Mixsonian

 THE MIXON-MIXSON FAMILY

1798 BENJAMIN FRANKLIN MIXON, JOHN MIXON (1775), JESSE MIXON (702), JOHN MIXON IV (6), JOHN MIXON III (3), JOHN MIXON II (2), JOHN MIXON I (1)

Benjamin Franklin Mixon, s. of John J. and Rebecca Slade Mixon, was b. in Marion County, MS in 1833, d. in Battle of Atlanta, July 22, 1863 with the Confederate Army, member of MS State Guards,17th MS Infantry. In 1853 he m. Elizabeth Welch - b. Mar. 18, 1827, d. Aug. 13, 1896, bur. Ferguson Cemetery, Perry County, MS, the dau. of Henry and Sarah PageWelch of Jones County, MS, and a granddau. of Richard Welch, a Revolutionary soldier.

This story was told in several families whose descendants Marguerite Biemer visited:

Of the eight sons of John Mixon who fought in the Civil War in the Confederate Army, only three returned; John Christopher Mixon, George Washington Mixon, and Cornelius Lofton Mixon.

When the Civil War broke out, Frank had started his crops. After he harvested the crops, he joined the Confederate Army. He was twenty-nine years old, married, and the father of three children and another "on the way." He enlisted six months before his daughter, Martha Jane Mixon, was born on March 25, 1862. This would be in September 1861.

Frank had been with troops fighting somewhere in Tennessee and Georgia when he was given a furlough. Martha Jane Mixon was two years old when he saw her for the first time.

Soon atter his return to the fighting in Georgia, he sent his wife what money he had and was killed in battle a short time later. An officer notified his widow, Elizabeth Welch Mixon, of Frank's death, and told her Frank had been a good soldier. This information was given to me by Mrs. Biddie Ferguson McAdory, who was thirteen years old when her grandmother died and had this information directly from Elizabeth Welch Mixon. Mrs. McAdory had seen the letter which was destroyed by fire when her mother's house burned about 1932. She also states her grandfather was under Dr. J. B. Kennedy. In Civil War records, there is an unit of Kennedy Guards, Company "G" 27th Regiment Mississippi Infantry in the Confederate Army under the command of Julius B. Kennedy, who died in the Battle of Atlanta. Mrs. Martha Jane Mixon Ferguson wrote to her neice, Fannie Bertrand Richardson, Movember 23, 1919. In this letter she states her father was killed during the Battle ot Atlanta. This battle took place July 22, 1864.

There was also a letter to Elizabeth Welch Mixon from someone in Mariette, Georgia, to tell her where Frank was buried, and even gave her the number of the grave. This letter also destroyed when Jane Ferguson's house burned. When I visited the cemetery at Marietta, Georgia, in 1957, there were no names nor numbers: only a marker placed with a group of graves naming a state. The lady in charge of the cemetery records let me see an old book in which some names were entered. There was not a Benjamin Franklin Mixon, but there was a F. B. Mixon from South Carolina. The lady explained to me, the women of that area buried the men after the fighting was over. If the body was not too decomposed after two or three days in the heat, and if there were letters or papers on the body, it could be identified. Some of the bodies were so badly decomposed, the ladies were forced to wrap scarves around their heads in order to complete the work of burying the dead, so very few names are listed in the book. Also, no record of the correspondence with relatives of missing men had been kept.

Another daughter to Benjamin Franklin Mixon, Mary Margaret Mixon Bertrand, lived with her first cousin, Mrs. Lizzie McKenzie, several times. They would often discuss the older Mixons, and exchange information on their families. When I asked Cousin Lizzie about my great grandfather and what grandmother had told her, she said two men had signed affidavits stating they were with Benjamin Franklin Mixon when he was hit and they saw him die, so the children would be accepted at an orphanage. This orphanage was about four miles north of Meridian at a place called Lauderdale Springs, a former health resort. It was converted into a home for orphans of soldiers of the Confederate Army. It was run by a Methodist Preacher, and operated by the Methodist. The four children of Benjamin Franklin Mixon are shown on the census of 1870 at the orphanage at Lauderdale Springs in Lauderdale County, Mississippi.

Benjamin Franklin Mixon died in battle and is buried in an unmarked grave, and no proof exists that he was ever in any army. Only four children on a census in an orphanage, and a letter from a daughter to a granddaughter saying he died in the Battle of Atlanta. His widow put their children in the orphanage so they would have an education. She later homesteaded land, made no claim for money, and asked for no pension.

There is a story about Elizabeth Welch being courted by a Baptist Minister and her family was not too pleased as they were Methodist. The Baptist Minister was a lanky fellow and owned a swayed-back horse, The poor horse was so swayed the stirrups had to be chinched high so the feet would not dangle near the ground. When the minister rode the horse, he sat with arms akimbo and knees spread out much as Washington Irving described Ichabod Crane in The Headless Horseman. It was a funny sight. Martha Jane Welch, a younger sister, went out to a rail fence near the hour, took down the top rail and placed a saddle on the next rail and began to "ride" away with arms akimbo and knees out. Some of those on the porch that Sunday afternoon thought it was a very funny sight and were laughing just when the minister rode up. He rode on to the house, lifted his hat politely and said, "Howdy Miss Betsy" and rode on. That was the end of the courtship.

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