Subj: Bodinfield, Bettingfield, Bednfield Newsletter
Date: 97-07-28 23:03:50 EDT

Hi, gang. Here's the next installment of the newsletter. It may be a while before another comes out as I will be scheduling another surgery on my elbow shortly. I'll keep you posted.

Emily from Texas sends this information on her line: Willis Benefield B. 1773 NC marr. Isabella Cummins in 1800 Guilford co., NC> Henderson Benefield B. 1800-1810 NC or Ind. Marr. Sarah Louisa Tackett> Benjamin Jefferson Benefield B. 1839 Morrilton, Ark (lived in Pope Co., Ark.) Marr. Harriet A. Barry> James Henderson Benefield B. 1880 Marion Co., TX marr. Justa B. Glass> James Henderson, Jr. B. 1911 Marion co., Jefferson, Texas marr. Verla Stutz.> Emily A. Benefield (me). Does any of this look familiar to you? I have Willis other issue as well as Henderson other issue. Let me hear! Thanks again for your letter.

Dear Beddingfield kin, All the names mentioned in the Green River, Zirconia sounded real familiar as all the names were the relatives of my husband. He is related to Beddingfield's, (Nathaniel and the Larkin family) Russell's and then to top that his grandmother Lelar Russell (daughter of Alfred William Russell and Ada Mitilda Pace) passed away after she married John Lindsey and had two small children, Harvey and Lilliam and he then married Alice Beddingfield, the widow of William Larkin II. Roy Beddingfield retired after about 30 years in the military and lived the remainder of his live near San Antonia, Texas. He never had any children. Vione was married 3 times and had one child by each marriage. If I can help with other loose ends just hollar. Jeannie Lindsey

Mary writes: There are Beddingfields buried in my family's family cemetary at PeaRidge, north of Selma in Dallas County. Would love to place these...they must in some way be related to my Campbell family or Rountree family. These are:

Sarah Beddingfield, b 7 Nov 1798 and d 1 Sept 1838 (First Wife)
Needham C. Beddingfield, son of Needham and Laura Carroll Beddingfield, B 18 January, 1843 and died 23 July 1864. C.S.A. wounded 27 June 1862 At Gains Mill, age 19 years 6 mos

Laura, Wife of Needham Beddingfield, daughter of Thomas R. and Rebecca Carroll, B 11 July, 1802 and died 25 May, 1870.

Mary B. in Florida sends this bit of information: I found this while looking for other info. Not sure if it will help any one. Found at the Tampa-Hillsborough County Public Library:

The Reconstructed 1790 Census of Georgia
Substitutes for Georgia's Lost 1790 Census
, Compiled by Marie De Lamar & Elisabeth Rothstein, Washington County, GA
Page 157 Muster Rolls: 1793
Capt. Irwins Company
Benningfield, Jos.

Here's another excerpt from The Benefiel Families of Indiana and Their Descendents by Evelyn Benefield Stout.

WILLIAM BEDINGFIELD 1809-- Son of Needham & Polly (Rogers) Bedingfield
m 6 Sep 1831 w Deborah Stone 1815 m+Walton Co., GA; bk B p 169
WILLIAM *1808/1809@GA; 41 in 1850 Randolph Co., AL
DEBORAH *1814/15 ch 1. Sarah BEDINGFIELD *1831/2@GA
2. James BEDINGFIELD *1835/6@GA
3. Needham BEDINGFIELD *1838/9@GA
4. Hardy BEDINGFIELD *1841/2@GA
5. John L. BEDINGFIELD *1844/45@AL
6. Henry P. BEDINGFIELD *1845/6@AL
7. Betsey BEDINGFIELD *1847/8@AL
* * * * * * *
AZARIAH BEDINGFIELD 1813-- son of Needham & Polly (Rogers) Bedingfield
m ?? w Elizabeth 1824-
AZARIAH *1812/13@Al or GA; 37 in 1850 Randolph Co., AL
ELIZABETH *1823/4@AL; 26 in 1850
ch 1. Zachariah BEDINGFIELD *1839/40
2. Mary BEDINGFIELD *1841/2
3. Holstein BEDINGFIELD *1843/4@AL
4. Martha BEDINGFIELD *1845/6@AL
5. William BEDINGFIELD *1848/9@AL
* * * * * * *
HENRY ZACHARIAH BEDINGFIELD 1817-1879 son of Needham & Polly (Rogers) Bedingfield
m ca 1841 w Susan R. "Ann" Almand (or Almon) 1825- m@ Heard Co.,GA
HENRY *1815/17 @GA; d ca 1879 @Webster Parish, LA; bu Whitehall cem, Webster Parish, LA; Farmer & Prize Fighter; 33 in 1850 Heard Co., GA; moved to LA ca 1875.
SUSAN or "Ann" *1821/22/25 @SC; died ca 1880/81; bu Whitehall cem, no marker, but said to be bu w/Henry & dau Susan; 28 in 1850.
ch 1. Mary A. D. BEDINGFIELD *1842 @GA; 7 in 1850
2. Emily Elizabeth "Beth" BEDINGFIELD *26 Sep 1843 @GA; d 8 Sep 1912 @Webster Parish, LA; 6 in 1850; m ca 1867 to John M. "Jack" Kight
3. Josiah Pope BEDINGFIELD 1846-
4. Nancy Ann "Nan" BEDINGFIELD *22 Nov 1848 (or 1852?) @GA; d 2 Jan 1923; bu Whitehall cem., Webster Parish, LA; m (1) 1868 h Henry Swint; m (2) 1876 h Nathaniel Holt
5. Robert Randolph "Bob" BEDINGFIELD *1850-1920
6. Martha J. BEDINGFIELD *ca 1853 @Heard Co., GA
7. Susan A. BEDINGFIELD *ca 1855 @Heard Co., GA; d ca 1876; said to be the first person buried at Whitehall cem.
8. Serena Antoinette "Nettie" BEDINGFIELD *10 May 1856 @Heard Co., GA; d 24 May 1894; bu Whitehall cem; m 5 June 1874 h Fletcher Lee
9. Henry Zachariah "Zack" BEDINGFIELD *1 Sep 1858 @Heard Co., GA; d 9 Oct 1929 @Haynesville , LA; m 20 Feb 1880 w Sally Waters
10. Charlotte E. "Lottie" BEDINGFIELD *1862 @Heard Co., GA; d @Bossier Parish, LA; m h John Norse
11. William John "Will" BEDINGFIELD *1864-1926
* * * * * * *
MARY BEDINGFIELD 1831 dau of Needham & Polly (Rogers) Bedingfield
m 1849/50 h David Shelnut 1826-
MARY *1830/1 @GA; 190in 1850 Randolph Co., AL; married within the year; some descendents say Mary's parents were William & Nancy Bedingfield???
DAVID *1825/6 @GA; Shoemaker; 24 in 1850

Here's the next installment of the murder story, courtesy of Peggy in AL from the Florence Gazette Friday June 21, 1912.

John Legg Arrested

Charged with Double Murder in Lauderdale Twelve Years Ago

Renewed Interest in a Crime that Ended Two Lives and Shocked the Entire County

John M. Legg, charged with the murder of John and Jerome Bedingfield, father and son,in East Lauderdale, over twelve years ago, was arrested on that charge on Monday of last week in the village of Jasper, Arkansas; taken to Harrison, the county seat of an adjoining county, and there turned over on Friday to Sheriff Dowdy, of Lauderdale, who, accompanied by Mr. Dick Holland of Florence, had gone there to receive the prisoner. Sheriff Dowdy did not know Legg personally, and Mr. Holland went with him to identify the prisoner. Messrs. Dowdy and Holland left here Wednesday for Arkansas, received their man Friday, and arrived here Sunday morning. Legg is now in jail here, awaiting the action of the courts.

Sheriff Dowdy had no trouble in securing Legg. When taken charge of he broke down, and tears fell from his eyes. He seemed much broken in spirit, and related much of the hardships that he had endured. For seven or eight years he camped in the swamps of Missouri, sending out such articles as he had for sale by a friend. His location for the past four years has been high up in the Ozark mountains, where he went under the name of James McLemore. He had led a quiet, hard-working life, and was regarded as an honest man by all who knew him. Before he left he was careful to pay the few little debts that he owed.

The first information of Legg's whereabouts was obtained through a young man who had been attending school at Memphis, and whom Legg had asked to come down to Lauderdale and get him news from his friends here. The young man did not come here; but on his return home, some misunderstanding occurred between the parties, when a brother of the college student wrote to the sheriff here about the case.

On account of the flagrant nature of this case the officers had for years been on the lookout for Legg, and it is said that on several occasions in the past they have been quite close on his trail. His recent whereabouts have been known to Sheriff Dowdy for several weeks past, but the fact was kept a secret until all the papers necessary in the case were arranged.

This double murder occurred on the 23rd day of January, 1900, and in the issue of The Times of date Friday, January 30th, 1900, the following account of the tragedy appeared under double column headlines:...(repeat of previous article)....

Additional Particulars

In the succeeding issue of The TImes, dated February 3rd, 1900, the following additional particulars are given:

John and Jerome Bedingfield, father and son, who were shot by John Legg, near Oliver, in this county on Tuesday of last week have both died from their wounds. The son died on Thursday and the father on Saturday. Legg is a fugitive from justice, the last seen of him being several miles from the scene of his desperate acts, riding rapidly away.

Later developments add to the brutality and recklessness of the crime. Evidently, malice had rankled long in the heart of the man, and it is apparent that the outbreak with the younger Bedingfield at the mill, was only the small spark that kindled the sleeping embers of hatred into the murderous deed.

It is said that Legg had threatened to kill four other members of the Bedingfield family. This being the case, he is a dangerous man to be at large, and no labor should be spared to secure his arrest.

It is said that $500 have so far been offered as a reward for Legg's arrest, $250 by Mrs. John Bedingfield and $250 by her brother, Newton Tribble, of Athens.

Some of the details of the murder of the Bedingfields have a decidedly pathetic coloring. When Legg shot Jerome, the team the latter was driving became frightened and tried to run away. Legg stopped the animals amd unhitched them, and going back to where the poor man had rolled into a ditch, asked him if he must "finish the job." The pathetic reply was: "No, cousin John, don't shoot me any more."

Again:--When Legg came upon the father of Jerome, a younger brother, only twelve years of age, was driving the team. After the first shot had brought down the father, the boy started to go to his relief, when a significent look from the murderer caused him to stop. He sat upon the wagon and saw his father cruelly murdered.

Mr. W. Garratt Wallace has been legally deputized to capture Legg. Mr. Wallace was formerly a constable of that beat, and it is hoped he will aid materially in the effort to arrest the fugitive.

Stay tuned for the next issue! That's all for now. "night, all. Thressa.