Burwell Blanton was born in Coffee County Tennessee on 9 January 1838 to Smith Blanton and Nancy C. Willis. He married Clementine Sartain before 1870. Most likely he divorced Clemmentine since she dies in 1896. He had two daughters with Clementine. They lived with theri mother after their parents split up. He married Emily Tatum on 18 December 1877.
Emily Tatum was born on 5 November 1837 at Jones Creek, Dixon County, Tennessee to George Washington Tatum and Parthenia Murell. Emily and her first husband, Solomon Jackson Whitwell, were married on 26 November 1857. They lived in Hickman County, Tennessee and had at least four children: Thomas Benton Whitwell, Susan Palthenia Whitwell, John Marshall Whitwell and Osce Jackson Whitwell. Then on 3 February 1865 Solomon Whitwell dies in South Carolina, probably fighting in the Civil War. In 1877 she marries Burwell Blanton. The 1880 Census indicates Emily could not read or write.
Burwell and his family met the missionaries in 1879 and are among the first few to join the church in the Cane Creek area. They were baptized and confirmed on 20 June 1879 by Elder Joseph Argyle.
Burwell Blanton (misspelled as Buswell) is described in Elder Belnap’s journal as a member living on Beaver Dam near (six miles north of) Cane Creek in 1879. Franklin Spencer baptized two of his sons, - actually stepsons John Marshall Whitwell and Osce Jackson Whitwell - in late August or early September 1880.
Burwell is at one point the Branch President before he emigrates to Colorado. In 1900, while living in Colorado his wife and step daughter die. Burwell then drops off the record. There is a Burwell Blandon living in Arkansas at this time, and some have decided they are the same person. But I am not able to reconcile some of the details to my satisfaction.
Susan Palthena Whitewall was born on 22 March 1860 at Cane Creek, Tennessee. She was the stepdaughter of Burwell Blanton. She was baptized on 20 June 1879 by Elder Joseph Argyle and confirmed by Elder Martin Garn. She joined the church on the same day as her mother and stepfather. She died, unmarried in 1900 while they were in Colorado.
John Marshall Whitwell was born on 30 November 1863 in Hickman County Tennessee. A note in Hyrum Belnap’s autobiography claims that he was baptized in 1880, probably in September, by Franklin Spencer. Though I can find little about his life, I do see he married twice; first to Euphamie Highfill in 1891, and after the death of his first wife, to Zella Florence Bradin in 1898. Both marriages were in Missouri, and he died in Jackson County, Missouri on 3 September 1928. This location and the fact that his name is not on any of the LDS membership lists I have read makes me wonder if he joined one of the other Restorationist movements.
Osce Jackson Whitwell was born on 3 December 1864 in Hickman County. A note in Hyrum Belnap’s autobiography claims that he was baptized in 1880, probably in September, by Franklin Spencer. He marries Theodosia M Elliott in Jackson County, Missouri in1885. He dies in 7 Feb 1951 in Augusta, Kansas but is buried in Jackson County, Missouri. Like his brother I wonder about which church he ultimately affiliates himself.
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