received 2014-01-07
Shari Timms
22348 Era Lane #53
Porter, TX 77365
I am looking for the burial plot of Murf Henry Farris. He was buried on January 13, 1984.  Can you
provide the location in the cemetery and directions from maybe Brenham.
Your help is most appreciated.
I am looking for the burial plot of Murf Henry Farris. He was buried on January 13, 1984.  Can you provide
the location in the cemetery and directions from maybe Brenham. Your help is most appreciated.
Best Regards, Shari Timms
reply: Murf H. Farris (1925-1984) is buried in the Sandy Creek Cemetery. This cemetery is located on US 79
between Milano and Rockdale. Go north from Brenham on Hwy 36 thru Caldwell to Milano. At Milano turn left
onto US 79.  The Sandy Creek Church and Cemetery are approx 3 miles west of Milano on the right hand side of
the highway.  It is a fairly small and well maintained cemetery.

REPLY: Thank you so very much!
Good afternoon Ms. Timms,
I see that Mr. Jerry Caywood, our  Milam County Historical Commission webmaster, has provided the name and
driving directions of the requested cemetery of  the departed. I checked on "Find A Grave" and see other
family members interred (see attachment). I also see that no headstone photo is available for him on their
site. If you would like photo's of Mr. Murf Henry Farris's headstone let me know and I'll take them while in
Rockdale tomorrow. 
Respectfully,  Jack Brooks
Mr. Brooks, Yes Sir, pictures would be fantastic.  Thank you doesn't seem enough. The response I have
received is just so refreshing and truly appreciated. Please express my thanks to Mr. Caywood as well. 
Warmest Regards, Sharii Timms
Good evening Ms. Timms,
This is my first visit to this cemetery and like Mr. Caywood has written, it is very well maintained. I
observed that he, too, has family members interred here.
I must commend your family for the pride that it takes in its heritage, because so many of the headstones are
adorned with beautiful floral arrangements.
Attachment #1 ; I wanted to bring to your attention that Sallie Faris(one r) ref #7 is the same as the last
Sarah Sallie Farris(2 r's) by birth and mortality date. Her physical headstone spells her last name with one
r. Also that she is interred by herself a considerable distance from the rest of the Farris family plot. It
appears that someone created an entirely new posting on "find a Grave", and instead should have edited the
original which would have eliminated this confusion.
Attachment #2 ; Should you visit the cemetery, this is the physical location of your family headstones/plot.
(I had to work to find Ms. Sallie and didn't want you to have to do the same)
Attachment #3 ; This is an overall of your family plot. From left to right; Murf Henry Farris, Lydia Watson
Farris, Charlie Hubert Farris, Baby Girl Stevens(1913), Erline Stevens 17 days(1917), Nancy Ann McCoy Farris.
Hopefully, Baby Girl Stevens and Erline Stevens make sense to you since no  Stevens are shown interred in
this cemetery's records.
I just searched one other place, in unknown burials in "170 Years of Cemetery Records in Milam County Texas"
and found an Ellen Stevens, Sandy Creek area 17 d  1917. Obviously they are one and the same.
The rest of the attachments are self explanatory. It will take additional separate emails for me to forward
all the photo's. Enjoy, and on behalf of the Milam County Historical Commission, it has been a pleasure to
serve you.
Respectfully,  Jack Brooks

Mr. Brooks, This is truly amazing.   Thank you so very much for this.  I plan on driving up this weekend. The
time taken to do this for me is just beyond words.
Warmest Regards, Shari Timms

Received 2014-01-25
Celeste Banda
Austin, TX
I'm searching for information on the Buckholts Methodist Episcopal Church. I would greatly
appreciate any information available.
Reply:  I advised that would forward request to MCHC members for replies.
2014-01-25 REPLY from Jack Brooks: I am in the process of researching the below request. Please note the
below. This first is a church (Friendship United Methodist) that was on an adjoining circuit, but you'll
notice numerous references to the Buckholts Methodist Church.
I might add that the Friendship United Methodist Church also carries a Buckholts mailing address. This
article is interesting, educational and entertaining.
In it, Ms. Prebble Walker McQuary states that the Buckholts Methodist Church disbanded around 1965.
A couple of interesting points are made regarding the second link. In 1844, the Methodist Episcopal Church,
South, was organized because of the slavery controversy. In 1939, the Methodist Episcopal, Methodist
Episcopal South and Methodist Protestant denominations merged to form the Methodist Church. (Hyde, A.B. op.
cit. pp 535-550).
In 1968, the Evangelical United Brethren Church and the Methodist Church merged to form the United Methodist
Church.(New York Times, April 24, 1968, p. 26).
Therefore with the above timeline, the Buckholts Methodist Episcopal Church, South was in existence prior to
1939 and disbanded as the Buckholts Methodist Church prior to 1968.
I am in the process of attempting to locate Lynna Kay Shuffield's book, "Milam County Texas, Various Church
History's" to see if the Buckholts M.E. or Buckholts Methodist Church are discussed.
An additional reference would be the Annual Conference reports for that church.
I want to discuss this subject with the Pastor of the 1st United Methodist Church in Cameron.
Hopefully he will have some advice. I'll keep you posted.   Respectfully,  Jack Brooks



received: 2014-02-05
Lisa Gowen
863 Great Northern Blvd #301
Helena, MT  59601
I descend from Benjamin Franklin Bryant through his son Samuel Houston Bryant.  Benjamin died at Bryant
Station March 24, 1857.  I am interested to know where I would find a copy of his will?
Thank you for your assistance.  Lisa



rec'd 2014-02-24
RE: Norman Valley Cemetery Information.

We are looking for more information about this cemetery. We recently found the cemetery Off of 486 and CR
210. It is in a small treed area in behind the first farm house on the right. In the middle of a open
cultivated field. Among questions is how did the Norman Valley name come about? We recently found that my
wife's 4th great grandparents are buried there. That would be WP Norman and Sarah Norman. But the biggest
question is wondering what can be done to save this cemetery. I is in extreme bad shape and could be lost
before too long. There seems to be a lot of history there with possibly some very early settlers to Milam
County. My wife's 4th great grand mother emigrated to Texas as we found out by her headstone in 1826. What
headstones can be read or have some inscription most have fallen or are covered up. Major over growth and
many varmint burrows. It is really sad sight. We would also like to know what is the process that can be
started to save and possible get an historical designation for this very old cemetery. Also, if any
information on whom to contact about access to the cemetery since it is on private land would be appreciated.
It is not fenced and there is a road in to the field that is next to the cemetery.
Thank You
Gary and Sue Bruton
2516 Outlook Ridge Loop
Leander, TX 78641
Reply:  This email has been forwarded to all MCHC members.
Reply: 2014-02-25 - Mr. and Mrs. Bruton, 
Hopefully, I'll be able to initially give you some teaser information on the Norman Valley Cemetery.
My wife and I also visited this cemetery, not that long ago. Like you, we traipsed across that same field and
into the underbrush to view the headstones(see attachments).    In Milam County, we have a cemetery "Bible"
that is our invaluable resource for information. "170 Years of Cemetery Records in Milam County, Texas". It
was written by Mr. Perry Holder and his daughter Norinne Holman.
In it, Ms. Holman writes " It is believed that some 30 people were buried here(Norman Valley Cemetery). Her
book only lists 19.
"The earliest burial recorded is Thomas Norman's in 1870 and the earliest birth year seen is Sarah Normans in
"The Norman family was originally from Austria. Several of the earliest settlers in the area were the
Hertenberger, Hosch, Hanks, and Pfansteil families".
By chance, I happened to meet a gentleman, just this past week,  who owns property adjacent or surrounding
this cemetery. I am attempting to contact Mr. Carrol Richter to confirm this information and will advise.
In 1991 Mr. Holder Wrote" There are over 70 lost or abandoned cemeteries in Milam County". Obviously, this is
one of them.     We have had a handful of "resurrected" cemetery's recently, but it is usually due to
concerned citizens and/ or descendants of the interred. I know of three that are currently in the process of
restoration. Since this cemetery has been inactive for so many years, this makes it all the more difficult
contacting the interred descendant's for assistance.    I certainly don't want to discourage you, because I
think that you have a noble cause and honorable intentions.     My very first suggestion would be to try to
find ownership or trusteeship if put in trust to the County. A challenging aspect is that your earliest
burial is that of Thomas P Norman, 1856-1870. The Milam County Courthouse and all recorded deed records were
destroyed in the fire of 1874. There might be a refiled deed, but you would need to know the Grantor or
Grantee and the date in order to, more easily, locate it it in the numerous record books. This information
would be required in your THC HTC designation application.   Ms. Polly Hauk, who supervises the community
service folks, would possibly be able to provide a labor source for you, if she can spare the personnel.Ms.
Hauk's tel. #  (254) 697-7022. You would need to fill out some paperwork at her office(103 S Cameron St) on
the east side of the Courthouse square in Cameron.    I am able to tell you, through past experience, that
what is needed is lots of time and labor, and not a considerable amount of money, unless you contract your
labor out. The materials will be bricks and pea gravel for leveling the bases and epoxy for reattaching and
repairing broken/ separated markers and tablets. This project has the potential to be very rewarding for you,
especially if you're repairing your own ancestors headstones.      If you would like to learn more about an
Historic Texas Cemetery(HTC) designation go to  . Then in the search box type Historic
Texas Cemetery and you'll find all that you want to know about the program, forms and instructions. 
Personally, I would get the cemetery in pretty good shape before ever considering a designation. A number of
photo's are required, and you would want to present the cemetery in its "best light."   Should you decide to
have a cemetery "work day", I'm sure that Mr. Jerry Caywood, our gracious MCHC webmaster, would be happy to
post it to our site for you. This would have a rather limited exposure, though. You might also place an
announcement in the Rockdale Reporter under community events(free ad).    My wife
and I would be happy to assist, as time permits, with your endeavor.  I'll get back with you with a confirmed
access/ ownership and a contact tel. # for you.     Sincerely,  Jack Brooks   cell  90four-608-five555



Rec;d: 2014-03-04
Dallas E. Freestone
222 North 1200 West 112
Orem, Utah  84057
My wife Anne Laurence Freestone would like to find information about her natural grandfather Cornelius
Kincheloe Stribling. He died the same year that she was born 1933. His obituary only states that he died
suddenly and the funeral was held in his home in Rockdale. She has information from her sister that her
grandfather was a member of the K.K.K. No information was transferred from generation to generation.
Jerry:Thanks for the message from Dallas Freestone. I will do some investigating and send what I find to Mr.
Freestone, copy to you. Thanks again, Linda Whorton - MCGS -
Jerry   This is a very interesting family request!  I'm not finding much...yet.  I can't do much at work.  I
have reached out to someone for help.  I will get back to you.  I'm sure your email blast will gather a lot
of good info.
Johnnielyn Brown    johnnielynb(AT)att(DOT)net
Linda Whorton <lindamorningdawn(AT)aol(DOT)com>
Mr. Freestone:
There are numerous references (census, birth and death records) to the Stribling family here in Rockdale.
Cornelius K. Stribling was the son of a long-time minister here, and there are several generations of the
family buried in the I.O.O.F. Cemetery.

Here are the websites for you to look:

They are both free websites, but do require registration. The Family Search site has census, birth and death
records for several of the Stribling family, including C. K. Stribling's death certificate stating that he
died suddenly of "coronary thrombosis".

The Find A Grave site allows you to look up burial sites. The I.O.O.F Cemetery has listings for approximately
12 Stribling family members, including C.K. and his wife, father and several children.

If you do not have the time or computer savvy to look up the information and print it out, let me know and I
will gather up as much as I can and mail it to you.

As for the K.K.K. mention, there will be nothing about that to be found, except for word of mouth. In those
days there were numerous such things that were not talked about in the family, and to begin with, the K.K.K.
wasn't as dishonorable then as it is today. Also, no woman was allowed, or wanted to talk about such things.

Just let me know and I will get some had copies together for you.

Linda Land Whorton
Newsletter Editor for The Milam County Geneological Society
c/o Lucy Patterson Public Library
201 Ackerman
Rockdale, TX 76567

Milam County Historical Commission - Milam County, TX
Statue of Ben Milam at Milam County, TX Courthouse
Old Junior High School Building, Rockdale, TX
Milam County Courthouse - Cameron, TX
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Milam County Historical Commission
Milam County, Texas
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