Children of Solomon Murphree

His estate records list eight living and five deceased children.  Three others died in childhood.  One of those is identified in the family Bible of Daniel Murphree, which lists the birth dates of “the children of my parents” for the first nine children below.1   One other deceased child, of Solomon’s second marriage, is suggested by the 1810 census.  The remaining  four children were clearly the issue of Polly Prator.

All the children seem to be well documented in publications of the Murphree Genealogical Association and by their descendants.  The following is intended only as a brief summary.


  1. Rebecca Murphree (22 December 1779 – 22 September 1843) married Asa Bynum, brother of John Bynum, on 16 September 1802 according to family records.  They appear in the 1810 Pendleton census with six children.2 They were among the last of the family to leave Pendleton, still there on 6 October 1813 when Asa sold land, but in Franklin County, Tennessee by 1815 where Asa appears buying land.  (Their son Jesse gives his state of birth as Tennessee in later censuses.)  They were in Blount County, Alabama by its formation in 1818, for he made a land entry the same year.  Asa and Rebecca were among the charter members of Mt. Moriah church in 1820, and Asa was a preacher there who died on the above date, according to church records.   Eight of their eleven children and the heirs of two deceased children were legatees of Solomon Murphree’s estate.  This family is addressed in several publications, including Jasper Bynum’s 1916 book, and supplement to it of 1958, and my own 1983 book.3 Their children were: James Bynum (c1802), Solomon Bynum (8 Oct 1806), Isaac Bynum (c1807), William Bynum (c1809), Daniel Bynum (c1810), Elijah Bynum (c1813), Edith Bynum (c1811), Sarah Bynum (15 May 1815), Jesse Bynum (c1817), Asa Bynum (c1822), and Rebecca Bynum (16 Apr 1823).  The son William, had died childless about 1850, and was not a legatee of his grandfather.
  2. Daniel Murphree (9 October 1781 – 3 March 1851)  Daniel left the family Bible, which named his full siblings and much information on his own family.4   According to his own record, he married Pheraby Bynum, daughter of Jesse Bynum, on 16 September 1802.  [Jesse Bynum was the uncle of Asa and John Bynum.]  Daniel and Pheraby are enumerated in the 1810 census of Pendleton, and the 1830-1850 census of Blount County.  Daniel left a will in Blount County dated 3 March 1851and proved 14 April 1851.5  The will names only six children, but estate records list eight plus the widow.  He is buried in the Mt. Moriah cemetery in Blount County.  All eight of his children were legatees of Solomon’s estate.  Solomon Murphree (28 Aug 1805), Jesse Murphree (13 Jan1806), James Murphree (28 May 1808), Barzilla Murphree (13 Apr 1811), Caleb Murphree (16 Dec 1812), Martha Murphree (9 Apr 1815, wife of Thomas B. Staton), Levi Murphree (12 Aug 1817), William Bynum Murphree (6 Dec 1820).  See also the above-mentioned Bynum family genealogies.6  One of these contains a lengthy descendant outline.7
  3. Mary Murphree (12 October 1783 – 16 July 1857)  She married Benjamin Easley sometime prior to 1804.  Her son, Benjamin Easley, was an executor of Solomon Murphree’s estate.  Both Mary and her husband were living next door to Solomon in the 1850 census, and both are buried in the Eulaton Methodist Church cemetery.  Daniel Easley (c1804),  Twin Easley (c1804), Winnie Easley (c1808), Edith Frances Easley (Mar 1811), Sally Easley (c1812), William Easley(23 Feb 1813), Elizabeth Easley (18 Aug 1815), Benjamin Easley (c1819), Warham Easley (9 Oct 1822), John Easley (c1829)
  4. Edith Murphree (8 February 1786 –1859)  She married Daniel Stephens in Pendleton on 11 January 1811.8, and was a legatee of Solomon’s estate in the 1854 petition as a resident of Jackson County, Alabama.  A biography of their son Jeremiah Ellis Stephens confirms the marriage, though not the date.9   The marriage may actually have taken place a year or so earlier, as they appear to have married before the 1810 census, since she is not in her father’s household and Daniel Stephen’s eldest child was born before 1810.  In fact, they may already have been in Tennessee by 1810, for they are not in the South Carolina census that year.  Daniel and Edith are perhaps the only members of this Murphree family who did not move to Blount County.  Rather, they were in Jackson County with his family by 1830, and are in the census there 1830 through 1850.10   In 1850 “Eady” Stephens was aged 65.   By the time of the settlement of her father’s estate in 1857 she had moved to Titus County, Texas where she died two years later.  Their children included:  John W. Stephens (c1810?), Keziah Stephens (1812), Solomon Stephens (c1814), Josiah Stephens (c1816), Sarah M. Stephens, Rebecca Stephens, and Jeremiah Ellis Stephens (c1824).
  5. Rhoda Murphree (17 January 1788 –1875-9) married John Bynum, another son of Isaac Bynum.  She was a legatee as a resident of Blount County.  After John’s death, she moved to Ellis County Texas, where three of her sons were living, and where she died sometime before 1880.  John Bynum does not show up in the records of Pendleton County.  He seems to be in his father’s household in the 1800 census, but where he was in 1810 is not certain.  It could be that it was he, not his uncle John, who appears on the 1812 tax list of Franklin County. Jasper E. Bynum stated in his book that John moved from Tennessee to Blount County, Alabama in 1818 at the same time as his brother Asa.  He married Rhoda Murphree, another daughter of Solomon Murphree, about 1805. They had nine children.  Asa Bynum (10 Oct 1806), Tapley William Bynum (7 May 1809), Luvisa Bynum (c1811), Daniel Bynum (c1813), James Bynum (30 Sep 1816), William M. Bynum (31 Aug 1818), Nancy Bynum (c1821), Mary Serena Bynum (c1828), Cynthia Keziah Bynum (c1832).
  6. Miriam Kessiah Murphree (21 November 1789 – 10 March 1831) married Warham Easley. Warham Easley was among the earliest of the family to migrate into Tennessee, but was in Alabama in the 1830 census.  Six of her children were legatees of the estate, as were the children of a seventh child:   Solomon Easley (c1807), Nancy Easley Morton (c1811), Sarah Easley Murphree (c1813), Keziah Easley Ratliff (c1813), Mary Easley Cornelius (c1815), Benjamin Easley (c1815), Lucinda Easley (c1819), Hannah Easley Bynum (c1823).
  7. Hannah Murphree (25 August 1791 – 21 February 1852) married Jesse Ellis (20 Sep 1790- 29 Apr 1866).  Jesse’s father Jesse Ellis Sr. was another Chatham County resident who moved to Pendleton after the 1790 census.  They married prior to the 1810 census, when Jesse Ellis is enumerated next to his father, Jesse Ellis Sr., both he and Hannah aged 16-26.  The birthplaces of their children in later censuses suggest that they remained in Pendleton until removing directly to Alabama without having stopped in Tennessee.  A Jesse Ellis is listed in the Blount militia in 1818, though the children later give confusing birth locations.11   [Nancy Ellis Tunnell, born in 1817, gives her birthplace as Alabama in 1860-1880.  However, Stephen Ellis, born in 1819, gives his birthplace as South Carolina in 1850-1880.]   Jesse Ellis was admitted as a Methodist preacher in 1830 and served as an itinerant preacher for several northern Alabama circuits between 1831 and 1855.12  They were enumerated in Blount County in 1830, and in Benton County in 1840.13   In the 1850 Coosa County census, Jesse Ellis lists himself as  Methodist clergyman.  Hannah is age 52, with three of the children still at home.  Hannah’s death in Wetumpka on 21 February 1852 was announced in the Southern Christian Advocate.14   Twelve of her children were legatees of Solomon’s estate:  Reuben Ellis (20 Sep 1812), Elizabeth Ellis Tunnell (18 Jun 1814),  Nancy Ellis Tunnell (15 Jul 1817), Jeremiah M. Ellis (c1815-19?), Stephen S. Ellis (19 Feb 1819),  Marium Ellis (c1821),  George C. Ellis (c1822?), John Wesley Ellis (23 Dec 1823), Daniel George Washington Ellis (10 Jan 1826),  Sarah Jane Ellis Scoggin (6 Jan 1828),  Jesse Benson Ellis (c1830), and Hannah M. Ellis (c1832).
  8. Elizabeth Murphree (7 November 1793 – c1800?)  Her birth date is recorded in Daniel Murphree’s Bible, but she evidently died in childhood.  If she was still alive in 1800, then she was one of the four females under 10 in her father’s 1800 household, and Keziah was another.  If she was already dead by 1800, then both Keziah and Nancy were among the females under 10 in 1800.
  9. Sarah Murphree (17 May 1796 – aft 1857)  She either married before the August 1810 census, or was living with a relative, for she is not in her father’s household.  She is thought to have married William Faust about 1812.  I note that a younger Sally Faust, wife of William Faust of Blount County, was identified in settlement records as a daughter of Jesse Bynum who died in 1837.  Whether Sarah Murphree married another William Faust or not, she was “Sarah Mackey” of Texas in the petition and settlement of her father’s estate.   She was perhaps the wife of Thomas Mackey, who was in the 1830 Blount census with a wife aged 30-40 and four children.15   In 1835 Thomas Mackey had a land grant on the Brazos River in what is now Hill County, Texas, the memorial for which identifies him as emigrating from Alabama with wife Sally, age 29 (sic), and children Betsey 13, Elias 12, Mahala 10, Nancy S. 5, and Fereby 4.   If Sarah had married before, she evidently had no children in that marriage, for the 1830 Mackey household seems to match these children.  She was Sarah Mackey, residing in Texas, when she received her legacy.
  10. Keziah Mary Murphree (1799/1800 – c1840)  She was not among the “children of my parents” listed in the Daniel Murphree Bible, and appears to have been the child of Solomon’s second wife.  She was evidently born by the 1800 census, for that would nicely account for the composition of Solomon’s household.16  (Some descendants seem to have confused her with Solomon’s older daughter, whose middle name was given by Daniel Murphree as “Kessiah”, and they give her birth date as her older sister’s.)   She married Cummings Hallmark on 9 December 1820 in Blount County, and in the1830 Blount census was aged 20-30 with one male and three female children.   In 1840, she was 30-40, and the household included two male and four female children, the same number who were legatee’s of Solomon Murphree’s estate.   Keziah must have died later in 1840, for Cummings Hallmark remarried in Blount County on 13 July 1841 to Sarah Cornelius.  Keziah’s children were James Murphree Hallmark (14 Oct 1821 – 31 Aug 1866), Serena Hallmark (c1823),  Lodeanna Paralee Hallmark (c1826), Mary Ann Hallmark (10 Jan 1830), Sarah Salema Hallmark (c1832), and Marilda Hallmark (c1835).  The four youngest were in Cummings Hallmark’s 1850 household.  These six children, who split their mother’s share of Solomon’s estate, were identified in the petition and later in the distribution as:  James M. Hallmark, Serena Morton, L. Parrallee Hallmark, Marilda Armstrong (first as Hallmark, then later as Armstrong), Mary Ann Morton (initially Mary A. Gunter, then Morton), and Sarah S. Nesmith (first as Silema Hallmark, then as Sarah S. Nesmith).  The 1840 census suggests another son, then under 5, who evidently died in infancy, for he does not appear in Cummings Hallmark’s 1850 household.  He was perhaps Richard, for a descendant says Keziah had children named Richard and Elizabeth who died in infancy.17
  11. Nancy Murphree (c1801? – 26 September 1857)   Nancy and her sister Keziah were not among the “children of my parents” listed in the Daniel Murphree Bible, thus she was evidently a child of the second marriage.  I’ve assumed she was younger than Keziah based on Keziah marrying earlier.  She was presumably the Nancy Murphree listed among the charter members of Mt. Moriah Church in early 1820.  She married Benjamin Ellis, brother of Jesse Ellis, by bond dated 27 July 1821 in Blount County.  They are in the 1830 census of Blount county, Nancy aged 20-30, with three male and two female children.  She left the church in 1837, apparently to move to Randolph County, Alabama, where Benjamin Ellis appears in the 1840 census.  In that census, Nancy is listed as age 40-50, and the household consisted of five male and two female children.  She was living in Randolph County when identified as a child of Solomon in the estate records, but I was unable to find her in the 1850 census.  According to a published genealogy, her date of death is from a family Bible, and her children are identified as Solomon J. Ellis (24 Apr 1824), Jeremiah Ellis (c1825? – 1863), Jesse Ellis (17 Feb 1836 – ?), Phoebe Ellis (21 Feb 1828 – 18 Jan 1907), and Amey Ellis.18   [There is some doubt about Jeremiah’s age; he gives his age and birth as 31 AL in 1850 but as 47 SC, 58 SC, and 63? SC in 1860-1880.]
  12. (son) Murphree  It appears from the 1810 census that Solomon had a son by his second marriage born after 1800.  This son probably died in childhood, for there is no unaccounted-for Murphree later in Blount County, nor was a son or his heirs mentioned in Solomon’s estate records.
  13. Solomon L. Murphree (25 February 1825 – 19 October 1893)  The first child of the marriage to Polly Prator, he was the other executor of his father’s will.  He was in his father’s household in 1850. He married Martha Deavers on 19 January 1854 and by 1860 was in Bossier Parish, Louisiana with Martha and a son Solomon.  He was in Smith County, Texas in 1870 and Comanche County, Texas in 1880.  He is buried in Zephyr Cemetery in Brown County, Texas.  These censuses and family history give his children as Solomon W. Murphree (c1854), George W. Murphree (c1860), Finis Edwin Murphree (cc1864), John A. Murphree (c1866), Walter Murphree (c1871), Mary E. Murphree c1874).
  14. Dicy Murphree (c1826 – 1838)  She died in childhood.  The 1830 census shows three females under 5, one of whom was missing in 1840.  Her name and the dates are courtesy of Mary E. Taylor.
  15. Anna Murphree (c1827 – ?)  She married Wesley B. Burden on 18 January 1844 in Benton County, and in her father’s estate records was “Annie Burden” of Benton County in 1854 and “Anney” Burden in 1857.  They are in the 1850 census of Marengo County, Alabama, he listed as a schoolteacher and she listed as “Anna”, age 23, with two children: John W. R. Burden (c1845) and Charles W. C. Burden (c1847).  In 1860, W. B. Burden is listed as a schoolteacher in Choctaw County, Mississippi and Ann Burden is listed in Calhoun County, Alabama as a domestic two doors from Barzilla Murphree.  In 1870 Anna is enumerated with her son Charles W. Burden in Polk County, Arkansas and there is no sign of her husband.  She is again “Anna” in 1880 when she was listed in her son Charles’ household in Logan County, Arkansas.
  16. Emily Murphree (c1829 – ?)  She was aged 20 in her father’s 1850 household, but married James Heaton on 26 June 1850 in Benton County and was “Emily Heaton” in all of the estate records.  They were still in Benton County (by then Calhoun County) in 1860, enumerated with three children.  By 1880 they were in Cullman County, Alabama.  Censuses suggest five children:  Jouis Levi Heaton (c1852), Mary Ann Heaton (c1854), Harris Heaton (c1857), James C. Heaton (c1859). and Joseoh


  1. Daniel Murphree’s Bible was in the possession of the late Paul Murphree of Oneonta, Alabama when Paul provided a transcript to me in 1980. []
  2. 1810 Pendleton District census, p292:  Asia Binum 30010-30100-2. []
  3. Historical Sketches of the Bynum Family, Jasper E. Bynum, 1916 (Reprinted by The Southern Democrat, 1958). Genealogy of the Bynum Family, Mary Lou Boazman Howard, (The Southern Democrat, 1958) and Baynham and Bynum Families of America 1616-1850, Robert W. Baird (Gateway Press, 1983). []
  4. Owned by Paul Murphree of Oneonta, Alabama in 1979. []
  5. Blount County Box 20, File #1239. []
  6. Historical Sketches of the Bynum Family, Jasper E. Bynum, 1916 (Reprinted by The Southern Democrat, 1958). Genealogy of the Bynum Family, Mary Lou Boazman Howard, (The Southern Democrat, 1958) and Baynham and Bynum Families of America 1616-1850, Robert W. Baird (Gateway Press, 1983). []
  7. Howard, pp230. []
  8. Information from affidavit in her bounty land claim, courtesy of Pat Finnell of Denver, Colorado. []
  9. See his entry in Biographical Souvenir of the State of Texas. []
  10. 1830 Jackson County census, p91:  Daniel Stephens 102101-011101   1840 Jackson County census, p28:  0010101-00010001. []
  11. Alabama Historical Quarterly, Vol. 6 p147. []
  12. A History of Methodism in Alabama, Rev. Anson West (1873), p161, 294, 462-3, 466, 485, 495-6, 517 and other pages. []
  13. 1830 Blount census, p4:  Jesse Ellis 221101-101101.  1840 Benton census, p54:  Jesse Ellis 1022001-0110001. []
  14. Southern Christian Advocate  issue of 12 March 1852. []
  15. 1830 Blount census:  Thomas Mackey 01001-21001 []
  16. See prior note suggesting that either Keziah or Nancy was born by the 1800 census (which was supposedly effective 4 August 1800).  If Elizabeth had died, then both were born by that date. []
  17. Barnett F. Wilson, a grandson of James Murphree Hallmark.  He later repeated this in his book The Wilson, hallmark, Hendricks, Hewitt Families, p12. []
  18. The Descendants of Daniel I. Murphree and Benjamin and Nancy Murphree Ellis, O. D. Bates (1974), p8. []