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JoAnn Hemperley, 4 yrs. old

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, we should give thanks for all that we have, all those we have lost and the cherished memories we have of them.  Today’s memory is of Jo Ann Hemperley, the third child of Jesse Raymond and Earnestine Jane Parker Hemperley.

Today would have been the fifty-fourth birthday of Jo Ann who was born on November 23, 1961 in Vivian, Louisiana and was welcomed home by older sister, Janet, brother, Johnny Ray and a large family that included grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins.

Jo  Ann Hemperley

Jesse and Earnestine lived just down the street from my family for years and so their children, while cousins of my kids, grew up more like brothers and sisters.  They learned to ride bikes, water ski, camp and crawfish, and fish.  They got into trouble together, shared all holidays, and seldom, if ever, fussed.  They were just normal children; mischievous; healthy and happy until the summer of 1972 when Jo Ann became ill.

Jesse and Earnestine were excited about a trip they had won to Las Vegas and Don and I were to be their children’s babysitter while they were gone.  They had barely left when Jo Ann became ill and was seen by Dr. Mack in Shreveport.  Prior to Jesse and Earnestine’s return, Dr. Mack told Don and me she had cancer and needed to be admitted to St. Jude’s Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee.

Upon arriving home Jesse and Earnestine repacked their bags and headed north as there was no time for hesitation in getting to St. Jude’s;  Janet and Johnny would remain with my family.  The next few months were a test of family, love, hope and separation.  Along the way we would learn lessons about family and what bravery one small beautiful little girl would teach us.

During the next six months Jo Ann was poked, prodded, tested, given cancer killing treatments, and lost her hair but I never heard her complain.  On occasions she was able to return home for short visits and while she was not able to enjoy her siblings and family members as before, you could see happiness in her eyes to be home and surrounded by loved ones.

She was always hopeful the next treatment would be her last.   Losing her long blonde hair wasn’t a big deal since she had gotten a wig at St. Jude’s to cover her baldness.  She loved the staff at St. Jude’s and told of their sweet comforting manner.  She was a brave little trouper with a lot of courage which each of us admired.

On February 11, 1973 Jo Ann passed away at St. Jude’s.  She is buried at Mt. Zion Cemetery in Carthage, Texas.

Jo Ann's tombstone


This Thanksgiving we should give thanks for our families and the importances of each individual for each is dear and sometimes teach us the true meaning of life, love and family.  This Thanksgiving we should give thanks for those we have loved and lost for without them there would be no warm memories.  May your Thanksgiving be filled with family, food and warm memories!




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Kelly Anne Hemperley

She looked so tiny as she climbed the steps to the red brick building for her first day of school. Her dishwater blonde ponytails bobbed and danced beneath blue ribbons which matched the ruffled dress she wore. She was elated; I had my doubts. After all, she was just a mere babe, not yet five years old.

We met the teacher, Mrs. LeBleu, who after making announcements about needing room mothers, announced the children were to stay another hour……..WITHOUT MOMS………. And that we should return at the appointed hour to pick up our darlings. Kelly knew no one other than Donna, our next door neighbor and her best friend.

I drove around town a while, thinking I should not leave her all alone, but knowing inside, this was my first step, not hers, to her growing up.

Arriving back at school at the appointed time, she jumped back into the car; ponytails once so carefully preened, all but out of the rubber bands. Ribbons, chosen especially for the day and carefully tied earlier were now hanging by a few mere strands of wispy hair. She was full of herself! She had met Donna there and had made some new friends.

Her excitement of the morning, what she needed for school, where her desk was, all made her babble on without once taking a breath. We had to go stock up on Big Chief notebooks and Crayola crayons.   She also needed pencils; paste, scissors and the list went on and on!

“Know what I did today, Mom?” she asked as she fidgeted with her ruffles.

“No what, Kel?”

“I sang a song in class today!”

“You did what?” I asked not thinking this was my shy quiet daughter.

“Well, the teacher asked if anyone would like to sing a song for the class and nobody else would, so I did.”

I could hardly believe my ears. Here was my little munchkin, who I had been so worried about, in front of the entire class, entertaining all thirty-five of squirming, wiggling five and six year olds. My Kelly? I mean, she would barely speak to visitors in our own home. Where did all of shyness go?

From that day forward I knew she wasn’t nearly as inhibited as Mom thought. From that day I learned you don’t push her into doing things, unless she wants to do them anyway. From that day, I learned she would make it alright without Mom; but could Mom make it without Kelly.

I also learned she is like a beautifully wrapped birthday present…… you don’t know what’s inside; you just know it is something extremely special.

Step two of the growing up process took me quiet by surprise, as she proudly pranced into the kitchen one night as I was pouring cornbread batter into the pan to bake. She still wore ponytails, only now there were light brown and no longer sported ribbons. The ruffles and dress were now replaced by blue jeans, tennis shoes, and a shirt that was too large for her, or for that matter, her brother as well.

“Mom, I need a bra!” she proudly proclaimed with a meek smile that timidly showed her tinseled braced teeth.

I poured cornbread batter onto the over door and missed the pan completely!

Looking up at her in total disbelief of what had just fallen upon my ears, I was speechless. I couldn’t keep her the little girl who sold Browne cookies forever. I had been too busy running her to band practice, the orthodontist or slumber parties to even notice her budding maturity. However I did decide at that moment if she was old enough for a bra, she was old enough to make cornbread and promptly taught her how.

Kelly and cornbread


The next few years were filled with typical teenage disasters. Everyone else had three holes pierced in each ear and she only had two. She hated math. She needed a date for a special party. Her brother wouldn’t allow her to tag along on camping trips when it was clearly for males only. She did learn that while she liked the money of her after school job, being there on time was a drag. She also learned that all fifteen of her best friends could fit into her orange VW bug, complete with sunroof, without the police stopping her.

Once she tried to run away from home when she was sure her dad and I loved her brother the most. That myth was soon dissipated when I assured her that, in the words of my mom, I had sweated blood to give her life and what I said was the law! After a good swift spanking, that of course hurt me more than her, we unpacked her bags.

In many ways she was too “normal”. We never had to threaten nor beat her into oblivion to get her homework done. She never questioned a “no”; was always home on time from a date, and for the most part, helped with chores around the house without a confrontation. She was an honor student, an all-state band member, a class officer and won the “I Dare You” award at commencement exercises.

Then one night she came home early from a date with Scott, the tall skinny boy with an appetite not unlike a mother wolf with pups, who had been camping on our den couch for quite a while. She was sporting a new diamond engagement ring. No one cried. N one objected. No one threw the lanky kid with the enormous appetite out the door. She was truly happy; Scott, Don and I were too and on that night, he became our second son.

Scott and Kelly 1985

All of our lives have changed since she married in 1985. Her pony tails were replaced by short strands of silver; her smile is radiant (thanks to braces); she seldom wears ruffles much less leotards, She has two beautiful daughters and one grandson and Scott has loved and cherished her for all these years.

Since today is her birthday, I wish her love and happiness. She never ceases to amaze me! Every day I have with her is like opening a birthday gift.



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Albert W Eason, Shreveport

In December my blog shared information I had retrieved from the diary of Albert Walden Eason.  Since that time I have been able to gather more records and stories about him.  Sadly I say, some years are still missing, but as a genealogy hound, there is sure to be another trail to sniff out.

Being the writer he was, he made note of his day to day activities as well as his financial affairs in his diary.  He bought stock regularly, banked at the Bloomburg State Bank and was generous in giving to his mother and brothers.  He studied Commercial Partnership Calculations though correspondence courses and scored a 98% on his test. On one trip to New York City, he stopped at the Treasury Building on Wall Street where a statue of George Washington took the oath of the first President of the United States.  His written comment was, “The view of the site was interesting and it was not without a feeling of awe that I realized I was standing upon historical ground directly connected with the history of our great United States.” I make mention of this as it will come into play in his investments in the coming years.

Although the diaries I was able to read,  covered only the years from 1924-1926, I have been able to learn from the 1930 census he was stationed at the Navy Shipyard in Charleston, South Carolina.  He was a pharmacist mate and had been married for one year.

Albert married Anna Tate of New York; the daughter of Samuel Tate and Lena Éclair. Samuel emigrated from Ireland   to New York in 1879; became a naturalized citizen in 1883; married Lena, a native of New York; and was a carpenter/home builder.

Of Albert and Anna’s union there were two children born, namely Albert Jr. and Janet. In this article located on genealogybank.com published in the San Diego, California Evening Tribune on April 23, 1933 the announcement is made of the birth of his son.

Albert Eason, Jr.'s birth

After retiring from the Navy Albert moved to Dallas Texas where he worked as a civil employee of the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers. The following article was located on genealogybank.com. The publication was June 16, 1956 in the Dallas Morning News.

Albert Eason service, corps of engineers

Anna passed away February 8, 1971 in Dallas Texas. Her obit was published the following day in the Dallas Morning News.

Anna Tate Eason Obit

Prior to meeting and marrying Anna, Albert wrote in his diaries of his second cousin, Lettie Beatrice Hemperley and his fondness for her.

Beatrice Hemperley Tolleson Crain Eason downtown Shreveport

These are some excerpts:

Albert speaks of Bea 1

Albert speaks of Bea 2

During Anna’s lifetime and particularly after Beatrice’s husband, Ernest Crain, died, Albert and Anna visited Beatrice. Following Anna’s death, Albert and Beatrice grew closer and married on July 10, 1972 in Shreveport, Louisiana where Beatrice lived. I remember being at my father-in-law’s (John Raymond Hemperley) home shortly after their marriage when they came for a visit. I found him to be warm, personable, and outgoing.

Beatrice was a gregarious, outgoing, fun lady and, to me, was an independently strong woman. She worked in Shreveport many years and rode the trolley to work. Some of the places where she worked were: Millers’s Drug, Barquette Restaurant, Theo’s Restaurant, and her favorite place, Strawn’s. She had also worked at the shell plant during the war. Beatrice had an adopted daughter from her first marriage, Ruby Tolleson and she and her 2nd husband, Ernest Crain were parents to Dorothy and Ernest Jr.

Beatrice and Albert’s marriage was unusual in that they never lived in the same house. Beatrice would not allow him to move in and so when the house next door came up for sale, Albert bought it and established his household where he continued his diary writings until the day he died.

Bea and Albert dressed up

Beatrice passed away on July 27, 1988 and is buried by husband, Ernest Crain, Sr., in Shreveport, Louisiana.

Albert continued his residence in Shreveport until his death on November 22, 1988. He was returning from a month long to trip to Connecticut to visit friends and died in flight over Georgia.Special gifts to loved ones are listed in his will filed in Caddo Parish.

Albert Eason Will

Remember earlier how I told you about his investments? This inventory of stocks is from Albert’s succession.

Albert's stocks

A total of 4,250 shares! And he also had an annuity and real estate. I would say through his business acumen, good planning and frugal ways he was financially comfortable at the time of his death.

Albert was laid to rest along his wife Anna at Restland Memorial Park in Dallas, Texas.

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Maude Gladys Hemperley, daughter of Jefferson Beauregard Hemperley and Louvenia Virginia Sheppard, was born in Miller County, Arkansas on January 5, 1896.  There were thirteen children in the family.  As you can see by this Ripley’s Believe It Or Not article, which appeared in the Shreveport Times on October 3, 1953, she was a little different than her siblings! It makes me wonder what color her parents’ eyes were.

Maude Hemperly

The Bus

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Over the past month or so I have attended two meetings regarding the importance of writing our family stories.  The first was hosted by GENCOM Genealogical Society at the Broadmoor Branch Library in Shreveport.  Gary Calligas, publisher of The Best of Times magazine as well as being the host of a radio program by the same name, was the guest spokesman. Mr. Calligas stressed the importance of interviewing older relatives and writing their stories as well as your own.

A few days later I met with another group of ladies interested in writing at the home of Karen Logan of Gilliam.  Our inspiration came from Harriet Daggert, a retired school teacher, who has begun a number of these groups in our area. After reading stories written by a group she had initiated at a retirement home she then challenged our group, of about twelve people, to meet again in two weeks with a story of our high school years.  Below is my submission regarding years at North Caddo High School in Vivian, Louisiana.

The Bus

The big yellow school bus pulled up in front of me, the door opened and there sat Mr. Self, the driver, inviting me to climb aboard.  Never in my life had I ridden a school bus! I thought this to be so degrading but soon came to the realization that many of the giggling kids aboard had never known another way of getting to school.  They had never known having their parent drop them off or being able to walk next door to high school.  Perhaps riding the bus might not be as bad as when, at a different school, our yard abutted the school’s.  That was where my younger sisters set up a booth, much like a lemonade stand, where they tried to sell castoff dried locust shells to passing students. Talk about being embarrassed!

I was truly on my own that January morning as Mother was twenty-five miles away enrolling those two bug selling brat sisters in their school.  I found most of the riders on the bus were friendly and began asking where I was from, what grade I was in and my name.  My name!!!  Did I have to tell them???  Okay, so it’s Raby but I go by my nickname, Kookie, so please call me that.  There were the usual snickers as the boys promptly called me Rabies!  No, it’s not Roby, Ruby, Robbie, nor Rabby.  It’s Raby (Ray-B) but just call me Kookie.

Arriving at the campus of North Caddo High I was speechless!  It was huge!  There were rows and rows of the big yellow buses backed up in the drop off zone waiting to off load kids.  I had never seen that many teenagers hurriedly scampering off to the different “wings” trying to beat the bell before first class.  After all, in my three previous high schools, the total enrollment was smaller than the freshman class here.

 I think it was Mr. Self that directed me to the Principal’s office to enroll.  My curriculum would change that day as North Caddo didn’t teach Spanish but did Latin.  No way!  I was only taking Spanish because Mother wanted me to and I wanted no part of Latin.  Home Economics had already finished sewing so I would learn to cook; but wait; I had already done that in my last school but I had never sewn.  North Caddo didn’t have a girls’ basketball team therefore basketball would only be played in Phys Ed. I was so disappointed. Algebra was beyond the point that I had studied and I felt sure I would never catch up much less make a passing grade.

My biggest fear that day was learning where A, B, and C wings were located.  I didn’t even care where the cafeteria was as my stomach was in turmoil.  And lockers with combinations?  I just knew I would never master that in time to get the appropriate book or make it all the way to a class in a totally different wing before the tardy bell rang.  I had nightmares about wings, lockers and bells the remainder of the year however I managed to finish the year without too many glitches or a trip to the Principal’s office.

By my junior and seniors years, things were much better.  I had made friends and could find my way around campus, beat the bell, and open my locker.   My Phys Ed teacher sponsored a girls’ basketball team at the YWCA in Shreveport and invited me to play.  Luckily I made the Shreveport Y’s All Star Team.  I didn’t place in calendar girl tryouts as I had what mother referred to as “knocked knees”.   It was about that time that an association with Mrs. Amy Gleason began.  She was beautiful inside and out as well as a true Southern lady.   Mrs. Amy taught journalism and English which were my two favorite subjects. In class we wrote the school’s newspaper, the Southern Accent, as well as a skit we preformed at the talent contest about a group of riders on a bus.  My friend and I played the parts of two young girls desperately needing to get off the bus in order to find a restroom. While we didn’t win a prize for our performance, we did get lots of laughs.

During my last year at North Caddo I got a roll in the senior play playing the part of a newlywed. In the anxiety and excitement of performing on stage before a live audience I skipped two pages of the dialogue!  Luckily my “husband” picked it up from that point and the audience never knew.

  By this time riding the bus was no longer denigrating but something I looked forward to.  You see, there was this tall skinny boy with dark hair and beautiful blue eyes who got on in Gilliam.  Now when Mr. Self opened the door, I hurriedly entered and found him seated at the rear of the bus.  He and I became best friends first, dated and following high school, married.

Would you believe my trip to our first home was made on a big Greyhound bus? Only this time Mr. Self wasn’t the driver.  This time upon arriving at my destination there was that same handsome young man, dressed in Air Force blues, waiting to guide me through the bells, wings and the combinations of our lives.

One never knows when the bus door opens and you step in just what lies ahead.

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Henry Fincher Eason

I will never cease to be amazed by the research information, documents, and contacts to be found through internet!  It is truly mindboggling that after extensive research in libraries and courthouses, traipsing through graveyards, genealogy websites, searching high and low, sometimes the “rest of the story” is just a click away.  Such was the case when on October 1st I posted “Road Trip: Henry Fincher Eason”, which is also shared on Facebook.  A long time friend shared that blog with a friend of hers, Lyndal Lane Eason.

Through email, Lane contacted me on Our Families Untold Stories, and told me his grandfather was the brother of Fincher!  He also told me his family held the diary of another uncle, Albert Eason, which would enlighten me as to what lead up to Fincher taking his life.   After several emails and phone calls it was time for another road trip!

It wasn’t long before my genealogy side-kick, Cheri Payton Atkins, and I were in the road to Three States, near Atlanta, Texas, to visit with Lane and his brother, William Winston Eason.  My mind was racing as I drove along wondering of the secrets about to be unveiled; how I would be greeted by the Eason brothers; and would it be possible to copy parts of the diary. All I can say is how incredibly warm and sharing these two men are!

As we sat getting to know each other and chatting about my husband’s connection to the Easons, three diaries written by Uncle Albert were lying before me on Lane’s desk.

Alberts diaries stacked

I could hardly wait until I had them in my hands. The diaries, all written in books issued by the U. S. Navy, contained daily entries about Albert’s naval career, letters from home, and relationships he had with family members. Scattered among the diaries were faded newspaper articles as well as memories recorded by Albert. I couldn’t possibly read it all within the timeframe I had that day. Graciously, Lane and Albert generously loaned them to me to take home to read and copy.

Almost as soon as I arrived home it began raining and so I settled in for the weekend as it would take a while to read all the books. Two contained close to 200 pages and the larger one 400. It was fascinating and like a good novel, I could not put them down!

The newspaper clippings below do not tell which newspapers they appeared nor some of the dates published. Some were entered into Albert’s diary with the dates of when he received them.

Fincher Eason Tax Collector Ends His Life 11-20-1924

Fincher Eason Tax Collector Ends His Life 11-20-1924 continued

In this article you learn that he took his life by ingesting carbolic acid in his Court House office. It also states that he wrote letters grammatically correct, in his perfect penmanship and punctuation precisely accentuated, on the backs of prints of himself that he had planned on using to run for a state office. (Lane and Winston tell me he aspired to become Governor of Arkansas.) Letters addressed to his children and former wife were sealed. He left his wishes for the distribution of his property and speaks of his failing health, as well as accusations against certain individuals.

Fincher Eason Thousands Attend Funeral 12-8-1924

In this article it addresses those in attendance at his funeral, namely the Knights of Templar who conducted the grave services and about seventy-five (75) robed and masked Ku Klux Klansmen! It further states his was said to have been one of the high officials of the Klan. It seems as if he was so highly esteemed that despite his short comings, was regarded as a man with charitable heart and mind who was betrayed by some within his circles.

Before long Sheriff Barber filed claims against Fincher’s estate:

Sheriff files Claims Agains Eason Estate 6-13-1925

Walter S. Harris, administrator of the Estate brings suit to collect tax:

Administrator of Eason Estate Sue to Collect Tax 2-9-1925

And finally, the Bondsmen pay taxes to Arkansas:


Bondsmen for Fincher to Pay Arkansas 10-10-1925

Bondsmen for Fincher Pay State 43,000 1-10-1925

While there is much family speculation as to whom Fincher’s wife had an affair with, there is no name mentioned in Albert’s diary, therefore, I cannot document it. What I do know is that his children were taken from his wife at the time of divorce, remained in his custody until his suicide and then were awarded to his sister to rear.

Fincher wrote of his health in the letters he wrote during his last moments, however those letters are sealed and I have been unable to locate a death certificate. I suppose I will never know of his physical condition.

As I have stated in the previous post Fincher was a leader in his community having been a teacher, principal and superintendent. He was Chairmen of the Registration Board in Miller County during WWI; enlisted as a private and became a Captain. He served as Tax Collector and Clerk of Court of Miller County; held memberships in the Mystic Shrine, Odd Fellows, Knights of Pythias, Woodmen of the World and was a Baptist. Fincher was a high profile man in Miller County.

Perhaps he was overly ambitious; perhaps politics were his downfall. Perhaps there are things better off unknown. However what is known is that he was admired and forgiven for any wrong doings by the citizens of Miller County, Arkansas as demonstrated by the thousands in attendance at his funeral.


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It was a beautiful late September day last Thursday when friend Cheri Atkins and I drove to Texarkana, Arkansas on a quick road trip to do some research at the Miller County Court House. Her goal was for Dial and Collins documents, and I would be searching for Martins and Hemperleys.

As we drove we talked about late blooming summer flowers and how it was difficult it was to recognize some parts of Highway 71 since I-49 construction had changed the scenery. We passed round bales of hay in fields, a pasture filled with a herd of buffalo, churches and graveyards. There was some construction and we even passed a group of prisoners picking up trash along the roadway.  Cheri, who has a vivid imagination, commented on how she thought it would be easy for one of those convicts to escape.  A short time later we passed a police vehicle heading South flying down the road with lights flashing soon to be followed by five more patrol cars.

Arriving at our destination of 400 Laurel Street, there it stood…… the Court House. My imagination ran rampant about the discoveries we were about to make. I could already smell the old books filled with Our Families Untold Stories.

The Court House is located in older section of town filled with homes of the same era and nearby beautiful churches. This was not the original Court House which initially served both Texas and Arkansas, but the one finished in the late 1930s to serve only Miller County, Arkansas.

Miller County Court House

Once inside we must have looked as if we were strangers to its halls as a man I recognized from the Court House’s website as County Judge Larry E. Burgess offered assistance by directing us to the Clerk of Court’s office. I can only sing the praises of those who work there as they were friendly, courteous and only too eager to answer our questions or offer assistance.

The search was on! Cheri and I both were able to obtain documents pertaining to marriage licenses, preacher certificates, deeds and other priceless pieces of our families’ history.  Then it dawned on me that I was standing not only among history of Miller County but the history of one Henry Fincher Eason, former Clerk of Court and Tax Collector of Miller County AND his mother was a Hemperley!

Henry Fletcher Eason-1

(Photo owned by Susie Higginbotham Reynolds)

Fincher Eason (son of Seaborn Sidney) was one of fifteen children born to his father and mother, Luella Hemperley (daughter of Dr. Edward Thomas Hemperley, great grandfather of my husband). His family lived in Sulphur Township on his father’s farm.

He attended college at Louisiana State Normal School and at the age of twenty-two began a career in education. He served as teacher, principal and superintendent. Below is a photo of College Hill Ward School in Texarkana where he was a principal.

Fincher Eason, College Hill School

On December 23, 1908 he married Miss Ollie Minnie Walton and from this union there were six children born, two of which died in infancy.

In 1916 he became Miller County Clerk of Court and served for two terms before becoming Tax Collector in 1920. The 1920 Census shows him living at 414 Hickory Street with his wife and four children: Fincher, Jr. age 9, Sidney S. age 6, William Boyd, age 5 and Evelyn who is 1 year of age. On November 20, 1923 Fincher and Ollie divorced and he retained sole custody of the children.

During WWI he served as Chairman of the registration board; enlisted as a private and reached the rank of Captain.



Recently while looking over notes I had made while interviewing a Hemperley relative thirty years ago, I had jotted down “committed suicide” by his name. It was time to revisit Fincher and locate any information I could find regarding how he died. Below are a couple of articles I found on www.genealogybank.com relating to his death.

Fincher Eason found deadFincher Eason FuneralFincher Eason , Tax office closed

Why, I thought? Why would a man who was a pillar in the community commit suicide?  He had to be well thought of as there were 2,000 people that attended his funeral and 4,000-5,000 at the gravesite!  This man was a 32nd degree Mason, a member of the Mystic Shrine, served as senior deacon of the lodge, Member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, Knights of Pythia, Woodmen of the World and Baptist Church. I had to know more and so I enlisted the help of one of the clerks to locate the probate records from his estate. Surely his will, one of the letters he had written, or the “To The People of Miller County” mentioned in the newspaper article about him being found dead would give me some insight.

His will was not in the Probate Records. None of the letters were.  Nor was the “To the People of Miller County”.  Nothing to give me a hint or understanding of his taking his life.  However, what I did locate was a list of his debts, which amounted to $83,000.  In 1923 that had to be comparable to millions today!

Fincher Eason, Total Debts

As you can see from this document, the administrator of his estate asks the Court to allow 35% payment of his debts or $29,050.

Did he commit suicide because of his divorce; his being the sole parent raising four children; ill health; or the amount of debt he owed? I suppose I will never know!

What I did learn was that the two ounces of poison he took changed the lives of his children forever. Fincher’s sister, Ida Hughes, petitioned the Court for custody of the children as set out by Fincher in his will.

Fincher Eason's Children Guardianship

The children’s mother sued for custody of two of the four children and according to the article below, the judge in the case awarded them to Fincher’s sister, Mrs. Ida Hughes of Bright Star, per his handwritten wishes.

Custody of Henry Fincher Eason's Children





One week later Arkansas State Police and other law enforcement officers are still looking for the escapee.

One week later I am still looking for more information on another escaped man, namely  Henry Fincher Eason!





Throwback Thursday: A Day on the Cossatot

Don Hemperley and Tommy Burge

Don Hemperley and Tommy Burge after a morning of fly fishing on the Cossatot River near Gilham, Arkansas.


According to astrology, Virgo, the sixth sign of the Zodiac, runs from August 23 through September 22 (although some say the cusp day is the 23).  It is the only sign represented by a woman.  Virgos typically are reliable, practical, meticulous and do well in vocations of service, such as doctors, nurses, teachers, bookkeepers.  They are also creative and sensitive.  Do I, as a Virgo, believe all of this?  I don’t put a lot of credence in it however I do read my horoscope daily!

In my family tree of most recent relatives, I have sixteen Virgos not counting myself.  My grandmother was one.  One aunt, one uncle, one daughter, one daughter-in-law, two granddaughters, one grandson, one great grandson, one niece and her husband, one nephew, one nephew’s wife, two great nephews, and one great niece are all Virgos. Whew!  Not to worry only four are the subjects of this post.

Granddaughter Emerson Avery Hemperley (Emy) was born September 3, 1992 in New Orleans, Louisiana to Steve and Andrea Tanet Hemperley.  As a child she took ballet but soon diverted her competitive spirit to sports playing tee ball and soccer.

Emy Hemperley


Emy, 1996

The photo above shows her determination while playing at an arcade in Celebration Station in New Orleans in 1996.

Emy began school in Mandeville, Louisiana; graduated from Sacred Heart Academy in New Orleans, Louisiana.  Following graduation she traveled to Paris, France and has visited other large cities including New York City.   She attended Ole Miss, missed New Orleans, returned and is currently enrolled at the University of New Orleans.  She and her family enjoy spending time at their camp in Monterey, Louisiana however Emy is truly a New Orleans girl to the core!  She loves the city and all it has to offer; Mardi Gras, clubs, good food, family and friends.

Emy at Mardi Gras

Zachery Tucker Hemperley, Emy’s brother, was born September 6, 1994 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  Tucker first attended school in Mandeville, Louisiana and graduated from Jesuit High School in New Orleans.  While living in Mandeville, he played tee ball and loved skate boarding.

Tucker Hemperley

Tucker likes to hunt and fish and can often be found at the family retreat entertaining friends.

Tucker's First Deer

Tucker’s first deer was taken in Monterey, Concordia Parish, Louisiana.  The following photo was made while fishing in Mexico.

Tucker fishing in Mexico

Tucker is in his second year at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge where he pledged K A.  Below is a photo of Tucker and Southern Belle, Gabby Ray at the fraternity’s celebration of the Old South.


Tucker and Gabby

Nine days following Emy’s birth, granddaughter Lauren Elise Brown was born in Hobbs, New Mexico on September 12, 1992 to Scott and Kelly Hemperley Brown.

Lauren was active in scouting beginning at the age of four.  Too young for the Daisys, she attended meetings where he mother was scout leader.

Lauren's first apron

She went on to become a Brownie, Girl Scout, and earned the Silver Star award which is the equivalent to the BSA Eagle Scout.

Lauren Elise Brown

She attended Herndon Magnet School in Gilliam, Louisiana and graduated from Caddo Magnet High School in Shreveport. Lauren enjoys Renaissance Festivals, Dr. Who, fly fishing and camping with family. They have traveled as far West as Colorado, North to South Dakota, and East to Florida and Washington, D. C. Lauren attended University of Louisiana Monroe and Louisiana Technical College in Shreveport where she studied the culinary arts. She is currently employed at a law firm in Shreveport.

the Dawsons

Lauren married Christopher Wayne Dawson and on August 23, 2014 gave birth to another Virgo, a son, Benjamin Rhys Dawson in Shreveport, Louisiana. Ben enjoys being fed, napping, and being spoiled by everyone.

Benjamin Rhys Dawson

And the final featured Virgo is my daughter, Kelly Anne Hemperley Brown. Kelly was born on September 21, 1963 in Texarkana, Arkansas. She was a mischievous child who was always into something. The joke in our family was that had she been born prior her brother, he would never have been born! There was always impishness in her eyes as she was about to get into something. However, to this day when she hears me call out “Kelly Anna”, she knows she’s in deep trouble! Give her a challenge and she will eagerly accept it.

Kelly Anne Hemperley

Kelly was educated in public schools in Vivian, Louisiana graduating from North Caddo High where she was a member of the Louisiana All Star Marching Band and the winner of the I Dare You award at graduation. She attended Louisiana State University-Shreveport for a short while before enrolling in business school. Prior to her graduation she was hired by the Caddo Parish Police Jury as personal secretary to the administrator; a position she held for seven years before moving to Hobbs, New Mexico. While employed at the Police Jury it changed to a Commission and a resolution was written into the Commission’s minutes, which was entered into Caddo Parish’s history, for her dedication and work during the transition.

Resolution of Appreciation for Kelly Hemperley Brown in Caddo Parish


In New Mexico she was employed by the City of Hobbs where she received special recognition as employee of the month.

Kelly Hemperley Brown, Hobbs, New Mexico

In 1993 her family moved back to Caddo Parish and she returned to work for Caddo Parish; this time in the District Attorney’s office in the drug division. Since then she has been responsible for the training of all secretaries in the District Attorney’s office and most recently moved to the position of secretary for the Appellate Court.


Kelly’s dedication to helping others, lead her to become a Girl Scout leader for many years; church secretary; church youth leader; and exercise instructor. However I think she would say her most important job today is that of being wife, mother and grandmother. A job she does well!

Now that you have allowed me to give you a little insight to my favorite Virgos, I would also like to wish the others who share the sign a Happy Birthday. They are Andrea Tanet Hemperley, Marty Stanley Roberts and husband Jimmy, Damon Goodwin, Melissa Slaughter Goodwin, David Stanley, Greg Stanley, and Amanda Roberts Mather!



Throw Back Thursday: Jesse and Teeny’s Kids

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Jesses Kids Janet and Johnny

Janet Lynn Hemperley Stanley and Johnny Ray Hemperley, children of Jesse Raymond and Earnestine “Teeny” Jane Parker Hemperley.

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