My Adventure Through Our Family Tree Branches

For over 50 years my Dad researched both his and my Mom's family tree branches - and loved every minute of it! Trying to fulfill the promise I made him the last month of his life, I have spent the past four years continuing where he left off - finding out about all the many family members who came before us, from the many branches of our family trees. The histories will still be published as my Dad always wanted. But what he wanted most was to share the stories of the people who came before us - the places they lived, the cultures of the times, the families they created, and the circumstances - good and bad - that would one day lead to us, their descendants. These are the stories of my Mom's families. . . .

Surnames in this Blog


Monday, October 3, 2011

SUNDAY'S OBITUARY - Elizabeth Agnes McCaffrey Flemming (1858-1922)

Elizabeth Agnes McCaffrey Flemming
Elizabeth Agnes McCaffrey was the third of thirteen children born to Thomas Joseph McCaffrey (1832-1896) and Charlotte Elizabeth McCluskey (1838-1917). Lizzie, as she was called, was born December 23, 1858 in Baltimore, Maryland. Lizzie is my great-great-grandmother.

Lizzie's father, a pipe moulder by trade, left his family in Maryland to move south at the start of the Civil War to support the Confederacy. He worked at the ironworks at Brierfield and Tannehill in Shelby County, Alabama. After the war, the whole family moved south, first to Shelby County, then later to Rome, Georgia. It was in Rome that Lizzie met her future husband, Charles Clinton Flemming (1854-1932). Born in Darlington, South Carlina, he, too, had moved with his family to Rome in the 1860's.

Lizzie and Charlie were married on April 9, 1877 at St. Mary's Catholic Church, a small wooden church built in Rome in 1874 by the 30 Catholics in the city. Although Charlie's family were Baptists, he had converted to Catholicism as a young man. It was here in Rome, where her parents and siblings, and his parents and siblings lived, that they started their own family. Five children were born here in the city. For a while Charlie worked  as a clerk in a local store. By 1891 the family had relocated to Birmingham, where Charlie worked for the Great Southern Railroad. By 1900 he was the Yardmaster. In 1902 he retired from the railroad and started Charlie's Transfer Company. [See "Saturday's Structure - Charlie's Transfer Company", September 18, 2011]

Lizzie and Charlie went on to have a large family, ten children, with eight surviving to adulthood. Their children born in  Rome were: my great-grandfather Harry Clinton (1878-1955), Susie Elizabeth (1879-1908), Minnie Agnes "Mamie" (1880-1881), Charles Clinton (1884-1935), and Elizabeth Imogene "Imo" (1886-1919). After moving to Birmingham they had the other half of their family: James Benjamin (1889-1932), Charlotte Teresa "Lottie" (1891-1937), Sarah Marie (1893-1963), Thomas Joseph (1896-1918) and Willie Mae (1898-1898). Many of their sons went to work with Charlie in his successful company.

On July 17, 1922, at 2:00 AM, Lizzie died at home, 1115 St. Charles Street.. She was 63 years old. Her death certificate listed "acute cardiac dilation" as the cause of death. Her funeral took place the following day. The Birmingham News  reported her funeral on the front page of the paper on Wednesday, July 19th.

from The Birmingham News
July 19, 1922; page 1

Body of Well Known Local Woman Buried in Elmwood
"Funeral services for Mrs. Elizabeth Agnes Flemming were held Tuesday morning at 9:30 o'clock from St. Paul's Catholic Church. Following impressive services at the church burial took place in Elmwood Cemetery, with Lige Loy in charge.
Mrs. Flemming is survived by her husband, C. C. Flemming, three sons, C. C. Flemming, Jr., J. B. Flemming and H. C. Flemming, and two daughters, Mrs. J. B. Thomas and Mrs. L.  McMurray, all of Birmingham. Pallbearers were A. H. Geohegan, John McGeever, Bart Harris, Ryan Mullane, H. J. Kribbs and W. E. Frawley.
Mrs. Flemming was 65 years of age and had lived in Birmingham for many years. She was widely known and had a host of friends who join the family in mourning the loss of a dutiful mother and companion.
The funeral was largely attended and many beautiful floral tributes were sent." (Birmingham News, July 19, 1922; page 1]

Gravestone of Lizzie McCaffrey Flemming
Elmwood Cemetery, Birmingham, Alabama

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