Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Roberts Relatives in Sunset Hill Cemetery, Valdosta—Update

A couple of weekends ago, I spent some more time wandering around Sunset Hill Cemetery in Valdosta, Georgia, looking for more relatives. This time, I “dragged” my sister Helen along (I don’t think she minded, though). After posting the photographs of my maternal great grandfather John Taylor (J.T.) Roberts and who I think are his brothers and father, I realized that I didn’t know where any of J.T.’s brothers, sisters, or his parents are buried. (Here’s my post about J.T.’s grave) One of my favorite things to do is to wander the cemetery. I know you genealogists, family historians, graveyard rabbits, and just-plain-interested-in-cemeteries kind of folks understand. Below are a few of the photographs that I took of some of the graves of my Roberts clan in Sunset Hill.

William and Margaret DeVane RobertsThese are the graves of my maternal 2nd great grandparents William Roberts (1828-1903) and Margaret DeVane (1826-1882), parents of John Taylor Roberts (my maternal great grandfather). They’re buried in Section A204, Block 22, Lot 2, Sunset Hill Cemetery, Valdosta, Georgia. The left side of the marker reads: “William Roberts, Aug. 27, 1828, July 24, 1903.” The right side reads: “Margaret, wife of Wm. Roberts, Sept. 29, 1826, Aug. 18, 1893, None know thee but to love thee.”

Edwin & Anna Pricilla Roberts DavisThe grave of William and Margaret’s eldest daughter Priscilla Ann Roberts is on the same lot. Her grave is on the right and her  husband Edwin Perry Davis is buried on the left.  Their grave marker in the middle reads: “Edwin P. Davis, Apr 20, 1840, Dec 7, 1898, His Wife, Ann P. Davis, May 9, 1847, Oct 10, 1920.”

Willaimm P Roberts1Also on the same lot as William and Margaret is their second oldest son (my great grandfather J.T. Roberts was their oldest son) William Patrick Roberts. His headstone reads: “William P. Roberts, May 3, 1855, Oct 22, 1922.” I don’t know if William was married. There is no wife buried next to him, and I haven’t researched his marital status.

Ben Hill and Tommie RobertsThe grave of William and Margaret’s third son Benjamin Hill Roberts is on the left and his wife Helen (Tommie) Harrell is on the right (Section B218, Block 2). Their gravestones read: “Benjamin Hill Roberts, Oct. 7, 1858, June 20, 1936,” and “Tommie, Wife of, B. H. Roberts, Dec. 29, 1873, May 25, 1906.”

IMG_2838William and Margaret’s youngest son was Francis DeVane Roberts. He is buried in Section C201, Block 6 with his wife Lillian Irene Jones and their eldest daughter. His headstone reads: “Frank Roberts 1860-1915.” His wife’s: “Lillie Jones Roberts 1870-1942.” Their daughter’s: “Lily Belle Roberts 1890-1989.”

The two youngest children of William and Margaret were Martha (Mattie) Leona Roberts and Margaret Beulah Roberts. They were married to the same man, but not at the same time, of course (click on Mattie’s name for my previous post). They are buried with their husband Colquitt Strickland between them in Section C313, Block 13 in Sunset Hill.

IMG_2846 Mattie Roberts StricklandThis is the grave of Martha (Mattie) Leona Roberts. The back of her headstone reads: “Mattie Leona, Wife of, C. Strickland, Jany. 17, 1864, Aug. 10, 1900.” I didn’t transcribe the saying engraved at the bottom of the back side.

IMG_2855 Beulah Roberts StricklandThis is the grave of Margaret Beulah Roberts. It reads: “Beulah Roberts Strickland, May 12, 1867, Apr 23, 1946.”

William and Margaret’s second child, Rebecca Jane Roberts, died shortly after her birth in 1849. She’s probably buried in Berrien County, Georgia, where they were living at the time, which was actually once part of Lowndes County.  Their third daughter, Elizabeth Roberts (1853-1936), may also be buried in Berrien County or in what is now Cook County. She and her husband James Taylor Giddens were living in Berrien County as of the 1900 U.S. census, and by the 1910 census, she’s listed as a widow in Sparks, Berrien County, Georgia.[1,2] In the 1920 census, the county for Sparks is listed as Cook instead of Berrien.[3] Cook County was formed from Berrien County in 1918, so apparently this included Sparks.[4] **

Next, the Youngs in Sunset Hill.


**Update: My first cousin Charlie found Elizabeth Roberts and James Taylor Giddens listed on findagrave.com in Sparks (click on their names to go to their memorials). I could have sworn I checked this website, as it’s one of my “go to” places, but apparently I didn’t! Thank goodness for cousins who check behind me!


[1] Ancestry.com. 1900 U.S. census, for James and Elizabeth Giddens, Militia District 1487, Berrien Georgia, Page 13B.

[2] Ancestry.com. 1910 U.S. census for Elizabeth Giddens, Sparks, Berrien, Georgia, Page 12A.

[3] Ancestry.com. 1920 U.S. census for Elizabeth Giddens, Sparks, Berrien, Georgia, Page 12A.

[4] “Cook County” in New Georgia Encyclopedia. ttp://www.georgiaencyclopedia.org/nge/Article.jsp?id=h-2316

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Watching the Sun Go Down at Ocean Pond

Ocean Pond at Lake Park, Georgia, in south Lowndes County was one of my dad’s favorite places. I even wrote a post about it a while back.  I found a few photographs at my mom’s of him doing one of his favorite things—watching the sun go down at Ocean Pond.  I’m not sure when these photographs were taken but possibly in the 80s or early 90s.





Albert Pendleton, Jr. (my dad) watching the sun go down at Ocean Pond, Lake Park, Georgia.




How serene!


Sunday, November 11, 2012

Veterans Day—Remembering those who served

My dad was a private during World War II and served with the 80th Infantry Division, 317 Battalion, Company I in France.  As I wrote in a previous post [A Wounded World War II Vet: Pfc. Albert S. Pendleton, Jr. (1925-2006)], he didn’t talk much about the war.  He was seriously wounded in France and spent a long time in the hospital recovering.  He had a constant reminder of the war in the pain he endured the rest of his life because of his wounds. I’ve learned more about his experiences in the war from his writings than I ever learned from him directly.  His brother William Frederick Pendleton and his sister Frances Hoyt Thomas (later McLaughlin) both served in the military during World War II.


Bert cropped resizedMy dad, Pfc. Albert S. Pendleton, Jr.  This photograph was taken at his parents’ home on Slater Street in Valdosta, Georgia. 

Billy Frances Albert2 adjusted
William Frederick Pendleton (my Uncle Billy), Frances Hoyt Thomas (later McLaughlin, my Aunt Frances), and Albert S. Pendleton, Jr. (my dad).

Here is one of the poems that my dad wrote about the war.

Losses: The Return

I came home to you in Atlantis spring
With heart and soul and bladder brimmed
Of everlasting French rain,
And a memory of claustrophobic earth tombs.
My abode is here because St. Lo disappeared from its stone.
Omaha Beach that summer was not for relaxing tourists.
Now the trek homeward…I see whole buildings
As I glide along
And a dream of a dream of what is left of me
And my quickening heart,
Reborn, but not renewed,
What of tomorrow, my young man…What? Tomorrow?
…all I know is I must lose my elephantine memory…
…only to find my candlelit face
In glassy window panes
Reflecting the dream of me
And what I used to be…
Albert Pendleton
July 1978
As you can see from the date, when he wrote this poem the war was still very much a part of him.


Monday, November 5, 2012

J. T. Roberts Family Photo ID—Request for Help

This past March when I was visiting Valdosta (before I moved), I scanned all of the family photos that were in my grandmother Leona Roberts Redles’ desk at my mom’s house. Included was a small box/envelope with the unlabeled photographs below. I’m hoping that some Roberts relatives can help me identify these men. I’m pretty sure the man wearing the hat is my great grandfather John Taylor Roberts (1850-1920). Isn’t he handsome?! I recognize that icy, blue-eyed stare from other known photographs of him, but I’d like to know for sure. John had three brothers, William Patrick (1855-1922), Benjamin Hill (1857-1936), and Francis DeVane (1860-1915). Their father was also named William (1828-1903), and their mother was Margaret DeVane (1826-1882).  These five men would account for the five photographs.

SCAN0862 croppedSince the photographs were in this box/enveloped addressed to J. T. Roberts, I assume these are photographs of him, his brothers, and their father. The back of the box says “D. J. Ryan’s” “Art Gallery” “Savannah, GA”

SCAN0857 croppedI believe this photo is of my great grandfather, John Taylor (J. T. as he was commonly called) Roberts. This is the only tintype in the box. Love his “I’m handsome and I know it” countenance!

SCAN0859 croppedPossibly one of my great grandfather J. T. Roberts’s brothers. The back of the photo says “Ryan” “Savannah, GA”

SCAN0855 croppedAnother brother of J. T. Roberts? The back of this photo says “Brown’s Gallery” “Thomasville, GA”

SCAN0861 croppedThere isn’t anything on the back of this photo to indicate where it was taken.  This man looks very much like William Patrick Roberts whose photograph is in DeVanes 1798-1975, although the photograph in the book was taken when William was older.

SCAN0858 croppedCould this photograph be of their father William Roberts? He looks older than the men in the other photos, but since I don’t know when any of the photographs were taken, this is just a guess.  There is also nothing on the back of this photo about the photographer.

After William Roberts and Margaret DeVane were married, they lived in the part of Lowndes County, Georgia, that later became Berrian County, and that is where their children were born.  Later, several of the Roberts clan moved to Valdosta, Georgia. Any help with the identification of these men in the photographs would be much appreciated!