Coke County, Texas

The Berrymans in Coke County

By Carol Berryman Randall

Three of the children of Benjamin Henry BERRYMAN and Alice GOWENS STATLER lived in Coke County for a period of time: George Carroll, John Green and Ida Bell.

Benjamin Henry, the son of William BERRYMAN and Polly LANDERS was born 5 January 1826 in Glasgo, Kentucky. Alice, the daughter of James GOWENS and Mary JACKSON, was born in 15 August 1836. They were married 10 April 1862 in Glenwood, Iowa. Soon afterwards they moved to Nebraska with Alice's two daughers by a previous marriage

The family of Benjamin Henry moved to Coleman County, Texas in l882. They first settled in White Chapel community, but moved to Pleasant Valley community in l890. They belonged to the Baptist Church. Alice's parents, James GOWENS and his second wife, Luvisa Ann JACKSON, sister to his first wife (Mary Jackson), had moved to Coleman County, Texas from Iowa in the late l870's. Alice GOWENS BERRYMAN died on October 24, l89l and Benjamin Henry BERRYMAN died October 2, l9l5. They and several of Alice's family members are buried in White Chapel, Texas.

Other children of Benjamin and Alice:

  • James Freelove, born 2 April l863, buried in SD
  • William Henry, born 11 May l865; married Annie R. McCLURE, daughter of William Bradley and Clarinda E. Brown McCLURE, 1 Jun 1894, Coleman Co, TX; died 1941, buried Talpa Cemetery
  • Benjamin, born 17 April l869, died 16 February l874
  • Minnie, born 4 December l873; died 23 December l873

George Carroll BERRYMAN and Cora A. BIRD

George Carroll Berryman, son of Benjamin Henry BERRYMAN and Alice GOWENS STATLER, was born May 25, l867 in Nebraska. He was married to Cora A. BIRD, daughter of Miller BIRD and Rosa Ann ULMER, by A. J. Prichard in Robert Lee, Coke Co, TX. George received a degree from Howard-Payne College in Brownwood and a Master of Theology Degree from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary of Louisville, Kentucky. He applied for and was hired as a teacher in the Sanco school for two years. He was a Baptist pioneer preacher in Coke County, Lamesa and Seminole, Texas and did missionary work in small towns in Southeastern New Mexico. George later moved his family back to Lincoln, Nebraska. After his death 26 Apr 1934 in Lincoln, NE, Cora lived in various states and countries with her daughters and Grandson's family. After Cora died 11 November l959, she was brought back to Lincoln, Nebraska and buried by George in Lincoln Memorial Park.

Children of George and Cora:

    1. Opal Leigh, born 1897, Texas; died 29 January 1975, California; married Herbert Benjamin PAUP, born 3 September 1897; died 14 March 1962

      1. Donald Herbert PAUP, born 11 July 1917, Syracuse, Nebraska; died 8 January 1976, Guam

    2. Marjorie French, born 10 November 1905, Texas; died 22 January 1969

    3. Bonnie Jeanne, 15 June 1917; died 9 October 1944

Opal chronicled the life of her parents in Pioneer Preacher which became a Book of the Month selection and was later made into a movie. The book is not a biography but a collection of her remembrances of their early life.

John Green BERRYMAN and Maggie Salenda BIRD

John Green Berryman, son of Benjamin Henry BERRYMAN and Alice GOWENS STATLER, born May 23, l87l in Scotts Bluff, Nebraska. He married to Maggie Salenda BIRD, daughter of Miller BIRD and Rosa Ann ULMER, in Robert Lee, Coke Co, TX, by B. F. Meek. John and Maggie met while Maggie was visiting Cora and George's people. Maggie was l7 at this time. They lived on the family farm in Coleman County, Texas and later moved to Lamesa, where George and his family lived. They later moved back to Coke County near Maggie's parents. Six of their seven children were born in Robert Lee, Texas. Their moves later took them to Littlefield, Texas and on to Eunice, New Mexico, and Lea County. They were very hard working people. They bought a small building and added a second floor, garage and a garage apartment to make the largest hotel in Eunice.

John Green died 10 Jan 1946 of Leukemia in Eunice, New Mexico and is buried in the Eunice Cemetery,

"Tennie", as she liked to be called, also owned a hotel on the square in Snyder, Texas for a number of years. She was an active member of the First Baptist Church in Eunice. She ran the Eunice Hotel until her death 27 July 27 l98l. She is buried in the Eunice Cemetery beside her husband John Green.

They were the parents of seven children:

  • 1. Annie Azalea, born 5 May 1905, Lamesa, TX; died 2 Aug 1940, Eunice, NM, at age 35; married Oliver Eubanks 1929;
  • 2. Benjamin Carol, born 2 Dec 1907, Coke Co, TX; died 9 Nov 1982 at age 74; buried Conroe, TX.
  • 3. Edward Doyle, married Ina Bell RODGERS.
  • 4. James Girvin, born 5 Jan 1913, Coke Co, TX.
  • 5. Mamie Ruth, married Joe VERNON
  • 6. Irene, born 1 Dec 1920, Coke Co, TX.
  • 7. Leroy Truitt

View pictures of my family

William Rufus THOMASON and Ida Bell BERRYMAN

William Rufus THOMASON, son of William K. THOMASON and Susan Carolina HUGHES, was born 18 November 1879 in Mississippi. Ida Bell BERRYMAN, daughter of Benjamin Henry BERRYMAN and Alice GOWENS STATLER, was born 15 February l876 in Nebraska. They were married 19 June 1894. They had six children born in Coleman County and two in Coke County. They are:

  • Mabel, born Coleman Co, TX
  • Rodney, born 22 Sep 1897, died 17 Jun 1966, buried at Robert Lee Cemetery, Coke County, TX.
  • Hazel, born Coleman Co, TX
  • Verna, born Coleman Co, TX
  • Olan, born Coleman Co, TX
  • Belva, born 23 Oct 1910, Coleman Co, TX; died 29 Jan 1996, San Angelo, TX; buried Robert Lee Cemetery, Coke County, TX; married J. D. McCutchen, 15 Apr 1931
  • Kenneth, born Coke Co, TX
  • Glen, born 28 Sep 1916, Coke Co, TX; married Lucille 10 Aug 1940, tombstone (without death date) at Robert Lee Cemetery, Coke County, TX.

Sources of Information

Coke County Book Committee, Coke County, Texas 1984, Specialty Printing Co, Inc., 1984.

Bonita Copeland & Wanda Smith, Coke County Cemeteries Epitaphs and Dates, S. & H. Printing, Co, Inc., P O Box 385, Bronte, TX 76933, Sep 1990,

A History of Coleman County Texas and It's People Vol I & II.

History of the Lamesa Baptist Church

Coke County Marriages - Coke County TXGenWeb Archives

Opal Leigh Berryman, Pioneer Preacher, Thomas Y. Crowell Company, New York, 1948

Marvin Berryman

Becky Rodgers

Carol Berryman Randall

This page was updated: Tuesday, 05-Jan-2010 13:29:03 MST

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