Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Genealogy of Mother's family, the Robisons

John Monroe Robison, in chair, and his children by wife Idella Frances Cooper who was disceased.
Left to Right: Sarah Robison Oats,Melissa Robison Walden, Willie Henry Robison (my grandfather)
Ira Robison, Annie Robison Thomas,Oliver Robison,
Jesse Robison, Coy Robison, Eula Robison
Leila Robison Nicholson (nickname: Dumpy

I often write about my father's family, the Councils, but Mother's family also comes from south Georgia. Mother, Lois Robison, was born near the town of Whigham, GA and her father, William Henry Robison, son of John Monroe Robison, farmed in Decatur County, GA. John Monroe is buried in the old Providence Cemetery in Grady County. Linda Wimmer, a cousin I recently met, lives in Florida and has begun tracing our Robison line.

As we began a photo organization project recently, I came across a photo of Willie and Lula Robison and all their children plus a photo of a couple that I believe is John M. Robison and his wife Idella Frances Cooper Robison.

In a later picture of Willie and Lula's children the sisters are seated on the front row and the three brothers stand behind them. Lois dearly loved her brothers and sisters. Mildred was the youngest child, two years younger than Lois and they were as different as night and day. Two other sisters, Edith and Berma, married brothers, Sidney and John Blitch.

Lois and Mildred were small children when the family lived on the farm. Edith often babysat the little kids while Lula helped her husband in the fields.

"She would whip us for the least little thing," Lois said in her later years. But she adored her sister anyway.

The Robisons moved to Pelham Georgia in the early 1900's just as the Council family did, because J.L. Hand, a wealthy northern man who founded the town, opened a business that employed and paid wages to children and adults. The Robisons and the Councils were urged to move there and put all those kids to work in Mr. Hand's plant just as many of the people who lived in rural areas.

William Robison, a good carpenter and a good chimney builder, took the job of caretaker for all of Mr. Hand's buildings, the largest of which was Hand Trading Company. This giant enterprise covered an entire block in the center of the town. The store was a forerunner of the big box stores of today.

My father said, "Hand Trading Company claimed they supplied everything you needed, from the cradle to the grave."

They carried caskets and baby cradles as well as anything else a household might need. Like people today flock to the malls to shop, in Pelham and surrounding area, everyone traded with the big store.

Sometime after December 23, 1904, lines were re-drawn and parts of Decatur County became a new county, Grady. Therefore, my mother's birthplace is presently in Grady County, but her birth is recorded in Decatur county, Bainbridge, GA.

Once while pouring over old books in the Decatur County Courthouse, I uncovered dusty records and felt like I was digging for treasure. The name Robison, also often spelled Robinson, was seen throughout the decades in wills, land transfers, and other papers as well as the name Cooper, my great grandfather's family name.

I've not researched the origin of John Monroe Robison's family, but I believe they came to Georgia from Virginia by way of South Carolina. Samuel Cooper has been traced back to that area.

Another cousin, Norman Cooper, sent me much information on the Cooper family. He has done extensive research.

I hope to go down to the Macon Georgia library in a few months and research the Robison line and the Jones line on my mother's side. My grandmother, Malula Jones, was the daughter of John Jones. I also have more research on that family.

When I have more time I hope to continue with my genealogy research, but for now I have to put those plans on hold.

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