Published 4:58 pm Wednesday, August 27, 2003
By By LYDIA GRIMES, Forgotten Trails
Last week I told you about the Rabb family. One of the Rabb daughters, Mollie Hodge Rabb, married James Monroe Padgett and there are descendants living in this area today.
James Monroe Padgett (16 Jan. 1861-31 Aug. 1949) was the only child of Samuel Padgett Jr. and his first wife, Caroline Branson.
Samuel Padgett Jr. was the son of Samuel Padgett Sr. (abt 1811-abt. 1880) and his wife, Lucinda. They came to Conecuh County from Georgia, along with their four children, Luke Padgett (abt. 1835) who married Susan Hughes, Sally Padgett (abt. 1838) who married Tim Hobbs, Samuel Padgett Jr. (1 Oct. 1841-26 Oct. 1917) and Salletta J. Padgett (abt. 1843) who married Wesley Brown.
Samuel Padgett Jr. married first Caroline Branson (abt. 1843-Oct 1863) and second Sarah Thomas Beasley. He and his first wife had only one child, James Monroe Padgett. He married for the second time 5 April 1866 and they were the parents of six more children: John Wesley Padgett (abt. 1867), Mary Jane Padgett (28 Nov. 1868), Thirzy Lucinda Padgett (27 Dec. 1870), Alice Elizabeth Padgett (1878) and Sarah Thomas Padgett (4 Feb. 1882).
This family moved to Texas in the mid 1870s. James Monroe Padgett went to Texas with the rest of his family, but didn't stay very long. He came back to Conecuh County and lived with his grandfather. He started to work at the Rosenfield Brothers in Evergreen, a mercantile business. He soon married Mollie Hodge Rabb (7 Nov. 1862-29 Sept 1937), the daughter of Young Madison Rabb and Mary Hodge Stallworth. He formed a partnership with the Rosenfields and opened J.M. Padgett and Company in Brewton in the late 1880s. Over the next years he was involved with several mercantile businesses and owned his own horse and mule-trading business on Persimmon Street in downtown Brewton. He named the business Elway Livestock Company after his three sons, Edwin Lovelace, Walter and Young. He acquired a lot of land which became known as Padgett's Farm and today is that property is the location of Double "M" Farms on Kirkland Road. He built a railroad to take the timber from his lumber mill located on the farm.
He served as a county commissioner for Escambia County and both he and his wife were active in community affairs. They were the parents of eight children, including two sets of twins: Ruth Tresvant Padgett (1 Jan. 1886-7 Dec 1981) who married first George Oliver Harold and second to Philip Nicholas Sowell, Samuel Young Padgett (13 Nov. 1887-18 April 1972 who married Valera Johnson, Sadie Loebman Padgett (14 July 1890-24 July 1985) who married Duncan Parker Liles, Edwin Lovelace Padgett (1 March 1893-9 Oct. 1972) who married Bessie Terrence Robinson, Walter Lee Padgett (1 March 1893-26 June 1901) who died died of a snake bite, Myrtise Lenora Padgett (10 July 1899-5 Jan. 1995) who married William Swanson West, Marie Jeannette Padgett (10 July 1899-27 Oct. 1982) who married Arthur Augustus Miller and Bessie Cushman Padgett (15 July 1901-25 Jan. 1997) who married Frank Alex Luttrell.
This Padgett family has produced many descendants who grew up in the Brewton area and many of them still reside here.