Thomas Marmaduke Mendenhall

A copyrighted manuscript by: William L. Newberry
1012 N. 15th St.
Arkadelphia, Ark., 71923 copyrighted 1993

Thomas was the patriarch of this branch of the Mendenhall family. He was born in Guliford Co., NC on February 13, 1792. He was the son of Stephen and Elizabeth Rich or Rich Mendenhall. The family was Quaker and members of the Deep River Monthly Meeting in Guliford County. Thomas' grandfather, Mordecai, had come to this are in 1736 and owned many hundreds of land on Deep River.

In about 1815, Thomas and brother Eli and a friend, Reuben Hart, came to Conecuh County, Alabama and established himself at the spot known as the Old Savage Place on the road running from Bellville to Evergreen. A few years later, Thomas Mendenhall built a sawmill above Fort Crawford. Very little of the lumber sawn here was sold to the citizens and Thomas, aided by a man whose name was Rolly Roebuck, transported his lumber on rafts to Pensacola, Florida.

Thomas married Mary Wood on June 3, 1819. They had one child, James Wood, who was born July 2, 1820. She died and Thomas married Mary Caldwell, the daughter of James and Sarah Byrum Caldwell of Evergreen, Alabama, on August 8, 1823.

Thomas and Mary Mendenhall had 16 children, all born in Alabama. In 1845, the family moved to Ouachita County, Arkansas and acquired many acres of farm land. County tax records for 1846 indicate he owned and paid taxes on 1394 acres and owned 37 slaves. The value of real property was $4, 423 and the value of his personal property was $18, 113.

The family farms were in the western part of Ouachita County, near the community of Caney. The 1850 Census indicated Thomas Mendenhall had real estate valued at $10,000 and he owned 49 slaves. he was one of the largest slave owners in the state.

Thomas Mendenhall died October 24, 1875, and is buried in the White Church Cemetery in what is now Nevada County. His wife, Mary, died July 8, 1884, and is buried beside her husband.

In 1891, a U. S. Post Office was established and it was named Mendenhall. it was deactivated in 1901.

Ouachita Co. Ark.
1850 Census
Jefferson Township

Family #53

Mendenhall, Thomas age 50 Male Farmer 10,000 born in NC
Mary age 45 Female GA
Sarah age 20 Female AL
Mary A. age 27 Female AL
Thomas L. 18 Male Student AL
Martha age 16 Female AL
William age 15 Male Student AL
Andrew J. age 14 Male Student AL
George W. 12 Male AL
Amanda C. 10 Female AL
Abagail 9 Female AL
Margaret M. 7 Female AL
Mary Jane 8 Female AL
Blackshewp, Harry age 48 Male Black AL