January 17, 2007

Joseph R. and Martha Elizabeth Gragg Coffey

Joseph R. Coffey, born Dec. 2, 1849 in Caldwell Co., NC, married Martha Elizabeth Gragg, born May, 1850 in Caldwell Co., on Sep. 19, 1869 in that county.

Joseph was the son of Zachariah (Zack) and Margaret (Maggie) Coffey Coffey. Joseph died May, 1936 in Caldwell Co.

Martha was the daughter of Johnson P. Gragg and Nancy Jane Cuthbertson, natives of Burke Co., NC.

Joseph and Martha had eight children:

Reuben Finley, born Jul. 3, 1870, died Nov. 15, 1955, married Flora Elllen Hollifield Dec. 14, 1893 in Caldwell Co. Flora was born May 27, 1876 in Caldwell Co. and died there on Nov. 18, 1956. They had at least four children: Alfred Linney; Martha Viena; Joseph Merritt and Wiley Earl.

Anna Martha - no information

David William, born Oct. 6, 1874, died 1966. Married Martha Etta Destimonia (Dessie) Crump, daughter of David and Mahulda Jane Clark Crump, in 1901. Dessie was born Jun. 20, 1883 in Avery Co., NC. The NC Index to Delayed Births names David as Daniel William Coffey, but his obituary names him David William. Their children were: Jennie Decola; Joseph Howard; Leonard Gilbert; Jerome; Dillard Green; and Verlene.

Update Feb. 11, 2008: David William Coffey obituary, unknown newspaper:

D. W. Coffey

David William Coffey, 91, of Star Route, Lenoir, passed away at 10 a.m. Saturday in a Blowing Rock Hospital following several months' illness.

Born in Caldwell County Oct. 6, 1874, he was the son of the late Joseph Coffey and Elizabeth Gragg Coffey. He was a member of New Hopewell Baptist Church where he served as a deacon for over 70 years. He was self-employed as a nurseryman.

Funeral services were conducted at 3 p.m. today at Globe Baptist Church by Rev. Basil Tester and Rev. Herring J. Crisp. Burial followed in Globe Baptist Cemetery. Greer Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements.

Surviving Mr. Coffey are his wife, Martha Etta Destamona Crump Coffey; five sons, Ivey W., Howard and Jerome Coffey, all of Route 8, Lenoir, Leonard Coffey of Star Route and Dellard Coffey of Route 4, Boone; two daughters, Mrs. Sidney (Jennie) Joplin of Route 2, Hudson, and Mrs. Samuel (Verleen) Beck of Warren, Mich.; 28 grandchildren; and 10 great-great-grandchildren; one brother, John Coffey of Blowing Rock; and one sister, Mrs. Sam Aldridge of Lenoir.
According to NC birth records (Roll Number: B_C007_68001 Volume: 6 Page: 201), Daniel [sic] W. Cofffey was born Oct. 6, 1874 in Avery Co. to Joseph and Elizabeth Gragg Coffey.

Prior to his marriage to Dessie, David was married to Gertrude Triplett, who was the mother of Ivey Watson. Gertrude apparently died in childbirth because in 1900, Ivey was with his paternal grandparents in Caldwell Co., and David was enumerated as a widower living alone in Globe Twp., Caldwell Co.

Leonard Bealer, born Mar. 6, 1876, died Aug. 11, 1960. He married Eliza Alice Townsend, born Feb. 24, 1886, died Jul. 16, 1969. Alice had been previously married in 1907 to Willard T. Coffey, born c1880, son of Scott Rabon and Margaret Hollander Coffey. Children by Willard were: Margaret Mae; Florence; Balsom Joseph; Caledonia Doris; Mary Blanche; Harrison; Jimmy Clayton; and Blaine. I do not know of any children by Leonard.

John Wesley (Happy John) - see Singing on the (Grandfather) Mountain

Roby Columbus, born Jun. 16, 1881, died Sep. 1964. He married Lester Pearl Elrod c1907. Lester was born c1889, a daughter of William G. and Laura V. Green Elrod. Their children were: Hellen; Dallas Eugene; Deward Belmont; Omer Roby; Ruby Almeda; Dennis Owen; Edward; and two daughters for whom I have no given name.

Cleveland, born c1883. I'm not certain that Cleveland is a son of Joseph. However, he does appear in the 1920 Caldwell Co. census as a neighbor residing between Joseph and the family of Joseph's son "Happy John." Cleveland married Hattie L. Ramsey, born c1888 and had children: Wheeler E.; and Blain.

Lora Destomonia, born Mar. 1888, married Samuel A. Aldridge, Jr c1917. Sam was born c1894 in NC. Their children were: Howard Glenn; Murphy Lail; Edith Floe; Audry Clair; Darrell Claude; Gerald Guy; Lyle Byard; and Ula.

Please contact me at the e-mail address above with additions and/or corrections.

Photo courtesy Margaret Coffey Farley

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