Forgotten Trails: Mayo family information found in historial society publication

Published 3:50 am Wednesday, August 13, 2008

By Staff
I was trying to organize some of my files this past weekend and I ran across this information. It is a hardbound copy of the first quarterly put out by the Escambia County Historical Society in 1971. The book was given to me by Betty Garrison a few years ago, along with several other books and pamphlets.
I ran across this information on the Mayo family in this area. It was written by C.Y. Mayo Jr. in 1935 and contributed to be printed by Ed Leigh McMillan I. The information of Mr. Mayo was of things he remembered his father, C.Y. Mayo Sr. telling him based on what he remembered and also data gathered by his uncle, J.L. Mayo. This data was destroyed in the flood (1929 I presume).
C.Y. Mayo Sr. said that his great-grandfather came from County Mayo in Ireland, and settled in Virginia. His grandfather, John W. Mayo, came south first settling near Fort Crawford on what is now May Creek in 1815. He later moved across the river to a place called Douglasville, where he lived the rest of his life. He married Nancy Gainer in 1818 and they were the parents of Charles Young Mayo who married Mary Brackin, Martha Mayo who married Jeptha Blacksher, Samuel Gaynor Mayo who married Elizabeth Spier and moved to Missouri, Nancy Mayo who married Andrew Newman of Milton (or James Bishop); Reubin Mayo, Benjamin Mayo and Emerlin Mayo.
In the Memorial History of Alabama it states that other children were Rebecca Mayo who married William Spier, David Mayo, John L. Mayo, and Adeline who married Andrew Newman.
Charles Young Mayo was born Nov. 28, 1819. He was named after the lieutenant in charge of Fort Crawford. He married Mary Brackin in 1847 and they had eight children, Andrew Mayo who married Celia Hutt, David Mayo who married Annie Avent, Charles Young Mayo Jr. who married Mary W. Avent, daughter of J.C. and Mary Avent, William K. Mayo who married Mamie Satcher, Nancy Mayo who married Levi Solomon, Laura Mayo who married William Dixon, and Julia Mayo who married Dr. S.C. Henderson.
John W. Mayo possibly operated the first sawmill in that section of the state, for in “Memorial History of Alabama” it said the materials used to build his home came from his mill. In 1847 C.Y. Mayo Sr. left the family home and became involved with sawmill and later mercantile business. There is some data included in the material that stated that these Mayos were related to the branch who settled in Rochester, Minnesota. This was the branch that founded the Mayo Clinic.
There are other details about the businesses he was involved in. At one time either C.Y. Mayo Sr. or C.Y. Mayo Jr. was in the business of building bricks. If you are lucky you can still find a brick with his initials carved into it.
Another piece of information in the book tells of an Act of Alabama dated 1868-1870 declared that Wiley Dixon wanted to be in the county of Covington so the boundary line between the two counties was changed so that his wishes would be honored. This came at a time when Escambia County was brand new, being formed in 1868 out of Conecuh and Baldwin Counties. George P. Weaver, Joseph J. Jackson and Thomas J. Jernigan were named to appoint a board of commissioners, whose duty would be to set the day for election of county officers. It was also their job to select and put into nomination three sites for the location of the county seat, one of those being Pollard. The site was to be no nearer than three miles from each other or more than 10 miles from the center of the county. The three sites were to be put up for the voters of the county to select one of the sites. The one with the majority of votes was to be declared the county seat. All seven sections of the proclamation were approved and Escambia County came into existence on Dec. 1, 1868.
There is a listing of locations for bridges, ferries and landings. All of these are interesting. One Lowery Landing was located on the road from Appleton to Wallace, just where Lowery Landing Road is today. Murder Creek Bridge was the first bridge ever heard of in the region. It was below the junction of Burnt Corn with Murder Creek. It crossed about where the old Peters Lumber Company mill was located in Alco. (I used to believe that this mill was on the hill at Alco but now know that the mill was actually to the south of where the bridge crosses Burnt Corn today.) This bridge washed away in what was known as Lincoln's Freshet, which was a flood in 1864.
One more thing that I found that was interesting was the announcement in the June 18, 1895 issue of The Pine Belt News. This is how it read.
As usual Brewton will, in its accustomed way, celebrate Independence day, and maintain her enviable reputation made in recent years along this line by giving this time a barbeque, blow-out, etc., that will eclipse all attempts of the past.
Committees have been appointed who are now getting things in order and shaping their plans so everybody that comes to Brewton on that day will be insured a good time.
A baseball game, bicycle races, gun club contest, target practice, foot races, etc., are promised as amusements.
A big barbeque and basket lunch will be free to all. Refreshments may be found on the grounds.
Next week we will endeavor to give a more complete list of attractions.
Get ready to come yourself, tell your neighbors and send word to the balance. Hurrah for Brewton and the glorious fourth!”
This celebration was called off because Sheriff E.S. McMillan was killed by Railroad Bill, a desperado, on the night of July 3, 1895.
I am planning on doing a story about the days when Brewton had a team in the Deep South Class D Baseball League. If you have any information about the years in the late 1930s, 1940s and 1950s when the Brewton Millers played ball, please let me know. I am especially interested in any photos that may still be around. Please call me at 867-4876 if you can help.
Happy hunting.