Generation No. 1
1. Thomas2 Woodruff (Nathaniel1) was born July 09, 1748 in Augusta County, VA1, and died March 19, 1829 in Bibb County, AL. He married Eunice Woodrove. She was born January 16, 1755 in Augusta County, VA, and died August 15, 1830 in Bibb County, AL.
Notes for THOMAS WOODRUFF: Our Woodruff Family came to the US around 1639 from Fordwich, Kent England. The original immigrant was John Woodruff. He settled first in Southhampton, LI, NY and later in Elizabethtown, N.J. where he died in 1691. From there, we come down through Joseph Woodruff who died in 1792 in Westfield, NJ. His son Nathaniel moved to Augusta Co., Virginia, where Thomas was born. The family then went down the Shendoah Trail into Surry County, NC, where Samuel and his brother Nathaniel were born. They were in Spartanburg District of SC by 1782 where Thomas shows up on the Tax records for that year. Thomas' will was written on 29 December 1825, as the family was preparing to leave for Alabama. It was probated in Bibb County in1829 and the estate settled in 1830. Records from Surry Co., NC Land Entried, 1778-1781 Thomas Woodruff enters 50 acres of land in Surry Co. on the N side of the Yadkin River joining John Scritchfields (dec'd) old line beginning at the upper end and at his old beginning running N then up the river including whereon Amos Scritchfield now lives. No dates are given, but warrant is granted. Thomas Woodruff enters 300 acres of land in Surry Co. on N side of the Yadkin River beginning at a place known by the Person Rocks then runs N thence down the rivere of quantity - August 8, 1778. October 6, 1778 caveated by Amos Critchfield. Returned to Court. Jury found for Critchfield. Money Returned. Children of Thomas Woodruff and Eunice Woodrove are:
2 i. Nancy3 Woodruff, born February 16, 1772.
3 ii. Josiah Woodruff, born February 19, 1774.
4 iii. Jemima Woodruff, born October 25, 1776.
+ 5 iv. Nathaniel Woodruff, born May 03, 1779 in North Carolina; died October 05, 1832 in Bibb County , AL.
6 v. Joseph Woodruff, born May 27, 1783.
+ 7 vi. Samuel Woodruff, born November 05, 1785 in North Carolina; died November 10, 1837 in Bibb County , AL.
8 vii. Elizabeth Woodruff, born November 03, 1788.
9 viii. Anny Woodruff, born December 12, 1891.
Generation No. 2
5. Nathaniel3 Woodruff (Thomas2, Nathaniel1) was born May 03, 1779 in North Carolina, and died October 05, 1832 in Bibb County , AL. He married (1) Mary McDaniel. She died September 06, 1827. He married (2) Anny Crawford May 24, 1828 in Bibb County, AL.
Notes for Nathaniel Woodruff:
After the death of Mary McDaniel, Nathaniel married Anna Crawford, a recently widowed friend of the family. They had known each other since the days of the trek from S.C. Left without a family, Anna needed the security of the marriage and Nathaniel needed a wife and stepmother for his children. They married on 5/5/1828, eight months after the death of Mary. Hannah Woodruff had assumed the role of Mother after the death of Mary, and the two boys were apparently disappointed when they had to accept Anna as their step-mother. On October 5, 1832, Nathaniel passed away after a short illness. Newton, age sixteen, and Washington, age 13, went to live with Samuel and Hannah. Martha Ann, age 11, stayed with Anna in the big house. Samuel took over the livelihood for both families.
Marriage Notes for Nathaniel Woodruff and Anny Crawford:
Marriage Information from Alabama Marriages 1800-1920 OSPage 23 Performed by Justice of the Peace Surety/Perf.Name D.R. Boyd
Children of Nathaniel Woodruff and Mary McDaniel are:
10 i. Newton McDaniel4 Woodruff, born 1816. He married Frances M. Abney December 19, 1837 in Shelby County, AL; died in Shelby County, AL.
Notes for Newton McDaniel Woodruff:
Newton Woodruff reached the legal age of 21, 21 days after his father died. As soon as he reached legal age for guardianship, he sold his family's home place along with the 38 acres that went with the place, and settled all other business interests his father had, including the cotton gin business. Anna Crawford and Martha Ann were forced to vacate and move elsewhere. Newton then married his childhood sweetheart, Frances Abney on December 19, 1837. Her father, K.W. Abney was in the coalmining business in Shelby County, AL.just across the Bibb County line, about 17 miles east of Centerville, where he owned and operated a coal mine. It appears that Newton invested heavily in the business. After seven years of mine ownership, he was killed in a mine accident. Included among the several men killed was Mr. Abney. They are buried in the Smith-Malan Cemetery located about four miles west of the Shelby County Line, on Highway 25. His wife, Frances, who died later is also buried there.
All of the above are from the notes of William S. Perry
11 ii. Washington Woodruff, born 1819.
12 iii. Martha Ann Woodruff, born 1821. She married Horace Ware June 24, 1841 in Bibb County, AL.
7. Samuel3 Woodruff (Thomas2, Nathaniel1) was born November 05, 1785 in North Carolina, and died November 10, 1837 in Bibb County , AL. He married Hannah Lavalle 1819 in South Carolina. She was born October 09, 1790 in South Carolina, and died January 28, 1847 in Bibb County , AL.
Notes for Samuel Woodruff:
These are from the notes of William S. Perry: When Alabama was awarded statehood in 1819 , a huge migration to the Cahaba District n the middle of the state began. Many people from the Spartanburg area of S.C. came to AL, among them Samuel and his brother Nathaniel. The Woodruffmen were looking for water power to energize the cotton gins that were increasingly in demand. Also, they needed the water to transport the commodity to market. In 1820, the two arrived in the little village of Centerville, AL. For several days the traversed the land seeking out possible sites that might be available to them. Finally, they purchased 80 acres of rich level bottom land, located across the river from the village. The land was farmedby the Choctaw Indians, and was ready for planting. For the first time in the young lives of the Woodruff boys, the land wasn't free for the taking. The property bordered a main highway to the south, and the river to the east. To the west, the highway ran for about 15 miles to intersect with the Old Huntsville Road to Tuscaloosa. The river flowed south into the Alabama River where the old former state capital of Cahaba was located. Upon returning to SC the two brothers and their families, joined a caravan consisting of several hundred prople and prepared for the journey. In late May 1821, they began the trek with oxen-drawn wagons, arriving in central AL sometime around the first week of August of that year. Samuel and Hannah Laval had no children at that time. The property was divided into two tracts of forty acres each. Nathaniel and his wife Mary McDaniel took the southern half facing the highway. An existing house and barn were remodeled for use by both families which had easy access to the highway. There existed an old shallow water well that was in need of repair. They took rock from the river bed to reline the walls of the well. After they settled in, the next step was to harness the river for water power to operate a cotton gin. Their first attempt to build a dam failed after the first flood. A second site was selected down-river and this dam held for several decades, until it was destroyed by a unit of the Union Army known as Wilson's Raiders at the close of the war. The first child of Samuel and Hannah, Cesaro, was born in 1826, and a new house was constructed on the northern forty acres. In 1829 Amerzona Martha Maria Woodruff was born. In 1832 Minerva Narcissis Anne Frances Woodruff was born. Frances was nick-named "Fannie" and was our grandmother (Velma Frances) Mother. The next two were Samuel, Jr. and Columbus. In 1827 Mary McDaniel Woodruff died. The next 20 years were a struggle for life for the Alabama Woodruff families. Samuel Woodruff, Sr. died on November 10, 1837. He was killed in an accident working at the cotton warehouse preparing for a shipment of cotton bound for Selma, AL.
Notes for Hannah Lavalle:
Hannah Laval is believed to be of French Hugguenot descent. As of this writing (9/26/1999) have not uncovered her birth parents or the exact place, possibly in the Spartanburg district of S.C. or near the town of Woodruff, since this is where Samuel Woodruff eventually came from. Hannah taught school at the Presbyterian Church in Bibb County, AL. After Samuel's death, she continued living at the home. Washington Woodruff lived with his aunt on the farm, and worked the farm. There were two or three Negro slaves that lived on the farm. Hannah received some income from Samuel's interest in the cotton gin. On May 16th, 1841, Washington Woodruff passed away. Cesaro Woodruff passed away about the same time. On June 24, 1941 Martha Ann married Horace Ware, and moved away. On July 22, 1845, Anna Crawford passed away, and is buried beside her first husband under a beautiful summer shade tree in the church's cemetery.
Then, on January 28, 1847, Hannah passed away, and the four children became wards of the court. The court took control of all the property and advertised it to be sold at auction. The sale included all the farm animals, current crops, the interest in the cotton gin, warehouse, and the three faithful Negro slaves. The advertisement attracted the Calhoun brothers in Troup County GA. to come to Bibb County, AL and investigate the sale. (Note: See "The Plantation Family," pages 20-30.)
Children of Samuel Woodruff and Hannah Lavalle are:
13 i. Cicero D. R.4 Woodruff, born 1827 in Bibb County, AL; died Bef. 1860. He married Cryia Ann Ware August 04, 1842 in Shelby County, AL; born Abt. 1825 in Weehawken, Hudson, NJ.
14 ii. Amerzona Woodruff, born 1829; died 1849.
15 iii. Minerva Narcissus Anne Frances Woodruff, born 1832 in Centerville, Bibb County, Alabama; died 1903 in McCalle. Jefferson County, Alabama. She married Henry David Calhoun January 31, 1850 in Centerville, Bibb County, Alabama; born 1821 in Fairfield County, S.C.; died 1868 in Bibb County . AL.
Notes for Henry David Calhoun:
Henry David Calhoun was my greatgrandfather. The following is taken from the notes of William S. Perry: Henry David was given his mother's maiden name, Henry and his uncle's name David. He was born in Fairfield County, S.C. in 1821. After the death of their father, Alexander Calhoun, the family went to Troupe County, GA. In 1847, he and his brothers, James and Alexander, went to Bibb County,Alabama; and purchased a forty acre farm in Centerville adjoining a farm once owned by Samuel and Hannah Woodruff. With both Samuel and Hannah dead, Henry became the legal guardian of the four Woodruff children. He acquired the property by accepting the responsibility. He first married the oldest girl, Amerzona Woodruff in 1847. In 1849, Amerzona died shortly after her first son David Henry Alexander Calhoun was born. He then married her sister Frances Woodfuff. They had six children. Henry David Calhoun died in 1868 in Alabama of Cholera.
5 Nov. 2000 - Went to Centerville with Bill to see the layout of the land. There was 750 acres along both sides of the Cahaba River from around the Mt. Zion Church area down to the Perry County Line. The original 80 acres of land is right across the Cahaba River Bridge in Centerville, and the Centerville High School is now on part of this property. Henry also purchased 95 acres of land near the Tannehill Blast Furnace, Tannehill State Park, on the Tuscaloosa County Line. He built a home there, and he a Frances, and the children lived in this home. He mined iron ore in that area, and took it to the Tannehill Blast Furnace. When the Civil War broke out, this furnace and surrounding land owners were supporting the war effort. Croxton, out of Iowa, gave the orders to destroy the furnace, which they did, and burn the homes in the area, Henry's home being one of them.
16 iv. Samuel Woodruff, Jr., born 1834 in Bibb County, AL. He married Martha Portlock October 10, 1853 in Lauderdale County, AL1.
17 v. Columbus Q. G. Woodruff, born 1836 in Bibb County, AL; died Aft. 1860. He married Rachael A. Drennan April 12, 1859 in Ashely County, AR, Film# 0970981-09709086; born Abt. 1837.
1. Alabama Marriages 1800-1920, OSPage 58. Endnotes 1. Written Family Records.