THEY HOPED FOR SOMETHING NEW
THE ALEXANDER FAMILY
William Alexander wandered from Tennessee to Alabama.
In Limestone County, Alabama he married Martha Henderson.
From Alabama he journeyed to Mississippi where he reared a large family of at least seven children..
Apparently while living in Alabama their oldest son,
Joseph Alexander, was born.
The rest of their children were born in Mississippi.
Joseph was a young man when the Civil War erupted around them.
We know he fought in the war and received a medal
from the Daughters of the Confederacy.
While Joseph was fighting in the war,
the family of Allen Massey, in a nearby county,
found itself engulfed by the war.
James Morgan Massey enlisted at the age of fifteen.
He would not see another birthday.
He fought at the Battle of Shiloh,
and he died a month later.
One story in the family says that Susan Tillery Massey
transported cotton to Memphis for the Confederacy.
She covered the cotton and piled her children on top
to conceal it from the Yankees as she transported it.
She told the Yankee patrol that she was carrying
her children to a safe place because the war was too close.
Perhaps on this wagon one would have seen her daughter Martha.
On February 20, 1868, after the war was over,
Joseph Alexander and Martha Massey married.
But times were hard in post-war Mississippi.
They decided that they would seek
to make their lives better elsewhere.
They would go to Texas.
Life was not easy there either.
They settled in the Hill Country around Llano.
There they carved out a farm
and reared a large family of ten children.
Martha wrote a letter to her brother
which gives us some insight into their life there.
They worked hard to break the ground
in the harsh country to which they had moved.
Martha worked hard to care for her family,
but they did not give up.
They created a home for their children
in the harsh land where they found themselves.
My grandfather was one of their sons.
John Vance Alexander
Read Martha Massey's Letter
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