Gaines brought family to Covington County

Published 11:59 pm Friday, September 23, 2011

The Gaines family from Wales originally was introduced in last week’s column. Today’s writing will be a continuation of the Gaines lineage from Heirome (Hiram) Gaines, Sr. (1730-1806). Among his children was a son, Hiram Gaines, Jr., who was married to Ann Thompson by whom he had at least four children: William Shanklin, James H., Margaret C., and Jensy.

Green Livingston Gaines and his wife, Sarah (Brunson) during 1890s. Courtesy photo

Another son, Francis Gaines, was introduced in the previous column, and his history and family were outlined. This line will now be continued through one of his sons, Robert Taliaferro Gaines. Robert was born in 1781 in Albemarle, Va., and died in 1860 in Elbert County, Ga. He owned several hundred acres of land in Elbert County. He was married to Sarah “Sally” Alexander who was also a native of Virginia (ca 1780-ca 1850). They reared the following eight children: George, b. 1802, d. 1865 in Clay Co., Ala., m. 1823 Mary “Polly” Craft (1805-1880); Francis Alexander, b. 1804, d. ca 1887; Willis, b. 1806; Anna, b. 1808; Mourning, b. 1810, d. 1887; Richard Strother, b. 1812, d. 1860 in Chambers Co., Ala.; Livingston B., b. 1815, d. ca 1860, m. Elizabeth “Eliza” Ann Williamson; and Agatha Victoria, b. 1817, d. 1860.

This line is continued through the son, Livingston B. Gaines, who was married to Elizabeth “Eliza” Ann Williamson, daughter of Henry and Mary “Polly” (Simmons) Williamson. One record shows Livingston owned about 40 acres in 1850 and that he died circa 1860. He and Eliza had the following four children: Green Livingston “Ruff,” b. 1845, d. 1933, m. Sarah Elizabeth Brunson (1834-1935); Sarah Ann Elizabeth, b. 1850, d. 1871, m. Benjamin West Tisdale; Piety, b. 1853, m. 1871 John William Everage; and Emma M., b. 1855, d. 1905, m. 1877 Furney Green Everage.

The oldest son, Green Livingston “Ruff” Gaines, was born in Coffee County and died in Crenshaw County, but he lived some years in Covington County. Therefore, he is the ancestor who moved this family into Covington. In 1870 and 1880, the family was residing in Crenshaw County. In 1900, they were living in Bradleyton, Crenshaw County, and had a sister-in-law, Mary Rose with two children, Cleveland and Julia Rose, residing in the household. By 1920, the family was residing in River Falls, but Ruff died in 1833 in Crenshaw County.

Ruff was married to Sarah Elizabeth Brunson, daughter of John R. (1826-aft. 1900) and Julia A. (Underwood) (1836-aft. 1900) Brunson. Ruff worked as a farmer and supported the following family of children: John, b. 1877, d. 1933; Dozier, b. 1880, d. 1937, m. Julia D. Wise (1884-1966); James Marvin, b. 1886; Henry Artimus “Henery,” b. 1888, m. Sarah ?; Mattie “Minnie” A., b. 1889; Walter, b. 1889, d. 1975, m. May ?; and Joseph B. Sr., b. 1893, d. 1964, m. Elizabeth “Lizzie” Jade Mitchell (1898-1986).

Livingston B.’s oldest daughter, Sarah Ann Elizabeth Gaines, was married to Benjamin West Tisdale, son of Furney Green and Mary H. “Polly” (Norton) Tisdale. In 1880, they were residing in Mount Ida, Crenshaw County. They reared the following three children: Nancy J., b. 1873; Furney Livingston, b. 1875, m. Annie C. Griffin; and Benjamin Gideon, b. 1879, d. 1929, m. Ester Lee Morgan.

Livingston B.’s second daughter, Piety Gaines, was married to John William Everage, son of Jonathan Andrew and Martha Elizabeth (Tisdale) Everage. They reared the following children: Laura Viola, b. 1872, d. 1951, m. 1890 James “Judge” McDuffie Morgan (1854-1908); Henry Jonathan, b. 1874; Anna Elizabeth, b. 1877, d. 1904, m. 1893 Andrew Jackson Wyatt (1871-1938); Rosa Lee, b. 1879, d. 1951; John William, b. 1882, d. 1942, m. 1904 Lillie Devada Morgan; Charles Cleveland, b. 1884, d. 1965, m. 1906 Eva Rae Fletcher; Oscar Wallace, b. 1887, d. 1956, m. 1910 Fleta Mate Davis (1894-1996); and Julia, b. 1888.

Livingston B.’s youngest daughter, Emma M. Gaines, was married to Furney Green Everage. They reared the following children: John Fielder, b. 1877, m. Carrie Lela Sasser (1880-1919); Furney Green Jr., b. 1883, m. Caroline Lela Sasser; Eula, b. 1886, d. 1968, m. Ocie Theotis Bullard (1882-1960); Walter, b. 1889, d. 1901; Yancy, b. 1893; and Benjamin W., b. 1898, d. 1968.

Green Livingston “Ruff” Gaines’s second son, Dozier Gaines, was married to Lula D. Wise. Dozier moved his family to Opp circa 1920. He and Lula reared the following children who have lived in Covington County: Annie Pearl, b. 1908, d. 1988, m. Hillard Parker Schofield; Mamie Lee, b. 1910, d. 1994, m. Huey Tolbert Phillips; William, b. 1912, d. 1993, m. (1) Stella Mae Russell (2) Ola Williams; Mildred, m. J.D. Hargrove; and Opal.

Green Livingston “Ruff” Gaines’s youngest son, Joseph B. Gaines, Sr. was married to Elizabeth “Lizzie” Jade Mitchell (1898-1986), daughter of John Thomas (1868-1917) and Amanda Elizabeth (Gorum) (1871-1968) Mitchell. Joseph died in Niagara Falls, N.Y., when the family resided there for a number of years. His body was returned to Covington County and buried in the historic Hickory Grove Cemetery just west of Opp. He and Lizzie reared the following children: Pauline, b. 1921, d. 1922; Joseph B. Jr., b. 1923, d. 1963, m. Martha Elvira Harris; John Douglas, b. 1924, d. 1998, m. 1949 Grace Uren, a native of England; James Curtis “Curt,” b. 1926, d. 1982, m. Helen Marsh; Thomas Love, b. 1927, m. Joan Uren; Lonzie Lavon, b. 1929, m. Eleanor May Litten, native of Penn.; male infant, b.&d. 1932; and Roy Green, b. 1934, d. 1991.

The son, Lonzie Lavon Gaines, was married in 1949 to Eleanor May Litten, daughter of Albert J. and Beatrice C. (Hegarty) Litten. He worked for a number of years as a sharecropper in Gantt, Red Level and Rose Hill communities. He at times drove a log truck as well. All his brothers were drafted to serve during WW II, but Lonzie had to quit school to farm for the family. He along with brothers, John D. and Joseph B. Jr., went to New York to find better jobs circa 1948. It is reported that Lonzie borrowed $50 from Bob Gantt to enable him to make the move to Niagara Falls. There he ran a dairy and operated a junkyard. The brothers also found a job at a dairy for their father, so their parents moved there to join them. They all returned to Andalusia in 1991.

Lonzie and Eleanor reared the following children: Linda Jane, b. 1950, m. Charles Leddon; Donald Levon, b. 1953, m. Ava Caldwell; and Sally Lou, b. 1959, m. Richard Michael Ayers, Sr. Sally and Richard reared the following three children: Richard Michael Jr., Angela Rose, and Amanda Marie.

Joseph B. Gaines, Jr., was married to Martha Elvira “Red” Harris, daughter of Willie and Winfred Era (Morgan) Harris. He was killed in a trucking accident in 1963 in Penn. They had the following three children: Richard Dowe, b. 1946, m. (1) Laura Wadsworth (2) Fae Bagley; Alan Joseph, b. 1948, d. 1968 in Viet Nam; and Brenda Karen, b. 1952, m. (1) Pat Henegan (2) Andy Little.

Once again, the family records of Richard Michael Ayers, Jr. along with were the sources for today’s writing.

Anyone who might have any corrections to the above or additional information on this Gaines family is requested to contact this writer, Curtis Thomasson, at 20357 Blake Pruitt Road, Andalusia, AL 36420; 334-222-6467; or Email:


The Covington Historical Society will meet at 7 p.m., Thurs., Sept. 29, in the Dixon Memorial Room of the Andalusia Public Library. Guests and anyone interested in becoming a member are encouraged to attend.­