I have run into the same problem with our family that lived in neighboring Coosa County (near Goodwater). Soon after the 1860 census, four of the seven family members died including the parents. Family legend says it was a smallpox epidemic. I also found records of a church in nearby Equality, AL where church services were temporarily suspended due to a smallpox outbreak. I believe the timeframe was the fall of 1862 through the spring of 1863.