|James Benjamin Flemming|
James Benjamin Flemming was born in Birmingham, Alabama, on September 27, 1889. He was the seventh of eleven children born to Charles Clinton Flemming (1854-1932) and Elizabeth Agnes McCaffrey (1858-1922), my great-great-great grandparents. He was named for his paternal grandfather James Benjamin Flemming (1827-1907). James had two older brothers, including my great-grandfather Harry Clinton Flemming (1878-1955), making James my great-great-uncle.
|Statue of Mary Cahalan|
Principal of Powell Elementary
Downtown Birmingham, Alabama
On June 15, 1910, James married Elizabeth Haney Cahalan (1891-1972) at St. Paul's Catholic Church. He was 20, she was just 18. Elizabeth was the daughter of William J Cahalan (1854-UNK), and the granddaughter of Michael Murray Cahalan (1830-1884), an immigrant of County Tipperary, Ireland, and Catherine Kenney (1837-1894), of County Limmerick. The first Catholic masses in Birmingham were said twice a month at his home, before St. Paul's Church was built. Elizabeth's aunt, Mary Ann Cahalan (1856-1906) was a school teacher in the new city, and became a highly respected principal at Powell Elementary School. She was so loved in the city that the children of Birmingham collected money to have a statue created of her by Guiseppi Moretti, the Italian scuptor who created the city's landmark - Vulcan. The statue of Mary Cahalan can be found in Linn Park, behind the Courthouse and the old library (now the Southern Research Library). After both her parents died, sometime before 1900, Elizabeth lived in the home of her uncle Redmond N. Wheeler (1863-1922), husband of her aunt Katherine Cahalan (1866-1930). Also living in the home were her late father's sister Mary, the school principal; his brother Michael Frank (1873-1928), a lawyer and future judge, and the 2nd boy born in the city of Birmingham; his sister Margaret (1867-1934) and her husband and children.
When James and Elizabeth married, their wedding was announced in the newspaper. After their honeymoon, according to the newspaper, the young couple moved in with her aunt and uncle Redmond and Katie Wheeler. According to the paper their wedding "in its simplicity simulated that of Mr. and Mrs. R.N. Wheeler, solemnized some years ago." They had the same singer and the same woman who played the music at the Wheeler's wedding to perform at their ceremony.
In 1911 the first of the couple's five children were born. Their children were Catherine Cahalan Flemming (b. July 4, 1911), Elizabeth Agnes Flemming (b. January 12, 1914), Charles Clinton Flemming (b. January 10, 1915), Redmond Wheeler Flemming (b. November 21, 1920), and Michael Francis "Frank" Flemming (b. May 4, 1924).
Family legend has it that Charlie had to close the business in the late 1920's and it was bought by James, changing its name to Flemming Transfer. This was a true family business. James' wife, daughter Catherine and all of his children would work at some time at the transfer company.
James' wife and children continued to run the transfer company, and it's still in operation today - owned and operated by James' descendants. Elizabeth lived forty additional years, to the age of eighty. She died on May 16, 1972. She is buried beside her husband of 21-years. She was survived by all five of her children and fourteen grandchildren.
|Gravestone at Elmwood Cemetery|