On this day 150 years ago, Mary Ann Wolstenholme and Reddick Smith stood before Henry Holt, a justice of the peace, and promised to love, honor and cherish each other for the rest of their lives. There were no guarantees their lives would be easy and hardships were almost certain.
Born in 1842 in Gallatin County, Illinois, Reddick Smith enlisted in Co. F, 131st Illinois Volunteer Infantry. After leaving a hospital in Millikin's Bend, Louisianna without permission, he was captured by the Confederates and sent to Richmond, Virginia before being paroled in July 1863. Later he enlisted in Co. G, 6th Illinois Cavalry and participated in the Battle of Nashville on 15 December 1864. After the war, Reddick left his company in Alabama and returned home to southern Illinois. Yes, he deserted again. The charge of desertion was later removed from his records by the War Department.
Reddick settled in Goodlettsville, Davidson County, where Mary Ann was living. On 2 August 1866, he used a coin and hammered it over a rod to form a ring and placed this ring on Mary Ann's finger. I wear this ring today.
Reddick and Mary Ann had 14 children: Rebeckah, Edna, Susannah, Henry Clay, Sarah, Caroline, Mary Beatrice (my grandmother), Francis, Giles, Earl, Morgan, Herman, Edward and an unnamed child who died as an infant. Nine of these children lived to adulthood.
Reddick and Mary Ann stayed in Tennessee until after 1870 and then moved with their three children, Rebeckah, Edna and Susannah, to Hardin County, Illinois. Except for a brief stay in the state of Washington in the early 1900s, the Smith family remained in Hardin County. Reddick died there 14 April 1913 and Mary Ann died 7 January 1933. Both are buried at Central Cemetery.
Reddick and Mary Ann are among my favorite ancestors and have been the most interesting to research. One of my current projects involves getting a tombstone to mark Mary Ann's grave.
Published 2 August 2016, Western Kentucky Genealogy Blog, http://wkygenealogy.blogspot.com/