison P. “Peck,” b. ca 1891; Trammell, b.&d. 1893; and infant daughter, 1896.

Her sister, Julie Ann Franklin, lived in Loango and was buried in Fairmount Cemetery. She had one daughter, Emma Franklin, b. 1875.

Their sister, Eliza Jane Franklin, and her husband, William R. “Bill” Hart, resided in Covington County and had the following children: Flossie B., b. 1882; Babe; Dan; Travis, d. before 1957; and Robert Leonard Sr., b. 1895.

Their sister, Ara Ellen Franklin, was married to William Edward “Bill” Hitson, who was listed as a coffin maker. They lived in the Red Level community and reared the following children: Lena Alba, b. 1888; infant son, b.&d. 1889; William Merton, b. 1891; Daniel I., b. 1892; Sarah Maud, b. 1895; Lee Dean, b. 1898; Ruth, b. 1901; infant son, b.&d. 1903; and Ella, b. 1905.

Their sister, Salonia Frances Franklin, and her husband, Alvin Tatum McLelland (1869-1946), resided in the River Falls community. They reared the following children: William Starling Sr., b. 1891; Minnie C., b. 1893; Alzie Otto, b. 1901; and F.M., b. 1903.

Their sister, Mary F. “Mollie” Franklin, appears to have not married. She lived in the Loango community and had the following four children: Millard Neal Franklin, b. 1892; William Mallory, b. 1894; Ira Leonard, b. 1896; and Otto Batson, b. 1899.

Their brother, George Willis Franklin, and his wife, Mary Irene Mock (1873-1957), resided in Loango and Red Level. They had three daughters: Alma Ruth, b. 1895; Ludie Irene, b. 1900; and Pearl, b. 1903.

The genealogy of many other Franklin descendants in this and other generations is available from Lisa Franklin’s web site, Appreciation is expressed to Lisa for providing the research and records used for today’s column.

Anyone who has additional information on the Franklin family or who might have personal family history they are willing to share for this column is asked to contact this writer, Curtis Thomasson, at 20357 Blake Pruitt Road, Andalusia, AL 36420; call 334-222-6467; or e-mail: