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Fayette County, Alabama

~ Lawrence Family of Pearidge ~

Generously contributed by
Betsy Haley Dill

b. c1802, GA, m. (1) Nancy --?-- (reportedly Nancy MORRIS), b. c1814, GA, d. c1861, Fayette Co., AL, bur? Lawrence (now Randolph) Family Cemetery, Fayette Co., AL, m. (2) ca 1861, in Fayette Co., AL, Mrs. Lettie BYNUM, b. May 1834, AL, last known to be residing in Lee Co., MS, in January 1920 [census, p. 53].  Alexander died 1866, Fayette Co., AL, bur? Lawrence Family Cemetery.

Children of Alexander Lawrence and Nancy --?--:

(SON) LAWRENCE b. (1830/1835), AL, d. apparently before 1850, Fayette Co., AL.

RICHARD LAWRENCE b. c1841, Fayette Co., AL, d. (after 1860).
MARY L. LAWRENCE b. c1846.
Children of Alexander Lawrence and Lettie --?--:

BENJAMIN LAWRENCE b. c1862, Fayette Co., AL, last known to be residing in Lee Co., MS, in June 1880 [census].

GEORGIA ANN LAWRENCE b. 11 Dec 1866, MS, m. (1) c1879, in Lee Co., MS, Rufus E. SANDLIN, b. 1858, MS, d. 26 Jul 1923, Clearwater Co., ID, m. (2) ----- LOVELAND.  Georgia died 13 Sep 1959, Humboldt Co., CA.

It is not yet known when Alexander LAWRENCE moved to Fayette County.  He possibly could have arrived before the county was even formed, although he does not appear by name in the records there until 1837.  In November of that year, he received a federal land patent for 80 acres in Section 6, Township 16 South, Range 10 West.  He later was recorded on the 1840 U.S. census of Fayette County with a wife and five children. 

By 1850, the family had drifted a short distance north.  That year's census lists Alexander as a farmer in Township 15 [p. 59].  In June 1858, he received a patent for 120 acres of federal land in Sec. 9, Twp. 15S, Range 10W.  This property was located about two miles northwest of present-day Pearidge (Pea Ridge). 

The 1860 census of Fayette County shows Alex LAWRENCE with real property valued at $1,200 and personal property worth $1,875 [p. 404].  His occupation was now listed as "Botanic Doctor" (herbalist).  His wife Nancy is believed to have died soon thereafter, and he quickly remarried.

Military records suggest that the LAWRENCE family supported the North during the Civil War.  At least three of Alexander's sons (William, Jesse and Alexander Jr.) and two sons-in-law (Henry and Wade TREAD(A)WAY) served in the 1st Alabama Cavalry, U.S.A., from 1862 to 1863.  Fayette County at this time was a dangerous place for so-called "Tories" (Yankee sympathizers), so the family left Alabama and made their way north.  They spent the remainder of the war safely ensconced in the southern tip of Illinois.  Alexander LAWRENCE Jr. was residing in Mound City, Pulaski Co., IL, when he enlisted in the 144th Illinois Infantry, Co. F, U.S.A., in September 1864. 

Most of the family had returned to Fayette County before the elder Alexander's death in 1866.  He and his first wife are presumed to be buried in the Old Lawrence Cemetery on or near the family homestead.


State of Alabama / Fayette County }

Probate court of said county to the Hon. the Probate Court of said county ~ The Petition of H.G. TREADAWAY the administrator of the estate of Alexander LAWRENCE deceased in said county respectfully represents unto your honor that he filed an application in said court on the 10th day of March 1866, for Letters of Administration on said estate of Alexander LAWRENCE deceased, that he set out in said petition the heirs of said estate / Lettie LAWRENCE widow of deceased / She resides in Mississippi and has one child / its name is Benjamin and resides with his mother in Mississippi / Said child is the son of Alexander LAWRENCE deceased / & W.A. LAWRENCE and Jesse LAWRENCE each of this county / Martha TREADAWAY wife of Wade H. TREADAWAY they reside in Tennessee / Alexander LAWRENCE Junior he resides in Illinois / and Caroline TREADAWAY daughter of petitioner and also daughter of Susan TREADAWAY who was petitioners wife who is deceased and the daughter of Alexander LAWRENCE she resides with petitioner in this county / and Mary GILLIARD [sic] wife of Harvey [?] GILLIARD [sic] who resides with her husband in Illinois / they and they alone are the heirs of deceased / petitioner further states that he also on said 10th of March 1866, filed his bond as said administrator in the sum of eighteen hundred dollars said estate being represented in said petitioners worth about eight or nine hundred dollars with F.M. TREADAWAY and Noah PARIS [sic] his securities / Therein [?] that Letters was granted to him on said date and an Order of Appraisement [was] made on said date that William M. ENIS and Noah PARIS and Calvin PANTER were appraisers / he further represents that said appraisement was made about 1866, and returned / petitioner is advised that all the papers in said estate was burned except said appraisal bill, which was returned after the burning of the Court House, and he ask that he may substitute said papers lost in order to administer said estate and that such order decree and proceedings may be made and had in the _____ as will lawfully substitute said papers and as in duty bound will ever pray etc.

Sworn to and subscribed before me this the 5th day of Sept 1866.

          /s/ B.H. WILLIAMS ~ Judge of Probate }
          /s/ Henry G. TREADAWAY

The probate record establishes that Alexander LAWRENCE Sr. had a second wife named Lettie and at least one child (Benjamin) who had moved to Mississippi by September 1866.  Indeed, the 1870 U.S. census finds a widow named Lettie LAWRENCE living in Lee Co., MS, with a 7-year-old son named Benjamin [p. 448].  Although this woman also had four older children and one younger child named Georgia, the only personal property reported in the household belonged to young Benjamin.  Later census records prove that the surname of Lettie's older children was actually BYNUM.  The younger child was not mentioned in the probate record apparently because she had not yet been born.  Based on Georgia's reported date of birth, Alexander LAWRENCE Sr. could not have died any earlier than March 1866 — which is precisely when his estate was filed for probate.


Mrs. Lettie BYNUM was the apparent widow of Elijah BYNUM of Blount Co., AL [1].  She was recorded as Letta PINYON [sic] on the 1860 U.S. census of Fayette County, just six households away from Alexander's son Jesse [p. 398].  Enumerated with Lettie were her five children: Isabella, William Cobb, Eli G., Ara Elizabeth and Calvin (Franklin) BYNUM.  Isabella apparently had married and left the household before the next census of 1870.

Lettie remained in Lee Co., MS, and married at least two more times — to Mabry BALDWIN (1811-1890), whom she later divorced, and to Lafayette LONG (1824-1912).  Mrs. Lettie LONG was living with her son, Eli BYNUM, at the 1920 U.S. census of Lee Co., MS [p. 53].  Nothing more is known of her.


2. WILLIAM A. LAWRENCE b. c1828, AL, m. c1854, in Fayette Co., AL, Elizabeth Jane FROST, b. 21 Nov 1838, AL, (daughter of Edward Ned Frost and Jennie Jenkins).  Both were residing in Fayette Co., AL, in June 1880 [census].

Children of William Lawrence and Elizabeth Frost:
       i  ALEXANDER LAWRENCE  b. c1855, Fayette Co., AL.
      ii  FRANCIS A.J. LAWRENCE (m) b. c1857, Fayette Co., AL.
      iii  EDWARD LAWRENCE b. c1859, Fayette Co., AL, m. c1878, AL, Martela --?--, b. c1861, AL.
      iv  MARTHA LAWRENCE b. c1865, Fayette Co., AL.

3. MARTHA ANN LAWRENCE b. 08 Nov 1834, AL, m. c1855, in Fayette Co., AL, Wade Hampton TREADAWAY, b. c1836, NC, (son of Daniel Treadaway Jr. and Elizabeth Stegall) d. (1873/1880), Fayette Co., AL.  Martha died 16 Oct 1924, AL, bur. Studdards Crossroads Cemetery, Fayette Co., AL.

Children of Martha Lawrence and Wade Treadaway:
MANDY J. TREADAWAY b. c1857, Fayette Co., AL.
HAMPTON ALEXANDER TREADWAY b. 10 Apr 1859, Fayette Co., AL, m. c1884, in Fayette Co., AL, Nancy Emaline WRIGHT, b. 18 Oct 1864, AL, d. 30 Dec 1938, bur. Studdards Crossroads Cemetery, Fayette Co., AL.  Hampton died 09 Apr 1901, Fayette Co., AL, bur. Studdards Crossroads Cemetery.
ANDREW JACKSON TREADAWAY b. Jul 1865, IL, m. 25 Jul 1886, in Fayette Co., AL, Orpha STUDDARD, b. Jul 1866, Fayette Co., AL, (daughter of David Studdard and Mary Biggers).
JAMES W. TREADAWAY b. c1868, Fayette Co., AL, d. apparently before 1880.
S.A. TREADAWAY (f) b. c1873, Fayette Co., AL.
MARY S. TREADAWAY b. Jul 1879, Fayette Co., AL, m. c1890, in AL, John A. WRIGHT, b. Mar 1866, AL.

4. JESSE LAWRENCE b. c1837, AL, m. c1856, in Fayette Co., AL, Frances WHITLEY, b. c1833, NC, (daughter of Henry WHITLEY and Nancy BRIDGES).  Both were residing in Fayette Co., AL, in June 1880 [census].

Children of Jesse Lawrence and Frances Whitley:
MARTHA A. LAWRENCE b. c1858, Fayette Co., AL, m. 08 Jan 1874, in Fayette Co., AL, Newton R. MILLS.
ELIZABETH JANE LAWRENCE b. 1859, Fayette Co., AL, m. 29 Apr 1875, in Fayette Co., AL, Alfred PARRIS, b. Mar 1855, GA (son of Noah Parris and Mary A. --?--).
MARY FRANCES LAWRENCE b. Oct 1865, Fayette Co., AL, m? 06 Apr 1884, in Fayette Co., AL, William S. ENIS, b. Mar 1864, AL.
CYRUS M. LAWRENCE (m) b. c1868, Fayette Co., AL.
ARMINDA LAWRENCE b. 1869, Fayette Co., AL.
MARINDA LAWRENCE b. c1875, Fayette Co., AL.

5. SUSAN LAWRENCE b. c1838, Fayette Co., AL, m. c1857, in Fayette Co., AL, Henry G. TREADAWAY, b. 12 May 1835, Union Co., NC, (son of Moses Treadaway and Mary Ragsdale) d. 28 Oct 1877, Fayette Co., AL, bur. Morris Family Cemetery, Fayette Co., AL.  Susan died (1860/1866), Fayette Co., AL.

Child of Susan Lawrence and Henry Treadaway:
       i  SARAH CAROLINE TREADAWAY b. 08 Aug 1857, Fayette Co., AL.

6. ALEXANDER LAWRENCE (Jr.) b. 22 Nov 1843, Fayette Co., AL, m. c1867, in Fayette Co., AL, Martha Ann EDMONDS, b. c1842, GA, last known to be residing in Fayette Co., AL, in June 1880 [census].  Alexander died 30 Apr 1894, AL, bur. Old Miles Cemetery, Marion Co., AL.

Children of Alexander Lawrence and Martha Edmonds:

RICHARD LAWRENCE b. c1868, Fayette Co., AL, m. 03 Sep 1889, in Fayette Co., AL, Darthia A. STUDDARD, b. 1870, Fayette Co., AL, (daughter of David Studdard and Mary Biggers) d. 1936, AL, bur. Pea Ridge Methodist Church Cemetery, Fayette Co., AL.  Richard died c1898, Fayette Co., AL.

WILLIAM A. LAWRENCE b. c1873, Fayette Co., AL.
HENRY G. LAWRENCE b. 05 May 1874.

THOMAS J. LAWRENCE b. c1879, Fayette Co., AL.

MARY A. LAWRENCE b. Aug 1883, Fayette Co., AL, m. 1901, in Fayette Co., AL, James Harvey STOKER, b. 1883, AL, (son of William Archard Stoker and Trilla Mavean Davis) d. 1948.  Mary died 1963.

7. MARY L. LAWRENCE b. c1846, Fayette Co., AL, m. 1860/1866, H.A. GILLION, b. c1845, MS, (son of Benjamin Gillion and Mary --?--) d. c1879, Fayette Co., AL, bur. probably Pea Ridge Methodist Church Cemetery, Fayette Co., AL.  Mary died 12 Jun 1927, Fayette Co., AL, bur. Pea Ridge Methodist Cemetery.

Children of Mary Lawrence and H.A. Gillion:
  9.   i  JOHN ALEXANDER GILLION b. Oct 1871.
       ii  WILLIAM A. GILLION b. Mar 1874, IL, m. c1898, in AL, Sophia Emeline --?--, b. Apr 1860, AL.
10. iii  HENRY JAMES GILLION b. Jun 1875.
      iv  HATTIE (HALEY?) E. GILLION (f) b. c1879, IL (AL).
Little is known about the husband of Mary LAWRENCE.  Even his name is shrouded in mystery.  Census records consistently show that the family surname was GILLION, yet it was listed as GILLIARD in the probate record of Mary's father (see above).  His given name also was spelled variously as Herbert/Harbed (per census records) and Harvey/Harry (per the aforementioned probate record).  He is supposed to be the identical H.A. GILLION who served in the Civil War in the 2nd Mississippi Cavalry, C.S.A., and the same H.A. GILLION (age 25, b. MS) who was recorded on the 1870 U.S. census of Alexander Co., IL [p. 105].  His wife's name, age and place of birth on the 1870 census are consistent with those of Mary LAWRENCE.  In addition, Alexander County adjoins Pulaski Co., IL, where Mary's brother Alexander was living in 1864.  The couple had no children, even though the probate record indicates that they had been married at least four years.

Mary returned to Fayette County by 1880.  That year's census lists her as a widow with four children between the ages of 9 and 1 [p. 466].  While this enumeraton appears to place Mr. GILLION's death at about 1879, tradition says that he died when his son John was 16 years old (1887/1888).  He reportedly was shot by a KIMBRELL man in a hollow on Pearidge.  The mortally wounded GILLION died in front of the family fireplace and was buried probably in the unmarked grave beside his wife's marker at Pea Ridge cemetery.

Mary (LAWRENCE) GILLION is said to have been a small-built woman.  She loved to go walking in the woods and always carried a walking stick with her.  She often was accompanied by her grandchildren and would tell them to find the prettiest rocks they could to decorate the graves in the cemetery (Old Lawrence Cemetery).


8. HENRY G. LAWRENCE b. 05 May 1874, Fayette Co., AL, m. c1899, in AL, Lula "Lou" ROGERS, born 03 Jan 1880, Fayette Co., AL, (daughter of John W. Rogers and Lucy -----) d. 19 Dec 1962, bur. Carbon Hill, Walker Co., AL.  Henry died 28 Sep 1961, bur. Oak Grove Cemetery, Bankston, Fayette Co., AL.

Children of Henry Lawrence and Lula Rogers:
EULA LAWRENCE b. 1900, Fayette Co., AL, m. 13 Jun 1920, in Winston Co., AL, Martin MITCHELL, b. 1902.
ELLER LAWRENCE b. 27 Jan 1907, Fayette Co., AL, m. Joseph "Joe" MEALER, b. 21 Aug 1900, GA, (son of Steven B. Mealer and Emma -----) d. Jul 1987, AL.
LEE LAWRENCE b. 06 Feb 1908, Fayette Co., AL, m. Bessie SWINDLE, b. 12 Aug 1914, Winston Co., AL, d. 27 Feb 1985, Walker Co., AL, bur. Shanghi Cemetery, Walker Co., AL.  Lee died 02 Jan 1977, Walker Co., AL, bur. Shanghi Cemetery.
EUGENE VIRGIL LAWRENCE b. 11 Nov 1912, AL, m. 02 Feb 1932, in Walker Co., AL, Anna Frankie WILLIAMS, b. 28 Jan 1917, Walker Co., AL, d. 19 Sep 1981, Walker Co., AL.  Virgil died 26 May 1983, Walker Co., AL.
ARTHUR "Ott" LAWRENCE b. 02 May 1914, AL, d. May 1979, Walker Co., AL.

9. JOHN ALEXANDER GILLION b. Oct 1871, IL, m. c1897, in Fayette Co., AL, Mary M. "Mollie" FORD, b. Oct 1877, AL, (daughter of Erastus Ford and Elizabeth --?--) d. 1964, bur. Pea Ridge Methodist Church Cemetery, Fayette Co., AL.  John died 1927, AL, bur. Pea Ridge Methodist Church Cemetery.

Children of John Gillion and Mary Ford:
IDA ROSA LEE GILLION b. Feb 1900, Fayette Co., AL, m. Virgil Lonzo FROST, b. 30 Jan 1899. (son of William Newton Allen Frost and Susan Elizabeth Madison).
MARTHA DESAREE GILLION b. 27 Mar 1906, AL, d. 20 Nov 1926, bur. Pea Ridge Methodist Church Cemetery, Fayette Co., AL (never married).
MYRTLE GILLION b. c1909 (01 Jul 1915), AL, m. John KELLUM.  Myrtle died Feb 1981.
HALBURT CEDEMUS "C.D." GILLION b. 03 Feb 1911, AL, m. Vera McDONALD, b. 29 Sep 1912, d. 1984.  C.D. died 1989.  (Note: C.D. Gillion and his wife Vera ran an Auction Sale on Hwy 102 at, what we call, sand mountain for years.)
DAVID ERASTUS GILLION b. 24 Jan 1913, AL, m. 03 Jul 1935, in AL, Velva Lee PAINTER, (daughter of Valentine "Vol" Painter and Ethel Eliza Frost).  David died 07 Dec 1987, bur. Old Panter Cemetery, Fayette Co., AL.
JOHNNIE M GILLION b. 21 May 1918, AL, m. Annie SELMAN.

10. HENRY JAMES GILLION b. Jun 1875, IL, m. c1897, in AL, Martha Ella PAINTER (PANTER), b. May 1881, AL, (daughter of Benjamin Franklin Painter and Eliza Norris), d. c1928, Coal Valley, Walker Co., AL, bur. Patton Hill Cemetery, Walker Co., AL.  Henry bur. Pea Ridge Methodist Church Cemetery.

Children of Henry Gillion and Martha Painter:
BENJAMIN ODIE GILLION b. 24 Mar 1899, Fayette Co., AL, d. 1983, Fayette Co., AL.
ORA L. GILLION b. Sep 1899, Fayette Co., AL, d. 1907, Fayette Co., AL, bur. Old Panter Cemetery, Fayette Co., AL.
HENRY (OSCAR) GILLION b. c1905, Fayette Co., AL.

Please send additions/corrections to
Betsy Haley Dill


Family interviews
Bureau of Land Management/General Land Office records (online)
U.S. census records
Social Security Death Index (online)
Fayette County probate records
The Heritage of Fayette County, Alabama (1999)
History of Fayette County, Alabama (c1960)

Additional sources:
[1]  Don Bynum, e-mail messages, April 2005 

Return to Fayette County Family Records
Return to Fayette Co., AL

This page last updated 30 Aug 2006.