Florence in Lauderdale County, Alabama — The American South (East South Central)
Wilson Family Cemetery 19th Century / Slave Cemetery 19th Century
In 1818 three Wilson brothers John, Matthew and Samuel, came from Virginia to purchase large farms in this area. The plantations of John and Matthew joined near this cemetery. All three brothers and their families are buried here. Inscriptions on two gravestones tell of a Civil War atrocity when, on April 30, 1865 two local Union guerrilla gangs tortured and murdered John Wilson and his nephew, Matthew Jr. Two others in the house were shot, yet lived to tell the story. The plantation overseer was murdered the following morning.
A number of slaves are buried here adjoining the south wall of the Wilson Cemetery. There were 160 slaves on the two Wilson plantations at Wilson's Crossroads (now St. Florian). The graves of Christopher Brewer and his wife are probably located here. They were the maternal grandparents of William Christopher Handy. Florence's famous "Father of the Blues". Brewer a freeman was with John Wilson in 1865 when the family was terrorized by guerrilla gangs. Brewer was wounded but survived to lead the Wilson heirs to where the family valuables were buried.
Erected by Florence Historical Board Florence Alabama.
Location. 34° 51.045′ N, 87° 37.773′ Click for map. Marker is in this post office area: Florence AL 35630, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Andrew Jackson's Military Road (approx. 1.1 miles away); Deibert Park (approx. 1.2 miles away); St. Florian Historic District (approx. 1.6 miles away); St. Michael's Catholic Church (approx. 1.7 miles away); Larimore Home 1870 (approx. 1.8 miles away); Governor Hugh McVay Home Site and Cemetery (approx. 1.8 miles away); Sweetwater (approx. 2 miles away); Weeden Heights (approx. 2.2 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Florence.
Also see . . . Lauderdale County, Alabama Cops and Robbers. Mountain Tom Clark (Submitted on March 4, 2010.)
Categories. • African Americans • Cemeteries & Burial Sites • Notable Events • Notable Persons • Notable Places •
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Sandra Hughes of Killen, Usa. This page has been viewed 2,620 times since then. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Sandra Hughes of Killen, Usa. 4. submitted on , by Sandra Hughes of Killen, Usa. 5, 6. submitted on , by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.