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Martha E (Alford) Brumfield 1846 MS – After 1910

Martha E (Alford) Brumfield 1846 MS – After 1910

Martha Elizabeth (Alford) Brumfield was the daughter of Edwin Barksdale Alford and Martha P. (Smith) Alford. She was born 8 August 1846 in Pike County, Mississippi.[i],[ii]

In 1850 Martha was four years old and living with her parents in Pike County. Her father, Edwin, was a farmer and her brothers, Jeptha and Seaborn, helped with the farm work. Siblings, Julia and Newton, were also still living at home.[iii]In 1860 Martha was 13 years old and living with her parents and siblings Julius and Julia.[iv]

By the time Martha was 18 years old she was married to Jessie Alexander Brumfield, son of Nathaniel Brumfield and Charlotte Temple (Ott) Brumfield. They lived “on a farm near the original home of her parents.”[v]In the summer of 1864 her husband went off to fight in the Civil War. He was a private in Company C, 3rdRegiment of the Louisiana Calvary.[vi]Jessie was fighting in Mississippi and Louisiana, the war raged around her and Martha was pregnant with her first child, Martin Ellis Brumfield.

If Martha wrote letters to her husband during the war she had a difficult time obtaining paper, ink, pens and pencils. Paper produced during the war tended to be lower in quality than usual. Old business forms, wallpaper or scrap papers were folded to be used for envelopes. Ink could be made from berry juice and pencils were made from coal or lead. People wrote letters in pencil so the recipient could erase the letter and use the same paper to respond.[vii]

Martha would have had difficulties making clothes for her baby. Metal goods were scarce in the south, including pins, needles and scissors.[viii]Those items that she did have would have been precious and handled with care. Cloth, buttons, thread and dye were also difficult to purchase if not unavailable all together.

Southern women “learned to make their own cloth, thread, and yarn. Just as people today consider such activities a thing of the past, so did many Civil War-era women, who had to pull old spinning wheels and looms from attics or storerooms and learn how to use them from people of their parent’s or grandparent’s generations.”[ix]

[x]

If Martha had any Confederate dollars, called graybacks, they would have had little value. During the war the Confederacy issued approximately $1 billion in in currency. Early in the war one Confederate dollar equaled 95 U. S. cents on the dollar. By1863 the value was down to 33 cents. By the last year of the conflict the limited goods that were available could only be obtained through barter or with U. S. dollars obtained on the black market.[xi]

After April 9, 1865, when Lee surrendered his army to the Union, the value of Confederate dollar dropped in value to 1.6 cents against the Union dollar. Less than a month later, on May 1, 1865, on the last known day that Confederate currency was actively traded, it was sold in bales of 1,200 notes for $1.[xii]

Martha’s husband did return safely from the war. Because Louisiana was in such terrible shape in the aftermath of the war, Jessie and Martha left for Mississippi.

Martha went on to be the mother of nine children, all born in Mississippi.

[i]“Death Certificate of Rose Brumfield Brown”, State of Mississippi # 16010. Gives information on her mother, Martha Elizabeth (Alford) Brumfield.

[ii]Conerly, Luke Ward, and E. Russ Williams, Source Records from Pike County, Mississippi 1798 – 1910 and Misc. Legal and Family Records Pertaining to the Areas of Pike and Walthall Counties, MS(Easley, South Carolina: Southern Historical Press, 1978)97.

[iii]1850 US Census, MS, Pike, Police District 1; digital image, Ancestry(ancestry.com: accessed Sept. 2016) Edwin Alford family.

[iv]1860 US Census, MS, Pike, Holmesville; digital image, Ancestry(ancestry.com: accessed Sept. 2016) Edwin Alford family.

[v]Tynes, Walter Edwin,My Pilgrimage(1928) 8.

[vi]Louisiana, Confederate Soldiers Index, 1861-1865Ancestry(ancestry.com: accessed 2017) Private J A Brumfield in Co C, 3rdRegiment, LA Calvary.

[vii]Varhola, Michael O. Life in Civil War America (Cincinnati, OH: Family Tree Books, 2011) 149-150.

[viii]Varhola, Michael O. Life in Civil War America (Cincinnati, OH: Family Tree Books, 2011) 150.

[ix]Varhola, Michael O. Life in Civil War America (Cincinnati, OH: Family Tree Books, 2011) 146-147.

[x]Varhola, Michael O. Life in Civil War America (Cincinnati, OH: Family Tree Books, 2011) 136.

[xi]Varhola, Michael O. Life in Civil War America (Cincinnati, OH: Family Tree Books, 2011) 135 – 137.

[xii]Varhola, Michael O. Life in Civil War America (Cincinnati, OH: Family Tree Books, 2011) 135 – 137.

1 Martha Elizabeth Alford b: 08 Aug 1846 in Pike, MS, d: Aft. 1910
…… + Jessie Alexander Brumfield b: 27 Sept 1838 in LA, d: Aft. 1910
…………2 Martin Ellis Brumfield b: September 1865 in MS, d: Aft. 1920
………… + Dollie King b: June 1877 in LA
………………3 Lola Brumfield b: September 1890 in LA
………………3 Jewel Brumfield b: Abt. 1901 in LA
………………3 Jesse Alton Brumfield b: Abt. 1905 in LA
………………3 Ayleen Brumfield b: Abt. 1908 in LA
………………3 Dora Lee Brumfield b: Abt. 1915 in LA
………………3 Lola Brumfield b: Abt. 1891 in LA
…………2 Rose Ella Brumfield b: 18 July 1867 MS, d: 2 Oct 1948 Pike, MS
………… + Jasper Pascal Brown b: 15 May 1865 in Pike, MS, m: 21 Dec 1887 in Pike, MS, d: 08 June 1950 in McComb, Pike, MS
………………3 Lucy Viola Brown b: 16 Oct 1888 in MS, d: 23 March 1942
……………… + Tate Edward Fortenberry b: 14 Jan 1885 MS, m: 17 Dec 1908 MS
………………3 Ina Lucille Brown b: 29 Dec 1890 in MS, d: 25 July 1972
……………… + Dewitt W Alford b: 29 Oct 1874 LA, m: 8 Dec 1910 LA, d: 24 May 1942
………………3 Junius Earl Brown b: 12 May 1892 in MS, d: Jan 1956
……………… + Armetha Brown
………………3 Hubert Allen Brown b: 01 Oct 1894 MS, d: 25 Nov 1971 Hinds, MS
……………… + Freddie Smith b: 19 Nov 1899, m: 10 Jan 1920 in Pike, MS, d: 21 April 1988 in MS
………………3 Mavis Marie Brown b: 18 Aug 1897 MS, d: 28 June 1928 MS
……………… + Denny Herbert Smith b: 3 March 1892 in Tylertown, Walthall, MS, d: 18 March 1966 in MS
………………3 Lyda Mearl Brown b: 24 Dec 1900 Pike, MS, d: 6 Dec 1979 MS
……………… + Arlie Pierce b: 27 Jan 1898 in Walthall, MS, d: 1993
………………3 Roy Jesse Brown b: 8 March 1902 in Osyka, Pike, MS, d: 12 May 1956 in Magnolia, Pike, MS
……………… + Ivy Regina Mark b: 08 June 1908 Medina, Ohio, m: 2 Aug 1927 in Seville, Medina, Ohio, d: 18 Sept 2003 in Rhinebeck, Dutchess County, NY
……………… + Mary Thelma Ellzey b: 22 Feb 1906 in Pike, MS, d: Jan 1974 in Magnolia, Pike, MS
………………3 Mildred Olga Brown b: 23 June 1904 in MS
……………… + James Alton Ball b: 22 March 1902 in Angie, Washington, LA, m: 24 Dec 1921 in Vernado, LA
………………3 Thelma Lady Brown b: 27 Feb 1908 in MS, d: 15 Nov 1979
……………… + Reynolds
…………2 John Edward Brumfield b: Nov 1869 in MS, d: 1933
………… + Ada Beatrice Fortenberry b: 1893, d: 1956
………………3 Baxter Edwin Brumfield b: 13 June 1912
………………3 Fannie Chelottie Brumfield b: 28 Aug 1913
………………3 James Albert Brumfield b: 28 Dec 1914
………………3 John Edward Brumfield b: Feb 1915
………………3 Claudia Martha Brumfield b: 27 Dec 1917
………………3 Selwyn Alex Brumfield b: 31 Oct 1919, d: 08 Sept 1981
………………3 Olgee Shelina Brumfield b: 07 Aug 1921
………………3 Oliver Wendell Brumfield b: 21 Aug 1923
…………2 Fletcher Boyd Brumfield b: 28 June 1875 in MS
………… + Mattie Burmfield b: MS, m: Abt. 1908
………………3 Mead Brumfield b: Abt. 1913 in MS
………………3 Francis Brumfield b: Abt. 1916 in MS
………………3 Courtney Jane Brumfield b: Abt. 1919 in MS
………………3 Ed H. Brumfield b: Abt. 1924 in MS
…………2 Lily E. Brumfield b: 1876 in MS, d: 1959
………… + Julius Alford b: 25 Oct 1869 in LA
………………3 Lillian Alford b: 1900 in LA, d: 1969
……………… + William Archie Simmons b: 1897
…………2 Daisy L. Brumfield b: July 1879 in MS
………… + Cornelius Alford
…………2 Lucy May Brumfield b: 12 April 1881 in MS
…………2 Sallie Joy Brumfield b: 31 May 1884 in MS
………… + Joseph Ed Brumfield b: Abt. 1873 in MS
………………3 Alex Brumfield b: Abt. 1906 in MS
………………3 Philip Brumfield b: Abt. 1909 in MS
………………3 Donald Brumfield b: Abt. 1912 in MS
………………3 David Brumfield b: Abt. 1915 in MS

Selected Sources:

  • 1870 US Census,  Holmesville, Pike Co., Mississippi.  Township 2. Range 10. Page 3. Jessie Brumfield, 34
  • 1880 US Census.  MS, Pike Co.,  ED 37 SD 3 Page 54. J Alek & Martha E. Brumfield & family.
  • 1900 US Census, MS, Pike, south of Magnolia at Walkers Bridge Rd., SD 7, ED 104, Sheet 31A. Jesse A. & Martha E. Brumfield & family.
  • 1910 US Census, MS, Pike, SD 7, ED 95, Sheet 8A. Jessie A. & Martha E. Brumfield
  • Conerly, Luke Ward, SOURCE RECORDS FROM PIKE COUNTY, MISSISSIPPI, 1798-1910; 1798-1910; South Carolina, Southern Historical Press, 1989.
  • Creel, Bevin J. A Patriot’s Legacy: The Family of Richard Dillon and Ann Lawrence From Bertie County, North Carolina To Southern Mississippi and Louisiana. Franklinton, Louisiana: Privately Printed, 2002.
  •  Death Certificate State File #16010, Registrar’s # 264, Mississippi. “Rosa Ella Brown” White Female. Aged 81 Years, 2 months, 13 days.  Born 18 July 1867.  Father: Alex Brumfield  and  Mother:  Martha Alford who was born in MS

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