The setting of this journey begins in Jones County, Georgia with a westward shift to Pike County, Alabama, and finally settling in central Florida, Marion County.
The Allen line goes quite a long way back to the patriarch Benjamin Allen in Wales. According to some sources, he migrated to Spotsylvania County, Virginia in 1735. A couple of generations later, John Earl Allen (6.10) was born in Georgia on the 4th of March, 1805. In Jones County, Georgia on November 23, 1824 he married Lucy Thomas Anderson (6.11) and exactly nine months later on August 22, 1825, Andaline Susan Thomas Allen (6.5) was born. Some time between the birth of their new baby girl and 1827, the family moved to Lucy’s hometown of Pike County, Alabama. It was here that John and Lucy had six additional children in this order: Eason William (1827), Permilla H L (1829), Mary Ann (1832), Early Alexander (1830/5), Loduskie (1837) and Fadria Amanda (1841).
Our research of the Hall line only brings us back to the early 1800’s when Joel Hall (6.8) was likely born. He He and his wife had probably had seven children: William, Richard, James, Joel, John, Sally and another son. Their son Joel Thomas Hall (6.4) was born on November 15, 1811 in South Carolina. At some point Joel Thomas moved to Pike County, Alabama where he met and married Andaline "Ann" Susan Thomas Allen (6.5) on the 18th of July, 1843. Prior to their move to the Sunshine State around 1846, the couple had their first son in 1845 who they named William Harris.
I'm sure the thought did not even cross their minds, but their move to the land of citrus trees made Marion County, Florida a home to generations of Hall’s for over 100 years.
November 4, 1850, the Hall family of Joel & Ann has increased to include two additional boys, James Edward Beaumont (23 Apr 1847) (6.2) and Charles (1849). This census also shows that Susan's father and some of her siblings made the journey as well. As Lucy Allen is not listed on this census, it could be assumed that she passed away prior to 1850. I also wonder if Lucy made the trip at all and could she possibly be buried in Pike County, Alabama since that was her hometown?1850 United States Census (Nov 4) - District 3, Marion County, Florida
Now, these folks obviously lived pretty close to each other as well, but my recent visit to this part of Florida certainly does not bring a Tara and Twelve Oaks plantation vision to mind. Though the impression is not of glorious parlors and neighborhood feasts (do I watch too many movies??), the families did own a lot of land, as this purchase of 40 acres by John Earl Allen on the 1st of May, 1855 proves.
By June of 1860, with a real estate value of $4,000 and additional property value of $3,000, Joel was doing well, providing for his family as a planter. Ann was taking care of her, now five children and a 22 year old female named LB Allen was also residing with them. I am guessing this was her younger sister Loduskie. Still no daughters to her name, her two new sons were named John Wesley "Jack" (1854) and Joel Thomas (1856).
1860 United States Census (June 9) - Marion County, Florida
At ages 57 and 43 the Hall's completed their family of ten children (eight boys and two girls) in the 1860's. There last five were Alice Eason (1861), Leonidus B "Lonnie" (1862), May L (1864), Robert L (1866) and Louis Jefferson (1868). In January 1867, 18 year old Charles died and a year later, baby Robert died at only 16 months old.
The addition of new children brought happiness to the family, but the loss young sons and brother must have been difficult. Not to mention the unsettling times of the Civil War were also upon them.
"In many respects, Florida remains the forgotten state of the Confederacy. Although the third state to secede, Florida’s small population (ranking last among the Confederate states with some 140,000 people) and meager industrial resources made the state of little strategic importance to either side. Indeed, one contemporary referred to the state as the “smallest tadpole in the dirty pool of secession."
Though Florida did not provide as much support to the Confederate defense as other states, of the 15,000 troops that risked their lives, two were the Allen brothers of Ann. On the same day in June of 1862, both Eason William, age 35, and Early Alexander, age 31, enlisted as Confederate soldiers in the 9th Infantry Regiment of Florida. On June 5, 1864, Eason William lost his life in Virginia while on duty in a picket. Early Alexander was shot in the chest, but recovered enough to be released from duty at the end of the war on April 9, 1865.
By 1870 Joel and Ann were grandparents and living near their grown sons James and William.
1870 United States Census - Camp Izard, Marion County, Florida
The second born son of Joel and Ann was James Edward Beaumont Hall (6.2), my great-great grandpa. He married Elizabeth Jane "Janie" Martin on March 4, 1867 and together they had eight children. The first six were born in the 1870's: Dora Ann (1868), John Eason Allen (1870), Henry Thomas (1871), Charles Clinton (1874), Joel Emmanuel (1876) and James Harmon (1878).
1880 United States Census (June 30) - Fort McCoy, Marion County, Florida
This 1880 Census was taken in the early summer, but in October of the same year, John Eason Allen died at age ten. William Leighton Hall, my great-grandfather, and James Edward Beaumont, Jr who were not born until 1881 and 1883 never met their older brother. When great-grandpa William Leighton was only 2 years old, his father died in a sawmill accident at age 36. Another tragedy to the Hall family was in 1886 when it is said that John Wesley E, or "Uncle Jack" to great-grandpa, died in a knife fight. Finally, on April 18, 1889, Joel Thomas Hall died. How tragic for this family to have lost four of their loved ones in a ten year period.
John Wesley E "Jack" Hall (1854-1886) Fort McCoy Cemetery, Marion County, Florida
Joel Thomas Hall (1811-1889) (6.4) Fort McCoy Cemetery, Marion County, Florida
Many of the Hall's discussed in this blog are buried in the Fort McCoy Cemetery, Marion County, Florida. See blog dated May 14, 2008 for details.
Memories of Janie Martin:
My grandpa, William Andrews Hall remembers that his grandmother, Janie Martin, was a "short woman with a loud voice." He did not see her much that he recalls, but specifically remembers the time when he was very young (we estimate 4-5 years old) that she was "sitting on a throne" and all the grandchildren had to approach her one at a time and recite a poem. To this day, grandpa can recite the purple cow poem:
A Purple Cow
I never saw a purple cow,
I never hope to see one;
But I can tell you, anyhow,
I'd rather see than be one.
by: Mr. Gelett Burgess