John A. Bedingfield and Lurana Elizabeth Martin Bedingfield
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J.A. and Lue Bedingfield; courtesy of Paul Abell
Photo courtesy of Paul Abell

John and Lurana Bedingfield
Rose Spray
Birth Date:   Aug 14, 1856       Birth Date:   Jul 3, 1859
Death Date: Aug 30, 1946     Death Date: Jan 29, 1945



The Bedingfield's were married in Stephens County in July, 1879, where both had lived for several years. Mrs. Bedingfield was Lurana Elizabeth Martin, who was born in Thomasville, Oregon County, Missouri, in 1959. Her mother died at the beginning of the Civil war. She was an only child and lived with an uncle during the war, then was brought to Texas by relatives who settled in Stephens County. (Note from Paul Abell: Lue’s parents were Frances "Frankie" Parrack and Isaac "Ike" Martin. Ike was killed during the War Between the States and Frankie died shortly after, leaving Lue to be raised by her Uncle Bolin Parrack. He was a circuit Baptist preacher. His wife was Rebecca. They came to Texas from Oregon Co, MO when Lue was young.)

J.A. Bedingfield was born in Georgia, but his family moved to Texas when he was three months old. He lived in Anderson during war. He was old enough at that time to remember "scratching ticks with corn cobs wet with kerosene." Then he added, "My family moved to Collin County, where I got acquainted with chiggers, and after that just came on west, following cattle. I never ran Indians, though they were there when I first started moving. When Stephens County began to settle, I was a clerk in the election to organize the county. It was a good country. Believe it or not, turkeys came in the fall to eat the acorns, one hundred in a herd. People came in and shot them, dressed them and sold them at Dallas. It was a fine place for hogs. I went with a man over into Palo Pinto and got a hundred white brood sows on the halves. We couldn´t keep all the pigs marked; everybody had white hogs. Run about two years, then in winter they died in piles as there were no acorns. There were no strings on me then. I worked for cattlemen, then got a team of six oxen and two wagons from a fellow on the halves. Took a month to make the trip to Ft. Worth or Dallas."

Mrs. Bedingfield´s eyes twinkled as she said, "Well, it was not long before you had some strings tied on you. And now we have been married sixty-three years the past 23rd of July."

With their growing family they started out from Stephens County in 1892 to go out to the West Texas Plains. It was in February that their covered wagon climbed the Cap Rock south of Emma, Crosby County. Bedingfield laughed at his wife´s dislike of the Plains fuel, cow chips. Their first stop in the county was at a mill where cowboys were at work, and the cowboys gallantly piled up a generous supply of "prairie anthracite" for the newcomers´ cooking fire. But Mrs. Bedingfield refused to get out of the wagon and cook dinner, her husband recalled.

Bedingfield traded a horse for a claim northwest of Emma and put up a temporary shelter.

"I was never lonely or afraid," said Mrs. Bedingfield of those homesteading days.

She recalled various highlights from the routine of early days; "Once my husband had to make a trip and the children and I were alone when a high north wind broke the ridgepole of the tent. I fixed it with a bed slat. When we got our dugout, I cut up the tent and made Bub and the boys some pants of the heavy duck. They were white pants tho," she laughed. "Once during a blizzard our cattle drifted off and our twelve-year-old boy went to look for them. We tied rags to his feet. He overtook the cattle near Lubbock and drove them back that night. We knew the horse would bring them home. That same horse would take the children to school to Emma some six miles away and bring them back even in a blizzard. Our buggy did not have a top and in the worst weather our children would put the lines on the dash, cover themselves with a wagon sheet and trust to Old Babe."

"No, I never was lonely or afraid, but I liked for folks to come by. The freight road passed our house, so we saw folks right often, and the cowboys, too, would stop for buttermilk."

Source: "Through the Years, A History of Crosby County, Texas" by Nellie Witt Spikes and Temple Ann Ellis ©1951, page 375
Lurana Elizabeth (Aunt Lue) Martin and John Arlando (Uncle Bub) Bedingfield lived on the Gonzales River in Stephens Co. There would often be overflows on that river and everyone would go to the mountains. Sometimes they would just go down to the cowpen and climb the fence in order to get into one of the big trees. At this time the Bedingfields only had three children. Rufus, John, and Maude. After a few of these experiences, Uncle Bub decided this was no place to raise children. so, in 1892, Uncle Bub, Aunt Lue, Rufus, John, and Maude, along with the two younger ones, Frank and Paul, set out for the West Texas Plains. It was in Feb. when the two covered wagons climbed the cap south of Emma, after a long 14 day journey from Stephens Co. At that time, the land only cost a dollar per acre with 40 years to pay. When they got to Emma, they traded a horse to Joe McDowell for a claim six miles northwest of town.

Maude, now 92 years of age, can still remember some of the ways children entertained themselves. In those days they would catch butterflies and grasshoppers. If they could catch enough grasshoppers, they would go to the barn and make grasshopper-mud pies.

In 1893 Uncle Bub decided to use his wife´s name for his brand. It was "LUE"

Rufus was killed by a horse when he was a young man studying medicine. Frank married Laura Smith. John married Ethel Mickey. Laura and Ethel were cousins. Paul married Layton Hinson, the daughter of Needham (Uncle Bud) Hinson, owner of Hinson Hotel in Ralls. Paul and John had the first furniture and hardware store in Ralls. Maude, the only daughter, became the bride of Claude Scott. They resided in Lorenzo for many years.

Source: "Crosby County History Book 1876-1977", Crosby County Historical Commission, ©1977

Others Researching This Family

Paul C Abell [pcabell at rainbowtel dot net]

Burial Site

Site Map Location

Headstone Photograph, Inscription & Sentiments

tombstone photo

Additional Photos & Documentation

1900 Census showed the following children:
Rufus A. Bedingfield
John S. Bedingfield
Maude T. Bedingfield
Frank M. Bedingfield
Paul Bedingfield

J.A. Bedingfield, courtesy of Paul Abell
John A. Bedingfield, courtesy of Paul Abell


None submitted to date

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