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2003-2020 Copyright - All Rights Reserved - Globe Rhodesian Ridgebacks, Virginia Vaughn Art Studio, Family History, Philomath, Georgia,
Needlework by Nelda Vaughn, Globe - The House, Favorite Recipes.
Nelda Vaughn
*For clarity, it should be noted that Philomath was originally called Woodstock.  Name had to be changed
in mid-1840s when a post office was approved though locals continued calling it Woodstock and this is
still the Woodstock District of the county.  It should also be noted that throughout these writings about
families, I will use abbreviations and often identify individuals by initials as writing of multiple people
with same first name is confusing and repetitive use of full names becomes cumbersome.  EX:  Robert
Cunningham Daniel may sometimes be RCD.  Links to documents or other sites provided at the end.


Ella Campbell Daniel (ECDB), was born September 11, 1846, daughter of Robert Cunningham Daniel and
Emily G. Milner Daniel.  She married November 8, 1865, James McCarter Bryan (JMB).  He was born
September 18, 1844, in Charleston, SC, the son of Jonathan Bryan, Jr. of Charleston, SC,  and Georgia A
Sneed Bryan of Washington, GA.  James apparently went by the name “Jimmie” as that is how he signed a
letter to his mother.  Ella was 19 and James was 21 when they married – 7 months after Lee’s surrender.  
James died October 13, 1907, in McDonough, GA, while visiting his brother-in-law, James Cicero Daniel.  
Ella died July 21, 1923 – age [not quite] 76 years.  Both are buried in Daniel Family Cemetery, Philomath,
GA.  (see RCD-BIBLE, see JMB-ECDB-MISC)

QUESTIONS:  Some sites I have seen show Ella’s name as Eleanor, even the Find a Grave site, though her
tombstone only shows initials “E. C. Daniel Bryan”.  Where does the name “Eleanor” come from?  Yes, it is
“etched in stone” on the tombstone of her granddaughter Dorothy Wright Normandy, and the name
“Elvianor” appears on the 1850 census which had other errors.  Does Eleanor appear on any other official
document?   She was not only called Ella, but Ella is listed 3 times in the RCD Family Bible for her birth,
marriage, and death.  Ella is the name listed on all legal documents I have found:  “Ella D. Bryan” on her will;
“Ella C. Bryan” on their marriage license, on at least 3 deeds,  on her application for widow’s pension, even
in the law suit Walker vs Bryan.  NOTE: the marriage license used for Ella’s pension application was a
transcript (issued Oct 4, 1921) of the original license and shows the year as 1872 in error (should be 1865).  
That document is on a pre-printed form showing the year as 19__ (fill in the blank) with the 19 struck
through and 18 written above.  It was accompanied by a document signed L H Bacon, Ordinary, that states
this is a transcript of the original which remained in his office.  With 3 children born before 1872, what a
scandal it would have been in that era!   James and Ella had the following children:

Mary Antoinette (Nettie) Bryan:  born August 24, 1866 – died December 29, 1925.  see link at end

Jonathan Bryan:  born July 19, 1869 – died November 15, 1941. see link at end

Benjamin Latham Bryan, Sr. :  born November 25, 1871 (year approximate) – died July 14, 1920.  see link
at end

Georgia Sneed (Daisy) Bryan:  born 1875- died 1923.  see link at end

Robert Cunningham Daniel Bryan:  born March 30, 1879 – died July 17, 1956.  see link at end

Harry Gordon Bryan, Sr.:  born January 19, 1882 – died May 28, 1955. see link at end

George Samuel Bryan:   born August 2, 1884, died April 13, 1934 (unmarried).  He is buried in DFC.  The
1910 census shows he was living in Union Point, a boarder with the family of Joe Gee, and working as
Assistant Post Master – his brother Benjamin being Post Master.  no link provided

Mary McCarter Bryan:  born April 10, 1888, died one month later on May 10, 1888.  Buried DFC.  no link

Ella was a student at the Philomathean Collegiate Institute (aka Reid Academy, formerly an all-boys
academy) in January term 1858 (11 years old).  She was 17 when her father died December 1, 1863, and
when her mother died just seven months later June 30, 1864.  On March 14, 1864, while her mother was
still living, $200 was paid from RCD’s estate to E J Irvin for four months board in Ella’s behalf @ $50 per
month.  QUESTION: Where was this?  Why?  In the 1860 census, Washington, Wilkes County, GA, there is
an Elizabeth J. Irvin, wife of Isiah T. Irvin, Attorney.  Is this the E J Irvin with whom Ella boarded for four
months?  (See JMB-ECDB-MISC)  

James McCarter Bryan served in the Confederate Army from September 12, 1862, and was at the surrender
at Appomattox, VA.  Included with the pension application of Mrs. Ella C. Bryan, his widow, found in
Georgia Archives Virtual Vault, was James’ enlistment documentation which shows that he enlisted
September 12, 1862, in Irvin’s Artillery in Washington, GA. and served until April 1865.  He wrote that he
was 17 years and 11 months old (he would turn 18 in 6 days).  James’ mother signed for consent in the case
of a minor – his father had died in 1858.  The Recruiting Officer declared him qualified “to perform the
duties of an able-bodied soldier”.    Also on the enlistment:   “This soldier has hazel eyes, light hair, light
complexion, is five feet 8 inches high, 12 Sept 1862.”    Surrendered “April 1865 Appomattox Court House,
Va.”  James wrote a letter to his mother November 24, 1864, from “Near Petersburg, Virginia”.  It was
retrieved by Harry Gordon Bryan III from a dumpster in 2006 following the death of Blount Gallaspy, the
widower of James' granddaughter, Claudelle Bryan Gallaspy.  (See JMB-ECDB-MISC, see JMB-ECDB-
PENSION)
[Pension at Georgia Archives]

I had been curious as to how James, a young man from Charleston, SC, would meet Ella Daniel, a young lady
in the small village of Philomath, GA.   It is said that they met during the Civil War.  James’ mother, Georgia
A. Sneed Bryan, had married Jonathan Bryan, Jr. in Wilkes County September 29, 1843, as his second wife;
so it is assumed she was living there at the time.   Jonathan had died in 1859.  James’ enlistment was in
Washington in 1862 with his mother giving consent.  In James’ letter to his mother November 1864, he
writes:  “You seem to feel perfectly safe in Washington”.  He also mentions Bill (his best friend) and John
Ficklen, writing that John will be leaving for home and that he (JMB) “will write by him”.  The 1860 census
for Washington, GA, shows a family named Ficklen with sons named John (age 14) and William (age 16 –
same age as James in 1860).  (see JMB-ECDB-MISC)

Ella’s brother James Cicero Daniel (JCD) also served in the Confederate Army.  Although JCD and JMB
served in different companies, they were both at the surrender at Appomattox according to Ella’s pension
application for widows and according to JCD’s own pension application.  JMB died October 13, 1907, in
McDonough, GA, while visiting his brother-in-law, JCD.  Perhaps there was a friendship between them by
end of war if not before the war started.   In light of the above (JMB’s enlistment in Wilkes County (GA), his
letter referring to his mother’s safety in Washington, etc), it seems obvious that mother, Georgia, and James
were living in Wilkes prior to beginning of war and during it.

James and Ella married November 8, 1865, only seven months after the surrender at Appomattox, VA,
April, 1865.  Within two weeks prior to their marriage, clothing for Ella and special foods were paid from
RCD’s estate suggesting they were purchased in preparation for their wedding.  Similar items do not appear
as having been purchased from RCD’s estate any other time.  The marriage certificate shows that John W
Reid, M.S. officiated the marriage ceremony.  (see JMB-ECDB-MISC)
[AR, Q-453; Equity & Appeals, Book D, page 81]

Though we still do not know  how they met, it is evident that James and his mother were living in
Washington, GA, so he and Ella did not live far apart.  Now I wonder about James’ parents.  How did a man
(Jonathan Bryan, Jr., born 8/18/1814) from Charleston, SC, meet and marry (9/29/1843) an 18-year-old
young woman (Georgia A Sneed, born 5/29/1825) in Wilkes County, GA.  (see JMB-ECDB-MISC)

Of the 3,639 acres of land from the Robert C Daniel estate, Ella purchased acreage for $4,965 at the
division of property January 3, 1870.
[E&A-D, 114]   The acreage site or the amount of acres was not
identified.  However, in the deed from ECDB to Samuel Lumpkin indentured January 7, 1881, it reads 850
acres for $850 as “the same being a part of the tract purchased by [Ella] from the Administrator of Robert
C. Daniel deceased, and her title to same appears of record in the Clerk’s Office of Oglethorpe Superior
Court in the decree found in Book D of Equity and Appeals pages 118, 119, & 120”.  (October 1875 term of
court)   
[Deed Book  Y pg 312]  

Then, on November 3, 1885, Ella purchased the same land from Samuel Lumpkin for $250.
 [Deed Book AA, pg
91]
 My observation:  During this era, it seems that outright deeds were implemented for less than value of
land and the land later bought back suggesting property used as collateral for a loan.  Given the amount of
acreage she “sold” for $850 and bought back for $250, I wonder if Ella’s deed to Lumpkin was, in effect,
collateral for a loan rather than an outright sale – perhaps she had been making payments and the $250 was
the final payment.  Had she defaulted, Mr. Lumpkin would have the land.  That’s speculation – guess we’ll
never know for certain.   In December 1879, James rented to Lucius A Walker a portion of Ella’s land for
1880, later extended for 1881, in exchange for certain crops.  This seems to be the only land Ella owned at
the time, so it overlapped the sale to Lumpkin.  In fall of 1881, Lucius A Walker filed law suit against James,
as trustee for his wife, Ella C Bryan, and against William D Pittard, as constable for the district.  The case
revolved around JMB’s renting to Walker a piece of land belonging to Ella, and payment by Walker was to
be made from the crops he produced.
[Deed Book AA, page 91; E&A, Book E, 64-77] (see JMB-ECDB-MISC, see Deeds)  

According to E&A Book D, the land for RCD’s estate (3,639 acres) was purchased by five of his children on
January 3, 1870, but payments were not made at the time of sale.  The acreage was not identified, just the
amount to be paid.  Based on her will, the land Ella acquired at that time was the 850/860 acres, more or
less, that is sandwiched between Hwy 22 and the Woodville Road.  She later (1910) acquired the RCD home
place with 16 acres on south side of road plus 84 acres across the road.   She purchased that total of 100
acres from Ida Pope Daniel (second wife of John Daniel) and John’s son R A Daniel and John’s son-in-law
Walter Arnold.  (see Deeds and Wills)

The Equity and Appeals Book D, pages 63-120 shows items purchased at the RCD estate sales as well as the
land divisions/purchases.  Items purchased by “J M Bryan” at the RCD estate sales included:  baby carriage;
beds and bedding; bureaus; hat rack; split bottom chairs and parlor chairs; sofa; curtains, shades, and
fixtures; carpets & rugs; 2 calves, 2 mules, 2 sows, 2 bulls; bushels of corn, wheat, and peas; thousands of
pounds fodder.   (A more complete list can be found at JMB-ECDB-MISC)

Although the two estate sales had been in January 1866 and December 1868 and the land
divisions/purchases had been in January 1870, none of the children had paid for any of their purchases at
those sales.  In John’s attempt to settle RCD’s estate, interest on those purchases was calculated from time
of each sale until December 1, 1874.  When John J Daniel summoned RCD’s children to appear in
Oglethorpe County Superior Court on Third Monday in April, 1875, in effort to settle RCD’s estate, James
and Ella were in South Carolina.  In the October 23, 1875, term of court, it was ordered that “whenever
anyone of said heirs…shall pay the said sum…Administrators of the said R C Daniel…shall make to such
heir…and Admistrators Deed to all the land of said estate which such heir has heretofore purchased as
administrators sale of the same; and should said deed for any cause not be made, then said payment shall
operate as an Administrators Deed”.   Thus, titles to land had not been transferred/recorded until after the
October 1875 term of court.  
[E&A, D, 118-120]   As cited in Ella’s deed of land to Samuel Lumpkin, this seems to
be the method by which Ella gained title to the 850-acre tract of land as I could not find an actual deed
transferring the property from RCD’s estate to Ella.  (JMB-ECDB-MISC)


next page
James McCarter Bryan and Ella Campbell Daniel
May 2020