Tuesday, October 21, 2014

A Magnificent Social function at A Southern Home, ca. 1900

James Moran III and his sister Ida Morehead Moran attended a "magnificent social function" given by Mrs. Emma Martin for Miss Harriett Hankins and Mr. Roy Martin.   Ida married William G. Timberlake in November of 1902 so we know this article was written prior to that date because Ida was still listed as a Moran.

Some quick research tells me that the newspaper had Mrs. Martin's name wrong.  She was Elma, not Emma Martin.  Specifically she was Clara Elma Sullivan, born about 1859 in South Carolina.  Elma was married to Henry C. Hankins April 22 1880 in Madison County TN, they had a daughter Harriet born in 1881.  Elma and Henry C. Hankins appear in the 1880 Census for Henderson, TN.  Henry was a railroad agent.  He died in Union City in 1890.  It is my belief that  Henry C. Hankins is related to the Nashville artist, Cornelius Haley Hankins.  Cornelius Hankins painted the large portraits of John W. Moran and his wife Sophia Gunn Moran that hang in our home.

After the death of her first husband, marriage records show that Mrs. Elma Sullivan Hankins married Marshall Presley Martin in Madison County Tennessee on August 14, 1894.   Marshall had two previous marriages, Cora Belle Wilson and Annie Sothron Clagett, and seven children between those two wives. Marshall Presley Martin died in 1896. 

The society party was in honor of Marshall's son Roy Wilson Martin and Elma's daughter Harriet Hankins.  Roy and James Moran III would've had a lot in common.  They both attended the University of Virginia, held high positions in the banking industry and had large land interests.  Roy never married.   Harriett Hankins married Fredric Wilburn Kelsey October 28 1903.  They had a son named Peyton Kelsey.  Peyton lived in Kingsport Tennessee, as did Jim Moran the IV.

Another interesting note would be that Jim Moran IV married Annie Ruth Martin, the daughter of Walker Lawrence Martin and Myrah Amanda Nash and the grand-daughter of Marshall Presley Martin and his second wife, Annie Sothoron Clagett.

In addition to this article  I've also blogged about Belton O'Neal Sullivan, a brother of Elma Sullivan Hankins Martin.  He married Jennie Walsh in 1893 in Jackson Tennessee.   

A Magnificent Social Function at A Southern Home
A social function in which the beauty and chivalry of several states were represented was the house party given last week at Martin, Tenn, by Mrs. Emma Martin, complimentary to Miss Harriett Hankins and Mr. Roy Martin, both of that place.

Those in attendance from other towns were: Misses Ethel Hatcher, Columbia, Tenn; Myrtle Wilcox, Jackson; Ida Moran, Dresden; Harriett Temple, Jackson.  Messrs. J.H. Moran, Radford, Va; E. Prescot Boyd, Ann Arbor, Mich; Alfred Berkley, Atlanta; Will Holland, Jackson.

The joyousness and festivities of the week culminated Thursday night in a reception, the brilliancy of which was never before equaled in the pretty and cultured town of Martin.  Miss Hankins and Mr. Martin, the hostess and host, were assisted in receiving by the guests at the house party.  The decorations were exquisite in selection and in their arrangement reflected splendid artistic taste.  The parlor presented a triumph in the supberb (sic) art of decoration and was a dream of loveliness; American beauty roses and smilax predominating.  The library was done in white and green, and in the dining room sweet peas and smilax formed the decorations.  Neapolitan cream in the patriotic colors of red, white and blue was served.  Punch was dispensed in the hall.   The long veranda was done in national colors, and the beautiful lawn was illumined by Japanese lanterns. An Italian band discoursed inspiring music throughout the evening.

The young ladies who assisted in receiving were gowned in white organza and carried American beauty roses.  

The home of Mrs. Martin, where the reception occurred, is one of the handsomest and most comfortably appointed in West Tennessee, and its hospitality is thoroughly identified with the social life of this section of the state.

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