21 July 2013

Sallie Lincecum's Widow Pension Saga

What a difference ten years makes when applying for a widow's pension...I guess.

Sallie (Kirksey) Lincecum was the wife of Brazos D. Lincecum, married 26 October 1871 in Caldwell County, Texas. They are also my second cousins, 6x removed.

Sallie's signature, 1917.
Brazos enlisted in the Confederate Army in 1862, when he was just 19 years old. He was a soldier in Company K, 36th Texas Infantry. And, at the time of his death in 1913, Brazos was living in a Confederate Home in Austin, Texas. So why was Sallie's application for a widow's pension rejected when she applied in 1917?

Well, one of the first notations I saw that might be a problem was this: "Husband of applicant died at the Confederate Home at Austin. Applicant has not preserved any records."

Nonetheless, Caldwell County Judge J. T. Ellis attempted to get information on Sallie's behalf by a letter to the Commissioner of Pensions:
I am enclosing the application of Mrs. Sallie Lincecum for a Confederate pension; she is very old and feeble and is unable to give definite information as to the command in which her husband served; It is a well known fact however in this county, that B D Lincecum was a Confederate Veteran and that he died at the Home in Austin in April, 1913...
The commissioner did request information from the war department and received notice that Brazos B. (aka Brazos D.) was indeed a member of the company K, 36 Regt, TX Cav, CSA, but that he was listed as deserted on the roll for Feb 1864. It was noted, however, that he was on the roll for January 1865 with no specific information regarding presence or absence. All that prompted the rejection of Sallie's application:
Dear Madam --
I have your application for a pension but am compelled to reject same as the war records at Washington show that B. D. Lincecum Deserted Feb. 2, 1864.
Sallie's signature, 1927.
Fast forward ten years. Sallie again applies for a widow's pension. This time attorney Henry Fielder appeals on her behalf with nothing more than a "Dear Sir: Enclosed application of Mrs. Sallie Lincecum for pension as widow of Confederate soldier."

This time the war department fails to mention B. D.'s desertion: "The records show that B. D. Lincecum, pvt., Co. K, 36th. Tex. Inf., C.S.A., enlisted Feb. 28, 1862, at San Antonio, Tex., and on muster roll for Jan. and Feb. 1865, (last on file) his presence or absence is not stated." -- Lo and behold, Sallie gets her pension. Unfortunately, she died January 1929. Instead of getting the pension for a likely deserved twelve years, she got it for less than two.

The relationship between Sally and B. D. is a murky one. I have yet to find them in the 1900 census, which I would desperately love to see. Are they together? Maybe an odd question to ask, but I have my reasons. In 1910 (before B. D.'s death in 1913) Sallie is living with her brother, listed as widowed. And on her husband's death certificate (about sixteen years before Sallie's death), B. D. is listed as a widower. Furthermore, though they both rest in Caldwell County, Texas, Brazos and Sallie are in different cemeteries.

Maybe I'm making something out of nothing.

11 July 2013

Rincerum? Really? That Should be Lincecum!

The surname LINCECUM is not an easy one to transcribe. I know that and do not begrudge anyone's rendition of it when working hard to read those records. I'd much rather lean toward the end of being thankful for the transcribers and resulting indexes.

I do tend to chuckle, however, when I see seemingly odd attempts at a LINCECUM transcription. The latest is in the 1940 United States Census at Ancestry.com (which can be searched for free, btw). I initially couldn't find cousin Addison Lincecum where I thought he should be. But when you have this surname, you get used to that quickly. I searched using the first name of his wife, Letha, in the appropriate county and state (Wharton, Texas) and found her with the surname of RINCERUM. The family consisted of Dr. A. L., Letha, and Barnett -- that's them!

One thing I don't remember knowing (does that ever happen to you?) about cousin Addison was his work as Postmaster in El Campo, TX. It was the occupation listed in the census. It seems he held the position for about twelve years.

From Appointments of U.S. Postmasters, 1832-1971 at Ancestry.

09 July 2013

O.M.G. Strawberry Bread

We had a good deal on some nice strawberries recently at work, so I partook and purchased a couple of pounds. Little did I know how that simple transaction would change my life. Exaggeration? I think not, but you be the judge.

I was poking around the 'net for a strawberry bread recipe, and what I found did not disappoint. After giving it a go, what resulted was quite possibly one of the best things I've ever eaten. Definitely the best strawberry bread I've ever eaten.

Yep, all that strawberry goodness in one loaf!

The recipe is from Saveur. More specifically, Saveur kitchen assistant Farideh Sadeghin. It has a yield of two loaves, but, me being me, I cut it in half for one loaf. I know that doesn't always work in baking, but this one turned out just fine.

There is cinnamon in the mix, and you can taste it nicely in the batter before baking. (I think that batter alone would make a nice coffee cake, but that's for another day.) But I got barely a hint of it after baking, so don't let that scare you. The recipe also calls for strawberry jam to be swirled into the top. Between me and you, I wouldn't do that unless maybe you had freshly made jam at your fingertips. Store bought jam (IMHO) puts a damper on the fresh strawberry flavor of the rest of the bread.

Another delectable of this loaf is the slight crisp and crunch of the crust. That sugar adds a lovely texture as well as yummy-ness.

Funny thing is, just two people managed to make that single loaf of strawberry bread disappear in about 24 hours. B (obviously) agreed with me that it was so good -- Oh. My. Goodness good. So much so, that he made a second loaf with the second pound of strawberries.

P.S. It's pretty darn good for breakfast with (can you guess?) -- Blueberry Butter!

Recipe after one more enticing photo...

O.M.G. Strawberry Bread

Adapted from Saveur kitchen assistant Farideh Sadeghin's recipe here.


  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 + 1/8 (or, 5/8) cup canola oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups strawberries, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup strawberry jam (optional)


  1. Heat oven to 350°, and grease a 9x5 loaf pan.
  2. Whisk flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt in a large bowl.
  3. Whisk sugar, oil, and eggs in a separate bowl. Combine wet ingredients into dry ingredients. Stir in strawberries.
  4. Pour batter into pan. If using jam, just dollop across the top and swirl into batter.
  5. Bake until golden brown, about an hour (mine took 1 hr, 6 min). Let cool a bit before turning it out of the pan -- about 30 minutes.

Yield: 1 loaf

02 July 2013

Ada Died of T. B. (Tombstone Tuesday)

I don't know why, but even after researching my family history for many, many years, I'm still saddened when I find out a relative died young. In this instance, the young age is 49. Ada Rhodes was born about September 1875 in Washington County, Georgia to T. P. and Fanny (Martin) Rhodes. Ada died 23 May 1925 in Wheeler County, Georgia. The cause of death was simply indicated on her death certificate as T. B. Ada suffered with the disease of tuberculosis for at least five years.

From Georgia's Virtual Vault
(Permanent link)

Upon her death, Ada was buried in Erick Cemetery. Her husband, Lucien E. Avant, joined her some 32 years later.

FindAGrave Memorial #67116817
Photo by Craig & Tonya Banks

01 July 2013

Sweet Mountain Dew Bread

Since I've started making these jams and butters, I decided to start looking into making my own sweet breads (yep, that's how I like to eat my jams and butters -- with more sugar). I also thought of it as a cost-cutting measure. Some of the breads I like to eat are crazy priced.

I'm not new to making bread; I've been getting paid to do it for about twenty years. It's not often something I do at home, though. Many, many years ago I owned a bread machine. We used it often enough, but when I got my all-time favorite kitchen appliance it seemed a little unnecessary so we got rid of it. What's my all-time favorite appliance? The Kitchen Aid mixer, of course!

My Kitchen Aid is one of the classics (that's really what they call it now). I've had it for about twelve years, and it still works wonderfully. I've thought about upgrading to one of the artisan mixers, but that would be filling a luxurious want more than a need. Maybe one day, but probably not as long as my classic continues to do the job well.

I guess the reason why I shared that with you is because of the recipe book I used for the sweet bread -- it's a collection of recipes for bread machines. (But I'm here to tell you, you don't have to have a bread machine to use the recipes!)

The recipe that follows is for an egg bread with slightly sweet overtones, using Mountain Dew instead of water. It's delicious with blueberry butter, and it makes a mean honey smoked turkey sandwich.

Wet Ingredients

Ready to Bake


Sweet Mountain Dew Bread

Adapted from Sweet Bread recipe, pg. 59, The All-New Ultimate Bread Machine Cookbook


  • 3/4 cup Mountain Dew
  • 1 extra-large egg
  • 1 extra-large egg yolk
  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter, cut up
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 3 cups bread flour
  • 1 packet fast-rise yeast


  1. Add dry ingredients to mixer. Next add the butter and incorporate. Then add the egg, egg yolk, and Mountain Dew. Mix until dough forms, cleans the bowl, and has proper development.
  2. Let dough rest for about an hour. Shape it into a loaf and place it in pan.
  3. Let dough proof in pan for about two hours.
  4. Bake in a 375° oven for about 25 minutes. Turn out of pan and let cool on rack.
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