Tabitha Clementine Kenady Ham was born 20 Sept. 1859 in Mississippi. She was the daughter of Robert L. Kenady and Jemima Clementine Rawls – and she was my husband’s great great grandmother. Some researchers claim her name was “Tobitha” ; however, I have not seen any records using this name. Tabitha was very often referred to as “Tabbie.”
Tabitha’s father, Robert Kenady, immigrated to the United States from England. Nothing is known about him other than the oral family story that states, “he was called out onto the porch and shot to death.” In another version of this story it is said that, “he was accidentally shot and killed in his own backyard.” Suffice it to say, we don’t know how or why….but he apparently lost his life to a gunshot wound.
Tabitha was brought to Johnson County, Texas when she was a young child by her mother, Jemima Clementine Rawls (Mamie) and her step-father Jim M. Thomason. Tabitha had one brother, Norman. Tabitha also had a half sister named Jessie Thomason Ballard.
Tabitha married Robert Montgomery Ham on 1 July 1875 in Johnson County, Texas – near Cleburne. The couple raised a large family and lived in Johnson County until they relocated to Kaufman County, Texas around 1900. Shortly after the death of her husband in 1905, Tabitha relocated to Brown, County, Texas, where she lived until her death on 3 Feb 1939.
Brownwood Bulletin (not dated): Mrs. T. C. Ham – Funeral arrangements have not been completed for Mrs. T. C. Ham who died this morning at 11:10 o’clock at the home of her daughter, Mrs. F. M. Puckett, 1002 Melwood Avenue. Mrs. Ham was born September 20, 1859, in Mississippi. A resident of Brown County for thirty years and a member of the Nazarene Church for twenty years. Mrs. Ham has lived a useful Christian life. Survivors are her children: Mrs. Puckett, W. N. Ham of Corpus Christi, Mrs. Ora Ward of Tyler, Robert Ham of El Paso and S. D. Ham of Brownwood; also a number of grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Austin-Morris Funeral Home is in charge of the funeral arrangements which will probably be held some time tomorrow.
Tabitha is laid to rest in Greenleaf Cemetery in Brownwood, Brown County, Texas.
As a side note, the oral family story of Tabitha Ham, includes the contention that she had a cousin whose name was Charles Goodnight. Goodnight was a famous cattle rancher of the American West. If there is such a connection between Tabitha and Goodnight – I haven’t found it yet !