Brown and Smith families of Van Zandt county, Texas

Some information about the family of James Brown (son of Martha Thaxton and Thomas Brown of Allen Co., Ky., and Sangamon Co., Ill.; grandson of Thomas Thaxton and Jemima Cobb):


From Graveyards of Van Zandt County, Tx., Van Zandt Gen’l Society, Vol. C, White Rose Cemetery:

Block 1, Row 11 (in order in the row):

Little Polly Brown, 09 Nov 1874 – 01 Oct 1875  daughter of G. W. & Ella

James Brown, 05 Dec 1812 – 14 Jun 1874, Father

Eliza Brown, 14 Feb 1824 – 10 Feb 1898, Mother

John C. Brown, 14 May 1839 – 17 Aug 1892, G.A.R.

Others in that row: Inf. Downing, 1878-1879, d/o A.B. & C; W. B. Lane, 1832-1883 s/o Sarah; Clota Burnett Stroup, 1886-1952; Nola Stateler 1880-1881 and Ettie Stateler, 1879-1879, both d/o S.D. & E, Mary E. Pate High, 1857-1894, w/o A.J.; several Haydens.

Block 1, Row 12:

W. J. Smith, 17 Mar 1839 – 30 Jan 1886, b. Coshocton, OH

Mrs. P. J. Smith, 01 Dec 1847 – 15 Apr 1921

Others in row:  Robisons (from Alabama), Bowlden, McMahan, High, Pate, Hayden.


Original will of Eliza Brown, Probate Minute Book 4:290 (abstract)

07 Dec 1897, Eliza Brown of Canton, Van Zandt County, of the age of 82.  Leaves to her beloved daughter P.J. Haynes her property in Wills Point, Texas, as reflected in a deed to Eliza from the O’Neals, Deed Bk S:743-744.  If any part of the property remains at her daughter’s death, it is bequeathed to “my two grandsons, to wit: Louie and Will A. Smith.”  Appoints grandson Will A. Smith executor.  Witnesses W. J. Greer of Wills Point, T. P. Davis of Canton.

June 1898 petition:  Will A. Smith of Bowie County attests that Eliza died 08 Mar 1898 [note: March, not February as gravestone erroneously states] in Canton, Texas.  Legatee P. J. Haynes is of Van Zandt County.  Attorney for petitioner Smith is W. L. Haynes.  Appraisers of Eliza’s estate (consisting only of the property in Wills Point) are J. A. Pate, B. R. Goodwin, and J. F. Sallie.


From the book Early Obituaries and Death Notices of Van Zandt County, Texas 1874-1900, Vol. I, Van Zandt County Gen’l Society:

Wills Point Chronicle, 10 Mar 1898:

Died, at the residence in Canton, Tuesday morning the 8th inst., Grandma Brown, the venerable mother of Mrs. W. L. Haynes.  The funeral took place at White Rose cemetery, this place, yesterday at noon, Rev. A. E. Ewell, pastor of the Christian church, conducting the service.  Grandma Brown has been a resident of Wills Point, with the exception of a few years, nearly since her creation and has acquired a host of friends and acquaintances who will regret to learn of her death.  To the bereaved daughter who soothed the last fleeting days with uninterrupted watchfulness and attention and to the friends generally the Chronicle extends sincerest sympathy.

Wills Point Chronicle, 04 Feb 1886:

A universal feeling of sadness was caused in our community last Saturday evening by the announcement on the streets of the death of Capt. W. J. Smith.  But few knew of his serious illness before they heard of his death, as he had been sick only two or three days.  During that coldest weather he was driving the mail back from this place to Canton, and being a man who never shrank from any duty, it is probable that the exposure brought on the severe attack of pneumonia which soon proved fatal.  Capt. Smith has been a citizen of Wills Point almost since the town was founded.  He was many years in the employment of the Texas & Pacific Railway Co.  He has successfully conducted the hotel known as the O’Neal House and in every position he proved himself a faithful and industrious man.  He had no enemies – every one spoke in the highest terms of him as a Christian gentleman.  He was a consistent member of the Christian church at this place.  Funeral services, conducted by Elder J. T. Poe of Longview, were held at his residence Sunday evening, where was gathered a large concourse of the people of our city.  He was buried in the City cemetery.  The funeral procession was one of the largest we have seen in the city.  The Chronicle extends its deepest sympathy to the afflicted family and relatives.  He leaves a wife and three sons.

Wills Point Chronicle, 22 Aug 1907:

Lengthy obituary of County Judge W. L. Haynes (in a hurry; no time to type entire entry – abstract follows)

Catarrh of the stomach and bowels, d. Canton 15 Aug.  Burial White Rose under auspices of Odd Fellows lodge and Wills Point camp of Confederate veterans.  Born 07 Nov 1843 Yell Co., Ark.  Moved to Texas 1866 and to Van Zandt Co. in 1872.  Has resided at Wills Point, Grand Saline and Canton.  Civil War – 12th Arkansas infantry, promoted to 2nd Lt.  Methodist church.  Widow and six children – Slone Haynes of Okalona, Ark., Miss Laura, Andrew, Robert, Ed and Will Haynes-survive him.

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