Erastus Tillman Hendon's History
[The Hendon Wanderlust]


[Submitted 29 July 1998 by Rufus S. Hendon (]
[Revised 1 May 2002.]

[This document was written by Mariella Knight Hendon (photo), the second wife of my paternal grandfather, Erastus Tillman Hendon, and sent to my mother, Rebecca S. Hendon. It was known in the family as the "wanderlust" document. The photograph (above) shows the writer, "Miss Mariella," in Cordova, Ala., sometime in the early 1920's.

To make the relationships described in the document easier to follow, I give below the line of descent of the people mentioned in it, beginning with Josias Hendon, even though the family tradition recorded in the document goes no farther back than generation 5. This tree is based on William S. Hendon's Hendon Master File (Release 2).

[Numbers in brackets in the document refer to my notes at the end.]

1 Josias Hendon (1701-1738) + Hannah Robinson (1707-1751) (Maryland)
  2 Isham Hendon (1725-1804) + Keziah Johnson (????-1768) (Maryland, North  Carolina)
    3 Robinson Hendon (1749/50-1832) + Elizabeth Hartzfield (1759-1843) (Maryland, Georgia)
      4 Johnson Hendon (1779-1860) + Sarah (Sally) Scoggins (1783-1856) (North Carolina, Alabama)
        5 James Alexander Hendon, Sr.  b: 5 Aug 1812 in Oglethorpe Co. Ga.
          d: 18 Mar 1890 in Walker Co. Ala.
         +Elizabeth Easley  b: 8 Jan 1814 in Tenn.  d: 17 Apr 1891 in Morgan Co.  Ala.
          6 Johnson M. Hendon  b: 11 Feb 1834 in Danville, Walker Co. Ala.
                d: 12 Oct 1862 in Holly Grove, Walker Co. Ala.
           +Margaret M. Morris  b: 22 Nov 1831 in Ala.
                d: 6 Dec 1891 in Holly Grove, Walker Co. Ala.
            7 Erastus Tillman Hendon  b: 28 Jul 1860 in Holly Grove, Walker Co., Ala. 
               d: 25 Dec 1947 in Cordova, Walker Co. Ala.
             +Nannie Dollar  b: 7 Jan 1873 in Ala. ?
                  d: 6 Dec 1909 in Walker Co. Ala.
              8 Rufus Staples Hendon  b: 17 May 1891 in Gamble Mines, Walker
                    Co. Ala.  d: 19 Aug 1941 in San Diego, Calif. (buried Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery)
              8 James William Hendon, Sr.  b: 7 Jun 1893 in Gamble Mines,
                    Walker Co. Ala.  d: 17 Feb 1963 in Atlanta, Ga.
              8 John Alexander Hendon, Sr.  b: 3 Apr 1897 in Walker Co. Ala.
                    d: 20 Jul 1953 in Prescott, Ariz. (buried National Cemetery)
              8 Ann Lucille Hendon  b: 4 Oct 1902 in Walker Co. Ala.
                    d: Est. 1938-1996
              8 Nannie Hendon  b: 5 Dec 1909

             *2nd Wife of Erastus Tillman Hendon:
             +Mariella Knight  b: 4 Jan 1883 in Cordova, Walker Co. Ala.
                  d: 28 Feb 1985
              8 Perrin P. Hendon  b: 17 Aug 1912 in Cordova, Walker Co. Ala.
                    d: Oct 1977 in Chicago, Ill.
              8 Vivian Hendon  b: 14 Dec 1913 in Cordova, Walker Co. Ala.
                    d: 1991 in Washington, D.C.
              8 Mariella Hendon  b: Private
            7 Johnson Cudellas Hendon  b: 5 Feb 1863  d: Est. 1864-1953
          6 Joseph W. Hendon  b: Mar 1836 in Danville, Ala.
                d: 20 Jun 1881 in Montague Co. Tex.
          6 John W. Hendon  b: 1839 in Danville, Walker Co. Ala.
                d: 1862 in Courtlad, Ala. (Civil War)
          6 James Rufus Hendon  b: Abt. 1842 in Morgan Co. Ala.
                d: 12 May 1864 in Rock Island, Ill. (Civil War)
          6 George Washington Hendon  b: 1844 in Ala.
                d: Est. 1845-1934 in Tex.
          6 Albert L. Hendon, Dr.  b: Oct 1849 in Ala.
                d: 29 Apr 1924 in Walker Co. Ala.
           +Sarah Ann King  b: 1 Jun 1859 in Ala.
                d: 5 Apr 1932 in Walker Co. Ala.
          6 Thomas Staples Hendon  b: 15 Apr 1853 in Ala.
                d: 1935 in Walker Co. Ala.

The wanderlust started in the Hendon family when the great-grand father left Hendon, England, to come to America to settle.[1]

On the Easley side (the great-great-grandfather) came from Wales.

On E. T. Hendon's mother's side the grandfather Morris came from Scotland. While grand-mother Morris' people were from England. 

E. T. Hendon's grand-father James Alexander Hendon came from South Carolina and settled in North Alabama at Danville, Morgan County, where his father Johnson Hendon[2] was born Feb. 11, 1834.

Grand-mother and grand-father Easley (on father's side) came from Virginia on to Georgia; then came on with the Indians and settled in Alabama.

The Morris' came from Moulton, North Alabama, into the wilds of Walker County and settled.

The Hubbards (great-grand parents on the mother's side[3]) scattered to the four winds of the earth. The last account was when grand-mother's oldest brother loaded up his wagons and teams, with approximately 400 slaves, and left Mississippi before the Civil War and drove to the Colorado River in Texas and settled. Do not know anything further about the Hubbards.

Back to Father Johnson Hendon. He was a school teacher and Baptist Minister. Died early in life, age 28. Was brought home from the war with typhoid fever and died Oct. 12, 1862.

At the beginning of the war father and his brothers Joe, John, Rufus and Dr. Geo. Hendon all volunteered in the Southern Army.

Joe came home and with his family drove across the country to the plains of Texas; taught school in different parts of the state for 20 years. Died on his farm at St. Jo, North Texas.
John Hendon was killed in the battle of Murfreesboro; Rufus[4] died in prison at Rock Island, Ill., during the war.

Dr. George Hendon came home and taught school with my (ETH's)[5] mother for a few sessions so one day got on his horse and rode across the country to Black Jack Grove, Texas (near Dallas), practiced medicine, and died there.

Dr. Albert L. Hendon practiced medicine in various towns and cities, always changing, for fifty years. Finally died at the old homestead.

Uncle Thomas Staples Hendon, the only one of the family who never left home and only one to amass a fortune.

In the immediate family of Erastus Tillman Hendon -- he only had one brother who lived to be grown -- Johnson Hendon[6]. It is thought he never stayed two nights in the same place if he could get away. Living in Texas at present. Did most of his rambling in Ark., Mo. and Texas.

His half-sister Lucinda Blackwell King[7] reared in Ala., now lives in Cal., and enjoys travel & c.

Erastus Tillman Hendon was born on July 28th, 1860, in Walker Co., Ala. When a mere boy began his rambles and has been in almost every state of the Union. Claims he was never happier in all his life than when on the road to some new place where he had never been. Has lived in a number of the states.

Nannie Dollar Hendon (Rufus' mother) was from a family of very sturdy farmers who were well situated and settled, and never traveled or wandered. Her grandmother Dollar taught school in one County of Georgia for 50 years.

Now as to the children[8] think they all have a very serious case of wandering.

As to Rufus -- you know his history.

Will has never liked to get so far away from home, but enjoys out-of-door life the very best kind. Is fairly well satisfied at one place.

John is a regular wanderer, never satisfied any where a moment and wants to be continually on the move. 

Annie, as you know, likes to travel and explore the new countries. 

Nannie also likes to go and always restless if at home at all. 

Perrin, too, started his rambling early in life. Likes to go but takes good pains to be in pretty close touch with relatives and friends. 

Vivian and Mariella are not old enough to start by themselves, but would start around the world if it was proposed to them. Willing to go any where at any time, so I believe the entire family agree on the one idea of going, traveling and wandering.

As to my people -- they are not so infected, as my near relatives are still in Ala., and lots of them live in same neighborhood all their lives.

[1] The point of reference for relationships in this document is Erastus Tillman Hendon. The ancestor who emigrated from England was, of course, much farther back than great-grandfather.
[2] This is Johnson M. Hendon, the grandson of the Johnson Hendon of generation 4.
[3] Johnson M. Hendon's wife, Margaret M. Morris, was the daughter of John Harvey Morris and Catherine Hubbard.
[4] Note that James Rufus Hendon was evidently called Rufus in the family. The records of the Union prison at Rock Island, Ill., list him as Jas. R. Hendon.
[5] This reference suggests that at least in part the document was dictated by E. T. to his wife, Mariella, although elsewhere he is referred to in the third person.
[6] This must be Johnson Cudellas Hendon.
[7] After Johnson M. Hendon died in 1862, his widow, Margaret M. Morris, remarried, taking as her second husband John Preston Blackwell (born 2 March 1837 in Walker County, Ala.). She gave birth on 10 April 1869 to a daughter, Lucinda Blackwell. Since my grandfather, E. T. Hendon, was Margaret Morris's son by her first husband, Johnson M. Hendon, he and Lucinda were half-brother and half-sister, and she was therefore the half-aunt of my father, E. T. Hendon's son, Rufus Staples Hendon (Sr.). She married Jesse Lafayette King (born 10 November 1864 in Walker County, Ala.). In the 1930's, my family drove in our second-hand Stutz car from San Diego to Lindsay, Calif., to visit Aunt Cindy, who was then living there with her lawyer son, John Preston King, his wife Sylvia, and their twin children John Preston Jr. and June. Aunt Cindy was driving Sylvia crazy, because, despite being asked not to, she continued her Southern habit of dipping snuff or chewing tobacco (I don't remember which) and, to conceal it from Sylvia, would spit or deposit her cud of chewed-out tobacco in the washing machine. The Kings were trying to find someone to take Aunt Cindy off their hands, but the relationship with my father was too distant for us to feel any obligation to do so. 

[8] I.E.; E. T.'s children by his two wives.