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JIM: Marriage, news items, death of Sophia Ellen Simmons

She and Mr. George Andrew Murphy were married at Adair County Courthouse. Census records of the day failed to honor her occupation as a midwife. Story includes obituary from the Adair County News April 8, 1949
Story a response to: Query: Wants to know about Fairplay, KY area midwife -1930s

By JIM

On the 4th day of October, 1890, Miss Sophia (Sophie) Ellen Simmons, a native of Russell County, and Mr. George Andrew Murphy, a native of Cumberland County, were married by Levi Shepherd at the Adair County courthouse, the ceremony witnessed by Green B. Murphy and Sophia Breeding. The bride was the daughter of Robert C. Simmons and Julia Anne (sometimes spelled Julian) French. Sophia was about 30 (various records give or imply her birth year as anywhere between 1857 and 1862, dates inclusive; she appears as a one-year-old in the 1860 Russell County census); George was somewhat younger.


In 1900, the family lived in the Glenville district of Adair County, and according to the census record of that year, Sophia was the mother of two children, their sons Robie G. (Robert George), born July 1982, and Dewa G. (George Dewey) born 1898. (The names are spelled as found in the census record.) By the time the 1910 census was taken, Maggie, Robert's wife of about a year, was included in the household, and Sophia had given birth to three more children, all three of whom were deceased.

In all the five census records in which George and Sophia appeared, his occupation was given as farmer, hers as "none."

In the late summer of 1914, the Dirigo correspondent to the News noted that "Several of the younger set from this place attended an apple peeling given at the home of G.A. Murphy, at Chance, one day last week." A few months later, another Dirigo news item reported that Mr. Murphy and his son R.G. had formed a partnership, and would "run a general mercantile business here under the firm name of G.A. Murphy & Son."

George died in 1946, and on a double marker in the Antioch Cemetery appears this information:
Father / George A. Murphy July 21, 1869 - Nov 26, 1946
Mother / Sophia E. Murphy July 3, 1861
No death date is inscribed on the marker for Sophia, bur she passed in late March, 1949 ; her obituary appeared in the April 6 edition of the Adair County News:

Services On Wednesday for Mrs. George A. Murphy

Mrs. Sophie Ellen Simmons Murphy, 88, died at her home in the Fairplay community on Tuesday, March 29. She was the widow of George A. Murphy, who died two years ago.

She us survived by two sons, Robert and Dewey Murphy, fifteen grandchildren and twenty-five great-grandchildren. Three daughters died in infancy.

Funeral services were held at Antioch Church at 2:00 p.m. Wednesday [March 30], conducted by Rev. Joe Stotts, assisted by Rev. W.T. Furkin and Rev. M.B. Hodges. Interment was in the Antioch Cemetery. The pallbearers were: Messrs. Edwin, Lloyd, and Homer Murphy, Titus Spoon, Coy Furkin, and Clyde Whittle.

Compiled by JIM


This story was posted on 2014-07-13 13:48:42
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