Monday, October 27, 2008

Alvin Cletus Floyd and Essie Maples

I mentioned this family in a previous post (on Alvin's sister Alice Floyd); Alvin was the first "new" Floyd sibling that I found from the Caswell B. Floyd and Mary Miller Floyd family. As I mentioned in that post, when I found Alvin Floyd in the census I strongly suspected that his mother Mary Long (wife of Charles Long) was Mary Miller Floyd, who must have remarried some time after Caswell Floyd's death in 1890. Mary and Charles' son Emmet Long was born in February 1893 according to the 1890 census, so she must have remarried in around 1892. One confusing thing was that Mary Miller Floyd's tombstone in Kleberg Cemetery has her last name as Floyd, not Long, There are a couple of possible reasons for that - perhaps the tombstone had already been purchased, or perhaps she split up from Charles Long before her death. But it kept me from being entirely sure that Mary Long was actually Caswell's widow, even though her date of birth from the 1900 census - January 1848 - matched the year of her birth on her tombstone.

Some time later, I did a search on "Caswell Floyd" and came up with a post on a genealogy inquiry board for the Floyd surname - but the name was Cletus Caswell Floyd, the grandfather of the poster, Shari Floyd Sinkler. The location given for him was New Mexico. This still wasn't enough to make a connection (I did not know yet that Alvin's middle name was Cletus). A search on this Cletus brought up an obituary, which stated: "Born on Feb. 21, 1913, in Cleburg, Texas, to Alvin and Essie Floyd, he received his early education and was raised on a homestead in Pecos County, N.M." I realized that Cleburg was Kleberg, and this with the name Caswell clearly indicated that he had to be Caswell's grandson, which meant that Alvin Floyd was indeed Caswell's youngest son (born 1888).

I wrote to the original poster, but did not hear back from her for a while. But when I did, it was a wonderful e-mail about her grandfather Cletus (with a little about Alvin and Essie) and his 3rd wife, her grandmother Gwendolyn, written in an affectionate and wonderfully readable style. Shari painted a vivid picture of this colorful couple and their strong faith. Cletus' faith apparently came after some life experience and youthful hell-raising, including a stint as a Golden Glove Boxer that ended with him getting knocked out at Madison Square Garden, but the conversion took - he spent the rest of his life as a minister with the United Pentecostal Church. According to the obituary, "He was married for 57 years to Gwendolyn Marie Bradley Floyd until her death in 1994."

Cletus had a sister, Ruby, who may have married a man named Miller. He had at least one brother, Linton, who married a woman named Pearl and possibly a second woman whose last name was Edwards. There may have been another brother named Grover or George, but SSDI indicates that Linton Floyd was born on 10 March 1910, and Grover/George's age on the 1910 census indicates that he would have been born in late 1909, so perhaps they were actually the same person (Grover's middle initial is given as "L"). I would love to hear from anyone who has any additional information on this family.

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