Children of Dennis Lindsey (1794-1836) and Jane Brooks: Samuel Asbury Lindsey (1825/6 – 1865) — Children of Samuel Asbury Lindsey

The given name Asbury is a tag that usually tells us that a 19th-century American family using it was a Methodist family. As staunch Methodists, Dennis Lindsey and Jane Brooks named their first son after the founder of Methodism John Wesley. Samuel, the fifth of their sons, carries the middle name Asbury in recognition of the early Methodist missionary Francis Asbury. Many Methodist families in the 19th century named sons for this pioneering figure of the Methodist movement.

Samuel’s first name is, in my view, likely to honor Jane Brooks Lindsey’s brother Samuel K. Brooks (1815 – 1898). Samuel is not a given name I’ve encountered much in the Lindsey family. I suspect it shows up among the sons of Dennis and Jane Lindsey due to its use in the Brooks family, where both a brother and a first cousin of Jane — the latter a son of James Brooks and Nancy Isbell — were named Samuel.

Samuel Asbury Lindsey had three children by his first wife Mary Jane Hunter, and two by wife Leonora Elizabeth Bickley. As the last posting indicates, Mary Jane was the daughter of John T. Hunter and Louvisa Bentley of Lawrence County, Alabama. The Hunters moved to Alabama from Franklin County, Georgia, where they were connected to members of the Brooks family; the two families had been connected for years, in fact, in Virginia and Kentucky. The family had been a Todhunter family whose surname shifted to Hunter in the first part of the 1800s, with some family members — John T. Hunter is an example — keeping the Tod part of the surname as a middle name. Mary Jane Hunter was born in 1832 or 1833 in Lawrence County, and died there in 1858. She and Samuel A. Lindsey married 12 October 1848 in Lawrence County.

The children of Samuel Asbury Lindsey and Mary Jane Hunter are as follows:

Louvisa Jane Lindsey Wade, a photo shared with me by her descendant Jon Wade in April 2005, apparently owned by other descendants of Louvisa

1. Louvisa Jane Lindsey was born 9 February 1850 in Lawrence County, and died 31 December 1901 at Trinity in Morgan County. On 31 October 1872 at Oakville in Lawrence County, she married Jasper Newton Wade, son of William Wade and Aletha Landers.[1] He was born 2 July 1832 in Franklin County, Tennessee, and died at Trinity on 24 August 1893. Jasper and Louvisa are buried in the Grange Hall cemetery at Trinity

As Samuel and Mary Jane’s oldest daughter, Louvisa was name for her grandmothers Louvisa Hunter and Jane Lindsey. The name Louvisa has various spellings including Luvisa, Lavisa, Levisa, or Luvisey/Lavisey/Levisey. 

As I noted in my previous posting, after Mary Jane died in 1858 and Samuel went to Louisiana to join his siblings there, he left Louvisa in the care of his sister Sarah Brooks Lindsey and husband James B. Speake, and he left his two youngest children by Mary Jane, John Dennis and Margaret Elizabeth, in the care of Mary Jane’s Hunter relatives. As a previous posting about Sarah Lindsey Speake indicates, Louvisa is enumerated in the Speake household on the 1860 federal census and again in 1870, where her occupation is given as a teacher and her brother John Dennis is also in the Speake household. As the same posting notes, when Sarah wrote her sister Margaret Lindsey Hunter in Coushatta, Louisiana, on 1 May 1877, her letter spoke of Louvisa (whom Sarah called Lavisa in this letter).

In one of her volumes of Lawrence County records, Pauline Jones Gandrud transcribes an announcement of the marriage of Jasper Newton Wade and Louvisa Jane Lindsey, which she says was carried by the Huntsville Advocate on 22 November 1872.[2] I have been unable to locate this announcement in that issue of the Advocate or other issues in 1872. The announcement states that the couple were married at the residence of J.B. Speake near Oakville in Lawrence County, with Elder J.L. Lattimore solemnizing the marriage. It also indicates that Jasper N. Wade was of Trinity, Alabama.[3]

According to Jon Wade, a descendant of Jasper and Louvisa Lindsey Wade living in Montana in April 2005, Jasper and Louisa lived west of Decatur, Alabama, north of a railroad line running along present-day highway 20, not far from the Pond Spring house of General Joseph Wheeler, which is at Hillsboro in Lawrence County. The Grange Hall cemetery in which the couple are buried is south of where they lived. Jon Wade sent me a digital copy of the photo of Louvisa above, from a framed portrait-photo that is under glass and apparently owned by descendants of Jasper and Louvisa.

On 3 January 1902, the New Decatur Advertiser published the following obituary of Louvisa:[4]

Obituary of Louvisa Lindsey Wade, “South Decatur,” New Decatur Advertiser (3 January 1902), p. 2, col. 6

Henry C. Lindsey’s The Mark Lindsey Heritage includes a report on a Wade family reunion held 20 June 1948 at Wadecliffe, the Wade family homeplace atop Trinity Mountain in Morgan County. This report, evidently from a local newspaper, notes that those gathered at the reunion were the sons, daughters, and other descendants and family members of Jasper Newton and Louvisa Lindsey Wade. A list of participants is appended.[5]  

2. John Dennis Lindsey, who was named for his grandfathers John T. Hunter and Dennis Lindsey, was born about 1853 in Lawrence County, Alabama. On 28 December 1871 in Colbert County, he married Mary E. Devaney/Devanney, daughter of Alexander and Matilda C. Devaney/Devanney.[6] Many details of John’s life remain elusive to me. I have not found a date or place of death for him. He seems to have been living as late as 1881-2, since a daughter of John and Mary, Ada Lee Lindsey, was born in 1882 in either Franklin County, Alabama, or Texas. I do not find John and his family on the 1880 federal census. And I find no further records for him or his wife Mary following his daughter Ada’s birth.

Typescript written by Samuel Asbury Lindsey (Jr.) compiling a history of his family as he knew it; shared by his descendants with Henry C. Lindsey, early 1980s

According to an undated typescript written by John’s half-brother Samuel Asbury Lindsey (see the last posting on this source), John and his sister Margaret Elizabeth were raised by Hunter relatives. On the 1870 federal census, I find Margaret Elizabeth living in the household of her grandmother Louvisa Bentley Hunter, but, as noted above, John is enumerated on this census in the household of his aunt and uncle Sarah Lindsey Speake and husband James B. Speake. I have not been able to locate John and Margaret Elizabeth on the 1860 census, or Louvisa Hunter, though her husband John T. Hunter is found in Lawrence County in 1860 listed alone. 

As the last posting noted, at Lawrence County court in December 1873, John D. Lindsey and Margaret E. Brown filed for a final settlement of their guardianship by their uncle John W. Hunter. The court ordered a final settlement of the guardianship on the second Monday in January 1874, per an announcement in Moulton Advertiser on 2 January 1874.[7] Louvisa Bentley Hunter, John and Margaret Elizabeth’s grandmother was still living at this time; she died in Lawrence County on 21 January 1880. The 1870 federal census, which will be cited below, shows several of her children living at home in that year, with John as the oldest. I suspect that in acting as the guardian of his sister’s two youngest children, John was representing his mother Louvisa, who raised them.

Colbert County, Alabama, Marriage Bk. A, p. 159

Henry C. Lindsey’s Mark Lindsey Heritage includes a note that John had a daughter Ada Lindsey of Muscle Shoals, Alabama.[8] It is by tracing Ada that I was eventually able to discover that John had married Mary E. Devaney in 1871 in Colbert County: Ada’s death record in Colbert County states that her parents were John Lindsey and Mary E. Devaney.[9] From 1910 through 1940, Ada is enumerated on the federal census in the household of the family of her sister Jane Lindsey, who married William Henry Green, son of William T. and Mary M. Green, in Franklin County, Alabama, on 21 August 1892.[10] Jane died between 1910 and 1920, and Ada then continued living with Jane’s widowed husband and, after his death, with his children Henry Neal Green and Mary Gladys Green. 

I mention these censuses to note both that they tell us Ada Lee Lindsey (her full name as given in her obituary) had a sister Jane who married William Henry Green, and because they provide conflicting information about when and where Ada was born. The 1910 census, taken in Tuscumbia with Ada living with William Henry and Jane Green and their children, says that she was born in 1882 in Texas. In 1920, when she’s in Tuscumbia with the widowed William Henry Green and his children, the census reports her birth year as 1885 and indicates Alabama as her place of birth. In 1930, she’s again with her brother-in-law and his children, now in Muscle Shoals, with the census stating that she was born in 1884 in Texas. The 1940 census, where she’s living with nephew Henry Neal Green, his wife Alene, and Henry’s sister Gladys in Muscle Shoals, has her born in 1892 in Alabama.[11]

The Texas birthplace on two censuses makes me wonder if John Dennis Lindsey and wife Mary E. Devaney went to Texas at some point, and perhaps died there. Their daughter Jane was born in December 1874 in Alabama. If Ada Lee was in truth born in Texas in the early 1880s, had the family moved there after Jane’s birth? 

Ada Lee Lindsey died 5 May 1959 and is buried in Glendale cemetery at Leighton in Colbert County. Her Find a Grave memorial page has a snapshot of an obituary clipped from the Muscle Shoals Times Daily on 5 May 1959 stating that she was 77 when she died in 1959 (thus born in 1882) and a native of Franklin County who had lived with her nephew Neal (Neil in this document) Green and niece Gladys Green.[12] The obituary places her birth in Franklin County, Alabama, in 1882, but the fact that Texas is mentioned twice as her birthplace on the federal census makes me wonder if at some point her parents did, in fact, to go Texas.

3. Margaret Elizabeth Lindsey was born in 1858 in Lawrence County, Alabama, and died, it appears, between 20 June 1874, when she gave birth to a son James Arthur Brown, and 21 October 1877, when her husband George Washington Brown married Sarah Elizabeth Daniel in Morgan County. Margaret Elizabeth married George Washington Brown, son of George William Brown and Elizabeth Pinion, in Lawrence County on 22 December 1872.[13]

On the 1870 federal census, Margaret Elizabeth is enumerated (her name is given as Bettie Lyndsy) in the household of her grandmother Louvisa (Levisa in this document) Hunter at Oakville in Lawrence County.[14] Bettie is 14, born in Alabama. Also in the household are Louvisa’s children John, George, and Lucinda. John is the son of John T. Hunter and Louvisa Bentley who was the guardian of his niece Margaret Elizabeth and her brother John Dennis.

As noted above, in December 1873, John Margaret filed for a final settlement of their guardianship by their uncle John W. Hunter in Lawrence County court, and the court ordered a final settlement of the guardianship on the second Monday in January 1874, per an announcement in Moulton Advertiser on 2 January 1874.[15] The notices of these legal actions in the Moulton paper refer to Margaret by her married name, Margaret E. Brown, noting that she was formerly Margaret E. Lindsay [sic]. 

According to a family group chart in Mark Lindsey Heritage, Margaret Elizabeth had a son Arthur Brown of Hanceville, Alabama.[16] On his World War I draft registration card, James reported his date of birth as 20 June 1874.[17] The same date of birth is recorded on his tombstone in Hopewell cemetery in Hanceville.[18]

As previously noted, at some point following the birth of her son James Arthur, Margaret Elizabeth seems to have died, probably in Lawrence or Morgan County, since her husband George Washington Brown remarried to Sarah Elizabeth Daniel in Morgan County on 21 October 1877.  James Arthur Brown married Martha Caroline Shirley in Cullman County 3 December 1892, and lived in that county at Hanceville until his death on 25 March 1967.

It is worth noting that the name Margaret Elizabeth was the name of Samuel’s cousin Elizabeth Brooks, to whom he wrote a letter from National Bridge, Mexico, during the Mexican-American war. That letter and Samuel’s choice to name a daughter with his cousin’s name suggest that Elizabeth Brooks, who was close to him in age. was perhaps among his favorite cousins

It seems to me unlikely that after he left Lawrence County, Alabama, in the latter part of 1858 for Louisiana following wife Mary Jane’s death, Samuel never saw his children by Mary Jane again. As a man who suddenly found himself single, seeking to establish a new life in Louisiana, perhaps he had intended to leave the children with relatives in Alabama until he re-established himself in Louisiana. But his death in the Civil War within only a few years after he made the move to Louisiana would have prevented such a reunion….

As noted in my last posting, on 18 July 1861 in Claiborne Parish, Louisiana, Samuel Asbury Lindsey married Leonora Elizabeth Bickley, daughter of William Cary Bickley and Elizabeth Jane Moffett. Leonora was born 20 June 1846 at Greenville in Meriwether County, Georgia, and died 20 February 1935 at Ardmore in Carter County, Oklahoma. She is buried in Lamar cemetery in Lamar, Hughes County, Oklahoma, where her third husband Benjamin Franklin Robinson is also buried.

Register of births, bible of Frances Rebecca Lindsey Kellogg — on this bible, see previous posting and R. James Kellogg, “The Kellogg Family in Louisiana

As noted previously, the bible of Samuel Asbury Lindsey’s sister Frances Rebecca Kellogg records the dates of birth of his two children by Leonora Elizabeth Bickley, with this document giving Samuel’s middle name as Cary, though all other sources show him as Samuel Asbury Lindsey (Jr.), and this is the name he used throughout his life. The children of Samuel Asbury Lindsey and Leonora Elizabeth Bickley are as follows:

1. Mary Jane Lindsey was born 22 September 1861 at Homer in Claiborne Parish, Louisiana, and died 26 November 1890 at Noonday in Smith County, Texas. On 18 August 1878 in Smith County, she married James Warren Holbrook, son of Jesse Jordan Holbrook and Theresa Ann Meredith.[19] Mary Jane is buried at Springhill Methodist cemetery at Noonday, with her tombstone stating her dates of birth and death

Smith County, Texas, Marriage Bk. H, p. 369

Mary Jane and  husband James Warren Holbrook had the following children (all with surname Holbrook): Herman Lee (married Lillian V., daughter of George Calston and Martha Simms); Samuel Jessie (married Minnie Mae, daughter of William Smith and Katherine McMillan); Bessie Lou (married Thomas Dismuke); and Claudia Lindsey (married James Emmett, son of George Washington Wilkerson and Loretta Jane Waller). 

Following Mary Jane’s death, James Warren Holbrook remarried to Surdena Anna Treadway on 18 September 1891 in Smith County, and had a family of children by her. James and Surdena are buried in the Noonday cemetery at Noonday, Texas. 

“Tylerite of the Week,” Tyler Courier-Times, 14 January 1940, p. 7

2. Samuel Asbury Lindsey was born 30 September 1863 at Homer in Claiborne Parish, Louisiana, and died 28 February 1961 at Tyler, Smith County, Texas. On 20 June 1893 at Tyler in Smith, he married Martha Therese Kayser, daughter of Albert L. Kayser and Mary Lawrence.[20]

Smith County, Texas, Marriage Bk. 12, p. 5

Because Samuel Asbury Lindsey became a judge who served in the Texas legislature and was a prominent businessman in Tyler, and because his wife Therese was a writer whose work won awards, as well as a prominent activist on behalf of woman suffrage, the lives of both Samuel and Therese have been well-documented. 

The website of the Legislative Reference Library of Texas provides a biographical page for Samuel A. Lindsey, noting his dates of birth and death and that he served in the Texas legislature from 13 January 1891 to 10 January 1893 as a Democrat representing district 93 (Smith and Gregg Counties). This biographical page links to the following biography of Samuel published by the Texas Bar Association[21] following his death: 

“Samuel A. Lindsey,” Texas Bar Journal 24,6 (June 1961), p. 628

The Legislative Reference Library of Texas biographical page for Samuel also links to a biographical statement about him published as a resolution by the 57th Texas legislative session[22] after his death. A copy of this resolution is at the top of this possting.

As these source note, after his birth near Homer, Louisiana, on 30 September 1863, he moved at an early age to east Texas with his mother and step-father, the family settling first in Navarro County and then in Smith County near Tyler, where Samuel was educated. In 1883, he won a competitive scholarship to Sam Houston Normal Institute, graduating in 1883. He then became a teacher and went into business in Tyler, after which he studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1891. In that year, he was elected a state representative from Smith and Gregg Counties; he also served the following year in a special session of the legislature.

The biographical sources also note that in 1901, Samuel A. Lindsey was elected county judge of Smith County, serving four years. In the same year, he founded the S.A. Lindsey Telephone System, which had become the Southern Telephone and Telegraph Company with 1905 and then in 1911, with continued growth under Samuel A. Lindsey’s leadership, the Gulf States Company in 1911.

Samuel’s biographies also state that he began his work life as a tenant farmer, and this gave him a lifelong interest in improving the conditions of small farmers. In 1913, President Woodrow Wilson appointed him to a Presidential Commission studying agricultural credit systems in Europe, and the report he produced as part of this study ultimately led to the establishment of the Federal Land Bank System. This report was published as Our Rural Life and Farm Problems.[23]

The legislative resolution enacted following Samuel’s death also also states that he was president of three banks — the Federal Land Bank of Houston, the National Bank of Commerce of Houston, and the Peoples National Bank of Tyler. His interest in banking and telephone systems led in 1923 to the creation of the Utilities Finance Corporation, a pioneer financing group for the formation of small independent telephone systems.

The legislative resolution describes Samuel as “a devout Christian gentleman, a man of rare vision possessed of a keen analytical mind devoted to the highest principles of honest and fair consideration of his associates, yet cloaked with a modesty of his accomplishments and a deep loyalty to his family, to his friends, to his state, and his nation.”  

Albert Woldert’s A History of Tyler and Smith County, Texas, also contains the following biography[24] of Samuel Asbury Lindsey:

Albert Woldert, A History of Tyler and Smith County, Texas (San Antonio: Naylor, 1948),
pp. 84-85

Further biographical notices about Samuel A. Lindsey appear in obituaries published in various newspapers following his death. The following obituary from the Corsicana Daily Sun providing details about his death notes that he had been known as the “Father of the Federal Land Bank System.”[25]

This states that he had died Tuesday at his lake house at Tyler after a long illness, and was known as “the Father of the Federal Land Bank System,” and had also been chairman of the Federal Land Bank of Houston.[26] He was former president of National Bank of Commerce of Houston and a former judge of Smith County. He was also former president of Gulf States Telephone Company and a former board chair of Peoples National Bank of Tyler.

Another obituary in the Gatesville Messenger and Star Forum has a photo of Samuel.[27] This obituary notice speaks of the prominent role he played with setting up a telephone company and the Federal Land Bank system:

“Telephone Firm Pioneer Dies,” Gatesville Messenger and Star Forum (10 March 1961),
p. 6, col. 4

Even after his death in 1961, Samuel and his legacy continue to be remembered. On 26 September 192, the Longview, Texas, newspaper Longview News Journal announced, for instance, that he had been nominated by the East Texas Chamber of Commerce for a “free enterpriser” award in the Notable East Texans program. The article states that Samuel was being nominated for having implemented the first “Good Roads Convention” in Texas to promote paving of farm-to-market roads even before the state highway commission was established, for having employed the nation’s first county agent, and for his pioneering work in establishing telephone communication in east Texas.[28]

In his book Mark Lindsey Heritage, Henry C. Lindsey reproduces a brochure from the 22nd  annual stockholders meeting of the Tyler National Farm Loan Association on 17 August 1939.[29]  This document shows that the meeting was dedicated to Samuel A. Lindsey, and contains a portion of a statement about the economics of farming in the South composed by him. 

Mark Lindsey Heritage also reproduces a letter on the letterhead of S.A. Lindsey, Tyler, Texas, dated 6 July 1953. The letter was written to his niece Claudia Lindsey Holbrook, and was composed by Samuel’s secretary Edythe, whom Judge Lindsey had asked to write Claudia to see if he could depend on her to get him two bushels of good peaches. The letter reports that Samuel and his wife were in good physical health and thinking of going to Minnesota with Gertrude. Appended to this typed letter is a handwritten note in which Samuel says he is no hurry for the peaches, and that his wife was suffering from depression and had his sincere sympathy. The letter suggests that the trip to Minnesota would be for the sake of his wife’s health.[30]

In a letter he sent to me in the early 1980s, my uncle Henry C. Lindsey, author of Mark Lindsey Heritage, told me that he had just gone to Palestine, Texas, to visit Samuel A. Lindsey’s great-nephew Herbert Lindsey Wilkerson (1917-1999). Mr. Wilkerson had told him various stories about Samuel, which suggested to my uncle that Samuel was “an amazing man who started with nothing and built an empire,” but who remained “a very simple, caring, human person.” Mr. Wilkerson told Henry C. Lindsey that as he was growing up, he would spend weekends with his great-uncle, who would let him use his car for outings and furnish him with $10 to spend on his outings, but insisted on his returning by 10 P.M.

In the same letter, Henry C. Lindsey also reports that he had gone to Tyler, Texas, where he interviewed people who had worked for Samuel A. Lindsey. One of these was a Rolla Johnson, who told him that when he came to work the first time, he found Samuel in his office stretched out on an old black horsehair sofa, figuring on the back of an envelope with a short pencil, which is all he ever used to write with. Samuel greeted him saying, “Well, kid, they say you want to go to work for us.” Johnson said that Samuel called him “kid” for another twenty years, and referred to the older men working for him as “boys.” Mr. Johnson stated, too, that during the Depression, Samuel never let any of his employees go.

Numerous sources document Samuel’s interest in and ownership of properties in Tyler, some of them now on the National Register of Historic Places. On 24 September 2009, the city of Tyler honored Samuel A. Lindsey with a stone marker designating him (posthumously) a recipient of a “Half Mile of History” award recognizing his contributions to the history’s business and cultural life, the latter due to the buildings and residences he constructed or owned. The city of Tyler website has on its website a cache of materials about this historical designation, including the application form submitted by Samuel’s great-grandson Samuel Lindsey Wolf.

Both the websites of Historic Tyler and Tyler’s Historic Preservation program contain abundant information about properties Samuel A. Lindsey either owned or developed, which are now considered historic sites. These sources note that he donated property at 911 S. Broadway that is now the site for the Tyler Woman’s Building, and that he gave the property with that purpose in mind. He was once owner of the Morrell-Pinkerton house at 415 Charnwood, a Queen Anne wood frame house built in 1895, which was the first home of Samuel A. Lindsey’s family in Tyler. Both structures are considered historic landmarks.

These sites also offer information about the Lindsey-Owens house at 902 S. College Avenue, noting that it was built in 1926 as a classic American “cottage” style house with an entrance typical of the Greek Revival Architecture used during the 1920s to enhance the home’s appearance. Samuel A. Lindsey purchased the entire block on which this house sits in 1914, building the house for his two sisters-in-law in the 1920s and donating the northeast portion of the block for the Tyler Woman’s Building in 1931. This house is in Tyler’s historic Azalea District. The Lindsey-Owens house and surrounding area also feature historically significant WPA drainage projects. 

Photo of People’s National Bank building (now People’s Petroleum), Tyler, Texas, from People’s Petroleum Building website

Samuel A. Lindsey also owned the Witherup House at 212 W. Dobbs Street, a portion of which was donated for the Tyler Woman’s Building. Of particular note is the People’s National Bank Building on Tyler’s courthouse square, an Art Deco building designed by noted Texas architect Alred C. Finn, which Samuel A. Lindsey commissioned to be built in 1932. This site is now on the National Register of Historic Places and also has been designated by the city as a Tyler Historic Landmark. The building is now named People’s Petroleum Building and has been repurposed as an office building with a restaurant or restaurants also housed in it.

Another building built by Samuel A. Lindsey and now on the National Register of Historic Places is the Jenkins Harvey Super Service Station and Garage, which Samuel commissioned in 1929. The application form for its listing on the National Register contains historical extensive historical documentation for this site.

Statement composed by Samuel A. Lindsey (Jr.) for his family, expressing his philosophy of life, from Mark Lindsey Heritage, pp. 127-8

Mark Lindsey Heritage reproduces the preceding typewritten autobiographical statement written by Samuel A. Lindsey at an unknown date,[31] which he apparently left to his family as a statement of his philosophy of life.

Portrait of Therese Kayser Lindsey, previously online at The photo the Texas State Heroes page of the Advancement Office at Texas State University; according to Tyler Courier-Times (23 December 1951), p. 14, col. 5-6, the portrait is a crayon by Garfield Learned of New York, 1924

As I noted above, Samuel’s wife Therese Kayser was a prize-winning author and activist for woman suffrage. A biography of her at Handbook of Texas Online notes that she was born in Chappell Hill, Texas, in 1870 [2 October], daughter of Albert and Mary (Lawrence) Kayser.[32] She was educated at what is now Southwest Texas State University, and studied also at University of Chicago, Harvard University, and Columbia University. The biography states, 

She wrote poems, stories, and plays and received a number of awards for her work. Two of her books, Blue Norther (1925) and The Cardinal Flower (1934), contained lyrics dealing mainly with Texas and nature. A third volume, A Tale of the Galveston Storm (1936), was a long narrative poem based on a true incident of the Galveston hurricane of 1900.  She also published Collected Poems (1947). As a member of poetry societies in America and England, Mrs. Lindsey initiated the movement that resulted in the formation of the Poetry Society of Texas, and she served as the society’s first corresponding secretary and subsequently as vice president. She was also donor of the “Old South Prize,” one of the society’s major annual awards. She died in Tyler on April 3, 1957, and was buried in Oakwood Cemetery in that city.

In 1977, Samuel and Therese’s daughter Louise Lindsey Merrick endowed a chair in her mother’s memory at Southwestern State University, donating half a million dollars to endow the chair.[33] Merrick made numerous charitable gifts to Texas educational institutions, and at her death, left $13.2 million to University of Texas at Tyler, along with bequests to the city of Tyler and other local organizations.[34] Mark Lindsey Heritage reproduces a newspaper article (source not noted) showing Louise Merrick presenting an oil portrait of her father Samuel A. Lindsey to the chair of the board of Gulf States Telephone Company at a date not noted.[35]

As Vivian Elizabeth Smyrl notes, starting in 1976, Louise Lindsey Merrick began donating land to the state in southwestern Bandera County, where she owned a ranch.[36] By 1982, all 4,753 acres of the Merrick ranch in this area were in the state’s possession, and is now designated the Hill Country State Natural Area. In donating this land to the state, Louise Merrick stipulated that it must “be kept far removed and untouched by modern civilization, where everything is preserved intact, yet put to a useful purpose.”

In recognition of her contributions to preserving natural spaces in the state of Texas and safeguarding the environment, Texas A & M University Press has inaugurated a series of environmental works named the Louise Lindsey Merrick Natural Environment Series.

The children of Samuel Asbury Lindsey and Therese Elizabeth Kayser were Samuel Asbury (1895-1903), and Louise Elizabeth (1898-1982), who married 1) John Hunter Pope, son of Irvin W. Pope and Sunshine Bonner, 2) Bernard Aloysius Law, son of John P. And Jennie Law, 3) John W. Miller, son of Lowell M. Miller and Matilda Wier, and 4) John Fenny Merrick, son of Frank Merrick and Louise Fenny.

Photo of Samuel A. Lindsey (Jr.) from Houston Post, 21 January 1912, p. 13; this article provides photos of all those serving as officers on the Texas Welfare Commission

[1] In November 2004, Dennis Wade of Lake Stevens, Washington, sent me information about Jasper Newton Wade. His father William Landers Wade was a grandson of Jasper Newton Wade and Louvisa Jane Lindsey. Dennis Wade told me that the information he was sharing had come from his father and one of his father’s brothers. In an email in November 2004, another descendant, Paul Wade, told me that Jasper N. Wade was a 2nd lieutenant in Co. A, 8th Alabama Cavalry, CSA, during the Civil War. He is enumerated on the 1850 federal census in the household of his parents William and Leathy Wade in Franklin County, Tennessee, and in 1860, in Decatur, Morgan County, Alabama, where he and his brothers, all carpenters, are living in a boarding house.

[2] Pauline Jones Gandrud, Alabama Records, vol. 59: Lawrence County, p. 67.

[3] John Knox, A History of Morgan County, Alabama (Decatur, Alabama: Decatur Printing Co., 1967) says that “a son of Dennis Lindsey married a Miss Hunter; their daughter, Lavinia [sic], married a Wade” (p. 126). 

J.N. and L.J. Wade are on the 1880 federal census at Trinity in Morgan County, Alabama, p. 3A (ED 259, dwelling and family 31; 2-3 June). Jasper’s occupation is proprietor of a lumber mill. The household has, in addition to children Annie L., Mary L, and twins Samuel and William, African-American servants Wade Walker and Viney Mays. In 1900, Lou J. Wade is widowed and head of her household at New Decatur in Morgan County, p. 3B (ED 142, dwelling 54, family 58; 4 June). Her children are living with her — Anna Laura, Mary Lethe, Samuel Lindsey, William Landers, Sarah E., Dora L., Charles Dennis, and Henry Webster (all surname Wade). Also in the household is James B. Speake, son of Louvisa’s first cousin Charles Washington Speake and wife Dixie West.

[4] “South Decatur,” New Decatur Advertiser (3 January 1902), p. 2, col. 6.

[5] Henry C. Lindsey, The Mark Lindsey Heritage (Brownwood, Texas, 1982), p. 119.

[6] Colbert County, Alabama, Marriage Bk. A, p. 159.

[7] Moulton Advertiser (2 January 1874), p. 1, col. 2.

[8] Mark Lindsey Heritage, p. 119.  

[9] FamilySearch database, “Alabama Deaths, 1908-1974,” a name index to Alabama death certificates 1908-1974 abstracting information from them. Mary Devaney’s surname has been incorrectly transcribed as Devauly.

[10] See Ancestry database “Alabama, Compiled Marriages from Selected Counties, 1809-1920,” abstracting and indexing marriage records from various counties.

[11] Muscle Shoals’s Times Daily has an obituary for William Henry Green on 14 February 1955, p. 2, col. 7. It notes that he had previously been mayor of Muscle Shoals and would be buried in the Glendale cemetery in which his sister-in-law Ada Lee Lindsey is buried.

[12] This memorial page was created by Find a Grave user Scrappy, who also uploaded the snapshot of the obituary.

[13] Lawrence County, Alabama, Marriage Bk. F, p. 247. The marriage record gives their names as G.W. Brown and M.E. Lindsey.

[14] 1870 federal census, Lawrence County, Alabama, Oakville post office, township 7, range 6, p. 32A (dwelling and family 6; 15 August).

[15] See supra, n. 7. 

[16] Mark Lindsey Heritage, p. 119. 

[17] U.S. Selective Service System, World War I Selective Service System Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918, Ancestry database “U.S., World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918.” James was living at Hanceville in Cullman County, Alabama, when he filed the registration.

[18] See James Arthur Brown’s Find a Grave memorial page, Hopewell cemetery, Hanceville, Cullman County, Alabama. The page is maintained by Paul and Teresa (Martin) Goodwin, who have uploaded a photo of the tombstone to the memorial page.

[19] Smith County, Texas, Marriage Bk. H, p. 369.

[20] Smith County, Texas, Marriage Bk. 12, p. 5.

[21] “Samuel A. Lindsey,” Texas Bar Journal 24,6 (June 1961), p. 628.

[22] “In Memory of Judge Samuel Asbury Lindsey,” 57th legislative session, Texas legislature, resolution 222, online at website of Legislative Reference Library of Texas.

[23] Samuel A. Lindsey, Our Rural Life and Farm Problems (TX Commercial Secretaries and Business Men’s Association., 1913). 

[24] Albert Woldert, A History of Tyler and Smith County, Texas (San Antonio: Naylor, 1948), pp. 84-5.

[25] “S.A. Lindsey Dies at Tyler,” Corsicana Daily Sun (1 March 1961), p. 3, col. 2.

[26] A source reproduced by Henry C. Lindsey in Mark Lindsey Heritage (p. 125) entitled “The Story of Judge Sam Lindsey’s Founding and Building the Gulf States Telephone Company in Tyler, Texas,” also states that Samuel A. Lindsey had the honorary title “Father of the Federal Land Banks.” This recounts the circumstances of Samuel’s founding of his telephone company, and describes him as “the son of a Louisiana Civil War veteran, who got his first formal schooling at the age of 15 with funds he earned as a farm hand and cowboy.” The article notes that Samuel had died the year before, and has a picture of him as an elderly man.

[27] “Telephone Firm Pioneer Dies,” Gatesville Messenger and Star Forum (10 March 1961), p. 6, col. 4.

[28] “ET Chamber makes East Texas notable nomination,” Longview News Journal (26 September 1982), p. 40, col.  3-5.

[29] Mark Lindsey Heritage, p. 123.

[30] Mark Lindsey Heritage, p. 126.

[31] Mark Lindsey Heritage, pp. 127-8.

[32] Sonja Fojtik, “Lindsey, Therese Kayser,” Handbook of Texas Online at the Texas State Historical Association website. On Therese Kayser Lindsey’s activism on behalf of woman suffrage, see The Suffragist 8,4 (May 1920), p. 1, with a full-page listing of members of the National Advisory Council of the National Women’s Party showing Mrs. Samuel A. Lindsey on the national advisory council.

[33] Plano Daily Star Courier, Sunday (16 October 1977), p. 5, col 1.

[34] Dottie Roark, “Mrs. Merrick Wills Millions to UT Tyler,” Tyler Morning Telegraph (23 June 1982), p. 1, col. 4-5.

[35] Mark Lindsey Heritage, p. 122.

[36] Vivian Elizabeth Smyrl, “Hill Country State Natural Area,” Handbook of Texas Online at the Texas State Historical Association website.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.