Greetings fellow researchers. I am a Bowden searcher and am in Wilmington, NC. Following is new information on the marriage of Hepsey Keathley b. 1842, to one Wm. B. Bowden in 1869. I believe Wm. B. to be William Bryant Bowden.
1. From Missing Original Marriage Register of Duplin County, NC, 1867 - 1872: Male: Wm. B. BOWDEN; Female: Hepsy Keathley, Parents of Male: Samuel BOWDEN and Matilda
(Note: It appears that Matilda should have been Miranda or Martha, I can find no records of a Matilda).
Parents of Female: Mark and Elizabeth (Pipkin) Keathley, Place, Date and By Whom Married: (No place given) 15 Jan 1869, C(alvin) Jernigan, JP. Note: Calvin Jernigan was a Justice of the Peace in Wolfscrape Township, Duplin County, NC.
2. From the 1870 US Census of Wolfscrape Township, Duplin County, NC, Dwelling 175: Bryant BOWDEN, age 35 (b.1835), M, W, farmer, born NC, parents born NC (Note: Use of the middle name only was not unusual). Hepsey BOWDEN, age 28 (b.1842), F, W, keeping house, born NC, parents born NC
3. It appears that by the time of the 1880 US Census, William Bryant and Hepsey BOWDEN have relocated to Brogden Township in Wayne County, NC. Dwelling 305, as follows: W.B. Bowden, W, M, age 44, occupation merchant and farmer Hepsey BOWDEN, W, F, age 3?, keeping house. Robert BOWDEN, W. M. age 6, son John BOWDEN, W, M, age 5, son. I have been unable to locate the parents of Wm. B. Bowden, however, based on existing records of names, dates and places, I am inclined to believe the parents are Samuel Rufus Bowden Sr, b.1818, and an unknown mother. I believe Samuel married second Miranda Fannie Best b. 1836, before 1866, the year of birth of his first child by Miranda. Note that Samuel was 48 years old when Miranda's first child was born so it is not illogical to suspect that Miranda was his second wife. I believe Miranda was therefore Samuel's stepmother. Any further information or comments appreciated. Thanks, RBJ
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