Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Norvell Slay & Martha Rebecca Sandifer






Norvell Slay, born 20 November 1836, son of Alexander Slay and Elizabeth McLean, is my first cousin, three times removed. He grew up and lived in Crystal Springs, Copiah County, Mississippi, until his death. His description was one of dark hair, dark eyes and five feet seven inches. He had twelve siblings including; Martha, Nathan, Alexander Jr., Mary, Elizabeth, Elijah, Corydon, Cincinatus, Leonidas, Alonzo and twin sisters Cornelia and Ophelia. His family was of the Baptist faith. His parents and a few siblings are buried in the County Line Baptist Church Cemetery in Copiah County, very near Crystal Springs.

On 10 August, 1860, he served as a Bondsman, when his first cousin Catherine Cornelia ("Kate") Slay, (daughter of William Sidney Slay and Honor Futch) married William Garrison Hennington in Crystal Springs.

On 26 May, 1861, slightly over a month after the Civil War began, he enlisted in the 16th Mississippi Infantry, Co. C. He was 24 years old. On 28 November, 1861, he was detailed as a Musician. He served in this regiment with his brothers Pvt. Corydon Slay (also a Musician) and Capt. Elijah Slay.

Norvell was captured on 03 April 1865 at Bermuda Hundred Defenses, Virginia and sent to the New York Harbour as a prisoner-of-war. The war would close in less than two weeks.

After the war, he returned to Crystal Springs to resume his place as a Farmer, and lived near his parents. On 08 March 1866, he married Martha ("Mattie") Rebecca Sandifer in Crystal Springs. She was born 23 October 1849 in Mississippi, possibly Copiah County. Her parents were Joseph Sandifer and Martha Unknown. She had seven known siblings including; Margaret, Arlina, John, Acadis, Josalean, Jefferson and Emily.

Norvell and Mattie, had the following twelve children, all born in Crystal Springs:
John Clarence, b. 11 June 1867, d. 1927, m. Rosa Harrell
Lenora, b. 08 Sept. 1868, d. 02 Nov. 1870
George Elmore, b. 15 Apr 1870, d. 1952 m. Maggie May Cooper
Mary Catherine, b. 14 Feb 1873, d. 30 Sept 1874
Florence Ella, b. 02 Feb 1874, d. 02 Aug 1940 m. J.L. Bridges
Joseph Russell, b. 22 Aug 1875, d. 1938 m. Lelia Young
Webster Alexander, b. 11 Jan 1877, d. 21 Nov 1964
Judson Jefferson, b. 16 May 1878, d. 24 Dec. 1963 m. Evelyn Unknown
Troy Theophilius, b. 20 Nov. 1880, d. 15 Jan 1953 m. Anna Lee Baecher
Carrie Belle, b. July 1881 d. (unknown) m. R.S. Alford
Silas Sheldon, b. 16 May 1883, d. 12 Nov 1962 m. Eva Davis
William Miller, b. 02 Dec. 1887, d. 21 July 1974 m. Fannie Ava Henry

Norvell Slay died 09 July 1907 in Crystal Springs. He is buried in the Harmony Baptist Church Cemetery in Copiah County. In 1930, Norvell's widow Mattie was living with her son Joe and family, as listed on the census. It is unknown what date she died after 1930. It is likely she is buried near her husband. Several of their children are also buried in the Harmony Cemetery.

Any Slay reseachers, or descendents of Norvell Slay are welcomed to contact me at the above email address.
Gayle