You're in the right place if you're looking for information about the lives, backgrounds, or descendants of
James Marion "Jim" King
born in Buncombe Co NC 18 Apr 1829
Winnie Louisa "Lou" Thompson
born in Mississippi 17 Jan 1841
Family Bible records show, and 1900 census records agree, that Jim and Lou King were married in 1859. The marriage, said but not documented to have taken place in Springfield MO, produced ten children that we know of. However, census records state that as of 1900, twelve children--eight of whom were still living--had been born to Lou. It appears that two children other than those known to us died at birth or in infancy.
According to family tradition, Jim was a Confederate soldier, wounded when Union soldiers chased him across a yard and he fell over an upside-down wash pot. He suffered a puncture wound in his stomach from a leg of the wash pot. The Yankees captured him, and he spent the duration of the war as a cook in a Union Army prison camp. Lou told this story to the family of her son Mack when she visited them during her later years. Mack's son Clifton recalled that the year he started to school, Lou told this and other stories to them as they all gathered around the fireplace. No Confederate service record for Jim has been located; however, Clifton reported that the first time he looked through the family Bible, Jim's Army discharge papers were in it, and he read them carefully. The next time he saw the Bible, the papers were gone.
The 1860 census shows Jim and Lou, with $200 worth of property, living in Ozark Township, Lawrence County MO.
During the time they lived in Missouri, Jim and Lou had three children:
Sarah Elizabeth King born 20 Jan 1859
Reese King born 6 June 1861, died in January of 1862 in MO
Sophia King born 5 Apr 1864, died at age sixteen in Franklin County TX
The King family moved to Texas around the time the Civil War ended. Possibly traveling with some of Lou's Bailey relatives, they made their way from Missouri to Franklin (then Titus) County and settled at Stringtown, near Purley, where Jim bought land and began farming.
Seven children were born to Jim and Lou in Franklin County TX:
John Hamon King born 30 Apr 1868
Sterling Guy King born 25 Nov 1871
Rena Melvina King born 18 Jan 1874
Mary MaDaindy King born 12 Apr 1876
William Sylvester King born 6 Feb 1880
Wylie Xerxes "Jack" King born 24 Jul 1885
Mack Clifton King born 4 Jan 1887
One of Franklin County's pioneer couples, Jim and Lou were active in both community and church affairs. They were commonly and affectionately called "Uncle Jim" and "Aunt Lou." Jim was Purley's second Justice of the Peace, and he and Lou were devoted Christians and workers in Pleasant Hill Methodist Church. This church, located about two miles from Purley, was the center of both religious and social life for its members. Jim and Lou's farm, where their seven youngest children were born, was within easy walking distance of Pleasant Hill. All their children were raised in the church, and it was a source of happy memories to them all their lives.
Around the turn of the century, as Jim began to grow old, he gave his farm to his son Jack with the understanding that Jack would take care of Lou after Jim's death. Jim died 17 May 1905, when he suffered a heart attack while working in his garden. He was survived by Lou, seven of their children, twenty-three grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren. Jim's obituary was printed in a Winnsboro newspaper.
Lou spent the next fourteen years under the care of her son Jack and her daughter Liz. Confined to a wheelchair in her later years, she was attended by Dr Perry Davis. She was living with Jack's family at the time of her death 21 Dec 1919. According to Dr Davis's statement on Lou's death certificate, she died of mitral stenosis, or hardening of a heart valve. She was survived by five of her children, forty-one grandchildren, twenty-three great-grandchildren, and a great-great-granddaughter. Lou's obituary was titled "Good Woman Is Gone."
Lou's great-grandson JC Davis remembered all his life that when he was small, Lou would play peek-a-boo with him while she sat in her rocking chair. He would go to one side of her chair, she would peek at him and grab for him, then he would run around to the other side of her chair and do the same thing, over and over again.
One of Lou's grandchildren, Rena King Blake, recalled that the only time she ever saw her King grandmother was on a visit sometime in 1919. This would have been only a short time before Lou's death. Rena's one impression of Lou was that the King men all looked like her. Milton King, who was a child in Jack and Bessie King's household during Lou's last years, recalls that when Lou was bedfast, Bessie would bathe her, then the children would wash her feet.
Jim and Lou's granddaughter Romie, daughter of Mack and Velma King, was ten years old when Lou died. In 1988 Romie related what she remembered about her grandmother:
My first remembrance of Grandma King, she was living with Uncle Jack and Aunt Bessie in their new home at Pleasant Hill. She always sat in her chair by her bed, they always brought her meals to her, and they took good care of her. She was kind of bent over, and she would imagine things. At that time not many cars came by. She was sitting where she could look out the window, and one day I heard her say, "Did you see that rooster on top of that car that went by?" Of course there was no rooster on the car.
My next remembrance of her was when she was sick and died. I don't remember how many days she was sick, but the family would go and sit with her. We children went with Uncle Syl's children to their Grandmother Davis's and stayed some, so there wouldn't be so many children over there. I remember going with Leita and Connie and them to the Davises' over in Stringtown.
Grandma's funeral was held in the old church at Pleasant Hill. I remember that was the first time I ever saw my daddy cry. He was standing behind her casket. She was buried, of course, there at Pleasant Hill by Grandpa King. Of course I never did know Grandpa King. He died before my mother and daddy were married, I believe.
Jim and Lou King are buried side by side in Pleasant Hill Cemetery, in the "hallowed ground" they had enjoyed and treasured during their lifetimes. Jim's tombstone in inscribed with his name, dates of birth and death, and the epitaph
He followed virtue as his truest guide,
Lived as a Christian, as a Christian died.
Lou's gravestone reads
Wife of JM King
|Jim King's Background|
Lou Thompson's Background
Poem: "The Parable of the Pear Tree"
Poem: "Tribute to Ancestors"
Jim and Lou King's Descendants
Index of Photographs
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