Sunday, October 27, 2013

1850s Autograph Album of Mary Caroline Gudger, "Mollie", of North Carolina; married William Hamilton Moore


1850s autograph album that belonged to Mary Caroline Gudger, "Mollie", of Buncombe County, North Carolina.  Some of the autographs were collected after Mollie's marriage to William Hamilton Moore.


As you can see from the title page, this album was published by the J. C. Riker Company of Fulton Street, New York, and contains lithographs produced and hand colored by the firm that the famous lithographer Fanny Flora Bond Palmer created with her husband at 34 Ann Street.  Fanny was most famous as a lithographer for Currier and Ives.  

There are four other illustrations interspersed throughout the album

One of the first pages of text in the album was from a later era when Mollie gave the album to her daughter Margaret Elizabeth (Moore) Patton.  She inscribed another page and overleaf to Margaret later on in the album.




The album is approximately 7-3/4" x 6" and contains the sentiments of 25 of Mollie's relatives and friends, in addition to the two pages Mollie inscribed to her daughter Margaret.

An alphabetical list of the signers appears at the end of this post, though in the custom of that era many people did not sign their full names or residences.

From online research, hopefully correct: [corrections and additions welcome!]

Mary Caroline Gudger, "Mollie", was born 21 January 1833 in Buncombe County, North Carolina, the daughter of Samuel Bell Gudger and Elizabeth Siler (Lowry) Gudger, both Buncombe County natives.

A huge help in identifying the Mollie who owned the album was the page signed by E. S. Gudger who called herself Mollie's mother.


Following the page signed by Mollie's mother was a page signed by James Lowry, who possibly was Mollie's maternal grandfather, as he dated his page 18 February 1856, when her grandfather was still alive, and his two page message seems grandfatherly, at least to me.



At least three of Mollie's other relatives were among the signers.  Her brother David, presumably David Madison Gudger, signed the inside front cover and first end paper.



And I wonder if the Cassius who signed a page at Okefenoke, presumably in the Georgia/Florida area, on March 1, 1856, was another brother, James Cassius Lowry Gudger.


Mollie's cousin Lou signed a page at Waynesville [no state given] on April 4, 1854.


Cousin Jim signed a page and overleaf at Sand Hill [no state given] on March 13, 1856.

Mary Caroline Gudger, "Mollie", married William Hamilton Moore on 17 October 1855 in Buncombe County.  William was born in Buncombe County, North Carolina, on 24 April 1812, the son of Charles Augustus Moore and Margaret (Penland) Moore.

William had been a merchant in his early years and served in the military during the Cherokee Disturbances in 1838.  After his military service, he became a farmer.

It's interesting that some of the entries after Mollie's marriage are inscribed to Mary.  Perhaps these were new acquaintances unfamiliar with the nickname or perhaps Mollie had decided to use her given name.

From what I could find online, hopefully correct, Mollie and William had seven children, all presumably born in Buncombe County:

  1. Walter Evans Moore, born 14 October 1856; married Laura Rebecca Enloe.
  2. Nina May Moore, born 21 February 1861; m. William Carr Battle
  3. Margaret Ann Elizabeth Moore; died in infancy
  4. Eugenia Evelyn "Jennie" Moore, born 25 January 1865; m. William Whipple Clarke
  5. Lucy Swain Moore, born 10 June 1865; m. Thomas Pinkney Gaston
  6. Margaret Elizabeth Moore, born 9 November 1870; m. James Erwin Patton
  7. Mary Hamilton Moore, born 4 September 1875; married Benjamin Hill Greenwood
I found a wonderful account of William Hamilton Moore and Mary Caroline (Gudger) Moore and their children here, including a description of Mollie's pleasant disposition and penchant for story telling, some of which stories made their way into "Aunt Mary's Story Book for Children", a collection typed up by Charles J. Rice in 1913.

William died in 1879.  It appears that Mary didn't remarry; she died in 1917 in Hominy, North Carolina, after living with daughter Lucy Swain (Moore) Gaston and her family for 25 years.

If you have corrections and/or additions to the information above, or information or insights into any of the signers listed below, please leave a comment or contact me directly.  Thanks!

Alphabetical list of signers, though many signers did not give a complete name, if any name at all: [Note: given names within a specific surname may not be in alphabetical order; some women are listed twice, once by maiden name and once by married name.]

  • A friend
  • Friend W., signed on March 7, 1854
  • J. E. M. of South Carolina, signed on September 19, 1859
  • Lorenzo P., signed at Oak Bowery on June 6, 1855
  • William, signed in 1854 at Oakland
  • Friend, signed at Rural Wilds, on March 2, 1854
  • Washington, signed at Asheville, North Carolina, on July 17, 1855
  • Lou, your affectionate cousin, signed at Waynesville, on April 4, 1854
  • Cousin Jim signed a page that ran into the overleaf at Sand Hill, on March 13, 1856
  • Mollie L, possibly Loc. or an abbreviation, signed at Asheville, North Carolina, on November 18, 1854
  • Mollie M. M., signed at Sulphur Springs, North Carolina, on November 7, 1860
  • A Friend signed a page and the overleaf
  • Fannie, sighed at Asheville, North Carolina, on December 16, 1854
  • Signed by M.
  • Mollie F. J., signed on November 9, 1857
  • This page and the overleaf signed by someone whose initials are hard to decipher, perhaps C. P. M., or P. M., or ?
  • Harriette, signed on March 26, 1854
  • Friend Maggie, signed at Sand Hill, on October 13, 1854
  • Cassius, signed at Okefenoke, presumably in the Georgia/Florida area, on March 1, 1856
  • W. G. Candler, signed at Chapel Hill, North Carolina, on December 15, 1854
  • Mary E. Gray signed this page and the overleaf, at Willowdale, on May 28, 1854; her message carried over onto the next page
  • Mary Caroline (Gudger) Moore of North Carolina, album owner
  • Signed by E. S. Gudger, the mother of Mary Caroline (Gudger) Moore.  She was Elizabeth Siler (Lowry) Gudger, born 9 November 1810 in Buncombe County, North Carolina, daughter of James and Hanna Esther (Siler) Lowry
  • S. Jones, signed a page and the overleaf at Pleasant Hill, on November 28, 1857.  Not sure of first initial - could be T or ?
  • Signed by E. S. Gudger, the mother of Mary Caroline (Gudger) Moore.  She was Elizabeth Siler (Lowry) Gudger, born 9 November 1810 in Buncombe County, North Carolina, daughter of James and Hanna Esther (Siler) Lowry
  • This page and the facing page signed by J. M. Lowry on February 18, 1856.  He may have been James Lowry, Mary Caroline (Gudger) Moore's maternal grandfather, who lived until 1857.
  • Mary Caroline (Gudger) Moore of North Carolina, album owner.  She wrote in the front of the album explaining that she was turning the album over to her daughter Margaret; and she wrote another page to Margaret in the middle of the album that ran over onto the overleaf.
  • Margaret Elizabeth (Moore) Patton, Mary's daughter, to whom the album was presented at some point
  • Margaret Elizabeth (Moore) Patton, Mary Caroline Gudger's daughter, to whom the album was presented at some point
  • S. L. Weaver, signed at Pleasant Hill, on February 26, 1855  
Buncombe County, North Carolina


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