Rev 9: 7/22/2010


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Carlile / Carlisle:
One American Family

First Generation
James / Ann Irvine

Second Generation
James / Margaret Boles

Third Generation
Francis / Mary E. "Betsy"Grant

Fourth Generation
S. J.Y. / Elizabeth Leak

Fifth Generation
William M. / Emma Thompson

Sixth Generation
Lucile / Clifford C. Sarrett


Francis Carlile is thought to have cofounded Green's Chapel in Wedowee, AL along with John Cephus Green in 1844. Our grandmother, Mary E. "Betsy" Grant Carlile, was the first buried in the tiny cemetery.
Contributed by Linda M. Benefield
Third Generation

Francis Carlile, the second child of James and Margaret Boles Carlile, was born Dec 15, 1786 in Abbeville District, SC. He married Mary Elizabeth "Betsy" Grant on Nov 1, 1815, also in Abbeville District, and died July 29, 1855 in Randolph County, AL.

Our grandmother, Betsy Grant Carlile, was born Mar 30, 1792 in Virginia and died Jun 18, 1846 in Randolph County, AL. She was the daughter of John Grant and Isabella Paxton.

On Aug 20, 1819, Francis Carlile was appointed co-administrator of the estate of his father-in-law, John Grant, along with Grant's son, William. However, William Grant died a few months later leaving Francis as sole administrator.

Francis and Betsy Grant Carlile had thirteen children, the youngest of which was our grandfather,
Samuel Joseph Young Carlile. Joe, as he was known, was named for his father's younger brother, Samuel Young Carlile. Both Francis and Betsy Grant Carlile are buried in Green's Chapel Methodist Church Cemetery located approximately six miles east of Wedowee in Randolph County AL.

Francis and Betsy lived in Abbeville District, SC, however, they may have also lived a number of their early married years just across the district line in Moffetville, Pendleton District (later Anderson), SC, on land granted to his father, James Carlile. Although, only one of their children is listed as being born in Pendleton District, SC, others may have also been born there.
Francis Carlile and his family are in Georgia by early 1833 since census records prove that their youngest child, Joseph, was born there in February, possibly Meriwether County , where Francis purchased 202 acres from Sherod Porch in Land Lot 194 on Dec 18, 1837. The sell of 110 acres in Land Lot 194 to his son, John Carlisle, on Aug 7, 1843 probably proceeded the move of Francis, Betsy, and their children still living at home to Randolph County AL.

By 1850, according to Randolph County AL census records, only the youngest child, Joseph, is still living at home with Francis, now a widower. Francis, 63, is listed as a mechanic and 18-year-old Joseph records his occupation as a farmer.

Webster's Dictionary published about 1850 defines a mechanic as a "person whose occupation is to construct machines, or goods, wares, instruments, furniture, and the skilled in a mechanical occupation or art." Carpentry, woodworking, furniture making, and an aptitude for all things mechanical runs though our branch of Carlisle descendants even today.

1853 Letter

Francis seems to have written the following letter to his children, Francis Nelson Carlile and Edith Amanda Carlile Peeler, and their spouses living in Jefferson County, FL. However, since it references both "Nelson" and "Amanda." the letter may have been more specifically directed to Edith Amanda's husband, William Peeler, a Methodist minister. Spelling has been corrected and explanatory text is contained in brackets.

By the spring of 1853, a dispirited Francis Carlile is now widowed, ailing, and living alone in Randolph County AL.

Alabama Randolph

Dear Children,

I have got your letters, one the 27 of January, the other March the 12. I can't read your letters without tears; when I think of past life, I sit and weep many times. Sometimes I think I am just like a hired Negro, here this year and yonder next. I offered the children a good chance, both Isaac [son-in-law] and Woodwerd [nephew and son-in-law] if they would live with me, but they wouldn't come. I was compelled to break up. I have never been satisfied since nor never expect to be in this life. If I was like some people, contented anywhere, I could do; but home is my place if I could have stayed at it. So you see how I'am. When I wrote from Georgia, I told you about my jaw. How it had rose last September. It continues to rise and rerise. What it will come to, I know not. I don't expect it will ever be well. The friends are all well as far as I know. Jane [daughter] is as well as can be expected. She had a fine boy last Friday night. Old Uncle Thomas Grant is dead. I can't hear anything from Parker. Where he is, I know not. I expect, if I am well, to go over to Meriwether next week and perhaps stay a month, but I can't stay there. Randolph is my home. I can't leave it long at a time. Randolph is getting very popular. You would hardly know the place. It is only settled too thick in the old neighborhood. The Henson settlement is filled up with good settlers. This has been a backward spring. Wheat crops looks promising at present, but aren't able to tell. Religion is almost gone. Never have I seen such a time. The world has got into the church, or into the people. What will be the end, I know not. But one thing I do know, to whom we are servants, to obey Him. We will obey. The Church is all split to pieces. This is to come to pass in the last days, but he that endures to the end, the same shall be saved I want you all to guard against the other grand enemies, the world, the flesh and the devil. It is one thing to get religion and another to keep it. The people now-a-days have got little time to pray. Some can make out to pray at night, haven't got time to pray in the morning. Hustle off to work. God pity just such Methodists, have you come to that? If you have, think of your children; they won't pray perhaps but once a week. Will God bless, if we don't ask? Think yea, but I hope you don't do so, but you know who does. This is the cause of all this hard feelings in the Church. Oh my barrenness, my barrenness the cry is and how can it be otherwise. Primitive Methodism is gone and as with the people, so with the priest. I think if ever there was a time since Mr. Wesley's day till now that a reform is needed; it is at this time. Who will come up to the help of the Lord against the mighty. Help is wanting and if not obtained, Methodism is gone. It has almost become like the Church of England in Mr. Wesley's day. Ask your mother or some old soldier that recollects Primitive Methodism. They will tell you the same. The preachers know it and try to patch the old ragged garment up with new cloth. It won't do and I told them so. It will make the rent ones rub out and begin in the new. I had rather have ten good soldiers than a thousand cowards, for ten can chase them all. Look what Jonathan and his armor bearer did. This may convince any person that God would put it into the hands of the people to get about this work before the judgement of God overtakes us. Perhaps I have said enough, but my heart is full, and I could write columns, when I think of my children and the rising generation which are the prospect. It is like it was by Joseph with Israel, after his death. Mr. Wesley is dead Methodist, evenly interested, look at it and think of your children. Perhaps they may remain in bondage in Egypt. F N. [may refer to his son, Francis Nelson Carlile, although later in the letter he speaks of 'Nelson'] wrote to me that he expected to leave that country as soon as he got able. I commend him for it. It is no place to raise a family -- every person knows, that knows anything. His cow I left at John's. I allowed her to stay till he comes. She has had one calf last Spring. She will have another this. They think her calf got drowned sometime ago. The creek was up. They were on the other side. They haven't seen it since. The first time he writes, he can let me know what to do with her. Josephus is living with William Hill. Gets 15 dollars per month. Jane calls him boy Robert Wesley. Pray always and in everything give thanks. Tell Amanda [daughter] that I stand firm to my promise. Tell her and Nelson [son] not to forget to pray for their old afflicted father. May God bless and save you all.

Francis Carlile

This old letter, courtesy of Donnie Shackleford, and a bible Francis Carlile gave to his daughter, Edith Amanda, are both in the possession of a great granddaughter of William and Edith Amanda Carlile Peeler in Jacksonville, FL. The old Bible stands as a silent witness to the births, marriage, and deaths of Francis and Betsy Carlile, the births of each of their thirteen surviving children, and the birth and death of two infants.

The "Josephus" Francis writes about is his son and our grandfather, Samuel Joseph Young Carlile, who is living with his sister, Margaret, and her husband, William B. Hill, in Hogansville, Meriwether County GA. Shortly, Josephus will go to live with another sister, Martha, in Cass (later Bartow) County GA. There he will meet and marry Elizabeth Leak, and Martha's husband, Rev. James Parker, will perform the wedding ceremony.

Buried in Randolph County Alabama

Francis Carlile died Jul 29,1855 in Randolph County, AL. Family tradition places him next to Betsy in unmarked graves at Green's Chapel United Methodist Church Cemetery, east of Wedowee, Randolph County, AL. In Aug 1994, descendants placed grave markers in the area believed to be their final resting place. Their son, John Carlisle, and his infant son, Ernest, are buried nearby. Other descendants of Francis and Mary Elizabeth "Betsy" Carlile are buried in Green's Chapel Cemetery, most off-springs of their daughter, Mary F. Carlile Willingham.

Bill of Complaint

Chancery Court Notice, Randolph Enterprise, Randolph County AL, Apr 2, 1875:

"In Chancery Court. Alsey Stephens, et al vs. John C. Greene, et al. William Ivey for the Complaintant moved for an order of publication as to the Defendants, Elizabeth A. Willingham and Cash Willingham, heirs of Martha A. Parker, deceased; the heirs of Eda A. Parker, deceased; the wife of William Parker; Samuel J. Y. Carlile, Francis A. Carlile, Margaret B. Hill and William her husband; and Lucy J. Carlile, wife of W. Carlile, deceased."

They were ordered to appear before the Register in 60 days to answer to a Bill of Complaint.

According to the U.S. Census Report, John C. Greene was living near Francis Carlile in Randolph County, AL on Sep 27, 1850. He may have bought Francis Carlile's property subsequent to his death in 1855.

Although the court notice contains a number of errors, there is little doubt that those listed are heirs of Francis Carlile living outside Randolph County, AL in 1875. John Carlile, Mary F. Carlile Willingham, and Martha Elliott Carlisle, wife of James M. Carlisle, deceased, were known to be living in the county at the time. Cash and Elizabeth A. Carlile Parker Willingham were living in Meriwether County, GA. Martha Carlile Parker, listed as deceased in error, was living in Leon County, TX. Eda A. Parker, deceased, wife of William Parker should read "Edith A. Peeler, deceased, wife of William Peeler." Edith Amanda Carlile Peeler died between Jun 17, 1863 and Dec 19, 1864 in Jefferson County, FL. Her husband, William Peeler and their children, were living in Clay County, FL in 1875. Samuel J. Y. Carlile was living in Bartow (formerly Cass) County, GA. Francis A. Carlile should read Francis N. Carlisle. He and family had moved from Jefferson County, FL to Meriwether County, GA by 1875. When Margaret B. Carlile Hill died Jul 7, 1873, she and husband, William Hill, were living near Hogansville, GA. Lucy J. Carlile, wife of W. Carlile, deceased, was living in Rusk County, TX. Lucy Jane Carlile married a first cousin, William Woodwerd Carlile, who died of disease in Richmond, VA in Jun 1862, while a private in the Confederate States Army. William G. Carlisle, another son of Francis Carlisle who was not listed in this notice, died Aug 8, 1872 in Jefferson County, FL. His wife, Elizabeth Elliott Carlisle, died Aug 5, 1848 in Meriwether County, GA. He left no heirs except his brothers and sisters.

Children of Francis Carlile and Mary Elizabeth "Betsy" Grant:

1. Infant Carlile b. Aug 1, 1811 in Abbeville, SC, d. Aug 1, 1811, possibly buried in Carlile Cemetery, Lowndesville, SC.

2. Elizabeth Ann Carlile b. July 5, 1812 in Moffetville, Pendleton District (later Anderson), SC, m. Robert Augustus Parker Jan 21, 1834 in Abbeville District, SC and later Cassius "Cash" Willingham, Nov 3, 1842 in Meriwether County, GA; d. Aug 28, 1884 in Meriwether County, GA and is buried there in the Old Midway Methodist Church Cemetery..

3. J. M. Carlile b. 1814 in Abbeville, SC, d. 1814, possibly buried in Carlile Cemetery in Lowndesville, SC.

4. Martha A. Carlile b. Dec 21, 1815 in Abbeville, SC, m. Rev. James Parker about 1835 in South Carolina, d. about 1889 in Leon County, TX. Rev. James Parker married Samuel Joseph Young Carlile and Elizabeth Leak in 1854.

5. John Carlile b. Jan 19, 1818 in Abbeville, SC, m. Elizabeth Earnest Jun 8, 1843 in Meriwether County, GA, served in Almond P. Hunter's Mounted Infantry, Randolph Home Guard Reserves during the civil war, d. Mar 12, 1882 Randolph County, AL, buried Green's Chapel Cemetery, Randolph County, AL.

6. Margaret B. Carlile b. Mar 28, 1819 in Abbeville, SC, m. William B. Hill about 1845, d. Jul 7, 1873, Meriwether County, GA.

7. William G. Carlile b. Feb 21, 1821 in Abbeville, SC, m. Elizabeth G. Elliot Jan 15, 1846 in Meriwether County, GA, served in Jefferson County FL home guard during the civil war, d. Aug 8, 1872 in Waukeenah, Jefferson County, FL, was living with brother, Francis Nelson Carlile, at time of death.

8. Mary F. Carlile, b. Nov 15, 1822 in Abbeville, SC, m. Isaac Willingham about 1841, d. after 1910 in AL.

9. James M. Carlile, b. Aug 2, 1824 in Abbeville, SC, m. Martha F. Elliot Dec 23, 1848 in Meriwether County, GA, "...died of typhoid fever during the civil war."

10. Francis Nelson Carlile, b. Feb 6, 1826 in Abbeville, SC, m. Euphemia Elizabeth Peeler Jul 10, 1851 in Thomasville, GA, d. after 1880 in Meriwether County, GA.
11. Edith Amanda Carlile, b. Aug 27, 1828 in Abbeville, SC, m. , Rev. William Peeler, a Methodist minister Nov 7, 1846 in Randolph County, AL, d. between Jun 17, 1863 and Dec 19, 1864 in Jefferson County, FL.

12. Lucy Jane Carlile, b. Feb 25, 1830 in Abbeville, SC, m. first cousin, William Woodward Carlile, d. Nov 16, 1902 in Rusk County TX. William Woodward Carlile, son of Samuel Young Carlile and Prudence Cozby born in 1826, enlisted as a private in the 13th Alabama Regiment, Co. I, Confederate States Army early in 1862, present at Seige of Yorktown from April 10 to May 3, 1862, absent sick at Seven Pines on May 31, 1862, died between June 8 and June 11, 1862 of disease in a Richmond, VA hospital.

13. Samuel Joseph Young Carlile, b. Feb 18, 1833 in Georgia, m. Elizabeth Leak Nov 27, 1854 in Bartow (formerly Cass) County GA, d. Jan 10, 1903 in Bartow County, GA and is buried there in Cassville Cemetery.