Albert Judson May was born on March 16, 1845, son of John William May who had moved as a child with his family to Hollow Square, Alabama, in 1819. Jud May was the brother of my grandfather, Jonathan Brooks May. In December 1868 Jud married Susan Marguerite Wright Parr (Parrs are May cousins, so these two may have been kin) and with her produced 5 children:
Joe Taylor May (July 13, 1874 - Jan. 5, 1930. Thought to be retarded.)
Oscar L. May (b. 16 Oct. 1877 - d. 1969.)
Albert Pickett May (Cud’nt Pickett) (Sept. 3, 1882 - June 29, 1969)
Susan Wright May (Cud’n Susie) (May 20, 1885 – d. 20 May 20 1971)
These 5 children are first cousin to my father. The last 4 are buried in Hollow Square Cemetery west of Sawyerville.
Jud’s first wife died somewhere between 1885 and 1901, the year he married a second time, to Martha Ann Augusta Willingham, widow of James Marshall Martin. She brought to the marriage her 4 children:
James Robert Martin (“Mr. J.R.”) (Jan. 14, 1888 - Feb. 19, 1964. \
Melton True Martin (“Mr. M.T.”)
Louse Martin (“Miss Louise.”) (1880 – 1969)
Fanny Martin (“Miss Fanny”)
Mr. J.R. and Miss Louise are buried at Hollow Square, Mr. M.T. in the old cemetery in Greensboro and Miss Fanny I believe in Tennessee.
All 4 retained the name Martin, Fanny later adding Gamewell when she married and moved away from Sawyerville. I have the impression, not documented, that James Marshal Martin, their father, was somehow related to the Mays.
Jud and Iddie had no children together, but his 5 and her 4 made a pretty big household in the 2-story house in Sawyerville that stood on the old main road that ran alongside the railroad track. (That house burned in late 1961, occupied at the time by the Hartsill family.)
Jud May’s name lingers on in the Jud May Place, as we Mays still refer to the property about 3 miles north of Sawyerville off County Road 17 where most of the original May settlers put down roots after their move to the area in 1819. That land still remains in May hands, as it was purchased by the Blue Shadows Corporation which was established by the 7 children of my father’s brother Ellery Brooks May.
At some point, around 1880 I believe, give or take a few years, my grandfather, Jonathan Brooks, began to acquire what ultimately became a large farm of some 1,100 acres about 4 miles west of Sawyerville on County Road 92, much of that land originally called Kimbrough Bottom. (The Kimbrough house stood just to the east of this land.) There seems to be evidence that he did not obtain full title until 1900 or thereabouts but family lore is that all of his children, my father and his siblings, were born on that land between 1884 and 1898. That land remained in May control, first under Brooks and later under his son my Uncle Stephen until most of it was sold some decades back by the May family corporation. Only the 50 acres bought by my first cousin Steve from his father after WW2 remained in May hands, and that was finally sold in the spring of 2021.
But back to Jud and Iddie and their family:
On November 9, 1911, Jud’s daughter Susie married Iddie’s son J.R. This can look just a bit strange on genealogical charts, as they grew up in the same household as brother and sister but of course they were not. By all accounts that have come to me they had a happy marriage, and Susie remained in love with her husband until her own death some 7 years after his.
J.R. and Susie had 5 children:
Willard Martin (Aug, 5, 1912 - June 18, 1978)
James Robert Martin (Apr. 1, 1914 – June 13, 1915)
James Roy Martin (Nov. 18, 1915 – June 11, 1916)
Richard Kirby Martin (Feb. 22, 1918 - ?)
John Burr Martin (June 22, 1919 - July 2, 1920)
The 3 boys who died in infancy are buried along with J.R. and Susie at Hollow Square.
Willard Martin married Warren Walton of Greensboro (Dec. 7, 1907 – July 16, 1963) and with him produced 4 children:
Warren Judson Walton (Jud) (May 6, 1936 - )
Daniel Douglas Walton (Doug) (May 24, 1940 – Dec. 13, 2016)
Melinda Dale Walton (Melinda) (May 24, 1949 - _)
James Brand Walton (Jim) (Mar. 1, 1945 - Aug. 30, 1996)
These 4 children, along with Emmet and Thomas Callahan (also distant cousins through their mother), Charles Johnson (who lived with his family in the house where my Uncle Tom had died and as far as I know not kin), and Evelyn Martin (child to my mother’s sister who had married Cud’n Edna’s son Murray) were the childhood playmates and companions of my sister and me when we were growing up.
All these descendants of brothers Jud and Brooks May living close together in a small community with competing country stores, what could possibly go wrong?
But that, Dear Reader, is another story! (Actually, come to think of it, a whole lot of other stories!)