Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Francis Marion and Mary (Sadler) Baldwin

Francis Marion Baldwin was our first ancestor to be born in Texas -- actually the Republic of Texas.
Francis Marion Baldwin
Francis Marion was born the 6th of September 1840 in the Republic of Texas.  We know his mother's name was Jane (click here for Jane's blog post) and his father was most likely William Baldwin, who died about 1849 in Grimes County.  William was enumerated on the Jasper County, Texas poll list for 1840 (along with J C Thomas, husband of Lousia Baldwin).  By  November 1844, William (along with JC and Louisa Thomas) was listed in the minutes of the Rocky Creek Baptist Church in Grimes County, Texas.  So, Francis Marion may have been born in Jasper County, Texas, but most likely spent his young childhood in Grimes County, Texas.

After his father's death in 1849, his mother Jane was left a widow to raise a large family on the Texas frontier.  Young Francis Marion then grew up without a father and with the added responsibility of helping his widowed mother.  In 1850, Francis, age 10 years, was listed with his mother, Jane Baldwin, who was listed as the head of the household, in the the 1850 Walker County, Texas Federal Census.

Move to Limestone County, Texas
Sometime in the early 1850's, the Jane Baldwin family moved to Limestone County, Texas.  The next record that can be found for Francis Marion Baldwin is the 1855 School Enumeration for  Limestone County, Texas.  Jane (listed as Jane Balden) is indicated as the Parent/Guardian of four children (3 males and 1 female) who attended school in Limestone County in the 1854-1855 school year.  The Baldwin children attending school were Francis M. along with brothers Andrew J., and James, and sister Cornelia.
1855 Limestone County School Census
Texas State Archives, Austin, Texas

In the 1860 Federal Census for Limestone County, Francis, aged 19, was living with his mother, Jane Baldwin, and his younger siblings.

In 1862, Francis M. Baldwin, was reported on the rosters for the Confederate army.  He was a Private in Texas Cavalry Baylor's Regiment Company E, Muster Roll for Oct 21 to Dec 31, 1862.  Francis enlisted 21 Oct 1862 at Centerville, Leon County, Texas by Capt Carrington for a period of 3 years in the war and received no pay.

Shortly after Francis returned home from the Civil War, he married Mary Sadler (or perhaps during the Civil War while on leave.)  Mary, who was also born in the Republic of Texas on October 1, 1845, was the daughter of John and Bathsheba (Lindley) Sadler.   Her father, John Sadler, was a veteran of the Battle of San Jacinto, having fought for the independence of Texas from Mexico in 1836. Mary's uncle (her mother's brother), Jonathan Lindley, died at the Alamo.

The John Sadler family was a neighboring family to the Jane Baldwin family in Limestone County.  Both families had moved from Walker County to Limestone County at about the same time -- around 1854-1855.  Because Limestone county is a "burned county," meaning that the Court House burned down, no records exist prior to 1873.  Therefore, there is no record for the marriage between Francis Marion Baldwin and Mary Sadler on the county level.  In 1958, their daughter, Alice, stated that her parents were "married in Limestone County during the Civil War."  Their first child was born in September of 1866, so it is very likely that they married at the close of the Civil War in 1865.  Perhaps someday, a family bible will come forward with the marriage date, but no family bible for the Francis Marion Baldwin family has yet been located.  Frank Atchinson remembers seeing a family bible, when Mary Baldwin had to prove son Roscoe's birth date.

The 1870 census, shows the Francis Marion and Mary (Sadler) Baldwin family was living in Limestone County, Texas.  Mother, Jane Baldwin, was also living with the family.   Jane Baldwin was 65 years old.   Francis and Mary had three children by 1870: Lafayette, Allen (our ancestor) and Levi.

1870 Census Limestone County, Texas

By 1880, the Baldwin family, who were still living in Limestone County, had grown to include nine children.  Also in the household is 18 year old Franklin Thomas.  Franklin Pierce Thomas is the nephew of Francis Marion Baldwin.  His mother Louisa was FM's oldest sister and his father was John C Thomas -- both deceased by 1870.

1880 Census Limestone County, Texas

Move to Eliasville, Young County, Texas
In the latter part of 1883 or early in 1884, the Baldwin family moved to Eliasville, Young County, Texas.  Eliasville is tucked between the mountains and the banks of the Clear Fork of the Brazos River in the southwest corner of Young County.  The Baldwin children were listed in the Young County, June 11, 1884 School census.  The Eliasville school was a rock building located south of the business section of town on what was called "The Hill".  In 1884, the school had 115 students and was taught by Prof. A. N. Edwards, Miss Martha Elkins and Mr. W.T. Stinson.

The Baldwin family was included in the book, "Story of Eliasville" by Thomas Cunningham (see below).  We learn from the book that the Baldwin family's home was a two-room frame building with an open hall between, to which were added lean-to rooms to the rear.  The Baldwin family were faithful members of the Baptist church and never missed a service.  They often entertained visiting preachers.  Once during an Association revival, Francis plowed till ten, then shifted his team to the wagon.  With his children and visiting preachers, he went to church.  After returning from church and the noon meal, Francis bidded his minister guests to make themselves at home while he resumed his weed killing.

Photo of the Francis Marion Baldwin homestead in Young County, Texas.
All that was left standing on the Baldwin homestead when I visited in 1984 was the cistern.

"Old and Well Known Citizen"
On May 21,  1900, Francis Marion Baldwin died, at the age of 59 years.  He was buried in the Eliasville Cemetery.  His headstone has the Masonic emblem on it -- see gravestone rubbing below.

A short obituary was posted in May 1900 in the Graham Leader newspaper (Graham, Young, TX):
"F.M. Baldwin, old and well known citizen of the Eliasville country, died at his home Monday and was buried at Eliasville Tuesday. Mr. Baldwin was near sixty years old, has been a citizen of Young County for the last sixteen years. He leaves a wife, a large family of children, and numerous friends who mourn his departure."

F.M. Baldwin Headstone, Eliasville Cemetery, Young County, Texas

Since the photo of the headstone is hard to read, I've added some
headstone rubbings (didn't have the right supplies.)

Find-A-Grave Memorial Page
To view Francis Marion Baldwin's Find-A-Grave Memorial Page, click here.

Mary Sadler Baldwin
 Mary was born in Walker County, Republic of Texas on October 1, 1845.  She was the daughter of John and Bathsheba (Lindley) Sadler.  According to descendants who knew her, Mary Sadler Baldwin was a small petite lady --- only about 5 feet tall.

Mary spent the first 9 years of her life living in Walker County.  Family descendants remember their Grandma Mary telling them stories about playing with the children of Sam Houston, when she was a young girl living in Walker County, Texas.  School records show that the Sadler children were attending school in Walker County in 1854.  The Sadler's moved shortly afterwards because by 1855, the children showed up in the school records for Limestone County, Texas in 1855.  (White, Gifford, TEXAS SCHOLASTICS 1854-1855, Copied from originals in the Archives Division of the Texas State LIbrary, Austin, Texas, 1979)

In 1885, both of Mary's parents died.  Her father, John Sadler, died in April of 1885 and her mother, Bathsheba (Lindley) Sadler died six months later in October.  Mary may have received a small inheritance from her parents, because in 1886 she had her own money and bought cattle from her husband, F.M. Baldwin, for $486.80.  She apparently did not want to just turn her money over to her husband, so she made him write out a legal bill of sale for cattle in exchange for her money.

After the death of her husband, Mary continued to live on the Baldwin homestead in Eliasville until her death in 1933.  No one lived in the house after she died and the house was eventually torn down -- only the cistern was left standing.  According to cemetery records, Mary is buried next to her husband in the Eliasville cemetery.  If Mary had a headstone, it no longer exists and her information is not added to the side of her husband's headstone.

"Story of Eliasville"
In 1958, Tom Cunningham interviewed daughter, Alice Baldwin Atchinson, for the information on the Baldwin family to include in his book, "Story of Eliasville."  (Cunningham, Thomas M., Story of Eliasville 1958, Denton, Texas)

The following is from the Story of Eliasville, pages 73-74:

The Baldwin Family
Francis Marion Baldwin (1840-1900) and Mary Baldwin (1845-1933) were married in Limestone County during the Civil War, and with ten children came to Eliasville in 1884, settling on the river two miles north east of town. The two youngest children were born here. They were faithful members of the Baptist church and often entertained visiting preachers. Their home was two room frame building with an open hall between, to which were added lean-to rooms to the rear. During an Association revival Mr. Baldwin plowed till ten, shifted his team to the wagon, wan with the children and preachers went to church. After their return he arose from the noon meal bidding his minister guests to make themselves at home while he resumed his weed killing. The family never missed a service at the church. Their twelve children were: Lafayette, Allen, Levi, Charlie, Bob, Willie Ann, Mittie, Walter, Lem, Alice, Roscoe, and Lena.
Lafayette married Nannie Barnes, and they had four children. By a second marriage he had six children.
Allen married Mary Stewart, and they had eight children.
Levi married Addie Johnson, and they were parents of four children.
Charlie marred Della Choate, and they had three children.
Bob married Mattie London, and their children numbered six.
Willie Ann married Pleas Hyden, an they had ten children.
Mittie married Virgil Matthews, and their son is Clayton.
Walter, single, died only a few years ago.
Lem, died in young manhood.
Alice married Charlie Atchison, and their three children are: Frank, Leroy and C.L. Frank married Rita Bell, and they have one daughter, Mary Alice. Frank Atchison is a banker in Graham. Leroy married Lois Lankford, and their three children are: Helen Catherine, Steve Roy and Ralph. C.L. is the father of one child, Lynn. C.L. owns a successful finance company in Midland. Frank and C.L. received their financial training in the Eliasville Bank under Mr. Harvey C. Brock and Mr. W.O. Cunningham.
Roscoe married Annie Belle Mills, and they have two boys: Hoyt and Hubert. Hoyt has a son, Bobby. Hubert married Wanda Sharklin. Roscoe and his family reside in Johnson County.
Lena married John Hill and they have six children: Norman, Robert, Myrtle Mae, Wayne, J. W., and Nettie Fay. This family lives at Seymour.
Father Baldwin worked oxen on his farm, and Alice recalls when she rode the oxen to the water in spite of brotherly warnings from Walter and Lem that she might get hurt. Lively as a cricket and unafraid, Alice rode them just the same. Alice, the baby when the family moved to Eliasville, claims a continuous residence in Eliasville of seventy-three years.
(On page 40)
Roscoe Baldwin got his nickname from reciting a bumble-bee poem which ended with, “it went bum, bum, bum.” We called him “Bum Baldwin” ever afterward."

The below photo of Francis Marion Baldwin was sent to me by B. R. Sadler in the 1990's.  If anyone has a better copy or the original, please scan a copy and share!  With today's technology a much better digital copy could be posted for all posterity to enjoy.

Francis Marion Baldwin
The following photo is of Mary Sadler Baldwin holding Hoyt Baldwin, her grandson.
Mary Sadler Baldwin holding grandson, Hoyt Baldwin
Any additional information on the Francis Marion and Mary (Sadler) Baldwin family would be appreciated.  
Thank you.

See new post about  FM Baldwin DNA Project. 

ALL descendants (both male and female) of Francis Marion Baldwin and Mary Sadler are encouraged to participate in autosomal DNA testing!!  Ancestry.com is a great place to test.
Direct male descendants can do Y-DNA tests through FamilyTreeDNA.com where there is a Baldwin surname group.