People Buried at Davis
here is members of the Davis Family. Seated from left
to right: H.W. Davis, Thomas Wilburn Davis, Narcisis
Morgan Davis (second wife), Nancy Alice Davis, Standing:
Ezekial Dempsey Davis, Sarah Caroline Davis, Zura Cordelia
Davis, Lynn Ann Paralee.
The earliest known settlers on the present site of
Dora were, no doubt, James M. Davis and Ezekiel Morgan.
Sometime soon after the War of 1812 the families of James
M. Davis and Ezekiel Morgan along with several other
families left Raleigh, North Carolina, and traveled by
covered wagon and horseback to Alabama, settling for
a time around Blount Springs, then moving again. In the
late 1820s or early 1830s, they found a pretty valley
with a creek running through it that they named Horse
Creek because of all the wild horses that ran along the
banks. They decided to settle there for a life of farming.
James M. Davis filed claim to government land Tn Section
18, Township 15, Range 5, on February 13, 1830. This
land was located along Horse Creek and extended west
to the Warrior River
JAMES M. DAVIS (ca 1790-August 16, 1865) a pioneer settler
of Walker County and Dora having- come to this area with
his wife Lydia (1781-1851)-* and his family in covered
wagons after the War of 1812 opened up this area to be
homesteaded. James was a soldier in the Mexican-American
War. (An unusual story is told about James and Lydia.
When James was a 'soldier, Lydia received word that he
had been declared dead. She remarried and had a baby
with her new husband. However, James was not dead at
all, and one day he came home from the war to find his
wife married to another man, and a new child in his home.
James did the honorable thing-—he suggested a duel,
with Lydia as the prize. The second husband said he would
simply disappear if James would promise to take care
of Lydia and their baby.)
James M. Davis got a Passport into the Indian/Mississippi Territory in 1816. Soldiers escorted him through Indian Territory and he traveled south and west ending up in what was a little creek with wild horses all around. He lived in a stone house above the creek.
James M. Davis filed for government land on February
13, 1830. In the early forties he dug coal out of the "bottoms" and
banks of the Warrior River and Horse Creek and boated
it to lower river markets. He and Lydia had four children:
J.T. Davis (1813-1861), Daniel Davis (1816-1874), Peggy
Davis Glover, and Sabra Davis Hood. The J.T. Davis and
Daniel Davis families are listed below.
J.T. DAVIS, oldest son of James M. Davis, and his wife
Annie lived in East Walker County in the Dora area. They
had ten children: Thomas W. Davis married first Antalisa
Morgan, second Narcissus Morgan, and third Sarah Busby;
Daniel Jackson Davis married Nancy Snow; William; Emaline;
Francis Melinda married Francis Alien Gilbert; Margaret
M. married William A. Reed; Martha Ann married William
Black; Sarah married Sam Walker; Mary Elizabeth married
Marion Reed; and Nancy L. married William P. Taff.
THOMAS WILBURN DAVIS, oldest son of J.T. and Annie Davis,
was born April 7, 1837. Thomas Wilburn was a Baptist
preacher and a Confederate Soldier, a Sergeant in Company
F, 56th Alabama Regiment. Later Thomas became a circuit
rider. Thomas was the father of nine children in all.
Thomas and his first wife Antalisa Loucreasa Amerzener
Morgan had four children: Josiah, not married; Newton
Woodard married Mary Jane Morgan; Patsy Lucceasa
married James Newton Barnett; James T. married Mollie
A. Antalisa died in 1862, just after Thomas entered the
Confederate Army. Antalisa's sister Narcissus cared for
the children while Thomas fought in the Civil War. After
the war, Thomas married Narcissus (Thomas and Narcissus
had five children: Ezekiel Dempsey married Sarah C. Sanders,
Lyna Ann Paralee married Charles H. Phillips, Hiram Wilburn
married Melissa A. Barnett, Zora Cordilia married John
David Wilson, and Nancy Alice married Pearce Phillips.
After the death of Narcissus, Thomas married a third
time to a widow, Sarah Busby. Thomas died August 24,
EZEKIEL DEMPSEY DAVIS, son of Thomas Wilburn Davis, was
born June 9, 1867. He married Sarah Caroline Sanders,
daughter of J.R. (Jake) and Annie McAdams Sanders. Dempsey
and Caroline had ten children: Jacob Alvin, Mary Lee
D. Alien, John Wilburn Davis, Thomas Nathaniel (Nat)
Davis, Annie D. Griffen, Simmie Davis, James Euel Davis,
Lance D. Sanders, Francis D. Maize, and Cora Davis. Dempsey
was a schoolteacher and later became a blacksmith.
THOMAS NATHANIEL "NAT" DAVIS, son of Ezekiel
Dempsey Davis, (1896) married Katie Ola (Bud) Watts.
Nat was a coal miner all of his working years, having
started at the age of nine at Old Victory Mine. Besides
Victory he worked at Kershaw, No. 10 and in most all
of the Alabama By-Products mines in this area. During
this time he helped connect Ruby Mine and Barney Mine. "Nat" and "Bud" were
married at the residence of Judge J.A. Thomas. They built
their home on Red Star Hill and reared six children:
Thomas B. married Jus tine Gray. They had one daughter,
Diane D. Browning-, and one grandson, Billy Jack. George
Nathaniel remained a bachelor. Sarah
Kate Davis married Walter H. "Junior" Park.
They had one daughter, Myra Rose P. Rouse, and one grandson,
Lloyd Neal Rouse Jr. Mary Helen married John Henry Spradling.
They had one daughter, Jo Helen "Jo Jo." Jimmie
Lee "Sonny" married Mary Frances Reed. They
had two daughters, Lori Leigh D. Wallace and Kelly Lynn.
William Ray married Virginia Ann Cole. They had two daughters,
Joy Nell and Andra Katie.
2. DANIEL DAVIS, second son of
James M. Davis, married Louisa Hoover. (Louisa was born
in Armenia; saw her mother killed in a massacre, probably
in a war between Russia and Persia. Her father escaped
with Louisa and her brother and came to the United States
on a cattle boat. Louisa was indentured to the family
of a physician named Hoover in South Carolina. Daniel
met and married her there and brought her back to Dora
to live. She outlived her husband by more than twenty
years and continued to run the farm with her children's
help after Daniel died. Thus she was one of the few women
of her time with private property of her own. She was
affectionately known as "Aunt Louisa".) Daniel
and Louisa had twelve children: John, Josiah, Martin,
Joan, Jake, Bill, Mary, Sarah, Lucinda, Jane, Martha—married
Burwell B. Posten, and James Wesley—married Sarah
JAMES WESLEY DAVIS, son of Daniel and Louisa, was born in 1841. James Wesley married
Sarah Elizabeth Snow, daughter of the Reverend William
Henry Snow and Mary Ann Chilton Snow. On September 21,
1861, he enlisted at Jasper as a private in Company I,
Fiftieth Alabama Infantry, under Captain B.M. Long. He
was wounded in Atlanta on May 12, 1864, and after recovering
from this wound he re-enlisted in Company G, Fifty-sixth
Alabama Calvary, and served until the close of the war.
(There is an interesting story told about his re-enlistment.
After he was wounded in the battle of Atlanta, he went
home where he found his brother Martin to be AWOL and
in danger of getting shot as a deserter. Their mother
was so ashamed of Martin that she made James Wesley go
back and fight in his place. James Wesley re-enlisted
under Martin's name and finished
the war as Martin Davis. Later Martin collected a pension
on James' service.) James Wesley and Sarah Elizabeth
had eight children: Matilda Norman, Daniel Monroe, Mary
Angeline, Martha M., Lucy L., Queen Esther Belle, Henry
Etta, and James Grover. Both James Wesley and Sarah are
buried at Davis cemetery in Dora.
DR. DANIEL MONROE DAVIS, oldest child of James Wesley
and .Sarah Elizabeth, was born in 1866. Daniel was the
first teacher at "Hard Bargain School." Starting
his medical career as early as 1889, his entire life
was spent in Walker County and vicinity with the exception
short period of medical practice in Texas. Daniel was
graduated from Southern Medical College in Atlanta, Georgia,
in 1889 and The Bellvue School of Medicine in. New York
in 1893. He was married to Laura Richbourg, daughter
of (Mrs. Jim Armstrong. Dr. Daniel usually worked as
a company doctor for mining companies; however, he was
a doctor in Cordova for a while. Dr. Daniel and Laura
Davis had eleven children: Florine married Kelly Harris,
no children. John and Alice died in infancy. Henry married
Willie DeWeese. They had one daughter and four grandchildren.
Mary married Otis Smith, two children. George married
Josephine Oscello, two children. Sarah married Raymond
Wilkenson. They had two children and six grandchildren.
James married Mary Maynard, no children. Samuel Richbourg
married Florine Cunningham and had three children: Laura
Lee Hudson, Margaret Parker, and Daniel, and five grandchildren:
Mike Hudson, Rhonda Hudson, Linda Kay Parker Spears,
Nicky Davis, and Jennifer Davis. Louise married Wilburn
Cunningham. They had three children: Hugh Lee, 'Laura
Sue Tucker, and Harvey Wilburn, and four grandchildren:
Bobbi Sue Tucker, Wilburn Lee Cunningham, Pamela Sue
Cunningham, and Laura Elaine Cunningham. Francis D. Wood
Cousins had one son and two grandchildren.
MATILDA NORMAN DAVIS SINGLETON, daughter of James Wesley
Davis, was born in 1876.
Although her father didn't encour age education for women,
she completed one year at Mississippi
Female College in Hattiesburg, then taught school for
a while at Barney. She married Edmund Singleton, originally
from England, in 1898. Edmund had come to Dora to purchase
coal mining mineral rights from Matilda's father. They
lived a short time in Jasper, but Edmund was away a lot
and soon his wife moved back to her family home, vowing
never to leave.
Edmund's job as an auditor with the Pratt Coal Company
gave him reason to be absent a great deal, so Matilda
sold milk, butter, and eggs to supplement their income.
Edmund and Matilda had five children: Edmund Davis married
Poe, no children; Edith Elizabeth; Louise Bessie married
Lawrence Norberg, two children and four
grandchildren; James Wesley married Lucille Cunningham,
two children: James and Elizabeth and two grandchildren:
Iris and Melissa; Margaret Hannah married Herbert Joseph
Kuntz, five children, several grandchildren.
NOTE: This information comes from the Dora Centennial
1886 to 1986 Book