Can anyone offer additional information on Sam Merritt from Brooks County, Georgia? I'll share what I know, what I've guess and what I hope to discover. Because of the length of the post, I'll leave out specific references, but I have checked the SSDI, spoken to Vanessa Merritt (a granddaughter through his marriage to Dokie Scott), checked numerous Web sources, and spoken to my family members.
What I know:
~ His middle name is either Humphreys or Humphries.
~ He was born either August 25, 1899 or August 25, 1892.
~ He is buried at Oak Hills Cemetary-East in Quitman, Brooks County, Georgia and died in December of 1971.
~ He was married at least twice.
~ One marriage was to Dokie Scott, and they had a son, Leonard Merritt, born in 1928. Dokie died a short time later. They lived in Brooks County, Georgia.
~ Another marriage was to my grandmother, Valley Smith, in 1932. They has 3 children, Edward, Harold and Lena, before the marriage ended. My grandmother later remarried and Sam lived out the remainder of his life in Quitman, Brooks County, Georgia.
~ I have seen mixed reports about a Sam Merritt marrying Ella Pyles. I have also seen that credited to a James Merritt. This would be a third marriage but seems unlikely because there were many children involved. Can anyone confirm?
~ Sam Merritt lists his parents on his SS application as Frank Merritt and Emma Parsons. I have found a reference that needs confirmation to a marriage between Emma Parsons and F.M. Merritt 30 Jun 1880 in Madison, Florida. I would like to confirm if this is the Emma Parsons, who is the daughter of John Ulysses Parsons.
~ The only thing I know of Sam's siblings is what my family remembers, and those are hazy and contradictory. They think that Sam had at least two sisters, Mary and Needa.
~ My family also thinks that Sam's family was from Brooks County or at least that nearby area, but I have been unsuccessful in confirming that with census records. I looked at the Index to the 1880 Brooks County Census and found no Merritt listed.
Obviously there are lots of gaps in my knowledge so anything you can contribute would be appreciated. Specifically, does anyone have census records for Colquitt or Brooks County for 1900 through 1930 to check for Sam or Frank Merritt and family? I also would like to know if any of Dokie's siblings recall Sam and any family or details.
Thanks for any and all leads.
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