Rolison, Lee, Pickett,
Genealogy; A Summary
Compiled and Written by Jan Rolison Farren, Indianapolis, Indiana, 2003
"...In all of us is a hunger, marrow deep, to know our heritage to know who we are and where we have come from. Without this enriching knowledge, there is a hallow yearning. No matter what our attainments in life, there is still a vacuum, and an emptiness, and the most disquieting loneliness..."
Several years ago, I started researching the Lee/Rolison/Pickett/ Meggs lineage from which many reading this descend. Although, far from complete I felt the need to compile and assimilate the findings thus far. The research is a combination of many sources. Perhaps, the most significant is that of my sister Ruth Rolison Denison who began our family research back in the late 60s and 70s as part of her fulfillment to the LDS/Mormon Church of which she is a member. One of the church's tenet is that families are eternal, they do not end at death. as part of church doctrine, it is a religious obligation to identify their ancestors and link themselves to those ancestors. Members must make special covenants with their ancestors that will unite them for eternity. In doing her research, Ruth was fortunate to have an opportunity to speak with and documented family histories of two of the oldest living descendants; Effie Cora Rolison Kemp (Fresno, California), granddaughter of George W/E Rollison and only surviving child of Benjamin Franklin Rolison and Elizabeth Jane Fleming, and our aunt Lela Belle Hutchinson Barnes (Columbus, Georgia) granddaughter of William Levi (Levy) Lee and Josephine A. Pickett and daughter of Ida Mae Tillery Lee.
Ruth's early research provided a springboard on which I have used to dive into the family genealogy you'll find here. In actuality, the material summarized in these pages is only a modest start. Yet, I wish to share with all those of like mind and sincere interest something of our shared and collective family history. Where possible, and if permitted, I have included sources and listed the contact information. By so doing I hope to provide a small window to our past which may let in a bit of light and spark an interest in some of you to delve deeper into our small but unique clan and help decipher the role we've all played in a certain place and time.
It is time to sit down and reminisce with our older kinfolk be they grandparents, great-grandparent, granduncles, grandaunts, great-granduncles, great grandaunts, older first and second cousins, and even older neighbors and acquaintances of these people. It is time to pull out that old forgotten box of family mementos, family photographs, and records and start sharing the valuable information with others. You never know when a photograph or an old letter might bring to light a clue or lead someone else has been looking for years. It is time to share what we know about ourselves and our families, no matter how small or insignificant we might feel the contribution to be! It is time to search for and locate those old family cemeteries that will surely be gone in years to come. It is time to reconnect with living relatives both near and far as we learn more about our family's origins. It is time to gain pride in ourselves, our family and our heritage. It is time!
Below are brief profiles of key ancestors which are currently being researched. Where possible I have include birth and death dates, and geographical locations. As the information that is presented here has come from many sources, and the spelling sometimes varies dependent upon the source, you would be well advised to look under all possible spellings. Always take phonetics into consideration. For example: The surname Rolison is also spelled Rawlinson, Rollinson, Raulerson, Raufson, Rollison, Rawinson. Likewise the name Pickett can be spelled Piggot (French pronunciation) Piggott, Picket; the surname Lee can be spelled Lea, Leigh,…etc.
William Levi (Levy) LEE born 1846 Leetown (?) North Carolina died in Midway, Alabama 1925. Buried in Pinkard, Alabama, place UNKNOWN. Son of Sampson LEE and Suzanne UNKNOWN. Below is part of the 1910 Dale County Alabama Census...with William Levi LEE and Josephine PICKETT listed online 172. Also listed is my Aunt Lela Belle (Hutchinson) Barnes, age 13, who lived with William and Josephine after her mother Ida Mae Tillery LEE married my grandfather George Emmett Rolison. I am unable to show the complete document but it does show that Josephine PICKETT was born in Florida and William Levi LEE was born in North Carolina. Here William's age is recorded as 60 and Josephine's as 45. Both of these ages are incorrect or at least do not reconcile with the records we got from Lela Belle Hutchinson Barnes, nor, do they, reconcile with the census records provided in this document. Josephine's death record show a different age as well. With this document we do know conclusively that our LEE line resided in Dale County, Alabama in the early 1900s. Aunt Lela was again right about the family moving from Pike County, Alabama to Dale County, Alabama around 1900. William Levi (Levy) LEE is the father of Acie Greenberry LEE, Ida Mae Tillery LEE, and Robert LEE; other children may include
Cader LEE, Lemuel LEE, and Helen LEE.
Josephine A. PICKETT born 1848 Quincy, Gadsden County, Florida. Died 1929, Columbus, Georgia. Buried Pine Grove Cemetery, Phenix City, Alabama. Daughter of Asa (Acie) PICKETT and Martha Ann (Carter?). (See attached death record.) Josephine was the 5th daughter born to Asa Pickett and Martha Ann Carter (?). Josephine PICKETT married William Levi (Levy) LEE in Duval, County Florida, 1877? She was the mother of Acie Greenberry LEE, Ida Mae Tillery LEE, and Robert LEE.
Sampson LEE ca. 1812 North Carolina, died unknown.
Father of Joseph T. LEE, Robert A. LEE, William Levi (Levy) LEE. Married Susan (Susie) UNKNOWN. Sampson LEE, Susan Unknown and three sons can be found on the 1860 Gadsden, County, Florida census. Although, little is known about Sampson LEE's life, there is a long standing bit of family lore that states Sampson LEE died, along with his oldest son Joseph T. (Tommie?), during the Civil War. William Levi (Levy) LEE, age 11, and youngest son, Robert A. LEE, age 8, were too young to enlist. Also included in the family history, but not shown in 1860 census, is a sister, Susie. (See attached census record.)
Susan UNKNOWN ca. 1813, North Carolina. Some indication she was buried in or around Bainbridge, Georgia. Susan was the wife of Sampson LEE and the mother of Joseph T. Lee, Robert A. LEE, and William Levi (Levy) LEE. Family history states Susan's father was a white man butreportedly, her mother was of Choctaw or Seminole Indian bloodline. There is a long standing bit of family lore that states Sampson LEE died during the Civil War, along with their oldest son Joseph T. (Tommie?). Susie was overcome with widow's dispair and died shortly afterwards. William Levi (Levy) LEE, age 11, and youngest son, Robert A. LEE, age 8, were too young to enlist. Also included in the family history, but not shown in 1860 census, is a sister, Susie.It is thought Susan moved into Bainbridge, Decatur County, Georgia with William Levi and Robert A. sometime in the late 1800's. Genealogical notes taken from Lela Belle Hutchinson Barnes.
Asa Pickett born bet. 1800-1810 North Carolina, died UNKNOWN. Asa was the husband of Martha Ann (Carter ?) and the father of Josephine PICKETT and Asa Crow PICKETT. Other children included Cely Ann PICKETT, Mitty Mosella PICKETT, Cynthia PICKETT, Peney Ann PICKETT, and Frances L. PICKETT. Asa and his family are found in the 1850. 1860, and 1870 Gadsden County, Florida census (see attached census). It is thought that prior to moving to Gadsden County, Florida, Asa PICKETT lived in Pulaski County, Georgia. (See attached related census, land records, and early marriage records for Pulaski County, Georgia.) On the census for 1850 Gadsden County, Florida. Asa PICKETT and family are listed on line 120. Here Asa is shown as a 48 year old man with 6 young children under the age of 11. This would indicate that Asa was 37 before he started having children. This is highly unlikely since the average age of marriage during this time period was between 16 and 20 for males -- earlier for females. Likewise Martha is 40, showing, she too, would be at a much older age (29) than the norm for starting a family. My gut feeling is that this is a second marriage for Asa and Martha and both may have other children already grown and out on their on. Note a Martha Lambert, 16 at the bottom of 1850 Gadsden County, Florida census list. This may very well be the daughter of Martha from a previous marriage (hence the name Martha). The first two girls Celia (Cely) and Mitty Mosella are born in Georgia, as is the Martha Lambert. The first child born in Florida to Asa Pickett and Martha Ann is Cynthia age 7 which indicates that the family was in Georgia prior to moving to Florida around 1843. Our Josephine is listed as 3 years old indicating her birth date to be 1847 which may prove closer to the true date given the chronographic order of the other children ages.
Asa Pickett found in:
Land Records: AL, AR, FL, LA, MI, MN, OH, WI, 1790-1907 Document number: 5467 Description number: 1
Number of acres: 39.7800 Accession number: FL0120__.338
Patentee Surname: Pickett Patentee given name: Asa
State name: Florida
Volume: 120 Page number: 338
Land office: Tallahassee Aliquot part reference: NESE
Section number: 34
Township: 2 North Range: 5 West
Meridian or special survey area: Tallahassee Meridian
Title transfer authority: Sale-Cash Entries
Combined signature date: Apr. 20, 1837
Multiple patentees: N Multiple warrantees: N
Signature: Y Canceled document: N Subsurface rights reserved: N
Metes and bounds: N Fractional section: N
Martha Ann (Carter?) born South Carolina. Died UNKNOWN. Martha Ann was the wife of Asa PICKETT. Born in South Carolina died UNKNOWN. Martha was the mother of Josephine Pickett and Asa Crow Pickett. Little is known about Martha Ann and the two references pertaining to her are include here. The may be a clue to Martha's identify on the 1850 Gadsden County, Florida census. At the end of the list is a Martha Lambert, age 16. This may well be Martha's daughter from a first marriage.
Asa Crow PICKETT born March, 1850. Son of Asa (Acie) PICKETT and Martha Ann Carter? Married Zelpha UNKNOWN. Father of Ferdinand PICKETT, born June 1885, Asa S. PICKETT, born August 1889, Carl A., born 1891, Walter PICKETT born September 1898, Delia (Celia?) born March 1878, and Mattie PICKETT Rogers born February 1882. This information was found on the 1900 Decatur County, Georgia census. The older children listed here may have been born in another marriage, considering the ages of Asa and Zelpha at the time of this census. Asa Crow PICKETT is the only known brother of Josephine PICKETT.
Ida Mae Tillery LEE born April 16, 1892 in Midway, Dale County, Alabama, 1892. She died November, 30, 1943 in Hilton, Alabama and is buried in a family cemetery in Old Columbia, near Dothan. Ida Mae Tillery LEE was the daughter of William Levi (Levy) LEE and Josephine PICKETT. At 15 she married Lewis Hutchinson a marriage from which a daughter Lela Belle Hutchinson was born in 1907. Lewis Hutchinson died soon after and she remarried George E. Rolison in 1910. It is not certain how George Rolison and Ida Mae met but the story goes that George Rolison had a cousin who work for a local telegraph and cable company and it is he who introduced the two. George reportedly sent for Ida Mae LEE and they were married in Clark County, Mississippi. It is true the young couple spent the early years of their marriage near the ancestral home of George's father Benjamin Franklin Rolison in Pierce Springs, Mississippi. Both George and Ida Mae were widower's with young children. George had 3 children from his first marriage to Georgia Kemp: Annabel, Ollie, and Calvin Berry Rolison. Ida Mae had a daughter, Lela Belle Hutchinson. Together they had 5 children: Wilbur, George Emmett, Joseph IM, Billy Glen, Pearl, and Myrtle Jewel. Ida Mae was a strikingly beautiful women with delicate features and Indian physical characteristics. She was a small woman of statue, dark skinned with high cheek bones and piercing brown eyes. She was lovingly remember by my father as a women who knew much of the Indian lore and medicine. Ida Mae was often called upon when neighbors and kin were ill and helped birth many children in her community. She had a natural aptitude for music and play the piano for the Methodist church of which she was a member until her death.
George E. ROLISON born January, 1882, Pierce Springs, Clarke County, Mississippi; died. George E. Rolison was the only son of Benjamin Franklin Rolison and Elizabeth Jane Fleming. He married Georgia Kemp in Mississippi, date unknown. They had 3 children; Annabelle, Ollie, and Calvin Berry Rolison before her death, date UNKNOWN. George married Ida Mae Tillery Lee in 1918. Their children were Wilbur Rolison, Joseph IM Rolison, Billy Glen Rolison, Pearl Rolison, Myrtle Jewel Rolison, and my father George Emmett Rolison. After Ida Mae's death in 1943, George continued to live near his son George Emmett, in Eufaula, Barbour County, Alabama. During the early years of their marriage Ida and George lived in Crandall, Clarke, County, Mississippi, near the ancestral home of George's father, Benjamin Franklin Rolison.
Acie (ASA) Greenberry LEE was born August 9, 1881, Pike County, Alabama; dead Phenix City, Alabama, March 11, 1965. He is buried in Lakeview Memory Gardens, Phenix City, Alabama. Acie Greenberry Lee is the oldest documented son of William Levy Lee and Josephine Pickett. He married Vassie Ordella Meredith. Their children are William James Lee, Albert Carlton Lee (twin), Calvin Cason Lee (twin, died at age 2 or 3) Claudia Mae Lee, Willie Mae Lee, Gussie Lee, and Beatrice Lee.
Vassie Ordella Meredith born July 13, 1882, Geneva County, Alabama; died April 11, 1965, Columbus, Georgia. Buried Lakeview Memory Gardens, Phenix City, Alabama. She married Acie Greenberry LEE December 10, 1905 in Dale County Alabama.Their children are William James Lee, Albert Carlton Lee (twin), Calvin Cason Lee (twin, died at age 2 or 3) Claudia Mae Lee, Willie Mae Lee, Gussie Lee. She was the daughter of Jim Meredith and Henri Alice Conner of Pike County, Alabama.
Robert LEE born between 1893-1900. Died Phenix City, Alabama.
youngest son of Josephine and William Levy LEE. Robert Lee never married and has no known offspring. He lived at home with his parents and was beloved by his nieces and nephews. He was a lifelong teacher. Died at home of heart failure during the night.
James Meredithborn March 4, 1860. He married Henri Alice Conner. Children of James Meredith and Henri Alice Conner are: William Meredith, Georgia Milton Meredith, Vassie Ordella Meredith, Alice Francis Meredith, Mary Meredith, Margie Elizabeth Meredith, Claudia Lee Meredith, Rosa Meredith.
Henri Alice Conner born November 28, 1863. She married James Meredith. Children of Henri Alice Conner and James Meredith are: William Meredith, Georgia Milton Meredith, Vassie Ordella Meredith, Alice Francis Meredith, Mary Meredith, Margie Elizabeth Meredith, Claudia Lee Meredith, Rosa Meredith.
Benjamin Franklin Rolison born 1858 in Dallas County, Alabama, died 1940 Pierce Springs, Dallas County, Mississippi. He married Elizabeth Jane Fleming, November 16, 1880 in Clarke County, Mississippi.
Their children are: George E. Rolison, Alice Virginia Rolison, Leody Bidlay Rolison, Sallie Dallas Rolison, Effie Cora Rolison, Maggie Ann Rolison. Benjamin Franklin Rolison was a prominent citizen of Clarke County, Mississippi. He owned much land. He, and brother William Francis Rolison, were responsible for the development of many businesses in that county including a mercantile and grist mill. Benjamin was known to have the largest and grandest carriage in the area. Benjamin was also known for fiery redhair and a quick temper. He and his brother William were opposites; William, tall and dark, Benjamin, shorter and light. Benjamin Franklin and William Francis married Fleming sisters. Today Clarke County, Mississippi is still
a county here many Fleming and Rolison descendants live.