Nymphas A Burroughs/Burris Family Story


Submited by Alice Burroughs-Shipey and Mearle Jr. Burroughs.

Nymphas A. Burris (Burroughs) was born 1829 in Davies Co. N.C. His parents were Henry born 1798 in N.C. and Charlotte Burris. Charlotte was born in 1805. They were proably married abt. 1825. We don't know too much about Henry and Charlotte for sure until we find them on the 1850 census in Dyer Co. Tn. listed as Henry age 52, Charlotte age 44, Benjamen age 57(proably Henrys brother), Memphis age 20 (should be Nymphas), Martha age 18, Jo T. age 13, and C.F. age 9. We know shortly after that they traveled with a wagon train going west and they stopped off in Van Buren Co. Ar. By this time Nymphas had married a woman by the name of Mary, last name unknown.It has come down by word of mouth in the family that people on the wagon train were Barletts, Loves, Bettis, Davis, Philips, Bennetts, Burroughs, and Cargiles.

Henry and his son Nymphas bought up some land in Van Buren Co for as little as 5 cents a acre. They owned land at one time in sec. 21,22,23,25, in Cadron township. Some of the land was bought from the railroad. Nymphas later on got a land grant and recieved another 160 acres in section 22 twp 9 north range 12 west. There they built a home along side of Cadron Creek. There is an old newspaper article written in the 1940s in Van Buren Co. entitled, "Early Settlement in Cargile Township By Burroughs Family." This is what it said in part....... About 120 years ago or around 1825 (it should have said 1850) Henry and Charlotte Burroughs, natives of Tennessee emigrated to Arkansas and settled in Cargile township in the south part of Van Buren County. As to the size of the familiy we do not know, but among them was a son by the name of 'Nimph' and his young wife. Some years after their arrival here the latter passed away and Nyimph married (Nov. 1866 V.B.C.) Miss Julia Goff of near Heber Springs. To their union 12 children were born. Near the bottom of the article J. A. Burroughs a son of Nymphs furnished this information. He said as a small boy he could remember seeing as many as 40 to 50 deer in a single place. Turkeys, he says, were about as common as blackbirds in a freshly plowed field in the spring time. Many wild hogs abounded in the woods, furnishing all the meat the settlers needed. There was much other wildlife such as foxes, wolves, mink, beavers, squirrels, and rabbits. Henry, Charlotte, Nymphas, and Mary are on the 1860 census in Van Buren County in Cadron twp. We know Nymphas went to war in 1862 Co. H. 32 Vol. He served until 1865. After Nimp came back from the war, we believe he found that his wife and father had both died. Nymph married Julia A. Goff in Nov. 1866 in VBC. It is recorded.

Henry and Mary were buried in the family cemetary about 100 yards away from the house. Also buried in a small grave is what some familiy members say are twin boys born to Mary and Nymph. Nymph and Julia went on to have 12 children. They are Sally Anne born 1867 died 1871 (buried in Burroughs cemetary), William Henry born May 27, 1869 died Nov.29, 1947,(buried at Flat Rock), Edward born abt 1872, James born 1874 died 1960, (buried at Holland Cemetary), Auminta (Aunt Mint) born 1877 died August 19, 1935 (buried at Holland Cemetary), Annie born 1880 died 1974 (buried Holland Cemetary), Lillie (twin to Rosie) born 1881 died 1935 (buried at Holland Cemetary). Rosie (Aunt Rosie) twin to Lillie was born 1881 and died 1968 and is buried at Holland Cemetary, Monroe born 1885 died 1956, is buried at Pine Mt. Cemetary, Nancy Matilda (Aunt Tilda) born 1886 and died ?. The last child to be born was George Franklin born June 29, 1889 just two months before Nymph died. Nymph had been admitted to a hospital in Little Rock a few months prior to his birth. George died Jan. 11, 1979. Nymph died August 1, 1889 in a Little Rock Hospital. He was only 59 years old. It was about three months before the family recieved word that he had died. The staff at the Hospital had buried him on the grounds. He had been admitted to the hospital suffering from depression. We don't know exactly what he died from. He was only in the hospital about four months when he died. We have tried to get his grave moved to the family cemetary and get him a civil war marker. The hospital graveyard has been moved twice, in 1936 by the WPA and again in 1972. The Dept. of Health building in Little Rock is where the cemetary was. They say when the cemetary was moved there was no way to tell where Nymp's grave was. Julia filed a pension on Nymp in 1909 and drew a 100 dollars a year until her death in 1924. She died Oct. 23, 1924 and is buried at Pine Mt. Cemetary. Her death certificate list her death as T.B. of the lungs.

A family story that has come down is that Nymph met Jesse and Frank James during the war. Nymp and Julia's house and land sit right on the Batesville to Little Rock road. It was used by everyone. There was only a few roads in those days. Jesse and his gang would travel the road and when he needed to rest for a few days, Nymph would hide his horses under the bluffs along the creek and Julia would fix them food to eat. One time when Jesse left he is supposely left five thousand dollars in gold coins for Nymph and Julia. Nymph put the money in a eel skin purse and left the house, telling Julia he was going to bury it for save keeping. He was gone only about 30 minutes, so he couldn't have gone to far. Later, he went back to get his money and he couldn't find it. He spent the rest of his life until they finally had to put him in the hospital looking for his gold. That is what finally ran him crazy. People spent years looking for it, but it has never been found.

William Henry Burroughs was Nymphs and Julias second child. He is our ancestor. William was born May 27, 1869 and he grew up along Cadron Creek his whole life. He married Shirlotte Harris May 22 1892 at Quitman, Ar. At that time it was still VBC. William and Shirlottie had 14 children. They are: Noie, Eileen & Ivie...all died as infants and are buried at Flat Rock. A son by the name of Genie died as a boy, buried at Flat Rock. The others are: Oather b. 1893 died 1970 buried at Old Salem, James Edward born 1896 at Gravesville died 1983 and is buried at Sand Springs Cemetary, Clarence Wilbert(Uncle Will) born 1898 died 1978 and is buried at Pine Mt., Oscar Lonza born 1900, Albert Clifton born 1904, Vela born 1907 died 1977 and is buried in Little Rock, Ola Thurman(Uncle Coley)
born 1910 died 1982, Charlie Joy born 1914 and died 2002, Cloy Ray born 1914 and Claude Franklin born 1916.

James(William, Nymph, Henry) was my grandfather. He was born Dec 1, 1896 at Gravesville Ar. He married Nancy Belle May in Nov 1916 in Ada Oklahoma. He went by train from Conway to marry her and bring her back. After they got off the train at Conway they rode in a wagon all day to get back to Gravesville and start their married life. Nancy was the daughter of Joseph Henry May and Nancy Elizabeth Gaither May. Jim Ed and Nancy had nine children. They are Grover Chester born Feb 28, 1919 died 2002, Lester Henry, Ernest Ralph, Forrest Ray born April 15 died April 3, 1988, Roy Lee. J.C., Anna Beth, Mearl JR, and William Harold.