James Thomas Bennington

11 Jun 1835 - 7 Apr 1888

Private, 2nd Company D

35th Tennessee Infantry

By Jean Caddel

447 Ridge Creek Rd.

Waxahachie, TX 75165-9647

James Thomas Bennington was born June 11, 1835, in Tennessee, according to his tombstone inscription, which is barely legible, located in the Lee Cemetery, Lamar County, Texas. The first information found on him is from the 1860 census of Grundy County Tennessee, District 1, page 427: He was 22 years of age, a farm laborer, and said he was born in Tennessee.

Soon after this he enlisted in the Confederate States Army. From the brief muster rolls obtained from the National Archives, he was enrolled at the age of 26, on September 6, 1861, at Camp Smart near McMinnville, Tennessee, by Capt. Morgan, a private 2nd Co. D., 35th Tennessee Infantry, 5 Tennessee Provisional Army Mountain Rifle Regiment. His unit was mustered in on September 11, 1861.

The Confederate War Department notified the unit there was already a designated 5th Tennessee Infantry, and they were instructed to use the designation of the Thirty Fifth Tennessee Infantry; however the later number was rarely used in the first two years, and it was known by a variety of designations, including Fifth Tennessee (Volunteers) Infantry, Fifth (Provisional Army), and Tennessee Infantry and Fifth (Hill's Tennessee Infantry). After 1863, the War Department forbade the use of any name but the 35th Tennessee Infantry.

(1st) Company "D" was composed of men from Warren County. They disbanded April 17, 1862, and were reassigned to remaining companies, and

(2nd) Company "D" was composed of men from Warren County who had first been assigned to Company "F".

They were first assigned to Kentucky until that unit was absorbed by the Army of Mississippi and subsequently changed to the Army of Tennessee.

Specific higher command assignments of the regiment until the summer of 1863 were:

October 28, 1861, Second Brigade, First Division, Central Army of Kentucky.

April 6, 1862, Second Brigade, Third Corps, Army of the Mississippi.

November 22, 1862, Second Brigade, Buckner's Division, Hardee's Corps, Army of Tennessee.

December 31, 1862, (Consolidated with the Fourth Tennessee Infantry) Second Brigade, First Division, Polk's Corp, Army of Tennessee.

July 31, 1863, Polk's Brigade, Cleburne's Division, Mill's Corps, Army of Tennessee.

The Thirty -Fifth Tennessee Infantry participated in more than forty-five various type of engagements during it's career. It was one of the largest units consolidated to form the third Tennessee Consolidated Infantry. Members of the regiment were assigned to Companies "A" and "F" of that unit.

Assignments and engagements until the end of the summer of 1863 included:

April 6 - 7, 1862, Battle, Shiloh, Pittsburg Landing, Tennessee.

April 29 - May 30, 1862, Separations against the Advance on and Siege of Corinth, Mississippi.

May 30 - June 12, 1862, Retreat to Booneville, Mississippi.

October 8, 1862, Battle, Perryville, Kentucky.

October 10 - 22, 1862, Retreat from Perryville to London, Kentucky.

December 25 - 30, 1862, Operations against the Advance on Murfreesborough, Tennessee.

December 30, 1862 - January 3, 1863, Battle, Stone's River, Murfreesborough, Tennessee.

June 23 - July 7, 1863, Campaign in Middle Tennessee ( Tullahoma Campaign).

August 16 - September 22, 1863, Occupation of Middle Tennessee, Passage of the Cumberland Mountains, and Chickamauga, Georgia Campaign.

The unit also saw duty in North Carolina before the end of the war.1

According to the "Confederate Service Record" of James Bennington, he was present on October 31, 1861, Bowling Green, Kentucky, and also on the roll dated Tyner's Station July 17, 1863, age 26. A note on July and August 1863 muster states, "Deserted on the retreat from Tullahoma to Chattanooga."2

The next records are Tax Lists for Lincoln County, Tennessee, District 13, listing 1 poll 1865-7.

The 1870 Lincoln County, Tennessee, Census, 2nd Civil District, p. 348, lists James Bennington as a farmer in that county. He is also listed in District 10, p. 126 of the Lincoln County Census in 1880.

Parents of James T. are still a mystery. All of the persons who are likely siblings indicate they were born in Tennessee; however, no reliable source has been found to indicate there were any Benningtons in Tennessee before 1860.

Others who were probably siblings or, at least, close relatives of James T. Bennington are:

1. John Bennington, last found in the 1900 Lamar County census. John was born about 1833. He married Nancy Vandergriffe, and also served in the Confederate Army. From Lamar County Death Records, Book 1, page 103, #1037, a white male, age 73, died in Roxton of "euterelis," reported by C. R. Huckabay.

2. In the 1880, Lamar County Census, Family #245, there is a William J. Bennington, age 42, born in Tennessee with his wife, Martha J., age 39, also born in Tennessee. They had been married only one year. Martha Jane was born April 7, 1841, and died February 2, 1908, according to her tombstone. She is buried in Restland Cemetery.3 1910 Census, Lamar County lists W. J. Bennington, age 65, widow.

From the records of the Lamar #258 United Daughters of the Confederacy: Awarded Cross of Military Service on March 23, 19121. He served in Co. D., 16th Tennessee Infantry Volunteers. He received a Texas Confederate Pension #20435 for service in the Confederate Army, approved 30 September 1899, lived in Roxton, age 61.4

3. There was a Jasper Bennington, born about 1839, who also served in the Confederate States Army. Last record that has been found on him was in 1876, Coffee County, Tennessee.5

4. Amanda J. Bennington, born about 1845, married Marshall M. Endsley. Monroe M. Endsley (October 8, 1883 - October 18, 1989), son of Marshall M. told us when we visited him in the spring of 1989 that his parents were Marshall Endsley and Amanda Bennington. He also said his uncle, John T. Endsley, moved to Lamar County with his wife Delia C. Chambles soon after his family came.

From The Paris News, Friday, November 9, 1923: "John T. Endsley, a Delta county farmer, who farmed in that county for twenty years, and had farmed in the Roxton community before moving to Delta, died Wednesday evening at his home three miles north of Ben Franklin of pneumonia. He was about 65 years old and was born in Alabama. Survived by a wife and several children. Burial was in Roxton Cemetery." The tombstone of John T. Endsley in Restland Cemetery reads: 19 Nov 1865 - 7 Nov 1923.

It seems possible that James T. followed others of the family to Texas in about 1883.

James T. Bennington was married in Lincoln County, Tennessee, on November 10, 1868, to Martha A. Adams.6

Martha A. Bennington filed Widow's Application for a Pension in 1913. She stated that her name was M. A. Bennington of Klondike, Delta County. Witnesses were James Johnson and W. J. Bennington, who both served with the applicant's husband. Martha A. had no real or personal property. She was the widow of James T. Bennington who died 7th April 1888, in Lamar County, Texas. She married him on November 10, 1868, in Lincoln County, Tennessee. She was 67 years old at the time, born in Tennessee, and had resided in Texas for thirty years. She had lived at Klondike, Delta county, Texas for four years. Her husbands full name was James Thomas Bennington. Mrs. Bennington stated she was unable to support herself due to chronic bronchitis, obesity, and old age.

James T. Bennington died April 7, 1888 in Lamar County, and is buried in Lee Cemetery. Martha A. Bennington died in Delta County April 29, 1918. (Death Cert. #15891) Burial place unknown.

Children of James T. & Martha A. Bennington:

1. Mary Elizabeth Bennington was born November 7, 1869 in Lincoln County, Tennessee. She was married to George E. Fields July 1, 1891, in Lamar County, Texas.

She married second Joseph M. Lattimore in 1900. He was born August 7, 1845 and died March 4, 1926. The following was taken from an article in "The Paris Morning News," Friday, March 5, 1926, page 2: "J. M. Lattimore, 87 year pioneer settler of Roxton and a civil war veteran, died at his home at that city at 5:30 o'clock Thursday morning. Funeral will be held at First Methodist church at Roxton this afternoon.... Mr. Lattimore is survived by a wife and seven sons and one daughter. He is the father of R. L. and A. W. Lattimore of Paris, and John and Roy Lattimore and Mrs. Ella Horton of Roxton. He was born August 7, 1844 [sic], in McMinn County, Tennessee, where one of his sisters, Mrs. Callie Rowland survives him. At sixteen, he enlisted in the Confederate Army, and served for four years, spending ten months as a prisoner at Camp Morton, Indianapolis. He served in Company A, First Tennessee Cavalry."

On March 7, 1870, he married Miss Clementine Ware,4 on March 7, 1870 and they left for Texas, settling near Jefferson, where he farmed for a number of years. His wife died in 1898, and two years later he married Mrs. Elizabeth Fields. There were twelve children by the first marriage and (Ten?) by the second.

According to information from Janna Larson, two of the children by his second marriage were Mary Orlean Lattimore, born February, 1903, Roxton, and James King Lattimore, born July 29, 1905 in Roxton.

Mary Elizabeth (Bennington Fields) Lattimore died March 27, 1947, and is buried in Restland Cemetery, Roxton, Texas.

2. Nancy "Nannie" J. Bennington, born in February of 1872, married Thomas W. Vaughn in

Roxton, Lamar County, August 23, 1888. In 1910, they were living in Delta County, Prect. 2, Household #322. Thomas W. was born in Missouri April of 1860. They had three children, Joseph A., born June 1889 in Missouri; Julia A., born September 1892 in Missouri; and William H., born October 1894 in Missouri. Martha A., her mother, age 64, was in the household, and a niece by the name of Bessie Dustin, age 11, whose parents were born in Alabama. The abbreviation "unk" is listed for Martha A. in the column giving marital status. This would indicate, perhaps, that Nancy, Thomas, and Martha A. were not at home or the census taker did not bother to ask, since they would have known she was a widow.

3. Julia Ann Bennington was born August 13, 1872 in Tennessee, and married James Cafield Newkirk on September 16, 1888, in Roxton, Lamar County, Texas. In 1910, they are in the west part of Delta County, Prect. 1, Household #225. James C. was 42 years of age, and was born in Arkansas, his father was also born in Arkansas, and his mother in Tennessee. Their children, all born in Texas, were John T., born 1889; James G., born December 1891; Nora E., born August 1894; Jasper F., born August 1897; Effie Jane, born December 23, 1900; Joseph P., born about 1901, and Edna Ann, born September 23, 1905.

Their son, John T, and his wife Girttie, age 18, were living next door in Household #227. The George Fulton family is on the other side, and close by is Andrew J. Goodwin, and several more Fulton families. Goodwin and Fulton families are also represented in Lee Cemetery, though the women bear different names.

4. Mary F. (M. A.) Bennington was born about 1874 in Tennessee. M. A. Bennington

married D. W. Benson in Lamar County on July 15, 1891. David W. Benson was born February 22, 1867 in Texas, and died March 3, 1894, in Lamar County. He is buried in Lee Cemetery.

His parents were David W. and Sarah Benson from Tennessee. David and Sarah Benson had eight children, the first five having been born in Mississippi: Nancy, born 1851; William T., born 1853; Isabel B., born 1855; Martin, born 1858; Arena, born 1860; James F., born in 1864, and the first to be born in Texas; David; and Eli, born 1869. Eli S. Benson, born August 13, 1869, died March 5, 1876, is also buried in Lee Cemetery. (1870 Lamar County census)

5. J. T. "Tom" Bennington, born in February of 1876 in Tennessee, married Nancy "Nannie"

A. (E)? Neighbors on September 13, 1896 in Lamar County.

Nancy was born in Arkansas in April of 1875, the daughter of William M. and Nancy (Hettie?) Neighbors. William M. was born about 1836 in South Carolina, and Nancy was born about 1837 in Tennessee. Other know children of this family were Carline, born about 1863 in Mississippi. She married Jesse S. Morris on December 24, 1880. James W. was born about 1865 in Illinois. Joseph C. was born in November of 1868, died in 1938. He married Hannah "Hettie" M. Derrick July 7, 1892. Joseph C. & Hannah "Hettie" are buried in Restland Cemetery, Roxton. John T. was born August 19, 1872, in Arkansas, died October 11, 1892, in Lamar County, and is buried in Lee Cemetery. Nancy was the fifth know child, and Martha E. was born in Arkansas in 1878.

In 1900 Lamar County Census, J. T. & Nancy Bennington had in their household two nephews: John C. Morris, born December, 1887, and J. William Morris, born October, 1881, and a niece, Armitta Morris, born April, 1883. These were the children of Carline Neighbors, sister of Nancy Neighbors Bennington..

Children of Tom and Nancy Bennington, as listed in the 1900 Lamar County Census, Precinct 2, 1910 Delta County Census, Precinct 3, Family #289, and 1920 Delta County Census were:

(1) Arthur Fred, born October, 1897.

(2) Marion M., born November, 1898.

(3) Earl "Infant Son", born April 5, 1900, died April 25, 1900. He is buried about two unmarked spaces from his grandfather, James T. Bennington. John T. Neighbors is the next marked grave in that row.

(4) Thomas Ruben, born April 12, 1901, Roxton, Lamar County; died June 1966. He married Nettie Clementine Cates on December 24, 1922 in Roxton.

(5) Nellie B., born about 1902/3.

(6) Eunice B., born about 1905.

(7) Lily Mabel, born about 1906/7.

(8) Leeman W., born October 29, 1908; died December 23, 1988. He married Aranelle Whitlock February 11, 1939 in Delta County.

(9) Jim, born about 1910.

(10) Sarah, born about 1912.

(11) Maude Nina, born about 1917.

(12-14) Also had two more sons, Dave and Numan, and a daughter, Julia.

In 1910, John C. Morris, nephew, was still in their household. Two Childers families were neighbors, which is another family represented in Lee Cemetery.

6. Mande E. Bennington, born about 1878, married Millard Gordon on October 27, 1896 in Lamar County. They are living next door to Thomas and Nancy Vaughn in Delta County, 1910, and are listed as Mattie L. & Millard C. Gardon. There were two children at that time, William C., age 9, and Thomas D., age 3.

7. (W)? Jasper Bennington was born in June of 1881 in Tennessee. He married Willie B. Barnes about 1908. Willie was born November 7, 1888, the only daughter of Hannah "Hettie" A. Derrick and her first husband, W. W. Barnes. She died on December 14, 1911, and is buried in Restland Cemetery, Roxton.

W. W. Barnes died by about 1890, and Hannah Barnes married second Joseph C. Neighbors, son of William M. and Nancy Neighbors, July 7, 1892, in Lamar County. Both Hannah and Joe Neighbors are buried in Restland Cemetery, Roxton They had four children: Myrtle, born March 31, 1893, and married Grady A. Winn; Luther, born in August of 1999; George Truman, born about 1905; and Mahala, born March 3, 1907, died March 17, 1999. She married Brown "Buster" Burrow.

Willie Barnes was a 12 year old girl living with Joe and Hannah Neighbors and their children in 1900 Lamar County census, Prect. 2.

1900 Lamar County census, Prect. 2, lists Jas or (Jos) Bennington, born in June of 1880, age 19 (Census was taken in June), as a boarder in the household of J. B. Welsh, born in May 1859, Tennessee. In the same household are J. D. Welsh, born January 1862, Tennessee, and S. P. Welsh, sister, born April 1855, Tennessee.

There is a William J. Bennington, born in about 1880/1, and his wife, Willie B., age 21, with their son of eleven months, James W. who are listed in the 1910 Delta County Census, Prect. 6, Family #257.

Are these people one and the same? Is the full name William Jasper Bennington? Need to find some documents that have both names listed or at least two different documents for the same person with William on one and Jasper on the other one.8


1. Information on the 35th Tennessee Infantry was found in The Confederate Research Center, Hill Junior College, Hillsboro, Texas. With this and the War Records of James T. Bennington, we were able to make an educated guess as to what part of Tennessee he may have been at the time of his enlistment.

2. This was the last muster roll on file, so the reason for this note is not known. It was not uncommon for a person to become seperated from his company, nor was it uncommon for them to stop off to check on family at home if they were passing nearby. After seeing the destruction at the Battles of Shiloh and Stone's River, and participating in the Campaign in Middle Tennessee (Tullahoma) quite near his home land, it would have been logical for him to drop off to check on the folks at home. From the records, we do not know whether or not he ever returned to his unit or another unit, as some did.

3. Original record does not state a cemetery. A tombstone was found in Restland, Roxton Cemetery with exact dates. Gibbs Funeral Home book #5; p. 373; Mrs. W. J. Bennington; died 2 Feb 1908 in Roxton at 10 am. Interment at Roxton Cemetery. From Lamar County TXGenWeb Project, Lamar County Cemeteries, The Death and Cemetery Records of Lamar County, Texas.

4. The Lamar County TXGen Web Project, Lamar County Cemeteries; The Death and Cemetery Records of Lamar County, Texas.

5. Could this Jasper be the "William" J(asper), who was last found there in 1876, ands reappeared in Lamar County in 1880? Could there have been an error on the marriage license in Coffee Co.? Martha J. is probably his second wife, since they have only been married one year according to the census. Wives listed are still a mystery! See note 6 below.

6. Coffee County Marriages, Book T: J. Bennington and Martha Adams - license Dec. 26, 1863; married Dec. 27, 1863 by C. Coulsen, J. P. Lincoln County Marriages, J. T. Bennington married Margaret A. Welch Nov. 10, 1868. See Application of Martha A. Bennington for Confederate Pension.

7. According to Mrs. Beatrice Horton Ridgeway, who was a granddaughter and life long resident of Roxton, his first wife, Clementine Ware was first buried in Lee Cemetery and later removed to Restland when another member of the family died.

8. Jasper Sr. dropped out of sight in Coffee County, Tennessee, 1876, and W. J. reappears in Lamar County, Texas in 1880. These two people are about the same age. Could he have been William Jasper, Sr., and this one William Jasper, Jr., and the sone of J. T. Bennington?

A Special Thanks to Janna Bennington Larson, publisher of the latest edition of the "Bennington Genealogy" for sharing information on James Thomas Bennington, and to Vema McMullin, who noted our query on the Warren County, Tennessee GenWeb page and forwarded it to Janna. We wish to express our appreciation to The Lamar County TXGen Web Project, and The Death and Cemetery Records of Lamar County, Texas, compiled by Ron Brothers of Paris, Texas, for information used from their pages.

©Ron Brothers and Jean Caddel, 1999, All Rights Reserved.

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