Wakefield-AL-1795-1858

AL, Wakefield, Geo. W., 1795 - 1858

From: THE ANNALS OF NORTHWEST ALABAMA, VOLUME II. complied
by Carl Elliot, 1959:

"The Wakefield Family of Walker County, Alabama", By Wayne
E. Wakefield, page 186-187

According to family traditions, three Wakefield brothers,
Henry, William, and John migrated to the United States from
England around 1795. They spent their first winter in New
York, working as an architect, a brick mason, and a
carpenter, respectively. The winter weather in New York
proved to be too severe for them, however, and they moved to
South Carolina. One of the brothers (the parent of George W.
Wakefield and the first known predecessor of the Northwest
Alabama Wakefields) later moved into Georgia.

George W. Wakefield was born December 14, 1804 in Georgia.
He was married to Nancy Mahala Smith, (ref.#1) who was born
November 27, 1814. Not much is known about his early life,
except that he was a farmer and that he moved his family to
Alabama between 1835 and 1838. They settled in Wetumpka,
Coosa (now Elmore) County, (ref.#2 an important trading post
on the Coosa River. (ref.#3)

In 1858 George W. Wakefield and his family moved into Bibb
County; however, they remained there for only one year
before moving to Dublin Post Office in Fayette County, on
the old Byler Road near the present site of the New River
Baptist church, formerly known as Killingsworth. (ref.#4)
George and Nancy Smith Wakefield brought several Negro
slaves with them. (ref.#5) A Number of them were bartered
from the farm which they bought in Fayette County, the
others stayed on with the family for many years.

1. Nancy Mahala Smith was born in and lived in Virginia for
twelve years before moving to Georgia. She is known to have
had two brothers, James and Mack and one sister, Cumi.

2. According to the U. S. Census 1850, George W. Wakefield
owned property valued at $300.
The following children were born to George and Nancy
Wakefield, the names and dates being taken from the 1850
census and from family records:
   Susan Amanda, b. April 17, 1833, married Daniel F.
Brannan, d. May 16, 1904
   Thomas Milton, b. Feb. 26, 1935, married Elizabeth L.
Brannan, d. Jan. 2, 1880
   Benjamin, b. 1838, d. during the Civil War
   Tilitha Cumi, b. Dec. 22, 1839, married Willis McArthur,
d. June 26, 1899
   Martha Ann, b. 1841, married Henry Walters (after her
marriage she moved into Mississippi and later to Wylie,
Collin County, Texas, where she was buried alongside her
husband)
   Mary Eliza, [familiarly known as "Johnnie," a nickname
given her by the Negro slave, "Aunt Mary"], b. March 12,
1842 married  first, Eli Tesney and second, Abe Roberts, d.
Nov. 18, 1919
   James Monroe, b. April 12, 1846, married Virginia M.
Eason, d. Aug.8, 1920
   Emma Virginia, b. Jan 12, 1848 married William L. Tesney,
d. 1935
   Sarah Salina, b. Sept. 1, 1850 married Frank Kelley, d.
May 6, 1906
   Donia, b. Sept. 14, 1853 married Foster L. Phillips, d.
Jan. 28, 1943
   Nancy Arlena, b. Jan. 12, 1858 married Jesse L. Barnard,
d. Dec. 18, 1944.

4. Andy Tidwell was the first postmaster at Dublin. He lived
to be 100 years old and is buried in a cemetery located at
the old post office site.

5. Among the better-remembered slaves were "Aunt Mary", who
was given to her mistress as a wedding present, and "Mose"
and "Allen", who stayed with the Wakefields even after
receiving their freedom. All of them, as was the custom,
accepted "Wakefield" as their surname. Some of these
"Wakefield" slaves were buried in the cemetery near the
Wakefield Old Place in Fayette County.

Contributed by: spice3@juno.com (Susan S. Buckley)