by John Earl Martin
After the Louisiana Purchase in 1803 surveying of the land began in 1814 in what is now Madison Parish. In the late 1820's the Federal Land Office' began selling off a few parcels, probably to a few select customers, but the real sale of the lands of Madison Parish began in 1832, peaked around 1837 and dwindled to a trickle by 1850. The first white settlers were those aforementioned recipients of French and Spanish land grants. By 1802 they had congregated along with a few hunters, fishermen, and traders, at a small trading post on a great bend in the River called Milliken's Bend, so named for John Milliken who owned much of the land facing the River. These lands were evidently obtained through the old land grants[i], as these were surveyed off in "arpents"[ii]. (Early recipients were Harbird Hood in 1827 and John Ingles in 1826.)
RC 1 This card refers to Dick Sevier’s map of early settlers and shows Richard Winn owning "Mansford" land in 1834, joined by Hippolyte Pargoud, Honore' P. Morancy, Gideon Gibson, Hughes Lee and Ed Lee in 1837.
RC 2A After the War and Reconstruction, when many landowners lost their lands through theft or poverty, there was at least some semblance of order as E.D. Batchelor sold 1,050 acres to William H. Steavens of Ohio in 1869. This land was in the center of the west side of "Mansford" with almost a section of the Maher land on what is now Talla Bena Pit. The Batchelor family was from Marion County, Miss.
RC 3 Dick Sevier's map of 1975 shows Napoleon Batchelor as Mansford's neighbor on the west side; Ganier Bros on the north; H.P. Morancey on the east by John Ingles; and by W.H. Steavens including "Ellendale" and "Taylor' on the southwest.
RC 3&4 Some sources indicate L.W. Balfour as owning some of the Ganier property. Since the Mahers. Morancys, and Ganiers were close, and in some cases intermarried, this was likely.
RC 5A Geo. Steavens (Ref. Card 2A) deeded the 1,050 acres in 1882 to his wife Louisa.
RC 6 In 1884, C.J. Mitchell bought at sheriffs sale some of the Balfour-Ganier property as a wedding gift to his daughter Amanda Mitchell Ganier.
RC 10A In 1891 Louisa Steavens died and left her 1,050 acres of Mansford land to her three grandchildren; Louisa Leonard Chapin, Marietta Leonard, and Samuel Leonard Jr.
S. Leonard, Jr. and sisters in 1896 sold the 1,050 acres to Albert Caldwell and
W.H. Ward. Caldwell
was a prominent land speculator, soon to become president of The Ashly Co. and
Ward was his partner for several years.
In 1896 Ganier, Gamier, Mitchell and Mitchell sold the 1,436 acre tract
of Mansfield to Caldwell and Ward at sheriff’s sale.
Caldwell sells 1/2 interest in Mansfield, now consisting of 2,810 acres, to Ward
for $325.00 in 1898.
In 1902 W.H. Ward and W.M. Scott agree to a division of properties, wherein Mr.
Scott retains Shirley Plantation; perhaps in anticipation of the approaching
sale of the Ashly Company to the Deltic Corp. of Glasgow, Scotland in 1903.
W.M. Scott sells Morancy Plantation, 1,298 acres, to E.W. Shirk in 1902.
of 1903 shows Mansfield owned by W. H. Ward and Morancy Plantation owned by
W. H. Ward lost Mansfield in 1914 to a Burnett at sheriff’s sale. 2,756
acres for $48,000.
leases Mansfield to Neal T. Holt with equipment and livestock for year 1915 for
Meanwhile, in 1914 E. W. Shirk had sold Morancy to Joseph Shirk.
Joseph Shirk sold Morancy to Clarence Kirschner.
Kirschner sold Morancy in 1917 to Madison Parish natives D. H. Allen and A. E.
In 1917 Allen and Adams sold Morancy to E. Scarborough of Madison Parish,
RC 20 Back
to Mansfield for a while - In 1915, Burnett sold Mansfield back to First
National Bank, Vicksburg, with all equipment and supplies. 2,756 acres for
RC 22 In 1917 First National sells Mansfield, supplies and equipment, and
stock in Mansford Store to Noel and Noel of Caddo Parish and Madison Parish For
In 1919, Noel and Noel sold Mansfield's 2,756 acres to John J. Henry and
Joe Weinberg of Greenville. MS for $ 196,000
In 1920 Weinberg and Henry sold Mansfield to Mansford Planting Co for $270,000,
with the Mansford Store valued at $15,000. This company consisted of Weinberg
and Henry owning 95 shares each and Frank Harbisson, their bookkeeper, and John
B. Stone, their lawyer, owning 5 shares each.
However, in 1921 Mansford Planting Co sold back to Noel and Noel for
In 1926 Noel and Noel sold Mansfield to A. W. Farney of Kansas City, MO
With the1927 floodwaters just drying up, A. W. Farney sold Mansfield,
2,756 acres, to C. T. MacNeille for $65,000.
MacNeille bought Morancy from E. E. Scarborough, 1,000 acres for $4,000.
Morancy's acreage had decreased due to encroachment of the River;
down from 1,298 acres in a period of some 100 years.
In November 1947 R. A. MacNeilte sold to A. O. Logue of Vicksburg 4,204
acres for $156,000, consisting of Mansfield. Mansford, and Morancy Plantations,
to be known hereafter as "Mansford"; perhaps named for a ford across a
bayou that originally drained floodwaters from Clingaman Lake. A small bridge
was built over the bayou when the road was a section of the original road to
In 1962, Logue sold 458 acres to H. N. Pippen, SE sec 32, and S 1/2 of
sec 30 and 31.
In December 1963 Logue sold 23/26 interest in Mansford for $530,769 with
usufruct of 3/26 interest to Wortham and Evans of Houston, Texas.
RC 36 May 1965 Wortham and Evans sold Mansford to Albert Prevot, a French
national for $1,015,926.
December 1971, Prevot sold Ralph Loe 230 acres (located in NW corner of
Mansford, sec 23 and 24) for $385 per acre.
January 1972, Prevot and Roger Dupree signed a lease purchase agreement
for 155 acres on Mansford's north line in sec 24, with an actual purchase in
April 1975 for $60,450. See RC 20.
Meanwhile - March 1972, Prevot sold the remaining acres of the west side
of Mansford to Paul, Larry, Jimmy, and Billy Marsh 1,179 acres
RC 42 In 1972 Prevot sold to Jack Williams and Charles Rundleman of
Missouri all of Mansford east of US Hwy 65 less the 25 or so acres sold to Mo.
Pacific R. R. in 1902. Some 1,765
Again in 1972. Williams and Rundleman sold to Max Williams Mansford east.
Legal descriptions of Marsh Bros, purchases of Mansford west in January
1973 are located in Book 30 in the Madison Parish Clerk's Office.
April 1975, Prevot to Dupree, 155 acres
July 1976, Max Williams to the John Terral family, 1,737 acres of
Mansford, east of US Hwy 65
Dupree to Larry Marsh and Jimmy Marsh, N. line cuts east of US Hwy 65.
MACNEILLE was probably the longest-tenured owner of Mansford; in that from 1927
to 1947 he had a successful enterprise which included a large dairy, row crops,
and a producing 120 acre pecan orchard, plus a thriving general mercantile
From 1943 to 1948 the orchard was run by J. J. Kuhn who had some years'
experience with the renowned Sam James Orchard at Mound. When Mr. MacNeille sold
to Mr. Logue in 1947, Kuhn went to work for Mr. Stubbs at the Stubbs Orchard in
Monroe, where he remained until the death of Mr. Stubbs. Kuhn died in 1959
leaving a lasting legacy at Mansford with his grafting of the Mahan variety
pecan to a great many of the trees. He is also to be remembered for his work as
refuge warden on the Singer Wildlife Refuge where he guided an expedition to
study the rare black wolf and several expeditions to study the near-extinct
Ivory Billed Woodpecker in the 1930's. This study fostered a movement that
resulted in the creation of the Tensas River National Refuge.
Hermione Museum has some material donated by Steve Mauton, whose father worked
at Mansford in 1929-1932 and perhaps longer, that indicates R. R. Taylor was
General Manager with C. M. Bridges as dairyman, succeeded in 1929 by E. G.
McMillan, with a Mr. Garrison as bookkeeper. They did a large amount of business
with Allen's Dairy of Vicksburg, as well as local sales
managers were Albert Paxton, Robert Hoseman and Frank Knox, all sons-in-law of
Logue. Logue was no doubt impressed by MacNeille's dairy, having been a
life-long dairyman himself. There were three sizable dairies in this period. F.
M. Logue, Archie Logue and W. A. "B" Logue each had a dairy. Frank
Knox saw to the row crops and beef cattle. In the early fifties they opened a
modern creamery in Tallulah with delivery of dairy products to the home.
Logue sold to neighbor H. N. Pippen 458 acres on south side of the place.
Logue sold Mansford to Wortham and Evans, Houston Texas oil and insurance
executives. In 1965 they sold to Albert Prevot, a French national. Prevot
brought in Buddy Johnson as farm manager.
renters under Wortham & Evans and under Albert Prevot include Billy Hodge,
Troyce Dukes, James Oscar and Russell Thornton, the Marsh twins (Joe &
Jeff), Marsh Farms, JA Dupree and Roger Dupree, Charles Vining and Teddy Oliver.
Others may be possible.
1972 Prevot sold the east side to Jack Williams and Charles Rundleman of
Missouri who in turn sold to Max Williams of East Carroll. In 1976 Max sold to
the Terral family of Lake Providence.
Dupree fulfilled his option on the north line cuts and got title, he sold this
155 acres to Larry and Jimmy Marsh.
So, Mansford is again divided, but now between two families that love the land and appreciate it for what it is - a landmark of Madison Parish "at the Mansford curve".
[ii] Arpent - Old French measurement of approx. 5/6 acre and of an oblong or irregular shape to insure all an access to the river.
To date I have not been able to find out when
the pecan orchard was planted or by whom. Also, the location of the Mansford
Mercantile Store has not been found.
|2a||1869||Batchelor & Batchelor to Steavens||Bk
G, p 234
|5||1875||Madison Parish Plantations & Owners||unknown
|5a||1882||Steavens to Louisa Steavens||Bk
L, p 675
|6||1884||Ganier & Balfour to Mitchell||Bk
L, p 413
|10a||1891||Steavens to grandson Leonard Jr||Bk L, p 8-12|
Leonard Jr to Caldwell & Ward
|Bk L, p 8-12|
|8a||1895||AS Caldwell to WH Ward, 1,436 acres||Bk L, p 376 (½ int)|
|9||1896||Judgement to Caldwell & Ward||Bk L, p 417|
|8||1896||Ganier & Ganier, Mitchell & Mitchell to Caldwell & Ward, 1,426 acres, Mansford||Bk
L, p 413
|11||1896||Sam Leonard Jr Caldwell & Ward||Bk L, p 402|
|15||1898||AS Caldwell to WH Ward, 2,810 acres||Bk M, p 122 (½ int)
|17a||1902||WH Ward & WM Scott divide property||Bk N, p 433|
|17b||1902||WM Scott to EW Shirk, Morancy||Bk N, p 112|
|17||1903||Map shows Mansford - Ward and Citizens Bank Owning Morancy||1903
|18||1914||WH Ward to Burnett via Sherriff Sale, 2,756 acres, Mansfield $48,000||Bk Q, p 627
|17c||1914||EW Shirk to JH
Shirk. 1,298 acres, Morancy
|Bk Q, p 503|
|17d||1915||Shirk to Kirschner, Morancy||Bk R, p 598|
|19||1914||WT Burnett lease to Neal Holt, 1 year||Bk Q, p 630|
|17f||1917||Kirschner to Adams & Allen, Morancy||Bk R, p 529|
|17e||1917||Adams & Allen to EE Scarborough, Morancy Plantation||Bk R, p 548|
|20||1915||Burnett to First National Bank Vicksburg, 2,756 acres $1.00||Bk Q, p 560|
|22||1917||FNB Vicksburg, to Noel & Noel, Mansfield||Bk R, p 563
|24||1919||Noel & Noel to JJ Henry & Joe Weinberg, Mansfield, 2,756 acres $196,500||Bk S, p 395|
|25, 26||1920||Weinberg & Henry sold Mansfield to Mansford Planting Co. for $270,000||Bk T, p 407|
|27||1921||Joe Weinberg sold Mansford Planting Co back to Noel & Noel for $111,000||Bk T, p 565|
|29||1925||Noel & Noel
sold Mansfield tc AW Farney for $100,000
|Bk W, p 71|
|30||1927||CT MacNeille bought Mansfield from Farney, 2,756 acres $65,000|
|31||1927||CT MacNeille bought Morancy from EE Scarborough, 1,000 acres $4,000||Bk W, p 467|
|33||1947||MacNeille sold Mansford, Mansfield & Morancy to AO Logue of Vicksburg, 4,204 acres $156,000||Bk KK, p 561|
|34||1962||Logue to HN Pippen, 458 acres||Bk 1, p 80|
|35||1963||Logue to Wortham & Evans, Mansford $530,000||Bk 6, p 476|
|36||1965||Wortham & Evans sold Mansford to Albert Prevot of France||Bk 12, p 417|
|39||1971||Prevot sold SR Loe 230 acres, the northwest corner||Bk 27, p 188
|41||1972||Prevot to Paul, Larry, Jimmy & Billy Marsh all of west side except Loe's 230 and Dupree's 155||Bk 28, p 662|
|42||1972||Prevot to Jack Williams and Chas Rundleman, Mansford east of Hwy US 65 less RR ROW of 1902||B 27, p 178|
|43||1972||Jack Williams and Chas Rundleman to Max Williams, Mansford east of Hwy US 65||Bk 28, p 438|
|44||1973||Legal Description of Marsh Brothers purchase of Mansford
|Bk 30, p 39, 45, 51, 58|
|45||1975||Prevot to Roger Dupree, 155 acres north line cut||Bk 36, p 318
|46||1976||Max Williams to Terral Farms, east side Mansford, 1,737 acres||Bk 38, p 889|
|47||1975||Dupree to Jimmy & Larry Marsh; 155 acres north line cut||Bk 36, p 323|
1903 Land Ownership Map showing Extent of Ashly Company Holdings (Red)