Southern New England


Home ] Up ] Miscellany ] Obituaries ] Photo Album ] Records ] Site Map & Index ]


The Family of Timothy & Sarah (KEELAN) LAWRENCE
of Woonsocket RI and Augusta GA
Submitted by Bryan L. Starr, Atlanta GA

Timothy LAWRENCE was born in Ireland about 1820 and he was married to Sarah KEELAN, also from Ireland. They were Roman Catholic and immigrated to the Smithfield, Cumberland, Woonsocket area of Rhode Island some time prior to 1849. Timothy's occupation was that of a butcher, which he passed on to at least two of his sons. Timothy and Sarah had three children that we are sure of because they are cited in his will (see will abstract below). We suspect that there were several more but have not found positive proof of them thus far (see 1865 RI census below). Their known children were Edward E., Bryan Joseph and Frances.

Timothy purchased 21 acres in Woonsocket (formally Smithfield), RI on 11 Jun 1860 from Robert Aldrich that was recorded in Deed Book 35, page 117 on 1 Jul 1860. He owned this land until his death and bequeathed it to his son Bryan. His will was proven 6 May 1889 in Augusta, Richmond Co., GA. Timothy also owned property in New York City located at the corner of 143rd Street and Willis Ave in the Bronx, but it is believed that he did not make this his permanent home.

Timothy's will was written and witnessed in Augusta, Richmond Co., GA on 4 Oct 1886 where his son Bryan was then living but it is believed he returned to Woonsocket, RI where he died prior to 6 May 1889 and is buried in that area.

Timothy had an older brother Thomas E. LAWRENCE (b: 1819 in Ireland), also a butcher, and we know he was living in Massachusetts as early as 1840 because his son Thomas was born there at that time. Thomas E. moved to Augusta, GA and opened a meat market. He died 16 Jun 1877 and is buried in the Magnolia Cemetery, Augusta, GA.

Sarah KEELAN was born in Ireland about 1827 and died in Augusta, GA 4 May 1902. She is buried along side son, Bryan, in his section at Magnolia Cemetery, Augusta, GA.

Children of Timothy and Sarah (KEELAN) LAWRENCE

1. Edward E. LAWRENCE was born about 1849 and died prior to 1916, probably in Augusta, GA.

2. Bryan Joseph LAWRENCE was born in Cumberland (now Woonsocket), RI on 5 March 1855 and he married Frances MITCHELL, daughter of Aaron MITCHELL and Sarah RUNCIMAN, in Augusta, GA in about 1877.

At the age of 12 he moved to New York City to assist his father in a meat market venture. He remained there until 1877 when he moved to Augusta, GA, along with his older brother Edward, to help his ailing uncle Thomas E. LAWRENCE at his meat market. He quickly rose to prominence in Augusta where he was elected Councilman for the Second Ward and was a member of the Fire Committee. He became the hotel man of Augusta. Invested largely in real estate and became interested in a number of different businesses, besides conduction out-of-town hotel establishments. He owned valuable farmland near the city and was very successful in farming and the dairy business. He was a devout Roman Catholic and was a member of St Patrick's Church where he donated a stained glass window in honor of his father Timothy. He died after a long illness on 15 March 1916 and is buried along side his wife in Magnolia Cemetery, Augusta, GA. (see his will transcribed below.)

Children of Bryan and Frances (MITCHELL) LAWRENCE

Mary Emma LAWRENCE b: abt 1877, Augusta, GA
Edward Leon LAWRENCE b: abt 1879, Augusta, GA
Leona Agnes LAWRENCE b: 1889, Augusta, GA - d: 1948, Augusta, GA
Catherine White LAWRENCE b: 28 Jul 1891, Augusta, GA - m: Frank Carswell BUSSEY in1918 - d: 1985, Atlanta, GA, buried at Magnolia Cemetery, Augusta, GA
Cecelia Viola LAWRENCE
Bryan Joseph LAWRENCE, Jr.
Runciman LAWRENCE died young
Nellie LAWRENCE died young

3. Frances LAWRENCE was born about 1862 in Smithfield, RI

The Last Will and Testament of Timothy Lawrence

Timothy Lawrence, Last Will and Testament, 4 October 1886, Richmond Co., Georgia
Item 3. To son Edward E. Lawrence the sum of $1,000.00
Item 4. To his daughter Fannie Lawrence the sum of $1,500.00
Item 5. To his grand-daughter Mary E. the sum of $500.00
Item 6. To my son Bryan Lawrence 
1) 21 acres in Woonsocket, RI (formerly Smithfield, RI) in the county of Providence Co., RI. Purchased 11 Jun 1860 from Robert Aldrich, recorded in Deed Book 35, Page117 on 1 Jul 1860.
2) 2 lots on Willis Ave and 143rd Street in New York City, New York. Each having 25 feet frontage on Willis Ave.
Item 7. To my son Bryan Lawrence the remainder of my estate.
Item 8. I appoint my son Bryan Lawrence Executor.
Witnessed by: James T. May 938 Reynolds St
John Welsh McIntosh St.
Augustus D. Picquet 330 Ellis St

Recorded: 6 May 1889
Attested: 6 May 1889
Proven: 6 May 1889 

Timothy Lawrence b: abt 1820 in Ireland; d: bef 6 May 1889 in Augusta, Richmond Co., GA

The Last Will and Testament of Bryan Lawrence

Will of Bryan Lawrence 1 June 1915
State of Georgia In the name of God amen.
Richmond Co.
I, Bryan Lawrence, being of Sound and disposing mind and memory, do hereby make and disclose this as my last Will & Testament, hereby revoking all others heretofore made by me.
Item 1
I desire that my body be buried in a decent and Christian-like manner and the expenses of same together with my other just debts be paid by Executer, herein after named, out of my Estate before distribution.
Item 2
I give and bequeath to my son, Joseph Lawrence, $100.00 and no other property, except as hereafter provided. 
Item 3
I give ------------- to my daughter Katherine $100.00 and no other property, except as hereafter provided.
Item 4
I give ------------ to my son Edward my place of business known as the "Exchange" to be his absolutely, after --- the payment of old debts due by the said "Exchange" out of my Estate.
Item 5
I give --------- to my faithful servant Lacy Morrison, $50.00 and direct my Executors hereafter named to pay same as soon as practicable.
Item 6
I give and bequeath to Robert Harris Hughes and Emma Hughes the some of $500.00 each, and direct my Executors hereafter named to pay same as soon as practicable.
Item 7
I bequeath to my daughter Mary E. Walker, in trust for the purpose of educating her three children $3000.00and direct that my Executors hereafter named shall see that it is so held and applied by proper order of Court.
Item 8
I give and bequeath to my two daughters Mrs. Bruce Young and Mrs. Franklin Johnson $200.00 each and direct my Executors hereafter named to pay same as soon as practicable.
Item 9
I give and bequeath, to my wife, my lot in the city Cemetery to be hers absolutely.
Item 10
I give and bequeath to my daughter, Mary E. Walker, for her personal use the sum of $200.00.
Item 11
I give and bequeath to Father Marrow, of St Patrick's Parish and Father (Lanke) of St Francis Xavier, $50.00 each and I also give and bequeath to St. Patrick's Church $50.00 and ask that masses be said for the repose of my soul.
Item 12
I will and direct that my Executors hereafter named shall provide out of the balance of my Estate not herein and before disposed and the income thereof for my wife during her natural life, such necessaries of life as shall become he station in life, and for this purpose I will and direct that that portion of my Estate not here in and before disposed of be kept and held in tact, except that they (the Executors) shall have the power and authority without any order of Court to dispose of any part thereof ----- at public or private sale, for the purpose of paying any of the specific legacies herein and before made and providing for my wife as directed. I further will and direct that after the death of my wife, the balance of my Estate, both real and personal, shall be equally divided among my children now living, share and share alike and in the event of the death of ------ of them before the death of my wife, then to his or her child or children living the share of his or her as their parent.
Item 13
I do hereby constitute and affirm J.S. Watkins, Esq. and Rev. Thos. J. Marrow, Asst. Pastor of St. Patrick's Catholic Church, Co-Executors of my last will and testament and direct that they shall act as such after giving ----, without order of Court, That they shall not be required to make any report to any Court, other than as necessary for the proper probate of this my will and of the fiscal disposition of my Estate. I also will and direct that my Executors shall the power, jointly as such executors, to dispose of any and all of my property both real and personal, in their discretion, when the same shall be for the best interest of my estate, without order of Court and at either public or private sale.
This June 1st AD 1915
(signed) Bryan Lawrence (L.S.)

We the undersigned, witnesses do hereby certify the we at the request of Bryan Lawrence did witness that he signed the above and forgoing as his last will and testament and that he in our presence did so declare this same to be his last will and testament and that we signed the same as witnesses in his (Bryan Lawrence) presence and in the presence of each other after ----- ------ ------.
This June 1st 1915
(signed) (Mrs) ------- Stevens (LS)
( Miss) Angela -------- (LS)
-----------Smith (LS)

Attested and Approved
20 March 1916

Selected census information from Rhode Island and Georgia

1860 Rhode Island Census
Census Place: Smithfield, Dist. 1, Providence, Rhode Island, page 129, ID#RI40134076
Name/ Age/ Place of Birth/ Parentage/ Occupation
Timothy Lawrence

1865 Rhode Island Census
Census Place: Town of Smithfield, Rhode Island June 1st
Name                     Age Place of Birth     Parentage   Occupation 
Timothy Lawrence  45   Ireland               Ireland        Butcher 
Sarah Lawrence     38    Ireland                Ireland      House Keeper 
Mary Lawrence     18    Cumberland, RI  Ireland 
Robert Lawrence   17    Smithfield, RI      Ireland 
Edward Lawrence  16    Mass                 Ireland 
Sarah Lawrence     15    Mass                  Ireland       Passed 7th Grade 
Joseph Lawrence   12    Cumberland, RI  Ireland       Passed 6th Grade 
Bernard Lawrence 10    Cumberland, RI   Ireland      6th Grade 
Frances Lawrence   3    Smithfield, RI       Ireland 
Frances Lawrence 77     Ireland                Ireland       She is Deaf 

1870 Richmond Co., GA Census
Name                        Age  Sex  Race Occupation   Birth Place
Thomas E. Lawrence  30    M    W     Butcher           Mass 
Harriet A. Lawrence   38     F    W     House Keeper SC 
Thomas E. Mitchell     16    M    W     at Home          NC 
Fanny Mitchell              9     F    W     at School         NC 
James H. Mitchell       12    M    W     at School         NC 

Edward Lawrence (see page 367)

1880 GA and RI Census
Census Place: Augusta, Richmond, Georgia
Source: FHL Film 1254163 National Archives Film T9-0163 Page 277D 
                                      Relation Sex Marr Race Age Birthplace
Harriet LAURENCE       Self         F    W     W    50    SC 
         Occ: Keeps House Fa: SC Mo: SC
Thomas E. MITCHELL  Nephew  M    S     W     25    NC 
         Occ: Butcher Fa: SC Mo: SC
Harriet CLARENDON   Other      F     W     B     48    NC
         Occ: Servant Fa: NC Mo: NC
Census Place: Augusta, Richmond, Georgia
Source: FHL Film 1254163 National Archives Film T9-0163 Page 351D 
                                     Relation Sex Marr Race Age Birthplace 
Bryan LAWRENCE      Self        M    M     W    25       NY 
         Occ: Butcher Fa: NY Mo: NY
Fannie LAWRENCE    Wife        F     M     W    20       NC 
         Occ: Keeping House Fa: NC Mo: NC
Mary E. LAWRENCE  Dau        F      S      W      3       GA 
          Fa: NY Mo: NC
Edward L. LAWRENCE Son     M     S      W      1       GA 
          Fa: NY Mo: NC
Lena MITCHELL         Cousin    F      S      W    18       SC 
          Fa: SC Mo: SC
Census Place: Woonsocket, Providence, Rhode Island
Source: FHL Film 1255216 National Archives Film T9-1216 Page 424C 
                                       Relation Sex Marr Race Age Birthplace 
Timothy LAWRENCE      Self        M   D     W     60    IRE
          Occ: Farmer Fa: IRE Mo: IRE
Fannie LAWRENCE        Dau        F    S      W    17     RI 
          Occ: Housekeeper Fa: IRE Mo: IRE
Joseph LAWRENCE        Son        M   S      W    24     RI 
          Occ: Works On Farm Fa: IRE Mo: IRE

Submitted by Bryan L. Starr, Atlanta GA