A Life in Words
Lying in a grave in the Southeast Section of Mt Zion Cemetery, space 1, row 5 we believe is Edmond T. Finley the deceased twin brother of John William Finley and son of David Merritt Finley and his wife, Phoebe. His grave is near the main road that enters from the church parking lot. His limestone grave marker was apparently knocked down and moved to the back corner of the cemetery where broken markers were piled for a while. Since then, it may have been removed along with several other broken markers and taken away to a nearby landowner’s private property. There it could have been set up as a part of a mock cemetery with a frontier settlement look complete with a small log cabin. Somebody replaced it with a small granite marker that is pictured below.
Shocked that broken markers of historical ancestors were discarded? In today’s world, it seems regard for history either elicits apathy or contempt. Few people seem interested in the preservation of history unless it supports their egocentric cause. One of the few people on the board of trustees who has demonstrated an interest in the preservation of our history in Mt Zion is Yvonne Stewart Rollins. Her booklet, Mt Zion: It’s history its churches, its schools, its families, and its folks is one of the BEST little collections of historical information available. However, the spotlight here is on the Finley family, who only has a brief mention in her booklet.
From that source, we learn the patriarch of this family is David C. Finley, who was born in Virginia, married there, then moved to Kentucky and ended up in Indiana. They appeared to have lived between Indiana and Missouri, with Indiana being east of the Mississippi and Missouri west of the river. David had at least two sons who lived in Texas early on (early 1830’s): Jesse and Edmond ‘Ed’ Finley. William J “Bill’ Finley was Jesse’s son and the brother of Elizabeth Ellen Finley, who married Merit Branom, for whom the Branom community was named.
Additional research reveals that the FINLEY name is of Scottish origin and the people were probably Scots-Irish. The Finley family were more than pioneers to the area, they were pathfinders, meaning the family had arrived before Texas became a state and Hopkins County was still part of Red River County.
Edmond T was a grandson of Jesse Finley and Rachel COLCLASURE Finley and his great aunt was Elizabeth Ellen Finley. Another relative, Milton Finley, married a native American woman and the Finley surname is listed on a list of Cherokee surnames dating back to the Trail of Tears.
Edmond's birth was about 10 years after the Civil War had ended and the area was beginning to prosper again, except for the farmers. People were still moving into the Branom community from southern states more severely affected by reconstruction and devastation of the economy.
Edmond’s date of death is unknown, but he probably died soon after birth. There is no record of his life to be found, even on ancestry.com. He is buried in Hopkins, Texas, but any record of his life and death is not to be found in their records either.
Phoebe must have had birthing difficulties, lived in harsh conditions or children had health problems because her next 3 infants didn’t live long either and she only raised half of her children to adulthood.
We can learn of how his life could have been by looking at his twin brother’s life. His brother lived in Hopkins County, for a while as an only child until other siblings (who lived) were born when he was 6 years old. As stated, his mother only raised about half of her children to adulthood. Maybe this was why John William moved away and became a physician. He died in Dallas and is buried in a cemetery in Sulphur Springs.
When Viola Lee Finley was born on October 15, 1878, she died as a child (age 2) on September 11, 1881, and was buried in the Mt. Zion cemetery.
When Infant Finley was born on August 10, 1880, died as a child on November 6, 1881, and was buried there.
Infant Son Finley was born on June 10, 1882, and died 9 days later.
David-III Merritt Finley was born on May 19, 1848, in Texas, his father, William ‘Bill’ Finley, an early landowner in Hopkins County, was 32 and his mother, Elizabeth SIMMONS, was 26. David married Phoebe HODGES on September 23, 1875, in Hopkins, Texas. They had about 10 children in 18 years. He died on February 22, 1917, in Dallas, Texas, at the age of 68, and was buried in Commerce, Texas.
When William J 'Bill' Finley was born on March 6, 1816, his father, Jesse Finley, was 23 and his mother, Rachel, was 27. He married Elizabeth C SIMMONS in 1841 in Hunt County, Texas. They had three children during their marriage. He died in October 1853 at the age of 37.
This Finley family moved away, but ancestors can be traced to the Fred Finley family who lived in the Branom community during the lifetime of many members of the Mt. Zion family.
Lying in an unmarked grave in the Southeast Section of Mt Zion Cemetery, Row 6, Space 3 near the main road that enters from the church parking lot is Debby Ann Lucretia Dalrymple (pronounced, ‘dul-rimple’). Her limestone grave marker was apparently knocked down and moved to the back corner of the cemetery where broken markers were piled. Since then, it has been removed along with several other broken markers and taken away to a nearby landowner’s private property. There it was set up as a part of a mock cemetery with a frontier settlement look complete with a small log cabin (see actual picture).
Shocked? In today’s world, it seems regard for history either elicits apathy or contempt. Few people seem interested in the preservation of history anymore. One of the few people on the board of trustees who has demonstrated an interest in the preservation of our history in Mt Zion is Yvonne Stewart Rollins. Her booklet, Mt Zion: It’s history its churches, its schools, its families, and its folks is one of the BEST little collections of historical information available. However, the spotlight here is on Ann Dalrymple Patrick.
Ann, as she was known to go by, was born on February 14, 1836, in DeKalb, Alabama. At the time of her birth, her father, Henry, was 30, and her mother, Hannah, was 30. She was their fourth child.
She married Thomas Austin Patrick, Jr. on October 1, 1854, in her hometown. She was 18. They had at least 9 children in 20 years. She died on January 14, 1882, in Hopkins County, Texas, at the age of 45, and was buried here in the Mt Zion Cemetery. After she died, Thomas married Martha Jane Wilson.
We first find her living in Texas around age 40, when her youngest child, Tera Jane was born in July 1876. The migration history looks like they moved west toward Arkansas, then southwest from Arkansas through Texarkana to Hopkins County.
She had most of her children while living in Alabama where her husband also served in the Civil War in Company I of the 10th Infantry. He was wounded and discharged before the war was over. Yvonne’s booklet provides additional insight:
The surname, Dalrymple, is of Scottish origin and dates back to the 16 Century.
There is a Find-A-Grave post for her created by: Eugene Cornelius, a family descendant. Record added: May 03, 2009 Find A Grave Memorial# 36695328
Deby Ann was a daughter of Henry H. Dalrymple and Hannah Smith. She married Thomas Austin Patrick Jr. October 1, 1854 in DeKalb County Alabama.
1850 DeKalb Co., AL: H.H. Dalrymple, 45, SC; Hannah, 44, SC; Berry, 19, SC; Drayton, 18, SC; Deby L., 14, AL; Susan, 10, AL; Benton, 5, AL
1860 DeKalb Co., AL, pg 227: Thomas Patrick, 26, farmer, TN; Wife Debian, 24, SC; Hanna, 4 F, AL; Mary Ann, 3 F, AL; Henry A.,1 M, AL.
1870 Woodruff Co., AR, pg 463: Thomas A. Patrick, 36, farm Laborer..TN; Debbey L., 34, AL; Hannie E., 14 F, AL; Mary A., 13 F, AL; Henry A., 11 M, AL; Rachal L., 10 F, AL; Nancy A., 8 F, AL; Susan, 5 F, AL; William A., 2 M, AL.
1880 Hopkins Co., TX, ED 59, pg 184D: Thomas Patrick, 44, TN; Ann D., 44, AL; Mary A., 23, AL; Henry, 21, AL; Rachel, 19, AL; Nancy A., 17, AL; Susan, 14, AL; William, 12, AR; Odis, 6, AR; Tiria, 3, TX.
Henry H. Dalrymple (1805 - 1870)
Hannah Dalrymple (1805 - 1880)
Thomas Austin Patrick (1834 - 1913)*
Hannah E. Patrick Partlow (1855 - 1941)*
Mary Ann Patrick (1857 - 1881)*
Henry Austin Patrick (1858 - 1948)*
Rachel Lucretia Patrick Vaughn (1860 - 1889)*
Nancy Ann Patrick (1862 - 1882)*
Susan Alberta Patrick Sharp (1865 - 1939)*
William Asbestos Patrick (1867 - 1944)*
Odis B. Patrick (1874 - 1948)*
Tera Jane Patrick Burns (1876 - 1955)*
Mary Susan Dalrymple Coats (1836 - 1904)*
Deby Ann Lucretia Dalrymple Patrick (1836 - 1882)
Ann is the grandmother of Roy Lee Patrick (who was an initial member of the Mt Zion Board of Trustees back in 1968).
The Patricks got their fill of farming and most of the descendants got college degrees and moved away.
In that Mt Zion booklet, we find words that stick to my heart like the black gumbo of Mt Zion: “…we learned that we too have roots in the rich black dirt of Mt Zion. Such dirt does not let us go easily, no matter where we move or how long we stay away.”
She is the mother-in-law of Minnie Elizabeth Haddox, who was married to her son, Henry Austin Patrick, Jr. (Roy Lee’s dad) and daughter of Eugene Haddox/Haddock & Susan Ann Moore Haddox, they trace all the way back to Admiral Haddock of NC (named after the famous Admiral of the English Navy, Sir Richard Haddock) – the name went through a misspelling from mouth to ear and ended up with a variation as they migrated to SC, then Georgia/Alabama.
In addition to Mt Zion community, this HADDOX family also lived near PICKTON, in Hopkins Co. She was the 2nd of 6 children. Married 1/9/1894 in the Mt Zion Church, by Rev. Barbie. She was a twin, brother, Will, died at birth.
In 1937 New London, Texas, in northwest Rusk County, had one of the richest rural school districts in the United States. Community residents in the East Texas oilfields were proud of the beautiful, modern, steel-framed, E-shaped school building.
On March 18 students prepared for the next day's Inter-scholastic meet in Henderson. At the gymnasium, the PTA met. At 3:17 P.M. Lemmie R. Butler, instructor of manual training, turned on a sanding machine in an area which, unknown to him, was filled with a mixture of gas and air.
The switch ignited the mixture and carried the flame into a nearly closed space beneath the building, 253 feet long and fifty-six feet wide.
Immediately the building seemed to lift in the air and then smashed to the ground. Walls collapsed. The roof fell in and buried its victims in a mass of brick, steel, and concrete debris.
The explosion was heard four miles away, and it hurled a two-ton concrete slab 200 feet away, where it crushed a 1936 Chevrolet.
Fifteen minutes later, the news of the explosion had been relayed over telephone and Western Union lines. Frantic parents at the PTA meeting rushed to the school building. Community residents and roughnecks from the East Texas oilfield came with heavy-duty equipment. Within an hour Governor James Allred had sent the Texas Rangers and highway patrol to aid the victims.
Workers began digging through the rubble looking for victims. Floodlights were set up, and the rescue operation continued through the night as rain fell.
Within seventeen hours all victims and debris had been taken from the site. Mother Francis Hospital in Tyler canceled its elaborate dedication ceremonies to take care of the injured. The Texas Funeral Directors sent twenty-five embalmers.
Of the 500 students and forty teachers in the building, approximately 294 died. Some rescuers, students, and teachers needed psychiatric attention, and only about 130 students escaped serious injury. Those who died received individual caskets, individual graves, and religious services.
Birth: Aug. 6, 1907
Death: Mar. 18, 1937
Occupation: Teacher at the New London Jr. and Sr. High school when it exploded and killed many of the occupants.
Son of E. L. Butler and Minnie Raines
Edgar Ligon Butler (1881 - 1935)
Minnie Aveline Raines Butler (1879 - 1968)
Mary Frances Robinson Gibson (1912 - 1997)*
Allen Therada Butler (1902 - 1947)*
W. Ligon Butler (1905 - 1962)*
Limmie Raines Butler (1907 - 1937)
Limmie Raines Butler (1907 - 1937)*
Clyde Udell Butler (1909 - 1991)*
Mattie Evelyn Butler Fitzgerald (1912 - 2001)*
Mount Zion Cemetery
His parents are also buried there.
Billy D Haddock, Ph.D.
Bill Haddock lives in College Station, Texas. He is a retired psychotherapist & marriage/family counselor who graduated with a doctorate from Texas A&M University. In his retirement, he spends his time researching family history & writing. He currently serves as Vice-President on the Board of Trustees for the Mt Zion Cemetery Association in Hopkins County, Texas, just outside of Commerce.